Often people tell me that they are doing “poorly”. They don’t have any diagnosis and can’t identify a reason for their malaise. This situation can go on for days, weeks or even longer. When I question them and offer suggestions, many reply “I know but I don’t want to do that”.
Sometimes in life, we don’t want to do the very things that will improve our lives or just find self-care to be too boring to be practiced consistently
Following are some things that, when accepted and embraced, will take you to a better place in your life:
- Sleep to feel rested. Problems usually occur when individuals do not have a regular routine and end up sacrificing sleep time. Humans like consistency and having a set bedtime in a comfortable environment is therefore important.
- Eat nutritionally and regularly. Your body is a complex machine that requires fuel to function properly.
- Exercise in a manner that you enjoy – otherwise you will give up the practice. One of the best ways to improve your stamina is to walk. You don’t need expensive equipment or memberships to do this!
- Interact with positive people who will encourage you. If you don’t know anyone like this, no problem. There are many who offer programs, blogs or musical concerts on the internet that you can enjoy. Also talk to people who you don’t know and find at least one new friend!
- Think about what you want, not what you don’t want. Your mind is like a computer that gives you what you talk about. When you are constantly rehearsing your troubles, the brain has little to work with except trouble. Try soothing yourself and using dialogue that you might use with a scared or discouraged child. After all, there is a child in each of us!
And some things to avoid:
- Taking on too much – Remember the saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day”? Limit your stress by having a schedule that is reasonable and achievable. Make a list and divide tasks into A-B-C. “A” Items are things that are time sensitive and must be done first. “B” items are done when the “A” is completed. “C” have the least priority and, in fact, don’t really ever need to be done.
- Focusing on past hurts – Yesterday is gone. Try to glean lessons from what has happened but don’t allow yourself to be trapped by what you can’t change.
- Worrying about tomorrow – When you hear yourself saying “What if….” realize that you are creating problems for yourself. Worry is just a way of creating negative fantasies that will likely never occur. Better to focus on today where you have choices and more control.
- Consuming too much internet, world news, caffeine, alcohol and sugar – Mind and body work together so it is important to watch what you are consuming. A little bit of anything can be stimulating but too much will drag you down.
- Blaming others – Each of us is responsible for our own choices, happiness and well-being. Better to look in the mirror, get honest with ourselves and then make a plan to improve our situation than to keep searching for a scapegoat!
You’ve probably realized that the theme of this article is that life is a series of choices which we each make for ourselves. We are who we are today because of the choices we have made up until now.
Take some time this week to think about each of the ten items above and make a plan based on what you discover!
Remember, in the future you will be the person who resulted from the choices you are making today. Make good ones!