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Kaizen is 'continuous improvement' and is a popular subject among businesses and managers. Kaizen means that the best way to affect significant change in an organization is to encourage lots of small, incremental changes that can improve workflow, profit margins, and everything else. By continually improving in small ways, you can create change throughout your whole business, resulting in much more efficient and effective operations.9410126664?profile=RESIZE_400x

But kaizen works best when it is applied at the individual level. In other words, if you can help your staff work better on their own and improve the way they approach problems and their regular workload, you can make your entire organization more effective. A chain is as strong as its weakest link, and a business is the sum of its employees.

If you try to come from above as management and enforce continuous improvement, then the chances are that it won't go well. Your staff might be resistant to minor changes, and you might be too far removed from the process to see where the problems are occurring or where things need to be improved.

On the other hand, if you encourage your team to improve themselves, they will be far more motivated and be able to make changes that affect what they're capable of and how much they're getting done.

So how do you encourage this continuous change in your team?

The Environment

The solution is to give your staff more space and provide them with the environment and the tools they need to improve continuously.

What this means, first and foremost, is that you should create a blame-free environment. Second, this means that your team should feel comfortable trying new methodologies and systems without thinking that you're going to punish them if their new ways of working don't work as well as they should have.

Giving your staff a sense of ownership over their work is also an important step that will motivate them to be better, as is making sure that you aren't micromanaging them to the point where there is no flexibility.

Finally, get your team to monitor and report on their performance and show you how profits or satisfaction are increasing. Again, this shouldn't be used to apply pressure, but monitoring metrics will get the feedback to see what works and what doesn't.

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Whether we do good or bad, people will always talk; what matters the most is what you choose to listen to and why you choose to listen to it. Basing our decision-making on what people will say is no way to live because that means you can easily be swayed. We all want to be considerate; we want to make our loved ones proud and happy, and we do not want to be known as selfish, but where do we draw the line. We sacrifice so much and miss out on life because other people’s opinions about our lives matter. Think of all the things you have wanted to do, but you never got around to doing because of the fear of being judged and having people talk about you. So do you and stop worrying about what others think of you.9386412072?profile=RESIZE_400x

Being you sounds easy on paper, but you need to know who YOU are for it to work. Being the you that is an individual and not affected by groupthink, the you that is passionate about being alive and living life on your terms, is not easy. You need to define who you are and what you think your purpose is in the world and cancel out the noise that comes from other people. Once you know exactly who you are and what you want out of life, it becomes easy to do you. If you listen to everyone’s opinion of who you are supposed to be, you will drown in the river of confusion that becomes your life. On the journey to doing you, you will need to look into why other people’s opinions have a hold over you. Introspection will shed light on why you do not want to be your person. It will bring to light the co-dependence and all the things that you are afraid to face.

We all want to be there for our loved ones, we want to be called a good friend, sister, or partner, and we dishonor ourselves for our loved ones. We forget about the resentment that comes with trying to please everyone but ourselves. We forget about the regret that follows and how that will rob us of peace of mind. We spend so much time focusing on the external noise that constantly tells us what needs to be done, and we forget about the internal roar that we notice when it is too late. The problem with focusing on the external noise is you forget about yourself. You forget about your needs and wants and what you should be doing with your life. You then get external noise and no peace when you are on your own because you are neglecting yourself.

Peace. That is the price we pay for forgetting about ourselves and focusing on other people’s opinions of us. Many of us are not even familiar with what peace is because we have never experienced it. From the time we are teenagers, we want to fit in, we want people to accept us, and we do what is necessary to fit in. We move in packs being the social beings we are, and try to follow the status quo. We toe the line, and often the opinions of other people are what will imprison us.  Liberation from these prisons is where we need to free ourselves. The price we pay for peace is simply being our most authentic selves and following our heart’s desire. When we focus on ourselves, we break the cycle of turning into the people whose opinions imprison others.

People who spend their time worrying about what others think of them become people who talk about others. When you spend your time people-pleasing and do not live your life, you focus on people who live their lives. Then you begin to judge people for doing what you failed to do, which is to live life on your terms. People that are courageous enough to take up space in the world and do what matters to them are a bother to you, and you talk about them. How dare they go against the grain and forge their paths. You look at these people with contempt.

The cycle must be broken. We must focus on living our lives and free other people from our opinions. Spend time doing what you love with people that you care about and do not become a stumbling block in other people’s journey. To aspire to live a peaceful life and mind your own business should be your motto in life. Focus on your own life and ensure that the loudest voice in your life is your voice.

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Get Rid Of Regrets

Peace is a beautiful thing. There is nothing as satisfying as being at peace with yourself and the decisions that you have made. However, regrets have a way of snatching that peace right from under us and breeding a life of torment and suffering. Regrets usually seep in when we go over our lives and our day, and we begin to analyze the decisions that we have made. We realize that some may not have been the best decisions, and years have gone by, but that gnawing feeling won't leave you alone. "I should not have…" is the statement we all say to ourselves sometimes, and that steals our joy and peace. To live a peaceful life, regrets must be done away with. It is not an easy process but one that can be done.9382284686?profile=RESIZE_400x

Make amends.

We all say things we do not mean or do things we regret at some point one way or another. However, find the person and make amends for the thing you regret. This is the simplest way to get rid of regrets. For example, as a parent, you yell at your child unnecessarily, we have been there, and the guilt and the shame start eating at you. The best way out of the situation is to make amends. Making amends allows you to see things from that person's perspective, and one can be forgiven, and sometimes one may not be forgiven, but the fact that you owned up and made an effort to make amends will bring you peace.

Regret is not only in how we treat people but also in the opportunities we let go of. You are offered an opportunity, but because of fear, you do not take the opportunity. Now you are regretting not taking the chance. Call up that person, you may get a second chance. The challenge most of us face is that we shy away from making the call because it is embarrassing, or that it seems like we are begging and it is somewhat beneath us. This is the reason regrets go on for so long.

The past belongs in the past, but the future is yours to have

The best way to get peace and get rid of regrets is to leave the past right where it belongs, in the past. Make an effort to move on with your life the best way your know-how. Look for other opportunities, meet other people and work on those things. Rehashing the past will not in any way change it. It will just frustrate you more. Thus it is better to leave things as they are and forge a new path going forward. Regrets are usually a thing of the past. The best way to let them go is to focus on the here and the now. Living in the present means actively living out your best life despite what happened in the past. Being at peace or choosing peace does not mean that you do not feel bad if it concerns something you did and regret. Choosing peace means you are willing to give yourself another chance at life and not allowing what you did to steal your joy. This does not negate that you feel awful about your actions. It does not mean that you do not seek forgiveness. It means that you can still feel terrible and seek forgiveness and that you desire a life without regrets.

If you cannot change something, change how you think about it

More often than not, the way we remember things is not always how things have played out. We remember things according to our emotions, the way we see and view things, our belief systems, and so many other social constructs. Ever been there where an issue gives you sleepless nights until you see that person or call them to apologize, and they tell you there is nothing to apologize for because they did not see things the way you did. Well, this is the same with regrets. You may beat yourself up for making a particular decision, yet it was not that big a deal. Instead of beating yourself up for being human, why not choose to think of yourself in a more kind and forgiving manner? Look for the silver lining in the dark cloud. Understand that everything, either good or bad, happens for a reason, and good or bad is only how you see things. If you saw things differently, the outcome may surprise you. 

In closing, peace is good for the soul, and we all deserve to live a peaceful life. Part of being human is that we will all make mistakes at one point, but punishing yourself by carrying the burden of regret does not help any situation. If there is a chance to make it right, do. If not, choose to move forward with your life without the burden of regret. Being regretful is not synonymous with being sorry for your actions. It's a burden that you can put down and still remorseful about your actions. So, do what you can to get rid of regrets and get some peace.

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Serenity is every person's dream. But if you asked me about anything related to it a couple of years ago, I would never have known how to answer adequately. It was only when something huge hit me in recent years that I understood the value of mental health and inner peace. After that, I was left with no other choice but to survive. After trying every trick I could think of, I realized that the way I felt had more to do with my mindset than anything else. I had to change the narrative that was repeatedly replaying in my head, and I can tell you that power was born the day I made that decision.9382096283?profile=RESIZE_400x

I must say, though, mental issues are not the easiest to deal with. It takes time for many people to come to terms with various situations or life experiences and be at peace. Whatever the reason you are reading this, remember that you owe yourself a great life, and it begins with inner peace. Developing it is up to you.

Why is it essential to develop inner tranquility?

Life can never live up to our idea of being perfect, and we sometimes find ourselves in situations we have no clue how we got into. Sometimes we have dreams, but things do not go according to the exact plan. Even then, someone who has learned how to develop and maintain inner peace will find a way to keep themselves from losing their mind. You learn to enjoy life through it all or accept situations that would otherwise break you. Inner tranquility is like medicine to the soul. Not only does it shield you from being hurt by others. It also protects you from hurting yourself. Having it means that you are mentally stable and can approach situations with positivity. However, this does not mean you do not experience anxiety and the likes. But, you know how to keep it from consuming you.

You can use the following tips to develop inner tranquility

  1. Affirmation - If you think the grass is greener on the other side of the street, start watering your own lawn. Russ Lipari
  2. Feed your mind positivity – do not entertain negative thoughts and do not pay attention to negative words. Be careful what you listen, read, and watch. Those are the things we often use to form opinions about ourselves and the world around us.
  3. Keep good company – surround yourself with positive and supportive people who will help you push forward. This does not mean you have to find perfect people because you will never meet such. However, you need people who will be there for you in good and bad times. Sometimes they will forget the same words they used to help you find strength and will need you to repeat the same words to them. As you do that, you are affirming those words and engraving them into your heart.
  4. Stop comparing yourself to others – admiring others and learning from them is good. Just do not compare yourself to them. It could make you feel like your dreams are delaying, or you have failed, among other things. It can also make enemies for you and divert you from the right path due to the pressure to do better than the next person.
  5. Let go of the past – your past mistakes and all the disappointments-let them go. Holding on to things you cannot change only serves as a reminder of the pain you have experienced and keeps you reliving that painful experience. Instead, give your current life and dreams the much-needed attention so much that you won't have time to revisit your past.
  6. Do not make everything about you – you are not the center of everything that happens under the sun. It would be best if you understood that. What affects you affects others too. Try to listen to other people and be understanding. This will help you understand that even the bad things others say about you and their attitude have nothing to do with the person you are or what you are doing. People have their problems and weaknesses. Therefore, at some point, you will be a victim of uncontrolled emotions arising from those problems and defects. Do not let others define you, and do not give room to their negativity.
  7. Celebrate all your victories – appreciate all your wins, including the smallest ones. It will help you realize that your life has not only been a series of misfortunes and lack. This can give you hope when going through difficult times and doubts.
  8. Whatever your hands find to do, do it with all your heart – do your best in all your duties. This will keep you from regretting missed opportunities and wasting chances.
  9. Be easy on yourself – forgive yourself, do not put yourself under pressure, and get some rest. They say slow and steady wins a race.
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Many people believe that inner peace is a myth. Maybe that is because there is too much noise around in the actual world for one to meditate or engage in activities that modern media advocates for when seeking peace. They all seem like a luxury we cannot afford to spare time for. We are in a hurry to achieve after all.9344206671?profile=RESIZE_400x

Yet, if we are not deliberate about discovering tranquility, we risk being swallowed up by the busyness of life. If we are not active about bringing calm to the world where ‘fast’ is the order of the day and patience is scarce, do we not become vulnerable to frustration and stress? 

Peace is the most incredible response we can have to situations that put pressure on us. It is the way we maintain sanity amid chaos. Through peace, we bring calm to circumstances that call for frustration.

Unfortunately, the external environment that confronts us today is too chaotic to bring peace without participation from within us. When you turn on the news, the headlines do not encourage any sense of calm. Neither does social media with its superficiality. Add the stress of the different workspaces we are part of and the inevitable clashes with well-intending loved ones, and you realize that there is little hope for peace to come from outside. 

We are our sources of peace because we can build it from inside. While we have external agents that encourage peace- such as a healthy working environment or supportive social connections- true peace is nurtured within. We draw it out when we come across situations that try our patience. It is an inner peace that allows you to walk away from a clash with your impossible boss or that holds you back when you would rather engage in a screaming match with a spouse or family member. Inner peace keeps you from being buried alive by hardships. It allows you to draw on calm when you would rather resort to the default human reaction of anger, frustration, or worry.

Introspection plays a considerable role in bringing peace.

To introspect is to take a journey within yourself to discover a lot about what makes you who you are. When you examine yourself and how you deal with stressful situations, it helps you control your emotions and reactions. Introspection offers you the opportunity to discover what triggers panic and uncertainty and what makes you calm.

‘Developing clarity within yourself improves self-assessment, decision-making, and overall happiness. Rather than reacting in the heat of the moment, you can act with understanding, calm, and wisdom.’ G. Razzetti. 

We play a role in every adverse situation we encounter. Sometimes, we are even to blame because of our actions or lack thereof. Often we may even be unaware that we are creating sticky situations that will haunt us later. Other times, we are victims of the actions of others. Either way, we are participants who either contribute to the situation or react to it. Introspection allows us to step away and examine the part we play.

Let us say that you clash with your boss over a misunderstanding. The default reaction is to go on the defensive and point out that your boss was not paying attention. Your boss may feel you are challenging them, and it escalates into an argument. However, when you draw on your inner peace and introspect, you may well discover that you could have done better to give a clearer picture to prevent any misunderstanding. That is not to admit guilt for something your boss may genuinely have failed to understand. Instead, it is to examine whether you could have played a role in avoiding the misunderstanding. That interpretation can bring calm to a tense situation as it allows you to respond differently to the scenario.

Introspection is not embarking on a fault-finding mission for every difficult situation you find yourself in. Instead, it examines not only the bad but allows you to look at your successes and your contribution to positive situations in your life. Peace can also come from knowing that you are doing your best. You find the motivation to do better from positive reflections too.

Introspection means noticing more of my inner world, especially as it reacts and responds to external stimuli, whether good or bad. The emphasis on reflection during circumstances helps us approach adversity more calmly and cultivate inner peace in situations that call for the opposite. The decisions you make are based on your approach to hardships, regardless of who authored the mess. An introspection is just a unique approach that allows you to examine whether you can avoid escalating a situation by being kinder and more compassionate to yourself or others. 

Asking yourself hard, thoughtful questions about a situation you find yourself in will allow you to think before acting or speaking. It will save you from explaining yourself after saying the wrong thing in the heat of the moment. It will keep you from condemning yourself or others over mistakes. The practice of regular introspection will nurture peace in any environment, no matter how hostile it seems.

How to engage in introspection.

  • Find a quiet space to reflect. Somewhere that allows you to think without interruption. You could even take a short walk.
  • Ask yourself hard questions about your thoughts, feelings, and responses to specific scenarios. Then, pause and thoroughly think them through.
  • Write your answers down. Be honest. Capturing your responses helps you evaluate your thoughts or feelings.
  • Study your responses and draw a conclusion about your character or behavior in the different circumstances you reflect on.
  • Commit to improving where you need to.

Peace is internal, so you can cultivate it by becoming more self-aware. We spend time understanding our thoughts that allow us to control our response to situations, no matter how negative they are.

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I believe sleep is like a therapy session when we get in a loop to unbuckle all the days' frustrations and trauma. Time to check out from the activity of the day. Just like a restart button to prepare us for tomorrow. When I wake up the following day, I expect to be both mentally and physically awakened. This will give me the right attitude to go through the rest of my day. In meditation, they usually say how one wakes up is a significant factor in deciding how one goes through the day.  A famous Indian author also shared some wisdom on waking up in the morning feeling fresh and energized. 9339655453?profile=RESIZE_400xHis enlightenment was that it's not really about the hours of sleep or the sleep quality. It is our quality of living that determines how peaceful we're feeling each morning rise. He advised that we focus more on enhancing our quality of life than increasing the quantity of sleep we have. When we work hard and take care of our health, we sleep better at night. Appreciating life, exercising, and creating good pre-bedtime routines also affect how peacefully we'll feel waking up in the morning.

Appreciate life

So often, we tend to take life for granted. We start living as if the next day is guaranteed to us. But it is not. Life itself is a gift. The more we get to understand it, we start appreciating it more. Now when we appreciate life, we look at each morning with a different lens of understanding. In such a perspective, we learn to smile with gratitude as we open our eyes to each new day. We're not waking up to stress or lack, but living in the moment with gratitude to what's already there. We should appreciate life more for us to have more peaceful mornings.

Monitor your nighttime routines

Everything we do before bedtime determines the quality of sleep we'll have. Drinking too much water before bed will give us many trips to the bathroom during the night. This will affect our sleep cycle and have us feeling not well-rested in the morning. Certain foods take more time to digest. To avoid feeling bloated and suffering from heartburn, it is advised to eat 4-5 hours before bed.  Drinking caffeinated drinks before bed increases our brain activity. This will keep us tossing and turning for hours after turning the lights off. Smoking is also to be avoided due to the effect of nicotine which increases heart alertness.

Moreover, taking a shower before bed helps increase our quality of sleep. The bedroom's atmosphere or environment can induce better sleep. Sleeping in a cool, quiet, dark room and a comfortable bed is ideal.  Even the color of the bedroom walls is crucial. An hour before bedtime, we should try to do something relaxing. Toxic habits such as falling asleep on the phone or in front of the Tv triggers insomniac behavior. This can alter ones' sleep patterns.

 

Stop hitting the snooze

Waking up gradually to natural light could be a preferred alternative to using an alarm clock. Most people would undoubtedly struggle to do without this tool. However, it has been found that the device has its shortcomings. In some cases, waking up to an alarm clock inflicts sleep anxiety, a rise in blood pressure, heart rate, and even stress levels. The anticipation and worry not to miss a '5am alarm' could promote insomnia. Now instead of having a good nights' sleep and waking up on time, you'll wake up with an adrenaline rush and panic attack. Don't hit the snooze button. The longer we stay in bed, falling in and out of sleep, the more exhausted we'll feel once we get up. Imagine a scenario where you decide to hit the snooze button a couple of times in the morning. Five days later, you then decide you need to wake up on that first alarm sound. In this case, the brain gets confused because you've already disrupted your sleep cycle. You're jumping in and out of your sleep cycle. You could drift off into the first stage of sleep, which is the worst time to wake up, leaving the body in shock. This is known as 'sleep inertia,' which causes that familiar feeling of drowsiness after you wake up. Instead, we should try and wake up at the same time every day naturally.

Exercise and Stretch regularly

Exercising and stretching in the morning is a great way to get us rejuvenated and awake. Regular exercise impacts the release of certain chemicals in our bodies. An increase in Serotonin levels stimulates the brain, activates our vitals, and improves our appetite. When we exercise, our bodies release dopamine and endorphins in our brains that make us feel happy. Stretching too loosens the muscles.

Comprehensively to keep having more peaceful mornings, let us first attain inner peace. In Viggo Mortensen's words, "One of the best pieces of advice I ever got was from a horse master. He told me to go slow to go fast." I think that applies to everything in life. We live as though there aren't enough hours in the day, but we will get it done quicker and with much less stress if we do each thing calmly.

It is not stress that kills us. It is our reaction to it. - Hans Selye

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Peace! just hearing the word itself sends out incredible much-needed vibrations around and within us. All creation, all of humanity need peace, but how can one attain this noble virtue which can make our lives so much more enjoyable and fulfilling?9336506076?profile=RESIZE_400x

Peace is a calm state of being. It is an attitude and culture one can actively cultivate. However, it does not automatically exist. The moment people wake up, a rush of thoughts plunging them into worry and restlessness often attacks them. Just checking our phones and switching on the television introduces us to the reality of the hurting world we live in today. Amidst the inevitable storms of this life, how can one manage to attain peace and be grounded, not constantly being tossed about by the waves of unforeseen challenging events that await humanity every day?

Attitude of peace

In simple terms, attitude is a way of behaving, feeling, or acting towards a particular person or situation. When undeveloped and immature, the usual way of reacting towards our surroundings is often spontaneous or impulsive. Whenever anyone wrongs you or things don't go as expected, it's often easy to immediately respond negatively with feelings of resentment, bitterness, anger, frustration, and impatience. This is usually the norm when an individual has not trained one's mind to be mindfully responsive rather than instinctively reactive. Constantly reacting to things that happen to you on a day-to-day basis in that untrained way can most certainly lead one to have a heavy burden to carry all the time, no matter where you go. 

We are what we think, say, and do

To successfully adapt to our environment and overcome any setbacks that come our way, it is essential to consciously cultivate an attitude of peace. This means one must start mindfully training themselves to develop a peaceful way of thinking, acting, and speaking. If you had gotten used to the attitude of cultivating the ABC mindset, then that becomes who you become. ABC mindset stands for Accusing Blaming and Complaining. Our repeated thoughts, actions, and words form our habits and, ultimately, our character. Hence it is possible to unlearn negative reactive behavioral patterns and reprogram ourselves to being a peaceful person by cultivating thoughts, actions, and words that show an attitude of peace. Actively start practicing a culture of peace in how you behave to enjoy the fruit of peace. Practice certainly makes perfect.

Be open-minded to new or different perspectives

Albert Einstein once said, "There are only two ways to live your life; one is as though nothing is a miracle and the other is as though everything is." Decoding everything that happens to you in a negative light robs you of the much-needed peace you could be cultivating and enjoying with others in your sphere of influence. Focus on the positive. 

It is better to light a candle than curse the darkness- Chinese Proverb 

Most people often urge to point out the shortcomings and faults in a system, person, or situation. But, unfortunately, this often leads to tension, misunderstanding, fights, wrong perceptions, and unintended hurt. Before you know it, the situation would have escalated from bad to worse. Hence to introduce any suggested ways of handling things more fruitfully, it is vital to learn to cultivate peace in dealing with those situations. 

Instead of exposing and calling out shortcomings, a better approach to try first is usually becoming the change you want to see. Then, by showing a good example of how things should be without making others feel demeaned for not doing it right, you can peacefully introduce positive change, which will be gratefully accepted. However, when you try to change things from a place of wrath, frustration, and anger, this closes people's hearts from cooperating willingly and peacefully with you. Which in turn often leads to more harmful and strained relations. Therefore, developing an attitude of peace is key to progress. 

Acknowledge the other person's reality.

Misunderstandings, strife, and broken relationships often prevail when we resist acknowledging and respecting other people's perspectives which differ from our own. Therefore, learning to communicate peacefully through positive dialogue to settle disputes or differences is key to attaining peaceful co-existence with others and developing authentic, relaxed, friendly relations. Without mindfully cultivating this attitude of peace, it is almost impossible to have peace. 

Calm Morning

One of the most beautiful things to witness every day is the gift of waking up to a new day. Waking up to hearing the peaceful, calming songs of happy birds always carefree and ready to take on the world is empowering. Such a calm morning state that nature presents is a blessing we ought to learn to behold and appreciate.

Calm morning routine

Mornings routines are very important. How they unfold often sets the tone for how the rest of our day will most likely turn out. We are more productive when we are calm, our environment is well organized, and our thoughts are also organized. Most chaotic mornings are often due to lack of planning the night before, sleeping too late, waking up to a messy environment, waking up late. Hence to cultivate an attitude of peace and calm in the morning, good habits must be practiced to get there. These include having a good rest, not going to bed before resolving any previous conflicts, starting your day with prayer, meditation, and a glass of room temperature water before eating anything, to name a few. Peace is possible. All we need to do is be the change we want to see.

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If there is anyone who owes you a peaceful life, it is you. If you are waiting for anyone else to come to your rescue and make life better for you, then you will wait forever. It sounds harsh, but the sooner we come to terms with that truth, the better. Name any other person who understands your pain, your choices, your needs, your dreams, and everything about you better than yourself. Name anyone who can control your mind and actions better than you do.9316349278?profile=RESIZE_400x

If you ask yourself the relevance of these things to the topic, the answer still is: we have so much control over what happens in our lives than we realize. We know exactly what makes us cry or smile and the thoughts that pull us back or keep us going. Therefore, we have the power to control the more significant part of our environment. Where we are not able to control what happens around us, we at least can program our minds to deal with it. Creating an atmosphere of peace means creating a safe space for you to run to when faced with challenges. It is not the same as creating a fake world of happiness or running away from problems, as these only leave your issues with no one to attend to them, and they keep piling up. Instead, it is about your ability to remain sane and at peace as you face your problems head-on.

Why is it essential to create an environment of peace in your life problems, and how can you do it?

  1. It is impossible to avoid problems. If you are doing anything with your life, you will run into the unknown, and these are the bumps in the road we need to navigate. Unless you have learned to create an environment of peace, you will most likely spend your short years of life miserable and running away from your problems.
  2. Remaining calm in your life problems puts you in a better position to find the best possible solutions. The opposite will make you look for an easy escape without considering other consequences. You feel as though you are in a desperate position which blurs your view and pushes you to do the first thing that comes to your mind. This can go on to create more problems for you. Peace helps you stay positive.
  3. Creating an environment of peace in life problems keeps you from magnifying your issues. Your problems may not be too bad or without an easy solution, but your lack of stability can cause you to feel helpless and make you panic.
  4. Failing to find peace in your problems makes you vulnerable to manipulations and other schemes from predators. Some people are always ready to exploit those in need, and if you do not stay calm, you could quickly become a willing prey.
  5. Calmly approaching life situations makes you stronger and wiser. You get to know how much you can take as you learn lessons on how to deal with problems and other people. You get to understand what to or what not to do to avoid facing the same problem in the future. More importantly, bravely facing situations makes you brave enough to face more challenging ones.
  6. Learning to be at peace when facing problems preserves relationships and keeps you from making enemies. Remaining peaceful even where you feel you were wronged can keep you from ruining people and your relationships. You learn to handle issues calmly and choose words wisely. As a result, you create strong and meaningful partnerships too.
  7. A peaceful environment in life problems makes you resilient. Obstacles cannot stop you from getting what you want because of your ability to remain sane in situations that would typically break you and instill fear in you. As mentioned previously, giving you a clear view of things and not making rushed decisions help you make calculated moves to keep you moving towards your dreams. Success will be your companion.

Below is how you can create an environment of peace;

Build mental strength – this is more important than physical strength. Without mental strength, you would not have developed physical strength. Mental strength allows you to control your thoughts, including how you process external factors that affect how you view yourself and life in general. You build mental strength by feeding your mind the right things and leaving no room for any form of negativity, among other things. Stay positive.

Build healthy relationships – stay away from toxic people who will make you doubt yourself and the beauty of life. Instead, build strategic relationships that align with who you want to be and surround yourself with supportive people who will also know how to give constructive criticism.

Learn to be content – contentment will help you stay in your lane. It protects you from peer pressure and living other people’s dreams while it enables you to appreciate who you are and what you have. However, this doesn’t mean that you should dream small. Instead, it means that as you dream big and continue to work hard, do not be tempted to think that your dreams are not good enough simply because others are seemingly doing better. The best way to do that is to understand that every individual has their life purpose and interests, and you have your own for a reason. Therefore, do not compare yourself to others. Instead, do the best you can to be the best you can be.

Forgive yourself – understand that it is natural to make mistakes. So forgive yourself for making them, learn, and keep on going forward.

Let go of the past – no matter what happens, you matter. Your failures, losses, and mistakes do not define you. So, given another chance, do not spend it regretting the past or daydreaming about what could have been. Instead, get up, dust yourself off, live and love life.

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Be At Peace With The Past

"Peace begins with you." - Manhee Lee. A good tree bears good fruit. A bad tree bears bad fruit. We can either be happy with the good fruit we see in the various aspects of our lives or be saddened by the rotten fruit we are yielding in the other parts of our lives. The ideal reality we wish to see is us being like a healthy tree planted by the streams of water, which yields its fruit every month, in which the leaves never wither and whatever it does prosper. However, in many cases, attaining that reality is often difficult. How then do we make our lives become like a good tree which bears good fruit in season? How does our past influence us to attain this goal?9310710274?profile=RESIZE_400x

Focus on the tree, not the fruit!

To become like a good tree that bears good fruit in our present and future times, one needs to come to an understanding that the outcome of your life today has been primarily shaped by you. The decisions you made. The ideologies you chose to live by. The events that happened in your past shaped who you became today. How you learned to adapt and respond to situations in your environment produces the fruit you yield. 

In the present, all we see is usually the fruit of what your past generated your present reality to be. We look at our relationship's history, health, goals, socioeconomic status, and we are often not happy with what we see. The immediate response is usually blaming external factors or people instead of focusing on nourishing the tree's roots with self-care. Yes, the past may have exposed you to harsh adverse conditions that led you to be like an unhealthy tree producing unhealthy fruit. However, to live with bitterness and resentment over that reality will only lead to the tree remaining in that harmful situation and eventually dying. 

When we focus on accepting that what happened to this tree happened and yes it wasn't right, l will move on to attending to the tree's needs now. Then, we start to see positive change. Every well-nourished tree automatically bears good fruit. Hence, let our primary focus be attending to the root of the problem rather than treating the symptoms. Be at peace with the past and do what you can now to create the reality you desire. 

Dealing with past trauma

Almost everyone went through different kinds of trauma, including physical, emotional, verbal, domestic, or childhood abuse and trauma. Most of the needs we expect our primary caregivers to provide for us are sadly often unmet in most people's lives. This leaves a generation like we see today and in past decades of people struggling with all sorts of invisible yet visible problems.

These include struggles with an identity crisis, self-worth, low self-esteem, constantly not feeling good enough, perfectionism, and so much more internal turmoil that throws our outer experiences into a roller coaster of chaotic experiences. Ultimately, we can see that even though we are alive in the present, we are also very much attached to the past in a negative way that is no longer serving us. As a result, one will be entangled in all sorts of destructive coping mechanisms that often do not work; in most cases, they lead one to re-living their painful past. 

Face the past, carry the lesson with you forever but not the past!

To evolve into becoming the best versions of ourselves, we all need to face challenges. The attitude in which we embrace is what will determine whether our past will make or break us. To be at peace with the past, one has to decide to attain that peace consciously. The following insights help aid one to be at peace with their past. 

Awareness:

Awareness is the art of being mindful and enlightened about a particular thing. In this case, taking time to understand our past will help one to understand their present reality and take the lessons necessary. In addition, it frees one from being entangled in toxic behavioral patterns due to one's adverse past experiences. 

An example of this can be someone who finds themselves in repeated toxic relationships with partners who end up trampling on them and not serving their needs. This pattern could be due to perhaps growing up not learning how to love yourself. As a result, that person's past influences the individual to have dysfunctional relationships because they lack self-worth and esteem. Hence, it affects every other relationship that person has until they decide to learn to be aware of their past. Once one has the correct diagnosis of the past, they can apply the relevant remedies in the present and be at peace with their past, no longer hostage to re-living the same painful experiences in the present

Forgiveness, letting go, and moving on:

Forgiveness is giving up the hope that the past could be any different. Instead, accepting that it has happened to you. This does not mean accepting that it was okay for it to happen. It simply entails accepting that life will not always go the way we want it to and choosing to acknowledge that fact.

Letting go of the hurt allows one to no longer be a prisoner of the past. It will enable one to move on. Letting go is empowering and helps you be at peace and reserve more energy for investing in your present. Letting go is essential to be at peace with your past. This way, one undoubtedly takes back the power they would have given away to the past events or people still causing them to suffer.

Don't cheat on your future with your past. It's over. Instead, choose peace. You can do it!

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10 Ways To Practice Peace

  1. Loving yourself

"love your neighbor as you love yourself." This is indeed one of the most profound wisdom that can abundantly nourish people's lives when applied correctly. It stems from the understanding that you cannot give what you do not have. The relationship you have with yourself will influence all other relationships you will have, be it with family, friends, significant other, or strangers. It is impossible to love others well without learning to love yourself first. It is also impossible for others to love you or treat you as you ought to be treated until you take the lead and decide to love yourself first.9310473871?profile=RESIZE_400x

  1. Forgiveness

Unfortunately, when one does not forgive others, the same fate befalls them in their relationships. To not be judged, we too should judge not. Forgiveness is choosing to accept what has happened and not letting it continue to have power over you. Unforgiveness robs you day and night of your peace and joy. Forgiveness allows you to let go and no longer be a prisoner of your past. It leads to progress and sustainable peace.

  1. Thinking before you act

Impulsive behavioral patterns often have serious negative consequences. For example, when angry, people often say words they do not mean, costing them their peace and so much more. Rather than acting on the urge to react when things happen immediately, it is wise to take some time. Give yourself time to understand the situation better before reacting. Breath, think, ask questions to ensure you understood correctly, then respond from a place of maturity.

  1. Avoid procrastination

Do not procrastinate to do things tomorrow that can be done today. Procrastination leads to mental exhaustion as the weight of remembering the deadlines and more things that need to be done will keep weighing you down. Just practice saying no to distractions and do what needs to be done on time.

  1. Conflict management

Conflict is inevitable, no matter where you go. Running away from it or pretending that nothing phases you is a recipe for peace deprivation. Instead, take the time to learn how to address conflict with mutual respect peacefully. Choose a suitable time and location to do so. Speak from your heart with logic, love, and consideration when addressing things. Listen compassionately when someone else is sharing their side of the story. End the conversation with a healthy consensus and way forward for both parties involved. Learn to practice sincerely apologizing when you are the one in the wrong.

  1. Discover your true identity and purpose. Dare to live it!

The two most important days in a person's life are the day you are born and the day you discover why. It is undoubtedly one of the biggest tragedies to have lived most of your life not knowing who your Creator created you to be and why. Wholeness and peace are attained when we become enlightened about who we are and why we were created. Hence, it is vital to take the time to acquire that knowledge from your maker to be at peace in this life. Every created thing has a designer. To know it well and use it to the best of its ability, one has to ask the designer and read the manual, then use it for what it was made for. If we can easily do that for our phones, laptops, home appliances, why can't we do it for ourselves?

  1. Prioritize your health and wellness

Sickness can be avoided by actively creating a lifestyle that includes good eating habits, practicing good interpersonal skills, exercising, drinking lots of room tempature alkaline water, having a good rest, amongst many other things. You cannot buy life once it's gone. So prioritize your health and wellness.

  1. Meditation

Meditation helps you to be mindful. It allows you to assimilate deep into your consciousness norms, values, lessons that you need to live by and avoid living a reactive life. There are so many benefits of meditation that you can learn and apply to attain peace.

  1. Paradigm Shift

A paradigm shift is consciously deciding to have a fundamental change in your approach to life. It is getting rid of perceptions, limiting beliefs, and stereotypes that are like a program that runs your life to the extent that it happens subconsciously. Replace negative thoughts with positive thoughts and affirmations and choose to act from a place of mindfulness and maturity.

  1. Cultivating good relationships through spreading a culture of peace

Connection is a primary human need. Without good relationships with people, life becomes a battlefield and a burden. It is essential to practice a culture of peaceful coexistence when living with people—putting forth the effort to understand others and serving them. Adding value to others is critical. A life selfishly lived only haunts the owner. Do good to others as you would want to be done unto you. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude. Tackle challenges one day at a time. You cannot solve all problems in one day. Dare to celebrate life and honor yourself with the gift of peace!

 

Ego says, "Once everything falls into place, I'll feel peace." Spirit says, "Find your peace, and then everything will fall into place."- Marianne Williamson

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Happiness continues to elude many people, not because it does not exist but because they look to the wrong source. Disappointment follows on the heels of every expectation you put on another person or object to make you happy. Peace comes from knowing that you are the only true source of your happiness. 9307750889?profile=RESIZE_400x

‘The greater part of our happiness and our misery depends upon our disposition and not upon our circumstances.’ Martha Washington.

We cannot limit happiness to an emotion that we experience when things are going well. Instead, it is a state of mind that we can adopt. One has to choose to pursue it through their actions. You could go through some of the most troublesome times in your life and still choose to be happy through it all. It does not mean that sadness does not creep in or that you perpetually smile through the pain. Neither does it mean that a state of happiness vanquishes trouble or that overwhelming sense of defeat we sometimes encounter. Happiness makes the most of every season in your life and chooses the positive in the surrounding chaos.

Losing your job will not encourage positivity. There are bills to pay and people to take care of. An option would be to cry at the unfairness of the situation. It does not solve the problem, though. The more you allow negativity to creep in through worry and anxiety, the more unbearable the condition. It affects your mental health and your relationships.

Another option would be to see the loss as a state of transition between opportunities. You could use that time to evaluate your skills and upgrade them so that better opportunities find you well prepared. You can also use that time to follow through on that business idea and look for potential partners and investors. Finally, it could be a season to look into your gifts and talents to start an income-generating project. It is all in the way you choose to perceive it. 

You are ultimately responsible for any state you choose to be in, even after life throws you curveballs. 

Giving such responsibility to another person or material things is to give them too much control over you. To let someone else be your source of happiness is to depend on them. They get to decide when you are happy. You do not want another person dictating how often you are happy. Otherwise, you may never experience true happiness in your lifetime. Neither do you want happiness determined by material possessions as the world dictates today.

Your definition of happiness differs from that of the next person. This is because it is intrinsic. It stems from our internal makeup and what we value. So if another person sees value in something that you do not, already there is potential that you will not be happy with what they choose to prioritize. This is why you should choose happiness on your terms, not on someone else’s. The reason people are so unhappy today is that they continue to look to their friends, family, spouses, or careers for happiness. When these things cannot fill that void, people see a life of doom and misery.

 If you want to experience true peace, define what makes you happy and make it your responsibility to bring that happiness to your sphere.

Taking responsibility for your own happiness.

Know what makes you truly happy.

No one knows you better than you. The more time you spend with yourself, the more you get to see what you enjoy doing and what brings you joy. If you do not make these essential discoveries about these triggers, you will get swept up in other people’s happiness, doing what makes them happy while never achieving that same state.

Do not try so hard to fit in.

Many people struggle so much with the need for acceptance and validation from society. We want to blend in so much that we sacrifice our happiness for a seat at the table. It is frustrating to pretend to be someone else and to force yourself to like what they like. Do not shortchange yourself. Be true to your identity. You will be happier existing as your true, undiluted self. If other people dislike what you bring, find another table with those who appreciate you for who you are.

Never compare your life to someone else’s.

The greatest source of dissatisfaction and unhappiness is the perception that someone else has it better than we do. When we look to the other side and see their greener grass, we become unsettled about our own lives. There is nothing wrong with looking on the other side for inspiration. Success stories should fuel us to work harder. The problem comes when jealousy takes the place of admiration. Accept where you are in life. It is the right place to be at that moment, especially if you are working hard to improve yourself. You need the rags to bear witness to your journey to riches. Your turn will come. Be content in the place you are now.

Be grateful.

Gratitude is a state of mind that allows us to appreciate what we have. While we desire to improve our lives, gratitude allows us to look at what relationships and opportunities we have as a blessing. To cultivate happiness under challenging moments, consider what you have and be thankful for it. An attitude of gratitude is an essential ingredient of happiness.

We cannot avoid tough seasons in our lives. Things may not always go according to plan, and that is okay. When we take full responsibility for our happiness, we control the narrative of the lives we live. Do not give anyone control by making them responsible for what makes you happy. It is a burden only you should bear because no one knows what makes you happy better than you.

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Overthinking is a result of one of the most complex emotions we have to deal with as humans, and that emotion is FEAR. Fear cripples, steals your peace, and leaves you down and out, and it all happened in your imagination. As some have elucidated to mean False Evidence Appearing Real, cripples us by making us worry about something that has not even happened yet. Our minds go into overdrive, worrying and fearing something that has not even taken place. This drives us into overthinking every minute detail, pondering as to what can go wrong and the many ways it can go wrong. Here are some nuggets on how to avoid overthinking and reclaim peace over your life.9307613873?profile=RESIZE_400x

  1. Live one day at a time.

We tend to think and plan about the future so much that we forget that the present is happening. By relegating ourselves now and worrying about the future, we mess it all up before it even happens. Understand that tomorrow is a gift that none of us are promised, so make the most of the time you have today. Going into overdrive thinking about the future does not secure it because the things that will happen tomorrow cannot be controlled. To avoid overthinking, take each day as it comes, see the gifts in what you already have, and trust that things will work out eventually in the end.

  1. Act on your worries.

Overthinking also happens in relationships. We worry about what the other person is thinking, and we stress ourselves trying to figure out a way to make things right or know where their mind is. The best way to learn anything is to ask. Communication will inform you if there is anything to worry about at all. Find out from the person how they feel and take things from there. Overthinking is crippling. Most of us take in the suffering without taking action on the things that are putting our minds into overdrive. Make that call to get clarification, send that email, that text, do whatever you can to try and set your mind at ease instead of just stewing over things.

 

  1. Focus on what you can control

If there is anything that constantly reminds us that we are not in control in a situation where our peace and stillness are dependent on someone else. When you overthink, sometimes nothing can be done about the situation, and this eats away at us further. As difficult as it is, you have to focus on what you can control. You can control your actions and what happens around you. Focus on those things that bring you peace and stillness. In some situations, no matter how much we mull over them, there is no solution in overthinking. Instead, focus on those things that you can control.

  1. Face your fears

As mentioned earlier, overthinking is fueled by your fears. For as long as you do not deal with your fears, they will drive you up the wall into overthinking. For example, most people fear abandonment; thus, they refuse to face the other person fearing that they will be abandoned. Overthinking will kick in, robbing them of their joy and peace, and no matter how much they overthink, the solution can only be found once they confront their fear. Ignoring your fears or brushing them off will not bring peace. The issue can lie dormant for a while, but you are right back where you started when something triggers you. So the best way to avoid overthinking is to deal with your fears before they deal with you.

  1. Find ways to unwind

Overthinking has devastating effects on our mental health. It can make you question your decisions, and you can forget who you are at the core. It is crucial to find ways to remind yourself of who you are so that overthinking does not become your identity. People have different ways to unwind, going to the gym, speak affirmations, run, yoga. No way is better than the other. Just pick one that will remind you of who you are so that you can think clearly and make sound decisions that you are proud of. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Overthinking can lead to more severe conditions such as anxiety, panic attacks, and depression. Thus, nipping overthinking in the bud, choosing the way of peace can improve your overall lifestyle.

 

The solutions suggested here are not easy to do, but anything worthwhile in life takes some effort. However, when you put effort into your mental wellness, you are guaranteed to lead a peaceful life. Of course, this does not mean that you will not face challenges, but that they will not defeat you because you know how to avoid the trap of overthinking.

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Do you feel you are the victim of bad circumstances? Or maybe that your circumstances have a massive effect on your life? If either of these sounds familiar, then it’s time for you to stop letting your circumstances define you and change your attitude so that you can change your life. 9046215858?profile=RESIZE_400x

Your Thoughts Affect Your Attitude 

You may be wondering just how you let your circumstance define you in the first place. This happens because you are thinking negative thoughts about your life because of your perception of what is going on around you. And when you do this, your negative thoughts are reflected in your emotions, actions, and ultimately, your attitude. That’s why the number one way to change your attitude is by changing your thoughts. 

Instead of thinking of the dismal facts surrounding your life, try starting each day with a positive thought and surrounding yourself with positive influences. This will help make your mindset more positive, and in the process,  you may notice that your attitude becomes more positive. 

Your Attitude Affects Your Interactions 

Although you may think that it doesn’t matter what your attitude is like in life, it does. When you have a certain attitude, you also speak and act in a certain way. And others will respond to your words and actions. 

Think of it this way, when you meet someone for the first time and have a negative attitude, they may not want to see you again. But that person could be an important contact to have on the journey to your success, and you just ruined it because of your attitude. This is why it is essential to your success for you to have a good attitude. And if you change your attitude, you’ll be able to change your life. 

Your Environment Is Neutral 

It seems easy to blame your circumstances for what is going on in your life. But your environment, no matter how you look at it, is neutral. It is a blank canvas that you can manipulate any way that you want. 

And you can use your attitude to manipulate this canvas to become anything you want. This means whatever your circumstances may be, you are the artist, and the power to change your life lies in your own hands.

Leave The Past Behind 

If you’ve decided that it’s time to change your attitude to transform your life, as mentioned above, it’s time to think positive thoughts. But beyond just that, it’s also time to leave the past behind. 

This means whatever you may have done, or whatever may have happened to you before, it’s time to forgive so you can move on. You need to know that you are responsible for everything which happens in your life. This means if you want to make your life better, you absolutely can. You don’t need the past telling you who you are or what to do. 

And once you stop thinking about the past constantly, you’ll find that you feel a lot less stressed and ready to face the future which is ahead. 

Overall, taking the leap to stop letting your circumstance define you is difficult. But if you are genuinely committed to changing your attitude, you can guarantee your life will follow. Just remember to watch what you think and how specific thoughts make you act. 

Don’t let your past define you, and instead treat your circumstances as your blank canvas for a new beginning. Before you know it, you will have a new positive attitude and be on your way to becoming the person you want to be.

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People tend to dream big and set high goals for themselves. So many of us spend hours fantasizing about what life would be like if we could get the big promotion, lose weight, or learn a new skill. 9046112661?profile=RESIZE_400x

Unfortunately, people also tend to let negative thinking get in the way of working toward their goals. Have you ever talked yourself out of making some significant life changes or trying to meet a goal because you thought it would be “too hard” to achieve? If so, you’re likely allowing negative thoughts to get in your way! 

If your thoughts tend to be negative, never fear–with some practice, you can work toward changing your thoughts to be more positive and supportive. 

  1. Strive toward improvement–not perfection.

A common negative thought that gets in the way of making change and progress is the (entirely untrue) belief that we must seek perfection if we chase after a goal. Perfection is the ideal to strive towards. Every step you make towards perfection will improve your life. You also need to celebrate each step towards the ideal. Not look at the strides you make as failures because you did not reach perfection. If you do not have perfection as the goal, you will settle for what is easy to accomplish. 

Verywell Mind suggests working toward accepting improvement over absolute perfection. Challenge yourself to work a little harder each day. Even giving an extra 10% of effort while working toward a goal will help you move closer to your desired results. Only settling for perfection will lead to big disappointment, but working toward improvement will encourage you to continue, even when things get hard. 

  1. Look into cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) methods to restructure your negative thinking habits. 

CBT sounds intimidating, but it simply refers to a toolkit of strategies you can use to replace negative thoughts with better, more positive ones. 

For example, one method of doing this is called cognitive restructuring. Again, this isn’t as complicated as it sounds. Cognitive restructuring takes some time, practice, and patience to master. Still, it will achieve what its name suggests–you will learn to restructure your thinking patterns to be more positive, motivational, and forward-thinking. 

To do this, you identify a negative thought, identify it, and then replace it with a less distorted version that gives you a clear mental picture of reality. Often, our bad or negative thoughts are fueled by fear or worry–this means those negative thoughts cloud our minds with “what ifs” that can stop us from taking a chance to make a change or try something new. Learning to identify, label, and change thoughts takes quite a bit of practice. Below is an example of what this might look like:

  1. You have a negative thought: “I don’t know why I even bother trying to learn this….I know I’m going to fail my test no matter what.”
  2. You identify the negative thought: “Talking to myself like this isn’t helping my situation. It makes me feel even more worried about my upcoming test.”
  3. You replace the negative thought with a more truthful one: “My teacher told me what I need to review to do well on the test, so I am going to spend time studying it tonight, so I feel prepared tomorrow.”

 

  1. Practice basic mindfulness. 

Mindfulness is the practice of putting yourself “in the moment.” Mindfulness means you take a moment to assess your current situation, feelings, and environment. It can be used as a tool to quiet a busy mind and bring yourself back to reality, particularly if you struggle with stress management and anxious thinking.

For example, if you’re feeling overwhelmed, take a moment to close your eyes, draw in deep breaths, and focus on the “here and now.” You can take a few minutes to run through these questions to bring yourself back into the current moment: 

  1. What does the temperature of the room feel like?
  2. What can I smell in the room right now?
  3. What does the floor feel like under my feet?
  4. What sounds can I hear?
  5. How do my clothes feel against my skin? 

By focusing on these “right now” questions, you can bring your mind back to focus on the present.

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Do you remember hearing your parents reminding you about the importance of using kind words? Perhaps they repeated to you constantly that your words carry significant weight. They were absolutely correct! 9044677096?profile=RESIZE_400x

Many of us understand the importance of using kind words with others, but how often do we follow these guidelines when we speak to ourselves? Everyone has an internal dialogue–the words we speak to ourselves throughout the day–and just as the words we say to others can help or harm them, the words we speak to ourselves can do the same. 

If you think your internal dialogue needs monitoring, how can you begin to control your tendencies to use negative language toward yourself? Check out this step-by-step guide to get started! 

  1. Recognize your unkind words, thoughts, and feelings toward yourself. 

The first step you can make toward monitoring your internal dialogue is identifying and labeling unkind words and thoughts. To begin developing a healthier inner dialogue, you need to understand which parts of the conversation need immediate attention. 

If you’re used to being hard on yourself, this can take time. If it helps to keep yourself organized, keep a running list when you catch yourself using unkind words or thoughts toward yourself. If you aren’t sure what could constitute unkind internal dialogue, check out this list of examples: 

  • I don’t need to eat that. I’ll screw up your whole day of healthy eating and gain back a ton of weight again.
  • I can’t believe I was stupid enough to say that.
  • I’m too dumb to ever pass this class.
  • I shouldn’t bother applying for that job. They would never hire me.
  • I am not good enough to participate in that activity.
  • I would look so dumb if I wore this.
  • People would laugh at me if I tried to do that activity.
  • ….and so on. 

Unfortunately, there are a lot of events that can trigger negative internal dialogue. Things that trigger your unkind thoughts toward yourself can differ vastly from a friend’s. Learning to recognize yours is the first step toward replacing them with healthier internal dialogue. 

  1. Find alternative ways to rephrase and frame your thoughts to yourself.

Psychology Today recommends finding ways to rephrase and frame your thoughts to yourself in a more positive way.

For example, suppose you’re experiencing a negative internal dialogue about going on a first date. In that case, you can use the following method to begin swapping out those negative thoughts for healthier, more positive ones:

  1. Have the negative thought: “I don’t know why she said she would go on a date with me…. I bet she meant it as a joke.”
  2. Recognize that this thought is negative. Also, consider why this isn’t the case. For example, if the person agreed to the date, this most likely means that they’re interested in going and spending time with you.
  3. Rephrase your thought to be more positive: “I’m looking forward to seeing how this date is going to go.” 
  1. Develop an internal “motivator and complimenter voice.” 

We’re all familiar with our internal “mean” voice. If you have a negative internal dialogue, you probably hear from yours often, unfortunately. However, what if you developed an inner “motivator” voice? 

All the internal voices we hear in our minds don’t have to be negative or mean. Try building a positive one! 

For example, bring out your inner motivator when you’re feeling uncertain, down, or stressed. This can tie in with the step above–your internal motivator voice can step in when it’s time to trash a negative thought and replace it with something positive. 

  1. Practice, practice, and practice some more. 

Getting better at anything requires a lot of practice. If it takes you extra time to begin monitoring your internal dialogue, stick with it and continue to implement strategies to make it more positive. Even small baby steps are still movement toward progress–and healthier internal dialogue!

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Having moments when you focus on worst-case scenarios or scary what-if situations is normal. As human beings, we tend to picture these kinds of possibilities to prepare ourselves for potential trouble in the future. 9044591269?profile=RESIZE_400x

However, if you find yourself constantly ruminating on bad possibilities, this type of thinking, called catastrophic thinking, can have terrible effects on your life. 

  1. Catastrophic thinking can ruin your chances for good things in life.

Psychology Today describes how catastrophic thinking can keep you from chasing after your dreams and living a fulfilling life. Working toward goals requires a lot of work–and risk-taking–to achieve them. If you’re too consumed imagining all the bad things that could happen, you’ll never allow yourself to spend time working toward achieving good things for yourself. 

  1. Catastrophic thinking steals your inner peace. 

Catastrophic thinking takes worries and stress above normal levels. Feeling worried is normal; everyone has times that make them feel stressed or out of control. However, when catastrophic thinking settles in, these thoughts happen more frequently than usual, leading to crippling fear. 

For example, pretend you’re having a typical night at work when it suddenly begins to rain. When you see the rain hitting the roadways, you think about your wife driving home from her day shift. 

You immediately begin to think of all the ways she could get hurt–a bad car accident, another driver sliding off the road and into her vehicle, or even a flash flood across the roadway. Is it likely that the rainy drive home will lead to your wife’s imminent demise? Absolutely not. Does the possibility feel very real to someone with catastrophic thinking issues? Yes! 

  1. Catastrophic thinking can damage relationships. 

People who suffer with catastrophic thinking can also have issues maintaining strong and healthy relationships. 

Because people with catastrophic thinking tendencies often visualize horrible things happening to the people they love, these constant, scary thoughts can cause them to be overprotective or highly cautious. 

While being cautious and protective aren’t the wrong ways to be toward your loved ones, too much can feel incredibly smothering. If your mind is obsessed with catastrophic thinking, it can cause people to stay away from you. Rather than strengthening your bond with your loved ones, catastrophic thinking can ruin your chances to build a meaningful relationship with someone. 

  1. Catastrophic thinking consumes your attention from truly important things in life. 

If you spend all your time obsessing on catastrophic thoughts, you lose time and focus on other vital parts of life. 

Some worrying is normal (and can even help you stay focused on avoiding bad situations). Still, when the worrying enters the realm of catastrophic thinking, you lose focus and energy for the critical parts of your life.

If you’re spending time obsessing over imaginary situations and convoluted fantasies, you aren’t spending that time focusing on things that need your attention. Plans, relationships, to-do lists, fun activities, and more all fall to the wayside when you spend time obsessing over worst-case scenarios.

  1. Catastrophic thinking makes living an everyday and happy life nearly impossible. 

When left untreated, catastrophic thoughts make living an everyday and happy life seemingly impossible. While you can learn to control your catastrophic thinking, not everyone does–this can quickly lead to missed opportunities, failed romances, and more. 

When your energy is spent feeding into catastrophic thoughts, you feel crippled when it’s time to take action, make decisions, and live life. Rather than taking a chance and trying something new, you immediately stop trying when you think of how everything can go wrong.

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We all want more self-control. It is common to fantasize how much easier life would be if eating right wasn’t such a struggle or a trip to the gym wasn’t such a fight with self. 

Self-discipline is a trait that you need to develop. You are not born with the ability. In fact, by following a few simple tips, you can start improving your self-discipline skills almost immediately. Here’s how: 9015589687?profile=RESIZE_400x

Understand What’s Particularly Tempting

We all have a weakness. Whether we can’t say no to the salty snacks or wind up staying up too late night after night, we’re looking at the same problem: A lack of self-discipline. By knowing what our triggers are, it’s a simple matter to defuse them. 

Change Your Environment

Once you know what tempts you, the simple solution is to remove the trigger from your environment. Salty snacks? Stop buying them. Staying up late? Remove the lightbulb from your bedroom. Don’t be afraid to get radical and more than a little creative. 

Set a Goal

Without a plan, how can you accomplish anything? Ask what you’re trying to change. What does your new future look like for you? Make an action plan to take you there.

Practice

Self-discipline doesn’t happen overnight. The only way you’re going to learn it is to practice it. Look at the plan you just created. What steps does it require? Push yourself to act on those steps, daily

Break Things Down

Change is more natural to make when the steps are kept small and very simple. Break things down to their smallest components. What’s something small you can do today to help you build the habit of self-discipline? 

Pay Attention to Your Body

Your physical health will always affect your willpower, so taking care of the basics, such as getting enough sleep and exercising regularly will help you to have better self-discipline. 

Gain a New Perspective

The moment you start thinking you have no self-discipline, or that your willpower is a finite resource, you start limiting yourself. By changing your inner dialogue, you’re more likely to have success. Remind yourself often: “I’ve got this.” It truly is about mind over matter. 

What’s Plan B?

When going into a difficult situation where you know self-discipline will be challenged, create a backup plan. Know before you begin just what you’re going to do if the worst happens. Implement as needed. 

Use Rewards

When you succeed in your goals, don’t be afraid to allow yourself a small reward. As human beings, we’re wired to work our best when we know we’re going to get something out the experience we want.

Know How to Move On

Screwed up? Forgive yourself. Keep going. It’s normal for everyone to mess up now and again. It’s what you do next that matters.

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The Art of Letting Go

Letting go is never easy. It’s hard to admit to yourself that someone or something you cared so deeply about will never be in your life again. Yet, one thing’s for sure: Letting go is necessary when it comes to prioritizing your mental, emotional, and physical health. It’s time to give yourself the chance to heal and learn the art of letting go.8990265260?profile=RESIZE_400x

Allow Yourself the Chance to Feel

Very rarely will letting go be a pleasant experience. You’ll likely feel immense sadness, anger, and disappointment. Sometimes, it seems easier to pretend the loss never happened at all in the first place. Yet, avoiding your feelings and emotions doesn’t mean that they don’t exist. They might creep up on you sometime down the road when you’re reminded of the pain associated with such a loss. Allow yourself to cry, yell, scream, smile, and laugh.

Increase Your Distance

It’s hard to let go of a person or a part of your past if you’re frequently reminded of them in your daily life. Every time you see an image of them posted on social media or drive down the streets you two used to explore, the pain of the loss will come back two-fold.

Sometimes, the best way to let go is by putting some distance between you and what you’re moving on from. Unfollow your ex from social media, avoid going to the park he goes to for his morning run, and block her number on your cell phone.

Work to Improve Yourself

You’ll never be the way you were before the loss occurred. Instead of letting the breakup or loss take over your entire life, you need to use the process of letting go to improve yourself as a person. Think about the things you need to work on that would make you a better person. Maybe it’s something as simple as regaining control of your health by going to the gym or starting a new diet. Perhaps you want to go to therapy to sort through your emotions.

Talk About Your Emotions

You don’t necessarily have to sign-up for counseling every time a relationship ends, but you must take the time to express what you’re feeling. Acknowledging your feelings will help you to stop internalizing your pain and sadness and lean on somebody else for support. A good friend, a family member, or even a stranger can provide you with a listening ear and give you the chance to verbalize what you’ve been feeling. The worst thing you can do is stay silent.

Stick to a Routine

Letting go can be debilitating for your mental health, especially when the person was so heavily involved in your life. You might get to a point where you feel like you don’t have the motivation to do anything.

Sticking to a routine is the best way to stay on track as you work through your emotions. Be sure to take a shower every morning, do something you enjoy at least once a day, treat yourself to something you love, and nourish your body with good food.

Final Thoughts

Unfortunately, the process of letting go of someone or something important to you doesn’t happen overnight. This might take you weeks, months, or even years to learn to be okay with the loss. The most important thing you can do is look toward the future instead of reminiscing upon the past. The only way you should be going is forward, and constantly looking toward the past will slow your progress and send you into a downward spiral.

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What do you do when you’re feeling sad or low? Maybe you reach out to friends or stay in bed watching your favorite series on TV. 

Have you ever considered turning to writing as therapy? 8901239697?profile=RESIZE_400x

Studies have shown that those who write about their most traumatic or stressful experiences experience better health outcomes.  

The stories we tell ourselves give us meaning in our lives. Writing therapy helps you explore the stories you tell yourself, the feelings associated with those events, and what meanings we can draw from events. 

Writing can be a powerful, low-cost, and easily accessible therapy. Getting your thoughts and words onto pages empowers you to work through difficulties. 

Writing therapy can help you sort through your stories and feelings around grief, anxiety, life transitions, or even stress. Writing therapy gives you a safe space to track your progress and self-reflect. 

While writing may not always be a complete replacement for therapy, it’s still a tool you can use to work through your thoughts. It’s also a tool that can complement your regular therapy appointments. 

Writing therapy is a guided way for you to interact with and analyze events in your life. Through writing therapy, you explore your beliefs around those events - and how your thoughts might trigger certain feelings. 

Follow these journal prompts to start exploring your thoughts:

  1. Start your day with Morning Pages. Morning Pages, a daily practice popularized by Julia Cameron, are three pages of unfiltered writing. This daily practice of filling three pages with your unfiltered thoughts can help clear your mind to start the day fresh.
  2. The WDEP Model (Wants, Doing, Evaluate, Plan). The WDEP Model can help you think about what you want and whether you are making the choices needed to get what you want. It can help you feel more in control of your daily decisions.
  • What do you want?
  • What are you doing to get what you want?
  • Is what you are doing helping you get to what you want?
  • Can you make a more effective plan to get what you want?
  1. The ABC Model (Activating Event, Beliefs, Consequences). We tend to think that activating events leads to consequences. This can help you explore your beliefs and reflect on your emotions.
  • Activating Event. The event that triggers an emotion or thoughts.
  • What you believe or think about the activating event. Our beliefs are the part that often subconsciously gets overlooked.
  • The emotions we feel as a result of the activating event and our beliefs.
  1. Self-Contract. Do you want to change something in your life? What do you want to change? Write a contract to yourself about how you will make changes in your life to reach your goal.
  2. A love letter to yourself. How often do you appreciate and acknowledge yourself? Writing yourself a love letter, or letter of gratitude, can be a perfect space for building a positive relationship with yourself.
  3. Gratitude. Studies have shown that gratitude has a positive impact on a person’s well-being. Integrating gratitude journaling into your routine can increase your happiness and well-being. 

Writing therapy can be a great tool to investigate your feelings or reflect on what you want in life. You can use writing therapy as a tool to fuel your personal growth. 

Exploring your beliefs and feelings using the journal prompts above can help you work through difficult emotions. By giving yourself a place to process your feelings, you’re allowing yourself to be happier and healthier.

 

This practice can be an empowering form of self-care! Try it today and feel the difference!

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If you’re facing a new phase in your life, you might be feeling a bit nervous. Will it work out? Was this the right decision? Whether it’s a new job or a new relationship, here some tips for making the most of your fresh start. 

  1. Don’t Fear Failure

8889937701?profile=RESIZE_710xFear of Failure is America’s number one fear. Many people are so scared they’ll mess up. They never try anything new. And that’s a real shame because unless you take a few risks, you won’t get anywhere, and you’ll never reach your true potential. Reframe Failure as a lesson in what not to do next time. If you make a mistake or something doesn’t work out, you’re a step closer to success. Learn and move on. 

  1. Talk to People

Did you know that most opportunities come from outside your usual network? Be open to new possibilities by talking to people you don’t know. From a casual conversation in the coffee shop to chatting to the person in the next seat at a conference dinner, you never know who you’re about to connect with and where that connection might lead. Be approachable, be polite, and make new friends. 

  1. Know What You Stand For

Whether you’re aware of it or not, you have your own set of personal values. Make those values conscious, and write your personal mission statement. What are your core beliefs? What is your purpose in life? Once you know what you stand for, you can align your actions and focus on your path to success. Think of it as your roadmap

  1. Be Aware of Your Personal Biases

Successful people don’t let their personal opinions get in the way of achieving their goals. Your opinions are not the same as your values. Values are the bedrock of what’s important in your life. You can have an opinion about sports or politics or how you prefer your steak, but don’t confuse views with what’s best for you. If a nontraditional opportunity comes up, think it through and work out if it’s in your best interest. 

  1. Celebrate Your Successes

It’s essential to celebrate the milestones as you check them off on the way to achieving your goals. Celebrating small successes keeps your motivation and your energy high. It also makes those big life goals seem a bit less daunting. High-five yourself for everything you check off your to-do list, and you’ll soon find yourself celebrating the big wins.

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7 Day Mental Diet

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