Tag Archives: positive thinking

5 Steps to Happiness

The many faces of emotion

Emotions – we all experience them. Some people share their emotions, they don’t try to hide them. They make it known exactly how they are feeling. Other people hide their emotions and you never quite know what they are feeling. What’s right? There is no right or wrong way, but what we must ensure if that we are not ruled by our emotions. They are fleeting sensations and experiences that we give a label to, give meaning to. Sometimes we cling to those emotions and become identified with them, sadness, anger, fear, shame, disgust. It is when we cling to those emotions that there is suffering. It is ok to feel anger if a situation warrants it but when that anger is uncontrolled, unwarranted or held on to for excessive periods then then it becomes destructive and leads to suffering. It is ok to feel fear in situations, it drives us to take action, but if we constantly live in fear then it prevents us from taking any action at all. Similarly, with sadness and grief – it is ok to mourn the loss of a loved one, but we also need to remember the joy and happiness that person brought into our life. Emotions are energy, they carry a vibration. Negative emotions really draw us down to the root chakra and our sense of survival. Positive emotions lift us up but we also need to be careful that we don’t get too attached to positive emotions. All emotions cloud the way we see the world around us.

Our main aim in life is to be happy, but that happiness has to come from within. It is not the responsibility of anyone else to make us happy or for an object to make us happy – as once that person or object is gone then so is our happiness. Take control of your own happiness.

5 Steps to cultivating happiness within

  1. Gratitude – Spend time each day giving thanks. It might be being grateful for the roof over your head, the food on your plate, the money in your pocket. The more we focus on the things we can be grateful for the more we are training our minds to focus on the positive.
  2. Meditate – Spend time each day meditating. Calming the mind so that you can see the world as it really is. Meditation allows you to witness your thoughts and see those emotions for what they are.
  3. Watch the energy around you – What is the energy around you? Remember that no one is responsible for making you happy and likewise you are not responsible for anyone else’s happiness. Are you surrounding by people that drain your energy? Take time out so that you can refocus your energy. Visualise a protective bubble around you that shields you from negative energy.
  4. Move – When we feel a negative emotion it’s important to move. How we sit or stand has an impact on how we feel. If we always walk with our head down, shoulders hunched we are sending a message to our brain that we are sad. Adopt a more positive position. Stand upright, o for a walk. This can be really hard to do if you are feeling down but make yourself shake off the emotion and you will feel a whole lot better.
  5. Choose to be Happy – Happiness is a choice. If you actively choose to be happy rather than sad, angry, fearful you are also training your brain in happiness. You might have to keep reminding yourself to start with that you choose to be happy but eventually happiness will become the default setting.

Spring Detox Part 3 – Digital Detox

This weeks detox focus is on what you consume digitally.

Social media, TV, internet. They all have an impact on how we feel. These are the things we do to relax but are they really relaxing us?

We get totally caught up in the programmes we watch on TV. Sometimes it might be feel good dramas, but it can also be dark dramas that can induce a sense of fear. You sit down to watch the TV ready to relax, drop your filters and you’re tranced out, absorbed in the drama before you realise it.  Distorting your view of how life is without you realising it. Not to mention the adverts in between – utilising this lovely tranced out space you’re in, convincing you that all you need is that new car, that particular perfume or that shampoo in your life to make you the hottest thing alive!

Social media – the edited highlights of everyone’s life. You pop on to facebook for a few minutes and before you realise it you’ve lost an hour of your life, maybe two hours! You started off in a good frame of mind but you’ve now started comparing your life to someone you don’t really know who’s life looks amazing. And then before you know it you’ve become lost in an array of you tube videos of cats performing tricks, goats dancing……….& suddenly you think “how did I end up here”.

Or there’s the attention seeking post – it’s just one line that is waiting for comments……..
You don’t want to give in and ask what’s happened but secretly you’re intrigued so you scroll through all the comments from other people: “are you ok honey?”,     “what’s happened”,    “don’t let them get to you”.  You’re still none the wiser about what’s happened and you’ve lost another hour of your life!

And there’s also the fitbit (or similar digital device) – designed to make us healthier and fitter by logging every aspect of our lives – you’ve counted your steps, logged what you’ve eaten, analysed your sleep pattern over the last week.  Are you healthier as a result or more stressed because you’ve not done enough steps, not eaten enough vegetables/protein/carbs, not drunk the requisite amount of water, or not had enough REM sleep?

Can you switch off from digital media? The majority of us use it in everyday life but are there times when you don’t need to use it and you could do something else instead.

Maybe set a curfew to switch off digital devices for periods each day. Set time limits and stick to them. How much time would it free up?

Witness how much time you spend on digital media – does it make you feel good or does it leave you feeling lacking and inadequate?  Curate your social media feeds – you can “snooze” or “hide” posts from certain people if you don’t want to completely unfriend them!

Try it for a week.  Notice what happens when you can switch off from digital devices.  Do you sleep better? Is your mood more positive? Does it affect your relationships?

If it feels good, why not keep it going

 

Spring Detox – Part 2 – Thought Focus

Being healthy isn’t just about food and exercise.  Our thoughts also have an impact on our health and wellbeing and we tend to be our own worst critic.  The internal chatter in our minds can be harsh – we say things to ourselves that we would never say to a friend:

  • “You’re not good enough”
  • “You’re too fat” / “You’re too thin”
  • “You shouldn’t have eaten that”
  • “You’re not clever enough”
  • “You’re so stupid”
  • “You could never do that”
  • ………..The list goes on and on.

If those thoughts are repeated enough they can become ingrained and we start to believe them – then we’re in a vicious cycle – the thoughts bring us down, we don’t put energy into doing new things and so the thoughts are reinforced.  The thoughts are often so general that we start applying them to all areas of our lives bring us down further and further………….

Step back and breathe.  It’s time to detox those negative thoughts.  How?

Start witnessing and catching them when they arise – when they show up question it:

  • “What if I could do that?”
  • “How could I do that?”
  • “Who say’s I’m too thin/fat?”
  • “What can I do differently”
  • “Is that really true”

Look for the evidence that says this isn’t true – we tend to delete the positive things and focus so much on the negative aspects of our lives.  Start looking out for all the positives instead.

This can be hard to do to start with but with practice it gets easier.  If the thoughts are overwhelming, just stop and breathe, take a pause and in that pause you can question the thoughts and look for the positive aspects.

Another great way for detoxing the mind is to cultivate gratitude.  Noting down a few things each day that you are grateful for really helps you to look for the positive things.  The more you focus on the positive things the easier it is to let go of the negative thoughts.

Detoxing our thoughts isn’t just about how we talk to ourselves either.  What about anger and resentment that we feel towards others?  Those thoughts can also be toxic as we tend to cling on to them for way too long.  Getting caught up in the drama.  Telling everyone how bad someone has been to us, bringing them into the drama and getting their reassurance.  Each time reliving the experience and all the associated emotions.  Again, it’s time to stop and breathe.

When there’s anger rising up in a situation ask yourself:

  • “Is what I’m about to say true?”
  • “Does it need to be said?”
  • “Does it need to be said by me?”

Just think about how much energy you waste ruminating on negative thoughts.  if we can just allow them to evaporate – even just a few of them, think about how much more energy you’d have to focus on the good things.

The Art of Manifesting Part 2

Another full moon this weekend so another excuse for some manifesting! Following on from last months blog on manifesting this month I’m exploring what happens when you’re not sure what your goals are.  Some people set out on things with no idea where it will lead.  They have some vague idea or notion but can’t yet get clear on what the end result looks like.  It feels like too big a commitment to say “that’s definitely what I want”.  There may be too many options to consider which all look appealing.  How can you choose a definite path?

So this month I’m working with “this is where I’m heading for now”.  Taking things one step at a time, see where things lead.  Remember nothing is permanent and things can change. And they will change!

Look back across your life and see how many changes you’ve been through – new homes, new jobs, new relationships. So just because you manifest something into your life it doesn’t mean that you can’t then make changes in the future.  It’s an ongoing and evolving process. And the more you do it the more skilled you’ll become so when you are ready to make those big changes you’ve had plenty of practice.

We need to commit to our goals and visions. If we go into them half hearted the end results will reflect that. But there will always need to be tweaks, we may not get things quite right so we can continually adjust and fine tune. And once in a while you might see the need for a complete overhaul. Don’t stress about it! Let it flow.  

My life has twisted & turned through varying jobs, careers, friendships, romances, interests & hobbies. Each one manifested from what I put out and each one an opportunity to learn and evolve. Some of them stick with you for life, some don’t. It is all part of life’s rich experience – and you are the creator of your life.

The Art of Manifesting

The Art of Manifesting

Yes, Spring has finally Sprung!!  It’s a time for visioning, setting goals for the year ahead, and with a second full moon this month, a Blue Moon, what better time to set some intentions and start manifesting what you want from life.

When it comes to manifesting it doesn’t actually matter when you do it – full moons, new moons, beginning of the season or month, beginning of the year, beginning of the week, a new day or any  symbolic moment in your life.  Any particular time you feel drawn to creating a new beginning is a great time for setting intentions and manifesting.  Listen to your intuition – if you are wanting to make changes then “now” is a good time to start.  In terms of Seasons, Spring is the perfect time for looking ahead, for setting out what you want to achieve in the year ahead.  Planting those seed intentions and then nurturing them throughout the year so that they can grow and expand.

I like to create some rituals, to create a space to think and dream. Nothing overly complicated, do what feels right for you.  You might want to light a candle, grab a notebook, have an object with you that will be symbolic of the change.  Meditate to get you into calm and focussed state of mind.  Then start to dream.

  • What do you want to achieve over the next year?

Be specific, dream, but start to create a clear picture in your mind of what you want to achieve, how it looks. Take time to really explore that picture in your mind and see how it feels through all 5 senses.  Let go of the if’s, but’s and maybe’s – this is your dream and it is limitless.  What does that dream look like?  Explore that picture – the sights, sounds, smells.  How does it feel?  How do you look in that picture?

Once you have this picture your unconscious mind can start looking for opportunities that align with your dreams.

  • Why do you want to achieve this?

Understanding why you want this, what your purpose is, gives you a context for achieving your goals.  Like having a compelling picture in your mind, having a compelling reason for what you want to achieve is great for keeping you on track.

Make sure that reason is for you and not linked to someone else’s expectations.

  • What do you need to do to achieve your dream?

Now you have this compelling picture in your mind you can start thinking about the steps that you need to achieve it.  It might be a big goal or dream so start breaking it down into chunks.  What can you start doing now that aligns to your dream and will help you?  What tasks are on a slightly longer timeframe?  Plan them out, write them down.

Once you start breaking it down into smaller chunks what might seem like an impossible dream suddenly looks achievable.

  • What do you need to let go of?

What is stopping you moving forward with this dream?  What is holding you back?  Acknowledge these things.  Ask what purpose they are serving in your life.  Wht are they holding you back?  The majority of times it is fear that holds us back – fear of the unknown, fear of change.  If this dream is something that you really want then something has to change.

Can you let go of these things that are holding you back and no longer serving you?  Revisit that picture in your mind of what you want to achieve – make that picture so bright and compelling.

  • Take Action in alignment with your dreams

Start taking action – start making progress on those small steps that you’ve identified.  Don’t put them off.  It’s amazing how quickly times passes by so start taking action NOW – by taking action in alignment with your goals you are sending a powerful message to the universe that this is where you are going, this is what you want.  Once you start taking small actions it also reinforces the dream in the unconscious mind and it will keep looking for opportunities.  Keep taking small steps forward and the plan will start to come to fruition.

When we take action that’s not in alignment we are sending messages to the brain that it doesn’t really matter, it confuses the brain & it will direct us back towards comfortable habits.

Take action now.  Do it with purpose and focus.  No half-hearted measures.

  • Stay open to possibilities and opportunities

Don’t become too rigid in your goals.  In Spring time when we set goals we can become too wooden, allow space for flexibility, for new ideas and opportunities to present themselves and above all, allow space for magic to happen.

When we stay open it is amazing what opportunities might present themselves to get you to where you need to be.

  • Tune into, and Listen to, your intuition.

Sometimes we become so fixed on our goals that we say yes to things that seem like they might be good but our intuition says “No”.  They might be part of someone else’s dream and tempting as it sounds might not be quite in alignment with what you are doing.  Listen to your gut instincts

  • Get EXCITED

When we are manifesting new things we are manifesting changes to the current status quo and change can be uncomfortable thing.  Pushing us out of our comfort zone, into unknown territory.  Be curious about where that could take you, get excited about where that could take you.  See it as an exciting new adventure full of learning, full of new possibilities.

Where will your dreams take you?

Spring – Detoxing & Energising

Spring has Sprung

Spring has finally sprung and with the clocks going forward last weekend we now see the lighter nights.

Winter always seems so long, just when you start to notice the longer hours of daylight and think spring is finally here – bam, a deluge of snow, a beast from the east!  But finally, some lovely sunshine over the last few days, spring bulbs sprouting up from the earth, new leaves forming on the trees.

Spring is a time for growth, rising energy pushing up from the ground.  The organs associated with Spring are the Liver and Gallbladder – the liver removes toxins from our bodies so it’s a great time to be thinking about spring cleaning – home, body and mind.  The gallbladder is our decision maker so it’s a time for getting clear on your goals for the year, setting some objectives and starting to take action move you forwards.

Cleansing and Detoxing

Greens are great for the cleansing the liver.  Try vibrant green juices with spinach or kale or make simple stir-fired greens.  The liver works hard to process toxins from the body, processing alcohol, drugs, excess hormones etc.  If the liver becomes overloaded the toxins build up in the body so it’s important we give the liver some TLC and ensure it’s in tip top condition.

Detox your environment too.  Spring clean your home, car, office space.  Get rid of things you don’t need and also consider the quality of your environment – get some plants to improve your air quality.  Have a look at the cleaning products you use – are they creating more toxins in your home environment and the environment as a whole?  Have a look at switching to eco-friendly products.

Detox your self-care routines – have a look at what you are putting on your body as well as in your body.  Your skin absorbs products you put on the skin so make sure they are full of natural ingredients and not leading to more toxins in your body.

Detox your mind – how toxic are your thoughts?  Take some time to cultivate a positive mind set, maybe keep a gratitude journal, have a digital detox and step away from social media, meditate.

Goal Setting

Over the winter months we’ve had time to reflect on what we want and don’t want so now is the time to start putting some thought into setting goals.  What do you want to achieve this year?  How are you going to get there?  Big goals can be overwhelming but when we start to break them down into smaller goals they start to seem possible.  Set some clear visions, create a clear and vibrant picture of that vision in your mind, see it through all five senses so it becomes so compelling your unconscious mind starts looking for ways to make it a reality.  Create a vision board that you see everyday to remind you of what you want to achieve.  Then start taking positive action to achieve your goals.  It’s only through taking action that your goals will materialise.

Self-Esteem

Today I’m talking about self-esteem………

Self Esteem is defined as confidence in our own worth or abilities.  Like many things though it’s not something we have or don’t have but something that fluctuates throughout our life and on a daily basis.  We might remember periods of our life when our self-esteem was particularly high or low but also within those periods our level of self-esteem could vary.  I’m sure we’ve all had times when we’ve been feeling great and then someone makes a comment.  Suddenly our self-esteem plummets through the floor and we need the help of a JCB to unearth it.  Other times we feel invincible and can just brush off comments – water off a duck’s back.  Why is this?

Usually when we feel good about ourselves we are more likely to be able to brush off comments easily. Positivity breeds positivity and our brain ignores the negative.  The conscious mind can only process a limited amount of information and yet it is bombarded with millions of pieces of information from all five senses – sight, sound, smell, taste and touch.  The conscious mind has to decide what information to take in and will use past experience to help decide what is important and what is not so important at that moment.  If we are in a positive mood the mind will pay more attention to positive things around us and so we can see when things have been said in jest or just let something wash over us.

If we are already feeling low, however, already telling ourselves negative things the mind will pay more attention to the pieces of information that reinforce this negative state.  The more we do this the more evidence and experience the mind builds to seek out negativity.  Our mind is clever and trying to protect us and keep us safe but it is doing so in a not particularly helpful way.

So how can we build and maintain our self-esteem?

We can use Positive Affirmations. Short positive sentences or mantras repeated a number of times to build or reinforce a positive state.  The mind has to buy into the affirmation though and believe it.  It’s no use repeatedly saying “I am amazing, I can do anything” when the first thought that pops into your head after saying it is “No you’re not, you completely messed up that exam last week”!  In those instances adjust the message slightly to get the buy in from your mind. If you are in a low state of self-esteem it might simply need to be “I am doing the best I can”.

Accept Compliments.  Don’t brush compliments off.  The people around you want to be around you and so if they pay you a compliment accept it, they mean it! This might feel a bit difficult and strange at first so just start with saying “thank you”.  When we accept the positive compliments the conscious mind is actively taking in that positive information.  When we hear negative comments the mind will consider these against our past experience – if that experience is hearing compliments and positive comments it will be able to dismiss negative comments more easily as they don’t fit with our experience.

Drop Negative Self Talk.  If you can’t say anything nice don’t say anything at all.  This goes for speaking to yourself as well as speaking to others.  We all bombard ourselves with negative self-talk, about our bodies, our abilities and a whole myriad of subjects.  That drip, drip, drip into the mind provides a reference point which the mind will go to when evaluating the information coming in from external sources.  If the external information aligns to the internal representation it reinforces that message.  Look out for when you are utilising negative self-talk and flip it into something positive.  A bit like the positive affirmations, make sure it is something that you can believe.  It might take a bit of practice.

Surround yourself with people who raise you up.  Make sure you have plenty of people around you that make you feel good about yourself.  As with the positive affirmations and accepting compliments the more your mind has positive reference points to compare external information to the more it can ignore negative comments and more easily put negative experiences behind it.  It would be great to live in a bubble of positivity but there will always be challenging situations and people that we do not to interact with that don’t bring out the best in us.  But by taking steps to build and maintain our self-esteem these situations will not affect us so deeply.

Don’t keep these tips to yourself – remember Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe.  Help to lift up others, pay them compliments and help build their self-esteem.  Use your positivity to breed more positivity around you.