For a very long time in my life, I always looked and blamed my outside circumstances for everything going wrong in my life. Ups and downs were part of my daily roller coaster ride and finding happiness and contentment was a difficult task to manage. We are just human and things happening around us that is out of our control can make us feel despondent and anxious. I couldn’t sleep at night and had anxiety attacks on a daily basis. My health was a mess and I felt tired and run down most days. I still had small children and the responsibility around them and taking care of them was just an add-on to my frustration and the feeling of anxiousness.
Then we had to close down our business and make a complete career change. Things were tough and unknown and some days really scary. I felt like everything just became too much and couldn’t see the bright light at the end of that freaking dark tunnel. Everyday I worried how we will be able to pay the bills and just feed the kids never mind all the other bills piling up and creditors phoning on a daily basis to collect their money. Yes, part of it was us that made mistakes and not the best decisions and part just life and unpredictable happenings around us. Then there were friends who deserted us in a really difficult time when we needed them the most. And the list goes on and on and on… I had SUCH a DIFFICULT time to find happiness and contentment! I had the longest struggle to find my JOY again. But… I did! This is the way I reconnected with myself, and found my happiness and joy again:
Yes, GRATITUDE! You can’t change anything in your life if you just focus on the negative every day. For every negative, there is a positive! The negative (It is also about our perception of what is negative..) is there to show you the contrast. It is also there to show you what you really want. A great way to practice Gratitude is to keep a Gratitude Journal. Making a list of all the great things happening in your life and actually seeing it, can change your whole perception. It makes you feel good and appreciative of all the little things in life. Start every day on a clean page and read your list often to remind yourself of the great things happening in your life.
2. Change your Perception
One of my favorite quotes is “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change” Wayne Dyer. This is not just a clever play on words! If we challenge and change our perception about the things happening around us we can change it into a positive! Say for example you applied for that dream job and you didn’t get it. Instead of looking at the situation in a negative depressed way, you can change your perception to there must be a better and greater opportunity on the way. By just making that mind shift the whole picture changes.
Meditation and prayer is probably the most important one for me. There is a serene feeling of calm and peace when you sit down for 15 minutes in absolute quiet. It is a practice that can bring you into mindfulness and awareness instantly. When you can find peace in the middle of the storm you can change anything. The only way for me to get into that calm state is to take few minutes a day and spend it wisely to reconnect with God and myself. Try it for a few days and feel the difference in your state and thought practice. I promise you it is absolutely worth it!
This I practice every single day! You have to take time for yourself to love and care for yourself. Do you know that saying “You can’t give what you don’t have”?. It is exactly that. If you don’t take care of yourself emotionally, physically and mentally how will you be able to give it to your family and others. When you are on a plane and about to take off they always run you through all the safety protocols. They always say that when something happens, you use the oxygen mask first and then you give it to your kids. This analogy is exactly the same as self-care. You cannot be or do anything for anyone if you don’t take care of yourself first. And please my dear friend don’t feel guilty when you actually do something for yourself. The rest of the stuff on your to do list will still be there when you are finished. But at least you will be able to do all those task with an eagerness and enthusiasm!
Take care of YOU
and be AWESOME