Tag: shift feelings

Welcoming Change

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We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.

– Joseph Campbell

It’s natural to take comfort in the things we know—even if they aren’t best for us or we know they aren’t working for us—but keep in mind that we often limit what is possible when we avoid or resist change. Sometimes, better things—things we didn’t dare hope for, anticipate, or imagine can come into our lives when we create room for them. That means a necessary first step is a shift from our old way of thinking into a new one.

In this post, Support yourself through transitions by changing your thoughts, I shared how to shift your beliefs and perceptions when we face transitions and changes. Most people acknowledge that change is a part of life and something we “have to deal with.” However, what if we were able to welcome change?

Staying the same takes more effort than allowing change. Have you ever decided you didn’t want things to change and did everything in your power to resist it? Was that easy to do, or hard? Did you succeed in keeping the status quo? Most likely, it took a great deal of energy and time—not to mention stress—to fight the change, and resulted in change anyhow.

Not convinced that allowing change is something that can come naturally to you? Think of it this way: We are all made up of molecules. Molecules are always in a state of change. Therefore, whether or not we are aware of it, WE are always in a state of change. If we are in a constant state of flux, then change is one of our instinctual qualities. Can you see that change can be an ally instead of an enemy? My post, Shifting Your Perspective to Relieve Stress, Anxiety, and Anger, is an additional resource to support you in welcoming change.

We may experience fear and stress as we are forced to adjust to new circumstances and the chance that we will experience what we see as failure or other negative outcomes. With time and a supportive attitude, we can acclimate and welcome change. We may even look back and realize that the change, which initially caused us discomfort, opened a world of new possibilities.


Elevate Your Mood

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It’s natural to find ourselves in a low-energy space once in a while. Sometimes we may want to honor that feeling and explore its roots and effects upon us, other times we just want to shift it. To support you, here are 9 ways to help shift your mood from low to high gear in no time.

Focus on the positive things. It sounds obvious, but we often forget to do this when things aren’t going our way. Seek out the positive in your day. Look for kindness (someone holding the elevator for you), gifts (your checkout line moving the quickest), miracles (getting a late start but making it on time anyway), smiling faces around you, laughter in the air…anything positive. What we focus on grows, so if you want to elevate your positivity, then it will benefit you to focus on positive things!

Add “but” to negative statements to turn things around. If you’re having a hard time seeing the positive, you can still give yourself a boost by adding “but” to any negative thought, followed by a hopeful statement. For example: I can’t seem to do anything right today BUT I know this will pass as it always has in the past and I’ll be feeling better soon. What comes after but is what you might say to a friend when they’re feeling down. You acknowledge their emotional state, and you remind them that they won’t be feeling that way forever. Be a friend to yourself!

Compliment someone. Without any expectation that it will be acknowledged: giving another a compliment often makes both people feel good.

Go to your happy place. In your mind that is, and if you don’t have one, you can easily come up with a place—real or imagined—where all your troubles and stress melt away. Imagine your surroundings (weather, sounds, smells, sights) and what you would be doing in this safe peaceful place. Making your happy place as vivid as possible will add energy to your day and it can help you feel as if you’ve taken a mini vacation.

Make a gratitude list. When things seem to not be going your way, it’s helpful to gain perspective. Find a few things you are grateful for—even if it’s as simple as a pair of comfortable shoes or a sunny day. Then make a list of gratitudes and write them down. Next time you are feeling that way, read your list and notice how you feel better.

Be the energy of Happy. How would you speak, act, and look if you were happy in this moment? What things would you be doing? What would you be thinking? Act ‘as if’ you are happy NOW and notice that happy will quickly become an authentic state of mind.

Listen to music that puts pep in your step. Or better yet, makes you want to dance! It’s a good idea to create a playlist of songs ahead of time for just this purpose. When blue, turn on your chosen upbeat tunes, become energized and watch your mood shift

Laugh out loud. Pick anything in your mind or life or current news and just laugh until it feels genuine. This is a form of Laughter Yoga.

Just SMILE! The act of smiling, even if it is forced, will lift your mood as endorphins are released when you smile that will make you feel better.

 


Showing Compassion in Times of Conflict

_528A relationship breakup, workplace conflict, a feud with a family member or friend…these experiences can be difficult and may involve tense communications and stress. Most of us can recall a time when we felt that someone was causing us suffering, either intentionally or unintentionally. It can be challenging to see past the situation and the other person’s actions, which can color your view of them. It is easy to blame others for our feelings.

While some of us are content with being swept up in a drama, others would rather apply a higher-self perspective to conflict. For those of us who desire the latter, how can we show compassion to people we perceive as causing us suffering?

Try a perspective shift. Keep in mind that people who are hurting tend to hurt other people. However, it is up to us how we perceive our reality. We create our own hurt by what we say to ourselves about the other person. If we change our thoughts, our feelings will change.

Be aware of what you’re feeling about the situation with this person. When you feel anger, anxiety, fear, or any kind of stress, mentally say, “Stop!” and then visualize a stop sign. This will halt the body and mind from continuing to circulate non-constructive thoughts and feelings. Take a few deep breaths while you ask your body to release any tension. Then ask yourself:

  • What are the facts about this situation? We usually have a story attached to what the other person is doing or not doing. We guess what they are thinking and what their intentions are. Think of how a lawyer might present the facts of a case in court. Hearsay, inner dialogue, feelings, and predictions aren’t useful there, and neither are they to you. Separating fact from story is helpful in avoiding emotionally charged thinking.
  • How significant is this problem in the grand scheme of my life? How significant is this in relation to the timeline of the universe?While you may not prefer that someone is talking about you, being antagonistic, giving you the cold shoulder, etc., what are they really doing to you in this moment? Recognize that your thoughts about the other person are what are causing the feelings you don’t like. Shrinking the perceived enormity of your situation can allow you to regain perspective.

Focus in on the present. Usually, nothing “bad” is happening to us in the moment. We are thinking about the past or the future, which is causing us discomfort. Take a deep breath, let it out, and tell yourself, “All is well. Right here, right now.”

Show yourself love. In times of stress, it is even more important to practice self-love. Whether it’s walking in nature, getting a massage, losing yourself in a great book, taking a yoga class…Take time for yourself doing things that are enjoyable and nurturing. Here are some of my videos explaining how to use meditation, breathing techniques, and laughter yoga to de-stress and re-center.

Although you can’t control what someone else does, you can control how you process the experience and interact. I hope these points help you to release unsupportive feelings, as well a see the conflict from a more neutral standpoint. It is much easier to deal with these types of challenges when you are coming from a calm, clear place.

 


Emotional Awareness

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Let’s say elevating your level of positivity and happiness is a daily intention for you. You utilize mantras, affirmations, and/or other tools on a continuous basis. You are letting go of unsupportive thoughts and adopting supportive ones. But there are many moments, or even days, that you are far from a state of bliss. What gives?

Well, we’re not robots, so it’s perfectly normal to experience unexpected emotions even after a lifetime of positive focus. No one is a happy, smiley person 24/7. Nor should that necessarily be the goal, nor a marker for successful personal growth. A more helpful goal is to achieve emotional awareness, or being conscious of how we are feeling and why.

Here are some points to keep in mind regarding our emotional experiences:

Emotions are not destinations. They are road signs. Your emotions are a result of your thoughts. So if you recognize you are in an uncomfortable emotional state, take a look at what you are thinking. For example, if you’re feeling despair the thoughts creating that are likely defeat, hopelessness, and powerlessness. Once you’re alert to your thoughts, you can start shifting them to ones you consider more positive and higher energy. “Happy people” are not always happy and “unhappy people” are not always unhappy…they just engage in more of that particular kind of self-talk and, therefore, resonate the corresponding emotion.

All emotions are the same. Yes, you read that right. Emotions are neither “good” nor “bad.” They are just different from each other, and some we prefer over others. However, being able to identify what kind of emotion we are experiencing gives us the opportunity to shift our thinking in another direction. We can create more of the feelings we like (referred to as “positive” feelings) by changing or shifting the language we use in self-talk from words that create emotions we feel badly about to words that create feelings we feel positively about.

All emotions are useful. Emotions like despair, fear, anger, and frustration may be uncomfortable and undesirable, but they are signals that something isn’t sitting well with us. Uncomfortable emotions can nudge us into awareness and can help us define what we want in life. As we work to move on to preferable emotions, we may see beneficial results we wouldn’t have had the opportunity to experience in the absence of that initial unwelcome feeling.

Recognize and accept all of your emotions for what they are. Emotions are part of the human experience. Take comfort in knowing it’s ok to feel unwelcome emotions, and feel confident that you have the power to change your thoughts, and therefore your emotions and your experience, at any time.

 


Shifting Your Perspective to Relieve Stress, Anxiety, and Anger

Photo by Kristin Rath

In this…world

Nothing is the truth or a lie.

Everything depends on the color

Of the crystal through which one sees it.

― Pedro Calderón de la Barca

When the unexpected crosses our path or things don’t go our way, it is natural to react with feelings such as irritation, fear, anxiety, and anger. However, if we allow these emotions to go unexplored, we will be allowing our perspective to be restricted and possibly negative. When we continue to view the world from this state, it can color our perspective for hours, even days, later.

The great news is we can change how we view a situation by recognizing when we think, feel, and/or act in a way that is not beneficial. By asking ourselves some questions that will shift our thinking we will change our current viewpoint.

For example, perhaps you have a long to-do list, and have been worrying about getting everything accomplished. The worry grows throughout the day into guilt as you know you can’t possibly get X, Y, and Z done. Now you’re in full stress mode, feeling irritable/emotional/anxious/etc. You’re on autopilot, reacting to what comes at you. Nothing seems to be going your way, you can’t seem to do anything right, and the day is generally not enjoyable. What if you had known how to stop the worry in its tracks when it first crept into your thoughts by asking yourself a few questions to gain clarity on the issue? Perhaps the worry would have only lasted a few seconds instead of ruining your day!

Here’s how you can put a perspective shift into practice: Be aware of when you feel anger, anxiety, fear, or any kind of stress. Mentally say, “Stop!” and then visualize a stop sign. This will halt the body and mind from continuing to circulate non-constructive thoughts and feelings. Take a few deep breaths while you ask your body to release any tension. Then ask your mind a few of the questions below that are relevant to your situation. Check in with yourself and note any changes in mind and body. With practice, these steps will become effortless.

  • Is there really a problem? Or do I perceive a problem? In relation to the example of the to-do list, ask yourself what items are priorities and what are not? If a task is a priority than you can choose to complete it; if it is not you can allow yourself to choose to put it off for a day until it is a priority. Keep in mind that plans are fluid and can change. When we shift our perception, the thoughts and emotions that don’t serve us have the freedom to slip away. You might surprise yourself with how much you can get done with the energy you used spending on worry and guilt.
  • Are the outcomes I’m imagining necessarily going to happen or am I expecting a worst-case scenario? Being prepared when you are clear what outcome is ‘supposed’ to occur is useful, however it is unproductive and needlessly stressful to focus your energy on scenarios or outcomes that may never happen.
  • How significant is this problem in the grand scheme of my life? How significant is this in relation to the timeline of the universe? Shrinking the perceived enormity of your situation can allow you to collect your thoughts and emotions. Once you are grounded you can ask yourself: Is this something I need to act upon? If yes, you can now do so from a centered, open viewpoint.

Life is 10 percent what you make it and 90 percent how you take it.

― Irving Berlin

 


Change Your Mind – Change Your Life

Life does not NEED to be hard.

It is all about shifting ones attitude by changing thoughts, which shifts feelings, which shifts ones belief systems. Positive thinking really works and yes it does take intention and determination to create a positive life. Now some people might call this work; but I call this process and flow and attitude shifting.

When we catch our negative thoughts and dispute these irrational beliefs i.e. that the cup is half empty (I mean after all if you want to be irrational why not hold the belief that the cup is half full), then you will move forward in life and you will feel great. It is worth disputing negative irrational beliefs so that you can think and feel better. No reason to dispute the positive ones, usually.

If you shift into dreams than you can learn how to achieve your dreams by creating bite size goals and then tasks that will allow you to complete your goals and then eventually create your dream. If your intention is set and you are willing to put the time in, anything is possible. Of course accepting that yes there are limitations and knowing what your limitations are; will allow you to dream dreams that you can reach.

If you are grandiose and your ego is bigger than your brain well, most likely you will make yourself unhappy. So, if you have one leg, dream dreams that a person with one leg can achieve…no you are not going to grow another leg; but you can perhaps get a bionic leg and win the race.

If you find that you are angry a lot at the unfairness of the world consider what you can do to shift your world so that you are treating yourself fairly rather than wishing the world or other people would be different. No one is going to change for you and certainly not the world. It is unfair and so what, if the cup is half full it will not matter…