It’s been years since I made the commitment to be the best version of myself every day. It took years to get to what my husband and I refer to as maintenance stage. I would do a variety of things sporadically, even consecutively, but all along had this on again off again mentality when it came to eating healthy, exercising, meditating and being more mindful of how I am creating my reality. I had no rhyme or reason to my “practice.” One thing that was certain was that every time I was “on a roll” to experiencing true health, happiness, abundance and peace, I would do something to fragment my efforts and put me back at square one, especially exercise.
After over a decade, I’ve learned that there is more to being healthy than trendy routines, counting calories, diets and the like. It is about finding gratitude and happiness in the smallest of acts in your everyday life experience that can have such a huge impact on your overall health. Stress is such a buzz kill and can cause some major health problems in the process, such as increased cortisol levels, the stress hormone that is related to health conditions like type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and autoimmune diseases. Stress occurs, from my direct experience, when we are not in a grateful state of consciousness and when our beliefs are contradictory to our desires and actions. This leads me to believe, and is supported by research, that the opposite of stress, like contentment and happiness can have a positive effect in lowering cortisol levels, and over all better health. So you aren’t the cup is half full kind of person? Have a proverbial black cloud that follows you where ever you go? Check out my tips below for increased happiness and better health.
- Make your first thought of the day one of gratitude. “Before you leave your bed and as soon as your eyes open, do not reach for your phone. Instead, make a commitment to see yourself not as a body, not as your mind/thoughts, but as the soul that you are that is using your physical form to experience life. Conjure up the kindness you and those in your world deserve by deeply feeling the appreciation of the things you normally take for granted. “I am SO grateful for my bed and covers.” I am SO grateful that my lungs are working properly.” Make the commitment to use all of your energy to develop yourself and expand your heart out to others, including yourself for the day.”
- Smile out of a negative mindset. “I am guessing you are like the millions of people that are plagued by undesirable and possibly destructive thoughts about yourself or others. I recommend you enjoy my “Smile Out of It” meditation technique, in which you smile a knowing smile of “I did it again and it is OK” whenever you start to think negative thoughts about yourself or towards another person, smile a knowing smile. This will literally help you “smile” out of the negative thoughts. Thinking negative and hurtful thoughts is nothing more than a habit. Smile your way into a new one.
- Tap into some fun. It happens, right? Where, the daily grind wears on you and you can feel stressed about your responsibilities and commitments. It is at this time where unplugging from the world, literally – shut off your computer and phone, and tap into fun. Stay with me for a minute here. When you are stressed you are not working at optimum levels. You are stagnant in the “I have so much to do!!” mode. To help banish this stress, tap into a few minutes of fun. Set the timer between 10 and 15 minutes and doodle, play solitaire, go for a walk and try not to step on the cracks, look at the details of a flower petal, color in a coloring book (I’m not kidding), anything that you used to LOVE doing when you were a child. If it was freeze tag – get a couple of your co-workers and an play freeze tag in the parking lot or discreetly in the actual office. ANYTHING child like and fun. This will help you grow your capacity for curiosity and creativity. This childlike energy can bring you a more positive outlook and can help release tension from your life.