This week tap into the part of you that loves to laugh. Recall what it was like to be a child when your main concern was to play, have fun with friends and above all, laugh. As we grow up, we inevitably acquire a lot of responsibilities that we did not have when we we were younger. However, the importance of bringing laughter into our daily lives is essential for our well-being.
Put a halt to rumination
This week, focus on your ability to manage your thoughts and in particular, to put a halt to the exhausting habit that so many of us have – rumination.
When something happens that we don’t like, for example an aggressive driver shouts at us; our boss is in a bad mood and takes it out on us or someone close makes a comment that we find hurtful, we need to be extra vigilant as the mind has the potential to run away with the situation. We can carry such negativity with us not just in that moment but for hours and days after the event.
As Socrates said, “know thy self’.” When we are self-aware we observe negative thoughts in response to an undesired event or comment. We can then, through acceptance and self-awareness, choose to halt the process of rumination by distracting ourselves or by taking a positive action that breaks the cycle (like going for a walk or reading a good book). Focus on your breath and bring to mind a sense of calm.
Give your mind the rest it deserves and allow negative energy to remain at it’s source so that you can protect your cultivated positive energy.
The truth is that we are generally highly motivated to achieve something if we believe a reward will come at the end of our labours. Many people have been conditioned to believe that comfort foods or alcohol or smoking is a reward that will help them to relax. If you have any unwanted behaviours that you wish to change now is the time to change the reward patterns in your brain.
When we experience having energy, feeling strong and healthy, feeling positive and able to manage life we have a choice to link this positive feeling into the reward systems of our brain. This it the true reward for our hard work and efforts. When we overeat, drink too much or take recreational drugs or smoke then we are in fact depriving ourselves under the illusion that we are rewarding ourselves. Reward yourself wisely.