Guest Author - Tracy Hamilton
We all say we want a stress free and more peaceful life, then act in ways that do not promote such an outcome. Mostly our actions are in direct opposition to our intentions.
For example, if you are worried about the approach of the winter months, knowing that you always gets depressed during this time, what could you do now to prepare yourself for winter so that you have some strategies in place when times get tough? Do you plan for the winter or just wait for the depression to arrive as expected?
If you do not put something in place, it can be likened to driving towards a wall, knowing that you are going to hit it but not changing direction so as to avoid the collision. Also, Albert Einstienís definition of insanity; "Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results."
We can prepare ourselves for life in many ways, and there is much research that suggests that having a plan or goals to achieve can give you a sense of purpose, motivation and a happier demeanour.
Here are some general suggestions that may help:
Have a purpose - when you have a purpose in life you always have a reason to get up each day, and to achieve something. It has been said that people who have dogs live longer and happier lives because they have something to care for, a reason to go out every day and a sense of companionship. What are you passionate about?
Make plans for eventualities - as with the example above, you are not destined to have a certain experience, you can alter the course of potential events by doing something different. When you have strategies in place you are more able to cope with life and not feel at the mercy of it. What can you do to make things easier for yourself?
Take time out - it is so easy to get caught up in life and to forget to enjoy the journey. How many times have you finished work on Friday, then worried about what will happen on Monday, and effectively missed the weekend? This happens all too often. Most of us get the weekends off, why not make plans to be creative, walk with friends, spend time in nature, or do whatever it is that you enjoy? It is not uncommon for the weekend to pass by in chores, worries and duty. All this can be changed by a change in the way you Ďsee ití. Chores and duties can still be made fun, or be performed with a joyful frame of mind. What plans can you make that will transform how you spend your weekends?
Make time to meditate - when you take 5 or ten minutes out of your day to sit quietly you can recharge your batteries so to speak. A simple meditation that focuses on the breath for a few minutes can break the cycle of stress and enable you to continue your day feeling calmer. Can you take 5 minutes out of your day to re-energise yourself?
Find gratitude for what you do have - do you find yourself wanting more things, or when this happens Iíll be happy, or chasing money? A lot of problems can come from feeling dissatisfied with what you donít have, and not seeing the amazing things that you do have. Taking time to be thankful for all the things, people and experiences that are you in your life helps to focus your mind on finding more things to be grateful for.