Are you genuinely happy? Are you growing and thriving? Or are you just pushing through the hours day after day. I have been doing the latter for too long now. I told myself that when summer was over and the kids were back in school I would be more mindful of my self-care. I told myself I would start working out more regularly, meditate, incorporate yoga into my days and “finally” start living my best life. Our level of awareness is at the heart of our ability to create our best life. With more awareness, we expand our consciousness, compassion and acceptance for the world and everything in it.
What does this mean for us? We typically think of being aware through our human senses – touching, tasting, hearing, seeing, and smelling. Each of these is important to how we perceive the world however, awareness also includes the thoughts and feelings we experience in any given day. When we’re aware of what we are doing and how we’re feeling, then, and only then, do we have a choice in how we respond or act. We are always one choice away from either thriving or well, not.
Having awareness gives us better insights into others, and that’s good for our mental and emotional health. We’ll be able to see others acting out of their own pain and, from that place of understanding, we’ll be inspired to rise above feelings of abandonment, feelings of not good enough, rejection, and jealousy as we become aware that their actions or inactions aren’t personal. We no longer have to take our neighbors shitty behavior personally. We no longer have to internalize someone’s bitter, angry projection on us as he is projecting his own pain, that has NOTHING to do with us at all. From this place of understanding, forgiveness and peace we can decrease cortisol levels and anxiety.
My failure to “choose” care for the last couple of months has reeked havoc on my life, my relationships, my health, and my overall outlook on life.
- Haven’t been able to sleep– can’t shut my mind off
- Haven’t been able to engage with friends – too exhausted
- Haven’t been able to work out – my heart rate is too high
- Haven’t been able to control my reactions to sometimes the smallest things – I am overwhelmed
What did I do? I “chose” to control what I could control and give the rest up in peace and love.
I no longer have to spend hundreds of dollars on sleep aids. I no longer have to spend energy trying to figure out why my heart/life is spinning out of control.
What I do have to do is spend time increasing my awareness and incorporate the following care activities into my life plan.
- Dig Deep: This means confronting our fears and transforming them to make way for new understanding and kinder thoughts. We are what we think. To do this successfully, we have to dig deep and tap into festered emotions that have imprisoned us with a false sense of not being good enough or that we are destined to struggle. Old stories from the past that continue to haunt us as we turn pages expecting a different ending but surprised and frustrated when the outcome is the same. What stories do you continue to manifest? Can we relinquish our fears, replace with forgiveness and change the story? The answer is yes, when we do our work, we can learn from the lesson and create a new table of contents, subjects, and characters that align with our new world view untainted by the beliefs that no longer serve us.
- Meditate: If you haven’t learned the life-changing skill of meditation I would highly recommend it. It helps to silence the world, clear the mind and allows for a deeper connection with mind/body. Even if you only have 5 minutes you can benefit greatly from this little gift of peace and awareness. I love the Calm app for guided mediation, sleep stories that will help you fall asleep (this has come in handy), breathing exercises and more.
- Letting go: Letting go of people, things, outcomes, and the notion that we are in ultimate control. We give ourselves to much credit when we think we have everything to do with everything. It is so freeing to control what we can control and give the rest up.
- Stop stressing about what other people think of us: This one is the hardest for me. As a people pleaser I struggle to NOT WORRY about what people think, say and do. I benefit greatly from an internal focus on what my heart wants and align my choices to choose what is best for MY LIFE – not anyone else’s.
Awareness is a lifelong journey. There are many things to learn about our life, our relationships and our world view. Make a conscious effort to explore your own truth- your own wants, needs and values. Enjoy the ride- there is no rush. My wish for all of us is the self- awareness to make the choices to create our best life.
Love to all of you-