Tag Archives: happiness

Worrying too much?

 

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worrying too much

Escape the worry cage

Text Version here:   Worrying too much?

…when I was younger and out of a true concern for my welfare – my Mum was always saying to me, “stop worrying too much!”

So I began to believe that as part of my identity it was normal for me to have cycling persistent worries – always trying to think one step ahead. “Just how could I deal with any negative outcomes that might befall me.”

It wasn’t until many years later that I came to understand that when we consistently  hear or persistently think of a negative possibility as being a probability, then not only is it exhausting but it can reinforce the uncomfortable feelings of those message.

Flexibility and the ability to live with uncertainty  sadly becomes  alien.

Now I’m not saying that it’s not a good thing to think about things through planning ahead in a more constructive light but…

Let’s attempt to switch perspective for a moment. 

What if there is a difference between being a worrier versus being a person full of curiosity?  Think about it.

Does that mean we’d be more likely to be able to think more clearly about a given situation? Is it more likely that we could reach out for help to find useful solutions and get the emotional support we need?

Notice if becoming curious holds a different internal feeling for you. Or maybe it strikes a chord which creates changes in how you’re thinking.  What’s the difference to your inner experience?

Which one, worry or curiosity, would give you a glimmer of hope for the future. It’s intriguing, isn’t it? …

Many clients have said that they wish they could be more resilient when the stakes seem high.  I believe they have a good point. Growing an inner resilience to handle life’s challenges doesn’t mean we have to be super-human.

On the contrary growing an inner resilience means gradually gaining a more adaptable outlook. When things aren’t certain we can have more control, by listening to our emotions as a way to be helpful and supportive to our self.

How to –  where to start?

We’re all human, and we’re used to going into a protective mode of thinking which when we’re under stress, can lead to negative over-thinking, and high anxiety.

But being human means that we’re also able to grow strategies that nurture resilience. That means in circumstances where we need to handle the normal and not so usual challenges of everyday life too.

History is full of normal everyday people who have gone on to do extraordinary things, or have overcome challenges to lead a happier life with family, friends, and for themselves.

Sometimes we need help to learn those strategies and that’s okay because in one way or another, we are all fellow strugglers.

Just being…In this moment

Worrying about things that haven’t happened yet, worrying about what others are thinking about us, not feeling good enough, loved enough.

Overwhelming factors which lead to fatigue can take the juice out of remembering times when we’re having fun, when we were really pleased with the outcome of something.  Those things can be simple things that can bring us a sense of joy and connection.

Re-edit your personal movie

When life gets tough then people often find themselves replaying fears based on past experience, without taking into account what they have learned or that they have changed.

I wonder what happens if you stop the replaying of the feared expectation, that imaginary snapshot of discomfort by using the imagination to re-edit the journey.

What went well? Who helped? What have you learned that could help you make better choices? What things had the potential to make you feel good?

What’s the first action you can take today towards a better outcome? Does that mean moving on or holding out?  The choice is yours.

Recall those good times too.

From experience, we can recall how feelings of confidence do grow over time, with practice and experience. From the first time riding a bike, to the first time we were in flow with a work task which initially we can recall, months or years ago, was a challenge.

The world didn’t end!

Recognizing that we have choices.  knowing deep inside that it’s really okay to be the best that we can be within each moment, of each day, can help us to feel better and give us hope on the journey.

It’s been said that we’re learning machines!  No one is saying that it has to always be easy to learn.  But why not experiment, by choosing to believe that it’s okay to just give ourselves a fair chance.

I like to think that showing ourselves a bit more self-compassion is preferable to constantly berating ourselves.  It surprising how these switches in perspective can lead to improvements in self-esteem too. Give it a go…

As attitudes to ourselves change for the better, I wonder how that could allow us the space to be kinder to others who may be facing challenges too?

Do you want to change?  We all have to start somewhere..and that could begin by one small step, by giving yourself a break and showing yourself some kindness.

Interested in getting some professional guidance on your journey? One to one therapy at my office or over Skype or an alternative web meeting link is available.

Contact me

Quest registered Cognitive Hypnotherapy

Maria Richards

 

 

 

 

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Happy New Year Challenges!

Facing your challenges in the New Year!

Challenges can be invigorating

 

 

 

Do you recall the first chimes of the New Year, was it  like stepping  through a rusty creaking door into the challenges of 2016 or did the door glide freely because it was lubricated (no pun intended!), as you swung with positive expectation into the New Year?

 

 

Last year was a mixed bag of emotions for a lot of people, me included.  Life comes with challenges – some may be exhilarating because they involve stretching those boundaries which may take courage and determination.  Challenges can be described as grabbing the bull by the horns in an unpredictable landscape.  Overcoming difficulties or making changes by engaging at a deeper level can mean finding self-acceptance of one’s limiting beliefs. Learning to let go of them by trusting oneself can be a life-changer.

It’s funny how many people have said that it’s the learning to trust in one’s  own instincts that allows them to be more at peace with themselves and as a result more in ‘flow’ in their world.

Finding your own path doesn’t necessarily mean following someone else’s!

When it comes to testing situations, the choices we make and the things we tell ourselves can lead to growth or protection.  If protection causes negative stress, then that can really feel debilitating and exhausting, even lead to destructive behaviours.

If we expect New Year challenges to be like experiencing an uncomfortable roller-coaster ride, – struggling with circumstances ‘outside our control’, that can derail, upset  and cause muddled thinking.

Instead we have a choice to be curious about how we can take action on small things through the year. What can gradually improve our situation to stop feeling responsible for things outside our control?  New ways of thinking can prove to be an emotional game changer and in the bigger picture, a life changer!

Challenges can dissolve old ways of thinking…

With an enquiring mind if we can turn what challenges us into an opportunity for growth, then we’ll be using stress as a positive force, so that what can at first appear difficult can transform into a glimmer of hope for success and well-being.

Hope  can create change.  Determination to pull through can enable us to access a more powerful nurturing resource, through building a personal resilience.

My follow-up blog may encourage you to start that exploration within yourself – opening up to  ‘New Ways of Being’…

Happiness!

Raising the default level of happiness in your life:

Flower of happiness_photo by MRichards

Find your creative-self

Theories abound about what it is that brings us true happiness.  Like for example,  “60% of our happiness is determined by genetics and our environment and that the other 40% is up to us”.  What’s for sure is that happiness can be something different for each and every one of us. Research within the field of positive psychology has shown that the pursuit of ‘pleasure’ in itself, does not necessarily have any contribution to lasting fulfilment and happiness.  Rather ‘pleasure’ is the icing on the cake for those of us leading satisfactory lives which have meaning,  and were we have a sense of engagement by being in-flow with what we are doing.

Yes really… this is possible to do.  In the rush of our lives it’s sometimes too easy to overlook those things that could make a difference in raising our own personal perceptions and happiness levels.

Here’s are few tips from those who practice happiness within their daily lives.

Surrounding yourself with other happy people:

Well who really needs to be brought down by other peoples negative attitudes and behaviours?  If we are constantly surrounded by people behaving or thinking  in a certain way it’s so easy to take on the same way of thinking and being.  Make a change and find people who are more joyous and playful – that too is just as contagious.

Cultivate resilience:

Okay so something you’ve tried out may not be successful at first.  To succeed we have to be willing to fail, then we can start coming up with the golden moments.  Take small steps towards what it is you want to do and remember to look out and celebrate the smaller victories too.

Appreciate simple pleasures:

At the end of your day, and just before you go to sleep, there is a ‘positive psychology’ tactic you can try out.  Take a moment to allow your unconscious to bring forward 1 to 3 positive gifts from the day. For example, it could be help from a stranger, the beauty of the sky, or a flower,  a piece of music, something you did to help another, whatever it is that would be a good thing to have happened because of, or while you were present.  Choosing to tune into optimism has many health benefits including reducing stress.

Learning ‘mindfulness’ or ‘meditation:

Giving you a chance to put to one side the cares of the day. Switch off technology and find a place to be at peace, just for 10 to 20 minutes  once or twice a day, using mindfulness or meditation techniques can lower your stress levels, recharge your brain functions and increase your resilience.

Connect with your environment in a new way:

By tapping into different habits you could make a difference to your day, or your week. Learning to make choices in how we interact with ourselves and the world around us in a more positive way. For example some people help themselves by creating a better experience of their day by choosing a different route through the park or a new street, opening up their awareness to the amazing things that surround us.

For many more tips and the route to background studies and research, I’d like to share with you this excellent blog from the Huffington post:

The Habits of Extremely Happy people

To your good health,

Maria

Cognitive Hypnotherapy offers a range of techniques and hypnotic downloads which can help you to relax or release you from the strains of stress and anxiety.  If stress or anxiety are causing you a problem please contact me and let’s see how we can help you take back control and create a much better experience in your life. 

You may also be interested in a previous blog on mindfulness – the spin cycle of stress – a small change can really help.