5 CHANGES TO YOUR HABITS THAT WILL TRANSFORM YOUR LIFE
“My dear buddy, you need to learn how to deal with stress. There are always going to be gloomy times ahead.” ~Kris Carr
Four years ago at this time, my life was a complete and utter shambles.
At work, I got the impression that I had reached a point of no return. The relationship that I was in (or so I believed I was in), was turning out to be a one-way path on which I was just being taken for a long, long, and terrible trip. I thought I was in a relationship, but it turns out I was wrong.
Taking care of myself was something that I did only when I remembered to do it, or at random periods of clarity or quiet amid the small emotional cyclone that I was whirling around and around in.
My main objective was to make it through each day alive.
The cumulative effect of all of these wrongs was making me feel jaded, physically unwell, and on the verge of giving up hope altogether.
Because of one simple action that I chose to take, everything came to a head just before Christmas in 2013, which was fortunate for me, even if at the time I didn’t believe myself to be very fortunate.
I came to the conclusion that I’d had enough, and I walked away from the situation—for good.
In spite of the discomfort, everything in my life shifted for the better the very next second. I felt lighter. Relieved. Free. It seemed as if I would soon be able to lay my head down on my pillow and sleep like a baby.
By that point, I had also quit my full-time job and was working on my own business full-time.
I was prepared to go with my life.
But before that, I put myself through a period of self-imposed rehabilitation during which I examined everything that had gone wrong in the previous couple of years, why I had let them happen, and what I was going to do to not just go ahead but also upward.
Where exactly do you think I went wrong?
I was a person who always said “yes.”
I was never one to refuse help or favors when others sought them from me.
Because I wanted to have good relationships with all of the people I met. I had the notion, “If I say no, maybe this person won’t love me anymore,” so I kept my answer to myself.
When considered in retrospect, it is abundantly evident how absurd and risky this way of thinking was. No matter how hard I tried or what I did, there was always someone who was offended by me or unhappy with me. This was true regardless of how much I tried or what I did. Being someone who always said “yes” left me feeling exhausted, resentful, and furious.
The more times I said yes, the more times I put myself in precarious circumstances and the more times I allowed other people to take advantage of me.
When I got to the point where I couldn’t take it any more, I told someone no for the first time, and it set me free in a way that I never thought possible. Therefore, I continued to do it as much as I felt I needed to.
It seemed like life was becoming easier. I had less commitments to fulfill, which meant that I had more time on my hands to concentrate on regrouping, recuperating, and spending time with the people who were most important to me.
Your “yes” will be transformed once you master the ability to express “no.” Even if you put in the effort, you will never be able to please everyone, and you certainly shouldn’t feel like you have to try.
You will also learn how to say yes just when you really want to follow through with it if you do this. You won’t be as influenced by peer pressure or an ongoing want to be validated or approved of as much, and this will lead to you making better judgments overall.
I did not place a high premium on nourishing my body.
The last thing you’ll want to do when everything appears to be going wrong, you’re nervous, unhappy, confused, and lost, is to have to pick between an extra large pizza and salad for lunch.
If you’re going through a difficult or painful time in your life, you may not even give eating a second thought.
But here’s the thing: I’d been on both sides of the spectrum, eating too much and then not eating at all for days at a time if life became too stressful for me. Both possibilities made me feel and appear worse off than I already was, which was actually the case.
My lack of proper sustenance caused me to feel feeble and unable to deal with the challenges of everyday life, while the unwelcome increase of weight lowered my self-confidence and contributed to the pressures I faced on a daily basis.
I was able to adjust by reducing the complexity of my meals by eating more fruit and salads, which required very little cooking and very little preparation on my part. I ask other people to prepare meals for me and have them deliver them to me.
Every day, I made sure to take a multivitamin. I grazed whenever I had the opportunity. I made sure to arrange as many of my meals as I could so that I would be reminded to eat at regular intervals. I was aware that if I did not consume any food, I would not be able to weather this storm successfully. My eating patterns changed as my health improved.
Your new eating plan should include the realization that it is OK to choose less-than-ideal foods when you are having trouble taking care of yourself. It’s all right to allow other people assist you.
Make your mealtimes more regimented so that you are forced to focus on giving your body the nourishment it needs. A meal with friends may do wonders for your mood. The happiness will return at some point. When you grow better at doing this, you’ll be better equipped to take care of yourself the next time life knocks you down.
I refused to let go of unhealthy connections.
When I was among the wrong kind of people, I felt unsure, depressed, anxious, restless, or just plain exhausted, as if the wind had been knocked out of my sails. Sometimes I felt all of these feelings at once. In contrast, being among the appropriate people prompted me to experience feelings of buoyancy, playfulness, ease, elevation, motivation, and support.
I came up with certain principles that would make the process of filtering out the people who didn’t belong in my life simpler as I became stronger and began making more definitive decisions about who could remain in my life and who would be sent out.
continually stole without ever providing anything in return to me (or anyone else)
recast every debate so that it seemed as if it was my responsibility to bear the blame.
minimized both my expectations and my emotions.
I was subjected to verbal abuse.
I was lied to.
Was unwilling to accept responsibility for their errors, and instead seeks to place blame on others for their failures.
I walked away. No exclusions. Spending time with the wrong people is a waste of what little time we have here on earth.
Give everyone in your life three opportunities to make things right when they do anything to harm you. This is the transformation you need to make in your poisonous relationships. If nothing changes after three strikes, you should not merely walk away; you should run. I’m sorry if this comes out as harsh, but by doing this, I’ve been able to recover control over who I want in my life and who I don’t want in my life, as well as my peace of mind.
I stopped dreaming.
It requires faith and commitment to keep the flames inside your soul burning, and this is especially true when you are at your wit’s end and have both your heart and spirit broken.
I continued on in this manner for a number of years until I finally gave up wishing and dreaming due to the intense feeling that I was confined.
My time in “rehab” that I forced upon myself was ideal for providing this aspect of my spirit with the much-needed TLC it required.
I reignited my passion for reading by consuming as many novels as I possibly could. The books The Fire Starter Sessions by Danielle LaPorte, Uncertainty by Jonathan Fields, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill, and A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle were very helpful in putting the pieces of my soul, world, and dreams back together again.
I invested a significant amount of time in digging, investigating, modifying, rediscovering, and constructing.
I made peace with the fact that I had made some poor choices and errors in judgment, and I began engaging with people instead of avoiding them. This allowed me to have more in-depth talks.
Initial embers ultimately developed into flames that were much bigger than life.
Your fantasy makeover Your dreams did not pass away in a single night, therefore you should not rush to bring them back to life. Gaining a better understanding of what it is that you want out of life can assist you in determining the first measures that need to be taken.
Try your hand at this simple but effective exercise: Put the question to yourself, “What do I want to achieve?” Then, with whatever response you arrive at, ask why to that, and so on and so forth for a total of five times.
Start re-kindling your flame from here.
My life became filled with an excessive amount of quiet.
The heavier I began to feel, both physically and mentally, corresponded to how much darker and larger the grey clouds surrounding me became. Wherever I went, I shuffled my feet slowly. The idea of working out seemed like a burden, requiring a lot of energy that I had the impression I no longer had.
As a result, I quit gradually.
As a direct consequence of this, I began to experience feelings of being unproductive, lethargic, and unwell. I like the rush of excitement and endorphins that I got after working out, but I simply couldn’t get going.
Walking and practicing yoga were the two activities, however, that I was able to continue doing and found to be both soothing and good to my physical health.
I wasn’t in the proper frame of mind for high-speed, high-intensity, and as many rounds as possible circuits just yet. I’ll be in the appropriate frame of mind soon. And even that was OK with me.
My redemption came in the form of long walks that helped clear my thoughts, rhythmic sun salutations that were focused on my breath, and gentle stretches, all of which I practiced more of.
Your new approach to moving: When it comes to working out, you should do the activities that are most beneficial to you at the times that are most beneficial to you. Even though a strenuous and rapid pace is typical for you, this does not imply that you have to push yourself to keep up with it even when you are not in the correct mental place for it.
If you don’t pay attention to what your instincts (and your body) are telling you, you might end up hurting yourself and being unable to get the most out of your workouts. If you have never exercised before, even going outside and moving around might make a huge impact in your health.
But whatever you do, don’t just sit there and do nothing.
You’ll develop a deeper type of inner strength if you’re nice to yourself and if you learn to bend as the wind blows, so be easy on yourself.
Are you now through a difficult time or have you just emerged from one?
I am really interested in learning which harmful habit makeover speaks to you the most, as well as the steps that you intend to take to change things around.