Three Empowering Habits

Today, 11th of April, I am turning 34, which means I almost reached the halfway point of my 30’s. This presents the perfect opportunity to reflect on my 30’s so far. 

You have probably heard people around you portraying 30’s as the best decade of their lives. If you’re still in your 20’s, you are probably thinking people who say this must be mad. I still remember when I turned 30, I was scared - to say the least, but now I can confirm that the rumour of 30’s being life’s best years may very well be true. Being in your 30’s is not always a walk in the park and life still has its ups and downs. However, the one aspect that changes when you reach this number is your ability to deal with life's curveballs and challenges. 

Why? Well… I don't have any scientific evidence to support that but I do have a bunch of friends who went through similar experience. In our early 30’s we tend to do a ‘life audit’ covering all aspects of our life, aka friends, family, health, habits and work to find out what’s important and what’s no longer serving us. During my audit I discovered that some of my habits were liabilities so I decided to let them go. I replaced all limiting habits with new empowering ones that with a daily practice became my greatest assets. These are the THREE great assets that I developed in my 30’s….

AN ATTITUDE FOR GRATITUDE 

In my 30’s I developed an attitude for gratitude. I have noticed that by focusing every day on things I am grateful for I managed to shift the focus from problems to solutions. Even when I am having a bad day, I write in my gratitude journal to remind myself that there are still a lot people, things, and feelings I can be grateful for. When you’re feeling down, make a list of good things you have going on right now and I promise, you will experience a positive shift in mood. Focusing on what you have, instead of on what you don’t, is a very powerful tool. Don’t believe me? Try it out, I dare you! 

There are two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.
— Albert Einstein

FOCUSING ON POSITIVE THOUGHTS

In my 30’s I’ve become more successful in managing my inner critic, aka Ego as well as my outer critics, aka people around me. I used to give in to thoughts such as: “Who do you think you are? You want to start a blog? - What?! You are not a writer” “You are not good enough” “Who would want to ready it anyway?”. Even though this paralysing voice still hisses quietly from time to time, I have become better at dealing with it. The realisation that negative thoughts in our heads often derive from a fear of failing and a fear of disappointing others allowed me to silence my overly critical internal monologue. Even if I fail....so what? What’s the worst thing that could happen? If things don’t work out the way I want this time, it doesn't mean a failure forever. I learnt not to be trapped by fear and get out of my safe cocoon as often as I can.

When it comes to judgmental comments made by other people, I used to get angry and defensive. Now, I understand that I don’t owe anyone an explanation and I don’t seek others’ validation or approval thus their negativity or judgment have no power over me. Remember other people can’t affect you, unless you allow them to. 

 

CULTIVATING MEDITATION PRACTICE 

My morning guided meditation practice has become one of the most powerful way to start my day. It not only promotes the peace of present moment but also enhances my self-awareness and helps me to stay focused and calm. The one that resonates with me the most at the moment I found on the app ‘Insight Timer’, it’s called “Morning Mediation with Music” by Jonathan Lehmann. This meditation contains 7 powerful affirmations and even though it only takes 10 minutes it results in altered state of positivity lasting throughout the day. Meditation isn’t some pseudoscience, there is strong scientific evidence confirming that people who practice meditation regularly experience reduction in anxiety, depression, and pain. If you haven't included mediation into your morning routine, I would suggest you do it starting today. For all the sceptics reading this article, I included references to scientific journals confirming the benefits of regular mediation. 

Have a fantastic day! 

Izabela Primal Health Coach

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References: 

Gratitude:

  • http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsletter_article/in-praise-of-gratitude
  • http://www.psy.miami.edu/faculty/mmccullough/gratitude/Emmons_McCullough_2003_JPSP.pdf 
  • http://greatergood.berkeley.edu/pdfs/GratitudePDFs/5Watkins-GratitudeHappiness.pdf 
  • https://www.mendeley.com/research-papers/gratitude-subjective-wellbeing-brain-1/ 

Meditation:

  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24395196
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22582738 
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25783612
  • https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24705269