MIND: It's time to clean up your stinkin thinkin!
It feels great to de-clutter the junk in the house, and when you clear out the junky mind clutter, those automatic thoughts that create nothing but cobwebs, you will decrease your stress. We all know the effects stress can have on our health. If you continue to practice the following tip, you will break some bad thought habits and build emotional muscle to support overall good health. Sometimes we don't realize how our negative thinking is affecting us or that we are even thinking negatively at all. We humans have 50,000-70,000 thoughts a day! How many do you think are creating stress or bad moods?
Here is a fast and simple way to ditch the stinkin thinkin trap:
1. Catch and Shoot: I don't know much about basketball, but I do know that when you receive the ball you're not supposed to hold it long. You have to hold for a bit to look for a strategically positioned player, but then you have to shoot. The next time you find yourself feeling stressed, anxious, overwhelmed or frustrated it's because you have caught a big ball of thoughts and you are holding them. Next time catch your thoughts. Observe your thoughts because this will build awareness and awareness is the first key. CATCH the ball by asking yourself: "What was I thinking just before I started to feel this way?" Just asking this question is good because it interrupts the negative dialogue pattern. HOLD the ball, but just long enough to determine your next strategic action. Ask yourself: "Is that thought true, is it possible it could mean something else entirely? What is a different perspective? Now you have a choice. You can HOLD the ball and continue to keep the thoughts that are causing distress OR you can SHOOT the ball! You can shoot that thought right out of the playing field if you can find a new meaning or simply acknowledge that it was a ridiculous thought. I have had a few of those and I bet you have too! See the truth or give it a new meaning and feel the difference. Sometimes simply catching and changing one word is enough. Here is an example I use all the time: Have you ever found yourself stressed out with all your responsibilities? I HAVE to do this, I HAVE to do that. Try this: Change HAVE to GET. Kinda changes everything doesn't it?
BODY: Release toxins and rejuvenate your health! A whole food cleanse will do your body good! It will jump start you to:
- Reduce inflammation
- Lose weight naturally
- Increase your energy
- Sleep better
- Boost your metabolism
- Improve your mood
Get your body moving! Movement is so important for overall wellness. Just a short walk with your dog is all you need. Your dog will thank you too! Yes, gardening counts. I love to take my fur kids for walks around the property and exercise at home with DVDs. You need to find something YOU enjoy or you won't do it. Consistency and a set routine will create a new habit and before you know it you will WANT to move every day. I just read that dancing makes you smarter so what a way to improve your body, mind AND spirit! Make it easy, make it fun.
SPIRIT: It's time to shine!
In my holistic practice when I hear someone say that they feel lost or dead inside or without purpose, I help them understand that it's not that they are lost or without purpose, but it certainly can feel that way when they are not feeding their spirit. Ask yourself: "What area(s) of my life need attention, What needs reorganization?Is there anything or anyone in my life that I am allowing to dim my spirit? What needs to go or what am I missing? For example, are you involved in a relationship that you know has been hurting you, but you can't find the courage to leave? Are you choosing to have people in your life that bring you down instead of build you up? Have you forgotten about your dreams and goals, have you been too busy to do what you love or be with who you love. What can you do now that will turn up the light even a little? How can you grow, how can you give to yourself and others? The possibilities are endless and remember it's the seemingly small stuff that often times is really the big stuff.
Allow light, joy and fun in! It's already here. It's already within you, all you need is some good Spring Cleaning.
Peg Haust-Arliss, LCSW-R
Holistic Psychotherapist, Anxiety Specialist and Life Strategist
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