I have seen several posts in the blog-world about how to de-stress during the holidays, or how to cope with difficult situations. One great article I read can be found at www.getinthehotspot.com, just search for the article titled ” 10 ways to shake up your life and feel energized” as written by Annabel Candy.
As I wrote in my “About” link, I am exploring myself, my life, my writings, my passions, my interests, etc. I also wrote that I have a lot of “lows” in my life, and so this blog is meant to be my haven of positivity and creative expression. As a new blogger and as a person, I am still trying to find my style…what do I really want to write about? what do I really want to offer to others? …what do I really want out of life?
Staying positive is a tricky skill for me to grasp. Or maybe I am not trying hard enough, maybe its not a skill to be earned or learned, but instead a quality that you have to believe is inherent in everyone. Why do I find it so difficult to be positive? Maybe because right now , in this very moment, I have not achieved what I would like to have in life….I am not going fast enough towards the things I really want….and on a more specific note, I am not sure if, when or how Iwill even get there.
Have you ever felt like that?
The suggestions Ms. Candy makes in her article to energize your life are worthy to read. Some of them not as easy or realistic (i.e….quit your job, or move abroad). But if your goal is to leave your job, then maybe you can formulate deadlines or target dates. Even if this means it will be 5 years from today, at least it is a goal….at least you are setting a specific, measurable and timely goal to aim for.
Maybe another goal of yours is to start an exercise program. But maybe at this time in your life you are physically unable to do that. That is okay. You can immerse yourself into positive thinking and other forms of creative expression. And in the meantime, you can develop a plan….perhaps you can outline the month of december where you will walk for 30 minutes outside during the day for 5 days of the week and the other 2 days perhaps you can participate in a 20-minute meditation-sequence.
Maybe a goal of yours is to get a job that you enjoy. If that is not possible, and you need money, then find what you can. If you are interested in books then maybe you can get a full-time job at a bookstore. Does it pay a lot of money? No. Does it offer prestige and reward to be a bookstore cashier? Most likely not…..but at least you can work and make some money (some money is better than no money)….and at least you can semi-enjoy it for even just a little while. And what you do in the interim (perhaps this job will endure a few months, or a year, or 3 years), is to make a goal and a deadline of ways to reach what you really want to do.
We do not all have the resources for the things we wish to obtain or do in life. We do not all have the physical ability, or the money, or the connections and contacts to get to the things we want. But at least we can make goals for ways in which to get to that end-goal, no matter how far in the future they may be.
If you want to be a runner , but circumstances are offering you the ability to walk at this time, then what do you do now? You walk. And you damn well appreciate it. And you strive to be able to jog for 30 seconds in about 6++ months time. And if you at that time, you are still unable, then keep walking and make another timely goal.
If you want to join a gym or participate in a yoga class but cannot afford it, what do you do now? you walk outside, you wear warmer clothes to tolerate the cold weather, you do stretching and meditation 2-3 times a week, just for 10 minutes, sit down and stretch and take a minute to “zone out”. You do not need hour-long sessions daily. You may want it …but you cannot have what you want…so that does not mean that you cannot make it an end-goal and that you cannot do just 10 minutes a day. Even if its 10 minutes a day for longer than you want or you hope. You do it and keep building to the future.
Making friends is another excellent suggestion written in the article I have mentioned. Do you have friends? Well, make some more. And even further to this, why not lend a smile, a hand, an encouraging word to another person? Know someone going through a tough time right now in life? Someone with low finances, a physically unhealthy body, etc? Well, why not give encouragement to them ? Instead of feeling very un-thankful for your own physical abilities and opportunities, why not realize how lucky you are to have what you have and lend a word of support to others.
How about trying something new? See a new chocolate-flavored almond milk, a tofu burger, or maybe a curry-chicken dish you would like to try? Try eating vegan for a few meals? Try a new hummus? Buy that box of christmas chocolates you think would be really enjoyable to have? Well do it, and enjoy it. Be confident in what you want to try and respect and accept your choice.
One of the tips given in the article that I like the most is the one to stop wasting time. Productive time really does differ from person to person. For some, writing on a blog, baking a holiday recipe, sitting and reading an interesting book….for some, these activities are unproductive…for others they are entirely productive. So, this point to “not waste time” is very individual.
However, spending too long on the internet reading comments from others who exercise every day and feel guilty for doing “nothing” for a few hours, is that really healthy? is that really worthwhile? Some people may jump from blog to blog trying to find the latest diet trends and find what they can do to be the “perfect eater”….wouldn’t it be better to shut off the computer and do what you desire? what you can? what you feel is for you and not anyone else?
Being productive can be a lot of things. If you are unable to participate in physical activity, then get a pile of books…humor, fantasy, fiction, anything….and read…can’t afford to buy any?….borrow some from a friend, go to your library, etc.
Find some time once a day to write in your journal, it may be nothing…it may be 2 sentences…well, write them…maybe one day you will have something to write. Watch a movie on TV. Talk on the phone with a friend. Volunteer at a food-bank.
And, sure, there will be unproductive times, particularly for those unable to do more. But accept your position in life. Do what you can do, and only you. Phase out others and ignore others that do so much and have money and have opportunities…as they might complain and do not appreciate all they have and all they can do….and ignore them and accept your position in life. If you spend so much time worrying about someone else and their fortunes, then who will worry about your opportunities?
No, opportunities may not be available at this moment. It may be over a year before you can initiate an exercise program because of a health problem….it may be over 5 years before you can really pursue a job you want, because money realistically is needed….but that is okay…in the meantime, make a plan…and each day , maybe try one step closer to get there. And those small steps do not have to big, giant steps….they can be as simple as going for a walk….or phoning a friend…or planning to do meditation before lunch.
I encourage you to find ways to be positive in life. Every individual has insecurities, challenges, and even negative thoughts. I have them. I sometimes analyze my own current situation in life and am saddened by how I have not achieved what I would like to have, and how at this moment I appear to be “stuck” ….but if I say the future will be better…even if it is 2 years from now…well, I think that has to be okay. In the meantime, I will appreciate what I do have, as little as it may seem sometimes – it is something – and a person has to appreciate that.
Have a nice weekend