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Take a Pause

How are you feeling today?

Really. I want you to take a moment and think about that. All too often we go through our days on auto-pilot without actually taking the time to pause, and acknowledge how we feel. Sometimes it’s only when our feelings pile up in overwhelm, stress or anger that we tend to notice them. By then, it has already settled into our muscles, causing tension, headaches, and pain that only adds to our frustrations.

I invite you to try something to break that cycle. Take a moment today to pause and think about how you are feeling.  If you feel content and relaxed, that’s awesome! Take a moment to celebrate that. If you feel stressed and overwhelmed, take a moment to acknowledge that. It’s not bad to have these feelings, but once you can acknowledge them you have a choice: are you going to do something to address them, or ignore them in hopes that they’ll go away (here’s a hint, they won’t).

calm sea under golden clouds

Do you have strategies to cope with negative feelings? Here are some popular ones, all of which I’ve used myself at one time or another.

  • Exercise 
  • Journaling
  • Meditation
  • Mindfulness
  • Positive Affirmations
  • Self-care
  • Distractions
  • Bingeing Netflix
  • Avoidance
  • Breaking down crying

Yeah, not all of the ways we deal with negative feelings are healthy. And sometimes the ones that are healthy, like exercise and self care, when used in excess actually turn into distraction and avoidance. That’s why I’ve been practising quick, easy techniques to immediately address and refocus those negative feelings into positive energy.

One of those techniques that you can utilise right now is positive affirmations. A positive affirmation is a phrase that you tell yourself that challenges and helps you overcome the negative thoughts that are on repeat in your head. You can pick one out of a list like the one I will provide, or you can come up with one on your own, but the key to picking a positive affirmation that will actually work for you is that you have to believe it.

You can tell yourself “I am a positive person, nothing can bother me” but if you don’t really believe it, it won’t work. Choose a phrase that resonates with you and empowers you, and watch it make a difference in your attitude and your life.

Try picking one or more from the list below if they fit, google positive affirmations, or brainstorm your own (maybe using some journaling or meditation techniques)

  • I am in charge of how I feel and today I am choosing happiness
  • I give myself permission to do what is right for me
  • I accept my emotions and let them serve their purpose
  • I give myself space to grow and learn
  • I put my energy into things that matter to me
  • I trust myself to make the right decision
  • I make a difference in the world by simply existing in it
  • I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be
  • I have the power to change who I am
  • I will let go of that which no longer serves me
  • I am not [who others say I am]. I am [fill in the blank]

Once you have your phrase(s) that resonate with you, now what? Just think it really hard? Well, if that works for you, sure. You can meditate and reflect on your affirmation(s) as you breathe. You can keep it on standby and repeat it to yourself anytime you notice those negative thoughts and feelings. If you are more of a visual person you can write it on notes for yourself around the house, or in your journal. You can create a piece of art or a moodboard around it.

Again, pick something that makes sense to you. For some people standing in front of a mirror repeating it out loud works, but if that feels silly to you it’s not going to help you believe and embody the affirmation.

Now that you have this tool, use it. Notice how you feel. Are those negative thoughts and feelings still there? They might be, and that’s okay. But do you also feel more capable of dealing with them, more determined to do what you can to turn it around? That’s the goal. How about that tension? Be aware of the relaxing effects that breaking that pattern gives you. The more you practise replacing your negative thoughts with positive affirmations, the easier it gets, and when you have control over your feelings your feelings don’t control you.

If this helped you and you want more content like this please let me know! If you’re sitting here wanting more, ready to take the next step, send me a message about my Wellness Coaching programs so we can set up a call to determine if I can help you overcome the things that are holding you back and preventing you from achieving what you desire.

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