20 September 2015

Learning Through Lifes' Little Quirks

"If you're gonna make a change...operate from a new belief that says life happens not to me but for me." - Tony Robbins

Life isn't always the bundle of joy and blinding sunshine that the fairytales like to sing song and dance about. Yet following the status quo and stickin' to the stuff you know like the Troy and Gabriella's of the world is overrated anyway. Most of the time life likes to play its hand at being a freakin' fire launcher blasting out countless shit bombs into the mix so that we end up as quivering anxiety-drenched monkeys of self-pity.  

#1. Change Yourself First

It's all too easy to jump onto the woe-is-me bus by seeking out external reasons and excuses for why life gets a little messy as no one likes to hold their hand up and accept responsibility for when life goes down the drain pipe. I've slowly come to the realisation that if there's one thing that you can do to improve a fun-sucking situation, the best favour you can do is to look at yourself first and do what you can in changing the way you approach life. Change can only flourish and ignite if you actually change the way you do something. Without a difference in your approach, how can you expect the way you live and the things that occur in your day-to-day existence to magically improve? Stop burying your head like an ostrich and try something different to make a difference. Take responsibility for managing how your react to events as failure to do so and ignorance in accepting the truth will only lead you like a mouse to its easy cheesy mousetrap and the escape button becomes a far distant reality. Take a chance and throw yourself into tweaking and moulding your attitude, your habits, your routines so that slowly and surely your outlook on life becomes just that little bit more sparkly and colourful. 

"You cannot control what happens to you, but you can control your attitude toward what happens to you, and in that, you will be mastering change rather than allowing it to master you." 
- Brian Tracey

#2. Life Isn't Meant To Be Controlled But You Can Control Yourself

It's drummed into us from an early age that the key to success often lies within independence and resilience. Yet we often run to the hills and try and dance to the music by controlling every single morsel that occurs in our daily existence. To be in control and to control the situations that happen around you is often seen as mastering the art of independence, inner strength and something to admire. However there are circumstances that we simply cannot control such as becoming ill with cancer, having a bipolar father or even finding yourself as a victim of an accident. When life throws these curveballs, our automatic response is to crumble into the self-defeatest cradle believing yourself to be vulnerable, alone and powerless. Take a step back and think where that train of thought will lead you - will it change the situation? No. Will it make you feel better about the situation? Absolutely not. In fact, accepting defeat will only lead you down a path of self-destruct and misery. 

Breathe. Accept that you can't control all life events that are thrown at you but realise that you can control and switch up the way that you control your reaction. Instead of free-falling from being knocked off your cutshy life path, use it as motivation to spring back into something different that will only help to build a stronger, more resilient and better version of y-o-u. You can adapt your reaction, you can surround yourself with helpful and positive influences and people and with that you will never stop continuing the journey in improving your inner strength. Use the trauma and the distress to motivate you into something greater. Be determined to make a change and through perseverance, tears, a shed load of hard work, you'll only succeed and shine that bit brighter. 

"It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for movement there is in life, and in change there is power." - Alan Cohen

#3. You Are Stronger Than You Realise

The mind is one powerful wrinkly walnut. An ugly one at that but one tough cookie no doubt! The very fact that you're reading this and practising the skills to change your thinking shows you that you're a darn sight stronger than you first thought. It takes a lot of courage, energy and willpower to hold your hands up and accept that things don't feel right and something needs to break to allow the glow stick to shine. Stop bashing yourself if you stumble as you're already further ahead than those who are dragging their heels and refusing to change the shit. You've got this and the skills you learn along the way will pull you through as you're capable of succeeding at whatever you put your mind to. You can be a powerful existence if you choose to be. 

"Time does not heal everything but acceptance will heal everything."
- Buddha 

#4. Pay Attention To What Matters And Forget What Doesn't

There's nothing worse when you find yourself busting your ass to scrape together very little dolla just to muddle by, leaving you with nothing to play with whilst your friends seem to jet off on expensive holidays every 3 months and work next to nothing hours for the priviledge. It's easy and flippant to say but don't sweat the small stuff. They live and navigate their lives the way it's handed to them and so you should focus and navigate your own gifts too. You may not be able to afford the luxuries you pine for or get your hair looking like Kate Middleton's but you can learn to focus on the small things. Teach yourself to appreciate the simple things in life and I promise you that in the long run you'll lead a far more satisfying and fulfilling life surrounded by good company, good family and a good attitude as opposed to seeking happiness in a shiny new pair of Manolos. Taking a step back to appreciate the little things like a television programme that makes you chuckle right from the belly or dancing around the kitchen baking a crumble with your mum with fill you with a warmth that no amount of new season clothes could buy. 

Adopt joy by opening your eyes and heart to all that is already around you and indulge your time in others who stick by your side through the bad times - even when you don't realise how much you need them. Chances are they need you just as much and it's those true friends who should be cherished as they're hard to come by at best. 

"You must trust yourself more than you trust others. Pay attention to your inner voice - it will tell you if how and in what you are investing is right for you." 
- Suze Orman

"To all the other dreamers out there, don't ever stop or let the world's negativity disenchant you or your spirit. If you surround yourself with love and the right people, anything is possible." 
- Adam Green

#5. Be Your Own Best Friend And Not Your Own Worst Enemy

Try not to get yourself spiralling down a black hole of misery like Alice in Wonderland when life hits you with a shit load of bricks. As I mentioned you can't always control what is dealt to you in life and sometimes those events can really test your resilience to bounce back. Through the struggles and the dark moments, it's important to keep in mind that you are not a victim being punished for doing wrong; it simply means that some greater force has bigger and better plans in store for you by giving you the opportunity to build vital life skills and bad-ass strength to rival Captain America. It's all too easy to allow your anger, upset, frustration and tears to become meddling monkeys and position you into being your own worst enemy. It is in this moment that you have the power to change the solution. 

You can admit defeat and blame yourself by brooding on the misfortunes and self-destructing or you could get back in the saddle, take the reigns, forgive yourself and move on. True healing and change comes through the strength to accept the past as the past and something that can't be changed. Forgive yourself for the pain you experienced and use that discomfort to rewrite your present and be open to what the future may bring. Big yourself up girlfriend and believe in your abilities as you can only expect others to fall in love with you if you learn to love yourself first and foremost. 

Self-love is one of the most powerful and influential attributes to master so when choosing how to treat yourself, decide to be your own best friend and not a fun-sucking enemy. 

"Surround yourself with the right people and realise your own worth. Honestly, there are enough bad people out there in the world, you don't need to be your own worst enemy." 
- Lucy Hale

As the Buddhists say...
"We are all perfect as we are, and we could all use a little work."
[Source Inspiration: Pinterest, brandmentalist.com]

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