Have you ever considered how your daily habits – the stuff you hardly even think about – creates your life?
So. The morning alarm has sounded.
Now what do you do?
Reach out instinctively for your cell phone & start checking for urgent incoming messages/alerts/emails/news? Or…
Step out of bed. Stretch. Drink some water. Check the weather outside. Give yourself some breathing space to gear up into the new day?
Admittedly two, polar extreme examples. But here’s the thing;
The way you start your day, and the hundreds of other little daily rituals you often unknowingly adopt, have a direct effect on how your life unfolds.
The question is: “Are they all serving you well?”
“Seemingly non important daily habits can keep us stuck in a less than helpful place.” Sarah Virág.
But fear not, because our habits are never set in stone.
And just as you have the power to set your mood for the day ahead – so too can you decide in a heartbeat to shake up old habits and replace them with ones that will serve you much better.
I’ll give you an example.
Until fairly recently I fell into camp 1) above.
Mornings always starting from a very familiar, reactive place.
Check device for new messages. Fire off a few quick replies through barely-awake eyes and sleepy brain.
Scan the global news headlines. Feel my heartbeat race (or intense heartache) at yet another terrifying report.
Quick overview of social media accounts for overnight activity. Fire off a few likes/short comments/replies to followers.
Oh! And let’s have a sneaky peek at overnight website traffic stats too…
… all of this in the first ten minutes of opening my eyes. Just awful.
Can you relate?
The beauty is always in the ‘Aha!’ moment – when you realise that something’s not working.
Here are 4 excellent ways you can start creating a life that serves you better;
Be More Mindful
Avoid the human tendency to follow what life presents, without ever questioning if it’s right for you.
For many people, mindfulness simply means ‘being present in the moment.’ But you can take it a whole step further.
Be mindful by opening your eyes wide to exactly what’s in front of you, and on every level; emotional, material, physical, financial, spiritual, in your relationships, in all of your communications.
Be mindful of your options. Be aware. Do the research. Don’t be afraid to go in a different direction to the general flow. Or even to re-engineer your own thinking.
Expand mindfulness to mean; reviewing some simple daily choices. To ensure they’re creating genuinely positive outcomes for you.
Discover What Makes You Happy
One of the very first things I ask new clients to do, is to write a list of what makes them happy. Not just everyday happy; ‘Jump For Joy Happy!’
It seems that most of us are much better at reeling off the things we don’t like, such as the neighbour’s heavy metal selection late at night, rainy mornings that make our hair go crazy, or the way the guy at the petrol station always tries to shortchange us…
But take a step back, and consider how much better each day would be if you hit it from a place of awe and wonder.
By looking for things that inspire you or make you laugh out loud. By spending time with uplifting people. Appreciating nature and the world around you. Daring to dream BIG.
Make Self Care A Priority
If you can take the time to catch up on a TV series, hang out with friends for an after work drink, or graze around the Saturday flea market for a bargain, you can definitely ear mark some time for self care.
Self care in the sense of those things that feed your soul, inspire you to think positively and big! – to take care of your mental, physical and spiritual health.
It wasn’t so long ago that we ridiculed those who spent time on their appearance and health; smuggly implying that this made them somehow lazy, vain or – worse – non productive.
But modern thinking is changing fast. We now know that real winners lead balanced lives. The most successful among us regularly detach from the digital world. They spend time with their families. They prioritise sleep and a healthy diet. They slow down when needed.
Top tip? One of the surest ways to get more out of life is to put your own wellbeing at the top of the list, not the bottom.
Drive Your Own Bus
I was thinking about this just today. The way we get tangled up in other people’s agendas, only to find we’re putting our own aspirations on hold. Do this and you’ll quickly find yourself a passenger on someone else’s bus.
But at a certain point you’ve just got to break free and do things that make sense for you. Right now. Not in some far away “when ‘x, y and z happens’ place that keeps everyone else happy.
Bosses, colleagues, friends and even loved ones can severely block our horizons – our growth – without meaning to. When we cling to every little aspect of how what we’re doing might affect them, we can grind to a halt.
So make your own decisions on the things that matter most to you. That affect your life.
And don’t make them based entirely on what others will be happy seeing you accomplish.
Take a close look at the everyday, knee jerk, habits you’ve created. Ask yourself;
“Are they helpful and healthy?”
“Are they making me feel good about myself?”
“Are they helping me hit my short and longer term goals?”
Always strive to be mindful of the life you’re creating for yourself at the most functional, basic level.
Want to read on?
I’ve written many articles on the topic of self care, self love and creating an easier flow to life. Try these;
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