Positive thinking was always something I'd heard being spoken about. But it was never something that I thought was important to me until I really found myself in a rut.
I found myself struggling with mood swings and depression and anxiety. At the time, I had no idea that it was linked to my lack of positive thinking, I just assumed it was something that was wrong with me. But, as I started going to therapy and started to change, I realised that, in many ways, I had literally *thought* myself into a rut.
By entertaining certain thinking patterns and ways of believing and seeing the world they had become foundational beliefs that dictated everything that I did. So often we take ideas about ourselves from events that happened to us and we cling to them and never question them again.
After a lot of introspection, therapy and spending time delving into my thoughts, I managed to find the tools to help me when I am feeling low or stuck. Here are the six habits I have adopted to shift my thinking and encourage positivity.
1. Find Effective Self-care Rituals
I have a host of self-care rituals, and I don’t let more than two days go part without partaking in or performing them. These are activities that help to keep me grounded and feeling centred and put me in a more positive space. For me, these include journaling, meditating, exercising or having a long soak in the tub. It’s my bag of tricks for uplifting my spirits when my thoughts and outlook start to become heavy and negative.
2. Make Movement a Priority
I think exercise is so key in one's life, and it can be anything from running to yoga. Apart from wanting to look good or wanting to keep your body in great condition, there are also a whole host of other benefits. I studied metaphysics, where I learnt that energy only shifts if you move. This is why movement can help you to gain mental clarity and help you to understand yourself, and your body, better.
3. Take Stock of Your Life – Regularly!
Things in our lives tend to pile up. This is why I like to take stock of my life on a regular basis. This goes for everything, from checking my bank statements to make sure that I am financially on track, to going through my cupboards and tossing old food and donating old clothes. It also extends to your relationships – have you checked in on your friends and family lately? Do it!
4. Direct Your Focus and Pay More Attention
I have learnt that energy flows in the facets of my life where I pay the most attention. So if I feel like an area of my life is not going the way that I would like it to, it means I should pay closer attention to it to establish what's wrong. If you are in a rut, ask yourself: What could I change? What could I do better? What could I do differently? Have I adopted a negative attitude towards it that is not working for me?
5. Go on a Detox
Detoxes are always necessary, and this doesn’t just pertain to our food intake. Doing a social media detox and unplugging from technology for a bit can help you to reconnect with yourself. You should also detox your thoughts. We often accumulate all sorts of emotional rubbish that can weigh us down. Keep circling back to your inner self to remember who you really are, and discard the rest.
6. Make Healthy Eating the Norm
Yes, I have cheat days where I will binge a box of biscuits while watching series! But it definitely impacts my mood. What we put into our bodies really affects us, and is another area in our lives where we should be taking stock. Are you getting in enough water and leafy greens? Are you going overboard with coffee or wine? It’s all about making conscious choices. You won’t always get it right from Day One, but showing up every day with the right intentions is a good start.