A heathy mindset is everything. I can’t express that enough. If you don’t have a healthy mindset, you’re going to be miserable. Someone once said, and don’t quote me exactly, but it was something like, “Life isn’t what happens to you, but how you react to it.” I don’t think that was verbatim what they said, but you get the point. And whoever said that was right. We can’t avoid bad things happening to us, but we can control how we react to them. The beautiful thing is that the brain is like a muscle in that you can train it to react in different ways. Mindset is something I struggled with not too long ago, but with these 3 simple tips I found myself able to change the way I looked at everything and live a happier and healthier life.
- Evaluate — One of the biggest things that changed my mindset was evaluating WHY I was feeling the way I was. Was there a certain situation that was making me feel down, angry, depressed, or whatever I was feeling at that moment? Once I narrowed down the root cause of my emotions, I asked myself if it was something that I could control. Was I mad about my job? Was it something about the place I lived? Once I made that distinction I told myself one of two things. First, if it was something that was in control, like my job, then I needed to take action to get myself out of that situation. Moaning and groaning wasn’t going to fix anything. And now anytime I feel upset about something that I have the power to change, I switch my attitude up and instead of crying a river, I figure out what I need to do to make things better. Now on the other hand, if I’m dealing with something that I can’t take some action to fix, like being stuck under a lease somewhere I don’t like, there is a completely different approach. I make myself understand that there’s nothing I can currently do to fix it, and worrying about it or being upset also will not fix it. So why waste my energy being sad about something that I can’t change? Evaluating situations like this will help you immensely have a more positive and healthy mindset towards any situation.
- Nothing Is Permanent — This kind of goes along with the first tip, but for a healthy mindset it is important to remember that nothing is permanent. Your current living situation isn’t permanent, your panic attack isn’t permanent. I know it can be hard when you’re in the middle of something negative to have a positive outlook, but just remember that eventually it will pass. Just so we’re all on the same page, please know it’s okay to have an initial negative reaction to something. For example, if you lose a loved one or you lose your job or something like that, obviously you’re not going to be jumping for joy about it. Those are tough situations and it is okay to feel upset. It’s when those feelings are lingering and won’t go away and you start to lose hope that you need to remind yourself that nothing is permanent, including your feelings. Changing your mindset and having a more positive outlook on the future will help you get there faster.
- Create Healthy Habits — You are what you do, and what you think. A large part of not only getting to a healthier mindset, but maintaining that healthy mindset is creating healthy habits for yourself. Create a morning routine where you have a cup of coffee and read for 20 minutes, or maybe go for a walk. Do something that you enjoy before you get the day started. Something else I’d like to talk about and I consider a healthy habit is to not give into negative thoughts from your mind. This could range from negative self-talk and being hard on yourself to stalking someone on social media who you know you shouldn’t. Mel Robbins, who is a motivational speaker among other things, once said she changed her life by living with the “5 second rule.” This isn’t when you drop your food on the ground and decide it’s still good to eat after 5 seconds — although that isn’t a bad rule either. This rule is when you decide to take action within the first 5 seconds your mind has a thought. For example, if you know you should get up and go on a run, you only have a short 5 second window before your mind will interfere and tell you that you’re tired and you’d rather stay on the couch. If you’re thinking about stalking that person you don’t like even though you know you shouldn’t, you have that 5 second window to take action and stop yourself from doing that. Essentially what you’re doing is taking an action before your thoughts start to creep in and take control of your actions.
So that’s it — my three most important tips to a healthier mindset. I’ve learned from experience that these changes won’t take place overnight and you won’t see changes right then and there, but if you are mindful of your thoughts and feelings and practice these 3 things, you will start to notice more drastic and positive changes in your mindset very quickly. Be patient with yourself and remember, even after you’ve mastered your mindset, we still all have bad days. That’s ok. Just keep pushing forward and living a life that is true to you.