Bear with me for a moment. You know when you’re driving to an unfamiliar place, blasting the radio while simultaneously watching your GPS spit out directions? Then you suddenly get to that one part of the route that’s ridiculously confusing, so you lower the volume even though it really has no direct impact on the way you read the directions?
That is your life. That radio noise you need to cut out to concentrate? That’s the needless, energy-sucking noise in your head.
Turning down the radio in the car re-energizes your mind and offers you clarity when you need it most. You don’t really think about how or why this makes such a huge difference, you just know that it does.
Now it’s time to apply this same principle to all that other noise in your life, starting with the noise in your head.
The first step is to eliminate toxic, energy-sucking habits that support this noise. Here are six such habits to eliminate:
1. Pretending like everything is OK when it isn’t. – Do you feel overwhelmed? Do you feel like giving up? There’s honestly no shame in it. You are not a robot; and even if you were, you’d still need to stop for maintenance sometimes. There’s no shame in admitting to yourself that you feel exhausted, doubtful, and low. This is a natural part of being human. The simple fact that you are aware of this means you are able to turn things around. It’s okay to fall apart for a little while. You don’t always have to pretend to be strong, and there’s no need to constantly prove that everything is going well. You shouldn’t be concerned with what other people are thinking either – cry if you need to – it’s healthy to shed your tears. The sooner you do, the sooner you will be able to smile again. (from the “Happiness” chapter of our book)
2. Letting pain from the past devastate the present. – I am stronger because of the hard times, wiser because of my mistakes, and happier because I have known sadness. The same is true for you. Every difficult conversation you have includes someone who is teaching you something about yourself. Every trying situation contains an opportunity for deeper self-reflection and learning. Every irritant, heartbreak, frustration, disappointment, fearful moment and sadness is a teacher. Remember, nothing is as bad as it seems. Nothing. There’s a benefit and a blessing hidden in the folds of every experience and every outcome. So don’t you dare give up on today because of the way things looked yesterday. Don’t even think about it. Every day is a new day to try again. (from the “Inspiration” chapter of our book)
3. Resisting change and growth. – You must consistently check with yourself and ask: “Am I committed to feeling good, or am I committed to growing?” Because growth does not always feel good, and feeling good does not always provide growth. Neither is wrong, as long as there is balance. The important thing is to remember that being uncomfortable is important too, and this discomfort often arrives right on time. Don’t avoid it – embrace it. Channel your energy into progress. All growth begins at the end of your comfort zone. When you’re feeling uncomfortable, know that the change taking place in your life is a beginning, not an ending. (from the “Passion and Growth” chapter of our book)