The power of thoughts…..

You may consider a thought about something is nothing important. Something transitory and fleeting and in many ways, this is true. Thoughts are impermanent but their effects on our entire wellbeing can be quite extraordinary. The power a simple thought has can be found in our reaction to it.

When we begin to identify and react to our thoughts, we allow ourselves to become what we believe to be true. ‘I am positive. I am rubbish at this. I can do this. Nobody wants to be with me. I am worthwhile.’ The list goes on. How many thoughts do you have during the course of a day that you would say are useful and positive?

You can think about anything you like. You can choose what to believe, what to feel and what to say. You are in charge of how you react to yourself and the world around you. When you are aware of this, it becomes so much easier to see that there is a choice when it comes to how we feel. We can choose which thoughts to react to and those we ignore.

Emotions are a constructive tool we can use when it comes to changing how we feel. Instead of reacting to emotions without an awareness of why we are experiencing them, we can effectively learn to watch our negative thoughts without reacting to them.

A lot of stress and anxiety can be managed simply through becoming aware of our emotional ‘triggers’. Only you can know what they are. Is it a thought or a feeling? An event perhaps? It could be anything.

What you need to remember is that the thought or feeling itself is just what it is. Your reaction (or non reaction) to it is the key point that will either create a good or a bad day.

And we all want to have a good day. It is easier than you might think….

Just be aware of your thoughts and the choices you have…..:)

Feel good and be happy….

‘Just stay positive…’Managing the ups, the downs and the messy inbetween stuff..

‘Life is what happens while you are busy making others plans’.

John Lennon

The messy bits in between make life worth living….nothing is apparent or clear until we make our way through it all. Walking a path through the chaos is the way we find the path…

If there was anything I could say is ‘wrong’ with my life that I would want to improve, it is the inability to stay positive. I can remind myself to be positive on difficult days. Staying positive – well that is another whole kettle of fish sometimes. I can’t just stay positive all of the time. I’m moody and have loads of ups and downs. I’m just not one of those people. I’m more of a ‘if the glass is half full, then…I’m out of booze, fill it up with a large tequila to make me feel better….please God.’

(I usually snap out of it soon enough!)

I can bring myself back to a state of positivity but I’ll be damned if I can maintain it sometimes! I have a positive outlook on life and I am a great believer in being positive. Being negative for no reason sucks. The only problem is I am very sensitive and emotional and my mood goes up and down from one day to the next. A human sponge. I am conscious of other people’s moods and sensitivities and I am liable to pick up someone else’s bad vibes as a consequence. How can you negate the bad vibes and focus on the feel good stuff instead?

Don’t Think Too Much:

That is a curse in itself. Thinking too much places your entire day in a self-imposed bubble of nonsense. The chattering mind will not help you to gain or keep perspective. It makes you feel gloomy for no reason, even if everything is going well. Thoughts are just thoughts. Your reaction to thoughts means more than the actual thoughts themselves. I would rather think too much than too little though…(Not that I think too much or anything and end up tiring myself out over nothing…. (I gotta work on that one…)

Don’t complain about other people (no matter how much they get on your nerves):

Seriously – how often do we feel we want to get some annoyances off our chest? I do. A lot! I try to let those feelings go. Usually, I can feel myself getting very angry before I feel a tirade coming on.

So cue the following – ‘Deep breaths, calm blue ocean, let it go, let it go…one glass of tequila please’…:)

Learn to Laugh at Yourself:

Life can be hilarious sometimes. Just look around you. Taking things too seriously is no way to go. Take things seriously enough and that will be just fine. If you don’t laugh at life, you will end up being miserable. When s*** happens, smile 🙂 How often do things ever really go to plan? They will always work out but not according to the way you might have originally thought they would. They may even work out better for all you know….

Break your routine:

It is so easy today more than ever before to get trapped in a behavioural rut if we are not aware of it. We all work very long hours and especially in the city, it can leave you feeling comepletely drained. Many of us our a slave to routine. There is nothing like a good stable routine to make you feel secure sometimes but it can also weigh you down and make you feel as though you have nothing to look forward to.

Do something fun and shake it up! 😉

© Christina McDonald 2014

Can anger be positive somehow?

Of all the emotions we can experience, anger is the one that is the most destructive of all. Our mental state becomes agitated and disturbed and the desire to ‘lose it’ becomes stronger with every passing moment.

Sometimes I deliberately want to be angry. That may sound a little strange. If I have something that is annoying me, a part of me naturally wants to vent that frustration.

Sometimes I wonder if it is right to become angry in the first place? Maybe allowing youself to enter a state of disharmony is completely wrong. But then…if something gives you a legitimate reason to be cross, surely that is understandable?

I think anger has its rightful place. If approached in a way that is constructive (and not destructive), it can be a powerful tool for change. Things may change for the better because you spoke up for yourself and a difficult situation for instance.

You may be able to learn something about yourself and others in the process. As long as you are aware of your feelings, you remain in control. I think anger can be channelled into healthy assertiveness with the right approach.

● Stay calm – you will remain in control.

● Your point will then be conveyed.

● You will be taken seriously.

Problem solved!

If you can keep the ultimate goal in perspective which is to change a negative situation into a positive one by voicing your concerns calmly, you are transforming anger into a productive energy.

Shouting and screaming shows a weakness and lack of control-and you must always be in control if you want your personal issues to be taken seriously by others. When you remain in a calm state, you achieve things.

We have all these feelings for a reason and it is always better to understand why we are experiencing them than not. Neglecting something as powerful as anger is something we should do at our peril.

Repressing anger will not only work to destroy those closest to you but you will also be consumed by it. It’s just like a black hole….it will anhililate everything in its path if you don’t approach it correctly!

(Also – if something doesn’t look like it will be resolved anytime soon and it is really getting to you, head for the gym and pound it out!) Don’t allow yourself to be wound up….just not worth it!

© Christina McDonald 2014

Dealing with stress….more is less.

I don’t think there is one person on this earth who could say their life and relationships are not complicated somehow. I’ve woken up feeling tired today and my mood is pretty much neutral.

I know it isn’t just physical exhaustion but it is emotional as well. I was born a sensitive person. Yey. It can either make my life more difficult or it can help me understand myself and others more.

Sometimes, when I have had too many emotional ups and downs and I feel overloaded with complicated feelings, I just want to find the off-switch in the end. Chilling out, unwinding with a funny film or a good book is the remedy for me.

Thinking too much is a big part of it as well especially if you are experiencing a multitude of different feelings with it all. Before you know it, everything has become a huge emotional ‘knot’ in your mind and body. If you don’t nip it in the bud quickly, it becomes an ugly mess.

How can we stay on top of things?

Know your limits:

It is wise to be aware of how much stress you can take before you begin to feel out of control. There are warning signs (such as snapping at people, banging things down hard on tables and slamming doors for instance…time to go for a run…or a long hot soak in the bath…:)

Talk it over:

If something is bothering you, talk to someone about what you’re going through. Stress reduces when you find an outlet for your frustration…talking is a great way to work through difficult feelings. Even if you don’t find a solution, you will feel some much needed and welcome support.

Reduce your to-do list:

Have you taken on too many responsibilities? Is work taking over your entire life? Then, it is time to change things in favour of what you need to be genuinely happy and not simply what others want you to do. Live-up to your own expectations and not that of others…

Ask for help:

Too many people suffer the burden of their load in silence and just carry on feeling the weight of stress on top of them. It isn’t a crime to ask someone to help you out or if they can help you manage everything better. You will not lose face by doing so. Is there a better arrangement you could come to at work in regards to your working hours? Is flexibility possible? You have the power to make your life easier…if you really want to.

Minimise your responsibilities:

If you can find a way to focus on things that you really want to do and still earn the money you need…then you may be a frustrated artist like me! That’s my own personal dilemma. With anything to do with work, it is always about finding the balance. If you can find a comfortable situation between your working and your personal life, you will feel happier knowing that you have more freedom to be you…

And that’s what matters!

© Christina McDonald 2014.