For those of you who are interested in some basic tips on living the life you want to live, I have come up with a basic list from my own experience (and research) that might benefit you.
- Pay attention to your thoughts as often as you can. The mind is always working on something and we are oblivious most of the time. However, what it's doing affects everything we do or say, so start keeping tabs on the thoughts going on in it. This is also referred to as practicing mindfulness and does take practice.
- Break your routine. This includes what you would ordinarily say in response to something as well as your daily activities. This also translates into "think before you speak or act."
- See what thoughts occur as a result of changing your routine. If you are practicing mindfulness and choose to do or say something different (or nothing at all) from what you would ordinarily do or say, interesting thoughts or feelings may arise. Pay attention to those and ponder them.
- Stop to smell the roses. When you are feeling trapped in your routine or stressed out about something, take a moment to stop and clear your mind of the habitual thoughts for a moment. Take a deep breath and look around at the scenery and find something to appreciate. Practicing gratitude is an important thing to do and can make you feel better about things, but it too takes practice.
Some people say that you don't own your thoughts, you just listen to them. They tend to be based on years of training and are not always the types of thoughts that have your own best interest at heart. So, no matter what your interested in doing with your life, being mindful will be a key to making it happen. With practice, you can begin noticing when negative thoughts start to enter your head and intervene before they take you somewhere you don't want to be. Over time, you can maximize the number of positive things that happen in your life and minimize the negative things.
Though I could elaborate on each of these things in great detail, I wanted to just give you some basic tools to use if you so choose. Mindfulness is where it all begins. Hope all is well with you and yours.