Ten years ago I was at one of the lowest points of my young adult life. I lived a wild unbalanced life filled with bad eating habits that consisted of junk food, starving myself and doing hours of cardio to lose weight, going out, staying up late four to five nights a week, drinking a lot of alcohol, and smoking cigarettes when I drank. I was caught up in a whirlwind of living fast, and nothing in my life seemed to be going smoothly or manageable. Within a course of two months that year my mother was in ICU nearly dying from a lung infection, my boyfriend's children's mother died in a car accident, my condo was foreclosing, my boyfriend lost his job, my driver's license was suspended, and I found out I was pregnant.
I felt as if I was on the brink of insanity with no where to turn. It was during that time that my boss's son started reading books on positivity and had the entire office read "The Secret" by Bob Proctor. That book changed, or I should say, saved, my life. I read it four times in one month, and that is the year that I started learning to focus on the things that I have the power to change.
It's so easy to get caught up in life's problems, because there will always be things or situations that are not going the way we want. Life will always have problems, but I've learned that it's the way we respond to them that changes our life and most of the time- the outcome.
PROBLEMS OR CHALLENGES?
I learned that once we change ourselves everything else follows. I wasn't living a healthy lifestyle at all; therefore, my mind and body was not equipped to handle any level of stress. Like most people, I was wired to naturally think negatively about situations and focus on the problems and what is going wrong in my life. Jumping out of that rat race of thinking is hard, but anything worth doing in life is hard. As soon as I jumped out, slowed down and looked around I saw that the problems that I could control were not as unmanageable and big that they appeared to be at first but were, in fact, fixable. I'd like to compare problems that we can control to walking around with a few tiny rock chips in our shoe. With our shoe on you can feel them, and they feel huge and almost impossible to walk comfortably, but when you take your shoe off they're actually very small and not big at all in the grand scheme of things. Therefore, I try to not look at problems that I can control as problems, rather I look at them as challenges- opportunities for growth.
So, am I at where I need to be at thinking differently and being positive? Heck no!!! But if I didn't start learning about how to train my mind to think differently ten years ago, I definitely wouldn't be at where I am today. I would still be living a life I felt stuck in, not being able to control anything.
Tony Robbins has an expression that says, "Where focus goes, energy flows", and it's so true. Anything, we focus our energy on, will grow; whether it is a "problem" or a solution. So rather than focusing on what's wrong try to stop yourself and direct your focus on solutions and what is going right. Let your energy flow in that direction of your life.
TIPS TO HELP TRAIN YOUR MIND
Here are a few things that I've learned to do daily from the books that I've read and a long list of positive leaders that I follow on social media. All of these things DO help in training your subconscious to thinking more positively and focusing your energy on what matters:
Write positive, motivating notes for yourself and have them hanging somewhere you can see first thing in the morning.
Set goals for yourself and break them up to small things you can do every day. Setting monthly goals that work towards your yearly goal. Write them down and hang them up where you can see them every day.
Create a daily routine that gives you enough SLEEP and take care of your body. Sleep, exercise and eating right all goes hand in hand in maintaining balance; which is necessary for growth. You can't expect your body and mind to grow and evolve if you don't take care of it.
When you find yourself thinking negatively, stop yourself by directing your attention to something else, even if it's irrelevant to what you were thinking about. Forcefully stopping your negative thoughts is being actively aware of your thoughts and is a step towards training your mind to think differently.
Limit your TV time and READ or do something productive. Most of the things we feed our brain through TV are nothing but a bombardment of negative images.
Make time throughout the day to meditate. You don't have to pull out a yoga mat and sit in some crazy position. It's good to be able to have even five to ten minutes of down time to clear your mind, breathe, and let your mind relax. I try to do this at night after I put my kids to sleep. Prayer after meditation is even more relaxing and engaging, because you'll find that when you pray after meditation you're giving thanks to God rather than focusing on your "problems".
Follow positive pages and leaders on social media so that when you go on your facebook, snapchat, instagram or twitter you're always reading something uplifting and inspirational.
Be passionate in everything that you do even if you're having to force yourself!!! All of us get caught up in the tedious routines of our job and daily life, and it's easy to find yourself not being in the moment and giving half effort. Focus your energy on why you're doing this and be passionate about the "Why" as your reason instead of the "what". This fuels our purpose and motivation which in turn enhances the energy you put out.
To read more about my journey and newly released book go to my homepage at www.shareenrivera.com
or to read more of my blogs visit: www.shareenrivera.com/blog