If you are like many people I know, including my clients (and me, of course), when you judge yourself negatively, your heart begins to sink.
So does your gut.
And thoughts get worse if we don’t stop them early on, don’t they?
Shaking off thoughts that bring you down and knowing what to do quickly is important if you are prone to having them.
Here are 4 helpful ways to shift them.
1. Speak with Someone (or a Lamp Post, Really?)
Sometimes just a brief conversation with someone else can alleviate all that inner tension.
It can then shift you towards a happier thought pattern.
Part of the success system of recovery programs is speaking daily with a sponsor or other member so that the events of the day can be addressed rather than building up.
You don’t need to solve anything, only express and connect to get out of your isolation.
Life coach Michael Neill says that even if you spoke to a lamp post for an hour a day, you would feel better.
2. Write It Out
Writing 3 pages first thing in the morning putting down whatever thoughts come up, without concern for content or grammar, gets the noise out of your head.
And out of your body.
And that’s why Julia Cameron’s Morning Pages work so well.
3. Change Scenery
When your mind is on the attack, you’ve probably noticed that a change of scenery, a walk or good company can stop it in its tracks.
We do that with young children when we want to stop them from crying or winding themselves up.
Show them a toy and you can stop a big emotional flood.
(No, I don’t mean handing them ice cream, unless you want another problem on your hands.)
Simply move from where you are and shake your sillies out.
3. Notice and Feel Your Feelings
This is by far the trickiest for most of us, because when so-called negative feelings show up from our thinking, we can feel SO uncomfortable that we want to get them out of the way.
We eat, watch TV/Netflix/YouTube, click our heads (or thumbs!) off!
I won’t go into this one too much today except to invite you to get closer, not further, no matter what emotions come up.
Stay with the feelings, not the thoughts that spin from the feelings.
Feel them in your body.
Something happens when you do that, and it will surprise you.
Let me know what you find.
(You know you can hit reply, right?)
Much love to you.
Here are some other posts you may have missed last week.
Offer yourself compassion rather than criticism. It’s easier than you think.
Please. No more dating. Sometimes you have to break the rules that are deep inside you and do what’s right for you.
The gifts of imperfection and Brené Brown. Some great questions to ask yourself the next time you feel shame rise up.
Everyone is significant. And nothing is too small.
And you can still join me here at Luscious Aging.
Illustration from Prawny at Pixabay