I know that many of you are going through challenging life transitions right now. At one time or another, we all experience significant changes in our lives. But, working your way through these transitional times can be challenging and taxing to body, mind, and spirit. Yes, overcoming life challenges is a common theme I hear regularly from clients.
So, here’s my first question to you: What life challenges are you facing right now? Are you dealing with challenging family dynamics, or a financial hardship, or a serious health issue? Or perhaps you’re searching to find meaning and purpose in your life.
This leads to my second question: How are you handling those challenges? Do you ever hear yourself saying, “Why is this happening to me? . . . I don’t have enough time . . . I don’t have enough money . . . I don’t have enough energy”? Well, don’t despair. Sometimes it just takes shifting your mind set; it’s that simple.
Here’s an example of what I mean: I recently interviewed Sat Dharam Kaur, a naturopathic doctor here in Ontario. Among other things, we discussed how a person can respond to a serious health diagnosis like cancer. According to Dr. Kaur, a health crisis like cancer is a way of telling someone that they need to “get with the program—be who they’re really supposed to be.”
In other words, it’s a wake-up call that can help a person realize that it’s time to make changes and to address what isn’t working in their lives. Rather than just accepting a cancer diagnosis, we can see it as an opportunity to transform ourselves for the better. This means examining our lives to determine what gives us the most meaning and brings us the greatest joy.
It also means letting go of the things that aren’t serving us well. It means not giving in to the disease by doing nothing.
If You Could Rewind Your Life, What Would You Change?
Not long ago, someone asked me what “one” thing I would have changed if given the opportunity to reset my life back to an earlier period.
I really had to think about it because my mind immediately filled with a long list of things I would have done differently. But, here’s the thing that stood out: if given a second chance, I would take more pleasure in life and stop being so hard on myself.
Back then, I was very driven and purposeful and always looking for the next thing. You know, women are so hard on themselves. They feel so much pressure to look perfect and to be perfect at all times. That’s an old pattern we’ve learned that can play over and over in our heads.
But, in Dr. Kaur’s words, I “got with the program.” I knew that being driven to accomplish one thing after another wasn’t really me and wasn’t making me happy. And, what I realized was that, while I couldn’t change the past, I had the power to change my future.
You see, nothing in the way we live our lives is final; we have free will to change the things that aren’t working for us. And, so I changed my life for the better. I learned how to take pleasure and delight in life’s many gifts, and how to be gentle with myself and to forgive myself.
Now, here’s what I tell myself every day: I am a bountiful being and I am enough!
So, think about the things you’d change if you could rewind your life to make it better. And, know that you have the power to start making those changes now.
10 Powerful Ways to Overcome Life’s Challenges and to Feel Stronger in Body, Mind, and Spirit
Here are 10 powerful things you can do to help get you through a challenging life transition. These activities, which are healing and empowering, have really helped me, as well as my clients, to find more peace and happiness in our lives.
1. Trust Your Intuition, Your Inner Self. Intuition is part of our inner guidance system. It’s often associated with what we call “gut instincts.” And, when we listen to that inner voice, it can steer us in the right direction when we’ve made a wrong turn. So, use your inner knowing to discover what you’re tolerating in your life that you need to change.
Are you in a job or a relationship that is weighing you down? Then, start addressing these things one-by-one to make room for the good stuff coming your way. Intuition activates your creative center and helps you to recognize all of the possibilities and choices available to you in any given situation.
2. Enjoy Time Alone. I’m somewhat of an introvert, and I very much need my alone time. Alone time is personal time dedicated solely to your needs. It can mean spending time exercising, enjoying a meal in silence, getting enough rest, engaging in creative activities like drawing and painting, or finding ways to manage stress such as through meditation.
Not having enough time is the most commonly used excuse for not taking care of yourself. But, aren’t you worth it? Remember that taking care of your physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs is a way of honoring yourself and keeping you healthy.
3. Create a Vision Board to Help Manifest Your Desires. Did you know that thoughts can create reality? It simply means that what you focus your attention on, you attract. That’s the idea behind vision boards. A vision board is a visualization tool that can help you to clarify and focus on specific desires or goals.
It’s a collage of pictures, positive words, and other images that you create of something you desire to be, have, or do in your life.
As we enter 2015, creating a vision board may be the perfect way to express what you desire to manifest in the new year. It’s a great way to stimulate your creativity and imagination while having fun. And, once you’ve completed your board, you have a visual picture of something you truly desire.
I love surrounding myself with positive affirmations and images that express what I want to accomplish, who I can be, and what I value in life.
4. Use the Emotional Freedom Technique® (EFT). EFT is a therapeutic technique that involves tapping on your meridian system to release stuck or blocked energy. You simply use your fingertips to tap on specific energetic meridians while thinking about your specific issue and voicing positive affirmations.
I use EFT on a regular basis now. It’s a simple technique that can help release limiting beliefs and stuck energy that are preventing you from healing and moving forward.
A good source of EFT information also can be found at Tapping Solution
5. Use Positive Affirmations. Affirmations are positive statements that describe a desired state of being. They’re like ideas or stories, and they offer ways to reprogram your consciousness in order to change your reality. Beautiful and meaningful affirmations to uplift your day. I love Louise Hay’s affirmation.
6. Practice Meditation. Meditation is about learning to sit in silence. Its purpose is to still your mental chatter so you can be present in the moment. And, when you sit in the quietness of meditation, you experience peace and tranquility.
It took me a long time to get comfortable with meditation. Sometimes, I still struggle to quiet my mind; but listening to guided meditation CDs really helps. I now meditate daily in the morning and at bedtime.
Another one of my favorites is Outrageous Openness: Letting the Divine Take the Lead by Tosha Silver. This is a life-changing book, which is about being open to the unlimited abundance of the universe. Plus, it offers plenty of suggestions on how to create your life in the highest way with very little effort.
I send my clients to this book because it’s the best one I know about that allows them to steep in a trust that life is always guiding and supporting them. Wonderful, wise, liberating and encouraging book that teaches you the how of “letting go and letting God” through humorous and well written little vignettes of the author’s personal experiences and of people she knows. A great book to read when you are going through and transition, difficult time or as a daily meditation.
7. Pray. Well-known minister Joyce Meyer says that when we pray, we open the door for God to come into our problems and situations to work on them. To pray is to let go of your belief that you are in control of your life and to give it over to something more inclusive than your own point of view.
One of my favorite books is The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity, which was written by author Catherine Ponder. It’s a classic I return to over and over again because her affirmations are so powerful. She talks about how to deal with “energy blocks,” and she talks about divine order and truly living in faith, and how that attitude changes everything in your life for the better.
The book is about opening all of the doors and windows in your life and letting in the abundance that’s already yours. It’s a basic textbook for understanding affirmations as well as manifesting good in our lives.
8. Practice Forgiveness. Forgiveness creates room for love in the heart. In Catherine Ponder’s words, “Forgiveness is the magnet which draws your endless good. It wipes clean the slate of the past to let you receive in the present.” Isn’t that a beautiful saying!
In my interview with author Marci Shimoff, she stated, “If I were to say the one thing that we all could do to raise our happiness set-point fast, it’s forgiveness. The more we hang on to any kind of resentment, anger, blame, victimization, the harder it is to experience happiness.
And sometimes the lack of forgiveness is towards ourselves. It may not be toward somebody else. It may be an internal kind of a judgment or lack of forgiveness.”
9. Take Ownership of Your Life. Act to make positive changes in your life, and stop blaming others for the failures or challenges you’ve experienced. It’s easy to get caught up in the “blame game,” but remember that you’re responsible for setting the course of your life.
So, where do you want to take your life? Take a moment to think about where your life is headed. Are you going in the direction you desire to manifest your dreams, or do you need to make a course correction? Identify the changes that are needed to make your life better, develop a plan on how you’re going to achieve those goals, and make it happen!
10. Get Rid of the Clutter Around You. It’s insane to surround ourselves with clutter. We collect so much stuff and never get rid of it. And, when we run out of space in our homes, we look for storage space elsewhere. Instead, focus on getting rid of the clutter in your environment.
To keep clutter away, stop buying things you don’t need, even if they’re on sale. In an interview I did with Sue Rasmussen, who’s a master certified coach, she talked about how your outer environment is a reflection of what’s going on inside of you. She said that when things are cluttered, messy, and stressful in your physical space, you’ll have a corresponding level of overwhelming stress inside of you that will keep you from living and being your best.
Most of us don’t realize the far reaching, negative effects clutter has in every area of our lives. If we look around our homes and feel relaxed, peaceful, and quiet, that’s happening inside of us, as well.
But, if we look around and feel stressed, overwhelmed, and chaotic, we’re probably feeling that way inside, too. Believe it or not, decluttering your life can have a huge impact on your energy and health.
How To Foster A Gratitude Attitude
This activity should be included in the list above; but it’s so important, it warrants a section by itself. Be sure to express gratitude daily!
Gratitude is an expression of appreciation that involves the state of being thankful. When we think about it, there are an endless number of things to be grateful for in our lives.
But, it’s not just about expressing thankfulness for the tangible things in life such as your family and friends, your personal possessions, or your job.
It’s also about being thankful for the person you are, the freedom you have to make choices, the beauty you see around you, and the life experiences, good and bad, that have served as a catalyst for your personal development and spiritual growth.
Did you know that expressing gratitude is healthy for the body? It’s true. The more you express gratitude, the more healing endorphins your body secretes. And that means a healthier immune system, a happier countenance, and less stress and anxiety.
There Are A Multitude Of Ways You Can Express Gratitude, Here Are Just A Few:
Keep a gratitude journal. Every day, write down at least five things that make you feel thankful. You’ll be surprised at the number of riches you possess in your life. Include special mo¬ments that made you smile or laugh, acts of kindness by strangers, and things that often go unnoticed but make your life more comfortable or enjoyable, like the shade tree that keeps your house cool in the summer.
Write thank you notes. Write notes of appreciation to people who routinely provide you with exceptional service, such as your gardener, postal carrier, favorite waiter or waitress, or hairdresser.
Tell people verbally that you’re grateful. Tell loved ones how much they mean to you and why you appreciate them so much. Don’t assume they know or would think it’s silly. Remember that these are words coming straight from your heart.