I hope that as you leave 2021 behind, you are proud of yourself; that you are proud of how far you have come, not necessarily in terms of what the world may count as achievements and accomplishments, but in terms of how far YOU have come. I hope that as you review your year, you practice self-compassion and remember that your worth is not tied to your accomplishments
I hope that you look back on the year, not with regret or pain, but with peace; a peace that surpasses all understanding, that envelopes you and makes you feel warm on the inside and that gives you hope for tomorrow.
YOU have made it and that is all that matters.
You may not feel like this year was anything to write home about. You may still be dealing with some unresolved disappointment, blow or pain that the past months or year have thrown at you. BUT YOU are here and YOU are present. YOU should be proud, if not for anything, but for this.
It is true that where there is life, there is hope, there is opportunity, there is chance; A chance to heal, a chance to right wrongs, a chance to start all over, a chance to keep going, a chance to grow… a chance to live.
So this is not a piece to help you take stock of how the year has been or to give “tips” on how to bounce back from a rough 2021. While these may be useful, this is a simple piece to once again celebrate YOU, for making it this far and for not giving up.
So here’s to YOU. 🥂
Remember, the world is always better with you in it.
“Even if you did nothing, you are still worthy; worthy of love, of friendship, of happiness, of peace and of laughter. Your “amazingness” does not come from “the things you do” but who you are at your core.”
– Rachel Eyo
When was the last time you enjoyed just being?
Just being you; kicking back and relaxing; being present and enjoying the beauty that is life; doing nothing.
More often than not, we tend to find “joy” in “doing”, in being motivated, in being busy and in being “productive”. We swell with pride at an accomplished feat and sometimes do not even pause to celebrate said feat. Rather, we’re immediately on to the next task, goal, mission or vision. And if we fall short after a victory, we are quick to get hard on ourselves, forgetting the recent victory we forgot to savour. We are constantly on the move and not stopping soon, not even to get proper rest. Sometimes we proudly say “sleep is for the dead” and worse, we believe it.
The fast-paced world we live in occasionally makes us feel being busy (not “productive”) all the time is a good thing and not being busy is a not-good thing. Social media has exacerbated this feeling due to the fact that we have constant access to a steady stream of daily updates of things “being done”.
As a result, we’re constantly “doing”, constantly attending meetings, working, creating, dashing here and there, meeting deadlines and working some more. In fact, we subconsciously derive some joy and validation from constantly doing to the point that believe that if we are not busy or doing something, then we have nothing significant to contribute to the world. This explains why taking some time out to rest or vacationing with family without looking at a laptop could prove very difficult for some people.
Thus, we tie our worth and self-validation to what we do, achieve or accomplish; When we “do” and are busy, we are worthy and amazing. When we are doing nothing, we are not worthy and so we fidget and fight ourselves and look for something to occupy our minds and we are restless through out.
I’m learning to enjoy the art of being, enjoying my existence, the present moment, breathing in the fresh air and taking one step at a time. While I hardly get bored(because I’m always with one book or the other, lol), I’m learning to be okay with doing nothing at certain points and just appreciate life for what it is. Sometimes, it feels weird because I’m used to “doing” and feel weird when I’m not doing, but I’m slowly unlearning glorifying “busy”-ness and “doing”.
So, be okay with being bored occasionally, be okay with the quiet, take walks, REST, meditate, unplug from social media and the noise occasionally and bask in the beauty that is life.
If you’re reading this, you have made it to the last day of 2020.
What a tough year it has been. From the outbreak of the corona virus pandemic, to a nationwide and global lockdown, from social distancing and practices that have become “the new normal” to record-breaking deaths in a year, from dealing with loss, grief and pain and the shocking turn of events from the #endsars movement in Nigeria…it. has. been. ALOT.
No matter what pain or heartbreak one bears from whatever events, it is true that where there is life, there is hope, there is opportunity, there is chance; A chance to heal, a chance to right wrongs, a chance to start all over, a chance to keep going, a chance to grow… a chance to live.
2020 may not have been the best of years for a lot of us – indeed, our spirits have been tested, pushed beyond limit and probably broken at some point- but you should be proud of how far you have come… not necessarily in terms of what the world counts as achievements and accomplishments, but in terms of how far YOU have come.
YOU have made it and that is all that matters. You may not feel like this year was anything to write home about. You may still be dealing with some unresolved disappointment, blow or pain that the months have thrown at you. BUT YOU are here and YOU are present. YOU should be proud, if not for anything, but for this.
So this is not a piece to help you take stock of how the year has been or one to give “tips” on how to bounce back from a rough 2020 or how to cope with a mentally challenging 2020 or how to set goals compassionately in 2021. While these may be useful, this is a blog post to celebrate YOU, for making it this far and for not giving up.
“To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti
In a fast-paced world full of activities and distractions, it is pretty easy to get overwhelmed and suddenly find yourself on autopilot, coasting back and fourth day in day out, as the weeks go by.
Sometimes, there are just too many things; goal setting and planning, implementation and execution, responsibilities at work, home, school… it can get crazy and you can swamped and cluttered.
Life can get so overwhelming especially when you feel as though you are being pulled in several directions but cannot get a proper handle on each aspect of your life…and those moments where it seems like you cannot seem to catch a break? You just want to sit in a corner, cry your eyes out and then move on.
The point is, life tends to get alot… and the thoughts that propel these activities that we engage in often get too much, and feel as though they are consuming us from the inside out. It feels like you are constantly chasing down these thoughts to put them in order but they keep getting away from you.
Then there’s social media. You have information about everyone and everything coming at you from every angle, unrestricted unfiltered, uncensored; the good, the bad and the very ugly. This can be unsettling some times and you KNOW you should take a BREAK, but there is that seemingly addictive pull to it that you cannot explain that gives you some sort of relief in spite of everything crazy going on in the world.
No, meditation is not just about sitting cross-legged with your eyes closed and constantly making humming sounds.
Meditation is a whole lot more than that as it involves a using particular techniques like mindfulness to focus your mind on a particular object, thought or activity. By doing this, you are able to eliminate unwanted thoughts and clear the mind of any overwhelming feeling. You are also able to train your mind to be more attentive, aware, stable and calm no matter what may be happening externally.
“With a calm mind, you are more likely to be able to act by rational choice and appropriately to the situation. When you are in a grip of an emotion, that’s going to bias your perceptions of what is occurring to what fits that emotion. Themes that don’t fit in, you are not going to recognize. So, a calm mind is an essential precondition for being able to respond to the reality, not the unrealities that you are preoccupied with. The Dalai Lama says that if you are only aware of how you felt afterward, that’s pre-kindergarten. If you are aware immediately afterward, that’s kindergarten. High school is being aware during, and college is if you become aware as the emotion arises. That’s what we would all like to do, so we can choose whether to engage or not, in order not to have episodes that we’ll later regret. And I think it’s possible for everybody to learn this.”
With Meditation, one feels more relaxed and refreshed afterwards and is able to eliminate any unwanted thoughts by clearing the mind of so much debris. Admittedly tough at first to do, with time, you learn to sit still and focus on one thing, perhaps your breathing, as you take steps to arrive at a peaceful place in your mind.
In the midst of it all, it can get difficult to remain centred; to remain present or to actually be aware of how we are feeling in any given situation. In charting the auto-pilot course, we tend to take our feelings about situations for granted. We take for granted our thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations, mental health and how what is going on in our surrounding environment is negatively affecting us. And we just keep it moving.
“Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens. When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.”
– Greater Good Magazine
Scientific research has shown that mindfulness helps reduce anxiety and depression. By effectively understanding and becoming aware of our moment-by- moment thoughts, feelings and sensations, we can find better reactions to difficult situations.
While Mindfulness could be said to be the awareness of something (emotions, thoughts, feelings and sensations), meditation is the awareness of nothing (by elimination of unwanted thoughts). However, both leave you feeling relaxed, more in tune with your body and true self and all together relieved. They aid in improving sleep, reducing high blood pressure and are a great stress reliever.
Another side to it all is this belief that we can do as many things as possible at a time. In trying to meet deadlines, achieve certain things and just handle responsibilities generally, we find ourselves attempting to multitask… trying to do two or more things at a time thereby giving half the effort to both tasks instead of solely concentrating on one task until that has been achieved.
Multitasking is a Myth.
Multitasking is really just an attempt at trying to do two or more things at the same time. It has been scientifically proven over and over again that the brain does a bad job at trying to handle more than one thing at the same time. Examples are checking your social media while driving or maybe checking your social media while working or reading and replying messages while having a conversation with someone else.
The more we try to multitask, the more the tasks before us suffer because we do not give our full attention to the.
The world is already a crazy place. Allow peace flow into your mind for your mind is your greatest asset.
You have composed your first song; you have written your first blog post; recorded your first Youtube video, gathered content to launch your website; tidied up your CV; written your masters’ application essay, put together content for your first webinar/masterclass/event or come up with a brilliant business idea with a stunning business plan and proposal even you are proud of.
You are eager to get the process going.
You are stuck.
You are paralysed.
You cannot seem to take any step further because you are plagued by the need to ensure that everything you have done is perfect.
You probably suffer from perfectioniosis and have no one to tell you. Your need for perfection may be your blessing and curse in that your refusal to accept nothing less than your idea of “perfect” helps you produce top quality work, but may paralyse you when all you need to do is just get started.
If you do find yourself stalling intentionally on getting things done, here are 6 tips to help you overcome perfectionism and just get started:
1. Develop a Growth Mindset
“A growth minded person believes that they can learn anything as long as they are willing to put in enough effort into it. If theyfail, they would get back up and try again, this time with new knowledge about what not to do. They realize that their potential is only limited by their willingness to work hard and keep trying new approaches until something works.”
A growth minded person takes on challenges, learns from them and increases their abilities and achievements. He or she does not see failure in its raw form and does not get discouraged or devastated by mistakes, but sees each failure as a learning opportunity or as an opportunity to be better and to do better. He/she sees failure not as an evidence of unintelligence, but as an opportunity for growth. He/she is constantly willing to improve, is positive about the future and hopeful that his/her goals would be achieved.
When you develop a growth mindset, you are gradually able to overcome perfectionism as you learn to accept that failures are a part of the process. Your first try is not expected to be superb neither is it expected to be perfect.
“In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work-brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment.”
2. Remember, “Done over Perfect”
This is so important to remember in whatever task or project you may be working on. You may be waiting for the perfect time or the perfect person, or perfect equipment, or perfect result, or perfect scenario. Just stop waiting and get started!
The perfect time is now. Every second you waste trying to “get things together” or “put the finishing touches” is another second that you lose fussing over things that may not matter. Be okay with learning as you go along. No one is ever perfect the first time around. Mastery takes time, practice and consistency. You may be worried about what other people think of the quality of your work, but put in your best and put it out there. How would you know if you do not try?
Also, be okay with welcoming constructive criticisms and feedbacks. Do not take them personal.
3. Avoid Unhealthy Comparisons
Do not in anyway compare yourself to the next person.
Sometimes these unhealty comparisons creep up subconsciously and we waste valuable time dwelling on them and feeling less than competent to handle certain tasks because we are too busy concentrating on the next person’s strengths and not ours.
A growth minded individual realizes that each person has his/her gifts, talents, strengths and weaknesses and has an equal chance at developing same as each individual is unique in his/her own way. Focus on your strengths and develop your weaknesses into strengths. Also, feed your potential.
Time spent watching another person’s progress and comparing to yours, reduces the time you have to focus on your journey and goals.
Remember, comparison is the thief of joy.
4. Fall in Love With the Process
Enjoy the learning process of it all.
Life is in various stages and phases with each one presenting a plethora of lessons you can learn from. You could find that you are so obsessed with end results and expectations within a certain time frame that you get impatient and begin to freak out when the process goes beyond that expected time frame.
Embrace each phase and each lesson that can be learned from life, all the while expecting the best to come and working hard to achieve it. Do not worry about how you are going to be perfect or how it will work out. Just put your head down and do the work. Success will come.
The prize is in the process.
5. Believe In YOU
Seems pretty basic right?
The reality is if you are letting time pass you by and not getting started on your goals, then you do not believe in yourself so much. You have chosen to focus on your weaknesses and not your strengths. You have chosen to listen to the negative “what if’s” over the positive “what ifs”. You have decided that you are not good enough, not smart enough, not pretty/handsome enough or not qualified enough to get things done
The most important question to ask yourself when you get consumed with these self-limiting beliefs and doubtful thoughts is “How true are these thoughts?” Alot of time, we drown ourselves in thoughts that are not true; thoughts and fears that prevent us from getting what we truly want. Your fears are really just that and they almost never come true anyway.
So what are you waiting for? It does not have to be perfect the first time and there is always room for growth and self-improvement.
Stop doubting your greatness.
You can do it.
Just get started!
Watch this book review I did on Jen Sincero’s book You Are A Bad Ass which has given me the inspirational and motivational push I needed to keep going after my goals. (Also, please subscribe to my Youtube Channel)
I’m sitting in the dark (of choice) typing this on the WordPress app on my phone which I recently discovered because, well, my laptop decided to have a mind of its own and develop a faulty screen. I have now been without my baby for about 2 days, the longest time I’ve been without my her, I think. I do not own a television so I’m not watching that. Televisions are not my thing, really. I don’t know when that started but I haven’t owned one for the past 5 years or so.
It’s the funniest thing how I would typically spend my Saturdays indoors, resting and reading, perhaps shooting content for my YouTube channel or going to book club meet and listening to some very smart people share their perspectives on the book we would have read that month.
However, this Saturday certainly feels different because for the first time, I’m not “allowed” to go anywhere; to move about, to hang out with my crazy friend who gives me life or to go get frozen yogurt from Tutti Frutti. We had our book club meet online today and while it was interesting, it was different.
Had this Saturday gone the way it was supposed to, I would have been surrounded by family and loved ones at a cocktail dinner party in an amazing dress, with professional make up and amazing hair, feeling like Beyoncé et Rihanna with a good-looking date on my arm and dancing like there would be no tomorrow.
I can see it clearly in my head as I type; everything happening in slow motion with music in the background. I am dancing and laughing out loud, being twirled around by the most handsome man in the room as we attempt to out-dance each other. I’m sipping wine I don’t like (because I don’t like alcohol generally) and just having a great time. My nephew, who can now walk, is running to me and I lift him in the air as he squeals in excitement. Then again, if I know my nephew very well, he might be asleep or not in the mood to be carried by anyone since he’s now a grown man at 1 year old and can now make life choices for himself.
Life is funny. We make all the plans in the world but at the end of the day, it’s not up to us. There’s only so much we can control. Man proposes and God deposes, right? Hard truth right there. This is why it is important to make the most of life at any given life. Don’t wait until there’s a pandemic to want to travel and see the world, to take that chance, to do something you’ve always wanted to or be who you’ve always wanted to be.
I’m also understanding how sometimes, it really is the simple things that bring joy and happiness; how at the end of the day, it really is the simple things that matter; the things we often times take for granted.
Fresh air and long walks, a hug here or there from a friend or a loved one, a drive by to get frozen yoghurt, being able to hop on a plane to be with the people who matter the most to you whenever you want, walking through the supermarket and buying things without anxiety or paranoia, going out on Friday night with your girls to have drinks…
It’s day 5 of Lockdown and I’ve learned more about myself in 5 days of being “locked down” and in “self-isolation”; more than I have in the past couple of months, even though I’m not typically surrounded by a lot of people on a normal day.
I am doing the best I can to remain positive, I speak to my family and friends occasionally and I’m confident within me that we will overcome this. I know that God will continue to be with us. He never leaves us hanging. In the spirit of full disclosure, I did ask him some questions at the beginning to find out why this was happening. I needed to however make peace with not knowing why; with not having all the answers to every question I asked and I did make peace.
When this is over, I know the things I’m definitely not taking for granted. I hope you do too.
I know that this will be over soon, for this too shall pass.
It is easy to get enveloped in fear and anxiety in these times and with everything happening around us, including the increase in the rise of corona virus cases, it is easy to get overwhelmed with all the bad news flying back and forth globally.
For the first time in a really long time, we really understand what we mean by phrase “the world is a global village” as everyone’s business has now become ours. We are concerned about where people we engage with physically have been (even though most of us are working remotely from home). We are worried about being in the wrong place at the wrong time even if it’s just to step out to stock up on supplies.
Some of us have gotten paranoid or had mild panic attacks at the sound of every sound of a cough or sneeze even when it’s coming from us! Suddenly, our breathing does not feel right and we worry that our immune systems may not be strong to overcome this pandemic. A little spike in our temperature is automatically cause for alarm. We are therefore putting in place safety measures that we hope will protect our physical beings and see us through this pandemic.
However, while it is important to consider and observe every possible safety measure known to mankind to protect your physical body from harm, it is also important to ensure that in this period, especially as you work from home or self-isolate, you do not neglect your mental health.
Your mental health; which includes your emotional, psychological, and social well-being, affects how you think, feel, and act. Your mental fitness or lack of it has the ability to positively or negatively affect vital areas of your life including your physical health. You have the ability to “think yourself sick” in that if your mind continuously conjures symptoms in your head, you may become paranoid to the point that you believe that you have a particular sickness.
The importance of optimal mental health during this period cannot be emphasised. So, here are 5 tips to help you cater to your mental health in the midst of the current chaos.
1. Limit Exposure to News
There is a lot of bad news making the rounds on televisions and in social media. The number of confirmed cases and deaths of this pandemic keep increasing. There are also concerning events simultaneously occurring around the world at the moment.
While it is important to stay up to date and remain informed of current developments as they arise, it is also important to balance and filter the amount of information coming at you.
Too much of bad news can cause untold levels of paranoia, anxiety and depression. So stay informed, but as much as possible, consider limiting your exposure to moment by moment updates in the news. Stay away from fake news; avoid reading and spreading every Broadcast message you receive especially when its from unconfirmed sources.
2. Entertain yourself
You may currently be working remotely from home or on self-isolation and so spend the majority of your day indoors. This may get boring at some point in time.
It’s interesting how most of us who never had a problem with staying indoors for days at a stretch now suddenly feel bored or feel the need to step outside to see what’s going on. Well, I guess there’s something about loving something more when it’s done naturally and without force.
However, given the present circumstances, you will find yourself indoors for days to come. Find new ways to entertain yourself because your normal routines may become boring overtime. Switch things up and research suggestions on things to do.
A few examples are: read new genres of books, write (in your journal or a book you’ve been meaning to work on), listen to music, exercise, create content (make funny videos), take an online course, chat with family and friends online, engage in funny and entertaining threads on social media and watch lighthearted or YouTube videos.
Speaking of Youtube Videos, you can subscribe to my YouTube channel, BooksWithRachelEyo where I review books I’ve read. You can click the link below to entertain yourself and watch my latest book review!
No, meditation is not just about sitting cross-legged with your eyes closed while making humming sounds. Meditation is a lot more than that as it involves a using particular techniques like mindfulness to focus your mind on a particular object, thought or activity. Trust me, it’s a lot harder than it seems.
By doing this, you are able to eliminate unwanted thoughts and clear your mind of any overwhelming feeling. You are also able to train your mind to be more attentive, stable and calm no matter the chaos happening in the world at the moment.
What you can do is take five to ten minutes of your day meditating. You can sit in an absolutely quiet place, close your eyes and focus just on your breathing or any other sound. When thoughts try to creep in as they normally would do, you mentally swat them away and maintain that quiet calm.
Praying also helps quiet the mind and keep the brain functional. This is because your body ultimately bows to your mind and the belief system you constantly reinforce therein. If you strongly believe that prayer will bring you peace and comfort, then it will. Prayer does not have to occur in a structured pattern. Just say it as you feel it and your spirit may just feel a tad bit lighter.
4. Keep in Touch with Family and Friends
This is another way to cater to your mental health during this period, especially if you’re self-isolating and alone. Talking to family, friends or loved ones can act as a much needed boost to your mood and general attitude to life.
As much as possible, resist the urge to self-isolate your mind. Reach out to people or friends you have not checked out in a while. Thank goodness for technology as we can now video call and voice call friends and family all over the world.
5. Stay Positive
I will be the first to admit that this may be hard to do right now, given the circumstances and the news that you wake up to every morning but stay positive.
Things may be uncertain or scary right now, but what you have is your attitude and state of mind. Stay positive, think happy thoughts, pray for those in need and stay hopeful.
This too shall pass. ❤️
Wishing you Love and Light,
We need all the positivity we can get. ❤️So, I’ll be sending out daily encouraging emails/newsletters to your email to keep your positivity level right up there, starting Friday, 27th March 2020. Click the link here to receive the daily and weekly emails and share with friends and family.
“Uncertainty is the only certainty there is, and knowing how to live with insecurity is the only security.”
~John Allen Paulos
Dealing with uncentertainty can be tough.
Not knowing what lies ahead or whether you’re on the right path can be nerve-racking. Not having figured out your path or purpose in life can sometimes cause levels of anxiety and stress.
The world is full of different opportunities for the taking and sometimes, you want to be sure an opportunity is for you before you take it; you want to be certain of an outcome to ensure that it is not a waste of time or a failed venture. You want to take a risk, but not too-big-a risk; you want to make your loved ones proud, be successful, fall in love, settle down with a family and be happy.
If you could, you would probably want to see the end from the beginning…just to be sure before taking that step; because some assurance that you’re on the right track and that things will turn out well always comes in handy.
However, life does not always go this way. Uncertainty is the only certainty there is. In other words, you will continue to exist in a space that is filled with uncertainties; not knowing the end from the beginning. You will continue to have “what–if?” questions, doubts and wonder whether it will all be worth it at almost every phase in life.
You may be undergoing a phase of uncertainty in your life or have just completed one phase, uncertain of what the next holds. You may be afraid of the change that comes with the next phase or in fact, have no idea of what it’s supposed to look like.
I am learning a lot about making peace with uncertainties in life and not being able to predict the future. So here are 7 ways you can handle uncertainty.
1. Let go and Make Peace
The first step to dealing with uncertainty is learning to let go and make peace with the fact that you cannot control everything and everyone. While you may strive to have total control over your life and take responsibility for your every action, you do not have total control of life in general.
To deal with uncertain phases in your life, you need to be willing to understand that some things are just way beyond your control and this should be okay. You may be able to control what you say but you cannot control how someone will interprete it; you cannot control another human being’s feelings towards you no matter how hard you try; you can submit your CV for a job application, but you cannot control the HR Manager’s actions; you cannot control your children, your friends or the universe as a whole.
So what do you do? You simply make peace with this fact and take each day as it comes, hoping for the best and working hard to get the best.
2. Trust Yourself
Right now, you may be trying to find your purpose or what on earth you are here for. You may just be waiting for the next best opportunity to kick off the next phase of your life.
Whatever the case may be, you need to learn to trust yourself. Trust your capabilities and believe in you. You are doing your very best to make some good out of life and you will be rewarded for all your hard work. You may be quite unsure of what the future holds and overtime, may have started doubting your capabilities to achieve a task at hand or get that job or get admission into school or start that business or that blog or YouTube channel.
Resist negative thoughts such as “Will I be good enough?”, “Will they like me?”, “What if I’m not accepted?”, “What if they laugh?”, “What if it fails?” and engage! The best way for you to know if an opportunity is for you is to engage with it; try it out.
Most of the time, you do not lose anything by trying, but all the time, you lose 100 percent of the shots you do not take.
Trust yourself. Trust the God in You.
You can do it
Sometimes it can get overwhelming not knowing what the future holds and not having figured things out in your current phase of life. The pressure on you right now may be seemingly insurmountable because a lot of expectations are weighing you down. In your world, you have no choice but to “make it.”
In the midst of all the uncertainty, the drama, the “hustling” and “bustling”, the disappointments and emotional rollercoasters as well as the hopes and expectations, remember to Breathe.
Once in a while, take some time out for yourself. Breathe in and out intentionally. Exhale the stress and inhale the positivity and bright hopes for the future. Take some time out to do things you love, hang out with friends, watch a movie, take in the beauty of life, take periodic mental breaks and stay emotionally and physically present.
It’s pretty easy to get lost in the overwhelmingness of life, planning for a future that you cannot see and striving to put the right things in place. Enjoy each moment life gives you and remember to stay positive.
4. Maintain a Positive Attitude
I will be the first to admit that sometimes, this could be very tough to do in the midst of uncertainty.
However, the good news is that you have a choice. You always have a choice. You can either choose to have and maintain a positive attitude towards life in general and be positive about what the future holds for you or you can choose to be consumed by negative thoughts.
Remember that you attract what you are ready for and what you speak over your life. I believe that words are very powerful, no matter what context they are used. If you constantly speak about how hopeless your reality is and how it does not seem to get better or will it ever get better, then that is what will manifest in your life. However, if you speak positivity into different areas of your life even when you have no clue what the future holds, even when it seems bleak, you will manifest that positivity over your life and reap fruitful rewards.
5. Stay Focused on Your Journey
While it is important to learn to speak positivity over your life, it is equally important to stay focused on your journey.
YOU HAVE TO RESIST THE URGE TO ENGAGE IN UNHEALTHY COMPARISONS.
Put your head down and focus on what needs to be done. Remember that you can only control so much, so do what you can. If you need to tidy up your CV, apply to that school, take a first step towards a business, take a leap of faith or work on a relationship, DO IT. Do what you can control and leave the rest to God.
Believe it or not, everyone is trying to figure life just like you. No one has it all figured out, including the ones who do. We all have uncertain moments and moments of success culminating in individual journeys in life. So do not compare your behind-the-scenes with another person’s highlight reel. If you need to take some time off from social media, do it. If you need to unplug, do it. But remember that it is YOUR journey; it does not have to look like that of another person.
6. Avoid labelling
Avoid negative labelling when you are going through any form of uncertainty. If you have not gotten desired results in your life after trying a number of times, do not label yourself as “stupid”, “dumb”, “broken”, “not smart enough”, “not good enough”. You also need to refrain from making statements like “I always mess things up” or “I’ll mess this up”.
Your mind feeds into what you continuously tell yourself. Negative labelling does not keep you focused and strips you of the strength to go on.
7. Keep Going!
Most importantly, keep going!
Even in the midst of uncertainty, do not give up, do not give in, do not stop.. Keep going. Keep putting in those applications, keep studying hard for that exam, keep acquiring those skills, keep hoping for the best and feeding your mind with positive thoughts.
You may not have it all together or figured out right now, but that is okay. One day you will, and one day it would all be worth it. So do what you can and stay focused and consistent!
Trust the process. Trust God. Trust your journey and never give up.
Remember, you miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.
Love and Light,
HOP ON THIS TRAIN!! Free, life-changing, concise, motivational and inspirational weekly emails guaranteed to help start your week right have started going out! Click the link here to sign up so you don’t miss out on anything! https://mailchi.mp/06750630c287/weeklyemails
As a recovering control freak, one of the hardest things I have learned and am still learning is occasionally stepping out of my comfort zone and taking big little steps in the pursuit of my goals.
Admittedly, stepping out of your comfort zone may be difficult to do; in that it is the space in your life that brings you the most comfort and where you do not have to deal with nerve-racking uncertainties.
As human beings, we are wired for comfort and tend to seek out a peaceful existence where we are in control and can plan accordingly. We are perfectly content with a world where everything goes right and nothing goes left. Most of us only desire to be in a space we can control. However, the danger of remaining in your comfort zone is that it limits your growth, learning and creativity as you “escape” taking on challenges which are an integral part of life.
“Move out of your comfort zone. You can only grow if you are willing to feel awkward and uncomfortable when you try something new.”
It is simply fascinating how we subconsciously tie the words “safety” and “better” to our comfort zones. We believe that it is better and safer to remain in our comfort zones (whether or not we choose to call it that) when in reality, our comfort zones may not necessarily be safer or better; it is just all we have ever known. Our bodies get used to a particular way of doing things and a way of existing that any thought that creeps up to suggest something otherwise is shot down by fear and “rationality”.
Another prominent reason why you choose to remain in your comfort zone is the almighty Fear of the Unknown.
The Fear of the Unknown is such a paralysing factor in the pursuit of goals and dreams. We tend to think of the unknown as “unsafe” and subconsciously associate it with failures and negative “what-ifs” which is why we would rather stay in a toxic relationship that our bodies have gotten used to than be single or explore thoughts of leaving the toxic relationship. This is also why we would remain in a job we hate which pays a relatively reasonable salary as long as it can foot the bills.
While fear is valuable in that it keeps you safe and encourages caution when caution is due,…
It’s also a limiting thing: Not everything you’re afraid of deserves fear or caution. And sometimes, moments of bravery are what are needed to make your life better.
Forbes Coaches Council
How can you overcome fear and step out of your comfort zone?
Do new things that make you uncomfortable
This is something I started at the beginning of last year and it has been amazing. Simple yet profound in stretching your mind to get used to a life outside your comfort zone.
By doing things that typically make you uncomfortable, you find that your mind gradually experiences freedom. You may experience discomfort while doing or watching people do certain things due to factors like your upbringing, culture, fear and environmental factors or just a subconscious “what would they think about me?” mentality.
However, by constantly engaging in activities that you may not typically engage in, your mind experiences freedom to enable you take the big little steps. Some of these activities, may include singing out loud while taking an early morning walk, greeting and talking to strangers, dancing in public, jumping out of a plane (skydiving, please), wearing clothes that typically make you feel body conscious, parasailing or entering a hot air balloon, answering a question first in class…the list goes on and on.
In a nutshell, the things that make you cringe or think “I can never do that” ? …do them.
“As you move outside of your comfort zone, what was once the unknown and frightening becomes your new normal.”
Take Baby Steps
A very important way to overcome fear and step out of your comfort zone is to take baby steps in the direction of your goals.
Understand that if your goals and dreams scare you sometimes, this is perfectly normal. Perhaps you want to achieve something that has not been achieved before, or you want to give a different twist to an already existing product and the thought of starting gives you all sorts of anxiety; start by taking baby steps. You may be looking to quit your job to get a better one or start doing what you love because your current job does not align with your purpose. You may be scared of losing your financial independence and/or somewhat financial stability that has aided you this far.
However, it is necessary to take baby steps in the direction of your goals. Some baby steps could be drafting a business proposal, reaching out to a potential investor who is a complete stranger, searching for new jobs, dusting up your CV, applying to schools to further your education if you desire, giving yourself closure before stepping out of a toxic relationship. Whatever the case may be, the important thing is to start somewhere.
When you take and accomplish these baby steps, you gain the necessary confidence required to step out of your comfort zone.
Develop a Growth Mindset
“In a growth mindset, people believe that their most basic abilities can be developed through dedication and hard work, brains and talent are just the starting point. This view creates a love of learning and a resilience that is essential for great accomplishment.”- Carol Dweck
Developing a growth mindset is crucial in overcoming fear and stepping out of your comfort zone. This is because your mindset affects your attitudes and general outlook on life.
Most often than not, we remain in our comfort zones due to the fear of failure which is intricately tied to the fear of the unknown. The fear of failure itself is so mentally paralysing and destabilising to the extent that the comfort zone begins to look so attractive that any opportunities for growth and learning are subconsciously shot down by the mind.
By developing a growth mindset, you are able to take on challenges while learning from them and increasing your abilities and achievements. A person with a growth mindset does not see failure in its raw form and does not get discouraged by mistakes, but sees failure as a learning opportunity to be and do better. Furthermore, he/she sees failure not as an evidence of unintelligence, but as an opportunity for growth and as such, is constantly willing to improve and positive about the future.
“A growth minded person believes that they can learn anything as long as they are willing to put in enough effort into it. If they fail, they would get back up and try again, this time with new knowledge about what not to do. They realize that their potential is only limited by their willingness to work hard and keep trying new approaches until something works.”
You can read more on how to develop a growth mindset here.
Words are so powerful and simple positive words which may seem ineffective on their own, can evoke a powerful response of feeling amazing, powerful and like you can take on the world.
By repeatedly saying positively affirmative words to yourself even if you do not believe them at first, your brain believes them. This is because your brain does not know the difference between what words are true and false. Positive affirmations help you counter negative thoughts that may pop up from time to time due to fear.
Also, be careful of the negative words you tell yourself or others about yourself, whether jokingly or in serious terms. Sooner or later, you begin to believe them and act accordingly. If you continuously say “this one is too big for me to do” or “I can only imagine working there” or “let me do the one I know I can do, that one is only a dream” then sooner or later you believe in and limit yourself accordingly.
You cannot know until you try.
You cannot control everything in life and you need to make peace with this. In the pursuit of your goals and dreams, you can only fight to overcome fear, take calculated risks, do your best and have some faith.
Your greatest fears are just that…your greatest fears.They have no power over you unless you give them power.
I pray you find the strength and bravery to step out of your comfort zone this 2020 and exist courageously.
Love and Light,
HOP ON THIS TRAIN!! Free, life-changing, concise, motivational and inspirational weekly emails guaranteed to help start your week right have started going out! If you have not subscribed then you are definitely missing out! Click the link here to sign up so you don’t miss out on anything! https://mailchi.mp/06750630c287/weeklyemails