We’re really good at ‘should-ing’ oursevles.
I should workout. I should eat better. I should sleep more. I should clean my house. I should have more patience…
But all that should-ing gets us nowhere, and can actually make us feel really bad. Like no matter how much we get done during the day, there’s always more left to do, and that by leaving things undone, we’ve failed in some way.
So instead of putting all kinds of pressure on yourself to DO ALL THE THINGS, I want to suggest that you pause right now and pick one thing from the list below to do today instead.
Showing yourself just a little kindness can go a really long way — try it out and see for yourself.
Do a Body Scan 1-2x per day
Do a little physical scan of your body- are you holding tension in your shoulders? Your jaw? Your hips? Are you hydrated? Hungry? Focused? Distracted? Tune into YOU.
Play, play, play!
This is something we can easily allow to slip away as adults. Whether it’s a board game, going on the swings at your local park, playing with leggos or building a fort in your living room, let yourself have some fun!
Watch your language.
How does your inner voice talk to you? Are you in the habit of talking down to yourself for failing in some way? Do you pick yourself apart in the mirror? If yes, be gentle with yourself as much as you can- you deserve all the love and praise.
Stop doing stuff you hate.
Give yourself permission to say no to doing things you don’t want to do and don’t like doing. People might be disappointed, but overtime, boundaries create respect.
Act on what you NEED, no what you WANT.
You might WANT the fourth cookie after a long day, but what you NEED is probably a little downtime and self-care. You might WANT to hit snooze and skip your workout, but what you NEED is to move your body so you can stay energized.
Forgive yourself and others.
Yourself and others. You aren’t meant to do things perfectly, and neither is anyone else. This can be a hard one because if we forgive ourselves or others, it can feel like we’re excusing their behavior that hurt us in some way. But what you’re actually doing is releasing that negative energy from your body and mind, leaving more space for gratitude and love.
Disconnect from technology.
Turn your phone off and read for 15 minutes. Shut off the TV and color in a coloring book. Close the laptop and do a few stretches. Give your eyes and brain a rest a few times throughout the day – especially before bed.
Challenge yourself to ONE DAY of no complaining – and when you catch yourself complaining, pause and ask yourself what better feeling thought or words can you choose to describe your frustration? Complaining doesn’t actually help us feel better or make better choices, so try to cut back on it bit by bit.
Quit numbing out.
Shopping, eating, drinking, scrolling, Netflixing, working 24/7– these are examples of avoiding discomfort. Start by acknowledging what you’re feeling and identify why. Then, you can create helpful strategies for what to do when those feelings come up, like deep breathing, journaling, etc.
Ask for help if you need it.
Remember that you’re never alone in a struggle. Whatever you’re going through now, many others have been through exactly the same experiences before and come out the other side in one piece. Ask for their guidance and support.
Take time for yourself.
Make a date with yourself whether it’s a solo workout, reading time, a walk, a nap…make sure you get time that is free of other people’s plans.
Laugh as much as possible.
Whatever it is that makes you laugh, do it. Every. Single. Day.
Stop trying so hard to control things
Life is mostly unpredictable– clearly! And the more we can surrender to this truth, the more at peace we’ll feel. Just show up for yourself and do the best you can, minute to minute and give yourself a break when things don’t go as planned.
Do a daily brain dump.
Maybe you journal about your day, or you go on a rant about your annoying co-worker. Maybe you write a gratitude list. No matter what you write, putting your thoughts onto paper will do you a world of good and help you feel calm and at ease.
Consider minimizing the time you spend with difficult people.
No better time than right now to practice this one! You know those people who after you leave their company, you just feel…..bad? Or stressed? Or like ‘what the heck is wrong with them?!’ If so, then it’s probably time to consider either having an honest convo about it with them, or just let the relationship go.
Put down the victim card.
When bad things happen, instead of falling into the “why do these things always happen to me?” trap, try asking “what’s the lesson here”? Cuz the truth is, if bad things keep happening over and over and over again, the Universe is trying to tell you something…
Speak the truth.
Be honest about what you want, what you need, and how you feel. It’s not always comfortable, or possible, really, to be 100% truthful all the time, but when you can speak the truth it can deepen relationships with yourself and other and create a lot more happiness in the long-run.