You can’t control what’s happening in your life, but you can control what you think and feel about it
Start each day with a plan. Before you get out of bed in the morning, gently imagine everything you wish to do on this day. Picture the day progressing as you wish it to, and also picture yourself dealing with everything that happens with calm serenity. Picture yourself being kind and responsive to everyone you meet, whether you know them or not.
When you get up, leave some time for writing out your plan of action for the day: leave around ten minutes. If it seems impossible that you can find time alone for yourself in the morning, write out your plan the night before. Having a plan eliminates worry, and prevents stress.
On your plan, write out the two or three items that you most want to accomplish today. Your task list can be hundreds of items long, but restrict your task list to the top two or three. Tick each task off as you complete it.
Throughout the day, take a few minutes every hour to re-orient yourself. In these minutes, do some deep breathing exercises, and if you sit at a desk all day, do some gentle stretches. My Daily Yoga at http://www.mydailyyoga.com offers easy stretches you can do, even if you’re unfamiliar with yoga.
On the hour, when you’ve completed your stretches, glance at your task list. Close your eyes for a minute, and picture yourself at the beach, or somewhere else in nature. Imagining yourself out in the open air calms you automatically.
When stressful moments occur, deal with them as effectively as you can, but then let them go. Much of the stress that we experience happens because we go over and over the events in our mind. However, it’s up to you what you think about. Replace stressful thoughts with images of calm – you can even carry some calm images along with you. Scan some holiday photos and carry them with you in y our pocket or purse, or do a Google search online for “calm images”.
Meditate. Anyone can meditate – you do it often when you fall into a reverie. Sit upright in a straight-backed chair, with your feet on the floor. Rest your hands in your lap. Close your eyes if you wish, or leave them open. Take three slow, deep breaths. Then let your breathing be as it wants to be, just be aware of your tummy rising and falling, or of the air leaving your nostrils. As your mind latches onto a thought, gently bring it back to your breathing. Sit for five minutes, working up to 20 minutes. If you can’t manage five minutes, sit for 20 breaths.
Make meditation a part of your life. Set a regular time for it, perhaps before you have your bath or shower in the evening, or before bed.
Your plan of action for the day, your daily breaks, remembering to breathe – these are all things you have control over. Focus on these things, and let the things that you can’t control go.
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