Happy, Healthy Mind – Power of Shifting your Focus

 

Happy, Healthy Mind – Power of Shifting your Focus

 

What do you focus on? Have you paid attention recently to what your thoughts are? How about your words? Are they negative or positive? Do they build you up or tear you down? Do they foster feelings of self worth and confidence? Or are they demeaning or destructive? On a daily basis, we can change the direction of our day to a positive one, IF we change our thoughts. And ultimately, our speech. Obviously, some days this is harder to do. First, we have to be willing to be aware of our thoughts and second, be willing to make the conscious effort to change them. Maybe you do pretty well on a day to day basis of seeing the glass half full. Or maybe you have been able to stop your negative thoughts in their tracks. Good job! For me personally, some days it takes real effort for me to shift from beating myself up to acknowledging myself for all the great things I do for myself and others. So now lets go even deeper…

What about those times in life where you are enduring immense pain from a recent traumatic life changing event? Of course, all of us need to take the time to grieve our losses and vent our anger. Its never a good idea to stifle your emotions. And if you have an eating disorder, it is all too easy to fall back on bad habits of using food to stuff down our feelings and numb ourselves from the pain. It IS possible to learn healthy ways to deal with our emotions. For me, having supportive friends I can vent to has proved valuable. Not to mention, it helps me immensely to put my feelings on paper. I have learned to appreciate the value of journaling. My older sister always urged me for years to write my feelings down and I now do. Another very useful tool has been what my life coach calls, barf and burn. Yup, it is what it sounds like. Write down as much as you want, using whatever words you want, knowing you are going to burn it (or rip it into tiny pieces). I tried to burn my first time but the smoke filled the house. LOL. I find this exercise especially effective when I can feel the emotions piling up inside of me. It probably goes without saying that a good kick butt workout helps too. (I just got a punching bag and gloves for this recent life changing event).
OK, but what happens if you marinate in negative feelings (and speech) for weeks or months at a time? Its normal to have moments of pain but what if you focus on your pain all day, everyday? And what if all you talk about is your trauma? Warning, this may not be easy to hear, but are you are possibly robbing yourself and others of joy? The joy of letting yourself and others see all the wonderful facets of who you really are? You are more than your pain. You are more than your trauma. I only bring this up because recently I had a valuable (and brave) friend bring this matter up to me. Its not easy getting constructive, loving feedback, but she was right. Her words helped me to really reflect on my words and actions of the last few weeks. I had been eating (literally), breathing, and drinking my trauma. I made a conscious decision to focus on ME. MY healing, self care and emotional/mental health. In the end, no matter what challenges we are facing in life, the only thing we can change is ourselves. When I finally made that shift, the powerful shift of changing my focus, bam, it was life changing for me.
I sincerely hope you too can experience the power of shifting your focus!
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