May 19, 2017|
Life is beautiful, magical and totally enchanting. Life is also tough, harsh and devastating at times. No matter who you are, how much money you have, how old you are, life is going to have some dark valleys. Our job is not to avoid those troughs, in fact it would serve us well to prepare and rehearse some buoyancy and preservation strategies, right?
It all begins with identifying the thoughts you have and your reactions to them. If you don't realise you have an issue you can't remedy it, can you? Such mindfulness is the golden ticket to taking control of your thought life, wellness, resilience and ultimately your happiest and healthiest life.
I was shocked when I read Dr Caroline Leaf's words, "If your thought life is toxic, you have toxic memories built into your mind, and the chemicals that accompany those toxic thoughts are coursing through your body in a myriad of feedback loops." I knew this in myself, but here was a neuroscientist verbalising and scientifically verifying my feelings - toxic thoughts create toxicity in one's body and spirit. Are you full of harmful thought energy that has been dumped in you over many years, even decades? There is hope. It can be reversed. You can detox.
It is only once you are aware of this that you can turn this around. Dr Leaf has written about it and I can testify that you can do a complete 180 degree turn. It does take effort, especially at first, but it can do done and it is definitely worth the effort and time it takes. According to Dr Leaf, "You can start to recover in as little as four days."
Here is a summary of Dr Leaf's Detox Plan that provide the outline for my buoyancy and preservation strategies:
1. Consciously Control Your Thoughts - this is not just the first step, it is the main step!
2. Frame Your World With Your Words - Words have power, stem from your thoughts and heavily influence you and your life.
3. Express Emotions - if you hold them in it's only a matter of time until they come POURING out. You've got to let them out.
4. Take Responsibility and Take Control - So much of what goes on in our brain is happening unconsciously. The only way to change this is to consciously think about what you're thinking about.
5. Dream On - Research shows that when we are dreaming we are in fact cleaning our memory networks.
6. Think Forgiveness - Such a powerful act to rid yourself of toxicity, anger, shame, hate and guilt. Forgiveness sets you free. You can't grow good thoughts if your brain is constantly soaking in the negativity of resentment and bitterness.
7. Love: Tune Into Your Heart - All you need is love. I know it's a cliche but it really is so extremely powerful, almighty, influential and supreme. It helps all the systems of the body; nervous; immune; hormonal.
8. Monkey Hug Therapy - Touch is described by the psychologist Harry Harlow as, "an essential element of human development", "a critical component of health", and a "powerful healing force." So reach out, hug someone, hold their hand or rub their shoulder.
9. Play and Laugh - Having fun is such a simple and inexpensive fast track to detox and rid yourself of stress. It just feels good!
10. Exercise - Moving your body, getting the blood pumping and the oxygen flowing cleans and invigorates your brain and thought life. Get going even if it's a quick walk.
11. Diet - The old adage is, "You are what you eat." Dr Leaf says, "You need to eat well to feed your brain properly."
12. The Spiritual Aspect - We are spiritual beings and connecting to a higher power brings connection, hope, peace and light.
13. Relax - Just chill out a little. Intentionally.
14. This is my own personal addition to the list... Be Grateful - Count your many, many blessings. By doing so your brain will be so busy thinking on positives that it won't have time to think about rubbish. Remember what you focus on grows, so if you are focusing on the good things in your life, those aspects will take off.
So here's to staying buoyant during the rough patches of your journey. Prepare and rehearse consciously controlling your thoughts and words, taking personal responsibility, forgiving, loving, hugging, playing, laughing, moving your body, eating well, connecting, relaxing and being grateful for all that you have and for the amazing person you are.