Do you want a better life?

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This article will help you evaluate the present state of your life & health and provide you with the first 3 steps to getting unstuck.

First check out your current feelings about your life:

The Feelings Zone
Despair ..Disappointed.. Dis-satisfied..                                                                    Sad.. Mad.. Frustrated.. Angry                                 —–                                      Satisfied ..  Content..  Happy..   Fulfilled ..  Joy

Which type of feeling do you have right now?   You may want to add more feelings to label exactly how you feel.

The next interesting question is “How do you feel about being in that feeling ?”. Often we feel sad about being sad or at the other end of the scale, feel over the moon about joy. This, of course, compounds the feeling. And often if we are sad or angry, we want to feel happy, or at least we don’t want to be sad or angry for too long.

The first important step is to know is the present tone of feeling in your life. If no particular feeling is dominant, your daily life will probably have its share of frustration, sadness, happiness and perhaps even joy. When we are truly happy, this is usually quite obvious. However, when we are predominantly sad, frustrated or angry, this is often less obvious to the individual (but very obvious to their friends, family or co-workers!).
When you need to move up the feeling zone, you need to be aware of what your typical feelings are during a day, a week, a month. If you don’t journal, you may want to write a little each morning & evening.
How do you start the day?   Looking forward to an exciting day?    Dreading going back to work on a Monday morning?   Full of energy ….. or needing 3 cups of coffee to get going? !
At the end of the day, reflect about the highlights & lowlights of your experiences. What were your feelings?  How do you feel about the feelings?

The second step is to accept where you are at. This is fairly easy to do if you are happy & more difficult if you are angry or sad. But if you continue to feel sad about being sad, or angry about being angry, this will compound those feelings and add to the frustration in your life.
If you don’t meditate, you may want to try this exercise for the morning and evenings. Take 10 deep breaths, focus on the feeling and say to yourself “ I accept that I am feeling … sad…frustrated…angry. Byron Katie has a wonderful book called “Loving what is”. If loving is not possible for you at this moment, then try ‘Accepting’ what is. Until you do that, you will always feel unhappy with yourself and your life.

The final step is to change how you feel about what is happening in your life – if that is what you want. In order to change how you feel, you need to think and do something different! ( If you keep on doing, what you always have been doing, you will always get what you always got!)

Quick fixes

Step 1 – take at least 10 deep breaths. Make a sound on the out-breath that expresses & releases the old feeling. Imagine releasing it back into the universe.
Step 2 – choose one thing new to do – take a long relaxing bath – go for walk – call a friend
Step 3 – Do It! Check how you feel now. Appreciate yourself for doing something new.
Repeat what worked the next day ( and be kind to yourself for any small lapses)
or choose one more new thing

Let me know if this helps   or    if you disagree

The next article will show how to examine your current activities in more depth, so you can get what you really want in your life, starting with improving your relationships.

Want to  fast-track your Personal or Professional growth?

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11 Responses to Do you want a better life?

  1. johnnypistola says:

    Step 3 is complicated… any tips?

    • djtyler says:

      Agree Step 3 isn’t easy and yet it is the key to a new start. As I mentioned in the article – we need to think and do something different! ( If you keep on doing what you always have been doing, you will always get what you always got!) In other words – stuck!

      So, take 10 deep breaths, think of one thing different to do – then do it!

      If you don’t get any ideas, keep taking deep breaths, then go for a walk. When get back home, call a good friend & ask for their suggestions – then do it!

      Let me know if this works for you.

  2. johnnypistola says:

    I sense this article is for women. Nevertheless, I offer a suggestion on the title, “Do you want to change & improve your life?”

    If someone wants to improve their life, then a change is already implied. How about a simpler title like, “How can I change?” Or, if you must ramble on about self-improvement, something more specific about the desired improvement, like “How can I be less critical”?

    I recognize that asking you to change your title might affect the way you feel about changing it, but not necessarily how you’ve chosen to feel about the way you felt about your prior feeling for this very same title… although now changed, I hope!

    Respectfully,
    J. Pistola

    • djtyler says:

      Hi JP

      Agree with your suggestion and I have changed the title – thanks for the suggestion.

      I am guessing you think this article is focused on women, because the main topic evolves around feelings. Its true that women generally know more about their feelings than men do. However, this article is for both sexes, indeed as a man I think we men need this even more. I spent years ignoring & not expressing most of my feelings. Logic was the answer to all that nonsense! Right? Well, I just got more and more numb and eventually quite sick.

      The other reason it is dangerous to avoid feelings, is that they can usefully inform better choices and action. For example, earlier in my life, when my relationship broke up, I ignored my feelings and moved straight into action – find another lover! …. and usually repeated the same mistakes …. and then found another lover!

      Now I let myself feel any anger, sadness and the loss first. Then look to see if I am just using anger to blame my ex, or if there is any chance I played some part in all this! … and that is where my learning has been. More on this in future blogs.

      You will be happy to know my next article will be be about improving our relationships – so perhaps it will appear less rambling to you!

      Please keep putting your ideas forward, I like to know what my readers are thinking and it helps me to express my thoughts a little more clearly ( I hope!)

  3. Johnny Pistola says:

    “I am guessing you think this article is focused on women, because the main topic evolves around feelings. Its true that women generally know more about their feelings than men do.”

    Wrong twice in a row my friend! I thought it was focused on women because most of the women I know are very concerned about changing and improving their lives… or at least want to appear that way, whereas most of the men I know are concerned about being who they are while still getting laid, paid, or whatever.

    In spite of popular notions, I do not believe that women generally know more about their feelings than men do. Furthermore, many women I know have expressed difficulties in expressing their feelings, particularly if they are an issue with someone they love… or work with.

    But I totally agree with your main point, which is about how important it is to explore our inner feelings… unless you’re a natural born child rapist, mass murderer, or one of those wretched public wash room disruptors, of course!

    • Rhonda says:

      Interesting that you “sense” this article is for women. I know some men who are very in touch with their feelings even though they may have difficulty expressing those feelings. I also have experience of men who say they are in touch with their feelings but never share them with the important people in their life. Women, however, are no different in my experience. There are some that are very in tune with what is going on for them and others that push through life irrespective of any thoughtful analysis of what they may be “feeling” at the moment. Some women grow up in environments where having “feelings” gets them in trouble, they are considered weak, they are taught to “pull up their socks”, “be tough”, “don’t talk about what is going on at home “, etc. So, exploring true feelings, being vulnerable, exposing onself’s inner conflict/turmoil/confusion does not know any barriers, in my experience. Both genders struggle. I think there is a stereotype that women express their emotions more easily because they are born to bear children and are supposed to be nurturing and comforting. Well, I have experienced some pretty cold, heartless women, along with men. And those cold, heartless women can bring up a host of tears easily – the open display of emotions does not indicate any true understanding of what is going on for them or their feelings.

      • djtyler says:

        I agree Rhonda, both gender do struggle with expressing deeper, more vulnerable feelings.Quite often, we are not fully aware ourselves. An easy example is road rage where the driver gets mad at being cut off by another driver, winds down the window & and lets the words fly (or worse).
        Not realizing that s(he) was really very scared (to death) at how serious the incident could have been.

        Thanks for giving the feminine viewpoint on this topic.

      • johnnypistola says:

        I also agree, Rhonda. The stereotyping is there largely because of the roles we were taught to emulate. My parents encouraged me to speak out, so expressing my feelings is not very difficult… but because I was a boy I wasn’t supposed to cry. On the other hand, my wife could cry as a child, but she wasn’t allowed to criticise or complain… that was unseemly in her family. So the end product is a couple where I do most of the self-expression about feelings but she is the only one that can cry!

  4. Johnny Pistola says:

    And then today. I wonder how how relevant Adam Lanza’s “feelings” were before he committed 19 young children to their shocking death this week… or those “warriors” in Rwanda that massacred 800,000 people in 1994 before our very eyes… with guns, and then machetes when they ran out of bullets,,, my heart reaches out to those helpless victims, when it comes to my “feelings”.

    As a man, not as a woman, I sing my desire to “reach out” to Adam Lanza and his mindless predecessors… and all the shallow, uncaring decadence of his ilk. God, give me the power to find them in hell and show them my anger! Amen.

    Anger or fear… empower people to defend their values, or place more controls on them? That is the political consequence of these atrocities… and I expect our maternal government, and their fearful electorate, will choose the latter… go with the fear and legislate yet more laws to constrain people… thereby triggering yet more mindless violent reactions by the weakest, most antisocial amongst us.

    Yet we the people. who are the greatest innovation of life on earth, will be judged by our lowest representative today, a disgusting, affluent man who murdered his mother before massacring a room of helpless children.

    Dave, I am sad and angry today. Thank you for a forum to express it.

    • djtyler says:

      Thanks John

      I am sad too. Despite having lived to this grand old age, I have no understanding of why a person would commit this kind of atrocity against innocent people & children. Nor do I have an easy answer on how to prevent or even minimize this happening again.

      I can only imagine that anyone who commits these murders has long left the world of positive feelings and has only anger and hate left inside them. How sad and awful !

      • Johnny Pistola says:

        Well said, Dave. My anger is gone today but some confusion and sadness remains. My rant may have helped me release some anger last night, but today I see that you are right. There is no easy answer to these murders and blaming the assailant does nothing for the victims or their families.

        It’s interesting to note that I checked out several news blog sites and saw hundreds of rants similar to mine emotionally… all posted within the last 24 hours.

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