5 tips to remember when you are having a bad day
Originally published by YOGI TIMES
Understanding self empowerment
We all get those days where nothing is going how we think it should. You’ve woken up on the wrong side of the bed and you aren’t quite feeling like yourself. This negative outlook can spiral quickly and you may end up questioning what you are even doing in life. Why aren’t I happy? Why does everyone else seem to have everything together?
If you fall out of touch, its OK! We all do. Here’s a few tips to put into practice when you need a moment to realign:
1. Cut the negative self talk
You are only (and wonderfully!) human, and we are an incredibly complicated species. Imagine that all of the negative criticisms that you think about yourself were to be printed onto your skin. Would you proudly display your skin, or would you hide away from others?
You are allowed to make mistakes. Mistakes can lead to more opportunities for growth. You are allowed to change at anytime and set your life on a new course. Take baby steps, and be gentle with your inner self-critic.
Start by telling yourself regularly what you love about you just being you. This may feel as though you’ll have to dig deep, but dig that little bit deeper and you will find gold.
2. Embrace who you are
Set your own beauty standard. Be uniquely you! You are beautiful. It doesn’t matter what your outward appearance looks like, but it doesn’t stop body image ideals being repeatedly thrown at us. This idea of having a ‘perfect body’ is strewn across all media platforms and isn’t just aimed at women; men deal with it too. It’s hard to always remember that it’s what’s inside that counts, however, your inner-self is all that truly matters. Go inward and shine.
So what if you don’t fit the current societal idea of how your body ‘should’ look? Stretch marks? They are just lightening stripes to show that you are an incredible force of nature! Cellulite? Because dimples aren’t just cute on your face.
Scars? You went into battle. You fought, you came, you conquered. Any other physical insecurity not listed here? Turn it around and own it!
Let go of what other people think. That box they want to put you in will never be big enough to contain all of your awesomeness. Someone out there will judge you. Bypass that judgmental notion by learning to love yourself first, flawless flaws and all.
3. Be present
Buddha said it. Rumi said it. Your favourite yoga teachers say it. Whatever you are doing, do it fully. Be there in that very moment. The only thing we have is the present moment. When you are doing an activity, no matter how small or repetitive, do it with complete and total awareness. You may be performing that action to help you accomplish a goal, or take further steps towards your dream. That part is absolutely necessary but it is only secondary to being aware. Presence comes first.
When we are at peace and living in the now, it makes it harder for stress and worry to filter through and into our lives. Worrying doesn’t change the future, but it takes away today’s peace.
4. Practice mindfulness meditation
When things start to get overwhelming, take five. Just sitting quietly for five minutes of your day, and feeling your belly rise and fall with each breath can help you reset and relax. If your mind wanders, accept the thought and come back to your breath flowing in and out of your body. It only takes five minutes.
You could also practice mindfulness while you’re eating. Absorb the moment by really tasting your food. Is it hot or cold? What’s the texture like? Is it sweet, salty or sour? Enjoy your eating experience.
Regularly practicing mindfulness can change the way we react to stressful situations by rewiring the brains neurological pathways. This means we are able to override habitual negative behaviours and truly change how we perceive life and the world.
Practice mindfulness and let your worries float away.
5. Say thanks
Gratitude is a powerful tool. Sometimes it’s hard to be thankful for what you have when you aren’t quite in the career/relationship/country or place where you would like to be at in life.
Write down 3 things that you are grateful for and remind yourself of these things throughout the day. Be thankful for even the smallest things; for hearing the birds sing, for having somewhere to sleep at night, or feeling the breath going in and out of the body giving you this life. Go one step further and create a daily gratitude journal, by writing down positive things from your everyday life and reflecting on why you’re thankful for them. We all have the ability to appreciate life.
6. Spread the love
That person sitting across from you is struggling too. They’ve got their own war that they are waging. Even just a kind smile in a stranger’s direction can turn their mood around. It could even save a life. Sprinkle love around as freely as you like. Uplift others. Share your own story or just be there to listen. What the world needs right now is love.