• Tools for Personal Growth by Deborah Jane Wells

    imagesCA7HIOQFWhen you fuel all aspects of yourself with love, respect, curiosity, compassion and gratitude, your life becomes a grounded but fluid journey to wholeness. Every breath, thought, word and act fosters a gracious life filled with faith, hope, prosperity, peace and joy.

    The following practices—just a few of my favorites—help you realize the essential shift from believing these principles in your head to living them from your heart. When you drift off-center occasionally, as any of us can when we’re overwhelmed by stress and gripped by ancient self-destructive scripts, these tools are the key to recognizing it quickly and getting back on track.

    Pay Attention: If you don’t recognize you’re feeling stressed, you can’t change it. Practice mindfulness by noticing what you’re feeling and figuring out why.

    Write It Down: Getting stressful thoughts out of your head and onto paper can improve your sense of perspective. Often, just putting them in writing reduces them to a more manageable size you can begin to get your arms around.

    Breathe: Next time things start getting a little crazy, stop, take three deep breaths, become fully present, and realize you have options. Your brain needs oxygen to function effectively. Try setting a timer on your phone or computer to remind you periodically to stop, close your eyes for a minute and just breathe.

    Be Here Now: Forget rehashing the past and agonizing over the future. This moment is your only real opportunity to make a difference. Just you, just here, just now, just be.

    Get Curious: If everything’s an opportunity, where might the opportunity be in this situation? Assume the best and look for the silver lining in even the darkest cloud.

    Trust Your Gut: You have inside you all the wisdom you seek. Instead of stressing yourself out by fighting your instincts or feeling compelled to justify your hunches with logic, try trusting your intuition for a change.

    Behave As If: There are two aspects to this one. First, if you gave yourself the same care and attention you give your friends and loved ones, what support would you give yourself right now? Second, what would you dare to do if you believed you couldn’t fail?

    Time for What Matters: Time is not a scarce resource. You have all the time you need for the things that matter. Your sole responsibility in each moment is to discern what matters most right now, focus and follow through.

    Take Baby Steps: Slow and steady produces meaningful, lasting results. Vast, forced output is rarely sustained. Great strides of lasting value involve myriad baby steps over time. Identify the next small step and take it; then another, and another, and another. Before you know it, you’ll have built your dream—and it will last you your whole life through.

    —Adapted from Choose Your Energy, Change Your Life!
    by Deborah Jane Wells

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