Excerpt from Enlightened Weight Loss

Don’t Be So Hard On Yourself

I’m in a position where I see how people really treat themselves. They beat themselves up over little things, and tell me how fat and lazy they are. How disappointed they are in themselves for getting to this point.

They treat themselves worse than they would treat anyone else in their lives. They don’t see how talking down to themselves is like spending all their time with someone who wants them to be unhappy. It is the same as being stuck in a toxic relationship.

Start to pay attention to how you talk to yourself. You might notice that you’re talking to yourself in a way that you would never tolerate from anyone else. In a way that you wouldn’t talk to a friend or someone that you care about.

If you notice that you’re hard on yourself, then work on being kind to yourself. It might feel uncomfortable at first, but it will become second nature once you get used to it.


Quit Raging

If you are mad at someone or something, then your best revenge is not to be angry. Anger triggers the same stress hormones that shut down brain function and cause you to feel unhappy. That doesn’t mean you should never get angry, however it does give you a reason not to stay angry.

This is especially true because in this situation you will likely need to confront someone or solve a problem. With all those anger induced stress hormones, you will be in no position to solve problems or communicate.

If you are angry with a person or a situation, then calm down before you talk. Swallow your pride, and use all the empathy you can manage to see where the other person is coming from. Recognize that no one is perfect. You are much more likely to get your point across if you are calm and thinking clearly.

In other situations, you might not have the opportunity or authority to communicate. In that case, allow yourself some time to feel anger but then realize that it is not worth holding onto. The only person it is hurting is yourself.

If you are angry with a situation and there’s something you can do to change it, then it’s in your best interest to calm down so that you can find the best solution.


Slow Down

With limited time we often resort to rushing. However, we do not realize that it has not benefited us. Rushing is an easy way to trigger stress hormones, which we have understood to slow down brain function and reduce focus. In the event that there is a limited amount of time, it would only be beneficial not to rush but to move with awareness and focus. This can be at an increased pace, however it does not need to be with stress and worry.

Try to avoid situations that cause you to rush. Give yourself a few extra minutes whenever possible. But be aware of your thoughts and mood if you’re short on time. It’s possible to move quickly without being frantic if you:

  • Don’t agonize about the consequences of being late, if there’s nothing you can do about it.
  • Let yourself be a few minutes late if there are no major consequences.
  • Find useful ways to spend the time that you’re sitting in traffic or waiting for the bus or train, like listening to music, audiobooks, reading, meditating, or just relaxing.
  • Take a minute to calm down when you start to feel rushed and unfocused.

There are inevitably going to be times that you’re running around. However, be sure not to perpetuate the same frantic energy for the rest of the day. When everything is settled, set aside time to reset with a quick meditation or a few deep breaths.


Believe That You Can Change

Having anxiety or depression is not a life sentence, and it doesn’t always require medical intervention. I have witnessed the transformation of many people just by changing the way they think and deal with stress.

Sometimes the biggest and most difficult step towards being happy is to decide that you don’t want to be unhappy anymore. To make that possible, understand that you have the power and the tools to be happier if you decide to make that change.


Accept The Highs And Lows

Even after you make these changes, there will still be times that are harder than others. Some days or some weeks that you feel less happy than you were before. If you notice that happening, then don’t use it as another cause for concern. Stressing about being stressed will only make things worse. The highs and lows are inevitable in your life, as not any emotion has permanence. In fact motion is in the word itself, as it always remains in motion.

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