How Certain Habits Could Help You Improve Your Life in 2022
Rev. Dr. Kitty Boitnott, NBCT, RScP
Heart-Centered Career Transition and Job Search Coach | Life Strategies Coaching
There are times--especially the last couple of years--when it has felt impossible not to feel overwhelmed. Let's face it. The pandemic has changed us all forever. Things we once took for granted we know now we can't.
There may have been times when you felt incapable of taking care of your mental, physical, and emotional health. As a result, you may have lost touch with yourself and who you were before the pandemic hit.
But the fact is that while life has changed for each of us on a fundamental level, we must go on. We must learn to deal with new realities and recognize that we can adjust and adapt.
Indeed, that is what we have learned during the last two years if nothing else.
Because of the changes you have had to deal with during the last few years, you may have realized something important. You may have come to understand that you have the power to change your life in ways you didn't know before. While adapting to outside circumstances, many of us have started to focus on the essential things in life. We've begun to eliminate what no longer serves us.
People are quitting their jobs mainly because they realize that life is too short to spend them in jobs they do not love. So people are seeking work that feels more meaningful. But that is just one of the outcomes of the pandemic. There are others.
Because we have become acutely aware of the fragility of life, many of us have started to examine every aspect of how we live. And we have decided to make fundamental changes so we can live lives of greater meaning and more joy.
Our lives are the cumulative effect of the habits we form over a lifetime. When we realize that, we decide what habits to keep and what to discard. That's why this post is about how you can create habits that will help you improve your life.
Of course, there are many habits from which to choose. But to help you think about those that can be helpful to your overall happiness, consider the following suggestions:
Stop Making Excuses
Too often, we let ourselves off the hook by giving ourselves excuses for indulging in behavior that doesn't serve us. Take a habit like smoking. As a former smoker, I told myself I could quit anytime I wanted to for years. I didn't want to. I said to myself that I enjoyed smoking.
But the reasons to stop eventually outweighed the excuses for continuing. It was probably one of the more difficult things I ever did. But I did--finally--quit smoking. And I am grateful that I did. As most habits go, smoking can hold you back from being your best self in many ways.
But smoking is only one example of many bad habits that we excuse ourselves for. Take your pick from overeating to over drinking to procrastinating, to name your particular vice. If it is holding you back, stop making excuses for yourself and make a change.
Stop Taking Things Personally
I know this is easier said than done. This is one of the four agreements from Don Miguel Ruiz's book, The Four Agreements.
Sometimes, people say things they don't mean. But let's say they did say something to you that hurt you, but it was still valid. The point is that you should not let others dictate your happiness. Not everything is about you.
Realize that, and you will be much happier almost instantly.
Exercise Your Body and Your Mind
Exercise helps you feel better and think clearer. It helps to release stress and anxiety. It makes your mind sharper and stabilizes your emotions. For example, going for a brisk walk or run has a way of clearing your mind and making problems seem less daunting.
Eliminate Unnecessary Distractions
It's time you started monitoring habits that distract you and waste your time and energy. Some of these habits include checking the phone all day. Time is precious. Waste time, waste life. To become more productive, you need to identify what your distractions are. Then eliminate them.
Stop Playing the Victim
We are the total of the choices we make. Few people are really victims. I am not referring to victims of crimes here. I am speaking of choices we make that don't turn out the way we want and then the blame game we sometimes indulge in. Instead of playing the victim, take responsibility for your choices, and if you need to make new choices, do it.
Face Your Fears
How long do you want to keep running from your fears? Though you may run, for now, you can't run forever. Since that's the case, it makes more sense to brace yourself and face your fears now. They may not be as daunting as you thought.
Our lives are the total of our decisions and the habits we form over the years. Each of us has the sole power to take charge of our own lives and change what we don't like or what doesn't serve us well. These are just a few habits that one might address when trying to make significant changes in their life. There are many others. Select the ones for you that make the most sense to change. Become a better version of yourself. You'll be happy that you did.
Is changing your career one of the things you are contemplating? Would you like to chat about that? If so, I would love to talk with you to help you assess your ability to transition from your current job into something new. I offer a complimentary Discovery Session. You may sign up for a session here: https://teachersintransition.com/calendar.