How to shovel yourself out of the shit!

August 16  |  Adversity, Mindfulness, motivation, overcoming adversity, Self-Help, self-reinvention, self-transformation, single women  |   Cynthia









We all feel down in the mouth at times. It’s part of being human. However, we needn’t stay there for long. Here are some simple tips to help dig yourself out of the vortex.

Prioritise your physical well-being

Practise physical self-love – stop punishing your body – treat yourself to nourishing and healthy foods. A car won’t run properly and reach its destination without the right fuel. Cut down on booze and pills. Pamper yourself. Don’t get into the debating society on this. You deserve it. Find a form of manageable and above all enjoyable exercise in which you can indulge regularly.

Take charge of your emotional state

Claim courage and take responsibility. Accept that we’re not responsible for the tragedies which happen to us but we are responsible for how we react to them and the messes we make of our lives. Identify which areas you play the victim in. Break these areas into bite-size chunks which you can then tackle. Pump yourself right out of that victim mentality. Don’t take yourself so seriously. Care enough about yourself to learn to lighten up. Look for the humorous side in your situation – it really is there, even if you have to emotionally contort yourself to find it. Do so because it’ll be worth it and be measured by the enormous sense of relief you’ll feel.
Stop the name and blame game – take responsibility where you need to and discard the rest. These habits completely destroy your inner power, because they prove that you’re still expecting solutions and changes from others. You’ve no power over anyone else but yourself.

When you’re wallowing in an orgy of self-pity, stop enjoying it. Force yourself out of that tangled up, childish, emotional nappy. What do nappies contain? So why stay there drowning in it? Take positive daily action to help yourself, no matter how seemingly insignificant or minute. This can be as simple as calling an encouraging friend, when all you want to do is sit and stare into space. Small actions like this will propel you out of the navel-gazing, analysis/paralysis syndrome and you’ll soon begin to feel immeasurably better.
Don’t indulge in negative talk. What you focus on expands and what doesn’t get taught, gets caught. Don’t touch it with a bargepole. Read inspiring literature. Keep a gratitude list, not a hit list. Write down five things every night which you’re grateful for, then review your list in the morning. The blessings are always there, even in the worst situation.

Take responsibility for your feelings and reactions.

You’re in charge of your life – no one else. Don’t be immobilised by or afraid of failure. Most seemingly successful people have made it after disastrous failures. Simply pick yourself up, dust yourself down and move on with belief and determination.
Don’t be a victim to others’ expectations. Be yourself at all times. Stop being a people-pleaser and a chameleon. There’s never any need to seek anyone else’s approval but your own and in this area practice does make perfect. Keep your own counsel and have the courage of your own convictions. If you have erred, don’t beat yourself up. Use that energy to forgive yourself.

Stick with the winners and not the whiners

Stick with the winners. Stay resolutely away from people with victim mentalities. Find someone you trust to help you to make a realistic appraisal of your situation. Treat yourself to a mental clear out. Find a support network with positive peer role models. There are thousands of resources out there for every area and every stage of our lives. When you’ve found your role model, be brave enough to ask for help and copy what they do as best you can. What’s the downside?

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It’s never too late to boogie!

May 15  |  Dreams coming true, Self-Help, self-reinvention, self-transformation  |   Cynthia

Once upon a time you had dreams. Then the Big Bad Wolf, called LIFE, came along, grabbed you by the throat and shook these the hell out of you.

So – then you told yourself that it was “too late”, or that you’re “too old”, or “too busy”, or that “there’s no point” – and other such tripe. Or – even worse – you allowed somebody in authority, such as a parent, teacher or partner, to piss on your campfire and extinguish what you know your inner wisdom was begging you to do.

The bottom line is – it’s NEVER too late to embrace a dream, no matter how old you, or it, might be. Where’s it written that you can’t? You only can’t if you think you can’t! It’s possible to rewrite your life script at any time. Why do you think that you don’t deserve the good stuff, like other people? While there’s life there’s hope. Time will pass anyway, so why not make the most of the time you have left? We all know people who’ve checked out of life way too early. The saddest words in the English language have got to be, “too late”, and “if only”.

Now – today – is the time to unblock your creativity, whatever the latter means to you. You don’t need anybody’s permission. You can choose to live your life in black and white – OR – in glorious technicolour. The choice and the power to do so is yours.

Once upon a time, when I was 14, I was told by an occupational psychologist, that I wasn’t academic. My father colluded with her, and between them they stitched me up big time, telling me that I’d just get married anyway, so I might as well do a secretarial course. Given that it took me until I was 52, to grow the balls to stand up to my authoritarian parents, I found myself hurtling along that traditional path, and into my first unhappy marriage, aged 18.

It took the catastrophic death of my son in the car I was driving, in 1987, and my daughter’s severe injuries, to eject me from the quagmire of despair, propelling me into taking 2 A levels part-time, the year after Anthony died. Less than two years later, I was admitted to Cambridge University, to read law. Aged 30, with a major tragedy to contend with. boy, did I prove those academic naysayers wrong!

I’ve gone onto pass many exams since then and, last week, I was offered a place to do a Master’s degree in Mindfulness. So much for not being academic! And it was the same with all of my relationships and my two doomed marriages, before I found happiness with my third husband, Peter, in 2002. Never settle for less than you’re capable of in any arena of life. Find inspirational role models, read uplifting books, listen to rousing music. Whatever you do, never, ever give up your biggest asset – yourself!

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