Have you ever had an emotional or personal problem that makes you feel “stuck”? Often, in such a scenario, you may be tempted to look for a geographic or circumstantial solution. There is a certain logic to this mindset. You feel trapped by your circumstances.
So, you look to move to a new location, new job, or new living situation. This gives you the impression you can just start fresh or end a relationship that is not working for you. You change location in the hope of finding a job or partner that does feel like a better match. However, before you could change your circumstances you may want to look at your mindset instead.
How Do You Know What to Change?
Sometimes yes, we do need change just for the sake of it. Unfortunately, I’ve worked with a lot of people who change locations or relationships and find themselves confronting the same problems or dissatisfaction 6 months or a year later. What you might be overlooking is the fact that your behaviors and mindset are what is contributing significantly to your unhappiness. These will not magically change when you make a major external move.
In this counterproductive mindset, one is focused on what the world and circumstances are doing to them rather than what they can do to impact their situation. An important question to consider is how we can think differently about what challenges we are facing? There’s a reason why this old adage has endured: “You can’t control what happens to you, but you can control your reaction or attitude towards those things.”
How Does One Change Their Mindset?
Take a personal inventory
How are your expectations, thoughts, feelings and behaviors contributing to the repetition of the dynamic that you are experiencing? Do you need to take more ownership of how you are contributing to the recurring dynamic and the process of personal growth required to change it?
Talk Back to Your Internal Monologue
You don’t have to trust your inner critic. Shut down the negative noise and do some fact-checking. When the voice in your head tells you everything sucks, take a good look around and prove them wrong. For example:
“Count your blessings” may sound corny but wow, it certainly works! Try keeping a daily gratitude journal to mindfully acknowledge all the joyous moments — big and small. You will realize you have far more balance in your life than you ever imagined.
Take Tech Breaks
Our social media-smartphone culture is not conducive to inner peace and satisfaction. Schedule regular breaks from your devices. Also, when scrolling, be judicious in what content you choose to consume. It’s shaping you more than you may realize.
Make Positive Connections
Surround yourself with people who are striving to succeed and find contentment. Feed off the positive energy and watch your mindset shift. In turn, this puts you in a position to give something back to them. Conversely, reduce or limit time/exposure to those that leave you feeling drained or depleted. On the topic of giving:
Nothing changes your mindset faster than helping someone in need. You may choose to volunteer or embark on your own mission of daily kindness. Whatever option you choose, make altruism a steady presence in your life.
To deal with life’s inevitable rough patches, you need to be resilient. A giant step in this direction is a daily regimen of self-care, e.g.
- Healthy eating choices
- Regular sleep patterns
- Exercise and physical activity every day
- Stress management and relaxation techniques
Help is Always Available
Working on counterproductive beliefs about ourselves, our relationships, and the world around us in therapy can help us get to the root of the issue. We can recognize how old core beliefs that may have been helpful at one time in our lives are now limiting us. In addition, we can begin the process of changing them to be more in line with who we want to be in the world moving forward. To get this essential process started, I invite you to reach out today. Please contact me for a free 15-minute phone consultation.
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