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Improve Your Thinking

Mental-health-007-300x180Our greatest friend and also our most devious enemy could easily be our own thoughts. It is the most sheltered part of our being and is who we really are. Both good and bad experiences shape our thought processes which in turn shape our perception of other people and the world around us. A majority of good experiences usually initiates more positive thoughts but bad experiences or stress could really adversely affect one’s thoughts and damage one’s view of life. More importantly, we find that our actions are usually extensions of our thoughts. Negative thoughts usually elicits negative actions. Therefore it is important that we monitor and pay attention to our thoughts.

Thought patterns

These are created when we have the same type of thoughts again and again, creating a habit of thinking in that particular
way. The battle we have withing ourselves have to do with these thought patterns because they determine how happy, confident and active we are each day. How ready we are to take on lifes challenges and hope for the future. This is when our thought patterns are in tune with our desires. As we know, sometimes our thoughts conflict with our desires. For example, someone who has a pessimistic view to life believes he or she is more likely to fail at a certain task at hand. However they are aware of how much joy they’d feel if they completed the task, but even this joy is usually not enough to eradicate their negative thoughts of failure. At the end of the day, if they let their negative thought pattern prevail, they end up quitting the task.No-Negativity-Stop-Negative-Thoughts-Coral-Springs-Counseling-Center

We all have the inner negative thoughts we have to battle when we set out minds to do something. Those thoughts that remind you of when you tried something similar in the past and you failed or reminds you of how you never get anything right or complete any tasks. These Automatic Negative Thoughts (ANTS), as neuropsychologist author Daniel Amen calls them, invade our minds usually when we are concerned about the outcome of an event to make us anxious by exaggerating the negative outcomes that could possibly happen and undermining our ability to deal with them. Negative thinking makes us focus on the negative things in life and magnify them while we filter out the brighter side. These negative thought patterns are especially difficult to get rid of because they are formed over time.But do not give up hope, they can be “killed” if we pay attention to our thoughts and realize that because we think something bad will happen does not make it true.

Thinking healthily

First realize that your mind is supposed to be your safe haven and your thoughts your best friend. It should be filled with positivity, encouragement and hope. We cannot control alot of external factors in our everyday lives, but we have, or should have, full control of our own thoughts.The quickest way to begin thinking healthily is to remove ‘absolutes’ from our thinking. Words such as ‘always’ and ‘never’ can be very harmful by causing you to give up and despair. “I always make the same mistake” “I can never do this” “I will be forever alone” Such thoughts encourage self pity, anxiety andpositive-people depression. Instead, though we realize our shortcomings, we should also acknowledge that we can indeed improve on them and be better. “I can never do this” should then become “This is very difficult, but since i have to do it i’m going to keep trying”. “I always make the same mistake” becomes “I make this same mistake a lot and i don’t like that, i’m going to try my best not to do so again”. This way you remind yourself that you can control the outcome and that you’re not powerless against the circumstances.

You also have to pay attention to your thoughts. Ask yourself what you think about the most each day and why. Trace the genesis of your most common thoughts and begin to break negative thought chains. This is a daily practice as thought patterns were also formed over time and are hard-wired in our minds. Each day as soon as we are conscious of a negative thought pattern we must redirect our thoughts in order not to further solidify such patterns. You’ll figure that there would be more room for innovative thoughts and ideas and a wider perspective in situations. Maintaining control over your thought patterns and having positive thoughts as much as you can is the basis of thinking healthily. 

Forgive yourself for your mistakes. Be satisfied with things you genuinely cannot change. Pay attention to your thoughts and stay positive.

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Writing a Better YOU!

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Writing down your goals are very important when it comes to the goal setting process. “But, why?”, you may ask.

It is easy to think that having your goals all figured in your mind makes achievement certain. Let’s consider our every new year’s eve ritual- new year resolutions.

Now, try to recall  how many resolutions you made for this year have been actualized at the moment and evaluate the chances of achieving them by the end of the year.

Let’s face the facts!

  • 25 percent of people abandon their New Year’s resolutions after one week.
  • 60 percent of people abandon them within six months. (The average person makes the same New Year’s resolution ten separate times without success.)

A conclusive research by Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor  in  California proved the effectiveness of writing down goals. In this study,  participants who wrote down their goals achieved more than those who did not.

It would be a costly mistake to drift through life not knowing what you wanted out of it, let alone take the necessary steps to achieving it. You can make your life more goal directed and purposeful by committing yourself to your dreams by writing them down and coming up with an action plan to make it a reality.

Here are some reasons for writing goals down:

1. Writing your goals  help your clarify and specify what you really want. Translating thoughts into words make the thoughts more concrete.written-goals-214x300

2. Writing your goals  makes you committed to fulfilling them

3. Writing serves as a constant reminder of what you intend to achieve and what you can do each day to make it a reality

4. Writing helps you see, evaluate and celebrate your progress which boosts your confidence.

5. Writing keeps you reminded of your goals. The palest ink is better that the sharpest memory

6. Writing your goals help you visualize them, the steps and obstacles on the way to achieving them. With this, better preparation can be made to remove the obstacles.

Now that you may have been convinced of the need to write your goals, examine some of the goals you have thought of. It may relate to your personality,your job,  your career, your family, your finances, etc.

WRITE THEM DOWN!

Of course, writing your goals is not an end, but a means to an end. It is only an initial phase in the goal setting process. Soon we will consider how to write down your goals.. Stay tuned

Have you ever committed your goals to writing?

You not only become your thoughts, you become your written words!

Please share one or two of your goals with me either by commenting or sending an email on drmorayojimoh@mobilehealthconsult.org

Together we can achieve more!

 

 

 

 


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The Importance of being Honest

Take a moment and try to remember the last time you told a ‘small’ or a ‘white’ lie…

Do you remember how it felt?

Now, take another moment and try to remember the last time you told a major lie…

Do you remember how it felt?

If you were caught, can you recall how you felt at that time? Not a very good feeling I presume. person_ashamed1

Whatever the size of the lie, big or small, lying makes us feel uneasy. There’s a valid reason why Benjamin Franklin professed Honesty as the best policy. It affects us psychologically, emotionally and even physically. Here are a few points to emphasize the importance of being honest.

1. You become less anxious when you’re more honest. There’s no such thing as a relaxed liarrelaxed-woman
. Studies have found that lying triggers the release of stress hormones. These hormones make us anxious and increase our heart rates and blood pressure. Hence the more we lie, the more anxious and stressed we become. Honesty makes us more relaxed generally, psychically and mentally.

handshake2. Honesty improves self-confidence and trust. When we lie often, especially about ourselves, we get caught up in that fantasy that we become dissatisfied with our present selves and begin to lose confidence. It’s almost like one has to lie to look good, and deep down is aware of that. You begin to depend on lies instead of your ability to improve yourself and cope with the circumstances. In addition, others would soon begin to realize that you lie often and consequentially lose confidence in you and brand you as dishonest to others. You also begin to lose trust in yourself. On the other hand, an honest person is almost always acclaimed by his or her peers and has a lot of peoples trust. He would have a lot of responsibilities due to this trust, which will in turn boost his or her self confidence. Being honest makes us self-affirmed.

3. Honesty improves relationships. In all types of relationships, once trust is broken it is normally difficult to fix. laughing-coupleContinuous dishonesty goes the extra mile to damage almost every relationship you are in. This would be evident soon enough to make you unhappy and could cause you to sink into depression. Honesty does the exact opposite. It solidifies every relationship you’re involved in and improves the likelihood of you forming new good relationships with people you meet. Good relationships ultimately improves our overall happiness and well-being.

There is no little or ‘white’ lie. Habitual lying begins from lying about the little things and almost always ends up with one lying about the bigger things which could cause substantial damage in ones life. On your road to habitual honesty, start by telling the truth about the littlest things and in time you’d find that recourse is always telling the truth.

The truth shall set you free! That’s psychotherapy is very effective, it’s based on complete honesty. It’s the first step towards solving any problem. Be honest, with yourself and with others.

Life comes down to honesty and doing what’s right. That’s what’s most important.

– Bob Feller


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Self-confidence

Self-confidence is one of the most attractive aspects in a person. Men admire it in women and women desire it in men. Self confidence is a major step to success in many different areas in life. A confident person leads and achieves and most of all is generally happier than others. Are you a confident person? Here are some main characteristics of confident people. A confident person:

1. is self-assured: Don’t wait for others to tell you good things about yourself to motivate you. Motivate yourself! happy-personRemind yourself who you are and what you want to achieve and be content. Be mindful of yourself. Take time out to sit quietly and explore your thoughts so you are aware of who you are all the time. Take criticism well, it is not the end of the world, don’t let it put you down. Exaggerate your good qualities to yourself and always tell yourself “I can!”. Be your number one fan.

plan2. has a plan:  Make a plan and a checklist of both your short term and long term goals and stick to it. You’d find the more achievements you check off the list the more confident you’d become. Know the things you can and cannot do. Not reaching our goals adversely affects our confidence. Achieve short term goals to boost your confidence for long term goals. It is also important to reward yourself as you attain your milestones.

3. looks the best he or she can: Find what colours goes best with your skin and wear such colours often. Alwaysmenssuitfull2-1 dresses nicely and have an image of yourself that you like and want to maintain. Be creative and stylish with your dressing and on formal occasions look extra sharp. Always look neat.

4. has “open” body language: They say body language is 70- 80% of communication. You’d find that most confident people use a lot of hand movements and don’t fold their arms across, which is a sign of being defensive. Be expressive and audible in speech. Make yourself comfortable all the time, wherever you find yourself.

5. is comfortable with himself/herself: Can spend time alone and not feel bad about it. In fact, they relish their alone time. Confident people like they’re own company. If you can’t bear with yourself others may equally not be able to bear with you.

6. holds beliefs firmly: Stands for something. Always have strong beliefs that practically defines them. They would always defend this belief and it is very difficult for them to let go of it. Remember the saying, “if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything”, confident people do not fall for anything.

jogging7. is active: Whether its playing sports or taking walks, confident people tend to have an active lifestyle. They are cautious of their physical well-being and are always up to something. Solve puzzles and read books. Gather as much knowledge as u can each day. Keeping the mind busy prevents automatic negative thoughts which people with low confidence levels often have. In addition, knowledge increases self-confidence. Stay active.

A great way of improving your self-confidence is through writing meditation. It’s the recording of ones thoughts without filtering, editing or judging oneself. It’s pouring out your mind on a piece of paper with utmost sincerity. It’s great for confidence, especially when you write down affirmations of your good qualities, for example “I am a good listener. I am hardworking. I am brilliant” and so on. This practice elicits a higher sense of self-discovery, self-assurance and, over time, significantly improved self-confidence.

Register for a FREE mindfulness meditation training which includes writing meditation, follow this link: http://www.mobilehealthconsult.org/?page_id=1008


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The ‘Perfection’ illusion

perfectionIn life, we find that those people who are seeking for the “perfect” job, the “perfect” child, the “perfect” lover and so on are unhappy. This is because they are chasing shadows in the dark;”perfect” is an illusion. No job is perfect and neither your lover nor your child is or will be. It may be difficult to come to terms with, for some, but for most this is expected. One way of testing this is by asking yourself if something or someone can be improved. We find out that 99% of the time the answer is “yes, we can improve this – he or she can be even better”. This is not a pessimistic approach to life, but a realistic one. So most times we find that we have to compromise with life, amend our wants and embrace the reality. But not everyone is willing to do so and they often end up falling into depression or having anxiety disorders.

This happens because their NEED for perfection in whatever aspect of their life would not let them be happy. By way of illustration,  insisting whoever you meet must tick ALL your boxes before you move forward with them. Or you keep focusing on the one small mistake you made during a presentation which in reality was still brilliant regardless. To base your happiness on someone or something being perfect, even yourself, is just like tossing all your life savings into the ocean and hoping it will all float back. Nothing will ever be perfect so therefore your happiness would be ‘out of your control’. One of the easiest ways to fall into depression is believing you’re not in control of your own happiness.

????????????????????????????????Such a person would need to learn satisfaction. Being satisfied with your job or with someone helps you appreciate and enjoy the job or the person more. You’re not anxious that they’re not good enough or that they will never be perfect. You are aware of their imperfections and you’re satisfied with them that way. Focus only on the things you can change. Learn to live with the thing you can’t.

Note that being satisfied does not mean you should not aim for the best. In everything, do your best, then be satisfied. 

SATISFACTION, not PERFECTION, is the key to HAPPINESS.