Unfortunately, it’s easy to have your thoughts pulled away from what you want by what is actually happening, or by comments from other people.
For example, let’s say you are focused on increasing your income. You know what you want, and you believe you deserve it and that it’s possible and you are busy working towards it. Then you receive an unexpected bill, or something unexpected happens that will require money, or somebody makes a comment that makes you doubt yourself. This causes you to turn your focus and attention to the fact that this has happened and is not what you want.
You then spend more time thinking about what’s happening than you do about what you want. This is like trying to get somewhere in your car with your feet simultaneously on the accelerator and the brake.
Acknowledge what is happening, but do everything you can to focus on what you want and keep your energy moving in that direction. You may have encountered a minor setback, but don’t allow it to pull your attention away from what you really want.Tweet
Don’t try to force it – if something’s not working, take a step back. Allow yourself to pause and take a break from what you’re trying to do. When you do that, you allow the solution to present itself, or you may begin to see that what you are trying to accomplish is not really what you want to be doing at all.
We often make things a lot harder than they need to be by pushing too hard, or because we want it to happen NOW. That takes a lot of your time and energy and is usually counter-productive.
Take a breath, take a step back and allow your next steps to present themselves to you.Tweet
For example – I’m starting the year off with a special, very restrictive diet to address some digestive issues that have been going on for a long time. I found myself resenting the restrictions, wishing I could eat other things. I was focusing on how boring the diet is, how I didn’t enjoy it. Fortunately, I realized that’s not helpful.
I decided to focus on being grateful that the source of the digestive problem has been found and is now being treated. I am grateful for the foods that I can eat, rather than focusing on what I can’t eat. I appreciate all those people who have created recipes for this particular dietary program that make it easier and more enjoyable.
Just having this shift in my attitude feels better and I know that if I can keep my attitude there it will help my body to heal faster.
Is there something you are resisting that would benefit from an attitude adjustment?Tweet
Hug more – research shows that hugging a loved one releases the hormone oxytocin. This hormone lowers your blood pressure, reduces stress and anxiety, and can even improve your memory. Researchers also say that someone who hugs loved ones more often become more empathic over time.
We probably don’t really need research to tell us that hugging has benefits, but perhaps knowing this may encourage us to hug more.Tweet
For this week’s tip, I’d like to share a quote from Esther Hicks/Abraham.
“We would like you to reach the place where you’re not willing to listen to people criticize one another… where you take no satisfaction from somebody being wrong… where it matters to you so much that you feel good, that you are only willing to think positive things about people…you are only willing to look for positive aspects; you are only willing to look for solutions, and you are not willing to beat the drum of all of the problems of the world.” – AbrahamTweet
Ask for what you want – how often do you find yourself struggling with something because you don’t like to ask for help? How often are you disappointed when others don’t offer to help you or are not there when you need them?
You must learn to ask for what you want. Don’t expect others to guess or to know what you need. If you learn to ask, you’ll be surprised how often you’ll receive exactly what you need – or perhaps even more.
Sometimes you might not ask because you don’t want to bother anyone, or because you’re afraid they will say no. At least give people the opportunity to say yes. So often we deny people the opportunity to help us because we don’t like to ask for help.
Learn to ask – you’ll be pleasantly surprised and energized.Tweet
Practice mindfulness – when you’re busy and you have many demands on your time it can be difficult to stay present and mindful. You find that your mind is thinking about all the things you have to do, or worrying about the future, or feeling anxious about the past.
Even when you want to be more mindful, it can be difficult to remember. There are some tools that can help you. For example, there’s a free app that you can get for your phone, computer or mobile device that can help you.
There’s probably more than one, but the one I use is called Mindfulness Bell. You can schedule it to ring at regular times throughout the day. When the bell rings, it’s a reminder to just pause for a moment and bring yourself back to the present moment. I find that it’s a very helpful tool to keep me centered and present throughout the day.Tweet
A highly sensitive person is someone who tends to be attuned to their surroundings. They are often intuitive and empathic, have a keen imagination and may feel very overwhelmed by noise, chaos and crowds. They can have trouble fitting in and have been perceived as “too shy” or “too sensitive.”
It is estimated that approximately 20% of the population is highly sensitive. The term highly sensitive is becoming more well-known, particularly since Elaine Aaron published her books ‘The Highly Sensitive Person’ and ‘The Highly Sensitive Child.’
Many people object to the term ‘highly sensitive’ because being ‘too sensitive is often thought of as being a bad thing. Some prefer terms like highly attuned or highly aware, since those terms don’t carry the negative connotation of being ‘overly sensitive.’
It can be difficult to understand or relate to highly sensitive people. I think that’s mostly because we (as highly sensitive people) don’t really understand ourselves. I certainly didn’t for most of my life. Because we were seen as being different from everyone else when we were growing up, other people, particularly our parents and family, didn’t know how to relate to us. A highly sensitive person often tries very hard to fit in but is unable to do so, and so they conclude that there must be something wrong with them. We’re often told things like “you’re too sensitive;” “get over it;” “you’re being childish, grow up;” and, my personal favorite “don’t be so stupid.” As if when we say that we are uncomfortable in certain situations or don’t want to do certain things, we’re just being difficult.
If you are highly sensitive or know someone who is, these tips might help you have a better understanding about what it means:
- We’re not delicate. Being sensitive simply means that we are more tuned in to the environment and to the people around us. We pick up on things that most others do not. We notice things. It doesn’t mean that we will fall apart if you are direct and honest with us (in fact we prefer it because then we know where we stand with you).
- There’s nothing wrong with us. We are not broken. We do not need fixing. We are just different. We don’t often enjoy the same things that many others enjoy – and this isn’t just in our heads, it’s a physical thing. We actually feel physical symptoms that are uncomfortable in response to things like: noise, fluorescent lighting, smoke, perfumes, chemical smells, crowds, chaotic environments, and so on.
- We are not unsociable, nor do we think that we’re better than everyone else. Those who are highly sensitive and also introverts can respond to over-stimulation by withdrawing and becoming quiet. We may decline to join you at a bar or an event where there are lots of people, not because we’re unsociable, but because we know we wouldn’t enjoy it and we would suffer afterwards. We know, from experience, that it can take us days to recover from such over-stimulation.
- Not all highly sensitive people are introverts, and not all introverts are highly sensitive. There are people who are extroverted and yet also highly sensitive. The difference is that an introverted HSP will tend to withdraw when experiencing over-stimulation, while an extrovert may lash out and become aggressive or angry. Although again, this depends on the person, not all extroverted HSP’s will act this way.
- It’s easy to think that highly sensitive people might not thrive in leadership positions. The opposite is true. They can thrive (although they may not always want to). In fact, HSP’s make great leaders because they can be more in-tune with the other members of their team and have a wider perspective. They also tend to pick up on things that others might miss – such as emotions, body language, facial expressions – because they are so highly aware.
There’s no doubt about it, being highly sensitive can be difficult. But those difficulties are greatly reduced and your sensitivities can be turned into great strengths once you fully understand and own who you are. It’s easy to think there must be something wrong with you when you are not the same as the majority of other people. But being different is not a problem, it’s a gift. Learn who you are and when challenging situations come up, help others to understand. Don’t expect them to automatically know, you must help them – and know how to help yourself.
Want to know how sensitive you are? Take this simple quiz to find out – http://thehighlysensitiveprofessional.comTweet
You may be surprised how much of your time and energy is taken up by the t.v. How much more energy and time might you have? Take the challenge and switch the television off for just one week.
If this idea brings up feelings of anxiety for you, then you may find that the t.v. controls you more than you thought.Tweet
Be willing to be wrong – sometimes being proved wrong can be a good thing. For example if you’re sure someone is going to say no to something you’ve asked them to do and they surprise you by saying yes.
Often we put so much energy into our need to be right all the time, that it can be quite exhausting. If you are open to being wrong sometimes you might be pleasantly surprised. If nothing else, releasing your attachment to the need to always be right will free up a lot of energy.Tweet