Wellness 9—– Subtracting

We’ve talked a lot about adding things to your wellness toolbox. But we haven’t yet discussed eliminating things from your life. Such as stresses, bad habits, toxic people, clutter, etc. I think we get so involved with building up areas of our lives that we forget it’s just as important to discard, oust, or phase out things too. 

What is there in your life that you feel is holding you back?

  • Is there a bad habit that you know you should get rid of? Like smoking, eating poorly, not drinking enough water, alcohol, drugs, or avoiding activity?
  • A partner who isn’t on board with your efforts or doesn’t understand what you’re trying to do?
  • Your own fear of failure?

What might be making you anxious? 

  • An issue at work that needs resolution? 
  • An area of clutter at home that you need to tackle?
  • A situation that you know needs to be dealt with but you’ve been avoiding?

Are there people that stress you out every time you encounter them? 

  • The toxic friend who likes to stir up trouble at every turn?
  • The relative who starts a fight at every family gathering?
  • The venomous coworker who puts effort into everything except work?

I’ve been working diligently over the course of the past couple years to eliminate the conditions that cause me stress and anxiety. So far, it’s been very successful and that success is what keeps me motivated me to continue. Dealing with one thing at a time is the key. If you make a list it’s bound to be lengthy and can appear quite daunting or even overwhelming. Stomp that feeling down right now. Just pick the thing that bothers you the most and think about how you’re going to deal with it. Then do it. The relief you’ll feel after you deal with that one thing will give you a wonderful sense of accomplishment. And that, my friend, is what will have you working your way through your list with a whole new vigor. 

The more you accomplish the more you will feel as if weight is falling from your shoulders. That buoyancy will keep you motivated. 

The most difficult thing I did was to ditch a couple of malicious people. Ridding myself of their toxicity and destructive behaviors was like opening a window on a warm, sunny day and letting the fresh air in. What a relief. When you have that bright spot in your day you tend to feel as if you can tackle one more thing and keep the momentum going. It’s an amazing feeling. 

Admittedly some things are harder to deal with or even impossible to eliminate. However, there are always ways to reduce, curtail, or lessen the problem. Stop and think about the issue. Can you minimize it in any way? What will make it better? Let’s take the example of the relative who starts a fight at every family gathering. You know you can’t change their behavior. You know you can’t change others reactions to him/her. What can you change in this situation? You can change your proximity to this person— just walk away and go talk with someone else. You can change your reaction to this person— don’t engage in the behavior. You could even skip the event if you choose. You have options. You also have an imagination so put it to good use. 

Stumped about something? Ask advice from friends, coworkers and relatives. Do some research online. Do whatever fits the situation and can help you make a good decision. A total eradication may be what is needed or perhaps only a partial elimination will make you feel better. Sometimes it’s a regular task that needs to be tackled. Like my refrigerator. Ugh. Always overloaded to the point where it gets unmanageable. I live with a hoarder and this includes food. It’s so trying. When I open the fridge door and things fall out I get so frustrated. Every now and then I just have to purge it. It’s one of my most despised tasks. I recognize that I can’t change the husbands behavior, so I just have to think of ways to keep it under control. How can I make it better? Maybe I could do a mini-purge weekly. Then it wouldn’t turn into the big, overwhelming, hour long task that it becomes. 

I hope these examples give you a starting point for your own “subtraction” process. Keep your goals in sight. Deal with one thing at a time. Don’t let your fear stop you. Look forward to that wonderful sense of accomplishment. Enjoy your results!   👩🏻‍💻

Wellness 7— Affirmations for Moving Forward

Sometimes you just need to sit down and spend some time refocusing on your goals. Then you need to affirm them to yourself daily in order to cement them in your mind. When your goals and visions are constantly a part of your thoughts, they will influence your daily decisions. So…… after an oddball week of restless sleep, nasty weather (except for one sunny day in the middle that I took off from work 🤭), fatigue, and just generally feeling scattered I decided that it was time to reassess. 

Keeping your goals in the forefront of your mind can be tough at first. I’ve found that there are many distractions and old habits that crop up. Being a visual learner, I’ve discovered that keeping pictures of my goals and other inspirational items is a good way to stay focused. But I don’t want something attached to the wall. The thought of dealing with cutouts and glue (or a bulletin board) is not motivational. I want to be able to access it anytime and anywhere.

So I’m experimenting with using Pinterest as a tool. I’ve made a board called Visions— Take Action to Get Results. (The title itself revs me up & makes me want to stay on course.) It’s where I can pin anything that pertains to my goals. I pin quotes there, or how to’s, or photos, or paintings. Anything that I find that represents a part of my complete vision and inspires me to take action. I can add to it anytime or delete things that no longer apply. And it’s portable. I can access it on the phone, the iPad, or the laptop. Perfect for this age of electronics don’t you think?

What techniques do you use to keep your goals in sharp focus?

The next tool that I’m going to put in my wellness toolbox is beginner yoga. Yes, you can download an app for this and have it with you at all times, just like the Pinterest board. How convenient. Gentle stretching is good for keeping your muscles and joints loose and lubed. I can sure use some of that! I’ll let you know how it goes. 

Summing up: Your wellness journey is very personal. Take the time to reassess your situation and your goals as often as you need to to.  Always be on the lookout for more tools to add to your wellness toolbox. Inspiration can be found everywhere. Example: although I have several friends who do yoga quite regularly, I was not inspired to try it until I read a news article about it. You may be aware of a thing, but might not think about applying it to yourself until it hits you like a bolt out of the blue. There are benefits to revisiting things you’ve rejected in the past.

Bonus content:

I have to update you on the restaurant story from last week (Wellness 6— Dealing With Frustration). Once again we went to a neighboring town to do some shopping and get a late lunch. We went to the same restaurant. We were seated and almost immediately the same waitress from last week walked by, recognized us, and stopped. She remembered what happened and asked if we were going to order the same thing. She actually remembered what we ordered last time and what we were drinking! That girl is amazing. She was a pleasant presence throughout our meal. Needless to say, we left her a very nice tip.  👩🏻‍💻