A Quick Guide To Affirmations

They say that thoughts become things. What better way to help your thoughts become things than by affirming the positive ones daily?

In this video, Samantha gives you a quick breakdown of what affirmations are, how they can help you and shares some of her favorite affirmations.

Quick & Easy Confidence Boosters

It’s totally normal to not feel confident sometimes. But how can you get yourself out of a rut when you aren’t feeling your best? In this video, Samantha shares some of her fool-proof tips for a confidence boost. These tips are quick and easy and will get you out of the rut you’re stuck in in no time! Music is GREAT confidence booster so you know we had to share a playlist that will get you pumped and feeling better. Here’s one of our favorites! https://spoti.fi/3h5RDPY Don’t forget to follow us on IG where we share tons of affirmations and feel good content —- @woeismillennial See you next week!

Bounce Back After Failing With These Tips

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.” – Thomas Edison

When you decide to go after the things you want and you commit to becoming successful, you will inevitably encounter failure. How you choose to deal with it will determine how far you will get in your attempts to achieve your goals. 

So often we fail at something that we’re trying to master and then we give it up because we make ourselves believe that it’s not even worth trying after failure. But that’s not the case. You can always start fresh the next day. You can even start fresh that same day in most cases!

In this post, we’ll review how you can overcome failure and not get discouraged by it. These tips will help you come back to center and keep going even after you’ve stumbled.

Practice Gratitude Daily

Sometimes we get so hung up on the fact that we haven’t accomplished whatever it is that we’re striving towards that we don’t take into account how far we’ve already come. Expressing gratitude puts things into perspective because it can remind you of the things you’ve done that you might have never thought were possible at some point. Acknowledging those things will make you realize you can accomplish what you want.

Set Intentions for Your Day

Something else you can do to get over failure is set an intention each day that will help lift you back up if and when you fail. The best way to do this is to sit in silence for a few minutes at the start of your day and set your intention then. Don’t know where to start? You can try something like “I will be present today”, or “I will be satisfied with my efforts no matter what” or “I will see the joy in everything today”. 

Carry your intention with you throughout the day and if things get rough or when you feel unaligned, think about what your intention was for that day and fall back in line with however it is that you intended on feeling.

Repeat Affirmations

It’s helpful to have some affirmations that will help you remember how far you’ve come, where you want to go, and the significance of your progress. Use affirmations to remind yourself that you’re a work in progress, that you’re doing your best, and that it’s okay to stumble sometimes. 

Examples of affirmations that will help pick you up when you fail: 

  • I don’t fail, I learn and I win
  • I am becoming the best version of myself
  • Nothing happens overnight

Be Consistent

Don’t give up just because you failed once or twice. Even if you fail a few times, there is no reason for you to truly give up. If you’re consistent you will make it happen. Keep in mind that when you’re working on creating a new habit or reaching a goal, consistency doesn’t mean always getting it right, it just means always making an effort every single time.

If you fail at making an effort, forgive yourself, and continue anyway. With that kind of consistency, no matter what you are trying to accomplish, you will accomplish. 

Be Patient

Finally, yourself a real chance at getting it right. To be clear, this doesn’t mean try for a week and give up after you realize that accomplishing your goal will be harder than you expected it to be. Give yourself a fair shot. If you’re trying to create a new habit give yourself at least thirty days to try it on for size. 

If and when you fail, it’s also important to consider that it’s just one day or one instance of failure. Compared to the bigger picture, in the long run, that one instance won’t make a difference. This is a good perspective to take on in order to forgive yourself and keep your head high even if you didn’t get it right. No one is perfect. You can always try again. 

These are tips that will help you get to the other side of whatever it is that you’re trying to accomplish. Don’t let your self-limiting beliefs stop you from changing your mindset and habits and become a better version of yourself. 

This is What Great Leadership Looks Like

There are many ways to be a leader and being the boss isn’t necessarily one of them. We all know that just because someone is a superior in the workplace (or anywhere else for that matter) doesn’t mean they are actually leaders. Just the same, you don’t have to be in a management role or be the boss to be a leader. 

We’ve all had at least one boss who was not even close to being an effective leader. You’ve probably also had colleagues who were not in management roles who were informal leaders to their peers.

So, what is leadership then if not the influence that someone with a title has over their subordinates? 

Here’s our favorite definition:

“Leadership is a process of social influence, which maximizes the efforts of others, towards the achievement of a goal.”

Notice that this definition doesn’t mention authority because a title doesn’t make a leader. It also doesn’t mention personality traits or attributes because leadership is a skill, not a characteristic.

If you’re reading this it’s because you want to be a leader or you already are a leader and want to know what you can do better. 

The skills listed below are just some of the skills that good leaders share, but they are essential.

Empathy

Good leaders genuinely care to help the people who seek their guidance. They give a lending ear and do their best to understand where other people are coming from.

Good leaders are empathetic. They know how to talk to people in a way that shows that they care because they know how to put themselves in other peoples’ shoes. When someone approaches them with a concern they do their best to understand what the person is expressing and why so that they can effectively help. And most importantly, they are genuine.

Active Listening

Good leaders listen more than they speak because they know there is value in what the other person has to say.

So often when in conversation, we think more about how we’re going to respond to the other person than making an effort to truly listen. A good leader knows that the people who rely on them have just as much to contribute to a shared goal as they do — sometimes more. They understand the importance of paying attention to words, context,  emotion. When you listen to someone to understand rather than to respond, the notice. It’s a great way to build trust and to keep learning. 

Personal Development

Great leaders never stop learning. They dedicate some of their time to reading, listening to inspiring podcasts or videos, and doing anything else that will help them continue to develop as an individual.

Good leaders know that in order for them to help others expand their minds and beliefs about what they can accomplish, they must also continue to expand their own minds and beliefs. Good leaders never stop learning because they understand that you don’t know what you don’t know and you can never know enough. They continue to learn so they can grow as individuals and so that they can serve those they lead more effectively. They understand that expanding their knowledge means expanding their world and the world of those around them. 

Receptivity

Great leaders are open to the ideas of others and they empower others by encouraging them to show off their strengths and grow.

Good leaders are open to hearing what other people have to say because they know that their ideas aren’t always the best ones. They understand the importance of working with others to get the most creative solutions. They know that other people often hold the key to success and they are totally okay with that. 

Integrity

Great leaders do their best to be all-around good to other people that’s why they give people credit when it’s due. They see the value in letting others shine and know this is an important part of developing future leaders.

Good leaders know that shining a light on the accomplishments of others serves the greater good, which includes themselves.  Giving credit where credit is due shows honesty, humility, and integrity. It also shows that you are a true team player and that you aren’t just interested in your own progress but that you want to bring help others progress as well.

Team Players

Great leaders aren’t just the ones who lead the team, they are also part of the team. They are in it with their people and they pull their own weight to help everyone win.

A leader doesn’t just tell others what to do, they pull their weight as part of the team. They show their team that they are in it with them. As a leader, you want the people who have faith in you to know that you’re right there with them, doing your best to help them achieve goals. 

Now that you know what some of the skills that good leaders possess, you have a place to start. 

Don’t forget to ask for feedback on your journey to great leadership. It also helps to have a mentor; someone to help lift you up and who inspires you to do better. You know, a leader. 😉

Wake Up Early With These Tips

 If you’ve wanted to be an early riser and have tried it all, this post is for you. For some people waking up before the sun might seem impossible. Despite what past experiences might have taught you, you are capable of waking up early, but you might have to change some habits to be successful at it. 

If you want to wake up early, you probably have a good reason. Maybe you want to fit in a workout before your day starts, maybe you’d like to get some extra work done before officially starting your workday, maybe you just want some peaceful alone time before your family wakes up. Whatever your reason is, it’s important to you and therefore, important enough to change your habits for. 

The tips outlined below will help you start waking up early and help you be consistent. Once you begin to wake up early regularly and see the profound impact an early schedule can have on your mood and your life in general, you might begin to wonder how and why you never stuck to it before.

  1. Set Yourself Up for Success the Night Before
Winding down before bed is a great way to prepare yourself for the next morning. Do something that will make you feel relaxed like taking a warm bath, having a cup of tea, or stretching in bed.

Waking up early begins the night before. Before you go to bed make sure to do the things that are going to help you sleep well and wake up feeling refreshed in the morning. Having a nighttime wind-down routine is a great way to do this. Your wind-down routine could consist of a nice shower, a cup of tea, a book, and/or a nice stretch in bed before lights out. Whatever you choose to do, start to do it well before your target bedtime so that you have enough time to still be asleep at a reasonable hour.

When it comes to bedtime, we’re no one to tell you what time you should be going to sleep but you should consider that adults need on average 7-9 hours of sleep a night to effectively recharge. So plan accordingly based on the time you want to wake up in the morning. 

  1. Give Yourself a Few Minutes To Get Out of Bed 
Rather than jumping out of bed the moment your alarm goes off, try giving yourself a few minutes between to get out of bed. This can help you start the day off on a better note and help making the waking-up-early process a little easier.

This tip is a bit controversial because it goes against all of the traditional advice we hear about waking up early. Most people will tell you to jump straight out of bed, don’t give yourself a chance to even think about the act because then you’ll want to stay in bed. That’s understandable but doesn’t necessarily work for everyone.

For some people getting straight out of bed without having a chance to properly get their head right for at least a moment can start the day off on the wrong note. If you’re one of those people, try giving setting two alarms: one to get you out of dream mode, another to get you out of bed.

  1. Have a Morning Routine and Follow It Daily
Having a morning routine in place will make it so that you have fewer decisions to make in the morning once you get up. It also serves as a way to help you transition from sleep-mode to get-it-done mode.

Routine, routine, routine. We preach it because it’s worth preaching — especially a morning routine. Having a morning routine for early mornings helps you get the day started on the right foot. If you do the same thing in the same way every day then you’ll have fewer decisions to make throughout the morning which will make your morning easier to start.

Make your morning routine easy enough to get through while you’re half asleep but invigorating enough to help you transition from groggy-sleep mode to fully awake. This can be as simple as getting up out of bed, taking care of your body’s needs in the bathroom, brushing your teeth, and washing your face.

  1. Have a Good Reason to Get Out of Bed
If you don’t have a good reason to get out of bed early, you have every reason to stay in bed. Many productive people start the day early because they take mornings to focus on the things that are important to them but that they might not have enough time for throughout the day.

This is probably the most important tip if you want to be consistent. Having a good reason to get out of bed is what will keep you from snoozing your alarms and staying in bed.

If you don’t have a good reason you won’t be motivated to wake up and it will seem like a chore. Waking up early can be a reward if you let it be. Giving yourself time to get things done before the rest of your house wakes up or before you officially start your workday can bring a level of peace into your life that you might have never thought was possible to accomplish.

Make sure that whatever your reason is, it fuels you and brings you closer to being the person you’re developing into.

  1. Stay Present Once You’re Up
Once you’re up, focus on the present moment and what you are doing rather than reminding yourself how early it is. Once you’re up, enjoy the moment and keep your thoughts and actions aligned with your reason — whatever it may be.

One of the best things you can do (at any time, ever) is to be in the present. The “right now” is all you have any kind of control over. This is a great life tip in general, but even more so when it’s 4:45 AM and you’re doing your best to convince yourself to not go back to sleep.

Rather than paying attention to how early it is when you’re up early, pay attention to whatever it is you got up for — your reason. This will make it a lot easier to stay up and to want to get up early the next day and the day after.

Becoming an early riser doesn’t have to be difficult, but it should be something you commit to if you want to make it a habit.

Keep in mind that we all work more efficiently during certain time windows of the day, so before forcing yourself to get up before the sun, ask yourself when you’re truly the most productive.

If you believe you’d do best in the morning and decide to try it on for size, give it at least a week trial before writing off your experience as unsuccessful. This will give you a chance to figure out what works best for you as far as wake time, routine, and your reason to get up goes.

How You Can Be More Productive

We all know at least one person who seems to always have it together; they wake up early, exercise regularly, spend time with their loved ones, and are still somehow able to produce creative results at work or in their business — but how? Who are these unicorns and how can we be more like them?

If you were to sit with a group of these guys and ask them what their secret to success is, you’d likely get an array of answers but there would undoubtedly be overlap. 

Productive people don’t do just one thing to make them more productive. Their productivity, efficiency, and mindset are the product of a set of individual habits that they practice daily that results in greatness.

What follows is a list of ten things that you can do regularly to be more productive. Making any one of these a habit will get you on the right track to being a more productive person at work and at home. Doing all of these things regularly will have you asking “who am I?!” once you’ve become a powerhouse of results. Then people will wonder how YOU do it.

GET ORGANIZED

A cluttered space creates a cluttered mind. Organize your space and spend less time looking for the things you need to get things done.

Imagine needing something and not having to look for it because it’s exactly where it’s meant to be when you need it. Don’t just imagine this for one of your things, imagine this for all of your things: keys, phone, wallet, favorite pen, extra lightbulbs, batteries, tools, etc. 

Being organized means having a place for everything and having everything in its place when it isn’t in use. This first step is critical if you want to be a more productive person because productive people don’t waste time looking for the things they need. 

Instead, they take the time to intentionally place things where they belong and to put them back in the same place when they are done using them. Think of it as a way to set your future self up for success — and be sure to thank your past self for organizing when you’re no longer wasting time looking for stuff. 

HAVE A ROUTINE

Having a routine in place means making less decisions throughout the day. The less decisions you have to make on simple things, the more you can use that brain power on more important decisions.

Many very famous and highly productive people have talked about how they do some of the same things every single day. Whether it’s wearing the same outfit or eating the same foods, having a routine will make it so that you’re flowing through the day with ease because you have fewer decisions to make. 

The best way to kick start a routine is to put a structure around what already works for you. Most of our days fall into patterns anyway. Creating a formal routine around these parts of your day will give you a chance to play around with what works for you in terms of flexibility. Once you’ve got that down pact, play around with other parts of your day (and life in general) that could benefit from more structure.

As helpful as it is to have a routine, it’s just as important to not be too rigid. Always be flexible, like a tree in a storm because life can come at you fast and things change. Don’t be afraid to bend with the wind.

LOOK AT YOUR GOALS DAILY

Looking at your goals daily will make you more likely to accomplish them because they will stay top of mind as you go about your days.

You’re more likely to achieve your goals if you write them down and look at them daily. Doing so will help keep your goals in the back of your mind as you go about your day. This makes it easier for you to stay the course and make decisions that will bring you closer to the finish line. 

Setting goals is the first step to accomplishing great things, but great things don’t actually happen until we put in the work to reach those goals. Productive people are productive because they know what they are working towards. They work with the end in mind and they not only set goals for themselves, they take actionable steps in the right direction as often as possible.

Even the smallest steps in the right direction ultimately make a big difference.

BREAK LARGE PROJECTS DOWN INTO SMALLER PIECES

Break large goals and projects down and focus on the smaller tasks rather than the bigger picture to stay on track and be more productive.

Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that your goals are too big to accomplish. It’s easy to get overwhelmed when you’re always focused on the bigger picture. Breaking down large daunting projects into smaller chunks makes accomplishing the bigger thing more manageable. 

Productive people understand that the day-to-day grind is as important as the big picture. They’re able to keep their head down and focus on one thing at a time more often than they step back and look at the big picture. 

An added bonus here is that when you’re so focused on the smaller pieces of the bigger picture, you have more fun and stress less along the way. Then before you know it, you’ve accomplished some big thing.

DAILY TO-DO LISTS

Creating a to-do list every day is a great way to get through your days more productively. The best way to start this habit is to prioritize just a few things each day and do your best to get those things done. Whatever you didn’t get to on any given day can roll over into the next day.  

A to-do list serves as a guide for the things that you want to accomplish, but it isn’t law. You want to be reasonable about how many things you plan to focus your attention on each day. It’s important to not pile things onto your list with high hopes that you’ll get it all done.

Pro tip: Create your to-do list the night before so that you can wake up and get the day started without having to think too much about what comes first. Then you only have to modify your list as the day progresses if unexpected things come up (as they often do). 

GO WITH YOUR BODY’S FLOW

Boost your productivity by taking advantage of the time of day when you have the most energy and your mind is sharpest.

Everyone has a certain window of time in the day during which they are most energized. This is the time of day you’re more likely to be productive. Whether you’re a night owl or an early bird, take advantage of those times of the day when you feel your best. 

You’d be surprised how much more you can accomplish by applying just this one tip. Planning tasks during the times when you have the most will power will help you get more things done. You’ll be less likely to drag your feet and procrastinate when you don’t feel tired or sluggish. 

ALWAYS CREATE FIRST

Empty your noggin before filling it up with other people’s content. Creating before you consume allows you tap into the raw inspiration that already lives inside of your head.

We often think we need to flood our minds with inspiration before starting a project or creative task. The problem with that is we fill our heads with outside influence before we tune in to our own inner guidance, which so often has the solutions we’re looking for.

Creating before you consume helps you pour out whatever ideas are already floating around in your head. It also saves you from the many distractions available to us these days. Because, you know, we’ve all clicked on that one video for inspiration and found ourselves watching videos of babies reacting to grass two hours later wondering how you even got there.

This is the kind of discipline our parents tried so hard to instill in us by making us finish our homework before watching tv or playing video games. They knew what was up.

LIMIT YOUR TIME ON SOCIAL MEDIA

Limit the time you spend browsing through social media and comparing your life to the lives of others. Productive people are so focused on their own grind that they aren’t concerned with what other people are doing — especially their Facebook “friends”.

Social media is a great tool for communication and learning, but it’s also a huge source of comparison and self-judgment. Productive people don’t let themselves get caught up in the mix. They fly over the social media radar, check in once in a while, and don’t let it consume their days. 

They realize that the people who are showing off their lives on social media are mostly showing snippets of their happiest and best moments. They don’t concern themselves with what other people are sharing because they are more focused on their own progress.

The more time you spend scrolling through feeds and stories of other people’s lives, the less time you have to focus on your own and to go after the things you want. 

MAKE YOUR BED

Making your bed in the morning shows that you are willing to put in the work that no one else sees. It can also set off a domino effect of good choices throughout your day.

They say that how you do one thing is how you do everything. Making your bed in the morning shows that you’re the kind of person who has integrity with yourself. You do things not because you’ll be praised for them or because it makes you look good, but because you want to do good for you.

If you want to be productive and successful, you have to be willing to put in the work that no one else can see, and you can practice that every day just by making your bed.

Doing something as simple as making your bed can also have a profound impact on your productivity throughout the day. It sets off a domino effect of good choices. Having made your bed, you’ve accomplished the first task of the day successfully which can motivate you to keep the momentum going.

There is no limit to how much you can achieve once you decide that you’re going to do something. If you want to achieve your goals and live your best life, you’ll need the tools and habits that will help you along your journey. Take on any of these habits to be a more productive person. Take on all of these habits to become the kind of person who crushes their goals and then some.

How to Choose Happiness Every Day

This post is for anyone who is searching for happiness, which is just about everyone that I’ve met. The thing about happiness is that although everyone wants to be happy, not many people know how to BE happy. 

I’ll let you in on the life-changing secret to finding happiness — you have to choose it. Yes, happiness is a choice. Every day that you wake up you get to decide what lens you’re going to choose to see the world in on that day. 

If it sounds simple that’s because it is. Deep down at our core, our natural state of being is one of love and happiness, but we trick ourselves into believing that happiness does and will always elude us. 

Doing these 10 things consistently can get you to a place where you choose happiness every day by default, no matter what is going on around you. 

This isn’t to say that you’ll never encounter another difficult, sad, or frustrating situation. What this means is that you’ll know how to find your way back to happiness despite the circumstances in the world around you and your life specifically. 

These daily practices will help make happiness your default choice each day. These tips are practical and easy to follow but if trying to take them on all at once is too much for you, implement one at a time and add in more as you feel comfortable doing so. 

  1. Practice Gratitude
Practicing gratitude daily can help you see the good in your life that you take for granted each day.

Every morning before you get out of bed and every night before you get back into bed, think of something that you’re grateful for. 

There is no right or wrong way to do this. The idea is to spend part of each day bringing awareness to things in your life that you so often take for granted (i.e., clean running water, consistent meals, shelter, family, your cat, etc).

Starting the day with gratitude will help you see the good in your life as the day continues. Ending the day practicing gratitude will help you unwind before bed and doze off into dreamland with a grateful heart and a happy mind. 

  1. Have Go-To Affirmations and Mantras on Deck
We talk to ourselves more than we talk to anyone else in our lives, so we should find ways to be nice if we want to be happy.

How we talk to and about ourselves has a significant impact on our lives. We talk to ourselves more than we talk to anyone else in our lives, so we should find ways to be nice if we want to be happy. 

A good way to do this is by repeating affirmations to yourself daily. You can even write your affirmations down and read them to yourself every day. If what you speak to yourself becomes your reality, then repeating affirmations that are uplifting and inspiring will get you to believe in the greatness that you are.

Then there are mantras. Mantras are different than affirmations because they are phrases that you can repeat to yourself to help bring your focus back to where it needs to be. Mantras aren’t necessarily the pick-me-up phrases that affirmations are, but they can have a similar effect. 

You can have go-to mantras for moments that you need clarity or grounding. For example, one of my go-to mantras is “there is time to take my time” which reminds me to slow down when I’m rushing.

  1. Don’t Compare Yourself to Others
Comparison is the thief of joy. Whether it makes you feel better or worse, comparison never leads to happiness.

Whether it makes you feel better or worse about yourself, comparison never leads to happiness. It is the thief of joy because it distracts you from enjoying the life that you have and the way you choose to live that life. 

The only person in your life that you should ever compare yourself to is yourself. This kind of comparison is constructive, unlike the judgmental comparisons that we put ourselves through when we’re wishing our lives were like someone else’s (or being thankful that our lives aren’t like someone else’s). 

The more energy you focus on anyone’s life that isn’t your own, the less energy you have to focus on your own life. You’re the only person who can make a difference in the direction of your life and your progress, so act like it. Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. You’ll be happier for it.

  1. Do Something For Yourself Everyday
Taking care of yourself first isn’t selfish, it’s self-less because it helps you take better care of others.

Have you ever heard the phrase, “fill your cup first”? It means, take care of yourself before spending your energy taking care of others. Learning to disconnect and set time aside for self-care will help you take better care of others.

It’s kind of like when you’re on a flight that’s about to take off and the flight attendant on the PA says to put on your oxygen mask before helping others in the case of an emergency. That’s the recommendation because you can’t save anyone else if you haven’t saved yourself first. The same applies to life in general. 

You don’t have to do anything extravagant or too time-consuming for self-care — something as small as spending 15 minutes listening to a podcast while you cook or taking a short but relaxing bath instead of a quick shower can do the trick. You should be doing whatever it is that floats your boat, you know, so that it doesn’t sink.

  1. Be Gentle With Yourself
We are oftentimes more forgiving and compassionate with others than we are with ourselves but it starts with you first.

The things you say to and about yourself become the things that you believe about yourself, and the things that you believe about yourself ultimately shape your reality. Most of our self-criticisms stem from our tendency to be judgmental.

We may not realize it, but we judge ourselves because we think that other people are judging us and we think other people are judging us because we are judging them, but we’re just projecting our self-judgment onto them because we are judging ourselves so hard — and just like that we’re right back where we started. It’s a sick cycle that ends the day you decide that you longer want to be judgmental; not towards yourself and not towards others. 

Self-compassion leads to compassion towards others. Once you accept and love who you are, it becomes easier to do the same with other people. 

  1. Spend Some Time in Silence Every Day
Sitting in silence for a a few minutes in the morning and few moments before bed can bring you some much needed peace.

This may be difficult to achieve if you’re an overwhelmed executive or an entrepreneur, or a student with a double-major, or a teacher with a summer job, or a stay-at-home parent with a kid (or a few), or anyone else for that matter. If it were easy to sit in silence every single day everyone would do it and the world would be a much better place. 

In this super busy and hyper-connected society it can be difficult to find time to yourself, let alone time to sit in silence, but once you make it a habit you will see a tremendous difference in the way you experience life. Sometimes you need to give yourself a chance to let your brain process everything that’s coming at you and happening around you. 

You’re doing yourself an enormous favor if you carve out at least 5 minutes for silence in the morning and 5 minutes at night. A little break to gather your thoughts and reflect can go a long way. 

  1. Get Moving
Moving your body every day helps keeps your body functioning the way it should. Find ways to move your body a little bit more every day.

Just about any list ever created about achieving happiness, being more productive, living a balanced life, having more energy — and so on — includes exercise. That’s not a coincidence. Moving your body daily can boost your mood, help clear your mind, and reduce stress. It also keeps things flowing the way they should within your body. 

Just because you can’t commit to a rigid workout schedule or wake up at 4 A.M. to squeeze in a workout doesn’t mean you should write-off physical activity completely. Find ways to be creative like parking a little farther away from the grocery store entrance, taking the stairs instead of the elevator to lower building levels, dancing around the house, or taking a quick 10-minute walk around the block.

The more you move your body, the better you’ll feel, and the happier you’ll be. This is not an opinion — it’s science.

  1. Consume Consciously
We often think about food when we think of consumption, but what you put into your brain is just as important as what you put into your body.

Another concept you’ll find on any self-help list is eating a balanced diet and while food does affect how you feel, eating is not the only kind of consumption you should be mindful of. 

The phrase “you are what you eat” should really be “you are what you consume” because you aren’t only what you feed your body, you are what you feed your brain too. If you’re consuming content that isn’t helping you grow and evolve then you’re consuming anything else. 

The more inspiring content you consume, the more likely you are to be inspired. The more inspired you are, the more likely you are to take inspired action. The more inspired action you take, the more you’ll accomplish. The more you accomplish, the happier you’ll be.

  1. Hydrate
Water is essential to all life, including your own. Drinking enough water each day is important for your body to function at its most optimal levels.

This might seem like out of place advice but it’s right where it needs to be. Hydration is the tag-along buddy to exercise and conscious consumption. Doing just those three things alone consistently has the potential to save a life. 

Water is essential to all life. Not just some life. Not just human life. All. Life. Drinking enough water is important if you want to feel good. 

The consensus around water consumption is that you should drink about half of your body weight in ounces of water. Not soda, or fruit juice, or beer — water. Sure, drinking flavored beverages throughout the day counts towards your fluid intake, but drinking water will give your body exactly what it needs without all the extra junk.

  1. Keep a Journal
There are many benefits of journaling for at least a few minutes every day.

Journaling is a great tool to use daily to keep yourself in check. What you choose to journal about on any given day is up to you. That’s one of the best things about journaling — there is no right or wrong way to do it. 

Journaling for just a few minutes a day can help you evoke mindfulness, achieve your goals, manage your emotions, boost your memory, and heal your heart wounds. It’s a great way to process emotions that you’re suppressing or didn’t know existed and it’s a practice that helps you get to know yourself better. 

The most important thing to keep in mind is that life is not a sprint and there is no rush to get it all done as quickly as possible. There is time to take your time creating the habits that will improve the quality of your life. Enjoy the ride, take in the experience, and soak it all in so that you can learn as you go. Before you know it, you’ll be a master at finding happiness regardless of any situation or circumstance.

How to Stop Being Anxious

Do you deal with anxiety regularly? Trust when I say that you aren’t alone. More than 40 million Americans suffer from an anxiety disorder. Unsurprisingly, anxiety disorders are the most common type of mental illness in the United States. 

It’s no coincidence that anxiety levels are rising as we continue to advance as a society. Life is fast-paced and it can be difficult to focus on what’s important and drown out the noise, especially if you are an anxious person.

I’m here to tell you that you can win your battles against anxiety without the drama. I’ve personally struggled with anxiety for the majority of my life, and although I’m by no means 100% cured of anxiety, I’ve learned how to keep it at bay over the years.

There are some things you can do regularly to prevent anxiety as much as possible including eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, and avoiding caffeine and alcohol to name a few. But sometimes even that’s not enough to stop the feeling of impending doom from taking over your mind and body at the least convenient times possible. 

Learning to calm myself down when I could feel my anxiety brewing has saved me on so many occasions. It’s helped me feel empowered in situations that would usually end in me curled up in a ball on my bed sobbing as I hyperventilate and shake uncontrollably — not cute.

These 4 tips will help you stop anxiety in its tracks. This is by no means an exhaustive list of things you can do to ground yourself when you’re feeling anxious, but it’s a good start. Sometimes you might need to do all 4 to save yourself from an anxiety attack, sometimes just doing the first step or two is enough. 

  1. Recognize and label the feeling
Learn to identify anxiety when it starts to come up for you so that you can control it before it takes control over you.

Tune into your body when you start to feel off and ask yourself “what am I feeling?” Sit in stillness for a moment and scan your body.  Is your heart palpitating? Are you shaking? Sweating? Is your stomach turning? 

Familiarize yourself with how anxiety manifests itself in your body. Know what it is that you feel when your anxiety starts to take over so that you can prepare to calm yourself down as needed. 

  1. Breathe intentionally
Remember to breathe! Taking slow deep breaths send a signal to your body to relax.

Once you’re aware of how anxiety manifests itself in your body and you feel it bubbling up, focus on how you’re breathing. Chances are your breathing rhythm is off. The more anxious you’re feeling, the more likely it is that you’re breathing fast. 

Reel yourself back in with your breath by slowing it down. Take a few nice, long, deep breaths by inhaling in through your nose for 4 seconds, holding your breath in for a second or two, then exhaling out through your nose for 4 seconds. Continue to take deep breaths as you move onto the next couple of steps.

  1. Repeat some mantras
Having a go-to mantra for times like these can be a great help.

If mantras aren’t really your thing, I get you — I’ve been there, but believe me when I say that a mantra or two can help save you when you’re on the verge of an anxiety attack. Repeating a good mantra or two to yourself when you’re anxious can get you out of your own head and back into reality. 

When you start feeling anxious and you’ve already recognized the feeling and started breathing intentionally, look around and take in your environment. Then ask yourself one simple question: “am I safe?”. 

If you actually aren’t safe, then your brain and body have every right to freak out and are trying to help you survive — you’re welcome. If the answer to the question “am I safe?” is “yes”, then let that sink in. Then repeat the words “I am safe” to yourself. You can also say “there is nothing to fear.”

Repeating these phrases to yourself will send a message to your brain and to your body that you are okay. You can thank your brain for trying to protect you from what it perceived to be a threat and move on knowing that your mind was playing tricks on you.

  1. Focus on NOW
Bring your focus to the present moment because it’s the only moment that you truly have control over.

The last step in this method is to bring yourself back into the present moment. You can do this by focusing on some of the things around you. For example, it may help to count how many things of a certain color or shape are around you. 

Another way to bring yourself back to the present moment is to narrate things to yourself in your head. Follow along with whatever it is that you’re doing as if someone was explaining it all to you. If your head is filled with whatever is going on in the present moment, you won’t have space to think about anything that isn’t relevant at that moment. 

A lot of times we feel anxious because we let our attention wander into any moment besides the present. These exercises will bring you back to the present moment because after all, that’s the only moment we can actually ever do anything about.

As you go through this process, stop where you feel the most comfortable. Sometimes I’m able to calm myself by just acknowledging that I’m anxious for no real reason and I don’t make it through all 4 steps; that’s perfectly fine. 

Please keep in mind that this method is meant to calm you down when you are on the verge of an anxiety attack. It is by no means meant to substitute methods that get to the core of your anxiety and help you rid yourself of it entirely. If your anxiety is debilitating and affecting your everyday life and relationships, then it’s a good idea to seek the help of a mental health professional. There’s so much power in seeking the right kind of help when you need it.