Updated: Mar 2, 2020
With the holidays behind us and the New Year ahead, now is the perfect time to learn
learn new techniques to enhance your life and magnify your potential. The following 10 tips will help you live a life of purpose and welcome in a peaceful, healthy 2020.
1 Breathe Deeply
Develop an awareness of your breath. Are you holding your breath? Is your breath shallow? Where is the breath traveling within your body? Inflate the belly slowly as if expanding a balloon inside of it. Slow down your exhalation as you deflate this “balloon.” This is the key to becoming more relaxed and calming your nervous system. Click Healthy Breathing to learn these tips or listen to my 1-minute breath guidance on YouTube.
2 Start Your Day with an Intention
State what you want to achieve or accomplish when you wake up each morning. You may do this silently or say it out loud. Replace any negative, worrisome thoughts with this positive statement. For example, “I am calm, relaxed, and my life is in balance.” Remember, whatever we think becomes our reality so state what you want in a positive way. To learn more about Intention-Setting practices, contact me to learn more about my 1:1 Mindful EmPOWERment sessions or group workshops.
3 Visualize a Positive Outcome
Like an athlete visualizes his golf shot or free throw before approaching the ball, picture a positive outcome of what you want to happen when faced with a challenge. Imagine yourself overcoming the obstacle and paint a picture in your mind of how it will look and feel in your life when it manifests.
4 Embrace an Attitude of Gratitude
Research shows that expressing our gratitude each day has a positive effect on our health and well-being. Take a moment to think about what you are grateful for in your life as each day begins. Experience the healing, de-stressing benefits of gratitude as you practice this technique. Families can benefit by individually expressing gratitude at shared meals together.
5 Lavender Up
Research has shown that scents can dramatically alter our mood, and lavender is known to be one of the most calming and soothing scents. Lavender comes in all forms- soap, bubble bath, candles, etc. I highly recommend purchasing a quality grade of pure lavender essential oil. Inhale the scent as you open the bottle. Place a few drops on your wrist and/or neck. You can also place lavender on the bottoms of your feet to aid with sleep.
6 Get Your ZZZ's In!
I can't stress the importance of healthy sleep. A former insomniac myself, I struggled for many years with falling asleep. I am not proud to admit this, but I even resorted to sleep medications many years ago. After reading about the harmful, lasting effects of these medications, I committed to going off all medications and diving into natural and healthy ways to sleep.
One of the most important methods is learning healthy breathing techniques. Click on the links in the 1st section (Breathe Deeply) in this article. Once the basics are mastered, there are many other specific breathing patterns that are tremendously helpful. In addition, there are many behavioral modifications one can make that support healthy sleep. 'Insomnia- Busting' is one of my specialties. In my experience, I can usually help my clients fall asleep (and stay asleep) in about 3 sessions! I also teach these techniques in group settings. My nickname 'The Sleep Whisperer' was one I never imagined to have many years ago, when I, too, struggled with sleep. Who better to learn from?
7 Laugh a Little… or A LOT!
Read a funny book or watch your favorite sitcom or comedy. Not only is laughing enjoyable, but it also has aerobic benefits. When we laugh, we release stress-relieving hormones and balance our immune system.
8 Collect a Good Tribe
Surround yourself with people who make you feel good. Distance yourself from individuals who drain your energy and feel obligatory in nature. Remember: 'Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe' so pay attention to the energy you are putting out there in the universe, as well.
9 Get Moving!
Walk, dance, hike, swim, run, bike, do yoga… just get moving. Exercise has been proven to increase endorphins and people who exercise benefit greatly from a more positive mood and lower rate of depression.
10 Find Your Passion
Is something missing in your life and you just can't figure it out? So many people I work with who are struggling with stress and anxiety have lost or forgotten their own special purpose or passion in their life and feel like they are 'going through the motions'.
Think about the talents or gifts you have that can enhance your own life or someone else's life. Love dogs? Volunteer in a homeless shelter or help them plan a fundraiser. Love to sing or dance? Sign up for voice or dance classes. Talented at making jewelry or other knick knacks? Open up a virtual shop on an online marketplace like Etsy and give it a whirl.
Many parents whose kids are grown and launched experience this lack of purpose once the nest is empty. But your nest does not have to be empty! Fill that nest with other passions and desires within yourself that you can nurture and grow.
~These tips and techniques will equip you with a healthy arsenal of tools to create and live the life you envision for yourself. Take a deep breath and say hello to a healthy, fulfilling 2020!
Here's to a Happy and Healthy New Year!
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Susan Ginsberg, Stop and Breathe