To change our life, we must first change our mindset. According to Psychology Today, “A mindset is a belief that orients the way we handle situations—the way we sort out what is going on and what we should do.”
There is a great quote by Albert Einstein, “We cannot solve our problems with the same mind that created them.”
I have spent half a century searching for new ways of approaching life whenever I have hit a hurdle or felt beaten down. In a recent conversation with a family member in his mid-twenties, he asked me, “How do you stay positive no matter what happens?”
We can’t pretend we aren’t hurt, angry or upset. Life and living are messy and chaotic. We need to take a moment and honor our emotions. There is a difference between honoring and being controlled by emotions.
According to Rachel Dhanja, honoring our emotions means: “Honoring our feelings doesn't mean being selfish. It means listening to our inner guidance system and being honest with how we feel.”
There are times when we let our emotions determine the way we live. The idea is that we can’t control how we feel; however, for the most part, our emotions present our thoughts, often our unconscious thoughts.
If we become still, let go and observe our life, we will always find the following. People whose life is worse off than our own and situations we have overcome that somehow we never imagined we could. This observation can allow enough of a shift to put us back in control. This awareness that our mindset is in our control if we make an effort to shift our thoughts to gratitude and hope.
Awareness is the first skill that breaks the routine of giving in to whatever we feel and taking back the power of our life. The next is deciding what we want to think and injecting those mantras into our daily routine.
Our emotions are like the ridged edges of the highway that tell you when you are outside your line. So when we feel a tightened jaw, a fast heart rate, or any emotion come over us, we are unaware that it is a great time to become the witness again.
Ask yourself what you were thinking?
Why were you feeling it?
How else could you look at this situation?
When we ask ourselves questions we open our minds to a solution and shift our control back to what we are empowered to act on.