When an event happens to us, we tend to label it good or bad. I.e. a relationship ended, a new job, financial trouble, health issue, etc. Based on how we label something, we will experience emotions and take actions accordingly.
Different emotions will lead to correspondingly different actions. Different actions will lead to a different life. The quality of your life will be determined by the quality of your thinking and your actions.
If we were to label a relationship breakup bad, then we might take actions to prevent us from getting into the same situation again or might take it out on the next person we meet.
Instead of labelling something good or bad, we can ask: how can I evolve from this? This isn’t a “always think positive” kind of question. We still want to acknowledge if something didn’t go as we planned. I.e. getting sick, laid off, etc. However, we also want to examine what else we can learn and grow from our experience.
I had a patient who was diagnosed with breast cancer. Her life before breast cancer was as a lawyer who worked 80 hours a week, rarely saw her family and was always busy doing something. Due to her diagnosis, she ended up slowing down, changing the field of her law practice into something she was passionate about and spending more time with her family and friends that were important to her.
On the other side of her diagnosis, she often said that her breast cancer was a turning point in her life. She evolved and learned from her experience and in the end, evolved through the life challenge. She says she’s never had a better outlook on her life than now and she no longer does things out of obligation but because she wants to. That is a life well lived!
Ask yourself: how can I evolve from this situation?
Need guidance? 613-761-1600
This blog was written a few months ago and I've come to appreciate it even more....
I have been in quite some pain for the past 2 days. I had been fighting a cough and 2 nights ago, I was lying in bed and I coughed and felt a pop in one of my ribs and then intense stabbing pain. My first instinct was to scream and wake up my husband to take me to the hospital. For those that know me, I don't take going to the hospital lightly. It was 3am. I then gave myself a few minutes of lying there to assess the damage before I decided to do anything else. Talk about life deciding to stop me in my tracks.
Once the initial pain started to subside, and now that I was awake, I got to thinking how this could happen. I am 8 months pregnant which means my body is releasing lots of relaxin to get my body ready for childbirth. This causes loose muscle and ligaments, making you more susceptible to injury. That was on the scientific level. On the emotional and mental side, I knew it was my body’s way of slowing me down and getting me to take a break.
Lying down was the worst position for me so I walked around which helped, meditated propped up on pillows and even had time to journal. By then, I had already decided to clear my day and focus on rest and healing.
The next day, I was able to call a friend and doctor to further assess my ribs for a home visit. I am so grateful that they were able to come. I felt better after her visit but was still in intense pain each time I coughed.
I managed to get a nap in, not cook or do the other million things I would normally do but just rest. I talked to friends on the phone and enjoyed a visit from my friend and rested the entire day.
When I went into work the next day, I was able to get taped up by the physiotherapist and use other modalities available for healing at the office. Once again, so much gratitude to have the tools I need to speed up the recovery process.
Even in the midst of pain, there are opportunities for gratitude.
As usual, life is teaching me lots of lessons. These past few weeks, one of my lessons has been to learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
It has often been said that growth occurs outside of our comfort zone. So, if you want to grow, you have a couple options....
1. You can take an active approach, figure out your fears, and start tackling them one by one. This is the brave and courageous approach.
2. You can wait for life to throw circumstances in your way where you are forced to grow (most of us). This is what happened to me.
3. Resist the growth and fight tooth and nail against it whenever you are called to make a change. This method is popular as well.
As I’m nearing my due date for the baby, life is getting more and more uncomfortable. It’s harder to walk long distances, go upstairs and do the things that I usually do. This has been a blessing and a curse for me. I’m used to running around and moving quickly through the day. I’ve been forced to slow down and in doing so, enjoy the process of taking my time to get places.
It’s been hard to sleep at night because there are just no more comfortable positions. This has taught me the gift of time relativity. The paradox being that at night, when you’re awake, the hours seem to pass by so very slowly. If you do fall asleep at your regular time, 5am comes too quickly. It's funny because both "times" are the same but what you are doing with the time differs and that gives the illusion of time being different. This has taught me to appreciate the illusion of time.
The more I get comfortable with things that are uncomfortable the more I’m learning about myself and about life.
This week, do something outside your comfort zone and tell us below what you discover about yourself.
We take care of our outward appearance by the clothes we wear, how we groom ourselves, exercising to look a certain way, etc. but what habits do we have to nurture us on the inside?
Task: Take a look at your weekly schedule and tasks that you do, is there time for your inner nourishment?
For myself, I found morning meditation, working out at the gym for increased energy and strength, journalling for inner reflection and visiting my chiropractor for inner balance on my weekly schedule.
If you didn’t find any, here are some suggestions to help:
We spend so much time worrying about how others perceive us that we don’t spend time on what really matters to us and that’s how we feel and think internally. Work on your inside world and it will be reflected in your outer world.
As you take more time to connect with you, you will notice your quality of life changes around you as well.
Need more help? Give us a call for a free 15 minute consultation 613-761-1600
As I’m going through this pregnancy, I’m discovering so many things about myself. It’s been a great opportunity to practice some life lessons.
This week, the lesson has been to choose between fear or progress.
When we are in a state of fear, we are scared that we are going to lose something. In the case of pregnancy, most people are aware at some point about the possibility of a miscarriage, especially during the first trimester. After that, there can be a myriad of things and tests that can be on your mind. If you choose to go down the road of fear, one can be in for a long 9 months. Other fears could include, losing the life that you currently have as things will change with a child.
When we are fearful, or scared we want safety and comfort. This means that our thoughts and choices that we make will be made of that as well. For example, if you had a fear of gaining weight, you may make a different decision on eating a cake or dessert, you may exercise extra or take other precautions. During pregnancy, it could mean excess worry, cutting back on activities that you would normally do, just in case. Note that in pregnancy, you may stop doing things out of fear as opposed to being told what to stop by your healthcare provider.
So, what is another choice? You can choose progress and growth.
When we want to grow, we feel more connected in our lives, give our gifts and contribute. While it will be important to be aware of the possible events that can occur, it is not possible to prevent all of them from occurring. So, what’s left instead? Trust.
Trust that your body has been programmed with the wisdom of all the ages. Trust that your body has the ability to do what it needs to and at the right moment. Trust that there is always an opportunity to learn a life lessons, no matter how painful.
Need help with trust? Give us a call for a complimentary 15 minute consultation. 613-761-1600
There is always something to fear, so what do you do when you fear?
Fear also has 2 acronyms: Forget Everything And Run or Face Everything And Rise
As most of you know, we’re expecting our first child very soon and with that, comes lots of unknowns and sometimes fears. So, how do you deal with fear?
This is the series of fears that I thought about surrounding birth. At first, there was worry surrounding getting pregnant, then once pregnancy was confirmed, there’s worry around having a miscarriage. After the first trimester when the incidence of miscarriage decreases, you move into your second trimester and you are told to be on the lookout for preterm labour. When you make it through that and to term, you worry about the baby coming late. Then there’s the actual birth process and then everything that comes with having a newborn that you are now responsible for.
Imagine you followed this thought train for the rest of your life. How many fears would you have feared that did not happen? Most of them! You would have wasted so much time worrying about the things that never happened. Also, whenever life throws you something unexpected, all you can do is to adapt and find a way.
Now, if I had decided to think about all these fears on a regular basis, what would the baby inside of me absorb? All those fears. That is a process of how parents pass along some of their fears to their children even before they are born.
We also carry with us, the fears from multiple generations through the thoughts and DNA that is passed down. Scary! There is a solution to this!
You resolve the fear for you and you resolve it for the generations that came before you and those to come after you as well.
Want more information about resolving your fears? Come to one of our complimentary workshops.
As the baby items started collecting in our house, we needed to make more room. The best way I found was to clean and purge. As I started in 1 room of the house and donated items to neighbours and the Salvation Army, I noticed that my mind felt freer and freer. If I felt this good after 1 area, what would happen if I decluttered the entire house?
I also learned what emotional attachments I have to material things. I kept old clothes and belongings that had sentimental value. When I let go of some of these objects, I started to gain more and more energy. Soon, my nervous system learned that it was fun to give things away, especially if someone else really needed and could use them.
In my neighbourhood, we have a group where we can post things that we don’t need anymore and a neighbour can request what we post. It makes everyone feel better and grows our community closer together.
Having trouble letting go of material items? Here are some tips to declutter your life:
Start decluttering today and leave me a post below on how it went!
Life is made up of a series of moments. If you miss the moments, you will miss your life.
While we may not consciously remember every moment of each and every day of our lives, there are some moments that stand out that we will never forget.
A defining moment is a moment in time that creates and defines a change within you. It’s a moment where you consciously decide something about who you are and what you represent. It’s when you make a statement to the universe that this is or is not you.
Some such moments could be a time that you stood up for yourself. In that moment, you made a statement that you would no longer tolerate the treatment that you have received and that something needs to change. You decided that you and your feelings matter and that you deserved to be heard.
Another moment could be the moment you decide that you are a survivor and not a victim. You are going to fight whatever health challenge that comes your way and that you are not going to be a victim to your circumstance. In that moment, you decided to choose courage.
The moments don’t have to be something big either. It could be a moment when you were in a rush to do something and instead, you chose to take care of the needs of a human in front of you. You decided that that person was more important to you than a thing.
In every moment, we are making decisions about who we are and what we stand for. Make a list of 5 moments that changed your life and who you were in an instant. If you feel like sharing, please do so below.
“Your days are your life in miniature. As you live your hours, so you create your years. As you live your days, so you craft your life. What you do today is actually creating your future. The words you speak, the thoughts you think, the food you eat and the actions you take are defining your destiny- shaping who you are becoming and what your life will stand for. Small choices lead to giant consequences- over time. There's no such thing as an unimportant day.” -Robin Sharma
Are your days busy and filled with appointments and to-do lists? If they were anything like mine were, then there’s not much room for anything else.
I used to have most of my days planned from the moment I wake up (washroom, make lunch, meditate, journal, gym, work, cook, bed etc.) to when I go to sleep at night. At some point, I started to get tired and bored of my same old routine.
It wasn’t until I wrote my own eulogy (come to our advanced workshop on writing your eulogy) that I realized that I didn’t have any room for fun, spontaneity, and miracles in my life. These were important values to me and I had left no where in my schedule for them. How could they occur if there was no time for them?
From then on, I decided to re-arrange my schedule. Instead of a to-do list that was a mile long, I would pick 1 priority task for the day. If I got my 1 priority done accomplished, I would feel like I had made progress. I also made sure to do that priority early in the morning so the rest of the day wasn't spent worrying about it.
I started to place the people I interacted with ahead of the tasks that I wanted to do. Whereas before I was thinking about a clock and what I had to do next, I was now listening for times when I could have more fun or connect more with someone in a conversation.
Make a list of all the important things in your life i.e. your family, relationships, your career, fun, your health, etc. Do you schedule these into your day? Do you leave opportunities for miracles to happen in your day?
Leave your experiences below.
I recently had the experience of throwing a temper tantrum which allowed me to observe myself and laugh.
I was mowing the lawn and I have allergies to grass. This is often frustrating as I would mow then sneeze, continue mowing and sneezing, trying at the same time not to run over the lawn mower cord and then getting frustrated and trying to mow faster so I could stop sneezing sooner. I’m sure my neighbours find it comical to watch me when I cut the lawn.
On this one occasion, the weather was hot outside and I was sweating. My sneezing was very frequent and I had managed on several occasions to get the cord tangled...and then I had it. I threw my arms in the air and exclaimed that I was never going to mow the lawn again. I stomped off into the house and got some water and came back out.
After cooling down a bit, I continued to do the lawn and was left with a tangled mess of a cord. After finishing, I opened my garage door, put away the lawn mower and threw the tangled mess of a cord on the floor. I texted my husband and told him that there was a tangled cord on the garage floor when he got home and he was not to ask questions about it but to put it away...
I wanted to throw the lawn mower over the fence and just get rid of it...too bad it’s quite heavy.
After calming down (again), I was able to laugh at myself. I had just had a temper tantrum. I realised also that I was blaming an inanimate object for my situation. How is it that my lawn mower could be responsible for my allergies to grass?
When you’re mind is in an overly emotional state, you don’t always make the best choices. Another lesson, I was looking for something (lawn mower) to blame for my situation.
Do you ever find yourself reacting emotionally and then laughing? Comment below and let me know.
Dr. Amanda is a non-traditional chiropractor who focuses on Neuro-Optimization in Ottawa, Canada.