For the new year I decided to change several habits and unproductive thoughts, so my future self would thank me. I set in place a process of observations, restrictions, daily mantras and just simply paying attention to my thoughts, feelings and actions. This I found entertaining and enlightening, and I recommend it for everyone.
Keep in mind this is a year-long process of changing behaviors that no longer serve me. Eliminate tobacco dependence, meditate daily, get rid of prejudgment or expectations and establish an open positive mindset in every situation.
The other day I went out for my daily run, and my iPhone was broken which meant no music or audiobook for the duration. I took it as an opportunity to listen to my inner voice. I blocked out any to-do lists, background noise, day-dreaming or musings. I just paid attention to my surroundings.
I’ve always known people stare at me while running, and I usually ignore it or get a bit defensive. But on this day I decided to look back and smile at any gazers. Maybe it’s just admiration, I thought.
An older man slowed down and leaned out the window. “How far do you run.” he asked.
“Oh, five miles. Give or take.”
“Damn, that’s impressive. I see you running all over town.”
I smiled, “See you around.” and then continued jogging.
Check your filter, I reminded myself. I think of it as a lens we look through daily. If my lens is open and clear, then the experience will be as well. If my lens is jaded or skeptical, then it affects my perception of the incident.
Back in my neighborhood, I heard a continuous hum and looked up to a drone hovering above. Oh, just a kid playing with his toy, I thought. Until it followed me down the street, and over to the next. Oh, hell no.
Start with an open clear lens, but always use other clues if it could lead to a dangerous or uncomfortable situation. Intuition, common sense, visual clues and awareness help complete the picture.
Changing habits is not an easy task, I’ve heard it takes three months for a bad habit to be broken or a new habit to develop. With over a third of the way to developing better habits, I’m doing pretty good. The best way to tackle the task is one day at a time. For me I like thinking positive sayings such as:
- You can’t accomplish anything until you try.
- Trust the process
- If you fall, get back up and try again.
- Get rid of what no longer serves you.
- You can’t and can’t until you can.
Do you have a favorite positive phrase to keep you focused?