In my last article, I discussed how important it is to move inward, and I promised I’d tell you how to do it in my next post. As promised, I’m giving you not one but four ways to do it, and I’m showing you how each works using real-world experiences from some of my clients.
The key to move inwards is to first identify areas where you can flip what’s not working for you. If you want to attain inner peace, you have to make some shifts first.
1. Be Consistent
Client 1: My client told me she is really consistent at blowing up at her children. In turn, her children are becoming consistent at expecting their mom to explode and react. What do the children do now? They explode and react.
Flip it: Take something that doesn’t work for you such as overeating vs. portion control, reacting vs. responding, passive aggressive vs. compassionate. What is it that you can become consistent with that works for you rather than against you?
2. Take a Step out of Your Box
Client 2: My client noticed her pattern and habits of doing things to the extreme. Whether it was having sugar and deciding she ruined her track record of eating well so she might as well just throw in the towel (sound familiar?) or something else, everything was always extreme.
Flip it: Did you go off your Simple Clean and Whole lifestyle? Big whoop! Life is about the ebb and flow rather than the extremes. Step out of the box. Make a choice to drop the dialogue of failing and be curious about flipping that pattern. What would it feel like to get back on your Simple Clean and Whole lifestyle the very next day?
3. Create a Daily Ritual
Client 3: My client would eat breakfast one day, but she wouldn’t eat breakfast another day. She’d exercise for one week straight, and then she’d completely drop exercising. She’d practice kindness, and then practice anger. Again, this is an example of living in extremes. I’m going to ask you to find your neutral. What does that mean? Think about the behavior that you can take on which is in between the extremes.
Flip it: Challenge yourself with one ritual that you’ll do for the next 40 days. It can be as easy as taking a breath when you wake in the morning, prepping your meals the day before, smiling at others, or gifting yourself with some “me” time, even if it’s for three minutes, a cup of tea in the quiet, or shutting down your phone at a certain time. This will promote a feeling of sturdy, a feeling of steady, and a feeling of being grounded.
4. What’s Good?
Client 4: My client said, “I’m tired. My husband works so late, work is overwhelming, my kids didn’t make the travel team, and I just want time for me.”
Flip it: We tend to focus on what we’re deficient in rather than what is sufficient and good. With that in mind, ask yourself what is good? What are you grateful for? How much do you focus on what’s good? Catch yourself when your dialogue is all the crap that is going wrong. Instead, focus on what is going right for you.
Putting It into Action
My husband and I have stepped out of our box creating a daily ritual of being consistent on 40 days of no complaining. We’ve had a few slips here and there, but we’re doing it.
I was propelled forward to create this ritual because of everything going on in the world – politics, natural disasters, gossiping, drama, and good old complaining was getting me down. It began to put a wrench in my relationships, my own spiritual practice, and my entire physical wellbeing.
There is only one guideline to no complaining. You state your displeasure and then, close your mouth. There is no rambling on about it or building on the complaint. Here’s an example of building on a complaint. You make a statement like, “I’m so tired.” Next, you add complaints to the statement such as, “I’m so tired – tired of everything. Tired of work, feeling overwhelmed, annoyed, annoyed at the kids, the dogs, the way someone looked at me today. I could go on and on.” As you can see, you can add on very quickly. Instead, make the statement and move on. This is a ritual you can practice with your spouse or loved one, too.
Can you begin to be consistent with a daily ritual that will help you step out of your box and begin to notice what is good? I believe we all have a choice to move inwards and begin to tame the inner hurricanes, flooding, heavy winds, rains, lightening, and storms – one step at a time. Use this fall to plant the seeds of life, and nourish those seeds with your ability to create inner peace. There are just too many pesticides flying around lately!