The peace and joy of summertime holidays and lazy, sunny days can seem in strong contrast to a world that gets littered with problems on the daily. Now more than ever, our mindset is so important to keeping calm and staying positive, even when you feel like you’re in the eye of the storm. Here are three principles to reflect on to help bring joy and goodness into your life and the lives of those around you as you travel through your summer:
Respond, Don’t React:
When we react to something, we are on the defensive, and our actions are like a ball in a pinball machine: involuntarily shooting in every direction purely through the laws of physics. A response, on the other hand, is personally and intentionally chosen, and usually involves a pause and time for reflection. Though we can’t always control what happens around us, we can choose our response to it. Understanding the difference between reacting and responding is vital in times when life is throwing you lemons. Anger grows when we feed it, but so does hope. Find ways to respond that keep you focused on hope, solutions, and the silver lining.
Find Your Peace:
That ‘pause’ between what happens and your response is the secret sauce to keeping your mind geared towards the positive. Reactions usually take us on a downhill ride, but when we pause to choose our response, we can create a peaceful headspace and manifest a peaceful life. Create personal habits that create a peaceful life. The pause before you respond is a habit. A practice of prayer or meditation is a habit. A ritual of drinking a cup of tea while you journal your ‘gratefuls’ is a habit. If you tend to be hard-wired for fire, taking nutrients that can help you find your zen is a habit. Being present in the moment while focusing on the future you desire can keep you peaceful regardless of what the world throws at you.
Think Big, Work Small:
When the world seems heavy with so many problems that you start to feel paralyzed just thinking about them, it helps to realize that it’s impossible for one person to take on every issue. What is the good work that YOU are called to do? Each of us has gifts and talents unique to us, and issues that we feel passionate about taking on. Rather than get crushed under the heavy burden of fixing the entire world, focus on fixing your world. What can you do with your family to make a difference? What can you do in your community to make a difference? What can you do in your work to make a difference?These things may seem small at first, but you’d be surprised at how big of an impact your small actions can make.
I hope these strategies help you to protect your mind this summer, and I encourage you spread that sunshine state of mind wherever you go!