Quote Of The Day 13/10/2019

SUNDAY, 13/10/2019:

Source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/485122191105646411/

‘Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.’

– John Lubbock

Quote Of The Day 08/10/2019

TUESDAY, 08/10/2019:

Source: https://www.pinterest.com.au/pin/305048574741288476/

‘Your subconscious mind is paying attention to how you treat yourself.’

– Sam Owen

Quote Of The Day 31/07/2019

WEDNESDAY, 31/07/2019:

Source: https://weheartit.com/entry/331599676?context_page=7&context_query=road+photography&context_type=search

‘There is no one more capable of helping you than yourself.’

– Gary Hopkins

Quote Of The Day 14/07/2019

SUNDAY, 14/07/2019:

Source: https://weheartit.com/entry/332578877?context_page=6&context_query=white+photography&context_type=searchv

‘Self-care is how you take your power back.’

– Lalah Delia

How Embracing Your Mental Illness Can Empower You.

‘The worst loneliness is to not be comfortable with yourself.’
– Mark Twain

Mental Illness is a struggle that affects many people and can take many different forms.

Mental Illness can be lonely and debilitating, forcing us to withdraw socially and try to hide our condition from the world. One of the hardest things for those who are suffering from Mental Health Issues to do, is to accept their condition in the first place.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with being introverted, or enjoying time to ourselves, but it becomes a bigger issue when that becomes the norm. Balancing those qualities and still having (and maintaining) meaningful connections with those around us can sometimes be hard – especially when we choose not to accept our reality.

Many of us choose to suffer in the dark, rather than admit to anyone they are struggling, or are ‘different’ or ‘sick’. This shouldn’t have to happen.

There is far more beauty, strength and power in accepting and embracing our flaws.

‘The worst loneliness is to not be comfortable with yourself.’

Mark Twain

Here are a few ways to learn how to embrace our struggles and turn them into something we can use in order to grow in our journey:

Get Diagnosed & Refer To Your Condition By Name.

Being diagnosed can often bring about shame or confusion in many people, as well as feelings of guilt or anger. ‘Why me?’ is something that people ask over and over again.

But as scary as being diagnosed is, it can be incredibly useful as well.

You can’t defeat something if you don’t know what it is you’re fighting. But knowing what you’re dealing with is the first step to finding a solution – a way to fight back.

If you’ve been diagnosed with Depression – call it by its name. Bi-Polar? Name it. Anxiety? Own it. If you name something, you own it. If you own it, you choose how much power it has over you.

If you choose to name your condition, you also help others put a name and face to the condition – making it far easier to relate to and empathize with – thus reducing the stigma attached to it.

Educate Yourself.

If you want to educate others, you start by educating yourself. If you want to be empowered and influential, the best thing you can do is learn as much as you can about the topic you want people to understand.

Having stories, facts and figures at our fingertips can prove incredibly important when we are trying to get our point across to someone. And learning just how many other people out there are in similar circumstances to us can propel us forward and give us hope and confidence.

Sidney Hook put it like this:

‘Everyone who remembers his own education remembers teachers, not methods and techniques. The teacher is the heart of the educational system.’

If we can learn about ourselves, and truly know ourselves, it can create an energy within and a fire that can’t be extinguished. Being able to feel good about ourselves starts from within.

Respect Your Mental Illness.

If you want to own your diagnosis, you need to learn how it works.

If you want to tame a beast, you need to know how to make it feel respected.

Some forces demand a certain amount of respect – they are powerful and damaging, but beautiful too – like fire.

The same thing goes for our Mental Health. If we want to own our diagnoses, we need to respect that there are going to be days that are better than others. And that’s okay.

Never minimize your condition. It simply is what it is, and that sometimes means adjusting ourselves accordingly.

For some, that means taking extra self-care steps. For others, it’s removing ourselves from a toxic situation.

Paying attention to ourselves and our conditions is critical when it comes to empowerment and feeling ‘in-control’.

Implement Self-Care Measures That Work For You.

Self-Care is meaningless if you aren’t focusing on yourself. Self-Care looks different for everyone – and that’s totally fine. What works for one, may not work for another.

The challenge is finding what does work best for us as individuals. There’s no point joining your friend for Yoga if you absolutely can’t stand getting sweaty and bending yourself into a knot. It may work for your friend, but not you.

For some of us, Self-Care is as simple as taking some time out for an afternoon nap. For others, it’s hitting the gym, or a nice hot bath.

Spend some time thinking about the last time you truly felt relaxed, and work from there. If you know how to manage the bad days, you will find yourself feeling much better and more in-control over our situation and condition.

And Lastly…

Embracing who you are is vital on all of our journeys – not just people with Mental Illnesses. Being able to accept who you are, flaws and all, is hard sometimes (even for the best of us). So don’t give up, and remember you are never alone.

If you’re feeling like you need to talk to someone, there are plenty of places you can reach out:

WEBSITES:

Headspace

Black Dog Institute

Kids Helpline

MensLine Australia

National Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisation

Q Life (LGBTI+ Specific)

PHONE:

Headspace: 1800 650 890

Kids Helpline: 1800 551 800

MensLine Australia: 1300 789 978

QLife: 1800 184 527

Related Articles:

How To Find Your Purpose.

How do we combat the feeling that something is missing from our lives?

 

Some people seem to have it all.

Have you ever looked at someone, and thought to yourself:

‘Wow, they really have their life together.’

Chances are, you answered yes. Me too. I have friends that just seem to get it. They knew what they wanted to do before the High School teachers even started asking.

They applied for University, got in, smashed out their degree, and now they’re doing what they always wanted – and posting about it all over Facebook and Instagram, almost as if to rub it in. They’ve got it all together.

Or so we think, from the outside looking in. But in reality, they probably don’t. In fact, most of us don’t really have a clue what we’re doing or where we’re headed. Some of the people we think have it all together are just as discontent as us – you see it all the time:

Person who has seemingly perfect life throws it all in for a life of travel‘ or;

Guy with Engineering Degree decides to open a cake shop’.

It’s like a light-bulb switched on in their brains and they suddenly saw the light. The thing is, everyone is on a journey to find their true purpose in life, and sometimes it takes some of us a little longer to figure it out.

So how do we combat the feeling that something is missing in our lives? How can we find something worth throwing it all in for? Something worth waking up in the morning? Something bigger than the mediocre-at-best life we’re sold in High School?

 

Motivations vs Inspirations & Head vs Heart.

The real reason so many people struggle with the concept of ‘purpose’ and accept their lives as they are, is that they spend all their time in the corner, thinking about themselves, what they want, what they need and where they want to go. But finding your true purpose starts with a change in perspective.

You need to stop using your head, and start using your heart. Motivation is not the same as inspiration. Most people are motivated in one way or another – usually by money. Because we need to be. We need money to live our lives – pay our bills, buy a house and car, travel, have children and pets, go out with friends… The logical, level-headed thing to be motivated by, is money.

The frustrating part is that your motivations can sometimes get in the way of our inspirations. 

Our purpose gets left on the side-lines while we chase a way to pay for life. The one day, we stop and realise there’s something missing – sometimes known as an existential crisis.

This is where the idea of using our heart rather than our head comes in. Because in this world, there’s nothing logical when it comes to love and passion and inspiration. Consider this scenario:

You are financially stable. In fact, consider yourself as part of the top 1% of the world. You have absolutely no need for money – you are infinitely rich.

What would you do with your time?

If you had everything you could possibly dream of, how would you spend your days?

When I first considered this question, dreams of living in a huge mansion, being by a poolside with a cocktail and reading a book was the first thing to come to mind.  But when I really thought about it, I realised that no-one in their right mind could do that forever – they’d get bored.

So what would I do? I thought long and hard about what made me sad and what made me happy. I thought about my experiences, and I thought about other people going through the same thing. And I realised I wanted to help them. All the kids from broken families, experiencing homelessness, witnessing addiction or had nowhere and no-one to go to.

 

So what next?

So let’s snap back to reality.

I’m not infinitely rich. I didn’t have endless amounts of time or money. But what I did suddenly have, was inspiration. 

The same inspiration that lead me to research, apply and eventually become a mentor for at-risk young people. And it has helped me see the difference between motivation and inspiration, and want and need. 

I wasn’t just someone who went to work and paid bills anymore – I was someone these kids looked forward to seeing. Someone who gave advice, listened, laughed and was present.

I had suddenly figured out what it was that I needed to do to help fill the void I was feeling in my life. In order to find my true purpose, I had to think about something other than my situation.

Because once we strip back the want for money and the responsibilities of life, we suddenly stare at what’s left of us.

Maybe we don’t all have unlimited time and money, but we all have a person hiding under all the baggage of life. We shouldn’t let that baggage limit the difference we can make in the world.

And every single one of us is different. Some of us join the RSPCA, start a wildlife sanctuary or foster cats. Others play cards with veterans at the retirement village or work on cars or coach a sports team. But one thing they all have in common is they aren’t motivated by money. They’re inspired by a cause.

And every single one of us is capable of being more than their surroundings dictate. It’s just a matter of choice.

5 Reasons To Practice Empathy

Why is empathy important, and what function does it serve in everyday life?

 

Being empathetic is often associated with being soft and sensitive, rather than a trait of an intuitive powerhouse. But being able to listen and truly understand the people around you is a sensational skill to have.

Regardless of what scenario you are in, whether it be work, at home, in a relationship or part of a friend group, empathy is an incredibly important part of being a good leader, a good partner and a good friend.

So why is empathy important, and what function does it serve in everyday life?

 

 

NUMBER ONE:

Connection.

Empathy is crucial in connecting with people at a higher level. Being aware of the people around you and how they think and feel can help you understand what they need, what motivates them and what they care about.

If you don’t know what makes someone tick, it’s almost impossible to be able to connect with them in a meaningful way. But more than that, being able to truly appreciate and empathise with someone’s feelings can really help and encourage people to feel that they can open up to you and talk to you about things.

 

 

NUMBER TWO:

Perspective.

Being able to understand and empathise with people can really help you look beyond yourself and see the bigger picture. Suddenly it’s not about ‘me’ but about ‘we’. Yes, some people are naturally more empathetic than others, but that’s not to say you can’t stop, look and listen to the people around you.

 

 

NUMBER THREE:

Respect.

If you’re empathetic, not only will you have more respect and appreciation for the people around you, but you will notice you will get the same in return. People are more likely to hold you in a higher regard and be loyal to you if they know you would do the same thing for them.

 

 

NUMBER FOUR:

Spirituality.

Not everyone is religious, but everyone believes in something. And usually it follows that being a good person will attract a sense of achievement and spiritual peace. Whether you believe in Karma or God or Reincarnation, the theme is generally: ‘what goes around, comes around’.

Being at peace with yourself and your actions is more powerful than you think, and can bring an abundance of positive energy into your life.

 

 

NUMBER FIVE:

Appreciation.

When you open your eyes to the people around you, you start to appreciate a lot more in life. Things aren’t always as bad as you think they are, and a lot of people have it worse. Not only does being empathetic and having genuine connections help you in your relationships, it can help your mood, too.

When you practice empathy, you’re practicing seeing the world from someone else’s perspective, or ‘stepping into someone else’s shoes’, so to speak. It’s hard not to appreciate things when someone may have it harder than you. And not only that, you begin to appreciate the small things in life too; like a random act of kindness, a ‘good-morning’ text, someone thinking to grab you a coffee, or even just a smile from a stranger.

 

Empathy is a beautiful, powerful action to practice, and is something incredibly important to maintaining relationships throughout your personal, professional and spiritual journey.

 

Remember:

  1. Connection
  2. Perspective
  3. Respect
  4. Spirituality
  5. Appreciation

 

 

 

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If you enjoyed this article, please feel free to read more at: www.theartofoverthinking.com

A Beginner’s Guide To Self Love

‘Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one’s own sunshine.’

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

My friend once gave me the perfect analogy for self love:

‘Shayde – there’s a reason they tell you to put the oxygen mask on yourself first when you’re on an airplane. You can’t help the people around you if you haven’t first helped yourself.’

How nice it is, to have friends that point out the glaringly obvious, when you can’t see it for yourself.

 

Some days are incredibly hard. That’s just life. Sometimes we forget about ourselves, on our journey through life. We give and give and give, until we have nothing left for us to fall back on. But it’s inherently important to take time to slow down and look after yourself.

But loving yourself is not an easy task. It never has been and never will be.

 

But why don’t we love ourselves?

‘You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection.’

– Buddha

 

We are surrounded by things that say we shouldn’t love ourselves, day in and day out. Of course, you all know what I’m talking about: magazines, social-media, advertisements, unrealistic ‘reality’ shows on television, sales professionals, sometimes even our bosses or our loved ones… wherever we turn, we seem to constantly be being told we are not quite good enough.

We’re told we need to be thinner. We need to have clearer skin. We should be more tan. We need less cellulite on our thighs. We need higher sales figures. We should have a house and kids by now. We should be getting better grades. We shouldn’t talk about our mental illnesses. We need a newer car, a bigger house and a six figure salary. We need to have prettier clothes, taller shoes and more make-up.

Everywhere we look, there is something to compare ourselves to. But the problem is – we shouldn’t have to. We need to realise that society has an unrealistic expectation of what ‘perfect’ is.

And it is really none of their business!

Perfect for you may look completely different to my idea of perfect. You may hate your curly hair, but another may envy you for it. Your friend eats whatever she wants and stays as thin as a rake – and yet she wants the curves you have.

Someone you know may like dating younger people, another may prefer someone more mature. Perhaps your friend may find someone who is strong and muscly preferable over someone who is academically gifted.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

And I’m here to tell you that no matter what you look like, where you’re from, what your age or preference, who you are – you are worthy of love – just as much as the next person.

And so we come to our first obstacle on the road to self-love:

 

 

ACCEPTING YOU ARE WORTHY.

‘Your problem is you’re… too busy holding onto your unworthiness.’

– Ram Dass

Before we can even think about giving ourselves the love we so desperately need, we need to believe we are deserving of it. And that’s where a lot of our problems start. We sow seeds of doubt in our mind that we aren’t good enough, we don’t deserve anything, and we end up feeling guilty at the very thought of looking after ourselves.

There is so much hate and pain and suffering in this world to simply act like it doesn’t exist, that is the plain and simple truth of it. But that does not mean we need to neglect ourselves out of some desperate attempt to help the people around us.

We must press on, or else be swallowed up by our insecurities, our pain and our problems.

‘You cannot pour from an empty vessel.’

Self-love is harder than what you see at surface value. It’s easy to have a bath, get a massage or a manicure, or spend a day in bed. What’s not easy is convincing yourself you truly deserve such things. It’s not easy to see past the action itself and into the ‘why am I doing this for myself?’.

There is an art to self-love. An art of really appreciating and understanding the love you give to yourself is in fact just that: LOVE. Love is something that needs to have room for growth – or else it wilts like a pruned rose in a lonely vase.

One of the greatest wonders in life is love. We simply cannot live without it. It’s proven time and time again in various forms – living beings that receive love and nourishment thrive next to their neglected counterparts. So it only makes sense that in order to spread that love, to truly thrive in the world around us, we must first know what it feels like to be loved.

So the first thing we must do on our journey to self-love, is to accept our flaws and to understand we are deserving of love in spite of them.

Treat yourself with respect and dignity, and never feel as though you aren’t worthy. If you don’t feel you are worthy of being loved, you will wilt. You may receive love, but it will be clouded by guilt.

It takes time and patience and won’t always seem right, but once you realise you are worthy of love, you can start to find yourself – which brings us to the next step in learning to love yourself:

 

 

SOUL SEARCHING.

‘Who looks outside, dreams; who looks inside, awakes.’

– Carl Gustav Jung

Someone once said something to me that made me stop and think for a really long time:

‘Every single person you meet has a different version of you in their mind. No two people know and remember you in the same way.’

It’s true. The way I think or feel about some of my friends will be completely different to how the person next to me perceives them. So the real question then, is this:

Who do you think you are?

How would you describe yourself? What are your favourite things to do? Who do you think about before you fall asleep? What are your aspirations? Your values?

To truly be able to take care of yourself, you need to know yourself. You need to know what you stand for, what you believe in, what you would fight for.

What use is it, trying to care and stand up for yourself, if you do not truly know what you actually stand for in the first place? Self-care loses meaning without knowing who you are. You may as well buy yourself a present from the Kris Kringle variety isle and be done with it.

So again: who do you think you are? It’s a question worth asking again and again until you’re sure. The stronger your foundations, the stronger the structure on top – fundamentally speaking.

This isn’t always easy. Especially when you start thinking about societal norms, expectations, religion, sexual preference, gender, war, history etc., etc., etc.. But not to worry – there are plenty of ways for you to begin to pick yourself apart – so to speak. Here are some interesting ideas for helping to find your true self and values:

  • Keep a journal
  • Keep up-to-date with current affairs
  • Find a creative outlet
  • Travel
  • Ask your friends what they think you’re good at
  • Take a personality/ strength quiz
  • Talk to people you normally wouldn’t
  • Learn to meditate
  • Keep a note of what and who you say ‘yes’ and ‘no’ to
  • Read your horoscopes
  • Acknowledge your fears
  • Accept your shortcomings
  • Apologize when you’re wrong
  • Research your heritage

There are so many ways to explore who you are as a person – it is all about keeping an open mind and finding what makes you ‘tick’ as a person. No two people are going to be exactly alike. Just like no two people are going to see you in the same way. So who do you think you are?

Once you have an idea of who you are, you can start exploring the next step on your self-love journey, which is:

 

 

WHAT DOES SELF-CARE LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?

‘When I loved myself enough, I began leaving whatever wasn’t healthy. This meant people, jobs, my own beliefs and habits – anything that kept me small. My judgment called it disloyal. Now I see it as self-loving.’

– Kim McMillen

Everyone’s idea of self-care is going to be different, based on their loves, values and personal ideas.

For one person, that might mean going and getting a pedicure. For another, a pedicure is an absolutely horrid ordeal.

Another person may want to buy tickets to a much-loved band, whereas someone else may cringe at the idea of a crowded venue being anyone’s idea of ‘self-care’.

It is all about you.

That’s why it’s called self-care and not other’s-care. And why it’s so important to know who you are, and what you love. And sometimes, certain situations call for different types of self-care.

For example, when I’m feeling at my worst, emotionally speaking, I’ll hide under my blanket for a few hours and block out the world, or I message my friend and ask him how he is and whether he wants to get coffee. And I feel better for it.

Other times, I might wake up and decide the definition of ‘self-care’ for that particular day is to not worry about the dishes on the sink, and watch a good Ted Talk or a documentary.

On the contrary, my partner’s idea of ‘self-care’ may be time with his friends, or going for a motorbike ride, or heading to the gym. Everyone is different, and every day is different.

It’s about recognizing how you’re feeling, and adjusting accordingly.

There is nothing wrong with learning to love yourself, understand yourself, and deciding to look after yourself. And there is certainly no shame in admitting you may not look after yourself as well as you perhaps should. It’s easy to lose sight of ourselves when the world is so loud, busy and consumer focused.

And so it makes sense then, in such a busy world, that the last (and probably the most important) step in our self-love journey is:

 

 

PRIORITIZING YOURSELF.

‘Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.’

– M. Scott Peck

It’s all well and good to think about self-care, and what it looks like and how deserving you are of it. But how many of you are thinking:

‘I don’t have time.’

Well I’m going to break it to you hard and fast. I won’t apologize for it, either. You do have time. We all have time. You just need to prioritize yourself.

What do you do that takes up so much time that you aren’t looking after yourself? Are you working too much? Taking on too much? Saying ‘yes’ too much, and ‘no’ too little?

Are you giving too much, and receiving little in return?

The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.

Take the time to look at your life, your schedule, your priorities, and truly evaluate. What is taking up so much time and energy that you have decided you aren’t important enough to look after?

And then make some adjustments. Perhaps you decide to take the train to work, so you can read for an hour rather than be stuck in traffic. Maybe you wake up an hour earlier so you can do some yoga, or make a healthy breakfast. You could start a self-care tradition to go get a massage on a Thursday night after work.

Whatever self-care looks like for you, you need to make it a priority. Because at the end of the day, you are all you have – and that can be scary or comforting, depending solely on how you treat yourself.

 

 

And always remember you are worthy, you are unique and self-care is important in order to grow:

‘Most of the shadows of this life are caused by standing in one’s own sunshine.’

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

Quote Of The Day 01/01/2019

TUESDAY, 01/01/2019:

Source: https://weheartit.com/entry/245535103?context_page=13&context_query=stairs+greece&context_type=search

‘Much as we may wish to make a new beginning, some part of us resists doing so as though we are making the first step toward disaster.’

– William Throsby Bridges