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In Part 1 we explored ways to calm the feeling of overwhelm, making a master list is one tactic. There are many other tactics that may help us prioritize our lives around what we want to create in the world. Now, in Part 2, we will explore the effect that state of mind has on overwhelm and the connection between our thoughts and feelings.

From Overwhelm to Clarity, Calm, Creativity

It’s important to know that how we feel (happy, carefree, anxious, overwhelmed, etc.) comes directly from our thoughts. Whether or not we feel stressed depends on our thinking about our situation, rather than the situation itself. Having tools and tactics to help quiet the feeling of stress is great, but what if there was a better option? What if there was something more innate that could instantly and continuously change how you think, act, and react to your world?

There is!  Being in a high level state of mind changes everything. Operating from the mindset of well-being brings a level of clarity, creativity, and ingenuousness that opens doors of opportunity. Think of a time when you were in an extremely great mood. What was it like? What did you notice about your interactions with people and clarity of ideas?

If you were in a happy, free, fulfilled state of well-being: How might you respond to a loved one who is upset and having a tough day? Imagine floating through your day at this level of peace of mind as your loved one walks into the room.  He (or she) is short with you and upset. How do you react? You might love on them, try to help them, or let them be and shrug it off. His or her reaction probably wouldn’t affect your state of mind much at all. What if you were feeling stressed, overwhelmed, and in a low state of mind and your loved one was short with you and upset. How do you react? It will not go nearly as well for either of you as compared to the previous scenario.

The only difference in these two scenarios is your state of mind. State of mind changes everything. Can overwhelm exist in a very high state of mind? When appreciation, happiness, peacefulness and love are oozing from your pores, is it possible to simultaneously feel stressed? Pause and think about that for a moment.

When we are feeling overwhelmed, we lose perspective and see things as black and white. This narrowing of our thinking is what fuels the vicious cycle of stress. When we are living in that clarity of a higher state of mind, ideas come to us. Things that once seemed like problems suddenly clear via creative solutions. The monstrous list of things to do begins to organize itself. New ideas pop up that change everything. Without realizing it, we get things done with efficiency and simplicity. We may even do more than we ever have before, but now with an ease and flow we can’t explain. This is not possible when we’re dragging ourselves through the quicksand of worry, stress and overwhelm.

Now, are you wondering how to get to this high level state of mind? If you try to control your state of mind, you won’t. It’s counterproductive. You can’t will yourself into clarity, well-being, and creativity. That would be like throwing a saddle on a wild mustang and trying to get it to take you for a ride like a pony at a petting zoo… it ain’t going to happen.

Instead of trying to make it happen, be open to letting it happen. Trust that it is possible. Trust that our natural state is well-being and calm. Be willing to step outside of your current thinking and notice what comes with the stillness. Trust that when you take a deep breath, step back, and settle in, you will effortlessly begin to float back toward this natural state of broader bandwidth.  In that stillness, you may find that peace and ease are already there. Instead of worrying about what could go wrong or cleaning up your mess, you’ll have more time to do what you want. You’ll begin to move forward with ease and grace.

I have lived from both sides. Right now I have a few more “things to do” on my plate than I did last year, but a totally different perspective. Back then, I was in the quicksand of overwhelm. I wasn’t as productive, my temper was much shorter, and I was living from a space of scarcity (scarcity of time, energy, money, love, bandwidth, etc). Comparing then to now, my surroundings haven’t changed, but everything else has. How did it happen? It was a change in perspective that was born out of the support, encouragement, and deep conversations with my coach, Andrew. It’s been a life changing journey.

Sure, I experience low states of mind and can get stuck there for a bit-that is part of being human. Now, I notice my thinking and feeling more often. About a week ago I had a heated discussion with someone close to me and I wasn’t in the best state of mind. Normally, I would go do something physical outside to find clarity and clear my thoughts. This wasn’t an option, but knowing well-being was my natural state, I took a different approach. I laid down and quieted myself by focusing on my breathing and purposefully noticing physical sensations in my body. In less than three minutes I was feeling calm, peaceful, and had clarity. Experiences like this continue to confirm that well-being is much closer and more accessible than it previously seemed. Well-being is our natural state… give it a try.

Clarity will be abundant when you come from a state of well-being and use your tactics, like the master list. In that state of well-being you have more common sense and more creativity. You’ll be able to identify which tactics and tools work for you. You’ll be streamlined and innately know what is best. You’ll be able to clear any unrealistic expectations and also clear limits you have placed on yourself.  This is our natural state and it is much closer than you may think. If you’d like support in your journey, begin with experiencing the power of coaching for yourself by contacting me directly via the phone number or email address listed below or by applying for a complimentary strategy session.

Well-being, calm, and limitless creativity are available to you. Be open to noticing and allowing yourself to experience it!

 

Until the next revolution…

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Achieve your Goals AND Enjoy your JourneyWe all have things we want to be. Or do. Or achieve. In going after what you want, do you consider sacrificing present happiness for future bliss? This is often the case, but there is a better way! What is the secret to achieving your goals AND enjoying the journey?

The first step is clarifying exactly what you want so that your path becomes clear. One of my clients described finding clarity and his path extremely well last week and graciously endorsed me sharing it with you.  He described his path as the Yellow Brick Road in the Wizard of Oz.  He explained how, right now, his yellow brick road is covered in a soupy fog. As he continues to progress day by day, that fog lifts a bit.  He has faith that soon all of the fog will be lifted and his path (The Yellow Brick Road) will be clear—at that point it is just a matter of continuing along the path and enjoying the journey.Yellow Brick Road

What a lovely visual, right? How would you like to have such a clear vision for your future and the famous Yellow Brick Road for your path?

Life is a journey and surprises come up along the way. For instance, just as Dorothy experienced in The Wizard of Oz, people flow in and out of your life—some deeply enrich the journey, some you learn and share with, and some are there in passing. From time to time you are skipping along with your friends when a wicked witch or a gang of super scary flying monkeys pop up! How you react to these surprises along your journey is totally up to you.

I remember watching The Wizard of Oz as a kid. Do you? What is interesting is even though I was a tough kid, those monkeys had me cuddling up to my dog for protection and closing the window blinds. To say the least, they were super scary—much in the same way that life’s obstacles can seem so burdensome in the moment. Now when I see a clip of the flying monkeys they seem fake and not scary at all. When you look back, years in the past, to life’s hurdles, do they often appear less daunting than when you were living through them? What are some ways you can gain perspective in the moment when surprises pop up on your path? A secret weapon is focus. Focus on where you are going, how you are going to get there, and remind yourself to appreciate the adventure all along the way.

What does focus mean to you? To me focus is: clarifying and being attentive to the task at hand, eliminating distractions, simplifying, and concentrating on getting the important things done that make a difference in the big picture. How would your life change, personally and professionally, if you kept your focus on where you were going versus concentrating on concerns that may pop up, like the flying monkeys?

Over a decade ago, while endeavoring to be the best mountain biker I could be, a lesson in a book hit me in the chest and changed my life forever. In his book, Mastering Mountain Bike Skills, Brian Lopez said:

“Focus on what is important… and let your peripheral vision handle everything else.”

Like many people careening down a mountain trail—and through life—I looked at, focused on, and gave a lot of attention to the bumps in the road and boulders in the way. How else will you maneuver around them, right? Brian revealed that there is a flow in riding that only comes from scanning the trail quite a distance ahead and noticing obstructions, but never looking right at them. When there is a hole, a tree stump, a huge rock, or any other obstruction, never look at it! Focus all of your attention down the trail—you will sense the overall flow, elevate your perception, and increase your speed. Instead of looking at an obstruction, look at the exact line on the ground you want your tires to follow and let your peripheral vision take care of everything else. You may be thinking (just like I did): “Wait, wait, so as I am barreling down this mountain trail making split-second decisions while risking life and limb, by just looking at where I want to go, the bike will magically steer itself right where it should? Yeah. Right.”

BUT IT WORKED!

I changed how I rode and purposefully focused on the exact line I wanted to take while keeping my attention down the trail. Of course I noticed obstacles on the path, but never again did I focus on them. Suddenly rides became smoother, more efficient, and much more fun.

Imagine having intense clarity about what you want in life, and then choosing to truly focus on your path. What will happen?

THE SAME THING HAPPENS!!!

Your life becomes easier, your actions are more efficient, and the ride is more enjoyable. Soon those flying monkeys that once stopped you in your tracks seem harmless and, with practice, they may vanish altogether.

The choice to enjoy the journey while achieving your goals is yours. Clarifying what you really want so that the fog lifts and reveals your yellow brick road is a fantastic start.  Then it is just a matter of keeping focused and enjoying the ride.

 

Until the next revolution…

 

If you just can’t seem to take your eyes off those flying monkeys, coaching can draw your attention to what really matters to you. Commit to a Strategy Session and experience the power of coaching.

 

If you would like to receive powerful tips and tools in your inbox once a month, sign up for the Yourevolution Newsletter by clinking HERE