Self-control is strength.
Right thought is mastery.
Calmness is power.
– James Allen.
Dealing with emotion, Morning Routines and shifting perspective.
Today’s Soundtrack (Spotify playlist by my friend and teacher Bella Fuego)
Yesterday was one of those days.
It started off really well.
I woke up, made smoothies and went to the beach with one of my favourite people.
I meditated while said person took a nap next to me. We both got a little sunburnt but that’s okay.
The sky was crystal clear and the ocean glistened in a beautiful turquoise colour as I sat in the sand, filled with content and gratitude.
Later that day, when I was home alone, I suddenly started to feel really sad, I don’t even know what triggered it anymore.
I was on my laptop, looking for something to study, maybe another online course, acting classes or god knows what and – due to not being very specific and selective – couldn’t find anything and felt completely overwhelmed and like a massive failure.
I guess, sometimes I feel like I’m always getting it wrong.
I’m okay for a few weeks and then I feel lost and anxious again and don’t know what to do.
I’ve been doing many great things here and had some cool work experiences and classes, all of which only lasted a few days or weeks though, nothing permanent again.
I research jobs, auditions and opportunities almost daily here but nothing really excites me.
I just don’t seem to really care about anything that isn’t the best thing ever.
Are my expectation (on myself) to high?
Am I spoilt from opportunities I had in the past?
Am I lazy and just not hard-working enough?
Am I looking in the wrong places?
Firstly, I think I am massively afraid of long-term commitment, which is one of the reasons I never started a long-term program at uni or something like that.
I need to know that I’m able to get out of it, in case I don’t like it and I don’t want to invest thousands of dollars to then drop out, so I never started.
Secondly, I just don’t feel like putting in the effort sometimes if I don’t immediately see the benefits for myself.
I can’t work effectively without pressure and I’m not really getting any pressure from anyone or anything at the moment.
Sometimes I feel like I at the times where I had (financial) struggles, I was much more dedicated and productive. Because I HAD TO be.
So, how do I create that sense of urgency without external pressure?
Bare with me.
I watched a great TED Talk last night (thanks Sarah!) called “How to stop screwing yourself over.”
Mel Robbins, the speaker said one thing that really stuck with me:
“So, why are you not doing what you want? Because you don’t feel like it.
But guess what, you’re never gonna feel like it.”
She explained, it takes force to push yourself to do the things you don’t want to do in order to get to where you want to be.
It’s tough, to force yourself to go on a diet, eat healthier and start working out if you’ve never had an active lifestyle. But the results after a few months will change your entire quality of life.
It’s hard for aspiring actors/dancers/musicians to audition 53785732502 times and getting rejected every time but once you have a breakthrough and get the role you would’ve never dared to dream of, it will all be worth it.
It’s heartbreaking to separate from your long-term partner, once comfort outweighs passion and happiness. You might be lonely for a long time afterwards. But once you wake up next to a new life companion who fills you with bliss and joy, you’re going to know why you had to let go of the old and suffer the hardship that came with it.
Let’s go back to this:
Sometimes it requires physical force to take action and push yourself to do the things you want to do.
Robbins states that whenever you get an idea or impulse, if you don’t take action within 5 seconds, you’re brain triggers an “emergency brake”.
You lose momentum and your mind will stop you from doing it, by bringing up worst-case-scenario outcomes or other reasons not to go for it.
When you wake up in the morning and everything inside of you is telling you to hit snooze a couple more times, feel that physical and mental resistance, lovingly acknowledge it, remind yourself how good it feels to accomplish things and get up anyways.
Magical Mornings and the power of having a plan
I have been working on a good morning routine again recently and it makes allllll the difference.
I conquer my own resistance and leave my comfort zone by getting up 2 h before I have to leave the house or start working.
I wash my face, drink lemon water with Apple Cider Vinegar and Honey (I also have some resistance towards that most days haha, doesn’t always taste delicious but definitely wakes me up!), I go outside and spend at least half an hour moving my body whether that is just walking, a short jog, a dip in the ocean or some yoga.
I then make coffee and a smoothie, get ready and start my day on the right foot.
If only I neglect one thing out of this routine, I feel less present and not as calm and focused as the day goes on.
I force myself – and by that I mean FORCE myself to turn my shower on cold for a minute or two before I get out.
I stopped doing that for a few weeks because it was actually a bit colder here but I’m back at it and it feels AMAZING (afterwards, not during haha).
It’s refreshing, wakes me up and exercises my discipline-muscle like a charm.
Back to yesterday’s breakdown/breakthrough:
I felt overwhelmed and shitty about myself for an hour or two, called my friend and then felt even worse for complaining to him.
Before that I listened to the saddest Spotify playlist I could find until I couldn’t help but cry for a good 10 minutes.
I know when I need to just let out my emotions and let go of built-up tension.
Some people think that’s bad or too much, I personally think it’s great.
I should mention though that I usually deal with emotions by myself, I don’t really cry or get angry/upset in the presence of other people anymore, except my Mum and really, reaaaaally close friends.
I do make it a priority though to not bottle up anything for too long and I have a few different ways of channeling my emotions and letting them flow through me.
- screaming (yes, screaming. haha. just be aware of neighbours/surroundings)
- physical (work)
- listening to and making music
- conversations (sometimes only with myself, if you know what I mean)
- creating something (paint, draw, crafts, whatever you like really, try not to think or judge just let out whatever comes up. The goal isn’t to create something beautiful but to overcome negative emotions)
After I was done crying and being emotional I was like, “Right, enough of that. Now, what can I do to make myself feel better and take back the power over my life and feel in charge of my own reality?”
I took a pen and notebook, opened Google Calender and mapped out what I want a normal work week to look like.
- When do I want to get up and go to bed?
- How do I want my mornings and nighttime to look like?
- How many times do I want to exercise and do yoga?
- When do I eat (approximately)?
- What is something I can do right now to give my brain some stimulation, learn something new whilst looking for a more long-term program?
I put all that into my calendar, which syncs with my phone, I turned good old Siri back on so I can tell her to time-block for me so I don’t even think about touching my phone and getting distracted.
When I need to get stuff done I can be like “Yo, Siri, set a timer for 45 minutes!” and in that time I will do nothing else other than the task at hand.
- I scheduled some meals and workouts (I do a quick session Mon-Fri in the mornings, yoga 2x a week and dance 2x a week)
- I got a class pass for the Yoga studio next door (great for accountability to workout in a group/register for classes. Pay in advance, so you have to go)
- I know what I’m having for breakfast each day (a smoothie, avocado toast), I’ll try to go out for food less and meal prep some more
- I set work and admin hours so I’m using my time efficiently and I’m not just being busy but actually productive
- I enrolled in 3 programs with Shaw Academy, an easy and affordable way to obtain new skills online and receive an internationally accredited Diploma so you can potentially build a career on what you have learned. (I chose Adobe Lightroom, Fitness&Weightloss plus another Nutrition module)
And just like that I went from feeling overwhelmed and hopeless back to “Actually, life isn’t so bad and I’m fully in charge of how I respond to my own thoughts and feelings.”
I’ll leave you with that and I hope this helps.
Much love and buena suerte,