4 Simple Steps for Midlife Women to Manage Their Mind and Achieve MoreNov 15, 2021
We all have the same amount of time each day, even though it may not feel like it at times. It's how you use that time and expend your energy. However, that really matters. So why do we spend so much time worrying about things that are out of our control?
How much time have you wasted beating yourself up because of the weight you gained during the pandemic, or sleepless nights spent wondering if you got the job, or time spent being overwhelmed, anxious, or stressed about things happening outside of you.
We spend too much time and energy in negative emotional states over issues that are beyond our control. It's like being mad at the weather. Is your anger or frustration going to stop the rain? Then why waste your time and energy being upset? Sounds crazy, right? But it's exactly what we do about so many things happening around us that's out of our control.
There are only two things in this life that you can actually control: your thoughts and actions.
As humans, we give meaning to the circumstances around us through our thoughts. Sometimes we're aware of our thoughts, but most often, we're not. That's why we worry about things out of our control like, "I don't think I'm good enough," or "I don't think my boss appreciates my work."
We can't change what happens around us, but we can change how we think about them. The truth is the root cause of many of our problems is our thinking. It's our thoughts that directly create the results we experience in our lives. Our thoughts drive our feelings that lead to our actions and, ultimately, the results we get.
You get to choose what food you put in your mouth and how much you exercise. You control whether you want to be pissed at your boss or co-worker. It's your call whether you apologize to someone or not, including forgiving yourself. Each day you get to choose which thoughts you'll carry with you through the day, whether or not you'll choose thoughts that will serve you and lead to the results you want.
This is not easy. We live in a society that doesn't like accountability and prefers to blame others for our circumstances, how we're feeling, and how life is treating us. After all, we live in a highly litigious society. But just because it seems hard doesn't mean we can't make it happen. Like anything, it just takes focus, commitment, and daily practice, and then before you know it, you'll be able to accomplish more than you initially thought possible.
Use these strategies to manage your mind to get what you want.
1. Do a Brain Dump
Differentiating your thoughts from those things going on around you will be an essential first step for you. The best way to do that is to become aware of what's going on in that brain of yours. You can do that by doing a brain dump every morning.
Notice what you're thinking and how those thoughts are creating your feelings. You don't have to do it just once a day. You can take a break every hour and check in on your thoughts, or better yet, if you get in a situation that feels uncomfortable, before you act, write out what's going on in your mind.
Ask yourself how you can think differently. How can you best spend the next 60 minutes? How can you use the next hour to your advantage? Asking this question will keep you aware of your thinking to learn how to control your thoughts, and ultimately your actions.
2. Catch Yourself
When you catch yourself worrying, ask yourself why? What's going on that you think is causing you to worry. Then ask yourself what thoughts I am having that's causing me to worry. Accept that you can't do anything about it, except to choose a different thought. Learn to create new thoughts to see the situation clearly, and refocus your activities and behavior. This approach takes practice. The more you do it, the easier it gets!
3. Be Clear About Your Goals
know the results you want and the goals you want to accomplish. ONce you know the results and goals you want to achieve, you can ask yourself whether or not your current thinking is helping you get to where you want to go or hurting you. If i's hurting you, it's time to shift your thinking.
4. Other Considerations
Keep in mind what you think about, you bring about. Consider whether or not you're seeking answers or wallowing in your problems? Mentally rehashing the past accomplishes nothing because it no longer exists except the weight you're choosing to give it. Instead, use your brain to challenge faulty, destructive, or unhelpful thoughts.
At the end of the day, reflect on how much you could get done toward your goals. Whether you reached your goals for the day or feel short, write down the thoughts you've had that helped you get there or prevented your success. Then link your thoughts to your actions, specifically paying attention to your level of productivity.
Many of the circumstances around us are beyond your control. Avoid focusing on events that you simply can't influence or waste your energy trying to change. The greatest gift you can give yourself is awareness. Knowing what's happening in your will help you capture your thoughts and control your actions. Using these strategies will help.
Be sure to check out my podcast, the Midlife Career Rebel to learn more about this concept and how you can control your thoughts and get the results you want in your life and career.