The Benefit of Accepting Those You Don’t Like and How to Get Started

Let’s face it, you’re not going to like everyone.

Sometimes the feeling is mutual. We meet someone who just rubs us up the wrong way. You’re instant rivals, right down to the barely suppressed sneer and curled lip.

Other times it’s not quite so dramatic. You might be making every effort to build a relationship, but they’re just not having it. Or there’s some previous history standing in the way of a relationship with someone.

Whatever the case, there comes a time to let dislike go. Holding onto animosity, even something so subtle as not wanting to be around a certain individual at work only winds up hurting you in the end. In fact, you might be missing out on some hidden benefits by accepting someone you don’t like.

Intrigued? Read on to discover the why of it, and better yet, the how.

The benefits of accepting those you dislike are many:

  • Reduces stress caused by the tension within the relationship
    • Cuts down anxiety regarding what the other person will say or do
      • Frees you from destructive thought patterns regarding this individual
        • Allows you to enjoy your relationships fully without worrying about how someone will or won’t react

In order to get started, you only need to follow these three steps.

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Address Any Fears

Frequently, when we dislike someone, it’s because they’re triggering us somehow. By looking deeper into the emotions being raised, and addressing them, you’ll be able to let go of a lot of the negativity you’re feeling toward them. This is especially true of fears, which have a way of looking like a lot of other things, such as dislike.

Let Go of the Anger

Much like fears, anger has a way of keeping up a pretense of hearty dislike. This is what happens when you let things fester, especially over something you’ve been holding onto for a while.

Pro tip? Try forgiveness.

Lay the past to rest between you and try accepting this individual now, in the moment.

Look for the Good in the Relationship

If you’re caught up in dislike, you might not have noticed there has been a positive impact on your relationship. Look for the things you’ve learned from the individual. Even harsh lessons have a way of guiding us onto new paths, benefitting us in the long run.

Sometimes we do ourselves a great disservice by hanging onto an immediate feeling of dislike for someone. As humans who grow and change, if we allow for it, relationships with those we don’t like can improve. Even if the connection never becomes stronger, accepting that the person is just the way they are will bring more peace into your life.

Rise like the Phoenix

7 Secrets to Stepping into Your Spirituality

In today’s world, it’s easy to neglect the spiritual. In our modern age, haven’t we evolved beyond the need for such things? I grew up in a very traditional Catholic household; Catholic schools, church, choir etc. I think I have an innate sense of Spirituality even though I no longer ‘practice’ my Religion. I still love sitting in Old Churches or Cathedrals, and thinking. I believe we all have that need to connect to our lives and our mortality.

What’s interesting as that the more we learn, the more we discover how important the spiritual aspect of our lives is. When you’re interested in bettering yourself and becoming what you have the potential to become, you have to address your inner self every bit as much as you do the trappings of your outward life. You discover your fundamental truths and learn just how much more there is to life when you accept the mystery and awe of knowing there’s something more to life than what you see with your own eyes. In short, you become complete.

How do you manifest this change and step into your spirituality?

Start with a Commitment to Change

You will never be able to embrace something so radical and new as your spiritual side without first making a firm decision along with a concrete goal regarding this path. Start with something simple, such as learning about spirituality by picking up a book or subscribing to a handful of blogs. Then commit to the task of reading these, and spending time thinking about the information you learn and what it means to you personally.

Question Things

Your first commitment dovetails nicely with this next one. Become curious. As you learn and discover questions you don’t have answers to, take action to find the answers. Follow rabbit trails, explore new paths. Go wherever your mind takes you and discover things you never knew about yourself before.

Practice Mindfulness

Whether you engage in prayer or meditation, take time to reflect, and find your inner peace.

Laugh

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Nothing does the spirit more good than laughter. By finding the funny side to things, we relax into who we are and stop taking ourselves so seriously. We engage with the absurd and recognize the universe has a sense of humour.

Take Care of Yourself

You can’t engage on a spiritual path if your flesh is weak.

  • Eat right.
  • Exercise.
  • Get enough sleep.

Don’t allow physical discomfort, pain, or illness to get in the way of your spiritual journey.

Pay Attention

When you experience coincidence, nudges, roadblocks, or sudden interests that feel like they are guiding your path, allow yourself to follow. Sometimes we’re given more guidance along the way than we realize. Learn to go with the flow and see where these divine nudges take you.

Friendships

Create a Tribe

Finding people of a like mind to travel with you will make your own journey more pleasant. You also will find companionship, mentorship, guidance, and encouragement along the way. We need people around us, and a group of like-minded individuals is a powerful thing to have.

Your spiritual journey doesn’t have to be complicated, especially as you start out. By taking these small steps, you’ll soon discover a world you never knew existed. Enjoy the journey, and the new you that you’re about to discover!

How Using Meditation Can Relieve and Decrease Loneliness

“Loneliness is just a word, So I’ve been told.

Loneliness becomes a world, that’s very cold.”

Chicago

Loneliness is an increasing symptom of modern life. As people have become more connected by technology, there’s less time to stay connected with friends and loved ones in real-time. That can lead to emotional exhaustion and burnout.

If you’re finding the 24/7 nature of life is making you feel isolated and lonely, consider adding meditation to your self-care. Meditation is beneficial in reducing feelings of loneliness, even if you only have short periods of time for practice.

How Meditation Can Help

Meditation is grounded in keeping you in the present and detaching from troubling thoughts and feelings. Instead of being overwhelmed by your feelings, you can learn to observe and acknowledge them.

By taking a moment to sit quietly, you can accept the thoughts and emotions you’re currently experiencing. Meditation helps you notice what’s in your mind instead of either blocking it out or getting stuck in it.

Instead of panicking when you start to feel lonely, you acknowledge what is in your world right now. Notice, acknowledge, and move on, so the cycle of negative thinking is broken, and you stay calm and in control.

How to Meditate

Meditation is easy to incorporate into your regular schedule. You don’t need to go to a temple or sit on a cushion for hours in silence, just find a few minutes in your day to focus on your breath.

Meditation can be practiced almost anywhere. A quiet place is good, but you can also meditate in a park or garden, even during your commute.

Here’s a straightforward practice to help you deal with loneliness.

Get as comfortable as possible. Sit or lie down and make sure you’re warm enough.

Take a deep breath in and out to center yourself.

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Think of someone you love. This could be a family member, partner, friend, or pet.

Imagine they are sitting beside you.

Send them love, like a light shining out from your heart and enveloping them in a virtual hug.

Repeat silently or out loud May you feel love, joy, and peace, three times.

Now think of someone (again, a person or animal) who has shown you love and kindness.

Imagine they are beside you beaming out love straight at you.

Repeat three times (again silently or out loud) May I feel love, joy, and peace.

Feel the love surrounding you, both giving and receiving.

Repeat three times May we all feel love, joy, and peace

When you’re ready, come back to the present.

Practice this exercise as often as you wish, to tap into a feeling of love and kindness, and banish loneliness.

5 Tips for Getting Out of a Rut and Starting Fresh

If you feel like life has become predictable, unfulfilling, and boring, maybe it’s time for a fresh start. Deciding to make a change doesn’t mean you have to turn your life upside down, but it is an opportunity to stand back and revise your current way of life.

Whether it’s a lifestyle, location, or career change, there are some simple things you can do right now to get out of that rut and get some positive energy back into your life.

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  • Work out What Makes You Happy

Have you ever sat down and ruminated about what makes you happy? What lifts your spirits and puts a spring in your step? What makes your heart sing and your energy levels skyrocket? Some people feel happiest out in nature, while others prefer sports or reading. Maybe you love the arts or helping people. Make a list of what makes you happy and take action so you can focus on bringing more joy into your life.

  • Practice Saying Yes

Most people are so busy with the everyday life that they don’t make time to get out of their comfort zone and do something different. When was the last time you tried something new or challenging? Be open to new experiences, start saying yes to yourself, and choose to do things that feel good.

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  • Make a Stop Doing List

Once you start saying yes to the things that feel good, you need to practice saying no. You need a stop doing list! You’re probably well aware of the bad habits you’ve fallen into and the things you do that don’t bring you joy. While there are some things you have no control over, see what energy-draining tasks you can eliminate from your life. Write a list to remind yourself of the things you can choose not to do, and free up time for the things that make your heart soar.

  • Declutter
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Most people have way too much stuff in their lives. Look around you right now and see what’s holding you back. Clutter includes spending hours scrolling through social media, limiting beliefs, and bad lifestyle habits as well as all that junk in the kitchen drawer. When I get to Liverpool in July I need to go to my storage department and see if I still need my collections of Action Man, Model cars, Trains, Vinyl, Books, CD’s and Stamps!

  • Say No to Fear

Perhaps the single most empowering thing you can do to get out of a rut is to walk away from fear. Fear will stop you from taking risks, big or small. It makes you too afraid to try anything new and holds you back from reaching your potential. I recently began seeing someone who has two children from a previous marriage. My friends say I’m crazy; I say it is a risk – a risk to be with a beautiful woman.

Make a commitment to yourself to take back control of your life and leap into a fresh start.

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4 Steps to Controlling Your Anger Triggers

Do you ever get angry and then hate yourself for it?

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Everyone has their own little quirks. Things that make them irritated, frustrating, or downright angry. You could probably list your own triggers right now—little stuff like clutter or having to wait around. Maybe you can’t stand a particular word or phrase, or you find it impossible to work if there’s noise. The thing about triggers is that they’re often small things that tip you over the edge, and before you know it, you’ve lost your temper over something that in the scheme of things, doesn’t really matter.

Here are four steps you can take to manage your anger triggers better.

  • Take control

The first thing is to realize that you are totally in control of how you react. Work out what your triggers are, and you can take your power back. You can anticipate and plan for situations where you know you’re likely to blow your top.

  • Learn to read your body

Be conscious of how your anger manifests in your body. Likely your heart rate will go up, or your hands and jaw will clench. You might feel breathless or even get a stomachache. Tune into what your body is telling you, and you’ll learn to be able to stop the process of reacting. And remember the feelings themselves aren’t ‘bad’ but how you choose to respond to those feelings can be harmful, even destructive.

Instead of sweeping the papers off your desk onto the floor, or yelling, take a deep breath or go for a walk. Feeling triggered is often a result of low blood sugar, fatigue, or dehydration. Taking care of your physical needs can help you manage your emotional needs as well and make you more resilient to stresses and triggers.

  • Identify what triggered you

Once you can interrupt the trigger response, you can start to work out what it was that set it off in the first place. Did you feel disrespected? Unheard? Were you mistreated or misunderstood? If someone pushed in front of you in the coffee line, what did that signal to you? That your needs aren’t important?

What about if someone talks over you or interrupts in a meeting? As well as being rude, you could feel sidelined, humiliated even.

  • Choose your plan of action

Whatever your triggers might be, it’s totally up to you how you react. You can anticipate how you might feel and what you might do or say in response. Take a deep breath, detach from the situation, and focus on how you want to feel. You can choose to stay calm in triggering situations – it’s up to you.

8 Tips for Handling Frustration in a Healthy Way

Are you feeling frustrated? The Pandemic; No vacation; stuck at home; lost job; furloughed; can’t get anything done…

Chances are you’ve been here before. You’ve probably even worked out some coping strategies for when you’re stressed. The problem is, some of those strategies aren’t the best, a fact you’re already aware of.

Handling stress in healthy ways is an ongoing challenge.

That’s because when we’re frustrated, we tend to react rather than respond.

The good news is there are natural, healthy ways to deal with your frustration.

Accept It

The first step in dealing with anything is to accept the reality of it. Once you’ve acknowledged you’re frustrated, you can do something about it, and it no longer rules your life.

Send an S.O.S

Pretend you’re behind enemy lines and stuck there. You can ask for help, but you’ll need to ask for that help in a letter. Describe your distress, including all the details of how you got where you are. Ask for help. When finished? Destroy the letter. You’ll be amazed at how much better you feel (and you might even get an idea for ‘rescue’ from the exercise).

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Make a List

What are your options toward fixing whatever is causing the frustration? List everything you can think of, even the silly ideas. Use this list as a jumping off point toward finding a solution.

Laugh

Read something funny. Watch a comedy. Tune in to your favorite comedian. The act of laughter releases endorphins in the brain, helping you to feel better and think more clearly. Frustration doesn’t stand a chance.

Look at the Big Picture

What will this frustration look like next week? Next month? Next year? Will it be as scary as it is today? Asking these kinds of questions helps you to put your frustration in perspective, making it smaller and easier to deal with right now.

Find Some Energy

Hang around people who are full of enthusiasm. Being around positive people helps you to remain positive and likewise energizes yourself. Frustration fades in this environment.

Socialize

Talk about what’s frustrating you with someone else or post it on your social media. You’ll find out very quickly that you’re not alone. More importantly, you’ll see other people who have successfully gotten past this very same point.

Focus on Something Else

Doing mindless, repetitive work helps to put your focus elsewhere. Break your frustrating task into tiny pieces and work each one with full concentration. Celebrate progress. Frustration gets lost in concentration.

There are dozens of ways to get past frustration. Experiment and find what works for you.

The key is not to give in.

Keep pressing onward.

You’ll get through this too.

7 Ways to Turn Worry into Excitement about Getting Things Done

Everybody worries sometimes. Right now, you’ve probably even got a few worries on your mind. You might be thinking about a relationship or a situation at work, causing you trouble. Maybe you’re worried about your health or whether or not you’re going to have enough money to pay the bills at the end of the month. Whatever the case, worry happens whether we intend for it to or not. This becomes a problem, though, when worry starts to take over your life.

So, what is the goal? Is stopping worrying enough to put you on an even keel, or are you hoping for something…more? What if, instead of worrying, you could become excited, then use this excitement to get more done?

Let’s look at seven ways to achieve this:

Be Here Now

Worry has a way of trapping you anywhere but here. Either you’re worried about something which happened long ago, or you’re caught up in fretting about something still to come.  Neither is going to get you anywhere. To stop worrying, you need to focus on the present. What interests you right now?

Realize This Gets You Nowhere Fast

Worrying stops you cold. In fact, most procrastination is caused by worrying. With this in mind, why are you wasting your time and energy on worrying? Sometimes just recognizing what a waste worry is, will be enough to derail it altogether. Especially when you have better places to be.

Throw Yourself into Something Interesting

Worry needs your attention to survive. Get busy doing something engaging to your mind, and you’ll find you forget all about worrying.

Rewrite the Script

If you’re seeing everything blow up around you, maybe you should try focusing on the perceived disaster. Ask yourself how you could do things to handle the situation were it to happen. Once you have it, practice the scenario in your mind. Picture yourself handling matters.

Practice

Worried about something you need to do later? Having a dress rehearsal in your head will make things go smoother and keep worry at bay entirely.

Ask

Challenge your worry. Dig in and get to the roots until you understand your worry intimately. Ask yourself where the negativity came from. Peel back the layers until you get down into the heart of the matter.

Try a New Path

In the end, worry can become very attached to the familiar. Challenge yourself. Find a different way to do things. Explore where this path takes you.

The main point in all of these is to enjoy the journey. This is where you find the excitement and enthusiasm, which leads to getting things done. The rest is all momentum and a whole lot of brand-new accomplishments just waiting to happen.

5 Self-Care Tips for Dealing with Stress when You Are Highly Sensitive

My partner is very stressed at the moment. There have been big changes in her life since the Pandemic set in. She lost her job, sold her car, pawned her jewellery… We are working toward reducing her stress levels and so I researched and edited theis blog post. I hope it helps others too.

Maybe you know that you are a highly sensitive person (HSP), or maybe you are starting to realize that you are feeling very sensitive about so much of your life. It is no surprise considering the current state of the world pandemic. There are basic choices you can make in your daily life to help yourself navigate the minefields of life.

  • Make Boundaries

Boundaries come in many forms. The first and most important is to make boundaries in your relationships. Surround yourself with people that do not create more stress for you. However, this also means letting those you love know when they are creating more anxiety in your life.

The second type of boundary is one of time and space. If you know that a jam-packed schedule will create tension in your day, do your best to plan your schedule to allow breathing room between meetings or activities. Or give yourself a lunch break away from people and places so you can reset.

  • Be Mindful
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Again, there are many ways to be mindful. You can be mindful of your schedule, but you can also be mindful of what you allow into your mind. Consider practicing meditation, either guided or on your own, or try yoga in the privacy of your own home. YouTube is a great place to find guided meditation and beginner yoga practices.

  • Areas of Relaxation

Create areas of relaxation in your life. Your home and office (if you have a private one), should be areas you feel comfortable, safe, and not triggered by anything. This can be soothing lights, sounds, and scents.

  • Self-Care

Self-care is more than pedicures, massages, and guilty-pleasure TV shows. However, if all those things help you relax, go for it! Self-care is as basic as eating nutritious meals that fuel your body and mind, drinking water, getting plenty of sleep. Also, not over-doing it on things that make your body go crazy like caffeine or sugary foods. Simple self-care can go a long way and help give you the energy to practice self-care in other forms, such as setting boundaries.

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  • Know Yourself

You know what causes you stress, so do your best to avoid those. If you do not know what your triggers are, you should work at being more mindful, so you can find the pressure points. Consider keeping a journal and writing about your feelings when you are feeling overwhelmed or anxious. This may allow you to uncover what is causing the tension and you can avoid those in the future. Knowing yourself and your triggers will allow you to better achieve the first four tips in this article so you can be your best self.

Being a highly sensitive person is nothing to be ashamed of. It merely means you need to know yourself a little better and take steps to prepare yourself every day. Through the process of learning to better care for yourself, you may just find that you are stronger and more resilient than you thought.

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6 Powerhouse Tips for Using Positive Affirmations

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So we are all in a mess.

Pandemic.

Finance.

Wellbeing.

Hopelessness.

Brexit.

Politics.

Let’s look at a few ways of getting a bit more positivity back into our lives. I have a series of posts aimed at Boosting each and everyone of us. Let me know if it helps.

You’ve probably heard that affirmations can help you be more motivated and successful in meeting your goals. But did you know that there are some ways you can supercharge your affirmations to make them even more powerful, even transformative?

Say you want to lose weight and get fit. If your affirmation is “I will lose weight and go to the gym every day,” how does that make you feel? There’s a heaviness in the energy of that statement that’s not very motivating. It focuses on the negative aspects of your goal (the need to lose weight and the obligation to go to the gym) and pushes the goal out into an indefinite future.

You can use these five steps to turn your affirmations around and make them high energy and motivating.

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  • Make your affirmations active

Using active verbs keeps the energy upbeat and your focus in the present moment. So now your affirmation starts “I am [positive verb] …”

  • Include Positive Emotions

Think of how you want to feel when you reach your goal. Are you happy? Proud of yourself? Relaxed? Grateful? Make sure your affirmation makes you feel good when you say it out loud.

  • Keep it Short

Make your affirmations brief and memorable. Concise, focused statements are easier to remember.

  • Stay in the Present

Your affirmation should always be in the present tense. Make sure you use “I am” rather than “I will” statements.

  • Keep it Positive

Focus on what you want, not what you don’t want. Think of the positive result you want to achieve.

  • Switch up Your Affirmations

Have a look at your current affirmations and see if they are working as well as they could be. In the example above, you could refurbish it into something genuinely motivational.

Instead of “I will lose weight and go to the gym every day,” let’s make it something that will make you feel good.

I am enjoying getting slimmer and fitter every day.”

“I am feeling stronger and healthier by choosing a healthier lifestyle.”

“I am joyfully and easily helping my body to get stronger and slimmer every day.”

Play around with the words until they feel right for you. Just keep your affirmation in the present, focused on what you want and what feels good.

Repeat your affirmations at least three times a day and look forward to manifesting the life you want.

Stay Strong and Happy in these Tough Times