A Thriving Breath

Tools To Thrive Series

Using your breathing as a way to thrive and be healthy.It happens automatically.  You don’t even think about it.  Unless you choose to notice it — or even change it.  And it’s a good thing it happens automatically.  Otherwise, you would not last long.

Breathing.

Even if you don’t ever think about it, your breathing will keep oxygen coming into your body and carbon dioxide going out of your body. In and out.  All day long.

No big deal, right?

Wrong.

HOW you breathe determines whether your body acts as if there is a threat or whether your body assumes everything is alright.  One way causes stress.  The other way creates calm.

One way is how you likely breathe on a regular basis — and especially when there is a perceived threat or stressful situation.  The other way allows you to calm yourself down, increase your oxygen supply, and shift away from fear/stress.

Ready to shift to a thriving breath?  Listen below

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula
The Perspective Shift
Your Built-In Importance Indicator
The Importance Matrix
The Appreciation Approach

The Appreciation Approach

Tools to Thrive Series

The Appreciation ApproachYour brain is really only capable of being in one of two modes:  fear/threat or love/appreciation. Unfortunately, the fear/threat mode is pretty much the default and automatic.

Fortunately, changing to manual and shifting to love/appreciation is not complicated.

More than that, there is plenty of research to point to the specific benefits of that shift:

  • Better emotional health,
  • Higher pain tolerance,
  • Higher sociability,
  • Greater life satisfaction,
  • More sleep,
  • More exercise,
  • etc., etc., etc.

There really isn’t much of a downside to gratitude and appreciation.  It just requires a shift in habits to get there.

Got 10 minutes or so per day, just for the next month?  YOU can build your appreciation/gratitude  toolkit and add it to your Thriving Toolbox.

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula
The Perspective Shift
Your Built-In Importance Indicator
The Importance Matrix

Your Built-In Importance Indicator

Tools To Thrive Series

Your Built-In Importance IndicatorWouldn’t it be nice if you had a built-in detector that let you know when something is important?  Kind of like a treasure detector to point out when to pay attention and dig in?

Guess what?

You do!

But you probably aren’t using it the way it was designed.  Most people aren’t.  In fact, most people use this indicator as an Avoidance Indicator — using it to AVOID things, even important things.

Used correctly, this built-in indicator will help you decide what is important and what is trivial.  It will also guide your choices.  Used incorrectly, and it will keep you stuck, small, and missing opportunities.

Ready to learn how to use it?  Listen below. . .

 

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula
The Perspective Shift

The Perspective Shift

Tools To Thrive Series

Shift Your PerspectiveAs I ran through the woods, I could only see the trees and path right in front of me.  I had no idea how far up the mountain I had climbed.  I had no idea about the turns in the trail ahead.  And I couldn’t even see very far back, given all the twists.  My vision was only the few yards ahead.

Sometimes, life is like that.  We are so close to something, we lose perspective.  We can only see the next little period of time.  Which means that some things seem bigger than they are, and some things seem insignificant, but prove important.

Fortunately, one tool in your Thrive Toolbox is the capacity of changing perspectives when you want.

This week, to equip you, I want to provide you with 4 perspective shifts you can use.  Then, you can see the forest, even when the trees are right in front.

Tools of Thriving Series
Introduction
Thought Awareness
Only Control What You Can

The Responsibility Formula

How To Accept AND Excel

How to accept what is and start growing toward what could be.In my latest book, Thrive Principles, one of my strategies is Accepting What Is.  Which has caused some readers to wonder how that fits into my ideas about constantly growing and changing.

They are not mutually opposed.  Accepting What Is creates a beginning point, a starting line.  From there, you can move toward who you want to be.  You can build a life of meaning and purpose.

Many people struggle with where they are.  But where we are is just that, our current spot.  Not a permanent place, but a starting point.

This week, I discuss how to both Accept What Is AND plot a growth course to become the person you want to be.  Make your impact with both sides of the equation.

3 Ways You Complicate Your Life

3 ways we complicate our life.Wouldn’t it make sense if we just made things easy, direct, and effective?

We don’t.  We tend to complicate things.  Repeatedly.

Life is already a challenge many days.  So why do we make it harder on ourselves?  Sometimes, it is mental blocks.  Sometimes, it is reaction.  Sometimes, we let our emotions run the show.

This week, I discuss 3 ways you likely complicate your life.  I know, because I fall into those same traps many times.

The first step is understanding the traps.  The second step is avoiding those traps.

Listen in to discover 3 ways you complicate your life. . . and how to avoid those traps.

What’s Your Center Point?

What's your focus point, your center point, in a dizzying world?It’s a dizzying world, disorienting and jarring.  And every day, you have to make decisions about how to live your life.  What is your primary focus point?  How do you orient your life?

In workshops, I have asked this same question.  People begin to name their priorities:  family, happiness, reputation, respect, or even profit.  Does that provide a moment-by-moment re-orientation?

Nope.

The other day, I was on a crazy, spinny ride with my daughter.  I told her, “Keep your eyes focused on the middle, right in the center.”  In the middle of the ride, I did just the opposite, looking to my side.

I was immediately dizzy.  But as soon as I turned my focus back to the center, the middle point, my focus came back.  The dizziness fell away.

In this dizzying world, what is your center point?  I’ll tell you mine. . .

Does Everything Happen For A Reason?

Does everything happen for a reason?In recent days, I have been with people in the middle of horrific losses.  Inevitably, someone steps up  and in an attempt to comfort, says, “Everything happens for a reason.”

That comment is rarely comforting in the painful moments.

But deeper than that, is it even true?

Many people default to this as a reaction to something that happens and is outside of our capacity to understand.

Sometimes, we want to think that there is something behind it — not just some random event.  But what does that phrase mean?  Does it mean that some force is trying to teach some lesson?

For many people, the answer is yes.

But does that make it so?

Does everything happen for a reason?

Let’s chat. . .

RELATED RESOURCES:
Moving Through Grief
Living The Big Stuff with Kristine Carlson

Moving Through My Midlife

Midlife Transition Series

Moving through MY midlife.Yep, MY midlife.  Because I find myself at midlife (maybe, even probably, beyond “midpoint,” but in the midst of midlife).

I thought that since I have been discussing midlife transitions and crises, I needed to be open about my own midlife issues and transitions.  While not a crisis, it is definitely a transition.

Let me be clear that I don’t believe I should in any way be a model of how to do this (or how NOT to do this).  But I do think it may be helpful to hear from someone else who is going through this.

It turns out that many people think what they are feeling is unique to them — and that is just NOT so.  Midlife is a transition.  And it CAN become a crisis.

Here’s how it has been for me. . .

MID LIFE TRANSITION SERIES
4 Myths of a Mid Life Crisis
The Heart Of A Midlife Crisis
A Healthy Midlife Transition
Midlife Crisis or Depression?