Gratitude & Blessings

It’s hard to walk through your day with absolute gratitude and positive vibes coursing through your veins, one hundred percent of the time.  I notice that certain things start happening to my body when I start to feel a shift in energy.  For example if someone is screaming at me in anger, I can feel my face start to flush and my pulse just about exploding through my neck.  If I’m watching something that makes me feel insanely happy, my heart starts beating rapidly – almost in 3-D right out of my chest – and I start grinning from ear to ear.  Or if I’m remembering a somber moment, perhaps from my childhood, my breathing slows down and I’ll likely let out a deep sigh in lament.

What do you do to bring yourself up when you’re feeling down? 

How do you lift your spirits?

Do you do anything that helps you start your day on a positive note?

I have a daily routine with my son.  We recite affirmations that I made up and we’ve been doing this since September.  He was home for a week on sick days and when I had to take him back to school again, he started crying during drop offs.  It totally threw me off because he was fine for a solid month before the separation anxiety started to show up.  So I created the following, which we recite every morning when I am dropping him off at school:  (And YES, we even did this when I tried to drop him off on Monday, when he didn’t have school that day.  #momfail)

I start off each line/mantra/affirmation by saying – “I am,” and he responds with:

“Brave!”

“Strong!”

“Smart!”

“Kind!”

“Sweet!”

“Loved!”

Then he repeats the following after me, three times:  “I say it, because I believe it!”

We finish it all off with:  “I AM AWESOME!  Today’s gonna be – a great day!  No more – accidents!  No more – timeouts!  No more – crying!”

We’ve been doing this for so long that he reminds me that it’s time to start, as soon as he sees the off ramp for his school.  It’s been working for us, so we’ve stuck to the routine.  Not every day is a good day, I get it.  But as a parent, I wanted to try and set my son up for success each day.  Helping him get into a positive mindset before dropping him off or tackling the thing that he dreads most in the morning.  I’m happy to report that he stopped crying almost three days into the routine and we haven’t had another anxiety driven breakdown since.

If I believe in the method and I’ve seen results in my toddler, I may as well try it out, right?  Because if I can consciously shift my mindset to reflect a positive state of mind before I cozy up to my desk to start my work day, aren’t I setting myself up for a successful day ahead?  If I complain about the traffic, or the rain, or how many e-mails I have to answer that day before I get to work, am I going to be excited to start my day?  Probably not.  One hundred percent not – but that’s just me.

As soon as I drop Bubba off at school, I switch my iPhone playlist to my morning drive mix entitled “A.M. Praise and Worship.”  My son has his own playlist of his favorites which we listen to on the way to work, so when he’s out of the car, it’s Mama-Solo-Time.  Music has always been something that speaks to me.  I gravitate towards the lyrical messages in songs and tempo, it’s just something that works for me.  All of the songs on the playlist have a great tempo and message, which helps to set me straight on even the most downtrodden and gloomy mornings.  I can usually get a good 3-5 songs in before I park my car, so that’s also a bonus.

If I know it’s going to be an especially taxing day, I’ll even recite a few mantras to help me focus on the blessings and gratitude that exist in the NOW.  I remind myself that I will also have these blessings during and after I complete whatever it is that I really don’t want to do:  exercise, having a difficult conversation at work, heading into a dreaded meeting.  Some affirmations that really help me get through some of my more difficult days are:

“I am present and I am positive.”

“I am grateful for all that I have.”

“Great things are headed my way.”

“I am blessed and in return bless others.”

“Today’s going to be a great day.”

“Lean towards love – especially when it seems like the last choice.”

Affirmations work for me.  It’s like that movie “Over The Top,” where Sylvester Stallone turns his hat around right before he finishes off an opponent.  That move is his switch flipping.  That move puts him in the mindset to conquer what’s in front of him.  Reciting an affirmation is my flip switch.  My jam.  My go to.  Give it a try.  What do you have to lose?

 

 

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