The saying that “some see the glass half empty while others see the same glass as half full” has to do with perspective. Some people see the world as a scary, mean place. Others see it as a safe place full of kind people. It is just as unwise to adopt a perpetually positive mindset as it is to view situations from an unfounded pessimistic viewpoint. The great news is that a person can create for themselves a better life experience by vetting and if necessary, discarding or changing their point of view to better align with the life experience they desire, Taking the time to use the mental health technique described below can guard against mistaken beliefs and regrettable behavior, resulting in greater peace of mind and mental wellness.
1. WRITE YOUR STORY:
It is far better to assess each situation on its own merit and as objectively as possible before taking action to resolve it. For example, if you find yourself in an unpleasant situation, take a moment to write the story you are telling yourself and then, fact-check it to be certain you have told yourself an accurate story. Look for assumptions, outdated traditions, biases, and undue influences that may create an inaccurate point of view. Be quick to edit or remove any mistaken beliefs before accepting your “final draft” of the situation that is compromising your peace of mind. Read your story out loud. Begin: “The situation as I see it is:…………….”.
2. BECOME AWARE OF YOUR FEELINGS:
Now that you have accurately and objectively written and heard yourself read back to yourself the situation that is disturbing your peace, become aware of your feelings. Write them down in list-form. All feelings are valid. They require no justification, explanation, or narrative. Acknowledge your feelings. Claim them. They are yours. Validate that you are experiencing these emotions. Let yourself feel their weight in your mind and body. Your feelings will point you toward understanding what you need. Read your feelings out loud in the sentence: “Right now, I feel ………., ……………, ………., …………, and …………..”.
3. IDENTIFY WHAT YOU NEED:
It is important to accept that you are worthy to have your needs met and to ultimately, experience peace of mind. Think about what might soothe you, empower you, heal you. Know that you are worthy of peace of mind and that you owe it to yourself to reach out for help or guidance, or by acting on your own behalf. Do you think that engaging in conflict resolution might be the answer? Perhaps a bit of strategic problem-solving either alone or with a trusted friend or with a helping professional might bring you closer to peace of mind. Do you need to engage in a period of solitude or do some directed self-care? After giving your needs due consideration, complete the statement: “Right now, I need……….”.
4. MAKE AND IMPLEMENT A PLAN OF ACTION:
Now, it is time for action. You have objectively defined a situation that is robbing your peace of mind. You have acknowledged and validated your feelings about it. You have identified what you need to create for yourself a better life experience. Now, make an actionable list with a timeline and get busy! Be patient with yourself. Take one step at a time and remember that as long as you are moving forward on your action plan, you are moving in the direction of mental health!
I would love to hear your thoughts, questions, and any experience you may have had with this mental health technique. Feel free to email me at: [email protected]