Lack of self confidence prevents you from living the life you deserve to live. It prevents you from fulfilling your dreams and deepest desires. It feels like it’s a part of you – but it isn’t. What usually is a part of you is your sensitivity – to moods, feelings, atmospheres... But that lack of belief in self is something learned, something passed on by others. If you once learned it, you can begin to understand it, unlearn it, and free yourself from its chains.
Stress gets to all of us from time to time, but for some it is a permanent companion that reduces our quality of life. But even when you have the world on your shoulders, and life seems too tough, there are things you can do. Here are five simple steps you that will help you to take back control of your life.
Our mood controls our life. When we are feeling low, perhaps because something unpleasant has happened in our lives, we make different choices from when our mood is good and we are feeling really happy. Outcomes to interactions with others are influenced by our mood – though we are likely to think it was something about them. Our mood state does not have to be some random thing controlled by the vicissitudes of life. You can take control of it. Here’s how…
There are a lot of people who find it anything from difficult to impossible to control their eating. They eat compulsively regardless of whether or not they are hungry. They eat much more than they need. Enjoyment of life diminishes. Thoughts of food dominate, and feelings of guilt ensue after every failure. This is a big problem, obesity is no fun. It is even less so when you feel powerless to change it.
Anxiety destroys quality of life. But it is also part of life. The trick is to learn how to control it, to alleviate it and even, on occasion, to simply allow it to be there. Here’s one quick ‘trick’ that will allow you to escape from its grasp for a short while. That short while may not be as long as you want, but it gives you a break any time you want one, and it teaches you, most importantly, that you can have control of your life.
For some, life is a struggle. There is just one thing after another. It never ends. Then just when there seems to be light at the end of the tunnel, the roof falls in and you are buried under a burden that’s just too much for you to deal with. Pills don’t help. In fact no one helps, and crying is the only break you get from it all. Want a way out?
The following is an extract from my book The Ten Commitments. The Ten Commitments is a set of ten steps that you can take to restore order to your life when your world overwhelms you. Each commitment is a simple step you can take – even when you feel totally unable to cope. Each Chapter is very brief so you don’t even have to worry about having to concentrate.
Is reality real? Unfortunately there’s no way to tell. But if it is an illusion, a dream, albeit an unpleasant one, then wouldn’t it be fun to learn how to change the dream, or create a better illusion. Perhaps that is the first step to enlightenment.
Is freedom an illusion? Are we controlled by others? How do we know when our choices are in our own best interests? Subtle control and manipulation are all around us. Advertising is the most obvious and blatant, but we are not as free as we’d like to think simply because we are social animals and group approval, from an evolutionary perspective, is life or death. So a part of our minds is constantly looking for clues as to how we are being perceived and modifying our behaviour to generate more pleasing responses.
Smokers only harm themselves – right? I mean the passive smoking thing is pretty much dead now that smoking indoors is largely prohibited. Pregnant smoking Mums-to-be generally make the effort to stop or cut down during pregnancy. You might think that just about covers it – but it doesn’t. Thousands upon thousands of workers are being damaged every day in the tobacco industry. Do you know, for example, how much a 9-year old child gets paid for manufacturing 1000 cigarettes? Why a 10-year old might be chained to a cigarette manufacturing machine? Or what a Malawian family earns for a whole year’s tobacco crop from their farm?