Improving Overall Well-Being Through Love
By: Meghan S. Phillips
In 2016, my intentions have to do with altering the lens through which I view my life and myself. It is so important to experience life through the eyes of love and not fear. It is equally important to see yourself through the lens of love and forgiveness. This will help us all become better people and, in turn, better parents.
We have been so programmed to look at life through the lens of fear that it becomes our default. And, for me, that’s what comes naturally. I have to work at shifting from fear to love. This shift will help to maintain our well-being which is important for our mental health and our physical health. Remaining mentally healthy and practicing self-love takes work too. Here are a few ways I am making the shift:
1. I don’t watch the news or read the newspaper. This triggers my fear response because there is nothing positive on the news or in the paper. Eliminating these two things has made a big difference for me.
2. I have stopped reading gossip magazines. And I was slightly addicted. I stopped cold turkey about a month ago after listing to Dr. Christiane Northrup talk about how to create a joy-filled life. If I’m being honest, I do miss them. But the truth is, my enjoyment out of reading gossip about celebrities wasn’t saying a whole lot about me.
3. I won’t watch violent or scary movies. When I watch movies with lots of killing or violence, I dream about it and think about it after it’s over. It sticks with me. So I decided to cut the movies and TV shows out that elicit a negative response in me.
4. I keep a gratitude journal. A good way to shift fear-based thinking is to focus on all the things we are thankful for. I got an app on my phone (gratitude 365, and it’s free!) that I write down, everyday, the things I am grateful for.
5. Meditation. I have a hard time with this because my mind just takes off. I recently found some mediation music that contains certain “beats” that help to put your mind in a deeply relaxed state. My mind still wanders, but the music helps to keep me focused on just relaxing. I also use guided meditations, which help to keep my mind from drifting.
6. Reiki. Reiki is a healing energy that uses a simple hands-on method with the goal of improving the flow of life energy in a person. It is very relaxing and stress reducing. You can find circles that are led by trained practitioners for a nominal donation. Or you can get private sessions.
7. I have started an exercise routine. I have always thought exercise was to lose weight. While exercise is definitely a part of losing weight, I have come to realize that exercise does so much more for your body and mind. It helps reduce stress, improves mood, and your immune system. It strengthens muscles and bones and improves your skin. Exercise is an important component in our physical health as well as our mental health. Since getting back to regular exercise, I have noticed a marked improvement in how I feel. I have more energy and just feel better. When we feel better, we are better equipped to deal with and handle stress.
These things can help change that lens with which we view the world. When we can also change the lens through which we view ourselves, we can be transformed. Love can be the impetus to health, happiness, and joy.
I wish you all an amazing 2016 full of peace, health and abundance.
Meghan Phillips, L-MSW is a school social worker working with kids ages 5 to 11 and their parents. Meghan is currently writing a book about how parents can make small shifts in parenting that will help children to become in-tune with their authentic selves and live in alignment with their true purpose and desires. Visit her website and blog: www.meghansphillips.com