How to Use Mental Surrender When the Mind is Freaking Out.

Have you found yourself at the point where a mental surrender of your thoughts is the only sane thing to do? I know I have and frequently arrive at this type of scenario. In your gut, you may know that you need to let the thoughts go, but for your mind, it may not be that simple.

Learning to surrender current stressed out thinking is an essential part of maintaining a sane mind. So if you have a hard time letting go of thoughts that are amplifying worry, anxiety, stick around and I will teach you what I know.

We Drive Ourselves Crazy?

How many times have you found yourself ripe with anxiety, stressed and obsessing over crap you cannot control? Whether you answered once, many times or that you do it nonstop, I have another question for you. Who’s fault or problem do you think that is?

Well, I am here to tell you that whether someone else, genetics or whatever else “that seems” like the cause, that isn’t reality my friend; You yourself are actually the root cause of this very personal struggle. Of course, I do understand that this is a difficult pill for many to swallow, but that doesn’t negate its reality.

The good news about being the cause of driving yourself crazy is that you then can be the one to bring yourself back to sanity. Sure, maybe you can’t control the economy, the government or your family from acting in ways that may trigger your worry. But it means that you can take back control of your mind, and if you can do that you are in control of everything you need.

Don’t get it messed up now. I understand the difficulty of cutting off our minds from the process of worry and anxiety. When stopping this self-fulfilling process It can feel like you are having to bring a freight train to a halt. You hit the breaks and that sucker doesn’t stop immediately. No, about a mile down the tracks it finally expends all of its forward momentum.

For many of us that are prone to anxiety what hasn’t been realized is that we have this ability to mentally surrender. This is a sad fact. But no need to lament over what hasn’t been known. Instead, let’s use that energy to do something that will help us take our minds back.

What is Mental Surrender?

It seems that generally surrender is talked about in the sense of someone giving up their personal freedom. That the stakes of continuing the current mission have risen too high, and it is time to lay down the struggle. Maybe it is about soldiers that lay down their guns in hopes their lives be spared. Or maybe a criminal on the run that decides they are done running and turns themselves into the police.

Many have a negative connotation of what surrender is. I get it though, in the examples of surrender given above, those individuals are losing their personal freedom. This is a scary thing, who in their right minds desires to have their freedom taken away?

But rest assured, you will lose no freedom by dropping the fearful thoughts that you are freaking yourself out over. In fact, it can be the very act that breaks us out of a personal mental prison, back into a state where we can be mentally free.

But what is it, to mentally surrender? Well, Intuitively we all know what it means, and we know how to do it. But that would require us to let go of what we think is “so damn important” at this moment. To mentally surrender is to drop it. Drop the argument, drop the cleverness, drop the self-pity, drop the fear, drop it all. Doing this because continuing with the current thought process is causing anxiety and will continue to cause anxiety that is entirely unnecessary. Only after dropping all the shit and allowing a mental surrender will we get to the source of why we are freaking ourselves out.

How you can Mentally Surrender Your Thoughts to the Moment.

I would say that the vast majority of people are capable of surrendering themselves to the moment. Since you have the capability of searching the internet for an article such as this than I am quite confident that you have that ability as well.

Having the ability for mental surrender and knowing how to use it are, of course, two very different things. So what I will teach you here is how to drop the shit when you are freaking yourself out.

1. Catch Yourself Freaking out and Decide to Knock it off.

As you may probably already realize, you likely will not stop freaking out if you don’t know you are. So if you are able to realize that you are in this nasty mental/emotional space, that is a reason for gratitude. Why? Because if you are able to come to know that your mind is out of control, you then have a platform from which to stop it.

Of course just because I know I am obsessing on a thought, doesn’t mean it will just magically disappear. I and also you will need to make the decision to let that thought, that worry, that fear, go. Don’t think about letting it go forever, just until the mental freak out blows over.

It is cliche to say just breathe when stressed out, but it is cliche for a reason. Because it is important, and it is important because it works. Let go of the thoughts no matter how important they seem at the moment, breath, and relax into the moment. The mental surrender of anxiety-causing thoughts will reveal emotions but also lead to peace.

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2. Commit to Staying Awake.

When you are freaking yourself out, you are most likely in a living dream. You are probably lost in thoughts of future bad things happening, or past things that have already happened. And hell, maybe something bad will be happening in the future or already happened in the past. But dwelling in the past about junk that we can’t change won’t do any good. And as studies have found out, we lose a considerable amount of IQ points while we are stuck in fearful thinking. Therefore, even if there is trouble coming or has gone, freaking out about those troubles will not assist you in any positive manner.

The thing is that the only way you will ever be able to respond positively to what’s coming is to have your head securely attached to your shoulders. Not floating off in some nightmarish thoughts that you habitually haunt yourself with. The possibility of the bad is real, but your thoughts about them, sorry, but not so much. Those thoughts are all just a best guess, maybe they will come true, maybe not. But either way, wake the hell up and face the moment like the intensely strong individual that you deep down are.

If you have been able to give your troubled thoughts up to a mental surrender you are in good shape to handle what life gives. Having gotten your head out of worry and into the present moment gives you the opportunity to actually live. Commit to staying awake, don’t waste this opportunity.

3. Stay Awake By Spreading the Vibes.

To worry and obsess expends a great amount of energy. When all of that energy is used positively in other places, then TADA there is much less energy to torture yourself with.

There are of course a tremendous amount of ways for you to use your energy positively. It is important to use that energy for taking care of our daily affairs, but it is also extremely important to spread good vibes as we do. The recovery program I frequent says that “we only keep what we have by giving it away.” What this means to me is that the only way to keep my sanity is to spread my sanity. The only way to feel loved is the spread the love. To keep my calm and relaxation, you guessed it, spread it around.

To spread the positive vibes consciously we must be mentally/emotionally awake. We need to be present in our bodies, not floating off in our minds. It requires dropping our negative judgments about what we are seeing and hearing. And instead, replacing those judgments with blessings of goodwill.

This may be difficult to do at times when our minds are having trouble with excess stress. But I guarantee regular practice will bring the positive results of being mentally/emotionally lighter and better able to deal with anything life hands us.

Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in letting go of troublesome thoughts and emotions through mental surrender. We realize surrendering to the moment is a simple process but not necessarily an easy one. Your success will show in the sanity and positive vibes you feel.
I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways of taking back your energy from anxiety. If you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, you will greatly benefit.

Reclaiming Your Ambition from Feelings of Anxiety.

Anxiety is a problem for a great deal of our fellow human beings. But what if I told you that what is hidden inside that anxiety is the creative energy of our ambition. The home of “strong desires to do or achieve”, as ambition is defined.

We all have ambition, from the people with the greatest amount of excited energy to the most stoic and subdued individuals that exist. There is a bubbling of creative impulses in all of us. And yes that means you as well.

If you respect and live right by this ambition it is possible to bring about the life of your dreams. But neglect it or use it irresponsibly, and find yourself in a world that is starving with meaning and ripe with anxiety.

Anxiety and Stress.

You don’t have to be a Psychiatrist to understand what anxiety is. It is an uncomfortable pest that enhances fearful thinking, distorting the way we see the world. Anxiety will leave a person feeling worried, unsafe and doubtful of abilities, as well as overly leary of the intentions of others.

Anxiety is not the same as stress but it is built upon stress. Meaning that the more stress builds, the more prone to the anxiety we will be.

This, of course, isn’t to say that stress is bad. In fact, a certain amount of stress is essential to having a life that is challenging and rewarding.

When we feel stressed it means there is a challenge at hand. It means our current skills have met up with a situation where we may not believe they are up to the task. That stress can be a motivator, it is the energy coming from inside of us to wrestle success out of the current opportunity. But if that potential motivator is resisted too often, gnawing anxiety will begin to grow.

A healthy you is destined for stress and a reasonable amount of struggle. It is how you learn, and how you grow and shape yourself into a well-rounded individual. But if you wish to keep this stress from growing into anxious feelings you better learn to listen to the impulses that are at the heart of the growing stress.

Anxiety Hints at Your Ambition.

When it comes to anxiety, like anything else in this world, it is made of pieces. You know, old unused energy over here, a bunch of moments of being too hard on yourself for not meeting expectations over there. It grows like a snowball rolling down a snowy hillside.

In this snowball that continues to increase in size is the energy of bodily impulses. It is the energy of ambition, it is the creative energies that lie at the core of you and me.

To feel anxiety is to feel pieces of yourself that are looking for your attention. Wait, not just looking for it, they are begging for it. Like a crowd of starving people waiting to have some food tossed into their vicinity. They are loud, they are needy, and they need your love desperately. Deny them that compassionate attention and they may eventually chase you down and threaten everything you care about.

Each impulse that fuels anxiety has a strong desire to do or achieve something. They are loaded with ambition. Now the important question is this. How do we get in touch with all of this hidden anxious ambition so we can find a productive use for it?

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How to Reclaim Your Ambitious Energy From Anxious Feelings

1. Recognize Anxiety as Such.

Being able to recognize when you’re anxious is critical to being able to get to reclaim its energy for good use. But how do you recognize anxiety? You slow down and give yourself a chance to spot its symptoms.

In an article from, they give a list of physical and emotional symptoms that can be a clue to being anxious. Here are some of the most common.

  • Nausea or dizziness
  • Headaches
  • Muscle tension
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Feelings of apprehension
  • Feeling tense and jittery

If you notice 2 or more of these symptoms going on with yourself it’ll be in your best interest to take stock of what is going on. Why? Because important energy is likely being bottled up. And I guarantee you will not enjoy the uncomfortable mental obsession and depression that will result from not dealing with these feelings.

These feelings may begin subtly enough that you may not even recognize them. But eventually, if the energy within them is not tapped into and used, the subtleness could morph into great pain. After recognizing these feelings the next step is taking responsibility for them.

2. Take Responsibility for Your Anxiety.

After you recognize anxiety it is important to take responsibility for it. By this, I mean that no matter what led us having this anxiety, we need to realize that it is now ours to deal with.

This can be an unnerving but empowering realization to arrive at. You might want to place blame on others for feeling this anxiety. Maybe you want to blame the government, family, the job or whatever relationship you feel has wronged you. Well, I am here to tell you, that is mostly a useless activity. If you find yourself stuck in blaming others for your painful feelings, do yourself a favor and knock that shit off.

The only productive use for blaming is to do so with the intent of taking back power for current feelings and hidden ambition. Then use that power to set healthy boundaries with self and others, feel emotions, and getting all that energy locked onto creative and productive outlets.


Photo by Avi Richards on Unsplash
4. Seek a Creative and Productive Outlet for Ambitious Energy.

We are all creative. Now I don’t mean that all of us know how to draw well, sing or play an instrument well or write well. What I mean is that we can’t avoid having a creative relationship with ourselves and the world around us. Everything we do has an effect.

But just being creative isn’t necessarily a good thing, havoc and pain can, of course, also be something we create. Pain begets anxiety, when causing pain for self and for others it always catches up. It isn’t enough to just do anything with our anxious, creative energy, it should also be productive.

Now you may be thinking that you have no clue what to do with yourself that could help. But I assure you, the amount of creative and productive ways to place the ambition of our anxious energies is limited only by the willingness to do something healthy. Every single day holds a crazy amount of opportunities to put our ambition to good use.

It can certainly be difficult to know exactly what to do when we are anxious. Sometimes we need to use that energy to take care of areas of life we have been neglecting. Other times we may need to use that energy to attack a new and challenging opportunity. And of course, there are many times where the best to do is take the night off, shut down all the electronics and actually allow our brains to relax.

Closing Thoughts.

Listen, I know anxiety is not an easy thing to deal with. For many years of my own life, I was crippled by anxiety. Through those years, I wasn’t aware that I was creating my own anxiety with the lifestyle I was stuck in.

But what I have learned through coming back to my right mind is this. Anxiety is a warning system to tell us that something needs to change and change fast. I also know that many times when anxious, our thoughts and perceptions can be dangerously misguided.

When working with the tips written above, take responsibility for what you’re feeling but don’t be too hard on yourself. Talk to other healthy people, talk to a trained professional if needed.

Now as you move forward in your life, know this, it is going to be okay, even if it doesn’t feel like it. If you listen to the feelings of anxiety, cry the tears, and take the right actions, you will wind up in a better mind and a better life.

The ambition that fuels your anxiety, when used creatively and productively will lighten up your world and the worlds of those around you. Don’t be afraid of it, welcome it. Quit resisting, surrender to the healthy places it desires to go.

Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in reclaiming the energies of your ambition from anxiety. I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways of taking back your energy from anxiety. If you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, you will greatly benefit.


To see our Terms and Conditions click here


Take Responsibility for What You’re Angry about.

Being angry can often be seen as something that is not okay.

But experiencing anger is a completely natural thing. It is a natural emotion but also a potentially troubling one that can cause many problems.

Today I will share with you some understanding for why we get angry, and practical advice for snapping out of it when we really don’t need to be.

Getting Angry is a Natural Protector from Threat.

Anger is an emotion that is completely natural. If it wasn’t natural, we wouldn’t be having it as an experience at all.

So why do you get angry? In the simplest explanation, you perceive that an aspect of yourself (mental, physical, emotional) or relationships are under threat. You feel yourself or the ones you love are exposed, vulnerable, at risk. So your self-protection system kicks into gear to ensure safety.

It can be helpful to think of anger as a protector of boundaries, a guard dog, a watchman. If there is any kind of uninvited threat sensed, we will be alerted. And our energies will rally to find the best way to protect what feels threatened.

The World’s Part in our Problem.

Of course, there are flat out shitty aspects to the world that we live in. Obscenely ridiculous things are going on in the world that would strike anger in most people.

There are a tremendous amount of threats to ourselves and the relationships we most deeply care about. Even aspects of the world that don’t seem to immediately affect us, may affect negatively for years to come. Examples of this are dirty politicians enacting harmful policies, or the weather causing us unwanted problems.

Let’s not forget that there are people that cross our boundaries or those of our loved ones, frequently. For the most part, we cannot control what people do, outside of ending a life in some manner I suppose.

What we do have some control over though, is how we respond to the way the world treats us. Which means learning to communicate with our angry impulses to understand what they were sent to do.

Who is Responsible for Our Being Angry?

If you are feeling angry most of the time or just some of the time, why is that? From my perspective, it is because you don’t feel safe. Maybe you aren’t even aware that you don’t feel safe. You may just think you’re angry and don’t understand why. It must be that idiots fault, or that idiot, right?

We certainly don’t get angry for no reason, even if that reason is unreasonable. But how many people understand that in the majority of circumstances, we are the perpetrators of our own angry feelings?

Often times the first reaction that comes when our anger is provoked is to look for someone to blame. And sure, other people may trigger our anger, but they are not in the least bit responsible for it. The responsibility for our anger lies in ourselves.

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Why and How to Take Responsibility for Being Angry.

Anger is creative energy. If used responsibly it will show us what needs to be done. The emotion doesn’t care that some politician just made it more difficult to make a living, the energy of anger is pushing us to clear a path to make one anyway.

It doesn’t care that someone stole an item that you loved. The energies are merely solving the problem of how it happened and how to keep it from happening again.

With all of the B.S in the world, I hope that it is obvious to you that just because your anger is provoked often, that you are not a victim to the outside world.

1. Seek to Accept Responsibility.

Without accepting responsibility for being angry, we are essentially out of our own control. To seek responsibility is to say “okay that really sparked my anger. Now how did I leave myself open to allow that to happen”?

It certainly may be difficult to ask yourself this question in the heat of the moment. Especially if someone did harm to you. But the more you open yourself to seeking the answer to this question, the better off you will be.

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2. Learn from Anger.

There is always a reason that you’re angry. Even if that reason is completely unreasonable, or even delusional.

Of course, you may also be angry for a completely sound reason as well. If someone harms or is seeking to cause harm to what you feel responsibility for, you should feel angry. Not feeling angry in times like these make it look like you don’t care at all.

But whatever the reason, finding out what the anger has to teach us can take a crappy situation and allow us to get the most out of it.

Maybe you learn that your personal boundaries sucked and allowed you to be taken advantage.

It could be that you will find out you need to work on rejection or need to assert your needs in a way you weren’t aware of. Find the reason for that anger, take responsibility for changing what needs to be changed so that it doesn’t happen again.

3. Solve the Problem that Caused the Anger to Arise.

Anger is not necessarily a pleasant emotion. I think some people get off on it, but for the most part human beings like it much.

But if it is here, it is here to create change. If you can be present for it and take responsibility for its presence you are in good shape.

Gandhi stated that “we need to be the change we want to see in the world”. I believe what he is saying is that pointing the finger at everyone else to change will not be helpful. He is saying that we want something done, we will likely have to bring about that change ourselves. And since this is Gandhi, it should be done with non-violent means.

I repeat, there is always a reason for our being angry. But that doesn’t mean we know what it is or how to change it. That is where doing our due-diligence in self-exploration comes into play.

To figure it out we may have to dig deep within ourselves through therapeutic writing, mediation or whatever other healthy methods you use to make sense of your life. We may have to enlist the support of people we trust or read some books on the area we are struggling in.

But whatever needs to be done, the answer is likely right inside our own skin.

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Closing Thoughts.

To echo the beginning of this article, having our anger triggered is a natural thing. Anger is a natural part of the human condition that will teach how to protect ourselves, and bring about creative solutions to what troubles us.

Much of our life energy lives in our anger, respect it, love it, heal it. It is through this process that we find out who we are and how to best take care of ourselves. But be careful about what is said or done in the heat of an angry moment. Our anger is best used to benefit the world rather than to make ourselves enemies of those who could help us.

Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping in to My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in gaining the creative benefits of taking responsibility for what angers you. I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways of getting the most out of angry feelings. If you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here


Show Yourself some Compassionate Attention.

Don’t all of us need some compassionate attention from time to time?

We all have times when feelings are heavy. In these times I deeply believe that being too rough on ourselves isn’t in your or my best interest. What is in our best interests is attending to the emotions so we can back to living as productively as possible.

This is exactly where giving ourselves positive and compassionate attention comes into play. We can all use a little bit more of it. But we don’t have to wait around for others to give it to us, we need to make sure we give this gift to ourselves.

To Give Our Attention.

When we give our attention we are offering up a powerfully creative human faculty. It is truly no joke. What we place our attention on is where our creative energies will flow.

But not all attention is created equal or creates equally. The nature of the emotion and intention given through our attention ultimately decides the nature of our creations.

Our attention can create beauty as well as destruction. It can build-up, as well as tear down.

This is true no matter where we give our attention; whether that be in our jobs, families, friendships, and for the sake of this article, yourself and myself.

Self Compassionate Attention.

Like I said there are all sorts of different types of attention we can give. But in my experience, there is already enough focus in the world today on criticizing and tearing things down. Giving our impulses a little more positive attention can help us have a personal safe haven in a world that is obsessed with focusing on what’s wrong.

To show yourself compassionate attention is show up and attend to the reality of your present state of being. Not just showing up to focus on what is wrong though, but to focus on building yourself up, and taking care of business. It is a posture of our being that embraces bodily impulse with active listening, active blessing, and productive action.

Compassionate attention is about healing. When you heal emotionally you might be surprised at what you are led to do.

Your emotions need your attention. You aren’t weak for having them, in fact, there is a great deal of personal strength to be found through acknowledging and respecting them.

These important pieces of ourselves deserve the respect of our compassionate attention. By respecting them, you will find it much easier to respect yourself and be yourself.

Self-compassion for a Healthy Self-Relationship.

Showing ourselves compassionate attention is a way to develop a healthy relationship with our emotional impulses.

But why should you want to have a healthy relationship with these emotions?

Well, most of all they are great teachers. They hold the lessons of our lives. Without getting in touch with them, we are not able to fully come to know who we are.

Without coming to know ourselves we are left to wander throughout life. Maybe you will stumble your way into a successful situation from time to time without the discernment we achieve through self-knowledge. But from a healthy relationship with these impulses, you will be able to be more intentional and on point with the life decisions you make.

Compassionate Attention
Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash

5 Aspects of Showing Yourself Compassionate Attention.

There are some great reasons to practice compassionate attention, but you may be wondering how to do so.

Well lucky you, I have some sound information to help. Just keep reading.

1. Slow Your Roll.

Often times when we come to realize our impulses, they just don’t feel right. We may not feel all that in control of ourselves. Thoughts may be moving through our brains at an uncomfortable speed. You may find yourself being overly critical of self and others.

In this state, we need to slow our damn roll. I have sponsored many addicts throughout my recovery that have a problem with obsessing. Many times I have let one know that “it is time to revoke your thinking pass.” I know the danger of continuing thought processes when obsession is present because I have the same problem to deal with.

Now I know many of you reading this aren’t addicts, but from time to time every human spends some time stuck on being too hard on themselves. So slow your roll, take some deep breathes, put your mind on something else.

Getting back to a healthy place always begins with this act of self-compassion.

2. Surrender Self Directed Anger.

Anger is a natural part of life. But there is most certainly healthy outlets for anger, as well as unhealthy.

Letting the voice in your head put you down when feeling rough may feel difficult to stop. But it is also necessary and brings tremendous value for living a self-respectful life for which we can be truly proud.

To surrender this self-directed anger means doing a couple things.

First of all, you need to stop behaving in ways that are creating bad consequences for yourself and others. Next, you need to watch your mind. You need to keep your mind from getting overly negative. Not allowing it to become trapped in treating yourself and others negatively inside of that brain of yours.

You may believe there are no negative consequences from allowing negative thoughts to flow through your head. Maybe you believe that nobody gets hurt until they come out into reality. Are you kidding me? Negative cycles of thought allowed to fester inside our own heads are the root of all personal problems.

3. Focus on The Positives.

Focusing on the positives is a powerfully self-compassionate tool. Maybe they are the positives about ourselves. But it is also compassionate to our own troubled impulses, to take our attention off of them, and focus on something positive outside of ourselves.

When attempting to give attention to the positives, it may feel highly unnatural. When pissed off or sad, it is usually easier to overdo those emotions than to shift them to something to appreciate or be grateful for.

Everything good in our lives takes work. It doesn’t take much effort to focus on the negative, that comes naturally to many individuals like myself.

4. Give Yourself some Self-care.

To give ourselves self-care can be many different things. Sometimes self-care means detachment from certain responsibilities. Other times it is stepping up to take care of responsibility in a way we have been avoiding. A routine of self-care should be full of both of these aspects.

For our purpose here, to give ourselves compassionate attention is to be with our emotions in a way that fully respects them.

Maybe that comes through meditation, yoga, therapeutic writing or working out. It may come from a walk through nature. Whatever way you keep from judging your emotions too harshly, and appreciating their presence is beautifully self-compassionate.

5. Change what Needs to Change.

Often times though not every time, our troubled emotions are telling us to go forward and get shit done. Neglecting to take care of our responsibilities, in a sense, is a form of punishment performed on ourselves.

When we are able to slow our minds down and get in touch with ourselves, we will come to know what we should be doing. After knowing what we should be doing, the only compassionate thing to do is to get it done!

Not all compassionate attention involves focusing on emotions that are troubled. Much of getting in touch with emotions is to understand what we need to change in our lives. And in my experience, there is always something to change or improve.

Allowing our healthy impulses to live productively through us is a thing of beauty. It creates a sense of great satisfaction to know we are living on purpose and succeeding at being ourselves.

Compassionate Attention
Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash
Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in regularly showing yourself the compassionate attention that you deserve. I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways of attending to yourself compassionately.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here


5 Ways to Work Through Being Fixated on Happiness.

Finding happiness is not a novel endeavor. It is a feeling that most individuals desire to have a majority of the time, if not all the time. Often times it is being chased in borderline unhealthy to drastically unhealthy levels.

Though many seek this almost ideal state of mental-emotional being, many are missing that mark. So what is wrong? I have a take on this and some ways to alleviate the problem I perceive.

A Poll on Happiness.

In 2017 Harris poll performed their annual survey on Americans that are 18 and over, to get a gauge on how happy the average American is. Of the 2202 individuals surveyed the poll calculated that only 33% of these Americans actually claimed to be happy.

This, of course, is merely a survey and having only 2202 individuals represent the whole of the United States population is questionable. But the survey does speak to a problem that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Of course, there is much more to the world then just the happiness of the citizens of the USA. In the latest World Happiness Report, the United States was still ranked 19th. So with roughly 33% of its population saying they feel happy, for the many countries ranking farther down the happiness list a pretty picture doesn’t seem to be painted.

Very simply far too many people do not feel happy. I certainly don’t have the complete answer to this question. But a happiness fixation is certainly present for many individuals.

The Happiness Fixation in a Highly Pressurized World.

Photo by Kinga Cichewicz on Unsplash

I have no problem saying that people, at least in the western world, are borderline obsessed with feeling good and don’t know how to let go of it.

The world is moving at a rapid pace, with rising pressures to perform. The middle class is shrinking, debts are growing, the healthcare, political and the world scenes seem to be going crazy.

So with all the rising pressures to perform in an increasingly fast paced world. We also are stuck on needing to feel good.

It can be easy to think that something is wrong because we don’t feel good. Maybe even feeling like we’re failing because of not feeling positive. But nobody is by any means failing because they don’t feel well. What it makes us is human.

We Cant Always Feel Happy.

Let’s face it, life flat out sucks sometimes. When grieving a great loss heavy emotions that don’t feel good may be present for many years or even the rest of our lives.

But most of life’s little inconveniences and unmet expectations, will come and go relatively quickly in the big scheme of things. When these emotions that don’t feel good are present, are we simply doomed for a crappy day, week or month? Certainly not.

Social media and others wanting to be cheerful and feeling good may make it seem like it isn’t okay to not feel okay. It is most certainly is though.

Expecting to be happy all the time quite simply isn’t realistic. But it is also possible to feel okay and comfortable with the fact that we are not currently feeling happiness or it’s close feeling good relatives.

How to be Okay when not Feeling Happiness.

It may not be realistic to feel happiness all the time. But there are some things to be done so that we can spend more time in authentic happiness, and less time fixated and chasing happiness’s shadow.

1. Don’t Chase Down Happiness.

Happiness is not always an easy target to hit. We can have it for one moment. But soon after have it disappear and leave us wondering what went wrong.

It’s obviously entirely okay to search out ways to feel more happy in times that don’t feel good. But seeking a path out of heavy emotions is much different than chasing one.

To chase oftentimes speaks to gratification as soon as possible. And used in this emotional wellness sense, it also implies running away. Running away from the current emotional state, as well as running from ourselves.

This is not ideal because to maintain connection with ourselves or connection with the present moment, we can’t be running away.

Chasing happiness can lead to an obsessive/compulsive cycle. Pain is present so we use this chemical, pain is present so we turn on Netflix, pain is present so we run away from it once again in the many different ways we numb ourselves out to life.

The first step to working through present emotion is to accept their presence and give them a little compassionate attention.

2. Know that Everything Eventually Passes.

If we are taking care of enough of our needs, as described in this needs inventory, happiness WILL find it’s way back. We do not need to find the next quick fix to mimic the feeling of authentic happiness.

Every heavy emotion will eventually pass if we let it. By letting myself know that this emotion that doesn’t feel good, is not going to kill me, and it will get better, I find comfort.

I find it to be profoundly true that when I know this emotion will pass and I will feel better relatively soon, I cause myself less unhealthy stress, and am much more gentle on my close relationships.

A powerful way I use to process emotion and get to the heart of what I need to do is therapeutic writing. Afterward, I generally find myself feeling refreshed, and receiving important information about why I am having a difficult time moving on from the current emotion.

Click here to read about My Life Experiments Therapeutic Writing Technique.

3. Be Careful When Comparing Our Insides to Other’s Outsides.

Do you ever look around when not feeling so hot, and see that everyone else seems so happy? It can be a painful activity to become caught up in.

Can’t it feel like all these other people are normal because they seem to be in good spirits? But here we are, stressed and sad. It can come to seem like there is something fundamentally wrong with us.

We must be careful with this process. If not gotten under control, we can convince ourselves that we are more messed up than we really are.

The truth is that all these people around us have probably felt this exact same way, and thought this exact same thought.

There is nothing wrong with feeling emotionally unwell, even if those around you feel great.

4. Stay Healthily Physically Active.

It can be very difficult to desire physical activity when feeling in rough emotional shape. especially if we are not used to getting enough of it. Others may use physical activity as an escape from feeling out the current emotional state.

We don’t need to use physical activity to chase down happiness, and we don’t need to allow our unhappiness to keep us from getting active. It is all about finding the balance between feeling and doing.

5. Quit Labeling some Emotions as Positive and Others Negative.

It is popular to call emotions that feel good such as happiness, joy, inspiration, and many others, positive emotions.

All of the rest that the average human would rather not be experienced like sadness, anger, lethargy and are then labeled, negative.

But the fact of the emotions that our bodies are capable of producing are for important purposes. Whether they feel good or not, they are necessary. They communicate to us whether we are neglecting bodily impulses or caring for them.

Calling those we don’t care to feel negative doesn’t make much sense at all. Whether they feel good or not, we will be better off be listening to them, respecting them, caring for them, feeling them.

6. Develop Positive Connections with Healthy People.

Other people are incredibly important in helping us work through emotions that don’t feel good.

They don’t need to be used for instant emotional gratification though, to cheer us up when feeling down. It can be just as important to have people that give us their presence while allowing us the emotional space to feel down. Allowing us to feel sad around them without trying to cheer us up or solve our problem.

It is a natural tendency to want to cheer each other up or help solve the current problem. If all you need is the space to feel heavy, communicate that. And fight the urge to complain and blame, that sends the message that we desire more than a simple place to heal.

Closing Thoughts for Working Through the Fixation.

Happiness can be elusive, maybe more elusive for some than others, but the point remains. It and the whole other world of emotions that feel good are also wonderful things for sure.

Sometimes they come in droves, other times it can feel like they are gone forever. But, remember this, the good times won’t last forever, and neither will those times where everything feels like it is falling apart.

It is okay to feel the fullness of our emotion. By doing so we make a much faster trip back to the path towards authentic happiness.

Photo by Jordan Bauer on Unsplash
That is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in coping with the fixation on happiness to feel emotion, heal faster, and get back to feeling authentically good. I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways for finding a healthy path to happiness.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here


5 Essential Ideas for Letting Things Go.

Letting go is not always an easy thing to do. Sometimes it’s the most painful thing we have to do, that is also necessary.

But what is it to let go, and how can we make this process easier on ourselves. Well, that is exactly what we are going to look into this article.

Letting Things Go?

To need to let go, obviously implies that we are holding onto something. There is an aspect of life, whether real or in our minds that we are trying to keep alive, and it is causing difficulty. If it wasn’t causing difficulty, then why give it up?

I find that letting go, is an action as well as a feeling. When holding onto something that isn’t right, it doesn’t feel good. Stress builds up, as well as mental-emotional disorientation.

But when we can finally shake loose from the experience, there is finally the possibility to find the feeling of freedom.

Letting go is something that only we can do for ourselves. Only by releasing our personal emotional attachment, can we free the energy our impulses have been pumping into it.

The things the Might Need to be Let go.

Us human beings are creatures that are very similar to one another. Though we may not be similar in the aspects of life which we need to let go. But rest assured, there are many things that each of us would do well to release. Some of those may be releasing themselves for our grasp as we speak.

To adapt and grow in this world, we need to find a connection. That could be a connection to others, to ourselves, to belief systems, to hobbies, to animals, to whatever. When we find a connection it provides stability, it allows us to find a place in this world we live in.

Maybe for a while these aspects of life we have found connection with, work well for us. But oftentimes their usefulness or presence fades, and we are forced to make a decision. To let them be in our lives, or let them go. Allowing ourselves to move on with our lives or deal with the consequences of holding onto what is now a fantasy, for too long.

What is needed to be released might be certain worrisome thoughts, certain opportunities, certain relationships, certain expectations, certain past times, certain areas that provided us with the feeling of sanity and protection amongst many other things.

It can be extremely difficult to let things go, but we can make it easier by having ways to work through this process.

Ways to Work Through the Process of Letting Things Go.

Life continues to move on, whether we like it or not. There is much to lose over the span of a lifetime. But holding onto what doesn’t work anymore, holds ourselves back from the beauty of this fluidly moving world.

The first step we need to take in letting things go is to stop engaging the thing that we must lose or have already lost.

1. Stop Engaging what Needs to go.

To stop engaging the things we are letting of means letting go on multiple levels. On the levels of physical interaction, mental interaction, and emotional interaction.

To physically stop involving ourselves with a person, a place, a thing, or an activity is, of course, an incredibly important step. By continuing to physically engage what needs to go, emotions that need processing, continue to be revved up.

Though when discontinuing contact, our mental-emotional worlds will still certainly need attention. Even if we can keep ourselves away physically, our thoughts, memories, and emotions will continue to remind us of what we think we are missing.

The more we allow these thoughts and emotions to pass, the more these impulses can begin interacting with new areas to grow. Instead of once again getting hooked into the strong “need” to reacquaint with the old.

2. Letting Go of Hope.

When focused on aspects of life that are good for us, hope is a tremendously beautiful, visionary, and important state of mind. It gives us reasons to keep working, even though we can’t yet see the results

But when hope is linked in with unworkable scenarios, the beauty of hope mutates into a potentially dark and delusional state.

Grieving is an essential piece of letting go. Especially if what we are having to send off into the sunset is deeply important to us. For grief to do its important work, we must give up hope for what getting back what is lost. But must also develop hope that our situation will once again get better.

Letting Things Go
Photo by Matt Lamers on Unsplash
3. Find New Areas to Place our Energies.

There is a great deal of energy left over when leaving unworkable situations behind. The more attached and committed we were to the relationship, the more energy that will be begging to be used.

This energy needs new homes, new things to do. Maybe that is getting back in touch with relationships and hobbies that have always been around. It also might be about embarking on entirely new journeys, with new hobbies and relationships.

It may be very difficult to want to do new things with energy that used to be dedicated to someone or something else. All of that energy could easily turn into a depressive state.

Whether it is easy for you to move on from what is being lost or not, staying active with healthy activities and people we help the process of letting things go, immensely.

4. Stay Focused on the Beauty of the Present.

When letting things go, it can be easy to get caught in regret and resentment. And why wouldn’t that be the case?

Time, energy, and effort were all given, and for some reason, in the end, it all didn’t work out. Don’t get me wrong, letting things go can flat out suck.

But even when going through the emotions of letting go, the world around us is full of life, beauty, and great possibilities. In times where I am needing to move on, I often remind myself that this present moment is perfect as it is. This reminder can help me realize that just because I am hurting, there is good all around me.

Giving some effort to being grateful for the present moment, life, relationships, health and anything else I can think of, is a worthwhile effort.

5. Look at the Loss with a Growth Mentality.

When having to let go, it can be easy to feel like time as entirely been wasted. Perhaps from time to time, we wind up spending too much time in a go-nowhere situation. But I assure you that the efforts can and at all costs should be learned from.

A long-time friend often says that we need to have the experience, learn the lesson, gain the wisdom, and do the next thing that is right for our own lives.

It is pointless in getting locked into anger, self-pity, regret, and resentment for what didn’t work. Every situation in our lives, whether it worked out or not, will teach us valuable lessons, if we remain teachable.

It is important to learn these lessons so that we don’t have to repeat them. Then we can better use our energy in the future, making new mistakes, and stumbling our way into success.

Getting on with Life.

Whether you are having trouble letting go of something, someone, some experience, or not, getting on with life is a good motto.

If you are having trouble, I feel you. In the worst cases like coping with death and long term relationship breakups, it can feel like life is all ending. There is always more to our stories though.

Pain in the short term will be alleviated by taking care of ourselves over the long-term. Life is short, so spending as little time as possible letting go is ideal. Just because life moves on, doesn’t mean we can’t enjoy it. In fact, I think that gives all the more reason to enjoy it! Don’t you?

Letting Things Go
Photo by averie woodard on Unsplash
That is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in letting go of people, places and experiences that no longer work for you. I offer you the challenge of applying what you have read here, as well as experimenting with your own healthy ways for letting things go.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here

5 Ways to Spend more Time Being Grateful.

Being grateful has amazing benefits. But you better believe that it can also be a struggle to maintain this state of being.

Let’s look at some reasons for we should work towards being grateful more often. As well as some ways to get there.

To be Grateful.

Being grateful is about maintaining a state of gratitude. It is about developing the art of appreciating life, as it is, as it was, and as it may become.

Gratitude as I know it is multiple things. It is a feeling, it is actions we can take, as well as a state of mind.

The feeling of gratitude generally comes when a certain range of actions are taken and our beliefs allow us to be. But it is also a choice that has to be made. We have to choose to be grateful, without a decision for staying grateful it is much more unlikely that we will hit that target.

Not only must staying grateful be chosen though, but it also takes great effort to maintain. It isn’t enough to just say I appreciate the blue sky today. I have to truly feel it! Emotion needs to be invested in the gratitude, the more sincere emotion the greater the feeling.

A state of gratitude is a desirable place to stay as much as possible. Why you ask? Let’s take a look at some of its benefits.

Benefits of Being Grateful.

The benefits of maintaining a state of gratitude are many which make it an entirely practical thing to do.

In my estimation, the benefits far outweigh the effort. Here are a few of those benefits!

1. Better Mental Health.

In many research studies about the effects of practicing gratitude, researchers have sought information on how gratitude affects individuals mental health. But for the most part, these studies focus on individuals that aren’t dealing with troubled mental worlds.

In this study, college students that are set to receive mental health counseling are the subjects of the test. The results of the study found that from the practice of writing letters of gratitude for others, without even sending them, helped these individuals experience better mental health both 4 weeks and 12 weeks after the studies completion.

The results of the study suggest something of high importance. It suggests that not only does gratitude help people with rather stable minds, but also can help some individuals with habitually stressed and anxious minds find better mental spaces.

2. Enhanced Mood.

Emotion and mood are different, though closely related concepts. In one analogy a mood state is thought to be the overall emotional climate an individual is experiencing. While on the other hand, emotions are like the individual instances of weather activity within the current climate.

Therefore mood is thought to determine the types of emotions that will be experienced. So if a person is experiencing a particularly good mood, the emotions they experience will generally follow suit.

There is evidence that making an effort to practice gratitude regularly for about a month will have positive effects on mood states.

They say that around a month is a good amount of time because less than that didn’t have the same effects on our upcoming mood climate. So the longer gratitude has become a habit, the more likely it will affect our emotional worlds positively.

This, of course, isn’t to suggest that mood states that don’t feel good will be eradicated. But it can definitely shorten the amount of time we reside in them, and they probably won’t come around as often.

3. Increase in Emotional Resilience.

To be resilient is to have the ability to bounce back and recover from difficulties. It is being able to have difficult events roll through our lives, and getting through them with a little grace.

We don’t usually get to choose when difficult events or emotions come into our lives. But having a consistent gratitude practice around when trouble does come, is a blessing.

It will help us stay in touch with the aspects of reality that are working in our favor. Which allows our already amped up bodily impulses, to relax. Relaxed bodies are fluid bodies, meaning that our emotions are much better able to show up, teach us what we need, and move on.

4. Sleeping Better.

Practicing gratitude also seems to help individuals catch a better nights sleep. In a research study, it is suggested that 15 minutes of gratitude writing every night before bed can help reduce the amount of worry students experienced. It also helped them sleep better.

The more stress that is present when trying to go to sleep makes it more likely that we will ruminate over whatever is troubling us. Being able to reduce that stress by focusing on aspects of life we are grateful for is a beautiful thing. It will bring us down to reality, settle our troubled minds, and allow us to connect with ourselves and the present moment.

Ideas for Creating a Staying Grateful Routine.

1. In the Morning.

Mornings can be a difficult time to deal with. There is a reason people joke about not being human until they have some coffee in them. As well as for why many of us have trouble not pressing the snooze button multiple times before finally waking up. When waking up our resistances to change are working in full force.

But making gratitude a priority as early as possible in the day is a way to set our attitudes and ourselves up for more enjoyable experiences.

Want to start tomorrow off in a better mood than usual. Set the alarm a half-hour earlier than normal. Then and as you roll out of bed and set your feet on the floor, sincerely say thank you for another day alive. Then do your best to extend the mental effort to stay grateful as the morning goes on.

2. Staying Mindful to Stay Grateful.

Probably the most difficult aspect of staying grateful is remembering to do so. With all the internal and external distractions we face, it is easy to get lost in the chaos.

To stay out of the chaos and in a state of gratitude, we must stay mindful. We must stay aware of our goal to remain in a state where we are appreciating life. This may take many reminders a day.

Pay attention. When that thought comes that has you feeling like life this moment isn’t good enough, let it pass. Just breathe and let all the nonsense pass. Even though some “idiot” did something you can’t stand, look at some aspect of the world you enjoy. There are, of course, many to be found in any given moment.

This isn’t to say that we don’t need to stand up for ourselves when we can do something productive with our situation. When remaining mindful and practicing gratitude, we are very capable of seeking out productive solutions to our problems.


Being Grateful
Photo by Hian Oliveira on Unsplash
3. Share it With Others Throughout the Day.

In the recovery community, I frequent, there is a saying. It states “My gratitude speaks when I care and when I share.” Meaning that when I show that I give a damn about other people I see throughout my day, I am going to feel better. The same goes for when I share with those people what I am grateful for.

Sharing gratitude with others can come in many forms. It could be letting them know we appreciate them by saying it. As well as letting them know by simply showing up with a good attitude and showing respect.

Another form of sharing gratitude doesn’t even have to be done in the other person’s presence. By bringing the person we are grateful for into our minds and offering them sincere gratitude, we reap benefits from this too!

This can actually be a way to learn to be grateful for people our personal boundaries won’t allow us to be around. Helping to get over resentments that we may wind up poisoning ourselves over with anger that feels insurmountable.

4. Writing them down.

Having a gratitude writing practice is a great item to have in our toolbox, for feeling better on a daily basis. Remember above when I said that 15 minutes of gratitude writing over time can help a person sleep better? Well, it can be done anytime throughout the day that permits it. And there are benefits to be found whenever we give ourselves the pleasure of writing 5 to 10 things we are grateful for.

Just going over a list of gratitudes in our heads is beneficial. But writing them brings even more life to them!

Feeling gratitude does take effort. The more effort we put into getting into staying grateful, without being obsessive of course, will bring about more blessings, and more good feelings.

5. Before Going to Sleep.

When going to sleep we are going into a suggestive state that allows processing of the day’s thoughts and activities. What we do before going to sleep has an effect on how our sleep benefits us. Filling our minds with a feeling of appreciation for what has happened and what is coming helps drop the need to problem solve on our way to sleep.

Who enjoys that feeling of trying to work out the issues of the day when it is time to drift off into slumber?

Just thinking about what we have to be grateful for, can take our minds off of this problem-solving. It can ease some of the stress of the day, allowing a nice surrender into the void of sleep.

Being Grateful
Photo by Eli DeFaria on Unsplash

A Call to Gratitude.

Life is not an easy thing much of the time. But practicing gratitude can make life a little more enjoyable, maybe even a lot more. Life will still be life though, hitting us with unexpected troubles and problems to solve.

If we aren’t able to adapt to these problems, even greater trouble is bound to manifest. Striving to be grateful, can keep us closer to the reality of things, focused on solutions instead of creating excess stress from focusing on our problems.

With life being life, and us being human, with all the ambitious bodily impulses, needs, and desires we have, it isn’t easy to remain satisfied all the time. It is easy to become dissatisfied and resentful. And even though these states are bound to happen, to stay there is toxic to healthy living.

Look, none of us are going to be grateful all the time. Though isn’t being grateful as much as possible still something to shoot for? We don’t have to beat ourselves up if we don’t always hit that target. But to leave our gratitude completely up to chance seems like a waste of opportunity.

To wrap this up I will send you off with a mission. Take what you have read here today, please apply it to your life in the upcoming week. Use these ways and please experiment with your own ways to stay grateful as much as possible.

That is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping in to My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth. We sincerely wish you amazing success in spending more of your life being in a state of gratitude.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here

Developing Connection to the Present Moment.

Developing a strong connection to the present moment is one of the most rewarding undertakings to be done.

What is it? How do we keep ourselves from it? How can we wake up and maintain a connection to the present moment? These are the questions that will be addressed throughout this article.

Connection to Present Moment
Photo by Christopher Sardegna on Unsplash

Connection to the Present is Connection to Self.

Without a connection to the moment, there is no connection with ourselves. And not maintaining a connection to self is most certainly an unintended cause of self-harm. But how you may ask.

It’s easy, without a conscious connection to self, we will likely find ourselves feeling lost. Wandering through life, trying this thing and that thing, searching for something that feels “right.” Hardly ever finding that person, that experience, that thing that will create the lasting feeling of wholeness. Maybe finding that feeling momentarily, but losing it as it drifts off in the wind. It is a sad fact of life that many individuals wander their entire lives vigorously chasing lives that aren’t theirs.

This being lost is not from lack of effort though. But it is most definitely from lacking understanding of who we are and what we are connected to at our cores.

It is through having a conscious connection with the present, that the magic of life truly awakens. Likewise, this is where the magic of ourselves wakes up as well. Things begin to make sense. Our minds begin to make sense, our emotions, our desires, everything about us that is real begin to make sense. And all of those aspects that are just figments of our imaginations, get seen for what they are, unintentional self-deception.

Unintentional Self-deception.

There is much that may stand in the way of our conscious connection to the present moment. All of them being our own job to become aware of and cope with.

A critical part of establishing and maintaining our own connection to the present is claiming personal responsibility for the connections absentness. Not necessarily blame, just responsibility.

Self-awareness is key to understanding how we deceive ourselves out of a connection to the present moment. Without awareness of our ways, changing them is happenstance. We deceive ourselves with sneaky methods. Which are sneaky because we probably don’t even know how or why we are being self-deceptive. We do them behind our own backs but in front of our very eyes.

Waking up to the Disconnection.

We all deceive ourselves, that is a fact of life. What some people have learned to do, more than others is wake up to this process.

To wake up to the ways we are ensuring our disconnection to the moment requires picking up on the clues to our disconnection. When we are lacking connection, the clues are right inside of our bodies.

  • Extra anxiety is a clue.
  • Acting in ways we know we shouldn’t be is a clue.
  • Being generally dissatisfied with life is a clue.
  • Anger and its close emotional relatives are a clue.
  • Sadness and its close emotional relatives are a clue.
  • Blaming others for the way we feel is a clue.
  • Thoughts that seem sticky and more negative than usual are a clue.

When we are noticing any of these signs, our conscious connection to the beauty of the moment is compromised.

We all run into these clues at some point. Not all of us recognize them, realize what they are telling us and take responsibility for negotiating the energies they contain.

It, of course, isn’t enough just to wake up to the ways that we are holding ourselves from this beautiful connection to the present. But without first waking up, relaxing into the present and maintaining our connection is pretty much an impossibility.

Maintaining our Connection to the Present Moment.

Living a good life comes only through understanding and application of principles that will make that way of life possible.

Here we want you to understand how to wake up to present disconnection, and how to maintain a conscious connection to the brilliance of the reality right here. The one that is both inside and around us.

Noticing and Attending to the clues of our Disconnection.

Above we listed some clues to our being disconnected from the moment. We can neglect to take responsibility for these clues and stay asleep, or accept responsibility and have the chance to wake up.

If you notice them, label them for what they are, bodily impulses that are looking for attention. Impulses that if not given our attention constructively, will take us farther away from the moment the longer they are not attended to.

Nobody wants their own energies blocking their connection to the creative nature of the present. But if these impulses are blocking us, they are not doing it without reason. They need attention.

Not all bodily impulses need to the same type of attention. For some, attending to them could be simply taking prompt action to allow them to do what they are meant to do. The impulses we are dealing with may also not require any kind of outward action at all and need to be felt, processed and healed.

Now let’s look into some ways that we can attend to these impulses to ensure that we take proper care of them. As well as allow ourselves to live well in the process.

1. Get Grounded.

Waking up means that we first need to get grounded. We need to come back down to our bodies and back down to reality.

Mindful breathing is a great way to clear away excess stress so that we can settle body and mind back into the moment. It is from this place that we can find more clarity on what we should be doing next.

2. Feel What Needs to be Felt.

Once feeling grounded we will have a better grasp at what emotions are moving through us. These emotions, if not kept in awareness can keep us out of the moment. To the degree that they are painful, the more difficult it usually is to stay in the moment with them.

Feeling our emotions has the added benefit of keeping us in the moment. But resisting them will rip us out of this healing place.

3. Take Mindful Actions.

If we find that there are actions we have been neglecting to take, the impulses connected to these responsibilities will also take us out of the moment. After getting grounded and in our feelings, no matter what the flavor, we will be in the best place to take these actions.

In this state, we can take these actions mindfully, giving full attention to the current activity.

This attention we give brings high quality to the activity. Much more comforting and energizing, than if we allowed our thoughts to think about all other activities we need to do. When acting in this way, we will maintain a connection to the moment, as well as ourselves.

4. Use Mentorship to Maintain Connection.

Helping others allows us to find a connection as well. When connecting with other individuals, we find a connection to the moment and connection with ourselves.

Some people are masters at connection, while others haven’t a clue what a connection to the moment even is.

I believe we need both of these types of people in our lives. Throughout my years in recovery from addiction, I have learned a great deal from mentor types. Though I have learned just as much from being a mentor to others.

By allowing ourselves to be helped, and helping others, while letting ourselves be vulnerable we plant ourselves in the moment, in a powerful way.


Closing Thoughts on our Connection to the Present.

The present moment is all there really is. It is the only place we can think, feel, or do anything. Maintaining a close connection with it is our connection to the best the world has for us.

Sure the future may bring amazing things as well, and spending some time imagining it is healthy. But giving the vast majority of our time to loving this moment, will bring gifts beyond measure.

Pay attention to this moment, bring those thoughts down to reality, because this is where we are. The more time we plant ourselves in what is here right now, the more fruits our futures will bare.

That is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth. We sincerely wish you amazing success in learning how to wake up and maintain your personal connection to the present moment.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

To see our Terms and Conditions click here

How to Prepare for Making Effective Snap Decisions.

Making snap decisions is something that we are all going to have to do at some point.

So what do we do at that moment, when this decision, that we wish we had time to mull over, doesn’t have time to be thought out?

What we do is rely on what we have learned about making snap decisions. Let’s take a deeper look and see if we can get ourselves prepared for when these times come.

Time for Decisions.

Responsible living requires that we make the best decisions we can in the time we are allowed. It requires that we do our due diligence to make sense of what we are facing, then make a decision.

These decisions that we make can be unforgiving. Once we make them and put them into action, there is generally no turning back.

Sometimes we have time to prepare for these decisions we have to face. But there are going to be many times in life wherein a moments notice, we will have to make an unexpected decision, that we were not prepared for.

Decision-Making Vs Impulsivity.

Our bodily impulses are energies that pulse throughout bodies and nudge us to take actions.

There is a similarity between making a snap decision, and acting on impulsivity. They are similar in the quickness in which they are deployed, which is, in a moments notice.

But there is also a glaring difference between the two. That difference being that one involves us making an active decision, while the other tends to be a quick habitual reaction.

Much of the time Impulsivity can get us into trouble, because of the lack of a conscious decision. But sometimes it is all that we have to work with. Sometimes there simply is not enough time to formulate a decision we intellectually know to be sound.

What we need to do is learn to meld the two together. Allowing our decision-making game to be on point in pressured moments, not allowing our impulses to entirely take control, but allowing them to act quickly with our conscious consent.

Making the Best Snap Decisions in Pressured Situations.

It is pressured situations that are most likely going to test our impulses and decision-making capabilities.

In situations that bring pressure to act, it is our hopefully informed impulses that we must rely on. If our impulses are not informed about the best possible decisions and actions to take, then we are in a bad place.

Here are some skills you may want to add to your routine so that when the time comes for snap decisions, you will be mentally and emotionally ready.

Snap Decision Routine
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash
1. Stay on Top of Everyday Routine Decisions.

The logic is simple, the more we neglect to take care of all the little decisions we need to make on a daily basis, the less good decision capability we will have in pressured moments.

Staying on top of our everyday routine decisions sets us up for success in moments where we need to think quickly.

To keep on top of these decisions we need to be aware of them. It is easy to forget all of the little decisions we need to make. This isn’t a complicated concept, get your schedule written down, in a book or on your phone. This way it will be easier for our brains to be focused on the present moment, and more agile to make snap decisions.

2. Be Aware of what is coming.

Having a keen awareness of what is coming up in life is a beautiful thing. But it isn’t a skill that is developed without effort. It also isn’t necessarily a difficult thing to practice.

The most difficult part about developing awareness for what is coming up in our lives is paying attention. With all the distractions we face, simply remembering to write upcoming events down in our schedules can be tough. Not complicated, but tough.

Making sure that we have these events written down gives us the opportunity to remember them. And if we can remember them, then we can give a little thought and imagination into envisioning how to be prepared.

Most of these upcoming events don’t require much thought, but giving a little thought, even to our routine events can shed light on how we can be best prepared. Being prepared makes it easier to make snap decisions when those situations arise. This goes for what could go wrong, but don’t forget to do this for being more productive as well.

3. Prepare for what is coming.

There is a reason that coaches and drill instructors have their people practice as rigorously as they do. It is because those small movements that need to be made to be successful in pressured moments, need to become a habit. They need to be able to be done without thinking about them. That is because in sports and in armed conflict, events unfold quickly, and having to think about each little action is a recipe for poor performance.

For our average daily lives, most of us aren’t purposely repeating behaviors over and over to perfect the movements. Outside the realm of public speaking, I have never really set up mock sessions so I could perfect the average movements I will need to make to not make a fool of myself. That could be a helpful thing to do I guess, but that seems a bit obsessive, and not at all up my alley.

I will often use imagination to practice future scenarios though. Doing this with a mind that isn’t overly stressed out and plenty stable can give a decently clear picture of what may come. In imagining the future event, we can think of certain ways the scene might turn out. And with thinking those circumstances out we can think of ways of counteracting what might unexpectedly happen.

This advice certainly must come with a warning though. We must remember that our imaginations are not reality. Just because our imagination leads us to expectations for certain outcomes, of course, doesn’t mean that is what is going to happen. We must remain mentally and emotionally flexible, don’t get trapped in rigid expectations.

4. Respect Upcoming Deadlines.

For as big of pains deadlines can be, they have a great deal of importance in bringing about positive results. Without deadlines, it can be much more difficult to spark action to get what needs to be done, done.

Deadlines create internal pressure for us, and this pressure of internal impulses is a great way to bring about creative results. Studies have shown that too little pressure, as well as too much pressure, are not good for creativity. Right in the middle though, there is a sweet spot of internal pressure that will help us churn out amazing solutions for any problem we may face. This phenomenon is called the Yerkes/Dodson Law.

If we don’t respect upcoming deadlines, we are irresponsibly setting ourselves up for trouble. There is a reason we feel the pressure when deadlines are fast approaching. That reason is that there is preparing left to do, we don’t feel ready, so our impulses push us to get informed.

When going into a situation we care about unprepared, the pressure can be immense. But sometimes even if we are well-prepared, the pressure will still be palpable.

Snap Decision Pressure
Photo by Christian Erfurt on Unsplash
5. Just Breathe and Focus on the Moment.

Too much pressure is not a good breeding ground for desired results. But there will definitely be times in our lives when the snap decisions we have to make will be highly pressurized.

We need to make sure we aren’t feeling like victims to the pressure. This internal pressure is not here to harm us, it is here to transform us.

If unprepared, intense moments may rattle our brains with too much stress. And as some of you may have heard we actually lose IQ points when in states of high stress.

In the process of preparing for events that are coming and while engaged with them, relaxing, breathing, and focusing on the moment are always helpful. When relaxed in the moment, we need not worry about screwing up, and what may harm us. Stress is able to fade or be used to fuel our prompt actions to handle the situation in front of us.

Closing Thoughts.

We are all going to find ourselves in situations where we will need to make a snap decision. And the habits written above will add to the likelihood of positive snap decision results. But no matter how prepared we are there will always be aspects that are unaccounted for.

We can only prep as much as we can. There is no need to overly obsess about what is coming up next. Room also needs to be made for our natural intelligences to flexibly take care of business in the moment!

Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in learning how to make effective snap decisions.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

For more information about Decision Making from My Life Experiment, check out these articles.

-Practicing Discernment for Guiding our Lives Well.

-Importance of Proactive Decision Making.

Guide for Living with Healthy Expectations.

A crucial part of living a healthy life is living with healthy expectations. We cannot escape having expectations. We have them for ourselves, for others and essentially every aspect of life that affects us.

These expectations we carry are both an unavoidable part of life, a potential pain inducing one, and one with important benefits. Let’s find some ways to make these expectations as healthy as possible.

Having Expectations.

Developing expectations is an unavoidable part of our existence. These expectations are grown as we and our brains get busy putting a life together.

Our brains formulate plans naturally and when we start wanting such and such they get concocting. They say, “okay if we do X+Y then I am pretty sure we will get Z.” The more convinced we become that this equation is correct, the more we expect it to happen.

The only ones that can build our lives the way we can live with, is ourselves. But there are many more aspects of life that we will have to rely on others or sometimes sheer luck to bring about the best lives we can. So with the way our brains formulate, it also may have to say that X is the spouse, the colleague, the child, the parent, or our understanding of how an aspect of life works.

Inevitable Disappointment.

Just as expectations are unavoidable, as are the inevitable disappointment we will experience as many of these expectations are unmet. Being disappointed generally doesn’t feel good. But does that mean that all expectations should be avoided so we can avoid that feeling altogether? Absolutely not.

Some would actually say that the way to a healthy life is to have no expectations at all. That this state of not expecting anything would be the ultimate peaceful way. But sorry, there is going to be a lot of disappointment while learning to not expect. Even anticipation of peace from not expecting anything becomes an expectation we will likely be disappointed by.

A Life without Expectation.

What would life be like without expectation? If you didn’t expect to get in trouble for not showing up to work on time, would you? If your spouse or friends didn’t require good treatment to build a healthy relationship, would you treat them the same or more poorly? When you were a child if you hadn’t come to expect that the hot stove will burn you, would you have stopped messing with it?

Of course, the list goes on and on about how our expectations are useful. When we come to learn about the world and how it works, we anticipate at least to a certain degree that it will continue as such. Our expectations can save us from pain, help us predict future becoming’s, and allow us to develop healthy relationships.

Expectations are of course not created equal and we don’t have to live in a consistent state of disappointment because we have them. A big part of this is learning how to lessen the amount of unhealthy expectation in our routine, and developing more of the healthy variety.

Healthy and Unhealthy Expectations.

These ways that we expect, affect all aspects of our lives. They affect our relationship with ourselves, our relationship to life, and relationships with other people. There is tremendous value in taking great care in the way we create these expectations. Our healthy connection to all of these relationships depends on this.

I hope you are getting my point that there are healthy and unhealthy expectations. We could call them necessary or unnecessary expectations. Sometimes they are referred to as reasonable and unreasonable, sometimes realistic and unrealistic. Learning to differentiate between the two is critical for our ability to have an enjoyable life.

So how do we? How do we expect in healthy ways and avoid expecting in ways that could be self and relationship damaging?

Guidance for Creating Healthy Expectations.

1. Set Personal Standards and Purpose for how We Expect.

You have probably heard the old adage that “If we stand for nothing, we will fall for anything.”  This is the statement that rings true when we do not have purpose and standards, guiding our bodily impulses.

To have healthy relationships we have to set personal standards and purpose for how we expect. We need to formulate a go-to way that we will allow ourselves to expect, and for how we do it. Otherwise, we leave our expectations up to chance, maybe it will come out healthy, or maybe a little crazy.

The remaining points here are suggested standards to be placed on how we expect, with the purpose of creating trusting healthy relationships, and reducing personal pain.

2. Communicate Expectations.

Communication is a vital part of developing healthy relationships. That goes for ourselves and our relationships with others.

We need to make sure that we stay informed about what we are expecting. Reminding ourselves of those expectations in some manner. The same goes for our relationships with others, uncommunicated expectations can put great strain on our relations with others.

Without communicating what is expected we will likely be disappointed that those around us or even ourselves are not respecting our wishes. Well, they aren’t respecting our wishes because they probably don’t know our wishes!

We have every right in the world, and even obligation to communicate what and why we expect something. Communicating these expectations may be uncomfortable at first but in the long run, it can save a great deal of unnecessary disappointment and sore feelings.

3. Experience and Knowledge are Key.

The knowledge and experience that we have is the key to developing healthy expectations. A well-informed mind will have a much more keen sense for what to expect than one that is misinformed or uninformed.

As we learn that certain ways of behaving will lead to pain, we learn to expect that pain. So we can have the opportunity to avoid it. On the flipside, when we come to expect positive results by learning what brings those results, then we can engage in more of those behaviors to help our lives out.

Studied experience teaches us reasonable expectations. No there is no substitute for personal experience. But, learning from the experiences of others is very important as well.

4. Practice Intellectual Humility.

Experience and knowledge are essential in living with healthy expectations, but even with these, we can’t always expect them to be accurate. To expect that is foolhardy as all hell.

Life is going to surprise us with curveballs. None of us have all the information, or time to study all the aspects that can affect us. We need to leave ourselves open to be surprised. Being in the habit of closed-mindedness and overconfidence in our personal knowledge is not a good use of our mental and emotional life.

Expectations that are left open to change are expectations that will hurt less when they are not met.

5. Learn a Healthy Level of Emotional Detachment.

Emotional detachment as I am calling it isn’t about separating ourselves from our emotions. That is actually a recipe for losing touch with ourselves when maintaining connection with self is ideal. Instead, it is about separating our emotions from expected outcomes.

The more emotionally attached we are to an expectation, the more disappointment is likely when it is not met. This is not a message to try and get you to rid yourself of excitement for hopes and dreams coming true. But I do recommend being careful.

Life is an ever-changing thing, that being said, our expectations need to be flexible. Our thoughts and emotions also need to remain as agile as possible to deal with the onslaught of life changes in a healthy way. The more attached we are to a certain expectation needing to come true, in a certain way, the harder it will be to let go of when it is no longer useful.

But the more we are able to allow our expectations to adapt and flow, our lives will be filled with the benefits of being grateful.

Photo by Hannah Busing on Unsplash

Closing Thoughts.

With as difficult as the realm of expectations can be, with some work, anyone with the capacity for rational thought can learn to have healthy ones.

The guidelines in this article are intentionally held vague, use the ideas in it to fill in the blanks with the specific ways you will put these ideas into action.

If you have any ideas and would like to share them, please share them in the comment section below.

Well, that is all we have for today and thank you so much for stopping into My Life Experiment. What is written here has come from struggle and growth.
We sincerely wish you amazing success in living with healthy expectations.
We truly believe that if you take today’s lessons to heart and apply them, that you will greatly benefit.

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