We all set ourselves targets to achieve our goals. Often the path we choose to describe it is difficult. We encounter the most unexpected things that if they don’t turn us back, make us slow down. It is important that our strategy from time to time has the freshness to continue towards our goals. And where better than changing in our mindset to stay mentally strong. People, situations, fears and insecurities often become the motive for the mind to slow down the pace of productivity. In this article, 7 experts in this field share with us their 5 tips that every person should practice to stay mentally strong. They will guide us on how to stay mentally strong.
- ‘Mentally strong’: These are people who are adaptable in their thinking and open minded to new evidence. They don’t cling to existing beliefs if they no longer seem valid or relevant. People feel fear but do not let it stop them from moving forward…Most problems are created by our distorted thinking. Looking at life from the professional lenses of a psychotherapist, some practices need to be changed to bring about mental strength and positivity. Below are changes you need to imbibe to be mentally stronger.
- Practice Gratitude: Identify the little things you are grateful for. Examples are: Being alive, the gift of family and friends, health. This is a step that transforms your mindset. You pay more attention to things you have, rather than what you don’t possess. Start a gratitude journal daily or weekly.
- Taking Positive Actions: In life we experience bad moments. This should not stop us from moving forward with our aspirations. We need to turn a negative experience into positives to facilitate advancement. Don’t feel sorry for yourself but take baby steps, never give up and create an atmosphere that supports your drive to build possibilities.
- Managing Unhealthy Thought Patterns. Furthermore, to be mentally strong, our emotions and thoughts need to be controlled. When we identify negative mindsets as individuals, we have to replace, reframe and realign our thoughts by giving clear instructions to our mind. This is done with positive statements…“I will succeed.” The way we think invariably affects how you feel and behave. Attentiveness, is needed here, you’ll notice themes like ‘not taking risks.’
- Become Your Best and Strongest Self: Taking time and practice something continuously to make you the best at it. Mental strength requires dedication. When you build your mental muscle and capabilities, you’re at your best, attaining your greatest achievements. Endeavor to practice mental strength exercises.
As a transitional coach, and health and wellbeing expert, I have worked closely with female entrepreneurs and professionals in corporate roles, where they experienced low self-esteem, lacking in confidence, and struggled to find their passion and balance. Our mentoring program, ‘Seven Steps to Transition Your Life’, helps participants to discover what lies deep within themselves, and revive an individual’s hidden passion, purpose, and freedom to experience a flexible lifestyle that everyone deserves.
There are five things that individuals need to change to become mentally stronger:
- Always renew our mind daily and focus on the positive elements. It is imperative not to hold on to yesterday’s negative thoughts or issues as they can lead to self-sabotage; instead, focus on the positives that are being achieved right now.
- Resort to praying, meditating, and journaling. Writing down specific its – helps track thoughts and emotions.
- Practice deep breathing exercises and being an encourager to someone else
- Self-care – it is important to build self-care into the daily routine. Book time out in your weekly schedule for social activities, walking, swimming, a massage treatment, going to a health spa with friends, or a hot soak in the bath, having your nails or hair done, or watching a movie.
- Have an attitude of gratitude. “Gratitude helps us to make sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.” (Melody Beattie). On a personal level, start to show gratitude and be thankful in your life for all the things that are happening and learn from the bad experiences to enable you to be at peace with yourself.
At the Handel Group we say that personal integrity and accountability are the source of results and happiness. How do you get happy and proud, connect to your dream and go after it? Here’s how:
- Design your dream (we actually have you do that in 12 areas of your life).Make each of them inspiring to you. Craft the dream in the present tense, only do what you want and make sure it gives you goose bumps.
- Identify what’s in the way of that dream. See the negative voices in your head- the ones inconsistent with your dream (we identify them as the “chicken”, “brat” and “weather reporter”) and call them excuses.
- Conquer those voices with a good promise, consequence (and someone to hold you accountable)
- Catch your negative inner dialogue when it pops up (newsflash—we all have it).But know you are not stuck with it.Talk back to it- you wouldn’t allow your best friend to be stuck in saying mean things to herself. Don’t tolerate it if you do.
- Bring a sense of humor. See that “Maybe it’s you”. Recognize that you are the author – you get to say your own words (and you’ve done it before!).
5 Things You Need to Change in Life to Be Mentally Stronger
- Stop Living in the Past and The Future – When you dwell on the past, you can be filled with regrets and frustrations, the could haves and the should haves. The same happens when you overthink about the future and what will be or should be. Stay calm by focusing on “the here and now” so you can build on the lessons of your past while you take the actions needed today to move towards the future you want.
- Stop Over Committing – So many women, my self included, have a tendency to overcommit and say yes to everything and everyone. The result is having to fit a million things into our day that we simply cannot get through it all – leaving us feeling guilty, overwhelmed, mentally and physically exhausted. Learn to say NO!
- Stop Making Excuses – Stop blaming external circumstances and people for the things that do not go right in your life. When you are a problem solver, you are able to deal better with crises and setbacks.
- Stop Putting Yourself Last – Schedule time to focus on the things that make you feel calm and happy. For me, it is taking a bath, having my nails done, getting a massage, and taking time to read books and write poetry. Lock in non-negotiable time for yourself every week in your calendar.
- Stop the Negative Self Talk – You are a strong woman with unique gifts and talents. Life is not a competition. Stop being in a rush to please everyone. Strong mental health starts with self-love. Practice daily affirmations. Love yourself and be kind to yourself.
TAKE MENTAL BREAKS!
We keep hearing “Get out of your comfort zone!”It’s indeed crucial when it comes to both achieving a new goal and keeping your brain in great shape for as long as possible. Yet my clients often need to hear quite the opposite encouragement: “Get back to your comfort zone! Stay there for a little while and allow your brain to relax.”
You see, I work with individuals who are achievers by nature. It means that they are always hungry for more in life. They seek new challenges. They live outside of their comfort zone most of the time! It also means that their brain is constantly asked to learn new things and perform new tasks. It’s a great mental workout, but we need to balance it with some restitution. Once we have bombarded our brain with all this new information, let’s give it time to digest it, to create new synapses and neuropathways, to integrate new knowledge and skills. Otherwise this cognitive over stimulation can lead us to a state of mental fatigue or even burnout.
So, make sure that once a while you do the good same old! Things that feel easy peasy, tasks you can run on mental autopilot. And deliberately schedule times of doing nothing at all. You have my blessing.
To be mentally fit requires a regular daily practice. The reason for this is that our brain has a natural tendency to look for negative things and it scans the environment for threats every five seconds. I have found a recipe for a regular practice that works for me. These are my top 5 things:
- Spend time in solitude every day – connect with yourself and your soul. Let your mind wonder, be in silence and in your own company.
- Spend time in nature as often as possible. Use your senses and connect with nature.
- Journal, meditate and reflect on a daily basis. Make sure to add 5 things a day that you are grateful for in your journal!
- Mind your thoughts. Be aware that you create your own reality. The more you feed your brain with positive thoughts and experiences, the more resilience your build towards the negativity bias that we all have.
- Challenge yourself on a regular basis. Do things that scare you, things that you have never done before. This will strengthen your mental muscles in several ways. We have neuropathways in our brain, some are like highways and some are like small pathways. When you do things that you haven’t done before, you make the small pathways bigger, and as a result of this it comes more natural to you. To do things that scares you a bit also strengthens your belief system which also builds mental muscles.
Mindset is the state of your thinking at any given moment.Below are my 5 top tips for improving your mindset:
- Gratitude Journaling – It’s important to write down at least 5 things you are grateful for each day. When you acknowledge what you’re grateful for, this sets your mind in a positive way and elevates your energy levels.
- Meditation – You can meditate by listening to certain audios, praying, sitting in silence or listening to music. Meditation, when done properly and effectively, will reset your mind into the start position and help you focus more that day.
- Express your Feelings – Bottling things inside of you will weaken your mind. Start a new habit of saying how you feel, whether it’s positive or negative, to the person you’re with.
- Minimise your Time with Negative People – Don’t waste your time with nay sayers or people who suck out your energy. Mingle with positive people because those with the highest energies will attract success.
- Seek Solutions – Try to turn any challenge in your life as an opportunity. Everything happens for a reason, so when things don’t go to plan, look for a solution instead of dwelling on the problem.