Free spirit- a trait my old self unintentionally abused that made me live my life on autopilot.
Autopilot- the lack of clear goals, realistic dreams, sense of self and no sense of direction or life purpose whatsoever what my life was turned into.
Good habits- weird traits the nerds and uncool people have.
This was how my old vocabulary looked like that showed what kind of mindset I used to have no wonder I trudged the world lost, confused, clueless, scared and most of all, like an airhead that I needed to kill that airhead to develop good set of habits that will make my chances of finding contentment, happiness, life purpose and success high.
1.Waking up early.
The earlier I wake up, the earlier I can work on my dream. The more that I can have more time for myself before I attend to other things. I have also a morning routine I stick to. This prevents me from feeling rushed. Waking up early also meant sleeping early.
2.Making my bed.
The simple of habit of making my bed every morning already makes me feel a little victorious by tackling a small but nagging task.
3.Creating gratitude list.
I noticed how my struggles started subsiding when I started counting my blessings.
4.Daily dose of nature.
Surrounding ourselves with beauty and the calming and magnificent work of nature also does wonders to our soul and affects our happiness.
I love getting off one stop before mine and just walk. I also love walking when I take short breaks from writing.
6.Yoga and Stretching
My way to honour, listen and connect to my body. 5-10 minutes daily stretching goes a long way.
6.Drinking more water
I am finding more excuse to nap and sleep more. I thought and was convinced for so long that 6 hours of sleep was enough for me and just what my body is asking from me, but since I started sleeping more especially this year, my mood and energy level is better.
A very good way to connect to your inner voice, be aware of your breathing and just let it all flow. I would do walking meditation when I feel anxious, I try to listen to what is it that anxiety has been trying to tell me. I also try to contemplate while waiting for the bus or while inside.
If I needed to make a decision, I make sure to also try and listen to what feels lighter.
I don’t just do this my dreams but also to design and own my day when it comes to how I want it to look like.
I write letters to the Universe, to my anxiety, to people who stresses me out, to people I appreciate to myself. All the things I find hard to voice out, I write. It is not necessary to give these letters but it is necessary to let these strong emotions out.
I don’t know where I am now if I didn’t journal all my blues, confusion, hopes and dreams. This is still different from the letter that I write to the universe or to myself. These are the littlest things that happened everyday, how they made me feel, what I can do better, what I should stop and just whatever popped in my head.
Between the pages of my journals, I found the real me and the patterns that will lead me to finding out what can cure my depression.
Reading is one of the things that has been helping me get through life. It has been helping me understand the theory behind the actions I did mindlessly. It has been opening my mind and shaping me to be the best version of myself that I can ever be.
Reading travel blogs inspired me to explore, to move out of my country, to learn new language, to redesign my life, to become a minimalist, to start this blog, to always look for the silver lining, look for my life purpose, develop my passion, control my emotions and put people in front of me to look up to and claim that yes, life of dreams are possible.
I will never be able to stress enough how being a booknerd has helped and has been helping me learn new things everyday.
13.Audiobooks if I am commuting.
I used to find this cheesy and awkward but it worked. Repeating words of self encouragement everyday made my brain actually believe that I am that person. These affirmations helped me fight my limiting beliefs.
I used to find it really strange that Germans have not just a table calendar but calendar that is planned up to the hour. I have never used planner or calendars properly before even if I used to collect Starbucks yearly organizer.
My life only revolved around work, working out and looking good. All the others are for chilling out with friends, drinking and then I would wonder why I felt stuck.
I started making lists and even I am trying to be as mindful when it comes to what I don’t want to become again. I need to be more disciplined and do even those that are really hard. I figured it is the only way to master one skill. It is so satisfying to go to bed knowing that I have exhausted everything that I could to be closer to my goals.
I used to hate myself for having so many questions that I have never heard people in my circle asked. I forced myself to stop asking these questions by ignoring them and doing all sorts of activities just to not have a lot of time to face these questions because these questions used to make me feel not enough, not capable and not sure about a lot of things like the job I was doing to have money, the people I used to hang out with to be cool and the things I used to in between.
I dared answering these questions honestly no matter how broken they made me feel.
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When I started accepting these questions, my priorities changed. It was easier because I just needed to make sure that everything in my life aligns with my core values, my heart’s true desires and everything that interests me. These questions became the building blocks of my new life.
I8.Stop starving myself.
This is my attempt to be more in the present moment. To look at the little things I tend to overlook just because I have other tasks in my head. I have no more reasons to rush now.
24.Avoiding my phone
I know I always seem like I am on my phone but it is because I have found out that I can write better when I am on the move like when I am inside the bus where my thoughts don’t seem to want to stop or if I am on the sofa. But reality is, I have ways on how to maximize the use of my phone in helping me becoming the writer that I have always dreamed of.
Also, I have learned to leave the house without it. If I am using it write article or chapters of my book, I normally would put it on airplane mode.
Since reading Eat that Frog, I have learned to tackle the hardest tasks first. I realized that one of my anxiety attack triggers are tasks I feel I must do so I make sure to do this first. I have learned to ask myself, what can or should wait?
Another huge lesson I have learned is that not everyone is my friend and not everyone is really concerned. They just wanted to get a piece of you just to have topics for discussion with the other friends or to give themselves assurance that they are doing better than you do.
One of the toxic Filipino mentality that I really don’t like. I have learned to ignore and choose people I speak with.
I have very little attention span and I get distracted easily and the solution I have found is to organize my work station in such a way that I will not always stop to check something.
I used to keep thousands of tabs open in one single browser but I am learning to keep just one or two. This helps to clear my head too. And I work straight for one hour and then I take little breaks to do whatever it is that seem to always cross my mind while working.
28.Clean Desk Policy
I used to ignore my desk but I noticed that since becoming a minimalist, I got used to having lesser clutter and more white space which is more pleasing to the eyes.
Sometimes, when my head is full of tasks, I don’t notice my desk and the clutter that started to pile because my head was just focused on what I need to do.
Later I would wonder why I feel so scattered and couldn’t get anything done. I would stop and really look around and see that my desk has started looking like there are mug collection for all the coffee I have been inhaling the previous days, the chocolate boxes I have been munching on, water bottles I have been setting aside to remind myself to drink more, other trinkets and dusts which are about to remind me to clean.
The moment I start cleaning is also the moment I put the part of my brain on fire on rest mode. The act of cleaning and sorting things out give me that feeling that there is actually something that I have control over which later on, somehow, would give my work the same feeling.
So when I am at my boyfriend’s place and he tells me that I don’t need to clean, it is not actually solely for him. It is more for and my peace of mind that comes from an organized workplace.
29.Tasks outsourcing and delegation
I have learned to ask myself which tasks I can easily do and which ones I need help with. Idenifying so has been such a huge help in which to focus on.
I have designed goal planners and broken them down to daily goals, weekly, monthly, yearly and categorized them to blogging, writing and life goals. Being more specific has been helping me in accomplishing them. I have also started putting dates to them. Having deadline changed how I approach them.
I am not just working and writing for my blog, I am also finishing my book. And in the past, I couldn’t seem to move forward. I felt like I was stuck or not capable of doing both at the same time.
I felt like I was failing. But since breaking all my goals down and including all the little steps I would do to hit all of them I figured, I must also find a way to measure my success in writing.
Not the sales, not the analytics or how much money I make. I said, I would really feel successful as a writer everyday if I could write at least two pages no matter how ugly and nonsense they are.
I am calling myself a writer and writing is should be what I am practising and doing everyday. Without writing, I am not allowed to call myself a writer. Two pages. Whether on my phone’s notepad, my journal, my Artist’s Ways workbook or anywhere. I should be able to write everyday and two pages shouldn’t be so hard.
I used to curse myself for always being distracted by every movement I see. Sometimes I would just end up just browsing the internet and social without accomplishing anything. I would feel like I have wasted an entire day where I could have finished one article for the blog or edited one book chapter.
So I said, I could work up to one hour max and then take breaks to do whatever I feel like doing. It is working. I am writing and reading more.
Instead of doing my list in the morning, I have learned to do them the night before so the next morning, I would slide from task to task and not spend the first few minutes of my morning still thinking of what I should be doing when I should already be starting.
35.Kissing multitasking goodbye
I thought I was doing myself a favor when I juggle so many things or master so many skills at one time. This isn’t just unrealistic it is also a waste of energy and time. It is better to focus on learning one skill and once you have completely mastered it, move on to the next.
36.Name your core values
List down all the principles you believe in and stick to them.
Brene Brown said, “If you aren’t in the arena also getting your ass kicked, I’m not interested in your feedback.”. I have learned to stay on my lane and step on the gas.
Realising that we live in the present and the future is the sum total of thousands of now will make you feel that anything that you worry about the future and only wasted your now.
39.Learn how to respond and not react.
40.Do a life detox.
Anything that doesn’t make you feel good, let them go.
41.Practice self-care daily
42.Learn something new everyday
43.Stop ignoring myself
Even if it made me feel bad at first, I made myself part of my priorities and not just a part, I put it on my number one list.
44.I went with the decision that made me feel light.
Making peace with my self was the hardest I needed to do. I felt guilty for most part of my journey to personal development because it is just not part of a poor Filipino household. We Filipinos must put our families first but I have come to realize that it should change.
I learned t ask myself why do I feel guilty? Where is this coming from? Is what I am doing really bad? If so, is going for my dreams bad? Only by asking these questions I was able to find out that this guilt was not from me. It was instilled in my brain so I needed to find a way to remove all that. And only by doing that that I started being okay with really doing what I am doing.
It is only later that I realized how controlling I was. I wanted to control how people would perceive me. I wanted to have a control on how my parents react so I always went with the choices that I knew would make them proud of me even if I knew that it would make me suffer, work twice harder but still underperform.
When I stopped and let go, it is easier to breath, to move and to just live in alignment with life purpose and pursuing passion.
46.Overthinking and overstressing
My experience with anxiety and depression made me realize that my overthinking, overanalysing and overstressing talent made me waste so much time fearing thinks that are not going to even happen.
Every time I will catch myself overthinking, I make a conscious effort of asking what are the worst things that could possibly happen and what can I do to prevent it or even correct it in case that it will happen.
47.Source of motivation
There are days that I fear I slack off so I make sure to listen to podcasts, reread the books that moved me or even TED talks. I would often go back to all the goals I have written down, all the goals I have ticked off and the little success I was able to achieve.
I have accepted that I will not always wake up where I don’t feel the fire but for days like these, I need to go back to my why or to just rest. Maybe I am just burn out.
48.Saying what I mean
One of the things that I have learned from the Germans is no sugar coating, less use of euphemisms and be straight to the point. This is really very hard for me and I still struggle because I have grown up with so much beating around the bush to avoid other people being hurt and avoid being rude.
I would say what I mean and face hard conversations crying just because I couldn’t bring myself to say those things easily. I am from a family who has a weak emotional boundary and always resulted to either screaming, avoidance or just being physical when it comes to matters that would require all the parties to sit and voice out feelings.
It is also hard to say what we feel because we fear that we will not be understood, made fun of or worse, scolded for it. We take respect seriously that when explaining your side to the elders are being seen as disrespectful if it involves offending them even if it is not the intention.
I don’t like being around people who constantly complain so I did three things: 1, avoid them so I won’t need to participate by agreeing, 2. remind myself that I don’t want to be like that person and 3. write more of what I am thankful for. The more I counted my blessings, the more I stopped complaining and the more that I started feeling that my anxiety, self-hate and depression are going away.
Read also: How I Finally Stopped Complaining
50.Sleeping Early or at the same time
I am more mindful when it comes to sleep. I try to be in bed by 10:30 and if I can’t, I make sure to sleep longer. I hate to wake up late but I know that my healing is more important than starting my day early but tired, irritable and couldn’t function well.
Also, I try to nap and or just enjoy my bed just by laying down, not using my phone nor wanting to be productive like reading.
51.Brain dump at night
Even if I have already journaled in the morning, I still would journal at night. This habit is taking things off my mind which I know would only make it hard for me to fall asleep if they would all be there chasing each other.
I also have the chance to recall what happened and what I did during the day and what I should stop doing. I also love ending my evening brain dump by stating the things I am grateful for the day. This helps me drift to bed with a smile on my lips.
52.Raising my vibration
I love falling asleep while imagining all the things I prayed for coming to life. I love silently screaming I am so thankful and I am so excited to get up the next day again doing the things I love doing. I love drifting to sleep feeling that my dreams are already a reality.
53.Dim the light or make the room cozy
54.Stop solving problems before bed
Before I started my evening brain dump, I would toss and turn in bed with all of my day’s worries. I would cry and would try to find solutions for it while hating myself for not being able to sleep. I stopped doing it and just write them down to remove any trace of worry in my system that might affect my sleep.
55.Working on my dream every day.
I stumbled, I fell, I strayed, I questioned, I cried, I blamed, I hated, I sought, I learned and I found.
I quit my job without savings and no matter how many times I got kicked because of this poor life decision only children of millionaires are known to do, I still didn’t give this journey up. I am convinced that I would benefit greatly from all the real life lessons I would learn from it.
I have learned how to survive on my own and I know that no matter what will still come, I am ready because I now have a better foundation. I am very good at looking for the silver lining from all of my suffering.
I have found my purpose, a new career and this time, even if there are still things that I can’t afford yet, I know my priorities. I know that this time, whatever I have, it is not given. It is from constant hustle and faith that this life wouldn’t be given for nothing.
56.Telling and showing the remaining people in my life what they mean to me.
I am now more generous when it comes to complementing someone, smiling at someone, giving, creating something and just giving it away. I am not stingy with my time when it comes to showing people that I love and appreciate them. It feels so good to be able to give love away.
57.Playing with kids
I love babysitting and it is one of the sidelines that I still love doing. I love children’s energy, how they see magic in simple things, how their laughter is so infectious and how they hungry they are for new things to do and new things to try.
58.Finding reasons to laugh
I only have one friend who I love bugging on a daily basis just for some laughs, nonsense banters, deep life conversations, hopes, fears and dreams. We click because we don’t just speak the same language, we both understand how depression, despair and being broke means and the same amount of positivity in life.
We motivate and cheer for each other and look for reasons to have a good laugh and to be able to dust ourselves up and fight again.
I have included self-love, self-care, understanding, kindness and healing in the forgiveness box that I gave myself. I am forgiving myself for wanting to grow and be the version of myself that I truly wanted.
I am convinced that this is the purpose of one person’s life. To love herself fully to allow reaching full potential and only then that she can be more of help to other people outside herself.
You will never be a good daughter, good wife, good partner or even a good person if you’re tired, broken and if you feel empty.
I have always been keeping this in mind and this is the real reason why I feel way better than last years. Everyday, I am giving myself gifts and attention like how I would give others too.
Read also:7 Gifts I am Giving Myself Today
61.Stop being responsible for other people’s happiness.
Part of the things I learned to let go is the need to save other people. I stopped drowning myself wanting to save other people just to be able to say that I am not alone and that I don’t feel loved. I have also learned how to give that love to myself.
62.A love letter for myself.
I didn’t just write love letter to myself, I also wrote a love letter to my anxiety and depression in my attempt to understand what they wanted from me and also to let them know that I am breaking up with them.
I told them and myself that I understand and I forgive them and I am ready to move on and close that chapter. Every page of these coming chapters will also be filled with self-love and more of it.
63.Talking to like-minded people.
64.Not being ashamed to seek help and admit that I am struggling.
65.Looking for support group and mentor.
No man is an island is a cliché but these cliches aren’t going to be cliches if they don’t mean anything. It is true that no man can survive alone. People will always look for belonging, love and every soul craves to be understood.
Without it, it is hard for one’s suffering to end. I am no different. I have always been searching for belonging and love all my life that I couldn’t help but feel homeless. One thing I have learned is that your tribe, our tribe, is just out there.
Be courageous enough to look for it. Don’t stop until you find it. It makes such huge difference to feel connected.
After honestly stating what my dreams are, I have taken note of the skills that I must learn and I know that I needed to change my mindset.
After getting into the mindset, I started treating every step I am taking and every book I am buying as investment and baby steps to the new lifestyle I have visualized myself having. Online courses are one of them. All I needed is my laptop, internet, patience and self-discipline which I am giving myself daily.
67.Reading success stories.
My self limiting beliefs are still sometimes making me doubt myself and my abilities so I needed to exert extra effort to find something that would tell me that everything I can imagine, I can achieve.
Read also: Interview with Dani from This Village Girl
This is why I love business books, memoirs and personal development books. I love learning what every successful people in my chosen field did to be where they are.
Read also: 10 Books That Dramatically Changed My Life.
68.Incorporate more Fun.
As my self-knowledge increased, I have discovered activities that I enjoy and get my daily dose of fun. For me fun is going to the art supply store, bookstore, library, going to the supermarket, trying baking, photography, walking by the river, reading and just chilling with my boyfriend. I also enjoy writing so I find more time to make them daily.
69.Listening to podcasts
If I am not reading in my commutes, I am tuned in to podcasts. I also listen to them while I clean or do chores and tasks that don’t require full concentration and attention to details.
70.Align,Trust and Slay
I stopped checking numbers, analytics, reports and progress. All I do is check if I am in alignment with what I truly wanted and trust that everything is working fine. Once I feel that I am aligned, I stay on my lane and step the gas. Trust is my word for 2020 and I do trust the universe for whatever plans it has for me.
They say that it is not what you do sometimes that will get you the results you want. It is what you do everyday even if no one is watching.
(photo credit: unsplash.com)