5 Ways To Be A Better Version Of You This Fall. Even in my worst moments of self-doubt, I’ve never wanted to be someone else. I’m grateful for so many things…my children…The Todd…our amazing new job. But I have always wanted to be more. Do you feel like that? That if you could just be like the 2.0 version of you, you could be so much happier?
There’s some amazing tricks that therapists and life coaches use to help their clients move to this new and improved version of themselves. I wrote down these five for my Vision Board. Why don’t you try them too, and we’ll compare notes in a month of two.
5 Ways To Be A Better Version Of You This Fall
1. Hold That Hug. Nervous about looking like a Long Hugger? Admittedly, no one likes that creepy guy at the office party who just won’t let go. But there’s new research showing that especially for women, hugs are heart-healthy. You need a good 20 seconds for those levels of oxytocin (your happy hormone) to rise and blood pressure to drop. Remember you’re giving the gift of those happy hormones to the hug-ee too.
2. Pick An Argument And Let It Go. I’ve been writing for a national magazine, and it’s from a position that’s new to me and not always comfortable. I get a lot of heat from readers. I don’t think it’s deserved, and I waste a lot of time trying to defend myself and getting upset. I finally realized where that 5 day headache is coming from. Duh. I’ve resolved to write the articles, watch them publish, then walk away. It’s easy to fall into that trap with lovers, co-workers or anonymous snarkers online that surely, surely if you can simply overwhelm them with logic and facts, they’ll slap their forehead and and gasp “you’re right! I get it now!” It’s not going to happen. Be the one to let it go.
3. Spend Ten Minutes A Day Make Your Space Tidy. Maybe it’s your desk. Your cubicle. The comfy chair and table where you stack your books and magazines and your cup of tea. A visually serene space filled with easily-found items makes all the difference in an streesed mindset. Put out things you find beautiful or inspiring to look at: a favorite photo, a piece of jewelry with a wonderful memory. Then neatly store everything else. Tomorrow, spend ten minutes on the spot where you put on your makeup. Or where you sleep.
4. Choose How You Want To Feel. Does your 2.0 version radiate happiness and confidence? Then consciously choose to feel that way. It sounds simplistic, I know. But in the book “The Happiness Project” author Gretchen Rubin says “Act the way you want to feel.” It’s actually a conscious effort and will take a while to make a habit. But all the subtle changes come into play. You walk with your head up. Your smile is brighter and more spontaneous. Little irritating things that would make you brood for a week brush off with a laugh.
5. Have More Conversations With Strangers. That’s pretty much my job, so this one isn’t hard for me. I genuinely love hearing people’s life story. I’m fascinated with the choices they made, and why. But I know it’s a big stretch for a lot of us. But this is a big one: in the book “Listening With Empathy,” researchers stress that the more we reach out to others, the less imposing and heavy our problems become. Our understanding of life and the differences and commonalities between us all become stronger. And never underestimate the pleasure of making someone else’s day. How many times have you felt flattered and more confident when someone showed a genuine interest in you? Start small; maybe the cashier at your market or your bus driver.
What suggestions would you add to this list? I’d love to hear your ideas.