Friendship can be Fleeting

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Some friends come, some friends go.  And some friends are there for the long haul.  But sometimes, no matter what you do, the friendship may end.  It could be due to some toxic behaviour from one of you, or it could be a change in one of your lives.

It’s not a matter of loving each other any less, but being willing to understand when a friendship is at it’s end.  Or even recognising when it’s already over and not worth your time to try and save.

Regardless of how a friendship ends, it can sometimes really hurt and be confusing.  So here are a few things to look out for when that fleeting friendship is actually dying a slow death…

It’s exhausting

Spending time with your friends should be fun, exciting, and make you look forward to seeing them again, even when things aren’t going so well.  But if you find you’re coming away from seeing a friend constantly drained, emotionally and physically, it could be that they’re sucking the life right out of you.

Some friends are just emotional vampires, and any time spent together is all about them or their problems.  These people are needy and will latch onto anyone who’ll give them any attention.

Jealous of your happy

Whenever something good is happening in your life, one of the first things anyone wants to do is to share it with their friends.  We all enjoy sharing our happy moments alongside all the rest of it, and a true friend should be happy when something goes well for you, regardless of what is going on in their life.

But if that friend is continually trying to bring you down or is expressing jealousy because their life isn’t going as well as yours, then that’s not someone you want in your corner.  A solid friend should be a cheerleader for your accomplishments (and vice versa) without any thought about their own issues.

Always one-sided

Best_FriendsTruly good friends will always be there for each other through the thick and thin.  They’ll be their cheerleader, a shoulder to cry on, someone they can vent to, and ultimately, their rock.  We all go through tough periods and it’s important to have the right support when you’re going through a bad patch.

But if you find that you’re always listening to your friend’s issues and they aren’t letting you get a word in about what’s going on with you, then perhaps you need to let that selfish friend go.  Same goes if they never ask what’s going on with you (because they’re too busy talking about themselves), or don’t seem to even register what you do say (cause they’re not really listening).

Friendships may teeter back and forth, but ultimately it needs to truly be two-sided.

They put you down

All friends tend to roast each other to an extent.  It’s playful and always meant in good humour, never anything malicious or to purposely put someone down.  But sadly there are those out there who’ll always have something negative to say about you to bring you down.  Perhaps it makes them feel better about themselves, but regardless of why they do it, it’s toxic and they’re a friend you shouldn’t want to keep.

True friends always have your best interest at heart.

Mooches will always mooch

truly caresWe all have that friend who never seems to have any money on them to pay for drinks or dinner, or they say they’ll pay you back for those concert tickets but you never hear another word about it.  It’s one thing if it happens on occasion, but when it’s all the time it can become quite annoying to be chasing after them.

These people may not mean anything bad by it, and sometimes they don’t even realise they’ve done it.  But in the end you can only take so much of these flighty, forgetful friends.  And unfortunately, good luck getting your money back.

They’re overly demanding

It’s one thing to be a bit needy on occasion during a rough patch, but it’s completely different when you try to fully monopolise a friend’s time to the point where they can’t maintain other friendships or relationships.

When a friend is overly possessive, it generally means they’re insecure about your friendship and they’ll allow their jealousy to show.  Some may get so attached that they’ll freak out at the thought of you having other friends (let alone a relationship), and they could even try to sabotage things.

Best thing to do – run away.  Now.

Life moves on

Sometimes a friendship will end solely because life has changed for one or both of you.  People will change and grow over time, or perhaps one of your interests have changed.  It may suck when it happens, but it’s not like there’s a particular thing you can blame it on, as it just happens.  Some people just drift apart.

A lot of the time when this happens, one or both of you will be singing the hymn “We need to catch up soon!”, but it never really happens.  It could be that one of you has found a new social circle, or there’s a new relationship that’s occupying their time, or you no longer live near each other.  It’s just life really.

bad-friends-pic-3It’s ok to feel sad or confused when a friendship ends, but allow yourself the time to get past it.  Understand what changed and then move on.  There is no point dwelling on something that has already happened and can’t be changed.

This post has been influenced by – http://www.thelist.com/17938/tell-friendship/

Turning Your Life Around

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No matter what your age, there is always something you’d love to change or improve upon.  It could something to do with your career or your personal life, or even just something like quitting smoking or loosing a bit of weight.

Regardless of what it is you’d like to change, and regardless if it’s a massive or small change, it can be daunting to set up and get started.  This could be because we all get bogged down in the little details, and allow ourselves to be overwhelmed by what we’d need to do to get started.

Below is a timeless short list worth working on regardless of the goal in mind.

Stay in the Present

Let’s be realistic – the future is a wild and unimaginable entity that nobody can truly predict how things will turn out.  You’d have to be a truly gifted psychic to predict every single little bump and pitfall that’ll occur in your life in order to be 100% prepared for what life throws at us.

Instead of spending all your free time fretting over what may happen and trying to over-plan every step along the way, why not live in the present and enjoy life as it happens right now.  Stop worrying that you don’t have a 5-year plan and allow yourself to enjoy deal with the successes and pitfalls of everyday life.

The little successes you have now can potentially have a massive impact on your future, and ultimately lead your life in a totally different direction than you’d have predicted.

Enjoy Your Trip

life-is-a-journey-1We’ve all been there – focusing so much on the end goal that we’ve forgotten to enjoy the journey along the way.  As healthy as it is to have a goal in mind, it’s how we get there that truly makes that goal all the more worth it because of what we’ve gone through to get there.

Perhaps it’s a matter of hitting certain milestones along the way that make it worth it, or the physical or psychological changes we see in ourselves over time.  Whatever it is, enjoy the little things in life along the way.. and remember to take pictures.  😉

Everyone Takes the Easy Route

For something in your life to truly make a lasting impact, don’t allow yourself to take the easy route as that is basically allowing yourself a cop-out.  If you spend your entire life just reaching for the easiest and simplest goals, then your journey won’t necessarily take you very far.  Taking the easy options is being lazy.

Instead, try something new and difficult.  Reach for something you never in a million years thought you’d ever try or achieve.  Master a new skill.  Move countries.  Start a business.  Write a book.  Obviously, start off small, but the more you get used to achieving a slightly harder goal, the easier it’ll be to go for that big goal in the long run.

Plus, those harder goals?  They make the journey of life move along at a much more interesting rate than taking the easy route.  And more exciting too.

Trust Your Instincts

failure-quoteDon’t allow yourself to be bogged down in the uncertainties of life.  If you do, then you’ll never achieve those slightly harder goals from above.. or even try to begin with.

Let’s be frank – life is a risk worth taking, and if you’re allowing yourself to be held back from the unknown of what will happen next, then you’ll never truly live or know what could be possible.  And that potentially could be worse than if you’d taken the risk and tried in the first place.

Because if you’d at least tried and still failed, you’ve already achieved something because when you try again you’ll be even more ready for anything that comes up. So go for it already.

Nurture Positive Relationships

We’ve all heard it before, about how we need to cut out the negative people in our lives in order to lead a more positive and success life, be it personally or professionally.  But yet we all still allow those negative influences into our lives without meaning to because we still haven’t learned how to spot the rotten apples.

An entire post could be made up on this topic alone, but in the end it’s all about recognising those who’ll be nurturing and encouraging for your life goals along the way.  You want to surround yourself with people who’ll be willing to put the heart back into your life instead of sucking it out.  People who’ll go out of their way to help you because they want to, not because they expect something in return.

For now though, here’s a good read on how to meet the right people.

In the end, it’s your life and your journey.  It’s not a race or a competition.  So why not enjoy it to the absolute max while you’re on it, and share it with those who truly deserve to be along for the journey.

This article was inspired by: 5 Timeless Ways to Turn Your Life Around at Any Age

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Stop Absorbing Other People’s Negative Energy

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Like most people, I tend to be a bit of an emotional sponge when it comes to other people’s energies.  Perhaps I unwittingly mirror their attitude or demeanour on a subconscious level, allowing myself to be sucked into their negativity.

As well, I think I can at times project my own bad mood on others, causing them to come down to my level.  It’s something I try hard to not let happen, but sometimes it just does.

Ultimately we all need to do our best to find ways to maintain our own positivity, while shielding yourself from the negativity bombarding you from all around.

Take responsibility for yourself.

It’s ways too easy to fall into someone else’s negative attitude and allow it to wash over you.  For instance, who hasn’t had a co-worker who’s constantly berating everything around them – job, company, workload, boss, etc.  And as they spew their negative views, you want to be support by listening or giving them some advise, but next thing you know you’ve joined them on their downward spiral.

Only you can and should be able to control how you’re feeling at any given moment.  As often as we get testing by life around us, you need to make a conscious decision to not allow that negativity impact you, your life or your attitude.  It may not always be easy, but it’ll be worth it longterm.

Just Breathe.

fresh airThere’s a reason people will tell you to take a deep breath when you’re feeling frustrated or upset about something.  Just the act of breathing itself can be very therapeutic, and can help you clear out the negative energy that has affected your mood.

The best thing you can do when the negativity is creeping up on you is to stop what you’re doing or thinking, sit back, and take a nice big deep breath, and then slowly let all of it go.  Sometimes you may need to change locations before doing so, and that’s ok.  Get a bit of fresh air and allow it to revitalise your energy.

Ignore It.

NEGATIVEGenerally when a negative person is going on about who horrible things are, all they’re really doing is looking for an audience to bring down with them.  For some it may be intentional, but others may not realise they’re doing it.

They literally are looking for someone to absorb their negativity, so why give them the satisfaction?

We all know negative people will continue to be that way no matter what you say to them, so why not just ignore them.  It’ll pop their balloon in a way, and allow you to get on with your day.

You can’t make everyone happy.

If someone constantly complains about their life or whatnot, then all they’re really looking for is someone to bring down to their level not for you to help them work through their issue, realistic or not.

Ultimately you can’t make everyone happy.  Really, you can’t, no matter how hard you try.  When you give into these attention-seekers, you allowing yourself to get sucked in and allowing them to attack your own positive energy.

You need to work at maintaining your own upbeat attitude, and not allow these negative people waylay you from your own happiness.

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This post was inspired by: 4 Ways To Stop Absorbing Other People’s Negative Energy

7 Ways to Clear Your Mind of Negative Thoughts

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Like anyone, I have a very bad habit of thinking negatively about myself and my life in general.  It’s one of those things where you don’t realise you’re doing it until it’s too late, and those bad thoughts have already set root in your mind.

These thoughts tend to linger and it’s difficult to stop thinking about them.  And trying to resist them could potentially reinforce that thought pattern to the point where it makes it worse.

Like anything, the more you try to not think about something, the more you actually linger on it.  At least it seems that way for me.

So how do we change this negative pattern?  It’s not easy, but here are a few things to try.

Change your body language

foldedarmsGot a frown permanently etched on your face?  Are you slouching or just shuffling along as you walk down the street?  Maybe these are signs you’ve got some negativity bouncing around that noggin of yours.

How you present yourself not only projects a more positive outlook to others, but it can also improve your confidence and overall emotional state.

And the more you project that positivity out into the world, the more likely you’ll receive it back from others and the better you’ll feel about yourself.

Talk it out

Let’s be honest – the more you hold things in, the worse you’ll end up feeling about it.  However if you put into words what you’re feeling, you’re more likely to be able to work through your thoughts and feelings to find a possible resolution for what’s going on at that moment.

Allow yourself to put things into perspective through an honest and open discussion with someone you can talk to.  Their point of view may help you look at things in a different light and come at whatever is bothering your from a different angle.

Calm your mind

When your brain is running at a million miles a minute, it makes it extremely difficult to keep up and even harder to control the negative thoughts in your head.

So slow it down before tackling the issues at hand.  Empty your mind of the negativity, meditate if necessary, and reboot your thoughts to allow in the positivity that will move you past where you are at that moment.

Change the tone of your thoughts

It may sound simplistic, but by wording things in a more positive manner, it can help change your perspective.  Your point of view of things around you is bound to impact how you react to things, so try a positive spin instead.

Instead of telling yourself ‘Life is shit right now’, try instead ‘I’m feeling challenged at the moment, but am working towards a solution’.  It’s basically the same thing, but sometimes that shift in tone can do wonders for your perspective.

Opposite-Positive-ThinkingBe creative

When you’re feeling those negative thoughts come on, why not spend some time doing something creative?  You don’t have to be creating a masterpiece landscape or writing that epic novel, but just the act of being creative in some way can be very cathartic and help you move past the negativity.

For instance, if you’re into writing (like on a blog perhaps lol), get the words out on paper and write your way through the negativity.  It’ll help you work through whatever you’re thinking while giving you a bit of self-therapy to lift up your mood.

It basically helps clear the cobweb-like negative thoughts from your head.

Take a walk

Negative thinking isn’t just about what’s going on in your head, but it can also be due to the environment around you.  For instance, if you’re unhappy at home but you never leave the house, you’ll never be able to get away from the negativity itself.

Get your butt off the couch and go for a walk.  Or go to a park to relax amongst nature.  Or go check out a neighbourhood you’ve never been to before.  Whatever works for you to help clear your head and get yourself away from the negative spiral you’d surrounded yourself with.

And hopefully it’ll allow you to gain some perspective on things so when you do go home you’ll do so with a more positive outlook on things.

Be grateful for what you have in life

Sometimes it’s too easy to focus on what you don’t have instead of what you do have.  It’s way to easy to lose perspective on your life and focus on the negativity.

be gratefulEasier said than done, you need to retrain your brain and thoughts to look at the good things going on around you instead of the bad.  So why not take a few moments to list off those things you’re grateful for in your life?

Sometimes the best things happening to us are right in front of our faces and we still fail to see them.

So open up your eyes and see the positivity around you and enjoy it.

This post was inspired by the article –>> 7 Ways to Clear Your Mind of Negative Thoughts – Pick the Brain | Motivation and Self Improvement.

19 Signs You’re Doing Better than You Think

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All too often, we get caught up in our day to day lives and worry about what’s to come.  We worry about money, our love or social lives, work, school, and all sorts of other things that cause us anxiety on a daily basis.

positive or negativeBut is this the truth about life?  Is all this focusing on the negative aspects of our lives really getting us anywhere?

I found this list over on http://www.marcandangel.com, and reading through the list makes me think about my own life and what I truly should be grateful for.  I’ve posted the list in it’s entirety for you.

Obviously not everything on the list will apply to everyone, but I think by the end of it you’ll get the drift.

  1. You are alive.
  2. You are able to see the sunrise and the sunset.
  3. You are able to hear birds sing and waves crash.
  4. You can walk outside and feel the breeze through your hair and the sun’s warmth on your skin.
  5. You have tasted the sweetness of chocolate cake.
  6. You didn’t go to sleep hungry last night.
  7. You awoke this morning with a roof over your head.
  8. You had a choice of what clothes to wear.
  9. You haven’t feared for your life today.
  10. You have overcome some considerable obstacles, and you have learned and survived.
  11. You often worry about what you’re going to do with your life – your career, your family, the next step, etc. – which means you have ambition, passion, drive, and the freedom to make your own decisions.
  12. You live in a country that protects your basic human rights and civil liberties.
  13. You are reasonably strong and healthy – if you got sick today, you could recover.
  14. You have a friend or relative who misses you and looks forward to your next visit.
  15. You have someone with whom to reminisce about ‘the good old days.’
  16. You have access to clean drinking water.
  17. You have access to medical care.Feeling-Positive-after-Bariatric-Surgery
  18. You have access to the Internet.
  19. You can read.

The truth is, you’re doing better than a lot of people in this world.  So remember to be grateful for all the things you do have.  (Read The Happiness Project.)

Here’s the link to the original article: 19 Signs You’re Doing Better than You Think.

20 Things Mentally Strong People DON’T Do

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As someone who tends to focus on the negative too much and reminisce on how things used to be, I tend to find articles online that give advice on how to be more positive or happy about life in general, and then repost them here for all of you to read.. And as a way to hopefully motivate myself to be happier with my life.

I know it’s never a good thing to focus on the bad stuff, but sometimes it’s not that easy to get out of that funk once you’re in it.

Well recently I found an article on Elitedaily.com that gives some advise on what to avoid in order to ‘produce the greatest benefit in the shortest period of time’ (visit the original article by clicking the link at the bottom of the page).

I’ve copied them directly from the article for you to read through yourself.. The author’s explanations are very apt and on the mark, so no point in rehashing something already done well.

1. Dwelling On The Past

Mentally strong individuals focus on the present moment and on the near future. They understand that the past is out of our control and the far future is about as predictable as the weather this winter.

2. Remaining In Their Comfort Zone

The comfort zone is a dangerous place, a dark abyss where anyone who remains there for too long loses his or herself entirely. Staying within your comfort zone is giving up on life.

3. Not Listening To The Opinions Of Others

Only the foolish believe themselves to be sufficient in all regards. When it comes to brainstorming, ideas can’t so much be forced as they can be caught. A good idea is a good idea, regardless of whether or not you came up with it. Don’t let your ego get the better of you; if someone has great advice to give, take it.

4. Avoiding Change

What the mentally strong understand that the mentally weak do not is that change is unavoidable. Trying to avoid the inevitable is pointless. Therefore, trying to avoid change is pointless; it’s a mere waste of time and energy.

5. Keeping A Closed Mind

You don’t know everything. Even the things you believe yourself to know are likely to not be entirely true. If you keep a closed mind, you are preventing yourself from learning new material. If you stop learning, you stop living.

6. Letting Others Make Decisions For Them

Only you should be making your own decisions; you can’t allow others to make them for you. All this does is shift the responsibility from you to someone else, but the only person failing in the end is you. If you don’t have the courage to fail, then you don’t have the courage to succeed.

7. Getting Jealous Over The Successes Of Others

When others succeed, you should be happy. If they can do it, so can you. The success of others does not, in any way, lessen the chances of you succeeding. If anything, it should motivate you to keep pushing forward.

8. Thinking About The High Possibility Of Failure

Our thoughts control our perspective; our perspective controls our results. The mentally strong understand this and use this to their advantage. There’s always the chance you may fail, but as long as there is the chance you may succeed, it’s worth trying.

9. Feeling Sorry For Themselves

Sh*t happens. Life can be hard. People get hurt; others die. Life isn’t all roses and butterflies. You will fall off that horse again and again and again. The question is, are you strong enough to keep getting back on it?

10. Focusing On Their Weaknesses

Although working on our weaknesses does have its benefits, it’s more important to focus on banking on our strengths. The most well-rounded person is not the person that gets the furthest in life. Being average in all regards makes you average. However, mastering a certain skillset or trait will allow you to beat the competition with less effort.

11. Trying To Please People

A job well done is a job well done, no matter who is judging the final product. You can’t please everybody, but you can always manage to do your very best.

12. Blaming Themselves For Things Outside Their Control

The mentally strong know the things they can control, understand the things they cannot control, and avoid even thinking about that which is completely out of their hands.

13. Being Impatient

Patience isn’t just a virtue; it is the virtue. Most people don’t fail because they aren’t good enough, or aren’t capable of winning or succeeding. Most people fail because they are impatient and give up before their time has come.

14. Being Misunderstood

Communication is key in any properly functioning system. When it comes to people, things get a bit more complicated. Simply stating information is never enough; if the receiving party misunderstands you, your message is not being properly relayed. The mentally strong do their best to be understood and have the patience to clear up misunderstandings.

15. Feeling Like You’re Owed

You aren’t owed anything in life. You were born; the rest is up to you. Life doesn’t owe you anything. Others don’t owe you anything. If you want something in life, you only owe it to yourself to go out and get it. In life, there are no handouts.

16. Repeating Mistakes

Make a mistake once, okay. Make a mistake twice… not so okay. Make the same mistake a third time, you may need to consider giving up alcohol and drugs. You’re either stupid or permanently high.

17. Giving Into Their Fears

The world can be a scary place. Some things frighten us with good cause, but most of our fears are illogical. If you know that you want to try something, try it. If you’re scared, then understand that being scared of failing must mean that succeeding means a whole lot to you.

18. Acting Without Calculating

The mentally strong know better than to act before completely understanding the situation at hand. If you have time to ponder over something and cover all your bases, then do so. Not doing so is pure laziness.

19. Refusing Help From Others

You’re not Superman; you can’t do it all. Even if you can, why should you? If others are offering to help, let them help. Be social. Listen to their ideas and watch how they do things. You may learn something. If not, then you can teach them something and do what humans are meant to do: socialize.

20. Throwing In The Towel

The biggest weakness in all of humanity is giving up — calling it quits, throwing in the towel. The mentally strong go about things in such a way. Only do things if they are important to you; forget the things that aren’t important to you. If they’re important to you, then pursue them until you succeed. No exceptions, ever.

Find the original article here: 20 Things That Mentally Strong People Don’t Do.

7 Easy Ways to Improve a Bad Day | Successify!

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Let’s be honest – we all have bad days, and sometimes there just seems like there’s nothing we can do to improve it.  And no matter how many times our friends or coworkers tell us to ‘Cheer up already!’, things just don’t seem to get better…miserable-man if anything, they can sometimes get worse.

Now the peeps over on Successify! have come up with 7 Easy Ways to Improve a Bad Day, which in turn I believe they got from Geoffrey James at Inc. Magazine.  It’s always good to share, right? 😀

So here’s my take on their steps.. and if you want to see the original post, please click the link at the bottom of the page.

1. Remember that the past does not equal the future.

It’s quite easy when you’re having a string of negative things occurring in your life for your brain automatically create some sort of pattern that you easily fall into.  Reminiscing is fine and all, but not when it affects how you deal with things in the here and now.

I know I sometimes get stuck in a rut by repeating past events to the point where I’m not sure if I would know how to deal with things any other way.  And that’s kinda sad.

2. Refuse to make self-fulfilling prophesies. 

Just like the first point, by believing you’re having a bad day and that the rest of the day won’t get any better, then it won’t.  A bad mood can easily take over your day and colour the rest of it black.stop1

It’s the same with anything in life – dating, job hunting, finding love, saving money, losing weight, etc – if you already believe you’ve been defeated, then you’ll continue to do so.

It’s much easier to deal with things by not dealing with them and continue with how you’re already living your life.  But let’s be honest, will that truly get you anywhere?

3. Get a sense of proportion.

We’ve all had times when something slightly bad has happened in our lives where we somehow blow it out of proportion.  The saying to ‘not sweat the small stuff’ is completely accurate and after awhile that ‘horrible event’ will just fade into the past, and hopefully you’ll be able to laugh about how silly you were later on.  If you remember it at all.

4. Change your threshold for “good” and “bad.”

Perhaps we all need to change how we view things that happen in our lives.  It’s quite easy to say ‘keep positive’ without some kind of guideline of what makes a good day.  Obviously is something truly horrible happens, like you’ve been mugged and they drain your bank account, you can be justified to be sad about it.  It’s more about not taking too many little things to heart.

5. Improve your body chemistry.

This isn’t always an easy thing for some people, but by taking a walk or making yourself a healthy dinner, it can vastly improve your mood.  Let’s be honest, we all feel better after we’ve done something good for ourselves, despite the desire to give ourselves a ‘treat’ to make ourselves feel better.naked yoga

I know for me personally, this is something I need to do more often and break the cycle of being so sedentary.  I need to put down the remote, close the laptop (except when writing for you lovely people, of course lol), and just get out there more.

Not necessarily to exercise or lose weight per se, but just to be out more, as that could bring all sorts of new opportunities to meet interesting new people and have some kind of excitement in my life.  And get back into going to social groups like the (naked) massage classes I used to go to.

(And yes, I’ve actually been invited to a naked yoga class.. Not sure I’m quite ready to be that open and social just yet.  😉 )

6. Focus on what’s going well.

We’ve all been there.  There’s loads of good stuff going on in your life, but you focus on the one little thing that isn’t so great.  It’s always been easier to look for the negatives in life instead of the positives.  I know I do this without meaning to.  Sure, I’ve got a job but because it’s not the job I’d like to have or at the level I was at before my redundancy, I sometimes can’t help but focus on where I’m not instead of where I am.

I suppose the best thing you can do when you’re starting to feel down about something in your life is to make a list of all the positives and negatives happening at the moment.  You might just be surprised which list has more entries.

7. Expect something wondrous.

I suppose this is mostly about looking at things happening around you with an open mind and a sense of wonder.  To look at life like it’s an adventure and to look forward to each new experience.  child-with-look-of-wonderHell, perhaps even to look forward to each repeated experience and to find something new in it each time.

Sometimes it seems easier to just look at things with a defeatist attitude that can lead to other things, like depression or social anxiety.  I know I do, and it’s something I struggle with on a daily basis.  It’s sometime seems easier to just give up on trying to go for something good in life and just allow yourself to bog down in the sludge of dreariness.

Here’s to trying to find a more positive outlook on life and living more in the world in 2014.  🙂

Click HERE to read the original post