3 Daily Habits That Have Changed My Life






We all have habits – good and bad – that I believe ultimately contribute to our quality of life and happiness. The thing with habits is they stick. And if they are bad, well, that could be a bad thing. BUT! If they are good, well, now we're talking. I feel like the more good habits we acquire, the more control we have of changing our bad ones. Basically, good habits make life easier and that's cool. Like, I always put my keys in the same spot when I enter my apartment so when I am leaving in a rush which occasionally always happens, I am less late than I would have been. 

Where was I? 

Ah! Today I want to share three daily habits that seem simple but have actually changed my life in the biggest and best of ways. I've learned that one small daily repeated task can truly improve every other area of my life and make be a better person. 

MEDITATION

I mention this one first for a reason. It wasn't until I was in the height of my experience with anxiety that I decided to make this a habit. To start, I sat in the middle of my room on the floor and set my alarm to 1 minute. Just one. It was the longest minute of my day. I closed my eyes and sat with myself. Every. Morning. 

Now, I try to do at least 3 minutes per day but it usually ends up being closer to fifteen, and really should be thirty. My meditation sets my tone for the day. It ensures that I give myself a few minutes to just be, to breathe, and to remind myself of what really matters. 



If, for some strange reason, I wasn't able to find time to meditate in the morning, I like to experience meditations throughout my day. It's really about being more mindful in daily tasks such as eating, driving, and speaking to people. Look at your food and savour the taste. Be here, now. Put your phone away. Make eye contact during conversations. Stop what you're doing and take a deep breath, really feel the air filling your rib cage. I think we can all find ways of being meditative in our day. For some, it could be while walking their dog or making dinner. For others it could be taking the long route somewhere and checking out the scenery. 

If you're in Ottawa, come visit me and learn how to meditate here.

SELF-LOVE



Sometimes I find myself feeling angry / resentful / or over-whelmed but can't quite figure out why. And then I ask myself: "Have you laughed enough today? Have you done something purely for enjoyment? Have you had enough FUN today?" And if the answer is "No", then I change that. I do something I enjoy or see someone I love. For me that could be thrift shopping or crocheting, drinking a tea or having a treat, watching TV with my sister or seeing a friend. 

Another aspect to including self-love in my day is inner and outer self-care. On the inside, it's being my own cheerleader – which could be a full-time job, TBH. I constantly challenge the voice in my head that often tells me I can't do something or I am not good enough. I read positive quotes and remind myself that anything is possible. I engage in physical self-care too like exercising, eating healthy foods, taking a bath, painting my nails, and doing yoga. 

GRATITUDE



This is a newish one for me. I think that I used to think I was grateful for everything but it was a mere thought that would surface every once in a while. Mostly in times of great need or tragedy. I come from very humble beginnings and have faced adversity so I've always been grateful in that sense. However, I've recently taken it a step further by recognizing my gratitude for all things on a daily basis. I began including these thoughts in my morning meditation and have found that moments of gratitude now just come to me throughout my day. I now recognize little miracles that happen throughout the day (like drinking a perfect tea, or receiving a compliment, or the gift of giving or helping others, walking through nature and just appreciating how imperfectly perfect trees are, or realizing how gosh darn lucky I am to have a place to live and job and a car and friends and good health – I could go on and on!) 





I think many of us are waiting on amazing, incredible things to just happen out of the blue. And our standards of what these perceived miracles are keep growing out and out of our reach, making them virtually impossible to experience. The truth is there is so much beauty and goodness that happens to us every single day. But if we aren't grateful and aren't able to slow down to see them, we may never. So, I encourage you to open your eyes to the tiny miracles in each day and see how you feel. 


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