We stay in a world where we need to meet everyday demands which are often growing. Hence, a person needs to be healthy both, physically and mentally. Our functioning should be smooth not only at the workplace but also in the other areas of our life be it social, personal, academic, etc. There is an ideal way of leading a mentally mature life, and the following points may help you grow stronger in that direction.
1. Control your thoughts: Be the dam for your thoughts that run like a river. The hardest battle of your life is always going to be with yourself. When faced with a decision-making situation, people often tend to worry about what will happen if and end up having too many thoughts. This is a natural human tendency since you do not want to take a wrong decision and end up paying for it later. A situation can have any unexpected outcome. Hence, one needs to understand that no matter how much you deliberate, you will never be fully prepared even if you know what is going to happen. Might as well be mentally prepared to deal with whatever comes next.
2. Learn to take things with a pinch of salt: You will have people all around you that talk and think and act differently than you do. You may sometimes, dislike what they think, act, or do. It is okay to dislike them or their actions. But, imagine if you are surrounded by people whom you dislike all the time and all you can talk about is how much you disagree with them. You are going to start feeling irritable and negative towards most of the things around you.
You need to understand that everyone comes with different wiring. Your emotions, thoughts, and actions towards a certain situation, are an outcome of things learned and unlearned in the past that you may or may not even be aware of. At such times, try to understand the perception of the opposite person. People might be mean or rude towards you. They might say something condescending, that might hurt you. Here, you might want to consider that as a faulty perception of theirs rather than taking it personally. Easier said than done, to let go of what mean things people say for or about you but if inculcated as a regular practice, it may prove to be healthy in the long run.
3. Expect the least and be the happiest: Most of our emotions like anger, hurt, sadness, and disgust generally come from expectations of a certain kind of response or outcome that does not materialize as per plan. Want to get rid of such upsetting emotions? Try letting go of the expectations for these situations. No expectations, no negative reaction on their not being met. You can stay away from a negative emotion simply by expecting less. Reducing ‘shoulds’ or ‘musts’ from your sentences can be important.
4. Be goal-oriented: When you have a goal in your life, you have direction. Imagine being in a body where there is no sense of where to head next. The moment you have something to look forward to, your emotions significantly turn positive and you actually subconsciously start walking closer to your goals. While having a goal makes life simpler and hopeful, bear in mind that the goal should be realistic and have a rational perspective. Having a goal that is not necessarily time-bound would make a lot of difference in the attainment of it.
5. Know yourself better: It is often observed in Counselling that the moment one understands oneself or gets a thorough self-insight, half of his issues are resolved. This generally happens because we live in a fast-paced life where mindfulness of, being in the moment and living it, isn’t practiced much. Multitasking makes us forget that our mind and body are constantly giving us signals that we do not perceive as important and we overlook them. The moment your counselor makes you aware and get in touch with yourself, you start living your life much positively mentally, physically, and emotionally.
6. Use the ‘I’ more often: How often have we communicated our emotions towards someone by saying things like, ‘I am angry because she insulted me’ or ‘I am upset because I was embarrassed by that man’. What you need to understand here is that your emotions are wholly your responsibility. The moment you start learning to have control over them, you will not be feeling the same even if someone did something that made you angry or upset. Nobody is responsible for evoking the emotions you have in you. Your emotions are the outcome of your own thought process and your cognition. Hence, every time you feel an uncomfortable emotion, you should take responsibility for them by saying, ‘I am angry because I am feeling insulted due to my over expectation’ or ‘I am upset because I felt embarrassed as I had a certain kind of perception.’Simply put, the moment you start blaming someone for something bad happening to you; you are bound to feel even more upset about the whole scenario. Accept that the power resides in you. Understanding that you are the only person who is in charge of what can and cannot happen to you can make you feel good every single day. You will feel in control and can avoid these uncomfortable emotions.
7. Stop self-Pity: The moment you start pitying yourself and telling yourself how miserable you are or your life has been, you take away that control that you have over yourself. You tell yourself constantly that nothing is changing or will change. It is absolutely okay to not be okay. As a counselor, I believe in the statement and I believe that one must stay and feel with the emotion even if it is uncomfortable. Rather than pushing it away, it is the best way of dealing with emotions and moving on. But when you wallow in self-pity, you are actually loathing yourself by discarding the good that you have in you. You start looking at people’s lives and compare them with your own and feel terrible and stuck because you don’t see your life going anywhere. When such things happen, the best and the only way to get through it is to start looking gratefully towards what you already have and seeing how you can expand those in order to get where you want to be. These are only a few pointers which if inculcated may make you feel more mature and satisfied mentally.
Changing your attitude towards life in the ways described above is the best way to deal with most of your other issues too.