“If there was one thing you could do that would improve your attitude, your mental health and even your physical health would you want to know what it is? Would you do it? Are you interested in maximizing your potential and the quality of your life? If you are please read on.
In my last blog I emphasized recognizing, acknowledging and appreciating your strengths, talents and abilities. Celebrate you good points and your strong ones. This is important for a couple of reasons.
Search Ask Questions
Your mental search and discovery is extremely useful. When you set your mind to look for the positive things about you you will find them. This is precisely why asking better quality positive questions is so important. It is why I have recommended Directed Questions™ for so many years.
Unfortunately, many, if not most people, look for the negative. Don’t worry you will find those as well if you bother to look. Your mind will deliver whatever you focus on and it will deliver multiple examples. Birds of a feather flock together is a useful reminder.
It comes up with more that one answer because part of the way the mind works is by association. It finds relevant, similar examples to deliver. So you want good taste to prevail. You want to be smart about what you search for. Search for what you want to find.
When you search for positive, strengths and abilities you will find them. If you are one of the few who can’t seem to remember many examples at first just keep looking. Keep asking ‘what am I good at?’ ‘what is something else I am good at’ or ‘what other things am I good at?’ Continue to probe and to prod and the answers will soon come.
Reflect And Review
Think about how you interact with people. What you do in the form of activities, work and play? Where you spend time? What you know or are knowledgeable about? Sometimes finding the answers comes from adjusting the question or a word.
For those who think, I am not good at anything (because their use of good represents too high of a standard) they may have to first think about those things they do well at or just better than other things. You may have to keep asking in different ways. In actual use getting answers back from your own brain is pretty darn easy. Keep asking!
Focus on the type of answers you want. What you excel at or in. These constitute resources you have from your past. They are your strong points that you can apply in your present or future. They are things about yourself to celebrate and appreciate. They are part of you and your history. They are your present and your future too.
Remembering and counting these as blessings can help you feel better and be more positive because you focus on your strengths. You set your mind thinking along intentional productive lines. You are more positive because you can find examples in your own history of things you succeed at or accomplish well.
Realize And Recognize
Discover the many different areas you have strengths in and the many additional strengths you have yet to realize. Then keep doing it. Keep doing it. Search, find, recognize, validate and celebrate!
The way to stay more youthful, have more fun, feel better, think better and clearer is to keep learning new things. Learning is the key. It is the answer! When you set out to learn something you establish a purpose or goal. Stay a perpetual learner. It keeps you healthier!
Do you want to be able to ski, to sew, to sell, to speak better. Whatever you want to learn you start off with no ability or not knowing how. You negotiate a learning curve all the while practicing or playing. As you continue you learn to get better or even good at it. You have set a goal and a direction to travel in. Then you traveled.
This is beneficial for many reasons. When you learn new things you have to engage in new behaviors, new thoughts, new ways and different ways of understanding. You need to create new neural pathways. You add newness to your existing skill base.
Celebrate And Delight Be Happy
You actually grow your brain capacity by adding to the neural networks. As you learn and incorporate new abilities and overcome new challenges you keep your brain healthier because the brain loves challenges. It likes puzzles and things to do. It thrives on novelty and being used. You know the saying, use it or lose it.
Use your brain! Use your body to learn a variety of new things. Dedicate yourself to picking up new skills and talents. Have fun discovering other things you may enjoy doing and learning about. Read about them yes, but don’t just read about them get up and out and do them. Consider learning new things you never considered before. Learn on your own and with others. Take classes, get involved. Meet others!
Research has demonstrated that just learning fine finger motor skills such as playing keyboard and stringed instruments, or even finger movement exercises does much to improve overall cognition, keep the brain young and prevent dementia. Exercise and sports contribute to overall well-being and physical health when done properly. Learn new things to do! Get positive mental, emotional and physical stimulation.
Learn to sing, play piano, paint, ski, draw, act, or dance. Sit down and write a play, a script a novel. Learn computer programming or gaming. Take up filmmaking, photography, sports, biking, yoga, any form of art or crafts. Go for Formula 1 driving lessons. ANYTHING! Try crossword puzzles and board games like chess. Challenge yourself. There is so much to choose from. Never limit yourself! Get a coach or mentor!
Keep Learn New Skills Add To Your Strengths
You do not have to go skydiving. Certainly, you can but this isn’t about risk. It is about learning a new ability and adding it to your behavior repertoire. See my previous blogs about adding novelty to your daily routine. Your brain loves novelty. Spice up your days add in novelty. Do things a new and different way. Challenge yourself.
When you have a youthful brain, a positively focused brain, a happier you, you feel and act and behave healthier. You can be healthier too! When you align yourself mentally, emotionally, spiritually you align physically too. Of course, learning to do healthy things and incorporate these into your daily routine helps as well.
Practice well being in mind, body and soul. Every day allows you the opportunity to learn or practice something. Each day you can discover new ways to improve yourself and others. Continue to learn, grow and develop yourself and you can find so much more to be joyous and excited about.
It gives you something to look forward to. So look to your passions. Try things out. Explore and adventure for new things to add into your behavioral repertoire and you knowledge base. Have fun, skip, sing, dance, doodle, and enjoy finding out more of what you are good at. A flower either grows and blooms or withers and dies. Keep growing!” Rex Sikes
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*Horizons photo used with permission of Phil Koch.
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