Ten Ordinary Ways To Make Your Life Extraordinary

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Submitted by: Don Tony

Invest $100.00 monthly in the stock market. Save $10.00 weekly toward your dream car. Earn $50.00 extra for that Hawaiian vacation.We all have different priorities when it comes to our money. We read about how to manage and invest our finances; we think about how to make more money. But how many of us take the time to contemplate our investments in ourselves?

Take time, for example. That is, if you have a few seconds. Suppose you dream about writing a book. “I just don’t have the time!” you exclaim. But what if you decide that investing time in that project is a priority? Could you carve out an hour a day towards that goal and invest it in your book?

Or, what if your goal is to lose weight and increase strength or Self-improvement ? “I really need to drop a few pounds and replace them with muscles,” you mutter every time you look in the mirror. You contemplate joining a gym, or meeting with a nutritionist and personal fitness trainer, but debate about whether it’s worth it. Well, ask yourself whether your health is worth it. Ask yourself whether how you feel about yourself is worth it. Ask yourself what price you put on your mental and physical well-being.

You don’t have to be a guru to get benefits from some of the popular new “mind-body” self-improvement health and fitness techniques.People think that mind-body methods are mysterious and complicated, when they are really just the opposite. Mind-body simply means that your mind and body are working together, focusing on the same thing at the same time. It’s about Self-improvement…paying attention in every moment and putting your whole self into everything you do.

Studies have proven that this kind of focus is invaluable to the performance of athletes and that it can be a useful tool for stress management and Self-improvement. Techniques such as meditation, progressive relaxation, yoga and tai chi can help you practice your focus and awareness skills , but there are everyday ways you can start to enjoy mind-body benefits.

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No matter how busy your schedule is, these ten tips can help you bring more awareness, enjoyment and meaning to the everyday things you may take for granted in life.

Top Ten Mind-Body Self-improvement Tips

-Start the day with an affirmation — your favorite positive thought or prayer. Don’t let yourself get out of bed until you’ve done it. Some examples: “I am a strong, healthy, loving person and today’s going to be a wonderful day,” “God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” End your day with an affirmation before you go to sleep.

-When you brush your teeth, only brush your teeth. Keep your thoughts on brushing your teeth. Pay attention to the brush strokes, the taste, the foaminess in your mouth. Be thankful that you are able to brush your teeth, and enjoy the sensuality of it. In doing this, you are beginning the habit of staying in the running moment rather than thinking of ten things at once. Maintain the same awareness when you’re walking your dog, doing the dishes, making the bed, watering your plants.

-At least once during the day while you’re eating, eat slowly & savor of each bites . Pay attentions to the taste & feel of your s food. Feel and Enjoy it to its fullest. This is sometimes called an “eating meditation” and is helpful if tends to eat impulsively or have difficulty making your healthy food selections or choices.

-While you are walking during the day, count your breaths with each step. Be aware of how quickly or slowly you are breathing. Practice breathing deeply from your diaphragm. When you encounter stressful situations, notice your breathing. Take slower, deeper breaths to feel more calm.

-When you find yourself listening to someone during your day, concentrate very hard on what they are saying. Instead of thinking about how you will respond to them, focus all your attention on listening well. Ask questions and indicate that you are very interested in what they have to say. They will appreciate the attention and your relationships will benefit. You will also develop valuable listening and focus skills.

-When you pass mirrors or reflective surfaces, notice how you stand and move. Do you carry yourself with pride? Is your posture good? Pay attention to these things, and not to your perceived physical flaws or whether you look “thin” or “young.” Practice seeing your whole self, with all your unique qualities and abilities.

-While driving, doing housework or other activities, notice how your body feels. Are some of your muscles tense or tight? Are you aware of any pain, discomfort or fatigue? Keep in touch with your body by doing these mini check-ups — and pay attention to the signals your body gives you. Relax unnecessary tensions by imagining that you can breathe into those places that are uncomfortable. Inhale deeply and as you exhale, imagine that you are releasing the tension (in your shoulders, in your stomach, etc.) and “breathe it out.”

-At some point during your day, take time out for stillness. Rest is one of our most important needs and yet we often ignore it completely. Find at least five minutes (20 is better) to allow your body to be absolutely still. You can use this time to meditate, pray or to practice visualization. For example, you can imagine that you are at one of your favorite vacation spots, doing your favorite activity. If you need to, make appointments in your day timer or on your refrigerator calendar for these brief getaways!

-Plan some time into most of your days to let your body enjoy activity – whatever activity is most appealing to you. Walk, run, dance, go horseback riding or cross-country skiing, play tennis or ride a bike. While you are moving, try not to think about what you’re going to have for dinner or what your best friend told you on the phone. Instead, just think about how your body feels as it moves. Focus on your breathing, your heart beating, your limbs moving, your muscles working. Feel the energy, excitement, challenge, playfulness, exhilaration, satisfaction and joy. Put all your attention into your activity.

-Remind yourself to experience the night sky as often as you can. Go out into your back yard and gaze at the stars, open your window and peer at the moon. Make yourself take the time to enjoy life’s natural rhythms and mysteries. Breathe fresh air and savor it. Walk barefoot on the ground, feeling the grass and earth beneath your feet. Listen for the sounds of water flowing, wind rustling, birds chirping. Staying close to nature can help you view life’s stresses with calmness and wisdom.

Having to meet all the needs of your family, your career, your friends and your interests can be challenging. It’s easy to get caught up in the fast pace of our lives But if you just take a little time to step out of the rat race and fully experience some of the moments of each day for your Self-improvement , you’ll feel more in touch emotionally and spiritually. You’ll also get better at renewing your spirits and recharging your energy throughout the day so that you can take challenges in stride.

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