11 Inspirational Quotes for Keeping a Positive Attitude

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

Having a positive attitude doesn’t mean you always walk around with your head in the clouds; it just means that you approach unpleasant situations in a more productive and positive way. Some benefits of keeping a positive attitude (most of the time) are:

  • An increased life span
  • Lower levels of distress
  • Better coping skills during difficult and stressful times

Since October is Positive Attitude Month, here are a few quotes to remind you to try to stay positive and look on the bright side:

  1. “Bombard your subconscious with a constant stream of positive thoughts, words, and pictures. Keep your goal in front of you at all times.” – Che Garman
  2. “It takes but one positive thought, when given a chance to survive and thrive, to overpower an entire army of negative thoughts.” – Robert H. Schuller
  3. “Positive thoughts keep you in harmony with the universe.” – Dr. Wayne Dyer
  4. “Decide to be happy, knowing it’s an attitude, a habit gained from daily practice, and not a result or payoff.” – Denis Waitely
  5. “Change your thoughts and you change your world.” – Norman Vincent Peale
  6. “Your choices of action may be limited, but your choices of thought are not.” – Abraham-Hicks
  7. “If you absolutely can’t stay positive, don’t go negative, just cruise neutral for a while until you can get back up.” – Terri Guillemets
  8. “Start each day by affirming peaceful, contented, and happy attitudes and your days will tend to be pleasant and successful.” – Norman Vincent Peale
  9. “It is only possible to live happily ever after on a daily basis.” – Margaret Bonanno
  10. “Happiness is there for the taking — and making.” – Oprah
  11. “True happiness is an acceptance of life as it is given to us; with its diminishment, mystery, uncontrollability, and all.” – Michael Gilbert
Photo Credit: Eric Reisenberger (123rf.com)

#CalmTip: October 20th, 2015

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

Not only is meditation an awesome way to create more calm, it also cultivates a consistent sense of inner peace and decreases your tendency to worry. You don’t need anything special to meditate; your stillness and breath are all that are really necessary. If you’re ready to begin your practice, learn more about the Meditation Mentor audio.

“In the rush and noise of life, as you have intervals; step home within yourselves and be still.” – William Penn

7 Ways to Improve Your Emotional Wellness

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

According to the University of California (Davis), emotional wellness “involves the awareness, understanding, and acceptance of our feelings.” It’s a key element in maintaining a healthy balance in our lives and our relationships.

Of course, maintaining emotional wellness has its benefits: It can lead to success in work, relationships, and health. When you’re emotionally healthy, you’re also in control of your emotions and behavior; you’re better able to handle life’s challenges, you develop strong relationships, and are able to rebound from setbacks.

Being emotionally healthy also means you have:

  • A sense of contentment
  • A zest for living and are able to laugh and have fun
  • The ability to deal with stress
  • A sense of meaning and purpose (in both your activities and your relationships)
  • The flexibility to learn new things and adapt to change
  • A healthy balance between work and play, rest and activity, etc.
  • The ability to develop and maintain fulfilling relationships
  • Self-confidence and high self-esteem

How to Improve Emotional Wellness

Just like you work to improve your physical health and wellness, you should work on bettering your emotional wellness as well. In fact, taking care of your body is a great first step towards emotional health since, of course, the mind and body are linked. Exercise strengthens your heart and lungs while also releasing endorphins, a chemical that energizes us and lifts our moods. Other ways you can take care of your body (and by extension, your mind) include getting enough sleep and eating well.

And here are seven ways you can improve your emotional wellness:

  1. Learn or discover something new. You could take an adult education class, travel somewhere new (it doesn’t have to be far), or visit a museum.
  2. Enjoy art or nature. Check out a local art show, or take a walk through your neighborhood or a park.
  3. Manage your stress levels, and limit unhealthy mental habits like worrying. Practicing mindfulness and meditating are great ways to lower stress levels and help you worry less.
  4. Do work that’s meaningful and/or creative. This doesn’t have to be something you’re paid to do; it could be drawing, painting, knitting, or gardening.
  5. Take time for leisure. Watching a movie, reading a good book, talking to a friend, and listening to music are a few ideas.
  6. Practice gratitude. Take some time to focus on what’s good in your life.
  7. Connect with others. Ways to do this: Spend time face-to-face with loved ones; volunteer; join networking or other special interest groups in your city.

When to seek help

Below are red flag feelings/behaviors that might need immediate attention:

  • Trouble sleeping
  • Concentration problems that interfere with your work or home life
  • Feeling down, hopeless, or helpless most of the time
  • Using nicotine, drugs, alcohol, or food to deal with difficult emotions
  • Negative or self-destructive thoughts or fears you can’t control
  • Thoughts of death or suicide (if you’re experiencing this, please call this number: 1.800.273.8255).

If you identify with any of the above, consider making an appointment with a mental health professional.

“Caring for the mind is as important and crucial as caring for the body. In fact, one cannot be healthy without the other.” – from Approaching the Natural: a Health Manfiesto

How do you make sure you’re emotionally well? Let us know by leaving a comment.

Source; Photo Credit (123rf.com/Michael Simons)

P.S. — Join me on Periscope (@blackgirlcalm) for my new series!
Periscope #MeditationMonday

#CalmTip: October 13th, 2015

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

Visualization is a great way to create more calm in your life. Here’s an exercise to try:

  • Find a quiet, distraction-free space, and get comfortable.
  • Close your eyes, take a few deep breath, and imagine yourself in a beautiful location where everything is like you’d ideally have it.
  • Visualize yourself calm and relaxed. As you keep visualizing, focus on the different sensory aspects, making it more vivid in your mind.
  • Stay in this place for a few minutes or until you feel relaxed.

“Develop your imagination — you can use it to create in your mind what you hope to create in your life.” – Stephen Covey

How to Stop Worrying: 5 Steps to Try

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

You might have seen on social media last week that my site was messed up, and I wasn’t able to post links to this site on Facebook and Instagram. Long story short, some of my files got hacked, and I had to redo the site from scratch. As you can imagine, it was a pretty stressful situation. But it was also a good time for me to practice what I preach, and in doing so, I basically tracked how to stop worrying, or at least how stop worrying. And I wanted to share those ways with you for whenever you’re facing your own stressful situation.

(FYI, I actually posted this last week, but it disappeared, so this is version 2.0 :-)). With that said, here are few ideas to help you stop worrying:

#1 Find something to take your mind off of what’s bothering you.

The day I found out my links weren’t working, I’d also planned to clean out one of our closets that afternoon. However, I ended up doing it earlier because I just couldn’t seem to stop worrying and stressing about my website. So I decided to clean and organize that morning instead so I could redirect my focus and try to get my mind off of what happening. Although my situation was still in the back of my mind, doing something else helped me to not obsess so much about it.

#2 Focus on what you can do and let go of everything else.

Logically, we know there’s no point in worrying about situations we can’t change (at least not exactly when we want to), but, of course, not worrying is easier said than done. Instead of letting your circumstances drive you crazy,try being proactive and brainstorming some things you can do to solve the problem. For example, when it came to my site, the only things I could do immediately were contact my host and reach out to the social media sites to try and figure out what was wrong.

#3 Breathe deeply.

Just like everyone else, when I get stressed, I tend to either hold my breath or it becomes shallow. In addition to meditating so that I could calm down, I also reminded myself throughout the day to keep taking deep breaths. Breathing deeply reverses the stress reaction and helps you relax.

#4 Practice gratitude.

It’s kind of hard to stay down in the dumps when you’re focused on the positive aspects of your life. While I believe that you should allow yourself to feel the full range of your emotions (even the not-so-pleasant ones), at some point, you’re probably going to want to feel more joy and peace, and practicing gratitude is a great way to cultivate those feelings. I like to take a few minutes and write down everything I can think of that I have to be grateful for. It’s definitely a mood booster.

#5 Repeat affirmations.

This is another great way to change your perspective to something more positive and productive. You can either create your own affirmations describing how you want to feel (don’t forget to speak it in present tense, e.g., I am at peace); you can also look online and find some (I love to use the Affirm Your Life Blog to find affirmations). Here are a few affirmations/mantras use:

  • I am calm and centered.
  • Breathe in peace. Exhale overwhelm.
  • I have enough time to do all I need to today.
  • All is well.
  • Everything is working out for my good.

 

I’ll leave you with these quotes about why you should stop worrying:

“Worry does not empty tomorrow of its sorrow. It empties today of its strength.”  Corrie Ten Boom

 

“Sometimes the best thing you can do is not think, not wonder, not imagine, not obsess. Just breathe, and have faith that everything will work out for the best.” – Unknown

 

“Worrying is using your imagination to create something you don’t want.” – Abraham-Hicks

 

“Do not ever worry about the past, it’s gone. Do not worry about the future, it is yet to come. Live in today, and embrace it.” – Unknown

How do you stop worrying when you have a stressful situation? Let us know by leaving a comment!


Black Girl's Guide to Calm coaching

#CalmTip: October 6th, 2015

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

 

I believe that one of the biggest causes of overwhelm and stress for women, and Black women in particular, is the Superwoman Syndrome, trying to do it all and filling multiple roles like wife, mother, employee, entrepreneur, daughter, etc. It’s important to realize that 1) Trying to be superwoman does more harm than good; and 2) In the long run, you won’t be able to sustain it; eventually, you will burn out.

Here’s what you can do instead of trying to be superwoman and all things to all people:

  • Ask for help, whether it’s from your partner, kids, parents or other loved ones.
  • Create a support system. This can be your friends or another group of like-minded women (Check out my Facebook group to connect with like-minded women).
  • Prioritize. Figure out what’s really important at the moment, and forget about everything else for now. For example, some days, the laundry might sit in the basket unfolded for a couple of days because you have to finish a project. And that’s okay.
  • Release perfectionism. It doesn’t exist so just do your best.
  • Take time for you. You deserve it!

#CalmTip: September, 29th, 2015

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, being physically active is considered vital for maintaining mental fitness, and it can also reduce stress, making it a great way to find your calm. Studies show that it’s very effective at reducing fatigue, improving alertness and concentration, and at enhancing overall cognitive function. This can be really helpful when stress has drained your energy or ability to concentrate.

You don’t have to join the gym or spend two hours per day exercising (unless you want to). You could take a 20 or 30 minute walk after work, go for a bike ride, or work out at home with exercise DVDs or YouTube videos (I’ve used Blogilates, FitnessBlender, and HangTightWMarC). Figure out what you like, and get moving!

How to Meditate:The Basics

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

 

Want to meditate but having trouble getting started? This post is for you! I’m going to share the basics of how to meditate so you can begin your practice. Before I get into that, I want to share a definition of meditation:

“a precise technique for resting the mind and attaining a state of consciousness that is totally different from the normal waking state.”

When meditating, your mind is relaxed and inwardly focused, and when your mind becomes silent and is no longer a distraction, your meditation practice deepens. (It’s super important to remember that meditation is a practice, meaning the more you do it, the easier it becomes, and if you want to reach that deeper level and really reap the benefits, you have to do it on a consistent basis).

Now, on to how to meditate:

  • Find a quiet, distraction-free space (even if people are in the room, e.g., your kids, as long as they aren’t disturbing you, you can meditate).
  • Sit on the floor, a yoga mat, in a chair, or even in your bed. Wherever you sit, make sure your spine is straight. Two common ways to sit are cross legged or kneeling.
  • Basic ways to place your hands include: on your thighs or knees (palms facing up or down); prayer position with your hands at your chest; bring your thumbs and index fingers to touch and place the back of your palms on your thighs or knees.
  • When you find a comfortable seat and have placed your hands, close your eyes and mouth, and relax your body. Begin inhaling deeply and exhaling fully, and continue throughout your practice.
  • If you’re a beginner, meditate for anywhere from two to 20 minutes. (You can use an app like Calm or Meditation Helper to keep track of the time).
  • Some ideas for maintaining your focus: Concentrate on your inhalations and exhalations, and when thoughts come to you, let them go. Or, “watch”  your thoughts, then watch them float by.

That’s it! As I mentioned earlier, once you begin practicing meditation on a consistent basis, you’ll reap the benefits and see how it can change your life.

“Meditation is not a way of making your mind quiet. It is a way of entering into the quiet that is already there — buried under the 50,000 thoughts the average person thinks every day.” – Deepak Chopra

 


Take your meditation to the next level with guided Mediations for Calm, Happiness, and Fulfillment! Click below to learn more and purchase.

 

 

Photo Credit (top)/Zdenka Darula

#CalmTip: September 22nd, 2015

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

If you pay attention, you’ll notice that your breath is closely linked with how your feeling. When you’re relaxed, calm or content, your breath is deep and slow (how it should be). When you’re tense, angry, anxious, or fearful, your breath is either held in or it becomes irregular, short, or difficult. When you’re mindful of how you’re feeling, you can change your breath to what it should be and feel more calm.

Here’s a breathing technique to try for relaxation: Inhale deeply for four counts; pause; exhale fully for eight counts. Do this for a minute or two until you feel relaxed.

Uproot What You’re Hushing With Affirmations

 

Black Girl's Guide to Calm

By Trelani Michelle

When I learned about affirmations, I felt like I was falling apart. From my finances to my beef with my supervisor to the disconnection with my partner and my son acting out in school, I was all over the place.

So learning that repeating certain phrases would rewire my subconscious and turn what I was saying into my reality seemed the perfect solution. Where do I sign up?

It didn’t take long to realize what was happening though. And it wasn’t necessarily trial and error because I’ve never doubted the power of affirming. I just realized that trying to talk over my problems wasn’t solving them. Reminding myself that I was healed and empowered every time the memory of molestation resurfaced wasn’t helping the issue. Or saying that my marriage was alive and well when it was simply not the truth. I was ignoring my termite problem by repainting the shutters.

Can you relate?

The issue or the hurt doesn’t have to be totally resolved in order for your affirmations to be made true, but work has to be in progress. The affirmations should serve as the faith behind the work.

The law of attraction calls for focus. In order to manifest your desires, you have to set your intentions, be specific in your requests, and maintain positive energy around it. If you are affirming instead of addressing what happened (or what might happen), then you can’t focus on that because you’re still mentally and emotionally, and maybe even physically, occupied by something else.

So when my thoughts aren’t where I want them to be, instead of hushing my problems with affirmations, I ease my way into the water by first considering if the issue is of the past or future. Both of them require gardening. You have to dig up all of your stuff, through the days, months or years, in order to get to the root of the problem. How so?

Go back to what happened.

Let it replay in your mind step-by-step. Recall your role in it, how it made you feel, and how you’ve been reacting according to that feeling since then. If others were involved, consider how their behavior influenced that feeling. Did you ever tell them? At this point in your life, do you desire to?

Now consider what you can do right now to feel better about the situation. Once upon a time, that meant writing my mother a letter. I didn’t send it to her right then and there, but getting it all out and speaking up for myself made me feel better. In another instance, finding a therapist who I felt could best understand me was my action step. Then other times, it’s as simple as verbally releasing it, reminding myself that it’s done and there’s nothing I can do about it but react differently in the future.

I have a bad habit of worrying. I get it from my mama (and her mama). Ain’t nothing even happen yet, but I will stress to no end about it if I don’t catch myself. Worrying about what might happen causes anxiety like a mofo, and affirmations are really helpful in redirecting your thought in these cases. However, sometimes it’s rooted a little deeper. Worrying that you’ll be betrayed or that you’ll soon go without or that you’ll be disliked or anything along those lines is a fear that’s usually based on something that happened a while back. Explore that possibility, and if you find that it is, then go back to what happened using the prompts above.

These questions are tools of self-exploration, which is the practice of considering what you do, what you think, how you feel, and then why you do, feel and think those things. Healing is a domino effect: Once one falls over, it’s like your subconscious is alerted that you’re ready for the next experience, and that can be exhausting. However, being the best damn you that you can possibly be depends on this work, which is why it’s the heart of my upcoming book, Women Who Ain’t Afraid to Curse When Communicating with God.

It’s a 31-day self-study guide of writing prompts, meditations and personal stories to support you in uprooting whatever is distracting you from tapping into your full power and potential. Interested? Learn more and order your copy by clicking here: http://bitly.com/spiritspeaks

 

 

                  11870717_10153032245272548_7478323016631293998_n                      Trelani Michelle was the girl beneath the covers with a flashlight and a journal. The teenager who documented her tragedies as poetry. The college student who experimented with erotic short stories. Now an author and Spiritual Writing Coach, her passions are novel writing, blogging, and teaching others how to explore and express their experiences through writing. Get to know her better at SoFundamental.com and on Instagram @Trelani_Michelle.