I have been on a journey of self discovery for the past year. In my quest to find balance in my life I have started to see trends in the way I behave. I have have been trying to live my best life, trying my best to live as well as I can. I have noticed that their are certain things that trigger negative behavior; Stress, boredom and lack of sleep. I tend to revert to doing things that I think makes me feel good. The problem is that those things tend to feel good in the present moment but do not actually make me feel good afterwards. I don’t think I could eliminate those things but being aware of them might stop me from doing them. There are other things that ACTUALLY make me feel good. Things that make me feel healthy, alive and present.
Things that I think make me feel good:
1. Eating sweets
After a long day with the kids, or when alone and bored I tend to think that eating candy (usually in the form of Swedish berries) or chocolate makes me feel good. I do love sugar, however, the effect that sugar has on my body is not pretty. After years of being on antibiotics my body has an overgrowth of yeast. Eating sugar is the #1 thing that promotes yeast overgrowth and symptoms of yeast overgrowth are fatigue, headache, mood swings, sinus congestion, depression, poor memory and concentration, and cravings for sweets.
I love a good beer. A nice cold one at the end of a long day or on a patio on a summer day. My problem with alcohol is that I have trouble having just one. I also tend to drink them fast. The after effects of alcohol to my mind and my body are noticeable. I tend to be depressed for a couple days afterwards, and also tend to eat bad food either during the time that I am drinking or afterwards. I am 100% sure that I can’t eliminate alcohol from my life forever, but I need to think before I have a drink and ask myself why I am doing it and be mindful of the after effects.
Things that ACTUALLY make me feel good
There is no better high then an exercise high. That rush of endorphins that you get from a good workout. I do not have to talk any more about the positive effects of exercise. Good for body, soul and mind
2. Good Company
I get a real rush from hanging with good people. People that make me laugh. People who make me think about life. I can’t stand small talk so I would rather hang with a few good people and have a good conversation, then hang in a big crowd of people and make small talk.
3. Learning new things
There are lots of things in life that I would like to do but I have never learned. I love learning new things. I have started compiling a list of things that I would love to learn and will try my best to try them. I may not become a master, or I may not even like it once I have tried them but I am sure that I will a least get a good laugh trying. Learning new things as an adult is much harder then when you are a kid. Usually much funnier as well.
4. Taking (calculated) risks and working through fear.
I have never regretted taking a risk to do something a little crazy. The stress relief that comes after doing something that you are afraid of is amazing. I remember when a friend asked me to go bungee jumping with her. I thought she was crazy but I was up for the challenge. The risk was calculated. What is the worse that could happen? The rush of endorphins you get from doing something scary is so large that when you come back to normal hormone levels you feel a great sense of peace and tranquility.
These lists are not complete but they are a good start. If I do more from list 1 and less from list 2 I feel worse. If I do more from list 2 and less from list 1, I feel better. The goal is to balance both but I want to try to do more of the things that ACTUALLY make me feel good. Be mindful when I am stressed or bored and remember that as good as some things feel in the present moment, they my have a negative effect on my mind and body in the near future.
And always remember to dance when the feeling comes to me. That ALWAYS makes me feel good.