There is a ton of information about self-help on the shelves these days. Right? So much so that your mind just might explode from the massive amount of information consumption. What this over-load of info can lead to is people repeatedly trying different tactics and techniques that leave them living in a total state of chaos. So how are you supposed to know what information to try and what self-help strategies just won’t work for you? I’ve broken down some ideas on how to tap into what works for you so you can create your own self-help routine.
There is no one size fits all
I get that a “one size fits all” approach to self-help, and even a stylish poncho, are nice ideas, in theory, however it’s just a bald-faced lie. For real. That poncho will not fit everyone and then what happens to the person who finds it too snug or the person who finds themselves drowning in it?
Chances are they will ultimately decide what worked for everyone else, didn’t work for them.
The same goes for self-help strategies that are designed to fit everyone. When the whole world seems to be successful with these strategies and you struggle to find your groove, you’re left feeling like a better life just isn’t in the cards for you.
This is something I have worked to become hyper-aware of as a life coach. That each individual needs to be honored differently So, what do you do when what works for the majority isn’t working for you?
Decide what already works for you
What already puts you in your groove? Is there a certain time of day that you feel the most productive? How about clothes that you know put you in a better mood? Like my minimalist uniform.
Take the time to write out all of the things that you know are already working for you. Your list might look like this:
- Doing big mental tasks in the morning
- Having a slow-start morning
- Being outdoors instead of a gym
- Speaking my thoughts instead of writing them
- Sleeping with the fan on
- Guided meditations
- Having clear kitchen counters
By starting with the things you are already successful with, you are more likely to build a more solid self-help routine. And, when you hear new ideas, you are more likely to tune into the ones that will actually work for you.
Add without adding
One of the sneakiest ways to increase your mental health and improve how you conduct yourself throughout the day is to add things to your day without really adding anything.
So what the heck do I mean by that?
If you are working to have less sugar in your diet, maybe you could add 1 teaspoon less of creamer to your morning coffee. You are sticking to your same routine, adding nothing, but taking one small step in the right direction.
One of my favorite ways to boost my mental health is by playing an audiobook or podcast during my otherwise silent routines like doing my makeup and making my bed. This way you can feed your mind, get some inspirational words, and not have to add anything to your to-do list.
Avoid or supplement
If you have a nasty habit/addiction you’re trying to kick instead of just going cold turkey work on substituting or avoiding temptation altogether. For example:
You always get an energy drink when you get gas – avoid going into the gas station or supplement your energy drink for a coffee or even a soda.
At some point during the day, you are taking a walk. Whether it’s to the break room at work or the bathroom 18 times a day like me. This time could be extremely valuable time, especially if you are having an otherwise stressful day. During these mini walks, take the time to practice gratitude.
Adopt what feels natural
If every you find yourself thinking something like, “I have to do this because (fill in the blank) said it’s life-changing.” or “I have to make this happen otherwise I am a (insert self-doubt name calling.)”
Whenever you find yourself doing something out of force or “have to,” definitely pay attention to your motives behind it. This is the entire concept of my PULL group coaching program. Getting out of that state of pushing. Letting go of those “have to’s” and just allowing yourself to show up for your life and take aligned actions that guide you with purpose.
Find your helpers
Sometimes there are people in life who just “get us.”
If you are not a gym goer, you probably don’t want to rely on your 7 days a week workout friend with a 6 pack to be your accountability buddy. Chances are the only advice they are going to be able to offer is based off what they know and you already know that won’t work for you.
Take the time to find a friend, family member, counselor or coach that you feel aligns with who you are and how you want to show up in the world.
Having an accountability partner, or even just someone to talk to about self-growth can be a massive way to transform your self-help routine and your life.
What works for you?
So what beneficial habits have you already adopted that you know have played a massive role in allowing you to feel healthier both mentally and physically?