What Does It Take to Be Your Best Self?

The best "you" possible has many different elements. As you can see by the graph on the right, ensuring you are doing what you can to take control of your life will create a better "me."  Take time to enhance these essential aspects of your daily routines. For example, 
  1. Give yourself positive affirmation for things you do well. Praise yourself, validate your good deeds and moments.
  2. Develop good "sleep hygiene" with regular bed time, rituals, and quieting moments prior to sleep.
  3. Take control of your schedule by saying "no", cutting back on work, taking vacations and having fun.
  4. Work on relationship building, connection at work and energize yourself with positive challenges.
  5. Eating mindfully, examining your overall health, nutrition, weight, and exercise efforts will give you energy, enhance happiness, and longevity.
  6. Relax your mind and body. Meditation, massages, stress management and self-soothing activities will boost your immune system and invite health and well-being. 
Do this elements seem daunting? If so, start small with low expectations. Get a coach, trainer, nutritionist, therapist to create goals and accountability. Start today!

Emotional Baggage: What is it doing to me?

If you are carrying excessive "emotional baggage" from your childhood or family of origin, it can really weigh you down. It may be time to unload it! Like it or not, all of us unconsciously carry unwanted or even quite destructive consequences with us. 

It may be time to unload and unpack! In psychotherapy, there are many tools and techniques that can help accomplish releasing negative patterns, revealing destructive tendencies, burdens you carry as a result of family experience filled with trauma, abuse, alcoholism or worse. 

Once you begin to acknowledge the damage caused, you can begin to unload it. Unburdening yourself can help lighten your load and free you up. Are you projecting anger? Holding back from really trusting someone? Feeling damaged or unworthy of love?  Throwing up walls? Focused on past hurts? Can't forgive? If any of these are true for you, you are carrying baggage. Taking a look inward may help you find those hidden or blind spots. You psychological past determines to a great extent, your personal health and vitality. If your health or relationships are not what you want them to be, perhaps it is time to take a look inside.

Enhancing Self-Assurance, Self-Esteem

There is a big difference between confidence and self-esteem. Confidence is, "I can do something." Self-esteem is "how you feel about what you do. " Once you accomplish something, the next step is to take a moment to value yourself. Outside compliments are wonderful, but few people can really legimitmately take them in wholeheartedly.    Self-validation, positive self talk, is the best way  build self-assurance. In a recent article by Dr. Phil as seen by this graphic on the right, you can spin the arrow and begin to develop deeper self-acceptance. If you would like to read the article, just click on this link for the Huffington Post review. Ways to Self-Assurance.Below is a brief test Dr. Phil has to measure your self-esteem. Let's see how you do.

A Self-Esteem Quiz

Improving your self-esteem is a lot of work. Start by asking yourself these questions.
1. Is your self-esteem based on what others think of you?
2. Do you do things to make other people happy, even if it makes you feel bad?
3. Do you have a hard time being happy for others when they succeed?
4. Do you call yourself names like "stupid" or "dummy" when you make mistakes — or sometimes even when you don't?
5. Do you have a hard time taking risks?
Scoring:
If you answered yes to any of these questions, your self-concept or self-esteem may be distorted. If you answered yes to three or more, then you are not living authentically. 

The Hero's Journey of Your Life

The time is always..........now.  Of course, now, never waits!!! 
Do you procrastinate having fun? Do you hold yourself back?  Are you afraid to make a mistake? Is fear a factor in your decision making?
If you answer "yes" to any of these questions, it may be time for you to reevaluate your priorities in life.  

What is holding you back? 

There is a notion of readiness. You may need to prepare, learn, read, explore many avenues before you find the right path. This is part of the journey. The best way to accumulate regrets is to postpone seeking joy, purpose and meaning.  The model that best fits facing your fears and taking on challenges comes from The Hero's Journey, by Joseph Campbell. In the Power of Myth PBS series, Joseph Campbell gives you a perspective to help you find your way. There are distinct states to get your own life adventure started.  The Hero's Journey consists of the following passages. To help you unfold your myths, explore these ideas. Tis diagram shows the 12 steps and brief description of each one.


  1. Call to Adventure--This could be a telephone call to try something new or someone asking you to participate in their adventure. Do you answer the call or hang up? You welcome the quest. 
  2. Meeting a Mentor--most likely you will need some help. This is the a way to give you courage, strength, support. A coach, minister, friend, spouse, teacher or motivator.
  3. Challenges and Tests--There path will be fraught with obstacles, and people who will try to discourage you. You will also find allies. Go with them.
  4. The Ordeal--Here you will face your fears and most likely have to deal with a crisis.
  5. The Reward--Time to embrace the rewards of your endeavors, conquering fears, confronting yourself.
  6. The Return--Now, you return with your new found "elixir" of life and changed forever for having taken on the adventure.
Do you answer the call? Time will tell.