Posts tagged ‘calmness’

Creating an Environment of Well-Being

There have been times in my life when I have felt as though I was emotionally hanging on by a thread. By a thread that was fraying. And I was hanging on for dear life. Those days are behind me, and I owe it to having created an environment of well-being for myself. I wake up at 5:30 a.m. most mornings so I have time for a wellness routine. I begin with a gentle stretching routine by Bob Anderson and his DVD “Stretching.” I do the “Mindful Movements” routine by Thich Nhat Hanh, and a qi gong routine that varies according to the amount of time I have available. One of my favorite routines is free on YouTube and features Lee Holden. It is only 10 minutes long and helps move energy through my body. I like to end these wellness practices with qi gong shaking and mindful meditation. I really like the Insight Timer app for meditative music and/or guided meditations. These practices have had such a positive impact on my well-being that I also do most of these when I’m on a vacation.

The central theme of my focus on well-being is “self-compassion.” Kristen Neff, Ph.D. has written a really nice book, Self-Compassion: The Proven Power of Being Kind to Yourself. My morning routine helps begin my day with self-awareness and self-compassion. I have found that by building up a reserve of self-love and self-compassion, I am not relying on others to fill me up. As Neff says, “Instead of relying on our relationship to meet all our needs for love, acceptance, and security, we could actually provide some of these feelings for ourselves. And this would mean that we had even more in our hearts to give to each other.” (7)

One of the greatest gifts of a life focused on creativing an environment of well-being is a deep feeling of calm and peace, even in the midst of emotionally challenging times. As someone who used to suffer from panic attacks, I am grateful for a sense of well-being that provides me with a resilience I never knew was possible. As Neff says, “…self-compassion is a powerful way to achieve emotional well-being and contentment in our lives. By giving ourselves unconditional kindness and comfort while embracing the human experience, difficult as it is, we avoid destructive patterns of fear, negativity, and isolation. At the same time, self-compassion fosters positive mind-states such as happiness and optimism. The nurturing quality of self-compassion allows us to flourish, to appreciate the beauty and richness of life, even in hard times….Self-compassion provides an island of calm…” (12)

As Neff says, “…open your heart to yourself. It’s easier than you might think, and it could change your life.” (15)

For more information about how to create an environment of well-being for you and your family, here is a podcast with Dr. Dan Peters of Footprint Parent, and me.

September 1, 2017 at 2:36 pm Leave a comment


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