Overcoming Obstacles to Happiness

Having high and often unrealistic expectations of yourself is a common human experience, and is something that can be difficult to overcome. Placing this level of expectation upon yourself is especially easily done when you are seeking genuine happiness and positivity. Continue reading Overcoming Obstacles to Happiness

24 Hours of Self-Care

As you all know, I’m all about self-care and making it a priority. I talk, write and dream a lot about those small moments of self-care that we should incorporate into our everyday life. Continue reading 24 Hours of Self-Care

How to Rebuild Your Confidence

There are many reasons why your confidence and your self-esteem may have been negatively affected. It may have been the result of several small incidents, or perhaps even one ongoing situation. Regardless of the reason for your low confidence, the effects that it can have on your life can be difficult to overcome.

When you don’t believe in yourself or in your abilities, it can be tricky to motivate and encourage yourself to do the things that you truly want to do. It can seem impossible to actually give yourself the push you need to work towards your goals and ambitions.

So, how can you overcome this issue with your confidence and self esteem in order to lead a more fulfilling and ambitious life?

Taking care of your own needs is the first step, and in doing this you will be moving self-care to the top of your list of priorities! Self-care can take many forms, and essentially means you are recognising your own needs and taking productive and active steps to meet these needs.

I would encourage you to make a physical list of the things that make you happy, such as exercise, socialising, travelling, listening to music etc, and then ask yourself how often you actually do these things. I would then ask you to commit to finding the time to do these things often, and you can then notice how your perception of yourself changes and your confidence grows.

Next, try to establish what your negative views of yourself are – by this I mean the reasons for your low confidence levels. Do you perhaps think that you are not doing great at your job? Or, do you believe you aren’t taking care of your family well enough? Perhaps you don’t like the way that you look and would like to change your appearance in some way?

All of these negative views about yourself will have their roots in fear – a fear of change, a fear of failure, a fear of being judged. Whatever your fears are, it is important to recognise that these fears come from within you, and therefore you have the power to silence these thoughts and to kick them out of your mind!

Combatting negativity with positivity is key to a happy life, full of confidence. And, we all have the potential to enhance the positivity within us so that less and less space exists to allow the negativity in!

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we keep moving through 2017!

How to Not Hold Yourself Back

It’s a sad fact that sometimes we are the ones who hold ourselves back in life! It is often incredibly difficult, verging on impossible, to let go of the fears that we have in order to manifest the life that we want for ourselves.

Needing additional guidance from someone, or requiring that extra little push of encouragement in order to do something, is completely normal. However, this kind of validation isn’t always available from those around us. When this is the case, and also regardless of whether it is or not, it’s possible and powerful to become your own motivation!

We often rob ourselves of what could be defining moments in our lives because of a simple fear of the unknown, or a lack of motivation to truly explore the possibilities that are opening up to us. When this happens, regret can quickly set in, and this is a much longer lasting feeling than any negative feelings that may occur as a result of a perceived failure.

So how can you champion yourself and always have a well of personal inspiration to drink from?

First it’s important to remember that any self-doubt that you are experiencing is likely not entirely of your own creation. The lessons that are an inevitable part of life can often instil an attitude of limiting beliefs about the self. That is, of believing that your capabilities have limits, and that it is silly to attempt to break through these barriers. When you spend some time getting to the root of this self-doubt, then you can begin to understand it as an emotion that has no right in your life or in your mind – and work to expel it for good!

Secondly, you must strive to reject the concept of self-sabotage. Nobody loses out when you let fear hold you back – except yourself! Treating yourself with consistent love, respect and kindness is a great way to reiterate to yourself that you want to succeed in all that you do, and that self-sabotage is certainly not something that you want to engage in.

Thirdly, you must acknowledge that there is much to be gained by making brave choices and taking control of your own life. Holding yourself back, whether intentionally or not, will inevitably allow larger problems to develop in your life, and you could quickly grow resentful of yourself – which is a complicated emotional place to be in!

Let go of your fear, embrace all that is good about your life and be your own champion!

If you have seen my new wellness for women membership site – Truly Julie – then you will know that I am on a mission to inspire and motivate women to become healthier and happier – and I would love it if you would join me on this journey as we keep moving through 2017!

Living a Life of Mindfulness

If you often feel like you are making your way through life on autopilot then you are certainly not alone! With busy, repetitive schedules it is completely normal to start feeling as though you are just going through the motions. A good way to discover if this is true to you is to try and remember your day at the end of it. How much of your day can you actually recall and how much of it were you simply not present for as you powered through on autopilot?

Living life in this way is the exact opposite of living a life of mindfulness. It is living a life of habit and unconscious actions because you have become bored or exhausted by your routine. When you exist in this way you will find that you spend a lot of time focusing your conscious thoughts on the past or the future, as opposed to engaging in the present moment. This will usually take the form of regretting moments from the past and worrying about the future.

So, how can you break this cyclic way of living to turn auto-pilot off and live a life of mindfulness?

The answer that I am going to offer you may seem incredibly simplistic but I can assure you it works! And that answer is to make a conscious effort to bring your attention into each and every moment. If you are not paying attention to your life as you live it then how can you possibly expect to feel satisfied and fulfilled by life?

You may feel as though you have too many mundane tasks to complete during the day to want to be continuously present, but that is the mistake that causes this mindlessness to seep into other areas of your life. By trying to conduct every moment with awareness and intention you will be much better equipped to be in control of your thoughts and your actions. You will rule your emotions and you will approach each new day with a positive attitude.

As each and every interaction and situation unfolds and develops during your day, make an effort to pay attention to it and deal with it as it is happening. Resist the urge to make judgements and always work to find resolutions. When you do so you will be less likely to have an emotional backlog at the end of each day that could prevent you being present in the following one!

My online e-learning portal will soon have a new course dedicated to self-love, letting go and happiness which are all concepts that can help us to understand our passions! Head to the Flexi Foodie Academy soon to sign up and Like my Facebook page to be the first to know when it comes out!

The Path to Happiness

In our modern day world you would be forgiven for thinking that it is impossible to be truly happy if you don’t have a continuos source of pleasure in your life. It has become a common misconception that true happiness can only be derived from pleasure, whereas in reality the two do not always have to be connected. In order to understand why this is true, it is helpful to look back on ancient perspectives of happiness and how people through the ages have attempted to interpret its meaning.

The idea that the mind is completely responsible for happiness is one that has been explored extensively. The essence of this concept is that perception is everything and by finding ways to believe that happiness surrounds you will in turn breed feelings of persistent happiness. In order to achieve this it is essential to find ways to have a positive response to every situation and experience that you encounter. This can of course be a difficult rule to live by as the majority of us can never have complete control over all of our emotions! So, for those of us who can’t, I’ve put together the following list of simple concepts that can help us to strive towards a place of peace positivity.

First of all, I encourage you to accept the fact that happiness is not something that will appear overnight. It is a journey that we take which requires our attention and effort. Don’t see happiness as something that you are entitled to, but rather something which you earn through your behaviour and treatment of others. As you spread happiness, it will come back to you. Be grateful for the happiness that others extend to you and show appreciation for those who do so.

Secondly, work to adjust your perceptions of the things that happen in your life. Allowing yourself to have your mood dragged down by negative events beyond your control plays straight into the hands of sadness. Try to see light in every dark situation and understand that with every setback you are growing as a person. Your character is dependant on the way you conduct yourself in the world and refusing to let negativity in will go a long way to aiding you on your journey to happiness.

Finally, spend some time contemplating the things that are important to you and the things that you believe to be true in terms of a basic belief system. Do you want to eradicate cruelty from all aspects of your life? Do you want to be moral and virtuous in all of your interactions? Do you want to be kind and thoughtful to everyone you encounter? Once you know how you want to live, it will be much easier to implement this lifestyle. It isn’t until you truly do so that you will be able to reap the happiness that doing so brings!

How to Overcome Self-Criticism

Learning to deal with the negativity of other people can be tricky but it often pales in comparison to trying to deal with the criticism we hand out to ourselves. We all have constant thoughts and feelings throughout the day but who can honestly say that the majority of these are positive? Hearing affirming statements of support and encouragement from other people can do a great deal of good to our confidence and the same is true of the things we tell ourselves.

The inner struggles of each person are of course different depending on their circumstances and aims in life, however, there are several things that are true for many people. These common self-criticisms are usually in relation to career progress, family life and self-image. Even the slightest incident or comment from somebody else might prompt us to start doubting ourselves in massive ways and it is also true that we begin these thought processes by ourselves with no outside influence!

Negative thoughts are not only distracting but can also be incredibly damaging to our self-esteem. So how can we overcome this negativity and move towards a happier and healthier sense of self? First of all, it helps to identify what you are feeling and to say it out loud to yourself. When these thoughts are trapped inside your mind they can quickly spiral into something worse. Saying it out loud helps to isolate the feeling and make it seem much less intense. You can then flip your statement around. For instance you can turn, “I have not accomplished what I wanted to at work today” into, “I tried my best to be productive today and tomorrow will be better”.

Secondly it is also beneficial to try and trace your negative thought back to its source. Try to figure out if someone in your life makes you feel that way or if there are certain behaviours that you indulge in that encourage these thoughts. Once you have a better idea of why these thoughts are occurring in your mind you will be better equipped to deal with them.

Finally, try to remember instances where you have previously overcome negativity and moved towards productivity. Remembering these times will help to boost your confidence and push any fears to the back of your mind! It is important to give yourself credit for your accomplishments instead of only concentrating on the things that have gone wrong!

How to Make Time for Meditation

If you are searching for a way to bring peace into your life whilst better equipping yourself to deal with stress and anxiety, then meditation could be exactly the tonic you’re searching for. When meditation is combined with mindful eating and regular exercise, you’ll rapidly see positive changes to both your physical health and your mental well-being.

Although many people understand the amazing benefits of meditation, many find it difficult to find the time to do so. However, once you find a way to incorporate meditation into your schedule, you’ll quickly regret not doing so sooner!

If you are keen to include meditation in your life but don’t know where to start then following my simple steps can guide you on your way.

First of all, it is essential to have a space that is dedicated to your meditation. This doesn’t have to be a large space and could simply be an uncluttered corner of your bedroom. Take the time to make this space as comfortable as possible and also to include any objects that you own that are of particular spiritual significance to you. The inclusion of pleasant smelling incense or candles will help to complete this space and help your senses on their way to seeking relaxation.

Secondly, make a mental note that making the time to meditate once a day, regardless of the length of time, is a priority. Allow this thought to linger in the back of your mind throughout the day but try not to dwell on it. You will often find that the opportunity to meditate will present itself without you having to look too hard for it. No two days in your life are ever going to be exactly the same so don’t be too concerned with meditating at the same time of day for the same amount of time. Allow yourself to be flexible and you’ll find you’re much more likely to stick to your practice.

Many people find that meditating in the morning is the best way to prepare for the upcoming day. Stating a lack of time as the only reason that you don’t meditate in the morning is a redundant excuse! If you have time to snooze your alarm for half an hour or spend 20 minutes in the mirror trying to get your hair just right, then you certainly have time to meditate! Make the time to include meditation in your morning routine and you’ll be supercharged and super-focused throughout the morning and into the day!

If you live in a busy, chaotic household with others and find it difficult to get time alone, then try inviting those around you to meditate with you! Once you’ve gotten into the rhythm of this relaxing but extremely beneficial practice, extending and explaining your new found passion to others will be no difficult feat and your household will be calmer because of it!