If I asked you, “Do you want to be free of pain or do you want to be happy?” you’d probably stare at me as if I’d lost my mind. “What kind of choice is that? Don’t you need one to have the other?” Let me explain…
If you suffer from certain chronic issues such as PMS/PMDD, fatigue or depression, what you undoubtedly want is to get rid of the pain as quickly as possible, and be free of those nagging and dreadful symptoms.
That’s totally understandable. But it’s tough to be free of the pain when all you think of is the pain – and not the happiness you’d rather have.
In the past when I was overwhelmed with anger during PMS, I tried very hard to force it away as quickly as possible. But after numerous failed attempts, I finally realized that this was not an effective strategy. I also realized that when I focused on feeling relaxed and calm, even happy, the anger usually subsided naturally.
Whether you recognize it or not, you’re an image-maker. We all are. It’s just one of those amazing gifts we humans have. And the images we hold firmly in mind often manifest into our reality.
When you clearly and specifically define what it is that you want, and you can hear it, see it, smell it, taste it or feel it, you pretty much have already won half of the battle toward getting it. Here are a couple of tips to help you define and realize your desired outcome…
Stating in the positive
If you don’t want pain, what would you have instead? Perhaps you want to have more energy, or perhaps you want to feel more relaxed and centered. Whatever it may be, stating what you want in the most positive of terms possible will give you clarity and help set things in motion to realize your goal.
Identifying the evidence
How will you know when you’ve got it? What will you see, hear, smell, taste or feel? You need to know when you’ve arrived or that you’re at least on the right path. These sensory evidences are signposts that will guide you on your journey.
Making it manageable
Rome was not built in a day. Make sure your goal is of a bite size, so you can manage it. For example, if you want to be able to do a 7-mile hike but might not be in sufficient shape to do it without some training, you may want to start with a smaller goal first: “I want to be able to walk for 45 minutes with comfort and ease.”
Defining the contexts
If your desired outcome is to feel happy all the time, it may not be very realistic. So refine it to a more specific context in time and space. Tell yourself that you want to feel joy when you cook or when you go for a walk.
When you have a well-framed outcome, you’ve already won half of the battle toward getting what you want.
I encourage you to take a couple of minutes to write down your desired outcomes in the areas of your mood, energy, PMS/PMDD symptoms, or any other areas that you desire a change.