Cause if you don’t, you won’t forgive yourself.
You may already know a lot about yourself or you may think you know everything and don’t. It’s always good to revisit your knowledge and beliefs – especially when it comes to how your beliefs and how you see yourself. Here are 17 questions from Eve Arnold on Medium that do just that.
- What am I good at?
- What gives me energy?
- What takes energy away from me?
- What puts me in a good mood?
- What activities give me purpose?
- What do I not like doing?
- What scares me to death?
- What motivates me?
- How do I want others to see me?
- Why do I want others to see me that way?
- What amount of sleep makes me feel refreshed?
- What kind of food do I seem to be happier after eating?
- How much water makes me feel awake?
- What traits do I like in other people?
- What advice am I most often giving out?
- What do I love to talk about?
- Why do I love talking about that stuff?
From the article How to Become More Self-Aware in 17 Questions
There is something to be said about being alone – some people crave it, others hate it. Either way, everyone needs to be okay being alone. At some point you’re going to have to deal with it – whether your driving across the country on your own, out for a hike by yourself or stuck at home on a Saturday night for whatever reason. Being alone, and being okay with it is good for you. Some say it can improve creativeness, it does enhance focus, concentration, and memory, and you don’t have to worry about what other people are thinking about and if they’re enjoying themselves. You get to do exactly what you want and how you want to do it.
Being Alone vs. Loneliness
Being alone and loneliness are two very different things.
Where loneliness is being isolated when you don’t choose to be for an extended amount of time and can be harmful. Being alone is a choice and something that can improve your life. You can be around people and still feel lonely. Loneliness is a state of mind, and you can do a lot to keep from feeling lonely even if you don’t have the opportunity to be around others.
Some things to do do combat loneliness:
- Be positive. As cliche as it sounds sometimes you need to “fake it, ’till you make it”. Things will change, but you need to be part of that change. Being negative will only make that change more difficult.
- Sometimes it is who you’re around. Look for relationships with people you respect and who respect you.
- Recognize the feeling of loneliness is telling you something needs to change
- Understand that it is temporary
Some things you can do while you’re alone.
- Got for a walk or a hike
- Go see a movie
- Go get a meal
- Learn something new
- Listen to your favorite music
- Work out
- Read a book
- Go to the park
- Go sit in the sun
- Have a picnic
Really being alone is a skill and one that can make you a happier and better person. Don’t look at it as a bad thing.
If there is work to be done, and you have time time to do it, do the work. Get it done when you know you can.
There may be something you want to do at the same time and yes, you’ll need to weigh the cost of skipping that to getting the work done. Sometimes those decisions are easy, sometimes they are not. But favor doing the work first. It has many benefits over the option.
In doing the work, you remove an obstacle from your path. You have control. You clear the way for things you want or have to do. If you delay the work, the work has control, especially if you’re up against a deadline. Don’t wait on the deadline for the work. Be proactive. Attack the work. Then you’re in control, and you’re working in the present.
You’re gifting yourself the future by removing something that has to be done and you get to use the future for what you want to do.
Life and the things that happen to us and the people we love can be overwhelming. It’s easy to get trapped in the never-ending cycle of “waiting for the next shoe to drop” and trying to predict and prepare for things that may never happen.
Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.Matthew 6:34
Every day has enough to consume your attention and energy. Don’t create more distraction by focusing on the future or past. Be present, enjoy where you are, and the journey to create the life you want.
There will be bumps in the road. You can handle them. Those obstacles are there for you to learn from. They make you pause and think about where you are and where you’re headed. They force you to stretch for achievement or redirect and correct your course.
There is a reason for the trouble that shows up. There is no need to create trouble that distracts from your path.
Here are 7 scientifically proven benefits:
- Gratitude improves physical health – Grateful people experience fewer aches and pains and report feeling healthier than other people, according to a 2012 study published in Personality and Individual Differences. Not surprisingly, grateful people are also more likely to take care of their health. They exercise more often and are more likely to attend regular check-ups, which is likely to contribute to further longevity.
- Gratitude improves psychological health – Gratitude reduces a multitude of toxic emotions, from envy and resentment to frustration and regret. Robert Emmons, a leading gratitude researcher, has conducted multiple studies on the link between gratitude and well-being. His research confirms that gratitude effectively increases happiness and reduces depression.
- Boosts the immune system – Gratitude has been shown to help contribute to an overall sense of well-being. Stress lowers the immune response to potential bodily threats, whereas increased mental well-being can help your body fight off illness, according to a 2004 research review. Practicing gratitude also has the ability to improve other aspects of physical health, with one early-stage 2017 studyTrusted Source suggesting it can reduce the risks associated with heart failure.
- Gratitude enhances empathy and reduces aggression – Grateful people are more likely to behave in a prosocial manner, even when others behave less kindly, according to a 2012 study by the University of Kentucky. Study participants who ranked higher on gratitude scales were less likely to retaliate against others, even when given negative feedback. They experienced more sensitivity and empathy toward other people and a decreased desire to seek revenge.
- Grateful people sleep better – Writing in a gratitude journal improves sleep, according to a 2011 study published in Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being. Spend just 15 minutes jotting down a few grateful sentiments before bed, and you may sleep better and longer.
- Gratitude improves self-esteem – A 2014 study published in the Journal of Applied Sport Psychology found that gratitude increased athletes’ self-esteem, an essential component to optimal performance. Other studies have shown that gratitude reduces social comparisons. Rather than becoming resentful toward people who have more money or better jobs, a major factor in reduced self-esteem, grateful people are able to appreciate other people’s accomplishments.
- Gratitude improves relationships – Not only does saying “thank you” constitute good manners, but showing appreciation can help you win new friends, according to a 2014 study published in Emotion. The study found that thanking a new acquaintance makes them more likely to seek an ongoing relationship. So whether you thank a stranger for holding the door or send a thank-you note to that colleague who helped you with a project, acknowledging other people’s contributions can lead to new opportunities.
- Gratitude increases mental strength – For years, research has shown gratitude not only reduces stress, but it may also play a major role in overcoming trauma. A 2006 study published in Behavior Research and Therapy found that Vietnam War veterans with higher levels of gratitude experienced lower rates of post-traumatic stress disorder. A 2003 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that gratitude was a major contributor to resilience following the terrorist attacks on September 11. Recognizing all that you have to be thankful for, even during the worst times, fosters resilience.
- Gratitude Increases optimism – Being an optimistic person can have plenty of health benefits, including healthy aging, according to a 2019 studyTrusted Source. If you’re not naturally optimistic, gratitude practice can help you cultivate an optimistic outlook, as suggested by a 2018 study. In an older 2003 study, it took just 10 weeks of regular gratitude practice for participants to feel more optimistic and positive about their present lives and the future.
You can practice gratitude in lots of different ways, like:
- Exercises like journaling
- Paying attention to the little things in life, like the birds in the trees
- Telling someone you’re grateful for them or for something they did, even if it was a long time ago
- Doing something kind for someone in your life to express your gratitude
- Reflecting and/or meditating on the positive aspects of your life
- Giving thanks through prayer
ASU Campus Secret Garden
The Secret Garden is a secluded courtyard nestled in between buildings Dixie Gammage Hall and West Hall in the heart of the Tempe campus. It is just a walk from Hayden lawn or the COOR building.
Evelyn Hallman Pond
If you’re looking for a relaxing park away from all the excitement in Tempe, head north of Tempe Town Lake to Evelyn Hallman Pond where you can fish, hike, or enjoy the shade on a hot summer’s day.
Dip, splash, and play in the cool waters at Fossil Creek. Don’t drive six hours north to enjoy waterfalls and gorgeous scenery!
Haji-Baba’s offers affordable, quick, and out-of-this-world Middle Eastern food. Haji-Baba’s, known to locals as simply, “Haji’s”.
The Original Hoagie Shop
Some of the best sandwiches in Tempe, With some of the best Philly cheese steak sandwiches, hoagies, pastas, salads, and more, The Original Hoagie Shop’s got it all!
Desert Botanical Garden
Hike Camelback Mountain
It’s easy to get to, just make sure you keep a watchful eye for no-tow zones in neighborhoods. Designated parking is right off the street and near the closest trailhead.
Her Secret is Patience
This Phoenix art installation was originally adapted from the Ralph Waldo Emerson quote, “Adopt the pace of nature; her secret is patience,” and is elegantly displayed in the Phoenix Civic Space Park. The installation was designed by Janet Echelman and took a massive team of architects, designers, engineers, and fabricators to create the masterpiece that stands today.
The Mystery Castle
Built Boyce Luther Gulley abandoned his wife and family and built this unique castle over the course of 15 years. He used a combination of goat’s milk, cement, mortar, adobe, salvaged metal parts like railroad tracks, poles, car parts, and, well, whatever else he could get his hands on. His story isn’t exactly a fairy tale, but this hidden gem isn’t one you want to miss.
The definition of passion…
- Any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, as love or hate.
- Strong amorous feeling or desire; love; affection.
- Strong sexual desire; lust.
- An instance or experience of strong love or sexual desire.
- A person toward whom one feels strong love or sexual desire.
- A strong or extravagant fondness, enthusiasm, or desire for anything
- The sufferings of Christ between the night of the Last Supper and his death
There is the more interesting definition: suffering – the state or experience of one that suffers.
Passion is the willingness to suffer or sacrifice for something important to you.
Passion contains the essence of what purpose is about.
The definition of purpose…
- The reason for which something exists or is done, made, used, etc.
- An intended or desired result; end; aim; goal.
- Determination; resoluteness.
Understanding what you’re passionate about, informs your purpose.
Purpose gives you a “why”.
The “why” makes each day, every task, and your “being” a thing to enjoy. Regardless of what the mundanity, you can be confident in what you are doing. You will be doing it deliberately and intentionally.
Because of your passion, you live on purpose.
A walk in the park may soothe the mind and, in the process, change the workings of our brains in ways that improve our mental health, according to an interesting new study of the physical effects on the brain of visiting nature.Walk in Nature: Good for Brain, Good for Spirit
[T]he volunteers who had strolled along the quiet, tree-lined paths showed slight but meaningful improvements in their mental health, according to their scores on the questionnaire. They were not dwelling on the negative aspects of their lives as much as they had been before the walk.How Walking in Nature Changes the Brain
Intuitively we knew that nature was good for us as humans, but the results were beyond brilliantBBC Earth – How nature is good for our health and happiness
Exposure to nature not only makes you feel better emotionally, it contributes to your physical wellbeing, reducing blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension, and the production of stress hormones. It may even reduce mortalityHow Does Nature Impact Our Wellbeing?
[One] study found people who walked for 90 minutes in a natural environment showed reduced neural activity in a part of the brain linked to risk for mental illness compared to those who walked in an urban environment.What Happens to Your Body When You Spend Time in Nature
Close close all night
By Elizabeth Bishop
Close close all night
the lovers keep.
They turn together
in their sleep,
Close as two papers
in a book
that read each other
in the dark.
Each knows all
the other knows,
learnt by heart
from head to toes.
If Thou Must Love Me
By Elizabeth Barrett Browning
If thou must love me, let it be for nought
Except for love’s sake only. Do not say
I love her for her smile … her look … her way
Of speaking gently, … for a trick of thought
That falls in well with mine, and certes brought
A sense of pleasant ease on such a day’—
For these things in themselves, Beloved, may
Be changed, or change for thee,—and love, so wrought,
May be unwrought so. Neither love me for
Thine own dear pity’s wiping my cheeks dry,—
A creature might forget to weep, who bore
Thy comfort long, and lose thy love thereby!
But love me for love’s sake, that evermore
Thou may’st love on, through love’s eternity.
By Roy Croft
I love you
Not only for what you are,
But for what I am
When I am with you.
I love you,
Not only for what
You have made of yourself,
But for what
You are making of me.
I love you
For the part of me
That you bring out;
I love you
For putting your hand
Into my heaped-up heart
And passing over
All the foolish, weak things
That you can’t help
Dimly seeing there,
And for drawing out Into the light
All the beautiful belongings
That no one else had looked
Quite far enough to find
I love you because you
Are helping me to make
Of the lumber of my life
Not a tavern
But a temple.
Out of the works
Of my every day
Not a reproach
But a song.
I love you
Because you have done
More than any creed
Could have done
To make me good.
And more than any fate
Could have done
To make me happy.
You have done it
Without a touch,
Without a word
Without a sign.
You have done it
By being yourself.
Perhaps that is what
Being a friend means,