If 2017 felt like one gut-wrenching, stress-inducing, anxiety-ridden experience after another, it might be time to incorporate some powerful, positive mantras into your life this year. In addition to the physical choices you can make to boost your 2018 wellness, from eating well and exercising consistently to practicing self-care through massage and other relaxation techniques, internal statements can be powerful, too.
As naturopath, author and health advocate Dr. Lynn Anderson explains, mantras help us to release our worries and doubts, while maintaining consciousness and intense focus, via impactful one-liners. “It is a sound or phrase we say to ourselves to give us a moment to pause, take a breath and then take constructive action. Say these to yourself and then act on them wisely,” she suggests.
Not sure how to develop the right words for the right situation? Here, suggestions to get you started from experts:
You just went through a break-up: “One space opens, another closes”
Messy, seamless, drawn-out or surprising – no matter which word you’d choose to describe your breakup, it’s always an experience that hurts your heart. Once you’re past the first agonizing weeks and in a space where you can process the rise and demise of your relationship, Dr. Anderson suggests focusing on what’s to come instead of what happened in the past. “Use this mantra to make space for love to come again and know that it will,” Dr. Anderson says.
You’re stressed about your career: “I will reach my goal”
If you’re not quite where you thought you’d be career-wise (especially as your friends zoom ahead in their careers), it’s easy to fall into a work rut. Or the trouble with the lack of professional goals is that, without an aim, you’ll just keep treading water, explains industrial-organizational psychology practitioner and workplace expert, Amy Cooper Hakim, Ph.D.Perhaps you’ve always wanted to be an entrepreneur. Or, you’ve been working for a decade and need a three-month sabbatical of traveling to reignite your creativity. Maybe, you’re (over)due a raise, yet you haven’t asked for one. The key here is to give your aspiration an emotional attachment so you’re more determined to follow through: when you feel personally motivated by feelings of happiness to achieve this goal, you’ll be more focused.
You’re going through friend drama: “This too shall pass”
The hard truth about our friendships is that no matter how hard we all try to be supportive, fun, understanding and caring, we’re humans and we make mistakes. Clinical psychologist Stephanie O’Leary, Psy.D., says of all interpersonal relationship dramas, friendship breakups, and fights can be confusing and difficult to explain, either to yourself or others. That’s why it’s important to remember most friendships – like relationships – go through phases. “When friend drama is at a peak, it’s often difficult to remember the good times. It’s easy to become overwhelmed and frustrated. A simple mantra that reminds you of the inevitable phases of friendship and that refocuses your attention to the fleeting nature of most of these scenarios can help you keep calm and stay the course,” she explains.
You’re fighting with your romantic partner: “Let it go”
Every couple has periods of bickering. When these months rear their ugly heads, Hakim says it’s important to strive for compassion and empathy. “Remember that your partner may have completely different expectations for how you should act in the relationship. Put yourself in your partner’s shoes when possible, and take a deep breath,” she explains.
To calm down before saying or doing something you’ll regret later, Dr. Anderson recommends utilizing ‘Let it go’ mantras for relationship woes. “Most relationship problems are simply a contest to see who is right. Nobody is ever 100 percent right. But, it’s better to be happy than right so remind yourself to let it go. Your relationship is most likely more important than whatever the issue may be,” she explains.
Once you’ve allowed yourself – and your number one – an opportunity to decompress, it’s bonding time. From binging on Netflix to getting a couples’ massage, dual activities will help you reconnect.
You’re battling low self-esteem: “I can do anything”
If you’ve put your health on the back burner to push through a demanding client project or you’ve felt yourself tiptoeing toward depression, you might feel less than the stellar rock star you truly are. First and foremost, remember no one has all of the answers, so any act of comparison is a waste of your time. And secondly? O’Leary reminds that truly, you can do anything.
“There’s a lot of pressure to be perfect and if you’re getting caught up in feeling not good enough, a daily – or hourly – reminder that perfect is overrated will go a long way,” she notes. As the saying goes, never compare your insides to someone else’s outsides.