A Happy, Healthy Life Starts With You

This week I want to share two articles about being a happy and healthy you. The first article discusses ways to wire your brain to have happy thoughts and focus less on the negative. The second article is about self-care and how one woman is practicing self-care every day in her journey of recovery. Below you’ll find these articles and my thoughts on their implications.

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed below are those of Mark Pew, Senior Vice President of Product Development and Marketing, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Preferred Medical.

8 happy thoughts to rewire your brain to let go of negativity 

Due to our brains natural negativity bias, we often remember and focus more on negative thoughts and comments than positive and happy ones. However, there are actions you can take to rewire the brain to think happy thoughts and influence your attitude and life. This article mentions five principles that can lead to happy thoughts and highlights eight happy thoughts (or phrases) to incorporate into daily life.

Mark’s Thoughts:
Negativity is bad for you. It creates a death spiral (sometimes literally) because negativity begats negativity. Especially when you’re dealing with #ChronicPain. Here are some simple ways to strategically decide on a more positive outlook. It’s a great self-management tool that’s freeeeeee—two things for which I always advocate. Don’t be overwhelmed by all eight tips—pick one and do it today. Here are the happy phrases to utilize—literally things to say to yourself, aloud, to help refocus your brain away from the negative. Dive into the deepness of each phrase and the message each brings. If you say the right thing at the right time in the right circumstance—aloud—you can, over time, refine your resilience and overcome.

  1. “The difficulties are not permanent”
  2. “Good things will happen”
  3. “I am loved”
  4. “I am intelligent and capable”
  5. “Everything happens for a reason, everything leads to something better”
  6. “Smooth seas do not make skillful sailors”
  7. “When one door closes another door opens”
  8. “You are the only one you can compare yourself with”

To Learn Recovery’s Lessons, Self-Care is Key

In order to learn, grow and thrive in life, we must practice self-care. For the author of this article, this has been important in her recovery for the past 7 years, but can also be applicable to everyone no matter what they are going through in life. Self-care can be anything from eating healthy and exercising to prayer and giving back to the community.

Mark’s Thoughts:
“I cannot imagine my life without my addiction and recovery experience, because the work I do in recovery has become the most rewarding and meaningful of my life” is a comment I’ve heard from many in successful active recovery. As painful as their addiction was, without it they would not be who they are now, someone actualizing their potential. Self-care is indeed so important, whether you’re in recovery or not. It’s not being selfish—it’s being selfless—because you can’t help others if you’re not prepared/capable. Read the list of things she tries to do in part or totality every day. Regardless of who you are, this list is a great “checklist” that should be on the mirror as each of us start each day. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the final item on her list—summarizing everything before—is “Practicing Gratitude.” Exercise, quiet time, prayer/meditation, talking to other fellows in recovery daily, eating healthy, enjoying nature, nurturing my relationships and spending time with my people, service, practicing gratitude. Of the nine items the author listed, six are inward focused and three are outward focused. But all lead to the outward focused items being more effective because you’re taking care of yourself.

To read everything on my mind this past week, please visit me on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/marks-musings-may-13-mark-rxprofessor-pew/.

Until Next Week,