It is human nature to seek safety and stability. You might say, "This is who I am, and this is who I will always be." Familiar, repeated routines simplify life and conserve energy. They can help manage stress, because there is comfort in what is known. New situations require more awareness of our surroundings.
Some routines may temporarily reduce stress, but can lead to unwanted consequences and unhealthy habits such as obesity, procrastination, self-sabotage, or addictions. In order to embrace any change, we need to take specific action to challenge behaviors and beliefs that no longer serve us. Research suggests that creating any desired change in life requires the repeated practice of new health-promoting behaviors until they become new habits.
Getting regular exercise, eating a healthy diet, and developing positive social connections are among the best things we can do for ourselves to strengthen our resilience. No matter what you have gone through, you have the ability to heal your body and mind. The tricky part is this: Once you allow yourself to feel your pain - to face it head-on - you can free yourself from it. When you recognize that limiting beliefs are running your life, you can then work to take charge of your mind and begin reclaiming your right to a positive outlook on life.
Written by Morgan Sarkissian
Information obtained through public health nursing.