Metro

  • Written by Metropolitan Digital



As The Happiness Warrior there’s a question that I find myself always coming back to: “how do we build a whole and happy being when we don’t understand how the pieces fit together?” Taking better care of ourselves and understanding how our bodies work sounds intuitive but when I look at the world around me, I see so much unnecessary suffering that comes when we neglect the connection between our mental and physical well-being. Much of this can be blamed on the consumer environment that we’ve created. Everything’s too fast, too easy, meals come prepared in a box, or comes with a touch to our screens. We use phrases like “cheat meals” and “comfort food” to justify our lack of self-control and good judgment. We live as if tomorrow will never come and give up on manifesting the beautiful feeling of happiness and fulfillment that arises when we make the mind/body connection.

Everywhere I look these days I see a world where our physical and mental health has become an ideal that is increasingly removed from our experience. Medical care is reactionary and out of reach of many. Our food and our water supplies are increasingly toxic, disrupt natural hormone balance, cause obesity, and disease. Our bodies and decisions are often controlled by others, and we grow increasingly complacent and more out of sync with our lives. We’re pushed to believe that it’s much easier to conform and live by the rules that are made for us. Fear is part of the formula and self-sabotage is easy when subliminal messages are there to help us fail.

The good news is that I believe that this current paradigm is causing a shift and that more of us are at work to change the message and help realign our societal mindset from a more holistic viewpoint. We can be better with the intention that we can always be our best when we align our physical health together with our ability to create more happiness. We are the sum of our thoughts and desires, and we have the power to make things right!

Body, spirit, and mind are all connected and we’re never truly happy until we make the decision to love the only body that keeps us alive. We can never be our happiest, most purposeful, and most productive until we see our living being as a source of beauty and strength. Our bodies and minds comprise our entirety and how we value and find gratitude in the love for ourselves can come as soon as we awaken to a new day.

WE DESERVE BETTER

I live my life with the core belief that I can always be better in a continuous and sometimes tumultuous journey of small failures, personal triumphs, and absorbing the wisdom that comes as I continue the journey of life. When we’re young we’re coached and taught to be our best, but at some point, in our lives we might find ourselves getting lazy, easily distracted by others, losing direction, and becoming angry or depressed. We turn to external sources of pleasure and forget the deep feeling of happiness that comes from loving ourselves.

In a culture with so much shame and judgment embedded in our consciousness, taking care of our bodies and physical health can seem like an insurmountable task. Some try to rationalize it, but deep down we all know that we’re in control and only victims of our own fears, self-created emotional distress, and our societal mindset. It’s only hard when we make it hard.We only value who we are when we honor ourselves first!

GETTING OLDER HAPPILY

Just before I turned fifty, I created an Instagram account called @50redefined.  It became almost an obsession to think more about the link between my own mortality, my physical and mental health, and the role that I wanted to play in helping others age by their own rules. I was defiant and strong in my belief that aging is a mindset that we can use to our advantage. As a natural leader with a warrior like mentality, I accepted that I would be a role model and would live by my personal code and core values. I liked how I felt and knew that it was something I wanted to maintain. I knew that I could help others exceed their own expectations and find greater happiness within themselves. I firmly believe that aging is a privilege that deserves my full respect and attention. As my Aunt Karen once said with great conviction, “I’m older but I’m not old”. Words have spirit and the words we use for ourselves tell us everything. Change your inner dialogue and create a more incredible life.

As I grew into my fifties, I started to look at life as a magical journey in which I would continually expand my experiences and outlook. Everywhere I went people remembered me and shared their experiences and triumphs. Often, they would quote something that I said to them in a serious tone and tell me how much it had worked for them and changed their lives. I felt humbled and grateful for my ability to connect with people who needed to be heard. I began to realize that I was helping them feel better about themselves and realize their dreams by giving them the respect and attention they deserved. I believe that all humans have value, and we are all connected by the energy of the universe.

INCREASE RESILIENCE WITH SELF-DISCIPLINE

Maintaining a ready for anything mindset is one of my core Happiness Warrior values. Mental toughness comes from self-discipline which is often maligned in our world. Self-discipline is the means to everything that we want in life and is our best tool for moving forward with happiness in our lives. In the pandemic many of us weren’t prepared, didn’t think it would happen to us, and didn’t want to think about how we would cope in emergency situations. We ignored the signs and went about our lives and weren’t prepared for dramatic shifts in our environment.

In a world of chaos, the world needs more role models and leaders with strong self-belief in themselves and their belief in the greater good of all. No one is stopping us from stepping up to be our own warrior, increase physical health, be strong in conviction, and never again be shocked and stunned when life gives us change and chaos. Greater resilience and self-confidence leads to greater happiness in our abilities and the impact we can make on the lives of others.

RAISE VIBRATION

I believe that the frequency of our energy field is something that we can control and use to raise both our physical and mental health. We can choose to live in the light and radiant energy and inner strength and feel connected or we can stay in the shadows. We see this in our daily lives when we feel attracted to the bright light and energy that comes from happy people. Make the momentous step of giving yourself permission to be happy and you’ll want to share it with others. Everyone and everything are connected, and happiness is an emotion that draws us together. Raising vibration can start when we make the personal decision to  live our lives without fear and judgment. Start these steps now and reap the rewards for the rest of your life:

Unplug and unwind for a few moments by yourself every day. There’s no right or wrong way to meditate or connect with your higher power and just be in the present.

Add more movement to your life. Each step and each breath we take while consciously exercising makes us healthier and happier.

Examine friendships and relationships and ask yourself if anyone is dragging you down?

Know when to say no and feel yourself rise.

Know that happiness comes from within and know that your words have spirit. When we change our dialogue, our lives change for the better.

LOVE YOUR BODY

When we learn to love and care for our body we always do so in a place of gratitude. Be happy for the beautiful feeling of waking up every morning from a good night of untroubled sleep. Thank yourself for being alive to begin a new day and tell yourself that it’s going to be a great day! Be grateful for the choices you will have today and honor yourself in your decisions.

Motivation to live better develops in a natural flow when we stop telling ourselves that we aren’t good enough and that our lives don’t have any purpose or meaning. When we rise from the ordinary, we realize that happiness comes from within when we love ourselves first. Don’t spend your life waiting for it to happen. Take care of your body now and your journey of self-acceptance and self-love will bring more happiness and fulfillment in your life. We can do better each day when our journey is filled with a sense of intention and well-being. Start moving and taking action to create momentum and balance in both our subconscious and surface lives.

How we care for our physical health is how we care for our mental well-being and happiness. Remember that small ongoing positive changes to our mindset and lifestyle can have enormous life-changing results!

Here are some easy rules that can really make an impact on your holistic life and lead to more balance and happiness:

1.       Every other thing that goes in your mouth should be a vegetable or fruit.

2.       Avoid fast food (and drive-throughs), limit fried foods to rare occasions, avoid grilling with excessive charring and burning.

3.       Moderate alcohol consumption. Remember however pleasurable it might feel that alcohol is a poison and a depressant.

4.       Avoid processed food and prepare most meals at home. My hard rule is that anything made by a big corporation is probably bad for our health.

5.       Avoid excess sugar and processed juice without pulp. Big brand processed juice is diabetes and obesity just waiting to happen.

6.       Move on a regular basis and do 30 – 40 minutes of aerobic exercise daily. The older we get the more our blood needs to circulate and stimulate the cardiovascular system.  Find a way to safely do some sort of resistance training with weights, bands, or machines.

7.       Learn breathing techniques that help you relax and align with your spirit. Breathing can give us courage, help us make better choices, and calm anxiety and fear. It can also lower heart rate and help with depression and lower systemic inflammation.

8.       Take cold showers or immersive ice baths on a regular basis. Nothing clears my mind faster and enhances my spiritual being than a burst of cold energy.

9.       Don’t get angry at yourself for going off track occasionally, never use words to harm your spirit!

Show your body some love today, go for a walk, sit under a tree, be kind to others and remember that a healthy body is a healthy mind. Create more happiness in the world around you and set an example, you’re the most important one watching!


ERIC NORTH - The Happiness Warrior

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