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  • Writer's pictureEllen Dodd

Small steps big wins

Hey guys. So, as last year I had managed to let myself slip into a hole, this year I'm making an effort to be better. Slowly, I'm making small steps to do so, and it's got me thinking how much small steps are necessary.

So one example would be I'm having breakfast every day - previously unheard of in the land of Ellie, and it's helping me feel more balanced in life. It's even helping me create a sort of morning routine, which is a huge win for me cause for ages I would craft perfectly over the top morning routines then never follow them. Over time it made me feel unworthy and unaccomplished as I couldn't follow it. Little did I know, it would be near impossible to follow coming from nothing.

I had all these ideas that having a perfect morning routine would save my life, make me super-human, change everything. Then, when I couldn't follow through on it, I felt terrible about myself. I had no idea that the first step to following a morning routine, was getting up in the first place. I would sleep through my alarms, roll out of bed and have a coffee and a cigarette. And I'd be too tired to face any of the tasks I had assigned myself. So, I didn't. "I'll start tomorrow" I'd say, hoping the next day would bring some sort of perfect version of me. It never happened. Sometime, I gave up. But recently, I made a small step in the direction of meeting my mourning routine goal.

I get up and have breakfast. Idk, maybe you have your life together, but for me that's good. Instead of rushing out the door at the last minute. So I've even added in some health practices in the last few days to this newly cultivating morning routine. Which feels good.

So that's one small step. I'm also back at uni now, starting after over a year away from studies because of the way things worked out. I've surprised myself by actually doing the work straight from the off, instead of letting it pile up over the semester like I usually do. Already I feel less anxiety surrounding my studies than I usually feel, and it's down to staying on top of things. Okay, so I'm only on week 3, but hopefully this trajectory sticks.

So what is this teaching me. Well, that small steps lead to big wins. My days feel more alive now I get up and have breakfast, I'm more alert. My studies don't feel impossible, and I don't avoid facing it. I wonder if it's all a knock on effect, taking those multivitamins, getting up earlier, then having the energy to study properly. I've been doing more hobbies too, which is good.

I still have bad habits, but whatever, I'm gonna make the choice the focus on the good. Okay that's a complete lie, as with all endeavours, my brain naturally focuses on the negative so although I feel a bit better I still hate the flaws I have. This is a huge problem I think for most people, focussing on the negative.

So I think a small step most people could benefit from making, is trying to focus on the positive.

"Just be positive!" Is kinda like my OTT morning routine, it's the end goal - NOT the first step. So, how do we get there?

HAHAHhahHahJHAHHAHA yeah idk. I'm miserable.

I guess you could start with some systematic way of doing things, write down three things your grateful for every day. Maybe I'll try start doing this and let you guys know how it goes. I have read about that as a practice before, and think it could be a good place to start.

Gratitude is a big thing when it comes to self development, manifestation, spirituality and so on. To be grateful for what one has changes your perspective and subsequently your life. Plus it opens the way for more blessings to enter your life. So it's a good place to start with being more positive. But it's pretty hard when you hate your job or whatever brings you down in life.

In order to be positive, if we are negative or depressed or anything, we need to start from the bottom. I am grateful I have running water. Over time I'm sure you'll start to have more creative things your thankful for, and you'll maybe start to feel a bit more at ease in your life. I don't do this at present, I'm gonna start right now:

Three Things I'm Grateful For: Day 1

  • I have a home

  • I have running water

  • I have food to eat

You can copy that list to get you going if you're in a bad place and struggling to find things you're grateful for. I'M GRATEFUL FOR MANY THINGS but I'm just starting small as an example. Gratitude seems like a good place to start on the journey to becoming more positive.

Another technique which I use, is choosing higher thoughts. As in noticing negative thoughts and reframing them, or changing them. "I'll never pass my driving test!" To "oh wait, I just haven't passed YET." Literally think the new, higher thought. Then overtime you'll start having more positive thoughts naturally. It's all about rewiring our minds to be more positive, subsequently leading to us being happier. WE have this power! We don't need to rely on external circumstances to feel happy, we can create it for ourselves. But it doesn't happen overnight, so taking small steps is the best way to do it.

The things I write about such as affirmations are what I use along my journey, and things such as meditation (I do this sporadically). With the practice of catching negative thoughts I think doing a bit of meditation would be useful, as it helps you become more aware of your thoughts in the first place so you can catch these negative ones and replace them with something positive. You can just sit quietly for however long you like, do nothing, if you can't quiet your mind yet to start with then implore your thoughts during the time you meditate, get to know yourself.

You can use a mantra such as "Om" as an anchor during your meditation, that's what I do when I meditate. Or affirmations.

All of these things are small steps, and the big win is I'm having more and more energy throughout the days, and rebounding faster from sad moods. Which is good! Fuck you societal depression.

Hopefully this has got your reflecting on the small steps you do, or could take in your life. And the big wins you have or will have in the future!

I hope you've enjoyed reading, happy Tuesday!

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