Would you believe me if I told you it’s possible to maintain peace and happiness in the midst of life’s storms? I’m sure most of us have noticed it’s extremely easy to maintain happiness, show optimism, be courageous, be at peace, communicate effectively, meet workout goals, express love and receive love in return when life is playing out the way we’d like it to. But what about those defining moments when everything that could possibly go wrong does?
I’m sure all of us have found ourselves in situations where we’ve felt defeated and were unable to find peace. These moments make us feel as if life is saying, “I absolutely will not give you a break, instead I’m going to add more to your puzzle.” You begin to feel drained as life tosses you in every direction. These situations tend to make us feel as if it doesn’t matter which way we turn, because disaster awaits us .
For example have you needed car maintenance, or the AC stopped working mid-summer,your heater stopped working mid winter, your child is struggling in school, tuition is due and you haven’t received funding, you’re fighting with your S/O and to make matters worse, tons of bills are due and you have no clue how they are going to get paid?? I’m sure we’ve all experienced at least one or two of these. For those of us who are becoming veterans at this thing called life, we may have experienced all of thee above.
As we all know, unfortunately, problems do not wait for the current problem to go away. They tend to pile on top of each other, and if allowed to, they begin to weigh heavily on our shoulders. These problems can become breaking points. Now before you ask, No, I DO NOT have a remedy to removing life’s problems and if I did I’d be rich. 🙂 But I do believe anyone can find peace in the midst of their storms if they find a way to maintain balance in the 4 basic needs. For example, according to Grands Rapids Community College, we all have 7 basic needs that we must maintain balance in but I’ve maintained balance in 4 which happen to work perfectly and I would like to share them with you. These 4 basic needs are Physical, Emotional, Mental and Spiritual.
Firstly, physical needs must be maintained, which promote good health as well as less stress. You’d be surprised at the amount of stress that can be eliminated by simply taking a brisk walk on your lunch break. I do not enjoy exercising AT ALL but I always feel so much better and more relaxed afterwards. Plus, who doesn’t like to save money by bringing their food to work? 🙂 I actually bring my lunch to work so that I am able to walk the first 30 min of my lunch hour while reading my kindle to help time pass quickly.
Reading also helps with mental wellness so technically you could kill to birds with one stone. Work also allows us to exercise our brain muscles hence keeping our mental needs in check. For those who are in school or do not work I have listed a few tips that you could add to your daily schedule.
- Exercise daily
- Get adequate rest
- Use seat belts, helmets, and other protective equipment
- Learn to recognize early signs of illness
- Eat a variety of healthy foods
- Control your meal portions
- Stop smoking and protect yourself against second-hand smoke
- Use alcohol in moderation, if at all
- Take a course or workshop
- Learn (or perfect) a foreign language
- Seek out people who challenge you intellectually
- Learn to appreciate art
GRCC also states that Spiritual wellness is just as important. It involves possessing a set of guiding beliefs, principles, or values that help give direction to one’s life. It encompasses a high level of faith, hope and commitment to your individual beliefs that provide a sense of meaning and purpose.
I’ve noticed what works for me is as soon as I wake up I read daily scripture plans and seek to understanding so that I am able to apply these scriptures to my own life. I also take the time to meditate which brings peace and prepares me for crazy work mornings. I’ve listed a few tips and suggestions below which were provided by GRCC to help you get started:
- Explore your spiritual core
- Spend time alone/meditate regularly
- Be inquisitive and curious
- Be fully present in everything you do
- Listen with your heart and live by your principles
- Allow yourself and those around you the freedom to be who they are
- See opportunities for growth in the challenges life brings you
Last but not least, meeting our emotional needs on a regular basis will help maintain the balance we need. Being emotionally well is typically defined as possessing the ability to feel and express human emotions such as happiness, sadness and anger. It means having the ability to love and be loved and achieving a sense of fulfillment in life. Emotional wellness encompasses optimism, self-esteem, self-acceptance and the ability to share feelings.
So what exactly does this mean? Guess what, you actually have to remain optimistic even when you want to throw in the towel and scream! Maintaining spiritual wellness can definitely help with this. For example, I’ve started writing encouraging words & scriptures on sticky notes for myself and my family throughout the house and in my son’s lunch box for rainy days. As far as self esteem, I’m sure we can all find a few things wrong with ourselves, but we have to constantly remind ourselves that we were created the way we are for a reason. And while we may need to work on a few things, this DOES NOT mean we aren’t good enough.
We also have to learn to share our feelings when the time is right. Ask yourself this question, “When has bottling up my emotions helped me or anyone around me? It’s actually known to cause health problems and induce more stress in the long run. Furthermore, I definitely wouldn’t want to be on the receiving end if someone bottled up something I’d done and decided to spew lovely words at me after having a rough day. So let’s get that under control ladies and gentlemen. Below, I’ve listed a few tips provided by GRCC to get you started.
- Tune-in to your thoughts and feelings
- Cultivate an optimistic attitude
- Seek and provide support
- Learn time management skills
- Practice stress management techniques
- Accept and forgive yourself
Now that we’ve listed your 4 basic needs and a way to maintain them, you have ZERO excuses. Today is your last day to allow life to knock you around. Let’s put our best foot forward by maintaining our needs. It is very easy to forget to maintain this but we have all experienced life without balance and it’s no fun. So let’s start enjoying life no matter what we are going through. I strongly believe and have experienced the peace of keeping these 4 needs balanced. Life is never going to be perfect but your response to life could be more peaceful, and that’s the ultimate goal right?
Be blessed, be peaceful & be happy.
Information for this blog can be found at GRCC Seven Dimensions of Wellness
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