Now more than ever, our mental health is vitally important. It’s difficult to manage the stress of today’s world, mainly due to the volume of (negatively stressful) inputs we receive simultaneously, 24/7, but also due to the speed at which we operate. We might be feeling short tempered, under slept, overwhelmed, or irritable, which makes a lot of sense. The hard question is how do we triumph over these challenges in our daily lives? How do we take the high road?
The protection of our own mental state is our responsibility. When we live from that perspective, we can begin to take ownership of what we say yes to vs. what we say no to, who we surround ourselves with, what we do for work, where we go to unwind, and most importantly to what we give our attention and focus. Who and what we listen to reinforces our perspective. We can control our “half” of every interaction and behavior (it takes two to tango, after all).
This is all good and fun, in theory. In practice, it’s much more difficult. A daily theme I’ve been exploring in my life is to constantly “take the high road” to avoid some of this negativity, which involves changing a few key things about my behavior and thought process:
2) Operate under the assumption that I can improve every interaction by leading with kindness, respect, and empathy (i.e., it’s my responsibility to make this interaction positive, not to be treated kindly first).
3) Don’t assume malice (“Hanlon’s Razor”)
If you constantly feel like the world is out to get you, review your interactions. Sometimes we need to change our environment to make changes in our mindset. Are you seeking confrontation or friction inadvertently? What if you took the high road?
I’ll admit, it’s hard. People aren’t always the nicest, kindest, or most respectful (especially when they’re chronically stressed), but that doesn’t mean you can’t be. The practice of telling yourself “just let it go” won’t be perfect, but it will be worth it. You don’t have time to let it affect you because you’re on your way to do something amazing with your day.
Can you guess what kind of day that would be? Good guess. Go out and have the best day ever.