WHAT'S YOUR 'IF ONLY' AND HOW TO CONTROL IT

Do you ever get that itchy feeling of,

If only __________, was different, better. Then my whole life would be so much better.

If only I was thinner. If only I had more money. If only I was in love. If only I had my dream job. If. Only…

It’s not a new thing. People wanting more. Wanting what they don’t have. It’s not even the worst thing. Striving to achieve great things propels us into situations that make us uncomfortable and ultimately into great things! More often than not though, the ‘if only’ can take over completely if it’s not kept in check.

What can you do if the ‘If ONLY’ takes a hold over you and you can’t see anything else? The best thing is to get conscious and switch your mind. This doesn’t mean that you need to switch your brain off. In fact, you need to come back to you. The real you, and discover what is behind your ‘if only’ because the big truth… is that there will always be an if only - even if you conquer the one that’s on your mind now, another will rise to the surface. So learn to calm the beast and learn to love the skin you’re in and life that you are living!

Walk it off

Get outside and pound those feet. Get moving and do it outdoors to get the maximum impact. Want to up the anti, then hit the outdoors. The trick here is to walk for at least 45 minutes and let your mind wander.

See what your unconscious mind comes up with and if you hear your niggly voice, your mean inner voice. Stop and move it along. You’ve only got the space and time for the positive.

TAKE NOTE: What do you pick up on? What does your inner voice, the true inner voice that loves you say? Can you come up with 3 things that contradict your if only?

A moment of mindfulness

Take a moment to meditate. Again, this isn’t about switching the mind off, it’s about opening it. If it’s not a skill that you’ve been honing then get help from amazing apps like Headspace and Calm. Doing this stops your mind from drifting to an unrealistic future and back to your present.

TAKE NOTE: What thoughts are you guided towards?

Breathe

Stop a moment. Find a quiet, comfortable place that you can take yourself away to and take 3 powerful, deep breaths. In for 10 and out. This is a great way to both calm your nerves and to bring you back to the present.

TAKE NOTE: How do you feel? Do you notice that your mind is back to the now? If not, then repeat. I want you to move to a place of space and calm. Remember this, because when the ‘if only’ strikes then do this again.

Tap into your passion

For me, this is cooking. I love to create in the kitchen and I notice that I move into an automatic mode that doesn’t require thought. I’m fully in the moment and love it. Music can do this, dance can do this. Things that move you into a space of creation do this.

TAKE NOTE: By going into your ‘happy’ place you can tap into what you love and release endorphins! You can move back to what’s actually important and away from the if only.

Self-care rituals

Self-care = self-love. It also works in a funny way, the more you practice self-care the more love that you feel for yourself. These don’t need to be big, outrageous things. A shower with water that’s the perfect temperature and your favourite shower gel. A cosy corner and a book you love. Painting your nails a colour that makes you pop. Lipstick that gives you a little kick!

TAKE NOTE: When you find yourself drifting to the if only, remember your ritual, what you did and how you felt.

These will all take practice and you won’t do them all at once. Pick the one that speaks to you and do it. Small steps lead to big changes!