Have you every found yourself going along with a situation you didn't feel entirely comfortable with, just to accommodate someone else's feelings or needs? There are times when we willingly choose to go out of our way for someone we care about, and we feel great doing so. But what about those times when it doesn't feel so great? Those times when it's not so much that you're willing, and more that you feel compelled, obligated, or motivated by guilt?
Depending on the circumstances, you may be left feeling slightly uneasy, extremely uncomfortable, or completely overwhelmed. If it happens repeatedly, there's a strong probability you'll wind up feeling frustrated with yourself and perhaps even resentful towards someone else.
It can be hard to tell the difference between consideration and capitulation, especially when you're dealing with family or close friends. As a starting place, if you're feeling rushed, pushed, or pressured to meet someone else's needs or to accommodate a request, stop and ask yourself the following questions:
Some people seem to have a clear understanding of their special gifts and strengths. It might be a great sense of humour and the ability to make other people laugh. Maybe it's the ability to remain calm in the midst of chaos. Perhaps it's a natural talent for leading and inspiring others.
On the other hand, many people find it difficult to acknowledge their own strengths. Focusing on their positive qualities can make them feel awkward and uncomfortable, perhaps even self-centred. This is unfortunate, as there's enormous power in identifying and tapping into one's strengths.
While the concept of self-improvement may be gaining more attention these days, it certainly isn't new. We find it in religions and philosophies worldwide, dating back centuries. People have always carried a little spark within them, prompting them to work harder and reach higher, striving to achieve their full potential.
But that continual reaching and striving can also have a dark side. People can find themselves in a perpetual state of insecurity and dissatisfaction, as they try to live up to unrealistic ideals. In the long run, this can do more harm than good, as people are left feeling discouraged, deflated, and inadequate. That's definitely not what healthy self-improvement is all about!
Here are some characteristics of healthy self-improvement.
You know the feeling – you're not sick, but you don't quite feel like your usual self. You might describe yourself as feeling a little "low" or a bit "off" and not quite on the ball. Over time, this can escalate to the point where you find yourself feeling tired, drained, and run-down.
During these periods, it can be tempting to ignore how you're feeling and simply push on as usual with your regular daily routine. This is precisely the time when you can benefit from pausing and taking the opportunity to assess where you're at. After all, you can't really take care of yourself unless you first tune in to what's going on.
Where to start? For most people, the three areas most likely to be in need of some attention are sleep patterns, eating habits, and stress management.
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