How to be happy: Beat tired woman syndrome and rewrite your inner dialogue
“We don’t see things as they are, we see things as WE are”
That dreaded morning alarm. You know the sound I mean? It’s the signal to restart the perpetual cycle of daily life – the never-ending rush. It becomes difficult to remember how to be happy. Some days, it seems as though you’ve barely started a task and you’re already late for the next one. It’s like tumbling in the ocean’s high tide, wave after wave tossing you from deadline to deadline.
Is it any wonder the modern-day woman feels like she’s drowning? Women are inundated in negative thought-patterns around:
- Mothering well
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Keeping fit
- Not succeeding in business
- Failing to be a good friend
As much as women may believe they are failing at one if not a couple of these, in many instances the feeling of failure is a result of overthinking.
This is not to say the feelings are not 100% valid. It does mean we have the power to change the way we experience life by rewiring our brains to better perceive the joy that is already there – even when it is not tangible to us.
How to be happy and beat ‘exhausted woman syndrome’
Overthinking sends the brain into a negative feedback cycle which often results in anxiety, depression, and pushing beyond reasonable limits until adrenal burnout or exhaustion is inevitable.
A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology provides insight into why women who focus on their triumphs do better in life – they live longer, more productive and fulfilled lives.
“The study analyzed data from 70,000 women. They looked at participants’ levels of optimism and how it may affect mortality risk. The most optimistic women had:
- 38 percent lower risk of dying from heart disease
- 39 percent lower risk of dying from stroke
- 52 percent lower risk of dying from infection.”
The optimistic women also experienced greater success in their endeavors and lived happier lives – even in circumstances that were severely extenuating.
An exercise to prove the brain is malleable – you can rewire it to feel more joy
That said, changing your perspective is never easy. It’s like reformatting your entire thought pattern. Fortunately, the brain is a wonderful organ that can be rewired to find joy in the small everyday tasks that make up the fabric of life.
Here is an immensely powerful strategy you can use while you’re on the go to turn your self-critical inner dialogue into a powerful source of inspiration.
The Hawaiian prayer of forgiveness: Ho’oponopono
The Ho’oponopono is a Hawaiian mantra spoken to yourself as follows:
I am sorry
Please forgive me
I love you
This mantra is a reconciliation practice. Our society often speaks about the importance of accepting yourself in order to heal and live a happier life. Few provide a practical way to do so. This mantra can be spoken quietly to yourself whenever a negative or self-critical thought appears in your mind.
If you find yourself saying:
“I should have..” or
“I wish..” or
“why didn’t I rather…”
Repeat the Ho’oponopono to yourself.
At first, it may feel mechanical, that is normal, just persist. It helps to picture the recipient as the child-version of yourself, innocent and young and receptive.
Say this to yourself when you reach your greatest depths of self-loathing or regret. Allow yourself to forgive your failures – through this reconciliation practice, you will break out of cycles of compulsive behaviors that repeat themselves. It is only when we accept ourselves that we can really bring about change.
Ho’oponopono: Reminding your brain how to be happy
This exercise forms new neural pathways in the brain that will override negative self-talk with positivity. Make it the backtrack of your life.
We love to hear about the journey of our readers. Have you found a trick to nailing that negative dialogue and overriding it with joyful praise and positivity?