There are times in life where the discomfort of change edges under our skin, like a stomachache on your first day back to school.
Every sensation is heightened, agitating, and our brain feels like one big fuzzy swirl, individual emotions indiscernible and replaced by a persistent drowsiness.
Sometimes, we misread the situation and think that something’s wrong. Maybe we made a wrong turn. Maybe what we did wasn’t the right thing.
We all face crossroads in our lives where we can retreat into ourselves, or we can hit the dance floor.
– Sebastian Lelio
During such times, we just need a little reminder of the strength the exists within us.
Here are five mantras to help calm the mind and bring clarity when you’re at a crossroads.
1. “I cannot control what happens, only how I respond. How I respond to my life determines my happiness.”
No one can deny that life’s experiences will leave an indelible mark no matter how you respond to them.
However, how you respond to those experiences is easily half of the equation and can make all the difference:
- Abuse can be responded to with courage or pity and anger.
- Failure can be responded to from a perspective of growth or inadequacy.
- And tragedy can be responded to with wisdom and love or you can stay drowning in sorrow long after the necessary recovery period.
2. “Change is a natural part of life. Peace is found in my ability to learn to adapt to those changes with grace.”
There’s no fighting change. It’s a part of life that you must learn how to navigate.
But in doing so, you gain the ability to overcome any challenge and find peace even in the most difficult or uncomfortable of times.
3. “The journey will bring me what I need when I least expect it. Life moves at its own pace and I must practice patience and wisdom.”
Despite how hard we try to control our life it moves at its own pace.
There’s much we can control and setting goals is an important part of making the most of life. However, you can’t fully control when something happens and the circumstances around it.
Oftentimes, you arrive at a goal in a way you never imagined, a twist of fate that brought you somewhere or caused something to happen that you could never have planned for.
This is when patience and wisdom are needed most of all. Remember that life moves at its own pace, be patient, flexible, and listen closely to know when to adapt if necessary.
4. “The greatest happiness is found in looking back on good memories. I make the most of this moment to turn regret into gratitude.”
Retrospective happiness is one of the two major ways we find joy in life. When we can look back on our life and know that we truly lived– and did it on our own terms– we feel fulfilled.
But that requires that you make the most of each moment. This moment is precious, and once it’s gone, you’ll never be able to get it back. String enough moments along like that and you’ll quickly run out of time.
Live now, in this moment, so you don’t look back on your deathbed with regret but instead gratitude for having had the opportunity to live such an exciting, happy, and meaningful life.
5. “When my heart speaks, I listen. I don’t allow the noise of the world around me to influence my decisions.”
Sometimes, the heart speaks in a whisper. You need to develop the ability to listen to what your body and mind are telling you, whether it’s a feeling of nervousness around a particular person, a sense of flow when doing a particular activity, or an unsettling discomfort when in a particular environment.
These little clues are whispers of the heart which we often don’t hear because the world is a noisy place that always wants to tell you what you can and should do.
Don’t listen to the noise. Instead, seek out the heart and pursue it relentlessly.