When I learn a lesson I feel I have to share it in these articles. It’s the only way I can write authentically. I’ve just got back from an amazing 4 days in London, I was at Tony Robbins ‘Unleash the Power Within’ seminar. I had the most amazing time, truly outstanding and yes I did the famous fire walk – barefoot over hot coals. (I’ve no burns at all) It’s hard to describe it to anyone who hasn’t been, and I could write for days about it, but who would read that? So instead of that, I will just share one really important lesson that was tested already (and I’m only home a few hours).
Our state of mind is everything… we can choose everyday to feel happy, grateful, full of joy or to feel miserable, or a victim, or be hard on ourselves. You see, I knew this already, I learnt it during my training to be a life coach, and tried to practice it every day, I genuinely try not to let anyone or anything bring me down, but now I feel its been drilled into my mind. Tony Robbins uses some great techniques and really drives home that its so easy to be conditioned into being in a ‘beautiful state’. I was ecstatically happy, buzzing and excited about the future and totally motivated ready to fulfill my mission – to help as many children and teens as I could. I still am.
However, near the end of the seminar I had gotten some very sad news about the death of a precious little girl who had been very ill. The family are close friends of our family. She had been fighting for a long while, and died peacefully at home with her lovingly amazing family. I was so torn, I couldn’t not think about the family and their loss, their little angel, but I was still on a serious high from the event. I struggled. If I didn’t think about them, I felt heartless and cruel and if I did, I felt so sad, my physical body slumped and mood changed so much… I didn’t know what to do.
I decided that no amount of me thinking about this family would make any difference to how they felt or their situation. I was in London, they were in Dublin. I would try to get home early and make some food, bring it around, offer some practical help but not go into a sad, low place. What use was that? What good would it do? I couldn’t change anything. This family have gone through a really tough time, and I’ve spent so many hours worrying about them and trying to figure out how to help them, but worry never helps. I finally came to the realization that I’m a better person to everyone, when I chose my natural state of happiness. Its not that I’m not sad, or upset, I’ve cried, but I didn’t let the sadness take over. I didn’t allow it to live in my head, I didn’t go over and over it all and let it bring me down (the way I usually would).
So, I was thrilled to be reunited with my husband and 3 kids when I got home, I then made some food for my friends (I had to feel that I had done something useful) and my daughter made some buns, we all went to see them, and they were amazing… full of love and stories about their little girl. I felt what I’ve felt before in very sad and tragic situations, and it should no longer be a shock to me – the family want to celebrate that precious life not mourn it. The only feeling I left their house with, was one of love and gratitude. I was right not to go to a bad place. These people are just amazing! I’ve learnt so much from their courage, I know grief is a long road and it’s only the start of the journey but attitude and outlook is so important too.
Top tips for you and your family to become happy everyday and stay happy
- MUSIC: We now have a new routine every morning to wake up to a happy song, give it a try, weather you sing it or play it on your phone, it doesn’t matter. But you have to love the song.. you have to have good memories associated with the song.
- JUMP UP: Don’t use the snooze button, the idea is to jump up out of bed and sing, dance do whatever you want to your happy song. I know it sounds crazy… it’s just about breaking habits. Whilst coaching a teenager recently, I shared a link about a woman, Mel Robbins (no relation to Tony), who whilst going through a really hard time decided something new to get out of bed, she counts down from 5 to 1, and like a rocket, launches herself out of bed each morning without hitting snooze – it has worked really well for the teenager I’d been working with, have a go and show your teenagers – click here for the link. Please remember that if we’re not getting enough sleep – this doesn’t solve that problem!
- GRATITUDE: Try to take a few minutes in the morning and at night to be grateful for all you have and get the children in on this. When I’m coaching kids and teens they need a little warming up on this topic, but usually it doesn’t take long before they start to list lots of things. I’m lucky my kids are at a good age and they’ll still listen to me on this and take part, like its a game.. I usually ask at night; ‘what 3 things are you most grateful for today?’. Now we’ve got a new way to be grateful: we close our eyes, take deep breaths, put our hand on our heart, and think of happy times and all the love we have in our lives. I know there will be days this doesn’t happen at all, or they’re not in the mood, but I will keep trying.
- CATCH YOURSELF: Catch your thoughts and notice when they are slipping into a low state, maybe someone said something negative, or you are feeling sorry for yourself (or others). News items can be devastating to your mood. So read them quickly, if you must and move on… it doesn’t change anything if you get upset or caught up in it. A friend of mine said to me that a good mood everyday takes work, it doesn’t happen without effort, no one just wakes up happy and stays happy all day!
- ACTION: In some situations you may need to ask yourself what can I do about this problem / negative thought / news item? If there is nothing you can do, and its out of your control, you must let it go. If you can do something and you feel you must, go for it. (For example – If someone says something that’s mean or hurtful, I suggest to the kids I coach, to say ‘Don’t say that to me’ in a loud voice if they feel its the right thing to do. Then practice letting it go. Don’t let anyone rob your happiness.
- TRIGGER/ANCHOR: You need to have a trigger to get yourself back in a good place. Once you catch the thought and let it go, you sing your happy song in your head or make yourself smile, you move your body or find whatever works for you. This may be easy for you or some people need help with it.
We need not go around on automatic pilot, allowing life happen to us, we can choose happiness everyday of our lives. It’s all about training your mind and breaking old habits. Although I must add, that the grieving process is totally separate to this, and we must go through it until we come through all five stages: Click for a link and to reed more from grief.com
After my time in London, I am more determined then ever now to help children and teens to live happier more confident lives. I will be releasing details soon of Summer Camps in a few locations around Ireland, they will be packed full of helpful tools, games, mindfulness and yoga. Dates and locations to come soon.
Thanks very much, please ‘share’, ‘comment’ & ‘like’ if you think it was helpful. If you would like to book coaching for your child please call or email.
Caoimhe O’Grady Tegart – Child & Teen Life Coach
The Confidence Clinic
Mobile: 00353 833425364