15 things we can do to strengthen our mind

October 15, 2018
woman, mind, thinking, overthinking, monkey mind, lessons, learning, learnt, self care, self love

woman, mind, thinking, overthinking, monkey mind, lessons, learning, learnt, self care, self love

This morning as I was driving home from my Reformer Pilates class I passed the health centre where I go for doctor appointments, physio appointments, etc.  They have one of those large roadside noticeboards where you can change the letters to whatever message you would like. They’ve taken to doing weekly quotes and I really enjoy seeing what the new quote is each week.  This week it is this:

The sky is not the limit.  The mind is.

This struck a chord with me because I am constantly battling with my mind and I know I’m not alone. 

I remembered that Denyse’s prompt this week for #LifeThisWeek is ‘What I have learned lately’ and this quote and what it means to me is what I’d like to share, so I’ve decided to be uncharacteristically spontaneous and write this post only minutes before publishing.

Since it’s the 15th of October today, I decided to stick to 15 points (though I could list many more), so you’ll see 15 things that will help us to not have such limiting minds listed below.  Some of these things I’ve learned lately, but mostly these are things I’ve learned over recent years.

15 things we can do to strengthen our mind

  1. Our mind is at the centre of our wellbeing.  We need to try to understand it and how to manage it.  We exercise our bodies and we need to exercise our minds too.
  2. Tame the inner critic.  We all have one.  I know I have!  We would never talk to someone else the way our inner critic talks to us.  It can be so mean, judgemental and demeaning.  Check out my Top 6 Tips for Neutralising the Inner Critic (listed towards the end of the post).
  3. Busy minds (monkey minds) can be quietened by practicing mindfulness and meditation.  See my posts on mindfulness and meditation here.
  4. We do not heal the past by dwelling there. We heal the past by living in the present.  You can’t live in the present if you’re dwelling on the past. 
  5. ‘Comparison is the thief of joy’ – don’t judge or demean yourself by comparing yourself to others.  You never know another persons whole story anyway.
  6. Overthinking and ruminating causes us unnecessary suffering. The first step to stopping it is to recognise it.  Then distract yourself – e.g. talk to someone, go for a walk, watch TV, read a book, do some exercise, meditate.
  7. Understand what causes you stress – and know yourself enough to know how best to manage it.
  8. Take steps to improve your self-confidence and self-esteemSee my Self Confidence series.
  9. Constantly striving to achieve perfection is draining and an enormous time guzzler!  Perfection does not exist anyway.  Here’s a post where you can read 10 Ways to Tell If You’re a Perfectionist.
  10. Self care is important.  Know what fills your cup and do those things regularly. See this post I wrote on self-compassion & self-care.
  11. Take regular time out from screens and social media.  Being constantly switched on and connected can overcrowd your mind.  See my Digital Detox series.
  12. Get outdoors in nature.  I believe nature to be the greatest healer and calmer for our minds.  My favourite quote of all time is by John Burrows – “I go to nature to be soothed and healed and to have my senses put in order”.
  13. Eat good healthy food and move your body – these things all help make a healthy, happy mind!
  14. There’s no magic instant solution for anyone who suffers with anxiety or depression. However, my best advice would be ‘self investment’.  Invest time in yourself.  Learn to understand you.  Arm yourself with knowledge about you and what helps you during challenging times is the best gift you could ever give yourself.  I recently shared some ways that I help myself when experiencing anxiety
  15. Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions. Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become character. Watch your character for it becomes your destiny.  This is a quote which I think was originated by Frank Outlaw.  It basically means ‘what you think, you become’.  It’s very true, so be mindful of your thoughts!

How well do you know and understand you and your mind?  Could it be stronger?  Do you know how to manage it?  Is your mind limiting your opportunities? 

Ciao for now,

Linking with Denyse Whelan for #LifeThisWeek

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22 Comments

  • Reply Sydney Shop Girl October 15, 2018 at 2:50 pm

    Great list, Min! Thanks for sharing it. Filing away for later.

    SSG xxx

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 5:32 am

      Thanks SSG xo

  • Reply Debbie October 15, 2018 at 7:46 pm

    Fabulous list Min! I especially love #12 and #15 – a reminder to all of us ๐Ÿ™‚ #Lifethisweek

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 5:34 am

      Thanks Deb – yes #12 is my favourite – nature has a huge healing and calming affect on me. #15 is harder to keep tabs on but so important! xo

  • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au October 15, 2018 at 8:38 pm

    The awful thing is that I can tick so many of these as areas I’m still working on – the overthinking and the dwelling on things are two that catch me up regularly. Comparison and my inner critic are another couple – but I’ll get there eventually!

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 5:37 am

      Leanne you’re not alone! I’m aware of all these things but certainly not a master of them. I think these are things that we will always need to work on. Being aware of them and conscious of when we are off track is a very good start! ๐Ÿ™‚ xo

      • Reply Leanne | www.crestingthehill.com.au October 17, 2018 at 4:22 pm

        Min I have to tell you that I laughed at your comment on my “tall” post about being able to start our own company – but that you couldn’t be bothered – that was my exact thought when I read the suggestion – we might be height challenged at different levels, but we’re definitely on the same wavelength!
        MLSTL and I’ve shared your post on my SM ๐Ÿ™‚

        • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 9:09 pm

          LOL – and now I’m laughing at your comment. Our company is such a good idea but I truly can’t be bothered and so glad you get it! ๐Ÿ˜‰ xo

  • Reply Suger October 16, 2018 at 6:40 pm

    Thank goodness for that ticking sign and quote, this post was just the reminder I needed. Thanks for sharing.

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 5:37 am

      Is that what it is called … a ‘ticking sign’? Aha! Thanks for popping by Melissa – always lovely to have you visit. xo

  • Reply Natalie October 17, 2018 at 11:07 am

    Thanks, Min., for sharing these great reminders. Healthy mind, healthy body, and we get what we focus on. #MLSTL

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 9:07 pm

      My pleasure, thanks Natalie. xo

  • Reply Denyse October 17, 2018 at 3:58 pm

    Thank you so much! What a great post and I love how you took your inspiration. Thank you for joining #lifethisweek. Next week’s optional prompt is Easy Meal Ideas. Denyse

    • Reply Min October 17, 2018 at 9:08 pm

      Thanks Denyse!

  • Reply Christie Hawkes October 17, 2018 at 10:06 pm

    These are all great points, Min. I believe we can all strengthen our minds. I know I could for sure. I find it interesting that several of your suggestions point to getting out of our heads and experiencing life in our bodies–being in nature, meditation, stop ruminating. Perhaps one way to strengthen our minds is to give them a rest and be more well-rounded in our body-mind connection. Thanks for getting me thinking about this Min.

    • Reply Min October 18, 2018 at 10:06 am

      Now you’ve got me thinking Christie! Lol To me strengthening our minds is about having some control over them rather than letting our thoughts control us and lead us down a path that perhaps we’d rather not go! Strengthening our minds is about managing that so that we can feel a sense of peace and calm, feel more balanced, more productive and in control of our destiny and so on.

  • Reply Mary Lou October 19, 2018 at 1:46 am

    This is very helpful Min! There’s something here for everyone so I’ll be sharing this with my FB and Twitter friends for #MLSTL Thank you!
    https://meinthemiddlewrites.com/2018/10/12/one-word-inspiration-and-a-story-in-a-single-image/

    • Reply Min October 19, 2018 at 1:40 pm

      Thanks so much Mary Lou! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Jennifer October 19, 2018 at 5:45 am

    Really great list. 6 and 10 can sometimes be so hard to do. Self-care is something I try to remind myself without ruminating about it when I don’t do it.

    • Reply Min October 19, 2018 at 1:45 pm

      Thanks Jennifer – yes 6 particularly can be hard to do but recognising it is a giant first step! Self care is something that first needs to be identified – as in “what do I need in certain circumstances to feel better”? Once you have a list of things then you need to recognise when you need to apply some self care. Then it’s a matter of selecting the right thing for the time. Some people set regular activities (e.g. weekly or fortnightly). Some sporadic. Whatever works best for you! ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Reply Agnes October 23, 2018 at 2:40 am

    Great article, Min! We are certainly works in progress, aren’t we! I find meditation helps me… but there are days when my mind has a mind of its own! Sharing this one for sure! #mlstl

    • Reply Min October 23, 2018 at 8:11 am

      Thanks Agnes! Meditation helps me too and my mind has a mind of its own too which is why I have sought ways to understand it and strengthen/control it somewhat! lol ๐Ÿ™‚

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