People spend billions of dollars in pursuit of an improved self-image or makeover; facials, hairstyling, nails, nipping, tucking, liposuction scrapping and exfoliating and so on! It’s an exercise in feel good, in appearance improvement. Nevertheless, for the true makeover to happen, it must come from within; nip those negative thoughts in bud, tuck away those feeling of helplessness, scrape out those layers of habitual neediness and exfoliate those long beliefs and misperceptions. That is, a true makeover is inner makeover in which you scrub your entrenched habits of self-sabotage to purify your soul. Here are seven steps for inner makeover:
Stop BLAMING and Start CREATING: Stop blaming others for your problems. Start thinking creatively; ask yourself, how I could have responded differently.
Stop WORRYING and Start LIVING: Some people constitutionally worry about chances of things going wrong, others having low opinion of them or even about things that happened in the past. Stop these worries and work on how you can think, converse and act in a detached manner and start living in present.
Stop REGRETTING and Start FORGETTING: Thinking that you could/would/should have made a better choice, worked harder, paid more attention, acted with more detachment and responsibility is fictional. Stop it. Start forgetting the past because it happened in the past. Remember the past only to learn from it and to deal with the present in a more detached manner.
Stop RESISTING and Start ACCEPTING: It’s seems that we are fated to live a life of subconscious resistance; whether it’s someone else’s idea, or their desire, or their opinion, or just ‘them’, we square up against them, even when we cannot justify our behavior. In such moments we are essentially killing our contentment and generating anxiety. So ...stop it! Start accepting everything the way it is. It doesn’t mean agreeing, but stop disagreeing. It doesn’t mean condoning, but stop condemning. As you do, you will start feeling calmer and projecting more positive energy around you; you will start connecting with others in a way that builds and nurtures the relationship.
Stop TAKING and Start GIVING: Any impatience means we cannot wait to receive. Wanting, having, keeping, holding, grasping, are all forms of taking. It’s not wrong. Notice there is always a tension, an anxiety, perhaps an intense fear, that sits behind each. This is how to make yourself stressed. So ...stop it! Start releasing, offering, sharing, giving and you’ll also notice you naturally start receiving. There will likely be the feeling of a very different energy that comes not from others or from the world, but from your own heart! Wise is the soul who lives to give. Happy is the soul who cares and shares. Clever is the soul who receives, but never takes, in order to give!
Stop THINKING and Start FEELING: We tend to live based on what’s ‘on’ our mind, consequently, our thoughts create our emotions and images in our mind. When the world around us turns out to be different than our own image of it, our emotion and image in our consciousness are disturbed; we become uneasy. We make this mistake so often that it feels normal. We then become addicted to our emotions and forget how to really choose our feelings within our consciousness about anything that happens outside of our self. Stop living based on what’s on your mind. Start consciously choosing what you feel, by controlling your mind. You will then become the master of your mind.
Stop DOING and Start BEING: It is tough to stop being a compulsive doer! The imperative is to do more in less time. It is not difficult to become an action-addict, especially when there is the fear of being left behind. We even feel we have to do something in order to relax and do nothing! We believe we have to be seen by others to be always doing something, working on something, creating something. So we chase feelings of importance, fulfillment and worth through action. So... stop it! Stop being an action-addict. Allow the things to happen, to occur, to appear, as they will! Can you just be with others without trying to advise them, find out about them, fix them, make them feel what you think they ‘should’ feel? If you do, you will feel the reality and the power of ‘the being’ that you are. And you will know that that is all you are. And that will be enough! Quite enough!
Action: Take each step and ask yourself, “Why is it not so easy for me to do this?” Reflect slowly! Try to master each step.
Adapted from Mike George’s article, “Are YOU Ready for the Ultimate Makeover?”© 2013