It has been a few weeks since my road trip, the lessons that I have learned have really sunk in at this point. The calmness that I achieved on the road hasn’t left me yet. That warm fuzzy feeling that I had so many times on my trip has become my new normal. When I returned to training clients last week many of them remarked that my energy was different. I couldn’t agree more!. To create a habit some experts say it takes as little as 3 weeks depending on the person. After 3 weeks of putting positive energy out into the world, it has become a new habit among other things.
When I left for my trip being anxious and uptight were becoming everyday activities. Letting little things roll off my shoulders wasn’t something that came easy to me. If I had a thought I would hold on to it, dissect it, put it under a microscope and dwell on it for days. After spending hours upon hours alone in my car I realized how stupid that was. Wasting my energy, time and most of all my happiness. Those valuable resources were being converted into weight on my shoulders. Thoughts that should have held the weight of a feather became heavy and arduous. These minor thoughts became anchors that held me back from being the best version of my possible self.
I do not think that I am alone in this way of thinking. Fortunately for everyone who is stuck in this cycle, there is a way out. It isn’t easy to break the negative thought cycle, but with time and persistence anyone can do it. There is no quick fix to changing negative thought patterns, but luckily there are a few quick tricks that you can try to shake things up inside your mind. Here are the 4 things that helped me on my trip:
- Spend time alone, away from people! It can be a solo trip or simply going to a movie. No one in the world will make you as happy as you can make yourself. You know better than anyone what you need to be happy. Do those things!!
- Scream at the top of your lungs! Being a naturally quiet person this isn’t my norm to be loud. Screw your norm, this is about changing yourself. Screaming at the top of your lunges releases a ton of endorphins. Screaming is a natural reaction to fear, stress, sadness and even happiness. Let that pent up energy out!
- Read! I filled my brain with as much information as I could. The more time I spent engulfed in a book, the less time I had to dwell on things. Reading gave me new ideas and perspectives. These new ideas and perspectives changed me as a person. I read books that would give me a lot of things to think about. Another benefit of reading is no screen time!
- Disconnect from social media! This might seem weird considering you probably found this article on my Facebook page (its also on my website :). Getting sucked into the social media world wastes a lot of time. Instead of going out and seeing the world yourself you are looking at another persons edited version of their world. Instead of messaging a friend on Facebook to hangout, call them, hear their voice, connect with them!
Some parts of my trip were not all happy, but life would be terrible if it was all smiles, happiness and pretty things. We need pain, suffering and sadness to appreciate all the greatness that our lives hold. I spent a lot of time with tears in my eyes, missing people who are no longer part of my life, longing for someone to share my trip and life with and just the fear of what the future holds. I am ok with having these feelings, because you will never leave a legacy if your life was easy. Legacies are made by people who did great things. Those great things weren’t easy and that is why they were great.
It is amazing what 3 weeks of deep solo thought and adventure can do to a person. I wish everyone could take a trip like I did. The things I had seen cannot be expressed in words, or even pictures. The memories will live on in my brain forever. I am no longer the same person I was when I got in my car and left for my adventure. Don’t be afraid to try something new and be uncomfortable.