If you’ve read anything I’ve ever written, or if you have
met me, you know that it is my fervent desire to always be focused on
happiness. My happiness to be sure, but also to use my platform as a way of spreading
happiness, joy and …love… and all that airy fairy stuff.
Well guys, here we are in the middle of something that we
couldn’t have predicted a year ago. We are social distancing; all but essential
businesses are shut down; we are cloistered in our homes; we may be running out
of toilet paper; and hand sanitizer hoarders are now a real thing. Those of you
who have been preparing for the zombie apocalypse are probably doing the “told
ya so dance” right now.
For someone like me who’s always talking about happiness,
how do I even deal with this level of crazy that we are finding ourselves a
part of right now? I deal carefully, thoughtfully and deliberately. What I know
for sure is that we can maintain our happiness in this troubled time. I’m not
talking about putting a happy face sticker on a terrible situation. What I mean
is reaching for inner peace instead of panic. I’m not suggesting we spend our
days LOLing at those hilarious quarantine memes and GIF's, even though they are
super funny. What I am suggesting is being able to reach for inner joy in times
of crisis and being unshakable in our determination to think the best thoughts
we can in each moment no matter what each moment brings.
"That sounds difficult. How does one even go about doing
Please know that I’m not in any way simplifying the reality
of this and for those adversely affected I want you to know that my heart goes
out to you in this time. You may be surprised to know that our family has also been touched by SIGNIFICANT loss in this time. What I have found is that in times of good and plenty
and in times of adversity, sticking close to these 5 steps for happiness has
been sustaining and life giving for me. I am writing this in the hope that it
may bring someone some peace in this time.
1)What do you believe?
It took me a long time, many years in fact
to come to this way of thinking. I grew up in a very traditional sort of family
and so I was never taught that we create our own existence. Sure I learned that
if you put your mind to it you will succeed and that hard work results in
success, but at no time was I taught that thoughts become things. That what we
focus on is what manifests. It took me seeing that first hand and even playing
with the manifestation process to actually realize that what we are putting out
there energetically is what we get back.
...so I decided: "OK, this screwy idea sounds…well… screwy but I might as well try being happy and focusing on inner peace and watching to see what happens."
I’d tried all the other ways of being
that I was taught and I wasn’t seeing the results and so I decided: "Ok, this
screwy idea sounds…well… screwy but I might as well try being happy and
focusing on inner peace and watching to see what happens." I had in the past
just had emotions based on what was showing up in my life. If things were great
and the sun was shining, then I’d have a big smile, and if things were going to
the dogs, then my mood would be too.
This ground breaking idea of not letting
the circumstances of your life be the reason you feel the way you feel just
seemed crazy to me, but reading book after book by guru after guru saying the
same thing encouraged me to at least give it a 30 day money back trial. That
was many 30 days ago. And TBH there have been ups and downs on this journey.
Every day is a new day with this and that leads me to step 2.
What I can absolutely say is that I’m still
a work in progress every single day. Like I said, I didn’t learn this way of
being growing up. What I learned and what was modeled to me was: There are some
things that are just beyond your control. What I know now is I always have
control over my emotions and how I choose to feel in any given situation. That
doesn’t mean that unpleasant things don’t happen at all or that I look at the world
through rose colored glasses. It means that because I am practicing every day
to maintain my inner peace, on the days when I need it most I’ll be better able
to weather the storm.
It’s just like anything else. I remember when my baby was learning how to creep. (BTW, don't let him know I'm calling him my baby, he's now 5 years old going on 50 and in kindergarten!) That little
sweetie made me laugh so hard! He could only creep backwards. He was determined
though, if he wanted to go get something, he would calculate its location in
his little baby brain and then back his way towards it. I’m pretty sure that in
11 years when he goes for his driving test he will ace reversing! Anyway, he
kept trying to go forward, Practicing and practicing...and one day he got a little green talking dog
stuffed toy named SCOUT.
"...this time all his practice paid off: In the moment he needed to most of all."
Scout had been programmed to say the baby's name, it had
flashing lights, and it could sing songs for him that included his name and all
kinds of features that are catnip to babies. When he saw Scout for the first
time, his desire to creep forward had never been greater, he had tried and
tried, he had practiced, sometimes getting a few inches forward before moving
backward again, but this time all his practice paid off: In the moment he needed to most of all, he moved forward all
the way across the room, grabbed Scout (who promptly went into his mouth,) and
he hasn’t looked back since. I’m constantly sharing stories of my crazy kids
and their shenanigans but I share this to say that reaching for inner peace
during a crisis may not come easily, but we have this overwhelming desire to
feel better when things are at their worst and so it’s probably the perfect
time to practice.
"But how? You CAN practice emotions. True story!"
this: close your eyes and think about something for which you are truly
grateful. It could be hugs from your kids, amazing support staff or a lovely
life partner. Whatever it is that is meaningful for you, close your eyes and
focus in on the gratitude you feel.
The object of your desire may not have been
in the room with you while you visualized your gratitude, but that did not stop
the warm feelings from flowing into you did it? We can do this with almost
anything, it just takes knowing how, focus and practicing.
3)Morning and daily routine
I’m going to share with you what worked for
me; What helped me to build my happiness muscle. And I’ll say again, we are all a work in
progress, especially me, but I’m better today than I have ever been. This was
recommended by one of my most trusted mentors and I have to say this may have
been the game changer, no, life changer for me.
There is a little space in the morning when I wake up, when I know I’m
awake but before I start planning my day and going off on all my tangents. I
try my best to get control of my thoughts in this space and consciously project
thoughts of appreciation and gratitude. Appreciation for another day, for
health, for my family, for my internal plumbing working the way it should as I
rush off to the bathroom.
Once I’m squared away, I try to introduce some
movement / exercise. Usually yoga works well for me at this time and then I spend
a few minutes meditating. I do a spot of journaling and then I listen to or read something inspirational to help set the tone for my day.
This means for me that
I have to get up a bit earlier so as not to be disturbed by my little ones, but
the time is worth it, and I notice that on the days that I miss incorporating
this routine, that navigating challenges is a little harder. I also avoid all
media, social and otherwise during this time. The emails will still be there
when I’m done!
One of my mentors is a coach and teacher of universal law. She introduced
me to deciding how I want to feel before I move into each different portion of
"...deciding how I want to feel before I move into each different portion of my day."
For example- As I am walking into the kitchen to prepare breakfast for my kids
before getting them on the bus, I remind myself that I want to feel efficient and in flow; As I
drive to work, I tell myself I want to feel safe and secure; As I go through the day treating patients, I intentionally focus in on wanting to
feel in flow and knowledgeable; when I return home to my family I want to feel
love and joy …and patient; going to bed I want to feel relaxed and in
You can break this down into even smaller chunks of time, but what
this ensures is that you are at all times paying attention to how you feel.
c)Don’t beat yourself up
There are days when my morning “glow, “lasts longer than others. On some
days I’m rushing so much that I’m not paying attention to how I want to feel
and wander into uncomfortable emotional territory. On some days, things just
overwhelm me. That’s OK.
Let us please not beat ourselves up for not being
happy enough! Every day we have an opportunity to continue our practice and
every day our happiness muscle builds and gets stronger, helping us handle the
toughest situations with ease calm, peace and grace.
4)Taking care of you
We’ve all heard that you can’t pour from an
empty cup and that you should put your mask on first before helping others.
These are not just platitudes. Sometimes, no matter how hard we try to reach
for happiness, it may elude us because of something physiological. Have you
ever noticed that when you feel healthier, well rested, well hydrated, when you
are fed, you have exercised and when you have avoided negative people places
and things, that you just feel amazing, like you could conquer the world? Let
me just put on my physician and recovering researcher hat here for a minute to
let you know that yes there is a change in your brain and body chemistry in
response to all these things.
"...happiness, it may elude us because of something physiological."
I won’t bore you with the details, at least not
in this article. Just look it up on PubMed though, I kid you not, these things
affect how you feel, not just physically but also emotionally. So let’s make
sure we are doing all we can to maintain our health in this time. Let’s lay off
the quarantine snacks for a minute guys! Now is the time to infuse our diets
with healthy plant based foods, (great news, so far the produce aisles continue
to be STOCKED, there is a run on TP but not on fresh veggies!) Let’s not skip
meals even though we aren’t on our regular schedule. Let’s supplement our
health with key nutrients. In times like these a quality multivitamin, Vitamin
D, Vitamin C, a quality antioxidant, omega 3’s and probiotics, to name a few, can
go a long way.
Make sure we are getting quality sleep. With our schedules
upended, we may be tempted to stay up late nights bingeing streaming TV, or
reading or whatever. That is fine, just make sure you are getting enough quality
In the colder months we can be tempted to let our
hydration fall by the wayside. Don’t forget however, that we are about 70%
water and we can’t run many of our repair reactions nor can we eliminate waste
successfully without water. So drink up during this time. Try to get about ½ oz
per pound of body weight - that is on average about 64 oz per day.
find that we have more time in our schedule for moving our bodies, so let’s do
it. Exercise releases endorphins as well as dopamine and serotonin in some
cases. These are all chemicals produced by our bodies that can help us feel
better naturally. Doing some yoga, going for a walk in nature, joining a
virtual group exercise class, going for a run or even lifting weights in the
basement all count towards helping us feel better.
And as for keeping the
negative influences in life to the barest minimum, well, that’s just good
sense. All that being said, if you suffer from not just situational depression,
but clinical depression, incorporating these ideas as well as working with a
professional counselor can be tremendously beneficial.
I’m a firm believer that we don’t have to
go it alone and that everything is easier with a collective of likeminded
supportive individuals. On our journey to improving our lives through this
season that we are currently in and beyond, success is so much more likely when
we can ask the audience or phone a friend.
"In this time when social distancing is mandated, let’s look for opportunities for heart and soul connecting."
In this time when social distancing
is mandated, let’s look for opportunities for heart and soul connecting. It is
my hope that we exit this crisis better than we were at the very beginning.
That we rediscover what is truly of value in our lives, that we look for the
opportunity and silver linings in all of this and reach for innovation and
My offer to you:
I invite you to join us as we mastermind to raise our vibrations every day together. As a member of Ladies Power Lunch (LPL,) engage daily in our Facebook group, monthly at our LPL meetings, come to our conferences, summits, and retreats. Most of us go to webinars, listen to talks, read
articles and engage in all sorts of other self help activities, and at the end of the day
we go back to living our lives as usual. What I have learned is that in order for us to truly move forward
successfully, we need a container of support, and that is
what we provide each other every day at Ladies Power Lunch. If you would like to have a group of like-minded supportive individuals for
accountability, conversation and support, then I invite you to join us today, for FREE.
Thank you so much for attending the Ladies Power Lunch Presents Transformation 2020 on Monday. I appreciate your understanding given the circumstances. I am elated with how well the event turned out and am grateful for all of you! Below are the freebie links graciously supplied by our Transformation Ambassadors and presenters for all participants.
We expect to be live and in person on May 4th! As things progress we will keep everyone posted!
Sandra Centorino - Voice Over Artist · Motivational Speaker · Video Producer · Brand Representative · Ambassador
Bevin Mugford – Peach Head of Sales and Field Development
$20 off Coupon Code - www.discoverpeach.com and upon check-out enter code: PEACHWOMENSDAY20 Valid from: 1/20/20 at 12:00am PT until 3/31/20 at 11:59pm PT. Cannot be combined with any other promotion or coupon code.