Friday, October 28, 2016

6 Easy Ways to Energize Your Day!

Here are 6 easy ways to cleanse and clear your old energy sludge and open your system valves to a torrent of feel wonderful fresh energy flow.

Yawn, Sigh, and Stretch

Sit up or stand up straight, stretch your arms out or up, breathe in deeply, and yawn. Yawn even if you don’t feel as though you need to yawn. Allow yourself to yawn two or three more times. Each yawn will feel better than the one before!

When you yawn, sigh, and stretch loads of good things happen in your body. You relax your jaw and throat, you signal the body that you’re safe and calm, and you clear out sludge from the prefrontal cortex (the area of your brain primarily responsible for conscious thinking) and prepare it to return to work in a relaxed, invigorated state.

Close Your Eyes and Breathe Deeply for at Least One Minute

When you close your eyes, your brainwave patterns automatically shift toward producing more alpha waves, the brain waves that create a sense of calm and relaxation. Add in slower, deeper breathing, and you have a recipe for renewable energy that tastes great and feels wonderful.

Stand Up and Take a Walk

Your prefrontal cortex tends to tire after about 30-minutes or so of focused attention. Creativity decreases and a you can feel tired and spent. Think of the last time you spent an hour or more working feverishly on your computer with no break.

Standing up and walking around for a minute or two every 30-minutes or so will help ensure you stay fresh and relaxed throughout your day. If you have been standing for extended periods, sit down and allow yourself to simply “Be” as you relax body / mind / and spirit.

Tidy Up Your Space

The Chinese practice of Feng Shui offers many benefits for those who choose to use it. It’s an effective way to create a harmonies, nourishing living or work space.

Don’t want to study Feng Shui? No problem. It’s easy to apply Feng Shui’s most important principle: Open space.

When you clear off desk and table surfaces, remove unnecessary items in your space (to include your computer desktop), and generally tidy up, you’re opening your space to encourage flowing energy.

It feels good to tidy up.

Call a Loved One or an Old Friend Just to Say “Hi”

I’ll bet there is a loved one or an old friend you’ve been meaning to call for months. Call that person now or schedule a call on your calendar for sometime today or tomorrow. There is a loving positive energy that starts to flow as soon as we hear the familiar voice of someone special. Imagine how surprised that special someone will be when they hear your voice and how good you’ll feel for making that call.

Fire Up a YouTube Music Video That Makes You Want to Dance

There are thousands upon thousands of music videos on YouTube. Some of my favorite artists are the Temptations, Chuck Berry, and the Rolling Stones. Your favorites are likely different. Regardless of who your favorite artists may be, I’ll bet you dance in your chair - or maybe even standing up - as soon as the music starts.

Music is a great way to energize yourself and create a special “super feel good” experience. Take a music break two or three times a day and notice how much better you feel and how much more you get done.

There you have it! Six great ways to energize your day:

  • Yawn, Sigh, and Stretch;
  • Close Your Eyes and Breathe Deeply;
  • Stand Up and Take a Walk;
  • Tidy Up Your Space;
  • Call a Loved One or an Old Friend Just to Say "Hi"; and,
  • Fire Up a YouTube Video That Makes You Want to Dance.

What other ways have you discovered to energize your day and feel great? Share your high energy "secret sauce" in the comments section below.

Blessings and light,

Steve Carter

Stress Solutions, LLC |

P.S. Never miss a Stress Mastery blog post! Place your email address in the "Follow by Email" box on the right to have each post delivered to your In-box.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Break the Chains of Impulsive Behavior

Whether we’re thinking about having a second helping of dessert, buying a new expensive iPhone 7 when the existing phone works just fine, or choosing between an expensive destination wedding and a more modest ceremony close to home, too often we choose short-term immediate gratification at the expense of longer term bigger benefits.

Is there something we can do to help us break the chains of short-term impulsive thinking and behavior?

Yes, there is.

The Brain Science

Traditionally, self-control models look at brain processes in the prefrontal cortex associated with impulse control and emotions when attempting to explain why we so often make decisions favoring immediate short-term gain rather than opting for greater longer term benefits.

In a recent *study conducted by the University of Zurich and the University of Dusseldorf, researchers discovered another brain region called the temporo-parietal junction plays an important role in self-control by directing attention to the needs of a “Future Self”.

This discovery helps explain why a process I often use with clients called “Future Pacing” can be so effective in helping stop problem thinking and behaviors such as, low confidence, compulsive overeating, or other disempowering patterns.

Creating a “New You” With Future Pacing

Here’s how to put Future Pacing to work in your life:

  • Find a quiet, private, and comfortable place where you won’t be bothered for at least five minutes. Close your eyes and - as best you can - enter a calm and relaxed state.
  • Bring to mind a visualization of how you want to handle a situation that, in the past, you handled poorly.
  • Create a mind-movie of you handling that same situation in a way that aligns with your chosen new reality. Play that movie on the big screen in your Theatre of Mind. Allow the pictures to be big, bright, and bold. Give your mind-movie a title in alignment with your chosen new reality such as, “Confident Speaker”, “Healthy Eater”, or “Loving Partner”.
  • Add sound as appropriate. Hear others complimenting you on your chosen behavior. Hear yourself affirm how good you feel as you act in alignment with your new chosen reality.
  • Allow yourself to see, hear, and feel this chosen new, ongoing reality from a third person point of view (you’re watching yourself as if you are in a movie audience), a second person point of view (you’re in the movie, but looking at yourself through the eyes of another character in the movie), and a first person point of view (you’re looking through your own eyes). Really make the visualizations, big, bold, and empowering.
  • Allow your “Success Mind-Movie” to play for several minutes and then return to your normal activities.

Repeat this Future Pacing process three or four times a day for at least three weeks and then periodically ongoing until this new behavior becomes your default habitual way of behaving.

When faced with a situation that in the past may have resulted in short-term impulsive behavior, a quick visit in mind to a short section of your Future Pacing mind-movie will be all you need to direct attention and behavior to your new reality. You are "Re-minding" a chosen, empowering way of being.

Remember, you’re creating a script and then rehearsing the staring role as a happier, healthier new you. In just a few short weeks - or even in a few short days - your mind-movie can become your new way of living.

If you would like to learn more about our Future Pacing process and other ways of moving from Stress to Success, visit us at

Blessings, light, and love,

Steve Carter

Stress Solutions, LLC |

P.S. Make sure you receive your copy of each new "Stress Mastery" post in your email in-box. Put in your email address in the "Follow by Email" box on the right.

Important note: This post and all other posts on this blog are for informational purposes only. Please consult an appropriate licensed health care provider for any medical, emotional, or psychological issues of concern.
*Journal Reference:
A. Soutschek, C. C. Ruff, T. Strombach, T. Kalenscher, P. N. Tobler.Brain stimulation reveals crucial role of overcoming self-centeredness in self-control. Science Advances, 2016; 2 (10): e1600992 DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1600992