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Ten Rules for Taking Back Your Life

Anxiety and Stress Management with Patricia A. Farrell, PhD

The weather is turning from summer into fall and with it comes cooler days, longer nights and an initial surge of hurricanes. But you don’t have to see this as all bad news even if the the economy hasn’t come back the way most of us would have wanted. Terrorism continues around the world and corporate scandals are still making front page news but I see a positive side.

My personal belief and the belief that you’ll find throughout my book is that for every bad thing that happens, there is a corresponding good thing to be found – if you let yourself see it.

Taking back your life is a matter of deciding that you’re in the driver’s seat, not someone else. It doesn’t matter if the economy’s bad, you can’t go on a super special vacation this year or you are feeling lonely, everything has a positive side. Here are my ‘rules’ for turning things around for yourself, rather than waiting for something or someone to do it for you.

Life ‘Rules’

  1. Challenge yourself to use every ‘bad’ thing in your life as a new beginning.

  2. Find the ‘good’ in everything that you can.

  3. Don’t expect the good things to be readily apparent. It may take a few days, weeks or even months before you finally see them.

  4. Allow yourself to realize your true power. This doesn’t mean pushing people around, but looking for your hidden skills.

  5. Talk to yourself. Talking to yourself is a very powerful tool to use and it can help you increase your motivation and your ability to stick to a task.

  6. Stop expecting others to solve your problems. Even if you lost your job, it’s an opportunity to look in a new direction, to acquire a new skill and to blaze a more pleasurable path in life.

  7. Throw out that ‘yes, but’ expression from your life. It’s just a way of keeping yourself stuck in the mud.

  8. Take a good hard look at what you’d really like in life and sit down and begin making a list that outlines the steps you need to take. Not everyone needs to go to college to be happy. Find out where your happiness lies, if you don’t want to go back to school. Abraham Lincoln did just fine with his self-learning plan.

  9. Beware of the negative people in your life. Pointing out the problems is fine, but some people only see doom and gloom and they can’t be very helpful, unless you find that helpful.

  10. Remember that every road has unexpected turns and that any plan must be one that allows for some give and take. If there’s one word for your plan to take back your life, let it be ‘flexible’ and go from there.

Posted by: Patricia Farrell, PhD

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