Monday Mojo – Clear the Path

What’s in your way right now?

In a world that’s focused on moving forward (and increasingly at pace) you may have noticed things have felt more…complicated. Obstacles present themselves where we least expect; people are unnecessarily difficult and, sometimes we even get in our own way:
we procrastinate
say yes when we mean no
or avoid when we want to dive in. 

If we take procrastination as one example, we know now this is a form of perfectionism – setting punishing objectives and striving for flawlessness is a sure path to discomfort. As a result, we end up taking imperfect actions to deal with the difficulty.

Some things are easier to manoeuvre of course. We might placate to keep the peace, or we write another to-do list to set us back on track. But when it’s our mojo that’s blocked, if creativity has disappeared or we can’t see the wood for the trees sometimes we need a little more.

This week, maybe set the intention to Clear the Path. When tackling your to-do list, remember Eisenhower’s Principle: the difference between urgent and important. Important is what gets us where we want to be; urgent usually means someone else wants to make their problems (or goals) ours. This article offers tips on how to use the principle helpfully.

If it’s your own expectations that create a block, remember that good enough is enough; the relentless pursuit of perfectionism can be rooted in a fear of failure. So be compassionate with yourself, knowing we’re all just doing what we can, with what we have from where we are – and that’s ok. 

When other people are the obstacles, sometimes the only thing that helps is creating space between you. You can set the tone by articulating the boundary of what’s ok (and what’s not) and creating space between you when someone keeps crossing the line; it’s ok to say “enough” when something – or someone – is not good for you. Hard conversations by definition are never easy, but that doesn’t mean they’re not worth having. Go at your pace, and take the next step when you’re ready.

For an expanded version of Monday Mojo™ straight to your inbox, which includes access to free resources, click here

Monday Mojo – Notice the Spark

How would you define “a good life”?

If you’re old enough, you might remember Tom and Barbara (from a U.K. TV show) who decided to give up extravagant living and go self-sufficient – much to the amusement (but most of all horror) of their posh neighbours Margo and Jerry.

Now I’m not saying in order to be happy, you need to give up the things you love; in fact quite the opposite. In various schools of thought, it’s actually the simplest pleasures that can bring us the most joy. It’s one of the reasons researchers can’t agree on a single definition of happiness – what makes one person happy, won’t be the same for someone else.

So in this context it can help us to step back and think about the small things that bring us a bit of sparkle. 

This week, maybe set the intention to Notice the Spark. Take some time to think about the little things that bring you joy and then find some time to do them. It might be spending time with friends or family, going for a walk by the sea or doing some mindful colouring.

You might remember Marie Kondo explaining what it means when something “sparks joy”. You might use this as an opportunity to get rid of some old belongings and see how each one makes you feel. (You could even apply the same philosophy when in the company of others). You could also create a jar of activities of places to go and things to visit, that when you just think about going there you feel yourself light up.

Above all, make it a priority to think about what your good life could be. Who are you with? Where are you living? What work are you doing? Start small and see where it takes you.

For an expanded version of Monday Mojo™ straight to your inbox, which includes access to free resources, click here

Monday Mojo – Celebrate a Moment

When was the last time you gave yourself a pat on the back?

I’m asking because we might feel it’s “wrong” to blow our own trumpet. We worry it’s arrogant or self-indulgent, when in fact it might be an important part of progress. 

The brain is mysterious, but equally fascinating. For example, we know it has something called “the reward centre”. When something feels good (or tastes good), it’s like a fruit machine that’s just got three lemons in a row. We light up, get a “hit” of dopamine and the brain learns “that’s good”.

The downside is the brain doesn’t always seem to be able to differentiate between what’s healthy and what’s not. You can get a “hit” for example from someone liking your Facebook post.  As tribal beings, we need to belong, so our brain interprets a “like” as success – it translates this as “you fit in somewhere – keep doing that!”. In the same way, we “feel better” by having that slice of chocolate cake; this is how habit loops occur. We want to feel better so we have another slice of cake. 

Imagine then, if we rewarded our success, instead of numbing out fears or sadness; the brain might be motivated to get more done.

This week, maybe set the intention to Celebrate a Moment. Put one thing on your social media (if you use it) this week that you’re proud of – or just tell friends, family and colleagues what you’re glad you’ve achieved. If things to rave about feel a bit thin on the ground, write down one thing you want to get done today, this week and this month, then note how you will reward yourself for achieving it. It might be when you pay a bill, do your filing or have that tricky conversation you’ve been putting off – then tell yourself how great you are.

This article explains the benefits of celebrating accomplishments, including how recognising your success gives others permission to do the same. Be careful not to only measure your success on an oversized scale – the small wins always count.

For an expanded version of Monday Mojo™ straight to your inbox, which includes access to free resources, click here

Copyright Delphi Ellis 2021

Monday Mojo – Visualise Your Future

If you wrote a letter to your future self, what would it say?

You might write:
”I hope you got that job you’ve always wanted”
“May the years have been kind”
Or even “You see? It does get better”. 

When we frantically run the treadmill of life, one day we wake up and wonder how on Earth we arrived at an unknown location. Knowing where you’re going matters, especially if it’s not staying where you are.

That doesn’t mean mapping out every minute of your life until retirement and beyond. But having a vision of the life we want to live can help.

This week, maybe set the intention to Visualise Your Future. This article contains some ideas of talking to your future self, which includes looking at what you do today that might affect the years ahead. You can ask whether the habits you have today will get you where you want to be, or if you live each day aligned with the values you hold most dear. At the end of each day you could keep a journal listing what your values are and how you achieved them each day. For example if friendship matters, you could write how you checked in on one of your mates. If reliability is important, you could write how you turned up for work on time. Progress is often in the “little” things.

You could create a vision board that looks like all the things you want in your life whether it’s images of a gorgeous house, good company or writing that book you’ve been thinking about.

You could also look at how you speak to yourself each day. Are you being kind and reassuring or beating yourself up? The Power of Words can make a real difference to how we think and how we feel. Make it a priority to be kind to yourself every day.

For an expanded version of Monday Mojo™ straight to your inbox, which includes access to free resources, click here

Copyright Delphi Ellis 2021

Monday Mojo – Expand the Comfort

How do you feel about change?

I mean, if the last fifteen months has been a journey in anything, it’s been how to adapt and overcome. But that doesn’t always mean we can change at the drop of a hat – or that we should. 

During the height of COViD-19, we were living moment to moment. Just as we got used to one set of rules, they changed again.

As we await news of whether the restrictions will ease further in June in the U.K., it makes sense if you’re bracing yourself. Whether you’ve been desperate to get back to socialising in larger groups, want to expand your social circle or will actually be secretly pleased if things stay as they are, you may well be wondering what we’ll have to adapt to next.

Often we will sit inside our comfort zones because it feels safe, and that’s ok. But sometimes we need to stretch our limits or try new things so that we can realise our true potential and see what we can really cope with.

Here’s what might help:

This week set the intention to Expand the Comfort. Have a think about how far you want or feel you need to move out of your comfort zone – sometimes we can move too far too fast, and that in itself can be stressful. Finding ways to try new things but at a pace that feels safe and healthy also works. Sometimes we may think we need to make changes when actually it’s ok to stay where we are (at least, for now). Maybe start with asking “do I need to make this decision today?”

One of the reasons we can also find change difficult is because we become rigid in our thinking; in my mindfulness classes I talk about a “fixed mindset.” If we think things have to be a certain way in order to be ok, we can suffer, even if in the short term we do it just so we can feel safe. This article explains the benefits of taking small steps and exploring alternative perspectives. Yes it can be uncomfortable at first, but before long your mojo could be flowing.

For an expanded version of Monday Mojo™ straight to your inbox, which includes access to free resources, click here

Copyright Delphi Ellis 2021

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