red brick wall wordsI like to think the universe has my back. The question is how to keep hold of that belief, that inner strength, when life’s knocks, or even a word spoken in haste, can dent our confidence and leave us doubting our ability – to cope, to achieve, to heal? It is human nature, I think, to struggle with doubt and uncertainty. We don’t know what’s around the corner. Bad stuff happens. It’s harder to remain inwardly strong when we feel that the world is against us. The truth is, we can only take each day as it comes, appreciate each moment for what it brings and trust that all is well. Life is a matter of perspective – a matter of how we choose to see and experience our lives.

Emerson chose to be an optimist and a lover of life. Nature was his meditative sanctuary where he found connection with the universe and himself. Within the stillness and beauty of nature he experienced that inner serenity that brings wisdom. It’s the quietening of the mind that allows us to step outside our doubts and worries and see the bigger picture. From this place we can develop confidence and trust.

It is also by turning our thoughts to the positive and empowering that we transform our experience of life. Emerson also said “a man is what he thinks about all day long”. How much of your day is spent in doubt and fear rather than in love and trust? We need to have the confidence to seize the day and mould it to our will.

Personally, I don’t always find it easy to cope well with the events of my day. Press my stress trigger and there go my default alarm bells (anxiety, worry, doubt, anger, fear) clanging around inside my head. When I’ve lost confidence and my connection to myself here are the things I always try to do:

Be Mindful. I am learning to recognise my triggers and understand my responses. Through self-awareness we can learn to let go, forgive and to be kind to ourselves and to others. Being mindful clears a path through the tangle of doubts and worries that get in our way.

Turn It Around. My grandmother used to say “every cloud has a silver lining” She also used to say “there is always something good around the corner” – no matter how hard things seem. So I try to look for that silver lining if I can, the lesson to be learned perhaps, and if I really can’t find it at that moment, then I aim to just take the edge off by reaching for the next best thought and feeling that I can conjure up. Believe there is something better around the corner and there will be.

Get Outside, Breathe and Smile: Turning my focus to nature and to the world outside brings me perspective and peace. Taking a deep breath releases the tension of the moment. And remembering to smile at life’s absurdities and laugh at my mistakes allows me to not take myself, or life, too seriously.

I have an image, leaning back against a sunny red brick wall feeling supported, warmed, happy and peaceful. That’s how the universe has my back. How does it have yours?

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