Whether we like to admit it to ourselves our not, it is not uncommon to find ourselves anxious about our futures. The truth is, unless we are devoted entirely to mindful present moment meditation, a good portion of our moments encompasses envisioning the future. This is only natural, because moment by moment, our lives are being created by our actions and choices.
Do you struggle to believe that good things are coming your way? Cultivating a lighthearted approach when you’re feeling depleted from life can seem exhausting, or even impossible. Even in your darkest times, there are ways to gaze forward with anticipation and excitement to a vibrant future.
Keep these ideas in mind to help you recover your lightheartedness:
What does reality truly indicate?
It’s easier to view your future with a light heart when a positive outcome is likely, but we also need to know when to let go or to make a change. Sometimes this is very evident, and at other times we need to spend time feeling things out, envisioning and using our intuition.
Taking positive action to produce a better outcome also boosts your optimism because you cease being a helpless victim of life’s circumstances.
Discover for you the most appropriate situations and times
…to keep your heart light and be optimistic. Rather than keeping up the continual ‘soul search’ and chasing after any number of things (some of which may be unfulfilling in the end) try focusing your energy on what’s most important.
Where do your true values lie? What are those things that you find creeping into your mind, even when you don’t believe you are focusing on them or thinking about them? Your time is precious. Carve the time and space in your day – and in your life – for what matters most in your heart.
Become aware of your personal patterns and cycles
As humans, we tend to follow rhythms and cycles that are innate to us individually. Due to our upbringing, experiences and personal thought patterns, we have a set of beliefs. These beliefs, when called to the surface in any given situation, will lead to emotion.
Following this forward, we begin to realize that our emotions give way to our performance, or response to situations and events. This response or performance gives way to our results – and this is naturally where we find ourselves in a cycle.
Your responses and performance in any given situation further affect your beliefs. What beliefs are you holding on to that are no longer serving your highest good? What can you do to cultivate beliefs that lighten your heart and serve the greater good – your own and the good of others?
No one can truly and unquestionably know the future
How many times in your life has a scenario brought forth an unexpected outcome? If you’re anything like the rest of us, then the answer to that is, loads of times! And I’m sure that many of those were actually positive experiences. We all love pleasant surprises. Even if the initial outcome was not necessarily positive, there were gifts within the experience that brought about a change in how you see things, or how you respond in certain situations.
Even if life seems full of situations that look less-than-promising, you never know what may actually end up happening. When you open your mind, you’re in a better emotional position to find optimism. And you’re wise to expect the best, because new possibilities lay around every corner.
Remain clear and intent on your own personal passions
When we do what we love, we feel joy, and it goes without saying that the deeply human experience of feeling joy is a potent way of lightening the heart.
- Whether you play a musical instrument, love working on electronics, or enjoy any other activity, be sure to set aside time in your week for your hobby. If you can, enjoy some “me” time each day. Claim your Power Hour – an hour that you set aside each day for you – and divide it up each day as it feels right to you.
- Practicing your craft, hobby, or passion will help prevent you from hanging your hopes on another person, place, or thing. All the joy you need is within you and you’ll rediscover this moment by moment as you do what you love.
- Following your bliss also helps keep you in the present. The past has already passed. And the future hasn’t come yet. All you have this moment. Don’t you want to make the most of it? When you do, your future almost invariably turns out to be more to your liking also!
Open your mind to new…
Maybe you were expecting a promotion or a proposal that never came. Or perhaps you lost your job. Maybe a relationship ended unexpectedly – one that you thought would last forever. Now is a great time to dive in deep and explore those ideas and potential opportunities that you have left hovering in the corner of your mind.
Although you undoubtedly were looking forward to whatever didn’t happen, or were happy to avoid what did, the truth is that the future is in your hands. You have full power in every single moment to make choices. And every choice inevitably leads to an outcome.
- Maybe you always wanted to try your hand at freelancing, or using your creative talents to design and make things for a living. Now is the time to move gracefully in that direction. Nothing is stopping you anymore, not even waiting around for a different dream to come to pass. Seize the day, as they say!
Never forget that you are not alone
…and that there is help available when you may need it. Whether you make use of your social network or see a licensed counselor, other people are there to support you as you move toward your next adventure.
- If you find yourself really feeling depressed, and nothing seems to work to banish it, you may want to check out professional counseling services. It is well past time that we work to release any stigma around mental health. There is so much we don’t know about this complex paradigm. Therapists are trained to walk people through all sorts of life transitions and can definitely assist with yours. That said, everyone is human and has their own filters. Be sure to take the necessary time to be clear about what your needs are, so that you can do what you need to in order to find a counselor that is a good fit for you.
Although Alexander Pope wrote, “Hope springs eternal,” you may also find it wise to recognize where to place your optimism and how to rediscover that feeling when you’re down. Become very clear about those things that spark your creativity and ignite your passion, so you can draw upon these whenever you need some internal guidance and soothing sustenance. Make these a part of your toolkit, so that you know they are always there for you – like an old friend.