Many years ago, I came across a tool that empowered me in my ability to take care of myself and perform at my highest potential. Someone taught me a powerful acronym, to be used anytime that I felt my energy was low, unproductive, or just off.
It has been absolutely great at helping me truly understand myself and what I could be experiencing at any given moment. Often, we “misdiagnose” the root of our often destructive emotions and end up reacting from a misinformed place, creating more stress and pain for ourselves.
With this tool, you can systematically go down the most common energy and mood destroyers we can experience, and do what is necessary in order to re-align with your True Self.
The next that you feel that you are being unproductive and impacted by toxic emotions that are low or just plain destructive, say this to yourself:
And ask yourself the below questions. If any of them are a YES, get them resolved before making any decisions.
1. Am I Hungry?
When our body goes too long without food our blood sugar levels drop and our metabolism slows down. This can lead to feeling weak and experiencing headaches, difficulty concentrating, among much more. If you are hungry, take responsibility of your health and grab a healthy snack.
2. Am I Angry?
We want to stop anger before it becomes resentment. And we definitely want to stop anger before it becomes unbearable and does not allow us to be our best selves. We can catch the initial seeds of anger within ourselves if we are mindful, allowing us to address a situation before it becomes too late. Asking yourself this question is the first step towards the mindfulness of these seeds.
3. Am I Lonely?
“You are only lonely if you don’t like the person you are alone with” Wayne Dyer
Here, we are not talking about being alone. I personally like to spend time alone, as it energizes me and prepares me for anything that is to come. This is about being lonely. These are two different things. We are made for companionship, companionship from our friends, life partners, family, and community. Many believe that we cannot develop many of our talents and gifts without social interaction. Making time for positive and constructive relationships is critical.
4. Am I Tired?
It goes without saying that when we are tired, we cannot be at our best. Sometimes we think we need a massive amount of time off or a complete break from an activity in order to recuperate. The reality is that we can recharge by taking smaller and more accessible resting periods throughout our day to day. Maybe we choose to go to bed 30 minutes earlier, or decide not to take on a tiring activity. The key point is to know that you ARE indeed tired and the only way to remedy this is to rest.
5. Am in need of Exercise?
I was once at a weeklong workshop. After three days of sitting in chairs learning and absorbing really interesting material, I realized how incredibly annoyed I was. My energy was off, I felt uncomfortable and in a bad mood. In passing, a friend mentioned how difficult it must be for me to sit for such long periods of time, given what an active exerciser she knew I was. AHA! I hadn’t put it together until that moment. My body was yearning for movement. To run, jump, practice yoga, stretch. Anything! That afternoon, right after our last session, I laced up my exercise shoes and went on a run (and I’m not really much of a runner). I felt better immediately.
We must take responsibility for ourselves and our happiness. No one is responsible for our happiness. No one.
Tools such as the ones above will help us manage our responsibility. It is very difficult to just “decide” to be happy. It is very difficult to just “decide” to be happy when we are hungry, angry, lonely, tired, and in need of happiness. Start using this tool as often as you can and I promise you that you will begin to make better choices in your life that will lead you to greater happiness and peace.
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