The same situation can throw one person into fear, inner chaos or despair, while another is able to remain positive, proactive and face challenges with enthusiasm. What causes such disparity?

Over the years I’ve witnessed many such cases, while supporting people through life changing and stressful events such as job loss, divorce or tragedy. And I’ve noted three remarkable personality traits that seem to make the difference between handling stress with ease and collapsing like a burst balloon.

Attitude

Feeling unable to face change, unworthy or hopeless, almost guarantees failure and chronic stress. On the other hand, the person who accepts challenges as opportunities to learn is likely to enjoy higher levels of satisfaction and success.

The 60,000 thoughts you think each day influence how you feel and face life. As most of those thoughts are running as an undercurrent, you need to bring at least some of them into awareness and, as appropriate, change them. So, “this is too difficult” can be transformed into “I can handle it bit by bit” and this conscious change of mind will actually make a difference to how you feel.

Attitude is everything!

Beliefs

In the same way that a sugar pill can be a placebo and cure headaches, so your beliefs can influence your experiences. When you’ve had good news, are in love or generally bubbling with happiness, everyone smiles at you and things seem to go surprisingly smoothly. And when you feel cold, miserable and crotchety, somehow cold, miserable and crotchety people are everywhere.

Your beliefs come from family, society and education (to name a few influences). It is up to you to check whether they serve you now; whether they are indeed true and worthy guides for your present and future. Your beliefs need to be constantly and consistently reviewed, and changed when appropriate. Outdated beliefs create inner confusion and unnecessary stress.

I am worthy and live in a friendly universe.

Self-responsibility

Feeling entitled, expecting to be cared for and catered to, is a state of weakness, leads to disappointment, anger and stress. The moment you take self-responsibility, you become empowered.

No one is born knowing everything! Developing new skills, facing challenges and coping with tough situations all require acceptance, a willingness to feel pain and joy, and the strength to carry on to succeed in small or large ways.

Self responsibility means that you choose to learn, grow and face life with curiosity and courage. It also means that you care for yourself; mind, body, emotions and spirit.

The buck stops here.

With love,

Gillian.

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