What do a messy office, a stiff back and a negative friend all have in common? They are all examples of the things we tolerate – often without realizing it – that try our patience, dull our spirit and drain our energy. This month’s article will help you look at what you tolerate in various aspects of your life and help you choose what to accept (or not accept) from yourself and others.
To your health, happiness and success,
What Do You Tolerate in Your Life?
What do a messy office, a stiff back and a negative friend all have in common?
They are all examples of the things we tolerate – often without realizing it – that try our patience, dull our spirit and drain our energy. They may be so subtle, of such long standing, or so widely held as normal that they don’t feel like something we tolerate but more like “that’s just the way life is.”
The fundamental principle here is that the universe treats us just as well as we demand to be treated. Yet, we often move through life accepting less than the best from ourselves and others. Furthermore, it costs us our vitality every time we tolerate something that really isn’t up to our standards.
If you are committed to making changes that will bring you greater peace of mind and happiness, looking at what you tolerate in your life is a great, empowering place to start.
Here’s how to get started:
- Make a list of three things you put up with in the various areas of your life: home, work, health, romance, friends and family, money, recreation, and environment.
- Looking at your list, what items do you choose to minimize or eliminate? By starting with baby steps, you give yourself the permission to succeed and build confidence. If, for example, you choose to minimize your messy office, start by trying to clean up your desk or bookshelves.
- By taking a deeper look, you may find that there are limiting beliefs that have supported you in putting up with these things for so long. In the case of the messy office, you may think to yourself: “I don’t have time to clean this up” or “I’ve always been disorganized”. Or, for other things you tolerate, perhaps some of the following thoughts sound familiar: “That’s just how it is”; “That’s the price I have to pay”; “Don’t rock the boat”; “Don’t make a big deal out of it.” Try adding the words “until now” onto the end of your negative beliefs and see what happens.
- What is the benefit of continuing to tolerate these things? There is usually some kind of payoff – even if it’s as simple as maintaining the status quo. What part of you does not want things to change? Revisiting the messy office example, perhaps you find some comfort in holding onto old files “just in case you need them”. Acknowledge that part of you that doesn’t want to change.
- With your friends, family or coach, develop a strategy for eliminating or minimizing each item on your list. Commit to making real changes. In the case of the messy office, you may choose to set aside a half hour every Friday afternoon to clean up your desk. You can then expand this to other weekly action items until your entire office is exactly the way you want it. Create a support network for accountability, feedback and celebration to help you along your path to success.
As you choose to minimize or eliminate what you tolerate, you will enjoy greater confidence, joy and empowerment. Now that you’re in the driver’s seat of your life, be sure to enjoy the ride!