The Voice Of The Bully – Are YOU Your Worst Critic?

The Voice Of The Bully – Are YOU Your Worst Critic?

Most of us have been bullied. It often happens during our adolescent and teenage years and can take form in both verbal and physical abuse. I was bullied from kindergarten all the way through high school so I can certainly relate all too well.

The tormentor that I want to bring light to today is that of our inner bully. The voice of sabotage, put downs, and painful, recurring messages that we direct toward ourselves.

Ironically, we learn early on from other bullies, one of two things; To either accept their cruelty as truth, or if we have enough strength and self-respect from a young age, to repel their destructive messages. Unfortunately, many of us take these mean and degrading words to heart and we begin to use them as weapons against ourselves.

Constant abuse of any kind can eventually play with our minds and cause us to go into a downward spiral of negative, habitual self-talk. Even with plenty of positive tapes playing in the background, the frequent, underlying message is that “we are not enough.”

So how do we stop the influence of our bully, making way for more happiness, success, and self-esteem?

  • Recognize The Voice– Become clear that there is, in fact, a voice that is getting in the way. Begin to see patterns in your thoughts, actions, and inner dialogue that makes you feel bad. Listen to those voices but don’t buy into them. Start to recognize how you bully yourself and put yourself down on an ongoing basis.
  • Don’t Believe it– The next step is to STOP believing these messages. The routine we have fallen into is a toxic pattern of self-abuse and it has to stop! Begin separating yourself from the negativity and understand that it isn’t the voice of truth or reason. It is simply negative programming.
  • Befriend The Bully– Make friends with the bully. Hear what they have to say. Get sensible and send the tyrant gentleness. Like all bullies in our life, all they really need is recognition and love. What we resist, persists. What we love and forgive, dissipates.
  • Practice Feeling– Pay close attention to how you feel. What thoughts and words empower and energize you? Which ones drain you and make you feel tired or sad? Eventually, with a little practice, you WILL be able to create a new pattern of positivity, self-love, and becoming your own best friend and support system.
  • Spend Time Being Confident – Extend more energy doing those things that make you feel confident. If you constantly push yourself into areas that make you anxious and insecure, it’s fine to a point because it causes you to grow, but make sure that you are also doing many things that you’re great at! Somebody with low self-worth tends to continue patterns that emphasize their feelings of lack. Shift gears, you ARE amazing at many things! Start doing them more often.
  • Re-Charge– Continually re-charge your emotional and spiritual batteries. Create a daily practice that keeps you plugged in. Pray, meditate, journal, do yoga, read uplifting books, sing, get creative, and do whatever it takes to keep you balanced and open-hearted. With consistency, you will keep your batteries from becoming dangerously low and therefore avoiding the fall back into old patterns.

From somebody who has lived most of my life feeling unworthy due to early programming, I can tell you that THERE IS HOPE! It will take some consistent effort on your part but if you keep on, keeping on, you will most definitely make positive strides in the direction of regaining your natural state…that of confidence, self-love, worthiness, and a knowing that you are enough just as you are!

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

Are You Having A Midlife Un-Crisis?

Are You Having A Midlife Un-Crisis?

I am nearing 50 in a matter of months, the time when many people go through a midlife crisis.  Depending upon how long we live, it may occur earlier or later, and for many, we have numerous so-called crisis in our life.

A crisis would be defined as “a time of intense difficulty, trouble, or danger” or “a time when a difficult or important decision must be made.”

I have definitely experienced some major shifts over the past couple of years and much of what I placed importance on no longer has meaning. It has left me questioning everything that I had been working towards in the past. The term crisis may be a bit dramatic, but I for one, most definitely feel an important and life-affirming shift.

If you see things like I do, then you realize that life as we know it, involves constant expansion and growth and the very reason we are here, is to evolve as spiritual beings having this human experience. Therefore, we begin to understand that there is no such thing as crisis. Instead, I now make a declaration for everybody out there who is feeling the effects of such a challenging chapter in their own life, to rename it “Midlife Un-Crisis!”

What are the signs that we may be in such an “Un-Crisis?”

  • Lack of clarity, motivation, or passion for life
  • Feelings of powerlessness or depression
  • Questioning where you want to go from here
  • Wondering why you feel unhappy, stuck, or complacent
  • Recognizing negative, habitual ways of being but not knowing how to move through them
  • Noticing what once made you happy in the past i.e. shopping, eating, sex, or addictive behaviors no longer fulfill you
  • Discovering that what once worked to get you ahead, no longer does
  • You choose happiness over success, money, or accolades

Here is the good news! This doesn’t mean that life is over or that you should give up. It is just the opposite. It’s reflecting back to you, that THE BEST TIMES are yet to come and that all you need to do is make space. This is a time when you don’t need outside stimulus to make you feel alive, when you can actually accomplish more with less striving, and a time when you can allow more joy, fulfillment, and ease into your experience without being so attached to outcome.

It’s the perfect time to Un-Do, Un-Wind, and Un-Tether all those things that no longer serve you. A time to let go of the parts of yourself that you’ve outgrown and moved beyond. Laying just around the corner is something far more valuable and authentic.

It’s okay to question your direction. It is fine to wonder where the heck you’re going and why you’re here. But when we can begin seeing this as a strength and not a weakness, that is where our true power lies.

There may be a midlife questioning about your career or the marriage that you committed to but if you can just love yourself through all of it and learn to be gentle, forgiving, and accepting towards all that is, and stop making yourself wrong for these feelings, then you will soon realize that we really have nothing to fear.

Yes, the inevitable is coming, we are going to die at some point. Many of us fear that more than anything else. Sometimes these painful spots we find ourselves in are derived from that deep-rooted truth we want to avoid, especially as we reach mid-life.

If you can dig deep, do the emotional and spiritual work necessary to get you through to the other side, you’ll begin to see that these times of crisis really are our best teachers and that nothing lasts forever. If we can be patient and loving all while committed to moving through whatever we are dealing with, we will realize that we are having a Midlife Un-Crisis because more is being asked of us, because we are meant to be channels of light for others and because our life is calling for us to become beacons of inspiration, and love.

Don’t give up. Stick with it and begin to unravel why you’re feeling paralyzed, apathetic, or blue. Look for clues. Allow clarity with the help of healers, books, retreats, videos, and a spiritual practice, and you will begin to see that brighter days and a new chapter worth living are just around the corner. If you’re approaching mid-life like I am, the second half really can be your happiest, most fulfilling, and rewarding if you can just ride the wave and have faith.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

Consistency is Key

Consistency is Key

One thing that I have learned with almost 50 years under my belt is that consistency is the key to living a more satisfying and successful life. I’ve also figured out that being consistent always wins over hard work.

The problem that many of us have in life is that we lack consistency in certain areas. We tend to work hard for periods of time whether it be at our job or an exercise regimen but then we often slack afterwards because we feel burned out or tired.

When we overdo it in any area of our life it only makes sense that we’ll eventually lose momentum. Even with diets, we tend to be extreme for short periods to get the results we desire but the strict discipline is difficult to keep up and we end up gaining all of the weight back soon afterwards.

Moderate and consistent effort wins every time. People have often asked me how I have stayed fit throughout my life and my answer is always consistency. I don’t push too hard, I never have, and I have worked out 4-6 days per week since I was 13. Almost 37 years of consistent fitness has gotten me amazing results. While there were certainly times that I didn’t necessarily enjoy it, not once did I find it hard work.

While I have not been consistent in all areas, I definitely have the fitness and health component covered. None of us can be balanced in all areas of our life at all times and many of us put more emphasis in certain areas over others. But if we could learn to redistribute that effort into all parts of our day-to-day life from our spiritual practice to our work to relationships and our healthy lifestyle habits, we’d enjoy more stability and a smoother ride throughout.

Like brushing our teeth, doing something regularly and creating a routine makes it easier to continue. The longer we go without consistent action, the harder it is to get back to it. For example, have you taken time off from your exercise routine only to have months go by without doing anything? Have you avoided regular decluttering from your home only to quickly see things pile up in front of your eyes? Perhaps you notice that when you eat unhealthy foods regularly your body begins craving more unhealthy foods the longer you go.

Our spiritual and mental health also requires routine. When we run our spiritual batteries low, we become stressed, tired, overwhelmed, and grumpy. Committing to a daily gratitude and meditation practice for example, even for a few minutes per day will make the difference in how we feel.

When we act consistently it also gives us a sense of pride that we are taking care of ourselves and our life. We gain a self-reliance and confidence that we are committed to greatness and to being our best selves and we prove that we can in fact, do whatever we set our minds to.

The next time you find yourself slipping in any of the important areas of your life, stop, take a breath, and make a different choice. Push yourself if necessary and refocus your energy. Often the beginning is the most challenging but once over that initial hurdle, you’re set to go.

Sometimes just the simple awareness that we are off track or inconsistent is enough to snap us back into a new way of thinking, one that encourages us to keep moving forward towards our ultimate happiness and success in all that we do.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Expert Living in Los Angles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

 

 

The Art of Doing Nothing!

The Art of Doing Nothing!

This article was prompted by a particularly slow month. August didn’t hold a lot of work commitments for me, and what normally would have stressed me out caused a complete shift in perspective. Let me explain.

I grew up in a family where my dad was a go-getter. He started a very successful business that developed into employing over 100 people and created a small empire. I watched him carefully and learned that hard work equals great success.

Because of this, I always had drive and motivation but I chose a very different path then my father. I became a model and actor from a young age and developed my creativity over my business side. Nobody had prepared me for how this was supposed to look or feel. How do I merge success, business, and creativity? Much trial and error led me to finding some success along the way and eventually guided me to where I am today.

I have learned to combine my writing, speaking, coaching, and business skills into my current career as a health, wellness and lifestyle advisor and author. But deep down there was still, until this month anyway, an uncertainty as to how to deal with the down times.

My normal reaction when things got slow was to “get busy and make something happen” but this month I decided to rest, relax, and to simply be. I still worked out at the gym and kept regular commitments but I meditated more and took quiet time to sleep and contemplate. And while income was down, the most amazing things began to happen. People, opportunities, and synchronicities showed up that I would have never expected. In my stillness, I learned to “allow” rather than to “create.”

As a go-getter myself, this was NOT easy. My normal instincts are to stay active, plan, goal set, and to DO! But if you’re like me you’ll agree that this constant action mode can get exhausting! And, in all honesty, it hasn’t led to the ultimate success that I would have liked. So I decided to try something different. When we change the way we look at things, the things around us change and I have been ready for that change for quite some time.

To my surprise, one miracle after the other began to show up into my life this month from me doing virtually nothing.

Am I suggesting that you just sit, sleep, and meditate your way through life? Of course not. But there may be times when that is the absolute best approach possible. In between chapters is a great time to relax. In fact, learning to surrender and only act when you are inspired to do so, IS, I am learning, the only way to be. It offers us the ability to be more focused on the now and to be present in the joy that surrounds us rather than being busy just for the sake of it.

So the next time you find yourself down, bored, or you simply have a lull in your work schedule, acknowledge that perhaps it’s happening to provide you an amazing opportunity. Maybe it will deliver new things into your life that are even better than you could have ever imagined! And perhaps it’s teaching you a new way to live that taps into the Universal truth that you will ALWAYS be provided for. Learning the amazing art of doing nothing may actually be the answer you’ve been waiting for.

 

Jay Bradley is an Anti-aging, wellness & lifestyle expert living in Los Angeles.
http://jaybradleylifestyle.com

He is the best-selling author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

The Imposter Syndrome

The Imposter Syndrome

 

Have you ever felt like an imposter? Have you achieved success in your life only to experience an underlying feeling that people will soon find out you’re a fake? You’re definitely not alone! Numerous people have the imposter syndrome, but few talk about it openly.

According to Wikipedia “the imposter syndrome is a psychological phenomenon in which people are unable to internalize their accomplishments. Despite external evidence of their competence, those with the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved. Proof of success is dismissed as luck, timing, or as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent and competent than they believe themselves to be.”

I have had intimate conversations with famous friends and they have expressed the same fears too; that some day, people will find out the truth…they aren’t the knowledgeable, talented, and intelligent expert the world believes them to be. Deep down, they feel like an imposter.

I feel this way too at times. Although I am not at the success level that I’d like (the perfect excuse and symptom of the imposter syndrome) and even though I have spent over 30 years studying, learning, and experimenting with health, self-help, and life itself, I sometimes feel that just one more certification or a few more years will give me the edge.

The truth? We ARE READY NOW to shine our light and we DO NOT REQUIRE anybody’s permission or another promotion, certification, or celebrity client to do so.

It is said that Albert Einstein might have suffered from the syndrome near the end of his life: a month before his death, he reportedly confided in a friend, saying “the exaggerated esteem in which my lifework is held makes me very ill at ease. I feel compelled to think of myself as an involuntary swindler.”

How many times have you felt like a fake, a swindler, or simply an imposter? Have you ever felt unworthy? What about lacking confidence or self-worth? If you have, maybe this information will be helpful.

We can begin today, to reprogram our thoughts and begin to change our limiting beliefs once and for all. Learning to love and accept ourselves is the number one solution to overcoming this. We also need to stop comparing ourselves to other people and focus on what our unique gifts are. When we can let go of the need to be perfect and focus on doing the best that we can at all times, we then begin to release the hold that this syndrome has on us.

In spiritual terms, we are ALL entitled to God’s gifts of abundance, success, and whatever it is that we dream of. It is time to begin giving thanks to that very energy which has provided for us instead of judging ourselves for the accomplishments. It is also time to get out of your own way releasing any feelings of ego associated with these successes. Learn to accept these wins as something separate of your personality, and as gifts that have been bestowed upon you rather than ones that YOU created.

We all work hard and life isn’t always easy. Isn’t it time to start truly enjoying our successes and humbly, yet proudly accepting any praise, honors, and abundance that comes with it? What if you’re NOT an imposter but rather a magnificent manifestor who has connected to this source of unlimited abundance, prosperity and love? Now doesn’t THAT feel good?