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Opinions of Thursday, 8 April 2021

Columnist: Louisa Afriyie Boateng

Maintain the right mind frame irrespective of your surroundings

There is a reason the most powerful organ in the human body is the brain. It controls all other parts of the body through brain functions. It is where the mind works through thoughts, ideas and feelings. Having the right mind frame can boost your confidence, improve your general mood and help you reduce stress-related illnesses.

In the words of Chanakya, an Indian teacher, “it is the mind of man alone that is the cause of his bondage or freedom.” This quote expresses succinctly the power our minds wield. No matter where or how you live, we are supposedly prisoners of our own minds. That is why it is absolutely vital to protect the sanity of our minds and be wilfully positive.

Life, as we know, is full of challenges and obstacles. However, we are affected by our reactions to what life serves us. To stay sane, safe and have the right frame of mind regardless of your circumstances, you need to do these five practical things:

Manage your stress levels

Our lives have changed in the past two decades. The desire to be successful and live comfortably have contributed immensely to people’s stress levels (sleepless nights trying to solve socio-economic issues). Managing stress does not take one form. You can read books, listen to music, exercise, or just have a drink and relax (take a break) because stress can break you down.

Transform your let-downs into lessons

Almost inevitably, you are going to face difficult situations – there is no such thing as a perfect life. It may sound cliché but expect the unexpected. Take lessons from every experience whether good or bad. Do not focus on why things did not work out. Rather, think about how you are going to be better next time with the lessons learnt. In doing so, you improve your decision-making and critical thinking capabilities.

Be motivated by other people’s stories

Hearing inspirational stories being shared by many different people and how they overcame their struggles will fuel your mind. Aristotle once said, “The energy of the mind is the essence of life.” As your mind energizes, you get motivated and you begin to visualize the great things you can achieve. In that moment, you should write them down or use that to design your vision board. You can alternatively read books from successful people, life coaches or motivational speakers.

Be your mind’s gatekeeper

Just as security guards a building or establishment, always strive to guard your mind from negative thoughts. You have the ability to control what you think and allow certain thoughts to linger on your mind. Make sure they are not the negative ones. Replace them with positive thoughts or happy moments in your life and let the good memories remain on your mind.

Surround yourself with positive people

When you are in the company of positive people, you always hear positive words and engage in positive talks. After a while, their continuous positivity will consume you, your words and thoughts. Their energy will teach you to have a positive outlook on things. Finding such people is difficult and requires critical observation of what people say and how they speak. That will lead you to the right people you need to be around.

The way you treat your mind determines how you behave. Habits start from the mind. That is why psychologists focus on identifying the reasoning (mindset) behind their clients’ actions. Arnold Schwarzenegger, an American actor, puts it brilliantly, “Where the mind goes, the body will follow.”

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