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The 7 Things You Must Do Today

We thank each other all the time -- for holding doors, minor favors and common services. But when is the last time you thanked yourself?
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The majority of us have learned to see life as a routine -- we've stopped thinking about what we should do and instead only think about what we need to do. But living consciously is a choice and tiny deviations from our daily grind will help us make choices that we can be proud of. Several simple actions can shift our state of mind to cultivate a sense of tranquility about our life circumstances and an understanding about the world around us that goes beyond an everyday level.

Perform these seven deeds today to strengthen your energy, advance your wisdom and elevate your awareness:

Show patience. Our patience is tested in small ways each day. It may be morning traffic, a long line at checkout, or a particularly slow person walking in front of us. Pass your challenges of patience with a bit of compassion and a large calming breath. Remember that everything can wait but nothing is worth you taking a wrongful action that can never be taken back.

Thank yourself. We thank each other all the time -- for holding doors, minor favors and common services. But when is the last time you thanked yourself? Stand in front of a mirror and smile at your reflection. Express self-gratitude in a few simple words. Thank yourself for your lifetime of hard work, your generous nature and your drive to succeed. You of all people deserve the recognition.

Tell three people you love them. How good does it feel to hear the words "I love you?" We simply don't tell our dear ones that we love them often enough. Instead, we take our time with others for granted until we no longer have them in our lives. Call three people you care about today and tell them just how much you love them. Consider calling someone you don't speak to on a daily basis, too, and expressing to them your heartfelt affection. Spreading love is contagious, and the more you share it the more you will receive it.

Take time for serenity. Our hectic schedules don't allow for much "me" time. We run around taking care of business, chores and others so that we often forget to take care of ourselves. Take 30 minutes out of your day (today and every day) simply to bond with yourself in your favorite way. Bask in the beauty of your own company. Take a walk, write down your thoughts or meditate quietly. Do whatever helps you discover your deepest layers.

Put yourself in someone else's shoes. Rarely do we understand how others feel. Instead we are quick to judge, blame, and become angry in the heat of disagreement. We don't realize how easily we would resolve our issues with others if we simply put ourselves in their shoes for just a moment. The next time you don't see eye to eye with someone or a person irritates you, halt your emotions and ask yourself, "Do I know what this person has been through today?" Pleasantly surprise others by showing compassion instead of intolerance.

Detach from your past. Granted, detaching from negative experiences in our past is easier said than done. But it is something we must all learn to do in order to progress. The easiest way to detach is to forgive, both ourselves and others, for prior mistakes. When you find yourself thinking about a hurtful memory, remind yourself that it has passed and never needs to reoccur. Force the harmful thought out of your mind and imagine a positive opposite happening in the near future.

List your ambitions. Never underestimate the power of a list. Writing down a thought or intention is your first step towards bringing it to life; it has now become a tangible object on the paper. Creating a list of what you'd like to accomplish will not only spur momentum within you, it will prioritize your needs and desires within your mind. This will help you understand where you need to start, what you will need to do, and how to proceed towards your goal. Compile an agenda of the top ten things you'd like to achieve in the next year, being honest and realistic to your specific wishes. Fold your list and carry it with you wherever you go. When faced with a significant decision, glance over your list to ensure that your actions are in accordance with your ambitions.

Our choice of actions carries us through life day by day. But when we don't expand our actions to include conscious decisions, we limit our capacity and well-being. The true power and purpose of our potential becomes evident when we interrupt our routine and introduce small reminders of grace into everyday life.

To doing only great things,
Dr. Carmen Harra

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