Twelve Tips for Self-Improvement
- Get a new attitude. Change your outlook by thinking more positively. Banish negative, stressful thoughts by focusing on the good in your life. Avoid ruminating about dislikes and practice the art of gratefulness.
- Be kind to yourself. Learn to be less self-critical. Remind yourself of accomplishments. Give yourself credit for strengths. Picture the smiling faces of those who care about you.
- Express feelings. Holding in and “stuffing” feelings is a set-up for anger, depression and stress. Practice healthy emotional expression by communicating feelings openly and honestly.
- Ask for help. Avoid the “superman” complex, in which you take on too much. Be assertive in asking others for help. Learn to say “no” to unrealistic demands.
- Keep the faith. Our spiritual beliefs help keep us “centered.” Remind yourself of the meaning and purpose in your life.
- Get in touch with friends. Take the initiative to telephone an old friend, send someone a cheerful card or take a new friend out to lunch. Surrounding ourselves with pleasant people keeps us healthy, interested and alive.
- Relax. Explore new, healthy ways to unwind. Try meditation, yoga or deep breathing exercises. Create a soothing environment of favorite colors, scents and sounds. Light a scented candle, take a bubble bath or listen to music.
- Give up one bad habit. Identify and work on changing one negative habit. Recruit the help of friends, family or professionals to help you achieve your goal. Invest the time or energy needed to break the habit. Revel in your accomplishment.
- Get physical. Exercise to feel healthy, energetic and strong. Start slowly, by setting realistic goals that fit your lifestyle and which can be maintained.
- Learn to let go. Release old resentments and burdens from the past. Keep a journal, talk to a friend, say a prayer or find some other way to “just let go.”
- Remember what matters. Maintain a center of gravity in your life by remembering your values. You know in your heart what really matters - the rest is just scenery on the journey of life.
- Go ahead and dream. Give yourself permission to imagine possibilities, take risks, explore options and to dare to dream.
If you or someone you care about needs help, call the Bricklayer’s Member Assistance Program (MAP) to speak privately with MAP’s licensed mental health professionals. Call toll-free at 1-888-880-8222.