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A Mantra Really Works!

Point to ponder:

Do you have a mantra for the summer?

A few weeks ago iGnite member, Trina Keathley, shared a great article by Elizabeth Bernstein titled, "Say It Again, A Mantra Really Works" . Personally, I believe in mantras and have my own, but in case you are skeptical, check out the convincing research behind having a mantra:

Thinking of a word or phrase that affirms our values—and repeating it over and over—produces powerful physiological changes. It can lower our cortisol levels, enhance endurance and reduce perception of effort during physical exertion. Perhaps even more compelling, a mantra can quiet the mind. Mantras can create and strengthen new neural pathways that are positive and not toxic. And that can make our brain much calmer and happier! We evoke mantras during times of stress, new challenges, academic finals, first marathons, and life-threatening illnesses. Some are just one word: “Breathe”, “Shine”, and some are phrases: “This will pass”, “Never never never give up”.

Personally, I have taken a tip from a recent journal "6 Essentials to Living the Good Life" , which is “Don't Miss Anything” and because of it, just this week I did several things I would not have normally done! I have also heard from several iGnite members who have also adopted the "don't miss anything" mindset. I think it's the perfect summer mantra!

So, how do you choose a mantra? Here's how:

1. Picture yourself older and wiser. Now think about what advice this evolved version of yourself would most want to give you right now to make your life better. Write it down.

2. Keep it short. It needs to be easy to remember.

3. Make sure it is positive, but not unbelievable. If is is too positive, it can feel hokey. Mantras that build a healthy brain are based in truth, logic and helpfulness.

4. Trigger your mantra. Practice thinking about what is bothering you and then saying your mantra. This will train your brain to call up the word or phrase as a habit when you are stressed.

I will ALWAYS have my go to mantra—“Don’t be Afraid to be Amazing!", but my new mantra—"Don't Miss Anything” is going to take me through Summer nicely!!


Action Item:

Determine what you need and want out of the summer season and choose a mantra that will help you have an amazing experience.


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