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Reaching for Peace

In uncertain times, many of us experience stress. However, we can't live in a state of spiked cortisol without consequences. Learning to calm our nervous systems may begin with understanding what we can control vs. what we cannot control. When we can wrap our heads around what is within our reach, personal empowerment is soon to follow.


Let's start with what we cannot control, just to get that out in the open. These are the things that do not change with our personal effort. These are the things we need to exhale from our bodies. Deep sigh. Let it go.


You Cannot Control:

  1. What others think of you.

  2. What others say and do.

  3. The beliefs and perceptions of others.

  4. The past.

  5. The future.

  6. External situations and what happens around you.

  7. Other people's motives

  8. How others feel

While it can feel frustrating to feel powerless over the above items, it's really important to define them so that you can move forward. Trying to change things you cannot change creates unnecessary stress which can reduce your quality of life exponentially.


Here's what you CAN control. These are things you can address with skill building, mindfulness, and your effort. These are the pathways to feeling empowered, hopeful, and joyful. Deep exhale and find your smile...you've got this!


You Can Control:

  1. Your narratives. These are the stories we tell ourselves. We can choose our narratives. When we notice ourselves delving into negativity, we can choose to change that narrative, reaching for the positive. This practice is life changing.

  2. How you interact with others in relationship. The way we behave is something we can personally address, and we can build skills to improve the way we interact with those around us.

  3. The ways in which you enjoy staying healthy.

  4. Your emotions. Sometimes emotions seem out of our control. In truth, we can take mindful steps toward balancing them. Sleep, diet, exercise, social groups, therapeutic interventions and behavioral activation are all things that are actionable and within our grasp to be empowered within.

  5. Your productivity and your activities.

  6. How you spend your free time.

  7. What you eat and drink.

  8. Your inner peace.

  9. The ways you choose to enjoy life.

  10. The choice to have a positive attitude.

Can you think of other ways to empower yourself and those around you? No matter what you enjoy, at Western, we support your individual path toward wellbeing. You are worthy!




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