Being chased by your biggest and scariest fears? The world seems larger than what your mind can handle? Your challenges seem like puzzles, impossible to solve? Well, you’re not alone. Most of us feel that way. Question is, how do we get out of Jumanji? How do we solve those puzzles that never seem clear and take control of our fears?
- First, decide whether or not you are ready to improve your life, change your mindset, and believe in you again;
- Write down your overarching challenge and set a plan to overcome that challenge;
- Discover a motivating factor that will drive and keep you driven while improving your life. In my opinion, motivation creates movement and serves as a critical reminder why your hard work and investment will be beneficial to you and those around you;
- Set one realistic goal you can achieve without a timeframe. Something meaningful or that has value to you. A goal without purpose or value is difficult to achieve because it’s based on a superficial and false sense of desire;
- Bring in reinforcements. Set up a support system. This support system could consist of medical professionals, family, peers, online support, or all of the above. Any support is beneficial;
- Recognize behavior patterns that have served you well or created toxicity in your life. Begin to slowly integrate new behavior patterns while removing the toxic ones; and
- Most importantly, start appreciating you and take care of yourself. This might be the most difficult item on the list. I’m well aware of the complexities challenges can create, but I encourage you to try the following:
- Get out of bed every morning or most days of the week
- Shower every day or when physically able to do so
- Get dressed and look presentable regardless if you’re going anywhere. Yes, this is extremely difficult, but self-care is essential to improving overall health and confidence. Sometimes if you look presentable, smell like your favorite soap, or are wearing clean clothes, you tend to feel more attractive. Thereby, leading to improved confidence
- Feel free to add any other activities to this list that you think will help reach your goal
Now, let’s get started
I call this the “Mental Health Readiness Planning Guide”. I created this guide for me and have used it when dealing with my own challenges and obstacles. I have found it to be very helpful throughout my healing process. Please note, the above list and below guide are not intended to serve as medical help or counseling, as I am not a licensed professional. This information is only based on my personal experiences. Please feel free to share with your medical team.
(A separate attachment is enclosed including a printable Mental Health Readiness Planning Guide for you to use if you choose and a printable Sample Mental Health Readiness Planning Guide for your convenience)
|Mental Health Readiness Planning Guide|
|My overarching challenge is:|
|What is my motivation to conquer this challenge:|
|My goal is:|
|My support system consists of:|
|My negative self-talk consists of:|
|I will no longer tell myself:|
|I am afraid of improving my life because:|
|Improving my life will benefit me in the following ways:|
|Today I will:|
|Today I will:|
|Notes/Updates: (This section can be used to self-evaluate how you are feeling from one day to the next or you can use a separate journal. Additionally, this section can be used to write down any negative or positive behaviors you noticed that may have impacted your progress; i.e. self-talk or self-care|
©2018 Heidi Sullivan-Inyama
Below are links to studies and discussing the importance of motivation and group support and how they play a key role in successful behavioral and lifestyle changes. Many studies indicate there is a strong correlation between readiness, motivation, and obtaining goals.
Keep setting mini goals for each overarching challenge because the truth is, this is a lifelong journey. As you reach each mini goal, you will get closer to confronting and silencing your fears and overcoming challenges. Remember, only you alone can get out of Jumanji!