Entitled Attitudes Lead to Less Joyous Lives

A new study confirms that those who feel more entitled than others ultimately end up feeling the most unhappy.

Me, Myself, and I

Entitlement is a term that connotes a degree of selfishness. It’s a state of thought and behavior where an individual feels he/she deserves better than others. Standard rules don’t apply to the entitled.

This particular attitude is not just about deserving more “things” or money. It exudes a tad of narcissism; it’s a me-me world, which is all about what I want. And, I should get what I want—because I’m me!

Sound Familiar?

We’ve all observed a person who believes he/she is an exception to the norm. They are often the person who complains the most, the loudest, or blames others for their own unmet expectations.

A lot of times that individual expects something for nothing.

But we know the world doesn’t operate that way. That person may annoy us—or even make us feel envious (because a lot of times they do get what they want.) But new research out of Bowling Green University in Ohio shows that the “entitled” more often experience disappointment. They basically set themselves up for disenchantment and distress.

Don’t Whiney, Be Happy

The lead author of the study, Joshua Grubbs, explains that along with a sense of entitlement, there is a void of pride in earning. When we work hard and receive what we desire, we feel a sense of satisfaction.

Taking it a step further, we can feel satisfied by the smallest of accomplishments on a daily basis. We even have the ability to feel happy for the things we already have. That falls into the category of gratitude.

The study reviewed over 170 separate studies on the theme of entitlement. One discovery, which was a pervading theme, was the entitled person’s level of disappointment. Because he/she created a level of expectations (that were often unmet), the individual became angry and depressed. Those emotions bled into social and personal relationships, and life overall, did not hold much joy.

Ambition vs. Entitlement

As we are learning, entitlement is often synonymous with negativity and unpleasantness. Ambition, however, can be healthy if approached properly.

A strong drive and motivation to achieve is a positive model for attaining goals. Working hard and setting standards are realistic modes of meeting one’s own expectations. “Many of the world’s greatest, most-accomplished leaders have been truly humble people.”

Thankful

Truly, the world doesn’t owe us one thing. Perhaps that’s a good reason to be thankful for the things we do have. How positive it must be to teach and model for our children behaviors that display best effort and genuine gratitude. After all, isn’t the thing we want most for our children is for them to be happy?

If you want to read more about positive living and lifestyle tips, check out www.GetThrive.com

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Is Simplicity the Key to Good Health?

K.I.S.S. “Keep It Simple, Silly” is an age-old acronym suggesting simplicity is the best policy. But when it comes to everyday living, do you think it may be a way for people to attain personal satisfaction and good health?

Simple is not Stupid

Depending on the definition, one’s perception of simple may be quite different than another’s. For the sake of clarification, let’s look at “simplicity” as minimizing, making mindful choices, and practicing gratitude—in all areas of life.

Minimizing

Start with clutter. Piles of papers and an overabundance of material items around the house or office can be stressful. De-clutter and reduce your anxiety level.

Think about how happy you are when you’re on vacation, where there are no worries at home staring you in the face. It’s actually possible to achieve that sensation in your everyday environment. One key action is to minimize material possessions.

And it doesn’t have to be an overwhelming process.

All it takes is a little effort every time you look in your closet. If it’s ripped, worn out, or unloved, get rid of it. Look through the pantry and fridge. If food is expired, freezer-burned, or, you know you’ll never eat it, toss it. This also applies to boxes of old letters, ancient tax receipts, and duplicate copies of photos. Old towels, sheets, burned pot-holders—it’s probably time to add them to the trash bin as well.

Making Mindful Choices

Sure, you love to volunteer. You want to go to every event you’re invited to. Of course, you want to attend every sport, music, choir, parent-night on the calendar. Or do you? Perhaps it’s time not to say “yes” to everything.

Spend time in ways that are satisfying to you. We are all way too busy, and the effects are poor health. Take walks in nature. Visit friends and family that you really like. Support your kids so they know you care, but not to the detriment of your sanity and health (and in turn, theirs.) Rest and good sleeps are intensely satisfying and necessary for optimum health.

Reduce chaos. This may mean not overspending on holidays, not going to that party, but instead exercising, reading, or simply “playing.”

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Practicing Gratitude

“Being grateful” has become such a trendy buzz-saying. The truth is that this philosophy is ancient and successfully effective. It also lies as a root to many religions. Practicing gratitude has been proven to increase internal personal satisfaction as well as one’s physical health. It’s invaluably worthy.

Gratitude helps simplify

“Clinical trials indicate that the practice of gratitude can have dramatic and lasting effects in a person’s life,” says Robert A. Emmons, professor of psychology at UC Davis. “It can lower blood pressure and improve immune function…”

Another study from UC San Diego’s School of Medicine revealed that people who are more grateful had better cardiovascular health. They also had less overall inflammation in their bodies.

Being grateful for a way to earn a living, your clothes, furniture, food, and most of all, the people in your life, can bring a personal joy like no other. With that healthy spirit, a strengthening of the physical can certainly follow suit.

For tips on living a healthy, spiritual, and satisfying life, have a look at other articles on www.GetThrive.com

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4 Pleasant Ways to Practicing Yoga in 2018

A new year is quickly approaching, and it’s usually our intention to make exercise and stress-reduction a priority. Unfortunately, we get side tracked and our health and fitness goals somehow fall by the wayside. However, for 2018, a healthy body and mind can be yours (and simply!) if you choose to follow these 4 pleasant ways to practice yoga.

 

Happy Yoga New Year!

Most of us already understand the benefits of practicing yoga. But there’s no harm in offering some friendly reminders. Health experts and exercise advocates can probably come up with at least 50 reasons why it’s essential to your overall health. Here are just a few main advantages included in your new-year yoga practice:

 

  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Builds muscle strength
  • Improves posture
  • Protects spine
  • Increases ability to focus
  • Improves balance
  • Relieves tension and anxiety
  • Promotes better sleep
  • Boosts immune system
  • Decreases pain and inflammation

 

Yoga is clearly healing to the body, but it is also incredibly beneficial for the mind. It’s a holistic practice in where everything is connected. For example, garnering better posture opens up your lungs and allows you to breathe more deeply, naturally. More oxygen into your blood improves your nervous system. You then become more relaxed and hopefully more content!

 

Practicing Can Be Pleasant

All too often we think of exercise and then, we think, “Ugh, I don’t want to do it!” But, yoga should be a joy—and it can be. For 2018, change your mindset to, “I want to do it. It keeps me healthy and I feel good!” And, it will be easy for you to have this attitude because practicing yoga can be enjoyable and rewarding.

Here are 4 perfectly pleasant ways to practice:

 

1) Set up a relaxing, clean space. You don’t have to invest in décor, statues, lighting, or a home with an extra bedroom. All you need is a comfy, clean area where no one will interrupt your dedicated time while in your space. Lighting and ventilation are important, but you can burn a candle or leave a window slightly open (as long as there’s no traffic noise.)

Also, keep your mat clean. It makes a difference when you are stretching or lying down.


(Think of nice clean sheets on your bed.)

Making a Great Start Even Better…

2) Begin with gratitude from the very beginning. Whether you are rushing into the yoga studio or anxious to grab a break in your home space, take a moment to breathe and center yourself before entering. You want your practice to start from a place of compassion and gratitude. This is a precious time and you will be glad you enter into it from a positive and calmer place, making the entire experience more pleasant.

 

3) Bring only yourself to your practice. Leave material objects and worries of the world outside your yoga time and space. Therefore, if you’re going to class, just bring a mat. Most studios provide blocks, blankets, and whatever else you might want or need. The idea is lighten your load, physically and mentally.

Do not bring your phone or have your phone on you whenever practicing. Finish whatever task you were doing before you enter. Allow yourself complete freedom of experience. Forget a watch or clock. If you have a given amount of time, you can always set an alarm outside your space. Honor the pleasant simplicity.

And Finally…

4) Choose 4 favorite poses. Many suggest you begin your practice in a “do nothing doll” or “corpse” position. Just lie down, stop moving, and connect to your breath. Then, start out with four different poses that you love and that help your body feel good. You will be way more inclined to anticipate your yoga session if you already associate it with enjoyment and pleasure.

Most of all, yoga should never feel like an obligation. It is a gift you are giving to your body and mind. So take note when you are stretching or posing what feels the best. Start your session with those poses and you’ll be more apt to make time with a positive attitude.

 

Even though we make promises every year, sticking to your practice can be a success in 2018. Approaching your commitment with simplicity and a feeling of pleasantry can make all the difference. Best of body, mind, and spirit to you today—and everyday!

Sources:

https://www.yogajournal.com/lifestyle/count-yoga-38-ways-yoga-keeps-fit

https://www.doyouyoga.com/ten-ways-keep-yoga-practice-simple/

https://yogainternational.com/article/view/the-beginners-guide-to-home-yoga-practice

https://getthrive.com/yoga-heals-brain-body/

https://getthrive.com/yoga-tai-chi-instead-medication/

 

 

 

 

Are You Raising an Entitled Child Without Knowing It?

Doesn’t everyone want well-behaved children? Are we doing our best to prepare our children for the world? Surely, as our children get older, we have less ability to inform their behavior and their decisions.

While they are still impressionable, it’s imperative that as adults, we educate ourselves on best-practice techniques for socialization. When it comes down to it, our aim is to help teach our children how to get along with others.

Oh, Behave

Most behavior is learned. A five-year old wants another stuffed character from the movie Frozen. Mom says, “No, you have enough.” The child will try throwing-a-fit for size. She screams, falls to the ground, and refuses to get up until she gets another Elsa doll.

A scene in the store ensues. The parent is embarrassed and feels helpless. The parent concedes and buys the girl what she demands in order for the chaos to cease. The child just learned that her behavior was reinforced. Hence, “If I tantrum, I get my way.”

Historically, there have been several various styles touted as “the way” to approach parenting. Some had validity and continue to be effective, just as others were an experimental exercise in failure.

From a socio-psychological standpoint, a variation of operant conditioning seems to be a successful basis for bringing forth desired behavior and reducing unwanted behaviors or responses. It can be one technique in your bag of tricks that may prove to be effective.

On That Condition…

In layman’s terms, operant conditioning is basically teaching behavior through reward or punishment. Establish the reward or consequences beforehand. For example, tell your son if he doesn’t study and gets a D on his next math test, you will take his computer/gaming privileges away for a week.

He gets a D, you take it; he doesn’t like this. Next test, he studies and gets a B because he doesn’t want to lose his computer. He’s now learned how to avoid punishment through adapted (improved/desired) behavior. However, negative reinforcement can also breed unwanted results.

OK, so your son got a B. But did he do it because he understands the importance of best effort? Not really. It may not even boost his confidence as a student or give him a sense of pride for doing a job well done. In fact, once that “consequence” is removed, will that “good” behavior remain? (When he goes to college and you can’t take away his computer, will he have learned to study or even care?)

There’s something about reward that tends to be a better overall motivator. When your boss gives you a raise, you feel more apt to continue to apply yourself at work. And, you feel acknowledged and appreciated. Our kids need that too.

Don’t Go Overboard

Beware, however, of over-rewarding or rewarding for a job half-assed. Our youngsters need to learn a sense of earning, but also disappointment. Not every effort in life is going to get a prize. Helping your child find coping skills for disappointment is just as valuable as teaching them a sense of gratitude for accomplishment and reward.

Here’s a brief list of effective tips for raising a well-behaved person:

1. Set boundaries and enforce them: Make them realistic and manageable.

2. Reward desired behavior: (Note: Let’s say your kid screams “No!” and then crawls into bed every time you ask him to do homework. If you teach him to use words like, “I’m tired right now” and ask him not to scream at you, and soon, instead, he stops screaming, but still crawls under the covers—reward the good behavior of NOT screaming. Then work on the next part. Maybe offer 15 minutes of video time after 15 minutes of homework.)

3. Be a good role model by behavior: Let your kids see you treat others with respect. Treat your children with respect as well.

4. Keep your cool: Try not to be “reactionary.” You’re the adult. Ignore bad behavior—it will eventually decrease if no one’s responding to it.

5. Change takes time and effort: You have to be willing to attend to each situation. Be patient and you will see positive results.

6. Don’t be afraid to apologize when you’ve done something wrong or mistakenly

7. Don’t be afraid to be the bad guy: Your kids will love you and respect you when you take charge and implement rules. They may not like it at the time, but ultimately they understand you are there to protect and keep them safe. You can even explain that.

8. Teach and practice gratitude: Remind your kids how lucky you feel to have them in your life. Let them know you are thankful for all that surrounds you. Ask them occasionally what they love in their lives. Practicing gratitude allows us the freedom to care for others in hopes that they can have the best in life like we do.

 

 

7 Essential Tips How to Improve Your Mental Health at Work

Mental health affects how you think, feel, and act. On the job, your mental health needs to be in good, solid shape. If you suspect your mental health has been taking a toll, there are ways to boost your mental energy. Here are 7 essential tips on how to improve your mental health at work.

Monu-mental Stress

The greatest factor affecting stable and satisfactory mental health is stress—both at work and at home. Whatever the cause, your experience of stress can negatively affect your employment, relationships, and physical health. In order to improve your outlook and consequent behavior, you’ll need to pinpoint your stressors.

Some factors that lead to stress on the job (at the job) are:

  • Work overload (more work than your hours or skills can manage)
  • Lack of training (feel unprepared, left unsupported)
  • Lack of appreciation (no “thank you’s”, no bonus, perks, or raises)
  • Poor physical environment (no air, no natural light, tight quarters)
  • No autonomy (micromanaged, never get to make any decisions)
  • Role ambiguity (unsure of responsibilities or chain of command)

Unfortunately, many workplaces do not understand the importance of employee mental heath. There are definite psychosocial risk factors that impact the health of an employee. If your company or organization ignores these factors and you want to keep your job (and stay sane), you’ll need to utilize personal stress management tools.

Some factors that lead to stress on the job (from external circumstances) are:

  • Lack of available or affordable child care
  • Relationship struggles
  • Personal or family illness
  • Lack of proper rest

Whatever is causing your stress, you will need to use some of the tips listed to help manage your mental health.

Improve Stress Management

Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Decreasing your stress level is key. Here are 7 tips you can use to improve your mental health at work:

1) Take a walk. If you don’t have an official break, you can get up and walk around your desk or the office. Moving your body will help you get out of your mind. During your lunch break, try to get outdoors. According to Urban Greening Research at the University of Washington, adult office workers report less illness and more enthusiasm for their job when there’s opportunity for access to nature during the workday.

2) Improve communication skills. Using your clear words to express your feelings can help any situation. Discussing (in a calm manner) your needs and/or concerns can open a positive dialogue. The objective is to solve problems, relieve stress, and improve mental health. Certain suggestions to human resources could potentially affect positive change for you and your workplace. Be open about your struggles. Consider proposing solutions rather than just complaining.

3) Focus on something that lets your brain rest. Whatever your job, when done well, requires 100% of your attention. It’s an effort to attend to any task fully for long stretches of time. That’s one reason we become mentally exhausted. Take a couple of minutes to focus on something that requires no thought. For example, look at pleasant images—perhaps a painting, a flower, a picture of an animal, or a view out the window. Looking at images doesn’t require brain effort and allows our mind to rest.

4) Personalize your environment. Making your workspace a friendly place will boost your mental health. Placing photographs, your child’s drawings, or inspirational quotes nearby can help. Adding color is also uplifting. Indoor plants work wonders, adding a calming effect and more oxygen to your space. Just be mindful not to create clutter.

5) Zone in on the Inner You. When you’re at work and finding yourself too stressed out, you can always take a moment for some deep breaths. Shut your eyes and take long, full breaths. If you are adept at meditation, taking a few minutes to zone-in can instantly improve your mental state. Also, while taking time for “you,” consider “unplugging.” (Put your phone on mute, shut off your computer screen and allow the silence.)

6) Give yourself the gratitude talk. Find that spot in your being where you feel authentically grateful. Have a conversation with yourself. Remind yourself of all the things you’re thankful for. If you need help, some work reminders can be gratitude for: a) a paycheck; b) being able to help your children; c) a place to learn; d) a place to be around others; e) a feeling of usefulness, etc. A sense of gratitude leads to improved mental health.

7) Clean up your workspace. Clutter is stressful. You can justify it by saying you know where everything is, or, you don’t have time to clean up. The truth is, once you tidy up, even a little, you will feel a sense of relief. Mentally, organization will always trump chaos.