A quick trick for a kinder, calmer day


I am starting to see that, in life, the simplest solution is often the best – or, if not the best, then a very good place to start.

Take, for example, my favourite challenge of how to be kinder to myself and calmer in the world every day. There are thousands of ways I could tackle this problem, but I've found that starting with two simple questions generally works well for me (at least as a starting point). It may be all you need today too.

Before I even get out of bed, I ask myself:

How can I be kinder today?
How can I be calmer today?

Question 1 may relate to me or to those I deal with daily. For example:

How can I be kinder to myself today?

How can I be kinder to my kids today?

How can I be kinder to my partner/co-worker/friend/cousin/elderly neighbour today?

You get the idea.

Question 2 is more about me and the choices I can make in any given moment. For example:

What would make me feel calmer today? It might be deleting items from my 'to do' list, choosing a healthy activity (a walk, a celery juice, a catchup with the girls), or doing some sneaky diaphragmatic breathing.

On any given day, my answer might be anything from cleaning out the pantry ready for Christmas (really practical), to meditating for 10 minutes before a shower because my brain feels set to explode (more spiritual/me focused)? Or maybe I might choose to feel calmer by staying in bed 20 minutes longer, finally making that difficult phone call, binge watching my favourite TV show, calling a friend, or even buying that new rug. It doesn't matter what the action is, so long as it makes me feel calmer. 

Give it a try if you like. Ask yourself:

How can I be kinder today?

How can I be calmer today?

And let me know how you go.

Do you have any good tricks for starting your day off kinder or calmer? I'd love to hear them.

Natalie Bartley