10 STICKY NOTES WE ALL NEED HANGING ON OUR WALLS (UNTIL WE FEEL STRONGER)
By Angel Chernoff
Happiness doesn’t start with a relationship, a vacation, a job, or money. It starts with your thinking and what you tell yourself daily.
The best lessons we learn in life are the lessons we learn over and over again.
The human mind needs lots of reminders — lots of practice — to operate effectively.
For example, deep down we know it’s OK to…
- Say “no”
- Speak up
- Tell the truth
- Believe differently
- Change our mind
- Prioritize our needs
- Learn from our mistakes
- Embrace our imperfections
- Forgive and seek forgiveness
- Begin again, stronger than before
Yet, we often seek the exact opposite when life gets stressful and we’re under pressure.
We do the wrong things even when we know better.
Because the human mind has weaknesses. It becomes forgetful and insensible when it’s stressed. And the only way to conquer these weaknesses is to practice conquering them. Yes, the mind is like a muscle, and just like every muscle in the human body it needs to be exercised to gain and maintain strength. It needs to be trained daily to grow and develop gradually over time. If you haven’t pushed the mind in lots of little, positive ways over the course of time, of course it’ll crumble in the inevitable moments that get overwhelmingly stressful.
The easiest strategy to practice strengthening the mind?
Daily Reminders & Quotes on Sticky Notes
It’s all about keeping the right thoughts front and center every day, so they’re readily available in those moments when you need them most. For Marc and me, that means pausing as often as necessary and reflecting on precisely what we need to remember. To make this practice seamless we write ourselves important reminders on sticky notes like the ones digitally represented below, and then we put them up where we can quickly see and read them throughout the day (most of my sticky notes are up on the wall in my home office, and then I have a couple on my bathroom mirror and refrigerator too).
These sticky notes keep us on track by keeping our minds empowered with positive, proactive reminders, even when life gets hectic. Through this daily practice, Marc and I have ultimately learned that inner peace does not mean being in a place where there is no noise, chaos, or trouble to deal with; it’s being in the midst of all those things and still being capable of maintaining a calm and collected mindset.
And I’m sure you’ve learned something similar over the years from your own life experiences. But just like us, you often forget. This is precisely why we have our sticky notes up where we can see them. So my challenge to YOU is to start practicing alongside us.
To get started, steal our notes and quotes below — perhaps just the ones that resonate most — and rewrite them on physical sticky notes, so you can then stick them up where you can see them. Whenever you catch yourself feeling overwhelmed or off-center throughout the day, pause for a minute and quietly read them to yourself. See how doing so gradually changes the way you think through life’s twists and turns and bumps in the road…
Use Different Forms of Visual Notes Too
Written sticky notes like the ones we’re encouraging you to create are powerful, but they merely scratch the surface of possibilities for beneficial visual reminders. For instance, my phone, tablet, and laptop all have their backgrounds set to photos of my family, both because I love looking at them and because, when work gets really tough, these photos remind me of the people I am ultimately working for. It’s simple but it helps (you could even set one of the sticky note images above as your background).
I also know dozens of other people who successfully use similar visual reminders on a daily basis. A coaching client of ours who has paid off over $100K of debt in the past five years has a copy of her credit card balance taped to her work computer’s monitor; it serves as a daily reminder of both the progress she has made and the debt she still wants to pay off. Another one keeps a photo of herself when she was 90 pounds heavier on her refrigerator as a reminder of the unhealthy lifestyle she never wants to return to.
Think of moments when you are most likely to give in to impulses that keep you stuck or take you farther away from your goals. Then use written sticky notes and empowering visual reminders to interrupt those negative impulses so that you can keep yourself on track.
Now it’s your turn…
Yes, it’s your turn to get some empowering notes up on your wall. But before you go, please leave a comment below and let us know what you think of this essay. Your feedback is important to us.
Which sticky note or idea above resonates with you the most today?