Throughout life, we are faced with many challenges that we must overcome before we are released into our next level of life. Sometimes those challenges continue to present themselves until we learn the lesson and master those dreadful key mistakes. While some challenges can be people, places, or things, the power to overcome lies within ourselves. An additional bonus to overcoming these challenges is that they help to keep us focused and grounded when we reach our next level. You see, nothing in life is wasted. At some point, you will be realigned with the present to see how past experiences helped shape you. Here are 5 key grounding lessons that I learned as I overcame my burnout:

1.Stick to your original plan.

We are constantly bombarded with opinions and the likes of influence from those we love and respect, and sometimes, even from those who we don’t love and respect. Everybody always seems to think that the grass is greener on the other side, and they’ll even try to water your grass. However, much attention and focus should be on creating your dream life by following the formula that I have set for you. If you aren’t aware of that formula, you can find it here. In the book, we discuss building and creating your dream life following my 5 step system that takes you from start to finish to living and maximizing your full life’s potential. If you deviate from your original plan, then who’s plan or life are you living, building, and creating? This is why it’s important to stick to your original plan…the plan for your life…the plan for your vision…the plan for your abundant living. 

2. Stay congruent to who you are.

Think of a band or a symphony orchestra. Every instrument and musician plays their part. A flute player doesn’t play the flute as if it were a drum, and a flute doesn’t sound like a drum. I played clarinet in high school, and I never acted like I was playing the saxophone. I sat back straight, shoulders high, with my feet planted shoulder width apart, to give my best posture and breathing technique when it was time to join in to make beautiful music. It is the same with life. In order to live a harmonious life, we must be in sync with who we are at all times. I’m not a human who acts like a dog with certain people. I’m not a dog who acts like a cat when certain animals come around. Do you see where I’m going here? A triangle has 3 sides, but each side is in harmony with each other playing its part, the side of a triangle, in order to make a complete and whole triangle. I met a homeless woman in my travels to Mexico. I remained the same person that I was when speaking with her as I did after I got to Mexico to speak with a member of the board of directors. My compassionate side, combined with my dominate business side merged together to still form who I was, Me. The only difference in my conversation between both parties, the homeless lady and I, and the member of the board of directors and I, was the nature of our conversation. It is important that we stay true to who we are, realize that though we have several sides, who we are at our core is enough to live in harmony. 

3. Adhere to warning signs.

The Universe often gives us warning signs. Since hindsight is 20/20, you may be able to look back over your life experiences and see some red flags that you missed, and the effect being a bad situation or a missed opportunity. Sometimes, if we slow down, we will pick up on what the Universe is trying to tell us or keep us from. It’s much like a parent warning a child that there’s a hole in the front yard ahead, but because the child isn’t paying attention nor listening to the parent, the front tire of the bike runs into the ground, and up goes the child flying through the air! A dramatic scenario, I know, lol, but you get the picture. Since all things were created and connected, the Universe is much like our parent who has a vested interest in us to give us warning signs or red flags when danger or opportunities lie ahead. Slow down and catch the signs.

4. Create space to do nothing.

Are you a workaholic or busy-body like me? From sunup to sundown, I am constantly doing things like work. I am a restless soul would craves the busyness of a 9-5 even at home. What I find in my moments of busyness is that I’m spinning my wheels going nowhere fast. In fact, it’s when I prioritize my day’s to-do list that I get more done with less effort. I feel more accomplished. Then there are other times that I get in a routine and must go go go to get everything done. Honestly, it tires me out and before the end of the day, I am drained. For this cure, I create space to do nothing. My “do nothing” could consist of sharing a song with my grandmother, looking at the fish swim in my lake, writing a blog post, in which often times is therapy, or doing small arts and craft in which is also therapy as it causes me to slow down my thinking. While my “do nothing” sounds like doing a lot, it is the “nothingness” of my mind staying still and me being in control of my thoughts. That’s a whole lot of stillness for me.

5. Let people be responsible for themselves.

I’ve never viewed myself as a control freak (but would we?), but I am a problem fixer…and guess what, people love to bring me their problems and pile them on top of my problems…even if I don’t have problems of my own, I would still have their problems to fix as if it were my own. This is actually one way that led me to having a mental breakdown and landed me in the hospital for 5 days. It was in my recovery that I said, “NO MORE!” Of course it was not healthy for me to allow myself to breakdown before I put a stop to what would have been an endless cycle. And do you know that the same people attempted to give me more of their problems after I recovered??! That’s the fine line and slippery slope of being an enabler. It happens quite often with family. I actually just received a new book set to be released in April 2019 about cutting ties with toxic family members and loving yourself in the aftermath. I’m sure it will be a good read, and I will come back here to give my detailed review. The moral of the story is simple: we cannot save the world or the workings of human activity without saving ourselves first. Then and only then do we understand what our boundaries are that will put in place our limitations, in which will ultimately empower others to be responsible for themselves.

As I end, I hope that I provided you some key takeaways to improve your mental health and quality of life. Some of the struggles we endure in life are those that are self-inflicted and wounds that we allow by way of not setting boundaries. To live a meaningful life, we must understand that our network determines our net worth and they, as well as we, should want to see us grow. We must ensure that we also reciprocate the same energy to avoid throwing others out of sync with their own harmony.

Keiwana Eaton is an authenticity life coach and author of Align Your Current Life with Your Dream Life in 5 Simple Steps. Signup for her goal smashing workbook on her website.