5 Ways to Grow in Strength

“Promise me you'll always remember: You're braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” (A.A. Milne)

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Strength is not always visible- sometimes we need to push ourselves to find out what we are truly capable of becoming. Here are 5 ways to discover the strength that exists within…

1) Be Active

Remember- the most effective physical activities are the ones that engage your mind as well as your body. Traditions like yoga, tai chi (taiji), dance and martial arts not only build stronger muscles but they have a deeper, philosophical element that allows you to fully engage with the activity at hand.

2) Be Nutritious

Be aware of what you put into your body. If you need a place to start- green foods are great for you, and they’re delicious. A good rule of thumb is to eat plenty of what you would’ve avoided when you were little: this means asparagus, broccoli, green beans, spinach, and other wholesome veggies that will make you strong.

3) Practice Meditation and Mindfulness

Meditation can be practiced by anyone, regardless of background, to strengthen mind and body. Repetitions of mantras or even quiet observance of your thoughts leads to greater understanding of your emotional patterns, while the act of sitting still improves circulation, posture and core strength!

4) Breathe for Strength

Deep breathing slows your heart rate, improves digestion, and increases balance and endurance. In addition to building strong lungs, breathing exercises can go a long way in connecting you to the present moment, which creates a happier, healthier outlook on life!

5) Emotional Exercises

Our greatest strength lies in our potential to overcome fear. Pursuing goals in the face of adversity/uncertainty helps us to grow in personal and emotional strength and allows us to guide others along the same path. We become strongest when we work towards our happiness, instead of waiting for it to come our way.

Remember that real strength comes from challenging your status quo. Step outside of your comfort zone. Allow the chance for failure. Give up being perfect and just do your best in the present moment… you may be surprised to find strength you never knew you had.