What would you change?
I ask this question of all new patients. Recently, I got an especially inspiring answer: I would celebrate little victories and accomplishments more often. These felt like words of a prophet to me. I needed a moment to take that in.
Do I celebrate my victories? If I did, how would that feel? How would that be different than checking something off my list and just moving on to the next thing?
The first thing that comes to mind, is an absolute YES! an uplifting and positive feeling in both body and mind. YES! a sense of accomplishment. YES! I am awesome! YES! I can do this and so much else! What’s next?
The next thing that comes to mind is how the repitition of positive reinforcement affects the brain. “…experiments have demonstrated that positive emotions produce patterns of thought that are notably unusual, flexible, creative, and receptive. In general terms, it is suggested that positive affect “enlarges the cognitive context”, an effect recently linked to increases in brain dopamine levels.”1 Barbara L. Fredrickson calls this the broaden and build model of positive
emotions. It builds an individual’s personal resources in an enduring way that are then available in other situations.
I’m always looking for little things that we can do every day that make us stronger, wiser, more happy, more healthy. A practice like this is not a direct link to fertility. It’s more like eating nourishing foods, daily exercise and play, doing things that give you joy, getting enough rest, connecting with others, intimacy. These are all things that nourish our body and enrich our lives. That’s living a full and fertile life!
As we talked a little more, we came up with, not an original, but a simple way to celebrate our successes. It’s a bit like the gratitude journal. At the end of each day, write down three things that you could celebrate. You might want to give some thought to how you would celebrate too, and write that down. At the end of one week, you’ll have twenty-one reasons to celebrate! AND a celebration to look forwad to! How great is that?
The thing too, is that when you’re going through a rough time, the clouds are low and it feels like you’re wearing a wet blanket, just getting up and getting dressed is a success. If you need help with your list, reach out to someone. Connecting with a friend will probably result in a success for both of you.
What a wise woman. I am thankful and continuously inspired by the women I work with. Thank you to my new patient, you know who you are.
Thanks to all of you!