Much like my experience in The Birth of the Lagoon, many people have a special place they may not even realize, whether it is:
- A physical place– a nearby path in the woods, your gazebo, a certain bench.
- A place in your heart– a fabulous find on vacation, grandma’s house, the moon, and stars.
- A place from the past– a best friend’s bedroom, the mall, a local hangout area.
- A place you aspire to be– your future dream home, a future travel destination, or future retirement plans.
And with a little bit of soul searching, you can find your special place, your oasis.
Why Do I Want an Oasis?
The very idea of an oasis, a haven, a retreat, or a sanctuary, evokes notions of safety, sustenance, peace, and replenishment.
These positive feelings can destress us, ground us, and be further channeled to elicit positive action.
How Do I Find My Oasis?
It may take a few minutes of meditation and visualization, as your mind processes the spaces and places you’ve experienced the most comfort and joy.
But eventually, it will get there!
Let’s get started with this simple visualization activity.
7 Steps to Happiness, Joy, and Inspiration
1. Think about a time in your life, or a place, that makes you feel joy, contentment, hope, and excitement. This may take seconds, minutes, or even hours.
2. When you’ve focused on a time (present, past, or future) and place, consider:
- What does it look like?
- What do you hear?
- What do you smell?
- What can you touch?
- Is there a taste involved?
- Who else is present?
- How old are you?
- How do you feel when you’re there? Why?
- Can you feel that way now?
Analyze these questions carefully and thoughtfully.
3. Once you can visualize the place in your mind, harness all the positive sentiments associated with being there, write them down and cement them into your mind. Read it over several times.
4. When you feel upset, dejected, overwhelmed, sad, or unmotivated, glance over your list, close your eyes, and conjure up the positive essence you associate with your unique place, wherever or whenever that may be.
5. Allow yourself a few minutes to feel and embrace all the memories, thoughts, and feelings that connect you to that place. Relish being there.
6. Consciously channel the positivity you feel from your oasis, into the present, and ask yourself “How can I manifest the optimism and enthusiasm I feel, into tangible actions today?”
7. Leave your oasis and take tangible action.
What is Tangible Action?
Tangible action is doing something real. It means you must physically do something to make it happen.
A few suggestions for tangible actions you may want to tackle could include:
- Identify a source of stress and why you may feel worried, angry, hurt, sad, etc., and write it down.
- Develop and execute a plan to tackle your stressor like you would eat an elephant- one bite at a time- but deal with it.
- Examine and record your short-, medium-, and long-term goals, summon the inspiration to work towards the goals and get started.
- Start the first steps towards one thing you’ve wanted to do for a long time but never had the courage to execute.
- Get inspired from your oasis- develop and practice a positive mantra to diminish the severity or duration of time when you feel upset, dejected, or unmotivated.
- Move forward in a calm manner. Let your happiness and optimism radiate and benefit you through exercise, eating well, journaling, light cleaning, organizing, and doing something fun!
- Let your happiness and optimism radiate and benefit others through volunteering, donating what you no longer need, spending time with those you love, and being kind to all people.
Taking small, actionable steps each day prevents us from becoming overwhelmed, gives us the positive mental boost we need to push forward each day, and the confidence in knowing that we are working towards whatever goals we have set for ourselves!
Shifting our Mindsets
1.) The Power of Positive Thinking
Our minds are the most potent instruments on earth. More powerful than any computer in existence. And when we harness the power of our mind and practice positive thinking, there is no limit to what we can accomplish.
Don’t believe me? Consider a few of the most fantastical feats of humankind:
- The wheel
- Leonardo Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa
- The lightbulb
- The printing press
- Space travel
- Computers, the internet, algorithms, software, etc.
These feats were sparked from ideas born of the human mind, and I can guarantee there were many trials, errors, and failures along the way. It’s all a matter of visualization and action.
If you visualize your beautiful and peaceful oasis, your mind will manifest positivity from it. The manifested positivity will radiate from you, and when you send out this positive energy, the laws of attraction will bring it back to you.
2.) We Can Be Catalysts for Positive Change
Amazing feats are also accomplished daily, quietly, and humbly by average people, who also contribute tremendously to our societies. People like:
- Local volunteers
- Children- the world is a beautiful place when seen through their eyes
- Drive-thru workers
- Healthcare aides- the ultimate front-line workers of the healthcare system
3.) Starting From a Good Place
How good does it feel to resolve an issue with a customer service worker with kindness and patience? Isn’t it nice to smile at a stranger? What about opening a door for someone, or reading to a child?
These may seem like small and insignificant actions, but they are not. Acts of kindness cause ripple effects of positivity, for yourself and others.
And that is no small feat.
Our minds have the power to keep us in a state of negativity, doubt, anxiousness, and fear. They can also do the opposite, but we must re-train them.
And it starts with shifting our mindsets and starting out from a good place.
What if I Can’t Channel My Oasis?
If you’re finding a difficult time imagining or locating your personal oasis- a place for your spirit to be re-invigorated- here are some ideas:
- Make one. Transform any living space in your home- bedroom, living room, office, or bathroom, into a private, relaxing, mental getaway.
- Create a place in your mind to draw out calming and joyful inspiration- a beach, a glen in the woods, a villa you someday want.
- Look outside. Is there somewhere close by -a yard, a balcony, a nearby water source, or a greenspace you can escape into nature?
Once you create that physical space or that mental getaway, you can be physically present within its parameters, or visualize it whenever you choose.
How Do I Transform My Space?
There are many ways to transform your space into a calming oasis, even if you feel you have no décor or design skills at all!
And whether you are creating a mental getaway or making some physical changes to your space, the following three suggestions will make it easy for anyone to create a soothing sanctuary.
1. Uplift All the Rooms of Your Home With Plants
A quick Google search will provide an abundance of information on the benefits of plants in your home.
Some of the most common beneficial effects include:
- Cleaner air
- A boost in mental clarity
- Reduced physical pain
- Decreased stress and anxiety
- Improved mental and emotional health
- Increased productivity
- A better night’s sleep
The bottom line is that plants make us feel better, they look beautiful, they are live beings to share our space with, they depend on us for care, and they take in our carbon dioxide and provide us with oxygen.
But be sure to research the types of houseplants in your home for the safety of your children and pets.
2. Transform Your Spaces With the Power of Scent
Scents are alluring and powerful mood boosters that can whisk you away to pleasant places.
And just as important as a lovely scent is clean and purified fresh air. Dank, dry, moldy air filled with chemicals and pollutants is detrimental to your health and well-being.
Consider filling your home with safe, non-synthetic scents:
- High-quality essential oils in ultrasonic diffusers.
- Natural essential oil-infused candles made of soy, coconut, or beeswax.
- Fresh-cut flowers, flowering houseplants, or herbs such as lavender, mint, and lemongrass.
- Natural fragrance room and linen sprays.
- Simmering stovetop potpourri.
- Odor-eating charcoal balls.
- Essential oil burners.
- DIY odor eaters made from baking soda and other natural sources.
- Use high-quality third-party tested essential oils when possible.
And for clean, purified fresh air:
- Use a good quality air purifier.
- Throw open some windows and air out your home.
These options may require some research and more than a quick trip to the store if you wish to avoid toxic and synthetic chemicals in your home.
But you are well worth the time and effort!
3. Water-Related Themes
In 11 Best Water Features for a Calming Space, we discuss the soothing, calming, and therapeutic effects of water- even if we are nowhere near a natural source of water- and how we can introduce those curative effects into our homes through various indoor and outdoor water products and features.
Water, much like plants and scents, has beneficial properties not everyone may be aware of. Water:
- Fosters creativity.
- Helps us sleep better.
- Refreshes and replenishes us.
- Slows our heart rate.
- Reduces anxiety and relaxes us.
- Awakens our senses.
- Shifts negative feelings to those of kindness, gratitude, and optimism.
- Cultivates inner joy and peace.
And who wouldn’t want to experience these blissful feelings?
Lighting. Lighting is essential when it comes to the overall ambiance of our homes.
But good lighting does not have to be over-the-top expensive or even require any renovations.
The mood of an entire room can be improved simply by:
- Stand-alone floor lamps and table lamps.
- Nightlights in bedrooms, hallways, bathrooms, and kitchens.
- Ultrasonic diffusers with lights.
- Faerie lights.
- LED strip lighting tape.
- Use soft, warm, or natural-colored light bulbs.
- Patio string lights.
- Outdoor solar light stakes.
- Washing your windows inside and out.
And for even more inspiration see The 21 Best Gifts for a Relaxing, Zen Home.
There are always going to be times when we feel angry, frustrated, overwhelmed, unmotivated, sad, dejected, and so on.
And while those feelings are normal but seem negative, they can be beneficial because they
–spur us to action–
nobody wants to be stuck in a low place all the time.
So, when you are feeling melancholy, it helps to know we have those feelings for a reason, and they can often lead us to positive outcomes.
And for those times when we need a bit of hope and happiness, we can always look to our oasis- a place that offers clarity, peace, inspiration, grounding, replenishment, and joy.
So, ask yourself today- What’s Your Oasis?
If you have a personal “oasis” I’d love to hear about it! And if you have any other thoughts, issues, or ideas on living life as an awesome woman in her 40s and beyond, or anything you’d like to read about- please contact us!