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The 10 Most Powerful Mind Hacks to Maintain a Great Emotional State at Any Time

The 10 Most Powerful Mind Hacks to Maintain a Great Emotional State at Any Time

I always used to think of happiness as result – a lifetime pursuit that drives most of our actions and behaviors. It is what we try to accomplish and probably the only reason we stay alive.

Did you notice what I just did? Within two sentences I managed to decipher the secret and true meaning behind the word happiness: its dual nature. Happiness is both a result and a driver.

Here’s an example. Usually I am trying to find ways to be more productive that will result in me being happier. What I don’t see though, is that the best way to improve my productivity is by being happier.

Astonishing?

Easier said than done, though.

So, in order to clarify things for you and make the whole idea behind happiness a bit more tangible, I decided to present to you the 10 most effective mind hacks I use to maintain a great emotional state at any time:

1. Be present in the moment

Being present in the moment is a term introduced by the brilliant Eckhart Tolle in his best seller, “The Power of Now.” I am pretty sure most of you have read it or heard about it. Only a few people I know of, though, have actually managed to make its meaning part of their lives.

What Eckhart Tolle is talking about is one of the most groundbreaking realizations a human can have in their life.

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You know how we define and live our lives according to what happened in the past and what is about to happen in the future? What Tolle says is: What if I told you that if you could get rid of these thoughts and focus all your attention on what is happening NOW, right NOW, at this very single moment, you could be happier than ever?

“The Power of Now” is a manifestation of how to be present and how to be able to shift your focus on things that actually matter.

2. Disengage yourself from ‘earthly problems’

“My flatmate didn’t do the dishes last night and I need to do them again.”

“My boss gave me a boring task again, I hate him.”

“I have no friends, all the people I hang out with are stupid.”

You get the general idea. These are everyday thoughts that drain your positivity. They are emotional-state leeches and huge distractions to your happiness. I like to call them ‘earthly problems’ because only people who haven’t embraced a higher level of thinking pay so much attention to them.

Earthly problems are an integral part of our everyday lives. They are activated by our environment and they are amplified every time we pay deep attention to them.

Here’s a useful piece of advice: Stop giving them so much value!

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3. Meditate

Meditation is closely related to the two points above. It is the perfect way to clear your mind and get rid of any annoying thoughts you might have during the day.

Most of the greatest minds that I know of have made meditation an everyday practice. It helps them stay present and increase their attention span in anything they do. They also argue that meditation helped them find happiness and meaning in life, and at the same time reduce anger, anxiety, depression and fatigue.

So put in your schedule. Its importance is vital.

4. Be self-reliant

Why is self-reliance so important when we want to keep our emotional state on top?

Well, ask yourself the following questions:

How many times has your emotional state been affected by your external environment? How many times have you let people around you drag you down because of their moody behavior? Countless times, right?

The reason behind that? Lack of self-reliance! You are used to depending on others in every aspect of your life. This applies to emotional change as well. Stop being an emotional leech and start ignoring moody behaviors. Be the one who creates positivity and stop relying on others in order for this to happen.

5. Be more open-minded, embrace diversity

Most people cannot understand that our world or universe is an extremely complex place. Its complexity is so great that it is impossible for us to interpret the different kinds of mindsets and behaviors experienced by other people.

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This results in us being negative most of the time and also condemning types of behaviors that don’t match our own perspective and likes.

Stop doing that and embrace diversity in our world. Obviously, it is impossible to hang out with every person on earth, but start being more engaging and open minded. You won’t believe how many amazing people you can attract in your life.

6. Stop being outcome dependent

Embrace the process in everything you do. I know that you have goals and aspirations, but in order to achieve them you need to go through a long and rewarding process.

Disengage yourself from the stress that outcome dependency creates. Start feeling good with every single step you take towards achieving your ambitions.

7. Listen to music that pumps you up

There is this term in Neuro-linguistic Programming called anchoring. Anchors are stimuli that call forth states of mind, thoughts and emotions. One of the strongest emotional anchors is music.

I, for example, love electronic music. Why? Because when I started going to electronic music parties I had a lot of fun. I met so many awesome and exciting people and that helped me associate this type of music with happy times and emotions.

I suggest you do the same. Try to think of music that pumps you up and reminds you of happy times. Make this music part of your everyday life. When I say part of your everyday life, I mean it. Listen to it for at least two hours per day during the other things you do. Especially if these things are stressful or boring.

8. Smile

Ron Gutman in his TED talk, “The Hidden Power of Smiling,” made me realize how powerful smiling can be and how it affects our every day lives. So I put what I learned into practice and guess what, it worked.

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I felt healthier, I felt rejuvenated, I felt more attractive, I felt happy.

I suggest you do the same. Try and smile all the time. Smile like Robert Downey Jr. does. Look at yourself in the mirror. Look at how awesome you are and smile. Embrace the power of smiling, draw a good emotional state from within and let the world enjoy your positivity.

9. Stop taking things so seriously

I know that the “Stop taking things so seriously” phrase sounds quite cheesy and mainstream. I know that you hear it all the time. But you know what I also know? I know that common knowledge is not common practice. The ones that have managed to apply this phrase to their lives are the ones that make things happen.

So stop wasting your thoughts on what other people think about you and start pondering about what you think about you. And by that I mean start realizing that you are an awesome badass who is capable of achieving anything you can think of.

I am pretty sure you can do it. We only live once, so try and make it count!

10. Exercise and sleep more

I think it is pointless to start mentioning the countless benefits of exercise and sleeping here. Look around Lifehack and you’ll see others have them covered. But from overcoming depression to helping you increase your brainpower and image, exercise and sleeping have such a profound effect on our happiness and well-being.

Everything I mentioned here is common knowledge. They are ideas we learn from a very young stage in our lives. But as I already mentioned, for most people common knowledge is not common practice.

When you manage to master your mind and make these easy hacks part of your reality, only then you will be confidently optimistic about your happiness and future success.

Featured photo credit: Kingston, Jamaica :: Boys at a Boy’s Club in a local church/Sam Kwan via flickr.com

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Last Updated on October 5, 2020

Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss (The Ultimate Weight Loss Hack)

Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss (The Ultimate Weight Loss Hack)

Intermittent fasting weight loss is a type of diet that’s rapidly growing in popularity and becoming the way to lose weight. Scientists and nutrition experts like it, too. New books and articles on the topic are being published daily. Intermittent fasting is also popular with followers of the Paleo diet since our ancestors appear to have eaten this way for thousands of years.

I’ve been following this type of diet myself for 2 years. Doing so helped me lose and keep off 70 pounds without ever having to count calories, limit carbohydrates, or eat 6 to 7 meals a day.

This article teaches you all about intermittent fasting weight loss and details why it is one of the best weight loss diet hacks around. Once you finish, you will be able to implement into your diet and experience the benefits it offers almost immediately.

What Is Intermittent Fasting?

As you may have figured from its name, intermittent fasting weight loss is a diet plan where you set fasting periods during the day. This is usually between 16-20 consecutive hours, but it can be as little as 12 hours or as much as 24 hours (or even 36 hours).

While fasting you can eat and drink low calorie or calorie-free foods. Think coffee, tea, water, and vegetables.

The more time you spend fasting every day, the better your results. You can do these fasts as often as you like. Again, the more often you do so, the better[1].

Getting Started With Intermittent Fasting

Following this diet plan is super simple. All you have to do is choose a period of time during the day that you will fast. This should be between 16-20 hours.

The longer you fast each day, the better. Don’t worry about calorie restriction or measuring carbohydrates. Just focus on going about your day until it’s time to eat.

It’s best to choose a set period of time to conduct your fast. I like to fast from 8 PM to 4 PM the following afternoon. I’ll then have my first meal of the day and a snack or two a few hours later. Once 8 o’clock rolls around, it’s back to fasting.

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My experience with intermittent fasting is that it’s best to start with a 16 hour fast (i.e. 8PM one evening to 12PM the next day) for the first 1-2 weeks. Once you are comfortable with this schedule, you can increase the amount of time you spend fasting. Do this by adding 30 minutes to each fast until you get to where you are fasting for 20 hours at a time.

You don’t have to fast every day in the beginning either. You may be more comfortable breaking in slowly with 2 or 3 days per week, or trying alternate day fasting. Add additional days of intermittent fasting as you become more comfortable with this style of eating.

Tips To Make Intermittent Fasting Easier

1. Drink Plenty of Water

Squeeze a little lemon or lime juice into your water to help get rid of any cravings you experience. You can also drink coffee, tea, or other calorie-free beverages. After a few weeks, you will find that intermittent fasting keeps you from craving sugar entirely.

2. Take in Caffeine in the Morning and Early Afternoon

The caffeine in coffee and tea may actually make intermittent fasting weight loss a little easier since it’s good for curbing your appetite. Be careful not to overindulge as this may lead to you feeling a little too wired. I also recommend these natural energy boosting tips to keep you going during the day.

3. Avoid Artificially Flavored Drinks

One type of calorie-free drink that should be avoided are diet sodas and other beverages that use artificial sweeteners like Splenda and Sweet & Low. Studies show that the can actually stimulate your appetite[2] like a drink that contains sugar and cause you to overeat.

4. Don’t Gorge at Your First Meal

The first meal after your fast should be the amount of food you typically eat. Binging will only make you feel awful and diminish the benefits you get from the fast.

To avoid this, try creating meal plans, at least for the first few weeks. This will help you get into the rhythm of eating regularly portioned meals during your eating window.

5. Minimize Processed Carbohydrates and Sugars

While intermittent fasting does make it possible to eat a little looser than normal, you should still eat as little bread, pasta, rice, etc. as possible.

Focus instead on eating protein from beef, fish, or pork, carbohydrates from vegetables, fruit, and sweet potatoes, and healthy fats from foods like almonds, avocados, fish, and olive oil.

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You can find some carb sources that will aid your weight loss journey here.

How Intermittent Fasting Helps You Lose Weight

Eating this way has many benefits with regard to weight loss. The first is that when you’re fasting, your body will be forced to use its stored body fat for energy. Burning calories this way, instead of from the food you’re eating throughout the day, will help you experience significant weight loss, but specifically lose weight from any excess body fat you’re carrying.

This means that you won’t just be thinner, but you will also look better and be much healthier than if you lose weight the old-fashioned way[3].

Intermittent fasting can help optimize the release of the key fat-burning hormones in your body. This is especially true for the two most important hormones: human growth hormone (HGH) and insulin.

Human growth hormone plays a key role in turning on your body’s fat-burning furnace so that it gets the calories you need to work and play from stored body fat. Studies show that fasting can significantly increase the production of HGH[4].

The influence intermittent fasting weight loss has on insulin is just as impressive and possibly more important. Keeping your insulin levels low and steady is key to losing excess fat and keeping it off.

Diets that are rich in processed carbohydrates (bread, pasta, rice) and simple sugars (candy, cookies, and soda) have the opposite effect. They cause your insulin levels to rapidly spike and then crash every time you eat one of these foods. The net result of this phenomenon is that your body will store more of what you eat as excess body fat instead of burning it off as energy.

Chronically elevating your insulin levels like this can also lead to the development of type II diabetes, obesity, and other chronic health problems. Intermittent fasting easily solves this problem.

One study found that men who participated in intermittent fasting had “dramatically lower insulin levels and significantly improved insulin sensitivity”[5].

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This happens because you’re not giving your body food, so it will not produce insulin, allowing insulin levels to balance out until you eat again. This helps your body stay in a calorie and fa-burning state. You’ll also find that it gives you more energy throughout the day.

Another great weight loss benefit of intermittent fasting is that hunger pangs and cravings that may normally plague you throughout the day will be reduced, if not altogether eliminated. This is probably due to its ability to balance your insulin and blood sugar levels and, in turn, help correct other hormonal imbalances.

Intermittent Fasting Weight Loss FAQs

Now that you know what intermittent fasting is and how to get started, it’s time to answer your other questions.

Below are answers to the questions frequently asked about intermittent fasting. These answers should help you and make getting started a lot easier.

How Much Weight Will I Lose?

The amount of weight you lose with fasting is determined by how often and long your fasts are, what you eat afterward, and other factors. Fasting for 16-20 hours a day can help you safely lose 2-3 pounds of fat every week.

While losing this much weight every week is great, it’s how it makes it happen that’s really cool. Losing weight with intermittent fasting means that you will never have to count calories or plan and prepare several meals a day.

Can I Work out While Fasting?

Yes, you can. In fact, doing the right type of workout while fasting will help you lose weight faster and even build muscle.

The best workouts to do while fasting for weight loss are 3-4 intense strength training workouts weekly. This means anything from standard strength training to kettlebell or body weight workouts.

Focus on doing 3-4 total body exercises per workout with as little rest as possible between sets. Doing this will help you burn more calories during and after your workout. You’ll also build muscle, which will help you look and feel better as the weight comes off.

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Won’t I Lose Muscle When I Fast?

First of all, you aren’t fasting long enough for your body to start breaking down muscle for energy. You have, perhaps, hundreds of thousands of calories from your stored body fat to use before that will begin to happen. Studies actually show that even after fasting for 3 days, no muscle is lost.

Is Fasting Safe?

As long as you are healthy, not pregnant, and aren’t taking medications, fasting is safe. Like all diets, you should discuss it with your doctor before beginning an intermittent fasting style of dieting.

I also feel that it may not be smart to follow this type of diet when you’re especially stressed. Since this diet can be a little stress-inducing at first, doing so when your ability to be relatively stress-free and rested probably isn’t a good idea.

Are There Any Supplements I Can Take to Make Fasting Easier?

As with any other weight loss plan, it’s a good idea to take a few nutritional supplements to ensure that your daily requirements are met. This includes a once or twice daily multi-vitamin, fish oil, and vitamin D.

I’ve also found taking 10 grams of branch chain amino acids before and after my workouts really helps, too. They’re great for giving you more energy during your workout and decreasing post-workout muscle soreness.

For supplements to specifically help with digestion, check out this article.

Conclusion

Now you know what intermittent fasting is and how it can help you lose weight quickly, safely, and pretty much effortlessly.

If you want to give it a try, find a fasting schedule that fits with you lifestyle and give it a go.

More About Intermittent Fasting

Featured photo credit: Toa Heftiba via unsplash.com

Reference

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