Baggage comes in all shapes and sizes – it can be excess weight, low self-esteem, dysfunctional relationships, depression, anxiety – the options are endless. We all think we should have life sorted by the time we get to 60, but in reality, this is seldom the case.

Life happens – and keeps on happening relentlessly! We finally emerge at 60 or 70, sometimes a bit battered and bruised and wondering where all the years went but with a somewhat uneasy sense that all is possibly not well with our world.

Women are particularly guilty of spending the majority of their time making sure that everyone else’s needs are met before they collapse in a weary heap without giving any thought to their own unmet needs, vanishing aspirations or resolutions of past trauma.

The Mind Holds It All

It is well-established knowledge that the majority of our beliefs are embedded in our subconscious in early childhood. When these beliefs are shaped by adverse childhood events – perceived or real (the mind can’t tell the difference) – the outcomes can be devastating.

Our thoughts shape our beliefs and then our beliefs shape us. Adverse childhood events range from the apparently minor incidents of sibling rivalry to divorce and imagined or real neglect to domestic violence, physical or sexual abuse and even conflict in the environment outside the home.

Research shows that adverse events can predispose us to contract serious illnesses in later life and even lead to an early death. There is a distinct correlation.

Time to Take a Long, Hard Look

So now that you have the time to take stock, make sure that you don’t ignore your baggage any longer. It really doesn’t make any sense to keep hauling it around so that it can blight your later years as well.

Assess your load – now is not the time for pretending everything is perfect, unless it truly is – and decide to do something about it.

Find the Cause – Your Subconscious Knows What It Is

Sometimes we are aware of the possible causes of the issues in our lives, but some memories may be buried by our subconscious because they are interpreted as too painful or damaging.

Together with my clients, I am constantly surprised, when taking them back to review adverse events, that the root cause of an issue can be completely different to what they thought it was.

Excess weight is a perfect example – it’s seldom to do with food. However, once you understand the actual origin of an issue, you can get rid of it forever. This is a crucial step and sometimes hypnotherapy may be a good approach.

Learn to Love Yourself

Finally, you need to consider how you treat yourself. Make a conscious effort to become your own best friend. Instead of belittling and abusing yourself as we tend to do, make a determined effort to deal with yourself kindly and compassionately.

Your mind acts according to your instructions so make sure you send the right messages.

Fortunately, neuroplasticity (the creation of new neural pathways in the brain) is possible even at our age and beyond, so you can rewire your mind to revert to its original programming where you were strong and confident – and completely enough.

What does your mental baggage consist of? Do you have a good opinion of yourself, or do you think critically of yourself? What ways have you tried to get rid of your baggage? Have they worked? Please share your thoughts below.

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