Listen to the Pgh Dreamer’s Pod: https://podcasters.spotify.com/pod/show/meghan-greenwood/episodes/5-Ways-to-be-More-Chill-e22t5au
During a recent conversation with my husband, I admitted that I was jealous of people who are inherently carefree. I envy their ability to just let things happen and not dwell on the consequences. I am keenly aware of their continuous smile and infectious laugh. I’m especially intrigued by what’s driving this behavior. How are they able to compartmentalize all the shit life throws at us and still remain positive?
So I dug a little deeper into the science. Temperament, or the combination of attention level, activity level, sociability, persistence, and emotionality (the category that includes easy-going) is indeed affected by genetics. Up to 60% of our temperament is inherited. In other words, you are most like your family when it comes to these traits. The other portion of our behavior is from our environment – where and how we grew up and are currently living – in other words, SOME (and I stress some) things that are in our control.
Despite temperament’s obvious origins in our DNA, we can certainly work to overcome and reset our environmentally-derived traits. Here are 5 ways to be more chill:
- Stop worrying about things that are out of our control. It does no good, for anyone. Really scrutinize the next time worry starts to pop up and do a check-in with yourself to decide if it’s justified.
- Express yourself. If you are feeling a certain way, don’t push it down. Eventually, those internalized problems will eat at you or worse yet, come out in an explosive way. Speak your mind, diplomatically.
- Understand what’s important. Take all of life’s mishaps and issues and mix it in with the good times and joyful experiences. If you can, reflect and prioritize before you let doom and gloom take over.
- Surround yourself with positive people. Most of us are able to AT LEAST pick and choose our friends (even if we can’t pick our family or coworkers). Find people that motivate you and see them often.
- Take control of your own happiness. You are the only person that can better your own temperament – and if that means trying new things, saying no to others, and living your passions, so be it. Stop worrying about what others will think.
Overall, chill is a state of mind. And practicing these 5 methods can hopefully counteract any genetic relics or environmentally bad juju.