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Reclaim Your Vitality. Stop Tolerating Your Energy Drains

Aug 20, 2007
Tolerations are all those things that you put up with in life, even though you're not happy with them. Tolerations are a form of clutter and every single one of them drains your energy. So the more tolerations you can clear from your life, the more space and energy you'll have for success and fulfilment.

Tolerations are pervasive things. Most likely you'll find them at home, at work, in your relationships, your surroundings, your body, your habits... just about everywhere.

Most personal development work involves looking positively at life issues and what you can do to improve them proactively and creatively. But today it's your chance to get negative! Grant yourself 20 - 20 minutes to compile as big a list as you possibly can of the things that bug you in your life. A full and frank inventory.

What this inventory will give you is a clear overview of what you need to tackle if you want to get your space and your energy back. So go ahead... you have my full permission to have a really good whine today! The one condition is that you write it all down.

When I compile my own tolerations inventory, I find it helpful to divide it into categories. The categories that work well for me are:

* Self/personal
* Environment
* Relationship/friends and family
* Work

If you think these categories will work for you too, take them and use them. But give yourself the freedom to adapt them and to get creative with your own categories too.

Don't pull any punches with your tolerations inventory. There will be some tolerations that you feel you shouldn't have, but don't be tempted to omit them. Example of tolerations I'm talking about here are:

* Situations where you only do something because it's your duty
* Meaningless routines that have always been done this way
* Good deeds that you have to grit your teeth to get through

You probably tell yourself that if you were a better, nicer, more charitable person, you wouldn't get wound up by whatever it is. But the fact remains that you're tolerating something, so get it on the list!

There are 3 ways to tackle tolerations.

Now that you've created your tolerations inventory, let's look at the 3 different ways you could choose to deal with them...

*** Option number 1: No action.
The great thing about a tolerations inventory is that you can compile it, and then put it away without consciously taking action on it. Simply creating your inventory will have a positive effect even without you treating it as a To Do list. Take it out again in 6 months time and you'll be surprised how many tolerations have gone.

Whilst option number 1 may be reassuring, now you've got your list you probably want to take at least a small amount of action. So let's look at the 2 proactive ways of dealing with tolerations...

*** Option number 2: Zap them.
Zapping your tolerations means taking decisive action to get them sorted out and off your list. Some minor tolerations are outrageously easy to eliminate in this way, and quick action can be tremendously satisfying. Other tolerations take a bit more planning and/or tact before they can be zapped.

Some tolerations can be long-term projects. For example my shoulder muscles fall into this category. For several years I encountered those tight shoulder muscles on my list again and again, and every time I thought: "It will take so long to sort them out that I can't get started". Finally I realised that they'd never improve unless I got started. 18 months later, and I'm happy to report that a few minutes of daily stretching exercises are producing noticeable improvements.

*** Option number 3: Accept them.
Accept that you can't change a toleration and, instead, give yourself permission to stop being bothered by it. This option is less straightforward, but where there are tolerations over which you have no control or even influence, what point is there in making yourself feel bad about them? Either commit to taking what action you can, or stop complaining and find something more creative to focus your energy and attention on. You'll feel miles better for it.

By this route of identification, awareness and action you can reclaim loads of vitality. Declutter your life, eliminate the drains and your energy levels will jump for joy.
About the Author
Mary McNeil is an experienced, ICF-certified life coach, natural born planner and declutterer extraordinaire! She works with her clients on a variety of decluttering, success and creativity projects.
Her 30-day home learning and action program is jam-packed full with the knowledge and experience she's gained over years of one-to-one coaching with her clients.
Check out => Success Secrets Of A Clutter Free Lifestyle
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