by Sarah JF Braley | September 06, 2019

In upstate New York on the shores of Cayuga Lake sit the five Inns of Aurora, which share a spate of small meeting spaces, as well as a farm-to-table restaurant, a casual pub, a wellness and activities center, and a demonstration kitchen. In this peaceful spot, Laura Coburn, certified Ayurveda Health Counselor, works as the director of serenity for the properties. One practice she works on with guests is coming up with modern personal mantras, repetitive sayings that help them remember their intentions. To create your own mantra, she says, start with the end in mind: What outcome would you like from your focused attention? 

"To inspire positivity," she says, "I start with the root cause of not being positive. It is likely that I'm focused on what is wrong, and I'm often looking for evidence that supports my negative viewpoint. To shift this focus, I might ask myself, 'Where is my gaze?' From here I can begin to create a statement I can present in my mind and repeat over and over to shift my perspective. For example, I might create something such as, 'Today I look for what is right.' It is important to acknowledge that negativity exists but that you are choosing to look toward the positive."  

To stay motivated through the work day, she adds, try to recognize what is sapping your inspiration. For lack of motivation due to obstacles, repeat, "I am capable of working through this"; or, "I take each step one at a time." For lack of motivation because you're comparing yourself to others and their situations, try, "I am on my path, this is my work to do."