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Monday, December 29, 2014

"Let it Go"

"Let it Go"?

I'm not sure what it really means to "let it go" or "release it". And I think most people would LIKE it to be that easy, except I'm pretty sure few of us know what the steps or tools are for making that happen.

So, here are a couple:

STOP IT
This relates to a technique called "thought stopping".
First, practice catching yourself thinking about the situation, person or event.
Next, either in your mind or out loud (you have to be very brave to do the latter!), yell, "STOP!"
Any time you find yourself thinking about the issue, situation or person, repeat the process.

It may take several tries, but for many people, this is an effective way to let go of something that's causing distress.

CONTAIN IT, then punt or drop it.
Imagine placing the issue, situation or event in a container -- a box or huge ball or balloon -- then visualize yourself punting it like a football or spiking it like a volleyball or dropping the string of a balloon and watching it float away.

As more ideas about this strategy come to me, I'll add to this list...

Am I in DENIAL?

Am I in DENIAL?


Don’t

Even

kNow

I’m

Attempting to

Lie   to myself.


 You could be in DENIAL.

If you were not in DENIAL,

what would you be doing differently?
Take your next step with this in mind.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Be Creative!

Be Creative!

Write -- either about the event itself or about something completely different. 

Draw or Paint -- make it like the slogan for Outback Steakhouse: "No rules. Just right." Suspend judgement and just create something.

Dance -- move your body to a beat! It circulates and releases stress chemicals from your body so you can relax.

Sing -- it doesn't matter if you sing well, the act of singing makes your body shift into a different state. It releases endorphins, increases oxygen and circulation and stimulates the vagus nerve, which relaxes the body. Add some dancing and you'll further elevate your mood!


ANY kind of creative expression can have a meditative quality that allows us to relax. When we relax, our body-mind can process more effectively and efficiently. In a relaxed state, new solutions can drop in.


What’s your creative outlet? 

Use it to help you transform this concern!


Here's a website that offers ideas for a few creative tools as well as a video that might inspire you:
http://www.stress-relief-choices.com/art-therapy.html

Creativity is something anyone can cultivate. This website lists 4 research-based skills and habits that boost creativity: http://www.apa.org/gradpsych/2009/01/creativity.aspx

The 4 Skills are...
  • Capture your new ideas. 
  • Seek out challenging tasks. 
  • Broaden your knowledge. 
  • Surround yourself with interesting things and people. 

The 4 Habits
  • Sleep on it.
  • Collaborate—in writing. 
  • Let the sunshine in. 
  • Get happy. 

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Pay Attention to Limiting Beliefs

Pay Attention to Limiting Beliefs

Identify your limiting belief(s) related to the dilemma you’re facing.

These are statements that sound like,
"Yes, but...." or ones that have "but" in them.
Or "I can't do ___ because ___."

Some limiting beliefs are about trust or rejection and feeling safe. 
All of them keep you from taking action.
How could you shift your belief(s), knowing that this will contribute to changing your perspective about what is happening?




From Victoria Gigante: Overcome 8 Common Limiting Beliefs That May Keep You Stuck:



From Tony Robbins, here are ten examples of empowering beliefs to try on:
1. The past does not equal the future.
2. There is always a way if I’m committed.3. There are no failures, only outcomes—as long as I learn something I’m succeeding.4. If I can’t, I must; if I must, I can.5. Everything happens for a reason and a purpose that serves me.6. I find great joy in little things… a smile… a flower… a sunset.7. I give more of myself to others than anyone expects.8. I create my own reality and am responsible for what I create.9. If I’m confused, I’m about to learn something.10. Every day above ground is a great day.




Monday, December 1, 2014

Perform a Mitzvah

Perform a Mitzvah

The Jewish word, Mitzvah, can be interpreted as a commandment to complete good deeds. 

In essence, it's a means of taking the focus off yourself and putting it on someone else.

A true good deed isn’t performed with an attitude of, “What will I get in return?”
It’s undertaken in a spirit of, “How could I genuinely help this person?”

You’ll want to take a little time to center yourself first and simply focus on helping for the sake of helping. Plan and complete a mitzvah then notice what happens within you.

Revisit your dilemma with this fresh perspective. What has changed?

Bill O'Hanlon tells a story of how he learned about "Mitzvah Therapy" from Dr. Sol Gordon here.

Need some ideas?


Commit a Random Act of Kindness. Loads of ideas on their website!


Here's an app that can help you come up with ideas and allows you to share what you've done with others.

Erin McHugh's 2012 book,  One Good Deed: 365 Days of Trying to Be Just a Little Bit Better, describes a full year's worth of mitzvah work you could focus on. Here are a few to get you started:


1. Make a big deal out of something small. Celebrate those small "wins" when you make a big decision or when someone else receives a much-needed compliment. 


2. Volunteer. So many non-profit organizations need your help! Pick one, contact them and GO. Make it a regular commitment and you'll begin to see a difference in not only your life but in the lives of others.


3. Return favors. It can be something small. Did someone buy you lunch? Drop off soup when you were sick? Even if you can't remember when someone did you a favor, maybe YOU could start a trend!


4. Make a donation. Spend a few minutes clearing items in your home that you no longer use and donate them to a thrift store. Or take canned goods to a soup kitchen. Or donate books to a library.


5. Keep a gratitude list. Ok, so this isn't a mitzvah, but when you're feeling out of sorts, making a list of things and people you feel grateful for can open a window where it seems doors were closed.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Meditate

Meditate
Spend time in quiet contemplation.
Release your thoughts, feelings and body sensations.
Release and relax.
Focus inward without expectation.
Write notes about any insights that have emerged.





Meditation doesn't have to be a sit-with-your-eyes-closed kind of experience. It can be walking or focusing your mind on an image or something in nature. 

Most of us have "monkey mind" when we're first starting this practice. Our minds tend to wander in a variety of directions naturally. Does this sound familiar to you? 

Know that it takes practice -- that's why it's called a meditation practice! -- to get better at calming your mind. Even people who have years of experience with meditation will probably tell you that sometimes they have "monkey mind"! They just know to keep re-focusing their thoughts and mind.

You may not get any insights when you first try meditating. That's ok! 

Keep trying... you didn't ride a bike around the block the first time you tried, either, did you!?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

If…

If…

When things are rough for you or you feel stuck, it's difficult to think creatively. 
Fear stops us from being able to use the whole brain. 
So, take a minute, breathe and ask yourself one or both of these questions:

What would you do if
you couldn’t fail?

What would you do if
you weren’t afraid?


It's possible that your next best step lies inside of how you responded. 

What will you do now?

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Emotional Awareness

Emotional Awareness
(From The Heart of the Soul: Emotional Awareness by G. Zukav & L. Francis)


Emotional awareness is relaxing into the present moment, even when the present moment contains painful emotions. Every emotion is designed to inform you about how you are processing energy in your body so that you can choose to continue the same or change. 

Your emotions are coach toward health, healing, growth and transformation. Spend time each day paying attention to what your coach is encouraging you to be and do.


When you feel angry, frustrated, sad, depressed, stop what you are doing, what you are saying, and what you are thinking and focus your attention on what you are feeling

Move into the area of your heart. Allow yourself to feel whatever you are feeling. Notice any physical sensations or discomfort. Open to the possibility that this experience is an opportunity to learn about your emotions and to learn more about yourself.


When you find yourself wanting to please others, stop and allow yourself to feel what is beneath the surface. Ask, “Am I feeling love and trust or fear?” What is going on internally that contributes to your desire to please?


Detachment allows you to see beneath the surface. 

Simply observe your emotions in order to give yourself space; the act of observing can bring detachment. 

In this space of detachment, what answers come to you?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Listen to the Quiet Voice Inside

Listen to the Quiet Voice Inside
“Learn to follow the quiet voice within 
that speaks in feelings rather than words; 
follow what you ‘hear’ inside, 
rather than what others may be telling you to do.”
~ Bob Proctor ~

That quiet voice inside can often be hidden behind the noise of every day life. It may take practice to clear a space to be able to really hear what it's saying, but stick with it!

Brian Tracy writes about how to access your inner voice and how following its guidance can lead to greater happiness:
http://www.oprah.com/spirit/How-to-Access-Your-Inner-Voice-for-Guidance

Meg Lundstrum offers 10 steps for tapping into your own inner guidance:
http://www.beliefnet.com/Inspiration/2010/07/Tap-Into-Your-Inner-Guidance.aspx

Whatever advice you choose follow, check in with the quiet voice inside to determine YOUR next step!

The Quiet Voice Inside: Following Inner Guidance

I'm learning that the way toward manifesting anything in my life is a "simple" 5-step process.

Step 1: Decide on what I want to be, do or have.

Step 2: Set the Intention = Imagine it vividly

Step 3: Ask = "I ask to/for [be, do have]..."

Step 4: Be Open = be receptive and allow whatever comes. (Suspend "the cursed hows" as Mike Dooley would say. Don't be concerned about HOW what you want to be/do/have is going to show up.)

Step 5: Take the Next (Guided) Step = Pay attention to the inner nudges and outer synchronistic events. These will unfold exactly as they are intended.


Oh, and did I mention that this involves a great deal of TRUST?!?! Holy Moly does it!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Problems Without Solutions

Problems Without Solutions

Not every problem has a solution.
Not every predicament has a remedy.
Focus on CHOOSING more constructive ways of thinking about what is going on instead.

ASK:
“What is needed now?”
Think to yourself, “I CHOOSE to take action.”
ACT:
Take the first small step in the direction of what is needed.


Monday, August 18, 2014

What's Your "DEFAULT"?

What's Your "DEFAULT"?

When we're having a difficult or challenging time, often what's triggered is a set of feelings, thoughts and/or behaviors that we habitually use. We default to what is familiar. More than likely, it doesn't feel good, but whatever it is, it's something we've done or felt many times before. We return to them when our current lives are linked to unfinished or unresolved issues, experiences or beliefs that formed early in our lives.

Ultimately, our defaults signal us that it's time to do, think or feel something different. What we've been doing isn't working any more and it's time to make a shift, a transformation. 

Your DEFAULT may be any or a combination of the following:

Damaged part of self
Emotions 
Feelings in the body
Automatic actions
Unhealthy coping strategies
Lingering beliefs
Thoughts we grew up with but no longer serve us


Let's take one at a time.


Damaged part of self
When you hit something challenging today and had difficulty coping, you may be seeing a part of yourself that is damaged and unhealed. This part of you is in need of attention -- it's being triggered by the current event. When you're able to, begin to notice when you first experienced the kind of reaction you're now having. What was going on in your life then? Use this information to begin to heal the part of yourself that was hurt or damaged at that time of your life. 

Emotions
For some people, a default may be a particular emotion, like sadness, anger, frustration, guilt, or shame. Try to remember other times you've felt this way. Notice the pattern of the situations or events. What does this remind you of? In many cases, you can trace the emotional default to early life events that helped shape who you are. The important thing is to suspend judgment and simply notice. Inevitably, all feelings pass through us. It's when we block their expression that we return to them over and over again. 

Feelings in the body
Pay attention to WHERE in your body you're feeling your response to the event. Areas to check out are the gut, chest/heart, throat or head. When something happens to you, do you tend to experience stomach aches? Or perhaps tightness in your chest? Or heartache? Maybe your throat constricts or you get a headache. Our bodies store memories and send us signals to bring to our attention what we need to heal. Simply notice where you're feeling the effects of the situation you're now experiencing. You might pose a question: "If this part of my body could speak, what might it be saying to me?" Notice what floats up into your awareness. 


Automatic actions
Some of us launch into action -- or inaction through shut-down -- when life brings us stressful events. This could be to avoid or "run away". Maybe you "stand your ground" and end up arguing with someone, picking a fight with those dear to you. However you automatically react, it may have served a purpose in the past, but it's probably not helping now. It can be tricky to change this kind of thought or behavior, but it's not impossible. One way to start is to think of a situation in the past where you engaged this coping strategy. Guide yourself though the situation again, only this time create a new ending with a more healthy behavior or thought. Practice this mentally over and over again. This is and application of guided imagery, the kind that high-performance athletes use to improve their game. YOU can use it to change your "game", too.


Unhealthy coping strategies
Many of us have developed any number of unhealthy coping strategies, our "go to" comfort to ease the internal turmoil: alcohol, food, drugs, sex... the list goes on. ANY behavior or habit can become unhealthy -- even the "healthy" ones -- when used in unhealthy ways. The "trick" is to notice the coping strategy you're using, figure out what triggered its use, then interrupt the pattern. It's not usually very easy and you might have to distract yourself with other strategies or substitute another way of coping until you untangle the sequence. But with practice, you CAN learn to cope in ways that are healthy.


Lingering beliefs
Whether we realize it or not, beliefs from our early childhood have shaped much of our reality -- until we're conscious of their influence. These might be thoughts we grew up with but no longer serve us. Check your language for words like "Should" or "must" -- these are indicators of (irrational) beliefs you hold or "rules" you've lived by unconsciously. And it's a good chance that they're also keeping you stuck. Begin by examining the SHOULDs in your life and language, then find ways to challenge these beliefs. 


Thoughts
We all have a running commentary in our heads -- thoughts and values that shape our actions and our reality. Often -- not all the time -- these thoughts work against us. Because we are so open to having others' thoughts influence us, we carry them into our later lives without questioning them. These thoughts have always been a part of us, so it's pretty difficult to zero in on them. 

So, what are some of your default thoughts, feelings or behaviors? Once you can identify them, take small steps to changing when and how you use them. 

Let me know how it goes!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

TIISG

TIISG
(From The Attractor Factor by Joe Vitale)
Instead of being upset, choose to reframe what is happening into something that is beneficial to you. See the good in something “bad”.
“Everything that happens in your life is moving you in the direction of your goals.”
~ Bob Proctor ~
Turn it into something good.
~ Mark Joyner ~


Each of has a choice of where to place our attention, no matter what is happening. It's not always easy to take time to reframe what's happening, but it's worth a try! You may not be able to TIISG right away, either. It may take you more time to heal from the difficulty, but keep at it. Take time to reflect on the experience and ask yourself, "What did I learn?" You might be surprised at the answer that comes to you...

Take Inspired Action

Take Inspired Action

“Follow your hunches.
Watch the signals.
Listen to your intuition.
If you get a desire to make a plan of action, so be it. Do it.
But if you get a desire to go for a walk, or to watch television,
or to surf the web, then do that.
You never know where your Inspired Action will take you…
Inspired Action works because your ego can only see limited terrain
while the Universe can see it all.”
~ Joe Vitale ~


Monday, April 28, 2014

When Something Doesn’t Happen…

When Something Doesn’t Happen…
“Some things that don’t happen keep disasters from happening.” 
~ Rumi ~
 
How could this statement apply to
what is happening -- or not happening -- now in your life?


Sometimes we're impatient for a result or a next step or for SOMETHING to happen. What if there's a reason that it's delayed that would benefit you or keep you safe? How would you think differently -- and perhaps act in new ways -- about what is going on now?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Dance!

Dance!
Shake it Up, Baby!
(See Osho for dynamic meditations or put on your favorite tune)
Try an active and dynamic meditation
or just play your favorite dance music.
Shift your energy and point of power by moving your body.
Take a few minutes to dance!
Notice what happens to your energy and your perspective
as you return to your dilemma or concern.



Today I imagine the Whirling Dervish dance/meditation (here's an example: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L_Cf-ZxDfZA). I didn't know the information below before I started writing this entry, so I'm intrigued by it...

According to the Urban Dictionary, "whirling dervish" means, "(n.) A person whose behavior resembles a rapid, spinning object. These actions are often spastic fidgeting and incessant babbling. The actions of the whirling dervish are irritating and annoying, often exhausting other people in the immediate vicinity."

The ACTUAL Order of the Whirling Dervishes -- where it all began -- is a Sufi-oriented, meditative dance ritual. Those who participate whirl in circles for minute after minute -- in some cases hours. It's a spiritual practice for this group of people that has stages and only this Order can perform the dance. 

Fortunately for me, I don't have a desire to become a Whirling Dervish -- I just wanna dance!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Notice Your Own Process

Notice Your Own Process

Stop and reflect. Know the difference between your process and an addiction.
(Any undesirable behavior can be an addiction, so identify your addictions of choice.)

Ask: What is going on from your perspective?

What is the pattern of what is going on?

What does this remind you of?
(How is the situation a mirror/projection of you?)

What’s your next step?
Realize that as you heal, your process will change.

Outside – In

Outside – In
Step back for a few minutes and look at yourself from the outside in.

What does your behavior look like 
from the perspective of the people you love?
Would your behavior help or harm, benefit or detract?
What ACTION will you take accordingly?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Which Wolf?

Which Wolf?
A parable

See http://i.imgur.com/Ul4yFEs.jpg for a great graphicor go to https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vzKryaN44ss for an awesome video

One evening a Cherokee elder told his grandchildabout the battle that goes on inside people’s heads.

He said, “Little one, the battle is between the two wolves that live inside us all.

One wolf is Unhappiness.

It is fear, worry, anger, jealousy, sorrow, self pity, resentment, and inferiority.

The other wolf is Happiness.

It is joy, love, hope, serenity, kindness, generosity, truth and compassion.”

The grandson thought for a minute and then asked his grandfather, 
“Which wolf wins the battle?”

The old Cherokee simply replied,“The one you feed.”

Which wolf are YOU feeding?


Don’t Give Up

Don’t Give Up
(See Healed by Morning by Dr. Rick Barrett)
“You have to tell yourself that nothing will stop you,
that you won’t give up, that you won’t give in.
Sometimes you just have to turn it over to God or the Universe…”
~ Dr. Rick Barrett ~
What happens to your energy and your thoughts
when you KNOW you can turn it all over to 
"something else" (God or the Universe or...) now?


Monday, April 14, 2014

Sound Healing

Sound Healing
(See work by Jonathan Goldman or Tom Kenyon)
Try Toning, a Mantra or Chanting
Start with using the "AH" sound, in whatever key or tone feels comfortable for you.
Tone the sound for about 5 minutes.
According to Jonathan Goldman, this is an extraordinarily powerful sound
and particularly useful for generating peace and compassion –
vibrational keys to transformation.
After toning, refocus on the issue you’re facing. What steps could you take now?


Jonathan Goldman's "Holy Harmony" mantra/sound healing video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rRxwkxocRJY

Tom Kenyon's comments on research on the brain and sound:
http://tomkenyon.com/acoustic-brain-research

Deva Premal chants the Heart Sutra:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vSR1L9IN03g

Andrea Bocelli & Celine Dion sing The Lord's Prayer:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cjNfkbQr5zc

Here it is in Aramaic:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ROM5EpCQUlg

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Become GRATITUDE

Become GRATITUDE
List 10 things or people or places you feel gratitude toward.
Begin to feel gratitude throughout your body.
Allow this feeling to surround your current situation.
What would you do if you could approach this situation
in an attitude of gratitude?


Start your list:

1. 
2.
3.
4.
5.

Breathe in the feeling of gratitude.

6.
7.
8.
9.
10.

Feel gratitude permeating every cell of your body.