The art of practicing mindfulness has become especially helpful in the business world as executives discover how it canRead more
We are living through a summer of pots boiling over. It may feel as though personal and public spaces have become cauldrons of unrest. In America, we witness this in overheated political rhetoric, violence on our streets, and turmoil in public institutions from local police departments to the Supreme Court. This season of flaming pots […]
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There are four types of meditations that most traditions embrace; seated, standing, walking, and laying down, and in our work we practice all of them.
After our workshops, many of our students continue doing their seated meditations at home. They wake up in the morning and the first thing they do is sit down to meditate. This is an ideal way to start the day. But does this sound familiar? You just had a great meditation, felt like you really connected, you overcame an aspect of yourself, and emotionally embraced a new future. You shifted your energy, you’re feeling powerful, and ready to have a great day.
There’s just one problem—the moment the meditation is over, it’s off to the races and you find yourself rushing to get out of the house, taking the kids to school, answering calls and returning emails, hustling to appointments, and so on. In other words, you fell back into the habitual programs and emotional states of your past.
When this occurs, we wind up leaving the energy we created right where we were sitting, as opposed to carrying it with us throughout the day.
So why a walking meditation?
I wanted to create a meditation that included standing and walking so that people could take their energy with them, first in their meditation, but ultimately embody that energy throughout the day. I wanted our students to be able to reinvent a new self and to be able to walk consciously in a new state of being with their eyes open—to be able in their waking state to shift into an elevated state that maintains and sustains an energetic, biological, neurological, chemical, hormonal, and epigenetic change during their day.
When we can tap into or embody this state with our eyes open, it begins to form new habits and change our personality. Then, after practicing it over and over, we become more mindful of not returning to autopilot where we go unconscious and miss the present moment. This is important because if the body is the mind, the moment we go unconscious and start living on autopilot, we miss the present moment. And when we’re not in the present moment, we’re keeping our dreams, visions, and goals at arm’s length.
How we do it
We start the walking meditation by anchoring ourselves in the present moment and closing our eyes to disconnect from our external environment. We acknowledge the heart center—the center of oneness, wholeness, creativity, and where the soul and heart intersects with the unified field—and bring to the center elevated emotions such as gratitude, joy, inspiration, love, etc.
By resting our attention and creating an elevated emotion within our heart, we begin to change the energy field surrounding our bodies. While our lower centers are all about consuming and turning energy into chemistry, our higher energy centers are about creation, and in this state we become more energy than matter. Now we’re contributing to our field instead of drawing from it. This is important because this is how we begin the creative process.
After a few minutes of centering ourselves in our hearts, we hold a clear intention in our mind’s eye, thus changing into a new state of being and broadcasting a new electromagnetic field. We then ask our students to begin walking with their eyes open and embodying the energy they created, as well as the frequency of whatever they’re creating in their future. If we can begin to take this energy with us during our waking, daily lives, we are activating the same neurological networks and producing the same level of mind as when we meditate with our eyes closed. So now we’re firing and wiring new circuits while connected to our external environment, and our brains are creating order between our inner and outer world.
By walking in the new energy we create, we’re embodying the energy of our meditation, and with every step we take we’re taking one step closer towards our destiny. In this process we’re not only modifying our behavior, we’re laying down new neurological networks and signaling new genes in new ways. If we practice this enough times, then we’ll begin to not only carry that energy with us throughout the day, but embody it. This type of repetition will make us more mindful in waking hours, and before we know it we’ll start behaving, thinking, and feeling differently, thus we are reprogramming a new personality self.
The walking meditation is a great way for us to begin to not only embody our future while living in the present moment, but to start practicing living in that energy—living in that future behavior, living in those future choices, living in those future thoughts, and living in the feelings that create our future.
Eyes open or eyes closed? It’s your choice.
Photo by LuciaJoy
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source : http://zenhabits.net/shift/
By Leo Babauta
Throughout the day, we get frustrated, irritated, angry.
We are frustrated in traffic, when a loved one doesn’t behave the way we like, when someone tells us we’re wrong, when technology doesn’t work the way we want, when dinner is ruined, among many other daily stresses.
These frustrations can build up into unhappiness, relationship problems, work problems, built up stress, blowing your top at someone when you lose your cool. Not always helpful stuff!
I’m going to suggest a mindful shift in focus to deal with frustrations.
It’s a mindfulness practice, and I highly recommend it. We’ll start by talking about where frustration comes from, then how to mindfully shift.
Mindfulness of Frustration
The next time you experience frustration, just notice it. Just be mindful that you’re unhappy with something or someone, that you’re feeling frustration in your body somehow.
Pay attention to your breathing, to tightness in your chest or shoulders, to how it feels in your body. Stay with the feeling for just a couple moments, if you have the courage to do so. Normally, we run like hell from paying attention to this feeling, and try to resolve it by fixing the situation, making people behave differently, distracting ourselves, etc. But stay with it if you can.
Now notice what it is in this moment that you wish were different. What is missing from this moment that is frustrating you? Frustration stems from what you don’t have.
What do I mean by this? There’s something you don’t have right now, that you wish you had, and that lack of what you want is frustrating you. A few examples:
- My child isn’t behaving the way I want her to … what I don’t have is “ideal” behavior from her. (Actually, it’s my ideal, not hers.)
- My computer keeps crashing, and I’m frustrated … what I don’t have is a computer that behaves ideally.
- People are saying things online that irritate me … what I don’t have is a bunch of people who agree with me or behave in the way I want.
- Traffic backed up and stressing me out … what I don’t have is a stress-free, peaceful drive home.
- My spouse criticized me … what I don’t have is someone who thinks I’m an awesome husband right now, or their praise.
Those are just examples, but in all cases, there’s something that’s missing that I want. Usually it’s an ideal.
To start with, just be mindful that you’re frustrated, try to experience the feeling in your body, and then notice what it is you’re missing that’s frustrating you.
Mindfulness of Your Story
When we’re missing something we want, and we’re frustrated, irritated, angry … we often spin the story around in our heads for awhile. “It’s so irritating when he acts this way,” or “Why can’t she just be more …”
We get caught up in this story, stuck on it, attached to it. We wish things were different, wish other people would behave differently, wish people could see that we’re right.
It’s easy to get caught up. It’s not so easy to notice that we’re caught up, when it happens. But if you can notice it, just notice that you’re telling yourself a story about this situation. It’s a story about how you wish things were different, how things aren’t how you want them to be.
Sit and watch yourself get caught up in this story. Sit and stay with the feelings it produces.
Then see if you can notice that the story isn’t so solid. It’s not so real. It’s more of a dream that you’re in. Can things lighten up if you notice the dreamlike nature of this story?
Mindfulness of What Is Already Here
If we’re focusing on what we don’t have, and it’s frustrating us … then the opposite just might help us.
The antidote to frustration is appreciating what’s already here, in this moment.
That might not seem true when frustration arises, because the truth is, we just want things to be our way. We just want other people to act the way we think they should act, or want life to go the way we want it to go.
Unfortunately, that is usually not going to be the case. Sometimes we can force people to act the way we want, if we have power over them, but that will create a bad relationship with them, and in the end, neither person will be happy.
What I’ve found to work is focusing on what I can appreciate about this moment. Let’s take the examples from above:
- I’m frustrated by my child’s behavior … I can breathe, and appreciate things about this moment: my child is actually a wonderful person, who might not behave perfectly all the time (who does?), who is alive! And in my life! And I love her deeply.
- My computer keeps crashing … I can breathe, and appreciate the fact that I have a computer at all, that all my needs are met, that I have people in my life who love me. I can appreciate the break from the computer and stretch, notice the awesome things around me.
- People say irritating things online … I can breathe, and appreciate: I get to read amazing things online! I’m alive! People are diverse and interesting and messy, and I love humanity for that precious fact.
- Traffic is backed up … I can breathe, and appreciate the fact that I can listen to some beautiful music in the car, or that I have some transition time between work and home when I can reflect on life, or that I have a home to come back to, or that I’m driving past some beautiful scenery.
- My spouse criticized me … I can breathe, and appreciate: she’s a great spouse, and a person with a different way of doing things, and I’m happy to have her in my life. And maybe she’s frustrated herself, and could use a hug.
This doesn’t mean we should only “think positive thoughts” … quite the contrary, noticing our negative thoughts and staying present with them is important. We can’t avoid the frustration, but we can be mindful of it, and this mindful shift to appreciation of what is can be helpful.
Frustration in the Midst of Injustice
I should note that none of this means we should accept abuse or injustice as “OK.” I know that there are incredibly frustrating things about the world today, and that violence, protests, anger, and strife are all around us.
This mindful shift I’m suggesting isn’t a solution to all of that. It isn’t a suggestion that you should just be happy with your lot, or accept the world as it is without wanting change.
No, I think if there is abuse or injustice, we should compassionately try to correct these tragedies. But learning to deal with our frustrations, in the midst of all this, can actually help the situation. If we can’t deal with our frustrations, then we’re increasingly likely to act in anger and violence, and that isn’t useful.
There’s another way: recognize the injustice, be mindful of your frustrations, appreciate life in the present moment to calm your frustrations … then compassionately engage with everyone else to work on righting the injustice. Have a love-driven dialogue with everyone else, rather than fear-based or anger-driven interactions. Stand up to abuse, but that doesn’t mean throw a brick in anger.
I don’t have the answers, and my heart goes out to all who are grieving, afraid, hurt, feeling helpless, fed up, frustrated or angry. My only hope is that in the middle of all this sorrow, we can appreciate the gift of life that we’ve been given, and find love for our fellow human beings despite all their flaws and messiness.
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Without dedicating ourselves to discovering the voice of the soul, so many of us are lost in life. From the moment we wake up to the moment we fall asleep we are bombarded with a constant stimulation of the senses. This leaves us in an almost schizophrenic state where we confuse our thoughts with reality. Some […]
The post 3 Types of Soulwork That Instantly Free You of Fear, Guilt and Resentment appeared first on LonerWolf.
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It can be hard to admit when you need a fresh start to create your own opportunities. You’ve put time and energy into getting exactly where you are, but almost everyone eventually hits a point where they realize, “Man, this just isn’t working out.”
Starting over might be the most intimidating concept you can face, but it doesn’t have to be a painful process. If you keep your focus on what it can bring you — boundless opportunities, the freedom to create the life you dream of, and a sense of validation from newfound success — then this intimidating next step can actually become an incredible experience.
If you’ve begun to think it’s time for a fresh start in any, or all, aspects of your life, then rest assured that you have a lot to look forward to. Like a brand new hairstyle, the nerves that you wrestle with before the first cut eventually will give way to a newfound sense of identity as you see your new image form in front of your eyes.
So instead of continuing to struggle with a dead-end path, why not take steps toward creating your own opportunities?
5 Fresh Steps To Take
- Build up a savings account by taking on additional side work and cutting expenses wherever you can.
- Seek out new opportunities by reaching out to the experts in an industry you admire. Even if it’s just a general email or on Facebook, there’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to contact these pros.
- If their advice is good and they seem open to helping someone new, approach them about a mentorship. At the very least, they’ll be flattered by the request.
- Start building out the basics of a project that you’d like to run on your own.
- Get a good idea of what you need to make that project happen, and make sure you take one concrete step toward that every day.
Be serious and thorough when you’re planning out the steps required to make your fresh start. If you really understand what you need in terms of time, budget, training, or additional help, then you should be able to mark a calendar for the day that you can finally pull the trigger and switch to full gear on your new direction.
And until that point, you should know exactly what you need to accomplish each and every day to make sure that goal isn’t delayed an inch. This will keep you motivated, but will also provide opportunities for you to rejoice every time you hit a milestone and every day you cross off the calendar.
Birth Of A Phoenix
The thought of creating your own opportunities is the birth of many entrepreneurs — a siren call to create the opportunity you wish was already there in the world. This is how Nathan Chan found his strengths.
After deciding that what he really wanted to do was become a marketer, he created his own opportunity by founding his own magazine and began reaching out to experts who were achieving their dreams. By distilling the best secrets and tips they had found themselves, and sharing those with his audience, he grew a dedicated following with tremendous potential.
The makings of greatness are not necessarily in natural skill — often it’s the dedication and resourcefulness of being able to find the solutions and expertise that you need most at any given time that allow you to create your own opportunities in life.
Tune in to listen to the expert on appealing to experts, Nathan Chan, discuss with Marc Angelo the merits of social entrepreneurism, being your own biggest backer, and utilizing untapped resources.
It doesn’t take much to begin forming a new path for yourself, and though the obstacles ahead may seem like a lot to handle, there’s nothing more satisfying than seeing the mountains move out of your way. If you’re truly passionate about your new goal, there shouldn’t be any reason you can’t get started today.
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