Month: July 2016

Faces of Anger

Faces of anger

Anger, resentment, jealousy, revenge, hate, these are extremes, though we have all felt them, to different degrees of intensity.

You know what anger feels like.

In psychology they say ‘feel your feelings’, ‘do not push feelings away’, ‘allow feelings to exist’, if you don’t you would be suppressing them.

Should anger and its counterparts be given the same rights as those feelings that have less potential to harm?

The answer is yes, only if those feelings are explored quietly, before there is any harm done.

If anger is given permission to flare up then there is no doubt it will cause harm.

Though if suppressed can harm you.

Exploring your anger alone, mindfully is not an act of suppression

Pause and look at your anger, alone, don’t let others influence you.

As we know others can incite anger in us, through indifference, being rude, degrading us, blaming us and hurting someone we love.

Yet, our anger is within, bubbling away in a cauldron, waiting to explode at any time.

Anger is a time bomb, all, or most of us have some festering inside; waiting for the trigger, a reason to be expressed.

Take a look at the anger inside you, not in others; you are the one who is responsible for your feelings and the harm you bring.

Look at how anger feels, once it is expressed, all that is left is pain and remorse, until the anger begins simmering again.

Anger eats you alive, eats holes in your ability to love and care for others and yourself.

Anger is not kind or loving, it is arrogant and narcissistic.

Is there a place for anger, yes and no?

Yes, if you can own it and look at it with detachment and curiosity, then let it go.

Yes, if you can learn more about yourself and find love hidden underneath it.

No, if you use it to bash and scapegoat others!

No, if you use it to harm!

Anger is one of the most infectious emotions there is.

Angry people breed angry people; it can become an epidemic very quickly, whereby fingers are pointing.

Anger is addictive, the power you feel, can be as euphoric as a drug, especially if you are surrounded by a community of anger addicts.

Anger damages people and communities.

The first step is to look at your anger mindfully, sit quietly with it, allow it to swish around inside until it magically dissipates or softens.

Then go out into the world and help others do the same.

Start with your family, then your co-workers, people in queue at the grocery stores, on the streets, on the buses…

Not with smugness or arrogance, but with love and kindness, knowing that we all feel this way at times.

Remember not everyone knows what you know about the destructive nature of anger, or how to diffuse it.

You know how anger leads to hatred and harm.

Show them what you know.

 

Recipe: Diminishing anger

When you feel anger creeping up, do this before it turns explosive.

Step away, find a quiet space, away from the situation, and close your eyes.

Take some deep breaths and watch the anger, without the thoughts fueling the anger.

Observe it without judgment; acknowledge it as present, though like all feelings this too will diminish.

When calm, maybe take the time to self-enquire; ask yourself, what happened, how was this triggered?

Attend to your anger as if it is an unruly child, hold it with love, and allow it to return to back to calm state.

Once calm, anger loses its power, it will keep making attempts to find reasons to emerge, especially if it is your habit to be angry.

With persistence and patience you will no longer need anger to feel empowered.

You will feel empowered without it.

Now, show other people what you know.

Searching for silence

Searching for silenceSearching for silence.

We live in a noisy world.

Whether you live in a city, suburbs or in the country, noise surrounds us.

Noise from planes, people, road works, barking dogs, traffic, even the birds chirping; noise is everywhere.

Noises emerge from within us, our thoughts, physical sensations, and emotions; noise is everywhere.

Noise is not just heard, noise is seen, tasted, touched and smelt; noise is everywhere.

Our senses are bombarded by noise; we are surrounded with no way of escape.

A cluttered environment is noise, people in your presence are noise, technology is noise. The choices on a menu create noise, your ‘to do’ list is noise, gossip is noise… noise is everywhere.

It seems impossible to escape noise, especially when choosing to live amongst others.

It is even more difficult to find the opposite of noise: silence, internal silence.

When you find a space where there are few distractions, your mind then ramps up with noise.

Most of us crave silence, even for just a moment, using holidays to seek a break from the noise.

The ocean draws us, though the ocean can be noisy as well, especially if your mind remains active on concerns.

What a conundrum we know silence is the space we can rest, feel calm and at ease and where our inspiration and creativity flourishes yet it gets filled with unwanted noise.

The only way to achieve silence is to find that calm within, that space deep inside that is removed from noise, it appears empty, as if you are entering a black hole.

You will find that you will attempt to fill that space of nothingness with noise, as silence is unfamiliar.

Despite the relentless noise outside, silence remains.

How?

Recipe: Finding Silence

Start by with creating a quiet, uncluttered space at home and/or at work, which has no distractions.

Once your external environment is prepared, take a seat and close your eyes.

For the first few moments breath naturally, following the rhythm of your breath

Next for the a few minutes, take a short inhale through your nose and longer exhale through your mouth – make the exhale audible, sighing.

As your body begins to relax, even out the inhales and exhales, breathing in and our through your nose.

Tuning out the outside noise and detaching from the internal chatter.

Sit for 5 – 10 minutes (or longer).

Allow yourself to enter into the darkened, empty spaces, no matter how brief. Do not try and fill them with thoughts or visuals.

Sit with the silence.

With time and patience, you will find pleasure in the empty spaces and be able to apply it in your noisy life.

Let them be – feelings

FeelingsLet what be?

Feelings!

When unhappy or sad we look to our mind for answers.

Asking:

“How can I feel better?”

“How can I make this go away?”

Using the mind to cure unhappiness is completely insane, if not an impossible feat.

Yet, we do it all the time. When faced with an upset, we look to our mind to sort it out.

The sorting out feelings entails regurgitating stories, opinions and nonsense from the past, which hold no grounding in fact, serving only to intensify the emotions.

So why do we resort to this method?

Because our feelings are programmed from childhood, adults hate to see us hurting, so they advise us how to get rid of them, by:

Stuffing them away

Resisting them

Making them go away

Adults convince us that all will be fine, or look at what you have.

Though these approaches may appear to be helpful at the time, the feelings sneak back in, often times stronger.

They will keep reemerging until you let them stick around for a while.

Our feelings are signposts that something is out of balance, an event in your life has triggered these emotions, such as: a loss of loved one, not getting that job, grieving a life change…

Unless you allow these feelings to exist as they are at that time, they will keep reappearing in different situations, usually out of the blue, until you give them permission to stick around.

This method taught to us as children to quell feelings, prevents us from experiencing our feelings fully.

 

My recipe for today:

Give your feelings permission to remain in their true form as they emerge.

Let them be

Be prepared to feel lousy at first, maybe for a while, though with resolute patience your feelings will eventually disappear, magically evaporating.

Let them be

You will begin to heal, left with a sense of calm.

Let them be

Give it a try, what is the worst that could happen?

Nothing, you may actually start to feel better.

Blending in

Blending inAre you a Blender or do you stand out?

What does it feel like for you to standout?

Exposed

Vulnerable

Nervous

Self-conscious

Or?

Powerful

Confident

Invigorated

Happy

Are you the person who sits at the very back of a class or in front of the class?

Are you the first to raise your hand or keep your hand down?

Are you a person who dresses ordinarily in order to not be noticed or do you dress to be seen?

Are you the talker or do you wait to speak up.

Are you a Blender or someone who stands out?

Blending in makes a person small, almost insignificant so they are not easily seen or heard.

The Blender avoids crowds, parties and seeks refuge from the social scene.

The Blender may have been labeled as a child, “the shy one”, “not very social”, “quiet”, and “likes to spend time a alone”

Blending in can be a place of safety, where there are fewer threats of criticism and being judged.

Blending in is a way of coping when faced with too much stimulation and over arousal.

It is not easy being a Blender in a culture where standing out is revered.

Blenders view themselves as oddities of society as they are not like the rest.

Though, there are probably more Blenders than you would expect, possibly as much or more than those who stand out.

Blenders will often hide behind the façade of standing out in order to fit in, while sacrificing their ‘true nature’.

Their ‘true nature’ is to listen, sit in silence, contemplate, create, ponder, and observe.

Blenders may not attract attention with loud voices or a physical presence, they stand out because of their creative ideas and achievements.

Blenders reduce the noise in a noisy world.

‘Coming out’ as a Blender does not mean you will get lost in the crowd, it means you will find yourself.

Stand out as yourself, not as some one else.

If you are a Blender take pride in that fact.

 

Are you hungry?

Are you hungry?Hunger means you are starving, empty, deprived, malnourished and ravenous.

Satisfying this craving is essential to thriving and surviving.

This Hunger is not about food; it is about hunger to make a change, move forward or get out of a rut.

When you are hungry and in a place of starvation, you are preoccupied with finding a solution, feeling satiated.

Distractions lack appeal in such a time, you become driven and are on a quest to get what you need.

Hunger is rare these days, unless you live in a third world country.

Things are much too easy for many, it is way too easy to get caught in a vicious cycle of complacency, where things are okay, not perfect, but okay.

This lack of hunger can be considered one of the sources of unhappiness, without hunger; there is a stifled urge to move things on.

You are overcome with the feeling of being stuck, driving in first gear or sailing without a rudder.

How to you provoke hunger in your lives and others?

It might be that you don’t want it, hunger comes at a price: hard work, loss, and unknowns.

The choice is to let things ride, satisfy yourself with scraps of life’s offerings, in other words, existing.

Are you hungry?

So hungry that you fill yourself up to the brim with life’s joys, resulting from patience, hard work and yes, hunger.

Your choice is to exist or to thrive.

You choose.

Recipe: 5-Minute Creating Hunger Meditation

Start by taking a few moments to think of a time you were highly motivated (hungry) for something.  Whether it was to do well on an exam, get a particular job, win over a lover, move out of your parents house, get into a university… whatever comes to mind.

Close your eyes and reminisce about how that hunger felt to you – invigorated, excited, focused, energized, powerful, fearless, driven…

Feel it, as if it were happening now.

Remain with these feelings, bringing your focus towards your breath. Note how the rhythm of your breath fluctuates, increases, becomes erratic…

Note where in your body you feel those emotions, in your heart, around your belly, in your head…

Sit quietly and then after 5 minutes drop you chin to your chest and slowly open your eyes. Remain quiet for another minute or so with your eyes open.

You may need to repeat this meditation multiple times.

If you do not know what it is you are hungering after, time will tell. Once you become comfortable with the bodily sensations when hungry you will be less intimidated about stepping forth into an unknown space.

Happy Hungering

RJMindbody

RJMindbody