Month: December 2016

Stay or go?

stay or go?

Should I go or should I stay?

Do you know when to throw in the towel? To acknowledge it is time to move on?

If you do decide to do so, are you a quitter, a failure who runs away from things when times are tough?

When is it right to stop and walk away?

Where should you look for guidance?

It might be as simple as you are looking in the wrong direction, outside, rather than inside.

The outside compares you to others, whose lives are in no way yours, setting norms and judging what you think you should be doing.

If you confess to the outside that you are finished, the outside will offer contradictory views, such as, ‘keep going’, ‘don’t quit’, ‘wait it out’ or ‘stop while you are ahead’, ‘you’ve done your best’.

What do you do with the outside response, other than pick the one that endorses your decision, or feel confused and stay put?

The only way to know is to turn inside, deep within, where there is often no obvious answer, yet it is there?

As when checking an egg, you don’t know if it is done until you poke a fork into it. You need to go inside when making big decisions about staying put or letting go.

Be aware you will not get the emphatic advice as you would get from the outside, this is why you keep looking outside, it deceives you into believing it knows what it is talking about.

But does is it really?

Loud and flamboyant is the outside voice. Yes, it is sexy and catches your attention.

Soft and quiet is the inside voice, speaking in our dreams, feelings, sensations and whispers.

Who do you listen to when seeking help, most likely the one who speaks with conviction, not the delicate voice sitting inside?

It takes a great deal of patience to listen inside, requiring stillness, quiet and waiting. The answer is not as immediate as the outside voice, yet the inside voice knows, because it is in you.

It knows because it lives inside of you, whether you like it or not, it is you.

So why would you search for an answer outside, without first checking inside?

Crazy as it may sound, check inside, wait and listen.

Flashy the inside may not be, though shrewd it is.

Are you done?

Check inside, wait and listen.

 

Recipe: Go or Stay Meditation

A meditation to help decide whether to leave or stick with a situation – relationships, job, career, home, business… anything you are questioning whether you need to change course.

Sitting in a space without any distractions.

Close your eyes and take 3 deep breaths.

Once the mind begins to slow down, ask the question silently to yourself.

‘Help me decide whether to go or stay ’

Repeat 3 times and remain quiet and still

Using your breath or the Mantra ‘I am’ to gently move you away from the minds chatter and compulsion to answer.

Then ask again after a minute or so  – 3x ‘ Help me decide whether to stay or go’ – do not analyze or try to answer the question – remain still.

Return to your breath again or mantra.

After 5 – 10 minutes (use a timer) gently begin to open your eyes and return to your daily activities.

Keep your awareness on clues throughout the day – maintaining calm and mindfully attending your day.

Do not put pressure on yourself to have to know.

Be patient

Go inside, wait and listen.

Eventually you will know whether to stay or go

 

Trust or Fear?

Trust or fear?Who would you invite into your house? Trust or Fear?

How can we trust everything is going to be okay when we are driven by fear?

Will I be able to make enough money? Or find that job? Or do that thing I want to do?

Fear wriggles into the nooks and crannies of our minds, like cancer, in almost all of our thoughts. Fearful emotions and thoughts are one of the same.

How can you possibly trust that things are going to work out?

Trust and Fear cannot sit together comfortably, without Fear, insolently sneering at Trust, jabbing at Trust with its pointed finger and blood shot eyes – “see I told you so”

Trust tries hard to wriggle away from the prods and pokes of Fear, though Fear when left to its own devices, is much bigger and stronger that Trust.

Anything can trigger Fears’ presence, big and even small things – an email, a phone call, someone’s look or tone of voice, a piece of chocolate cake.

Fear shows up when gifts are presented, it eyes up the receiver seeking any evidence of disdain or disappointment.

Fear particularly enjoys dinner parties, lurking in the corners of the room scanning for the shyest or less confident. It stays away from the narcissists who control the room with their great booming voice and self-righteous attitude.

Fear leaps onto the backs of people who are on their first date; it can bounce between the two, landing in the soup only when they begin to feel at ease. Though Fear always finds its way back once each of them goes their separate ways, wondering if the other liked them as much as they liked the other.

You cannot escape from Fear. Fear grips on with claws, almost parasitic, it cannot survive if Trust steps in, especially if Trust is given center stage.

Of course, trusting Trust is random, unlike Fear, somehow Fear edged its way in long before you knew there was such a thing. Trust came in waves, diminished and undermined by Fear. Fear is oh, so powerful.

Though Trust still perseveres despite the continual onslaught of Fear, it never ceases, staying in the shadows waiting for an invitation to step forward.  See, Trust may be quieter and less obtrusive than Fear, but is based on Love; Love the most powerful emotion of them all.

It might surprise you; Fear is also created by Love but has gone awry. Fear has devoted its energy to keep you safe, if afraid, you will take fewer risks, and survive.

Unfortunately, Fear, without boundaries will consume all in its path, devouring the very thing it started out as, Love.

Are you tired of Fear? Does it consume you? Attach to you? Make decisions for you?

Who would you invite now?

I would venture to guess you if you could do it all over again, knowing the impact Fear has on you, you would have invited Trust in and slammed the door on Fear.

Next time you invite someone in, step back and pause, before opening the door, and then decide who you let into your home.

 

Recipe: Leaning into Fear – 5 minute Meditation

This meditation is meant to face your fears head on, once you face them, their power diminishes and then trust has space to emerge.

When fearful our instinct is to run rather than running, lean into fear, invite it in.

I would recommend for those who are dealing with a trauma, do this meditation with the support of a professional as it may elicit powerful emotions.

For those where there is no trauma linked to this fear, go about this gently

 

Starting now

Either sitting cross legged on the floor or in a chair, with your spine straight and eyes closed, or open if you choose to keep your eyes open look with soft gaze just above the periphery of your vision. Be comfortable. Take a moment and prepare yourself.

With your hands resting on your thighs, begin with 3 deep breaths – note the coolness of the breath as it enters the tips of your nostrils and the warm air as it releases through your mouth or nostrils

Feel the ground or the chair underneath you – become increasingly aware of your feet as they touch the ground.

Notice how your hands feel against your thighs – heavy? tingly? soft?…

Become aware of sounds in the distance, just notice, then come back to your breath.

Using your 5 senses to keep you grounded as you continue on with this exercise – knowing that you can come back the grounding part of the meditation at any point.

Now ask yourself “what is it that I am afraid of?” Invite the fear in as you breathe in

Then bring your full attention to the sensations that are coming up for you as you sit with this fear

Are there areas in your body where the sensations are stronger? What does it feel like? Check in and see how your mind is reacting.

Then as you inhale allow those feelings to gently circle around you and with each exhale let it go into the external world where it belongs

If it is getting to be too much then come back to concentrating on your breath and grounding yourself by feeling your body pressing against something

Continue on for 5 minutes or longer if you wish

Keep coming back to this, especially if you are feeling a fearful emotion and/or physical sensation – anxiety, nervousness, butterflies, racing heart, short of breath, hard knot in your belly, rapid thoughts, overwhelmed, stressed, angry…

To disinvite fear or minimise fear based emotions, first, face them and then they eventually diminish.

Namaste

Who would of known?

who would of known?Who would of known what you would become when you grew up.?

Who would of known that moment in time would change your life forever?

Who would of known that experience or encounter was the beginning of something bigger?

Who would of known when you met that person you would fall in love?

Who would of known that you are he when you were somewhere else last year?

Who would of known… who would of  known?

So much is unknown, more than is known.

We only know what we know, the unknown is not known yet.

How complicated is this, mind boggling, to say the least?

Dr Seuss would have had a field day with this topic.

Our mind does not know what to do with not knowing, it needs labels or it becomes agitated.

The mind goes to all lengths to understand everything, even if it doesn’t, attempting to place things into little neat boxes.

How egotistical the mind is, very much like an adolescent who believes he knows it all; formulating opinions about something they know nothing about.

Yet, convinced they do with an artful dance to prove they know.

Not knowing creates a great deal of discomfort for ourselves and for others as it signals danger; not knowing what is next or around the corner, could be fatal if you live in the wild.

If only we knew then all would be okay, or so we believe..

I hate to break the news, nothing is known, other than what is occurring now, thinking you know or grasping to know, is not possible. If you believe you know you are deceiving yourself.

The next time someone asks you; “where do you see yourself in 5 years?” or “ what do you want to become?” or “when are you getting married?”… answer with “ I don’t know”.

“I don’t know”, nope no idea.

Free yourself from the constraints of having or needing to know. Needing and wanting to know is way too stressful. Think about how much energy is expended trying to play the knowing game.

Admitting to not knowing, does not have anything to do with you being lazy, lacking ambition or intelligence. It is about being honest with yourself.

Imagine how it would to feel to stop having to know, or having to prove to others you know. The feeling of relief that you can finally live for today, rather than the future, your mind will fight tooth and nails but eventually, it will relax.

Who would of known that the answer to happiness is to not know.

Who would of known?

 

Recipe: Not knowing Meditation – 3 minutes

Find a comfortable space anywhere, close your eyes

Take 3 deep breaths, to calm your nervous system

Now, repeat “I don’t know” silently or out loud

Keep repeating for approx 2 minutes

Stop and allow your whole being to absorb those words

Notice, the physical sensations and emotions – tightness, release, anger, relief … whatever comes up for you.

Allow yourself to sit for 1 minute longer and then open your eyes.

Practice saying “ I don’t know” to others. Or “I cannot predict the future” or “ I would like to be here, but do not know”

Sit with the discomfort of not knowing, notice what you feel on all levels.

Who would of known, you would be practicing not knowing.

You are the mountain

You are the mountainImagine a mountain in your mind’s eye, the most beautiful mountain, whose roots stretch deep within the earth’s core.

Despite the changing weather and seasons that mountain remains still.

Despite the wind and torrential rain that mountain remains motionless.

Despite the blizzards and frigid temperatures that mountain remains unmoving.

Despite the heat of a hot summer day and drought that mountain remains tranquil.

Despite the movement of people and scurrying of animals that mountain remains silent.

The mountain sits soundlessly as day turns into night, season’s flow to the next, it watches as animals are born, live and die and nurtures seeds to take root in its soil.

It is the mountain that expects nothing, offers no judgments; it sits strong and steadfast through all trials and tribulations.

You too can be the mountain as you sit, tall and strong with your eyes turned inward, observing the ever-changing landscape.

From outward appearances, there is no movement, your face discloses nothing, your body shows not a quiver, despite the battle going on inside your head.

You remain still even while your bodily systems relentlessly conspire to keep you alive and your breath periodically catches your attention.

What a gift, to sit in stillness, not ruffled by life’s events or your inner turmoil.

To be calm and forgiving, allowing things to come and go, watching… seeing things for what they truly are, without the veneer of distortions.

The mountain symbolizes your meditation practice; it is the practice that keeps you still despite the ups and downs, the twists and turns of life.

Your body and breath move through you, though you remain rooted, in unwavering stillness.  As you face life’s storms, your practice keeps you grounded.

As with the mountain, you sit and observe all the comings and goings of life’s events, your emotions sweeping over you like clouds…  moments of disappointment and exhilaration, similar to the sun shining after a rain burst.

Take a seat and sit in stillness:

You are the mountain.

 

Recipe: I Am the Mountain Meditation

Sitting in a quiet place, preferably on the floor, if not sit in a comfortable chair

Sit tall, with hands on your knees, elbows soft, close your eyes

Take several deep breaths until you are settled and calm

Imagine that you are a beautiful mountain, this is your mountain; create it according to your wishes.

Spend some time looking at the mountain, then take a deep breath in and inhale that mountain into your body.

The mountain is now you

Imagine the snow, rain, sun, heat, wind, green, brown… travel through seasons, clouds, fog… watching observing all the comings and goings on your mountain.

Sit still, breathe, feel the breath embody you, keep you grounded and still despite the fluctuations of the events outside and inside you.

Breathe in – I am

Breathe out – the mountain

Breathe in – I am

Breathe out – still

Repeat several times out loud or silently to yourself.

After 10 minutes, open your eyes, sit quietly for a few more moments.

A letter to my Head

a letter to my headDear Head,

I need to speak with you.

After all these years you have taken up way too much space, telling me what and how I should live and feel. That I am not good enough, smart enough, pretty enough…never enough.

How many opportunities have been lost because of what you have been telling me? I believed you, I trusted you, you were the fountain of all wisdom. You ranted on about how I should feel, be, become. And I listened.

Your words made me fearful, self-conscious, unloved, hurt, unworthy. It angers me to know I had let you dictate how I should live my life, who I could be friends with, what achievements I was capable of. Yet, again I trusted you. You were all I knew.

I had no idea that deep inside me there was another voice, a kinder, more loving voice, that speaks to me in whispers, so quietly I could barely hear it above the cacophonous words you kept lobbing at me.

I am ready to take ownership of you! You are not in charge anymore! I am in charge! I choose!

You are here to help me, to assist, not to dictate. That quiet voice deep in my soul will be given a space to speak and to be heard.

Head, I love you, but you are not to take control anymore. We are a team, you come out when I need you to make some decisions or help me solve a problem. But you are not to define me or place me in a box where I am stifled and scared. We both want to be happy, let’s embrace one another and let the other parts of us in.

Thanks for your hard work, but it is now time to take a step back and sit in the peripheral.

I will let you know when I need you.

Remember, I am the one in charge!

 

Recipe: I Am That (So’ham) Meditation

A meditation to help control the fluctuations of the mind, calm the body and feel this interconnectedness with all beings.

This meditation is a practice uses a mantra as the object of attention – ‘ I am that’ or So Hum.

‘I am that’ or Sanskrit version, So’ham (pronounced ‘So Hum’)

‘I am’ is your conscious self – ‘that’ is the universal connectedness

As you inhale you say silently or out loud ‘I am’ or ‘So’ breathing in the universe

As you exhale say ‘that’ or ‘Hum’ – exhale your inner self to the universe.

Sitting on the floor with your spine straight and eyes closed or open if you choose to keep your eyes open look with soft gaze just above the periphery of your vision. If you are unable to sit on the floor, use a chair. Be comfortable. Take a moment and prepare yourself.

Place your palms on your thighs – face down for calmness of mind or face up with the forefinger and thumb touching to open your awareness – choose what is needed at this moment

Allow the body to relax scanning your body and releasing any residual tension

Begin to deepen your breath – as you inhale feel the rise of the chest and as you exhale as your chest falls.

With your next inhale, silently say to yourself ” I am” or ‘So’

Next, you exhale say silently “that” or ‘Hum’

Repeat for 5 -10 minutes

Once finished taking a few moments to absorb your experience, by sitting in stillness and then when ready move on with your day.

Remember you are the one who is in charge!

RJMindbody

RJMindbody