Month: August 2017

Really?? !!

Really

Is it for real? Really? Are you kidding?

Spellbound, stuck in a swamp of sticky, squishy mess.

Did you just say that? Excuse me?

Eyes wide, eyelids cease to blink

Hearing turned up to its highest volume, the mouth struggling to form a word

Mouth is frozen due to the brains shock into immobility

Neurons confused, misfiring across synapsis searching for a logical explanation.

Body heavy, weighted down, like an anchor caught in a submerged fishing net.

Is it true? Can it be? Wait a moment? Can you repeat?

Expecting one thing and getting something else instead.

Surprise!!!

We have all been there

Having already imagined yourself there, living It in your imagination, making plans for That future dream.

Within seconds, which feels more like hours, your dreams take a turn and promenade off the edge of a cliff.

Looking down, aghast as you watch That dream fall to its death, and no matter what you say or do you cannot stop it.

Yes, we have all been there?

These moments etched into our memories never to be forgotten.

They are moments in time, surprise events, where expectations are dashed; shaking your head as if by doing so will change the outcome.

Uttering phrases: What could I have done differently? If only? What did I do wrong?

Disappointment careens through your system initially with such speed it throws you off your balance, eventually decelerating to a blip

You get over it, move on, and regain the new normal.

The new normal may not be what you expected, but it is another one of those life’s lessons: Life moves on… Get back on your horse… What will be will be

Once the shock wears off and your disappointment reduces to a sputter, you can now turn around and walk away from the edge of the cliff and…

Get on with living.

 

Recipe: Breathing through disappointment

When faced with a disappointment due to a turn events

You will automatically hold your breath; this is one of the reasons time feels like it is standing still

Holding your breath triggers the Sympathetic Nervous System, Stress Response

Fortunately, you are able to reverse this response by taking long deep breaths

It might be you step away from the person giving the news or asking for a moment

Begin taking long deep breaths through your nose and exhale out your mouth, if you can close your eyes, invite your eyes to close and follow your breath until your nervous system relaxes.

Taking the time out to follow your breath provides time to absorb the news and bring you back into your body letting the really escape.

Back to where you feel safe and secure

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Mindfulness course

Rejection

rejectionRejection hurts

Did not get the grades, job, promotion or that award, no matter what life stage you are in rejection hurts.

It feels like being punched in the gut, leaving you writhing for breath, the air that once kept you afloat with dreams of success sucked out of you. Left with a narrative that will replay itself about how worthless you are.

Rejection hurts, though interestingly everyone has in some form or another felt it, having received ‘ I regret to inform you’, or ‘ It is our sincerest apologies’ or ‘We need to talk’ messages.

Gut wrenching, describes rejection, an emotional grip on your worth and likability. Instinctually it is akin to being ostracized from your tribe, left to fend alone.

It is a lonely place to be, no one is able to console you, and no words can ameliorate the pain. Their gentle, yet unconvincing clichés settle like a bee on a flower only to flit away, returning you to your hollow state.

Let’s put this in perspective.

If every person gets rejected by someone, at some point in their lives, then what makes you think you are the only one?

You are not alone in this pity party, woe is me moment.

Rejection is neither good nor bad, it essentially suggests that you have taken a risk.

The more rejections mean you have put yourself out there, taken a chance, and exposed yourself, despite the possibility of rejection.

Good on you!

If you want to minimize your rejections then take fewer risks, the downside to that you miss out on opportunities, personal growth and developing resiliency.

Next time you are rejected, have a pity party, invite your friends, whine and dine, then get up dust yourself off and leave. Identify what you could have done differently or acknowledged you did your best. If best, isn’t good enough it only means your life has detoured in a direction you did not expect.

Remember you are not alone; you have 7.5 billion friends who understand.

 

Recipe: Sitting with your rejection meditation

Following a rejection, take a seat, close your eyes.

Take 3 deep breaths, inhale through the nose, exhale either through the nose or mouth

Allow yourself to begin to calm your agitated nervous system

As your body relaxes, sit with the dominant feeling, choosing the one that stands out, not all of them at once

Identify where that feeling has settled in your body and breathe into it

If this is too painful, move into a child’s pose; place your forehead on the ground, with your bottom towards your heels.

Breathe, move away from the narrative, the beat yourself up voice, into the body.

Depending on the impact of the rejection, you may have to do this several times.

Remind yourself, you are not alone

 

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Empowerment

Empowerment

Empowerment

Are you empowered?

To answer this, first one needs to understand what empowerment means.

Lets start with what it is not:

It is not:

Indecisive, passive, aggressive, dithering, weak, indifferent, submissive, docile, meek, conniving, compliant, judgmental, obedient, a ‘yes’ person, self-abusive, self-doubt, self-critical, self- destructive, and rigid.

It is:

Honest, open, listening, pro-active, risk taking, assertive, nonjudgmental, resolute and self-accepting, self-discovery, creative, flexible, forthright, and loving.

Empowerment is the secret ingredient of self-love; it is the flour in our cakes.

Without it, there is no grounding or structure resulting in limiting your potential, self-destruction, illness, depression and no sense of self.

Empowerment begins with you, saying ‘no’, or ‘let me get back to you’ before answering ‘yes’.

If empowered, you will stand your ground, yet be willing to listen to others with an open mind.

While being able to walk away before you say too much, decide and stick with a decision, and be willing to take a detour if necessary.

An empowered person can move with confidence and fluidity, they are not stiff or flimsy. Their head remains upright, shoulders relaxed and feet firmly planted.

This empowerment journey starts with your posture and deep breathing.

A person whose breath is even and relaxed exudes confidence, even if inside your are not there yet.

Then move onto setting boundaries, listen actively and take chances.

Place yourself in uncomfortable situations, take a breath, try, falling is a possibility, though if so get up and dust yourself off.

Laugh at yourself, stroke your back, remind yourself that you are powerful and will persevere.

That is empowerment

 

Recipe: Empowerment Meditation

Set a timer for 5 minutes.

Sit on a chair; make sure your feet are directly under your knees, firmly planted.

Make sure your back is not leaning against the back of the chair, reach the crown of your head towards the ceiling; relax shoulders and face.

Invite your eyes to close or look towards the ground with a soft gaze.

Breathe in and breathe out, 3x

Next, inhale, repeat ‘I am”, exhale, “strong”, “powerful”, “that”, “decisive”, “confident”… or a another word that best fits.

The words may change each time you practice this exercise depending on how you feel that day.

Repeat the breathing sequence with the phrase, until the bell rings and gently open your eyes and get on with your day.

It may help to place a Post it on your desk or computer to remind through the rest of the day.

That is empowerment.

 

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Stressed

Stressed

Stressed the common response for pretty much everything when the senses and nervous system are overloaded

Stressed when tired, anxious, distracted

Stressed when excited, overwhelmed, insecure

Stressed when grumpy, hurt

Stressed is one of those words that lacks meaning, leaving you feeling lost, confused, possibly slightly satisfied, though where does that word take you?

Then what?  You are stressed!

What do you do then?

It becomes a throw away comment, such as ‘I’m busy ‘and ‘I am fine’

Everyone says it, so we say it

It is a label, similar to depressed, a succinct descriptor of how you feel.

Placing all your emotions under a one lid may seem crisp and efficient, though it traps you.

Traps you into the self-fulfilling prophecy of being stressed; not once in awhile but all the time.

Everything becomes experienced as stressful

Waking up, getting ready to leave the house, leaving the house, feeling stressed

Once involved in your day, feeling stressed

Stressed with the prospect of meeting someone new, going out with your work mates or going to the gym

Stress can be found in your happiest days, holidays, Christmas, a new baby or a first home and marriage

Stress creeps into the nooks and crannies of pleasurable times as it does sad times.

You cannot run or take cover from it; stress finds you, takes hold of you whether awake or sleep.

We find ways to get away from it, albeit only temporarily.

Get away by drinking alcohol to quell your nerves, smoke dope to zone out, eat greasy foods to warm your nerves and sleep to escape.

Then you sober up and guess what? Stress is still there with bulgy eyes and a quickened heart.

What can you do if there is nowhere to hide or run too?

Face stress head on, look at, and see it for what it is.

Stress is tired, happy, excited, lonely, disappointed, grumpy, overworked, underworked, irritable, hurt, embarrassed, impatient…

Catch stress as it enters your mind, before it leaves your lips, replace it with the actual emotion and then you no longer feel trapped or hopeless.

You can give it the appropriate label and do something about it or just the satisfaction of knowing what it is.

Recipe: Reframe Stressed Meditation

When feeling stressed, close your eyes and identify the physical sensations arising.

Tight shoulders, rapid heart rate, sweaty palms, tension in the chest, head, lower back, heaviness in legs and arms, tingles or another sensation

Then ask yourself, what am I feeling?

Tired, weary, anxious, excited, overwhelmed, bored, lonely, distracted or another feeling

Replace ‘stressed’ with the actual feeling

For instance, ‘I feel stressed’ with ‘I feel tired’ or ‘ I feel frustrated’ or ‘I feel angry’

Take 3 deep breaths and acknowledge that feeling

This is not the time to resolve the situation, just sit with it

Then open your eyes and get on with your day

Stop using ‘stressed’ as you catch all phrase for how you feel

Eventually, you will feel less stressed and more at ease and true to yourself

 

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RJMindbody

RJMindbody