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Posts Tagged ‘Present Moment’

I had to laugh at myself today.  I actually wanted to return to the peaceful solitude of winter!

This past winter I made great progress staying in the present moment.  Those delicious times of peace and joy felt so wonderful.

Unable to locate work outside my home I focused all my energy on creating art and letting go of all those things inside me that kept me from living a life of peace, love and joy.  I dug deep, learned some new ways of letting go and even shared them with my friends and those who read these posts.

I thought I was ready to face anything and still remain in a state of peace, love and joy.  As usual, my expectations were a little too high.

Now that Spring is here I find myself juggling more part-time jobs than ever in addition to building two businesses.  The madness in my head is keeping me from sleeping and slowing down my ability to deal with the tasks at hand.

They say we teach what we most want to learn.  I feel like I just entered graduate school and forgot everything I ever learned.

So, today I am returning to the basics I have been teaching and applying them to my new situation.

Pay attention to the emotions first.  When I feel uncomfortable instead of allowing my mind to keep thinking thoughts that are causing these unwanted feelings I give it a new job to do.  I ask it to help me identify what I am feeling.

Once I know what I am feeling I sit with it and allow myself plenty of time to feel it intensely.  Emotions are energy passing through and I know if I do not let them out they will make me miserable, my body sick and prevent me from finding that place of love, peace and joy.

When the intensity is gone, which only takes a few moments, I imagine myself offering love and compassion to a child or a pet that is hurt or crying.  I hold those thoughts until I begin to feel the love flowing in and through my body.  That allows me to experience the love my emotions were blocking.

Then I offer prayers of thanksgiving for this experience.  I know its purpose was to help me see a part of myself that needed to be healed in order for me to live the loving, peaceful joyful life I desire.

Next I focus my thoughts on gratitude for everything I can think of in my life now.  I am grateful for the chair I sit in, the desk that holds my computer, the computer, the internet that connects me to you.

Ah, now I am feeling better.

It looks like I have a lot to learn this season.  At least with my new tools I can make it an adventure to discover what else needs to go so I can free myself of past behaviors that no longer serve me.

I will keep you posted on my progress.  Who knows, I might learn something that will help you as well.

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There is a great classic comedy skit where the therapist tells the client he can solve any issue in five minutes.  When the client begins to describe the problem and all the fear that surrounds it the therapist stops the client.

He then proceeds to tell the client to listen carefully to his advice.  If the advice is followed the client will be cured for life.  The advice is simply two words.  “Stop It!”

Although we may find this funny there is truth in the advice.  If we know something we are doing hurts then in order to feel better we must  stop doing it.

It is easy to see this in physical actions like putting your hand on something hot.  If you touch something that is hot and you get burned you tend to stop intentionally putting your hand on something hot.

What about the times we allow our mind to keep telling us the same story over and over that results in emotional pain?  Rather than stop the mind from running wild we continue to feel bad as it tells us the same story a thousand times.  And, with each telling we feel worse and worse.

We even begin telling others the story.  Maybe we think if someone agrees with us it won’t feel so bad.  At least we will have proof from someone else that we are somehow justified to believe this story that makes us feel so bad.

Then we get to listen to that person’s story that our story reminded them of and we can share in our mutual misery.  If others are in earshot they can join the party and soon we are all feeling hurt, pain and sadness.

We have within us the power to stop it.  We can stop allowing our mind to tell the same stories over and over.  And, we can stop telling that same story to others.

If you are just beginning to learn how to stop your mind it might help to simply give your mind a new job. Give it something else to look for and focus on.

I use gratitude to help change the focus of my mind.  Focusing on something in this present moment for which I am grateful gives my mind the task of looking for something I feel good about.  After continuing to give my mind this same job each time it tries to take me back to the old story I eventually begin to feel peaceful.  In time I find myself able to experience love and joy.

What is your favorite method of changing your thoughts?

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This week I worked with two different people who experienced difficult love relationship issues.  While the equally painful circumstances were unique to each person the responses were quite different.

One person chose to focus on the hurt while the other chose to bless the situation with love and forgiveness.

The angry person relived the experience over and over.  Thoughts of who did what to who kept feeding the anger and turned to deep inner hurt, pain and despair.

Having traveled the path of the angry person more than once in her life the other person knew it would lead her right back into illness and depression.  She was not willing to allow the experience to rob her of her new-found life filled with love, peace and joy.

Determined to find her way back to joy she chose to forgive herself and the other person.  She offered prayers of blessing for the other person.  And, she congratulated herself for seeing the truth and making the choice to love herself no matter what was happening in her life.

As I reflected on the atmosphere of both discussions I was reminded of how simple it is to change our life in a single moment.

We can choose to look at what we label as “bad” and dredge up memories of the past that support our view.  The painful emotions follow and we find ourselves in a state of self-imposed punishment.

Or, we can choose to examine this mess we find ourselves in and look for the “good”.  Focus on the parts of the mess that are better than the last time we created one and love and bless ourselves for having grown.  Then, focus all our thoughts and attention on being grateful for anything and everything we can think of that we love about our life now.

A simple shift in focus can bring us out of the past and future into the love, joy and peace of the present moment.

Is your focus on loving yourself or hurting yourself?  You have the power to choose right now.  What are you choosing?

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For some time now I have practiced ways to keep myself focused in the present moment.  Yesterday I noticed something different and want to share it with you.

I was taking a few deep breaths trying to relax the tightness in my shoulders.   As I felt the shoulders relax I noticed  another part of my body was also tight.

When I finally felt my entire body relax…a thought drifted in and captured my attention.   Immediately my shoulders resumed the same raised and tightened place they were in when I started.

After some time of working and observing it became clear the tightness was the result of fear.  I was afraid of what might happen in the future and that fear was keeping my body in a state of stress and dis-ease.

I turned my thoughts to the things I love and appreciate about myself.  I noticed and gave thanks for the things I am grateful are in my life this very moment.

As quickly as my body had become tense it became relaxed.  I was experiencing joy and peace in the place of fear and worry.

It is no wonder we have so many physical problems.  We rarely experience our natural state of simply being.

Living fully focused in the present moment is where we find our health, peace, joy and abundance.

I plan to check in with my body more often to see how I am doing at keeping my thoughts focused in the present moment.

Are your shoulders tight?

Are your hands clenched?

Are you tapping  your feet?

What is your body doing to get  your attention?

A simple change in focus can change your life right this very moment.

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