Mindfulness Meditation Exercises for Anxiety

An anxious day is going to be a bad day. You’ll feel unfulfilled, overwhelmed and won’t hit your targets or get anywhere near them, in fact. However, there are many tricks and tips you can use to reset your balance and give yourself some time to just take a breath, and think. Being able to do this is very important as it will save you from having days where things just get that little bit too much for you.

flickr.com/photos/dblfineart

flickr.com/photos/dblfineart

Using mindfulness mediation techniques, you can push out stress and anxiety from your system. This effective meditation will help you move on from a day that has just had too many negatives, and allow you to have more control over your body again.

As you can imagine, meditating for the first time can be really difficult. You feel like a child again, unable to sit in silence. Make sure your practice sessions are only a few minutes long at first – too long and you can start to interfere with your mind and lose any positivity your practice has built up.

Over time, your will be able to hold the meditation for longer – but at first, you will just need to concentrate on getting into the state. Your environment also plays a big role in the success of your meditation practice. All you need is an area of your home that is without distraction and where you won’t be interrupted. Take off all heavy jewellery and shoes, so you can be as free and comfortable as your body will allow.

Keep in mind that meditation is not like doing squats or using the punchbag – there’s no specific aggressor that will start the process for you. As soon as you’re comfortable and no longer distracted by the world around you, then you can start to meditate. Once you are comfortable, start focusing on what’s going on inside –get some breathing exercises going to try and take your mind away from the normal thought processes.

If you find yourself wandering mentally, keep returning to the breathing exercises. However, don’t let yourself become so focused that you drift off into a sleep and lose your progress entirely! The most important part of any mindfulness meditation is to acknowledge your thoughts.

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flickr.com/photos/olga-lednichenko-photos-albums-images

During your focused period, you will need to fight off a huge array of negative and paranoid thoughts. Instead of pushing them aside as if you are running through a crowd, listen to these problems and these fears – let them pass off after they have had their say. Learning to sit in your own mind is so important for mental maturity; it will stop you reacting for no reason.

When you feel like you have made some progress on this front, and you have confronted your own mentality, simply bring yourself back to reality and do some stretches to get yourself more fully present. Take some time to reflect on what you just learned – did it help you? Do you feel any better?

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Getting Into The Flow State Of Mind

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flickr.com/photos/yogendra174

The mind is still one of the greatest human mysteries, and to this day we still have very little idea about certain functions of the mind and how we actually operate.

However, one common attribute that you hear mentioned in recent years has been getting into the flow state of mind. This is argued to be the be all and end all of happiness – being able to consistently live in the flow state of mind is the main ingredient for living a constantly happy life.

Therefore, by learning how to get into the flow state of mind, you can instantly open yourself to a far more positive lifestyle in general. You will find that you get more done, your overall confidence and happiness increases, and you’ll have more time to answer every question. This is because your mind is less confused and setback by a difficult question – it merely answers it.

The flow state is the state whereby everything else stops bothering you. How annoying is it when you are trying to work, but cannot concentrate? It puts you off and your work suffers, which annoys you even more. However, when in the flow state you simply don’t pick up on other things. You don’t hear chatter, you don’t notice you are hungry or your arms are beginning to hurt, it puts you into a completely new state.

Many jobs actually require this level of concentration and strength to do them properly. Certain occupations, such as being a music composer, requires virtually full attention from you just to start to get it right. The flow state of mind takes away anything that could be seen as a hindrance to your success completely out of your train of thought and even your attention zone.

The best way to get yourself into the flow state of mind is to:

  • Find something that challenges you – make sure you enjoy it, but it gives your brain a battle to get it finished
  • It HAS to be challenging – if something is easy for you it will become boring, meaning you cannot get into the flow. If something is too hard, though, you’ll get stuck in a frustrated loop. Find something you enjoy but struggle with just enough it takes your full dedication to succeed
  • Set your goals, meaning that before you start you have clear criteria that you need to reach. This means that you can go into your state of trance with a clear point of entry and exit, allowing you to get in there in a state of flow and complete the task at hand
  • The only way to get into the process though is to eliminate any distractions from your room. Just solely concentrate on your task at hand and how you are going to complete it; nothing else at all. This will eventually help you enter the state of flow – you won’t realise it until you come out, but the work in front of you will be inspired in comparison to work took on at normal capacity.
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How To Handle Challenges In Life Through New Perspectives

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flickr.com/photos/jorislouwes

If you want to know how to handle challenges in life it’s always useful to see things from a new perspective. Things often become problematic because we get stuck in a narrow point of view on the subject or object. For example we may feel challenged by a new colleague at work and start to focus on one of their particular character traits that gets on our nerves. Commonly what happens is we focus on this aspect of the person and “blow it out of proportion” which causes us distress.

We all know that “stepping back” from a situation can help us gain a beneficial new perspective on things, so why don’t we just go ahead and do that? We can do this easily enough in our mind’s eye while asking ourselves useful questions to shift our focus of attention and learn new perspectives and insights.

Stepping Back To Get a New Perspective

1. Thing about a situation (e.g. work) that causes you some stress.

2. Now in your mind imagine stepping back from this situation; So you can see yourself and the other people in the situation over there as if watching a movie.

3. From this point of observation ask yourself, “What beneficial learnings can I make from this perspective?” and, “If I could learn something new about this situation or person what would that be?

 

flickr.com/photos/gsfc

flickr.com/photos/gsfc

If you wish you could imagine stepping into the other people and look at yourself in the situation. What new learnings could you make form this perspective? How does it feel to be observing your own behaviour and communication from the other person’s point of view? Could you change anything in your own communication to improve the relationships?

As we know, often our stuck states are just that because we get locked into a fixed perspective. It can therefore be very useful to do something radical to snap out of our myopia. So go ahead now, think about one of your problems/challenges and then perform the following visualisation exercise on it:

Micro/Macro Zoomer

1. Select something you want a radically new perspective on.

2. Now imagine you have zoomed in on the image to the microscopic level.

3. Make new learning’s. Try different levels of magnification.

4. Next zoom back to normal focus and then zoom out, way out into space; Imagine zooming right out into deep space, looking back at our galaxy!

5. Looking at this new perspective, notice any new understandings.

6. Come back to the here and now.

Video: Universe Zoom Out/In

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Shamanic Skills: Communicating With Tree Deva’s

 

flickr.com/photos/pawel_pacholec

flickr.com/photos/pawel_pacholec

All the Shamanic cultures around the globe have a tradition of communicating with tree spirits. The word, Deva, meaning supernatural entity, derives from ancient India. In Europe tree spirits are often to referred to as Dryads.

“A dryad is a tree nymph, or female tree spirit, in Greek mythology. In Greek drys signifies “oak.” Thus, dryads are specifically the nymphs of oak trees, though the term has come to be used for all tree nymphs in general.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dryad)

Humans have a special relationship with trees, simply by the fact that trees produce the oxygen we breathe in and we exhale carbon dioxide which trees love.

So can I prove that tree spirits really exist? Nope. But you can do some really interesting thought experiments, by acting as if you can communicate with these Deva’s, and get useful results.

Isn’t everything a projection of the mind (consciousness) anyway?

If you would like insight into a problem or inspiration for a new project, I certainly recommend going for a walk in the woods, and imagine connecting with these wise beings or if you prefer; facets of the imagination.

One way you can achieve this:

Shamanic Skills: How To Communicate With Tree Deva’s

  • Walk around and allow yourself to be drawn to a certain tree.
  • Walk up to the tree and take a good look at it. Notice the trunk and the branches. Notice the bark and the leaves. Become aware of the smell of the tree. Place your hands on the tree and feel the textures.
  • In-tu-it: Imagine stepping In-To-It. That is imagine shape-shifting into the tree – becoming the tree. Notice what it’s like being the tree.
  • Psychically say “Hello” to the tree Deva. Become aware of any response.
  • Go ahead and ask a question you want help with. e.g.) “Please give me guidance on how I can solve problem xyz.” or “How can I improve my relationship with xyz?
  • Now allow any impressions to enter your consciousness. Relaxing, breathing and becoming aware of any thoughts, sensations or imagery that comes to mind…
  • Thank the Deva!

 

flickr.com/photos/waltstoneburner

flickr.com/photos/waltstoneburner

So there you go, you now have one approach for communicating with tree spirits. As you have fun practicing these new shamanic skills, you will find yourself being able to gain better rapport with certain Dryads. It is well worth forming a relationship with a favourite particular tree because it will enable you to learn more about the subtle aspects of communicating at these levels of consciousness.

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The Subconscious Mind Mirror Technique For Success

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flickr.com/photos/wickenden

Does your subconscious mind make the big decisions? You may think of yourself as a sensible and rational individual, and you may be right, but how often do you find any of the following happen?

  • You explode at a friend or loved one for something which really is not that bad
  • You cannot control your emotions at the strangest of times
  • You produce a pre-conception out of thin air that you had no idea you even thought

We can surprise ourselves by coming out with opinions we never even knew that we had. This can surprise those around us, too. Well, all of these little opinions and pre-conceptions all come from our subconscious. The subconscious mind makes up a massive proportion of our mind, in fact some studies claim 95%.

Therefore, the majority of our opinions or our beliefs are going to come from that huge sector of the mind. Our subconscious decides when we breathe, how we digest our food and pretty much deals with all vital tasks that humans need to do to survive. Try and focus on your breathing when you are talking or thinking, it’s incredibly difficult.

Our subconscious mind stores everything from memories to important safety information. For example, it’s the part that hears your name over the sound of a hundred over voices. It also, unfortunately, represses negative emotions which have been weighing us down without a resolution. This is not a good thing though as it leads to the outbursts that we mentioned above. While our subconscious does so much good to keep us safe, alive and well, it also provides significant issues for us at certain junctions in our lives.

Our subconscious effectively generates our opinions. The reason this is so important to get is that it really does allow people to understand why they have made certain decisions in the past. If you regularly find yourself snapping at people or thinking negatively, it’s fair to say that your subconscious mind has built up quite a poor opinion of the world around you over the years!

The following technique is simple and yet can have a significant positive affect on your life because it changes your perception of reality at the level of your identity.

The Subconscious Mind Mirror Technique For Success

1. Stand in front of a mirror and look into your eyes.

2. With a feeling of love, say to yourself, “I deeply love and accept myself.”

3. Keep repeating this phrase while staring into your eyes feeling love and appreciation for yourself.

4. Repeat this everyday and begin to notice how you are feeling better about yourself…

Posted in Beliefs, Habits & Thought Patterns, Happiness, Self Image & Self Esteem | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Mind Body Connection Exercises That Will Brighten Your Day

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flickr.com/photos/67194724@N03

With all the stresses and pollutants in our environment, noise, overcrowding, increasing workloads, commuting time etcetera, it’s no wonder the bodies energies get out of balance. All of these things can easily affect our thinking processes too. The good news is that there are many simple techniques available from fields such as Acupressure and Energy Medicine that can help rebalance your bodies systems just with the use of your own hands.

  • Thymus Tap: Use your fingers to tap at the center of your sternum; The thymus gland. Tapping this point helps keep your immune system in balance by helping produce T-lymphocytes (T cells).
  • Cross Crawl: Simply bring one leg up as you touch it with the opposite hand. Now swap to the other leg and hand. Repeat about twenty times. This exercise will help balance your brain hemispheres.
  • Crown Pull: Relieve stress, headaches and mental congestion by performing the Crown Pull: Place both hands in the middle of your forehead. Now pull apart the hands applying pressure to stretch the skin. Maintaining deep breathing, move your hands further up your head and perform the stretching again. Continue until you reach the back of the neck.
  • Ear Lobes Rub: You can wake yourself up by rubbing your earlobes. Rub and stretch the lobes starting from the bottom and moving up to the tops of your ears.
  • The Hook Up: This exercise that will help hook up your energies making your feel connected and whole again: Place your middle finger of one hand on the third eye point. Place the middle finger of the other hand in your navel. Now gently press each finger into the skin and pull upwards. Hold for about twelve to thirty seconds or longer if you wish. You will often experience a deep sigh or yawn. This lets you know your energies have hooked up.

Practicing these mind body connection exercises will help you feel more balanced. You can learn more about these Energy Medicine techniques from the video below that demonstrates all of Donna Eden’s 5 Minute Energy Routine:

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Developing Courage And Self Confidence

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flickr.com/photos/pictoquotes

Many people in the world, based on our social structure, underrate their own abilities. At school, children are made to focus on external sources for justification that they’re useful human beings in society. They mature and are convinced that their individual values rely upon other people’s approval about looks, family background, grades and so on. Courageousness is the ability to have an unstoppable sense of being able to overcome your fears. There are various ways that can assist you in developing courage and self-confidence:

  • Dressing sharp improves your physical and personal appearance; Ensure you wear clean, and fashionable clothes, shave frequently and take a shower daily.
  • Your walking style can demonstrate whether you are confident or not. People observing your walking style can judge how you feel about yourself. Is it slow and tired? Or is it fast and energetic? People who are confident walk fast, and seem to know where they are going.
  • Improve your confidence by practicing excellent posture when walking, standing or sitting. Adopt confident body language. Keep your head up and stand straight-up; This makes you feel more empowered and alert. Lethargic and slumped shoulders show a lack of confidence.
  • Compliment yourself and other people. Stop the idea of negative thoughts about yourself which we pass to others through gossip and insults. Praising people around you will help in breaking the cycle of negativity. When you look for the best in other people, you indirectly draw out the best in yourself.
  • During group discussion, speak up with a deeper and more confident voice without the fear of being judged by others. Develop courage to contribute to the conversation so that you may learn how to be a good public speaker in the future.
  • Keep your thoughts organised all the time especially during public speaking. Well-clarified and organised thoughts make you feel more confident and courageous in front of an audience. Enjoy learning tips from others to assist you in overcoming fear when addressing a gathering.
  • Make reading a habit so that you gain more knowledge on different subjects. In the long run, you become conversant in many areas and achieve wider frames of reference.

Aristotle suggests that courage is the means between recklessness and fear. You have to control and master your fear to become resolute and stronger. Courage is part of the way to overcome feelings of low confidence and low self esteem. Overcoming fear is essential in accomplishing your lifetime goals and dreams, and taking action is an effective way to conquer self-doubt.

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Self-Acceptance Exercises And Your Pure Potential

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flickr.com/photos/57511216@N04

Many people spend hours upon hours every single year, trying to hone their body into the perfect shape and size. However, one of the most important aspects of any kind of training – mental or physical – is having self-acceptance. If you think of self-acceptance as a muscle, then that muscle has to be trained and worked on constantly, so that it can function at its very best.

It’s a continual process that has to be maintained throughout your life. Everything around us changes and adapts to fit the changing environment of the world, and our bodies are no different – you need to constantly adapt, change and then accept this, or you will never succeed.

Self-acceptance exercises are much tougher than doing any type of physical exercise. You can train and harness your physical power until you can pick two people up two people at once, but you cannot train positive thinking so easily. One of the most important things to remember is that on your best day, you are still the same person as you were on your worst days, and vice versa. There is no change in you personally, just your perception from one day to the next.

Self-Acceptance Exercise

1. Get yourself comfortable; You can do this sitting or standing.

2. Looking out in front of yourself or on the floor, imagine seeing your different roles; Work Roles, Family Roles, Community Roles, Sport/Leisure Roles. You can also visualise your thoughts, habits, and patterns.

3. Simply notice these different aspects of yourself. There are good aspects and bad aspects.

4. While you are noticing these impermanent aspects of self (i.e. roles change throughout life), you can begin to wonder who are you really at this moment in time.

5. Allow yourself to become aware of this bigger sense of self; Your Essential Self – Pure Potential!

flickr.com/photos/aigle_dore

flickr.com/photos/aigle_dore

You need to realise that self-acceptance comes from accepting you have limitations, you have flaws, but you also have many strengths and positives. Be aware of what you think about and how it comes into your mind, and think about how you can change the record. If you regularly think negatively, then you need to flex that muscle we spoke about.  Every time you feel down or have a negative thought, step back and see the bigger picture; You are made up of different roles, thoughts and feelings that come and go, with many of them being positive. Essentially you are pure potential: So who are you becoming this year, month, week, today?

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Dealing With Jealousy In Relationships

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flickr.com/photos/30046478@N08

There are many things that can attract us to somebody – it could be anything from the way they smile to the first time you ever met. Likewise, there are many things that can destroy the way we feel about somebody. Dealing with jealousy in relationships is one of the most common problems people have to face.

If you have never had the urge to check your partners phone log and see just who they were texting earlier, you are very lucky. Sadly this is often the norm these days, as couples feel incredibly insecure about what their other half does. After the initial honeymoon period ceases, some people can start to feel like the relationship is dying and therefore there must be somebody else involved. Dealing with jealousy in a relationship is one of the main steps anybody has to take, in order to feel secure and happy.

The worst thing about jealousy is that it comes from you wanting to protect what you love and hold deeply so much! Not only is it ironic, but it can be corrosive and cause irreparable damage. By being able to see that all you want is the best for your relationship, you can see how jealous behaviour can quickly damage things. When you feel that spying on your partner is doing the best for you both, you are wrong. If you find yourself acting jealous, ask yourself why you actually do this.

You may know, on reflection, that it comes down to a previous experience. Somebody may have hurt you before, or you may have seen it happen enough that you are naturally guarded. It’s important to understand that by treating your other half with distrust and contempt, you are not going to get over these prejudices. If you assume from the first thing you hear or see that they could be cheating on you, or trying to make you jealous, then you need to adapt and change.

flickr.com/photos/pedrosimoes7

flickr.com/photos/pedrosimoes7

The only way to do this, of course, is by actually communicating. Jealousy usually comes out in the form of an immature outburst made up from paranoid thoughts that constantly swirl through your mind. Being able to get these anxieties off your chest in a calm and mature manner is by far and away the best way to deal with jealous behaviour.

Most of us feel that by mentioning our insecurities, we are either opening up too much or we are going to scare the other person away. On the other side of the coin, being extremely guarded and cautious about your time together and what they do when they are not around is not going to help. Jealous behaviour will never win you any favours, that’s for sure, and the sooner you can talk about your feelings and insecurities the better.

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Relationship Trust Exercises That Will Improve Your Communication

relationship-trust-exercises“I trust that person.” “I don’t trust that person.” We often here people make these kind of statements, but if you think about it trust is really a continuum. Your feeling of trust towards someone can increase or decrease. It’s not either-or, it’s a range of feeling. Thinking in terms of how much you trust someone is more helpful; It gives you the sense that you can learn to increase your trust in someone incrementally.

One of the interesting things about trust is that as your feelings of trust for someone changes, your perception about them as a person changes too. So what this implies is that if you change your perception of a person you can learn to increase your feelings of trust towards them – creating better relationships.

The following exercise helps you explore your feelings of trust and dis-trust and provides you with a way to increase your feelings of trust in others.

Polarities of Trust Exercise

1. Dis-Trust: Think about someone you distrust; Bring to mind a specific occasion when you were with this person, see what you saw, hear what you heard and feel those feelings of dis-trust.

2. Notice where those feelings of dis-trust are in your body; Imagine giving that feeling a colour and then create a circle of that colour beneath your feet.

3. Move away from that space, a few feet to your right.

4. Trust: Think about someone you really trust; Bring to mind a specific occasion when you were with this person, see what you saw, hear what you heard and feel those feelings of trust.

5. Notice where those feelings of trust are in your body; Imagine giving that feeling a colour and then create a circle of that colour beneath your feet.

6. Now step back from both circles so you can see them both there on the floor. Step into the Dis-Trust Circle and feel those feelings. Step back, shake that feeling off and then step into the Trust Circle and notice those feelings.

Do this a few times so you can clearly differentiate the two feelings.

7. Learning to Trust Someone More

Step into the Dis-Trust Circle; Think about someone you would like to trust more. As you picture them in your mind’s eye, look up towards the Trust Colour Circle. Take a step towards the Trust Circle. Notice how that changes your experience. And what happens when you walk fully into the Trust Space? Keep picturing the person while you allow the Trust Colour to permeate your being.

8. How does that change your experience of trust with this person? Could you now perhaps learn to trust them more?

Bonus: Polarity Integration Exercise

When you’ve done the exercise above you can integrate the polarities of Dis-Trust and Trust better with the following method:

1. Step into the space in the middle of the Dis-Trust Circle and the Trust Circle, so that one is on your left and one is on your right.

2. Picture the person you choose in the previous exercise. And now imagine the energy colour of Dis-Trust entering one side of your body, while at the same time the energy colour of Trust entering the other half of your body.

3. Allow these two energy colours to permeate your entire being while you picture the person in your mind’s eye for a few moments.

4. Now turn around 180 degrees; Do the same procedure again but with the energy colours entering into the opposites sides of your body.

5. Step back, shake that state off and now think about that person again and notice what has changed for you.

So by playing around with exercises like those above we can learn how to change our perception of others, increase our feelings of trust, and therefore improve our communication in relationships.

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