21 January 2013

Conscious Living

In our busy day to day lives, one of the biggest neglects is taking time out to pause – to just fall still. This may seem like a very counter intuitive thing to do, especially when you are so busy. But I assure you, taking a time out to pause is critical to physical health, emotional health and spiritual well being.

Most of your busyness is what I call treadmill busyness – lots of movement but not really getting anywhere. Chances are you merely repeat the same tasks today that you did yesterday and the day before that. And tomorrow will be more of the same. Your life is lived on autopilot, by default; constantly running on that treadmill!

I usually say to my busier than busy clients either you consciously stop and take an emotional time out or life will cause you to pause. When life has to step in, I can promise it won’t be so pretty. Only when a crisis moment strikes, are we then forced to stop – because we have no other choice. By then, it is usually too late and you cannot access your normal coping strategies because you are spiraling out of control.

I recommend three simple yet essential spiritual practices that will not only allow you to take a time out to fall still but also will help you gain more clarity, focus and energy in your life.

1.      STOP. Simply stop – stop doing and just be. It is said that stopping is a spiritual act, though you may see it as doing nothing. Well, that’s the point – don’t just do something, sit there! You have heard the old adage stop and smell the roses? This is truly profound wisdom. Stopping allows you to notice – to notice your next right action to take, instead of acting on impulse or reacting.

2.      Take a breath. Yes, I know you are breathing already, but you are breathing unconsciously or involuntarily. Try breathing on purpose and see how it feels. Conscious breathing is a practice that brings you back to center and back to this present moment. Most of life is not only lived unconsciously, but also lived worrying about the future or regretting the past. It is time to shift into this present moment – the only moment you have any power over.

3.      Ask a compelling question. Once you can stop and take a breath, you can then ask yourself some important and crucial questions, such as:

  • Is what I am doing right now moving me closer to the life I truly want to live? Why or why not?
  • What is the next small action I can take to create the life of my desires?
  • Am I being of service to those around me – family friends, acquaintances – by my constant busyness? Why or why not?
Only when you can fall still, stop, take a breath and ask some compelling questions can you truly begin to create a life lived by design and not by default.

14 January 2013

Feeeel Your 2013 Goals!

"If you want to be happy, set a goal that commands your thoughts, liberates your energy, and inspires your hopes." ~ Andrew Carnegie

When setting a goal or an intention, make sure that it ignites your passions and draws out positive emotions. There is no point setting a goal that you are not excited about; or you won’t be happy when you have received it, if you receive it at all.

Chances are you set your goals for this new year with every good intention of making them a reality in your life. Unless you are on fire about your goals and can see yourself being, having and doing them, they will fizzle out in a few months.

Think about what it would feel like once you have your desired goal or intention. Get full of the feeling of being, doing or having it.

Just for today, feel your goal!

11 January 2013

Friday's Purposeful Question

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions.” ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

In order to stay awake and be able to create a future that reflects our goals, we need to question the present. We need to question every choice we make and look at the positive or negative consequences of our actions if we are to align our daily actions with our deepest desires.” ~ Debbie Ford, The Right Questions

Author and teacher Byron Katie says that when you question your stressful thoughts, the freedom that comes out of that graces the world for all of us.

The quality of your life is determined by the quality of your questions. So, what questions are you asking? 

"Who or what are you willing to stop blaming to create a wonderful new year?"

"It is not the answer that enlightens, but the question." ~ Decouvertes

07 January 2013

The Finger of Blame

Blame is the lie by which we convince ourselves that we are victims. It is the lie that robs us of our serenity, our generosity, our confidence, and our delight in life.” ~ From Bonds That Make Us Free by C. Terry Warner

One of the vicious cousins of fear is blame. When you blame something or someone outside of yourself, you stay in victim mode. If it is someone else’s fault, then you can’t possibly do anything about it. This keeps you stuck. This also robs you of your power, your freedom and your life.

You cannot control another person’s actions but you can control how you respond to those actions. This is where you have full and complete control and responsibility. You can choose to react out of fear or you can choose to respond out of love.

Remember, when you point the finger of blame, there are three fingers pointing right back at you!

The choice is yours. Choose wisely.