So, I'll start with this: a couple years ago, an event planner called me because I was going to do a speaking event. And she called, and she said, "I'm really struggling with how to write about you on the little flyer." And I thought, "Well, what's the struggle?" And she said, "Well, I saw you speak, and I'm going to call you a researcher, I think, but I'm afraid if I call you a researcher, no one will come, because they'll think you're boring and irrelevant."
And I was like, "Okay." And she said, "But the thing I liked about your talk is you're a storyteller. So I think what I'll do is just call you a storyteller." And of course, the academic, insecure part of me was like, "You're going to call me a what?" And she said, "I'm going to call you a storyteller." And I was like, "Why not 'magic pixie'?"
I was like, "Let me think about this for a second." I tried to call deep on my courage. And I thought, you know, I am a storyteller. I'm a qualitative researcher. I collect stories; that's what I do. And maybe stories are just data with a soul. And maybe I'm just a storyteller. And so I said, "You know what? Why don't you just say I'm a researcher-storyteller." And she went, "Ha ha. There's no such thing."
So I'm a researcher-storyteller, and I'm going to talk to you today -- we're talking about expanding perception -- and so I want to talk to you and tell some stories about a piece of my research that fundamentally expanded my perception and really actually changed the way that I live and love and work and parent.
And this is where my story starts. When I was a young researcher, doctoral student, my first year, I had a research professor who said to us, "Here's the thing, if you cannot measure it, it does not exist." And I thought he was just sweet-talking me. I was like, "Really?" and he was like, "Absolutely." And so you have to understand that I have a bachelor's and a master's in social work, and I was getting my Ph.D. in social work, so my entire academic career was surrounded by people who kind of believed in the "life's messy, love it." And I'm more of the, "life's messy, clean it up, organize it and put it into a bento box."
And so to think that I had found my way, to found a career that takes me -- really, one of the big sayings in social work is, "Lean into the discomfort of the work." And I'm like, knock discomfort upside the head and move it over and get all A's. That was my mantra. So I was very excited about this. And so I thought, you know what, this is the career for me, because I am interested in some messy topics. But I want to be able to make them not messy. I want to understand them. I want to hack into these things that I know are important and lay the code out for everyone to see.
So where I started was with connection. Because, by the time you're a social worker for 10 years, what you realize is that connection is why we're here. It's what gives purpose and meaning to our lives. This is what it's all about. It doesn't matter whether you talk to people who work in social justice, mental health and abuse and neglect, what we know is that connection, the ability to feel connected, is -- neurobiologically that's how we're wired -- it's why we're here.
So I thought, you know what, I'm going to start with connection. Well, you know that situation where you get an evaluation from your boss, and she tells you 37 things that you do really awesome, and one "opportunity for growth?"
And all you can think about is that opportunity for growth, right? Well, apparently this is the way my work went as well, because, when you ask people about love, they tell you about heartbreak. When you ask people about belonging, they'll tell you their most excruciating experiences of being excluded. And when you ask people about connection, the stories they told me were about disconnection.
So very quickly -- really about six weeks into this research -- I ran into this unnamed thing that absolutely unraveled connection in a way that I didn't understand or had never seen. And so I pulled back out of the research and thought, I need to figure out what this is. And it turned out to be shame. And shame is really easily understood as the fear of disconnection: Is there something about me that, if other people know it or see it, that I won't be worthy of connection?
The things I can tell you about it: It's universal; we all have it. The only people who don't experience shame have no capacity for human empathy or connection. No one wants to talk about it, and the less you talk about it, the more you have it. What underpinned this shame, this "I'm not good enough," -- which, we all know that feeling: "I'm not blank enough. I'm not thin enough, rich enough, beautiful enough, smart enough, promoted enough." The thing that underpinned this was excruciating vulnerability. This idea of, in order for connection to happen, we have to allow ourselves to be seen, really seen.
And you know how I feel about vulnerability. I hate vulnerability. And so I thought, this is my chance to beat it back with my measuring stick. I'm going in, I'm going to figure this stuff out, I'm going to spend a year, I'm going to totally deconstruct shame, I'm going to understand how vulnerability works, and I'm going to outsmart it. So I was ready, and I was really excited. As you know, it's not going to turn out well.
You know this. So, I could tell you a lot about shame, but I'd have to borrow everyone else's time. But here's what I can tell you that it boils down to -- and this may be one of the most important things that I've ever learned in the decade of doing this research.
My one year turned into six years: Thousands of stories, hundreds of long interviews, focus groups. At one point, people were sending me journal pages and sending me their stories -- thousands of pieces of data in six years. And I kind of got a handle on it. I kind of understood, this is what shame is, this is how it works. I wrote a book, I published a theory, but something was not okay -- and what it was is that, if I roughly took the people I interviewed and divided them into people who really have a sense of worthiness -- that's what this comes down to, a sense of worthiness -- they have a strong sense of love and belonging -- and folks who struggle for it, and folks who are always wondering if they're good enough.
There was only one variable that separated the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging and the people who really struggle for it. And that was, the people who have a strong sense of love and belonging believe they're worthy of love and belonging. That's it. They believe they're worthy. And to me, the hard part of the one thing that keeps us out of connection is our fear that we're not worthy of connection, was something that, personally and professionally, I felt like I needed to understand better. So what I did is I took all of the interviews where I saw worthiness, where I saw people living that way, and just looked at those.
What do these people have in common? I have a slight office supply addiction, but that's another talk. So I had a manila folder, and I had a Sharpie, and I was like, what am I going to call this research? And the first words that came to my mind were "whole-hearted." These are whole-hearted people, living from this deep sense of worthiness. So I wrote at the top of the manila folder, and I started looking at the data. In fact, I did it first in a four-day, very intensive data analysis, where I went back, pulled the interviews, the stories, pulled the incidents. What's the theme? What's the pattern? My husband left town with the kids because I always go into this Jackson Pollock crazy thing, where I'm just writing and in my researcher mode.
And so here's what I found. What they had in common was a sense of courage. And I want to separate courage and bravery for you for a minute. Courage, the original definition of courage, when it first came into the English language -- it's from the Latin word "cor," meaning "heart" -- and the original definition was to tell the story of who you are with your whole heart. And so these folks had, very simply, the courage to be imperfect. They had the compassion to be kind to themselves first and then to others, because, as it turns out, we can't practice compassion with other people if we can't treat ourselves kindly. And the last was they had connection, and -- this was the hard part -- as a result of authenticity, they were willing to let go of who they thought they should be in order to be who they were, which you have to absolutely do that for connection.
The other thing that they had in common was this: They fully embraced vulnerability. They believed that what made them vulnerable made them beautiful. They didn't talk about vulnerability being comfortable, nor did they really talk about it being excruciating -- as I had heard it earlier in the shame interviewing. They just talked about it being necessary. They talked about the willingness to say, "I love you" first ... the willingness to do something where there are no guarantees ... the willingness to breathe through waiting for the doctor to call after your mammogram. They're willing to invest in a relationship that may or may not work out. They thought this was fundamental.
I personally thought it was betrayal. I could not believe I had pledged allegiance to research, where our job -- you know, the definition of research is to control and predict, to study phenomena for the explicit reason to control and predict. And now my mission to control and predict had turned up the answer that the way to live is with vulnerability and to stop controlling and predicting. This led to a little breakdown --
-- which actually looked more like this.
And it did.
I call it a breakdown; my therapist calls it a spiritual awakening.
A spiritual awakening sounds better than breakdown, but I assure you, it was a breakdown. And I had to put my data away and go find a therapist. Let me tell you something: you know who you are when you call your friends and say, "I think I need to see somebody. Do you have any recommendations?" Because about five of my friends were like, "Wooo, I wouldn't want to be your therapist."
I was like, "What does that mean?" And they're like, "I'm just saying, you know. Don't bring your measuring stick."
I was like, "Okay." So I found a therapist. My first meeting with her, Diana -- I brought in my list of the way the whole-hearted live, and I sat down. And she said, "How are you?" And I said, "I'm great. I'm okay." She said, "What's going on?" And this is a therapist who sees therapists, because we have to go to those, because their B.S. meters are good.
And so I said, "Here's the thing, I'm struggling." And she said, "What's the struggle?" And I said, "Well, I have a vulnerability issue. And I know that vulnerability is the core of shame and fear and our struggle for worthiness, but it appears that it's also the birthplace of joy, of creativity, of belonging, of love. And I think I have a problem, and I need some help." And I said, "But here's the thing: no family stuff, no childhood shit."
"I just need some strategies."
Thank you. So she goes like this.
And then I said, "It's bad, right?" And she said, "It's neither good nor bad."
"It just is what it is." And I said, "Oh my God, this is going to suck."
And it did, and it didn't. And it took about a year. And you know how there are people that, when they realize that vulnerability and tenderness are important, that they surrender and walk into it. A: that's not me, and B: I don't even hang out with people like that.
For me, it was a yearlong street fight. It was a slugfest. Vulnerability pushed, I pushed back. I lost the fight, but probably won my life back.
And so then I went back into the research and spent the next couple of years really trying to understand what they, the whole-hearted, what choices they were making, and what we are doing with vulnerability. Why do we struggle with it so much? Am I alone in struggling with vulnerability?
So this is what I learned. We numb vulnerability -- when we're waiting for the call. It was funny, I sent something out on Twitter and on Facebook that says, "How would you define vulnerability? What makes you feel vulnerable?" And within an hour and a half, I had 150 responses. Because I wanted to know what's out there. Having to ask my husband for help because I'm sick, and we're newly married; initiating sex with my husband; initiating sex with my wife; being turned down; asking someone out; waiting for the doctor to call back; getting laid off; laying off people. This is the world we live in. We live in a vulnerable world. And one of the ways we deal with it is we numb vulnerability.
And I think there's evidence -- and it's not the only reason this evidence exists, but I think it's a huge cause -- We are the most in-debt ... obese ... addicted and medicated adult cohort in U.S. history. The problem is -- and I learned this from the research -- that you cannot selectively numb emotion. You can't say, here's the bad stuff. Here's vulnerability, here's grief, here's shame, here's fear, here's disappointment. I don't want to feel these. I'm going to have a couple of beers and a banana nut muffin.
I don't want to feel these. And I know that's knowing laughter. I hack into your lives for a living. God.
You can't numb those hard feelings without numbing the other affects, our emotions. You cannot selectively numb. So when we numb those, we numb joy, we numb gratitude, we numb happiness. And then, we are miserable, and we are looking for purpose and meaning, and then we feel vulnerable, so then we have a couple of beers and a banana nut muffin. And it becomes this dangerous cycle.
One of the things that I think we need to think about is why and how we numb. And it doesn't just have to be addiction. The other thing we do is we make everything that's uncertain certain. Religion has gone from a belief in faith and mystery to certainty. "I'm right, you're wrong. Shut up." That's it. Just certain. The more afraid we are, the more vulnerable we are, the more afraid we are. This is what politics looks like today. There's no discourse anymore. There's no conversation. There's just blame. You know how blame is described in the research? A way to discharge pain and discomfort. We perfect. If there's anyone who wants their life to look like this, it would be me, but it doesn't work. Because what we do is we take fat from our butts and put it in our cheeks.
Which just, I hope in 100 years, people will look back and go, "Wow."
And we perfect, most dangerously, our children. Let me tell you what we think about children. They're hardwired for struggle when they get here. And when you hold those perfect little babies in your hand, our job is not to say, "Look at her, she's perfect. My job is just to keep her perfect -- make sure she makes the tennis team by fifth grade and Yale by seventh." That's not our job. Our job is to look and say, "You know what? You're imperfect, and you're wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging." That's our job. Show me a generation of kids raised like that, and we'll end the problems, I think, that we see today. We pretend that what we do doesn't have an effect on people. We do that in our personal lives. We do that corporate -- whether it's a bailout, an oil spill ... a recall. We pretend like what we're doing doesn't have a huge impact on other people. I would say to companies, this is not our first rodeo, people. We just need you to be authentic and real and say ... "We're sorry. We'll fix it."
But there's another way, and I'll leave you with this. This is what I have found: To let ourselves be seen, deeply seen, vulnerably seen ... to love with our whole hearts, even though there's no guarantee -- and that's really hard, and I can tell you as a parent, that's excruciatingly difficult -- to practice gratitude and joy in those moments of terror, when we're wondering, "Can I love you this much? Can I believe in this this passionately? Can I be this fierce about this?" just to be able to stop and, instead of catastrophizing what might happen, to say, "I'm just so grateful, because to feel this vulnerable means I'm alive." And the last, which I think is probably the most important, is to believe that we're enough. Because when we work from a place, I believe, that says, "I'm enough" ... then we stop screaming and start listening, we're kinder and gentler to the people around us, and we're kinder and gentler to ourselves.
That's all I have. Thank you
1. Increases Alertness
Due to the sudden change in temperature, our bodies naturally go into a state of initial shock and our breathing patterns can be uncomfortable, or we even hyper ventilate. However with deep breathing, in response to our body’s shock not only helps to keep us warm, but it also increases our overall oxygen intake. As a result, we'll get a natural dose of energy for the day.
2. Improves Hair and Skin
When it comes to hair and skin, cold showers can be highly beneficial and are one of the most natural ways to maintain your appearance. The reason for this is hot water actually dries out our skin, as it strips the skin of its natural oils that prevent it from drying out and crackles or wrinkles appearing. Cold water on the other hand actually tighten pores, which prevent them from getting clogged and prevent dirt from getting in.
3. Stimulates Weight Loss
One of the lesser known facts about cold showers is they can aid weight loss. This is because the human body contains two types of fat tissue, white and brown fat. White fat accumulates when we consume more calories than our body needs to function. Brown fat is considered a healthy fat, which is used to generate heat to keep our bodies warm and is activated when our bodies are exposed to extreme cold.
4. Improves Immunity and Circulation
Cold water can improve circulation by encouraging blood to surround our organs, which can then help combat some problems of the skin and heart. As cold water hits the body, it's ability to get blood circulating leads the arteries to more efficiently pump blood, therefore boosting our overall heart health.
5. Eases Stress
One of the greatest benefits of cold showers is they can ease stress. By jumping into the shower without letting it heat up, you can help promote hardening, increasing your tolerance to stress and even disease.
6. Relieves Depression
Cold showers can ease stress and this in turn has been shown to relieve depression symptoms due to the intense impact of cold receptors in the skin. This activity sends an overwhelming amount of electrical impulses from the peripheral nerve endings to the brain, which in response produces an antidepressive effect and boosts moods, acting as a pick-me-up.
7. Speeds Up Muscle Soreness and Recovery
Researchers have observed there is some evidence that cold-water immersion reduces muscle soreness at 24, 48, 72 and even at 96 hours after exercise compared with 'passive' treatment (Bleakley, 2012).
Bleakley C, McDonough S, Gardner E, Baxter G David, Hopkins J Ty, Davison G W. (2012). Cold-water immersion (cryotherapy) for preventing and treating muscle soreness after exercise. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2012, Issue 2. Art. No.: CD008262. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD008262.pub2. Retrieved 23 March 2020, from https://www.cochrane.org/CD008262/MUSKINJ_cold-water-immersion-for-preventing-and-treating-muscle-soreness-after-exercise
John Assaraf is a successful serial entrepreneur with 5 multi-million dollar companies to his name. He is also a New York Times bestselling author, a behavioral & mindset expert. He’s also been interviewed by Larry King, Ellen and Anderson Cooper. In this interview, he talks about:
How to Achieve Your Goals
As you have probably already realized, setting goals is the easy part. Taking the necessary action and consistently following through is the part that most people struggle with. This brings up a common issue for most people when it comes to change. We think we need to know more, but knowledge is rarely the problem. We've got enough "know how" already.
The real problem is that most people are unable to consistently adhere to the behaviors that can lead to success. Often times, people end up getting the same results they are used to. Even worse, instead of acknowledging that we fell back into old habits, we become victims and tell ourselves, "I didn't try hard enough," or ,"It wasn't my fault," leading us to repeat the vicious cycle over and over again. We are creatures of habit, so I have been here too.
What you need to consider to tip the scale in your favor has to do with the subconscious mind. Everything you do has to pass through the subconscious mind to make sure that you do not experience cognitive dissonance. Consequently, the subconscious mind is an important player when making decisions. However, if your conscious and subconscious minds are not aligned, your subconscious mind will tend to take the cake. For example, you may have the ambition to transform your life to achieve the goals of your dreams, but your innerself will say "No thanks, I'd rather stay comfortable."
The 6 Obstacles to Success
What is it exactly that is holding you back in your subconscious mind? Turns out, there are six main obstacles to success: fear, excess stress, limiting beliefs, negative mindset, lack of emotional control, and disempowering habits. Here is a brief overview of each.
Obstacle 1: Fear
From an evolutionary perspective, the brain is primarily hardwired to keep you safe and alive. A sensitive structure known as the amygdala is constantly active evaluating every perception as a friend or foe.
This system operates below your conscious awareness, and for many this system signals the alarm every time is perceives a threat, real or imaginary, external or internal. Even if you are to consciously consider that the odds of a threat aren't in the favor of danger, say being attacked by a shark, your brain is likely to jump to conclusions towards the most improbable threats.
Whenever the alarm is signaled, and it is frequently, the subconscious mind will do what it takes to bring you back to the zone of comfort. Whether you perceive a real or imaginary snake, a spectrum of stress neurotransmitters flood your brain and body in an effort to keep you safe.
These real or imaginary perceptions can destroy your optimism and desire to take action or make improvements. For example, you may continue to work a dead-end job rather than search for a job of your dreams. Or you may look the other direction when an captivating person enters your space for fear of being rejected rather than being emotionally available. Or if you do begin to make progress toward achieving your goals, it's likely you will sabotage yourself with chronic, impulsive, automatic triggered fears. Researchers, such as Dr. Srini Pillay, have discovered that there are more than twenty-five types of fears that can throw you off from achieving your goals, if not completely stop you. By learning to recognize these obstacles when they arise, you can learn to turn your fears into fuel.
Obstacle 2: Excess Stress
Anytime you feel worried, anxious, scared, or depleted, a stress response in the form of a cascade of neurochemicals is sent out from your brain to your body, leading to host of debilitating effects. Stress can diminish your ability to learn new skills; disable your motivation; provoke restlessness therefore interfering with sleep; and cloud your brain's executive functioning.
Moreover, stress can inhibit your creativity, leaving you less able to see new opportunities, create novel ideas, and to access your innate brilliance. (This is where meditation comes in - stress less to accomplish more.) But like most things, it's not all or nothing, and there exists a balance. A healthy amount of stress is necessary to keep you aroused, excited, and motivated.
Obstacle 3: Limiting Beliefs
Beliefs are the lenses that you view the world and your experiences through, therefore they filter and color everything you think, say, and do. Beliefs are simply reinforced neural patterns that are based on memories, personal experiences, and old paradigms.
What you believe to be to true in your life determines your self-image and sense of self-worth. If your external reality doesn't match your internal map of your sense of self-worth, a disconnect between your subconscious and conscious mind manifests, also known as cognitive dissonance, which often leads to unconscious self-sabotage to bring you back into alignment.
Limiting beliefs can create habitual patterns, often interfering with your ability to see yourself, your community, and the world in novel, creative and empowering ways. Until you change your limiting beliefs, you will keep repeating the destructive patterns that hold you back.
Obstacle 4: Negative Mindset
We have all experienced negative or pessimistic attitudes. This is a safety mechanism of the brain to be aware of danger before jumping into action. From an evolutionary perspective, being skeptical, indecisive, and negative can be a valuable trait because it can help prevent impetuously indulging in risky behaviors. This safety mechanism reminds you to take extra caution when spending money or talking to the special someone you barely know.
Conversely, if you begin to ruminate on all the possible negative potentialities, fear and anxiety can take control, transforming you from the optimist that is the natural state of healthy brain functioning into an entrenched "Negative Nancy" generating excess stress, further disrupting your brain's executive functioning. Once again, balance is key.
Obstacle 5: Lack of Emotional Control
Emotions are neither good or bad, positive or negative, regardless of whether they feel pleasant or unpleasant - they are merely signals that are triggered at the subconscious level. Nearly all organisms, from single-celled paramecium to Homo sapiens move away from pain and toward pleasure. The key is to be aware of our feelings without judgement and to learn how to manage them better.
Obstacle 6: Disempowering Habits
You are the product of your thoughts, feelings and actions. Humans are creatures of habits, and our autopilot patterns define who we are. By definition habits are tendencies that are easy to repeat and challenging to change.
From an evolutionary perspective, the brain creates habits to conserve energy. It is easier to automatically carry our familiar tasks without thinking about them than it is to reinvent the wheel. But habits can be empowering, such as moving your body five times a week, or reading forty-five minutes each day, or saving 10 percent of paycheck for savings.
On the other hand, disempowering habits - many of which were planted in your childhood - are largely destructive and sabotaging. The wrong habits can stop you from creating new solutions to life's problems. Instead, they can create cognitive bias blinding you from truth.
Aligning Your Two Minds
Your subconscious mind is a powerful and permanent part of you. Therefore, if you want to recruit the power of your subconscious mind to help you reach your goals, it's best to learn to live with it and align it with what you truly want by transforming these potential obstacles into opportunities for growth.
Your fears can become fuel for change instead of holding you back.
Your stress can become a powerful tool for building your resilience and creativity instead of burning you out.
Your beliefs can become powerful stories and anchors that inspire you instead of keeping you stuck in a rut.
Your mindset can become a lens for seeing possibility and opportunity all around you instead of making you miserable and cynical.
Your emotions can become significant signals relaying your subconscious status instead of uncontrollable reactions.
Your habits can become rituals that bring you closer to your goals instead of automatic disempowering cycles.
These six obstacles are concealed both above and below our conscious awareness. Until we learn to increase our mindfulness and observe with evaluating, we may achieve some of our goals, but not our highest potential.
Assaraf, J. (2018). Innercise. Cardiff, CA: Waterside Press.
Belief. It is the same element or factor which causes people to be cured through mental healing; enables others to climb the ladder of success and gets phenomenal results for all who accept it. Why belief is a miracle worker is something that cannot be satisfactorily explained, but have no doubt about it there's genuine magic in believing.
Thought attracts that upon which it is directed. Our fearful thoughts are just as creative or just as magnetic and attracting troubles to us as are the constructive and positive ones and attracting positive results.
While thoughts do create and exercise control far beyond any limits yet known to man, they create only according to their pitch, intensity, emotional quality, depth of feeling, or vibratory plane. In other words, comparable to the wavelength and wattage of a radio station, thoughts have a creative or controlling force in the exact ratio of their constancy, intensity, and power. While many explanations have been offered, no one knows whether the thought is a form of electrical energy or something else yet to be defined.
Sigmund Freud, the famous Austrian psychoanalyst, brought the world's attention to the hypothesis that there was a powerful force within us; an unenumerated part of the mind separate from the conscious mind constantly at work molding our thoughts, feelings, and actions. Others have called this division of our mental existence the soul. Some call it the super-ego, the inner power, the super consciousness, the unconscious, the subconscious, and various other names. It isn't an organ or so-called physical matter such as we know the brain to be. The ancients often referred to it as the spirit. Paracelsus called it will. Some have referred to it as conscience, the creator, or that small voice. Others called it intelligence and have asserted that it is a part of the supreme intelligence to which we are all linked.
No matter what its named, it is recognized as the essence of life and the limits of its powers are unknown. It never sleeps. It comes to our support in times of great trouble. It warns us of impending danger. Often it aids us in what seems impossible. It guides us in many ways and when properly employed performs so-called miracles.
Perhaps the most effective method of bringing the subconscious into practical action is through the process of making mental pictures using the imagination - perfecting an image of the thing or situation as you would have it exist in physical for. This is usually referred to as visualization. However, before this visualization can work you must really believe your vision can happen.
The one thing all humans have in common is that each of us wants to be happy, says Brother David Steindl-Rast, a monk and interfaith scholar. And happiness, he suggests, is born from gratitude. An inspiring lesson in slowing down, looking where you're going, and above all, being grateful.
Socrates once said, "The unexamined life is not worth living." On the other hand, if all you are doing is examining, it's fair to say that you are not truly living your life purpose.
Have you determined your life purpose? What are you passionate about? Many people spend their entire lives searching for an answer for this question, but it doesn't have to take a lifetime. We are all on this journey together to find more meaning in our life, and many often struggle along this path. You can begin to intentionally live your life in a matter of 5 minutes by honestly answering 5 simple questions:
When you honestly answer all of these questions, and put it all together, you can begin to understand your life purpose. Despite the catchy headline, it is best to give this some time, it's your life purpose - start with 5 minutes, then progress to a couple hours per week.
Remember that we are each unique - we each have a unique way of seeing the world. If you are still struggling to find your purpose, start with what brings you joy in life. Ask yourself what you would love to do to provide service to others, because service is what matters most.
Daily meditation is a life changer. Meditation radically improves our well being, psychologically and physically.
It starts with relaxing. Put on some calming, instrumental music. Find a comfortable position to sit in, somewhere quiet. Close your eyes and take a deep breath.
Gently exhale, count down from 20 and let yourself sink into a relaxed state of mind. To go deeper into this state, start with a gentle relaxation of your physical body. Feel your scalp relax. Feel that feeling of relaxation flow all the way down to your toes. Move your focus down your body, part by part, and relax each section completely as you go.
Phase 1: compassion
Focus on your consciousness. Picture it as a white light surrounding your entire body in a bubble of peaceful, gentle, loving energy. Imagine this light expanding to connect you, and spread compassion, to your room, house, entire neighborhood, city, country, continent, and planet. Feel that sense of oneness.
See yourself for what you are, a piece of consciousness directly connected to every other life form on planet earth.
Phase 2: Gratitude
Bring to mind 5-10 things that you are truly grateful for - big or small. Express gratitude for these things. Vividly recall how they made you feel - use all 5 senses: smell, touch, taste, sound, vision. Feel this gratitude vibrate all throughout your body.
Know that when you express gratitude for beautiful moments in life, you open the way for these moments to repeat themselves and grow in terms of their magnitude.
Phase 3: Forgiveness
Bring to mind anyone who you have had a conflict with - it could be a person or a situation. Imagine that person in front of you. Apologize for any wrong that you brought them. Ask for their forgiveness. Forgive them for any wrong that they brought to you. Feel that feeling of forgiveness all throughout your body.
Know that at a deeper level we are one, and any negative charge toward any other living being is a charge against yourself.
Phase 4: Visualize your future
Visualize all the different aspects of your life as you want them to unfold in the next 3 years. Be as vivid as possible by incorporating all 5 senses: smell, touch, taste, sound, vision.
As you wrap us, mentally tell yourself, "Let this or something better unfold in my life."
Phase 5: The Perfect Day
Visualize yourself from the current moment, living the best version of this particular day. Make it as vivid as possible. Bring in emotions of joy, excitement, and gratitude. Bring yourself to the end of your day, and see yourself going to bed and going into a deep, comfortable, rejuvenating sleep.
Visualize yourself making today amazingly wonderful.
Phase 6: Blessing
Call on any higher power you believe in (this could be your own inner strength). Ask for luck, energy, support. Ask for help crafting your perfect day so that you can make your dreams for the next 3 years unfold. Feel this support and energy all around you, a protective energy embracing you.
Know that luck is on your side and the universe has your back.
Bring yourself slowly out of your meditation by counting upwards from 1 to 5.
The principle reasons for failure are: Lack of confidence and too much effort. When you know how your mind functions you gain a measure of confidence. Whenever your subconscious mind accepts an idea it immediately begins to execute it. It uses all its mighty resources to that end and mobilizes all the mental laws of your deeper mind. This law is true for beneficial or harmful ideas. Consequently, if you use it negatively, it brings trouble, failure, and confusion. When you use it constructively, it brings guidance, freedom, and peace of mind.
The right answer is inevitable when your thoughts are positive, constructive, and loving. From this it is perfectly obvious that the only thing that you have to do in order to overcome failure is to get your subconscious to accept your idea or request by feeling its reality now, and the law of your mind (mentalism) will do the rest. Turn over your request with faith and confidence, and your subconscious will take over and answer for you.
You will always fail to get results by trying to use mental coercion - your subconscious mind does not respond to coercion, it responds to your conscious mind acceptance.
Your failure to get results ma also arise from such statements as, "Things are getting worse", "I will never get an answer", "I see no way out", "It is hopeless", "I don't know what to do", "I'm all mixed up." When you use such limiting statements and beliefs, you get no response or cooperation from your subconscious mind. Like a solider marking time, you neither go forward or backward; in other words, you don't get anywhere.
If you get into a taxi and give a half dozen different directions to the driver in five minutes, he would become hopelessly confused and probably would refuse to take you anywhere. It is the same when working with your subconscious mind. There must be a clear cut idea in your mind. You must arrive at the definite decision that there is a way out, a solution to any vexing problem. Only the infinite intelligence within your subconscious mind knows the answer. When you come to that clear cut conclusion in your conscious mind, your mind is then made up, and according to your belief is it done unto you.
Do what the 99% are not doing. It's up to you. This is the mindset of high achievers.
This portal contains research, news, information, observations, and ideas at the level of self in an effort to address lifestyle applications.