Viewing entries tagged
mindfulness meditation

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How to Achieve Inner Peace Despite Life's Challenges

1 minute 58 second read

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Over the past few decades, I've heard countless people tell me how stressed they are. They say they feel unsettled, unhappy, frustrated or discontented.

And they say they would do just about anything if only they could feel a sense of inner peace.

I tell them it is absolutely possible to achieve that but before they let me explain, they start listing all the reasons why it is impossible, all the obligations, the struggles, the family problems, the boss who's a demanding idiot, the in-laws that drive them nuts, the spouse who refuses to help with the chores or the children, the health challenges or messy divorce...whatever is going on in their lives, they insist that these are the reasons for their stress and unhappiness.

I'm not going to diminish the significance of any of these or other life challenges or how difficult they can be. Heaven knows I've endured plenty of my own. So I can promise you that I'm speaking not just from my education but also from my personal experience.

First, I will confirm that yes, it is absolutely possible to achieve inner peace despite whatever is going on around you. The real source of stress, unhappiness, frustration and discontent isn't external; it comes from inside you.

Now before you yell at me and stop reading this, let me explain…

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Your perception of the external circumstances of your life is what determines whether or not you feel stressed and miserable. Here’s what I mean: If you choose to adopt an attitude that it's all hard and awful and it hurts, then that's the experience you'll get. If you choose to adopt a positive attitude about being able to handle whatever is happening in your life and you trust that all is well, no matter what, you will get through everything so much easier.

Of course, there are some events that are truly going to throw you, like losing a loved one or dealing with some sort of trauma. Still, there are so many life challenges that will feel a lot less difficult if you learn how to achieve inner peace. Then it won't matter what's going on around you; you'll always manage to stay calm and centred.

The best way to do this is to practice mindfulness meditation every day. Even if you just do ten minutes a day, which is enough to develop discipline for your mind, it will train you to use those same techniques throughout your day and especially when things are difficult. You will keep bringing yourself back to a place of inner stillness, from which you can deal with anything so much better than when your thoughts are left to run wild and create all sorts of havoc.

Mindfulness meditation improves health and longevity when practiced regularly and it's so easy to learn! I know because after struggling to figure it out, I found some simple tips and tricks that made it the easiest thing ever. I’ve been sharing those tips with people for many years and they always see great results instantly.

I've written an award-winning book entitled Meditation Essentials: How to Achieve More Personal and Professional Success and it's loaded with super simple ideas and information to get you started on the path to inner peace. TO GET THE BOOK FREE (just pay shipping, no other obligation), click here.

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Too Much on Your Plate? Stressed and Overwhelmed? This Will Help.

1 minute 26 second read

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They say "A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step." Actually, the proper quote by Lao Tzu is that it "...begins beneath one's feet," which means something slightly different.

However, for my purposes here, they're similar enough to make my point, which is about facing a difficult -- or seemingly impossible challenge -- and wanting to give up before you start because it feels like it's just too much to manage.

It's easy to be in a place of feeling overwhelmed. All of us feel that way at times. It's like standing at the base of a mountain and staring up at its tallest peak, knowing you have to scale the damned thing and you don't even have a climbing rope.

You might feel like turning and running full speed in the opposite direction, just changing your mind or abandoning your responsibilities. But of course, sometimes neither of those options will work in the long term.

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So what do you do in the short term? How do you get past feeling completely overwhelmed and unable to cope with everything that you're facing?

Well, you do it one step at a time. You look at one small, manageable "something" that you can do right now, in this moment, or today, and you do that. Just take one step and begin the journey up that mountain. Don't look up. Don't look down. Just stay focused on where you need to put your foot next, and that's it.

The more steps you take, the easier they'll get, and eventually you'll feel ready to look up and see how much of that mountain is still ahead of you. It'll also give you a chance to notice how far you've come, which will spur you on and help you to continue to make progress.

Whatever your "mountain" is, every time you start to feel overwhelmed or as though you just can't cope with everything ahead of you, just remember that you don't have to do it all in one day. Focus on just one manageable step for now, and that's all you need to do. Then the next one, and the next one, and so on until you're feeling better.

Have you ever felt like this before? What did you do to start taking steps to move forward? Please share in the comments below. It could help someone else.

Is anxiety keeping you stuck? Get your FREE copy of my “7 Quick Tips to Reduce Anxiety and Get Unstuck” by clicking on either the photo or the button below!

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"Stop the World! I Wanna Get Off!"

1 minute 56 second read

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I remember being a young girl the first time I heard, "Stop the world! I wanna get off!" It conjured an image of Earth as seen from space, screeching to a halt (cartoon sound effects included), and seeing someone with a suitcase essentially leaping off the planet. What happened to the person after that, I didn't know, but I remember laughing at the idea that Earth could be seen as a large bus and you could just get off at any particular stop if you felt so inclined.

Then I grew up. Life became a series of crises and a whole lot of turmoil. There was just too much on my plate. Everywhere I turned, there were challenges and problems that took everything I had just to get through them. It took quite a while before I heard myself thinking, "Stop the world! I wanna get off!" Only this time, it wasn't making me laugh.

And of course, the world wasn't really going to let me off at some invisible bus stop in outer space. I had to figure out how to get what I needed while staying on right here on terra firma.

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It's easy for us to become overwhelmed in our insanely busy culture. There's information coming at us from all directions all the time. Phones and computers dinging and beeping with constant notifications of some sort of activity, most of which really don't matter in the least, but we treat them as though our lives depend on them.

The way we conduct business is changing, moving to the internet in a massive way while companies are closing their doors. This is adding equally massive pressure to many people. We have to reinvent ourselves, the way we connect with people, even the way we earn a living.

An extra problem is that we wait until we're overwhelmed and feeling like we're going to snap before recognise that we have to do something to reduce stress. This. Is. Not. Good.

The most important thing you can do to feel well and balanced. This will help you to deal with the challenges and keep you from feeling overwhelmed.

And in order to feel well and balanced, you've got to put yourself at the top of your list of priorities. Here are a few tips:

1. Make sure you meditate every morning, even if it's only for 5-10 minutes. It sets you up for a more harmonious day.

2. Spend at least 30 minutes a day doing something you love.

3. Do some sort of physical activity each day that releases physical tension and reduces cortisol. A walk, yoga, shooting hoops, ride a bike. Even just getting down on the floor and doing some gentle stretches can make a world of difference after your work day is through.

4. Drink a lot of water to help flush toxins and reduce exhaustion and headaches.

5. Eat whole foods as often as possible and avoid junk and processed foods. What you put into your body will determine what you get out of it.

Pop into the comments below and share what you do when you need to "stop your world so you can get off." Your input could help someone else!

Is anxiety keeping you stuck? Get your FREE copy of my “7 Quick Tips to Reduce Anxiety and Get Unstuck” by clicking on the photo, or the button below!

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When You Take that Leap of Faith, the Net Appears...

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1 minute 27 second read

There is nothing as paralysing as fear. Sometimes it hides behind the mask of indecision, or occasionally a worry about the wellbeing of someone else.

But at the end of the day, if you know you really want or need to move forward but something is holding you back, there's a good chance that somewhere under the excuses you're making is a big ol' pile of fear.

You might try to tell yourself that you won't/can't/shouldn't do it because you're protecting someone or they'd be happier if you didn't. You might say it's because you haven't a clue how to get where you want to go, or that you'd probably fail anyway so what's the point in trying.

But I'll bet if you dig a little deeper, you'll find a fear lurking there to stop you from expanding yourself and your life. And what is the point of this existence if it isn't expansion into something better?

I know what it feels like to take a swan dive off an enormous (figurative) cliff with jagged boulders all the way down the side and a raging river somewhere at the bottom. I know how it feels to be forced into that decision because there's something even more terrifying right behind me.

And I also know that it's true what they say...that when you take that leap of faith, the net appears.

How does that work? Well, once you've done it, once you've allowed yourself the freedom to expand, to try something new, or whatever "the thing" is, you will be open to incoming information that can help. You'll be more receptive to signs, people, open doors or whatever else is required for you to build that net and suddenly, the answers are right there in front of you.

As long as you stay stuck and refusing to move, to grow, to change, or to even try something new, the more stagnant you'll become. You'll always wonder "what if...?" You'll never know all the colours and magic that you could have created for the world to see.

You'll be destined to live a closed, small, grey life of regret and sameness. It might be safe, but it's not at all what you were meant to do.

Go on! Take that beautiful leap of faith. Believe in yourself and discover your purpose. The rest of us are waiting for you.



Do you struggle with Anxiety? Get your FREE copy of my “7 Quick Tips to Reduce Anxiety and Get Unstuck” by clicking on the photo, or the button below!

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The Most Powerful Tool You Have is the Power of Choice

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2-minute read


There are many of us on the planet who are blessed to live in countries where there is great freedom. We have the freedom to pursue careers that we want, to be educated, to go shopping and buy whatever we want, to move about from place to place if we feel like it, uprooting ourselves and setting out on new adventures.

We have the freedom to vote for the government we prefer, to dress as we please, and to travel and explore as much or as little of the world as we want.

Yet in spite of all of this freedom, it is astonishing how easy it can be for some of us to feel trapped, helpless and powerless. We might feel forced or pressured into careers, relationships, financial decisions, or parenthood. We feel like we have "no choice" because of the needs, expectations and demands of others who want what they want from us, and their happiness seems to be the only kind that matters.

Some of us will stand up to that sort of pressure, say "Not happenin'!" and run the other direction.

But far too many of us will feel like we don't have the right to do that. "I couldn't! He/She would be furious!" "He can't do it for himself (usually means "won't" do it...). "I have to do it. They're expecting it." "I hate it but they'll be so disappointed if I don't!"

And on and on and on.

I do understand how that feels. I lived there for a very long time. Too long, in fact. Like many others, I was brought up to believe my needs and feelings weren't important. I was not allowed to stand up for myself, to say what I wanted, or to say "No." Because of this conditioning, even into adulthood I was easily manipulated into making decisions that were about the happiness of others while ignoring my feelings.

Consequently, I didn't feel like I had any choice but to make decisions that felt completely wrong even though I tried desperately to make them feel right. I got into the wrong marriages or other situations that left me feeling trapped and like a hostage.

I take full ownership of that...I'm not pointing fingers. At the time, I couldn’t see that my upbringing and other factors contributed to it and ultimately, I was the one who made those decisions.

But all I could see was that I felt trapped, helpless and powerless.

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The thing is -- and it took me years to figure this out -- I wasn't trapped, nor was I helpless or powerless. I just felt that way.

If you're feeling trapped, it's probably got something to do with obligations, demands and expectations that others are placing on you. But you don't owe anyone your happiness. It's your right and your responsibility to make the most of your life, whatever that means to you, and whether or not anyone else approves. If we can just recognise that, it can help to keep us from making choices that are not in our best interests.

And there's the key phrase..."making choices." This is truly the most powerful tool you've got - the ability to make choices.

Don't waste it on people who pressure you to use it for their benefit and not yours.

Do you struggle with Anxiety? Get your FREE copy of my “7 Quick Tips to Reduce Anxiety and Get Unstuck” by clicking on the photo, or the button below!

 

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