The year is drawing to a close. Here we are again at the end of what was once a new beginning. You may be feeling hopeful. You may already be feeling anticipation of the new year making the difference for you. That is great, after all, it is only around the corner now.
It is the season of good will to all men and yet you may find some are not so welcoming or indeed you may not be feeling so welcoming to others. It is the easiest thing in the world to feel resentful and angry when you are hurt. However it is extremely harmful to you. I am very aware that many of you have experienced challenging circumstances this year. Many people may have or have been tempted to plaster their online profiles with positive intentions for change while others have chosen to reaffirm how positively negative this year has been for them so far. I recall a status update last year consisting of a message of hate with a photograph of a person flipping the finger to all the haters. This can be a tough time of year for many. My heart goes out to you. I want you to know that my heart goes out to you.
It is especially difficult for those who have lost loved ones or like many others experienced broken family relationships leading to feelings of alienation and segregation. If that is you, I send you loving thoughts and kindness and hope that this blog can help you combat negative thought patterns which could otherwise lead you down the path to depression or other physical ailments.
To all of you enjoying preparing vision boards and readjusting your bucket lists…congratulations…. these are indeed wonderful tools for encouraging growth and increase. I advise that once you have set them up, don’t cling to them with baited breath waiting for them to become manifest in your life. Simply enjoy the process, visualise and feel the outcome as if it were already here and then move on while holding the intention lightly for it to manifest. Say to yourself, this or something better and then get busy with your life. In short, once it is done, let it go.
Non attachment is the best way I have found to encourage your heart’s desire into your reality. If you haven’t already tried it then I can recommend it; let your imagination soar but remember to set your focus elsewhere once it is done. I will be writing exclusively on this subject in a later blog for more information. Another thing you might like to try is to make a list of all the expansion and growth you made over the year. I cannot recommend doing this highly enough. I do so numerous times a year. It was a practice I began 4 years ago and came in particularly helpful in reminding me just how strong, intuitive and courageous I can be. It was one of the keys I used to overcome and escape abuse, depression, mental illness, homelessness and a 2nd divorce. It was fundamental in helping me believe in my capacity to make strong decisions, rebuild my life and to make relocation across the country a great success. There is nothing more encouraging than listing where you have been, what you have achieved and especially the adversity you have overcome in order to really grasp how strong and amazing you are; and you are! You are infinite potential.
However, no matter how well we circumnavigate our challenges, we can sometimes fall into the trap of dwelling on the past, feeling guilty about ‘learning experiences’ (mistakes to the uninitiated) or worrying about the future. How do you avoid such pitfalls? Do you even believe in the latest trend for ‘being present’ and ‘living in the moment’? I was having a conversation with someone recently during which she referred to that phenomena of current thought and said ‘everyone is talking about it but I never live in the present’. Her mind is always focused on the next thing and even worse, on several actions she has to do after the next and all at the same time. She struggles even to be present for her children. ‘Being present is hard’ she said. I wanted to respond that being in the present moment is actually easy if you apply the mindset of ease. But I didn’t. There is nothing so irritating and trite as reducing a philosophy down to a soundbite that will only exacerbate and frustrate. I have been focusing on accepting that was the right decision at the time. No regrets. All is well and all that jazz. I intuited she wasn’t ready or in the frame of mind to hear and we didn’t have time to get into it. It requires digging deep not skimming the surface. Some concepts simply cannot be given justice in the time we have. But I haven’t forgotten it. So, here it is, my friend; a blog anonymously dedicated to you. You know who you are. If you share in the frustration of my dear friend who struggles to make time for herself amongst raising children, working full-time and managing a home and then on top of that trying to nurture a healthy relationship with a partner then I trust you also may find it an enlightening read even if you cannot relate to the ethos for the time being. Perhaps one day it may all click into place for you and bring you as much contentment as it has me and others I know and teach. For now though, please keep an open mind because I understand that this goes against your every natural instinct. If you are tired and drained, wondering how on earth you can continue to hold on because you are running on empty then this is for you.
Now this is really radical. What if, as others have found, practicing being in the present moment of every day life could actually prosper you financially, allow you to grasp opportunities and experiences that you could not otherwise see, give you more time for the things you enjoy and improve your health? I use the word practice because it does demand exactly that. It is a skill like any other which calls for concentration and intent. After all you will be breaking down the barrier of conventional thought and habit that you have fostered for years! For too long, we have been encouraged to work longer and harder to achieve success in any area. It will seem like the most unnatural exercise at first because it goes against everything you have been taught. You have literally come to fully identify yourself with a paradigm that dictates to you and enslaves you to the rhythm. What if I can get you to a point, by the end of this blog, where you actually understand the concept and it makes sense? It’s worth a go, right? After all, it would in all likelihood be impossible to sustain your current schedule with happy outcomes in the long term. My mission is to break down the walls of your entrapment and help set you free to live a life worth living by questioning the legitimacy of your current mindset. I know it sounds like achieving peace and completing your daily responsibilities is a tall order but it really isn’t. It is within your easy grasp. But it does take will and application.
Just take one minute to contemplate how successful you could be in every area of your life if you were able to be fully allowing yourself to interact with every moment. By being fully present, you would notice every nuance, every detail, every opportunity within any conversation; be it at work, with your partner, with your children, with your friends or even with the person next to you at the supermarket. Every day there are countless opportunities you are missing by being ever engrossed in your thoughts of your past or your future or indeed your massive to do list. I get so much more done by writing to do lists and fully focusing on them; one thing at a time. If you fully engage with each moment; you will find you will get more done not less but in less time. You will also establish time saving ways of conducting those tasks or find that you are more enlightened in your thinking as the whole of your brain is fully engaged in the process at hand. Think of a computer with lots of programmes running simultaneously. The computer operates slowly if there are several programmes open at once especially if you are attempting to download at the same time. Your brain is just the same.
If you can encourage yourself to be fully present for more of your day then you will gradually notice your energy levels increase. You will also find, over time, that you have more time to do things that you love or more time for family and friends because you are working smarter for shorter hours not harder for longer hours. Simply set the intention and recognise your desire to improve and change your practice. Be grateful when you accomplish it even for 5 minutes and trust that eventually your continued intention to practice living in the moment will reap dividends as you improve your quality of life at home and at work for more and more of your day. This practice really has the power to improve all of your relationships dramatically. It will help with understanding and problem solving and will go a long way to saving your sanity. Above all, embrace the learning experiences of the process and allow yourself to be perfectly imperfect for as long as it takes. Feed your soul by taking time to resonate with the colour of laughter or to absorb the vibration of a sunset. I encourage you to fully immerse yourself in moments with gratitude. Absorb the sense of peace that fully engaging brings. This is the fuel for an accomplished life. Always remember you will never adequately solve a problem by worrying about it so let go and simply let the answers come to mind. If they don’t come to mind then you are exhausted and drained so go meditate, play for a while or even take a soak in the bath. If the resolution still doesn’t come to mind then let go and wait. Control is the mother of restriction. It constricts and suffocates. Sometimes a situation that is afflicting you just needs to breath so give it the space to do so. Other times it may even resolve itself. As you increasingly develop your skill in living in the present; you may see a solution directly in front of you that may not otherwise have ever occurred to you.
This is a way of life which is as important for optimum brain function, health and prosperity as feeding yourself and drinking water. Epiphanies often come by way of distraction so take time to do the things you love but most importantly take the time to love yourself. Ask yourself this question often, ‘What would someone who loved themselves do?’ So Happy New Year to you all. If you set this one intention for 2017 then you will dramatically improve your life and circumstance. The present is a gift you can open any moment. It never comes again. Cherish it.