In a couple of wonderfully powerful sessions with clients this week, we worked a great deal on awareness and focus. I feel strongly that daily life is most enjoyable and satisfying when it is a reflection of what we value, what we want and who we truly are. It’s so easy, however, to get distracted by the hectic pace life sometimes takes on. To be pulled off center. Or to be swayed by things, people, and situations around us that can be a little hypnotic and seductive. Being conscious, aware, and present to the present helps prevent the “creep” (life creep…similar to project creep) life can make into what we don’t want, without even realizing it. Before we know it our life is organized around obligation and has settled into default mode.
In support of being more aware and conscious and out of worry and mental chatter, I have two tools to share today. The first is to help cultivate the discipline to stay connected to you, which is critical to being in present moment (which is actually the only real moment) and conscious. Are you familiar with that sensation when you suddenly become aware that you’ve been thinking and worrying for some period of time? A few minutes…a few hours. You’re suddenly aware of you, aware of your thoughts and aware that you’re thinking your thoughts. Instead of just swimming in your thoughts.
There’s the worrying or thinking, the actual doing/experiencing it. And then there’s the witnessing it, as my friend Barb With points out. Being the witness is the place where you are noticing you and what’s happening. This place of witness/observer can be such a friend to you, because you can’t change something until you see…see how “it” is right now. When I become aware that I’m lost in thought or worry, I know I have a tool for that.
Stop. Breathe. Re-choose.
I was introduced to it in the Tobias materials and then learned to master it with the help of Barb. First, I notice. It used to take a half day of spinning in worry, more recently it’s just a minute or two. Second, I stop. I stop thinking. I stop trying to figure it out. I just stop. Next, I take a deep breath (of course!). Usually a few minutes of deep breaths. It starts the flow of ease again, the flow of your own energies. It helps get me out of my head and into my heart and into my body. I begin to relax a bit. I stop gripping or resisting more easily with the breath. I take some time to get clear about what I need or want. I can more easily see my resources. I ask myself: What do I want? How do I want this to go? Then, I rechoose. Most often it’s something like ease and grace or efficiency or clarity…or all of them! Then, I allow that bigger part of me to go to work, the part that can see things from 10,000 feet and that can more creatively solve problems. I let it come to me…a feeling, a lifting of the mental fog, a knowingness, an inspired action to take, a creative solution, a resource or some support. I allow it. No forcing (the new force is no force). No pushing (you can’t push the river). Allowing. Trusting myself. Trusting that it’ll all come to me. And in my experience, it does.
To help keep my mind from slipping back into the chatter, to keep it occupied in a “positive” manner so it’s not tempted to go into the chatter and worry, I employ another tool that I learned from Esther Hicks. It’s called the Rampage of Appreciation. Appreciating things is a great way to get yourself pointed downstream, allowing the easy flow, in a powerful way. If worry and mental spinning is an upstream paddling/efforting, then a rampage of appreciation is flowing downstream.
As soon as I notice the banter or negative spinning, I hear a little voice in my head saying “Turn the boat around. Lift your paddles. Let yourself turn. Everything you want is downstream.” So I stop, take a deep breath, and start appreciating. It can be about anything, something as mundane as driving. Let me give you an example:
I’m driving down the road and I start saying to myself in my head or out loud…either works…
It sure is nice to drive on dry roads. I appreciate all the safe drivers around me today. How nice it is to live in a place where I see a highway patrolman who is helpful to that stranded driver. I love my car. I love it so much that I gave it a name. When I turn the key it starts. It always gets me where I want to go. It’s clean and efficient.
And so on…
You can do this with anything that you want to focus your appreciation on…your passions, music on the radio, your creations, the deliciousness of your lunch, your relationships. And then notice how you begin to feel relief. Notice how your mind stops clicking negative thoughts and working in a positive, supportive way. And you just feel better.
Both tools. Simple. Effective. Free (but priceless). ; )
Images found on Pinterest
Images by Antonio Mora