Getting Clear about Transformation

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Most of us spend our time and energy trying to transform our experience of life. When things are difficult, we blame circumstances, someone else, or ourselves. We take on new things and make new goals. We may change jobs, move house, or get divorced, to move away from our circumstances.

We move away from the discomfort.

And we somehow find ourselves feeling the same way in the next job, the next house, the next marriage …

In this society we are constantly being pressured to focus on the external and to acquire things in order to be “successful” and to feel good about ourselves. The message is “you deserve better” or “this will make you happy”.

Instead of moving from job to job, wanting things to be different and wishing for events to change, pause and notice how you are resisting what you are experiencing right now. Are you telling yourself “I deserve better”? rather than trying to understand your experience.

It is the relationship with what is happening that is causing the pain rather than the situation itself. The relationship between you and the situation is one of resistance and frustration with what is.

But you are only changing the external situation, and the chances are you will start to feel the same again, unless you take time to look at what is going within you that is getting in the way of transformation.

What if our purpose in life is to understand our external experience and how we relate to it? or Seeing all of our experience as lessons in life?

When we start to look into our experience with curiosity and an accepting mind, we can bring about real change.

Its an inside out job.

Here are some powerful questions to ask yourself to bring about inner transformation:

  • How do I want to feel ….? at work/in my marriage/in my relations with my children etc. Imagine your future self and what it feels like.
  • How am I contributing to this situation? What attitude adjustment do I need to make?
  • What actions would support this? What do I need to do differently?
  • What support do I need to bring it about? What resources do I already have?

 

Getting More Comfortable with Growth

seed sprouts after rain

In an earlier post about Stephen Hawking’s Universal Law of Growth we discovered that growing is a natural law that everything in nature must do. We cannot NOT grow.

Yet for many of us, personal growth can be a real challenge. Why is that?

Growth never happens in the comfortable.

As long as we perceive a “comfort zone” our ego-mind will be alert to anything that takes us out of it, and therefore into risky and vulnerable territory.

So how can we make growth easier?

Here are some perspectives that have helped me and my clients over the years.

  1. Embrace the idea that growth is natural. Knowing that, is reassuring.
  2. Expect resistance to show up and be ready for some discomfort.  This is natural too. There is nothing wrong with you.
  3. We have the ability to create the environment for us to be successful. For example, if we commit to taking better care of our bodies, then we can sign up for yoga classes; download a fitness app; stop going down the cookie aisle; set our sneakers next to our bed in the morning etc…. Keep exploring and be curious about what works best for you.
  4. Find a healthy stretch not a torturous unrealistic one. Let go of being someone who you are not! Let me repeat that. Stop resisting who you think you are. Accept yourself as this glorious flawed human being. Find your own growing edge and start working from there – step by simple step.
  5. Align any changes with what really matters. Give it real meaning –  from your heart and soul. Real growth never comes from a “should” or fear of consequences. Without inspiration change cannot thrive.
  6. Make space. You can’t keep adding to your knowledge without creating space for the new. Which often means letting go of what no longer supports you. Be prepared to let go … of many things including your own beliefs.

Spring is the natural time of year for growth and applying these principles. If you really want to grow, tune in to yourself and the word around you.

* Choose your Thinking and Change your Life

flower and butterfly

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“Hatred cannot coexist with loving-kindness, and dissipates if supplanted with thoughts based on loving-kindness.” ~ The Buddha

Modern research concurs. We cannot be relaxed and stressed at the same time … or grateful and resentful …  or forgiving and vengeful.
When we bring awareness to the present moment we can’t be regretting the past, or worrying about the future.

Quite simply, we cannot experience both positive emotions and negative emotions at the same time. Try to hold both at the same time right now. It isn’t possible.

Anxiety and relaxation can’t coexist. Neither can resentment and gratitude. When we become aware, we can choose to let gratitude in. We can choose to forgive… be kind… relax…

So, the next time you’re feeling anxious, see if you can deliberately relax by breathing deeply, releasing the tension in your body and smiling.

And, when you’re feeling resentful towards life or someone in it, see if you can let that emotion go by focusing on something you are truly grateful for.

Come into the present moment, notice without judgment your thoughts and feelings, then choose from your heart.
It will change your life.

Namaste