Just Because it’s Different …

We all tend to think that our thinking is the truth, and what we believe is right. As we grow up and experience the highs and lows of life, we can either hold on to those ways, or be open to understanding other ways.

Moving to a new country is eye opening and life changing. When I came over   to live in the USA, I immediately noticed lots of unexpected differences in the way that people think, how they see the world, what they value, and how they behave … especially in public.

“Just because it’s different doesn’t mean its bad.”

This was the key message I shared with newcomers to the USA and people moving to Europe from here. I became a cross cultural trainer to increase awareness of differences and to share ways towards understanding, acceptance and integrating into in a new culture.

Living in an other country makes us aware of how we are different, as well as how we judge others for being not like us.

We all grow up in our own family, society, group and culture. We form our beliefs, make assumptions and take actions based on our conditioning and the teaching that is continually reinforced in our subconscious.

In a world where differences are spotlighted in the press and social media, it isn’t easy to find a state of balance.

May we all let go of assumptions and become open to differences. May we be curious about others and take time to understand their perspective.

May we not forget, that despite differences, we are all connected in humanity and love.

This is what truly brings us together.

Namaste

rain in England

Two Myths Take a Hike

two men on mountain

ID 81700291 © Anna Spilkova | Dreamstime.com

Atlas is always shouldering his load.
You know the feeling – the weight
of everything pressing in, suffocating.

And there is Sisyphus pushing the
boulder uphill, over and over. Two
posters boys for ceaseless effort.

But what if (now here’s a radical idea).
the way of transformation is not a
long or tortured change?

What if its just being here, this moment,
now, complete and whole? what if you
could whisper in Atlas’s big ear, “It’s
time to let go. Really. The heavens will
not disappear if you put your burden down.”

Imagine him thinking about it. Imagine
him believing. See him set the load down,
straighten up, stretch, smile, stride over to
Sisyphus and say something you can’t hear.

See the stone roll down, and Sisyphus
choose not to follow. You are the witness
to the shouts of joy, the head shaking
wonder and relief – you mean its that easy?

Imagine the spring in their step, the lightness
of their laughter as they climb that hill and
disappear from view.

~ Danna Faulds

Lighten up my friends. Lighten up.

Living From a Place of Surrender

© creativecommonsstockphotos- ID 82953749 | Dreamstime Stock Photos

“If we pay attention, we will realize that every moment around us, there is a world that we did not create that’s been there for 13.8 billion years, and there’s trillions of cells in your body that are doing what they’re supposed to do, and all of nature, everything.

You wake up and you realize, “I’m not doing any of this. I didn’t make my body. I didn’t make my mind think. I don’t make my heart beat. I don’t make my breath breathe, etc, etc, yet I have this notion that I have to make things happen. Yet, all throughout the universe, things are happening everywhere and I’m not doing them, so why exactly am I the one that’s in charge of what’s unfolding in front of me?”

What you realize at some point is that you’re not; that the moment in front of you that’s unfolding is no different than all the zillions of other moments that aren’t in front of you that are unfolding in accordance to the laws of nature, the laws of creation.

You start to practice saying, “I don’t want to check inside of me first to see what I want and what I don’t want. I want to pay attention to what the universe is creating in front of me just like it’s creating everywhere were I’m not, and let me see how I can participate in that, be part of that instead of interfering with it with my desires and my fears.” That’s living from a place of surrender.”

~ Michael Singer

 

Wake up to everything that is around you.

What is the universe creating for you?

Pay attention and shift your perspective.

Let go, and live life fully.

* Haiku – Unfolding Year

As you read this, I will be landing in Scotland for a week with the family, and connecting to my roots. I send you with this message for the New Year.

Homeland

~

Let the year unfold

with kind heart and open mind. 

Hold your Middle Ground

~

Wishing you a Happy and Healthy New Year. May we all find peace and appreciate the little things that matter the most.

 

If you are new to this site welcome!

Follow these links to find out more about finding your middle ground and the steps to take you there.

Namaste

* Tao Wisdom – shift perspectives

Submit and transcend:

Divergence becomes patterned,

Empty becomes potential,

Used becomes renewed,

Basic becomes foundation,

Complexity becomes confusion.

The sage embraces what is rather than what should be.

We would do well to mimic this.*

~Lao Tzu

 

I love these shifts in how we can change our thinking and our reality.

We would indeed do well to mimic this.

 

*Braun Jr., John; Tzu, Lao; von Bargen, Julian; Warkentin, David (2012-12-02). Tao Te Ching (Kindle Locations 349-355). . Kindle Edition.

* The Four Keys to Being Present

This is second part of the article Being Present at Work. In this post I’d like to share the 4 keys to help you become more present.

smiling woman at work

1. Break the Habit of Multitasking

When we multitask, no one person or activity gets our attention, and in small and large ways, our relationships with others can suffer. Here are some practices to commit to:

  1. Give full attention when someone comes into the office or you answer the phone:
  • Stop what you are doing and turn your body towards the person. Smile and breathe.
  • Decide whether this is a good time to talk or schedule for later.
  • Commit to making human contact with this person 😊
  1. Focus in when you have an important task to do:
  • Set time aside to commit to this task and eliminate all distractions – people interruptions, email, phone etc.
  • Relax your body and stretch. Take a couple of deep breaths to center yourself. Focus on the task at hand.

2. Check in With Yourself – feel your feet and breathe

Taking time to pause and check in with yourself during the day is invaluable in being present at work. Some people use a phone app with programed alerts, while others plan short break at certain times or when doing certain tasks. It only takes a moment to pause. (When we remember!)

When we think and worry too much we are in our head. When we notice this its time to ask “Am I present?” “What’s going on with my breath?” “Is there tension in my body?”

– Sit comfortably with your back straight. Feel your feet firmly planted on the ground. Feeling the nerves in the soles of your feet will keep you grounded.

– Take a full diaphragmatic breath. Place your hand on your belly and feel your belly expanding with each inhale and coming back to the spine with each exhale. Under stress or exertion we tend to breath from our chest. Full diaphragmatic breaths calm the vagus nerve and the fight or flight response.

You cannot avoid being in the present if you concentrate on your breath.

content man meditating3. Change your Perspective – transform your inner critic

Recognize that the inner critic is a distinct voice that is not you. It’s usually a combination of voices from the past. These negative beliefs come from fear and will sabotage us – especially when we step out of our comfort zone or are stressed. Recognize the voice and verbalize it. Look beyond the voice and find a bigger place to come from. For example:

– Think of a time in your life when you overcame fear and accomplished something important to you. Feel that personal pride.

– Think of someone who gives you love and support. Keep that person in mind and recall how they treated you.

– Laugh at yourself. Humor always helps diminish the critic. Lighten up its only the inner critic!

– Focus on your goal and intention – the outcome you want to achieve and the feeling you want to feel when you’ve achieved it!

– Focus on others instead of yourself. Who is there who would appreciate your support right now?

– Do something pleasurable because our inner critic hates pleasure and wants to keep us feeling miserable.

4. Let Thoughts go – experience the experience

Something powerful can happen when we accept our fear and embrace it – it diminishes! As Carl Jung said, “What we resist will persist”, and that is true for the fear in our head. Don’t be afraid to focus on the fear or feeling. By accepting it for what it is, we can free ourselves from the reaction in our minds.

An additional step is to focus on the sensations in the body, rather than the thoughts or judgements. Feel that flutter in the stomach, the dry mouth and the sweaty palms. Breathe through it and observe your body calming.
Experience the experience.