The best security we have is in who we decide to be, who our relationships are, and our faith in the higher power.
This winter I realized that I was craving for some things from my past, like video games from my childhood. And I found a way to start playing some again, and it’s been great 🙂
I noticed once, in my very cold apartment, that thinking fondly of things from the past, from my warm past, actually made me feel warm physically and as if I was not alone. It was a beautiful moment and revelation.
Here is a brief online article about how nostalgia has been found to literally reduce mild pain: https://neurosciencenews.com/nostalgia-pain-20114/
And here is a New York Times piece on many benefits of nostalgia which I personally found very surprising: https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/26/briefing/nostalgia-oscars-mardi-gras.html
If you don’t have access to the New York Times article you can look at the Wikipedia entry for nostalgia which mentions a lot of the psychological benefits I found surprising: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nostalgia
Cheers to a warm past reaching out to give us comfort, security and hope in the Present.
Allowing / Appreciating versus Pulling / Feeding:
If I find myself energetically feeding on someone, whether feeding through their body or some other way, and I tell myself and get myself to stop, I find that it equates to a change from taking to allowing. And inevitably that allowing transforms into or invites my appreciation.
So that got me thinking: if I did more appreciating of how things turn out and allowing instead of pulling, then I’d be more open to how Life wants to turn out, and I think I would be more aligned with the purpose and meaning of Life, which may be to: be surprised and enjoy it.
Had a thought that consciousness might not even be an option, and that we may never be able to truly turn it off.
If that is the case, it creates the incentive to get more comfortable with it. To get better at appreciating and enjoying what we are conscious of.
A short radio excerpt:
As I take a little time to reflect,
I give you all my peace and respect.
I’m feeling pretty good. From this year I think I picked up a better sense of balance. Balance between trying my hardest, and making sure to stick with my greatest values: one of which is to enjoy myself. So, a balance between self-enjoyment, and trying my hardest. While knowing that the well-being of loved ones is top priority, while also keeping in mind well-being of the world.
I also realized that I love teaching. Maybe I will focus on that, instead of trying to get a more high-paying job that requires work which I struggle to enjoy or find meaning with.
When I think of what the world needs, it probably boils down to compassion.
Things just keep ticking, huh?
Keep the faith. Keeping a good mentality makes a huge difference.
I dream my dreams, but are my dreams dreaming me?
Right now, looks like I’m going through another identity shift or movement.
Im wondering whether I need to relax on myself, and my standards of discipline, a little, so that more joy enters my life.
I work really hard and diligently. My life is filled with beauty, love, blessings, and grace. Even with all these blessings, I have been missing a more consistent joy that I want. Even acknowledging that I want this joy, and having an idea of how to allow it (by relaxing more on my requirements and discipline), I feel better and more relaxed. Truly, I want to treat myself sweeter.💘💘
I need your help for me to grow, get better. I need you to show me the energy of knowing that we are all equal in value.
“Dwell on the beauty of life. Watch the stars, and see yourself running with them.”
“You have power over your mind – not outside events. Realize this, and you will find strength.”
I love this quote about having power over our mind, but not outside events. How I see it:
It’s obvious, if we are paying attention to our lives and circumstances, that we dont have direct control over everything, (and maybe not full direct control over anything). Simply put: out what we can control, we have a lot of power in creating change. But, there are plenty of times when we will receive surprises, and depending on who we are, we may interpret them in various ways, as in “good” or “bad”, etc. We have influence over our interpretation, over the meaning that we derive. And depending on our chosen and effective interpretation, we contribute or “attract” certain outcomes.
Something interesting here: I distinguish between interpretation and view. View is our perspective. If we were looking at an enormous boulder in the woods, and I was on one side and you were on the other, our view / perspective is different. The interpretation is the meaning we make with our perspective. So, to change meaning, you can try to change viewpoint.
So, while I’m with Marcus Aurelius on this quote, I think we have power and influence over both, our mind and outside events, but we will also get surprises. But we have power over how we interpret those surprises, which impacts the present as well as future events.
I made a short video as part of the application process to speak at SXSW Edu, which is a yearly conference on education in Austin, Texas.
Here is the video. Enjoy!!!
I am honored to have been asked to give a presentation to a class of working professional master’s students. The theme is: being healthy. These are the general notes I put together for the presentation.
What are your values?
- In other words, what are your priorities?
- We can only maintain a few priorities at the very top
- Find your values, and stick to that
- You are being who you want to be
- Self-discovery takes a lifetime
What happens when you live your values?
- You feel good about yourself
- You feel more meaning and fulfillment
- You forgive yourself and others more
- You are more willing to do the hard work
- You channel more positive energy
- You help the world
A more healthier you is a more healthier world
- We are all connected; we are all One; we are all part of the same whole
- When you hurt yourself you hurt others, and vice versa
- When you are doing the best for yourself, you are doing the best for others
- Your state of being impacts everyone, everywhere, every single moment, near and far
- The Present is a gift, that’s why they call it the Present
- Honor your gift of being here
- How do you honor it?
- By living fully. Live the moment as deeply as possible
- The moment is a miracle
- You have to be aware of yourself, of your mind, of your emotions
- Emotion regulation; equanimity – healthily manage your emotions
- Being aware of your thoughts allows you to stop negative thinking in the moment
- Positive thinking leads to healthy life and positive results
- How do we increase mindfulness?
- One way is meditation….
Meditation and breathing
- It’s all about the breath
- Always focus on your breath
- Slow breath in
- Just as slow, breathe out
- Breathe into the bottom of your stomach (the diaphragm)
- Diaphragm breathing is calming
- Chest breathing is for fight-or-flight
- Feel the breath fill every part of your body. Be physically present
- Do not judge your thoughts, let them go
- Always come back to the breath
- There are many types of meditation. This is based on the zen way (zazen)
Benefits of meditation
- Eventually adds pauses between thoughts
- More present
- More centered. Accessing answers that are inside of you
- Observing the thoughts, instead of identifying with them
- You are not your mind
- When you can “catch” yourself thinking, you can better direct your thoughts
The practice of meditation
- Meditation is a practice, not a perfect
- Commit to 2 minutes every single day!
- Practicing every day creates geometric growth like compounding interest in a retirement savings
- Good talk therapy is a fantastic compliment to meditation
- Meditation and therapy will illuminate each other
General wellness tips
- Keep your connections with loved ones strong.
- This helps to give you meaning
- Meditate every day, for at least 2 minutes. Every single day
- If there is something in your life that you know needs a change, make the change.
- This has a ripple effect on other parts of your life
- Show Life that you have the courage and commitment for growth and Life will respond to you with rewards and more opportunities
- Turn off all screens at least 1 hour before going to bed
- Do NOT look at your cell phone in the middle of the night
- Do not look at the cell phone when first waking up
- Use blue-light blocking lenses
- Reduces eye strain
- Detach from social media
- Give yourself breaks from external stimuli
- Your subconscious needs space and time to process things
- Balance mind, body and spirit
- They each affect the other
- Get out into nature
- Nature is a fantastic teacher of wisdom
- Consider allowing things to happen, instead of forcing them happen
- Don’t burn out! You are no good to anyone if you burn out.
- Burnout often is permanent. Once you burn out you may be completely done with this industry
- Maintain health and balance. You cannot continue a sprint indefinitely. You must go at a pace you can keep.
- Have compassion for yourself and others. This reduces the chance of burnout
- Learn your sleep cycles
- Start the day in calmness
- Start and end the day by thinking about what you are grateful for.
- Keep a journal and / or a dream journal
- Journaling helps you understand your subconscious
- Replace whatever you are drinking with water
- Don’t skip meals
- Eat your last meal early, so there is time to digest before going to bed
- You will feel lighter in the morning
- Chew completely. Your stomach doesn’t have teeth
- Eat in peace. Eating is a spiritual practice.
- Treat people like humans.
The other day I sat in a webinar where I heard LL Cool J say something very close to the following:
Humility is a super power. And I’m not talking about pseudo humility, where you are sitting at the back pew of the church thinking you should be sitting in the front. I’m talking about real humility – having the confidence to be humble; embracing your humanity.
There’s strength, peace & increased faith that comes with being more spiritual. It’s a daily battle.
Trials & struggles often test your faith & spirituality & show aspects of character deficiencies. They are opportunities for deeper spiritual growth. Regardless of how you feel continue to press on.
-Talia Dyce, Nurse & Friend Extraordinaire
If there is nothing to do, then wait.
For all our goals and aspirations, sometimes we just feel or think we have done all we could do. Maybe you have. It doesn’t mean the goal or aspiration won’t crystallize. Maybe it just requires the right timing – a timing you may not be aware of, sort of like celestial gears of a universal clock moving along, till at some point, click! The right thing has clicked into the right place, simply because the time required has finally transpired.
Like a fruit tree, or a cannabis plant. We may want the “fruit” of this plant, but we can’t force it to give fruit right after we plant it. Sometimes you have given all the water and light and nutrients it needs, and all that is left to give, is time.
How do you appreciate something beyond being grateful? En-joy it. Live it. Liiiiiiiiiiive it.
Our health is connected to our neighbor’s health.
I heard this statement somewhere on the radio, some days ago.
It’s a reminder that we are all connected.
“Patience, understanding, and helping each other is the best thing we can do at this time” –Z, the landlord
Two quotes from “As a Man Thinketh” by James Allen – the gender references were made neutral:
Here is a rich person who is the victim of a painful and persistent disease as the result of gluttony. That person is willing to give large sums of money to get rid of it, but they will not sacrifice their gluttonous desires. That person wants to gratify their taste for rich and unnatural viands and have their health as well. Such a person is totally unfit to have health, because they have not yet learned the first principles of a healthy life.
… whilst aiming at a good end, this person is continually frustrating its accomplishment by encouraging thoughts and desires which cannot possibly harmonize with that end.
I started a curriculum out of necessity. Essentially it is lots of things covered, some explicitly or implicitly in the first Spark the Flame book, other items being other concepts and connections.
The content naturally formed as a curriculum, a set of guidelines of how the universe has been observed to behave, and ways we can act best.
The order of the lessons / sections are not set in stone and can plausibly change.
Right now these are rough outlines / topics for discussion within a class environmnent.
Section 1: Karma; Interconnectivity
- You get
what you give
- The universe reflects to you who you are being;
- Life as a mirror
- Always see yourself in the other person’s position, because whatever you do to them, comes back to you
- Use your observation to see the direct answer that life gives to who you are being
- Good karma saves your butt when you are in trouble!
cannot get away with anything
- May return in different ways (pain to another causes a proportionate pain to you, but not necessarily the same exact painful event)
- Law of
- Thoughts and feelings attract like things,
thoughts, and feelings
- Works through mind images and feelings
- Also NLP / self-talk
- Neuroplasticity builds energies and points of
attraction into the subconscious
- You are
attracting things all the time: consciously and subconsciously
- Modify the subconscious by exerting the conscious
- You are attracting things all the time: consciously and subconsciously
- Its more personal, the methods that work for you
- Combine all methods that work for you
- Some people use “dream books” and “vision boards”
- My way is to walk with the mindset. It sort of “burns” it, or “overlays” it into the world
- Always stay true to your greatest, loving values
- Watch your thoughts, they do not occur in a vacuum. They bring like-minded thoughts and things into your life
- Thoughts and feelings attract like things, thoughts, and feelings
- STF section on Interconnectivity
- This is part of why Karma and LOA can function anywhere, anytime, with anything
Section 2: Recovery, Salvation, Redemption
an opportunity for course correction
- This is the same as religions saying “God will always take you back / forgive you”
- No matter how deep in ish you have reached, you can ALWAYS make the choice to begin coming back
This was an interview by Tami Simon from Sounds True publishing.
Brené talks about alot here, but she keeps things very simple and fundamental in a way that probably most of us can immediately connect with.
Thank you for this Blessedness
And help me be true to my Loved values.
I really appreciate this actor, Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Every time I encounter him he seems to put a lot of work into himself and being a good, healthy, balanced human.
Here he gives a TED talk on how people who “paying” more attention leads to greater happiness than craving attention. He touches on many related topics such as social media addiction, and also the concept of “flow.”
I’m posting this video here because it alludes to special things about the energy of attention; things that do not seem to be understood or cognizant in the public or private mind.
- I do think people “feed” on and take attention energy
- I think people can also “give” attention energy
- I think these attention energies can have different intonations and vibrations
- And when these energies are digested by humans, I think their effect is much more complicated and impactful than we know.
What do you do when you have control?
You make the right choice.
In other words, act responsibly with the power you wield. This is your chance to perpetuate harmony, or to cause disharmony, in your life. Life will reciprocate to you harmony or disharmony, based on how you handle the power you wield.
Sometimes what is needed and feels better is not necessarily to look on the bright side, but rather to see that the not-so-bright side is actually ok; a natural, normal, human part of life…acceptance.
Very imperfect beings we are.
-Myself accidentally doing a Yoda impression