Harness Your Mind Now

We learn to protect ourselves from pain – sometimes to such an extent that we destroy ourselves, our self esteem, our relationships.

Can we change? We can – we aren’t leopards. There is hope for anyone to change, if they choose to change. It may be instant or it may take considerable time, where you spend time in analysis to figure out why you acted in the way you did, why you made the choices you made – but and only where you use the information to move you forward.

There are many reasons why we don’t change. In the first instance we may not even be aware that we are continue to do the wrong things for all the right reasons, and the cycle perpetuates itself. Or it may be that we don’t change because we are not sure if it is possible to do things differently. Yet if we continue to do what we have always done, why should we be surprised that we continue to get the same results time after time.

What if we gave ourselves permission to try something different? What if it what we tried didn’t work – could we be gentle enough on ourselves to acknowledge the bravery that made us try something different, and wise enough to learn the lessons from that failure so we can try something else?

If we live the lives we want to live we can’t continue to constantly worry about other people, what they want, their problems, their issues. They are responsible for choosing their own path in life, so remind them of that. If you feel that you are always thinking of others needs, trying to help them, always giving never accepting, always controlling or being controlled, or feeling angry, upset or used then you may have deeper issues to deal with and a therapy such as Cognitive Behaviour Therapy may help.

If your moods are dependant on others moods or behaviour, then there is hope – for there is absolutely no need for this to be the case. You decide how you think. And making that choice to harness your mind is the most significant change you might ever make in your life.

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Make every yesterday a memory of happiness

This is an ancient Sanskrit poem …the wisdom echoes down over the centuries…..

A Life Well Lived

Look well to this day
For it is life
The very best of life.
In its brief course lie all
The realities and truths of existence,
The joy of growth, the splendour of action,
The glory of power.
For yesterday is but a memory.
And tomorrow is only a vision.
But today well lived
Makes every yesterday a memory of happiness
And every tomorrow a vision of hope.
Look well, therefore to this day.

 

Live Life Large by Sydney Philip

So many of us want to make a difference and so few of us believe that we can. But as human beings we were designed to dream, to create, to imagine, to express ourselves to share ideas, to progress. We don’t try because we don’t believe we can and we fear failure, we fear looking foolish, we fear the brutal consequences we imagine must lie in wait for the brave and adventurous. There are those who inspire us, those who teach us, those whom we can aspire to follow. And we can follow, we can be as brave and adventurous as anyone we know or have heard of. First we must shatter the myth that these brave and adventurous people know no fear. The fact is that those who ‘dare to do’ fear all of the same things that you do. The difference is that they don’t allow these fears to prevent them from pursuing their dreams and they fear other things more.

They fear dying without ever having truly lived, they fear being left with too many what ifs, they fear finding themselves at the end of their lives with a list of ‘dreams to do’ that have all been left undone. They choose to live “yes I can” not “no I couldn’t”. They choose to live LARGE.”

Sydney Philips

 

Get a life. Look at the view.

Anna Quindlen (Pulitzer Prize author) gave this speech at a graduation ceremony. It’s wise advice for anyone…

I’m a novelist. My work is human nature. Real life is all I know. Don’t ever confuse the two, your life and your work. You will walk out of here this afternoon with only one thing that no one else has. There will be hundreds of people out there with your same degree: there will be thousands of people doing what you want to do for a living. But you will be the only person alive who has sole custody of your life. Your particular life. Your entire life. Not just your life at a desk or your life on a bus or in a car or at the computer. Not just the life of your mind, but the life of your heart. Not just your bank accounts but also your soul.

People don’t talk about the soul very much anymore. It’s so much easier to write a resume than to craft a spirit. But a resume is cold comfort on a winter’s night, or when you’re sad, or broke, or lonely, or when you’ve received your test results and they’re not so good.

Here is my resume: I am a good mother to three children. I have tried never to let my work stand in the way of being a good parent. I no longer consider myself the centre of the universe. I show up. I listen. I try to laugh. I am a good friend to my husband. I have tried to make marriage vows mean what they say. I am a good friend to my friends and them to me.

Without them, there would be nothing to say to you today, because I would be a cardboard cut out. But I call them on the phone and I meet them for lunch. I would be rotten, at best mediocre, at my job if those other things were not true.

You cannot be really first rate at your work if your work is all you are. So here’s what I wanted to tell you today: Get a life. A real life, not a manic pursuit of the next promotion, the bigger pay cheque, the larger house.

Do you think you’d care so very much about those things if you blew an aneurysm one afternoon or found a lump in your breast?

Get a life in which you notice the smell of salt water pushing itself on a breeze at the seaside, a life in which you stop and watch how a red-tailed hawk circles over the water, or the way a baby scowls with concentration when she tries to pick up a sweet with her thumb and first finger.

Get a life in which you are not alone. Find people you love, and who love you. And remember that love is not leisure, it is work. Pick up the phone. Send an email. Write a letter. Get a life in which you are generous. And realize that life is the best thing ever, and that you have no business taking it for granted.

Care so deeply about its goodness that you want to spread it around. Take money you would have spent on beer and give it to charity. Work in a soup kitchen. Be a big brother or sister. All of you want to do well. But if you do not do good too, then doing well will never be enough.

It is so easy to waste our lives, our days, our hours, and our minutes. It is so easy to take for granted the colour of our kids’ eyes, the way the melody in a symphony rises and falls and disappears and rises again. It is so easy to exist instead of to live.

I learned to live many years ago. I learned to love the journey, not the destination. I learned that it is not a dress rehearsal, and that today is the only guarantee you get. I learned to look at all the good in the world and try to give some of it back because I believed in it, completely and utterly. And I tried to do that, in part, by telling others what I had learned. By telling them this: Consider the lilies of the field. Look at the fuzz on a baby’s ear. Read in the back yard with the sun on your face.

Learn to be happy. And think of life as a terminal illness, because if you do, you will live it with joy and passion as it ought to be lived

Look at the view.

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Choose a better future; choose love, not fear.

 

What happened in the past happened. It’s the stories we attach to it, how we interpret it, that move us forward or keep us stuck there. The same thing (more or less) will have happened to someone in the world at some point in history, yet they will have forgotten or forgiven it, or learned lessons that allowed them to teach and serve the world in a better way.

To be numbed by it, stuck in it, restrained or fettered by it is a waste of your own precious life. Pain and suffering are an inside job that create your outside life. Choose to let go, to tell your story in a different way that owns the experience but lets go the pain. Choose a better future, choose love, not fear.

Dare to be happier.

When Death Comes – by Mary Oliver… (or really how to live your life!)

When death comes

like the hungry bear in autumn;

when death comes and takes all the bright coins from his purse

to buy me, and snaps the purse shut;

when death comes

like the measle-pox

when death comes

like an iceberg between the shoulder blades,

I want to step through the door full of curiosity, wondering:

what is it going to be like, that cottage of darkness?

And therefore I look upon everything

as a brotherhood and a sisterhood,

and I look upon time as no more than an idea,

and I consider eternity as another possibility,

and I think of each life as a flower, as common

as a field daisy, and as singular,

and each name a comfortable music in the mouth,

tending, as all music does, toward silence,

and each body a lion of courage, and something

precious to the earth.

When it’s over, I want to say all my life

I was a bride married to amazement.

I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it’s over, I don’t want to wonder

if I have made of my life something particular, and real.

I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,

or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

Mary Oliver

The Journey by Mary Oliver

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice —
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do —
determined to save
the only life you could save.