From Panic to Peace…Your Guide to Meditation.

As the yoga class begins, I hit play on the Native American flute music and it wraps around my soul like a healing balm.  I literally shiver and feel myself becoming more still.  More “clicked” in to this present moment.  I breathe deeply and scan the energies.  What do we need today?

There are so many threads to smooth down at the beginning of a yoga class.  So we always begin with a centering exercise that calms the panic and soothes the soul.  But what if you have never meditated a day in your life?  What if the thought of being still, quiet and centered just seems out of reach?

The truth is, misconceptions to meditation lead to you not wanting to try it.  Most people envision a monk in robes at the top of a mountain sitting in stillness for days.  In reality, we can calm ourselves and really click in to our bodies in as little as 5 minutes.

How can we add this practice to our day?

  1. Clear a space on your calendar for “you” time.  Literally write it in if you have to.  I suggest the first thing in the morning, but if you feel stressed at any point in the day, you repeat your morning practice.
  2. You do not have to sit on the floor, but you do need to straighten your spine, relax your shoulders.  Put your feet flat on the floor if you are in a chair and sit up nice and tall.  The eyes drift closed and focus on the point between your eyebrows.
  3. Start by taking 3 deep cleansing breaths.  You can even repeat this mantra:  I am breathing in (inhale).  I am breathing out (exhale).
  4. As you breathe, focus on how your body feels.  Lift your toes and place them flat on the floor.  Put your hand on your belly and feel it expand like a balloon.  Just breathe.  If thoughts come into your mind, use my leaf imagery.  Place these unwanted thoughts on the leaf and watch it float away from you.  Peacefully down the stream.
  5. Allow your body to sit like this until you feel the tension release and a natural rhythm starts to take over.
  6. If thoughts have come in that you feel are really disturbing your peace, jot them down on a piece of paper after, and if you would like, you can use toilet paper to literally “flush” them away from you.  Ahh.  Release the you-know-what.

This practice can be done at any time, any place.  If you are having a particularly stressful time right now, use the shower meditation as well.  Each time you get in the shower, imagine the water washing off all thoughts of pain, anger, anxiety and only positive thoughts filling you up.  Continue to filter any and all thoughts that do serve you including panic, worry, thoughts of the past or thoughts of the future.  Keep focusing on the word contentment as you wash away worries.

Affirmations to use:

  1. All I need to do right now is breathe.
  2. I am safe and protected.
  3. A warm peaceful energy surrounds me and those I love.
  4. All is well.
  5. With every breath, I become more peaceful.

Interested in a meditative type of journaling practice to increase abundance and gratitude?  Feel free to check out my e-book here. <<< There are over 30 focused prompts to lead your mind to a better focus as well as exercises for the mind, and additional affirmations to use daily.

3 Lessons Rejection Teaches You

Admit it.  We’ve all faced some sort of rejection in our lives.  Sometimes, it feels a lot like failure, but in reality, it can be a blessing in disguise.

I never really liked paying attention in school.  I tried…I really did.  Honestly, there were just too many distractions.  But by the time I got to college, I knew I had to buckle down and so, I decided to graduate at the top of my class.

However, the truth is, none of that stuff matters if you get a degree, go out into the work place, and decide after doing this job for x amount of years, that underneath it all, it was definitely not what you thought it’d be. 

No one ever tells you about all the red tape associated with being a teacher.  There really should be classes on handling policy changes, curriculum changes, then going back to the old way you taught, then handling the parents, and, well you get my drift.  It wasn’t the teaching that I didn’t like.  I loved the learning and the beautiful children I taught.  It was the fact that I had absolutely no creative control what so ever.  Period.

It didn’t matter if I got on the curriculum planning committees, which I did, if I went to all the meetings on “brainstorming” new ways to teach this material, which I did, if I became a chair of a few teams, again, did that.  Nothing seemed to change.  Year, after year, after year.

So the same thinking was yielding the same results and it really was very difficult to live in this situation.  I decided to take a year off, and by that time, I was already dealing with health issues, so it really seemed a good time to think about what was happening in my career.

3 Lessons I Learned:

  1. Sometimes, rejection is a new lesson in what you don’t want.  I decided that I wanted to help a non-profit in some sort of form…at least I really thought I did.  As I looked at tons of job listings, I found one that looked “too good to be true” as it appeared made for me.  After applying, I thought to myself, why did I just do that??  I panicked.  I wasn’t ready for this big job.  I was actually called by a head hunter and had about 3 interviews, before the 2.5 hours interview in person.  The head hunter loved me…and at least one of the ladies in the panel seemed to love me.  The two who I would be working with; however, did not.  My ideas were too radical, except for the part where they were taking notes and saying “I’ve never thought about it that way.” I got a gut sensation that for whatever reason, the head lady instantly didn’t like me.  I was much better off as this job was actually 40 minutes from my home.
  2. Trust your gut feeling.  So I wish I had just turned around and walked out upon shaking the CEO’s hand, but I was actually invited to a lunch after…when I knew that I would never want to work there even if they offered me the job.  Energy never lies to me.  I stuck it out to make a good impression, and because honestly, I have manners.  Just because she was a prickly witch didn’t mean that one day I wouldn’t run into one of those people…somewhere down the line.  I knew it wasn’t right for me, but I stayed for my peace of mind.  Not theirs.
  3. Turn the lesson into a positive one.  Do NOT think about what you could have done differently.  That is what you are doing, isn’t it?  Instead, think about the ways in which this has taught you something.  For me, it taught me that I was actually one of the top three with almost zero experience for this really high-powered job, because I believed I could do it.  I had some of the qualifications and a true passion for what the organization was about.  That didn’t actually turn out, but to be a top three, the head hunter, who does this type of thing all the time, said my answers were the best.  I was still proud of myself.  And ermmm to be honest, I was proud of myself for not answering snarkily to the really dumb questions that I was being asked.  I could tell they were trying to catch me off guard, but I just kept on answering.  Two and half hours.  <<< I can’t get that back, but it taught me to stay cool.

I hope whatever your rejection is, that in the end, you see it really is pointing you in a better direction!

Rejection Note:  You might like this post on using gratitude to move forward.

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5 Signs You Are Over Thinking (And what to do about it)!

You have a choice to make.  A decision.  You listen to the chatter in your head for hours, days maybe and still can’t decide what to do.  Your heart knows the right answer.  But you keep listening to the chatter.  Did you know 73% of 25-35 year-olds identified as over thinkers?  More women (57%) find themselves over thinking than men (43%).

If you find yourself obsessing, over thinking, and not being able to stop, you need to change the thoughts immediately!!   

5 Signs You Are Over Thinking:

  1. You change clothes quite a few times before finally deciding on what to wear.  Solution:  Pick out your clothes the night before.  Everything, down to the accessories, and try it all on.  No matter what, stick with it.
  2. You are so busy running in a negative state of mind, that you can’t see past the situation.  The here and now.  Solution:  Get outside.  Change what you are doing right now.  Drop that thought and everything that comes with it.  Go on a bike ride, a walk, take a yoga class.  Move forward into the present.
  3. You don’t take time for yourself because you are too busy thinking about things that could go wrong.  You say no to new opportunities, new friends, and possibly new yoga classes because you might do something wrong.  Solution: Say yes.  Really, as soon as someone asks you to something that your body immediately thinks YES to, just say it without over thinking what could go wrong.  Your gut instinct and your heart are telling you to listen.  It’s your brain that is over thinking.  You have to change the pattern of the old ways by listening to your heart and gut feelings.  Here is what I like to do to get away:  Get outside and preserve my spirit. 
  4. You stay up all night thinking about the thing that happened.  The worst case scenario of that thing.  Maybe that pain was cancer?  You go from fine to spontaneously combusting in your head.  Solution:  Journaling all your thoughts out before you go to bed.  All the negatives in your head.  Then you write everything as you wish it will happen like in my manifesting journal article.  You write how it will go in the positive and believe it.
  5. The cycle of over thinking creates anger, jealousy, fear, betrayal, doubt, indecision and more in your real life.  Solution:  You have to take a step back and look at the process of letting go.  Get out of your head and let it all go.  Let go of the feeling that distract you from your higher purpose.  You can’t live your life in your head.  Start to come back to the body, the breath and this moment.  Slow down.  Be present and be real.  This is the only way to stop this process.  For me, it’s getting into my flow.  As you know that’s writing, yoga and reading a good book.  Gardening, hiking and more also fall on this list.  Time stops.  The world comes to a halt when I am in my flow.  Find that activity that makes your heart sing and stop the chatter.

Negative people