“Gratitude is the memory of the heart” – Massieu
“Grace is the outward expression of the inward harmony of the Soul” – William Hazlitt
Lets’ delve a little deeper and build on what we have learned over the last 2 months to make lasting changes. We will look at the following:
1. Your Why and Your Purpose
2. Your power morning routine
3. Breathing – Additional empowering breathing techniques
4. Different Stressors
What is your Why and your Purpose?
Being in tune with your purpose, means you are in harmony with your higher-self. The more in harmony you are, the less stress you will experience and the more fulfilled and meaningful your life will be.
“There is a model called “Salutogenesis”. According to this model, when you are in a state of coherence, you are likely to live longer, enjoy a good quality of life and enjoy good mental and physical well-being. In short, such a person will be dancing through the chaos of life. In a state of coherence, your degree of personal confidence is high, your life and its demands are meaningful and you feel you have the resources to meets life’s challenges: You are able to Change, Adapt and Thrive” – Dr Venning
“3 Components to being in a state of coherence as per A Antonovksy”
1. Meaningfulness – The belief that things in your life make sense emotionally and are sources of fulfillment
2. Manageability – The belief that you have the ability and resources to meet the demands you may face.
3. Comprehensibility – The belief that things that confront you are able to be understood”
So why is the WHY so important? Without your WHY, you will have no reason to take action and any action you might take will be purposeless, misguided and random.
Have a listen to these life changing videos on Your Why and Your Purpose:
Complete this exercise in finding your WHY to start living a life of more purpose:
Your power Morning Routine
Throughout the ages, one of the actions that sets successful people apart from the rest, is that they all have a power morning routine. Their morning routine brings calm and focus to their day – it sets them up for a power day. A day which they will run on their terms, instead of letting the day run them. A routine where they are pro-active instead of acting in a reactive way and “winging” whatever life throws at them. They are prepared for even the most unexpected. They visualize the outcomes they expect for the day, they are mindful and grateful.
Have a listen to this video before starting to design and cultivate your very own power routine:
Making it too complicated, does have the probability that 1) you will begin to see it as a chore and shy away from it and 2) make you feel like you are failing because you do not get to it. So it is important that you are realistic, especially in the beginning – remember less is more! It is better to have a short morning routine than not having any at all.
Have a look at this document that will help you to start building yours:
“Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open? “ – Rumi
“Breath is the bridge which connects life to consciousness, which unites your body to your thoughts” – Thich Nhat Hanh
We have touched on breathing and started off with The Box Breathing exercise, which by now you should be doing daily. The importance of breathing cannot be stressed or highlighted enough! Without air, we will die sooner than later. We can go without food for about 3 weeks, without water for maximum a week, but breathing – 5 – 10 minutes maximum!!
Not much hey? Yet we hardly focus and practice breathing and breathing techniques. We do in unconsciously, we take it for granted, accept it as part of our human right to be able to do! A scary thought – the very thing that keeps us alive and we are not even aware of it most of the time.
“We each breathe about 12-18 breaths in a minute, which comes to about 17,000 to 26,000 breaths a day, over 6,2 million breaths a year and on average 450 million breaths in a lifetime. How many breaths have you been aware of? “ – Maureen Whitehouse
“Conscious breathing means focusing your attention on the perpetual exchange that is taking place between your personal body and the extended body of your environment” Deepak Chopra
Here are some breathing exercises that you can incorporate in your morning routine and daily life: (*The Seven Spiritual Laws of Yoga*)
1. Bellows Breath – One of the most empowering breathing exercises. It energizes and cleanses.
2. Complete Breath – A cleansing and balancing breathing technique
3. Success Breath – It will help to settle your mind and body when you are feeling irritated, frustrated and overheated. It also allows you to stay focused and to enhance respiratory efficiency
4. Alternate Nostril Breath – Clears the channels of circulation and helps with reducing mental turbulence associated with anxiety and insomnia.
Stress and Stressors
Even though some stress is healthy and good for us, the problem we face today is that we are under constant stress, so therefore our body is in a constant flight or fight mode. We have covered unhealthy stressors before as well as the impact that they have on our health and well-being.
Let us look at different stressors that we experience in our life. The purpose of this is to create awareness within us, to sop living on auto-pilot and to empower us by living more empowered life’s free of dis-ease.
They will include headaches, emotional pain, heart palpitations etc. They will also include external events like, temperature changes, seasonal changes, difficult/toxic/ending relationships, work related challenges and financial burdens. A lot of these can be addressed by letting go of the ego, by practicing detachment, by improving on the nutrients we feed our bodies and by breathing and meditating.
There are chemicals in everything we use at home – from our washing powder to our bath products to our body lotions and facial products and not forgetting the air-freshners. We are exposed to even more chemicals when we leave home, from smoking or second hand smoking, to the “fumes” we inhale in traffic, to name but a few.
You can start in your home. Start buying household cleaners that contains no chemicals, or make them yourself. Your face and body does not need to be covered by so many layers of chemicals that leaves your skin unable to breathe! If you smoke, STOP! If you are constantly inhaling second-hand smoke, start making a conscious effort to distance yourself from that – Your life depends on taking a stand for your health! You will also have a great impact on our environment and help save it!
We are living in a world where not being connected via social media or the web, seems alien! However, the impact electronics have on us, is HUGE, deadly actually. We jump when the phone or device prompts us with notifications and we leave everything to attend to that. We lose concentration and focus, we become reactive and slaves to them.
Start setting clear boundaries. Disconnect all electronic devices at home at least 1 hour before bed time, switch your phone to airplane mode during the night and dim your lights or use candles 1-2 hours before bedtime. Electronics were invented to empower us, not to enslave us!
External noise is super invasive. Try sleeping in on a Sunday and the neighbor has his lawnmower going at 7am or the teenage kids next door is taking over the house with blaring music. Cars are fitted with performance exhaust systems that “announces” their arrival from 2 streets down. Some of us are unable to fall asleep without music or an audio book.
Like with everything in life, start with those that is under your control! Reduce the noise pollution in your own home and life. Speak to your neighbor and see if he will not be willing to start an hour later or so to cut his lawn or wear earplugs. Anything is possible!
Make a list of the stressors you are exposed to and how they impact negatively in your life. Awareness brings the ability to address them, and by starting to practice detachment and breathing, we will be able to reduce the impact they have.
“Be very still an instant. Come without all thought of what you ever learned before, and put aside all images you made. The old will fall away before the new without opposition or intention “ – A Course in Miracles
Meditation is not a mystical practice. It has been scientifically proven to be one of the most empowering practices to reprogram our beliefs, our mind and our well-being. You don’t have to be a yogi with a robe sitting on a mountain top. You can do it anywhere at anytime!
“In meditation, we move not just from conscious mind to subconscious mind, but also from selfish to selfless, from being somebody to being no body and no one, from identifying with some thing to identifying with no thing, from being a materialist to being an immaterialist, from being some place to being no place, from being in time to being in no time, from believing that the outer world is reality and defining reality with our senses to believing that the inner world is reality and that once we’re there, we enter “non-sense”: the world of thought beyond the senses. Meditation takes us from survival to creation; from separation to connection; from imbalance to balance; from emergency mode to growth-and-repair mode; and from the limiting emotions of fear, anger and sadness to the expansive emotions of joy, freedom and love. “- Dr Joe Dispenza
Not sure where to start? Have a listen to this video from Walter Bellin who is an expert in meditation
Here is a short 5 min Mindfulness Meditation to get you started