Connect with us

Enlightenment

The 5 Stages of Spiritual Awakening We All Need To Learn

Sheila J. Highland

Published

on

The 5 Stages of Spiritual Awakening We All Need To Learn

While a spiritual awakening is often considered a journey, it’s not necessarily a journey of physical travel or pilgrimage; it’s a process of going beyond your boundaries and taking the next evolutionary step.

In the course of a human life, few experiences can be as profound and transformative as those of a spiritual awakening. Identifying with and directly experiencing your divinity represents a paradigm shift of the highest order. A spiritual awakening has the potential to rip apart the fabric of reality as you’ve known it and pull you forward into a new life of conscious growth and evolution.

As the term implies, you “wake up” from the dream of everyday, mundane material-level, ego-based awareness to a higher reality of spirit. And as if emerging from a deep sleep, you can see the dream for what it is—an illusion to which there can be no going back.

 

The 5 Stages of Spiritual Awakening We All Need To Learn

 

Escaping Ignorance

A spiritual awakening represents the lifting of the veil of ignorance or avidya, which in Sanskrit means “incorrect understanding.” This ignorance shrouds your true nature and keeps you operating in the dark of lower levels of consciousness. This is a state of not knowing what you don’t know.

At the heart of this ignorance is tamas, one of the three gunas, or primary qualities of the universe. Tamas embodies darkness, dullness, inactivity, and entropy and binds you in the physical, mental, and emotional quicksand of inertia. Fortunately, though, the process of spiritual awakening runs directly counter to the currents of avidya in your life.

The evolution of consciousness generates a forward pull, a momentum toward growth, transformation, and change that is one of the most powerful forces in the universe. Like a spaceship achieving escape velocity, spiritual awakening punches you out of the limiting gravity well of ignorance and on toward the ultimate destination of cosmic self-realization.

But how does this happen? Well, if you accept that all human beings, and perhaps even all sentient beings, are hardwired for evolution, then it stands to reason that spiritual awakening is your birthright—something you are destined to achieve. And if this process is mapped into your consciousness and your body, then there must be clues or steps to indicate you are on the path to awakening.

The Vision of Your Spiritual Awakening Journey

One of the most useful metaphors for describing the stages of spiritual awakening is that of vision. In this model, five different qualities of sight represent unique steps on the spiritual journey:

  1. Glimpsing: The call to adventure
  2. Closer examination: Choosing a path
  3. Seeking: Following the path
  4. Loss of sight: Losing the path
  5. Seeing: Merging with the path

Let’s explore each of these stages in greater detail.

1. Glimpsing Spirit: The Call to Adventure

The celebrated mythologist Joseph Campbell defined what is known as the hero’s journey, an evolutionary path of growth and transformation woven into all great myths and stories: “When we quit thinking about ourselves and our own self-preservation, we undergo a truly heroic transformation of consciousness.”

At the start of any hero’s journey is the primary pushing off point known as the call to adventure. The call to adventure represents a break from everyday life, a signal that bubbles up from the subconscious, catches your attention, and leads you in a new direction. A call to adventure is the spark that triggers a spiritual awakening.

Every life has a moment, if seized, that will change that life forever. The call to adventure is an awakening incident, a new perception that compels you to look at life differently. This spiritual experience can take countless forms—a trip to a faraway land, the loss of innocence, an illness, a challenge, the death of a close friend, a near-death experience, or the loss of a job.

Regardless of the particulars, the experience shakes your worldview and you see the world with new eyes. You are called to live the ordinary life in a non-ordinary way.

At this pivotal point, Joseph Campbell teaches that you face a choice, to either accept or refuse the call to adventure. In reality though, refusing the call truly isn’t an option, because at the deeper level, your own soul is beckoning you to transform.

If you refuse the call, thanks to your unique karmic influences, the opportunity will only recycle itself like a skip on a record, patiently waiting for you to accept the call to a new life.

In addition, once a transformative and deeply awakening incident has been experienced, there can be no going back. Your eyes have been opened and you can’t un-see the vision of the higher reality calling to you, no matter how much you might want to deny it.

Once you have answered the call to adventure, you step into a larger world. You become a conscious participant in your spiritual growth and evolution. Responsibility becomes the operative word as you begin to navigate your life toward opportunities that further expand your awareness. A subtle shift in perception has taken place and everything feels the same and oddly different simultaneously.

 

The 5 Stages of Spiritual Awakening We All Need To Learn

 

2. Closer Examination: Choosing a Path

Faced with the realization that your limited worldview can no longer contain your expanding awareness, you come to recognize that your life is on a spiritual journey, an awakening of your consciousness.

While it can be an exciting time, this stage can also feel unsettling and unfamiliar. Everything you once accepted as fixed and stable (ideologies, worldviews, sense of self and others, relationships) can be called into question. You are in search of answers—a means by which you can repeat or return to the glimpse of spirit that initially shifted your perspective.

At this point, you may set out to find a new way—a new philosophy, a different tradition, or practice that will help to contextualize or re-map your worldview. This is when many begin spiritual exploration in earnest.

Often marked by a period of information gathering, self-study, and delving into world religions or psychology, you are drawn to practices and methods that align with your unique personalities and dispositions. According to Vedanta, there are four paths or yogas back to the unity you seek:

  1. Bhakti Yoga: The path of love and devotion
  1. Jnana Yoga: The path of science and the intellect
  2. Karma Yoga: The path of action and selfless service
  1. Raja Yoga: The path of meditation and all its related disciplines

Each path provides a distinctive vehicle for self-discovery and realization. Some may choose one, others may explore multiple paths simultaneously; there are no absolutes or set rules for discovering your path.

What matters is that it feels right for you and serves as an appropriate vehicle for growth. No one can or should tell you what path to follow; only your own intuitive heart can guide you to what method or vehicle will suit you best.

At this stage you would do well to remember the wisdom of the Hindu proverb that states:
There are hundreds of paths up the mountain, all leading to the same place, so it doesn’t matter which path you take. The only person wasting time is the one who runs around the mountain, telling everyone that his or her path is wrong.

3. Seeking: Following the Path

The next stage calls you to be a spiritual seeker. Having found your path, regular practice, study, and discipline serve to take you deeper toward the greater vision of expanded awareness. The Sanskrit term for the discipline of spiritual practice is sadhana.

Sadhana is the spiritual routine that takes your practice from an isolated exercise to a way of life. You are dedicated travelers on the path, familiar with its twists and turns, up and downs. As your practice deepens, you become increasingly more adept and more knowledgeable, not only of the tradition or practice you follow but also of yourself.

This stage is marked by the birth of self-referral, the process in which your identity begins to shift from external references (such as positions, possessions, and ego satisfactions) to the internal reference of stillness, intuition, and higher guidance. You know yourself as a spiritual being living a human life while fostering the progressive growth of your consciousness.

As you travel their path to expanded awareness, there are two markers, two clues that hint spiritual progress is underway.

  1. The first is an increasing sense of lightheartedness. With consistent spiritual practice, happiness and joy become your ground state. You take life less seriously. Hysteria and melodrama have less influence over you. Carefreeness and detachment flow from you spontaneously and you feel much more at ease in life.

2. The second marker of spiritual progress is the ease in which your desires are fulfilled. Regular spiritual practice removes mental, physical, and energetic blockages that obstruct the manifestation of your desires. As these obstacles fall away, life becomes easier; you step into the flow of life and experience synchronicities, little miracles, and experiences of grace that lead you closer to your life’s spiritual purpose.

4. Loss of Sight: Losing the Path

The spiritual path is not without struggle, however. By its very nature, the path of awakening confronts you with your shortcomings, self-deceptions, cognitive biases, and resistance to change. Growth can be an uncomfortable process at times.

As your chosen path challenges you to change thoughts, emotions, speech, or behavior to be more expansive, compassionate, forgiving, or kind, it is not uncommon to struggle with being in this world but not of it. Worse yet are the external influences that assault the spiritual seeker with temptations to give up the quest for awakening and return to a conventional life.

The most formidable challenges on the path come in the form of what Joseph Campbell called threshold guardians. Threshold guardians are the barriers (literal or symbolic) that stand in the way of important turning points in your life.

They can be enemies, rivals, life circumstances, limiting beliefs, or setbacks that block your progress forward toward a higher level. These antagonists can repeatedly knock you down, test your resolve, and make you question your chosen path. Such setbacks make you doubt yourself and your commitment and may even persuade you to give up the quest.

At this stage, you may feel lost or helpless, as if you have succumbed to spiritual blindness. However, what you often don’t realize is that this blindness or challenges are the subterfuge of your ego—your small self that fears its own extinction in the ever-expanding field of spirit.

Seen in this way, your spiritual challenges, or dark nights of the soul, become as spiritual teacher Ram Dass would say, “grist for the mill of enlightenment.” Every setback then becomes an expression of your inner doubts and fears—trials and hurdles on your personalized and self-made obstacle course.

Undoubtedly, this stage requires both fortitude and courage to stay on the path as you remember poet Robert Frost’s words: “The only way out is through.” Fortunately, it is from this darkness that you can emerge fully into the light, continue your spiritual development, and become awakened.

 

The 5 Stages of Spiritual Awakening We All Need To Learn

 

5. Seeing: Merging with the Path

At last, the seeker breaks through to a new stage; visionary, transcendent, and sight beyond sight. At this level you have gone beyond sadhana; you have become the practice. No longer striving to see, you exist in a state of unity in which seer, scenery, and that which is seen merge.

A permanent shift has taken place and you awaken fully to your true identity—the infinite, immortal, unbounded, God-force existing everywhere and in everything. You wake up fully to being the divine observer—the ever-present witness-self of the entire universe.

In this stage, you come back home to yourself, but surprisingly, the process isn’t one of accumulation or gaining more knowledge or experiences. Instead, it’s a process letting go, of continual decrease.

Like peeling the skins of an onion, the “you” gets smaller and smaller until only pure being-ness remains. It’s a journey of insight from here to HERE. This is the sign of spiritual awakening.

The path of spiritual awakening is the grandest adventure you can ever undertake. You are deeply privileged just to recognize the truth that such a journey stands before you. And embracing it is nothing less than following the heroic call of your life purpose and destiny.

Original article by Adam Brady.

More articles to read:

4 Helpful Tools In Making The World A Better Place & Find Abundance

10 Tips How a Spiritual Seeker Handles Social Media

5 Powerful Steps to Self-Respect You Need Right Now

Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Enlightenment

6 Steps To Meditate For Better Brain Health

Wise Life Lesson

Published

on

6 Steps To Meditate For Better Brain Health

6 Steps To Meditate For Better Brain Health

What exactly is the right way to meditate? Well, in truth, there’s no right or wrong way to meditate. While it can be intimidating to do meditation the “right” way, it’s actually a personal practice, meaning that you learn as you go.

In addition, most people will think that it’s hard to meditate, due to their thoughts interfering with their concentration. However, thinking is part of the process, meaning that a perfectionist mindset simply won’t suffice.

Like running, the body is about training and practice, regardless if your mind is calm or hyperactive. And, like going to the gym, meditation is a routine that you’ll get used to after a while. Just keep in mind, like regular exercise, don’t push yourself too hard – take baby steps.

In this article, we’ll introduce you to the 6 simple steps on how you can meditate to the best of your ability, and how you can keep practicing it to where you’ll have better brain health.

  1. Find A Quiet Place

“First, it’s important to find a quiet and comfortable environment to meditate in,” says Michael Lackey, a lifestyle blogger at Australian Help and Essay Roo. “Once you’ve found a good place to meditate, then be sure to eliminate any disruptions. That means putting away any electronics that may distract you. And, you should dim the lights, if you can.”

Plus, make sure that when you sit on the floor or on chair, your feet are on the ground and that your back is straight. Or, if you want to lie down, then you can.

  1. Eyes Closed

Closing your eyes allows you to get into the mood, and to prep yourself for relaxing. Once you close your eyes, relax your body by staying still and make yourself loose and less tense.

  1. Breathe

Once you relax, start focusing on breath. As you focus on breathing, feel the sensation of doing so. Take notice on your inhales and exhales. Inhale and exhale deeply, and feel the sensation of the air going in and out of you – inhale through the nose, and then exhale through the mouth.

Once you have a good rhythm from breathing, pay attention to your chest. Notice how your chest expands and contracts as you breathe.

  1. Don’t Silence Your Thoughts

When you start meditating, it’s normal for your brain to stir. In other words, you may hear a lot of “chatter” going on in your head. But the truth is, racing thoughts are part of the process, because you’re not used to having a calm mind in the real world. And now that you’re meditating, it’s time to get everything back in order.

But with that said, don’t try to stop thinking, or else you’ll waste time quieting your mind when you should be calming yourself while meditating. Therefore, let your thoughts flow through your mind. Just acknowledge your thoughts being there, but don’t try to engage with them.

The important part is to focus on breath. Whenever you find yourself drifting away in your thoughts, just return and find your breath.

  1. Stay Calm And Focus

“There are two simple ways to stay calm and focused, as you meditate,” says James Margolin, a content writer at State of Writing and Paper Fellows. “You can either continue to focus on your breath, or you can use a mantra or a prayer that you’re familiar with. Focus on either or, and be sure to be calm as you do so.”

  1. Be Consistent

While the recommended time to meditate is normally a minimum of 15 minutes, according to most meditation experts and gurus, in actuality, you can spend as much as you want meditating. However, if you do so in less than 15 minutes, then that’s okay too.

Plus, it’s normal to struggle with this routine at first; but as you set some time to meditate each week (and each day, if desired), you’ll soon make it a habit to do this. The goal here is to be consistent in your meditating, and then you’ll feel the results (i.e. a clear and relaxed mind).

Conclusion

Since meditation is all about self-discovery, it’s okay for your mind to wander. But eventually, you’ll be able to keep your thoughts in order, as you focus on being calm and on breathing. Remember: focus on the experience, not your brain.

Kristin Herman is a writer and editor at UK Writings and Academized. She writes articles for online publications, such as Boom Essays. As a tech enthusiast, she blogs about the latest trends in technology and meditative practices. And, as a project manager, she has overseen many writing projects nationwide.

Continue Reading

Meditation

5 Natural Ways To Relax & Get Centered

Avatar

Published

on

Natural Ways to Relax

5 Natural ways to relax and get centered.Yes, there are plenty of ways you can de-stress, unwind, enjoy time with your self and get centered. Getting centered, it sounds a little offbeat to those of you who don’t meditate or practice other self-awareness rituals. Maybe the word mindfulness is better. Either way, hear me out.

We all have a busy and hectic life, throw in kids and it gets even crazier.  So how do you destress? I know you have a girls night or even guys night out to unwind and blow off steam.  Aren’t their ways to do this without the potential use of alcohol and a hangover? The next morning is never any fun.

No need to be wary this doesn’t require guru knowledge on meditation, yoga just open-mindedness.   Being centered merely means being at peace with who you are, in every moment. Stillness and quiet are what that means for me. To thine own self be true.

These five things will help you to de-stress and allow you to exhale.  The key is to be in the moment and let your feelings, energy and mind flow in all of these exercises.

5 Natural Ways to Relax and De-Stress

Journaling

journaling-natural ways to relax and get centered

First, let’s discuss journaling. Yes, we are going back to the “dear diary” days but a more grown-up version.  Pick out a journal or notebook, whatever you like. You may ask “what do I write once I open the notebook (love that movie BTW, the book was even better)?”

To start, looking at a blank page can be intimidating if you’ve never journaled before.  The first thing I like to do is start by writing the date at the top of the page. On days you have a lot of feelings to get out just start writing. You’re not getting graded on these entries so don’t worry about how to properly get started and use correct punctuation and grammar.  Just let yourself flow.

Start with “I feel…” and go from there. The entries can be short or long. I’ve written pages upon pages before and then only a single page other times. Really allow yourself to be in the moment and let your emotions flow. Something happens during this process that is therapeutic.  You’re able to self reflect and analyze a situation better, step back and see things differently. Read how to do automatic writing or journaling here.

You can do this at the end of my day, or when the mood strikes you.  I believe getting emotions out and not holding them in helps to heal your spirit. At the very least, it helps you to be calm and learn about yourself.

So pick up a pen and notebook and start de-stressing.  Journaling is for your personal use only. No one ever has to read it or see it, unless you want them to.  Over the years I’ve used many different kinds of journals. I’m currently using this moleskin journal. I love the feel of the paper and smooth writing.

Walking in Nature

5 natural ways to relax
nurture, relax, serenity

Nature is an all-encompassing cure for feeding the soul.  A simple walk in nature can alleviate stress, calm you down through exercise, and feed your soul.  Listening to birds chirping, wind rustling through the leaves of tall pine trees, water gently waving in the lake as the reflection of the sun bounces off the water.

That my friend is relaxing and total de-stresses the best of us.  Nature almost forces you to be still and quiet. Listen to the sounds around you and lookup. Oh my gosh, the joy of just looking up! We don’t take the time to just look up and observe.

Look at the trees swaying in the wind, geese flying over information, clouds moving pass. Do this and take a breathe and exhale. The simple things we don’t pay attention to because we look down, at our devices. Busy rushing through from one stop to the next.

Take that walk in the park, listen to the sounds, and breathe.  Breathe and walk with intention. It’s more of a stroll rather than a timed fast walk. Try not to have your headphones in the entire time. It’s tempting, and some days I do it myself.  Or I listen to audible but nonetheless I’m still observing nature and taking it in. If you live in a busy loud city then turn on calming music.

Taking the time to do this a couple of times of a week or more, if you can, helps bring you back to being centered. Quiet on the inside to where you can hear your true self. Not the restless chatter that you hear all day.  Give yourself a break and take a walk.

Meditation

There are so many different types of meditation from mindfulness, transcendental, guided, sound and the list goes on and on.  I’ve tried a lot of these, read about it here, to see if there was one that worked best for me or that I connected to most.

As I mention throughout my blog, no two people are the same therefore no two people will meditate or do anything for that matter the same.  We will all have different experiences with meditation. Trying different types will help you not only learn what you like but also allow you to practice meditation itself.

I have found that mindfulness of breath meditation is best for me. It is bringing awareness to your breath.  I prefer to be in a quiet room where I will not be interrupted, hard to find these days with 2 little shadows.  Don’t be surprised if you catch me in the closet trying to get some meditation time in, just sayin’ do whatcha gotta do.

You can use an eye mask, to make it dark, I find this helps me to relax and focus.  You’ll have to try again and again before you learn to really quiet the mind.

This is a learning process so please keep on the path and don’t give up.  Start with a few minutes at a time and build up from there. You’ll notice over time you can meditate a little longer each time, and it becomes easier to get into that state.


Read More – How Meditation Affects Brain Aging in a Positive Way


Yoga

Natural Way to Relax
Don’t be intimidated by the postures, everyone learns at their own pace and becomes more advanced in time.

Everyone should practice yoga, at least once.  You have to try it to know if you like it. My yoga journey started around 16 years ago or more.  I will admit that I haven’t done it continuously during those 16 years. There were some years that I didn’t practice at all.  Other times I would attend a yoga class 4-5 times a week. Currently, I practice yoga in my bedroom with my favorite yoga youtube channels.

Just like meditation, there are many types of yoga styles.  As a result, I’ve tried many of them and learned which ones I like best.  You do the same.

Yoga has many physical benefits such as increased flexibility, muscle strengthening, lower blood pressure, reduce stress and the list goes on. As far as de-stressing, well this helps with that too.

You don’t even have to leave your own home to try, especially if classes aren’t your thing.  With that yoga classes have a different environment than other “gym” type classes. Everyone is focused on themselves and their own practice. There isn’t that feeling of everyone is watching me.

The flow of the poses is very soothing once you learn the salutations or sequences. That word mindfulness comes in again. It’s hard to not be during yoga.  You become very focused on your pose and breathe that this, in turn, becomes its own meditation.  It never ceases to amaze me how quiet the mind gets when you are practicing yoga. It’s almost effortless.


Looking to Improve – Rock Your Boat Pose with These 7 Fun Navasana Variation


 5 – HTP

5–Hydroxytryptophan (5–HTP) is an amino acid that your body already produces. It’s derived from an African plant known as Griffonia simplicifolia.  It helps to increase the serotonin levels in your body thus boosting your mood. Allowing you to be more mindful and less stressed and preoccupied.

It’s a natural supplement that offers numerous benefits including a calming effect.  To learn more about 5-HTP as a natural stress reliever read the article that goes into more depth.

There you have it 5 natural ways to relax and take a moment for your self. Self-care is a buzz word that we’re hearing everywhere right now. Don’t think its not for you or you don’t have time. Making time will only improve your daily life and mental health.

Being mindful during any of these activities will bring you to a more relaxed state and bring you into alignment. Find what works best for you and continue to develop your own self-care routine.

This article is republished by https://inspirehealthandspirit.com/ under Creative Commons license. Read the original.

Continue Reading

Enlightenment

What Enlightened People Do

Sheila J. Highland

Published

on

enlightened people

In this article, we’re going to look at how enlightened people put their wisdom into action.

The mark of truly enlightened people is in the actions they take to help put an end to suffering throughout the world.

enlightenment

 From my studies about spiritual figures in history, and my experiences with people well along their path, I’ve identified some general activities that enlightened people engage in to bring more peace and harmony into the world. Keep in mind that their activities will vary according to how enlightened they are.

The Extinguishment of the Ego

To say that their work is selfless is not entirely correct. You see, the enlightened person has realized that he is interconnected with the rest of humanity—more accurately with all that exists—and has lost the sense of a separate self.

Keep in mind that the loss of a sense of separate self is not the same as a loss of self. The enlightened person has lost only the notion that human beings are characterized by an individual and independent living entity. In other words, it is the extinguishment of the individual ego. Since the enlightened person is an integral part of all of humanity, everything that he does to help others also benefits him personally.

Listen to Eckhart Tolle talk about enlightenment and the egoless state. Video lasts about 8 minutes:

         

One day a friend of mine tried to point out to me that I derived a personal benefit from the work I do to help others on their spiritual path. I had to concede that he was correct. And since I am not yet fully enlightened, some personal gratification is still involved, though I hope that motivation is diminishing as I progress in my spiritual development.

With these things in mind, let’s look at how enlightened people put their wisdom into action:

They Teach, and Don’t Preach

The enlightened person wants others to have the peace and serenity they have found. To that end, he dedicates his life to teaching others how to put an end to their suffering. He understands human nature and the most effective ways of transmitting his insights.

He also understands that people who are truly interested in greater insight don’t respond well to preaching and lecturing. Instead, they prefer to be guided down the path of enlightenment.

Generally, people who prefer to be lectured are those who are not inquisitive and prefer to simply accept a particular spiritual doctrine without questioning. They don’t want to put in the effort it takes to finding the Truth within themselves. I should point out that we are all susceptible to getting set in our views. It takes work, courage, and humility to continuously question our own views.

The enlightened person understands that his role as a teacher is to show others how to become less dependent on him for their enlightenment. He wants his students to understand that all the wisdom in the world is within them, and his job is to show them how to reach it.


Grow More  –  3 Ways to Emotional Cleansing You Need Right Now


They Lead

The enlightened person leads people down the path to inner peace. She works tirelessly to reach more people with her teachings. She knows that in order to reach more people, she must develop a following. But she doesn’t do it for personal gratification.

The enlightened person is also not interested in being idolized. On the contrary, she realizes that once someone begins to idolize her, they stop looking within themselves for peace and serenity.

People follow her because of who she is and what she stands for. They also follow her because they know she can show them the path to enlightenment. However, once her followers progress in their spiritual development, they too begin to realize that they must now become leaders, and abandon their roles as followers.

They Practice

Enlightenment

The enlightened person practices what he teaches. He not only talks about love, compassion, and understanding, but he practices these principles more diligently than his followers. He has an unshakable faith that his spiritual practice will lead to peace and harmony within himself and in the world around him.

The enlightened person is committed to his own daily meditation practice. He is also continuously looking for ways to improve it further. He is a student of life. He knows that in order to improve his effectiveness as a messenger, he must improve his understanding of the path to enlightenment, and the interconnected nature of all existence.

He is not looking for the right way of doing things, but rather for a more mindful way of doing things, because he knows that more mindfulness leads to less suffering. For him, this process never ends.

They Serve and Protect

The enlightened person is committed to being of service, not just to humanity, but to all life. She has a deep reverence for all living beings, no matter how big or small. To her, it is not necessarily about having a right to life, but rather about having compassion for the inherent ability of living beings to suffer. She, therefore, works to protect all life.

She also knows that many people, as well as many other living creatures, are not fully capable of protecting themselves from the unmindful actions of others. She is aware that in our ignorance, we all do things that harm ourselves, other people and living beings, so she strives to protect us from others and ourselves.


Looking to Grow  – How to Be Your Best Self on This Life-Changing Journey


They Change Their Occupations

These are some of the general ways that enlightened people work to create harmony and goodwill in the world. They come from all walks of life. They may be doctors, lawyers, or teachers. Or, they may come from more humble professions such as factory worker, restaurant worker, or even trash collector.

Whatever their background, they generally transform their livelihood into something related to helping others find peace and serenity. The specifics depend on their skills and opportunities. They are not afraid to make a career change, because they realize the importance of helping other people.

To them, this path is not a matter of choice because they realize their duty. However, given the choice, they would still choose to help others because they simply have compassion for all suffering beings. It also contributes to their own peace and serenity.

Is Enlightenment Possible?

I realize that to some of you, achieving enlightenment might seem like an impossible goal. I can assure you, it’s not. From what I’ve described, there are real people among us with these qualities. You may even know one of them. I figure that if they can do it, then so can I—and so can you. My purpose for writing these 3 articles on enlightenment was to give us a North Star to guide us. I hope they help guide you on your spiritual journey.

This article is written by Charles A. Francis and republished from https://mindfulnessmeditationinstitute.org/ under Creative Common license. Read the original article.

Continue Reading

Personal Growth

7 Simple Ways To Find Micro-Moments To Take Care Of Yourself When You’re Low On Time

Tara Christie

Published

on

7 Simple Ways To Find Micro-Moments To Take Care Of Yourself When You're Low On Time

5 Ways You Can Stay Positive and Be Nicer to Yourself

 

5 Steps to Unleashing Joy, Opening Up, & Being More Yourself

 

10 Tips How a Spiritual Seeker Handles Social Media

Continue Reading

Personal Growth

5 Ways You Can Stay Positive and Be Nicer to Yourself

Tara Christie

Published

on

5 Ways You Can Stay Positive and Be Nicer to Yourself

Be nice to yourself especially during hard times. Here are ways to stay positive at all times…

Most of us have an inner voice — the one that usually shames us when we mess up at work or forces us to replay arguments from 7 years ago while in the shower. Even though it’s super common for us to critique ourselves (far more than others critique us), we can also use this inner voice to build ourselves up.

Enter positive self-talk. Granted, it can be weird to compliment yourself in your head — it’s like writing a cover letter (which I hate). But I swear it really works. My therapist and my eating disorder specialist both co-sign that our inner voice can be a powerful tool to help us feel better about ourselves.

P.S. I promise it’s normal to talk to yourself. You never question whether it’s weird when your inner voice says mean things about you. So why question it when the voice is nice?

Let’s talk about some ways to give yourself a little extra grace and compassion.

 

5 Ways You Can Stay Positive and Be Nicer to Yourself

 

Start by recognizing the negativity

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are many types of negative self-talk. Here are four examples and some particular ways you can use positive self-talk to combat those intrusive negative thoughts.

Personalizing thought: “My partner must be mad at me because they didn’t answer my text.” Positive self-talk: “My partner is probably too busy to talk right now. It’s great that they know their boundaries. They’ll respond when they can!”
Filtering thought: “Ugh, I didn’t finish this assignment on time. I’m such a failure.” Positive self-talk: “I got a lot of things done and was able to rest. Work isn’t everything!”
Catastrophizing thought: “If I don’t get this job, I’ll never be employed.” Positive self-talk: “It’s OK if I’m not a fit for this role. I want to work somewhere that values me and what I can bring to the table.”
Polarizing thought: “I slept in 2 days in a row. I’m so lazy.” Positive self-talk: “Wow, I must have been tired! I’m glad I could prioritize resting.”

It’s OK if you have things to work on (Lord knows I do), but it’s hard to make positive changes in your life if you give in to the negativity. Reframing every negative thought that comes into your head may seem like a lot of work, but it becomes much easier with practice.

  • Guided meditations: These can teach you how to use positive self-talk in the beginning stages, when it might feel a bit awkward or unnatural. When you have another person guiding you through the process, it can feel affirming.
  • Sticky notes: Every day for 30 days, write a positive thing about yourself, your life, etc., on a sticky note and put it somewhere you look often. Mirrors and the refrigerator are popular sticky note locations.
  • Journaling: Writing things down can be a more engaging way to practice positive self-talk. What’s great about journaling is that it’s a tangible way to get negative feelings out onto the page and then work out new, positive framings on the same page.
  • Daily mantra: This works through the power of repetition. Pick a new mantra biweekly or monthly and repeat it every morning or evening or in times of stress or sadness.
  • Questioning: Use this tactic to interrogate the negative thoughts that pop into your head. Are they true? (No.) Why aren’t they? The answer is usually a positive affirmation.

5 Ways You Can Stay Positive and Be Nicer to Yourself

 

The power to stay positive and positive reinforcement

As much as we might wish it would, positive self-talk doesn’t work overnight. Think of practicing positive self-talk like training for a marathon. You’re teaching your brain and its neural pathways to handle negative thoughts better and for the long haul. The point is that repetition and reinforcement are keys to becoming proficient at anything.

If you play an instrument or practice yoga, you likely remember the very first time you tried. It felt totally unnatural! But as time went on and you practiced, you were able to get into the habit of doing yoga or playing an instrument until it felt natural. Same goes for lifting weights, rehearsing for a play, or engaging in positive self-talk!

Ideally, positive self-talk becomes second nature once you make it a habit. You’ll be able to nip harmful thoughts in the bud by naturally engaging in positive self-talk.

If you need a bit more structure but can’t necessarily afford professional help, there are other resources to explore.

If you want more personal accountability, try leaning on friends or family. Being transparent with people you trust can be helpful, particularly in the positive self-talk reinforcement stage.

Bottom line: You’re not in this alone. But during the times when you’re by yourself, you can still be your own best source of support through consistent positive self-talk.

when times are tough, it is important to always stay positive. Be happier with life. Stay positive to have a positive outlook. When you stay positive, you become calmer and can focus on what are the most important things. So stay positive at all times.

Original article by Reina Sultan. Reina is a Lebanese-American Muslim woman working on gender and conflict issues at her nine to five.

Read these too:

5 Powerful Steps to Self-Respect You Need Right Now

9 Practical Ways To Experience Joy During Trying Times

 

Continue Reading

Personal Growth

10 Powerful Strategies for Reinventing Yourself These Days

Tara Christie

Published

on

10 Powerful Strategies for Reinventing Yourself These Days

Reinventing yourself is not that difficult. It is really about the desire to change, discovering a new path to follow, and having a curiosity about life.

Reinventing Yourself

It’s Time. It is time to mix it up. You are feeling stagnant, or things are not going the way you’d hoped. Now is the time to start your new beginning.  You are probably thinking, “do I have to move to another city and change my name?”  “How am I going to reinvent myself if everyone knows me?”

Everyone may know one side of you, but perhaps they have not met your creative side or your wild side. Maybe everyone knows you as being defined by your job, where you go, or what you do. But they haven’t met the “new you.”

Some people reinvent themselves all the time. They do this by changing their way of thinking, following an interest, or going back to school.  Companies do this all the time, as well.  They change the packaging of a product, reinvent a new name for an old product, or restructure their entire business purpose.

Reinventing yourself is not that difficult. It is really about the desire to change, discovering a new path to follow, and having a curiosity about life.  Here are ten sure-fire strategies for reinventing yourself.

 

10 Powerful Strategies for Reinventing Yourself These Days

 

1. Change your posture:

I could sense your body change as you read this. Yes, lift your head, pull your shoulders back and down, pull your abs in, and push your hips forwards. The minute you realize you have been walking around in the shape of a banana, you will understand that you’ve been in a “hiding position.”

It happens to all of us. We go through our day, not wanting to be noticed or taken too seriously. We tend to get wrapped up and involved in our “phone life” or just not caring.  This is the hiding position.  The minute you decide to stand tall is the minute, and your life will start to change. Feel that energy coming out of the top of your head to heaven.

Feel your feet grounded, yet your body pushing forward in the direction of the life you desire to go towards. When you change your posture, you change your life. Your body language expresses a desire to pay attention and move upward. You tell the world, through your attitude, that you are conscious, aware, and engaged with life.

2. Change your mind:

How many times a day do you emotionally beat yourself down?  How many times do you tell yourself you are not good enough, or you can’t do anything? Better yet, how often do your actions alone express this?

The minute you take control of your thoughts is the moment your life can change.  Change your mind, change your life. Instead of wishing, start doing. Instead of berating yourself, praise your actions.

We have to make a conscious decision to be the best we can be. You have everything you need to make your dreams come true, so don’t fool yourself with excuses.

3. Change your outlook:

Positivity is the only outlook you are going to have. When you see yourself as what you wish to be, it is the most powerful visualization and affirmation you can give yourself. It is the stepping stone of growth, as well as becoming that “new person” you are going to be.

Your outlook must be a nourishing, self-loving, and self-respecting reinvention of the person you currently are coping with. When you project your new self forward, other people’s perceptions of you will also change. Those who are savvy and forward thinkers will see this in you.

They are the role models and mentors you should believe in. Avoid the jealous, salacious ones who hold you back. Remember, pride is just the flip side of envy’s coin.

4. Change your inner programming:

When we decide we want to reinvent ourselves, we have to start with our inner beliefs or how we perceive ourselves. It can be a process that takes a long time because we need to restructure how we look at something. Are you judging the situation?  Are you self-opinionated, arrogant, stubborn, or obstinate in holding to your own opinion?

If you want to reinvent yourself, you have to let go of who you were and start looking at life through the eyes of humility, trust, wonder, and an open mind. You are pulling away from your comfort zone to reach new heights. Bumps in the road are inevitable. It’s how you choose to deal with them that manifests your positive inner programming.

 

10 Powerful Strategies for Reinventing Yourself These Days

 

5. Change your style:

What is your style? A new beginning starts with a new wardrobe. Go in another direction. Take on a different persona. Cut your hair. Get a facial. Commit to having fun with it. Sometimes styles emerge.

The more you get to know yourself, the more comfortable you become with your new look or image of who you want to be. Your inside reflects your outside persona, but your outer persona or look can help you to “get into character.”

6. Learn something new:

A critical factor in reinventing yourself is following the passions you yearn for. Remember, there will always be a learning curve to overcome. Learn to embrace and understand it.

You may remember the feeling of accomplishment when you have mastered a new procedure or process in the past. It makes you feel better about yourself and shows you that there is so much more out there for you to comprehend and enjoy. Your ability to do anything is proportional to the amount of love and commitment you give it.

7. Follow your train of thought:

When reinventing yourself, it is important to follow an idea that has presented itself to you. It has come up for a reason. Perhaps it’s your subconscious telling you what you want, even though you don’t think it’s possible. Go down that road without fear. This is often your intuition chiming in.

It is great to have a plan, but be flexible. Listen and act on your gut feeling or intuition. This unfolding of your journey may not always be smooth. Following that, daydream could be a (perceived) nightmare. But in reality, it is just steps you have to take into the unfamiliar, to get to the side of knowing.

8. Control what you can, the rest will follow:

Factors such as motivation, will-power, and enduring emotional stress will ebb and flow. You may not be able to control these ups and downs, but what you can control is how you cope with them. You are going to face adversity.

You can make yourself mentally ready for these challenges each day, by starting with a little “me time.” We all have commitments to meet and daily life to pursuing. Schedule your “me time.”

Make the time to prepare yourself. Some people meditate, do morning yoga, or just take a more extended shower. Whatever your process, create an extra 15-30 minutes to prepare your mind for the day ahead.

9. Support is something you manifest:

If we look long and hard enough, we find what we want. In the meantime, support can be just what you need when you fall off the positivity train or need direction or guidance. You can find support groups in your local town or on social media.

Consider finding reinforcement from books or articles. One of my favorite support tools is journaling. This is a daily or weekly expression of your journey on the road to reinvention.

Create a journal that you can express your joys and fears. Be sure and fill it with positive reinforcements such as ideas, images, colors, scents, or anything that inspires you to go on.

 

10 Powerful Strategies for Reinventing Yourself These Days

 

10. Don’t forget to improve what you have now:

Improve your strengths, better your weaknesses. If you look at who you are now, you will see what you are best at doing. These traits are your strengths, and they are there for you to build a better foundation on. We also know what we may not be the best at.

This is where there is room for improvement. Where there is room for improvement, there is room for growth.

Reinventing yourself is like a caterpillar emerging from its cocoon to become a butterfly. This process is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding experiences you can put yourself through.

The effort it takes to do this will challenge your mind, body, and spirit. What is most rewarding is when you look back on your old self and see those stagnant patterns you have overcome. It is when you realize just how much work it took to find your new self, as you reap the rewards you have truly deserved.

Knowing how to improve makes yourself better. Reinventing yourself during these times will help in your personal growth. You can start reinventing yourself with the help of these powerful strategies.  Start reinventing yourself now.

Original article by Andrew Pacholyk MS L.Ac

 

You will want to read these too:

3 Powerful Ways to Have A Break From A Busy Life

 

How to Be Your Best Self on This Life-Changing Journey

 

5 Powerful Steps to Self-Respect You Need Right Now

Continue Reading

Trending