3 Ways To Stop Being Held As A Prisoner of War Within Your Mind

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When i was a kid, i remember seeing the old comedy show, Hogan’s Heroes, about a prisoner of war camp during the Second World War.

The shows premise was that the POWs were actually active war participants, using the camp as a base of operations for Allied espionage and sabotage against the Germans or the German Armed Forces.

The prisoners could leave and return almost at will via a secret network of tunnels and had radio contact with Allied command. They were aided by the incompetence of the camp commandant, Colonel Klink, and the rather more complex motivations of Sergeant of The Guard Sergeant Schultz.

Colonel Hogan would routinely manipulate the incompetent Klink and get Schultz to look the other way while Hogan’s men conducted secret operations. Klink and Schultz were in constant terror of being transferred to the Russian Front, and Hogan took pains to keep the hapless German duo firmly in place.

Schultz was quite aware that the prisoners were carrying out some sort of mischief, but deliberately ignored it in order to maintain the status quo.

It was all fun and games as the actual war was now 20 years over at the time the show was broadcast and time to start having fun with it all, i suppose.

But i am struck with the similarities of how we are POWs within our own minds.

You see, i believe us to be prisoners to our egoic nature and, like the show, we seem to be willing to allow ourselves to be used by allied command, the ego, for all kinds of shenanigans.

Unfortunately, we will never be allowed to leave as the ego has decided that you are not worthy to become the expansive creatures who relish living in the beauty of each Now Moment.

You see, by keeping you forever trapped by a guilt-ridden past and a future that is full of angst, for the details of your life must always be planned out or you are just a failure, we are kept as POWs forever hoping the war might end.

But like in the show where the POWs were content to stay put to do the secret operations, we too, seem to be content with ceding our lives to the ego to manage. I mean, isn’t it just easier to live in guilt and regret of the things we should have done and to put our desires into some hope of a glorious future that will happen when our ship comes in?

3 Ways to Release Yourself to Live Free

The ego is never a tyrannical dictator as the aspect of divine providence within for freedom would always rise to the surface.

No, instead, the ego is indeed like Allied Command, making it seem as if you are part of the overall plan for success.

Way 1: Understand the Way You Are Being Held Captive

This is indeed different for everyone as the ego is subtle in its design. It is forever dwelling on that which will make you stay put as a prisoner but making it seem as if you are a full participant in the process. If it is guilt about something in your past, regret about some situation that you had no control over or whatever it is your ego has decided that t needs to keep you bound, you need to understand for yourself the way you are being kept prisoner.

The key here is to understand the feelings and emotions, yet never judge them. When you allow yourself to judge them, you become the victim and then the prisoner. Judgement always reflects on the one who judges.

Way 2: Understand that the Tunnels that Lead Away Have Always Been There

Believe it or not, there is a symbiotic relationship that you have with your ego. You know the tunnels are there, the ego knows you can be free, yet does not try and stop you from using them. However, the ego tells you that the tunnels are simply used for missions but that the place of safety and security is always behind the barbed wire of the camp.

When you can make sense of the “why” then the access to the tunnels becomes a bit easier to begin to see that the true freedom can only come when you decide to use the tunnels for a one-way trip out.

There is never any safety and security as a Prisoner of War but there is clarity when you understand that life begins when you do. This means shedding your reliance on the ego and allowing yourself to step into the fresh sunlight of your Present Moments. Only there can you find yourself waiting.

Way 3: Understand that There is No Safety Ever in the Realm of the Ego

The tendency to retreat back into the camp is so dominant as you come to truly live free. The ego has assured you that the missions were as free as you needed to be, but that you will always be the safest behind the barbed wire that encloses it. The ego will tell you that it is in charge but that everything you do is vital to the success of the war.

You believed it.

Well, you used to, but no longer. Yes, the freedom of accepting yourself for who you are can be daunting. The freedom to be free of judgement of yourself and of others can be exhilarating, yet scary, at the same time. It has been such a fall-back position that the ego has used to bolster your view of yourself, right?

But once you have lived in the realm of freedom of yourself, from yourself, you begin to see the uselessness of the ego and the temptation to retreat back into the tunnels.

It is not a journey back you should ever desire. It is like when someone loses weight and gains it back and it is more difficult, or so it seems, to lose the weight again. It is just easy to retreat back into old patterns of guilt, regret and judgement.

Don’t go there.

Be a person who is free of the encampments of the mind and of the ego, for there, in the details of each Now Moment, life is waiting.

Be a Person of Quality. Direct Your Power.

Until then…

Be Excellent, Expect the Best!

Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

dasouthern@directyourpower.comDA Southern is an Author, Speaker, Blogger and a Personal Development Life Coach, teaching the spirit of living in Now Moments with the principles he experienced during over 35 years as an actor and director in live theatre. DA coaches his clients to rid life of limiting beliefs that have kept them from achieving miracles in all areas of their life by embracing Mindfulness of the Present Moment with a renewed Vision for life. Contact DA Southern for Coaching or Speaking @ dasouthern@directyourpower.com

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Get Out Of Your Own Way: A 3-Step Process For Truly Living

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We all have done it; Gotten in our own way when it comes to our hopes and dreams of a better tomorrow, right?

Well, therein lies the very tool the ego uses to distract you from your way, the allusion, vision, hope, dream of a better whatever at some ‘future’ date. It is as if the only thing that matters is the future.

It is not surprising as many are led to believe that very thing about life. Author Mark Twain was known to have said, “Plan for the future because that’s where you are going to spend the rest of your life.”

While i admire Mark Twain, i believe him to have spoken with a bent towards the satirical and for the absurdity of life in general. I think no quote more indicates that Mark Twain was a passionate fellow who had a bent towards the Now Moment and the release of fears that hold you back; essentially just getting out of your own way.

To Illustrate my point is this quote from Mark Twain who said, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

But the process sounds so easy, doesn’t it? But unfortunately the ego enters into the picture with the constant drone of ‘security’ (or the lack of it) in your head.

We always have to be ‘secure’, right?

Most adult figures in your life preached this very thing to you. People even asses their possible marriages on this very fact; not so much is this someone you can weather all the beautiful challenges that may come your way together, but is this person stable enough for me? Are they secure enough to provide?

The ego fills your head with insecurities; about yourself, about your possible mate; about life in general, all built on this idea that there is this mystical security out there.

We have no one to blame but ourselves, of course, as we have become a culture of ‘entitlement’, at least in the USA. Everyone is entitled to, well, everything. Free this or that. We are all entitled because we deserve it for whatever reason.

But it only feeds into the real challenge; getting out of our own way so we can truly become the Universal Way of Life to ourselves and to those that intersect our bubble that is our life.

The 3-Step Process of Getting Out of Your Own Way

So, in this day and age where we seem to make everything a bit to over-complicated, one would think that a simple 3-step process is a bit too simple. Well, we are all on our own journey. If you decide you want to make it complicated, so be it. But, at the heart of the process are the last three words of the Twain quote; Explore. Dream. Discover.

Step 1: Exploration

Here in this word is the very nature of finding out about yourself for before any journey there is a period of self-discovery, is there not?

Some say that they learn about themselves on the journey, which is rightfully so, but, in truth, the journey must start within first. There is a part that must release the ego and allow yourself to take the journey to begin with. So exploration is always a journey from the heart to begin with. This goes for any new aspects of life that you are exploring. Never allow your ego or the opinions of others to set the parameters for your exploration for it is your journey alone, no matter how many others your bubble touches.

Step 2: Dream

This is simply allowing yourself to think out loud. This is feeling the wind in your hair and knowing that the Universe makes no mistakes, ever.

I often tell clients when they are speaking of some ‘failure’ that has befallen them. “Do you think that God is standing there saying”, “Gee, I never saw that one coming. Who would of thought that Joe would do that. Really, I Never saw that coming.”

No, the short answer. the Universe is the same for all; an abundant, joyful place that gives and expands with every breath we take. Dream on and allow yourself to see the possibilities. History is replete with men and women from all walks of life who have dreamed outside themselves and through whatever challenges that life threw at them and achieved for themselves. In fact, most would tell you that it was in the ‘failures’, or what society had deemed as such, was their greatest learning opportunities.

Step 3: Discover

This is pure release. The idea is that we can allow ourselves to see the beauty in every Present Moment with the ability of Discovery of simple every day aspects of our journey.

But the challenge is that we get caught in ruts and allow life to slip by in such a way so as to become a stagnant search for security in the mundane.

But this is what happens when, as Twain says, you “release the bowlines and sail away from safe harbor.” This is discovery of self and of the beautiful world that we have been given. This is the truth of the statement, “Stop and smell the roses.”

Release yourself to the Present Moment and Discover the beauty within and without for here is where all truth lies waiting for us.

The Simple 3-Step process; Explore. Dream. Discover. It is up to you to first release your insecurities that the ego has set as the stumbling blocks to a beautiful Now Moment.

Be a Person of Quality. Direct Your Power.

Until then…

Be Excellent, Expect the Best!

Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA Southern is an Author, Speaker, Blogger and a Strategic Life Coach, teaching the spirit of living in Now Moments with the principles he experienced during over 35 years as an actor and director in live theatre. DA coaches his clients to rid life of limiting beliefs that have kept them from achieving miracles in all areas of their life by embracing Mindfulness of the Present Moment with a renewed Vision for life. Contact DA Southern for Coaching or Speaking directyourownlife@gmail.com

3 Ways to Allow the Ego to Not Determine Your Future Happiness

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“Get your head out of the clouds son and think about your future.” my dad would tell me.

As i now look at the lunacy of that statement as a Present Moment thinker and coach, i have begun to breech the very nature of the future as a place the ego likes to keep us forever tied as a place where it, alone, has the answers of your hopes and dreams.

How could you ever doubt the ego, right? I mean, as long as you are forever looking forward, the very Now of it all is certainly of no concern.

But the trap is set and we have all fallen victim to it, or maybe, are in its clutches in this very Now Moment. The future, that glorious hope that this stinking Now Moment won’t exist. The very device that the ego keeps you from seeing beauty in this Present Moment keeps most from the understanding that when the “future” gets here, what is it really?

It is the Now Moment.

But the ego has a powerful ally in its always endeavor of a future pull; Life and all who participate and tell you as much to begin with.

We are told from as far back as babies that the future is all that matters. Kids are even told as early as kindergarten to choose a career path and encouraged to think of the resources that are needed to get there in the future.

Really?

Yes, we all have a destiny within us, that which gives our souls that sense of eternity, but it is a journey of self discovery that should be allowed to manifest in an organic way within each ones own individual journey.

Hollywood movies and accounts of famous people throughout the ages have heralded the journey of those who have “bucked the system” and struck out on their own to find their destiny according to themselves. You see, when you allow others and the ego to always think of the future and what you ‘should’ be doing, this Now Moment becomes unimportant. Essentially, reality can only truly exist then in some future event.

When you say it like that, it sounds ridiculous does it not?

I liken the future as telling someone to ‘try’ and pick up a glass from a counter. They can either pick up the glass or not pick up the glass, you cannot ‘try’ to. That, in essence, is the future. It is always something that is simply a ‘try’ scenario; you are trying to make it something it is not.

Yoda said it best when talking to Luke Skywalker, “Do or do not, there is no try.” You have got to admit that that little green Jedi Master knew what to say, right?

Living in some future reality is the actual living with ‘your head in the clouds.’  The future is not here nor shall it be as the ego designs it for you. Many people fall into the landmines of future happiness in some future relationship, some future perfect job, some future perfect living conditions. This is at the heart of stress and depression for many people; the future not as planned.

Let me give you an analogy here. As a director, i would give people a script at the beginning of rehearsals that defined the parameter of the show. We had the future in our hands, but what brings uniqueness to the future are not the set words written in the script, but the actors that are saying the words, bringing life to them.

As much as we all know as we rehearse the play, the future of how it will end, the performance is as mysterious as any future ever is. Will the actor say all of the words in the script as written? Maybe, maybe not, but one thing is for sure, the only moment we have to make the show flow is to bring the Now Moments we spend on the script to light on Opening Night and beyond.

The ego always has your head in the clouds and it is called the future, and it is not written yet.

3 Ways to Allow the Ego to Not Determine Future Happiness

Step 1: Understand that the past is called that for a reason, it is gone and no longer defines you.

Many fall into the trap of being forever tied to a past comment, emotion or event that is supposed to become their future. While they are tied there, they become then so embroiled within it that the future then becomes this constant embracing of the past, trying to ‘make it right’.

Typical tactic of the ego in that as long as it can keep you in the past or so tied up in the past that you are forever striving to make it a better future, you are forever kept of balance and never fully capable of connecting with the truth that is you.

Many times you see it of people who come from a dysfunctional home environment when they say that they will never be like the environment that they came from. On the surface, that sounds admirable, but when you are so tied to an identity of what you don’t want to become that it is all you do to not become it, you never fully define the truth of who you are in this Now Moment.

Step 2: Release the preconceived ideas and emotions of others about your journey

Hollywood loves making movies about the person in a family who doesn’t desire to go into the family business and seeks out on a journey of self-discovery.

Why do you think that movies such as these speaks to us so deeply?

Because it is in our very core, especially if we have indeed done something that is really counter-intuitive to who we are deep inside. We are on the journey that is ours alone. If it is what your family and does indeed bring you joy, it is in your core, then by all means become your destiny. But when guilt defines your journey, it is the simple act of the ego defining who you are and will always take you from the joy of Now Moments.

Step 3: Understand that this Now Moment is the only future you have.

When you put away the guilt of what others think your journey should be and focus on what it is within you, what brings you joy, then become that journey.

As i don’t subscribe to the concept of regret, as it is merely an egoic way of living in some past that the ego uses to define you current reality, this Now Moment becomes the place to leave it where it belongs; buried and left on its own.

There is a truth in living as a creature of joy and not allowing some future to be as much for you. Like Opening Night, we know the future may exist, but there is no guarantee. It is in the rehearsal in this Now Moment that defines any future Now Moments that might become your reality.

Live them brilliantly for that is the only truth you will ever truly experience

Be Excellent, Expect the Best.

*******

Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA Southern is an Author, Speaker, Blogger and a Strategic Life Coach, teaching the spirit of living in Now Moments with the principles he experienced during over 35 years as an actor and director in live theatre. DA coaches his clients to rid life of limiting beliefs that have kept them from achieving miracles in all areas of their life by embracing Mindfulness of the Present Moment with a renewed Vision for life. Contact DA Southern for Coaching or Speaking directyourownlife@gmail.com

3 Ways To Not Allow Life Roles To Define Your True Self

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The journey of anger and the ego are so intertwined that it seems as if we can’t function without either of them and they often are wrapped up in who we are as individuals.

“Anger is good to release every now and then so you don’t have an ulcer”, my dad used to say and the ego, well, the ego… It is taught so fervently in today’s educational arena that it almost seems as if we have negated the very principles of reading, writing and arithmetic for that important concept of self-worth.

Now, here is where it gets tricky, as i have discovered with many of the coaching clients that i serve. The idea of self is so wrapped up in what we do, that it is clear that the very aspect of who we are has been lost in many instances.

What do i mean?

Well, when someone asks you, “Who are you?” Most will say, i am an electrician, a banker, a business owner, a mother, a wife…you get the picture.

Are not those roles that we have assumed in life? Do they define the Universal You? How Does Anger keep you trapped in those roles sometimes?

This is the reason when someone “retires” (a concept i find abhorrent) they often lose themselves in the nothingness of their Now existence. Studies have shown that men, who so often identify themselves with their career, often pass away within the first two years of retiring. It is only when they become invested in another career path, of sorts, and redefine themselves, do they find a new life in their later years.

Anger plays such a role here that many don’t even understand that at the root of depression of role-identification is anger hiding in the form of non-appreciation for ‘all that i have done for my loved ones, for the world.”

For example, i am a writer, a coach, an author, but i am not really those things. I am simply performing an outreach of my current state of mind, of that place in my soul where i desire to serve. Now, i certainly understand identifying so closely with that aspect of who you are that it becomes all that you are. In fact, when i went through a spiritual growth, i had to step away from the role of director as i began to see how the ego had consumed me within it.

I was no longer a Universal being but simply a director. It was only when i decided to see the beauty of the art form as a way to serve the greater good, from a cultural standpoint, instead of being simply a director of the current production, did i expand my vision. I ceased being a director and became one who served the greater cultural good in many other endeavors.

3 Ways to Allow the True You to Become More Than a Role You Play

Step 1: There are No Regrets

First, understand that there is a perfection to the Universe, the Universe makes no mistakes. Now this is a very difficult concept for many to get their head around. First of all, something only becomes a mistake in the concept of circumstances. If something you did didn’t turn out as well as you desired, then does it not then become a “mistake?” Had it gone slightly different, it would have been considered a success by the ego, therefore by you.

Again, who defines the rules of the game here? The ego, of course, but here is the challenge. The game is played on sand and underneath the sand is a raging earthquake. By defining yourself in roles or always identifying yourself as ‘right’ or “wrong”, “good and “bad” the ego keeps you always in check. Things just are and we are but to learn from them.

Einstein said, “Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow.”

This from the person who unlocked the very secrets of the universe. Do you think if he regretted every failed equation, he would have defined the concepts we now understand?

Step 2: Understand the Roles you play and look at the core concepts that make you who you are within them.

Again, keep away from defining yourself as this or that, you DO this or that, but you are not these things. I suppose the best way to describe it is by watching your favorite actor or even sports star. A good performer will always make you forget that it is that person playing the part but that they become the part they are playing.

The great actor, Sir Lawrence Olivier said, “The actor should be able to create the universe in the palm of his hand.” He is correct and we are all but players here. Don’t get lost in the role, but instead, look at the values and traits you bring to the role. The goodness of who you are within that makes those roles so dynamic to begin with.

Step 3: BEE the B!

I am often asked to coach students and there is a little acronym that has served me to illustrate a point about being excellent, exactly as who you are.

I love to tell of the scientific data that states that the humble bee can not fly. That’s right. Its little body is much to big for its wings. Then there is the fact that the poor bees are not aerodynamic at all, poor little guys.

But here is the challenge for the bees, or rather for the all-knowing scientific community; the bee has no ego telling them, or anyone else telling them, that they can’t fly. They just do it anyway!

The bees are not defined by what others have set forth as their role, they just are bees. So, the BEE the B is an acronym for, Be Excellent, Expect the Best, and this is a simple guide that you can think of whenever you see the humble bee.

If you are simply in the Present Moment just being the best you you can be, not a role, but you, then this is your excellence.

Allow not your ego to define you or the roles you play, but always Expect the Best from the world around you. For it is only in the positive expectation of life and with an attitude of gratitude can you see the Universe for what it is and for who you are within it.

*******

Let me Know your Thoughts Below, Follow this Blog, and be Social with this Post, for the more people we have living successfully in this Now Moment and discussing the value of doing so, the higher we lift all others around us.

*******

directyourownlife@gmail.comDA Southern is a Strategic Life Coach, teaching the spirit of living in Now Moments with the principles he experienced during over 35 years as an actor and director in live theatre. DA coaches his clients to rid life of limiting beliefs that have kept them from achieving miracles in all areas of their life by embracing Mindfulness of the Present Moment with a renewed Vision for life. Contact DA Southern for coaching directyourownlife@gmail.com

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