Why Do You Do The Things You Do? 3 Ways To Relieve The Stress of Life

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Life is filled with one reaction after another. Everything seems to be stressful and the aspect of ‘flying off the handle’ or ‘having a knee-jerk reaction’ to something seems to be fairly acceptable these days. Well, if happens too often, we can always get a pill prescribed as seems to be the way in these stressful times..

But really there seems to be a heart condition that is far more spiritual, in nature, than is physical. Although, it has been proven that our stress of being reactive to every thing can, indeed, lead to physical ailments.

What, then, is at the heart of such a rapid decline of civility within ourselves that translates outward into our reality? Why do we find ways to be insulted and grouped together in our victimization?

Is it that we really desire that connection, even if it is through stress of living? Maybe technology has spread us out so far and wide that it is difficult to truly be connected as we are designed to be, one heart to another.

You know, where i sit and write often, there is a group of older, retired men that sit in the local coffee shop and, together, they solve the town’s, country’s and even the world’s challenges in a matter of minutes over a nice cup of coffee.

These men sit together and are seemingly unconnected, except through the coffee club that has connected them. Yet it seems as if there is a peaceful connection that they bring to the restaurant and to each other that cannot be spoken. It is a place of peace within them.

While it is fascinating to hear them as they solve the crisis of the world, there seems to be a far-reaching truth here; the connection that binds them is a connection of the heart and therein lies the truth to a stress-free existence.

Now, some would indeed argue that often relationships are the source of all stress, but i am of the mindset that the relationships that are truly bound together are seldom built on verbal discourse, but of a heart-to-heart connection that is at its source, the place where stress is seldom experienced.

3 Ways to Relieve the Stress of Life

Think about a relationship with a pet. Never words are spoken, but there is a connection that transcends words and lives within the spirit, does it not?Does it not relieve a stress within you?

Way 1: Understand Your Part in the Stream of Life

Now i am certainly not going to sit here and tell you to ‘buck up’ and not to experience life in the ways it is to be experienced, but i am here to lead you to a new reality of your part in the stream of life.

Nothing happens to you as life is not out to get you.

It s easy to get caught up in being a victim to circumstances, to people, to the challenges that seem to surround you on a daily basis.

But, quite frankly, its not them (not life), it’s you. Most have experienced those little words in terms of a relationship gone awry, but it is time for you to say it to life, “it’s not you, it’s me.”

You see, when you can back off and understand that you, and only you, are the responsible party when it comes to living life in the fullness that is our mission in which to do, life becomes a sweeter version of itself.

Life does not happen to you, you are the captain that steers the course. Yes, often times storms can seem to take us away from our course, but if we release the ego and take back the helm from being a victim, we can command the ship return to the designated course that has been designed for us.

You are still here and therefore your course is still as viable as ever.

Way 2: Find Your Happy Place

It has become quite a cliche that we have a ‘Happy Place’ that we go to in times to conflict, but understand that there is a place that many do retreat to that seems to manifest on the external, often times in ways that seem detrimental such as drugs, alcohol, and unhealthy relationships, just to name a few.

However, these things are just an extension of the internal desire to find that place of bliss that is our inner core of peace. Really, then, it comes down to the questions we ask at this point.

What is the external seeking to manifest from within?
What is the stillness that must be found within that gives me peace on the outside?

Where is that place within me that is my calm?

There is a danger here to give another that power which you must resist. Understand that the person or place or thing that you associate with your happiness factor is an extension of something within.

Really sit and source it out for yourself, for at the heart of that understanding is the key to living stress-free.

Way 3: Release Yourself to the Moment of Now

Life happens now and at the source of most stress are the future events that are supposed to happen in some perfect completion or some past that did not happen as planned and is now infecting your Now Moment existence.

This existence of Now is your Happy Place as you are here, are you not? Anything that was supposed to cause you some type of dire consequences has not kept you from this Now Moment. There is nothing that the past supposedly was matters to this exact Now Moment. There is no future as of yet that can not be dealt with.

Ask, “What is the worse that can happen?” if you must, and find a place in this Now Moment to live free of it all, because whether you know it or not, you already are doing so.

Enjoy the sights and sounds of your surroundings. Meditate silently in the conversations of those around you and just listen to the way they speak, the way they reflect as they speak. Notice the nuances of every little action and reaction for when you become ever-present in the Now Moments of life, there is little left for the stress of what should or might be or has been.

Live, now, free of the reactions of living and become the action of living free within yourself. For here alone, is the place of peace that transcends into a life of serenity.

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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Are You Living Your Truth? 3 Ways To Know Your Truth

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Isn’t it funny how we drift through life sometimes seemingly thinking that we have it all under control? We go through our morning and daily routine thinking that we finally have a groove and, yet, there is an uneasiness about life that seems to permeate our very essence of life.

Joy seems to be something that happens in those fleeting moments when something external happens that we have planned to be as such. You could say that there is a heightened expectation of that joy, so, therefore, we must obtain it.

The Question Then Begs; Are You Living Your Truth?

Are the moments you are experiencing coming from a place of joy or are you manufacturing moments that seem to fill the emptiness but for a fleeting moment.

It is at the heart of all indulgences that there is a fundamental expectation of joy to be experienced, but the real expression is of a life that seeks to live in truth.

Joy and a joyful state, then, are simply the extension of your truth, whatever it is.

Let us be clear here; truth is not about what you do as much as who you are in what you do. You are the George Bailey of your “It’s A Wonderful Life” and it is for you to know that the world would have been a different place without you. But what is it about you that is your truth?

You are not just some physical being that is taking up space, are you? What is it that is the essence of who you are that allow for your truth to shine?

3 Ways to Know Your Truth

In “It’s A Wonderful Life”, George Bailey was not just a guy running a savings and loan, but a soul who inspired others to be better for themselves by his very care and concern for who they were. Of course, it goes much deeper than that and is why the movie is watched every Christmas Season as it inspires a truth of character that we all would like to identify with, no matter how hard-hearted the world has made you to this point.

Way 1: Understand Your Passions

The best way to understand your truth is to look at what inspires you; what are you passionate about? Whatever that is, there is a core truth there within the passion that shines a certain light on your truth. Look not at the passion or the inspiration, but what about it is as such to you? There within are fundamentals of your truth.

Way 2: What Would You Do If You Knew You Could Not Fail?

In the seeds of this question are the seeds of your truth in that when there are no restrictions that you put on yourself, there is a core truth that shines out like a beacon. You could call it your beacon of truth. Here in the depths of no limitations, most self-imposed, the core you emerges to become a truth, almost as if it could not be stopped from doing so.

Here is where most fall down in this question. They begin the process of asking, but then allow the ego to tell them to “be realistic” or to ‘live in reality’ as you have neither the time, money, or resources to be or do what you desire. So, why even bother playing this ridiculous game.

Sound familiar?

The secret here is to know that you are looking for your truth and from there you shall build it into a life of possibilities.

Way 3: Update Your Data Base

Like an anti-virus program that runs continually on your system that seeks to eliminate constant threats to your computer, you should update your personal anti-virus data base that runs to eliminate your negative past and the thinking that is keeping you from your truth.

You see, the past is used by so many as a reason to not allow the truth of who they are to be ever-present. For some reason, your truth was put down as something not valuable or realistic or whatever else the ego has used to keep you for being the expansive creature that we are all designed to be.

Something about your truth may have been used against you or made fun of, so you have buried it.

Update your anti-virus data base and eliminate the past negative emotions and actions, unless you need to hang on being a victim in some way. Let the data base update to clear you of those things from the past that seek to define your present.

You are not your past, but are only here as a testament to it. And your past is in no way your future. This is the moment. Update your Data Base and clear out the limitations that have kept you from your truth, for in the end, we are but given a truth that is our life journey.

Live it and allow the joy that it is to wash over you and cleanse you from the limitations that have kept you from your truth.

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

Being In The Flow of Life: 3 Ways to Embrace the Beginning of Flow Within

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Do you find yourself often going through the routines of life with no concern for the actual essence of all that surrounds you?

Does anything that happens ‘out of the ordinary’ throw you for a loop and gives you an excuse to have a bad day?

Does your flow seem more like a muddy pool of water that has a filmy substance covering it with a gentle aroma that seems slightly unpleasant to the senses?

Flow. Everyone talks of it. Most embrace it as a way, or as a desire, as a way to live their lives. The truth, however, is crouched in a security mindset that leaves nothing for flow at all in your life.

Life, then, becomes nothing more than for an accumulation for the shinny things that somehow, then, constitute a way to make life exciting. Be it the latest electronic gadget or the immersion into the latest sports team that we seem to desire to live vicariously through or some television program that diverts us from any sense of flow.

Now, i am not being a ‘you kids, get off of my lawn’ here, i assure you. I love great movies and tv that entertains. However, sometimes, when you fill you mind with all of the trivialities of life and wonder why a sense of flow is interrupted, you have to begin to take notice.

Flow Begins With the Questions We Ask

The question then becomes one not so much of the external, but one of the internal and the place the soul’s growth is within your life. Do you take care of the internal in places that only silence and reflection can truly take you? Do you release yourself to a higher level of living in that you are mindful of the Universal Way of life for all of creation? Do you truly release yourself and your ego long enough in any given period of time to truly care about life or are you so invested in your own trials and tribulations that life becomes a one-dimensional look from only your perspective.

Essentially, i am asking you if you see beyond yourself and actually enjoy what you see?

3 Ways to Embrace the Beginning of Flow Within

It is funny how most expect struggle and desperately seek a release of that struggle in terms of just being in the flow. It seems as if they so enjoy the essence of the struggle that flow then becomes a place or a condition of circumstances of things and people. Yes, these things may be part of the enjoyment of flow, but they are not flow that comes from within.

Way 1: Be Willing to Understand that Flow is Always an Inside Job

A penny on the track will derail a train. Well, that is what i thought when i was a kid. I was once walking along side of some railroad tracks with some friends when i was a kid and found a series of about ten mishapped pennys along a certain stretch of track. As i picked them up, one of my friends excitedly asked if some one was trying to derail a train. I looked at him as he told the story of derailing a train by putting a penny on the track and how he had heard about it from a cousin.

I still laugh at the story and how excited that made my friend at the time. That a tiny little copper piece could actually derail a huge, heavy train. But, in retrospect, is it any different than what happens to us on a daily basis? A small little change in our daily routine can cause us to ‘go off the rails’ in such a way that everyone around us suffers in the process,

Flow, then, begins with that place within that understands that you are the train and no penny can derail you.

Way 2: Understand that Circumstances Don’t Define You

In the great poem by Rudyard Kipling, “If”, he talks about the virtue of keeping your head when he penned, “If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs and blaming it on you” and goes on to illustrate that circumstances should never rule the day.

In the final verse, he talks of being the same to all when he wrote, “If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue, Or walk with Kings—nor lose the common touch, If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you…Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it.”

There is no circumstance that should define you. There is an old saying that says ‘that it is not so much what happens to you, but how you react to it that counts’, is so very true. It is always about your reactions and the way you are in peace with the moments.

Way 3: Be Willing to Release Judgement of Situations and People

One of the greatest killers of flow in one’s life is the judgement in all situations and the people you deal with. Judgement is life the eternal water on the flame of life that seeks to snuff out flow in allowing life to manifest within you all that your heart desires. When you judge situations and people and make assumptions based on those judgements, you are damming up any chance for flow to become your existence.

When you simply release any preconceived notions of people, groups and situations in general, you allow flow to become your very existence, you begin the process of truly living in the flow.

The old expression, ‘Before criticizing a man, walk a mile in his shoes.” applies here and, while the ego may persuade you to live in these judgements, or life experiences as it may be called, instead, allow new experiences to become your norm.

Allow the flow of life to envelop you and give you a new perspective, a new appreciation for the excellence of the journey of life for, therein, lies the heart of flow and of living in truth.

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

Breakaway From Limiting Thoughts: 3 Ways To Begin Anew Now

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My Pandora played me a song by Kelly Clarkson, Breakaway, and i thought that the words of the chorus fit perfectly into the place we must all decide to do to really advance ourselves into each fantastic Now Moment.

Breakaway From Limiting Thoughts

The lyrics of the chorus are:

I’ll spread my wings and I’ll learn how to fly

I’ll do what it takes til’ I touch the sky

 

And I’ll make a wish

Take a chance

Make a change

And breakaway

 

Out of the darkness and into the sun

But I won’t forget all the ones that I love

 

I’ll take a risk

Take a chance

Make a change

And breakaway

 
These words struck me as a way to release yourself into a new Now Moment in a way that seeks to honor the experiences of the past.

However, to really release yourself, you must indeed breakaway from the anchors that sometimes keep you in a place that is not necessarily a bad place, but a place that is maybe too comforting. You have to release you have to breakaway.

It is funny as i coach people from all walks of life, sometimes it is the very comfort of what they see as a place of security that are the limiting thoughts that bind them in a place in their lives.

Sometimes it is the very security that you desire in a relationship, a station in life, or whatever, that keeps you from spreading your wings. Sometimes letting go is indeed the risk that others decide for you is crazy.

But the point is that others are deciding for you.Are you deciding for you?

Limiting thoughts are that place within you that is nothing more than the ego telling you that you are not worthy of a better experience. It is so-called security that binds you to an image of what is safe and secure.

You know, as i love the watching of reality shows, i watch with interest “The Biggest Loser” and hear to tell of how Americans have allowed that very thought of security and a sedentary lifestyle to become their reality. We become creatures that are then based in the image of security instead of the expansion of our selves into a better creature of the world.

During “The Biggest Loser”, the trainers usually get into the heads of the various folks at the ranch where they train. As they train them, they come to discover that the overweight individuals have become creatures of limiting thoughts in that they have retreated within themselves and put a certain amount of trust in the food as it judges them not.

It simply is there and is a place that they can find a comfort as the limiting thoughts that brought them there are now solely at the behest of the food.

Most have done this, if not with food, with relationships, or careers or anything else that seems fairly innocuous on the surface. Anything that keeps you at a place in your life and does not allow for your expansion is at the core of limiting thoughts.

3 Ways to Breakaway From Limiting Thoughts

Remember if you are allowing yourself to be kept in a place that you do not expand your soul, then you are limiting yourself. We are creatures of expansion of a soul level and that expansion brings forth the creation of the world we share with other enlightened souls.

Way 1: The Past is the Past. Forgetaboutit!

There is this feeling i first heard my mother describe as being “out of sorts”, meaning that something is just not right in your soul. You are unsettled but can’t really understand why.

That something is always the past that is rippling onto the Present Moment. Most live in such a place of regret and guilt with things that happened or did not happen in some distant past that they are ‘out of sorts’ with the Present Moment. The ego loves this. The Now Moment then is forgotten about and the past and future, then, are the essence of living, according to the ego.

You have to let go in love. This is the key. There must be only love for the experiences and lessons of the past alone. Yes, everyone has heartbreak and tragedy in their lives, as that is the natural order of things, but you have to, as the Italians say, “forgetaboutit!” Which in Italian means, leave it or die. Usually when you don’t forgetaboutit, you die. So make sure you “forgetaboutit”.

It was best described in the Movie from 1997 called, “Donnie Brasco” when an FBI technician asked Donnie Brasco what it meant. This was his response. “Forget about it is like if you agree with someone, you know, like Raquel Welch is one great piece of ass, forget about it. But then, if you disagree, like A Lincoln is better than a Cadillac? Forget about it! you know? But then, it’s also like if something’s the greatest thing in the world, like mingia those peppers, forget about it. But it’s also like saying Go to hell! too. Like, you know, like “Hey Paulie, you got a one inch pecker?” and Paulie says “Forget about it!” Sometimes it just means forget about it.”

The Past is the Past, Forgetaboutit!

Way 2: Understand That You Are the One Who Allows All in Your Life

This is a tough one to grasp, but this takes you to a place of responsibility in your life and frees you from the trap of not going froward with a knowledge that you can be expansive in thought, word and deed.

You are a creative being meant to be expansive and to create your own reality. To not allow that to happen is to allow the ego and those in your sphere to determine for you your existence.

If you have decided that life, the economy, a relationship or anything else that is ‘holding you back’ is responsible for your limiting thoughts and actions, then rethink it.

Believe it or not, you are the creator of your greatness and you are meant to live a life not based on excuses of why you can’t move forward. If you have retreated into some type of comfort like food or alcohol, you might want to stop and ask yourself why.

If you are constantly saying that this or that happened to you, you might want to understand that nothing happens “to” you but “because of you”.

There is no judgement here and no reason for self-incrimination or blame. Just release yourself to it and become a person that desires to know that there are no limitations. You can create your own reality, but begin the process now, for this is the only moment you have.

Way 3: Let Your Mind Go Free

You have to, as the song, Breakaway, says, take a risk, Take a chance, Make a change And breakaway.

Where do you want to go? Who do you desire to be Now? Who do you desire to become when you have released yourself to be so?

What is stopping you?

Here is the answer to the last question…You.

Create your own reality, not one self-imposed on you by a set of beings who have themselves, limited thinking and perceptions of what is and could be. You are better than those kind of thoughts.

Be aware, though, this step requires the full commitment to truly unleashing yourself. I usually describe this process to clients as the realization that the room that you have been locked in is finally open for you to leave, but you enter the hallway with your hand still on the door frame, just in case.

Just in case of what?

Step into the hallway and thank the room for the experience of solitude, if nothing else. Don’t look back for it was but a place that kept you from expanding.

You are free. You did Breakaway and now the world is your oyster. It is up to you to find the Pearl within it that is right for you alone.

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

Commitment: 3 Ways to Live the Idea

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Commitment is one of those words that, for whatever the reason, has become nothing more than fodder for the advancement of the ego. Granted, the very word conjures up a prideful look at the core of who we are in everything we do.

Marketers us it to instill a sense of excellence in our minds;

The commitment to detail

We are committed to a relationship

We are committed to success

We are committed to making something work

We are committed to our families

The list goes on and on, does it not? How could we possibly derive any sense of egoic nature here. How could the ego possibly be involved with something so noble, so filled with hopefulness?

Indeed, how could it?

Well, we should look at first the actual meaning and, then, get to the heart of the matter, Commitment as an idea.

The dictionary says of commitment that it is The Act of Committing or the State of Being Committed and it is Dedication; Application. The synonyms for committed are; charge, committal, devoir (chore or task), duty, engagement, guarantee, liability, must, need, ought, pledge, promise, responsibility, undertaking, vow, and word. Some of the Antonyms are; broken promise, denial, and refusal.

Looking over the list, it is extremely easy how the ego turns the very word into ways to get you away from living in the Present Moment and keeps your feet in the past and on a future-only vision that is filled with hope and achievement.

Now at the core, that doesn’t sound wrong but admirable, right?

But let’s look at it this way. We are creatures of joy and the reason we are here is to experience joy and expansion as human creations. We do things that brings us joy and if there is an obligation attached to something, the joy of doing so is diminished. Especially look at the antonyms in the list above and you can see where the ego would come in through the back door to plant a foothold on you. No one wants to break a promise, right?

At the heart of the matter here is the idea that commitment brings. It is, as stated in the definition, a “State of Being” and that is what is missed by many when trying to internalize the word commitment. Commitment, at its core, is that place that you are really comfortable with who you are in whatever it is you do. There is no hierarchy of emotions that are attached to any given even in your life for you are grounded with a sense of purpose for the perfection of Now. You are committed to this Present Moment and are excellent Now.

Lets look at ways to become the very idea of commitment.

3 Ways to Live the Idea of Commitment

Way 1: Understand that at the Heart of Commitment is only What Your Bring to it

You must move away from the concept of the long list of attributes that the ego ties you up in with the very word of commitment and begin to see yourself as a person of quality in this Now Moment alone. No matter how many ‘broken promises’ the ego tries to ties you to, it matters not. You are here and you are a being of excellence. There is only one place any commitment happens and that is Now.

Way 2: Understand that Others Cannot Insist on a Commitment Level from You

This is a trick one in that you are committed to your family, your pursuits, your friends, but here is the key here; YOU are the one committed. When someone decides for you, and you even allow it, you give away your power and the ego either strikes out in different ways or is engaged in the pursuit if getting your power back in the form of over-achieving or whatever else is needed by the ego to advance you. Essentially. you are taken away from being excellent for yourself in this Now Moment and are taken on a journey that is someones journey for you.

Way 3: Understand That There is No Obligation in Commitment

Anything you do for others, you do for yourself. That is why the concept of giving is so very important and that even if you have little to give in a monetary sense, the giving can be time and talents, if nothing else. The point here is that it is never a condition of the head, but always of the heart.

Commitment is an idea of excellence and when the ego subverts it in ways of an obligation, you become entangled in the journey of others and no longer a creature of excellence of though, word and deed in this Present Moment.

Let the past go and any ideas of commitments that may have fallen short. It no longer matters and if someone holds something over your head, that is no longer your business, but it is there journey alone. It is no longer any of your business what others think of you. The only commitment anyone truly has is ti themselves and the ideas of excellence they bring to each Present Moment.

Be that person. Direct Your Power.

Until next time…

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.

An Attitude of Gratitude; 5 Ways to Live There

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I recently attended a birthday party for a young boy who was turning 9 years young. The time for presents had come and as the presents were presented, the young boy tore into the packages with glee, but i noticed something lacking in its intensity.

An Attitude of Gratitude

Now, don’t get me wrong here, i would not assume an mature aspect of living to a child that has yet to embrace the concept of gratitude. At that point in their life, is it not all about a concept of “me” and the things that “me” wants?

Not so sure of that.

I questioned myself as to when an Attitude of Gratitude is indeed instilled. I mean, is it like a switch that is turned on at a certain time? It seems to be like many other rather insane held beliefs in our society. Ones like, ‘You are 18 today, you are now a man’, as many young boys have heard. Again, like a switch is turned on and you ‘become’ a man just like that.

There are countless others that i am sure you have heard, but is having an Attitude of Gratitude one that ‘just happens’?

Again, i am not so sure of that.

it is something that must fully manifest, but, it is my belief, that it must be nurtured and not coerced within us. Not the obligatory ‘love’ you must have for a relatives gift that you are instructed to be thankful for, but true, honest and heartfelt gratitude for the living of life

5 Ways to Instill the Journey of an Attitude of Gratitude

Way 1: It is Thee, not Me

When directing, i would tell the actors a little ditty i penned that would seem to get to the heart of performing.

‘The Me that acts is for Thee alone, but cares not what Thee thinks.’

The concepts here are that you act in appreciation of the audience alone but, at the core, you are not acting for their approval. When any great performance in a movie or play takes you to a level of an appreciation for the story being told and for the lesson contained within, you lose yourself in the story and not the actors or the special effects.

This is why a movie like Star Wars appeals to so many; it is not the special effects, (but, hey, who doesn’t want a lightsaber with them at all times?) but the story of the one no one thinks can who becomes the hero. It is a journey of self discovery we all desire to take. Becoming a Jedi, was becoming bigger that what Luke was but somehow knew he was.

This is gratitude at its core. Becoming something besides yourself.

Way 2: The Details of the Details

I tell my coaching clients that while so many say that the beauty of life is in the details, i tell them to think a bit…smaller. The beauty of life is in the details of the details. This is the true expression of living in the Moment, being Present to yourself, therefore to all.

You see, when you are so in tune with your very surroundings, every sound and nuance that surrounds you, you become a creature that cannot do anything except be grateful.

I can tell you this is a very intricate gesture, but one that, as you practice it, it becomes counter-intuitive to you.

What do i mean? When you become so focused on details within details, you become intrinsically aware of sounds, colors and movements that are so very precious. Watch an animal sleep. Notice every aspect of their fur move as they sleep. notice how they are aware of sounds as they sleep as their ears move and adjust, seemingly unconscious to their very sleeping.

This is a mental exercise that will give you a new appreciation of the beauty of life, but one that must be done to do so.

Way 3: Smile

This may seem years apart from an Attitude of Gratitude, but if you are to just smile in this Now Moment, you will begin to feel a new awareness. Now, suffice it to say, this must be a real smile. Even if you believe you are not in a situation that you believe warrants a smile, do so anyway.

You are here, present in this Now Moment. You made it and there is nothing stopping you from smiling, is there? Besides maybe it would be fun to live the old saying, ‘Smile, it makes people wonder what you have been up to.

Way 4: Focus

This speaks to Way 3; Smiling. If you feel silly just smiling, first, tell the ego to take a hike, for that is the only thing telling you it is ridiculous and the assumptions you give about others looks about you or to you are none of your business. You don’t care.

But the way to really smile is to focus on something tangible within your surroundings. Focus on that object and really think of what went into it. If it is a person or an animal, focus on the details of every aspect of them. What makes you attracted to them. What is pleasing to your senses. Keep emotions out, even though your gratitude will elicit emotions, keep any emotions out initially as you focus. Really look at what ever it is and allow yourself to bask in the appreciation for what it is in every way and smile as you do so.

This will take you to the details of the details and allow you to smile with a genuine heart.

Way 5: Release Yourself

Your experiences have brought you here, but were never meant to be an anchor to hold you at some sandbar of a past point where you briefly ran aground as you sailed the stream of life. You are free to be and to love and to laugh and to appreciate everything. You have been designed to be a creature of joy and of love and this can only be experienced in the grips of a Spirit that appreciates everything in all ways.

To truly live in an Attitude of Gratitude, release yourself to the attitude to begin with. Let go and let the Universe carry you to love in this Now Moment alone. Be like the little boy on his birthday and revel in the gifts of this Present Moment, but unlike the boy, relish the moments with an Attitude of Gratitude for what they are and with those who share them with you.

For herein lies all love.

Have always an Attitude of Gratitude and 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

The Ego and Victimhood; The 2 Step Process To Release Being A Victim

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There has been a real trend in the USA towards being a victim to the extent that most, it seems, are going to be a victim or, if nothing else, they look for ways in which to be so at some point in time. We train the fear of that very fact into every child from an early age onward.

It is all built upon the concept of “rights” and it seems that “rights” and “victims” are so closely related that we can’t seem to find one without the other in modern society. But what many fail to understand is that at the heart of battling for the “rights” automatically implies a victimhood status. The very irony of fighting for the “rights” of one person or group presupposes an automatic victimization of another or group.

As i could get very technical on the different aspects of victims and who is or not genuinely a victim, i will not. Suffice it to say that the very thing we breed into our children, the culture of fear, as i call it, is a natural step into being a constant victim.

In his treatise on the pathology of victimhood, Rethinking ‘Don’t Blame the Victim’: The Psychology of Victimhood By Ofer Zur, Ph.D, he states,

“From a very young age we are taught not to trust strangers, not to take candy from them or follow them to their cars. Milk cartons and grocery bags carry pictures of missing children who have been abducted. The mass media saturates us with stories of innocent victims who have been raped, robbed, and murdered by people unknown. More and more Americans arm themselves, barricade their homes, and avoid going places for fear of violent crime. The commonly held belief is that the victim and victimizers are strangers to each other, yet it can be argued otherwise.

While the media, our teachers, and the milk cartons tell us the danger is ‘out there,’ in fact, the home and one’s own neighborhood are the places where one is most likely to get hurt. Murder statistics shed further light on the relationship between victimizers and victims. It shows that at least 88% of murder victims in the U.S. had an ongoing active relationship with their murderers. The relationship ranged from intimate or close friends (28%), to relatives (24%), and acquaintances and paramours (36%). Only 12% of the cases involved complete strangers (Jain, 1990; Wolfgang & Ferracuti, 1967). The F.B.I. reports that 1.5 million children are abducted each year. The agency also claims that most of these children (80-90%) are abducted by a parent in a custody dispute and not by strangers (Gelles & Straus, 1988).”

As i have coached many who have been caught up in the victimization of our culture, i sense that really, we have become fodder for the egoic tendencies that i believe are at the heart of being a victim of, well, everything.

As the ego does what the ego does best, it keeps itself front and center as it seeks to “protect” you at any cost, you become “a ‘fraidy cat”, as little kids say to one another, when faced with a “put your tongue on a frozen flag pole” situation in life. The ego raises its ugly head to make sure you are not seen as such and in the process seeks to make you a victim of people, places, circumstances and, life, in general, so as not to have to have you be in the Present Moment of living victoriously.

Here is the crux of egoic thinking; Victims like their victimhood as it keeps them forever tied to a future that has no hope and a past that is filled with instances that are reasons to expect more of the same.

You have heard it from those ego-locked souls in perpetual victim status and maybe even participated in the “stinkin thinkin” exercises yourself with statements such as:

“Ever notice as soon as you get in the Express Line at the grocery store the line slows down?”

“When I was growing up my mother was very distant and since then I have had a hard time relating to women.”

“I’d like to have more money, but I have so many financial problems I will never get out of debt.”

“I’d like to open a business of my own, but my wife thinks it is too risky, so I guess I had better stay at this secure and boring job I dislike going to every day.”

What do these statements have in common? The very nature of the person who is making the statement. Each statement seems to reflect the same type of individual; a person with low self-worth and a soul who has a predisposition towards negative expectations.

Essentially, these people are holding on to their victimhood. They live at the Victim Level of Awareness. It is almost as if the ego is using victimhood as a way to keep them in their unfortunate past with the stories of the problems of their life.

Here is the truth about ego and being a victim. While they are commiserate companions, the very nature of living in the Present Moment with a peace of knowing that life is a glorious journey escapes them.

The real challenge for most stuck in the egoic nature of victimhood is that you tell your story so well to everyone around you that you end up following your own script. Your ego keeps you in an endless cycle of being that perpetual victim.

The 2 Step Process to Begin to Release the Ego From the Desire for Victimhood

Step 1: Understand that no matter what has happened, you’ve made it to this moment, have you not?

You are here, Present in this moment. You have survived every past Now Moment. Evidently, no matter how hard the ego has given you a fear of a future that it must be involved in, no matter what the cost, you are here.

So, release the past. Understand that the Universe is a glorious place and that your journey is as it is supposed to be. Don’t label things as ‘bad’ or ‘good’ but see them as experiences for growth.

I am reminded of a quote from Oscar Wilde who said,

“Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future.”

The very nature of this statement should make you smile and give you pause to reflect of the journey of Now Moments and know that none of us are victims of the past, but only reflections. We can look at ourselves and then move on, for reflections do not hold us but allow us to see ourselves as we are Now.

Step 2. Embrace this Present Moment alone, for it is all you have.

Here is where i lose many in the discussion as we have been taught that there is a future that MUST be planned and calculated to the second. However, there is old adage that says, “If you want to make God laugh, just tell him your plans.”

Present Moment thinkers are usually called, “head in the clouds” or  “pie in the sky” thinkers, or whatever else the ego says of those who are not under its dominion. But please show me one ounce of evidence that there is a future. Yes, we plan an existence with a hopeful eye on tomorrow, as that is the nature of truly living in the Now Moment, but we don’t live there.

It is as when i have directed a theatrical production; we hope there is an Opening Night, but the play happens one rehearsal night at a time. The idea is that we are only as ready for Opening Night that is the reflection of each rehearsal that we were involved in.

Essentially, this is the Now Moment we live in and we are aware of the presence of the future, but this Moment is but the reflection of the past.

Understand that there is much more to be discovered on this journey of love known as life, but you have indeed made it to this Present Moment. Reflect, but know that a reflection only shows you as you are but holds no pull on you otherwise. Your reflection is your past and your present, but you can look and walk away.

It is a choice.

And, live, truly live, in the Now Moments you are given for as an Opening Night approaches, know that while it may be scheduled, that when you arrive there, you are only a reflection of the rehearsals that you participated in.

Participate fully Now as it is the only Moment you have to do so.

*******

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

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