Monday 8 December 2014

Is it time to start meditating?

The new year is coming fast and it is natural to think about how you would like your life to be in 2015. Would you like to feel calmer, more relaxed? How about lower your stress level? Studies show that many symptoms such as fatigue, high blood pressure, inability to focus, anxiety and insomnia are related to stress levels.

 “Meditation can wipe away the day's stress, bringing with it inner peace.”~ The Mayo Clinic

Is it time to start meditating?

Do you have to become a different person to meditate? Do you have to change how you eat, where you live or what you do for a living? There is a perception that meditation belongs to those that lean towards granola and New Age or hippie philosophies. Quite the contrary, meditation has become main-stream and celebrities from Oprah to David Lynch have publicly embraced the benefits they have experienced. There are very good reasons why meditation has been practiced for thousands of years and continues to attract new followers, from many different careers, cultures and locations, who are open to creating and receiving change in their lives. By sitting in silence, for a short period of time each day, you too can realize peace of mind and lower stress levels. By consistently practicing how to shut off your busy life for a few minutes every day you learn how to access a composed, centered state of mind and that helps you deal with the pressures of life from a calmer place.

Yes, meditating can be a challenge. I’ve been meditating for several years and I still have days when I fidget and fuss and instead of focusing on quieting my mind, I find myself planning my shopping list. In those moments I have learned to have patience with myself and just bring my focus back to my breathing. Like anything else you would like to become good at – you must practice. As any coach will tell you, in order to build the muscles in any area, you must work them out regularly.

7 Steps to Creating a Meditation Habit (In a Nutshell!)

  1. Pick a time of the day that is convenient for you (first thing in the morning is the best) and make a commitment to meditate for 30 days.
  2. Choose a quiet place and sit comfortably with a straight back for 10-15 minutes (to start).
  3. Close your eyes and begin breathing slowly through your nose. Your body recognizes deep breaths as a signal to begin relaxing.
  4. Consciously drop your shoulders and feel your body warm and heavy.
  5. If you find your mind wandering bring your focus back to your breath.
  6. Continue focused breathing until your time is up.
  7. Take a couple of minutes to bring your awareness back to the present and then move into the rest of your day relaxed.

Once you create this habit you will have found an easy, cost-effective way to bring wellness into your life.

Still not sure where to start?

As a meditation coach I can help you create a habit that can be sustained for the rest of your life. I have created and customized corporate meditation programs, meditation groups on Skype and in house and meditation and counseling for couples. For more information and schedules check out the Meditation page on the Sound Reiki Institute website.

Do you have any questions about meditating, or any comments on this blog? I would love to hear from you.



Saturday 17 May 2014

First you dream…

This blog has been percolating for a while now. Time and time again, over the last few months I have had the conversation with friends and clients about how to move forward in their lives. They feel blocked, indecisive and uncertain about their future and there is often a feeling of being frozen and unable to move in any direction. I, too, have felt this unsettling energy and I would like to share the four steps I have used to take that uncertainty and change it into a positive energy that is propelling me forward.

First you dream

Sit down and really think about what you want your life to look like. Think about your ideal career and how much time you would like to spend working - a week, a month, a year. How much money would you like to make a year? (Money is only energy and is a way of balancing give and take. Everyone deserves to have a lovely, comfortable life!)  Dream without limits. What would you like to do – is there a career that has always called you and maybe you didn’t feel it was possible for you. Would you like to write, paint, teach workshops or help people? What makes your heart happy? Is it a relationship you desire or financial freedom? Really take the time to dream, to feel how you would like your life to be.

Create your dream on paper

Writing crystallizes thinking. Write down all the details of what you want to create without judgement of exactly how you are going to do it. In order for the Universe to help you manifest that which you desire, you need to be clear on what you desire. Isn’t it interesting that when you are happy so many things happen to make you happier? If you are miserable, well, all sorts of things to make you more miserable begin happening. The Law of Attraction shows us that whatever you give your attention, energy and focus to is what you attract into your life. If you have a very vague idea of what you want to create (and this goes for every area of your life) you will get a vague result. When you have all your details create a concise list or a Vision Board, whatever you prefer. Again, what makes you happy to look at?

Create an action plan

A goal without a plan remains a dream. Write down four things that you can do that will take you in the direction of achieving your goal. You need to know only how to peddle your bike, most people don’t start doing wheelies immediately. Do you want a new career? Prepare your resume, start contacting agencies, target the companies you want to work for and keep checking their available positions. Do you want to be a writer? Epictetus, a Greek sage and philosopher said, “If you want to be a writer - write.” Start a blog, start a book, write a short story. Do you want to be a painter, a speaker, a singer – take some lessons.
If money is a challenge right now, there are lots of free instructional videos on YouTube.

Take action

Make a commitment to creating your heart’s desire, trust that you can have the life you want and then start working your Dream Plan. Get on your bike and start moving! As long as you are working your Plan, the Universe will help you by bringing people and situations to assist you in moving forward. REMEMBER, if you start having doubts about what you want that is just like jamming a stick into the spokes of your bicycle wheel. If it is a little stick, there will be a little jerk, the stick will break and you will continue to move forward. If there are a lot of little sticks then these doubts will lock your wheel and you are going to fall off the bicycle. When this does happen it is important to be kind to yourself, dust yourself off and hop back on that bike. You have to believe you can have the life you desire.
When you can put a check mark beside all your action items it is time to review your dream. Take your dream to another level by starting the whole process again. Every time you complete your action items, begin again by re-evaluating your dream. Accomplishing your action items will change you;  you will gain more confidence, strength and courage. All through life, you will be course correcting. Like riding that bike, when the road is new you are going to come to forks in the road that you were not expecting and you must make a decision which direction to go. Take the path that feels the best to you, trust your gut instinct, your heart, even if it can’t be logically justified, and know that you have the ability to deal with whatever lies ahead. Continue to follow your heart and what makes you feel good and you will have a beautiful life in ways that you could never have predicted. Dreams do come true!