Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Slow down and pay attention...

- to your inner turbulence and thoughts;
- to your spoken words and gestures;
- to your choices...

and then... keep paying attention

- to others own turbulence and thoughts;
- to others spoken words and gestures;
- to others choices...

and understand, “True love is born from understandingGautama Buddha 

You must love in such a way that the person you love feels free.
Thich Nhat Hanh

Monday, April 27, 2015

Banged your head again?

Even when we bang our heads on some wall (accidentally or not), it hurts, we knew it would hurt and we know it will hurt the next time too. And face it, it's most likely sure you'll hit that wall again. Whether if it's sooner or later I guess it depends on our stubbornness or "lack of vision", but we will go, "for show" through that same painful experience.

What can we do to prevent that painful moment?

For a start, pay close attention to where/what you lead your head into, then, have it in your freezer one of those ice cubes plastic bag that are perfect to shape it around your bruise.

Ok, we can try to prevent it, but we can only do so much. There are walls, ceilings, trees, cabinet doors, shelves, vases, chairs or tables and ground everywhere, so even if you confide yourself to a small space and never change stuff around you, that moment will still come.

... Surprise! BANG! Ouch! "#$%#"!!!!!

Get prepared and be ready. That's my advice. Don't say you didn't expect it. We all know that emotional frustration, sadness, desperation, tiredness, it's just a matter of time till it gets you again.

So, deal with it before and have the right tools next to you when you need it.

What are the right tools?
... know yourself, know your weak points, know your sensitive areas. Learn how to talk about them and make the best to heal yourself from enabling thoughts like "I can't, I'm too tired, I'm not good enough, I'm not smart, I'm not a good person..."

You are a good person, you're smart, you're loving and deserving of anything, as any other person.
So, you don't have what you want, you don't even know what you want? work for it, get out, move around, risk it, but don't give up before making some effort.
Ah, you've messed it up? Again! Say you're sorry, learn from it, try it differently next time.

We all make mistakes but just some of us actually do the work to learn from them.
And this is where we really choose. We don't choose our opportunities, we choose to engage with them or not. We either choose to learn from our "accidents" and get the right tools for next time, or we choose to deny that experience and keep walking with our eyes closed (bad idea...)

So act smart, emotionally smart, and get your own first aid kit, for sure you will bang your head...

Guy Winch, Psychologist calls it "Emotional Hygiene", word!

On Self-Esteem:

"Self-esteem is like an emotional immune system that buffers you from emotional pain and strengthens your emotional resilience. As such, it is very important to monitor it and avoid putting yourself down, particularly when you are already hurting. One way to “heal” damaged self-esteem is to practice self-compassion. When you’re feeling critical of yourself, do the following exercise: imagine a dear friend is feeling bad about him or herself for similar reasons and write an email expressing compassion and support. Then read the email. Those are the messages you should be giving yourself."

On Guilt:

"One of the best ways to resolve lingering guilt is to offer an effective apology. Yes, you might have tried apologizing previously, but apologies are more complex than we tend to realize. The crucial ingredient that every effective apology requires — and most standard apologies lack — is an “empathy statement.” In other words, your apology should focus less on explaining why you did what you did and more on how your actions (or inactions) impacted the other person. It is much easier to forgive"

And last, but really important too: Stop Rumination!

"It is natural to reflect on painful experiences or worries. By going over such scenes in our minds, we hope to reach new insights or understandings that will reduce our distress and allow us to move on. But this natural process of self-reflection often goes awry such that instead of attaining an emotional release, we simply play the same distressing scenes in our head over and over again, feeling even sadder, angrier, or more agitated, every time we do." It's addictive, so the best way to really stop it is to distract yourself as soon as you start ruminating. Do a puzzle, watch a movie, dance, sing, whatever... just don't follow the negative spiral... cut that bad trip!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

... motivation for what?

So, I posted on motivation, on how we need to push more out of ourselves but as always, unless you do something great, something people will recognize as big, huge, great, you're just another person... What is that? Just another person?

Are we that many that some of us are dispensable? If so, I'm one of those dispensable people... but, and there's always a but! (I try hard to be positive...) I'm sure that for some I'm not dispensable. There's always at least one person that will miss you. For a start, if your mom and dad are still sharing the same world as you, even if they've disagreed with every choice you've made, you're their miracle, their tiny little sweet miracle that they embraced and took care the best way they could. And then you'll probably have one other friend, one soul mate, one crazy idiot that believes the same silly "unconjugated" things that you believe in also...

... so motivation for what?

Motivation to at least bring some positive energy into this world. Motivation for at least make life easier to whoever you meet daily or randomly.

We might not be the best thing since "sliced bread" (life's breath), but we can be a good thing for something (someone). So here's why, despite not being the super hot shot in whatever, we can get motivated to be the best version of ourselves.

... don't say goodbye angry or frustrated. Say it with a smile and a positive "see you soon"...

Friday, April 24, 2015

... motivation ...

Take care of yourself...

Thank you Ralph Smart : )

What are emotions?...

What are emotions?...
Have you felt how sometimes we're stuck in emotions that are not helpful or even true.

How sometimes we choose not to think to be gentle with our own self and then, those same emotions, lead us into negative trips...

Trying to put into words what's an emotion we can describe it as a feeling, a sentiment, a reaction or a sensation. Sometimes mutually felt, other times a surprise, even for the person feeling them. So they're actually tricky and not so much trustworthy... how many times have you felt trapped by your own emotions?

"Emotions are a mental state that arises spontaneously rather than through conscious effort and is often accompanied by physiological changes; a feeling."

It's a mental state, so... don't let them decide what is right or wrong in you, others or in the world. For that you need to be calm and peaceful. If you've been having some weird feelings all through out the day, what kind of emotions do you think you'll sustain towards the news, words or even when you wake up the next day?

Always, always! shift your emotions into positive feelings. Yes, even sadness. Understand what caused the sadness and then react with a positive effort.

There are moments in Life that seem unbearable. Changes and surprises in Life, our own or of someone important to us, that are unfair and impossible to understand through our simple minds. The emotions that come from guilt, grief or solitude bring us to our lowest levels of existence, and in that state of "being" we have no willpower, no voice, no energy, no capacity for self-preservation...

So pay attention to your emotions but don't let yourself be led by them. Make your best effort to change them into a higher/positive vibration.

Everyone in this Life will go through many downhearted despairing moments, we know that as we know there's no way around it. We are more bluntly caught by them when they're unexpected or even unimaginable. Like we usually say, Life is not fair. It isn't. Life is not fair when we stand and think of it through our simple minds, of right and wrong, of hours, days, months, of facts and things learned in books. Why this or that? Why me? Why so many people? The "why's" we can't answer...

... but Life starts with a miracle.

Life starts with a Miracle. Hold that thought really deep in you.
Life starts with a Miracle.

And that is what we need to remind ourselves when everything feels fucked up.
Yes, fuck, why?????? ... but then stop and rethink! change your emotion! we actually come from somewhere, against all odds, we're born. We start to breathe and exist. It wasn't our doing. We were born, period, that's how far we know. We can feel there's more to it, but that's as far as our simple minds go.

Can you feel the vibrational change of your emotions? Do you feel the Hope, Love, Acceptance that can rise from one single thought? Life starts with a Miracle.

Embrace positivity and a higher perspective on things. Embrace nature and find your self-love, self-respect, self-freedom.

Love is God, Gotama, Allāh, Khuda, Ishvara, Maasai Engai, etc...
Love is the highest vibration we should aim for. Think from, to and with Love.

The divine {power} placed {within you} is far {stronger} and greater than any challenge/obstacle ever set before you.

Some of the keys to living and operating from this {divine} place of power with you are:
  • having a daily prayer/meditation life
  • connecting with this divine power within you daily
  •  becoming one with this power within you daily
  • activating and calling upon this power within you daily
  • doing more of what strengthens and empowers your spirit/energy; daily
  • doing less of what weakens your spirit/energy; daily
  • eating more foods that make you vibrate higher; daily and less that don’t
  • mastering and monitoring your words and thought frequency
  • saying no to people, foods, places, relationships and things that make you  vibrate lower and which seek to rob you of your energy
  • mindfully protecting and empowering your energy; daily

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Let's go beyond

Can we really go beyond?
Beyond what...?

well, beyond disbelieves, beyond poor judgments, beyond unriching repetition and all that we do because that's we were taught to think that way.

"The entire purpose of society is to create a bulwark against the inner and the outer chaos, in order to make life bearable and to keep the human race alive. And it is absolutely inevitable that when a tradition has been evolved, whatever the tradition is, the people, in general, will suppose it to have existed from before the beginning of time and will be most unwilling and indeed unable to conceive of any changes in it. They do not know how they will live without those traditions that have given them their identity. Their reaction, when it is suggested that they can or that they must, is panic. And we see this panic, I think, everywhere in the world today, from the streets of New Orleans to the grisly battleground of Algeria. And a higher level of consciousness among the people is the only hope we have, now or in the future, of minimizing human damage."
James Baldwin

We act as if we're small but at the same we think everything is too huge.
Where does that leave/leads us?
Too small too make a difference, too big to care?

But there are some "things" that can actually take us beyond these existential doubts. Despite the frustration, even sadness, of feeling disconnected with what happens with the world, be it because we're too weary of seeing the same news, the same wars, hearing the same lies and twitched truths, sometimes we're surprised with the aesthetic fruition of a song, sound, detail, sensation.

It's my belief, and empirical experience, that Art can open our eyes and show us in clearer ways what Love feels like or what Hate looks like.

We know what Love feels like, right? Sweet tears and a smile so deep that each breath seems to hold all the honeyed spring fragrants of the Universe. A song that is felt like a soft feather slowly traveling your skin. Nature erupting in new births and spontaneous celebrations.

We also know what sadness and envy feels like. Green eyed monster...

But we choose. We choose our path.
Do we really?
What if you don't know what freedom feels like?
What if you believe you deserve pain?
What if your guilt or shame blurs all that you can be?   

well, can we go beyond?
 ... yes.

We can teach ourselves humbleness.
We don't know much about this world, and what we know is incomplete.

We can teach ourselves humbleness.
That simple decision will open your Heart and as said by that beautiful little prince, "What is essential is invisible to the eye". Our Heart "sees" further deeper into the nature of things and people. It can see the divine in others and from that place we can start believing again in forgiveness, in hope, in peace.

Art can work like a window that we open to get some fresh air. Open your mind.

"The artist is distinguished from all other responsible actors in society—the politicians, legislators, educators, and scientists—by the fact that he is his own test tube, his own laboratory, working according to very rigorous rules, however unstated these may be, and cannot allow any consideration to supersede his responsibility to reveal all that he can possibly discover concerning the mystery of the human being. (...) if we understood ourselves better, we would damage ourselves less. But the barrier between oneself and one’s knowledge of oneself is high indeed. There are so many things one would rather not know! (...) to become a social human being one modifies and suppresses
and, ultimately, without great courage, lies to oneself about all one’s interior, uncharted chaos."
James Baldwin

What we think is what we become, please repeat that to yourself when you choose that same old path of blaming and criticizing. Remember, what you think is what you become. To paraphrase Kierkegaard, Life is best understood backward but must be experienced forward, so right now, right where you are, you're in the present moment creating your story. How do you want to frame it to tell it one day? Go beyond the facts you "know". Be humble and let imagination open your mind/heart. Go beyond.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

This world is poetry if your Heart is open...

Let go of personal hurts, if we knew any better we would do better. Really, sometimes we think we know and we still choose wrongly. You have to taste it to embrace it or waste it... quoting Mr Baldwin again: "I imagine one of the reasons people cling to their hates so stubbornly is because they sense, once hate is gone, they will be forced to deal with pain." but you know, "There is never time in the future in which we will work out our salvation. The challenge is in the moment; the time is always now."

Live this world... a start: Baraka (old doc)

Do you believe in yourself? Do you really believe in yourself? Do you really believe you know what's best for you, what's your path to happiness, what are your main ultra-to-the-point goals, and so on... do you? Or you don't and just trust that things will come to their own term when it's time and in whatever way they have to.

It might sound sort of a loser and quitter attitude, but think about it, what do you really know that you can believe in so stolidly? Hey, remember that famous sentence: (...) As for me, all I know is that I know nothing, for when I don't know what justice is, I'll hardly know whether it is a kind of virtue or not, or whether a person who has it is happy or unhappy." So we don't know, we experience it and learn. More than believing we need to experience.

It's through experience that we build up our own wisdom. A cellular wisdom in the body, a thought wisdom in the mind, and an ethereal wisdom of the soul.

So next time you think you're thinking too much, go ahead and dive in. Learn, build your own conclusions and smile, like Amma said, "It’s better to get worn out than rust away."

There are some really foolish brave souls in this world and what they've shown us is that through the making we live. Be it Gandhi and is motto "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others", or someone from a completely different spectrum, James Baldwin, american writer who so eloquently spoke "When one begins to live by habit and by quotation, one has begun to stop living. (...) To be sensual, I think, is to respect and rejoice in the force of life, of life itself, and to be present in all that one does, from the effort of loving to the making of bread."

So, let's free our minds from all the ism's and social programming and, like heart-singer Lauryn Hill put it, "Your whole philosophy is paper thin (...) it's freedom time"

And just one more thing...

Word to this!

"My Wish: A vision of a world in which women and men progress together, a world in which all men respect the fact that, like the two wings of a bird, women and men are of equal value.

My Desire: Everyone in the world should be able to sleep without fear, at least for one night. Everyone should be able to eat to his fill, at least for one day. There should be at least one day when hospitals see no one admitted due to violence."

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Up or Downgraded Humans?

Responding to a friend’s appeal on the question of what is wrong with the “world” today, with so many massacres, violence, aggressiveness, I decided to actually spend some time, quiet time, to understand this apparent apathy towards so many impacting news.

The feeling that there’s more harm in the world comes of course from the technology advances in sharing content. In a quicker and easier way, news from all over the world are updated almost instantly, something that ten years ago did not happened. So, violent actions have always occurred, but now there is a camera to witness and share it.

Experience here: Walter Scott shooting

What I find now to be unsettling is not so much the amount of violence, because it has alwayas been there but the growing apathy and desensitization of that screening.

We do share and submit our opinion on those sad and violent acts, but quickly we change screens and go back to our day to day business: email, tweets and some randomness.

Violence and suffering are now like a background endless show that we talk about it without putting too much thought on it. Between one email and another, we might tweet or facebook about our “indignation” towards some really scary or sad story. The same for happy discoveries. We share random happy facts and we alter between what we consider relevant or irrelevant.

A simple analogy to this world wide intricate flow of information and human’s brain development is comparing Internet / Social Media to Food.

We need technology as we need food. Technology helps productivity as well as food gives us energy to produce. But we can choose what sort of food we want to nurture ourselves with. Junk food or a balanced diet? Pins and tweets, or quality news reporting?

So, to fully address what is wrong with the world today, we must look at what we’re actually paying attention to. Are we paying attention to the veracity of the facts presented on the media? Are we paying attention to the person right next to us? Are we making any effort to have a better insight and judgement of our place in this world?

I realize it’s too much too undertake such responsibility. It is an over stretch to say that what happens in this world is a consequence of what’s happening in our thoughts, a result of our decision making ability, but it is undeniably associated.

A hint of what I’m trying to say can be perceived through the really sad event of the GermanWings case. The opaqueness of the mental illness is augmented by the way everything happened in clear sight, but along with a very poor judgment of one person’s mind.

Through Social Media, we have access to more information and we get to know more and more people, but we know less about them and the depth of facts.

We must keep in mind that our brain is wired to adapt, so it’s inevitable to ask: are we loosing our analysis ability? Some studies reveal that we think we are smarter than we actually are when we search online.

Very shortly, our situation towards WWW technology is this:
  • we consume three times more information than in the 60s;
  • an average user juggles through an estimated 30 websites in a day;
  • the presence of screens is not anymore just at work or home, but in your pocket, car and even in the middle of a conversation;
  • more and more pediatric psychologists are concerned about the consequences of this plugged-in parenting, where the concept of “Alone together” tends to build up feelings of hurt, jealousy and competition;
  • Dopamine squirt: that ring on our pockets has been linked to the same addictive behavior as in gaming. Other studies have shown that the enticing surprise of a new email, a new chat, a new post, releases small amounts dopamine in the brain. Like cats like catnip;
  • Social Media changes are mood (for better or worse);
So, what will be posting post in 20 years from now?
If we want to see a better world, we must start at ourselves. Start posting things that matter, start doing things that matter. Hold on tight, very, very tight to a positive and constructive ethic code. Don’t just do it, do it because it matters and brings positive change.