Attaining Personal Freedom

May 31, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog

boy and the sky

Walking down the street yesterday, I was thinking about how hard it is to simply do what we want or think to be right without having any expectations.   The reason being is we are always concerned about how others will see us and/or we are living by societal “shoulds” we have adopted as our personal mantras along our life paths.

But, to find and act according to our own truths, means to have complete freedom and a much better chance for contentment.

This concept of personal freedom translates into our lives as: I’m going to live this moment to its fullest because I’m happy now.  What will take place tomorrow is not as important.  What other people are thinking or experiencing is also not as important.

This is not about acting out.  It is not about being selfish or hurting others – those would actually be results of a lack of a true relationship with the self.

Living truthfully and in the moment means to have an intimate relationship with the self where our feelings are not dependent on others to have the right to exist.   This state of being occurs when our egos are no longer so frail that we feel threatened or hurt by responses and reactions different from our own.

When we are constantly waiting to see how others feel or where the future will lead, we are never in our own present or in our own truths.  How we feel about something or someone is independent of how they feel about us or how things will turn out.

Having the courage to be means we have finally switched from living a life of reaction to living a life of action.  We act based on how we feel not on how others feel.

Imagine for a moment having the ability to honestly express yourself without expecting any specific response.  Wouldn’t that feel light?  Wouldn’t that feel like opening many doors?

I believe, living our truths, allows us to stop wasting time and energy on things we have no control over such as other people’s thoughts and feelings.

Start your journey by spending time with yourself.  Create a trusting relationship then ask yourself how you really feel and act accordingly.

 

 

 

 

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Finding Contentment in Seizing the Moment

October 11, 2010 by  
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Learning To Listen To Our Intuition

July 17, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog

Everything we need to know we can by listening to ourselves.  Of course I’m not talking about the answer to mathematical problems or the discovery of cancer treatments.  I am referring to the initial reaction to others and situations we all have.  It’s the sum of our life wisdom with intuition.

Wisdom comes from life experience.  Intuition can be attributed to a number of things depending on our belief system but for the purpose of this post, let’s say intuition is our inner voice which lets us know what often our minds have a hard time picking up and understanding.

The problem with intuition is that it speaks in a soft voice and places no demands on execution.  In other words it says what it needs to say but it is up to us to listen to it and take action, and there is where the problem lays. Read more

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How To Give Yourself To Whatever The Moment Brings, And Forget Stress

May 18, 2010 by  
Filed under Featured

Post written by Leo Babauta. Follow me on Twitter.

The prevailing way of living in our Western societies is to plan out our lives, both for the long term and on a day-to-day basis.

We have planners and digital calendars that map out our lives, sometimes to the minute. We feel we’re in control, with plans like this.

But it’s an illusion, as I’ve said before.

We cannot control our lives to this degree, no matter how we try. Things will always come up to spoil the best-laid plans, and the more detailed our plans the more of a guarantee that something will go wrong.

And what happens when the plans go wrong? We are stressed out, because things get out of our control and don’t live up to our expectations. This is one of the greatest sources of stress for most people, actually.

Think about how often your days actually go according to plan, exactly — it’s pretty rare, because we have no way of predicting the future. No matter how hard we try. There’s always an email that will disrupt things, a last-minute meeting, cancellations and postponements, emergencies and fires to put out.

So if plans will almost always go wrong, and when they do we get stressed out, isn’t all the time we spend creating the plans a bit of a waste?

But what’s the alternative? Giving yourself to the moment. This will not work for everyone, I’ll admit: there are those who will have a hard time giving up the illusion of control, and others who are controlled by their bosses or peers and cannot work or live this way.

Still, it’s something worth considering. Here’s how to do it — starting with the don’ts:

  1. Don’t plan. Planning is an attempt to control the world around us, but it’s a futile attempt. Throw out your plans, for now at least until you’ve decided this method isn’t for you. What do you do instead? More on this below. For now, just stop planning.
  2. Don’t worry about the future. Will something bad happen? Are there things coming up that we must anticipate and prepare for? Of course, if there’s a massive hurricane headed your way, you should probably get ready. But otherwise, just realize that the future is unpredictable, and worrying about it is a waste of time. Focus on right now, and you’ll always be able to handle what comes.
  3. Don’t have expectations. If you expect people to act a certain way, or hope that things will turn out a certain way, you’ll always run into problems. Forget about outcomes for now. Go into things without expectations, and they will always turn out perfectly (if a bit messy).
  4. Don’t get annoyed when others act a certain way. Don’t expect people to act any way other than how they actually act. They are exactly the way they should be — even if that’s selfish or weird or aggressive. Those are their problems. Your problem is figuring out how you should act. I’d also advise you to try to understand others — why do they act the way they do?
  5. Don’t overreact. This is a major problem when people plan and things go wrong — they overreact, and get upset and emotional and blow things out of proportion. Stay calm, because if things “go wrong”, they didn’t actually go wrong — they just happened. More on how to react below.
  6. Don’t try to be proactive. This is a common prescription (being proactive) in management and business literature. And while I think the general idea is fine — do something to prevent problems from recurring rather than just fixing them after they happen — one of the problems this creates is always worrying about what might happen. And creating solutions before there are problems — if there never is a problem, you’ve wasted a lot of time creating the solution, and a lot of energy worrying about the future.

And now for the dos:

  1. Do be open. What would it be like to go into each day without a plan, but just to see what happens? A bit scary, because of the lack of security and control, a bit chaotic perhaps, a bit like we’re a piece of driftwood floating in the middle of a churning sea. But in truth, this is what it’s like to go into each day *with* a plan — it’s just that we normally fool ourselves about the amount of control we have. So start the day with no plan, and be open to what emerges in each moment.
  2. Do what you love. So what should you do, now that you have no plan? Do what you’re passionate about, do what excites you right now. Create something amazing. Pour yourself energetically into a project. Build something new. And what you think you’re creating might turn out to be completely different from what emerges, but you’ll have fun doing it and something even better might be revealed.
  3. Do act, in the moment. Giving yourself to the moment doesn’t mean being passive and just letting life happen. It means acting, but doing what is best at this moment, what you are excited about right now, what needs to be done, in the present.
  4. Do respond appropriately. Life happens, and we must respond. But instead of overreacting, we can respond calmly and appropriately. We can take the action that’s required, fix the problem, do what’s necessary to prevent it from happening again, and move on without it ruining our day.
  5. Do accept. Accept what happens. It might not be what you considered ideal, but it’s what life has given you, what has resulted from your actions in an unpredicatable world. Accept it, respond, act, move on. Don’t get caught up in things not going your way, but accept that’s what has happened.

Again, this way of living won’t be for everybody. Some don’t have the freedom to live this way, and others just won’t give up control. Some will think this is a passive way of living, but it really isn’t: it’s just a way of living in the moment without being caught up in the future (or the past) so much.

And when we live in the moment, we’re really living life to the fullest. This is the gift of the present.

Thoughts? Please share them with me on Twitter.

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Inspirational Message

February 2, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog

By: www.innerlinks.com

I don’t know much about Innerlinks but thought this particular message was worth sharing.

—–

Let go of all that keeps you in the past or takes you into the future. This may include control, expectations, inhibitions, worry or an outdated self-image.

At the core of every unhealthy behavior is a misconception about life and the way energies really work. We unknowingly make conclusions that contract our awareness and hold these behaviors in place. We get overloaded with images, sounds, moods and the many sensations we pick up from our daily interactions with people and places.

We are now living in a time of unprecedented opportunities to evolve spiritually. As the energy accelerates, it stimulates the unconscious and compromises, resignations, and feelings of loss cannot remain suppressed any longer. As these surface and become conscious, we can briefly review them and let go of the outdated misperceptions and fixed decisions we made prematurely — some even before we learned to speak.

Our work now is to free ourselves from suffering by dissolving contracted feelings, unlearning old habits and developing new ones from our soul’s perspective. By continuously choosing to shift into the present moment, to a fresh space where we let go of our personal history and call forth the soul’s reality, we undergo a truly heroic transformation.

It is not a long linear process to our best self. The old world is slow and filled with gaps of separation and the need to dwell on the past. On the other hand, the new world is fast and based on interconnectedness, intuitive promptings, and courageous movement.

We are all at a turning point, one that requires each of us to release readily what no longer serves and prioritize our energies, focus, and actions in the world. And, the invitation is ongoing to set aside our doubts, preconditions, and impatience and choose instead to feel connected to life, flow, and synchronicity.

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Flying Down To Rio

November 3, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

I am on a plane on my way down to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  I was born in Rio.  It was there that I was first kissed and it was there that I first made love.   But I’m not going to Rio to kiss or to make love; I’m going to Rio for my father’s eighty fifth birthday and to work.  My father’s birthday is self explanatory my work isn’t, so let me spend a couple of seconds here.  I’m going to Rio to produce a segment of a film that has already shot in Toronto, Tokyo, and Berlin.  The last leg of this film – a dance film – is Rio and I’m producing it.

Going to Rio is always complicated for me; I have too much history there but at this point of my life I consider myself more American than Brazilian. 

Travelling really brings to a head the concept of living in the moment.  Travelling takes you out of your day to day environment and plops you into a different existence.   I won’t be back to my “regular” life for another five weeks.  Not a very long time but not a short time as well.

When I got to the airport I started to catch up on the phone calls I had not returned for the last couple of days.  One of them was to a Brazilian friend, actually a childhood friend, who now lives in Miami.  He said: “relax, you’ll be swimming in the ocean in a couple of days.”  I told him: “What do you mean? Like when I’m wearing my bikini and my skin is dropping everywhere?  How can I go to the beach with all the gorgeous women there wearing their bikinis?  If you were walking down the beach and you saw me and a twenty year old, who would you want?” To that my friend answered “ I would have sex with the twenty year old and then I would talk to you.”  “But what about me having sex?”  Now I was insulted.  Wasn’t I worthy of sex?  Mind you I haven’t had any in a year and a half.”  So he said the most amazing thing: “While we were talking you would say that you were interested in sex and I would by then be captivated by your intelligence, life experience besides your physical beauty – which attracted me to you to begin with – that I would consider myself a very lucky man.” 

As we go through life we are constantly thrown into life; new people, experiences and challenges.  Being in the moment, letting the past be the past and the future be affected by the present is the secret to going through it all.  It is hard and it is scary but the truth is, there is no other way. 

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How To Give Yourself To Whatever The Moment Brings And Forget Stress

November 2, 2009 by  
Filed under Featured

Post written by Leo Babauta. Follow me on Twitter.

The prevailing way of living in our Western societies is to plan out our lives, both for the long term and on a day-to-day basis.

We have planners and digital calendars that map out our lives, sometimes to the minute. We feel we’re in control, with plans like this.

But it’s an illusion, as I’ve said before.

We cannot control our lives to this degree, no matter how we try. Things will always come up to spoil the best-laid plans, and the more detailed our plans the more of a guarantee that something will go wrong.

And what happens when the plans go wrong? We are stressed out, because things get out of our control and don’t live up to our expectations. This is one of the greatest sources of stress for most people, actually.

Think about how often your days actually go according to plan, exactly — it’s pretty rare, because we have no way of predicting the future. No matter how hard we try. There’s always an email that will disrupt things, a last-minute meeting, cancellations and postponements, emergencies and fires to put out.

So if plans will almost always go wrong, and when they do we get stressed out, isn’t all the time we spend creating the plans a bit of a waste?

But what’s the alternative? Giving yourself to the moment. This will not work for everyone, I’ll admit: there are those who will have a hard time giving up the illusion of control, and others who are controlled by their bosses or peers and cannot work or live this way.

Still, it’s something worth considering. Here’s how to do it — starting with the don’ts:

  1. Don’t plan. Planning is an attempt to control the world around us, but it’s a futile attempt. Throw out your plans, for now at least until you’ve decided this method isn’t for you. What do you do instead? More on this below. For now, just stop planning.
  2. Don’t worry about the future. Will something bad happen? Are there things coming up that we must anticipate and prepare for? Of course, if there’s a massive hurricane headed your way, you should probably get ready. But otherwise, just realize that the future is unpredictable, and worrying about it is a waste of time. Focus on right now, and you’ll always be able to handle what comes.
  3. Don’t have expectations. If you expect people to act a certain way, or hope that things will turn out a certain way, you’ll always run into problems. Forget about outcomes for now. Go into things without expectations, and they will always turn out perfectly (if a bit messy).
  4. Don’t get annoyed when others act a certain way. Don’t expect people to act any way other than how they actually act. They are exactly the way they should be — even if that’s selfish or weird or aggressive. Those are their problems. Your problem is figuring out how you should act. I’d also advise you to try to understand others — why do they act the way they do?
  5. Don’t overreact. This is a major problem when people plan and things go wrong — they overreact, and get upset and emotional and blow things out of proportion. Stay calm, because if things “go wrong”, they didn’t actually go wrong — they just happened. More on how to react below.
  6. Don’t try to be proactive. This is a common prescription (being proactive) in management and business literature. And while I think the general idea is fine — do something to prevent problems from recurring rather than just fixing them after they happen — one of the problems this creates is always worrying about what might happen. And creating solutions before there are problems — if there never is a problem, you’ve wasted a lot of time creating the solution, and a lot of energy worrying about the future.

And now for the dos:

  1. Do be open. What would it be like to go into each day without a plan, but just to see what happens? A bit scary, because of the lack of security and control, a bit chaotic perhaps, a bit like we’re a piece of driftwood floating in the middle of a churning sea. But in truth, this is what it’s like to go into each day *with* a plan — it’s just that we normally fool ourselves about the amount of control we have. So start the day with no plan, and be open to what emerges in each moment.
  2. Do what you love. So what should you do, now that you have no plan? Do what you’re passionate about, do what excites you right now. Create something amazing. Pour yourself energetically into a project. Build something new. And what you think you’re creating might turn out to be completely different from what emerges, but you’ll have fun doing it and something even better might be revealed.
  3. Do act, in the moment. Giving yourself to the moment doesn’t mean being passive and just letting life happen. It means acting, but doing what is best at this moment, what you are excited about right now, what needs to be done, in the present.
  4. Do respond appropriately. Life happens, and we must respond. But instead of overreacting, we can respond calmly and appropriately. We can take the action that’s required, fix the problem, do what’s necessary to prevent it from happening again, and move on without it ruining our day.
  5. Do accept. Accept what happens. It might not be what you considered ideal, but it’s what life has given you, what has resulted from your actions in an unpredicatable world. Accept it, respond, act, move on. Don’t get caught up in things not going your way, but accept that’s what has happened.

Again, this way of living won’t be for everybody. Some don’t have the freedom to live this way, and others just won’t give up control. Some will think this is a passive way of living, but it really isn’t: it’s just a way of living in the moment without being caught up in the future (or the past) so much.

And when we live in the moment, we’re really living life to the fullest. This is the gift of the present.

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Rollercoaster

June 11, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog

I’m reading a book “No One You Know” by Michelle Richmond.  In it she has a phrase to describe a character “I could tell he was a person who lived at ease in the world…”

Somehow that phrase made me stop reading and think about myself.  I like me. I like who I’ve become and I like my place in this world.  I like my home and I feel energized about the many possibilities that lay ahead.

I’ve lost what was most important to me, and I grieve for that, but ahead of me I have a new beginning a new start.

I also no longer worry about what it will be.  I actually welcome it with a certain level of excitement. 

A childhood friend sent me an email saying she misses our times together when we were young.  That struck me as odd.  So much life has happened since and so much life is still ahead, why miss the past?

Of course the past is what got us where we are and who we are but that’s what it is; the past.

I’m much more interested in who I will become and how I’ll deal with the next set of emotions, thoughts, wins and losses. 

I see life like the ride on a rollercoaster, there are the ups and the downs, but once you realize you will always end up on firm ground, it can be a lot of fun.

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