Self-acceptance – You are not the enemy!

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“Self-acceptance involves the ability to hold ourselves lightly and playfully…well-practised, self-acceptance leads to self-empowerment and enjoyment, not resignation!”
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Dear Toby

The state of self-acceptance is a major asset to our wellbeing. The article below explores some pointers for beginning your own mindful exploration of self-acceptance. If you enjoy it, then it will be the subject of this weeks’ Tuesday and Wednesday evening class, so feel free to come along!
And a final reminder of the beginners meditation workshop this Saturday!

In the spirit of self-acceptance,

Toby


Self-acceptance – You are not the enemy!

One definition of self-acceptance that I have found enduringly useful is from Nat Branden who defined it as ‘A refusal to be in an adversarial relationship with yourself’. This means:

  • The principle of being on your own side in life
  • The principle of accepting who you are and proceeding from there
  • The principle of lightness and self-responsibility

The principle of being on your own side in life
This basically means being committed to treating yourself as a good friend would. When you are going through a difficult time, a good friend is one who listens to you with care, does not judge (unless asked to), who holds space for you with support and warmth, and when necessary acts to defend you. Imagine you are that friend to yourself and try practising accordingly.

The principle of accepting who you are and proceeding from there
We are often our own harshest critic. Self-acceptance involves accepting the things that we find difficult about ourselves without self-hatred or loathing. This includes:

  • Emotions or patterns of thought that we have that we find undesirable
  • Aspects of our appearance that we find unattractive
  • Past actions, our life circumstances

With acceptance of all these things we can then proceed to create a strategy to change them in ways that are realistic and appropriate, but our motivation changes from fixing something unacceptable that we hate, to improving something that we have already accepted and are at peace with.

The principle of lightness
When we get stuck in an adversarial relationship to ourself, or hate who we are, it can often feel very heavy, dark and serious. Self-acceptance involves the ability to hold ourselves lightly and playfully. This in turn makes our ability to take responsibility for change in our life easier. Well-practised, self-acceptance leads to self-empowerment and enjoyment, not resignation!

Related articles: From resignation to positive acceptance
Seriously light, lightly serious

Article © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, April 20th & 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 27th April, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 4th May, 10am-4.30pm – An introduction to meditation from the perspective of Shamanism

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From resignation to positive acceptance

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“If we can make a clear distinction between acceptance and resignation, we can start practicing positive acceptance on the one hand and avoid resignation on the other”.
Dear Integral Meditators,

I hope you enjoy this week’s article on acceptance. A quick reminder of the  Stress-transformation coaching offer details below. If your reading this and its past the expiry date, let me know and we’ll see what we can work out…

In the spirit of dynamic mindfulness,

Toby


Special offer on Stress-Transformation coaching
Stress transformation coaching with Toby helps you to transform your present overwhelm, stress, anxiety and other difficult emotions into forces for the good in your life. The coaching focuses upon thriving in situations and circumstances that would previously make you unhappy, fearful, inhibited and so on…See full details here.
Get 15% off the usual cost, offer ends on Tuesday 16th April 


From resignation to positive acceptance

For many of us there can be resistance to the idea of acceptance because we mistake it with resignation or giving up. It can be useful to make a clear distinction between them, so we can practice positive acceptance on the one hand and avoid resignation on the other.

Healthy acceptance involves a wholehearted acceptance of our reality, of something that has happened. It is reality oriented and acts as a basis for moving forward:

  • I accept that although I wanted to get the job, I didn’t.
  • I accept that this person manipulated me, I can see it now.
  • I accept that I am still a bit sad about X…

For acceptance to move to resignation, there needs to be added to this a ‘negative’ belief about our life in general:

  • I accept that although I wanted to get the job, I didn’t, and this always happens to me, I never get the break!
  • I accept that this person manipulated me, I can see it now. The world is full of manipulators trying to make a victim of me…
  • I accept that I am still a bit sad about X, why is my life always so full of misery?

To avoid resignation and move to ‘positive’ or dynamic acceptance, we can practice mindfully adding a sentence to it that helps us move forward optimistically:

  • I accept that although I wanted to get the job, I didn’t. But I learned a lot, and I have another interview tomorrow!
  • I accept that this person manipulated me, I can see it now. Boy, this experience is going to help me be less naïve in the future, I’m glad I had it.
  • I accept that I am still a bit sad about X…but I’m less sad than I was last month, and its natural to feel sad when you lose something that you value…

What are the situations in your life where you can practice moving from resignation to positive acceptance?

Related articleAcceptance and forgiveness – The difference

Article © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, April 20th & 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 27th April, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 4th May, 10am-4.30pm – An introduction to meditation from the perspective of Shamanism


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Mindfully unhooking your mind

Dear Integral Meditators,
Why not take a bit of time each day to ‘mindfully unhook’ yourself from the repeating thoughts and feelings that are tearing you up, and return your body, mind and heart to health and balance…the article below explains one way you can do this!
A quick reminder of the  Stress-transformation coaching offer details below, and the Stress transformation workshop this Saturday…In the spirit of unhooking,Toby

Special offer on Stress-Transformation coaching
Stress transformation coaching with Toby helps you to transform your present overwhelm, stress, anxiety and other difficult emotions into forces for the good in your life. The coaching focuses upon thriving in situations and circumstances that would previously make you unhappy, fearful, inhibited and so on…See full details here.

Get 15% off the usual cost, offer ends on Tuesday 16th April 


Unhooking your mind

A few days ago, I was feeling over-tired, over-stretched and over-whelmed. When I’m in this state I know that its very easy for challenging thoughts and emotions in my mind to become a lot more dramatic/catastrophic than my life is, in reality.
I knew from past experience that, in this situation, what I need to do is just stop for a while and gather myself.
So, I sat down to do a bit of meditation. As I began to calm down and breathe, I saw an image of myself underwater, with many little fishhooks in me. I was struggling around, and this was causing the hooks to tear my flesh even more. I saw myself in the image stop struggling, becoming still and relaxing. As I relaxed, I could feel the pain in my mind becoming less, and I could see the hooks stop tearing at my flesh in the image. I started to feel comfortable, gradually I could see the hooks in my body gradually dissolving away, and my flesh healing. As the image changed I could feel the energy in my body, mind and heart calming and regenerating. I became comfortable.
By the time I had finished sitting, I felt centred and recharged. My challenges had not gone away, but they felt different. I felt stronger, and able to take courage and continue moving toward the best that my life has to offer, and to continue to express myself according the values that mean the most to me.

This is a simple imaginative technique that you can use yourself anytime to ‘mindfully unhook’ yourself from the repeating thoughts and feelings that are tearing you up, and return your body, mind and heart to health and balance.

Related articles: When you are trapped in a thornbush
Big Enough, Specific Enough (Dealing with spiky minds)

Article © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, April 20th & 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues & Weds 2nd/3rd April – Monthly astrological meditation – Aries – I Am: Developing confidence in yourself and your identity in the world

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 27th April, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Mindful use of willpower (And stress-transformation coaching offer)

Dear Integral Meditators,

Willpower is an important domain to be mindful of because the way in which we use or abuse it in our life has a major influence on both the quality and the quantity of what we experience and achieve. The article below considers how we can start making better use of our willpower using mindfulness…
This week’s Tuesday and Wednesday class will be on mindful willpower, so if you enjoy the article, then do come along!
The first two weeks of April also sees a special offer on my Stress-transformation coaching, details below!

Yours in the spirit of mindful will,

Toby


Special offer on Stress-Transformation coaching
Stress transformation coaching with Toby helps you to transform your present overwhelm, stress, anxiety and other difficult emotions into forces for the good in your life. The coaching focuses upon thriving in situations and circumstances that would previously make you unhappy, fearful, inhibited and so on…See full details here.

Get 15% off the usual cost, offer ends on Tuesday 16th April 


Willpower as Your Object of Mindfulness

Willpower is the way in which we consciously direct our energy and action through intention. Here are a few thoughts on becoming more mindful around your willpower.

Willpower is precious 
It is an extremely important domain to be mindful of because the way in which we use or abuse our willpower in life has a major bearing on both the quality and the quantity of what we experience and achieve.
So the main mindful message here is to value and prize your willpower

Willpower is finite
We only have so much willpower. As a younger man I used to believe that the solution to a lack of willpower was simply to find more willpower, but each of us only has so much. For example, the right amount of exercise will generally cause me to feel good and complement my work life. However if I exercise too much my physical and vital energy will be depleted and the amount of willpower and energy I have available to achieve things in my work will go down.
It is also very easy to deplete your willpower and vital energy doing little things that you don’t necessarily need to do (eg: check your email 5 times an hour), which in turn inhibits the amount of willpower you have to get what you really want done.
Main mindful message: Be clear about what you want to focus your willpower on

Willpower is sustained by regeneration and rest
If you want to have good and effective willpower, you need to have effective strategies in place to recover your energy levels through rest, meditation, getting good sleep and diet, appropriate amounts of leisure, non-doing and so forth.
Mindful message: Nurture your willpower with periods of mindful recovery and rest

Wise use of willpower is not the same as forcing
Often the image that comes into our mind when we think about willpower is that of a high energy, high intensity activity where we force our way through obstacles and achieve exponential results in a short time. Actually willpower is often more effective when we use it gently and mindfully to keep our attention focused upon what we have decided to do until we have finished it. Effective willpower uses our intelligence to gauge the level of intensity appropriate to the task, only rarely trying to force things.
Mindful message: Effective willpower can be gentle and consistent as well as focused and intense.

What do I want to focus my willpower upon today?
Given that your willpower is precious, that it is finite, that you need to nurture it and use t wisely, what is the thing or things that you are going to focus your will power:

  • Today?
  • In the next hour?
  • In the next minute?

This way of questioning is one way to bring mindful awareness to bear upon how you can make good use of your willpower each day.

Related ArticleBecoming mindfully unfocused
Mindful Work Effectiveness Secrets (From an Ex-Monk)

Article © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, April 20th & 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues & Weds 2nd/3rd April – Monthly astrological meditation – Aries – I Am: Developing confidence in yourself and your identity in the world

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 27th April, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Your Shadow Child

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“To connect to our child within us and draw upon its creative power, we need to connect with it on its level without judgment, to learn to speak its language.”

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article focuses on mindfulness of your inner child, and ways to connect to its power in ways that can add to your quality of life and wellbeing.

For those in Singapore, a reminder of the Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self workshop this coming Saturday, 2-5.30pm.

In the spirit of bright shadows,

Toby


The Shadow Child

The shadow is 
The ‘shadow self’ is that part of our mind and self that we have rejected and pushed so deeply into our unconscious awareness such that often we are not even consciously aware that it exists. However, from its position within the unconscious mind our shadow self remains active, influencing our behaviour and causing us to behave in ways which seem to be difficult for us to understand. The shadow has both a ‘dark’ side and a ‘bright’ or golden side.

The child self is
That part of us that is child-like in nature. You could say it has three aspects:

  • That part of us that is simply child like in nature; playful, naive, creative, innocent, gullible, needs looking after and so on
  • The historical child, that is the child within us whose character has been shaped and informed by our own literal historical upbringing; experience with parents, peers and other significant others, what happened to us in school, how we were treated and learned to gain approval and so on. The child within us now that is a product of our personal historical experience, and our response to that
  • The spiritual child within us – that part of us that is ever young, ever new, ever creative, ever both innocent and wise, whose light helps us begin again each time we burn out.

The shadow child is
Any part of our child like nature, historical child or spiritual child that we have repressed and rejected, that we are afraid of, that we have neglected, which remains unhealed and damaged, which we have turned away from.

Why you need to connect and make friends with your shadow child
Because if you do not do so parts of your damaged, fearful and disowned child will continue to sap your energy, sabotage your happiness and make joy, love and wellbeing difficult goals for you.
Because if you do not the radiant, optimistic, strong joyful and creative child that lives within you will remain un-expressed, un-enjoyed and undiscovered.

A personal example
Earlier this week I went on holiday to the beach. On the first night I woke up in the early morning in my beach hut. For some reason I started thinking about things like insurance, what could go wrong in my life and was overwhelmed by a feeling of stress and anxiety. I asked to my mind “Why are you feeling so anxious all of a sudden?” A small, scared, high voice replied “Because the world is such a large and scary place”. That voice was an example of one of the ways in which my shadow child exists and speaks within my psyche. I relaxed, opened to the feelings of my child self, accepted them with care and allowed them to wash over and through me. After a while they subsided and I went back to sleep feeling fine.
From this short example you can see that one of the reasons we often reject our child self is because the voice that it speaks in is so child-like. We often dismiss it as nonsense and bury the feelings that are attached to the voice and the inner child that it came from. As a result the fear remains within us, and continues to affect us even thought we have dismissed it from our conscious mind.
To connect to our child self we need to connect with it on its level without judgment, to learn to speak its language.

Article and pictures © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, March 30th, April 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 30th March, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 30th March 2-5.30pm – Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self

APRIL

Tues & Weds 2nd/3rd April – Monthly astrological meditation – Aries – I Am: Developing confidence in yourself and your identity in the world

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Happiness, meaning and the action in front of you

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“We all have days (sometimes many days) where we feel completely overwhelmed by life, and are struggling to cope with things day to day. At these times it can feel as if your highest purpose is completely out of your reach. At these times it can be really useful just to focus on the immediate task at hand and do it a little better”

Dear Integral Meditators,

How can you lead a life according to your highest values, and at the same time cope with the days where you feel totally overwhelmed? The article below looks at one way…
Last call for the Spring equinox meditation happening tonight and tomorrow evening 😉

In the spirit of the journey,

Toby


Happiness, meaning and the action in front of you

One of the best ways to build your sense of happiness and wellbeing is to align your efforts in life with your highest values. Striving to achieve what you consider to be truly meaningful won’t save you from all suffering, but then your going to suffer anyway. If you align yourself with something worthwhile, then that direction and purpose makes it more likely that you’ll be happy and resilient in the face of life’s challenges.

So, then the question is: “What is the highest purpose and values that I can align myself with? And how can I start?

In contrast, we all have days (sometimes many days) where we feel completely overwhelmed by life, and are struggling to cope with things day to day. At these times it can feel as if your highest purpose is completely out of your reach. The fact that you have a higher purpose can even add to your feeling of overwhelm. At these times I find it really useful just to focus on the immediate task in front of me and do it a little better. Super simple things like:

  • Sitting with more presence and awareness
  • Tidying the desk in front of me
  • Bringing order to my bedroom
  • Writing the next email or text message mindfully and well

I hold my space, bringing order to the world right in front of me and doing the next task a little better. This way I can keep my direction under the pressure of the moment, and cope (even thrive) when I’m feeling overwhelmed. So, a question for this second practice is: “What can I do in this moment, just a little better”.
With these two mindfulness practices we can devote ourself to a meaningful life in a big picture way sustainably, and improve the world around us right now in small ways that help us stay sane.

Article and pictures © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, March 30th, April 27th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues 19th & Weds 20th March – Spring equinox balancing and renewing meditation

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 30th March, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 30th March 2-5.30pm – Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self

APRIL

Tues & Weds 2nd/3rd April – Monthly astrological meditation – Aries – I Am: Developing confidence in yourself and your identity in the world

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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A picture speaks a thousand words

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“As the saying goes, ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’. If you can find an image that speaks to you personally about the positive mind-state that you are looking to generate, then you can use it as your object of meditation.”

 

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article looks at the use of images in meditation. If you enjoy it then do consider coming along to next weeks Spring equinox meditation, which uses this method quite extensively…
Quick reminder of this Saturdays Qi gong workout session, and energy meditationworkshops!

In the spirit of powerful pictures,

Toby


A picture speaks a thousand words

Meditation is really about learning to shift yourself into positive states of mind, body and mood at will. There are a number of ways of doing this, but one that for many people can be effective is the use of images. As the saying goes, ‘a picture speaks a thousand words’. If you can find an image that speaks to you personally about the positive mind-state that you are looking to generate, then you can use it as your object of meditation.

Using this method, you can create your own meditations.

For example, last week I wanted to meditate on ‘the power of my highest beliefs and potential’. I sat down to think of an image that would connect me to this. After a while I saw myself sitting on a beach in the evening, with a canopy of stars above and around me as I looked out to sea. There was a bright star above the water, as I looked at it I felt it connecting me to my highest beliefs and intentions, a simple but powerful image that ‘worked for me’. I then saw a big tiger coming from the trees behind me and sitting next to me, its head beneath the palm of my hand. I felt its power, and connected it to my own power to stick to and work towards my highest beliefs and potential.

So now I have my image, and anytime I want to connect to my highest beliefs and potential, I go to my beach with the star and the tiger.

Why not think about what it is that you want to meditate on, and create your own ‘picture that speaks a thousand words?’

Article and pictures © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, March 2nd, 16th, 30th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues 19th & Weds 20th March – Spring equinox balancing and renewing meditation

Saturday 16th March, 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditation for self healing and creating high levels of energy

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 30th March, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 30th March 2-5.30pm – Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self

APRIL

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Mindful of what you believe is possible

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“If you look at your thoughts from moment to moment, you’ll see that they are often affirmations of your beliefs. They capture in a phrase what you believe is or is not possible”

 

Dear Integral Meditators,

This weeks article looks at the relationship between our thoughts and what we believe is possible (or not) in our life.

In the spirit of opening to possibilities,

Toby


Mindful of what you believe is possible 

A belief you have is a subjective feeling ( not a fact) and idea about what is possible and not possible in your life. The beliefs that you have create strong moods, emotions and atmospheres about what think you can and can’t do. They influence your actions in a very real way.
If you look at your thoughts from moment to moment, you’ll see that they are often affirmations of your beliefs. They capture in a phrase what you believe is or is not possible. So, to change a belief, you need to:

  1. Become aware of the thought that summarizes the belief in your mind
  2. Make small, incremental adjustments to the structure of the thought, changing what you believe to be possible in a positive way.
  3. Once you’ve made one small adjustment, then make another, and another, perhaps 3-4 adjustments in total. So now you have a new belief, and one that opens a doorway to a whole range of positive moods, emotions and actions in your life!

Here are two examples of what I mean:

Around work:

  1. Initial thought affirming the belief – “Two projects at the same time is already difficult, there is no way I can cope with a third”
  2. First adjustment – “Adding a third project to my schedule will be challenging” (but possible!)
  3. Second adjustment – “If I’m going to take on a third project I’m going to need to be more organized than I am now”.
  4. Third Adjustment – “I’m going to enjoy the challenge of taking on a third project at work, and the growth in income that it will afford me!”

So, you can see, with the final adjustment, a new belief, atmosphere, and sense of possibility is created around the same situation.

In an unhealthy relationship:

  1. Initial thought: “I can’t bear to leave this relationship; the thought fills me with fear and sadness”
  2. First adjustment: “I accept that I can’t bear to leave this relationship, but I know its time”
  3. Second: “I can leave this relationship, even though its going to be challenging”
  4. Final: “Because I value myself and my wellbeing, I am going to leave this relationship, and its going to be ok”

Again, you can see that by gradually changing the thought structure, progressively and gradually the belief and mood about what is possible changes.

So, the basic mindful process here is:

  1. Select the life challenge that you want to work on changing your beliefs around
  2. Observe your current beliefs around what you think is possible, capture it in a sentence
  3. Create a 3-4 stage adjustment in that sentence, to gradually change that belief, and open a door to a new set of moods, possibilities and actions in that situation!

Enjoy opening to new ideas of what is possible for you!

Related articleThoughts As Affirmations: Three Questions To Help Make Your Thoughts Your Allies

Article and pictures © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com   


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, March 2nd, 16th, 30th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues & Weds 5th/6th March – Monthly astrological meditation – Pisces – Mindful of our beliefs and sub-conscious mind

Tues 19th & Weds 20th March – Spring equinox balancing and renewing meditation

Saturday 16th March, 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditation for self healing and creating high levels of energy

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 30th March, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 30th March 2-5.30pm – Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self

APRIL

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Mindful of: The next thing  

“You can’t control everything about what will happen in your life. However, you can control what you are going to focus on in the next hour or so, and you can spend that time doing what you have chosen with a substantial amount of control.”

Basic mindfulness involves giving yourself a point to focus on in the present moment. This point then allows you to:

  • Focus your energy
  • Calm your mind
  • Feel as if you are doing something constructive
  • Take your attention away from worry and distraction

One way of doing this that I find incredibly useful is just to ask myself:
What are the one, or maximum two things that I want to focus my energy on in the next hour? (or the next time period ahead of you, say the morning, afternoon, evening).
Having identified the one or two activities that I want to do, I use them as my centring object or point of focus; the most important things I need to do in the next hour.
For example, right now over the next hour I want to write this article and send it out, and then do a backup email for last night’s meditation class. Knowing this then enables me to relax and enjoy focusing on these two tasks, without worrying about what comes after them, or trying to take anything else on. Because of this I feel a certain degree of peace; I am present focused not future focused.

You can control the immediate future
You can’t control everything about what will happen in your life. There will always be a degree of uncertainty, unpredictability and challenge. That’s just the nature of being. And likely there will always be one too many things on your ‘to do’ list. However, you can control what you are going to focus on in the next hour or so, and you can spend that time doing what you have chosen with a substantial amount of control.

By choosing to focus on what you can control in this moment, you are setting yourself to enjoy this period of time, and to engage in activities that make the likelihood of ‘success’ in the medium and long term future more likely.

For the next hour work, or relax, or play, or rest, deliberately. Make the next thing your mindful anchor.

Related article: Street mindfulness

Article and picture © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com 


FULL DETAILS OF ALL MINDFULNESS AND MEDITATION SESSIONS FOR MARCH 2019 AT IMA  BELOW!

 


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia 

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, 23rd February, March 2nd, 16th, 30th – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Tues & Weds 5th/6th March – Monthly astrological meditation – Pisces – Mindful of our beliefs and sub-conscious mind

Tues 19th & Weds 20th March – Spring equinox balancing and renewing meditation

Saturday 16th March, 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditation for self healing and creating high levels of energy

FOR BEGINNERS: Saturday 30th March, 11-12.30pm – Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 30th March 2-5.30pm – Meditations for developing the language of your shadow self

APRIL

Saturday 13th April 9.30am-12.30pm – Meditations for transforming negativity and stress into positivity and enlightenment


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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Meditation for cultivating vitality – Three practices

Below are three simple ways in which you can build vital energy in your body through meditation. They can be practised individually or in combination. They have the general meditation benefit of calming and focusing the body-mind, with the addition of specifically promoting the build-up and flow of life-force through the body.

Method 1 – Relaxing into tension:
Rather than fighting and seeking to get rid of tension, discomfort or fatigue in your body, make a point of moving towards it and relaxing into it. Try and locate the principal areas of tension in your body. Once you have identified them, take some time to work with each one in turn. Take a few breaths where as you inhale you allow yourself to feel the tension in that part of the body. Then, as you exhale relax into it and release. The principle here is that, if you focus attention on the area of the body where energy is blocked and work on releasing it, that will allow new energy and vitality to flow into that area of the body. Let your body relax so that vital energy can flow easily to areas where it is needed.

Method 2 – Breathing into your belly
In both the Zen and Qi gong traditions of meditation, there is a lot of emphasis upon breathing into the belly area, where the core of your body’s life-force (see my article on the Dan-tiens in qi gong) is said to be located. Initially, simply placing the palm of one hand on your belly, just beneath the belly button, and focusing on the rising and falling of the abdomen is a good way to start. Then once you have basic familiarity, you can visualize a ball of light about the size of a tennis ball sitting within the centre of the lower belly area. As you breathe in, see the ball glowing gently with vitality and life-force. As you breathe out see the light and energy from the ball expanding out into the rest of your body, filling it with energy. If you do this consistently, you will find that you have a real, tangible feeling of this energy building and expanding as you do the exercise.

Method 2 – Sitting like a pyramid
If you want to bring a sense of solidity and grounded-ness into your belly breathing, imagine your body as being like a pyramid as you sit and do the belly breathing. Imagine your hips and belly are like the broad base of the pyramid, with your chest and head tapering up to a point, so your hips and belly are super stable and broad. As you breathe in and out of the belly, release tension from your upper body downwards into the belly and hips, building the feeling of strength and stability.

Adding a smile
A final simple method you can combine with any of the above methods; add a gentle half smile into the mix:

  • As you release tension from the parts of your body, smile to them gently and warmly
  • As you breathe in and out of the belly, imagine the energy is warm and smiling, positively radiating out from the belly into the rest of the body.

Wishing you enjoyment with your experience of mindful vitality!

Related articles: 
Mindful Centring – three sitting positions
Breathing from your belly

Article and picture © Toby Ouvry 2019, you are welcome to use or share this article, but please cite Toby as the source and include reference to his website www.tobyouvry.com 


All Courses at Integral Meditation Asia for February

Ongoing on Wednesday’s, 7.30-8.30pm – Wednesday Meditation Classes at Basic Essence with Toby

Ongoing on Tuesday evenings, 7.30-8.30pm – Tuesday Meditation Classes at One Heart with Toby (East coast)

Monday 6.15-7.15 & Wednesday 12.15-1.15 – Integral Meditation classes at Space2B on Stanley Street

Saturday mornings 9-10.15am, 16th & 23rd February – Qi Gong workout and meditation class

Saturday 23rd February 11-12.30pm –   Get your meditation practice started now- The shortest and most time effective meditation workshop ever

Saturday 23rd February, 3.30-5.30pm – Developing Your Self-Confidence Through Mindfulness Workshop


Integral Meditation Asia

Online Courses 1:1 Coaching * Books * Live Workshops * Corporate Mindfulness Training *Life-Coaching *  Meditation Technology

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