Mindful by Design

61_hurricaneridgetree_OlympicPenWe have the right to be whoever we want to be. There is no rule dictating the way we should be. Working in the healing field I’m often fascinated by how guilty people feel if they don’t regularly meditate, are inconsistent in their yoga practice, or forget to do their self Reiki when they really could have used it.

At times it seems like people have an extensive internal checklist, fundamentally unachievable, which if they do not meet means they can’t really be called mindful. I do it myself. I say, I’m not really like a lot of Reiki teachers, because I do it a different way, I don’t do Reiki all day long, sometimes I use other modalities and blah, blah, blah….

I think this is a common mentality, that I’m not doing it right or I should spend more time doing ‘x’ or I’ve got some work to do and then I will be good enough.

This puts life on hold, off in the future, someplace.

What if you are fine the way you are now? What if, this is the way you are meant to be? And what if you can be as mindful as you want or don’t want, and that is completely fine?

I like the idea that we can design our own life, that we can integrate mindfulness by allowing it to flow into a variety of aspects of our life. Who says that when we are down the pub with friends, or watching the kids at a soccer match, or vegging out in front of the tv that we are not being mindful?

To categorize things is a very western approach, so if we with look at life through the lens of a more eastern approach we see that each moment flows into the next, that mindfulness is just about taking notice.

You can take notice as little or as much as you want, and taking notice of yourself not taking notice is exercising mindfulness, as well!

Play with the design of your life. Look at the unexpected places where you can simply bring a presence, a simple curiosity to your life. You might find that mindfulness can be fluid and fun, and incorporated in unexpected ways.

Project: Be Yourself

60_stonesbalanced_FTMindfulness

Let’s start with mindfulness. I see a lot of people taking yoga classes, learning meditation, getting excited, and voraciously reading about Buddhism, but I often wonder whether they are primarily doing mindfulness. Maybe the thought is, I’ve done my mindful thing for the day, thank god for that, now I can go and really be me!

Or maybe you are super enthusiastic about mindfulness and you try to spend every waking minute either meditating, doing yoga, chanting, or journaling. This is my personal favorite which I would like to do 24/7.

Definition

By definition mindfulness is about experiencing the present moment in the heart. Sometimes we do our mindful bit quickly to get it out of the way, or we do it all day long, but are we really connected and present in the moment?

Where’s your mojo hiding out?

When I talk about mojo, I am referring to the juicy essence of who you are, the part that when expressed feels very authentically you. It is a part of you that when expressed makes you feel very balanced and calm. Your mojo is very connected to all parts of you. When your spiritual side is neglected, it stunts the expression of your mojo. Getting spirit flowing helps reveal your mojo.

My biggest question is where is the real you in this equation? Where’s the mojo, the oopmph, the pzazz, the juicy essence of you?

Balance

Of course this leads us back to creating balance.  I’m not referring to balance as a static, unmovable thing, but rather a flexible state of mind in which we can be both mindful and be rocking our unique contribution to the world at the same time. GASP!

Mindfulness + Mojo = Being Yourself

So think of this as an appertif, or one of those fancy tasters in the spoon (can’t quite remember the name right now). I really, truly believe that life can be a fun, creative process in which we are mindful and present to the moment, whilst also really digging into the juicy essence of who you are and letting the world see you. Get out from behind your mindful mask, and let the real you shine through. We want to see the real you!

 

Where Did All the Obstacles Go?

abq_driedwildflowers_starshapeHow Do You Deal with an Absence of Obstacles?

For many of us who have done a lot of personal excavation and transformation, we are used to the feeling of being blocked, of people, ourselves or others, objecting to us being are true selves.

But what happens when the obstacles have been removed, when nothing stands between you and what you dream of doing?

Does this freak you out? Do you backtrack, preferring the old dysfunctional pattern? Do you crave the old pattern because it is familiar and the new opportunity is unfamiliar which is way too scary?

The visceral experience of hitting up against resistance from your mother, father, brother, aunt, boss, husband, children etc. is sometimes the grist that the mill needs to keep on running. Resistance from others is the thing that we “blame” for our lack of forward progress but in reality often it is us. We are the ones creating the obstacles, and, in fact, sometimes we quite like to have some resistance to keep us moving forward but never quite achieving our goals.

We tell ourselves, “One day when I have this sorted out, when so-and-so stops being such bitch and getting in my way, then I will be able to do what I want!”

But there are times in our life where the personal excavation pays off! We have come to peace with many aspects of our history, we have worked out a healthy plan of action for ourselves in our relationships and our life, at least for the moment. There are no obstacles.

Guess what happens now? We freak out! There is no resistance, there is nothing to butt up against, and no one to “prove” ourselves to.

There is only us, who we are, and what we want. Nothing standing in our way. Yikes!

Instead of freaking out, what should you do?

My advice – Keep walking forward one step at a time despite the quivering knees! It’s time to be present and learn a new habit, a habit of self motivating and of realizing that achieving your dreams has only ever been for you. Can you accept this?

 

Are You Underrating Your Super Powers?

OwensuperpowersUtilizing your super powers isn’t always about flashy weapons. To show the world your super powers you may be utilizing aspects of yourself you previously underrated. What super power do you have that you judged as inferior for the world to see?

A big part of succeeding is believing in yourself! Bring it! We want to see you wielding gift wrap paper ferociously like my son! Grrrrr!

This week as you spend time in meditation and in your heart writing / journaling practice, reflect on what super powers you have that you may have underrated. What skills, strengths and talents do you have that you are not sharing with the world? You may judge them as “not that special” or “not that important” but I’m betting if you tune into your body it will affirm that these “normal” or “everyday” super powers are meaningful, and that the world needs to see YOU expressing these super powers.

Let me know how it goes and what you discover. Super powers are not just expressed in the workplace or in your small biz, either. There may be things that your soul wants to express in your home, or a hobby that you have abandoned. When we all do the things that help us shine brightly it helps humanity as a whole. The more we are aligned with our true self the stronger the flow of light, bright energy through our systems that can be shared with the world.

Intuition Can Help Restore Emotional Harmony

Alinga Sky at Rae RanchWhen we are sensitive souls, people who are hypervigilent and often sensitive to our surroundings in many different ways, then we often disengage from our intuition out of the misperception that our intuition is thing that is leading us astray. Many people think that only disaster can result from tuning into the heart space and letting our emotions flow. “Are you kidding me? It will be utter mayhem,” our mind says. Very few will leap forward with blind faith to open the floodgates to their emotional life without some voice within saying “WTF?? Are you insane?”

But the truth is that when we do the work to restore communication with our intuition, it is not going to lead us off a cliff. In fact, our intuition is the way that we get access to the higher guidance that can help us navigate complicated, emotional circumstances. It doesn’t necessarily lead us immediately through a field full of daisies with blue sky and bright sun beaming down, but it does help us to make the choices, that if we are honest, we already knew we needed to make, but the mind convinced us was a bad idea.

Listening to your intuition, getting hooked up, restoring communication, taking baby steps to listen to what your intuition says about the food you are eating, or your relationships and whether they are meeting your needs, is a good place to start.

You don’t need to become a psychic guru, awakened or enlightened. Hooking up with the intuition can help you make daily decisions. It can be your literal guide in navigating daily life. In my opinion, connecting with intuition is logical. (brain balks at this) It is true. AND the only way to find out is to work with, develop and strengthen your intuition. Guess what happens next? You feel more steady and stable in your emotions because you feel more supported by YOU.

PS> I am writing a book about how intuition can help restore emotional harmony. Sooooo if you notice a theme in the posts, that is why!!

 

How to Cope with Expanding Consciousness

Photo Dec 14, 3 41 41 PMAs we expand our consciousness and get access to a greater flow of energy through the energy systems including the chakras, the meridians and the energy around the body, we notice shifts in the physical body, emotions, our thought patterns and the spiritual realm.

If you are noticing these symptoms it could be that you are going through an expansion in your consciousness where the energy you are channeling is getting bigger and stronger and this is causing discomfort as you adjust and release energies in all these areas that are restricting your ability to expand.

When we go through this type of discomfort, we can tend to blame ourselves and feel like we are “off track”, getting in our own way when the discomfort is simply a part of the journey and not something we need to get rid of.

What to do when we feel like this?

By now you have heard it a million times. Be present to the moment. Be mindful. Allow the energy to flow. Connect to the heart space and let the energies process. Let go of judgment. Be gentle. Have love and compassion for yourself.

All of this works and yet even when we are doing these things you might  still notice a negative belief and judgment that you are doing it wrong, that we need to get rid of certain physical or emotional feelings and experiences. This is a misperception and part of the way that we DO get off track is when we think we are doing something wrong.

Whenever we polarize our experiences, which we do as humans, as good or bad, better or worse, problem or solution, we are in the grips of our dualistic thinking which restricts our growth. Noticing the polarization of our thinking helps you to release the thought and get more access to higher guidance around the matter at hand.

We live in a dualistic life. This is fact. Another fact is that releasing judgment and aligning with the moment, doing what we can to release negative energies that are getting in the way helps smooth the ride. Then aligning with higher vibration thoughts and experiences. Letting go of the effort expended will help you align with greater ease as you expand your consciousness to new ways of experiencing life.

* Next week: Tools to Support Expanding Consciousness (including CRYSTALS to help!)

** Photo credit : Karen Wilson!

The Process of Transition

Photo Jan 12, 12 33 48 PMIn the process of transition you might be:
– Moody
– Excited/ elated about the change.
– Despising/ resisting the change.
– Feeling doubtful, unsure, and consumed with a sense that nothing is right with the world.
– Hearing a deep inner voice that reassures and tells you everything will be okay, even through the change.
– In denial with your head down saying la-la-la-la and not really doing anything to deal with the transition.
– Worried, anxious, stressed out maybe all the time.
– Feel abandoned, isolated, and like no one is there to help you.
– Feel grief, and in that process, also, anger, at the loss, at the change.
– You may feel regret, that there were so many things you wanted to do before things changed, but you didn’t and this may feel disempowering.
– You may feel guilt, and you may not know why.
– You may reject support or reassurance, as it may feel too much.
– It may trigger fight and flight responses. The stress of change may be too much for your nervous system.
– You may withdraw.
– You may be really excited about the new things to come but overwhelmed about the logistics.
– You may be excited about the new job, house, marriage, place to live, but it may be more excitement and happiness than you are used to which may trigger thoughts about whether you are worthy of the new events in your life.

Transitions are transformative, taking you to new places that you never thought you would be, changing your life, which often means leaving something behind including relationships, places, things or experiences which you valued and deeply loved.

I think big life transitions change you forever. Be gentle with yourself during transitions. And remember, self care is the kingpin during transition.

Choose to process your emotions as they come up, get support (as much as you can tolerate) from friends and professionals, and allow the energy of the universe to shower you with love and acceptance.

You are a divine being doing the best that you can in the face of deep emotions.

Embrace your divinity and love yourself! Loving yourself through challenging times will make it a much smoother ride!

Stress Overload: Do you need a reality check?

59_SeaGrassBlue_FTIn our daily lives we are inundated with sensory input and for people who are highly sensitive and find it difficult to filter this barrage to the senses it can be overwhelming. The simple act of living in a busy city can cause a strong and unrelenting stress response often manifesting as edginess, anxiety, depression and for some triggers PTSD symptoms.

What I am noticing is that even for us folks that are aware that we are highly sensitive, there is still an abundance of self judgment about our sensitivity to emotions, energies and sensory input. It is this self judgment that seems to do a bunch of damage because we resist the reality of the overwhelm.

Self talk, judging yourself, and putting high expectations on yourself in terms of how much you can cope with is equivalent to abusing yourself. We are all aware of the importance of being realistic about toxic relationships with others, but often we are in a toxic relationship with ourself.

In your meditation practice, heart writing practice, or during self reflection whilst out on a walk, think about how you are treating yourself. Are you putting high expectations on yourself? Do you need more sensory space? Are you in overwhelm and if you are, are you willing to reduce your exposure to busy, hectic environments?

Andrea Rae

Releasing 2014 & Visioning 2015

ReikiRockstarsAs we all transition from 2014 into 2015 often we feel emotions in the body which trigger self criticism. We might feel like we “shouldn’t” feel bad, should have gotten over things, or maybe we feel the opposite, that we are feeling “fine” and maybe we shouldn’t feel fine. The mind often is in opposition to our reality.

Notice how you feel about letting go of aspects of 2014 specifically noticing the feelings in the body. Are you tightening up around things, resisting and encountering inner criticism?

When you think about what you are visioning for 2015, how do you feel in the body? Is there fear, excitement, uncertainty, or all of the above? Be gentle, and rather than resisting, find the flow. In meditation and writing find the flow and follow the fear, the resistance or the irritation. When we are present to emotions then as Pema Chodron talks about, like weather the emotions shift. It is guaranteed. Not always quickly, but there is a shift. Follow the shift. Be present to it.

If you’ve got it in your tool basket, use Reiki. Set intentions and use the symbols to support them (Reiki level 2)! Reiki is a great tool to balance us energy sensitive folks because it supports us and expedites our intentions!

BIG HUGS & HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! xoxo

Andrea Rae

Controlling Emotions during the Holiday Season

image_SW_BeachDuring this time of year we are all trying to control our emotions to make it a nice holiday season, and to “be” something that is expected of us for family and friends, because, afterall, the holidays is a happy time where we all should be able to dial into the joy of the season.

Controlling our emotions becomes the priority but if our emotions are feeling turbulent, either because this time of year does not feel like a happy time, or family members are triggering old painful memories, it can be hard to stay in control, and we turn to our old patterns of “managing” our feelings.

This is where we walk the tightrope of acknowledging our emotions, getting the support we need, whilst expressing in a safe space (maybe NOT with our family) how we are feeling and realigning with heart energy, spirit energy and inner guidance to help calibrate and validate how you are feeling.

How are you looking after yourself this season?? Are you getting the support you need to have a smoother holiday season?