Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Thinking about reflecting on 2009

Image: City Refraction, City Reflection by Irargerich

Totally the time to be doing end of year reflections. Yes I am thinking about it. Not yet at the action stage but these posts have helped ... give them a read and you might get inspired too...

I'll share the results of my reflections in the coming weeks ...

The Art of Noncomformity business review - Chris has been writing about his annual review process. He devoted two weeks to it this year!

Back to the source with guided remembrance - Lovely post about dealing with busyness with two great podcasts

What's your trajectory? Ok so you're busy, but are you just filling your time or moving towards something?

Annual review: Reflection and setting goals for the new year - includes a helpful Word doc you can print off for your own reflections

Victoria Shmoria's quitting the man update - Victoria shares her reflections on her first 46 days with no boss

That time of year - Jess wrote a lovely post with her reflections on the year.

Any tips on reflecting on your year? Do you have a process? Can you share any great links?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

We won't run



There is far to go now
Let's not waste a minute more

But oh that our eyes will be open
Oh that our eyes will be open
Oh that our eyes will be open
Oh that our eyes will be open

I just love this video clip from Sarah Blasko - magical.

This post from Jonathan Fields includes 37 other fantastic videos if you're looking for inspiration - check some of them out! I enjoyed Elizabeth Gilbert and Tony Robbins :)

Monday, November 30, 2009

Freefall


freefall, originally uploaded by BotheredByBees.
Do you remember your dreams? A few years ago I saw a Clairvoyant who told me in a previous life I'd lived in Ancient Greece (or was it Egypt?) and interpreted the dreams of powerful leaders. Now I don't know if that's true or not and it barely matters ... but I do know that in recent years I've started to have dreams that are rich in symbolism, particularly in times of change.
Quite often the explanation comes as I awaken but this one didn't need too much interpretation ...

I was in a large house seeing clients ... and I knew I had to keep moving as my next client was ready for me. As I moved off to meet them I realised I was at the top of a series of huge steps suspended in the air. They were widely spaced.

To move between the steps I had to wait for a trapeze, jump onto it and then time my jump off to land on the next step and then repeat the whole process.

I was outraged.

There was a powerful lady with me (the owner of the house in my dream but I guess it was one of my guides?) and I turned to her.

"WHAT is going on? WHY do we have to take the trapeze? It is RIDICULOUS!" I told her.

"It's not SAFE!! You need to make it SAFE!"

She replied:

"Kerry, it is perfectly safe. But the more you worry about it, the more unsafe it becomes."

And as I trapezed between the steps, I realised she was right. The only times I stumbled were when I doubted.

When I just did it without thinking too much, it was easy.

What about you? Any interesting dreams to share?

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Sprung


sprung, originally uploaded by Robert S. Donovan.

Oh my goodness! Spring! Technically it is still here so I'd better be quick. Spring is Wood time in the Chinese Five Elements. The colour is green, the taste is sour, the emotion is anger and the climate is wind. The organs are gall bladder (planning) and wood (anger and resentment).

Wood time is about going with the flow, moving forwards, growth and change. If you're not flowing with wood time you can feel stuck ... which can lead to anger and resentment.

If your constitution is wood you will probably place a high value on what you do, particularly for work, and feel that this is who you actually are. You might overly focus on your actions and feel that your actions are who you are. Therefore you are happy with yourself when you perceive your actions are 'good' and feel annoyed with yourself when you think your actions are 'bad'.

You could have a strong sense that there is a right and a wrong way to do and to be and criticise yourself for making 'mistakes'. You might put yourself under pressure to be perfect. Having such high standards often leads to disappointment and impacts on your self esteem. You might also apply those high standards to others, inevitably feeling disappointed if they don't live up to them.

Sounds like hard work.

And remember too, this might be your overall pattern (particularly evident in times of stress) or it might just come up from time to time ... such as in Spring!

Instead of focusing on what you do, try to go beyond, to see what lies in the heart of yourself and others. Move beyond judgement and accept that you're doing the best you can and that is enough. More than enough, it is perfect. True self esteem comes from valuing what is inside. Self esteem based on what you do will only ever be a temporary solution.

We all know when we're in the flow. Things fall into place, we receive help from all angles, we have clarity and know what is right for us.

Criticising yourself, judging your actions, resenting the fact you're not moving forwards ... totally missing the point. Let go of it all now. You are acceptable already. Yes! And that stuckness? It will definitely pass.

And if you want it to move on more quickly, book a kinesiology session. Get your chi (qi - energy) flowing again!

Life is the flow of energy. It is in the air we breathe, the force that moves the weather, the force of all minds combined. It keeps the rivers flowing, our hearts beating and the sky blue ... the freedom to choose and change belongs to us.

365 Tao, p182.

Feeling stuck? Read this fabulous affirmation from Louise L Hay's 'You can Heal your Life' and get ready for change.

'Change is the natural order of my life. I welcome change. I am willing to change. I choose to change my thinking. I choose to change the thoughts I use.

I move from the old to the new with ease and joy. It is easier to forgive than I thought. Forgiving makes me feel easy and light. Forgiving makes me feel free and light. It is with joy that I learn to love myself more and more.

The more resentment I release, the more love I have to express. Changing my thoughts makes me feel good. I am learning to choose to make today a pleasure to experience.

All is well in my world.'

Read back over the other five elements:
Fire
Earth
Metal
Water

Which element do you most strongly resonate with?

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Thinking it out? Forget it!


Walking Cannon Beach, originally uploaded by ColbyOtero.com.

I was talking to my sister the other night. I mentioned I was busily thinking and planning about next year ... in fact, I was saying that I probably should be thinking about it a whole lot more. That would be the sensible thing to do.

My sister is doing a yoga teaching course at the moment.

She said in a recent class they did a walking meditation on the beach, with the objective being to focus on the walking and just 'be'.

She mentioned to the teacher that she likes walking because it helps her think and the teacher said ... we believe we are solving things by thinking them through ... in reality, whether we spend a lot of time and energy thinking about an issue or not ... life tends to sort itself out ... so we might as well let go of the need to intensely obsess and worry (oops, I mean think!) about things.

We confuse thinking with wisdom, 'working things out' with trusting, worrying with connecting to our inner knowing.

This is coming up for some of my clients at the moment too ... Sweet Chestnut is a Bach Flower remedy that helps dissolve highly strung mental processes. If you're a worrier/thinker, why not try reading the affirmation:

I make the commitment to kindly, gently, lovingly, and supportively trust in a higher power, accept greater capacity and grow in consciousness, beyond self made definitions and boundaries.

Ask yourself:

How might trusting in a higher power feel for me?
What self made boundaries and limitations am I placing on myself?
How might it feel to grow in consciousness and accept greater capacity?

But don't think it through ... just allow these questions to settle and take a moment to notice where it is in your body that you feel your sense of inner knowing. Feel don't think. Ohhh.

It can sometimes feel a bit, I don't know, annoying to come back to similar issues, things you think you should know ... whatever they might be for you. Nadine writes about this beautifully on her blog. The truth is ... we all have stuff, we're all working on our stuff, and really ... it's totally fine :)

Friday, October 16, 2009

What's all the fuss about stress?


Peace, originally uploaded by kudumomo.

We are all aware of the toll stress can take on our lives. Stress can lead to serious illness. Our bodies are designed to deal effectively with stress - you've probably heard of the fight flight response.

The fight flight (or stress) response is a feedback loop between the hypothalamus and anterior pituitary in the brain and the adrenals (above the kidneys). This is called the HPA axis. When stress is perceived the adrenals are quickly prompted to release hormones including adrenaline and cortisol to enable the body to quickly respond to the stress. Digestion and immune function are immediately reduced so the body can take action. That’s why digestive problems and regular illness are common in highly stressed people.

The fight flight response is essential if you are in immediate danger. However in today's fast paced society, many of us activate this response constantly – even if we’re not in real danger. Work pressures, traffic, deadlines, money problems, relationship stress, the list is endless ... and the fight flight response is not designed to work continuously.

The hypothalamus, which is responsible for maintaining homeostasis (balance) in the body becomes fatigued and stops functioning efficiently. You literally become ‘out of balance’. This has a snow ball effect affecting more and more aspects of your being.

Stress is sometimes called the ‘silent killer’. You can continue to live in a stressed state quite well for some time with few health issues. Living on adrenaline becomes normal. The inevitable exhaustion is addressed with short term fixes such as more coffee, sugar hits or a glass of wine. If stress continues finally everything can seem to fall apart at once.

The many negative effects can include:
• Anxiety or panic attacks
• Mood swings
• Insomnia
• Problems with concentration and focus
• Digestion issues
• Constant colds or illnesses, or difficulty recovering from illness
• Inability to relax or enjoy life even when nothing is ‘wrong’
• Memory problems
• Ongoing overuse of the fight flight (stress) response is now recognised as a leading cause of depression

Kinesiology reduces stress and helps your body to restore homeostasis or balance.

Kinesiology helps to dissolve the stress in your system by finding the source of the stress and helping your body return to a healthy balanced state. It can also help you become more aware of the underlying factors causing your stress and help you to take positive actions to reduce the stress in your life.

Regular Kinesiology sessions are an excellent way to ensure you manage your stress levels. It is not necessary to live your life in a state of high stress and anxiety. You deserve to be happy!

On a personal note

Totally taking longer to restore balance than I expected. Still pretty tired.

On my holiday to Darwin I had a little tarot reading at the market: 'lots of good is coming but for the rest of this year ... you have to rest. You've pushed yourself too hard, you'll become unwell if you don't.' Um, hello? Boring! Wasn't that what I was doing on holiday? Wasn't that enough? I'm rested! Where's the action? I'm ready for the next thing!

Apparently not.

I've come to my senses and slowed right down. This month I stopped drinking alcohol and last week I even went off coffee (harder! I usually only have one a day but how I love that one.) Predictably, I became unwell. Two other friends who have also been through busy times and are now slowing down have had similar experiences.

My body wants rest. A lot of rest. I've tried to just go with it, cutting back where I can, getting used to the space in my life. And waiting. Just in the past couple of days a lightness is returning and with it new inspiration, new energy. But with awareness too.

I needed drive to accomplish 1400 hours of study on weekends over three years whilst working full time ... and then starting my business as soon as I had my certificate ... to get where I am. Without drive and determination I wouldn't have achieved what I have.

But I can make different choices moving forwards.

So yes, I'm continuing learning my own lessons about stress and finding balance and I am making different decisions about how much capacity I actually have. However I try to practice what I preach and I can't wait for my next Kinesiology session ... tomorrow!

Monday, September 28, 2009

Kakadu


You get the best sunsets at Kakadu. Such a sacred, spiritual place.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Dust on the mirror

So my yoga intensive last week was divine. And it did help me to get back on the path. Definitely some hippy and confronting moments. Staring into another person's eyes for five minutes ... someone you don't know ... is definitely an experience and following that with a five minute hug (if you feel like pulling back ... keep going!) can feel a little uncomfortable ...
The point?
We easily see the differences in others. And yet here they are, in our lives and on their own path with their own challenges ... and there is far more that is similar between us than different.
It's about noticing. Paying attention.
It reminds me of the story Kate shares on Everyday Calm. A world famous violinist played in a busy metro in Washington for one hour. He made $32. 6 people stopped to watch. The previous night he sold out a concert with tickets averaging $100.
What are we missing because we don't take the time to stop ... look ... and listen. Well, in my case, plenty.
Kate over at The Monday Project just wrote about the calm she's currently experiencing since she recently simplified her life and started paying attention to the little things. Inspiring!
What stops us from experiencing peace? Andrew described the three malas as the 'dust that clouds the mirror to our true reflection' and we spent time on the intensive looking at each one and how to move forwards when they're blocking your path. What are they?
Anava - sadness, a feeling of lack, unworthiness. Address with 'bhakti' - devotion to something bigger than yourself.
Mayiya - anger, separation, difference conflict, hatred. Work through this with self and spiritual study. Learning.
Karma - fear, anxiety, not being able to accomplish. Deal with this by taking action ... even small action.
What's holding you back from moving forwards on your path? What can you do right now to get moving again?
Yoga Girl, originally uploaded by pixieclipx.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Keeping it simple

I have never really been much of a goal setter. What do I really want? What if I change my mind?

However I can see the value in goals and I've read all books and articles about the people who write their goals down being a gazillion times more likely to achieve them. In fact I have done this in the past and have been amazed to read back and see some of the things that have happened.

But it can be complicated and a bit messy to think about it all and I love the idea of a bigger, inspiring, overarching goal sitting over the top.

That's why I really liked the post on Zen Habits called really simple goal setting.

Now I haven't fully taken Leo's advice yet but he recommends reducing any goals you might have to one and turning that into a 2 - 5 word mantra. He gives you five steps for the process but breaks it down to '1) choosing a goal and creating a mantra for it; and 2) focusing on shorter-term actions to make that goal a reality.' So that means just choosing one action a day. I can totally do that!

As a starting point, I think my goal is: Integrate my passions. Does anyone else want to have a go?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Patterns, signs, yep I'm noticing!


I have had a couple of experiences recently to remind me that perhaps I need to slow down a little. Of course I know this *theoretically* but it is not something I naturally do.

First of all, my brother got engaged! How exciting. A surprise to noone but me apparently. Of course I knew it would happen sometime but everyone else predicted it would happen on their holiday. Now I do live in a different state to my family however when I expressed my surprise my Mum said, 'well you are probably too busy to notice these things Kerry.' Oh.

The following day Laurence rang me around 10am. Now I did observe he left the apartment rather early but when he said 'Hi honey, I've arrived' my response was the ever so astute, 'Oh? Where are you?'

Brisbane.

I have plenty of very good reasons for my distractability. The afternoon before I travelled to Geelong for a presentation and got home just in time to log onto an online conference for work that went until 9:30. And then there's the ever present pressure of weekend study. But really. We can all find reasons to be busy.

If you have sessions over a period of time you will often notice recurring themes. It might be self esteem, communication, confidence, judgement of self or others ... for me it is that busyness and the confusion and disconnection that you ultimately create if you can't allow yourself to just be.

Surprise surprise, it is the reason I went to a Kinesiologist in the first place. In one session I've had this issue went back to between lifetimes (yes a little wacky, even for me!) I just wanted to hurry up and get started!

Sometimes we know but we don't really pay attention. Nadine wrote about this on her lovely yoga blog today. She talks about the messages her pain were giving her. In my case it's more about the messages my crazy busy lifestyle are giving me.

This is one reason I have been so drawn to Kinesiology. It always brings me back to myself. It helps me connect to my own wisdom. And whenever I am in clinic I am completely focused, centred and at peace.

And one big difference for me? Previously noticing this pattern could have been a reason to get completely upset and annoyed at myself. Now I just notice and do something about it. A much nicer experience. Havi has a whole series of posts on not hating on yourself.

I will be completely done with study at the end of this month (yipee I can't wait) but I'm really mindful that I don't want to fill the new space in my life with more busyness.

I wrote a while ago about doing the Signs and Synchronicity yoga morning intensive. And - hello sign! I found out that Andrew's doing another one next week. This time it's Progress on the Path. 'Especially for those who want to get BACK on the path'.

Ok, bring it on!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Making Space


I'm decluttering! I'm doing this lovely 6 week e-course with Goddess Leonie and Lisa. It's called Making Space for your Goddess to Shine. I've never done an e-course before so it's kind of fun seeing how it all works.

Each week I get these cute books and worksheets to download and sometimes a meditation track or whatever. It's really nice having a mental focus and I definitely like the idea of making my home a space that works perfectly for me.

There are some nice floaty Goddessy bits to the course and some clean-up, tidy-up, clear-out, de-clutter type things.

I am better at the Goddess stuff.

Make an altar? Yay! Look at Feng Shui? Of course. Burn Grandfather sage (a smudge stick) throughout the house - I'd love to.

It makes such a difference too, the whole smudging thing. Definitely try it if you haven't before. So it's the sage leaves all kind of tied up with string and you just light it and I guess think clearing thoughts as you take it around the house.

Everyone commented how clean the house was. I told Laurence I'd smudged the house. He assumed it was some kind of new cleaning product along the lines of Mr Sheen.

So I'm less good at the actual de-cluttering.

Actually I was ok at the reflective parts. Why I'm holding onto things, what I want to create space for, that kind of thing. The fluffy side of de-cluttering. The non-actually-decluttering part.

Don't get me wrong, I'm quite tidy. Especially on the surface. Just don't try to look in my wardrobe (uh - kind of overflowing) or expect that I will immediately locate some essential stationery item like a stapler.

I promise I'll work on it, there's still a few weeks to go :)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Lucky


Last week I had to do a presentation for a conference, something I do semi-regularly. I always present on the same kinds of things - using online technologies, including blogging, for education.

But I was nervous.

There were a few rational reasons for this. For one it was a national conference. I even ignored the first couple of emails requesting that I present since it sounded a bit too intimidating! But in the end I was talked into it. Also, I hadn't presented in while so I thought maybe that's why I was a little anxious.

Anyway, with a half an hour to go before I had to leave the office I decided (last resort!) to listen to a free meditation track from Havi. Give it a listen!

You go through this process of imagining your brain as a computer and looking at the programs it's running for eg worry and then stopping them and changing the program.

So anyways, it probably all sounds a bit woo woo and meanwhile I was only half paying attention as I was trying to work at the same time.

Then, at around minute 14, right after we looked at self doubt and dissolving that, I felt a whole lot calmer. I suddenly knew I had to check my presentation.

It had completely corrupted!!!

Half the pages were deleted and big red cross marks where images had been on others. I have never seen anything like it. And just enough time to save another copy and get going. Anyway, presentation is here if you're interested. All a little bizarre.

So, what about you? Any stories of being saved by your intuition lately? Please share!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Sacral Chakra

Have you ever noticed what happens when you try to ignore an issue? It gets bigger and more obvious and annoying until you decide to to something about it! So this was happening to me and I couldn't figure out why. And then tonight I clicked.

It's mostly sacral chakra stuff. I realised that I've been putting off adding the sacral chakra practice to my blog. Why is that? Is it because I've subconsciously been avoiding looking at those issues? Not wanting to finish what I've started? Well who knows but I'm not avoiding any longer! Enough already.

The sacral chakra is orange and related to issues around relationships, passion, creativity and the integration of opposites - eg male/female, yin/yang. It's about being able to have intimacy but also appropriate boundaries. If blocked or congested you might have problems connecting to others, feeling intimacy or have a block to your creativity ... you might not be able to finish the things that you start.

Questions
  • Can I be close to others - am I able to express intimacy?
  • Can I express my creativity?
  • Am I able to start and finish tasks?
  • Am I comfortable with my boundaries?

You might like to choose one or more that jumps out at you and reflect on or write your responses. Then slowly and mindfully work through each of these asanas, with five breaths in each. They have a hip opening effect. Pictures if needed.

Yoga Postures

  • Warrior pose II (virabhadrasana II) - a side lunge with arms outstretched parallel to the floor
  • Triangle pose (trikonasana) - legs are wider than hip width, point one foot away and the arm on the same side goes down to meet the foot (don't over stretch) - the other arm stretches directly upwards (so that your arms are in a straight line)
  • Fan pose (prasarita padottanasana) - feet are still wider than hip width, feet parallel. Start with hands on hips, breathe in and look up, breathe out and move down towards the floor. Take hands off your hips and touch the floor allowing the head to hang down
  • Seated wide angle pose (upavista konasana) - sitting down with legs stretched out to the side and arms outstretched in front of you
  • Seated spinal twist (ardha matsyendrasana) - start with your legs in front of you. Bend one leg and place the foot over the top of the other leg so that you start to move into a twist. Hold your knee with the opposite arm and twist with your other hand behind you
Meditation

Sit in a crossed legs position. Bring hands out to the sides at a lower angle to the base chakra meditation, elbows bent, with the palms of the hands facing each other. Hands are at a 60 degree angle, facing outwards. Bring hands closer together without touching, like a clap, tensing the inner organs at the same time. Release, and move back to the starting position.

Chant/mantra: Ek ong kar sat gur prasad (says to listen to this on a tape but try chanting it and then doing chop movement and chanting it again when hands come back to start position?)

Mantra meaning: There is only one Creator who is realised by His grace

And of course a Kinesiology session is always a good way to work on chakra issues.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

But, is it a sign?


The external world is remarkably consistent, and yet we blame it for what's going on inside of us. People who think the world is going to end always manage to find a new thing that's going to cause it to end.

People itching to be bummed out all day long will certainly find an external event that give their emotion some causal cover. The thinking happens long before the event that we blame the thinking on.

How true is this! Go to Seth's blog to read more. Isn't it interesting that we are always looking to change the world around us. It's our situation that needs to change, other people, certain events. I talked about that a bit here.

What are you feeling now?

Nurture your feelings and be aware ... you are probably going to create events today that support how you're feeling right now.

But, is it a sign?, originally uploaded by Erik Charlton.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Homeopathics to the rescue



This is so funny! Kinesiology, Homeopathy and other therapies should defnitely be regarded as Complementary rather than Alternative to Western Medicine.

Trust me, if I had a car accident and ended up in A&E I do want surgery if I need it ... not flower essences and crystals!

Thanks to my colleague for this video :)

Monday, June 29, 2009

Clearing obstacles

Ganesha, the Hindi god, is the destroyer! The clearer of obstacles and provider of protection and guidance. Also: the lord of success.

I had a Kinesiology session on Saturday and pulled the Ganesha card from my Gaia oracle after I got home. An omen of good forture apparently this means 'whatever has thwarted your progress or prevented you moving forward will soon be resolved.' I think that is so symbolic of exactly what Kinesiology can do ... clearing obstacles, sabotages, blockages and fears, both conscious and subconscious. And allowing you the freedom to move forwards feeling calm and confident ... to achieve more than you'd dared dream!

What are you struggling with right now? In what ways are you feeling limited? Are you feeling fulfilled? Living your dreams? Or is that 'unrealistic'? Go within and listen. Here's the affirmation that comes with the card, why not say it yourself and make a wish ...

'I am protected and guided by a higher power
When the path is blocked, I take this as a sign to wait
I give thanks for divine intervention
When the path is clear, I move forward with ease
All that does or does not occur is for my highest good'

Friday, June 26, 2009

Holes


I still remember a story told by a yoga teacher in my ashtanga class a few years ago. It was a story about holes. She compared looking for clarity or change or personal growth to digging holes in the backyard looking for water.

We start. Soon we are bored. Clearly there is no water in this hole. So we start to dig another hole. Same thing. We can go on like this forever. We will never find water. However if we continued digging the same hole, no matter how we felt about it to start with, eventually we would get to water.

How can you do this? There are infinite ways. Kinesiology is one good one. In many ways it probably doesn't really matter which one you choose. Trust your instincts and intuition. You will know the right path for you.

Say not "I have found the truth,"
But rather, "I have found a truth"
Say not, "I have found the path of the soul"
Say rather, "I have met the soul walking upon my path"
For the soul walks upon all paths
The Prophet,
Kahil Gibran

A committed approach makes the difference. I floated around with lots of bits and pieces of personal development type stuff for years. And my results reflected that. An endless cycle of kind of better but not really.

But in the end I really wanted results. I was sick of my stuff. I started going to yoga a couple of times a week. And I started seeing a Kinesiologist and went regularly (every few weeks and then once a month). And guess what, my life completely changed. And this is what I observe in my practice. Committed people create amazing change.

I think it's being willing and ready to change that makes the difference. Sometimes a little bit of luck and synchronicity help too :)

Image: holes, originally uploaded by BarelyFitz.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Finding Happiness

How easy is it to find happiness? What is it that you really need? I love this talk from Dan Gilbert. Here are some of his suggestions for achieving happiness ...

  • accrue wealth, power and prestige and lose it
  • spend as much of your life as you can in prison
  • make someone else really, really rich
  • never, ever join the beatles

You might have to watch the talk to get it!

On a similar theme, I liked what Chris Guillebeau wrote about all the things you don't need to be happy on his blog today. I particularly love the four things he says you do need. Especially the two answers. What are yours?

  • You need passion. You need to be absolutely passionate about what you believe in. If you don’t feel passionate about something, chances are you haven’t discovered it yet. Keep looking.
  • You need a vision and a task. The vision tells you where you are going; the task tells you what to do next.
  • You need the two answers. What do you really want to get out of life? How can you help others in a way that is unique to you?
  • You need commitment to stay the course. Most people give up at 5,000 hours; the winners continue to 10,000 and beyond. I liked what Seth said about the 3,000 posts he’s written: the first 2,500 were the hardest.

Go read the rest! Do you agree? What do you think is necessary for happiness? I would say love is most important for me ... or at least self acceptance. I'm not so sure about the vision and task ... especially the task, it sounds like work! I'll need to reflect on that some more. Certainly a sense of a higher purpose or destiny helps ... interestingly that has been coming up for a lot of clients recently.

The thing that I'm learning is that it's not always tied to what you're doing. It's so easy to get stuck on thinking 'I need to know my purpose' or 'I'll feel happy when ...' or whatever. Maybe your purpose is doing what you're doing right now in the most beautiful way possible! And you're missing it because you're too busy worrying about it!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Base Chakra

The base chakra is red and located at the base of your spine ... it relates to issues of survival, safety and security and this includes our relationship to our family (or 'tribe'), money, work, housing and other life essentials. With a strong base chakra you generally feel secure and supported and can put in the hard work required to make your dreams a reality. It is about feeling grounded - essential to everything else in life!

Questions:
  • Do I feel in control of my life?
  • Do I feel grounded?
  • How is my home life? Do I feel safe, secure and happy at home?
  • How are my finances?
  • Am I creating what I want in my life?

You might like to choose one or more that jumps out at you and reflect on or write your responses. Then slowly and mindfully work through each of these asanas, with five breaths in each. They have a grounding effect. Pictures if needed.

Asanas:

  • Mountain pose (tadasana) - stand tall with feet parallel
  • High lunge (alana) - one foot is forward in a lunge position and hands above the head
  • Chair pose (ukatasana) - hands are upwards and parallel and knees bent into seated position
  • Tree pose (vrksasana) - sole of one foot rests on the inner leg (lower down is easier, higher up is harder) and hands are in prayer pose
  • Warrior pose III (virabhadrasana III) - kind of like a plane. Arms out to side and one foot outstretched behind you

Meditation:

Sitting with legs crossed. Arms are held in front of body as if holding a large box from the sides. Palms should be facing towards each other and elbows bent at 60 degrees. Focus eyes on tip of nose.

Chant ‘Hummee hum’ whilst at the same time moving the hands in a chopping motion towards each other and slightly down. Chant ‘Brahm hum’ whilst doing a second chopping motion, bringing the hands almost to touching. Continue for several minutes.

Mantra meaning: ‘Hummee hum brahm hum’ means ‘we are we and we are one’ (we are already everything we need to be).

Allow yourself to sit in silence for several minutes reflecting on your original question. See what comes.

Chakra practice


“I have so much to do today that I’m going to meditate for two hours instead of one” Gandhi.

I found this quote on the Quiet Mind Meditation blog today (go read what she wrote about it, interesting!) and thought isn't that so true ... whenever we're busy we think we can't possibly fit in time for meditation/yoga/whatever it is that will actually help us create some balance ... when in reality it would help us do everything else so much more easily.

Anyway, I do still struggle sometimes so join in with me and we can work through our issues together!

So I have put together a practice for each of the chakras including some questions to reflect on (either mentally or you could write your responses) to help tune you into the issues of the chakra and then some yoga asanas and meditation practices to help balance the chakra. See how you go.
Try each practice as many times as you wish. You can reflect on a different question each time. It should only take 15 - 20 minutes, depending on how long you spend in meditation. And we truly do all have 15 minutes in our day if we want to find it!

This might inspire you. When you practice meditation over a number of years you begin to open the chakras naturally and that releases some of the stressors held in each.

'You become aware of the emotional and spiritual lessons necessary to the proper functioning of that chakra ... the conscious personality begins to understand the reason for existing blockages'

Richard Gerber - Vibrational Medicine

However the conscious mind has a part to play! So that's why I'll include some reflective questions. And yoga helps to physically realign the body and allow energy to flow freely. Different yoga asanas help release blocks associated with each of the chakras too. You can find some pictures and descriptions of asanas here if you need them.

Remember this:

'Integration of mind, body and spirit makes healing possible. It is not enough to merely understand without action or to merely move energy without understanding. It is the integration of these two currents that creates the changes we see in our lives'

Anodea Judith - Eastern Body, Western Mind

I'll put up a new practice each week. If you do try it - even once - join the discussion and let us know how it went for you :)
* Meditation practices are variations from 'Meditation as Medicine' by Dharma Khalsa - recommended!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The world of water


The world of water, originally uploaded by Snap®.

Winter is Water element time! In Winter things start to slow down and it's a time where we can conserve our energies and build up our reserves ready for the action and activity of Spring. This can feel uneasy and bring up a lot of fears and anxiety. The water element is all about the balance between our fears and trust, particularly in our own intuition.

The water element is the colour blue and relates to the kidneys (fears) and bladder (control of the external environment). The sense is hearing, the smell is putrid and the taste is salty.

As with all the five element patterns, you might be primarily that constitutional type or it might be an imbalanced pattern you fall into at a particular time in relation to certain issues. The water element relates to your feelings about your potential and destiny. Do you feel like you need to achieve your inner potential no matter what? Or is your destiny out of your control and down to fate?

The pattern of the Water element type is to try and control your fear and anxiety. This can make you react in two main ways. You might be completely driven. You feel like you can never stop and rest - that you MUST keep going no matter what ... even though deep down you know it's not doing you much good. If you're like this the idea that you're racing around because you're 'afraid' is probably horrifying to you! It's not that! It's just that you have so much to doooo, and besides, you'l be able to relax once you have sorted out that job or house/have enough money/know what's going to happen next.

The other option is to freeze or hide away. You might feel that you have no real control over your life, that fate will decide what happens. When things start to get challenging you begin to withdraw ... from yourself and everyone else and go inwards to worry. Once again - you'll probably deny that too!

If you're a water type person you're probably clever ... and think a lot. In balance you might be very intuitive and have great instincts that you know you can rely on. You have an inner sense of safety and security and use your wisdom wisely.

The water pattern is never more obvious than when you are faced with either the slowing down of life as we move into Winter ... or dealing with unexpected new events that are out of your control. How do you feel? If panic and anxiety come up remember ... go inside rather than reacting to fear. Meditate. Breathe. Connect to your instincts and intuition. The answers are always within you.

This post is part of a series on the five elements. Why not go back and read about Fire, Earth and Metal. The final part - Wood - will come in Spring. Do you particularly identify with one of the elements?

Monday, June 1, 2009

Chakras

So I've been doing some research on the chakras, yoga and sadhana - which is basically a daily practice that is ideally done early in the morning. Every night I fully intend to get up for this and every morning I think ten more minutes sleep (and then ten more) is just what I need. But I'm really going to try.

This is what Claire East who wrote 'Chakras for the 21st century' has to say about chakras:

‘Chakra is a sanskrit word meaning ‘wheel’ or ‘circle’. Each chakra is an energy centre, a vortex that draws spiritual energy into our self. Chakras are spiritual centres of light held within our energy field, within our aura.’

You probably know there are seven main chakras and there are particular issues that relate to each one. You might not be aware there are also specific glands and hormones connected to each. The chakra system kind of acts as an interface between the physical and etheric body. For example your hormones can affect your emotions via the chakra system ... and vice-versa.

According to Anodea Judith who wrote 'Eastern Body, Western Mind' our chakras affect:

‘Glandular processes, body shape, chronic physical ailments, thoughts, and behaviour. By using techniques such as yoga, breathing, bioenergetics, physical exercises, meditation, and visualisation we can … influence our chakras, our health and our lives.’

That is a lot of stuff! If you're not the quotey type, she's just saying that the chakras affect lots of stuff on a physical and emotional level and by using yoga, meditation and other tools - you can actually balance the chakras yourself.

So I'm going to share the practices I collected and came up with in a bit of a chakra series. That way you can join in with me. I mean - if you're doing it, I will totally have to. I'll start with the Base chakra very soon.

ALSO - it's now Winter! And Winter means Water time according to the Chinese five elements. Water is all about FEAR ... and also intuition. Can you slow down to meet the season ... and go within ... without panicking that everything is stopping? Can you let go of control? More on water in my five element series soon.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

The awesome blogs edition

So, lucky me! I was awarded the Awe-Summ!!!! award by the lovely Yvonne from Safe Space and I must list 7 things about myself which make me Awesome. Thank you so much Yvonne, that is so sweet. Needless to say, I love the Safe Space blog.

Item! This has brought up some stuff for me! Interesting. Of course I could easily identify the top 7 awesome things about my favourite ... say 100 people or so. But identifying them for myself. Well, that feels a little uncomfortable!

Apparently it is perfectly appropriate that the clients I see should love and accept themselves unconditionally ... and I of course believe I should too ... but talking about it? To others? In public???

Really happy about the bit where I talk about seven blogs that I like. Having been meaning to do that anyway. Perhaps I'll do that first (whilst taking deep breaths).

The Fluent Self - I really like Havi's blog ... she's a life coach specialising in - wait for it -destuckification!! and always has some great wisdom to share and is really courageous and open about her 'stuff'. Love her writing style and general wackiness. If you write a blog, you might like this post she wrote about finding your 'voice'. I just found it last week. Helpful!

The Art of Non-Conformity - if you've ever thought about how fab it would be to quit your job and travel for a living, visit Chris' blog. He also has these awesome free products that you should download immediately: 279 days to overnight success and the Brief Guide to World Domination. The thing I like about Chris is that he is so amazingly honest and ethical. Like he creates a product to sell and then gives you about ten reasons why it might not be right for you and why you shouldn't buy it. But he still makes a living out if this blogging thing, so clearly he's doing something right :)

Jesse's Mess - totally gorgeous and creative, Jess shares some of her lovely art on here. A woman of many talents, she's a great Kinesiologist too.

Auric Fields - Amanda is my Kinesiologist! And she's awesome, clearly, since I've been seeing her for about four years. Sometimes I think I should try another Kinesiologist just for research purposes. But I never get around to it. I think you should be the client you want to attract. And I do, yay.

Vibrant Living Wellness - Kristen is another Kinesiologist. We're twitter friends! She's writing a fab series about her chakra journey at the moment.

Monday Project - cute idea! Creative musings from friends based in Sydney and Melbourne who work on a project a month and invite others to join in.

Zen Habits - read by about a gallion people, always something to inspire.

Well. That was fun! Ok, so let's do this thing.

  1. I am fab at taking action.
  2. I'm sooo happy that I've passed through that depression stuff that plagued me during my teens and twenties. I'm good at growing and learning about myself.
  3. I care for myself. I am gentle with myself. That might not sound huge but after years of criticising and judging myself, it is a big thing.
  4. I'm a caring friend and girlfriend.
  5. I like writing. And I'm happy with the blogging thing. I'm glad that I write my blog even though I'm soooo busy!!!
  6. I am supportive of others.
  7. I'm good at working with people who are anxious and stressed and stuck on stuff. I'm an expert on that! And I think it's what I'm meant to do :)

Below are the rules and guidelines to the Awe-summm award:

* List 7 things that make you Awe-Summm and then pass the award on to 7 bloggers you love.

* Make sure to tag your recipients and let them know they have won!

* And finally link back to the blogger that tagged you.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Freedom


Freedom, originally uploaded by kudumomo.

A little disappointed I've been MIA from my blog recently ... busyness is to blame, unavoidable this time ... but things will settle down soon! This I hope. I had a Kinesiology session of my own today and it came up that I'm living four months in the future ... and disbelieving that things will be calmer and more relaxed. What an unhelpful belief!

So we've obviously worked on that energetically, I'll do some reflection over the next few days and I have an essence to take for my Solar Plexus chakra (confidence, self esteem, will and positivity moving forwards).

Sometimes the issues we're dealing with seem unavoidable ... and the mind loves to label and project to some time in the future when 'things will be different'. Maybe they will!

But all we ever have is the now.

‘The present moment is sometimes unacceptable, unpleasant or awful. It is as it is. Observe how the mind labels it and how this labelling process, this continuous sitting in judgement, creates pain and unhappiness. By watching the mechanics of the mind, you step out of its resistance patterns, and you can then allow the present moment to be.

This will give you a taste of the inner state of freedom from external conditions, the state of true inner peace. Then see what happens, and take action if necessary or possible.

Accept – then act.

Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it. Make it your friend and ally, not your enemy. This will miraculously transform your whole life,’

The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle, p36.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Surrendering to emotion


Emotion, originally uploaded by BdwayDiva1.

'When you surrender and welcome any emotion that is present within you, something magical happens and suddenly it has the ability to pass through you.

It is only when you resist and fight against a mood or emotion, or think it shouldn't be there, that it gains power and the feelings intensify'


The best year of your life, Debbie Ford

Sometimes when we experience challenges we can think that there is strenth in resisting how we feel. How are you? Oh fine. It's not really that bad. I don't mind. I'm going to push through and just get over it ... I'm being POSITIVE!!!

Often in clinic, I find that people underestimate how much stress is affecting them. Rate it out of ten? Oh about 6. Really, that's interesting, your body says 9/10.

This is something I do myself. I remember when I started seeing my Kinesiologist and it 'came up' that I only thought it was ok to feel happy emotions and thought I should feel positive all the time. I was like, 'yes. That's exactly what I think.' Although I had some inkling this wasn't logical, I wasn't yet ready to realise that there are no bad emotions - and that by acknowledging and allowing them, they in fact lose power over you!

We don't always 'hear' the message our body/subconscious is telling us at the time, this is why I often say ... just see if something comes to you later.

It wasn't until I started studying Kinesiology myself that I noticed that some people were comfortable really exploring their 'weak spots', powerful emotions (not always the happy ones!) or the 'monsters under the bed that get bigger because you don't want to look at them' (as our lecturer used to say). They were getting amazing results and moving forwards. By confronting their pain, they were transforming. I started to get it.

Denial of your emotions is not equivalent to strength.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Oh That Body Language!


Oh That Body Language!, originally uploaded by malias.

I'm going to a yoga intensive with Andrew at Divine Grace in the mornings this week and the theme is synchronicity ...

After doing a series of quite hippy exercises and yoga postures with a partner to develop and show trust we started to share something about ourselves.

Turns out my partner had the same star sign ... and birth DATE and the same occupation. Well at least - she is a teacher and I used to be.

Isn't it funny how when you start to look for synchronicity it's everywhere.

I'm still amazed that I met my boyfriend (who I've never known to take public transport in the three years I've known him) on a tram. Why that day, that time, that tram?

Sunday, May 3, 2009

The Pond - a metaphor for meditation


I'm kind of interested in meditation but isn't it just sitting quietly and thinking and what is the point of that anyway??

We had this discussion at Book Club when talking about 'Eat, Pray, Love' and it reminded me of the metaphor of 'The Pond' by Wayne Dyer, as explained in 'Your Sacred Self'. I love Wayne Dyer and have been reading his books since I was about 15 ... here is my interpretation.

So, The Pond.

Level One: The Surface

So this is where all the disturbances are ... the wind churns, the leaves mess, the rain pelts, the storms cause it to be violent. It's the 'chatter'. The mind reminding of all the stuff we need to remember and do and think about (almost like it will make a difference). Money, deadlines, health, work, appointments, family, holidays, arguments, movies you want to see, your cough, your car ... the daily stuff of life that flickers across your mind. No problems with any of it but totally exhausting to live here all the time (and a bit dull too). This is the stuff we think about because we think we don't have a choice. You totally do. Let's go deeper.

Level Two: Just Below the Surface

Yep you've let the chatter behind. And now you're analysing. Why did that happen, what was the reason, why does he/she think that way???? Oh you're such a thinker, and so deep. I get a bit stuck here sometimes. At this level you are constantly observing, commenting on and judging everything that happens. You know that if you can figure things out you will totally be able to relax. Only you never quite get to that point. Ok so stop trying to work it all out for a sec and let's try the next layer.

Level Three: Well Below the Surface

Now things are actually starting to get a bit more relaxing. Rather than analysing, you're starting to piece things together. The pattern is emerging, connections are taking place and things are beginning to make sense. You know you can't figure it all out ... but somehow that isn't important anymore and you're happy to just be with it all. Ahhh (in a good way).

Level Four: Stillness in Bliss

The thoughts are starting to slow right down and awareness is taking their place. You feel more silent and quiet and joy starts to come in. Oh ... so this is meditation! All the chatter, analysing and even the coming together of everything is left behind ... you just are.

Level Five: The Field of All Possibilities

Beneath all of that is the experience of everything and nothing and finding what is at the centre of your being.
Exciting!
Image: Rainbow Over Pond, originally uploaded by Frazzled Jen.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Kinesiology and the subconscious mind


So ... tell me again how you know that stuff about me ... are you psychic or something?

No!

Basically, when I'm muscle monitoring during a session, I'm asking your body or your subconscious mind what is going on, what is affected and what it needs to solve the problem.
The great news for you is that you don't need to know exactly what's going on, why you feel the way you do or what you want/need to do about it. Your body does! And I can communicate with it! Yay!

All you need is an open mind and a willingness to change/make connections/deal with your stuff. Because we all have stuff!

The first time you find out your body is eg seething with anger about a particular issue you don't even want to think about it can feel a little confronting. After that, it's kind of fun. Seething huh, well that's not really a word I would use but come to think of it I was a little annoyed. Guess it affected me more than I thought!

So why is it useful to work with the subconscious mind? Well ... have you ever tried to 'think happy thoughts' or said affirmations and then wondered why things don't really change? It's probably because you're only working with the conscious mind ...

‘If the desires of the conscious mind conflict with the programs of the subconscious mind, which “mind” do you think will win out?

You can repeat the positive affirmation that you are lovable over and over or that your cancer tumour will shrink.

But if, as a child, you heard over and over that you are worthless and sickly, those messages programmed into your subconscious mind will undermine your best conscious efforts to change your life’

The Biology of Belief, Bruce Lipton PhD

Pretty interesting huh! So that's why Kinesiology is so effective for goal setting.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Simple things

I decided to go looking for a teapot yesterday because I was meeting up with Yvonne and I really felt like tea. I'm not usually much of a tea drinker but I've also got some lovely tea leaves my friend Elena brought me back from her recent sojourn to Japan so a teapot is clearly needed.

Yesterday I started talking about my need for a teapot at work. Where on earth do you buy a teapot? Jo suggested Craft Victoria and whilst their teapots are divine, they are really pieces of artwork so not really in my price/need range. The nearest Tea Too store is blocks away (maybe 5) and yesterday was freezing so I turned back after two.

So much for commitment to my teapot.

When I got back to work Jo asked what kind of teapot I want (who knows? What kinds are there? A pretty one?) and told me she actually has five. Including one nice red one that she never uses and did I want it. Oh my goodness, yes I do!

So she brought it today and here is my new teapot and my lovely Japanese tea. I am so happy!

And you've got to love a boyfriend who, when he witnesses you lining up a mobile phone shot of a teapot says, hang on a sec, I'll get you some light!!

All I need now is a strainer so I'm not drinking leaves along with the tea.

* Clearly I didn't have a teapot last night. So Yvonne and I had a 'tea bag' tea and then went to the Exchange for a couple of glasses of vino instead :)

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Ode to my Nanna

Mum, Nanna and me.

My sis, grandparents, cousins and brother.

So I do love my Nanna very much. Nanna just turned 80 and I went back to country South Australia last weekend to help her celebrate and gave a speech. The party had a theme of blue. My Nanna, in her darling and eccentric way, only wears blue. Never yellow, which she hates and claims makes her ill.

I should briefly talk about the party itself - at the 'Tarlee Institute' with nearly 100 people and a band mind you. Ah, the organisation. For those not from the country, this entails much preparation of the kind we cannot really even imagine. When I say we I mean you, however rest assured I don't get it either.

I'm talking 'mock chicken' sandwiches - a recipe bizarrely involving tomato, cheese and egg (sounds revolting but really quite nice - sorry Mum), caramel slice, 'butterfly cakes' with whipped cream and copious other recipes, a band playing the 'military two step' and the 'pride of erin' and a million blown up balloons.

I started my speech with a quote, which appeared on the date of Nanna's birthday (19th April) on a 'quote of the day' calendar of my Mum's.

'Growing old is compulsary. Growing up is optional.'

Words to live by? My Nanna is one of those people who will never grow up. She was unwell the day before her party and ended spending the night in hospital. However, annoying and stressful though this was, noone would have known. She somehow even persuaded the doctor to do early rounds so she could get to her hair appointment on time - I think it was something to do with the compliments she gives him about his 'nice shirts' and 'good injection technique' - which he apparently doesn't even have, but Nanna can make anyone feel good about themselves.

Nanna is the great provider and can always be counted on for any kind of food including her 'world famous' brandy snaps, or a lolly, which she'll find for you somewhere in the depths of her handbag. Apparently she got into trouble at bowls for giving lollies to the opposition - we should all be so evil :)

And that is how I ended my speech, that noone can leave Nanna's presence without feeling more beautiful, talented, clever (deep breath) , kind or brave as Nanna always has the right thing to say to everyone. So that kind of gave me a tear just writing it the first time, then giving the speech and even now.

In fact the next day, at a lunch for her actual birthday, she said that after my speech a number of people commented to her how close she was to her eldest grand daughter and that was it - I burst into tears. And then my Poppa, who is not the same these days, stroked my arm with such compassionate, unconditional and understanding love that it made me cry even more (v. embarrassing)

When I arrived back in Melbourne I picked a book off my shelf, 'The Prophet' by Kahil Gibran and it opened to a page on 'joy and sorrow' ...

'Your joy is your sorrow unmasked
And the selfsame well form which your laughter rises was often times filled with your tears
And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain
Is it not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven?
And is it not the lute that soothes your spirit the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorry that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful ... look into your heart, and you will see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight'

I'm sort of annoyed at myself for being upset without reason, I know how lucky I am to still have ALL my grandparents (the other pair are now in their 90s and very healthy) but it's really the joy and sorrow getting all mixed up together ...

What is the difference between genius and madness?

What do you think? When thinking about this question for work I immediately thought of David Helfgott; a brilliant musician driven mad by his own genius. I found watching these clips from the movie Shine quite emotional.

And then a few days ago I found out David Helfgott is actually coming to Melbourne in August. So Laurence and I have booked! I love it when that happens, I mean I haven't thought about that movie in years. Have a quick watch!




Along a similar vein, if you haven't seen a clip of Susan Boyle in 'Britain's Got Talent' you totally have to watch it now. Pretty inspirational!

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Another doorway


Things are sorting themselves out, as they do.

Although nothing is set in stone, it looks like I will be able to move to official part time work (0.8) and continue my Kinesiology practice :)

I wonder if you'll see the irony that the woman I will hopefully job share with is a Kinesiology client of mine ... and the person who introduced me to blogging in the first place. And I don't really mean the mechanics of type and hit publish, I mean the point to it all, which I'm still exploring.

I wrote about the big talk I had to do recently. Well the keynote was Will Richardson speaking on web 2.0 and blogging. I think I 'get' web 2.0 and in fact that is a big part of what I speak about to teachers. But I get it a whole lot more since, and I've thought a lot about his message, part of which was

"an important value of writing today is not simply to communicate but to get others engaged, to build a larger conversation around what we write"
Maybe that sounds obvious to you but I had an aha moment. I've also been thinking about something Lauren O'Grady blogged,

"You can only be one person online"
And since then I've been merging my worlds a little. Will also said, if you don't feel a moment's hesitation before you hit publish, don't bother. I hear you Will...