Consider love. What is love? With an open mind, allow whatever sensations to arise without language, memories, interpretations or expectations. Fall into your experience. Float in the sensory feelings alone and then while maintaining an idle mind, treat yourself to something you love! Whether it be a walk in nature, a warm bath, delicious dessert, or connecting with an endearing friend, expand your mind moment by moment staying fully present and aware!
Expand your mind further by asking yourself “What is joy?”. Without words, memories, thinking, interpreting or expectations, feel what arises within. Observe the sensations that surface in your body. Whatever comes forth, allow it to be and stay focused on an open neutral mind. You will discover after doing this that your perception of joy will expand exponentially!!!
Open your mind more by pondering “shame”. What is it? Employ an open curious mind without using words, memories, interpretation or expectations. Observe any sensations that come up for you.
Allow whatever arises to the come to the surface and simply observe it with an open neutral mind. Then let it all drift away. Remain open minded in the moment and enjoy the vastness of your mind!
To open your mind further, ponder ‘guilt’. What is it? Without words, mental activity or expectations, observe what arises within you. A feeling of spaciousness may come to the surface and then a sudden spontaneous tightness in your body. Maybe feelings of sadness or regret emerges. Allow whatever arises and simply observe with your open neutral mind. Then as you breathe out, let it drift away.
All emotions rise and fall, come and go. Remaining open minded is crucial to being fully present in each and every moment. This is the threshold for positive change!
Adopt an open and expansive mind. Let go of memories and the rational thinking mind, relaxing fully in the present moment. When you feel grounded, ponder happiness. What is it? Without words, mental activity or expectations, see what happens for you. A feeling of blankness or void may arise. If so, allow yourself to fall into it and even float in it.
In reality, happiness is a fleeting moment that often cannot be specifically defined with detail. There are so many things present when happiness occurs, including harmony of mind, body, spirit, heart and environment. Neutral observation is key. Let those memories fade away!
Cherish life. Cherish the whole journey without any need to attach your worthiness to achievements, external recognition or rewards. See yourself as part of the great big web of life where everything that happens, including the coming and going of relationships, jobs, skills acquired and community are simply the natural ebb and flow of life’s journey.
There is no such thing as success or failure. Outcomes are never solely produced by you as you are always interconnected with others. Just like new trees bursting through the ground, you are a part of the seeds and root system of all surrounding trees. Nothing happens on it’s own. Your life like all others is an adventure. Enjoy the ride as you move through each passing year. Explore, discover, learn and grow, knowing that you are always so much more than your creations. Honour your emotions every step of the way. Reap the lessons to be had and then move on … flow with life!
Embrace your perfectly imperfect self! Allow yourself to be uncomfortable in the moment. This more expansive than maintaining a cheerful mask to hide feelings. Commit to being fully authentic and present. Show up for new experiences during meditation, conversations and group learning. Even though the experience may not turn out the way you want or you find it difficult, accept it as the great dance of life! Stepping into action is critical as this is where new ways of being and seeing happens.
Accept your experience in the moment. Whether you feel happy, awkward or messed up, let go of any dualistic thinking involving good or bad. In the bigger picture of life, dark and light are two sides of the same coin. Both are normal and necessary, a part of the natural flow of life. Anytime we deny our present experience, we deny ourselves. Recognizing interconnection and oneness with all is essential.
Show up just the way you are. Allow your truth to be expressed with no need to hide what is happening inside you. Every time you reveal your authentic self, you will feel increasing flow within and less fear or need to hide. Believe that you are worthy and can release old patterns of shame, doubt and inferiority.
When practicing presence, be sure to allow full self-acceptance in the moment. Whether you are prepared or not prepared, anxious or confused, happy or sad, simply allow yourself to be. If thoughts, doubt or judgements arise, let them flow out of your mind as easily as they flowed in. Focus instead on what is most important … loving your true self! Remember that you do not need to be totally confident and clear when embarking on a new way of living and being. Just bring an open heart every step of the way!