Category Archives for Practices

3 Habits That Will Turn a Crisis Into an Opportunity

There is no doubt that recent events highlight we are in times of deep transformation. It doesn't matter which side of the fence you're on in the recent US elections. Crucial causes are being challenged. The shadow side of the human experience is playing out in schools and on the streets. Tensions are high, fear is rampant and emotions are on the loose.

As a veteran of BIG Shifts – not only a house fire a few years ago that turned my pleasant life upside down, but decades of overcoming crises and turning tribulation into transformation – I can assure you that all is not as bleak as it seems.

Though the media and your social media streams may have convinced you we're in a doom and gloom scenario, don't believe the hype. The truth is that it's a habit to focus on what's wrong. You are not alone in this. We've got millennia of habits to overcome. You can be a force for change right now. It's not difficult at all.

Here are 3 habits to help you turn a crisis into an opportunity:

1. Use Your Breath as a Consciousness Shifting Tool. This sounds too easy to be true, but it's not. Whenever you find yourself caught up in worry, blame, fear or anger bring your attention to the flow of your breath. Notice how your in-breath moves from your belly to your lungs. Notice the flow of your out-breath from your lungs to your belly. Slow and steady. Notice your breath, the come and go, the ease and flow. Notice where it's sourced from. Imagine the Creator (or the Cosmos) is breathing you into being. Every breath you are infused with the Essence of Life, like a magical elixir, making you anew.

The challenge is in focusing on your breath and only that. The habit is to let your mind run like wild horses. Every time you find yourself speeding off with a million thoughts bring your focus back to your body and breath. Be loving but firm, just as you would when teaching your child. At the core your focus is gentle and resolute. Your breath has the power to shift your emotions instantly. It is a consciousness shifting tool that is always with you. Use it.

2. Shift Your Focus To What You're For, Not Against. If you tune into the world around you most of the time the tendency is to complain, bitch and bemoan the circumstances. It's all about pointing the finger to the external world. This is an exercise in futility. You can't change the world, however, you can with practice change your default response.

The other habit to shift here is to focus more on the things you want, and less on the things you don't want. I know this runs contrary to the norm, but you're not one of the unconscious masses. You are willing and able to be the change in your own home, community and corner of the world. The big changes don't happen because of one person. Big changes occur when we reach critical mass. When enough of us focus on the world we want to inhabit, and not the one we may find ourselves in, it creates change for all of us.

3. Upgrade Your Circle of Influence. This habit can be the toughest one to wrap yourself around, but here goes. Notice the people that you spend the most time with. This includes your family and friends, colleagues and clients. It especially includes your social media connections. Take the pulse on how you feel when you're around these folks. When you're with friends and family do you feel supported and uplifted? In your work world, are your colleagues and clients (or your workplace) inspiring and meaningful? When you read posts on your timeline do they infuse you with promise and possibility? Are your connections feeding your life or depleting it?

It's not easy to let go, or curtail, connections that might have sustained you in the past. The truth is that the people in your world are an environment that can nourish you or diminish you. Choose to surround yourself with those that invite you to be more of who you really are. It's the most graceful way to navigate the massive wave of transformation we are all on.

One of the best things you can do during tumultuous times is to develop new habits that support who you are becoming. It takes practice, but I assure you that when you take on these 3 habits things will shift in glorious ways.

Most of all, in trying times be the light. Right now… focus on the infinite wave of love that is you, me, all. Radiate that love as if you were the sun itself. Seeing and feeling it touch everything, everyone, everywhere.

Claim and activate your own light and share it with others. Every act of love shifts the frequency of our world. Be the light, darlings!

Want some help shifting from problem to possibility, burden to blessing? Join our Blissings & Blessings Event. It's a 5-Day Event that will help you shift your focus to what's right in your world. Register below …

How to Use Curiosity to Take a BIG Leap

curiosity2Remember when you were a little kid and had a thousand questions? Boredom was out of the question! Your mind jumped from one exploration to the next, hands and feet scrambling behind you. Your  insatiable curiosity about the world enraptured your every moment.

Think of any great scientist, innovator or genius. The common trait found in all of them – which led to their discoveries – was curiosity!

What if you engaged curiosity as a way of navigating your BIG Shift into your BIG Leap?

One of the problems encountered on the transformation adventure is trying to make sense of what has occurred through your mind. And being too much in your head can stop the flow of your creative expression. Curiosity is one way to use your intellect that actually frees, instead of constricting your creativity.

Engaging curiosity means you are open to investigation of yourself and the world. You open to your natural inquisitiveness, which frees you from your preconceived beliefs. When you begin to investigate and ask why, a world of wonder opens up.

According to studies on curiosity, there are also lots of benefits:

  • Gratitude and appreciation for your BIG Shift emerges stronger than ever.
  • You get to know yourself  to an extent you never dreamed possible.
  • The more you discover, the more you want to discover. It creates a high performance environment.
  • You break through the cycle of judgment, and instantly go to a place of wonder.

“The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing.” Albert Einstein

Did you know that the human mind is hardwired to respond positively to curiosity?  Here are some ways you can add it to the mix:

1. What If? This is one of my favorite self coaching devices. Step back from the surface view of your BIG Shift and curiously question everything about it. “What if this was the only way I could have made this move?” “What if this ‘bad thing' is really serving me?” Curiosity melts resistance.

2. Find the unfamiliar in the familiar. One way to become more curious is to intentionally circumvent expectations, labels and assumptions about “seemingly” familiar activities and events. It’s easy to prejudge an activity because we think we have seen it before or avoid an activity entirely because we expect it to be boring or unpleasantThis same little experiment can be applied to any activity in your life. Consider the list of low-interest, but necessary, activities in your typical day. Choose one of these ho-hum activities and, as you do it, search for any three novel or unexpected things about itThe goal of discovering the unfamiliar in the familiar is to suspend judgments and attend to how things are, not how you expect them to be.

3. Do some free flow writing. Let your mind run loose! Start writing down your questions. Sometimes the more curious you become, the more the questions can freely flow out of your head onto paper. When you get your mind out of reactive mode, and get curious, your mind reacts more positively and can intuit more out of the box solutions.

4. Engage Your Subconscious In A Conversation. You don’t like being judged, and neither does your subconscious. However, most of us do like it when you ask questions about us and engage us in conversation.  This is exactly what you do to your subconscious when you get curious, you engage it in a conversation. Go ahead, have a chat!

According to Mihaly Cskikszentmihalyi, psychology professor and the author of Flow, there is a direct relationship between your attention and your interest in the world: Nothing is interesting to us unless we focus our attention on it. Crystals are not interesting until we begin collecting them, people in the supermarket are not interesting until we become curious about their lives and where they are going, and cars are not interesting until we need to buy a new one. According to Csikszentmihalyi, we can develop our curiosity by making a conscious effort to direct our attention to something in particular in our environment.

So, I leave you with this Curiosity Challenge. Test Csikszentmihalyi’s theory in your own life today. During those times when you are struggling, tired or unstimulated, focus your attention on something that ordinarily might not engage your interest. Notice how much effort you need to expend to focus your attention. Is it worth it? Is there a trade off between being frustrated and being interested? I'd love to hear what you discover, post below.
 

How to Make Your BIG Shifts Fun and Easy

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Resistance is not a fun place.

It is, however, a portal to possibility. That shift alone can open infinite doorways on your BIG Shifts journey.

Consider that resistance is your companion on the evolutionary adventure. Wouldn't it make sense to embrace the unknown, instead of fighting it?

The dark and the difficult are needed as
much as the light 
and the easy.  Osho

What if  resistance is a call to a deeper level of trust, an opening to your soul's calling? Wouldn't you just hate to miss that opportunity?

Luckily, you don't have to. Life is always on offer and resistance is really a personalized map to unleashing your greatest potential.

Once a BIG Shift has occurred you have a choice: You can respond from your wholeness or you can react from your habits. You know which one leads to a quantum leap in your own evolution, right?

Here are 4 companions to help you experience the BIG easy on your BIG Shifts:

1. Laugh a Lot. There are SO many reasons that laughter is good for you, but mostly it feels great AND gets your energy flowing. You can either watch some funny You Tube videos or even start laughing spontaneously. What may first seem to be a forced laughed, will become genuine laughter. Laughter relaxes and energizes you in seconds. Laugh more!

2. Lighten Up. Release your tight grip on how things need to be, or used to be. Seriousness and significance will only slow down your movement. Tune into the ways that you can lighten up right now. Look for the places in your world that are rigid and set. Toss out some of the ‘have to's.' Break the rules!

3. Luxuriate in the Now. Bask in the rightness of this moment. Feel the goodness that IS flowing and give thanks. Feel the perfection of right now. Less doing, more being. When you think of the things that you need to ‘do,' break them down into byte-sized bits that can be handled in a sitting. Build on these moment to moment successes. Experience every day magic!

4. Wonder. Think back to when you were a child and you’d sit, wonder and dream about the stars in the evening sky. Weren't you transported by your sense of excitement and possibility of what else was out there? It is this ‘curious inquiry’ which is an invaluable tool when engaging the BIG Shifts and breaking through to an expanded level of awareness. Daydream more!

Things often must break down in order for you to explore a new way of seeing and being. Resistance is Life’s invitation to compost the old and bring in the new. It’s the natural order for an evolutionary being, and that’s who you really are.

Every painful situation in your life can be used as a catalyst to create increased clarity and greater understanding. You are peace, you are light, you are love. The only ‘problem’ is a gap in awareness. The only ‘challenge’ is your programmed behavior. Be willing to free the me.

BIG Shifts can be your personal pathway to peaceful power.

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