Addicted to Busy

I often have conversations about how little good comes from being distracted. When I step back to look at my busy life, I see a struggle to focus my attention and balance my life. 
I am fatigued, and a perfect example to back up recent research showing creativity diminishes when you are constantly busy. 

Neuroscientist Daniel Levitin reported in 2014, from extensive study, that daydreaming is important to support creative problem solving. Effective focused linear thinking diminishes with busyness. Boredom and idle time is necessary for balance and to create true inventiveness.

In a time where we are processing exponentially more information than we were 10 or 20 years ago, it is vital to take time for our brain to reset. Creative thinking lives in our brain’s default network. If we never give ourselves downtime, we do not allow time and space for ideas to flow freely. We have forgotten that quiet reflection brings about creative association. We have a tendency to force ideas and rush process and it is damaging our creative problem solving. In our need to get things done we are undermining our productivity.

We literaly change our neural pathways by constantly ‘doing’ to distract and avoid down time. We need the ‘do nothing’ time for our brain to rest and process.

On a leisurely walk in Budapest, Nikola Tesla visualized rotating magnetic fields.  Albert Einstein enjoyed listening to Mozart on breaks from his intense thinking. 

Make a commitment to create space for doing nothing, meditating, being bored or sitting around. We tend to reach for our phone or find something to distract, because we have trained ourselves to be busy. Most of us find ourselves anxious and irritable when we have no stimulus. We are creating anxiety about the very thing that could be balancing us.

We have too much information and not enough time to process. We suffer from a need not to miss out in anything. Think about the things you feel compelled to do or be a part of that, if you didn’t know about them, your life would not be less. In fact it may be less stress, less anxiety, less pressure, less overwhelm.

Take time to just be: to walk in nature, meditate, sit in the backyard, play a game with a child, sing songs or doodle on paper. If you find yourself waiting for an appointment or a friend: people watch, daydream, count ceiling tiles or follow the pattern in a carpet. Don’t be afraid to do nothing and let yourself be bored, knowing you are heightening your creativity and innovative thinking.

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The Ancient Forgiveness Ritual HOʻOPONOPONO

HOʻOPONOPONO is an ancient Hawaiian practice for forgiveness, historically performed by priests called Kahuna. Anyone can benefit from this ritual. Creating a meditative, healing atmosphere adds to the ritual, light a candle or a salt lamp, burn incense or infuse essential oils. Start to list down the names of the people you have issues forgiving or that may need to forgive you.

When life is overwhelming and you find your self easily irritated include even those people who have remotely bothered you. If you have a conflict or altercation use this ritual to decompress the high emotions from the experience and let go of the place in your mind where resentment may build. It can be used for a single situation or with a list of resentments.

Ho’oponopono is a tool for atonement, for correcting errors, erasing the effects of past actions and memories that cause havoc and grief in our lives, the lives of others and on mother nature as a whole. The practice is meant to change your inner most emotional state to change perception from negativity to allow positive energy to flow in.

In the formal Hawaiian ceremony you would include all the people whom you have hurt across lifetimes. It repairs relationships for the highest good. We often find it difficult to forgive people who have hurt us and it is human nature to practice blame and justification. It is important to release anger, resentment, hurt and blame to find inner balance.

Obviously you will not know the names of the people you have hurt or who have hurt you in you in other lifetimes. So, just mention it as “everyone I have hurt across all directions of time.” and “everyone who has hurt me across all directions of time.”

Now begin the process and go through each of the names, mentally hold an image of the person in your mind and say.

HOʻOPONOPONO (name of person),

I am sorry, Please forgive me, I love you, Thank you

do this 2 – 3 times with each person and each time you say thank you, exhale through your mouth to release any negative attachment to that person and the resentment you had towards the person

All misunderstandings can be cleared with this ritual. HOʻOPONOPONO sends a message to the souls of the people, that all resentments are forgiven and let go of for the greater good.  This healing is taking place at a spiritually energetic level and is about letting go of the emotional attachment in our mind by working at a soul level.

Finish the process with an interaction with a power greater than yourself:

Dear Giver, Souce of Life…Use whatever term is meaningful to you and your spirituality; Giver Of Life, Creator, Universe, God, Spirit, Gaia, or anything that identifies a higher power of your understanding.

This is the acknowledgment of a power greater than ourselves who gives unconditional love and whose hands we can put our resentments into to a have them taken from us and cleared. 

Addressing a power greater than ourselves is fundamental to this process, since only something more divine and of pure unconditional love can fix the mess that we (and our ancestors) have created. 

I AM SORRY

  • This statement opens the door to atonement.  Recognize, without judgement, any negative manifestation you experience or witness to create opportunity for healing. 
  • Higher power does not require our apology because as this spiritual energy is without human emotion, but the vibration of our own energy that we use to communicate with the universe changes when we say we are sorry. 
  • The apology is an acknowledgement that we are sorry for whatever it is that we (or our ancestors before us) have done to cause adverse circumstance to take place.
  • There is no guilt or shame attached to this simple acknowledgement.
  • We are not giving permission for wrong done to us to go without addressing. We are letting go of the perceived responsibility we need to address it or hold on to its negativity to ensure justice. 
  • We say sorry to let go and accept the universe will set it right.

PLEASE FORGIVE ME

  • Ask forgiveness for having forgotten how much our higher power loves us.
  • Ask forgiveness for having shut out unconditional love and willingness. Fear often drives the need to be willful and we can ask to be absolved for mistakenly asserting the need for perceived control.
  • Ask forgiveness for any harm we have done to others and ourselves.
  • Do this with the faith that we have already been understood and forgiven, we just needed to complete the process by asking.  The Creator is Spirit and Unconditional Love, without human characteristics like that include emotions like anger, resentment and all other ego related behaviours. It is our humanity that blocks us from feeling the unconditional love that is without shame and guilt. This process connects us to an energy that will allow us to forgive ourselves.

I LOVE YOU

  • Love is the energy of creation and of healing.  Sending out the universal energy of love will allow this energy to be returned through you to bring peace and well being.
  • Source, Spirit, the Creator, does not need your love, but the very act of thinking loving thoughts will tune your mind to that frequency with remarkable power and fill you with a positivity that generates more of the same good energies.
  • Fulfillment is found in becoming unconditional in giving and receiving love.
     

THANK YOU

  • Saying thank you is the acknowledgement that your desire for  greater good has been heard.
  • Exhale remaining animosities and breathe in gratitude as you acknowledge the  power of changing energies and perception within this process.
  • Be thankful for the opportunity to learn and change.

 

The moment you take responsibility for your resentment, challenge or concern, and seek healing you will experience change. The response may not be immediately apparent or what you expect, but it will be what you need to start the process of healing and reconstruction. Trust it is happening inside you to bring resolution, and the reward will be worth your patience.

 

bamboo “If we can accept that we are the sum total of all past thoughts, emotions, words, deeds and actions and that our present lives and choices are colored or shaded by this memory bank of the past, then we begin to see how a process of correcting or setting aright can change our lives, our families and our society.” ~Morrnah Nalamaku Simeona
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Your Ideal Life Cannot Find You When You Are Standing Still

Picture yourself standing on a plateau. It is not so high you can not jump down to continue, but beside you there are rocks that create natural steps to get back on the path. You stand there looking back and forth at the two options analyzing which way to go. You contemplate both options painstakingly while you stand in the baking hot sun with others fading into the distance as they continue on the path they may have jumped down to or taken the steps to continue on. I am illustrating those times when you want to take action to move towards your aims and life plans, but you can’t decide which mechanism is the right one. You wonder why others seem to get ahead with little effort while you worry and plan, so that your ideal expectations can be met.

This type of inaction can cause a sneaky paralysis in our life. The root cause comes down to fear.  We often have a fear of making the ‘wrong’ decision and the fear of making a mistake keeps us stuck or plateaued in the over thinking and analyzing. We get so caught up in avoiding  a perceived misstep, we are not moving forward or taking any action at all.

This is our only mistake. Any action can not be truly wrong because it keeps us moving and learning. Staying on the plateau with our fear and indecision keeps us from our aims and the creation of our life. Making a decision that unexpectedly takes us in a direction from where we intended, gives us an opportunity to learn and understand how that choice did not happen as we may have thought but it is not a failure; simply an opportunity to try something different.

We create attitudes and energies towards fear, feeding it with analysis and overthinking that does not serve us. Instead, taking action even if it ends up feeling like a mistake, can be accepted as moving forward on a journey of purpose and adjustment. The message to our inner self is much more empowering. There is no productivity in trying to predict how to adjust without ever taking the steps. As we become willing to to learn what adjustments need to take place as we are in motion, we remain open to possibilities we may not have seen in our over analysis when we were stuck.

It is time to create momentum by letting go of fear leading to the need to predict and control outcomes. As much as we try, it is not possible anyway, so jump from the plateau or take the steps. It doesn’t matter which you choose just keep taking action toward your ideal life, understanding it can only find you when you are in motion.

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What is REIKI?

Reiki is a Japanese technique for stress reduction and relaxation, that also promotes healing. It is a form of Japanese Buddhist therapy involving manipulation of universal spiritual energy. ‘Re’ means ‘Universal’ and in this case is a term for an unseen spiritual quality, which serves as channel for ‘Ki. Ki is‘Life Force Energy’, some call it Source, Creation, God, Buddha, Chi, Qi, Prana, Love Energy, or similar. It stems from the idea that everything in the universe is made up from energy particulars. Science has proven that each cell in our bodies gives off small electromagnetic radio waves, almost imperceptible to all but the most sensitive of equipment. When this energy or life force is out of balance or blocked we become susceptible to emotional and physical health problems. The body is a complicated system of functioning parts each generating a frequency and a continually changing energy field. Reiki works in conjunction with these energy fields.

Reiki is a specific type of subtle, yet powerful energy work in which healing is performed by the touch of the hands and through intuitive connection of the practitioner with the source energy. Intention set by the practitioner works on a level that reaches natural states of being allowing deeper connection with creation and the flow of the universe. Source energy is also influenced by the power of thought and emotion. Reiki healing promotes a comfortable state of being and releases emotional and physical toxins. When we are relaxed and stress relieved, we are able to restore our natural ability to heal and to cope with life on life’s terms. This form of healing simplifies the complication we create energetically by bringing balance and clearing to the body’s spiritual energy centres.

Through the use of hand-positions, the practitioner is channeling pure energy through the body’s meridian lines that correspond to the seven major chakras on the body. Reiki is meant to encourage a state of deep relaxation, combined with a general feeling of well-being. Reiki treatment stimulates the body’s natural healing processes both physically and emotionally. The practice treats the person as a whole; body, mind and spirit, creating many beneficial effects that include feelings of serenity and fulfillment.

VISIT VITAL SPARK SERVICES TO BOOK A REIKI SESSION

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WINTER SOLSTICE: Shine Your Light In The Longest Night

Winter solstice, falling this year on Sunday, Dec. 21, marks the first day of winter in the Northern Hemisphere. Specifically, at 6:03 p.m. eastern standard time, when the Northern Hemisphere is pointed at its furthest distance from the sun. This means we experience the longest night and the shortest day of the year.

Since neolithic times winter solstice has been celebrated as a sacred time of renewal and rebirth. Winter Solstice is honoured as nature’s physical equivalent of a spiritual awakening. It is a time to find our own enlightenment.

Take time today to reflect upon and embrace all that is best in your inner most nature. Take time as well, to look into your shadows and fears, understanding awareness can allow for healing and change. Nothing is more powerful than compassion and love, find this for yourself and become renewed in it. Like the sun, the light of awareness, acceptance and love will overcome any darkness. Follow nature’s path to shift into a new empowered mindfulness.

Trust the possibilities that come in life lessons and find gratitude in challenges and hardship. The Winter Solstice marks this  journey we all have the opportunity to take, to live consciously,  accepting everything is as it is mean to be. Let go of anything that limits you and be reminded this present moment is all that has significance.

The word solstice is derived from the Latin word solstitium: sol meaning sun and stitium meaning stoppage. One ancient definition of solstice is “standing still sun.”

Take time today for stillness to consciously let go of times where there was fear the light in you life would not return. Embrace knowing the light is always there we just have to trust beyond the darkness. Listen for that inner wisdom that exists within us and surrounds us when we quiet our thought and doubt, to let our truth be revealed. Use this symbolic time to find the faith that you can feel your way through the longest, darkest times.

I wish you a winter solstice that is magical, contemplative and rich with renewal.

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6 THOUGHTS ON MEDITATION

Meditation is the simple act of learning to take time to breathe, connect and quiet reaction to thought and emotion. The more you carry meditation practice into your everyday life, the more naturally you will align your mind body and spirit and tune into your authentic inner self.

Enlightenment: Some ideas about enlightenment involve a misconception of psychic phenomenon. Enlightenment simply means that you becoming quiet and open to let the truth enter into you. It is about setting aside the voice of ego to allow authentic thoughts and ideas to enter. It is like emptying the mind of busy, purposeless thoughts to make room for beautiful, meaningful thoughts.

Happiness: Many of us look to meditation when we are stressed, disconnected or unwell. The best enlightenment can be experienced when we are full of happiness. Meditating in joyful and contented times builds energy to assist in challenging times. Connection can be deepened more purposefully from a place of harmony.

Intelligence: We are often filled up with too much information and opinion. This can become our perception of intelligence. This perception can be an obstacle in the meditation experience. The peace and light of meditation can easily enter into the consciousness of someone open to learning. An educated person or someone who feels they are all-knowing can build walls of information that disallow open-mindedness. Avoid allowing your perception of what you feel you know block the flow of wisdom that meditation can allow.

Breathing: Pattern of breathing plays a very important role in meditation. Simply finding a comfortable and natural inhale-hold-exhale, you will bring grounding and relaxation. Focusing intently at first on breathing and redirecting your mind to breath if distraction enters keeps maintains a desirable state. Use breath and visualization to let go of thought and emotion. Inhale slowly and intentionally, hold with consciousness in the moment and exhale tension and thought, feeling the spread of relaxation. Experiment with a variety of breathing techniques.

Thoughts: Thought will come and emotions may surface. Learn to become the observer of your thoughts. Do not judge or analyze. Meditation is where we learn to acknowledge thought and emotion, then let go. We need to practice being neutral to the perception of our emotions, like happiness and sadness. Become conscious of them, like watching a recording, then witness as they are released.

Intention: Begin each meditation with an intention. Your intention will manifest your thoughts into reality. The intention may simply be to benefit from meditation and mindful practice. A meditation intention may be to relax, to clear thought and emotion or to find clarity to answer questions. Intention may be to release emotional stress or heal the body.

meditation

“MEDITATION IS A PILGRIMAGE TO OUR OWN CENTRE, TO OUR OWN HEART. IT IS A SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINE AND PRACTICE WHERE WE FIND FAITH SIMPLICITY AND BECOME CHILDLIKE.”   ~John Main

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Living In The Moment: what is mindfulness?

What is mindfulness?

The tendency is to allow the mind to wander through multiple thoughts that often become attached to emotion. As we indulge thoughts of the past or worry for the future we often reinforce emotions that cause suffering. The only moment we can truly experience is the present one and for most humans it is not an easy thing to do naturally. Practicing mindfulness allows a more natural and present existence. It is about quieting the mind and changing patterns to slowly move toward a more peaceful and purposeful existence. Mindfulness can be summed up as learning to pay attention on purpose to experience each moment in life without judgement.

For me mindfulness is

  • Living with a focused awareness on the present moment.
  • Finding serenity by acknowledging and accepting feelings, thoughts and physical sensations.
  • Living presently in each situation without judging or analyzing.
  • Simply being while experiencing life with every sense.
  • Practice to find stillness and balance, aligning the mind, body and spirit.
  • Learning to detach from anything that does not serve my spiritual growth without judging myself.

Mindfulness is moving to a place of accepting experiences of pleasure and discomfort equally without questioning. To me it is to become present in real time, moving through what I perceive as joyous, painful or simply indifferent and letting go to remain open to what is meant to come next. I feel this practice allows me to more easily find what serves me and gives me opportunity to be present and giving to those around me and to the universe as a whole. This makes the opposite true as well; living purposefully opens me to receiving all the world has to offer. I believe this kind of connectivity brings me back to my true self and opens understanding without the frustration of actively seeking it.

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