Conscious Awareness Means We Agree to Live Focused and Present
12 Life Skills that can Change Your World
“What we hold dear can heal the world.” –Mark Nepo
Twelve-steps needn’t be limited to just substance-abuse recovery. Think about the number twelve in common cycles like the months in a year, weeks in a season or quantity in a dozen. This article is the ninth in a twelve-part series highlighting top life-enhancing practices that can make us feel happier, healthier and more alive. By focusing our attention on these integrated positive life skills, we begin a synergistic practice that leads to permanent proficiency by building a useful toolbox for greater self-mastery. Each of the skills in this series is well defined in order to give clarity, direction and action challenges that can help the curious and willing reader cultivate greater wellbeing and flourishing in your daily life. People who consider themselves to be most satisfied with their lives recognize that by constantly challenging themselves to learn, grow and expand they feel more alive connected, and joyful in the world. Your mission, if you choose to accept it, is to open your heart and mind in order to soar! Read on…practice makes permanent…
4 Tips for a Better and More Enjoyable Journey through the Adventure Called Life
Lisa Cypers Kamen, MA
Do you seek personal growth in your life? If you are, then this article will empower you to take those first steps towards that goal. The most valuable piece of information to take away from this is, “there is no age range for change and personal growth.” That is a myth. Old dogs can, in fact, learn new tricks. Neuroscience supports this 500%. We are always changing, even if we don’t recognize the process, and because we are, we can always improve our lives.
The choice is up to us. So, please, stop and ask yourself: “If I were to embrace personal growth and change, what would I want do do?”
Now, allow me to introduce myself as your Guide and Coach to this new life-long journey, as you embrace the process of personal growth and development.
“Be the change you want to see in this world.” –Mahatma Gandhi
As an applied positive psychology and lifestyle management coach, I want to let you know that the personal growth process is filled with adventure, which makes it exciting. But it is also challenging because you cannot go to sleep one night, and wake up a different person. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could? In order to achieve personal growth and development in your life you need to take action. This is one of the reasons why Gandhi’s quote speaks to me in volumes. The truth is we often are not as committed as we could be in the process of transforming ourselves into better selves.
It is natural to ask; “What is involved in the process of change?” During this active transformation, we must open ourselves up to new and different perspectives. We must gain a radical acceptance of living in the present moment. There really is no beginning, middle, or end when we embrace the journey. Instead, our focus is one of multiple perspectives. We begin to embrace the real possibility of infinite opportunities to be a better person. This demonstrates our commitment to the process, and shows that better self to the world.
Now, here are a few tips to empower you to embrace the process of personal growth and change:
1. MINDFUL MEDITATION: Meditation has been scientifically proven as one of the healthiest practices anyone can engage in. The art of meditation is a simple practice, and well worth the effort. It is an active process that is all about finding your breath, and the art of being still. Some call it not thinking about thinking or bearing non-judgmental witness to thoughts as they roll in and out of awareness. The reality of our modern world is that our minds constantly over-work. We lead active, fast-paced lives filled with far too much noise and distraction.
Meditation helps us to find clarity in our lives. This clarity emanates from the quiet and the stillness. Even brief sessions consisting of a few quiet meditative minutes, can assist you to engage in the process of personal growth by helping you become more centered and grounded.
2. UNDERSTANDING: Have you ever tried to look at yourself as others might see you? There is no doubt we would be very surprised. To gain some perspective, ask three to five good friends to tell you how they perceive you. Let them know they can be fully honest. Remember, that for this exercise to work, one has t be fully open to the exploration of other peoples’ perspectives. This exercise can help us open our hearts and minds to the ways in which people see us, and it enables us to understand ourselves from multiple perspectives.
3. ACCEPTANCE: Here is another way to explore the process of personal growth. Do you accept yourself as you are, or are you constantly trying to change yourself for others? This exercise is a very good follow-up to the exercise above. Now, that you have the perspectives of others who know you well, start to think about how you see yourself. What is it you like about yourself? What is it you feel that you do well? All too often we’re focused on the negative attitudes and self-perceptions we have about ourselves.
For this exercise to work best, it will help to meditate first. Quiet your mind and body. Then, pick up a pen and paper and write down the following questions:
- – If I were to describe myself to someone who’s never met me, what would I say in 3-5 sentences?
- – If I were to state my top five qualities, what would they be?
- – If I were to name my top five achievements, what would they be?
- – If I were to name the top five accomplishments, I would still like to make, what would they be?
- – If I were to name the top five things I do positively for others, what would they be?
Try and give yourself over to the process, and not be afraid of the answers. This is not about right and wrong, or good and bad. It is just about honesty and personal growth.
4. FLEXIBILITY: This is about allowing the process to unfold, and set realistic goals towards which you can work. To be flexible, also means to let go of the end result. Try not to worry about what might happen, because the future isn’t set yet. When we let go, we align our goals with or true purpose.
In this exercise, you can begin the practice of flexibility by doing these techniques:
- – Write down 2-3 goals you have in life right now. What will it take to achieve these goals? How will being more flexible and not worrying about the outcome help you reach your goals?
- – Write down 3-5 ways you think you can be more flexible in life. What are you holding onto that causes you to be inflexible? What are you afraid of?
- – Now, as a response to the exercise above, write down 2-3 things you truly fear in life? Why do you fear them? How could letting go help you to release these fears?
Always keep exploring and developing yourself.
With BIG gratitude and HUGE support,