Posts Tagged ‘Focus’

COVID-19 virus crisis: thinking to much is damaging

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Worry, doubt, fear, anxiety or calm can rule our life.

We control only a few things, one is where we place our attention.

In the middle of this pandemic, where we place our attention, decides if we panic, suffer or keep a healthy perspective.

Getting lost in thought, worry, doubt, fear or panic elevates the dire nature of life.

Remember life is a journey, not a destination, death is always our final act.

Our goal is to live life happily until we die.

If my time to die is coming soon, then I want to live fully and die a good death.

We can always let the noise go, then let our senses take over.

Observe nature, see the trees, flowers, weeds, sky and dirt.

Smell the aromas, feel the texture, be alive, be present, be centered.

Let the agitation, the body sensation, the fearful thought and emotions dissipate.

Negative emotion needs our attention to survive.

Observing life is so simple we overlook its power.

A thought: we can find happiness in the midst of today, then tomorrow.

Adversity is part of life, accept the challenge or be a victim.

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Mindfulness from Breath by Breath

Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

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Mindfulness is unbiased. It is not for or against anything, just like a mirror, which does not judge what it reflects. 

 

Mindfulness has no goal other than the seeing itself. 

 

It doesn’t try to add to what’s happening or subtract from it, to improve it in any way. 

 

It isn’t detached, like a person standing on a hill far away from an experience, observing it with binoculars. 

 

It is a form of participation—you are fully living out your life, but you are awake in the midst of it—and it is not limited to the meditation hall. 

 

It can be used on a simple process like the breathing, or on highly charged and unpleasant emotions like fear or loneliness. 

 

It can also follow us into the ordinary life situations that make up our day.

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How could I have known?

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Throughout childhood my fear and anxiety accompanied me. In high school, my stomach made me sick from the constant abuse.

This dangerous existence facilitated the dumping of cortisol and adrenaline everyday.

My normal was anything but normal.

How could I know? I had never felt my nervous system without those neurotoxins present.

This last week I have experienced my system as calm as ever in my life.

My focus has been concentrated on the slightest change in my fear drugs, cortisol and adrenaline.

I have been in observer role this week, detached, neutral, with as little judgment as possible.

With each observation, I see how my Ego feels slighted, followed by an emotional response.

Taking a step back, I see how easily these fear drugs dissipate when you break the Egos grip.

I never knew life could be this calm.

These fear drugs have caused turmoil in my life.

We can always learn and improve.

It is the journey that makes life worthwhile not the destination.

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ULTIMATE SOLITUDE: “Focused and Fearless”

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“The culmination of seclusion goes far beyond a quiet state of mind.The Buddha described true seclusion as an experience that is free from attachment. In a discussion with a monk named Elder, he said,

“And how, Elder, is dwelling alone fulfilled in detail?

Here, Elder, what lies in the past has been abandoned, what lies in the future has been relinquished, and desire and lust for present forms of individual existence has been thoroughly removed. It is in such a way, Elder, that dwelling alone is fulfilled in detail.”

Thus, inner seclusion is a way of being that is freed from attachment to past, future, and even present perceptions.

Consciousness ceases to take its stand on forms, feelings, perceptions, or thoughts.

Nothing is taken up as a basis upon which to construct personal identity.

This realization of the unfabricated nature of things brings the uncluttered mind to perfection.

We don’t just clear away physical and mental rubbish, and then rest in that neat and tidy mental space.

The very constituents of personality are exposed as utterly empty.

There is nothing there to hold, and no one to try.

Nothing exists that would structure a relationship between assumed constructs of I and you, this and that, there and here, past and future.”

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Reflections: low doses of cortisol and adrenaline!

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“People may become addicted to their own stress hormones, adrenaline and cortisol.

To such persons stress feels desirable, while the absence of it feels like something to be avoided.” (Hans Selye)

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My two cents: My Journey was long and arduous, filled with terror and anxiety. With great effort devoted to healing, my fight or flight mechanism calmed downed, finally quit firing when a trigger arrived.

This was a wonderful accomplishment and a great relief from the constant panic we endure from childhood abuse.

Now, I see that my system was addicted to small amounts of cortisol and adrenaline. I thought this heightened level was normal since life was so much easier than before.

These were smaller doses, not a full fight or flight explosion , dumped to keep my system like it was in childhood.

The “Ego” is irrational at these elevated levels and judges everyone more harshly. Agitated I might take action and cause drama.

I think for me, these drugs make it easier to feel outraged, betrayed or not respected.

Drama follows this heightened state of being.

I have brought awareness to my minds patterns, how these drugs start a heightened dialogue of stress, unworthiness or oppression.

My awareness has uncovered how my “Ego” takes charge the second cortisol and adrenaline get dumped.

My practice and moment to moment awareness are unplugging these patterns now.

Are you running on low doses of cortisol and adrenaline?

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What is Layering?… Addiction to Excitement / Inner Drug Store 101

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From “Adult Children of Alcoholics”

Layering is subconsciously taking multiple minor, addictive/distractive substances and blending them together to get a bigger hit of anxiety.

A hit which is available to us 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

We can create a hormonal symphony to try to escape from our lives and our feelings. We create a “normal” biochemical state that is anything but beneficial.

It is a masterful distraction from our internal pain.

Some examples:

● Our romantic relationship is dramatic and unstable.

● We put off filing our tax return until the very last moment.

● We may live paycheck to paycheck. If we get a raise, we may simply start spending more money so we continue to live paycheck to paycheck.

● We drive too close to the person ahead of us on the freeway.

● We are having an affair with our best friend’s spouse, threatening both our marriage and the relationship with our best friend.

● We would feel better about ourselves if we could just afford to buy (fill in the blank).

● We either tend to stay “busy “with lots of scheduled activities, or we stay isolated at home.

● Rather than wake up 10 minutes earlier in the morning, we often risk being late to work.

● We compulsively try to rescue a friend, then may flip to anger or victimhood if we feel they don’t appreciate us enough.

● Our inner critic berates us for a minor mistake we made.

● We may binge watch TV.

● We tend to take responsibility for other people’s feelings.

● We often check social media even though we may end up feeling worse after we do because we just don’t measure up to others.

● We wish we could talk to someone in our fellowship about all this, but we can’t pick up the phone to call — so we belittle ourselves for that.

● Our boss berates us again and we think, again, about finding a new job; but we never look for one.

● We focus on others, using gossip and judgment rather than focusing on improving ourselves.

● We eat something full of sugar and fat, then beat ourselves up for doing it.

We compound and layer the stressors. When one drops off (like we finally file our tax return) we add another one or two. By layering, we never risk having no excitement in our lives.

The state of being distracted can become an addiction.

The Perfect Storm:

When we layer enough things, we may end up over-stimulating ourselves, perhaps bringing on an emotional crash.

“For those habituated to high levels of internal stress since early childhood, it is the absence of stress that creates unease, evoking boredom and a sense of meaninglessness.

People may become addicted to their own stress hormones, adrenaline and cortisol.

To such persons stress feels desirable, while the absence of it feels like something to be avoided.” (Hans Selye)

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For those habituated to high levels of internal stress since early childhood, it is the absence of stress that creates unease, evoking boredom and a sense of meaninglessness

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“Adult Children of Alcoholics”: The Bridge in the Problem:

“We were dependent personalities, terrified of abandonment, willing to do almost anything to hold on to a relationship in order to not to be abandoned emotionally.

Yet we kept choosing insecure relationships because they matched our childhood relationship with alcoholic or dysfunctional parents.”

These two sentences seem disjointed. We are terrified of something, yet we seek it out.

Perhaps it is our Addiction to Excitement that creates the bridge between those two lines.

You could almost cross out the word “Yet” and replace it with “And so.”

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My two cents: I was terrified of abandonment and maybe with good reason, now my family has abandoned me.

What rings true is the drama in life I have experienced.

Now, I am searching out my connection to this behavior.

At 68, I am getting closer to being happier, less controlled by trauma and fear.

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