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My aim is to share my story in the hope it will inspire you, to find your purpose in life, make a living from your passion and live the life of your dreams.
Hi my name is Angela, I was born and brought up in England. I have lived in England all my life. Thank you for dropping by, I hope you gain something from my Blog. I am happy to connect with you. Lets talk about Holistic living – Remember Holistic living isn’t just about food, it’s about your whole being. That’s mind, body and soul. I believe that everyone can and should live the life of their dreams. Believe it or not it’s possible. Everyone has a purpose in life, your purpose is what you are innately passionate about. Your purpose in life is to use your passion to help others, some call it Destiny or living their dream. You know you are living your life's purpose when you can't wait to get out of bed in the morning to get started, you would do what you do for free, you can't believe they pay you for what you do. I believe that if everyone did what they were passionate about the world of work would be a better place. Check out archived Blogs. Last year was a series of talks about how we treat and use our body, in respect of living holistically. Those blogs focused on the body, having looked at 'What you do for living' we also dealt with 'SELF=YOU' and ' The Exhorted Soul' all books can now be found on Amazon (https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B01NBV5SA0) I introduced Lena, and we got to know Ms Lena Body intimately!
Love Live Holistically
This years' theme will feature SELF LOVE. As we intend to do things holistically, it will include Self Love, Bodily Love and Soul Love. The blogs will be shorter as they will be extracts from my up coming book- (Love Live Holistically - The concept of Self Love).
To love live holistically, is to ensure that your whole being ( Mind, Body and Soul) and way one lives their life is a portrayal of love.
Taking care of ones Mental Health (Mind) will aid the way we show up in the world...How we act towards others and how we feel and care or not care for ourselves
Taking care of ones Body will aid the way we show up in the world...How we act towards others and how we feel and care or not care for ourselves
Taking care of ones Soul will aid the way we show up in the world...How we act towards others and how we feel and care or not care for ourselves.
Love Live Holistically-
(The concept of Self Love)
20th January 2020
The following blog is an extract from my up coming book- (Love Live Holistically - The concept of Self Love).
This first blog will concern itself with taking care of ones Mental health which will aid the way you show up in the world...How you act towards others and how you feel and care or not care for yourself.
To love live holistically, is to ensure that your whole being ( Mind, Body and Soul) and way one lives their life is a portrayal of love.
To care for your mind is to ensure that your mental health is not threatened.
What is mental health?
Mental health includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
According to Mentalhealth.gov -
Over the course of your life, if you experience mental health problems, your thinking, mood, and behaviour could be affected. Many factors contribute to mental health problems, including:
Biological factors, such as genes or brain chemistry
Life experiences, such as trauma or abuse
Family history of mental health problems
Mental health problems are common but,people with mental health problems can get better and many recover completely.
One in four people in the world will be affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives. Around 450 million people currently suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide. - Source World Health Organisation (WHO)
So how is your Mental Health? How do feel? (asks the Doctor to the patient) It is imperative that you are aware of how you are feeling when caring for your Mind Body and Soul. As this segment is discussing the Mind I'll ask, what are you doing too much of, or not enough of? firstname.lastname@example.org
Mentalhealth.gov gives early warning signs of mental distress
Not sure if you or someone you know is living with mental health problems? Experiencing one or more of the following feelings or behaviours can be an early warning sign of a problem:
Eating or sleeping too much or too little
Pulling away from people and usual activities
Having low or no energy
Feeling numb or like nothing matters
Having unexplained aches and pains
Feeling helpless or hopeless
Smoking, drinking, or using drugs more than usual
Feeling unusually confused, forgetful, on edge, angry, upset, worried, or scared
Yelling or fighting with family and friends
Experiencing severe mood swings that cause problems in relationships
Having persistent thoughts and memories you can't get out of your head
Hearing voices or believing things that are not true
Thinking of harming yourself or others
Inability to perform daily tasks like taking care of your kids or getting to work or school
As one in four of us will have experienced a mental disorder it is important that we attempt to keep ourselves as mentally healthy as possible. Note that 'being low, down or out of sorts' is still classed as mental distress....When people think of mental illness they may think of a person, in a hospital being sedated. As you can see, the above shows the signs many, if not all of us have experienced at some time or another.
As it is important that we are aware of how we feel, we need to constantly ask ourselves how we are feeling .....
Feeling Sad, ask yourself Why
Feeling mad, ask your self Why
You find that you are indulging in activates that are aimed at masking a psychological pain or an incident......Ask yourself....Is this the best way to deal with this situation or change the way I feel now?
Feeling helpless or hopeless, ask yourself why! what has happened or more to the point 'not happened' to evoke that feeling..
I can not stress the importance of 'acknowledging how you are feeling' as it is essential to Mind Body and Soul well-being.
Be aware that if you experience any of the above, the feelings should be discussed with a friend, family member or a health professional. Contact me Drscott@loveliveholistically.com
Do you consider, what could threaten your mental health?
I have decided that I will attempt not to do anything that will put me under any duress stress.
It's driving without a working 'tom tom'.
Being in situations that I am wholly dependent on another person!
Saying Yes when I really mean NO
All the above puts me under duress stress....
I become very stressed when I am driving whilst being unsure of how to get to my destination, or without a working 'tom tom' ...I tend to get agitated, frighten, my mouth becomes dry and I get an instant need to use the toilet. I often travel along motorways, going 70+ miles per hour....If I don't take the right exit, I could end up 60/70 miles away from where I should be. Should it begin to get dark, my agitation is all the worst. (I'm working on this)
I don't ask for help often enough, but when I do, it means I have no other avenue to go down. (working on this too)
If I feel that you are not forth coming with the help I need or you 'act' as if the help I have requested is not as important as I deem it. I begin to feel embarrassed thus stressed. I understand that my drama or what I class as a priority, may not be what you class as a priority. I do not throw my dummy out of the pram. I say nothing and feel sad for me, having had to ask in the first place. I am not saying I become depressed, but It does make me feel uneasy, it does upset my equilibrium and does make me feel stressed.
I am often stressed after saying Yes to doing something or going somewhere when I really don't want to...You would think that I would learn that my No's are to stay No. In this instance, this causes me stress as I now feel obligated to do something I had agreed to do!
My three stresses above can show up in my life, in one event. For example Lets say I have agreed to see someone who lives, 100 miles away from me. I have said Yes when I really meant No. My phone is not working as well as it should, I open the Google maps app and use it anyway...I am about 45 miles away from the person I have decided to go and see, and I call a friend and ask them for directions as there is no internet connection now, the google maps direction that was downloaded before the trip has disappeared.....She states that she will have a look for directions and call me back. I sit in the layby, feeling valuable, shit scared as I am travelling alone. My friend would not know how frightened I am, my mouth is now dry, but I don't want to drink anything because I will need to go to the toilet. I know that if the next service station does not have an entrance and exit that I can see before pulling in to it, I will not be stopping, and God only knows how many miles I will have to go before the next service station. So I sit and wait..My Priority is not my friends' priority , she will get back to me, but at her own speed..not mine. The fact that I have to depend on this friend, also bothers me.....(Perhaps this is something I need to work on too) Maybe it's the idea that I do not have a plan B to fall back on, being in that situation causes me stress. Either way I have put myself in a situation that will cause me stress, and may cause me embarrassment...It is these situations that threaten my mental health and make me feel uneasy.
What threatens your Mental Health? Drscott@loveliveholistically.com. Bear in mind that what cause one person stress may not cause another, we are all different. In trying to pinpoint what could be 'stressing you' consider how you feel, at home, at work, throughout your interactions with others etc..Whatever stresses you...Identify it, (like I did) and do what you can to avoid it or put strategies/or coping mechanisms in place to make the situation less stressful.
Mentalhealth.gov suggests ways to maintain positive mental health, they include:
Getting professional help if you need it
Connecting with others
Getting physically active
Getting enough sleep
Developing coping skills
One of the tools given above to maintain positive mental health includes 'staying positive', this can be difficult if what you tell yourself is not positive. We will cover negative self talk in the next blog where we learn to love ourselves.
If you have enjoyed my blog and would like to contribute to its continued help and guidance to others, please donate. All donations gratefully received and appreciated.
23rd February 2020
The following blog is an extract from my up coming book- (Love Live Holistically - The concept of Self Love) and will concern itself with taking care of ones self which will aid the way you show up in the world...How you act towards others and how you feel and care or not care for yourself.
The feelings of being in love, can be described in as many different ways as there are people to describe it. To describe how you would treat a person you love or in love with can be summed up, for me at least, in the word 'Care'. One can imagine the care that would, will or have bestowed on the person or persons they love. One can assume that as much care as possible is taken to ensure that persons' happiness. It is easy to consider the love we have for others, animals and inanimate objects....My love for my God and family members are ineffable. This chapter aims to compare the love and care we show others, to the love and care we show ourselves. It also aims to show that, depending on where a person 'rank' themselves in the hierarchy of importance will show the amount of care and love afforded for themselves.
This chapter assumes that we care about ourselves, it also assumes that we live in hope that our future selves will be happier than we are now.
In my book SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter ) I give an example of the love I have of my two favourite inanimate objects, that is the bust of Harriett Tubman and one of Fredrick Douglas. I explain how I felt when I was 'presented' with Harriett Tubman, I tell the reader that when I got her to my mothers home in Jamaica (Where the bust was commissioned and crafted) I put her in pride of place, front and centre of my mothers living room, I go on to tell, how she was wrapped carefully and placed in my suitcase for the journey to England. On arrival home I describe how she is was unwrapped, dusted and placed 'front and centre' in my living room. I mention the wait for the bust of Fredrick Douglas to arrive in England, as it travelled with my brother and who lived over 150 miles away from me, so I asked my son to collect it, as he was visiting other family members. I insisted that he take a picture of it, before bringing it to me when he returned home. I could go on about how I felt when the bask arrived, how I unwrapped it slowly, dusted it and placed it beside the bask of Harriet Tubman. Now the mere fact that I relished writing my feelings of my basks should alert you to the fact that I love them. My basks are inanimate objects and although I enjoy looking after and at them, I am in ore of the strength, courage and determination of these two figures. I think I have written up a storm regarding my two favourite objects! What's your favourite object? This could be a piece of jewellery, a car, a picture etc. The reason for the question is to prompt you into conjuring up the feelings you covertly hold for this object. Secondly think of how you care for the object. Often this object is kept in a dry clean place, a place of honour, maybe, where it can be seen by visitors as they enter your home. Perhaps it is only taken out on special occasions. This item is held in high esteem in your home, members of your family and close friends know how you feel about it, and all have seen it. The feeling you have summoned, should be felt about yourselves, easier said than done for most.
In (SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter 5 Self Love) I give a few tips on working towards loving yourself 1st - Beware of how you have allowed others to treat you. Disclaimer: Please note that the following comments assume you are a consulting able bodied adult - If someone is taking advantage of you, you will not feel good about yourself. If you are being ill treated you will not feel good about yourself. If you are being spoken to or treated with disrespect you will not feel good. I understand that you can not stop disrespect coming out the mouth of others, but once it has come out and directed at you! You can and should do something about it.....If you 'nip it in the bud' early, or better yet, the first time you hear or feel it, un-favoured treatment will not continue. Ok.....as always, it's easier said than done. Not many people in an abusive relationship, will tell you that the relationship started off abusive. You will find that the abusive person started off by testing the waters, they needed to find out how far they could push the boundaries. While the boundaries are being pushed they are paying close attention to your reaction. They have to find out how they can treat you, like a toddler or teenager who pushes boundaries (to see what they can get away with) In this instance you, yes you tell your perpetrator what is acceptable and what is not. Often the abuse starts off with flippant comments which could be disguised as jokes! Perhaps this person speaks a little bit louder than usual when 'upset'. Turning a blind eye, laughing off cured jokes or ignoring a raised voice , alerts the abuser that these seemingly minor acts of aggression and disrespect are ok.These acts will be tested out in private then in public, and the more frequent they are allowed to get away with this behaviour, the more they will display it. I will give you a good sign post that will let you know that you've allowed disrespect to go on far too long....Consider that you are about to go out with this person (perhaps to a gathering) you find yourself wishing and hoping they do not embarrasses you in front of people you know or your family members! Ring a bell???? Remember this disrespect or un-favoured behaviour can be coming from your own adult child. So you have been out together and either you have become immune to the disrespect or you feel that a little 'banter' is alright......You become defensive when a colleague, friend or family member tells you that they felt a little a little uneasy by the way your abuser spoke to you. The abuse, disrespect or ill treatment becomes a little more intensified, but this will be just a little...they wouldn't want to share you off completely...Perhaps this person in your life begins to throw things, at the floor, at the wall, Perhaps what they are throwing at the walls or doors is actually their fists....Can you see where allowing this person to continue that type of behaviour could escalate. Where is the self love in accepting abusive, disrespectful behaviour from another? Think of a couple that you really admire? I'll go first...President and Dr Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Stedman I admire the people in these relationships, I can not profess to know what goes on behind close doors, but I believe that they respect each other. I am not sure if Dr Michelle Obama had 'put down' her husband on a constant basis he would have become the 44th President of the USA. I am not sure if Oprah was being constantly disrespected by Stedman she would be the strong Woman she is today. As I said I do not know what goes on behind close doors but one can assume there is a level of respect that is shared between these two couples and their partners.
The 2nd thing mentioned in (SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter 5,Self Love) in-order to aid you in your quest to loving yourself, is to be aware of how you speak about yourself.
Consider what you say and think about yourself?
Is it often good, bad or you've never really paid attention of how you think about you.
What do you often say about you? Some examples
I'm just a wreck
I'm never good at things like that
I'm always late
Nothing ever goes right or works out for me.
We'll get on to what we think and say about our own bodies later.
Anything you say or think about yourself should be positive. Anything said after ‘I AM’ must be positive, even if you are feeling unwell, your answer to the question 'how do you feel'? should be ‘I am hoping to feel better soon’ 'This will take some doing, it will take practice of being aware of how you speak, think and feel about yourself. What you say will be a minute by minute task. I can tell you it is certainly worth it. You will feel better about yourself, people around you will instinctively know how you wish to be treated. Feeling or knowing that you are just as important as any person you interact with is very liberating. I say this after being put down, putting myself down, treating myself badly, allowing others to treat me badly and far too weak to do anything about it. When you begin to see yourself on the same level as others, you will begin' [to love yourself] (SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter 5,Self Love) to start loving yourself.
Start today - Before you make a comment about you - STOP and think how you can I make this statement about me Positive?
As I said this will be a minute by minute exercise. Saying things like i'm tried may be the truth, but I want you to consider how you'll ensure your body isn't as tried as it was when you made the statement . Again we'll consider the body later. 'I am fed up' - What's made you fed up. I know this could be a myriad of things . The wider picture has you considering your life. 'I am tried and fed up' were a constant thought in my mind as my life had me living from monthly salary to monthly salary, even when I when I did get paid it didn't alleviate my tiredness because I would have to work just as hart the following month. I lived in a vicious circle of work hard, be tried, get paid and worry about not having enough.
Self love would have allowed me to stop, think about my options. for example, a better paying job may alleviate the (fed up) the worry over money. A better paying job may allow me to work less hours - thus not making me so tried. Common sense would tell you that getting a better paid job may stop you feeling fed up and tired, but Self love will put those thoughts into action, so much quicker.
There is nothing selfish about caring for yourself, ensuring you come first (some of the time. Consider this. Do you know some one who appears calm in most situations, that same person may not have a lot of drama in their life, (or they don't talk about it) Why is that? The reason is, whatever they do or get involved in, they consider themselves. They do the maths! They consider the amount of time and effort they may have to put in and come to a conclusion that - 'me running to help you with your drama is going to cost me more than I can afford' which equals Not worth it. 'me going out with you tonight is going to leave me tried for work tomorrow' which equals Not worth it. There is nothing selfish about the maths equation above - This is Self Love, Self Care and Self Preservation. Do what you can, when you can, to all the time you can, but if it is going to cost you more in diminished health and Self Care, your answer has to be NO. (We will get on to saying NO and feeling guilty in another chapter).
We have spoken about what we tell ourselves, and how we teach people to how to treat us.
I now want to ask this question, why is it so easy for us to offer ourselves negative self talk, accept verbal abusive, but find it so hard to accept compliments, accolades or praise, responding to rarely given compliments with a 'oh it was nothing' you do realise that the 'it' in that throw away comment, diminishes all the hard work and effort you applied in-order to warrant the compliment?
In my book (SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter 5 Self Love) I propose the answer to this question lays in the fact that we do not rank ourselves as high or as valid as others, or we give the situation we attend to, embark on, tackle or go through more importance. The other reason I feel that we find it hard to accept compliments is the fear of appearing egotistical, not humble, pretentious or arrogant. A thought has just occurred to me, please indulge me for a moment, think of a person you admire for their great business sense, this can be someone famous or someone you know (This could even be your Boss) This person in your eyes have made their money from hard work, good sense and determination. Now consider them entering a room in which you and others are waiting. What feeling do you think you will experience as they enter the room? Stay with that for a while. What words spring to mind to describe this feeling? Proud, a feeling of dignitary, honour and respect. Now consider how this person will react when given a compliment for their hard work in making a multi million pound company. I don't believe this person will become a striking violet, put their hands over their mouth trying to hide a smile, than say 'oh it was nothing' or go on to explain that ' it didn't take as much work as you would think' They are likely to say thank you or to add their team to the compliment, they may say, 'It took a team to accomplish this' At no point will they diminish their hard work, sleepless nights or the potential loss of millions, with a dismissive or flippant comment. Why do we do it every-time we are given a compliment? Again we don't see ourselves or our efforts as compliment worthy. This has to STOP in order to love ourselves.
Quoted in (SELF=YOU (2018), Angela Scott, Amazon, Chapter 5 Self Love) is a warning from Deepak Chopra, not to brush away compliments or reject other people’s appreciation. We are to, let others compliment us and bask in other people’s approval when it comes our way.
Among Deepak Chopras (tips for loving yourself just as you are (June 2015) he lists what to do to be kind to yourself:- YOU MUST
Let others compliment you.
Bask in other people’s approval when it comes your way.
Be gentle with yourself over small mistakes.
Value who you are and stand up for yourself.
Get to know yourself like a friend.
Be easy about your personal quirks.'
To love ones self is to stand along ourselves as an aviator and consider if we treat inanimate objects better than we treat ourselves. We should be aware of what we say to ourselves when no one is listening or when s*** happens. We are to stay alert to the way we act or react to what others say to us, and to realise that we are an entity that needs and deserve to be held in as high esteem as we hold others.
24th March 2020
3 John 2 (KJV) 2 Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.
1 Corinthians 10:31(KJV) 31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 3:16:17 (KJV) 16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? 17 If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
The three scriptures above mention looking after your health, being aware of what you eat and drink (or what you put in your body) and ensuring the body remains a temple that God can reside in. This chapter will look at these three subjects in-order to aid us care for our body.
Thich Nhat Hanh a Buddhist Monk, was asked 'How do I love myself'? He answers in a youtube video titled 'How do I love myself'. 'To love yourself ' he says 'is to remember that you have a body' he goes on to say that we can sit at the computer for two hours getting stressed, while there we are not remembering that we have a body. We are to remember the importance of the body and that we should look after the body in doing so we are showing ourselves love. Our aim should be to relieve tension or suffering in or to the body.
The bible scriptures at the beginning of this chapter reminds us to look after our health, eat drink well and remember that our body is a temple of God and thus we are to look after it.
If that is too far fetched for you. One should treat the body as if it is a new puppy!
It should be fed, nourishing foods with occasional treats.
It should feel love, and made to believe that it also gives love.
It should feel pleasure.
It should exercise.
It should interact with others.
It should be taught how to survive in the world/environment it has entered, by keeping it safe while teaching it what may cause harm.
Exercise, is important. I must admit I do not have an exercise regime, but ensure that my day does not consist of more sitting than standing and moving around. (This is not always possible, as I write and will be sitting for hours) I will take the stairs instead of the lift, I will and walk where I can, instead of taking the car. I do not proclaim to be an exercise guru, but know that it is important that to do some form of exercise, even if that means getting out each day for a walk, this could be around your own garden, up and down your stairs a few times during your day, or even a little light house keeping. There are exercise regimes for every part of the body. There is a wealth of information out there, on keeping your body healthy.
The Care of Body
We are aware of the hygienic care we are to take, in attempts to care for our body. We know how to care for our skin, nails, hair etc. We are aware of taking care of what we put in our bodies, be that food (good or bad) or drugs (good or bad)
We are aware of the importance of acknowledging what enters our body and the reason it is allowed to enter. Lets take eating: In my book ('The Exhorted Soul', (2019), Angela Scott, Amazon,chapter 12, Soul Care) I asked you to be 'mindful of what you eat. [..] Being aware of what you eat, will ensure you enjoy the actual act of eating. Take the time to appreciate your food, be mindful of where it comes from and what it took to reach your table'. I encourage you to be mindful of why you are eating, is it because you need nourishment? Or are you over indulging? Do you eat more when you are sad or happy? Are the foods you are eating fatty, lean, full of sugar or 'diet', and does it matter? Are you eating meat, fish, diary or non of the above, and does it matter? Have you considered where your foods come from? If you feel guilty about what you eat i.e how much or how little, this line of questioning may make you feel worst! To care for your body, just like the puppy, you would check the can of dog food to ensure it was suitable. We should be mindful of the anything we put in our body.
Consider what you call drugs! This could be caffeine, (defined as drug as it stimulates the central nervous system) Tyramine found in cheeses cured or smoked meats or fish, some overripe fruits and chocolate etc. The blood thinners found in leafy greens, the beta-blockers found in meat. I could go on but you get where i'm going with this...You may consider these drugs good for you, and most of them may be, but to not consider them at all, is an act of not caring for your body. Do you consider harmful drugs? The ones that could portentously cause harm if not taken as prescribed? Sure you do, when you are given a prescription to fill, you get it from the chemist and administer it as instructed.(Well I hope you do) After which, that rash or that pain subsides. The same could be said for medication you buy 'over the counter'. It would appear that we are then, conscious of the harm these drugs could potentially do to our body, and is an act of care of body as we are taking care of the amount we are administering to ourselves and also considering the length of time we will takes these drugs.
Then there are those drugs that we know, do harm, but we take every day, and for many of us, have been inflicting on our body for years....like nicotine, this not Care of Body. Some of us indulge in other drugs, although they are legal in some states, may have a diverse reaction to the body, and over prolonged use, could cause all manner of illnesses. Care of Body would have us seeking help to stop any habit that could cause harm. I am not saying that this will be an easy tasks, I am just bringing it to your attention!
We all know someone who, when given a compliment about their body will instantly say 'oh but, I don't like my legs' or 'yeah, but I think my arms are'.........too small or too big, they will then begin to show you what they are talking about, as if you are about to agree with them, by saying yes you're right, your legs, arms or whatever body part they uncover to show you, is too big or too small. I often wonder if they have every thought of what their life would be like if that limb or body part was amputated?
Here's my thoughts on what to do if you are unhappy with parts of your body. You should do something about it, which could mean, losing weight, gaining weight or seeking professional advice. Disrespecting your own body, by grabbing parts of it, and proclaiming that you don't like it is not showing Body Care or love.
In a world that attempts to 'show you' via social media, what you should look like. We are to acknowledge that we are unique, so having more fat on the underside of your left arm than your right arm, for example, makes you unique, having less fat on the inside of your right calf than you left calf makes you unique. Back to that puppy mentioned above, have you ever heard anybody who has a new puppy state 'The puppy is lovely BUT it has a tuff of brown hair under its chin' or the 'The puppy is lovely BUT it's tail should be longer' Any new puppy mamma or pappa will admire the uniqueness of their new puppy. See yourself as unique and you will begin to appreciate your differences. We could ask, why are we comparing ourselves to others, but we know that we have a need to belong! Belong to the 'healthy crowd' or at least to be seen (whatever that looks like for you) as healthy. For me, I feel that I could lose a little weight, my reasoning...I'd look and feel better in my jeans! That's just being honest with you. What do you feel you could change in-order to look or feel better? Also consider, who you want to look better for? If it's yourself, all is well, if its for your Instagram followers, we need to talk email@example.com
What does your body communicate to you?
Is your body happy with how you treat it?
How does it feel when you take it into hostile environments? Work, smoky rooms, into cold weather, into hot weather or even 'home'?!
What does your body say to you when it's tired? And do you hear it?
To care for your body is to love self. To love yourself, one would assume that there will be some sort of communication between what the body wants and what you are willing or able to give it. I believe that communication should be at least hourly preferably minute by minute. One should be asking their body. How am I feeling? How am I feeling? The answers you'll get back will sound a little like this: 'I'm cold, I'm too hot, I'm tried, I'm hungry, I need this or that' Do you get the jest? We have all heard those statements or requests from our body. This is where the acts of love or body care comes in. You act as soon as possible to what your body has communicated to you. You go get a jumper, you remove clothing, you get rest,food or where possible it's needs. We are assuming that you are in a situation where adhering to the requests of your body is feasible, moral and legal. There are times our body tells us other things, for example its time to leave this job, house relationship or friendship. How long before we show our body love by adhering to those types of communications? mmmm It can take a little longer than just getting a jumper from the cupboard! I mentioned intuition in my book ('The Exhorted Soul', (2019), Angela Scott, Amazon,chapter 12,Soul Care) here you are asked to listen to your intuition, as it looks after our well-being and keeps us safe, pointing us in the direction we should go. This internal compass is never wrong. Take the fact that danger may be lurking, we tend to feel it! We also are aware when 'something is not quite right' this could even be felt when speaking to someone who is lying! That 'just knowing' feeling came from within you.
The body will use itself to communicate, by sending blood and hormones to different parts of itself in order to allow you to run or fight, the need to eat, drink or sleep will not be communicated. The body will become hot or cold when trying to get a message across to you. Many messages are sent to alert you that something has to change in-order for optimum to be achieved. We again, are aware of this, yet we often don't take heed! We push ourselves to extreme limits of tiredness (I've done this myself, having my children remove a cup of tea from my hand as I had fallen asleep in from of a small fan heater touching my leg and the tea about to fall). Not an act of body care
Keeping your body in a hostile environment, which could be a place of work, or within any type of relationship is not body care
Body care is trying to relieve suffering, pain, that uneasy feeling, stress and tension. Remember the puppy, if you wouldn't do it to a puppy, you shouldn't be subjecting yourself to it.
Stress and tension should be avoided. We live in a world that makes this almost impossible. But being aware that your body is a temple, will be your cue when stressful situations arise. Find ways of keeping calm, find ways to diffuse certain situations, if you are talking to someone and you notice that the conversation is getting a little heated, take a step back. The only way you will be able to take a step back, is by being aware that the conversation is becoming heated, and not take the stance that you will get your point across. Be aware of your surroundings at all times, constantly ask yourself, 'How am I feeling'? Your body will respond. It would then be up to you to decide whether you act on what your body has told you or not.
In the Mental Health chapter we discussed the importance of learning or being aware of what threatens our Mental Health, we are to “bear in mind what may cause one person stress may not cause another person stress, we are all different. In trying to pinpoint what could be 'stressing you' consider how you feel, at home, at work, throughout your interactions with others etc..Whatever stresses you...Identify it, and do what you can, to avoid it or put strategies/or coping mechanisms in place to make the situation less stressful”. The chapter goes on to give you tips on how to maintain a positive mental health. In attempting to keep or thieve for a positive mental health is Care of Body.
This chapter took its lead from my interpretation of the three scriptures 3 John 2 which states 'Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health'. [ ] 1 Corinthians 10:31 'Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God' and 1 Corinthians 3:16:17 which reminds us that 'ye are the temple of God'[ ]
For me, the three scriptures mentioned above, looked at our health, in that it asks us to be aware of what you eat, drink (or what you put in your body) and ensuring the body remains a temple that God can reside in.
We then looked at the answer Thich Nhat Hanh gave to the answer 'How do I love myself'? He said 'To love yourself is to remember that you have a body' If we remember we have a body, I suggest, we treat our body as we would a puppy, amongst other things we would exercise, take good hygienic care of ourselves and be conscious of what we put in our body.
This chapter talked about Body Image and asked you not to disrespect your body, by grabbing parts of it, and proclaiming that you don't like it, but to accept your body as it is or do something about changing these parts we feel is not as we would like it. But spare a moment to ask yourself, why do you dislike this part of your body? Has social media got anything to do with your reason? What does your body say to you about that body part? Would you hear it speaking? The body speaks to us always. It tells us when it is cold, hot, hungry or tried, to mention a few. Should we listen and adhered to what our body is telling us, we would realise that it is asking us to do things that will ensure that we are taking care of ourselves, our body would never tell us anything that does not serve our well being. Our bodies tell us to treat it as we would a puppy!
In order to honour the God that resides in our body and to keep our body as a temple, I believe we should endeavour to seek good mental health, to stop stressing, try to relieve or find ways to combat tension, this could be tension found in relationships or stress encountered from the environment you find yourself in. Be aware of all your interactions and ask yourself 'How do I feel' Do this often and you will always be in a state of caring for your body.
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24th April 2020
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. Revelation 21:4 KJV
Reminiscing, we know can be filled with happy memory moments, we also recall the past in order to grow! We look back to remind ourselves how to do things. Sometimes we look back to see how far we have come. Have you looked back and felt sorry for yourself, or look back and wonder how you got through that or how you stayed in that situation for so long?
There are parts of my life that when I reminisce I cringe, feel sorry that I had been in that situation. There are other times, when past events just appear and the pain felt back then, comes rushing into the present. Having a flashback, sometimes has me reliving the situation quickly, which can remind me just how horrid the situation was.
These flashbacks are often called 'Pain Flashback' it is described in an article titled 'Prevalence of pain flashbacks in post traumatic stress disorder arising from exposure to multiple traumas or childhood traumatization' By B. Macdonald,T. V. Salomons L. Meteyard & M. G. Whalley (21 Feb 2018) they state that 'Flashbacks are a form of multisensory memory that are experienced with a “happening in the present” quality. Pain flashbacks are a re-experiencing of pain felt at the time of a traumatic event.[ ] They go on to say that 'Pain flashbacks are a re-experiencing of pain felt at the time of a traumatic event.
This Chapter will use two of my recurring flashbacks as examples. It will look at the stages we may have gone through to get through that past situation and the reason we have flashbacks.
My Flashback dictates that I play out the feelings of that time. I tend not to stay in that parallel past universe too long, but snap back to the present, noting that that was then, and this is now. It is to be noted here, that when these ‘flashbacks’ appear, they have been conquered up by the subconscious to be acknowledged and worked through. We will come back to that later.
My thoughts will acknowledge the flashback, depending on what I am doing or where I am at the time of the flashback. I will certainly ask myself, what evoked that flashback, I would be looking for the train of thought that brought that flashback to the present day! Again we’ll look at that later. If time and place permits, I may wonder why I stayed in that particular situation as long as I did.
I have come to the realisation that it was circumstance and mindset that kept me there. One of my issues and the subject of many of my flashbacks was money. I felt I needed more money. My circumstance (as I saw it) was to give my jobs 100% of me - That is, work every hour the job would or could offer me. I would then come home from a shift, go to sleep, eat and go back to the job. Using that strategy I wouldn’t have time to be me or do me. What I mean by that is, I was so wrapped up in earn the ‘not enough money’ and trying to work more hours, that I didn’t stop and breath. If I had stopped for a minute, I would have realised that my efforts were not giving me what I wanted or felt I needed. I would have had the time to evaluate my work/pay ratio. In my case the equation was Give 100% = not enough money. Had I come to the realisation that if I offered work 80% of me I would have 20% for myself! I would have had time to look for another job, time to consider my options perhaps working less hours so I could give 100% at work on 4 days and keep the other 3 days for myself.
I’m not in that situation now, I came through that situation by taking a breath, I stopped for a minute, and whilst at my job, I slowed down a little, just enough to consider my plight and knowing that if I carried on giving every thing to a job that wasn’t paying enough, I wouldn't move forward, but stay stuck. I started to look for other jobs. I have often had more than one job at a time and wondered if I could do another job whilst at my current job. hmmmm how would that be possible, whilst trying to do as many hours as I could?. At the time I was taking calls from distressed patients. There wasn’t always many calls coming in and I found that I had more time to read, more then I would normally do whilst at work. I scrolled the job sites and found a job, reading, reviewing and editing pieces of work. I could read, review and edit in between phone calls. HAPPY DAYS. When I got home, I sent an email to my prospective employer, they emailed back asking for samples of my work. Within three days I was employed. They didn’t even hear my voice (Everything was done by email) I was so surprised as to how fast this company took people on! I asked my daughter if this is how people get work these days? She said ‘yes mum, I get a lot of work through social media’ I was a little dubious as the field I normally work in, being 'employed’ would take at least six weeks from the first face to face interview. I went on to produce the work as expected within a week and earned over £1,000.00 HAPPY DAYS. I now looked forward to going to work to answer distress calls, as I knew I would be earning two wage instead of one that ‘wasn’t enough’.
My path from being in the situation to coming out of it was Circumstance – I had worked and worked and worked, without coming up for breath. One November I worked over 100+ hours extra in the hope that I would have ‘enough’ for the following month (Christmas). While trying to rack up those extra100 hours, I wasn’t trying to work smarter, I wasn’t thinking of how much harder I was working. I just wasn't thinking, having a holiday approaching didn’t give me no time to recalibrate. In my mind, I had to keep going and accepting as many hours as I could physically do.
The other important element of getting out of my then situation was my Mindset. I must admit I had gotten pretty low, thinking, how am I possibly going to get out of this crazy cycle of work, sleep, work some more. I asked God/The universe for help. In fact in a journal entry, I had written helppppppppppppp! After writing those words a small voice said look on xxxxx jobsite. I looked and found the job mentioned above, reading, reviewing and editing written work.
Before getting to my very low state, low enough to ask for helpppppppp. My mindset had changed enough to have me searching for jobs in earnest, in-fact I was willing to re-locate. I was willing to sleep on my Sons or daughters’ couch and put my furniture in storage in-order to get that job that would pay ‘enough’ or more. I knew something would turn up, but did not know what or even how it would arrive. I believe it was my willingness to let go and let God, after asking for help. That sent me in the direction of that £1,000.00 a week job!
The looking back above, spoke of being in a past situation and how I believe I got through it.
There are other times that you look back and feel sorry for yourself, back then you may have felt that there was nothing you could do about the situation you found yourself in. Thinking about now makes you feel sad for the you, you had been, back there.
There was a time in my life where my finances didn’t not allow for enough food to be purchased for myself. My children had all left home. I had taken a year off. I didn’t make a success of a business venture and found I had to go back to work. I took the first job I found, I applied and it was offered. It didn’t pay ‘enough’ but it was work. As you have seen my work ethic is to give 100% so I did just that, leaving no time to consider any other options. I fell behind with my bills and found myself contacting a debt relief company. They asked me to list all my debts, all my incomes and my outgoings. When they read it back to me, they said that I had not put down enough for food. I let them known that I tried to cut back on my spending and the only place I could cut my spending was on food. On the next day I had to call them back as I had to add other information regarding my debts. They read my debts back to me, this person stated, like the person I spoke to the day before, ‘you haven’t given yourself enough for food’. Again I explained my rationale of spending that amount. It was only after having to go through the same procedure with yet another debt relief advisor over the phone. I began to feel sorry for myself and even writing this now, I have a flashback of how I felt back then. It was sad to know that I had to cut my food budget in-order to pay the rent and a few bills. One just gets on with it. This is how I remember it. I would get my wage, hoping I had worked enough extra hours to see me to the next months wage. I often looked at the payslip thinking, I could do with double that figure. Well that’s how it was for me. I would make the food I had stretch, I would add vegetables or make a meal without meat. As my shifts would be over 12 hours, sometimes I would take bread and butter sandwiches if I didn’t have egg, ham or cheese. One tends to just get on with it, the best way they know how.
I can not remember going to bed hungry, but I knew I didn’t have enough! Today as I said earlier, that situation still saddens me to know that yes, Angela you didn’t have enough. The reason it hit home was the fact that ‘others’ (The debt relief advisors) brought it to my attention or should I say out in the open. It is one thing to be going though situations in silence or on your own, it takes on a different ‘feeling’ when others become aware of it, I believe the situation takes on the vibe or feelings of the other person, as now there are two people feeling sad, embarrassed or ashamed of the situation, the situation feels even more dire!
Did Circumstance and Mindset help change this situation? Lets see.
The Circumstance – or my circumstance was, I didn’t or felt I didn’t have enough money. In order to survive, or maintain my daily routine.. I carried on…I just got on with it. I spent as little as possible on food and cooked accordingly. My ability to earn more money was not investigated as I was too busy trying to work every hour God and my then employer was willing to give me. I came home slept eat and went back to work mmmmmmm sounds like a pattern, what a mindset to be in! You need money, you find any job, whether it pays less than you are worth or not, you take it and then find yourself having to work over 100 extra hours just to make enough to pay the rent and some bills! How does that make sense? Lets look at what happened when my mindset changed.
The Mindset change came when I decided to get help mmmm again sounds like another pattern. The debt relief advisors put my mind at ease, letting me know that help was at hand, they could speak to my debtors for me and advising me to contact them too, letting them know that I was in touch with the debt relief company and to offer them my reference number, so they could call them and get information on my income and expenditure, this did stop the debtors calling as they all gave me a few month grace to get things sorted.
When we look back at our not so nice past and feel the ping of pain that being in that situation caused. We sometimes beat ourselves up with ‘I should have done this or I should have done that’ We now know that it takes the circumstance and the mindset to make a change. These two stages are seen in my Liminal stage, a phrase I coined in my book ('Lena Body' ( 2019) Angela Scott, Lena Body, Amazon 'Ahead' chapter 12) It is 'The point between I want change and changing' [ ] 'It's a time of the unknown, you've never been here before, never been in this particular situation, dealing with this particular problem .....If you had, you wouldn't be going through my Liminal stage. This is a stage of growing, you know that you can not go back because you have outgrown the situation and want change.' There are four stages to the Liminal Stage, but Stages 1 and Stage 3 are relevant here - Stage 1) Awareness like circumstance or situation. One becomes aware that something has to change, something has to be done and Stage 3) the Seeking help activity. We go through a mindset change, from 'I've just got to get on with things' (working as many hours as I could get, buying and cooking what food I had) to 'I can't go on like this, something has to change' and we seek help.
There are other past events in my life that only called for help or mindset change, some are too horrid to mention here. The awareness stage and the help stage happened instantaneously. In those instances, the flashback isn't as mild as others, even today I believe some counselling may be of benefit.
When a flashback appears with it's pain, we are to remember that we had to go through that situation for a reason. We are not to beat ourselves up with the 'I should have......' If we find ourselves going through the same situation again, we are to ask ourselves....'Why am I here again'?, Often times, it's because we haven't learnt the lesson we were suppose to learn the first, second or third time we went through it. As mentioned above, there are solutions where our mindset change kicks in quickly and we seek help instantly. If that situation even peaks it's head around the corner, heading in your direction, you can smell it and your trained mindset pricks up, gets into gear and blocks that situation from gathering momentum. You stop it in it's tracks and it doesn't reach you.
Moving forward, is there a way we can avoid the situations that have given us those painful flashbacks?
To some degree, Yes. Remember some of the situations we encounter, are to ensure we emerge stronger and wiser, sometimes we go through these situations in-order to enable us to help others evade the same situations. In my situation of accepting the first job I was offered, in-order to pay the bills. I properly did not listen to my intuition when it said 'Don't take that job' When taking the job, I was of the mindset 'this will pay some bills, this will give me some money, this will help' for a while! I would not have looked any further than the first few pay checks. As the Law Of Attraction states, what you think about, you bring about. My job did just that, it paid some bills, it gave me some money, it helped (a little). I have never never had a job that I thought I would retire from, meaning I never ever thought that I would be in one job for 20 or 30 years, never. My concern has always been, this will pay me money for now! Once in the job I would give 100% and become somewhat 'stuck' busying myself with working, trying to get by with the 'not enough wage', paying bills, debts and buying food! There was no time for anything else in regards to my job status. It was a 'vicious circle' I was use to. This is why listening to our intuition is vital in every aspect of our lives and yes, you may have not had to experience that 'bad' situation if we had listened, any lesson that we were to learn, we would have been taught in a more pleasing way. Note that this is not a we should have done this or done that type of advice..Intuition should be our first port of call in every aspect of our lives.
Stopping and taking a breath before entering into any new situation is also a great way of giving ourselves time or a chance to hear what intuition has to say. To answer the question how I can avoid situations that give us painful flashbacks - Listen to your intuition! Now some situations do not start off as 'bad' or 'painful' situations. To avoid that situation becoming one that evokes the pain, you need to ask yourself two questions, that is 1) 'should I be here' and 'Do I want to be here'? If you answer NO to any of those questions GET OUT. Find ways to leave the situation. It doesn't matter what the situation is! Make strides to leave. This could be seeking help, seeking advice to get out, looking for a new job or place to live. Just do something to show the universe that you want a change by putting one foot in-front of the other, in the direction you want to go and God, the Universe will show you away. But you must listen, you must be open to what comes your way, the minute your mindset has changed from 'I'm in this situation' to 'I want out of this situation' The answer will come, you just have to be ready to hear it. Your answer to your plea may come from an unexpected source. I remember having to leave my home, as I was nearing an eviction date. I was still working full time which I needed or felt that I needed in-order to generate enough money for a deposit, among other things. I believed in the power of God and knew that a way would be found to get me and my family somewhere else to live. 'Something told me to ask anybody I met at work if they knew of a good Estate agent (real estates agent) in the area. So any time I was in conversation with anyone I would mention it. There was this one guy at work who only came in once a week, I never usually get a chance to speak with him, our normal conversations would be 'Hi' and 'Bye' , but as I been told that I should ask anybody I met at work for a good estate agent. I asked him the question. He said 'yes, their name and number is on this card, give them a call' So I did, do you know I picked up the keys to my new home within a week! All paper work and deposit was paid and handed over within a week. That is the power of a changed mindset, listening and being open.
I often ask myself why I didn't do certain things sooner.
Read the conclusion I came to, in my new book which is out at the end of the year called Love live holistically.
24th May 2020
Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth 3 John 2 KJV
The body and Soul go hand in hand, as we are spiritual beings living in a physical body. Keeping the body healthy, warm and fed is in part, keeping the Soul happy, and that's our aim in life, to keep the Soul or spiritual part of our being happy.
This chapter will look at the part, our Soul plays in ensuring we make the right choices and how it communicates with us. The word intuition and soul or spirit is used interchangeable throughout this chapter.
Do you realise that if you keep your spirit happy, you will never have to worry about anything for the rest of your life! I know that that is a big statement. Lets look at that statement. The Souls' purpose is to keep you safe, it is to look after your well-being and on the right path for your life. If the purpose of the Soul is to steer us in the right direction, how does it communicate?
In my book 'The Exhorted Soul chapter 12 - Soul Care.' I explain how our Soul speaks to us. It is through intuition. Intuition is that small voice within us that says, leave early for work today, if adhered to, we find that all other trains due to leave after that early train you took, had been cancelled, or you find that that impulse buy was a Godsend as it was needed a few days later, at a time you wouldn't have been able to purchase it.
On hearing or feeling what intuition wishes to convey, our human body may begin to explode with hormones, rushing to get to the parts of our body that needs it the most, for example in the case of a flight or fight situation, or we may just get a feeling that something isn't right. If we take the time to listen to what our body and intuition is trying to convey to us, we would always take the right action for the situation we are in or the decisions we have to make.Listening to our intuition plays it's part in keeping the Soul happy, as we are aware that the souls' only purpose is to keep us safe and on the right path for our life, so acting on its advice (and it is only advice, because we all have free will) we would always take the right step for our lives. In my case I wouldn't have taken the first job that was offered, a job that didn't pay enough for the bills I had coming in. I wouldn't have accepted the rate of pay offered. I would have made better investment choices. If I had listened when my intuition told me not to purchase that item, I would have enough to pay that bill, I had forgotten about.
Living intuitively takes constant, even minute by minutes effort! Think about it right now....does something tell you to continue reading this chapter or is that something telling you to check the dinner you've put in the oven? Should you continue reading, after being told to check the oven, you may find that your meal is over cooked, or worst. That is just a simple example, but if we practice listening to our intuition or that 'something', telling us what to or not to do, our lives will be richer in every sense of the word.
If we listened to our intuition/Soul we would live in a world where every traffic light turns green as soon as we approach it. We would get the best deals, always get that parking space next to the exit etc etc...and should the traffic light turn red, we missed the summer deal or the parking spaces are all taken, we would remain in the knowledge that we were not meant to reach our destination yet, we were not meant to park where we normally park or there will be a better offer round the corner. This may sound like a cop out, but I assure you that when you live intuitively your mood is often more elevated than others...You see the world, your family members, friends, work colleagues and members of the public in a different light. Take for example that person who over took you, as you was approaching the lights, they drive through and it immediately turns to red. A person who lives intuitively will say something like...' They obviously need to get somewhere really fast' (or words to that effect) You will not shout at them as they whizz past, wish them unwell or stress out because you've been stopped by a red light! As for that summer offer that you missed, you'll know that there is a reason for everything, and you'll get a better deal somewhere else or that that money will go to something that may generate even more money...get the picture? Your thoughts go to a more positive place. As opposed to stressing over what you think you have lost or have been denied.
But having me tell you all of this is one thing, proving it for yourself is another. Think back at a time when you followed your gut feeling and things worked out to your advantage? Think back to a time when you didn't follow your feelings and things did not work to your favour! I know this is not proof enough for you to walk around trusting your gut in every eventuality. I know that following my gut feelings or intuition gets me what I want sooner and most of us know this too. So why do we not follow it?
We live in a world of ego and dear I say it the real world, where decisions are made instantaneously which can have catastrophic consequences. I have spoken about the role of the ego in my book. ' The Exhorted Soul chapter 11 - Ego'. The ego is that 'Other Voice' We hear when a decision is to be made. I propose you consider The Ego as an immature entity with a big head! Let’s call him Heady.
Immature Heady sees itself as the big I AM. Heady the Ego is self-absorbed, conceited, an entity that believes it is the labels others place on it. The Ego is self preserving. It will try and keep things how they are. In doing so, its aim is to keep you alive. For Heady, there is no need for change. The Ego has kept you alive thus far and things appear to be working. Heady understands there is no need to change ANYTHING if it’s working, however if the change involves you impressing others, the Ego will be all for that.
Think for a minute about leaving your job and following your passion….Did Heady appear? What did it say? DrScott@loveliveholiscally.com I can imagine it saying ‘don’t be silly, how are you gonna pay the rent?’ Remember, The Ego is ‘what I have’. Starting a new venture may leave you with less than you currently have. To the Ego, leaving a dental practice to become a black smith (your passion) will hear the Ego shouting ‘What a black smith, instead of a dentist. A dentist is much more known, than a black smith. Remember the Ego is what ‘it’ does for a living and what other people may think of it. The Ego will keep you where you are in life, as change may take you to a place ‘less than’ where you are at the moment.
The Ego is selfish and would rather not see change as it may upset the equilibrium of your life causing you to fail! Ego wouldn't like that. 'the shame' what will others say?
You will have to distinguish between Ego talking and intuition. Daunting I hear you say. Practice makes perfect I say. If you prove intuition on an hourly basis you'll get to know or hear it's voice over the sound of ego. Here's a tip, The Ego will give you drawn out sentences to consider, why you should or shouldn't do something. Intuition on the other hand will only use THREE/FOUR WORDS e.g 'don't go there' 'leave early today' or 'don't buy that'
In my book 'The Exhorted Soul' I explain the reason one should live intuitively. My aim is to help you live a life of your dreams. I also propose that most people who have reached their goals in life would have exhorted their soul. (they had put their soul to work) As they would have gone within (listened to their intuition/Soul) in-order follow their goals. Let's give you an example here. Consider a person who wants to get into acting. Now I'm not privy, to what is needed to become an actor, but i'm sure there are different types of acting i.e stage/theatre and TV. If you feel this is your passion, you would have done some research into this art, you may have sought out some form of education, acting school or classes.
Perhaps you would seek out employment as an extra, maybe you'd get an agent who could point you in the right direction or get you some work.
In an ideal world you would get noticed and became a big star. But real life has you coming out of acting school and having to get work wherever you can, as you have to pay the rent, this may keep you from following your dream and chasing a pay cheque instead. I am not about to say that if that person followed their intuition they would have been 'noticed' by a big production company and became a big star, the minute they stepped out of acting school. However a person who is totally focused on their goal, will instinctively seek out, and accept jobs that will either give them the wage they need and want or enable them the experience they need or want. Paying rent would not necessarily be the first thought. I know! (for me, this would be inconceivable as I had children), buying food would not be their first concern, either you and I know that these items are important, relevant and vital. But that persons' mindset would be focused on their acting, any thoughts that deter them from their goal may be ignored. This goal focused mindset may be open to the voice of their intuition, they may be tuned into what they feel would forward their career. This is not to say that Ego wouldn't pipe in, but they would consider these voices and decide what path to take. One can be 'too' focused, and hear only the voice of Ego, telling them to take any acting job offered. Whether it goes against their principles, morals or ethics. However, the mere fact that they are listening and having feelings that something could be right or wrong opens the door to hear or feel the Soul trying to communicate.
The scenario above is not an exact science and one should spend time considering their own 'feelings' about what they intend to do in any situation. The point I am trying to covey is, the goal we are trying to reach would be achieved sooner and with less stress by listening to our intuition. One may not consider, 'the what could go wrong', instead they would consider the end goal and how they will feel when it is reached. A mindset like that will inevitably encourage intuition, once adhered to will please the Soul.
I have mentioned in 'The Exhorted Soul' that our goal in life is to keep the Soul happy. I explain how we feel when the Soul is happy – Contentment and at peace has been mentioned to describe these feelings.
In an aim to live intuitively, ones' goal is keep the Soul happy. As mentioned above, if we know that our intuition is always right, why is it that we do not follow it. We spoke about the part Ego plays in answering that question. But 'as we are human and have been living a logical rational life thus far....If we tried to live any other way, we may not survive. We have had to live by experience and what makes sense! Learning to change our cognitive process can be difficult' (Lena Body(2019) Angela Scott, Lena Body, Amazon chapter 10 ‘Nose - Intuition’), Karen Young author of the article '9 Ways to Tap Into Your Intuition (And Why You’ll Want To)' and Francis P Cholle author of the article 'The Intuitive Compass' state that - Intuition is powerful and can lead to amazing insights, but that doesn’t mean you follow it blindly. It’s still important to use common sense and a balance of rationality.
To follow your intuition or listening to what your Soul has to say to you, will make your life exponentially fuller, happier and less stressed. In my book 'Lena Body' some of the authors quoted in chapter ten 'Nose- (Intuition)' give their opinions or testimonies of living intuitively, here are few.
Juhea Kim (from peaceful dumpling) states that 'since I’ve begun living more intuitively, so many things changed. After feeling like a floater for most of my life, I found my home, sweet home in an upper-west corner of New York. I left my secure but stressful job to the most fulfilling, fun, and rewarding job: Peaceful Dumpling. Most importantly, I met someone when I was completely off-guard, at a bar where no respectable relationships are known to be born—and yet, I knew in my core that he was the One. I’d never planned for any of these things to happen. But my intuition lets me know that these blessings were just meant to be.
'My life fell into all sorts of previously unimagined opportunities and adventures which come good'. Sylvia Clare MSc. Psycho author of Trusting your Intuition.
'In my experience, nothing can compare with the pure joy, love, wonder, beauty and abundance that I have been able to enjoy from living intuitively. Living aligned with your intuition will allow for a fuller, happier and more satisfying life experience'. - 'Tuning In To Your Intuition: 7 Ways To Listen Up' By Katrina Love Senn.
Living intuitively is, to me, the only way to live. It has made EVERY difference in how I run my business, how I parent my children, my relationship with my husband, and my relationship with myself - Karen Geddis Author of article '3 Simple Ways to Begin Living Intuitively Today'
In these series of talks – We mention taking care of the mind, the body and the Soul. We are spiritual beings living in a physical body. We have to take care of the both of them.
This chapter stated that if you keep your body warm and fed, you would be working towards keeping your Soul happy. It is suggested that you wouldn't have to worry or stress over the small things, you wouldn't take the wrong job, keeping you there for ten years with no prospects of moving up, you would have the right job for the right pay. You'd find that most of the time you will be at the right place at the right the time. You will be the one who gets the bargains or win the prizes at events. You will be the one who chooses to invest in a company at the right time and selling before stocks plummet. Do you know anyone like that? Whether that person knows it or not, they have exhorted their Soul, they have put their Soul to work as they are communicating with each other constantly. Why don't you try it for 24 hours, let me know how you get on DrScott@loveliveholistically.com
BODY & SOUL CARE
25th June 2020
1 Thessalonians 5:23, KJV: "And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ."
We have looked at the mind and what is needed or advised to ensure good mental health. We looked at the body, and most of us realise that eating healthy and exercising may ensure a healthier body, it is surely conducive to remaining healthy. Soul Care spoke of how the Soul communicates with us, it's role in helping us to get to where we need to be and the path to take to ensure we get there sooner, with less stress than we would have without the Souls help.
How is it possible to keep mind, body and Soul healthy every day?
The answer is Mindfulness, acknowledging the the present, or simply being aware! In my book ‘The Exhorted Soul', (2018) Angela Scott,The Exhorted Soul, Chapter 12, Amazon) I introduce 'The Eight Wheel Path' which is the Buddhist teachings of attaining Nirvana (the path to enlightenment) through rightness of belief, resolve, speech, action, livelihood, effort, thought, and meditation.
'In order to reach, what Buddhism call Nirvana a place of perfect peace and happiness. One needs to be continually mindful, this is achieved by following 'The Eightfold Path', which is Right View, Right Intention, Right Speech, Right Action, Right Livelihood, Right Effort, Right Concentration and Right Mindfulness. ‘The Exhorted Soul', (2018) Angela Scott,The Exhorted Soul, Chapter 12, Amazon)
This chapter will use The Eight Fold Path as a suggestion/idea of caring for the Mind, Body and Soul, while using three subtitles: Life, Situation and Yourself. Part One will concentrate on Right View and Right Intention.
The components of the Eightfold Path are divided among three forms of training which are: Wisdom, Ethics and Concentration.
The Wisdom training consist of Right View and Right Intention. We will start with a look at Right View. I believe that any attempt to holistically care for your Mind, Body and Soul, one’s view is of vital importance.
What are your views about your life? How do you view, most of the situations you find yourself in? How do you view yourself?
What view do you hold for your life? Many people view life as a cycle, we are born, we grow, we work, we get old and we die. Thoughts like that may have you trudging through life expecting to retire then curl up and die.
When dealing with situations- If your view of life follows a pattern of, you are born, you grow, you work etc.. any situation you find yourself in, may have an inherent dim outcome. Disclaimer here, it really would depends on the situation. So let’s take a situation like missing the train on a work day.
Let me introduce Harry, he has the view of life, similar to the one above...Things just happen, that's life.
Harry missed his train as he had to find the cat, in-order to put her in the house before leaving for work. Millie the cat had gone out for her morning stroll around the garden and had gotten into next doors’ garden. It took ten extra minutes to get Millie into the house. Harry then had to get his keys and work bag, run to the bus stop, travel for 8 minutes, when he arrived at the train station, he had to purchase a train ticket, walk to his platform and board his train.
Harry normally gets to work 30 minutes early, so he felt he would still be able to get to work on time. Unfortunately the next train to Harry’s destination was cancelled. Harry then begins to play out what is going to happen. First, the next train will also be cancelled and secondly he will get to work 2 hours late, his boss will be at the door as he walks in. He will then be taken into his boss’ office and will be reprimanded or even sacked. The reason for his train of thought is …’One thing follows the next, you do something wrong, you get punished.' Remember we are born, we grow etc….. Harry runs his 2 hours late to work thoughts, through his mind for 45 minutes and then waits a further 15 minutes before calling the office, to let them know he is going to be late. The person who answers the phone tells him not to worry, most of the office, she says, is going to be late as there has been some issue with the trains today. Harry was wrong to think, he’d be reprimanded, Harry worried in vain. One of my issues with Harry’s way of thinking is that he used one hour of his life worrying. I won’t even go into what his body went through for that hour. Harry couldn’t hear his intuition tell him that ‘it’s going to be alright’. Putting intuition aside, for a moment. Harry wouldn’t hear it from his best friend, who happened to call him while he was waiting for the train. He's friend said ' I bet most of your office is stuck trying to get to work, there has been an issue on the Lines'. Train lines that were going to and from Harry’s final destination.
Harry lives in a world view bubble of ‘This is what is going to happen’ I had a friend like that! I am a very optimistic person and as a psychologist I can see things from different view points. I am also able to suggest different scenario’s to situations. My then friend would always, yes always, give me a rebuttal to every point I made, and she was unable to see her situation any other way than the one she had conquered up for herself, needless to say, most of her dreamt up scenario’s to her situation was wrong. Our conversations would go something like this ‘ No Kelly, you won’t get thrown in jail because you forgot to pay your bill and paid it a week late.’ ‘No Kelly, they won’t cancel your subscriptions because you called them last month enquiring about a different package’. It would be strange speaking to Kelly a few days later, when the sky didn’t fall to earth or the sun didn’t fail to rise and her situation, as it always did, worked itself out. Remember, situations always, always work themselves out. The outcome may not always be the one you would have hoped for, but they work themselves out one way or another. If you can do something to ensure the outcome is favourable, then do that, if there is nothing you can do about the situation, then let it play itself out, being mindful that the situation will work out in your favour.
For Harry, our conversation would have been something like this…’No Harry, you are not likely to be reprimanded for being late, this will be the first time in 5 years, that you get in late’! Admittedly Harry, clearly has other things going on! In order to jump to a self-deprecating conclusion to a situation he had no control over, and to stay there for a whole hour! Harry’s self-worth in that company may not be as lofty as should be. Harry had never been late for work in the five years he had worked there. He is well liked and respected. But because his view of himself is so low, a stern reprimand or a sacking is the likely out-come!
Buddhist teachings state, there is a healthy and an unhealthy view that could be adopted, and we are to adopt a healthy view. Harry we can see, took the unhealthy path, as his mind may have even taken him to a scene of losing his job, being unable to pay his mortgage, being thrown out and having no-where for him and Millie to live……..All because he was going to be late for work…WOW.
We have seen how Harry views the world or life and the latest situation he found himself in. The other question I posed earlier, is how a person like Harry would view himself. Do you feel equip to answer that question? I think you are! You have seen how Harry viewed his place of work, one can only imagine that Harry has a warped sense of his standing within his company. I would hazard a guess that Harry has a low self-esteem, as he believed that he would either be reprimanded or sacked, because he was late. They was no thought of ‘I have never been late before, so they can’t rumble too much’ Or ‘I’ll tell them the reason I am late, I’m sure they’ll understand’ There was not even an ounce of ego in his thoughts, regarding saving himself from punishment. Harry could have had a back up speech for his lateness. Harry could have said, if challenged ‘I’ve never been late in five years’ But Harry’s thoughts went straight to punishment. Right view or healthy view of life, may have changed the scenario you read above.
Consider for a moment how you handle situations, is it the end of the world, should you spill coffee on yourself as you are about to leave the house? or do you accept what has happened and change your clothes. For some, spilling coffee on their clothes would set the president for the whole day and way into the following day.
What do you find yourself saying most often? Is it positive or negative?
Do you hold a glass half full view of life or is it more often a glass half empty? I am the type of person that is grateful I have a glass, then I wouldn’t have to cup my hands to get the water! How you view life in general has a cascading effect on your interactions with others and how you treat yourself, that is your Mind, Body and whether you hear your Soul speaking to you.
The Wisdom factor on the wheel, is Intention. Buddhist teaching would say, one should set an intention to do no harm. That is, to oneself or to others. You may have heard the saying ‘with all good intentions’, this or that went wrong. Or ‘with all the will in the world’, this or that didn’t happen. One’s intention is vital, it aids our everyday activities, and helps us reach our goals. In caring for your Mind Body and Soul, intention has to be considered. Let’s look at my three sub titles: Life, Situation and Yourself.
Look at your intentions for your life? Do they match up with what you have achieved? Seriously, take a minute to have a look. For many, they haven’t stopped long enough in the last ten years to take stock of where their life is heading or what they have achieved, statements like ‘I’ve just got on with life’ are used. I, more than most can testify that the years can ‘run away with you’ I had spent a large portion of a ten year span chasing a wage, month after a month I would get my wage in-order to pay bills. There was no thought of luxury items, holidays or even a day out. I believe that as one gets older, the years go by quicker…maybe that’s just me! What do you notice about your intentions for your life, are they far fetched? Are they achievable? Have they been realised? DrScott@loveliveholistically.com What are your thoughts for mankind? As I write this, we have a virus circulating the world, causing most, if not all countries to shutdown. We are told by our governments to stay in our homes, we are told that we can leave our homes to buy food and get medication only. All shops that do not provide either are to remain closed. With all that going on, ones intentions/thoughts for our mankind may be, that we will all be wiped out! Or you may be thinking that if we stay safe we will be OK. Buddhist teaching state that we are to have the intention to do no harm to ourselves or others. So with that in mind what is the intention for your life?
What is your intention for the rest of your life? Is it like Harry? The worst is likely to happen? Or do you have a plan/intention for your life? Perhaps you think you will live a life that may have its ups and downs, but things will inevitably work out in your favour. Ones intention has powers. In a court of law ones intention can carry a harsher sentence than a crime that was committed without the intention to commit said crime. Scientific research shows that the mere intention has the power to evoke a response. Researcher Cleve Baxter measured the electromagnetic activity of sperm, as mentioned in Deepak Chopra’s book ‘Synchodestiny’ Baxters participant, a sperm donor was about forty feet away, down the hall from the lab where his specimen was located in a test tube. The donor crushed a capsule of amylnitrate, and as he inhaled the fumes, there was an instantaneous spike in the electromagnetic activity of his sperm which as mentioned above, was forty feet away. In another experiment by Cleve Baxter, he was isolating white cells in order to study them, using his saliva in-order to get a concentrated number of cells, this was placed in a test tube and a gold wire electrodes inserted, it was then connected to a EEG type instrument. Baxter then thought that if he inflict a small cut on the back of his hand he may affect his white cells, so he goes in search of lancet on a shelf near by. When he returned, he glanced at the chart that was recording the electromagnetic activity of the white blood cells, he noticed it had registered intense activity of the cells during his search for the lancet. Baxter concluded that the cells were reacting to his intention to cut the back of his hand, before he had actually inflicted the cut. This is the power of intention.
What effect do you think you could have on another by using mere intention? Imagine you are upset with someone and your intention, when you see them, will be to let them have a 'piece of your mind' holding nothing back. How do you think that conversation will go when you meet up with them? Give me two outcomes. Here's mine. You and that person are going to have a rather heated conversation. You and that person may begin to fight! What I haven't mentioned here is that your thoughts or intentions to have a confrontation with this person may have that person ready for a fight, ready to let you have it, ready to give you a piece of their mind. People are not often surprised by an intended confrontation when they know or 'feel' that they may have upset someone. The intensity of their rebuttal may have a direct correlation to your intention! Just a thought to consider. The situation above may turn out differently especially if your intention is to 'just, clear up the misunderstanding' or to find out how the other person felt about what happen or what was said to make you feel the way you do! Can you see the difference? Things get muddled when we began to assume another's motive or intention for saying or doing something! Being aware of your intentions and it's power to evoke a reaction, good or bad is an act of Mindfulness and care for one's self.
What are your intentions for yourself, lets take this one a little closer to home, what do you intend to do this evening? Rest, get that cupboard cleared out? Cook dinner for your family or get to your night shift on time? We are not often asked this question. As adults we tend to just get on with life and the responsibilities we are committed to fulfil. I propose that each day we consider our intentions for ourselves.
On waking, the intention for yourself should be considered. Ask yourself 'What do I want for me today'. This could be an unrushed transit from home to work, a stress less day at work. If we put the intention 'out there' we will attempt to carry those intentions out. You don't want to rush, so you may go to bed earlier, in-order to get up earlier. You catch an earlier train or bus into work, missing the morning traffic and getting into work while the office is not so busy. Your stressless day at work can't be promised, but with your intention of having a stress less day, how do you think you will react when a stressful situation pokes it's head round your office door? You have already decided that your work day will be stressless, so you will enter every interaction with this in mind. You would see the pile of 'folders' on your desk (metaphysically speaking) as work you'll complete or get done by it's deadline – Stresslessly! You will enter interactions with others, in a calm stressless provoking way. Everything you do or say will be with having a stressless day in mind.
The Wisdom factor on The Eight Wheel Path, is Right View and Right Intention. If our view and intention of life, the situation we are in, or of ourselves is positive we will be on the right path to caring for our Mind, Body and Soul.
BODY & SOUL CARE
As mentioned in the chapter above the components of the Eightfold Path are divided among the three forms of training. The training in Wisdom, Ethics and Mediation. Ethics consist of correct speech, correct action, and correct livelihood.
In part two we will look at speech. Here's some quotes that sum up how we should use speech. I am sure you can come up with many more.
Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not be. James 3:10 (KJV)
Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. Ephesians 4:29 (KJV)
“I’ve learnt that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel” Maya Angelou
'Speak only if it improves upon the silence' – Mahatma Gandhi
'Think twice before you speak, because your words and influence will plant the seed of either success or failure in the mind of another' - Napoleon Hill
In speaking, it is best to be clear and say just enough to convey the meaning - Confucius
“You are master of what you say until you utter it, once you deliver it, you are its captive -Ali Ibn Abi Talib A.S
Are you aware of you say? Strange question, as most of us 'hear' what we say. Maybe my question should be 'do you think before you speak'?
The quotes above gives us an indication of just how powerful the tongue can be. In caring for our Mind, Body and Soul what is said or not said revolves around the Eight Path Wheel as Right Speech and falls under Ethics training which includes, not lying, gossiping, not using abusive speech but using your words to teach and to be kind.
The aim of this chapter is to alert you to what, how and to whom you speak. It will remind you to be mindful whilst communicating verbally and of your responsibilities to yourself to care for your Mind, Body and Soul.
In my book SELF=YOU (Chapter ten) Tongue- What damage have you caused? I outline the reasons we speak to others and its effects. You will find that depending on your relationship with that person and where you 'class' them in your hierarchy of friend or foul, liked, disliked, tolerated, respected or not, you will speak to that person with a certain level of decorum, respect or distaste! That could be to your partner, child or children, other family members, friends, work colleagues and or other professionals. You may even use a different language or dialect, perhaps to emphasise a point. Another consideration in speaking to someone, is the reason you are speaking to that person, this could be day to day chatter, to be sociable, in response to a question, to gossip, scold, argue or to discuss an important issue. (My list above is by no means exhausted). Above, we have outlined 'who' you speak to, 'how' you may feel about them and the reason you may be speaking to that person. Let's incorporate my three elements Life, Situation and Yourself regarding your speech.
What do you speak over your life? I say over your life, because the spoken word has more power than just being heard or acknowledged. With that in mind, saying anything regarding your life should have been thought-out. I understand that this not the case for many of us, as people can be heard degrading their lives by saying 'Life is xxxt', 'life is hard', 'life is a struggle', instead of proclaiming that 'life could and will be better', 'life has its ups and downs, I just get on with it'. As you have learnt, what you say and think about, you bring about. The more you say something the more you invite it. When asked 'how are you'? What do you say? Is it something positive or negative. Consider your life, does it mirror what you often say about your life? Do you believe, life happened and you are just voicing what occurred? Or could it be that you voice something that happened and continue to voice it until 'it' became the norm? Perhaps you have a name for your life e.g 'I'm a divorcee' or 'I'm a xxxxxx victim' 'I'm a business woman/man' OK what I am getting at is, what you say about your life, is often the life you live! I knew someone who for years, would say that 'I am just trying to get by' She would often complain that had tried this or tried that to get by. Getting by, was what this person did, she only began to excel, when she changed her mindset and words. We often live by the title we have given our life. Consider one of the chapters in your life entitled 'I'm a divorcee'! What is running though your mind right now, about a person who calms and voices that title? We see in the chapter above, a life view of..life is a cycle, If this happens, that will follow. So when Harry was late for work, he immediately felt he would be reprimanded, which could lead to him being sacked. With that said, what do you speak over your life? Let me know firstname.lastname@example.org Perhaps, you may need to give your life a new title. If you have given your life a title that does not serve your Mind Body and Soul, it is time to start a new chapter!
How you view or voice prognostications of your life will have a bearing on how you deal with situations. Let's test this theory, consider how a person who states, life is xxxt! will view any stressful situation they find themselves in? …...... No need for me to give you a scenario, because i'm sure you can imagine one for yourself. I propose that that person will just use the situation as 'proof' that life is 'xxxt'.The more they believe life is xxxt the more they will encounter stressful events. Unless this person changes their mindset or how they view or voice, what they believe their life to be, life may continue to prove to them that life is xxxt!
Now, as we are all human, I understand that, not so nice thoughts may run through our minds when stressed. In my book 'SELF=YOU' (Self=You, Angela Scott, (2017),Amazon,chapter 7 Patience) I recall my thoughts, whilst pacing the floor as my daughter didn't answer her phone or decided not to return home for three days!
For me, I acknowledge that an incident has occurred and then my mind immediately goes to how I can rectify the situation. For many, some situations require conducting a military operation to sort it out. There are other situations that requires us to do nothing, as we come to the realisation that nothing can be done, but wait. While we wait, however we have to ensure that we do not start the bad scenario routine again. I have a mindset, that if things don't work out how I want them to, (namely, the situation resolving itself quickly) it will work out in my favour eventually. What do you say to yourself in situations like this? Do you say to yourself 'It was my fault' 'I never get things right' or do you start beating yourself up with 'I should haves'? Degrading or blaming yourself will never get you the outcome you want, it will only get you more situations that will have you blaming or degrading yourself. Anything that makes you feel less than is not serving you, plus it is not the act of caring for your Mind, Body or Soul.
For me, the most powerful spell you can utter is I AM! In chapter five (Self love) of my book SELF=YOU I write; In the quest of loving yourself, one 'is to be aware of how you speak about yourself. Anything said after ‘I AM’ must be positive, even if you are feeling unwell, you should say, when asked 'how are you feeling'? your answer should be ‘I am hoping to feel better soon’ (or words to that effect) This will take some doing, it will take practice of being aware of how you speak, think and feel about yourself. What you say will be a minute by minute task. I can tell you it is certainly worth it. You will feel better about yourself, people around you will instinctively know how you wish to be treated. […] It is very liberating. I say this after being put down, putting myself down, treating myself badly, allowing others to treat me badly and far too weak to do anything about it.' (SELF=YOU, Angela Scott, (2007), Self=You, Amazon Chapter 5 - Self love)
The reason I AM is so powerful is because, you become or remain the words uttered after it. (If said often enough). In caring for your Mind, Body and Soul we are to be mindful of our every interaction with others and ourselves. One of the quotes given above is from the bible 'Ephesians 4:29', my interpretation is: Do not say anything dishonourable, let your speech be for good, to improve and honour the hearer. This of course includes what we say to ourselves.The Buddhist way of life, considers silence. Although it is commonly associated with monasticism. We are aware of non-verbal communication, such as body language etc...Not to disregard those important aspects of discourse, but for the purpose of this chapter we will look at staying silent.
'Thinking before you speak, is one thing, not speaking out is another. Staying quiet while a ‘friend’ tears down another, is actually agreeing with what is being said. Staying silent while others gossip about another, is agreeing to what is being said. Remaining silent about any type of abuse is also agreeing to the abuse you have witnessed. No one is saying that speaking up in these cases will be easy, but one can find a way to 'whistleblow', either in person or anonymously, doing this will go some way to stop the disrespect that you have witnessed.
'Growing up, there was a saying, ‘sending someone to Coventry’ Its meaning according to Wikipedia is an English idiom meaning to deliberately ostracise someone. Typically, this is done by not talking to them, avoiding someone's company, and generally pretending that they no longer exist. Victims are treated as though they are completely invisible and inaudible.' (SELF=YOU,Angela Scott (2017),SELF=YOU, Amazon, Chp10.)
Sending someone to Coventry is bullying, there is no two ways about it. Ostracising someone is a childish way of dealing with your inner feelings, assumptions or thoughts about that person. If you had a horrid boss, you would still need to speak to that person, whether you liked it or not. Why is it different when it is someone you think less of?' (SELF=YOU,Angela Scott (2017),SELF=YOU, Amazon, Chp10) As mentioned above, depending on your relationship with that person and where you 'class' them in your hierarchy of friend or foul, liked, disliked, tolerated, respected or not, you will interact with that person using a certain level of decorum, respect or distaste! Being so upset with another, that you refuse to speak to them although they are in your presence and ostracising that person, is not the act of caring for yourself. In fact you are causing hormones to deploy in your body, your blood pressure to rise and you are also, evoking feelings of dislike, distrust or worst to boil up in your body. Non of which is pleasing to your Soul. As your intention is to make the other person feel 'less than' you can be sure someone will make you feel the same way....If this is you, hope that someone is not a loved one!
If you respected everyone you came into contact with, this [chapter] would never have had to be written. We may not like another person’s behaviour or maybe what they stand for, but when in [any type of ] interaction with them, we MUST respect that person.
Heated discussions or arguments between people who respect each other, should not be loud and are to remain on topic. Respect goes a long way to save the damage a muscular organ can cause'. (SELF=YOU,Angela Scott (2017),SELF=YOU, Amazon, Chp10)
This part of the Mind, Body, and Soul Care Chapter looked at speech, as it is in the Ethics training division of the Eight Wheel Path. Buddhist teachings state that one should refrain from lying, gossiping not using abusive speech but use your words to teach and to be kind. In Ephesians 4:29 of the bible, the same message is given. Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
To incorporate my three elements, Life, Situation and Yourself. I asked, what do you speak over your life and what title you give your life? I suggested that if you felt life was not so good, any unwanted situation you found yourself in, you may use it as proof that 'life is not so good'. Regarding Yourself using the most powerful spell 'I AM' ensures that you become or remain the words uttered after it. (if used often enough). It is imperative that we become aware of what we allow to come out of our mouths in regards to speech, in-order to ensure that we do not find ourselves in a vicious circle, of not so nice situations repeating itself as we call them into our lives every-time we recall them to others. Non-verbal communication was not forgotten but for the purpose of this chapter, we considered silence and staying silence when one should of spoken up or spoken out. Should you have an issue with whistle blowing, bear in mind that not stopping or disclosing any abuse witnessed makes you a co-perpetrator! Silence as a way to bully or ostracise another ensures the same behaviour turning up in your life from someone you actually care about. To care for your Mind, Body and Soul, one has to be aware what we say to others and ourselves. Being kind in every interaction will ensure you are respectful to others and yourself.
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Right Action &
27th August 2020
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. James 4:17 (KJV)
Do you do the right thing?
Do you choose to do right in all situations? Do you do right by yourself?
Right Action and Right livelihood, according to Buddhist teachings we are instructed not to hurt ourselves, others or animals. For the purpose of this chapter we will ask the questions: Do you do the right thing regarding your life, in situations and to yourself.
Research shows toddlers understand right from wrong at just 19 months. Children know the difference between right and wrong before they reach the age of two, according to research published in a journal published by the Association for Psychological Science. Scientists have found that babies aged between 19 and 21 months understand fairness and can apply it in different situations! Surprised? So if babies know right from wrong what is there to teach you about 'doing the right thing, taking the right action in everything you do'?
In life we assume that most of us do the right thing according to our families, values, to society or as dictated to us via the law or government we live under.
As life throws us challenges, we try to conquer them. Most of us have no interest, need or want to hurt, others or animals. We live our lives to the best of our ability whilst trying to navigate any situation we are in, by doing what is right. This, however may not be the case when we find ourselves in challenging situations.
What did you find yourself doing when challenging situations arises? Do you suddenly react or do you act in a structured way? We are all aware that some situations require us to act without thought. There are other situations that gives us enough time to stop, think, then act. However many of us react without thought to any and every situation we find ourselves in. My advise whilst in a situation that gives you enough time to think before acting is to consider two things: How am I expected to react or act and how I intend to act or react in this situation? Believe it or not, there are some situations that do not call for or warrant a response or any action at all! It is those situations that produce the best outcomes, as it gives you the opportunity to watch it play out itself.
Let's give a few simple examples. You are in a rush and need to drive to your destination, the five traffic lights that you have to pass in-order to get to where you are going turns red as you approach them. Do you act calmly or react negativity? As a conscious driver you know that the lights have changed to allow other cars to go, for pedestrians to cross the road, to stop the flow of traffic from building up or to keep you safe from a train or tram ploughing into you. Those who react negatively to a red stop sign, generally are not thinking of the reasons behind the red light, but themselves. I have found that people who react negatively to every situation, from spilling milk to being locked out of their house, because they left their key inside, often walk around their life with a 'Woe me attitude' a 'why me attitude'. Do you know anyone in your circle that fits that bill? Perhaps that person is you!
The situations we find ourselves in, happen for a reason, it is said that there are no coincidences. Situations occur to teach us something or to keep us on the right path for our lives. When you next find yourself saddled with a situation to overcome, do what you feel is right. Then look back and consider what you have learnt though that situation. Consider the way you reacted and whether you could have reacted or acted differently.
In doing the right thing and how you treat yourself, one should consider what they do for a living (livelihood) As we tend to spend 40 hours a week or 50 years of our lives working , it is important to ensure we pick the right livelihood. How have you chosen your livelihood? Is it a chosen field? Nepotism? Was your current job suggested by a friend? Or is it a job that came into your life at a time you needed a job? Do you consider whether the job you do is ethical? Do you consider whether the work you do harms others, yourself or animals in-order to produce a job for you? Does it matter? Should it matter? After all, you are not the employer, you may feel that you are only a tiny cog in the wheel of that company you work for. Perhaps you only consider the why, you are doing the work you do. To pay the bills and feed the family! It is imperative that we consider the bigger picture and consider our part in serving an employer that pays you to sell clothes that are made by workers in another country for pennies and who may work under terrible working conditions. As a cashier in a first world country, you then scan those clothes with a price tag of 100 times or more than what was paid to make it! Where does the company you work for get their merchandise? Do you feel that it may go against your morals? We are adults and as you have found your way to my books, my blog or my circle, you must have known that I was going to hit a nerve at some point in our relationship. Is it now? You may be saying that it is easy for me to bring up these issues and I shouldn't be making people feel uneasy, as I work for myself, and when I did have an employer I worked in the caring field. My answer to that is Yes and Yes. It is easy to bring up any issue and Yes I should make you wear that cap that fits. How all my clients and staff were treated became my focus, it was to ensure they had a pleasant working, living or appointment wherever I worked. Do you consider this and does it matter?
Many people mourn about their jobs, people say things like 'Oh i'm here again' 'Oh they have given me even more hours this week' 'the coffee machine doesn't work again' or perhaps the one I have heard the most ' I hate Mondays' Now, you already know how I feel about those statements. I will say is this. The person or persons who continually repeat these statements should be grateful that they have a job. This person is ungrateful for the food the job pays for, this person is ungrateful for the rent/mortgage this job allows them and the myriad of other things this job enables them to have and do. I am a great believer in what you say or talk about you bring about. Saying or using the word hate is frowned upon in my household and my circle. To utter the words you hate Mondays or any other day of the week is alien to me. What if you never live to see another Monday!
Consider what you say about your job and think about your values, ethics and morals. Does what you do harm others, yourself or animals? I understand that bills need to paid and mouths need to be fed, but if it forces you to compromise your well being either spiritually or physically, it is not worth doing! As mentioned above, some people feel that they do not have a choice but work for their current employer.......I disagree...If you are a believer of the Law of Attraction you know you will get the ideal job that pays the amount of money you want or need in the location you want, if you trust and believe it will come.The word Action, for me, conjures up a film production and the director saying 'ACTION' all eyes are on you, the lights are focused on you. In all your actions, you should play it out as if you are being observed....(most of the time someone is watching you, that could be your children, family members, friends, neighbours and or strangers) In this way you will be kept on the right track, you will consider your actions, ensuring it is not negative or doesn't hurt yourself or another.
29th September 2020
This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. Joshua 1:8 KJV
The last of the Buddhist three fold training I will discuss in this sequence of talks, is Meditative. This training consist of Right Effort, Right Mindfulness and Right Concentration.
Right Effort is as it states, displaying the right effort. One should make a conscious effort in order to follow the right path in life.
Right Mindfulness – We have spoken about being mindful in everything we do and say. Mindfulness is as it states, being aware of all actions we take and not take.
Right Concentration – Is both Right Effort and Right Mindfulness. When one uses effort and mindfulness they are said to be concentrating. One is using Right Concentration.
This chapter will encompass my three subtitles Life, Situation and Yourself.
We are all aware that if we intend to live a productive life, be of service to our family and friends, our community, even to the world, we need to use effort. One cannot simply sit on the couch and expect to be productive, we have to do something in-order to use Right Effort. The use of Right effort must not be too lax or too effortful. Your effort should be finely tuned. What do I mean? Whatever you do in life, your interactions, your livelihood, your relaxing, your everything, should be done using right effort. Not the right amount of effort, but the Right effort. Take the time to consider what your intentions are for the action you are about to take....Take the time to consider what you are about to say and how you will be received by the person or persons in ear shot. Finely tuned action works for you in the long run!. Right effort allows you time to consider what you do and why you do it. For example, why would you work 75 hours a week and miss out on being with your family? Before you start sending me emails. I understand that needs must! For you and your family to have a better quality of life in the long run, you may want to work 75 hours a week. This is using right effort because you are doing the work for the right reasons. The person with that mindset may start their working week feeling tried, and missing their family, but realise that it is a means to a positive end. The person who feels or should I say is of the mindset that they have no other choice but to work 75 hours a week, as they will not be able to pay the bills, they may get evicted, their marriage may fall apart is working those 75 hours for the wrong reasons, thus not displaying right effort.
Let's consider the two mindsets mentioned above, we shall give them names. James is of the first mindset, he is working 75 hours a week, leaving his family on Monday morning and returning on Friday night. James wished he worked closer, but understands that this is something that will enable his family to have the necessities and some nicer things in the long run. Plus he only intends to do this work for two years!
Jenny on the other hand, works 75 hours a week. She comes home every night after doing 12 hour shifts five days a week, plus a second job on the weekends. Jenny has a family and is of the mindset that she has do these two jobs, as she has no other way of looking after her family. Jenny's mood is always dull and appears tired most days, she also has no idea how long she will have to work at this punishing pace or whether her health will allow it.
We can see that Jenny has her hands full and you may feel that James has a better job than Jenny. That is further from the truth. James's job is hard physical labour, which he completes every day for 15 hours. Jenny's works in a call centre taking calls from people who want insurance, don't want insurance or want to claim on their insurance. On the weekends, Jenny works at the local cinema taking bookings or as a cashier in the booth. Both jobs, for me would be tiresome! But one of these two people have a positive mindset, their interactions with others, you may guess, is pleasant. James does not turn off his reason for working 75 hours a week when talking to his peers or his family members. Jenny does not turn off her reason for 'having' to do what she does, when she speaks to customer's on the phone (she has been reprimanded for being 'rude' several times) Jenny does not turn off the reason she works 75 hours a week when she interacts with her partner or child! So my questions to you again, is, why would you do something that will cause you pain in the long run? Right effort (not too lax or too effortful) will keep you in the right mindset. Right effort, when made a conscious part of our lives will encourage good qualities and be of benefit to all our interactions. It will discourage or reduce bad qualities that could block or interfere with the process of living a productive life.
Going to work is just one example of Right effort. Right effort should be used in every aspect of our lives, one should make a conscious effort to be caring, kind, non-judgemental, friendly, generous, and considerate to name a few. Right effort means thinking before acting and attempting to make the Right choice whilst being mindful.
Right Mindfulness has been discussed in my book 'The Exhorted Soul' - Chapter 12. I asked readers to consider where their feet took them, who they took tea with, what they ate and where the food came from. I considered our private spaces and whether some of our relationships served or hindered us. Our hands where brought into question and I asked readers to consider what they put their hands to or had a hand in! I looked at the heart and health and asked about living a healthy life. Eyes, ears and tongue were also discussed. Being mindful of every aspect of our lives make for a better person.
Being aware of what we do or say enables us to do or say the right thing every time we are called to interact in any way.
My list above is by no means exhausted. Ones feelings is to be considered when thinking of being mindful. Being angry for example, should be investigated with mindfulness, consider why you feel the way you do, how it is making you feel. Could those feelings have a bearing on your intended actions and future thoughts? I must admit when I am angry my thoughts are not always loving. I believe I 'Sin' some times, as my thoughts go some distance away from the loving, caring person I portray. In being mindful of your thoughts, one is able to quickly bring themselves back to present, the here and now, instead of somewhere in the future with thoughts of 'when I see that person I'm going to …...' or the past with 'I should have said or done this or done that' Being mindful keeps you in the NOW and allows you to remain calm, acknowledge what and how you are feeling. I didn't say this was going to be easy but the more you practice this mindful way of thinking, the quicker you will calm down after something or someone has evoked anger in you.
Being Mindful of how you feel, investigating what has made you feel the way you do, should to be used for most feelings: Such as Jealousy, resentment, repulsion, happiness, joy, love etc.
As human beings, negative feelings come and go, if they are acknowledged and investigated we will begin to learn how to entertain them less. Attempting to hold on to these feelings may cause hindrance, dull feelings, upset, and the myriad of body aliments associated with negative feelings, headaches, heart burn, acne, stomach ache, alopecia, the Cancer in you wakes up! Allow negative feelings to come and let them go, why would you hold on to something that is hot! Acknowledge that you have just caught a hot stone, then drop it. It does not serve you no good to watch it burn through your skin and into your bones. This is what you do when you 'hold a grudge' 'hold someone in contempt' withhold kindness, praise or forgiveness. Can you see that holding on to negative thoughts do more harm to you, than the person or thing it is directed at? We can not avoid feelings of negativity, after all it is the people we interact with that evoke these feelings! Is there anyone in your life that fits that bill? Remember they have to be close enough in-order to affect or should I say infect you with their negativity. Is that person your partner? A family member? Your children? Your 'C' friend! Your boss or a co-worker? You know actually who I am talking about. You need to do something about their presence in your life. I will not use this chapter to give you step by step instructions on how you are to distance yourself from them, but you must start TODAY in devising a plan to change the amount of negativity that thing or person infects you with.
Here are some examples for each of the likely negative suspects in your life:-
Shelly who calls you with her 'woe me conversations'. Every-time you answer her calls, you hear, in intricate details how something or somebody has affected her, made her do this or do that, or stopped her from doing this or that.
Two things you can do here: Stop taking Shelly's calls or tell Shelly that you want to hear something positive from her each time she calls you.
For your partner or children......Change you! They will change in response to your acceptance or non acceptance behaviour to their acts of negativity. You will need to become more positive, don't indulge in negative conversations, use rebuttal techniques to their negative ways or speech....(Disclaimer here- Depending on your situation, seek professional help, no one should stay and try and 'fix' an abusive relationship)
Your Boss or Co-worker
Change you! Change jobs. (easy for me to say, I know) Have you noticed that certain jokes or unwanted behaviours can not be repeated or displayed in front of certain co-workers, as they would not be entertained by them? That co-worker has subtly made you aware of their ethics and morals, they have taught you what is acceptable and what is not acceptable in their presence. Are you too afraid to do the same? Is listening to gossip or rude jokes keeping you in the 'in crowd' and is it worth it in the long run?
Practice and Concentration will allow you to grow pass anyone who has made negativity a part of their lives as they infect others with their affliction. As mentioned above we are human and negative thoughts will arise from time to time. If these feelings are not your natural habitat, you may feel dull or down. You are to acknowledge the feelings but begin steps to renew yourself. Relax if you need to relax, sleep is you need to sleep. Be mindful of what your body is telling you. John M. de Castro, Ph.D. In his article The Noble Eightfold Path: Right Effort – states that 'restlessness and worry are indicators of straying from attention to the present moment and wanting things to be different than they are, ruminating about the past, or fantasizing about the future. These states can also be useful as signposts and guides leading back to the present moment. “Right Effort” is to use these states to assist in maintaining energy, staying with mindfulness, and concentrating. The more they are used in this way the easier it gets to sense straying from the path and the sooner the return can happen'.
As we see, one should stay with mindfulness and concentrating. Concentration, can be confused with being mindful. We are to be aware of what we do and say, we are to be mindful of our environment and our feelings. But to concentrate takes a little more effort (right effort). I trust we agree that we should acknowledge all feelings. In order to cultivate and use good or right feelings, we need to concentrate on what feels good or right. Imagine a good feeling, what does it conquer up for you? Do you imagine yourself laying on a beach with the warm sun shining down on you? Perhaps you have thoughts of eating your favourite meal or laying in a freshly made bed with soft pillars and sheets. Whatever it is, concentrate on it for a moment...Many would call this meditation.
The meditative training, according to the Buddhist training is also called Right Concentration. Do you meditate? Many believe that meditation has you crossed legged, thumb and index finger touching, eyes closed and chanting 'Om Mani Padme Hum'. Meditating for me is being aware of my very being. That is, while I am walking, I am being aware of the breeze, the sights, the sounds around me. This can last 2 minutes as I am often walking to the shops and I flip back into thinking about what I'm going to buy, I wonder where I put the shopping list? Is it in easy reach when I get to the shops. Where's my glasses, oh that's a nice car. I often get a sense of serenity while reading and editing my written work. I am often in my garden or sitting on the coach. I read, I edit and then listen to the silence or the bird chirping in the tress. This feeling is not experienced while doing any other activity. I love this feeling of being. I feel that when I am in that space, I am meditating. It only lasts until I finish reading or when my phone rings or sends me a notification.
There are a myriad of things that we think about whilst doing other things. Take any activity you routinely do, what do you think about while you are doing it? Meditating is being aware and being calm. Thich Nhat Hanh, in an interview with Oprah, when asked 'how do you meditate', he responded 'I am meditating right now, while talking to you'! With practice you too will 'be calm' in any situation, you will be 'meditating' most of the time until you have the ability to display equanimity (A calmness, especially in difficult situations).
The more you practice being aware or make use of your ability to concentrate, the calmer you become when dealing with your life, people and situations. I am not about to say that nothing phases me or that you will not ever be phased, but it may appear that way to people around you should you practice 'Concentration' more often. You will begin to reach a stage of equanimity People around you will begin to comment on how calm you are, calmness will begin to exude from you!
Right Effort should not be selective concentration, that is too lax or too effortful, but finely tuned. In every situation consider using the right effort. Right effort allows you time to ask yourself, 'Should I be doing this? Will the outcome benefit me or others? Should I be spending time listening to this gossip? Should I be in a job that makes me sad, when I think of going there? Being mindful of all aspects of our lives makes for a better person. Being aware or mindful of what we do or say allows us the time to think before taking any action or interact in anyway. But what do you do when you feel down or upset? Being mindful is helpful here too. One should acknowledge and investigate the feeling. Consider who or where it originated from, who or what is it directed at? Then consider right effort, does it serve me any purpose to hold on to that feeling of resentment, jealousy, inferiority, joy, love, peace etc. Your body will let you know which feelings it prefer. No one is suggesting that feelings are to be brushed aside, remember you should acknowledge the feelings but also learn from the feeling. It may be telling you that listening to John on the phone for 54 minutes and 23 seconds, where he tells you all that is wrong with his life, your life and the world is not a good idea or use of your efforts! This is something that will have to be practised overtime. Concentration or being aware is your best ally. Concentration will allow you the time to consider your options. If you let it, concentration will come with peaceful thoughts and good feelings. Right concentration brings with it a calmer you, a calmer you brings you time to make the best choice given the situation. Whilst being mindful of how you feel, how the other person concerned may feel in response to your actions or reaction.
Using the Eightfold Path as the foundation of your life, will have you seeing the world through glasses others may find fuzzy. You will be aware of your intuition, how you view your world and your place in it. What you say or don't say. The right action to take, which includes the livelihood you choose to take. Living mindful of others and yourself can only be the right way to go.
27th October 2020
Romans 8:5-8 ESV For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace. For the mind that is set on the flesh is hostile to God, for it does not submit to God's law; indeed, it cannot. Those who are in the flesh cannot please God.
Do you realise that your Mindset determine how you treat your Body and whether you will listen to your Soul (intuition)?
What is Mindset?
J.D. Meier. In his article 'What is Mindset'? States that 'your mindset is your collection of thoughts and beliefs that shape your thought habits. And your thought habits affect how you think, what you feel, and what you do. Your mind-set impacts how you make sense of the world, and how you make sense of you'
“[...] mindset is a set of assumptions methods”, according to Wikipedia “or notations held by one or more people or groups of people that is so established that it creates a powerful incentive within these people or groups to continue to adopt or accept prior behaviours, choices, or tools.”
The Oxford Dictionary calls mindset attitude, and states that “An attitude is a settled way of thinking or feeling about someone or something, typically one that is reflected in a person’s behaviour.
In her book, Mindset: The New Psychology of Success: How We Can Learn to Fulfill Our Potential, Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D. describes two different mindsets: A Fixed-Mindset and a Growth Mindset. Dr. Dweck coined the terms fixed mindset and growth mindset to describe the underlying beliefs people have about learning and intelligence.
She divides students into two types, based on the student's own theory about their own ability. Fixed : These students believe that their ability is fixed, probably at birth, and there is very little if anything they can do to improve it.
Growth: These students believe that ability and success are due to learning, and learning requires time and effort. In the case of difficulty one must try harder, try another approach, or seek help etc.
In Mind, Body and Soul Care (part one) We spoke about 'Right View' and introduced you to Harry, a person who Dr. Carol Dweck would say, has a fixed mindset. We witnessed his thoughts and views of being late for work. Harry felt that he would be severely reprimanded by his Boss. I can only image what his thoughts would contain, if he had a more serious situation to deal with! This chapter showed the importance of one's view or mindset. Buddhist teaching, emphases the fact that our actions and beliefs have consequences. I would like to pose the notion that it is our view and beliefs of life or the situation that dictates the action we take. The chapter also discussed 'Intention' showing that with a positive view of the world, ones intentions may be more honourable, leading to more considered actions and deeds.
I believe that one has a Closed or Open mindset, and their lives follow that trend. Individuals who portray a closed mindset, tend to attach themselves to a religion and or organisation and attempt to live their lives and tackle most situations by the teachings or guidance of that institution. Think of someone you know, who is a devout Christian, Muslim, Catholic or any deeply religious person, can you picture that person outside that religion? Can you picture that person without the cloak of that faith or organisation to follow? The individual attempts to embody that religion or way of life. In most life situation that person will reach for their teachings in-order to react. This is supported by the Wikipedia definition “[...] mindset is a set of assumptions methods, or notations held by one or more people or groups of people that is so established that it creates a powerful incentive within these people or groups to continue to adopt or accept prior behaviours, choices, or tools.”
An individual with an Open mindset, may also follow a religion or organisation with its for life teachings, but can be seen taking other avenues than the rigid teachings they claim to belong to. An Open minded Individual is more accepting to the views others, their lives may be filled with spontaneous acts. They are willing to try new things and are open to a chance to experience something different. The way they deal with situations are also 'open', they tend to deal with the situations at face value and do not reach for a particular institution for a solution.
Bear in mind that one can be Open minded, with a Closed mind, when certain situations appear in their lives! And a Closed minded person will become very open minded when certain situations arise in their lives. Body imagine springs to mind.
What are your thoughts about your body? Are you Open or Closed minded? That girl who decided that her lips should look like a certain celebrity, was open minded enough to accept that that is what she should look like, and became closed minded to consider any other look or to remain 'natural'. Do you consider your parts of your body 'too' fat, large, slim, small etc? Are you closed or open minded about your body imagine? I feel that I could weight less, and very open to how, I could lose the weight. I am also open to staying the weight I am, whilst being somewhat mindful of what I eat, to ensure I am not consuming too much 'unhealthy' foods. We are aware that our bodies are important and should be looked after. I would class myself as open minded, but working 18 hour days, or working two jobs back to back, wasn't an act of a open minded, health or body conscious person. My two jobs started at 7.45pm and ended at 8am, the other started at 8.30am and ended at 2pm. I would sleep for 4 hours and start my night shift again, followed by the day shift! I displayed a very closed mind in regards to my health and body. Again I would consider myself as open minded, but during my closed minded work-fest, I was able to go days with a tooth abscess large enough to swell one half of my face. I hadn't noticed the swelling, but knew the left side of my mouth didn't feel normal. I only checked the inside of my mouth, when one of my children asked me, what was wrong with my face. After opening my mouth and pressing on what appeared to be a lump. I realised that I had a dental issue. I was an open minded person with a closed mind regarding my work ethics to the detriment of my health!
What do you feel you are open or closed minded about? We all can change our mind or mindset about what we originally believed, but we sometimes need to give ourselves permission to change our mind. For me, I had to realise that working as many hours I was offered or could get away with, was in fact, running my body into the ground (literally, if I carried on the way I going).
A closed mind to ones detriment is often an addiction. Any addiction in which you harm your body, be it food, drugs, alcohol or physical self harm, remains an addiction when ones mind is closed. When the mind becomes open to change, the addiction can be addressed and concurred. You will begin to hear what your body is telling you. Opening your mind will also allow the voice of your intuition (Soul) to be heard.
I hope we can agree that our mindset determine how we act, react or live our lives. Our mindset may determine if we listen to our bodies and our intuition. Our Soul or intuition remains constant, whether you are Open or Closed minded. Our Soul will still try to get through to us, sending us messages, via the way we feel.
Being Open minded allows your intuition to speak in-order to, advise and guide you in the direction you should go. Being closed minded, leave you not trusting your intuition, not trusting that small voice inside you. But reaching for what has been tried, tested or taught.
Are you open minded enough to acknowledge any uneasy feelings you may experience, about a situation, place or person to mean something is wrong? Are you open minded enough to act on what your intuition is telling you, although your current situation would suggest otherwise?
Are closed minded? How do you explain that small voice within you that tries to get through and direct you? Should you hear that internal voice do you, believe it, scrutinize it, or brush it aside?
Regardless of the description I propose of a closed or open minded person, my advise can only be...Listen to your body, acknowledge what it is trying to tell you in any given situation or interaction you may have. Reach only for your intuition to guide you.
Once you acknowledge your beliefs (your mindset) and begin to set those beliefs in stone in your life, they become habits or tools that you reach for in most situation you encounter.
Mindset as a habit.
Lets take something as simple a buying a certain brand of Washing Liquid. You have decided that it does what you need it to do, it is at a price that you feel comfortable paying and after all, you have always bought that brand. Then a friend tells you about a new brand, that she feels it much better than what is on the market at the moment... Do you try it? hmmmm Maybe you do, but with some scepticism, as you have been happy with the brand that you have always purchased. This new brand appears better value for the money and seems to do a better job. Do you change to the new brand? Or do you allow doubt to creep in? Doubt says “I bet the price of this new brand will go up in a few weeks” perhaps you decide that your family will have an allergic reaction to this brand, as they always seem to break out in a rash, when you change washing liquid, then you will have to revert back to the old brand, so why bother? On the other hand you may be the type of person who is happy to try the new brand, you may be the type to be open to trying new things in general.
Having a set, fixed or closed mindset causes anguish, when there is a decision to be made that is outside the 'norm' for you. An open mindest allows you to experience the world a little different from the closed minded individual.
In changing your mindest, one goes through stages I have coined 'The Liminal Stage' in my book Lena Body. (Lena Body (2019) Angela Scott Lena Body, Amazon Chapter 12, Ahead) It is the point between, I want change and changing.
It's a time of the unknown, you've never been there before, you have never been in that particular situation, dealing with that particular problem .....If you had, you wouldn't be going through my 'Liminal stage'.
It's a time of the unknown, you've never been there before, you have never been in that particular situation, dealing with that particular problem .....If you had, you wouldn't be going through my Liminal stage. This is a stage of growing, you know that you can not go back, because you have outgrown the situation and want change. In any life changing situation, our mindset will shift.
Take for example moving house. A person who has lived in a house for 30 years has had to change their mindset in order to leave that house, and perhaps that neighbourhood. A person in an abusive relationship has had to change their mindset from 'my partner will change, when they get a better job, more money or when I stop upsetting them' to ' I cannot live like this any-more'. A person who has been in a job for 20 years now wants to leave to pursue their hobby, has had a mindset change of 'I have to make this move, it's a gamble, but I have to do it'
The decisions made above, have one thing in common, that is, 'I have to do something different, the way I felt about the way I was living has to change. I have changed my mind'
Please note, that the knowing something has to change and dong something about it, can take years. The homeowner, lived in that house for 30 years, but knew she wanted to move house 10 years ago. The Survivor of abuse knew that being physically and verbally abused was not what they had signed up for, when the abuse began 12 months into their 12 year 3 children later, relationship, and the employee never wanted to study accountancy in the first place, but as it was a family 'thing' to go to university, study accountancy and go into the family business. So they stayed. They stayed at University, they stayed on to do a Masters degree, they stayed in the same seat, around the same desk for 20 years, knowing that their passion is baking.
After the waiting, enduring and staying, these three being my 'Liminal stage'. There are four stages: Awareness, Stalemate - Sad mate, Seeking help - Chrysalis Stage and Emergence.
This chapter goes on to explain the four stages and how our three participants, the Home owner,the Abuse Survivor and our Employee navigate through the Liminal stages. Full chapters in my new book due December 2020
This chapter discussed Mindset and introduced a definition from J.D. Meier who stated that your mindset is your collection of thoughts and beliefs that shape your thought habits. Dr Carol Dweck described two different mindsets: A Fixed-Mindset, she claimed that students believed that their ability is fixed, as it was probably fixed at birth and a Growth-Mindset in which students believe, that ability and success are due to having an open mind. We see that having the 'Right View' of life, facilitates a less stressful life, and situations like being late for work, will not be the end of the world! Our intention is also important as it leads to a more considered action and deeds.
I believe that one has a Closed or Open mindset, and their lives follow that trend. Individuals who portray a closed mindset, tend live their lives following a particular ethos, such as a religion and or organisation, and attempt to live their lives and tackle most situations by the teachings or guidance of that institution.
An individual with an Open mindset, may also follow a religion or organisation, but can be seen taking other avenues than the rigid teachings they claim to belong to. An Open minded Individual is more accepting to the views others, they are willing to try new things and are open to a chance to experience something different.
I reminded you that one can be Open minded, with a Closed mind, when certain situations appear in their lives! And a Closed minded person may become very open minded when certain situations arise in their lives. Thoughts of body imagine was used as an example, in that a person would have been open minded in-order to decide that a body part should look like that of a celebrity, but closed when suggestions are made that that person should remain 'natural'. I gave an example from my own life as an open minded person who once worked worked (two jobs) 18 hours per day five days a week for months. Showing that as I claimed to be open minded I was very closed minded regarding earning money and disregarding the wear on my body. Any addiction is an act of a closed minded individual which only opens to change when they feel ready and enter my 'Liminal Stage' of change. Which would lead one from the awareness of an issue through to the emergence or solution of the problem, the whole process changes the person, enabling them to drastically change their lives.
Open, fixed, growth or closed minded is a matter of option, you are what you are and labels do not define you. However this chapter may give you pause for thought and allow you the time it takes to read it, to think about your own life and whether you can hear what your Mind, Body and Soul (intuition) is saying to you, about you!
A Spiritual Life
A Spiritual life is a trained mind to see the good in everything. Positivity is a choice. The happiness in your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.
What is Spirituality? There are many definitions, a few are listed here:-
Spirituality - Involves the recognition of a feeling or sense or belief that there is something greater than myself, something more to being human than sensory experience, and that the greater whole of which we are part is cosmic or divine in nature. Dr Maya Spencer - Royal College of Psychiatrists.
The quality of being concerned with the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things. - Definitions from Oxford Languages
Christina Puchalski, MD, Director of the George Washington Institute for Spirituality and Health, states that "spirituality is the aspect of humanity that refers to the way individuals seek and express meaning and purpose and the way they experience their connectedness to the moment, to self, to others, to nature, and to the significant or sacred."
According to Mario Beauregard and Denyse O’Leary, researchers and authors of The Spiritual Brain, “spirituality means any experience that is thought to bring the experiencer into contact with the divine (in other words, not just any experience that feels meaningful).”
A Spiritual life
We are spiritual beings, living in a human body and as spiritual beings, our thoughts determine our happiness. Our thoughts determine how we live our lives and what we put in and demand of our bodies.
It is our spiritual life that cares for our mind, body and soul (if we allow it). Many of us do not realise that it is our mind, thoughts, belief that determine how we live. In the last chapter, we note that our beliefs determined how we perceived and acted or reacted to any given situation, whether we met it at face value or reached for a pre-learned ethos to allow us to deal with the issue at hand.
As a spiritual being, living in a human body, we instinctively know what is good for us and what may be bad for us. We are aware of the damage stress has on the mind, body and Soul. We are aware of what is good for our body, mind and soul. As the Soul cares for us holistically, we will be alerted through the use of intuition.
Whether you believe there is something greater than yourself, which is cosmic or divine in nature, instinct and intuition will be used. Instinct and intuition are innate traits of something warning or guiding us. That something is the 'spirit' part of us.
Instinct is just 'knowing to' suck as a baby, to cry, to be afraid of falling etc. Instinct is present from birth. Intuition is 'knowing that' something is wrong, something is right, something has given you an uneasy feeling. Intuition develops as you grow physically and spiritually, to a point where you begin to trust and or rely on your intuition.
I propose that we live a spiritual life, but I hear you have a few questions! “Why live a spiritual life?” The mere fact that you ask that question tells me that you are not living a spiritual life and would have nothing to lose by trying it. Living a spiritual life allows you to live a stress-less life, a life that is more pleasant, a happier life. People around you will subtly want to know how you be you!! I won't go on … Next question please. “Being spiritual sounds like living like the Dalai Lama” Far from it, without giving away my age, I remember watching Iyanla Vanzant on Oprah's 'Change your life' series. In which she used a house to explain our state of mind and rooms we visit along our life's journey, the basement she said is when we are depressed, living in a woe me mindset, she goes through the house as we raise our mindset, knowing our worth and standing on our own two feet. When she reached the floor beneath the attic, she claimed that she lived there, a place where she knew her worth, knew where she was going in life and how to get there. She knew the type of person she wanted in her life and most importantly she knew the type of person or people she didn't want in her life. In other words, she appeared to have it all worked out and had room to grow. I say grow because there was another room above the one she resided in, that was the attic. Vanzant said that most people lived on the level of the house she lives on, but the humans who lived in the attic were named Jesus, Mother Teresa, Dalai Lama. Iyanla states that she can not live in the attic as she loves 'shoes'! In other words she is an ordinary person with ordinary wants and needs.
Eric Ho (A Yogi) Believes that you should have what you want, when you want it. Being Spiritual shouldn't stop you from owning 'nice' things, living in big houses and having wealth, he certainly does.
Living spiritually has you walking and talking from a peaceful, happier place than most. Living spiritual has you viewing life from a 'higher' prospective than others.
So let's live a Spiritual life, no I will rephrase that, You should live your spiritual life, as my spiritual life will be different from your spiritual life. There are only a few things we will have in common on this spiritual journey, I will come to those later.
To live a spiritual life you will need to become SELFISH! This is hard to comprehend, I know, especially for many females, as we, for the most part are very giving and nurturing by nature. You will need to gather information about you. Ask yourself, “what do I want my life to look like, in respect of how I live my life?” Here's an example. Person A may say 'I want to enjoy life with my friends and family. I want to enjoy my job and what I do for a living, which should be reflected in my wage. I want a loving Partner.
Person A seems to be a fun loving individual who wants to enjoy life, their friends, family and what they do for a living. Living a spiritual life will set the foundations of living that life. Person A will have to become selfish in respect of weeding out anyone who does not allow them to be at peace. Living a spiritual life will allow Person A to steer away from drama or anyone who may cause them stress. Person A would like to enjoy what they do for a living and be content with their pay for this work. Living spiritually would ensure that they are causing no harm to themselves, by working too hard, too long hours for pay that only allows them to make ends meet. Living spiritually would also ensure Person A did not work in a toxic environment. A spiritual living person would ensure (as much as they could) that their work/job cause no harm to others! Sometimes we have the mindset that we need a job, we get though the interview, we are offered the job and we begin to work for the money to pay the bills, the rent/mortgage, for food etc... A spiritual living person would firstly trust that they would be offered the right job for them, they may also do a little research into the company they intended to work for, noting that it does not harm others, for example paying workers in third world countries minimal pay with poor working conditions. Research would also rule out cruelty to animals. The job chosen would be one of want not need.
Person A states that they want a loving partner......again, as mentioned earlier, a person living a spiritual life will ensure that most of the people in their lives encourage peace, so the loving partner is a forgone conclusion as they wouldn't settle for anybody less.
All the above seems easy! Not so. It will take you some time to ensure that drama filled friends and family members are kept at arms length. Once you begin to become selfish, in regards to your peace, your drama-less or stressless life, others will realise that you have changed and some will act accordingly. It is said that we teach people how to treat us. I believe this to be true. As you will find, after a some time of not entertaining friends and family members' drama filled phone calls or drop by's to chat, they will begin to get the picture that you are no longer their sounding board. Now, let's be clear, I am not saying that you tell your friend or family member to stop calling you with their drama, care has to be taken, especially if you have filled that role in their life for some time. What I am saying is that you have to make yourself less available, here you will begin to consider self (selfish) you will begin to notice the effect of listening to someone who goes on about the negative aspects of their lives, you will note the amount of time spent soaking up that persons' woes and how you feel after the visit or phone call. Once you have done that, you will find a way to discourage the amount of calls or visits.
An unemployed spiritual person will still ensure that the company they are to work for is in their best spiritual interest, they will trust that they have made the right choice. Being spiritual will not stop workplaces being toxic and Person A would need to find ways to avoid any work issues keeping them up at nights....As with any toxic environment, one should to try and change it or change themselves....This could mean leaving, the experience would be chalked up to experience and an investigation into what was learnt about ones self. Again it is about self care (selfish). So now Person A spends less time with mourning Mary, and woe me William, they have more time to spend with friends and family members who are more optimistic about life and with work being a place they have chosen, I can see the benefits of Person A living a spiritual life. Person A will begin to attract like minded people into their life.
Person B wants to reach a certain career level and financial goal, later getting married and living in a nice big house. Person B can also live a spiritual life, but first certain questions need to be asked, as with Person A , one has to know their self. Person B would need to ask themselves, why did they choose the career path they are on, was it chosen for them? A spiritual living person would choose a career that gives them satisfaction and or a sense of purpose, the hard work needed to reach a promotion or the next level will be welcomed. A spiritual living person wouldn't be over stressed by the climb. Person B states that they would like to reach a certain financial goal, again as a spiritual living person, one would ask, why do you want to reach this particular financial goal? The answer would identify whether they are reeving off the spiritual path or not. A higher financial level to show others that s/he 'has made it' would be the thoughts of a person who is living from 'without' as opposed to living 'within' out. Wanting to be married and living in a nice big house, does not discount a spiritual living person, why shouldn't we all have what we want. If getting married and living in a big house is for 'show', for others to assume that they are rich and living a 'good life' this would not be living a spiritual life, as they would be thriving in order to project a certain self.
A spiritual living person, is a self that may have a big house, a marriage a huge amount in the bank, but the reason for wanting these material and financial objects is not for 'show' but for self, (selfish) a self that perhaps can help others, a self that can build something greater than they would be able to, without the objects mentioned. Most of us want to be financially comfortable, most of us want to live in a nice house, some would like a big house. One would need to consider what they would be prepared to do or loose to get these objects. A spiritual living person, starts the process of gaining wealth with only honourable intentions.
From what you have read above about living a spiritual life, one can come to the conclusion that a spiritual life is being somewhat selfish in regards to their peace and state of mind. In regards to money, job and livelihood, the spiritual living person would ensure that the company or type of work undertaken lived up to their personal, ethical and moral standards. Note that Person A and Person B did not go out and heal the sick, turn water into wine, gather up orphan children and care for them or win the Noble Prize for peace. They just carried on their daily lives ensuring that their peace of mind was at the forefront of everything they did. They considered each environment they entered, whether that was with family, friends or work colleagues, to ensure that they were not soaking up negativity or causing harm from what was said or in deed.
Can you imagine meeting Person A or B? How do you think you would feel after meeting them? As I mentioned in the chapter named Meditative, A person who is happy with their life and their responsibilities is often a joy to be around, in any situation, wanted or otherwise. They would have a different take on life, than most. Consider person A or B running late for work! Now consider person A or B missing the train or in traffic, in a queue at the supermarket or as someone who has returned to their car to find a dent in the rear passenger side door! How do you think they would react? Bear in mind that we all have human traits and being spiritual doesn't stop you jumping up and down and using a few choice words! But consider how long person A or B would remain angry? The reason for the questions is to alert you to the fact that a spiritual person is an ordinary individual, but lives their lives from a place of peace, calm and learning. Whether that's dealing with spilt milk, toxic work environments or people they invite into their space.
Obviously, there is more to living a spiritual life than following the examples of Person A and Person B, perhaps by following the teachings of the eight fold path and ensuring that we make use of our intuition, we can then feel confident that we are on the right path. We are spiritual beings living in a human body, if we ensure that both are considered in every interaction, our lives will be enriched exponentially.
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