An Inspired Journey

In Honour of LIfe and Love


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The surrender and release from addiction…

After having decided to stop smoking several months ago, going through the process of readying myself and then putting action to it, has not been easy. I’ve been off the wall, so to speak. Emotional, in mental turmoil, not felt at all like myself and some days at a real loss how to cope with the experience of what I’ve been going through.

I’m now getting myself back on track and finding my way again. Putting a sincere effort into clearing the toxic chemicals in my body and releasing the mental and emotional traumas within that brought about my habitual smoking habit. This very writing is part of that process… openly admitting the habit, openly being vulnerable to what I’m feeling, openly acknowledging I still have a way to go.

It’s been a difficult 6 weeks but a more difficult time throughout the last few years in realising the addiction, coming to terms with it, accepting it as an addiction and the hold it had over me, and finding the peace in my heart that I needed to be able to release the habit.

Since stopping, the hardest parts have been the disturbances (physical, mental and emotional) not smoking has brought about, as my body no longer has the chemicals it’s used to, cursing through my veins.

Physical – constant headache, nausea, aches and pains, cramps, not sleeping. I never expected this. I didn’t know my body would fight itself. So unexpected was the dehydration, the peeling skin, the aches and pains, the muscles twitching and cramping, the long spasms as my body can no longer rely on that form of sustenance regardless of its poisonous affliction. Some days this feels cruel. Some days it feels wrong to deplete it of its addiction. Some days… some days, it feels anything but a healthy way of being.

Mental – loss of mental clarity mainly through sleep deprivation, disturbing dreams when I did sleep. Unable to focus for more than short intervals. Breathing through the headache that feels like I’ve been hit with an axe in my frontal lobe. It’s constant. A long thin needle like pain cursing through the motor cortex and reaching out through my eyes fleeting yet debilitating. Breathe, breathing through it. Concentration gone. Misunderstanding actions and words and feeling like I just can’t think – it hurts to think. I need sleep. My brain is tired, my thoughts are tired. I work through it having a strong pain threshold and knowing how to ignore the pain and function over the top of it, or underneath it – whatever the need. I can suffice. This too shall pass.

Emotional – feeling I’ve lost connection to myself, everyone and everything. Anger and sadness all rolled into one. Feeling completely blocked, shut off and shut down, with only fleeting moments of connectivity. Not enjoying the comments people  make whether positive or negative – feeling I have to restrain myself from reacting as the fight within wants to retaliate. Desperately needing a hug (but not wanting one at the same time) and at times looking for support but realising this too, is not the self-reliance and support I need to get through this and not what I need to live my life healthily as a self-empowered person. I need to find the strength within to carry myself through this and today, I finally feel that is coming – slowly and gradually awakening on a much deeper level than I’ve experienced prior to this moment. I have weak moments, moments where I look to other’s for support but it doesn’t come – not for lack of help but more so because they can’t replace the chemicals, a hug doesn’t feed my body with the wanton relief it’s looking for. I see this as a small sufferance in light of what I’m sure will come – the freedom of being free of the attachment… I hold that thought.

I’ve experienced and felt deeply, somewhat with curiousity at times, the inner emotional and mental battle, along with the physical implications as my body can no longer rely on the chemicals and begins its adjustment to a more natural state of working and functioning. An inner battle resides where the addiction fights for its continued life, desperately trying to find a foothold. Grasping for survival as it senses it’s loss of life and can’t surrender to death – it competes with itself, causing an angry yet sad battle – it’s in turmoil, sad at its impending death and with its dying breaths cries from the depths of impending doom for assistance to help it survive. It grasps at any fleeting chemical it can find within the body to stay alive. It is losing its hold. It knows it. It cries until it let’s go, surrenders and slowly but gracefully releases itself, only to rise up again in moments causing further physical pain; my body suffering but adjusting, slowly, steadily and I start to feel it lessening.

In a way I feel like I’m saying goodbye to a best friend. A friend who has supported me in my times of trials, who truly knew me and my fears, who was always there when I needed them, who never judged me. Coming to terms with how attached this union had become and realising that I felt I couldn’t survive without this ‘friend’ brought me to needing to say goodbye so that we could both be free of the hold we had on each other. Goodbye my friend, my lover, my supporter, my co-conspirator to the blindness that held me bound in a life (and thought) that I couldn’t do without you. Thank you for the help you provided when I needed you. Thank you for being there for me when there was no other and I couldn’t lean on myself. Thank you for the simple release from my pain that you afforded me. I say goodbye to you in true grace and send you off with blessings and gratitude for all that we’ve shared and grant us both peace.

smokeTrust. Release. Let go….

#spiritual #addiction #smoking #trust #emotional #physical #mental #connection

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Changing the Habit

We are by nature, creatures of habit. So, just as anything can become a habit, so too can our ‘regular’ mood. Sometimes we feel angry simply because it’s become habitual to feel that way. We can stop this by taking regular stock of ourselves and make a choice to feel differently.

 

We’ve all heard people say, “She’s so happy and friendly.” or “He’s such a happy baby.” or “He/she is always in a bad mood!” We all know people like this, either mostly happy, or mostly sad or angry.  

 

If you find yourself often in a bad mood, try practicing changing it. Say to yourself, I don’t want to be in a bad mood any more. Change the mind set to that of ‘I’m going to find something to be happy about.” Use your senses, is there a scent that is pleasing or beautiful, do you have something that you like the feeling of, look around, is there a colour or picture you really appreciate, is there a song or a sound you enjoy? Feel the difference in mood when you find something you can really appreciate and then develop that sense of appreciation.

 

Don’t want to be angry?                 Practice SMILING!

 

You’d be amazed at how hard it is to stay angry with a smile on your face. Try it… Smile; make it so big it reaches your eyes. In that moment, you cannot be angry.

 

We really do have the ultimate freedom of choice. We can choose to be in any mood at any time, it really is up to us. We can be positive; we can be negative. We can be happy; we can be sad. We can be angry; we can be tranquil. It is up to us.

 

Make a choice – change your mind. Choose what mood you’re going to be in.

 

Whatever you choose, make sure it is one you’re happy with. If you want to be angry then so be it. The choice and decision is yours to make.

 

The first step begins by making the choice.

 

Namaste

Maggie


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Attitude of Gratitude

We can all suffer from conflict at some point in our every day lives, whether it be in the form of conflict with others or internal conflict. Conflict can come from many different sources. Simply not being able to make a direct decision causes us to feel conflicted. Being annoyed at someone else’s opinion or actions, how we ourselves think about things, how we judge a situation or event, and how we choose to live can all cause conflict within ourselves. Conflict causes us to feel inner turmoil and can be the product of a range of different emotional outcomes. It can lead to enormous amounts of stress, worry and all manner of health problems.

 

Conflict isn’t always about being annoyed or angry with other people. Quite often conflict is internal, and is a result of our own thoughts and thinking processes. If we find ourselves in a bad mood for example, it can be a result of inner conflict; whether it is because of an event, or simply because we have not made a conscious choice to investigate why we feel the way we do

 

If  we don’t choose to be in a peaceful state of mind and remain angry, hurt, or sad, we naturally feel inner conflict because our natural state of being is peaceful and tranquil. Therefore, any state of being other than a peaceful, tranquil state of being, conflicts with our natural state of being, autonomously. Our vibration alters with every choice we make within our state of being. The vibration we emit is measurable.

 

Gratitude is a state of mind. Whenever we become grateful for an event, for someone, or for something, we enter into a different state of being. Our actual mind alters its state and enters into a quiet resonance.

 

We always have the option to change our mind. Therefore, we always have the option to change our state of being. When we choose, (because it really is a choice we have) to be grateful for everything in our lives, we enter into that space of peaceful resonance.

 

We choose our state of being either consciously or it comes about by default letting life depict our frame of mind and state of being.

 

Having the attitude of gratitude is a learned process that is readily available to us all.

 

It is a really simple process, and it is easiest to start with the small things. Each little annoyance is an opportunity to practice gratitude. For example, you spill some coffee while you’re making it, and tut in annoyance.

 

Stop.

Observe how you are feeling mentally, physically and emotionally. It’s important to observe how you feel so you can recognise this state of being as you go – you’d be amazed at how often these feelings enter into your state of being every day.

 Close your eyes.

Breathe deeply in, and then out.

Consciously relax.

Be grateful for the opportunity to practice gratefulness, afforded by the spilled coffee.

It’s that simple.

 

If you make your attitude one of gratitude, life itself will be something to be grateful for.

 

Everything we do is an opportunity to practice and be grateful. It is a life changing experience to have gratitude. Unless you enjoy being unhappy, it is a well worthy practice to take up. The more you practice this process the easier it becomes until you find yourself in this state of being more often than not.

 

Embrace yourself in times when you find it difficult to be grateful. Just relish in the moment of wanting to be in that state of being. Never ever get angry or out of touch with yourself during difficult times. These processes are not another reason to beat yourself up or judge yourself. Embrace yourself throughout the process by simply loving yourself as you are in any given moment. Remembering “I am perfect as I am. I am perfect in every moment.” Embracing yourself along the way stops the process of blame. Just be and let it flow. Gratitude develops over a period of time so continue practicing and embracing yourself along the way and make each moment a more conducive and loving one.

 

Namaste,

Maggie


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A Glitch in My Serenity

Greetings, fellow travellers.

Today’s post is a little insight into my day as it has been quite revealing.

Normally I get up reasonably early. I don’t get up with the birds, but like to enter the day early enough to enjoy the serenity of the morning, before the regular hustle and bustle of the day starts.

This morning however, I woke up somewhat startled to a rather loud and unpleasant noise, somewhat akin to a jackhammer. It seemed to be emanating from my front door. It was quite a rude awakening but curiosity got the better of me and I staggered in the direction it was coming from. I was pleasantly surprised to find a young man using a petrol driven steam cleaner, gallantly going to the task of washing down my entrance. Wonderful I thought, as it badly needed cleaning and going to save me a lot of time.

I live in a small complex with eight other units. Each unit has its own little entrance, which branches off from a long single driveway. As the morning went on, each of the entrances were slowly being taken to task by the gallant young man who was industriously cleaning them. Five hours later, my serenity was being severely tested, as the ongoing noise of this machine was steadily becoming a real annoyance. It hadn’t quite got to the point of causing a headache, but was certainly making focussing on my work very difficult.

I looked out to see how much progress had been made and was relieved to see the last entrance was being done. I breathed a sigh of relief, and was about to go back inside when I was rudely awakened to the realisation that it wasn’t just the entrances that were being cleaned, but the long driveway as well. This was going to be an all day process.

My mind went into hyper-drive with thoughts of not being able to get my work done, of how inconvenient it was to have this awful noise; of giving up for the day; of finding something else to do other than things I needed to focus on; of wishing I had a car to be able to go somewhere quiet, etc, etc etc. My thoughts raced on like this for what seemed like forever.

This infernal internal conflict rose to a hyper-pitch until I abruptly realised, the noise in my head was actually louder than the noise I was originally conflicted about. I stopped still. Took a deep breath and then focused on the noise of the machine and there was quiet in my mind. In that moment the realisation that the noise of the machine was a saving grace from the real noise of my own thinking.  I breathed in the noise of this machine and spent just a moment with it, in complete clarity.

As I smile and find the humour in the experience, and with a grin, I am also afforded the opportunity to write this post and say a passing grace to the oracle of this event: Oh wonderful yellow machine, belching out steam and water droplets, scurrying along madly with your effervescent indoctrination, what wisdom you have afforded me.

This is not to say I won’t be glad for a reprieve from the ongoing noise, for I have work to do and whilst I am grateful for the clarity, the ensuing headache is becoming a bit much.

We can take moments in our day to realise potential opportunities to embrace our life and all of the events within it. While it is noisy and I am getting somewhat of a rather throbbing headache from it, at the end of the day, the machine will be gone and so to its gallant operator. I’ll be left with a lovely clean driveway and entrance, and the clarity of the experience it granted me.

Blessings and joy, my fellow travellers, May your days be full of realise moments, albeit less noisy ones. 🙂

Maggie


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Who Are You – Finding Your Authentic Self.

If I were to ask you who you are, how would you respond? (And please feel free to respond to that question in the comments section below. I am genuinely interested in your answers.)

Most people when asked who they are respond by recognition of the job they do, whether they are a student, a wife, a mother/father, lover, etc. That answer depicts a position or title, or role, not who you actually are. I am a teacher. I am a student. This isn’t who you are; this is what you do.

People have become so lost in their roles as parents, the job they do, the aspirations of their own parents, social stigmas, etc, that they really don’t who they are any more and what the true representation of themselves is. This quite often happens as well, after a relationship ends and we need to find ourselves again, after the loss of a loved one, or a long time job suddenly finishes. People who retire quite often go through a phase of needing to find themselves, and quite often feel a little empty and not know what to do with their time. Empty nest syndrome happens because suddenly we feel empty not filling a role, and this is a wonderful time of regeneration and reflection on who we are authentically.

Several years ago, I was doing some group work with a lovely bunch of people. The aim of the group was to work on the principles of knowing what we want, in order to set goals and work on achieving them. Out of the twelve or so people in the group, around 10 of them confided to not having a clue as to what they wanted. This really struck home as to how life can become so conflicting and confusing.

It struck me, that if so many people don’t know themselves enough to know what they really want in life, then for the most part, we are not in contact with our authentic selves, and that is something that needs to be rectified.

You can’t in reality, know what you really want out of life unless you know yourself. To quote Shakespeare: “To thine own self be true.” Never were truer words said because if we can’t be true to ourselves, then to whom are we being true?

If we want to live an authentic life rather than a life based on others and the validation of others, then we must find who our authentic self is. It can be quite a scary thought to throw off the masks and show your authentic self to the world, but the benefits of doing this mean you can have a much more purposeful and fulfilling life. Finding our truly authentic self can be one of the most nurturing and loving things we can possibly do for ourselves. To live life doing what we really want to be doing, and being the real person we are, is an amazing journey on its own. To honour yourself by finding your authentic self is truly one of the most opening and loving ways of living and embracing life.

The answer to finding your authentic self is through self-inquiry. You need to start keeping a record of things – start a journal.  Make notes of the things you’ve liked and disliked throughout your day. At the same time, asking yourself simple questions as listed below. Then a few weeks later recheck the answers because your original answer will most likely of changed over a very short period. You need to sit quietly with pen and paper, think about your answers and write down not only the answer to what you like, but also what it is about each thing that you do like. Does it represent something to you? Why is my favourite colour torquoise? Because it’s deep and vibrant. It reminds me of other things I love such as water, a beautiful sky. I find it a very relaxing colour. I like wearing it because it brings out my natural colouring. And so on, whatever comes to your mind. You may not even know at first what it is you like about something and that’s ok too because it will come to you as you begin to find yourself.

Some simple questions to ask yourself:

  • What is my favourite colour? What do I like about it?
  • What genre of movies do I prefer? Why?
  • Where do I most like to relax? Why?
  • What do I consider fun?
  • What makes me laugh?
  • What type of books do I prefer to read?
  • Who is my favourite author?
  • Who inspires me?
  • Out of all of the things I do, what do I enjoy doing the most? How often do I actually do those things?
  • What do I value most about life?
  • What are three things I can’t do without?
  • What are three things I can do without?

Don’t forget to also ask yourself why.

Finding out what you actually do like the most helps you get to know you. This in turn will help you know what it is you would most like in your life. Can you answer the question now, what do you want? Many people can’t answer that question either. At first, they quickly answer with something, but then after really thinking about they don’t actually know. The authentic you knows exactly what you want! When you help yourself find who you are you can start knowing what you want and start living the life you want to live rather than just having one.

People say, “Get a life!” I’m saying, let’s find your life! Find the life you truly want to lead and live. In finding your authentic self you can be living your life with joy instead of just existing and getting through it. I know which way I prefer to live and I’m sure you would too if you’re not already.

At the very least, can you choose a dwarf that best suits your character? Or perhaps you are Snow White?

Onwards and upwards, my fellow travellers and may we all find our joy in this life.

Blessings

MaggieImage

Picture from Disney.wikia.com


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Nurturing the soul

I believe if we honour life as it presents itself to us, we can become more peaceful and tranquil throughout all of our days. It’s when we don’t honour the experience that we’re having it tends to keep repeating itself, simply because we’re not learning from the experience and opportunity being given.

Quite often we are bombarded with ‘positive thinking’ posts on facebook and in our lives in general, and told to ‘let things go’. But what does letting go mean exactly? Most people I speak to don’t really know. How often do you hear someone saying, I had a hard day but I let it go, so I feel great now?

Throughout our days we very often have moments that frustrate us, sadden us, or lead us to feeling not so good about ourselves or our lives. Letting go of something is a process, it isn’t just something we do. I can’t just say, well I’m going to let go of that, because it’s not going to go just by wanting it to.

What is the process to letting go of things?

The first part of the process involves acknowledging how you feel. For example, recognising and stating in your mind, how you’re feeling and why. If you try to ignore how your feeling all it does is bury it deeper. Then the next time something similar happens or you’re feeling the same way you don’t have the tools to allow for it, because you didn’t allow yourself to acknowledge and experience from it.

The second step is to honour how you’re feeling. Never have the thought, I shouldn’t feel like this, because you do and there’s nothing wrong with the way you feel. Our feelings are signposts leading us to recognising where we can grow and expand, so it’s very worthwhile exploring our feelings. The ideal is to love and honour yourself in all of your experience, not just when you feel good about yourself. Honour yourself by recognising that it’s ok to feel the way you do. If you are sad, it’s ok to be sad. We don’t want to nurture the thought that its not ok to feel sad because otherwise we feel worse for having felt sad. I honour myself in this sadness and I bless the experience of feeling sad.

And lastly, we allow love to wash over us just like a wave from the depths of the great ocean we can allow love to embrace and encompass us. This helps wash away the emotion and replace it with loving feelings. Visualise and imagine yourself laying in a pool of love and letting love wash over you. Let it fill you completely and as it does, visualise any feelings becoming love. Nothing exists outside of love so everything becomes love. You are love.

This process is wonderful because we haven’t bullied ourselves into feeling better, we haven’t tortured ourselves, we haven’t made small of ourselves. What we’ve done is nurture ourselves and nourish ourselves in a honourable and loving way.

Blessings, that’s what nurturing is. We are capable of being ultimately loving towards ourselves and others no matter what the experience. It is only when we are not nurturing ourselves that life becomes a battle. We must stop the battle, stop resisting what we’re feeling, honour and nurture ourselves. Long life love and nurturing.

Peace

Maggie