Thrivecraft ™ inspirational professional training, mentoring and business alchemy creating thriving coaches and meditation teachers

Posts tagged “calming emotions

Meditation Made Easy

Meditation Made Easy

For Busy Minds

Meditation Workshops with Maggie Kay

Saturday and Sunday afternoon

At the Port Eliot Festival 28 – 31 July

St Germans, Cornwall

 

 For info click here – Port Eliot Festival workshops

port eliot

Ten Tips for Easy Meditation

We’ve all had those moments.  Suddenly, we are totally absorbed in a thing of great beauty – an incredible golden sunset on a beach, a piece of heart soaring music that moves us to tears.  The rest of the world disappears.  There’s only this wonderful experience, filling us, thrilling us.  Anything we were doing pauses.  Anything we were thinking melts away.  We are transported into vivid aliveness and feel like we are standing in the center of the universe.

This aliveness is our natural state.  It is waiting beneath and below all the complicated layers of our life ready to greet us.  All we have to do is remember to drop in from time to time – visit the oasis, refresh ourselves – and we can take that aliveness back into our everyday life.  Somehow, then, our troubles aren’t quite so troubling.  We feel like our emotional batteries are charged up.  We can see more clearly how to deal with things.

This is essentially what we are doing when we sit down to meditate.  It’s so easy to forget our natural, alive state that we need to do something routinely to remind ourselves.  So, we build reminder time into our daily pattern – get up, brush our teeth, have a cup of tea, meditate – and that way we don’t forget to remember!  As little as ten minutes spent like this every day can invite the aliveness back into our life.

So, how to we do it?

1. Decide what you are doing

Before you start meditating, be clear how long you will sit for and what kind of meditation practice you will do.  Have a silent watch or clock within sight so you can open your eyes and peek at the time if you need to.  You may notice that you soon don’t need a clock.  Before long you will instinctively ‘feel’ that the time you’ve allocated is up and it’s time to come out of meditation.

2. Choose your time

It makes a big difference if you can stick to the same time to meditate every day (or every other day or every week – whatever routine you establish).  If you pick your time and stick to it you don’t have to keep re-making the decision to meditate and figuring out when.  It just becomes part of your day or week.

First thing in the morning is great.  It’s well worth getting up half an hour earlier to give yourself this start to the day.  Some people prefer last thing at night when everything is over.  Or perhaps your best time is when you get home from taking the kids to school.  Or maybe after getting home from work and just before dinner.  Whatever time you pick, have a satisfied tummy – neither hungry nor overfull.  Choose your time and make it part of your daily or weekly routine.

3. Find your quiet spot

Find a place where you can be quiet and undisturbed.  Be in a room on your own (unless others are meditating with you).  Unplug your phone and switch off your mobile.  Be out of earshot of TV or radio.   Let others know to leave you in peace.

It’s nice to set the scene for your self.  Perhaps face a garden window or a vase of flowers or an inspiring picture.  Burn some incense or essential oils.  Make this your special meditation spot.  You will find that this place will start to have a peaceful atmosphere, a meditation ‘vibe’.

4. Be comfortable

Find a chair where you can sit comfortably in an alert, upright position.  A dining room chair is good, or an easy chair.  You can also prop yourself up at the head of a bed.  Undo any tight clothing, buttons or zips.

Wherever you are sitting, support your back with cushions so that your spine is reasonably straight and your head and neck is free.  If you are on a dining room chair you can put a cushion under your feet.  If you are in an easy chair you can see if you prefer having your legs folded up cross-legged.  If so, make sure your knees are supported with cushions if needed.

Some people like to sit on a pile of cushions on the floor, or a meditation stool.  If so, put a blanket down first as a mat, then your cushions or stool on top.  Two or three firm cushions are about right.  At the right height your back is not bowing or arching but relatively straight.  You can straddle the cushions like a horse, or sit with your legs folded in front of you cross-legged. Support your knees by tucking extra cushions under them if they don’t reach the ground so you can relax at the hips.

However you sit, you should have a strong base – a tripod of your backside and your two knees. Have your hands resting in your lap.  Tying a shawl or scarf at your tummy gives a little shelf to rest your hands on if you like.

There’s always the option to lie down on a bed or the floor if you think you’d be most comfortable like this.  The only draw back is that you may find yourself feeling sleepier than if you were sitting upright.  None the less, the number one priority is that you are comfortable.  So if lying down is right for you, that’s fine.

Close your eyes lightly, or have them half open if you are very sleepy or disoriented.

If you get stiff or pins and needles while you are meditating, gently and slowly move and re-position yourself and carry on.  However, the idea is to find out how to sit completely comfortably for an extended period of time without having to move, so keep playing with your posture until you get it just right.

When you are settled, close your eyes lightly, or have them slightly open if you are very sleepy or disoriented.

5. Let the weight drop down

Take several big, long, deep, deliberate, audible breaths.  As you breathe out, let your weight drop down through the sitting bones – down, down, down through your seat and the floor into the ground.

Even as we let our weight drop down, we are also aware of an invisible force supporting us upright.  It’s as though we have a taut string attached the crown of our head, reminding us of our natural poise and alertness.  The more we relax and drop down, the more we feel effortlessly supple and upright.

6. Relax and soften

Relaxing further, roll your shoulders a few times each way.  Then move your head gently from side to side.  Make some wild faces to release your face muscles (nobody’s looking!).  Let your jaw hang slightly slack and your tongue be free. You can use your hands to gently massage your jaw, cheeks and forehead.  Carry on over the scalp and down the back of your neck.  Give your shoulders a bit of a squeeze then stroke down your arms to your fingers.  Continue down the body with your hands, squeezing or stroking all the way down to your toes.  You can hang over your toes for a while.  Keep breathing easily and slowly uncurl.  Finally, shake out your hands and finish with a nice stretch.  Come back to a relaxed, upright sitting posture again.

Take a few more strong breaths. Let your tummy be soft.  Check your jaw is still slack and that the tongue is free.

7. Drop into the breath

Notice how you are breathing now, however it wants to come and go.   Feel how it is to be breathing, how you feel inside yourself, the rhythm of the breath as it comes and goes.  Let yourself be filled with breath.  It’s as though your whole body is breathing, expanding and contracting with every in and out breath.  Feel your breath right down to your toes, to the tips of your fingers, to the roots of your hair.

8. Give your head a rest

As you’re breathing, you may be aware of questions and preoccupations rippling around in your mind.  It probably feels like its going on in your head.  However, invite your thinking mind to rest for a little while. It’s not needed for few minutes.

Soften your eyes, let your eyes go soft and dewy (even though your eyes are closed you can do that) and let the brain itself feel slack in your head.  Just feel the breath going in and out the body.  Breathe in and out and let all those thought particles fall through the breath like dust particles falling through the air in a sunny room.  Let them all fall to the ground.

9. Feel into your heart

Breathing into the body, notice how you are physically feeling around your heart area in your chest.  Can you feel if it is tight or relaxed? Can you feel if your heart feels nice, or if it feels pain, or somewhere in between? Can you feel if your heart feels far away or if it feels very vivid and acute and present?

And whatever it is or isn’t, just noticing it as you breathe. Feeling the texture and the tone of our heart.  You might be aware that there is a kind of atmosphere – an emotional atmosphere around your heart.  You might not have a name for it, but you can feel its ambience, its flavour.

Perhaps you can even sense its colour – the colour of your emotional heart right now. You might not see it exactly, but whatever occurs to you – the colour or colours of your heart. Even if it’s not what you expect, even if it’s not what you want, notice the colour.

10. Being with all that you are

Continue to breathe with all that you are – all that you think, all that you feel, all that you sense, and all that you know.  Gather yourself into the breath and let yourself drop into the vastness of your total being.  Getting into this zone is a meditation in itself, and you need do nothing more.  However, you are now also ready to take it further into a focused meditation if that’s what you’ve chosen.

Guided Meditation

Maggie Kay’s complete guided meditation – Ask Your Inner Wisdom – leads you through a full preparation / relaxation and then on to find inner answers from deep within your own wisdom.

The 20 minute MP3 download of Ask Your Inner Wisdom and free 2 minute sample is available at Meditation with Maggie Kay 

Online Meditation Course & Meditation Teacher Training

Maggie Kay’s 4 week online meditation and certified meditation teacher training courses are also available at  Meditation with Maggie Kay

 


Meditation and New Year Angels

For me, 2015 started with much excitement as I began printing out the manuscript of the book I have been writing for the last nine months – Diving for Pearls: Discovering Inner Wisdom – new book from Maggie Kay.  The pages were literally rolling out of the printer on the stroke of midnight, much to my delight at having completed it.

In fact, I watched the new year London fireworks on TV with the first few chapters in one hand and my wonderful husband Pat’s hand in the other, buzzing because I had just managed to finish writing my first good draft that evening.  I had been aiming to complete my book by the end of the year, but had given myself some licence to go over that if necessary.  When I realised I was nearly there on the morning of the 31st, however, I went all out to get it done in time for the dawn of 2015, forgoing meals and typing with happy fervour.

At Pat’s suggestion, we read out a chapter to each other before bed in the wee hours. I hadn’t shared my book with anyone before so was thrilled that he absolutely loved it and can’t wait to read it all.  I feel so supported by Pat who has been nudging me to get on with book writing for years.  And now I’ve finally done it!

Things took an interesting turn on New Year’s day when our Jeep broke down while food shopping in the neighboring village.  Yet, even that was somewhat charmed because a lovely young farmer man with typical practical confidence and know-how spent an hour trying to start it – a bearded angel in oily jeans and a pick-up truck.  I had actually put out a prayer for a mechanical angel to show up, and he did!

Despite his good-willed attempts, this angel didn’t manage to get the Jeep going, bless him, but my sister Katy, who lives in the village, kept me company at her house and supplied me with tea while we waited for my vehicle recovery service. (She also bought the helpful young man some bottles of beer as a thank you which he appreciated).  As I was there, I helped Katy get some boxes into her attic and she passed on to me some lovely clothes that she no longer needed.

The recovery guy got the Jeep started first time with the help of some injector fuel (or something – I don’t quite understand) and an enormous set of jump leads, and I was able to drive home. Pat was waiting to help me unpack the shopping, having been tipped off by Katy by phone that all was well.

So, although it was dark and raining by the time I got back and things hadn’t at all gone according to plan that day, I was left feeling totally blessed, supported and loved by beautiful caring people – whether strangers or family.

I actually kind of enjoyed the whole adventure, and am reminded that if we meet ‘adversity’ with that spirit of love and acceptance, we can have fun and encounter much goodwill and human kindness along the way.

As I have just been explaining in my new book, Diving for Pearls, I nearly always find the silver lining in any clouds that come my way these days.  I put this down to the clarity and positivity that my experience of meditation brings into my heart, mind and soul.  The awareness – or mindfulness as it is often called – generated by meditation gives you the opportunity to respond creatively to things that happen to you and draw good fortune to you.  This means that you can truly be master of your own universe and encourage things to turn out for the best.

If you are thinking about learning to meditate or having some support with an existing practice, I have a wonderful homestudy online meditation course available which results in a qualification as an accredited Thrivecraft Meditation Practitioner.

This easy-going four week course gives you tips and support as well as a thorough introduction to four fantastic meditation techniques that foster mindfulness, positivity, manifestation power and inner wisdom.  Simply watch the videos, listen to the audios and try out the guidelines I am laying out for you.

As a special encouragement to help you establish your new meditation rhythm early in the new year, I have decided to offer this course at 25% off until the 31st January 2015.

To claim your 25% discount, click on ‘enter promotional code’ on the Eventbrite booking page, and enter the code newyearoffer – this will reduce the quoted course price by 25%.

So what are you waiting for?  Click right here to find out more and have a sparkling start to 2015.

Happy New Year!

Eventbrite - Thrivecraft Meditation Practitioner - Certified Course

Thrivecraft Meditation

Practitioner Certificate

With Maggie Kay

Online home study course – 4 wk

Thorough, enjoyable, relaxed and friendly

instruction and practice in meditation

Thrivecraft Practitioner Certificate

Principles   *   Technique   *   Preparation   *   Practice

 Suitable for experienced and new meditators alike

Wk 1 - 1 

Four meditation techniques taught and guided

Talks on related topics

Home practice instruction

Participant experiences, comments and Q&As

Two hours of video per week/ meditation (approx)

Links to bonus videos

Written materials (e-documents)

 Meditation Practices Covered:

Mindfulness of Breathing

Development of Loving Kindness

Ah / Om Manifestation

Ask Your Inner Wisdom

Week 1.  Mindfulness

What is meditation, introduction to practitioner course, posture for meditation, what is mindfulness, mindfulness of breathing meditation explained, guided mindfulness of breathing practice.

Week 2.  Loving Kindness

Q&A on mindfulness, higher consciousness with meditation, loving kindness meditation explained, guided loving kindness practice.

Week 3.  Manifestation

Q&A on loving kindness, hinderances to meditation, antidotes to hinderances, principles of manifestation, Ah/Om manifestation meditation explained, guided Ah/Om manifestation practice.

Week 4.  Inner Wisdom

Q&A on Ah/Om manifestation, what is inner wisdom, Ask Your Inner Wisdom meditation explained, guided Ask Your Inner Wisdom practice, where to go from here.

 

  The Thrivecraft Practitioner Certificate is a prerequisite

for the Thrivecraft Meditation Teacher Certificate

IICT_Approved_Black_and_White

Thrivecraft is an Approved Training Provider

Accredited by the IICT

……………………………………………………………………………

For more information and to book the

home study online audio/video course

click orange button below:

to claim your 25% discount

enter the promotional code newyearoffer

Eventbrite - Thrivecraft Meditation Practitioner - Certified Course

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

In this video extract from meditation practitioner course, below, Maggie Kay describes the benefits of meditation.


Hold Your Nerve and Breakthrough

When we make positive changes in our life we can sometimes lose our nerve and doubt ourselves.

But actually, being stirred up like this can be a sign that we are on the point of a big breakthrough.

In this video I explain what’s going on and give you some tips on how to hold your nerve.


Stop for a moment…

Stop for a moment.  Just a moment.  It’s okay.  It’s really good for you.  Take a deep breath.  Breathe out.  And another.  Breathe out.

Is there somewhere you can sit down for a few minutes?   Or a quieter place to stand?  Decide to take a few more minutes to yourself.   Breathe freely.  Stretch, shake out, then settle again. Let the tension sigh away as you breath out.  Be at ease.

Where are you?  Look around.  See the colours and shapes around you.  Then close your eyes if you can.  Breathe in the air.  What can you smell?  Taste?  What can you hear?  Near?  Far?  Notice what you are touching.  What’s touching you.  The textures.  The temperatures.  Your feet on the ground. The air on your face. The way your clothes wrap your body.  Breathe in and out through your senses.

Breathing into your whole body.  Let your weight drop down.  Down into the ground.   Let your breath move through you.  Soften your muscles.  Shoulders drop.  Tummy round.  Jaw loose.  Tongue free.  Feel the breath reaching your toes.  Running along your spine.  Arriving at your finger tips. Tingling your scalp.

Breathing swimming through you.  Let go of thinking for a while.  Give yourself a delicious time out.  Nothing to figure out for now.  Let your eyes be soft and dewy.  The mask of your face melt.  Brain slack.  Thoughts gently floating to the ground.  Like dust particles falling through a sunny room.

Feel how good it is to breathe.  To just be breathing.  There’s nothing else you need do right now.  Just breathing.  Sensing.  Being.

Feel your chest rise and fall.  What’s it like in there?  Tight?  Expansive?  Allow it to open a little more.  Breathe into the area around your heart.  Does it feel good?  Uncomfortable?  Numb?  Just breathe.  However it is or isn’t.

Feel your upset.  That’s okay.  Feel your good feelings.  That’s okay.  Feel your blankness.  That’s okay.  Whatever you feel or don’t feel.  That’s okay.

Breathe into the whole of yourself.  Every molecule.  Every vibration.  Your body.  Your mind.  Your heart.  Let yourself drop deep.  Let yourself spread wide.  Let the breath be everywhere.

Notice the space inside you.  The warmth.  The places that feel good.  Breathe.  Allow them to expand.  Feel the freedom within you.  Let it grow.  Know that everything is going to be okay.  Feel the vastness within and around you.

All that you think.  All that you feel.  All that you sense.  All that you know.

Being with all that you are.

Now.  What’s bothering you?  What’s on your mind?

A decision?  A problem?  A question?

What is it?  What’s troubling you?  Choose one thing you’d like to resolve.

Breathe with all that you are.  Make it clear in your mind what this one issue is.

Feel the energy of it in your body.  Feel the emotion of it in your heart.  In your breath.

Now imagine yourself picking up your issue and rolling into a pebble in your hands.  There is a beautiful, deep, clear pool of water before you.  After a moment, make a wish to resolve your issue and drop your pebble into the pool.  Let the pebble sink down, down, down to the bottom of the pool.

Just being for a while.   Enjoying the ripples.

Then….  you notice.  There seem to be some messages coming from the ripples.   What whispers do you hear?  What images appear?  What ideas occur to you?

It may not make sense.  It may not be what you expect.  It doesn’t matter.  Just notice.  Whatever happens or doesn’t happen is perfect.

Take a few more moments to be.  Breathe.

Now, with the next few breaths, waking back up.  Take a deep breath and stretch.   Open your eyes.   Feeling whole and fresh.  Wake up.

Remind yourself what just happened by the pool.  What was your issue?  What messages did you receive about it?

Whether  you received any messages or not.  Whether you understand them or not.  Let it be.  You may not know how yet.  Restate your wish to have your issue resolved.  Carry on with your day.

Now and over the next few days, open yourself to whatever help or ideas come your way.

Revelation – finding wisdom from within

New guided meditation

Want some help with the process?

Download my brand new guided meditation – Revelation: finding wisdom from within – specially created to drop you deep into your own source of inner wisdom.

Click here for details – maggiekaywisdom.com/meditation-shop


Can we use intuition in our everyday lives?

In this video clip from our informal cafe chat, Judy Piatkus (founder of Piatkus Books) is asking me about how to use inner wisdom in our everyday lives.  Is it something anyone can access?  And how do we do it?

 

 


A Message of Freedom

Last week I was in London attending the book launch of Barefoot Doctor’s – The Message.  It was a fantastic event hosted by my dear colleagues Imago People TV – a brand new TV based marketing portal for transformational teachers, evolutionaries and heart-centered thought leaders.

Transformational Goddesses @RachelElnaugh @eros_and_psyche @k... on Twitpic

Jude Levy, Rachel Elnaugh and Katharine Dever (Imago founders)

www.imagopeople.tv

I loved it!  The theatre was full of sparkling, inspired, genuine friends and collaborators, gathered for this special occasion – the launch of Imago’s first book publication having recently signed Barefoot as Imago’s first ‘star’.

After his talk, Barefoot signed books and then we were transported to a Soho nightclub by a fleet of people-carriers where we had a trance-dance after party.  The cocktails were flowing and Barefoot and his DJ friend led a pumping set.  A brilliant way to end the night!

I began reading my copy of The Message this morning.  Having heard Barefoot speak just a few days ago, the pages are alive with his voice and presence.  I was taken right back to watching him on stage – yes with bare feet – talking from the heart without notes and SO eloquently.

And it’s juicy stuff – captivating and satisfying at such a deep level.  It reminded me of when I first heard Buddhism taught so excellently by the funky, fresh, bright young guys at the Glasgow Buddhist Centre in the 1980s.

At the tender age of 19, I was awestruck at the meaning and magic being revealed to me.  I was being given the ways and means to live a very blessed life – and although I no longer consider myself to be a Buddhist (prefering to be open to all forms of spiritual wisdom) – those early teachings have nourished me for decades.

And The Message – deeply infused with the Taoist wisdom that Barefoot draws from – describes the same universal principles of freedom, self-mastery and interconnectedness that is the essence of all untainted spiritual teaching.

Hot off the Press - @ImagoPeopleTV  's first book '... on Twitpic

This morning I am sitting in my conservatory back home in the beautiful Devon countryside, listening to the birds and the sound of our village church bells, watching the trees and shrubs bounce in the gentle wind.  It is so peaceful after the hurly-burly of London…

Even although I lived in London for 16 formative years, I rarely strayed beyond the ‘urban village’ created by the Buddhist community I belonged to.  And these days, I am very much a country bumpkin – an innocent – unused to the wiley ways of London living.

So when I realised that I’d got lost walking from my city hotel to the Barefoot event at Sadlers Wells Theatre, I had an attack of anxiety.  I was lost and alone in the backstreets of Shoreditch, the opposite direction to where I should have been going ( must have been a homing instinct as I used to live in the east end).

Asking directions at a film studio, I was advised to retrace my steps all the way to the main road and catch a cab.  It was going to take ages and I was already late!  Arghh!  Panic!  But the bigger, wiser part of me was cool.  “Don’t worry”, she said, “it’ll be okay.  Just put out a prayer.”

“Please I’d like a taxi to show up for me now”, I thought , and sure enough, a black cab immediately appeared from around the corner to drop someone off right in front of me.  I told the cabbie he was my angel and gave him a big tip.  We made it to the theatre in time.

It was the second ‘kind assistance from strangers’ experience of my London trip.  The first had come in the form of two incredibly sweet receptionists at the hotel who couldn’t do enough to help when I requested a change  to a quieter room.

I had considered just putting up with the roaring traffic, but then thought, “Well why not just ask?”  In the end my room was much nicer and twice the size of the first – and very quiet.  “Hmmm, it’s good practice to simply ask for better things”, I reflected.

The next experience of the kindliness of strangers came a few hours later at the book launch.  I pulled out my purse to pay for drinks and my payment cards were nowhere to be seen.  For a few moments, panic swept through me “They’ve been stolen!  How had that happened?  How was I going to pay for my hotel? What do I need to do to cancel them and stop them being used?”

But somehow, even in the swirl of panic, part of me was chilled, loving, peaceful.  Time slowed down.  Although the bar was busy, the bar tender was patient and smiled sympathetically.  A complete stranger standing next to me offered to pay my bill.  In a few moments, all was well when I discovered my cards had simply fallen out of my purse into my bag. Phew!  But how nice to have been held in my moment of anxiety by the care of others I didn’t even know.

However, the biggest ‘angelic intervention’ via strangers happened the following day when I was on my way to a client’s home for a day of coaching.  In the night, I had knocked a glass of water over my Blackberry (Instant manifestation there too.  In my half-sleep I thought, “Wouldn’t it be awful if I knocked my water on my Blackberry”, and it promptly happened!  Be careful what you think about Srimati!).  In the morning, my Blackberry wouldn’t work.

The dreadful realisation that I didn’t actually have my client’s full address or phone number written down anywhere soon overwhelmed me.  I was relying on my Blackberry for all that information!  Once again, complete panic!  And then, once again, the bigger part of me was reassuring, amused, loving, and enjoying the adventure of it all.  Something would work out.  “Just be open to having some help, as with the taxi”, my inner wisdom said.

I set off.  At least I knew the name and whereabouts of the apartment block.  Maybe there would only be a few flats to choose from and I’d find her.  But when I arrived at the address, I was gazing up at a huge tower block – with at least a hundred apartments!  How was I going to track her down?

I asked a few residents but no-one seemed to know my client.  I chatted with a friendly cleaner who was mopping the floor.  He was sorry but he didn’t know her either.  With me still feeling strangely peaceful despite the impasse, he melted into the moment with me and suddenly remembered that there was a concierge office for the estate just a short walk away.  Maybe they could help.

They did and I was on time for my client.  More importantly, with the backing of my calm, loving bigger self, I had navigated the problem without getting flustered and was still in great nick to conduct my coaching day.

To me these events are such a striking example of our ability to respond creatively even when something challenging is happening to us.  If we are aware enough of that bigger, calmer, wiser loving self (even when another part of us is panicking) there is always a positive choice to make – even if its just to be open to the help of strangers when we are feeling alone and vulnerable.

I read somewhere recently, “Nothing happens by accident.  It merely has a purpose that is not yet understood.”.  I like that.  I like the idea that whatever happens is for a purpose, even if it’s not what we want, and even if we are not consciously aware of it’s deeper purpose yet.

On reflection, I recognised that I had unconsciously created these circumstances during my London trip for a purpose.  The purpose was to graphically demonstrate to myself that I deserve help, support and the best of things; that I am not alone and don’t have to struggle the hard way and that if I am stuck, even random strangers will help me if I only ask.  That’s good stuff for an independent person like me to realise.

In this video, I am talking about the freedom of choice that comes from being able to tune in to our inner wisdom – our bigger, wiser self.  Being awake to this allows us to calm down, take our time, make the right decisions, be open to the positive options available to us.

Its just as Barefoot describes in The Message –

“Because as soon as you can see all aspects of the manifest world – this world of people and machines, this world of nature, this world of planets, stars and galaxies, this world of infinite space, and this world of you – as an expression of the ineffable background presence, as the Tao throwing shapes on the dance floor of the universe, you are no longer fooled or perturbed by appearances.”

“So that no matter how thrilling or scary your circumstances in any given moment, no matter how scintillating or distracting the current configuration of details, you remain centered, referenced to and identified with the prime cause informing it all and are thus able to maintain equilibrium and perspective at all times.  You are able to receive and process the endless incoming stream of information as an expression of absolute love, life and consciousness, as an expression of God or the Tao talking to you.”

So thank you Barefoot Doctor for inspiring me to write this blog this morning.  It was a pleasure to meet you and to participate in your beautiful transmission of The Message.


Manifestation, Wayne Dyer and the Ah Meditation

In the last few days I’ve been reading a book by spiritual teacher Dr Wayne W Dyer called There is a Spiritual Solution to Every Problem.  It’s great – so relevant, uplifting and re-assuring – and is awakening many creative thoughts within me.

Wayne first became a source of inspiration for me after my husband Pat introduced his work to me eight or nine years ago.  During the 1990s, Wayne taught the Ah meditation – a manifestation practice that he’d learned from one of his Indian Gurus – and Pat and I have been passing it on to friends, colleagues and clients ever since our Thrivecraft days.

Last year, I explored the practice in depth at my Entrepreneurs Find Inner Wisdom event, held here in Totnes, Devon.  This was filmed, but apart from posting the videos on my blog soon afterwards, I have not really made a point of publishing them.  Despite this, I have noticed that often people find the videos searching for information on the Ah meditation, so perhaps it’s about time that I made them more available…

Having plucked Wayne’s book off my bookshelf recently (and realised it was gifted to me by my special guest at Entrepreneurs Find Inner Wisdom – former BBC TV Dragon and business mentor, Rachel Elnaugh) I took this as a sign that it was time to run the Ah meditation video series here on my blog.

So here you are, a series of six short videos on the Ah meditation to dip into.  Do let me know what you think – and what results you get!  Enjoy!

1. Manfestation – You are a magician!

2. Introducing the Ah Meditation – Background and How to

3. Questions on the Ah Meditation – Do You Have to Believe for it to Work?

4. Preparing to do the Ah Meditation – Guided Relaxation / Opening the Chakras

5. Practising the Ah Meditation – Guided Practice

6. Concluding the Ah Meditation – Guided Om Chanting


Raw and Real in the Wild Field Episode 6: Just a Little Tenderness

Well, my lovelies, it seems I’ve had a bit of blog writer’s block! I have continued to write a daily journal and have recorded a few videos for future consumption, but it’s been hard to know what to share with you for this episode of Raw and Real.  I’m guessing that this is because I’ve been deep within an inner process that’s hard to write about whilst inside it. It’s still in happening, but it’s now two weeks since my last post, so I thought I’d at least let you know what’s been going on.

I’m writing this from the wild cliffs of Cornwall instead of the wild field in Devon. Pat and I have been here at our caravan on the atlantic coast for a few days – suddenly hungry to be here after a four month block in Devon. We were partly influenced by the change in the weather – beautifully sunny and fine again after an intense spell of rain. It is incredibly beautiful here. The views over the ocean are just awesome and the psychic quietness of the atmosphere totally liberating. It feels like there’s space for your inner world to expand out and fly-dance in the sky.

About three weeks ago I embarked on a 40 day spiritual programme. It’s a simple thing really – daily reading, reflecting and writing on the themes – but the effects have been profound. I’m no stranger to this sort of thing (I spent my twenties engaged in full time study, meditation, right livelihood practice and retreats on the lead up to becoming an ordained Buddhist) but its been a while since I’ve taken up a such a purposeful, purely spiritual, exercise.

Recently, things have been very settled at the wild field. We’ve been there for a couple of months and all the pandemonium is over. Pat’s bad neck is much better, Jamie has been enjoying a renewed social life after his relationship break up and I’ve re-established my coaching, meditation and writing practice. I’ve been waking up every day, looking out over the peaceful meadows, feeling my wonderful family close by and counting my blessings. What a fantastic, beautiful, quiet, retreat-like haven of a life-style!  Almost without realising it, I’ve been dropping deeper and deeper into the richness of my inner world.

And so its not surprising that the spiritual programme is biting.  I recognise the pattern.  At first there’s excitement and inspiration at the juicy wisdom being studied.  Then times of uncomfortableness and resistance because an unenlightened part of me feels threatened (usually hanging on to some ingrained and unconscious way of being that’s really not necessary or useful any more).

After feeling tense and unhappy for a while (can be hours or days) it becomes clearer what’s being challenged and what needs to let go.  It helps to allow myself to feel my upset emotions (have a rant or a cry or whatever) and talk to someone who understands the process or write it all down in a journal without judgement. Eventually the realisations come and I end up feeling cleansed, renewed and aligned with a more peaceful, happy way of living than ever before.

I’m now 25 days into the programme and having my third wave of uncomfortableness. (I’ve been really happy and carefree in between, honest!) I’m reminded that at times like this the best thing we can do is simply accept ourselves just as we are – and without the need to analyse why we are feeling out of sorts. A great exercise when you feel like this is to write a long list of “I love me when….(and finish the sentence)”. Write about loving yourself – good or bad – until you have a feeling of accepting every last part of yourself unconditionally. For example “I love me when I’m inspired”, “I love me when I’m depressed”, “I love me when I know what I’m doing and why”, “I love me when I’m lost and confused”.

Unconditional acceptance of oneself is always the beginning of the end of unhappiness. It’s so simple. Even when you are feeling utterly wretched it is possible to step outside and look back upon yourself compassionately (just as you would look upon a crying child who has broken a beloved toy). The trick is to remember to do so! Once, when I was upset about something and unable to feel compassion for myself, Pat fetched a mirror and tenderly held it up in front of me. Looking at the poor crying face in there made me feel rather sorry for the girl and my heart melted.

I think Eckhart Tolle’s masterful book, The Power of Now, captures the simplicity of this acceptance process beautifully. I always say that the Power of Now is one of my ‘desert island books’. I have read scores and scores of spiritual and personal development books over the years, but this one captures an essence of them all. If I was stuck on a desert island with only a few books, I’d want this to be one of them. I thoroughly recommend it. Here’s his website:

www.eckharttolle.com

There’s also a brilliant loving kindness meditation that I learned many years ago and still practice and teach with relish. It’s a Buddhist meditation called the Metta Bhavana, or cultivation of loving kindness. (Not surprisingly, it seems to me that most spiritual traditions have similar contemplations or prayers.) The meditation begins by fostering love for oneself, then a friend, then a stranger, then an enemy, then the whole world. In my experience it is deeply transformational as well as gently nourishing, no matter what state you are in when you begin.  You can find a led Metta Bhavana meditation on CD and MP3 on the amazing Buddhist meditation and resource website, Wildmind. (One day I’ll record one myself, but I haven’t so far).

www.wildmind.org

Wildmind was founded by a lovely colleague of mine, Bodhipaksa, a fellow Scot who I first met at the Glasgow Buddhist Centre 25 years ago when we were both rookies.  He now lives in the USA with his young family and writes and teaches in addition to running Wildmind.  His latest book – Living As A River – is being launched next month.  Recently I’ve been guest blogging for Wildmind (so you’ll find a few of my videos and articles on the blog page) and Bodhipaksa has been so kind and helpful in supporting my move towards publishing my books and CDs.

I have written about love (one way or another) a lot. I suppose really understanding what love is all about is the core of my practice and inspiration.  Afterall, I have it on good authority that love is a pretty important thing.  Once, when Jamie was sitting in his highchair as a baby, I said to him jokingly, “Oh Jamie, what is the meaning of life?”  Hardly able to talk at that age, he answered clearly and emphatically, “Love.”  – A baby Buddha!

One of my first articles ever published was for the Buddhist magazine, Dharma Life. It’s my story and thoughts on maternal love – having not long become a mother to said baby Buddha.  I’d noticed how spiritually minded people were mixed up about what non-attachment means (still one of my favourite topics) and I was extolling us to embrace our love even if it means we also experience loss. Wildmind still carries this article on their blog page, so here’s the link.

http://www.wildmind.org/blogs/on-practice/all-embracing-urge-motherhood-and-practice

And here’s me talking to Nick Williams of www.inspired-entrepreneur.com again (see last week’s blog).  This time, he is asking me about the principle of non-attachment and I explain what I think it really means.  I quote William Blake’s poem. For me it captures the spirit of non-attachment and unconditional love:  “He who binds himself to a joy doth the winged life destroy; But he who kisses the joy as it flies, lives in eternity’s sunrise.”

Well, writing about all this compassionate and love stuff has cheered me up no end! I guess “I love me when I’m deep in challenging process”, “I love me when I have writer’s block” and “I love me when I’m writing inspiring stuff about love”  Just a little tenderness does the trick…


Raw and Real from the Wild Field Episode 3: Be Careful What You Wish For

As it turns out, I’ve not only had weekday mornings to myself, but the entire weekend too!  I’m sort of pinching myself. One minute I was tired, depleted and overrun with domestic demands, and the next – acres and acres of time and space and inspiration to write. The family’s happy, the sun’s shining and  the retro caravan work space is all set up. Wow!

Well, I did ask for it.  It just shows you what the power of intention can do.  The suddeness and scale of the change can be startling, though.  It strikes you how powerful you really are – that you can make anything happen just by wishing it!   Of course there’s a little more to it than that.  There is an art to using intention to bring about what you desire.

I made this video about it last summer called Attracting and Creating the Life that You Want.  Not surprisingly, it’s my most viewed film!  Take a look if you like…

More recently, at the Entrepreneurs Find Inner Wisdom event I ran this Spring, I also recorded a series of  films about the art of manifestation.  I taught an ancient practice, called the Ah meditation, that powers up our ability to bring into being that which we truly wish for in life.  The whole series is on recent pages of this blog that you can have a look at, but here’s a shortcut to the video of me teaching the practice itself.

Achieving the results that I’d ‘put out for’ so easily was a little scary.  So much so that I caught myself trying to subtely sabotage them talking to my 15 year old son yesterday – “Are you sure you want to stay out another night with friends, Jamie?  Wouldn’t it be a good idea to come home, have a good meal, a decent bed, a shower?  I can always take you out again tomorrow….”

However, mostly I’ve been doing quite well with my saying “no!” practise (to curb my habit of over-giving).   Jamie did call me midweek (when he’s usually with his dad) to ask if he and his friends could come and stay at the wild field for the night.  It was exactly the same request I’d fallen down the hole with last Sunday when I failed to say no.  This time I noticed.  I saw the hole coming and I didn’t even fall into it!  “No, sorry, Jamie.  Your friends can come and stay at the weekend but not in the week when I’m working” – See? Easy.

And so it seems I’m bearing the fruit of my efforts.  It’s been the most glorious, peaceful, lovely few days.  It’s allowed me to realise that I’m in love with the huge skies here at the wild field. Day and night it is ever-changing and beautiful – the light, the clouds, the moon.  I keep wanting to photograph the sky, capture the unique beauty moment by moment, but its impossible.  The best thing is to simply go out and gawp, especially at night when the vast canopy of stars above is simply breath-taking.

This is why we are here.  Somehow, living like this in caravans in the big outdoors connects me so strongly with my rightful place in nature.  As a coaching client described it this week, it allows me to feel “in my skin”. I’m getting fit and brown and can feel the grass between my toes and the breeze on my face.  I can breath deeply and enjoy every mouthful I take and every movement I make.

In the first week here, sleepless and sobbing with exhaustion, my husband, Pat, could not console me.  Instead he called me outside and took my hand beneath the sparkling night sky.  “Look”, he said, pointing up.  Gazing into the vastness was a perfect, wordless reminder of what I truly am – an infinite spiritual being tasting a moment of human form in an endless universe of ever-changing miraculous beauty.  What could possibly be wrong?


Raw and Real from the Wild Field Episode One: Giving It All Away

Unsettling Change

Its been sooooo much more challenging than I thought it would. I mean, I knew it would be an adjustment moving from a nine room country cottage to a couple of caravans in a field, but I didn’t expect the personal disorientation to be so strong.

Okay it’s a big downsize and I knew I’d be saying goodbye to a lot of stuff and learning to live in less space and be confronted with emptying toilet tanks in the rain, but I didn’t expect to have the carpet ripped from under my feet. If I’m honest I’ve been feeling horribly unsettled and insecure since we moved a month ago. Where has the happy, inspired, life-loving Srimati gone?

Last night, Pat, my husband, stirred around 1am and I woke up too. I find that if I wake within a short while of going to sleep at night – and there’s something undigested going on emotionally – I’m presented with a shadowey, doom laden ‘oh-oh’ of uncomfortable feelings that won’t go away and won’t let me get back to sleep again. Last night it was dreadful, soul sucking, zero confidence. Everything was wrong. I was wrong. Life was wrong. And some how it was all my fault.

Many is the time I’ve been up in the night battling with such demons. I often wonder, however, how many women can say that they have a husband who is willing to spend all night, if necessary, slaying demons with them? I have one such husband – totally mad in many eyes and utterly sane in mine. A misunderstood Cornish rascal, I’ve been bright enough to recognise I have my very own, flesh and blood, guardian angel sharing my life with me. Pat is one hell of an ally and absolutely the best friend I’ve ever had by a mile.

So there we were in dressing gowns sitting under the moon in camp chairs at two in the morning. I briefly described how I was feeling. “I know”, he said, “I could feel your energy nose-diving all day.” I gazed at the magical moon appearing and disappearing into clouds and listened. His gravelly voiced, meandering stories and irreverant observations soothed me and brought humorous clarity all at the same time. I felt better. I could see what I’d been doing to myself…

Giving it All Away

Sometimes I get so frustrated with my own habitual mess ups – “Arggh! Stop! You’ve done it again! For goodness sake, STOP it Srimati!” Our habits and blind spots can be so entrenched. It seems to me that we all have one big core mucked up tendency that we spend our entire life attempting to break free of. (That’s if we are conscious enough to even try. There are plenty of us who never even realise what’s going on and just spend life being battered around by the painful consequences of our own unknowing over and over again).

With me it’s over-giving. I don’t mean being super generous, I mean giving inappropriately, ‘giving’ to the point that I abuse myself and prevent others from taking responsibility for themselves. Eventually, I get tired and depleted and have a kickback of resentment. The other person remains infantalised and never learns to stand on their own two feet. So in fact it’s not generous at all because nobody gains anything! Giving is only generosity when it is appropriately given and comes from a full cup, not being drunkenly sucked up from the dregs of a spill on the floor.

Over-giving is a classic generosity distortion, especially with mothers (and guess where my tendency shows itself most? Yes, with my 15 year old son Jamie). Not surprisingly, many of my friends, family and clients suffer from a similar thing. Like attracts like and so we draw people to us that carry similar energy and values – including problematic tendencies. The best teacher, however, is someone who is just a little free-er and more conscious than ourselves, so fortunately my clients do benefit from my years of self inflicted agony.

For the last six weeks I’ve been a one woman pack horse and rescue service. First I spent weeks, dawn to dusk, single handedly packing, redistributing or chucking every possession we had from the cottage, then setting up the caravans. I had the where-with-all to organise a man and a van to move some heavy furniture and ask a group of fab friends to help me with the final clean up day, but other than that, I’ve done the entire thing solo.

At the same time my boy, Jamie, has been experiencing his first big relationship breakup. He split up from his girlfriend after a year, and being an intense young thing (just like his mother) he has taken it hard. Late night and early morning phonecalls, mopping up tears, sick and messy rooms, taxi services to friends and work experiences have been a daily feature. And I’d somehow forgotten he’d be off school for the summer let alone need this extra emotional support. I’d had this romantic idea that I’d do the move in a couple of weeks and then spend July and August writing my first best seller. Hmm, had to re-think that one…

Meanwhile, being a highly sensitive person with multiple health issues, Pat’s chronic neck and back problems got a whole lot worse. In my exhausted, martyr-like hysteria (it’s really not very pretty), pushing to finish the cottage clean up in time, I told him to “F off” if he couldn’t help (the resentment kicking in!). So he did. Feeling totally powerless to reach me through my temporary insanity or love me or support me in any way, he withdrew to the caravans feeling terrible and his neck promptly went into acute spasm.

So, despite Pat’s enthusiasm for the caravan way of life, he’s not been able to help with usual domestics let alone the extra carrying and fetching this lifestyle requires. I felt like I’d cursed our last moment together at the cottage. Those ugly words were the last to leave my lips and it seemed like the antithesis of the love and appreciation we’d share there for two and a half years. The next morning, I went back to the cottage to say goodbye properly. All tasks done now, I went from room to room, remembering, weeping, blessing and praying. I asked for forgiveness and to cleanse the stain I’d made the day before.

Being a Mystic Angel

 A few months ago, I picked up Doreen Virtue’s book, Realms of the Earth Angels, and experienced a revelation. In her book, Doreen, describes personality traits and life experiences in terms of certain types of earth angels (do read this fantastic wee book to get the whole context). I had such recognition of myself that I began to shake. Her categorisations made so much sense of my life and relationships, my strengths and weaknesses and my purpose and inspiration. So much so that it generated a new title for the biography that I’m writing – More Than Meets the Eye: My Life as a Mystic Angel.

At first I thought I was a Wise One – compassionate and committed to helping the world, a leader and guide, a powerful manifestor with a tendency to be over serious.  However, I also recognised myself in the Incarnate Angel category. Here is the over-giving for a start. Along side this is an innocent, loving and trusting nature which can easily be taken advantage of. Incarnate Angels can tend to overweight (check) and drawn into co-dependent relationships (check).

And so it turns out I’m a Mystic Angel – a blend of both a Wise One and a Incarnate Angel. Right now, its my Incarnate Angel vulnerability/ gullibility that is being tested. Talking to Pat last night under the moon, I realise that I just do not realise when people are lying to me or trying to manipulate me or use me. I receive what’s said as the truth (I don’t usually get jokes or teasing because I fail to comprehend that the person is not speaking the absolute, literal truth to me!) I always give people the benefit of the doubt, understand why they feel limited or compromised and may not be acting in their own best interests and respond by doing what I can to rescue them from their suffering.

Of coure my trusting and compassionate nature is also my biggest asset! I do genuinely love and understand people and see their beautiful pure natures deep within them. That’s what helps me be such a good coach. However, our greatest weakness is also our greatest strength and vice versa. The trick is to be aware enough to know when our strength has flipped over to the dark side and is serving our fear and unconsciousness instead of our love and wisdom.

To help me with this, Pat has reminded me of a simple basic practice to correct my over-giving – the practice of saying “No!”. Sometimes its embarressing to have to go back to psychological base camp again, but that’s what I need to do. I need to say “No!” more and suffer the discomfort of the other person not getting what they want or having to dig into themselves to provide the solutions. I need to value myself enough to commit to my own needs first and foremost, to fill my cup, so that I can truly give again.

And so, I’ve invented a simple summer routine for myself starting today. Here I am living in the Wild Field. We are all moved. Jamie is getting over his break up and settling into his summer holidays. Pat’s neck is getting better. I have some time to myself again – time that I could fool myself into giving away to others if I am not vigilant. But I feel I will go mad if I do not now honour what is most precious in my life – my vocation to write and share wisdom.

In my own best interests, I’ve set some boundaries… I will not turn my phone on until midday. I will spend every weekday morning quietly by myself writing and meditating. My weekday mornings are all MINE from now on! And so, here it is, the outpouring of my love and creativity from a full cup – Raw and Real: Intimate Insights from the Wild Field. I hope you join me here often.