Love Is Where It Is, by Kevin

Love is where it is, is a thought-provoking reflection on the spiritual nature of love, and how to embrace it in daily life.

Here’s a thought-provoking reflecton on love, by our guest post Kevin Thompson from Resting Times.

There are days when I long to be elsewhere. Anywhere else.

Things seem stale, usual, or even mundane. So, usually, most of those days are spent inside my head, thinking of the ordinary, and seeing very little possibility. Everything seems familiar. Mostly because of my lack of interest in seeing the present moment as a new moment.

The road that is traveled to my house seems the same. Each step from the driveway to the front door seems rehearsed. Words spoken to my family upon entry to my home seems familiar and rehearsed. Eating a bite for dinner, sitting for a time on the deck, and off to bed.

Luckily for me, I catch myself on those ordinary days, and imagine the impossible. I do something just a little differently. Perhaps brushing my teeth with my left, instead of my right, hand. Maybe the right sock goes on first rather than the left. Instead of exercising, I might meditate. Rather than sipping tea, I might sip coffee.

What is most helpful during any day filled with the usual, is realizing that some people actually come to my town on purpose.

They come for vacations, business, and to see family or friends. There are mountains, there are rivers and lakes, and there are great restaurants. My hometown is a destination.

Every time I get a chance to “get away”, I pass people from the town that I am going, who are coming to the place from which I just departed. All for the same reason. What I find fascinating about their city, they most likely, at times, find stale, usual, and even mundane. This is human nature.

Relationships are like this. Spiritual practice is like this. Employment or even entrepreneurship, is like this. Anything the human is capable of doing, has the potential to become a burden instead of a blessing.

The blessings do not change, but the perception of the blessing changes.

We should not feel ungrateful or believe that we should feel guilty for not realizing how fortunate we are. What is true, is that we should simply be aware of the feeling and do something to change our view of what is happening in our lives. Not in order to appreciate things to be gracious, but to enjoy one more of the many ways an event might be experienced.

For those of you that drive, you might shake up your day be getting into your car from the passenger side. If you eat well, snack on small things during the day. If you have a meager diet, try something a little more. When you are faced with a challenge, do the exact opposite of what you are known for doing. My personal favorite is to take a minute to send an acquaintance a small message or drawing.

peace, love, kevin thompson, whiteboard, sketch

Once, while in Manhattan, upon exiting an apartment building for the southern US, I found myself with only a $1 bill. Staying in New York was not an option and I needed to get home. As I exited the lobby, I held the door for a young man and said, please take this dollar. With a smirk he looked at me and said, “I don’t need your dollar.”

I replied, “I know, but I need the karma much more than I need the dollar. Please, take the bill.”

He did, and the adventure home began. That adventure is too long for this article. Twenty years later and I feel somehow that I am still on that journey home. The only thing I know for sure, though having had many dollars since, is that I always need the karma more than the dollar.

It is this way with my thinking, my words, my imaginings, and my drawings. Someday I might need the dollar more than the karma, but for now, I am lucky enough to send encouragement into the world and let it fly and land where it will.  

Here is what I know for certain. Without any doubt. There is in all of us, a spark of the divine that exists both within and outside of what we consider our form. If you close your eyes, you might even imagine that you and it are one. And if you are able to imagine yourself as one with the divine, with love, it might not be so hard to imagine yourself as one with the creation of which you are a part.

If this proves too difficult, my recommendation is simple.

Think well of yourself. Think well of your place and position in the world. Be more grateful each day. For simple things and big things.

Take deep breaths and enjoy the simple pleasure of rest. Understand that you are as much a part of the universe as the brightest star. That you have the ability to affect everything in a positive way. You are worthy of great things. The secret is to realize this and be able to receive love.

Love is where it is. Kindness is the way to get there. Peace is what will light the way. May you find all three.

Remember the good times. Consider the most wonderful solutions to the most difficult problems. Keep reminding yourself that there is nothing stale, usual, or mundane about the you that is born anew each day.

Love & Light,

Kevin

5 Tips to Overcome Anxiety with Present Moment Awareness, by Iman

A meaty post about dealing with anxiety, with a variety of techniques for present moment awareness. Bookmark this for later!

This is going to be a meaty post about dealing with anxiety, you might want to bookmark this!

Anxiety is something everybody experiences. It is normal to feel anxious about certain situations in life. Be it family problems, work, school or a crisis you’re facing. Anxiety is also your body’s natural reaction to impending danger, so it can serve to protect us. 

When the symptoms of anxiety becomes constant, however, to the point that you’re fearful, worried and stressed all the time, It could be that you’re dealing with a medical disorder for which you can receive treatment. 

When dealing with anxiety, it can be difficult to imagine a way of what you’re experiencing. It traps you and makes you feel like you’ve lost control. But you haven’t. Believe it or not, it is possible to release yourself out of the tight grip of anxiety. 

In this article, I am going to share with you six ways in which you can ease your anxiety. These steps involve calming yourself by pulling your attention away from your worries and to the present moment. 

#1 – Accept that the past is gone and that the future doesn’t exist yet.

Anxiety is often triggered because of worries we have of the past or fears of the future. In both cases, it is pointless to feel anxious. 

past, anxiety, future, choice

The past is in the past. Accept that what has happened, happened. You can’t change events, all you can focus on is what you are doing now.

 If you made a mistake and you feel guilty about it, worrying won’t change a thing. Instead, learn whatever that experience taught you and resolve never to do it again.

The future doesn’t exist. Think about this fact for a moment. 

Ask yourself, why am I worrying about a tomorrow that isn’t guaranteed? Take any action necessary now towards making your future easy, but you don’t stress about it.

#2 – Silence the voice in your mind.

You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you.

– Dan Millman

Negative thoughts can sometimes be the main trigger of anxiety. You may not have control over a stressful situation you’re in. But you do have control over how you think about that situation and your perception of it. 

When a negative thought creeps into your mind, stop it in its tracks. It’s impossible to entertain two thoughts at once. So shift your attention towards something else. 

positive, affirmations, peace, stress

This is something you have to practice regularly because this inner voice will constantly come knocking. But the more it does, the more you have to train your mind to shut the door. 

You can practice this in four ways:

  • Change your thoughts from something negative, to positive. For example, if you’re worried about something that will happen in the future, such as an important interview, instead of thinking: “this is going to go horribly wrong” try “this is going to go extremely well”
  • Recite positive affirmations to yourself.
  • Distract yourself by focusing on something other than the thoughts in your mind. Do something practical like exercising, cooking or painting. Anything you enjoy. 
  • Speak to someone. The conversation doesn’t have to be about your problems if you don’t feel comfortable sharing that. But speaking with a friend or family member is an effective way of pulling your mind away from negative thoughts.

#3 – Practice mindfulness exercises for anxiety

Practising mindfulness exercises is a good way of being present, and easing your anxiety. You’re turning your attention away from your thoughts and feelings, towards something else which you are doing now.

mindfulness, meditation, present moment awareness

Here are some mindfulness exercises you can try:

a) Meditation 

Meditating is simple. Find a comfortable place to sit, this can be on your bed, chair, floor, anywhere you want. Close your eyes and focus on your breath. Don’t breathe consciously, let your breath flow in and out naturally. Be conscious of how your body moves as you inhale and exhale.

Read more : Everything You Need to Know About Meditation

b) Breathing exercises

If you’re in an environment where meditating isn’t an option, you can practice breathing exercises. Just take a deep breath in through your nose, and out through your mouth. Focus and breathe consciously, you’ll quickly notice a difference in how you feel. 

c) Being mindful of your surroundings

Life moves fast. So fast that we often forget to pause and live in the moment fully. A great way of easing anxiety is to be mindful of your surroundings by  using your senses. 

Try this:

  • Look around you and focus your attention on what your eyes see, absorb all the details.
  • You can then use your auditory sense, what can you hear? 
  • Use your sense of touch, place your palm against anything around you, that can even be an object like your phone. How does it feel?
  • Step outside and inhale the fresh air, how does that feel? 

#4 – If possible, SOLVE the problem that is stressing you.

If your anxiety is triggered by a specific issue in your life which you have the ability to solve, do so now. For example, you might have a lot of work or revision for school which you need to do. Start doing it. Even if you don’t complete everything, starting will give you a sense of achievement. 

solve rubix cube, anxiety, stress, resolve

If you have crippling debt, despite how scary it seems, start taking the necessary actions towards paying it back. 

Whether you can solve your problem now or in the long-term, taking the actions towards solving it will help to ease your anxiety now.

#5 – Journal your anxious thoughts

Journaling is an effective way of reducing anxiety. Grabbing a pen and jotting your worries down on a piece of paper can help you to gain clarity. 

journaling, diary, notebook, self awareness, anxiety, calm

You don’t have to worry about making sense or writing a structured entry, just write whatever is on your mind. If you’re stuck and you don’t know how to begin, here are some journaling prompts:

  • Why am I feeling this way?
  • What is the root of my fear?
  • How can I solve this problem?
  • What can I do to take back control?
  • What strengths do I have which will help me get through this?

If you rather write about something besides anxiety, here are more positive journaling ideas:

  • Gratitude journaling – write three things you are grateful for.
  • Describe your favourite memory
  • List five things that make you happy and why
  • List all the things your strengths and skills you have

#6 – Leave the situation that is making you anxious

Some people experience anxiety if they’re in certain situations they don’t like. If you’re uncomfortable in social gatherings for example, and your anxiousness is debilitating, leave that place. If you can’t leave for whatever reason, then excuse yourself for a few minutes. Practice some of the mindfulness exercises listed above, then go back when you feel calm again.

If you’re scrolling through social media, and it’s triggering your anxiety, log off. Your mental health comes first. You don’t have to force yourself to stay somewhere you feel uncomfortable.

Final Thoughts On Anxiety & Present Moment Awareness

There you have it. Six pieces of advice to help you connect with the present moment, and ease your anxiety. 

Here’s a recap:

  • Accept that the past is gone and the future doesn’t exist yet
  • Silence the voice in your mind
  • Practice some mindfulness exercises
  • If possible, solve your problem now
  • Journal
  • Change the situation you’re in

Is there any other way you can use the present moment to ease anxiety? Comment down below and let us know!

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5 Tips to Overcome Anxiety with Present Moment Awareness

5 Essential Ways To Get Over A Breakup, by Mariam

Here are 5 tips on how you can get closure after a rough breakup and heal a broken heart.

You might have had months or years with the person, before the breakup. And all the feelings and emotions you have felt during that time don’t go away on their own overnight.

However, there are things you can do that will help heal you a little faster, move on and accept the fact that the relationship was meant to teach you life lessons.

Without further ado, here are my 5 tips that might help you overcome this relationship heartbreak.

#1 – Give yourself time to grieve the breakup

There is no easy way out of these feelings, other than to allow yourself the permission to grieve. That too, right away. The more you let your feelings build up, the longer it will take you to get over the person.

Taking time to grieve and let go of any feelings you have is healthy and encouraged. If you need to cry it out, do it. There is something healing about crying, which is why a lot of us feel better after doing it.

sadness, unhappy, breakup, heartbreak, grieve, upset girl

Give yourself a few days to cry it out and be sad, and then try to understand what this relationship was meant to teach you. Which brings me to the second point…

#2 – Understand why the relationship ended

When you breakup with someone, or get broken up with, you might not understand what happened.

Did you two have a big fight and decide to throw in a tunnel?
Or have things been building up for a long time?
Was one of you unfaithful?
Or were you just not a good match?

breakup, couple fighting, argument, unhappy

Sometimes, the person we think we are meant to spend our entire life with turns out to just be a stop along the journey to find that very person. And that’s okay.

Read More : Do You Love ‘Too Much’?

What we need to do when these relationships come along, is recognize what aspects of that relationship were ones we would like to have in future relationships and which aren’t. Are there any things you have done in this relationship that you wouldn’t want to carry on to a new relationship?

#3 – Remove physical reminders of them

This one is a huge one for me. Many of us get attached to material things from past relationships and have a hard time parting ways with them.

There is something to be said about giving away/throwing away/donating your ex’s clothes, gifts or whatever other things of theirs you have lying around.

move on, closure, end relationship, cleaning out closet, pack bags, shoes, hat

How many times have we kept something small from a past relationship because it reminded us of better times? That can be fine for some people, but for most of us, it just makes it harder to move on when we have physical reminders of that person all around us.

Rip the band-aid. Get rid of their stuff.

#4 – Fill up your alone time with self-care

Self-care is crucial during any breakup. Instead of thinking about the past, taking time to work on yourself in the present is a great way to strengthen the bond you have with yourself.

self care, self love, pamper, heart, mug

Anything from taking a walk, to baking something delicious, to taking a bubble bath and nap are forms of self-care. Filling up your alone time with things you can do to better your mental health and happiness will help you a lot in the long run. For over 60 ideas to practice self-care, click here.

#5 – Stop following them on social media

Ah, social media. Remember when I talked about removing physical reminders of your ex? The same goes for following them on Instagram, Snapchat, and anywhere else you might be following them on.

I know that most of us are nosy and want to know what the person you just broke up with is doing. But trust me when I say that that’s one of the worst things you could do for your mental health.

Stalking them on social media is not going to help you with moving on. In fact, it might just do the opposite, and keep you in this weird place where you are broken up, but still a part of each other’s lives.

divorce, marriage, relationship, egg break, heartbreak, shock, end, breakup

If you want to move on, do yourself a favour and hit that unfollow button.

Concluding Thoughts

I hope these ideas gave you a deeper perspective on how to get over a breakup. I do want to add one final thought, though.

Not every single time you break up with someone is going to be the same as the other.

Every relationship is different, and all of us have different ways of dealing with going through hard times. Ultimately, you know yourself best and I hope this inspires you to look after yourself even better!

Image courtesy : canva

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Mariam Stevens is a blogger and the creator of Boss Babe Chronicles. She writes about personal development and blogging advice, and hopes to one day be a New York Times best seller.

For more inspiring content, you can also follow her on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.