July 17, 2012 § 4 Comments
We all have felt anxiety before. No matter how confident and relaxed you are, you know what it’s like to be nervous before an interview, trembling before a speech, or cold and clammy over the pending results of your graded quiz.
The point of this article is to provide you with eight different ways to release this tension. There are more powerful ways in which you can relax (as we will provide in our products) however this article provides eight ways you can use anywhere. Hardly anyone will actually notice that you are using them. You will not have to sit in a meditation position on the floor, or chant mantras to relax yourself… so no worries.
Also, notice the title of this article is not “…Calm Yourself Down”. We don’t calm down. We calm up.
Calming yourself involves not detaching yourself from your environment, but integrating yourself with it while you mentally move inward to obtain steadiness. You should not feel tired or detached. You should simply become “in the zone”: Alert, focused and relaxed.
This one’s great for if you are waiting to give a speech or if you are nervous in a group setting. Simply put your feet flat on the floor. Put your hands on the arms of your chair. If your chair doesn’t have arms, place them on the edges of the seat. Brace yourself. Now, take a deep breath, and push up with your arms and feet as you exhale. Lock your arms – let your torso hang from your locked arms for a moment while you finish exhaling… long and deep. Go limp, but remain locked in the up position. Now sit back down. You feel like a noodle, and everything is cool.
Breathing is absolutely crucial to calming yourself. I recommend you do some in-depth research on Eastern styles of breathing, and how to breathe powerfully with your diaphragm. Breathe in strongly and slowly through your nose as you expand your diaphragm. Your stomach should rise, not your chest. Now, blow it out strongly and steadily through your mouth. Repeat this a few times. You can feel the tension leaving your body.
This one may not seem like much, but it has serious subconscious value. When most people are relaxed (particularly us guys) we have a tendency to spread our legs slightly and take up more space. By consciously spreading your legs while sitting (or standing) you will take up more space, which is what we generally do when we are comfortable in a setting. Perform the action, and the feeling of comfort will follow.
Yes, slouching is bad for your posture. Slouching for years will curve your spine. Slouching for a few minutes will not. This is another habit most people demonstrate when they are relaxed and comfortable: They slouch. So, next time you feel antsy about a situation, allow yourself to lean back your head and slouch slightly in your chair. Once again, the feeling will follow the action.
Powerful people are often calm, relaxed and comfortable in their actions. When they sit around a table, they often do one of two things with their hands: Steepling, or the hands-behind-the-head. To steeple, put your elbows on the table, and steeple your hands in front of your face – like the bad guy does in the movie when he’s going “M’yesss…. Muwahaha…. I can see it all coming together so perfectly…” Think of yourself as the bad guy when you steeple your hands. You know you are going to win. You steeple your hands as you turn over your master plan inside your head. Everything is falling into place so perfectly. Muwhaha. For more of a “corporate” power / relaxation effect, lean back in your chair and put your hands behind your head, lacing your fingers together. This is how bosses sit when they are talking to people who work for them. It has profound effects in making you feel more powerful and relaxed.
This is an incredible psychological tool we will cover in more depth in our products. Your subconscious mind anchors certain actions / stimuli with certain feelings and responses. Psychological anchors and triggers are used everywhere. It is the reason behind many strong emotional connections. If you had a song played at your wedding, hearing the song played at a later date may make you cry. The emotional event was your wedding, and you heard a song during it (the anchor). Thus, the song became tied to the feelings you felt during your wedding. Uponhearing the song again (the trigger) you feel the same feelings again.
Another example is if you became very ill once from a certain drink, you may become sick simply from smelling the drink in the future. The emotional event was becoming very ill, and the anchor was the drink. Therefore, smelling the drink in the future could make you sick very quickly. Anchors are used everywhere, in positive and negative emotions. To use them to calm yourself, develop a specific anchor every time you are calm. My anchor is to place my hand palm-down on my thigh. Every time I am relaxed, I do this, to reinforce the anchor. Then when I need to be calm, I simply fire the trigger (palm on the thigh) and my mind recreates the emotion tied to that anchor – which is relaxation. Pick an anchor you don’t use that much, such as touching your ear, or putting your hand on your knee. Do it whenever you are relaxed, and when you need to become relaxed, doing it will help to put you in that mental state.
Kill Internal Dialogue
There are many ways to do this, but here’s one good technique: If you are talking yourself into a worrisome state, or worrying while talking to someone during a conversation, do this immediately. Defocus your eyes, and open your peripheral vision. Look at two areas ahead of you, to each side. Picture your conscious thoughts in those areas. Now, draw your gaze up from both points at 45 degreeangles until they meet in the high-center of your vision. Next bring the gaze straight down, so it is directly in front of you (a person’s face if you are talking to them). Now, picture your gaze coming straight back to your own head, as you return your consciousness to your own mind. Not only does it help increase focus, but the simple effort required to perform the exercise will often stop any distracting internal dialogue you are having at the time.
If you feel a general anxiety of your whole body, such as being self-conscious of your hands, feet, or body position, this exercise can work wonders. Close your eyes. Take a few deep, long breaths: in through your nose and out through your mouth. Place your tongue on your front pallet, directly above the backside of your upper teeth- this is effective in stimulating cross-lobe integration (and relaxation) in the brain. Picture a point far in front of you. Project your thoughts there in your mind. Continue breathing, and keep your thoughts there, until you are fully relaxed and have forgotten about clammy hands, sweaty feet, or mismatched socks. Once you are relaxed, slowly bring the point in front of you closer as you return to a fully aware state.
March 20, 2012 § Leave a comment
Why do we always feel the need to be productive? Always having to be on the move or keep our mind occupied. It feels like any time there is silence we have to fill it with some thing, god forbid there be a moment of uncomfortable silence to reflect in. It almost appears as though we are scared to spend a moment in silence. As though we’re afraid of what we might come to realize during our silent contemplation.
To reflect on your own personal reality is one of the most effective ways to get inalignment with your goals, desires and passion. Most people are not even aware of what they want to experience in life; they’ve become caught up in being “comfortable” keeping busy in order to continue being “comfortable” that they forget that there is an entire universe of possibilities awaiting them.
Silence is the key. From the silence can we begin to see cleary what we want to create in our reality. We must have the idea before we can start to build. The art of contemplation breeds change. We humans are not meant to be like gerbils, running on the treadmill of life. We must be still and listen to ourselves for a change in order to surpass the lifestyle and experience of previous generations.
Can you sit still in complete silence with your eyes closed and your hands in your lap? Could you do that for 15 minutes a day for the rest of your life? Try! Do it and see what happens. I guarantee you will see change in your life if you do this. You will begin to build a relationship with yourself that you once had when you were achild, before your mind became poisened by preconcieved notions. But don’t beleive me, do it yourself!
This simple yet underestimated way of experiencing reality is one of the missing pieces to bringing a grander experience of life to every one. Being in completesilence alone or with other people allows you to just be. They should teach a course in school called “Silience: The Art of Being”. We must go back to our infant nature and stop trying to fool ourselves in to thinking that we have it all together and understand all aspects of reality.
If we allow the idea that “we have to always be productive” to be prominate in every moment of life it will only hinder our growth as human beings. We’ll never take a moment to look and say, hey wait a minute if we keep walking the path we’re walking its only going to create more and more suffering, maybe we should change course. With out moments of silence, with our breaks in unconscious mindpatterns, we won’t be able to co-create a new reality for all human beings to live in. We need to take that time and experience the simplicity silence.
Maybe we’ll all finally realize that we’re just children convinced that we’re adults.
Shane Lamotte has developed a desire for knowledge of Zen, Taoism, Buddhism, Quantum Physics and anything that involves the nature of reality. His vision includes creating music that gives its listeners a “wake-up call” to change society in a positive way. Go to http://www.livingillusion.com.