“In life I always want to be authentic!”

Posted Thursday, April 2nd, 2009. Filed Under Voices of wisdom

I do pilate every Thursday with Bonnie.  She is an incredible teacher with a core that can rival any 20 year-old.  Bonnie is a mother figure to me.  We have so many great conversations about our experiences and awareness.  She tells me I am wise beyond my years and I say, “thank you” and please know that you have taught me as much or more as well.

Today before class on the cardio machines we were talking about a play that she saw about a woman set in the post-feminist era however she was stuck in a time warp, pleasing and catering to her husband. This woman has an opportunity to go to Greece (I believe it was Greece!) for two weeks with another girl friend, all expenses paid. She hems and haws for she knows her husband will not like this however in the end she goes!

What she finds on this trip is HERSELF.  She remembers who she is. WOW. Bonnie turned to me on the cardio machine and said, “In life, I just want to be authentic, my true self” and I could not agree more.
On this journey it is really about remembering who we are and yes, it does take baby steps. 

I asked Bonnie to write an article about her own awareness in life and to share it. Please enjoy. I love this woman!

All my best,
Sandra
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One of the most debilitating aspects of living with chronic anxiety, is the inability to enjoy “the moment”, due to an incessant nagging worry about what “could” happen in the near or distant future. Instead of sighing with pleasure at the sight of a beautiful flower, or feeling totally heard after a meaningful conversation, or even relaxing completely with a great book of fiction, that constant companion, dread, is ever-present and ready to make itself felt, full force, at just a nano-second’s notice. All that’s needed is the right trigger, and those are readily available in our material world- a newscast, a friend’s story, an irrational thought, a fictional TV program. It doesn’t take much to start the downward spiraling into motion- that combination of catastrophic thoughts, and the accompanying unpleasant physical sensations.

 So of course the important question to ponder is: how does one break this constant cycle of trigger and reaction, one that is draining and depressing, and instead, re-jig the emotional neurons to behave in a more satisfactory manner!

 This, then, has been my mission, and my journey, for the last year, and I am happy to report, that I have achieved a modicum of success! Undoubtedly, this is a slow and often painful process, as the roller-coaster of life events and pre-programmed reactions, are a powerful force to reckon with. To this end, I have borrowed the strategies of Ekhart Tolle, and have begun to practice, in daily doses, his recommendations for embracing the “power of now” Once I was able to see the logic and benefit of focusing most of my energies on what is occurring right at this moment, I was then able to unfixate from all of the future “unknowns” A simple mantra, “it is what it is”, can be repeated several times, until the rational message replaces the irrational worry. Along with conscious breathing, this often will do the trick, at least allowing for some calming moments, which in turn brings the ability to think more clearly. Of course, I am not successful every time I employ these methods, but I am banking on that old precept, “practice makes perfect!”

 A further addition to my practice has been the use of a daily meditation period. I am actually at the point at which I look forward to this solitary, quiet time, and feel that it can only bring some lasting positive results. During the give-or-take twenty minutes of practice, I focus on breathing deeply, allowing thoughts to drift by without engaging them, and mindfully being aware of words that help me to remain calm and relaxed.

 I feel very fortunate that I have been blessed with the ability to embrace a conscious mode of existence, coupled with the meeting of some very special individuals who have encouraged me during the course of my journey. I believe that we are drawn to the place in which we will find love and support, and this has certainly been the case for me.

 I am fascinated by the extent to which the human form can evolve- it is a never-ending quest, and I intend to pursue this journey until the end of my time in this life. I will always feel, I believe, that my existence has been meaningful, and I will always be aware of striving to achieve the greater good for both myself, as well as others.

 




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