Living With Passion
|Charles D. Bender
|Have you ever experienced a moment where everything seemed just right? A moment where you felt completely in tune with yourself and the world around you? A moment in which you felt completely unstoppable? A moment where you experienced a sense of oneness with the universe where you were completely in command and control of your own destiny? Where you felt the rush of adrenaline that only comes from being so in the moment, so completely connected to your own unique purpose, that you felt like you were being propelled forward by something bigger and more important than yourself. Toward something inspired. Something more important and truly meaningful than you ever thought you could be part of? Where you felt devoid of doubt, fear or apprehension. Feeling, instead, the unlimited power of faith and conviction.
Imagine what it would be like if you could have moments like that everyday. If you could live out your personal dreams and ambitions in moments like that connecting with and becoming the perfect expression of all that is best in you. Empowering yourself to reach beyond limitations, break free of the shackles of mediocrity and live your true passion. My passion is helping people live with passion. Where life ceases being about coping with your lot in life and becomes an inspiring and fascinating journey with meaning and purpose. Where life no longer controls you and you begin controlling it. By learning to master our emotions and perceptions we are able to leverage them as resources toward our goals and ambitions.
As citizens of this new global community we need to learn to be tolerant and respectful of others who on the surface seem different from us. While there exists a minority of misguided souls who resort to violence and terror on others as a means of being heard, the majority of people on this planet are good and kind souls just doing their best walking their own spiritual path. When we have true conviction and faith we know there is nothing to fear, nothing to lash out about when it comes to differences in beliefs and cultures. Being open to and willing to listen to new and diverse perspectives is a deeply spiritual act. Being respectful of others and their beliefs serves to help us better understand our selves.
One of the biggest health hazards for men today is stress. Much of this stress based on fear and anxiety about the unknown, change and an unwillingness to trust in themselves and in some higher power. The epidemic of cardiovascular disease in our country is evidence of the level of stress the average person in our society lives with. We all know that stress is bad for us but many of us are unaware of the fact that stress doesn't just dissolve away magically after a few stiff drinks. Stress builds up in the body over time if not managed and enduring high levels of stress over and extended period will result in serious health and relationship problems. Lets face it no woman enjoys living with mister grumpy pants.
A lot of guys come to me because they are unhappy and I can say eighty percent of them are really suffering from stress. Ironically, much of which is self-induced due to the nature of the self-talk (internal dialogue) going on in their head regarding the experiences in their daily lives. In the final analysis much of this unhappiness can be traced to existing verses really living, compromising one's dreams for the sake of the status quo, or simply not bothering to establish and maintain clear detailed goals and priorities.
"The world makes way for the man who knows where he is going." - Ralph Waldo Emerson
Nothing in our world is created without thought and planning. Especially happiness. Happiness is a daily choice not a long-range destination. It is not something randomly distributed blessing. There is no happiness lotto. It is there to for the taking, you just have to decide on it and make it a priority in your life.
"People are about as happy as they make their minds up to be." - Abraham Lincoln
In my work I teach clients how to adjust their internal perceptions and representations to improve their performance while decreasing levels of stress. Striking this balance is essential because human beings simply do not perform at peek levels under stressful conditions. I know some guys out there think they are awesome under pressure. However, research indicates the endorphins produced in a happy low stress state of mind consistently promote improved performance.
While I could write volumes on managing stress here are some easy tips:
1. The emotional state of stress causes physiological changes like shallow breathing. The opposite is also true. When feeling stressed, breath deep, slow breaths for about two minutes. Fill your lungs completely at a slow rhythm and exhale at that same slow rhythm. You will literally feel the stress leave your body.
2. Force yourself to smile for two minutes. The act of smiling will shift your emotions to a more cheerful less stressed state. Plus you will find people smiling back at you automatically without even realizing they are doing it. This also changes their state.
3. Exterminate ANTS. Dr. Daniel Amen coined this term in his book "Change Your Brain Change Your Life." ANTS are Automatic Negative Thoughts. Here we are referring to that internal dialogue which can be our own worst critic. We all experience ANTS and some of us have brains that are simply infested with them. Becoming cognizant of these thoughts and understanding that ANTS very often lie to us so we should not accept ANTS unchallenged as having any real meaning or value. In fact, any negative thought about others or ourselves only adds to our feeling of stress.
4. If you cannot do anything about an aggravating situation personally then do not dwell on it. Doing so only adds to your feelings of stress.
5. Make it a point to collect stories, jokes, websites that make you laugh or at the very least smile.
6. And last of all, challenge yourself every morning to find three things in your life to be grateful for. (It can be as simple as a cup of tea or the feel of the morning sun.)
|Charles D. Bender