7 Principles to Peace, Joy, and Absolute Passion
Principle 4: Thrive where you are.
You absolutely can THRIVE right where you are regardless of circumstance or situation!
I have discovered that to pull this off, this being to thrive, you actually have to be there (there being where you are-so really it’s here). In other words, be fully present now. I am super excited to share with you what took me a lot of years and pain to grasp: I have a choice and better still, I get to choose not only how I see the world but also the very next right thing to do in this moment. It sounds so simple and it really is, but boy is it hard to do sometimes in reality. And, what is reality?
Perception is reality. – Lee Atwater
Reality is merely an illusion, albeit a very persistent one. – Albert Einstein
Miracles happen every day, change your perception of what a miracle is and you'll see them all around you. - Jon Bon Jovi
If we can accept that how we perceive someone, something, or anything for that matter creates our reality, then what awesome power and responsibility we have to actually create the reality we want – one that best serves ourselves and those around us. Choose how you view the world around you and you can produce dramatic shifts in your present reality. The result can set you free to thrive right where you are.
You might be thinking, But you don’t understand my boss, family, kids, responsibilities, finances, and so on. Even though we have not experienced the same things, each of us has our own stories. While I have not experienced exactly what you have, please take comfort in knowing that I do empathize with you and have lived through my own stuff. In fact, I still encounter challenges and sometimes fears, worries, and anxieties. Solution: Give yourself a perception alignment and as often as necessary.
Just like our cars need to be realigned periodically for best driving and performance results (especially after hitting a pot hole, running into a curb, or getting new tires), we need a periodic perception alignment to make sure our deepest values and vision are congruent with our outer goals and objectives in our personal and professional life.
Let’s look next at a few ways to focus and bring our attention to now (be fully present):
- Centering breaths – great for when time is limited. Stop everything else and breathe - properly and intentionally. Take at least 3 to 5 (more if time allows) deep abdominal breaths, breathing in through your nose and out through your mouth while gently pursing your lips. With each successive breath, breathe deeper and slower. Notice the circle of your breath. Notice the rhythm and listen to the sound upon exhale. Done properly this will have a relaxing effect and free you to then continue on to the very next right thing. Do this throughout your day as many times as necessary.
- Meditation/Prayer – there is a plethora of scholarly research and studies that support the value of meditation and its amazing effects in all aspects of life: mental, physical, spiritual, emotional and social. If you do not already do this for yourself, please start today and make it part of your daily routine. And, utilize as needed throughout your day.
- Gratitude/Thanksgiving – cultivate gratitude in your life and make a daily practice to list 3-5 things for which you are thankful. Some people do this each night to end the day in a positive way (nice sleep aid), others each morning to set the tone for their day. Through such practice, you are learning to look for blessings and with practice you will discover the endless supply. Then, when the inevitable stressful times come, you will be better equipped to thrive right through them. To help with focus during the day, review your list (either written or mental) or name new things for which you are thankful in that moment. In addition to counting family and friends as blessings, consider things like indoor plumbing, air travel, technology, honey bees, cars, the road system, getting a raise or promotion, losing a job you didn’t like and gaining the opportunity to find rewarding work, someone extending kindness, your kindness to another, and on and on.
I hope you noticed the above ideas are all designed to slow us down, create moments of calm and shift our attention away from all the busyness. Doing this opens the door for us to be fully present and for peace, which we so desire and is there all along, to emerge. Because let’s face it, in the midst of all the perceived chaos, telling ourselves to “focus, focus, focus” really doesn’t work. In fact, the minute we say “focus” is when a litany of other things pop into the mind, further distracting and causing more anxiety, which pretty much steals our peace and robs us from thriving right where we are.
Attention all control freaks! Now I realize you may be thinking this is mumbo jumbo or frou-frou. I too once thought I had to be in control, manage the chaos with to-do lists, checklists, and any other kind of list, but it didn’t work, and in fact, things got crazier. Don’t get me wrong, I still use lists, but as an aid and not to run my life. We are always focused on something. But what and where is the something? Is it in the past, present or future? The past cannot be changed. The future cannot be predicted with absolute certainty. The present is the only place where we have any control. What can we control? Not others. Once we relinquish the unsupported desire to control things that are out of our control, focus and attention can then be directed toward what can be controlled.
According to David Breslow, a Performance Coach, there are 9 things for which an individual has 100 percent control over at all times: awareness, breathing properly, body language, what we focus on, routines, enjoyment, decisions/choices, rhythms, and effort. When that individual exercises such control, he or she experiences calm, relaxation, clarity, self-confidence, increased energy, and consistent action. Result: Thrive where you are!
Remember, wherever you are, there you are and you are always there by choice. That’s great news! You can and do choose – do so consciously. You have the power.
Abound in grace,
P.S. – If you ever have questions, feel comfortable reaching out to me (Click here)