Meditation and Motivation – The Symbiotic Relationship

“Happiness is not the absence of problems, it’s the ability to deal with them.” 
― Steve MaraboliLife, the Truth, and Being Free

The Lawn Mower

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Today I really didn’t feel like mowing the lawn, but I did anyways. By the time I finished mowing the lawn, I felt a lot better about myself, life, and what I was aspiring to be. At one point I was so motivated that I was jogging with the lawn mower instead of slumping down and dragging it around.

How did I do this?

Well I ran into a problem about 3/4ths of the way; my lawn mower decided to cough out and die on me. My first instinct was to check the oil, put in some more gas, and rev it up again. After that failed, I took the bag that collects the grass and emptied it out. Boom. High fives all around.

When I attached the bag back onto the lawn mower, I realized that the lawn mower was lighter, more proficient, and didn’t die for the rest of my time mowing the lawn. It gave me a boost of energy to finish the rest of the job in a really good mood.

Just like how the lawn mower gets cluttered and over-loaded with grass, our minds get cluttered and overloaded with thoughts. With that being said, sometimes we have to unload our thoughts in order to get back on the trail and continue to move forward.

But how do you clear your thoughts?

Meditate my friend. Meditate.

“Work is not always required. There is such a thing as sacred idleness.”
― George MacDonald

People-Watching, Thought-Watching

people watching

In my sophomore year at VCU, I lived in a house that had an amazing deck, right on campus. One of my favorite things to do during the spring was to enjoy the weather, drink a beer, and people watch.

When people watching, you get to see all the strange things people do; walk in weird ways, have sudden conversations, honk at cars in rage, you name it. Sometimes these interactions seem completely senseless while at other times they seem to make complete sense.

Thought-watching works in a similar way, except it’s all internal.

To  start watching your thoughts you must:

1. Be in a relaxed atmosphere

2. Control your breathing in a regular, slow pace

3. Be in a mindset where no judgments are made

Once you feel comfortable with yourself, your breathing, and your welcoming mindset, begin to let your thoughts flow. I personally like to close my eyes.  Allow your thoughts to flow for a while and try to observe some kind of pattern of thinking. This may be negative thinking or positive thinking, but it doesn’t matter – just watch your thoughts and do not be judgmental.

Like I stressed in my other blog post on point of view, you must recognize the problem in order to begin the journey for a solution. Once you understand that there is a pattern of thinking that is affecting your well-being, you can begin to let that thinking-pattern go. Just begin to release it, forget the intricacies of how it was affecting you at all. Just let it go, and accept that it has happened.

After doing this exercise, you should feel more like yourself and less worried. It doesn’t have to suddenly motivate you to kick-down doors and get back to pursuing your dreams, but it should clear your head and help you understand that you can move on with your studies, work, and activities.

“To understand the immeasurable, the mind must be extraordinarily quiet, still.” 
― Jiddu Krishnamurti

We Gucci

good

I hope that you’ve begun to understand that your mind is something that you need to maintain in order for it to function  to the best of its abilities. Take care of your mind! It controls your spirit, your thoughts, actions, and therefore, results.

Always remember that if you feel pent up, you can internally release and let go of your problems. I’m not saying your problems will disappear, but having a clear mind will help you solve your problems and move forward in any direction that you desire.

“That deep silence has a melody of its own, a sweetness unknown amid the harsh discords of the world’s sounds.” 
― Paul BruntonThe Notebooks of Paul Brunton

I understand that meditation isn’t always the first go-to thing that people do to feel better. What are some other ways to relieve stress that personally work for you? Feel free to comment and remember to feel good!

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Point of View is Power

“It is a narrow mind which cannot look at a subject from various points of view.”
George Eliot, Middlemarch: A Study of Provincial Life

The Genesis

bi-color-eyes

Do you wear glasses? I personally don’t, but I know that if I did, I’d see the world differently. With a lens between your eye and the world, you are able to see more detail, color, light.

Now think about how each person’s eyes are different from the next person. Hell, think about your very own two eyes – I know for a fact that my eyes do not interpret light in the exact same way. Each eye is absolutely unique in how it perceives the world, so why should we pretend that there is a ‘one-size fits all’ lens?

In the same way, understand that your mind is completely unique and you need a certain lens (point of view) to be able to succeed. How do you find the correct lens? Well first, you have to realize that you might be subscribing to the wrong lens. Only then can you start your quest to find the perfect lens, or find who you really are.

Recognize there is a problem, begin the journey for a solution.

“It’s so much easier to suggest solutions when you don’t know too much about the problem.”
Malcolm S. Forbes

Deep Questions, Deep Answers

deep-questions

Now wield this moment for the purpose of internal questioning:

– Really ask yourself if you are where you want to be in your life. Do you even have goals for your life? If not, it’s okay. But you really need to start creating goals for yourself in order to create actions and therefore, results. Understand that if you do not spring into action, you will never move forward in your life. Ever. That’s just pure fact.

– Do you have a sound mind? I think this is the most important part of finding the road to success. You have to get into the habit of controlling your mind instead of letting your mind control you. Think of it like this: do you realize that you can be happy almost all of the time? Do you have the urge and need to feel good at all times?

For example, if I am in a very stressed and uncomfortable mood, I begin to understand I am in a negative state of mind. I mentally tell myself, “positive thoughts.” With that as my base thought I connect that positive thought with another positive thought such as, “don’t take this so seriously.” Add another one, “smiling affects the entire body.” Add an action – Smile, laugh, feel the tension slowly releasing from your body. I have just transformed my mind into a positive mindset. This process takes lots of practice, but like I said earlier; recognize there is a problem, begin the journey for a solution.

– Ask yourself if you know what you want to do with your life. The main reason is, once you know what you want to do, you will automatically start to spring into action. Right now I want to be involved in new media, advertising, and design. I’ve been reading books everyday on what professionals do in each field, how to become better in each field, and what steps to take to really stand out in each field. I know what I want to do, but do you? If you don’t: research, try new things, come up with new ideas. If you aren’t self-motivated, you aren’t going to make it.

“Nothing is really work unless you would rather be doing something else.”
J.M. Barrie

Now Get Out of Here.

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Begin your journey. DO something right now. Grab a book, read a blog, take a shower, go on a run, do some research, talk to your mom or dad, anything. Just do something that will help you begin your journey and do it with a positive mind set. The sooner you start, the more productive and better you will feel about yourself. Good luck, see you on the flip side.

“The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing. ”
Walt Disney Company