It's All About Perception

If you often find yourself feeling hard done by, complaining about things and feeling sorry for yourself...Why doesn't anyone love me? Why don't I have enough money? Why can't I get a good job? You probably start to wonder what is going on?  Why is life constantly dealing you a bad hand? 
Between the optimist and the pessimist, the difference is droll. The optimist sees the doughnut; the pessimist the hole!
~ Oscar Wilde

If you're looking for an answer to such questions as these, you will find that the answers lay with in your perception or should I say "lack of". It's your perception about the things that come up in your life that make you feel the way you do. Changing life from the negative to the positive, is about changing the way you view everyday events, which will in turn change the outcome of how you feel about whats happening around you. If you never look for positives in situations and can only ever see the negatives, then that is exactly what you will receive. It is after all, all you can see at that time.

"When my house burned down, I gained an unobstructed view of the moonlit sky" ~ Zen Buddhism Quote

When Generations MeetCredit: chopsooy

Re-Wire Your Brain

We actually wire our brain to become negative, training it in a sense, to take the road well-travelled. For the more awakened among us, they are walking along a tree-lined avenue, full of the beauty of life, but for many of us who are less spiritually awakened, it could feel more like walking through the set of "Nightmare On Elm Street".

Studies have shown that 90% of error in thinking is due to error in perception. If you can change your perception, you can change your emotion and this can lead to new ideas.  ~Edward de Bono

It is our very own habitual thoughts and behaviours that create our suffering. It takes much practice to change our thought paths and patterns but neurological science has proven that it can be done. We can re-wire our own brains.

Leading brain researcher Richard Davidson, PhD, of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, said, "Based on what we know about the plasticity of the brain, we can think of happiness as a skill, no different from learning to play a musical is possible to train our minds to be happy."

Over time the neurological pathways become worn down from being trampled along, day in and day out. We follow the same negative paths so much, that it is as if a groove forms with in them, leading to the easiest pathway for our thoughts to travel along. Trying to change your thoughts (or neuro pathways) can be a little like taking a left turn, when it feels like you must do what you have always done, and that is to take a right turn.

To improve our thoughts and our mindset, we need to work out a little, much like working out to improve your body, you can also work out to improve your mind.

The Easy Way To Exercise Your Brain To Health

No one likes the thought of lots of hard work and exercise right? Generally speaking, finding your way along the path to happiness and enlightenment is usually considered a long-term prospect. There are however a couple of things that you can do to help you along the way.

What you have is good enough - The lazy man's path to enlightenment

- Ajahn Khemavaro

With this quote, Khemavaro is referring to the ease in which we can find happiness, by learning to be happy with what is already right in front of us. Realising that what we have is good enough  starts us on a path towards gratitude and contentment.

But to do this, we have to change our perspective. We are so caught up in our sense pleasures, always thinking about the next best thing, the next boyfriend or girlfriend, the next new car...or thinking about how we can get more out of life, more from our partner, more love and more money. Another common problem faced is constantly living in the past, almost like we have become firmly lodged in the mud of one of our neuro pathways, constantly reliving past guilt or resentment. Gratitude and contentment shows us the way out of the woods, so to say

If we can train the mind to have faith and trust within the present moment, you realise you don't need to be young, have a healthy body or lot's of money to be happy, you just need to be in the here and now. Learn to have trust in the present moment and faith that whatever is happening with you right now is good enough. 

EnlightenmentCredit: chopsooy

Being In The Present Moment

If you, like many other people have problems being in the present moment here is a technique that you may find useful.

Five Things Presence Awareness Exercise

Step One

  • Think of five things you can presently see - e.g. the hands moving on your watch, the curtains, the sofa...etc
  • Think of five things you can presently hear e.g.  my watch ticking, the t.v, a bird singing outside...etc
  • Think of five things you can presently feel e.g. my jeans on my legs, the chair under my backside, my shoes on my feet...etc

Step Two

  • Now lower the count to four things you can presently see, hear and feel
  • Carry on this way, dropping to three things, then two and finally one thing

This is a fantastic exercise to ground yourself, especially if you find yourself stuck in future or past thinking that is causing you some stress.

Meditation, of course is the most beneficial present awareness exercise that you can do. Just the actual act of meditating in itself calls for you to find peace and be present in the now.

Mindfulness, Bliss And Beyond

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What We Have Is Good Enough

Leaf of loveCredit: chopsooyIf we can ultimately begin to look at all things from the angle of peace, kindness, love and letting go, and learn to stay in the present moment, even things such as pain, sickness, old age and eventually death, don't become such a big deal. In this life of constant changes "impermanence", never knowing what will happen from one moment to the next... try to incline towards finding peace in the current moment. Happiness, gratitude and contentment can't be found by forward thinking to what you want (or don't want) nor  backward thinking to what you had (or didn't have). If you can live each day in the here and now (what you do have) looking for gratitude and contentment in everything that life serves up, you will find many more good things will come your way. Everything is exactly as it should be and will be "all right" if you make peace with the present.

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