Feel the Fear

“To thine own self be true.” -William Shakespeare

Why should we let ourselves “feel the fear”? Why shouldn’t we just ignore it, and do “it” anyway. Yes, do it. Yet, since fear may be at the root of whatever is blocking you, if you do not let yourself physically feel in your body, this emotion called fear, then it will keep re-surfacing in your life …. until you get quiet and connect with it.

I think at this point we all get that we’ve got to release this fear in order to move forward. However, it’s not just a matter of saying, “I release you fear.” If you feel stuck with moving forward, try the emotional connection technique.

The negative feelings that arise along with thoughts of achieving your end goal will present also as discomfort, or at the least, a physical feeling within the body.

Connect With the Fear:

  • Commit to yourself to move forward. 
  • Be quiet and still. 
  • Focus on where you physically feel the negative feelings. 
  • Stay with it. 
  • The location may shift places. It may start out in the heart, then go to the stomach, then jump up to the shoulder. 
  • Stay with it. 
  • Release any thoughts of labeling the feeling or thinking about why you feel this way. Also release thoughts of and getting caught up in childhood stories should they arise. 

If you continue to stay with it, the uncomfortable emotion and physical feeling will, at the least, decrease, and, at the most, release all together. This may happen with just one session or you may need several.

Once it has completely dissipated, release whatever it is you wish to move forward with …. Faithfully try this and you may just be surprised …..

Plus, what’s the opposite of fear? LOVE!!! We must connect with the fear to let in the love that’s there waiting for us! Love, sweet love … xoxo

(This is a topic that came forth in a client session. If you like my techniques and energy and feel you’d like guidance with connecting with and releasing uncomfortable emotions, please contact me. You can also visit this page to learn more.)

Latest “Mindful Living” Articles:
[catlist name=inspired-living]

Blessings,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

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Inspired Living: What Does Mindfulness Mean

I quite often toss around the word “mindfulness” on this blog. I sat down today to write a post with tips for mindful parenting. As I began to write, I realized that I had never researched and shared with you what mindfulness really means. I’d like to do that first. Then, I’ll come back to writing the mindful parenting post.

First, let’s see what you think about mindfulness. Does it bring up negative or positive feelings, or neither? Take a minute or two to write down what comes to mind when you hear the word, “mindfulness”. Then, read the research I’ve shared and see if your view changes or stays the same.

Mindfulness has its origin in ancient meditation practices. According to Dictionary.com the term mindful originated in late Middle English around 1375 and is defined as being attentive or aware. Before that, in 1200, was a now obsolete term of mindiness. It’s not clear from researching online, but the term mindfulness seems to have been translated from the Pali word of sati which literally means “memory” and from the Sanskrit word of smrti which means “that which is remembered”.

According to The Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley: “Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment.”

Jon Kabat-Zinn launched the Mindfulness Based Stress-Reduction Program (MBSR) at the University of Massachusetts Medical School in 1979. Per The Greater Good Science Center, since that time, thousands of studies have documented the physical and mental health benefits of mindfulness in general and MBSR in particular.

Here’s a two minute clip of Kabat-Zinn describing mindfulness.

Now that we’ve got an idea of what people mean when they use the word “mindfulness”, what does it mean to be mindful? Here are a few examples:

  • When washing the dishes, bring your thoughts to what you’re doing. This one is difficult for me, but I still try to do it! Think about how the water feels on your hands, how the dish feels, the smell of the soap, the sound of the water. What are you feeling in this moment?
  • When preparing dinner focus on each step. If you’re cutting vegetables, put your awareness on the sound, feel, and sound of the knife cutting and chopping. What are you feeling in this moment?
  • Another I struggle with …. When someone is talking to you (in my case, one of my kids, Thomas or Lillian), focus on that person. Look into the person’s eyes (or near the eyes) and really hear each word they say. Try not to think about what you’ll be cooking for dinner, where you’ll get the money to pay that unexpected bill, or what’s gonna happen next in the show you’re watching or the book you’re reading. Sending the person love while listening helps to stay focused on listening to what is being shared.

Matthew Tull, PhD shares on About Health’s PTSD website 4 skills of mindfulness. They each require practice. Briefly described here:

  • Awareness: Focus your attention on one thing at a time.
  • Nonjudgmental/Nonevaluative observation: Look at your experiences in a nonjudgmental way. Don’t label as “good” or “bad”.
  • Being in the Present Moment: Don’t get caught up in thoughts about the past. Be an active participant in experiences rather than simply going through the motions.
  • Beginner’s Mind:  Be open to new possibilities and observe things as they truly are, as opposed to what you think about it.

The Greater Good website has a wonderful mindfulness quiz. It only takes about 2-5 minutes to complete. Once you’re done you’ll find out just how mindful you are and get suggestions for how to increase mindfulness. Go here ⇉ Greater Good Mindfulness Quiz for the quiz.

Here are my results:

“Your mindfulness score is 64 out of 100, suggesting you have a moderate tendency to practice mindfulness. This score reflects two key components of mindfulness: your moment-to-moment awareness of your thoughts, feelings, and environment, as well as your acceptance of these aspects of your life.

Your score suggests you sometimes feel accepting and non-judgmental toward yourself, which means that you allow yourself to experience a range of thoughts and feelings, even if they’re upsetting or challenging at times. You don’t always believe there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment. However, you still occasionally seem to be self-critical, which can make you feel defensive, anxious, or sad.

Also, you’re not always able to focus your awareness on the situation at hand; you’re sometimes preoccupied with the past or worried about the future. When you do maintain this focus, you may notice that you’re more open and inquisitive and can savor being in-the-moment.

Research suggests you can cultivate more acceptance by practicing loving-kindness meditations that encourage you to be more compassionate toward yourself.”

Psychology Today has a great list of 6 mindfulness exercises that take less than a minute. Perfect for the person just getting started and who may feel there’s just no time for longer exercises. This article titled, Mindfulness in Everyday Activity, from National Federation of the Blind lists a great exercise with a cup of tea and gives a few more mindfulness details and how it helps with stress.

Also, I just picked up a book from the library titled, 10 Mindful Minutes, by Goldie Hawn. Can’t wait to dive in and start reading it! Seems like it will have some useful information. I’ll write a review of it when I’m finished.

What I find useful about this are the examples of exercises and the mindfulness quiz. What do you think? Will you try any of these or do you have your own tips? Do you have any other thoughts or questions about mindfulness?

Latest “Mindful Living” Articles:
[catlist name=inspired-living]

Heartfuly Inspired™,
Camilla
See It. Share It. BE IT … Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

Go here to subscribe to my blog to ensure you receive new posts delivered straight to your inbox!

My next newsletter is going out the week of October 20th! The newsletter will contain four basic sections with a short introduction. They are:

  • Mindful Minute – A quote, thought, or mini-exercise to inspire you, spark an “aha” moment, or to ignite your creativity.
  • Latest News – A brief excerpt of my latest blog posts.
  • Suggestions Spotlight – A suggestion of items I find useful; such as a book, essential oil, classes/workshops, or other items I find to be helpful.
  • Recipe Spotlight – I’ll include a recipe periodically.
Go here to sign up to receive a copy in your email inbox!

Have you ordered your copy of my book, “D iz for Different”? It’s available in paperback and Kindle (Kindle device not necessary). Go here to learn more.

(To help support my blogging I will include an Amazon link to items I use or you will see google ads from time to time. I LOVE sharing my journey and choices with you and this just helps to keep me going!) 

 

Latest News: Happy Birthday to ME Plus A Happy Gift for YOU

Happy Happy Happy Birthday to ME (February 26th)! I’m only a week late with my birthday post y’all! Teaching this class at High Desert Montessori has kept my hands full to overflowing.

I’m starting off my 44th year spreading love, happiness and kindness … with an intention to do this every day either in a small itty bitty way or a big ole huge way … ALWAYS for myself first so that I can overflow with the ooey gooey stuff to share with others!

My new motto is Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

I invite you to join me in spreading love, happiness and kindness. Who wants to choose to see the good that surrounds us? Who wants to choose to see the good in others? Who wants to choose to see the abundance that surrounds us? Let’s do it!

My son, Thomas, set up a LEGO birthday party for me too. So much fun! Sweet boy!

And, then I treated myself to this …. a Salted Caramel Mousse Cake with yummy fresh raspberries! Why not celebrate life EVERY DAY?!

Next up was dinner with the two favoritest people in my life …. my two kids, Thomas and Lillian! Thanks to my wonderful Oaklawn Junior HIgh friend, Lois, for the gift card. Crispy potatoes, Cheese Plate (cow, sheep, goat) …. SO YUMMY, Warm Golden Beet salad (I will be back for this … made my tummy HappyY), Margherita pizza, and Caramel Budino (Oh My Heavens!! …That was delicious)!!!! Check out how the bill is delivered! Comes tucked inside an awesome quote book. Love the quote that was marked with my bill.

After our early dinner, we had time for a brief walk along the river. Such a special time!

Next up was the HDMS Science Fair …

Lastly, here’s another treat I gave myself on my birthday and my gift to you also. I listened to this wonderful song titled “Happy” by the local Reno band, CRVSH. I was fortunate enough to hear and see these amazing guys live a couple of weeks ago!

This song gives me goose bumps all the way to my soul! I hope all y’all take four minutes out of your day and give this one a listen. Turn it way up and DANCE! Then spread the happiness and share it with somebody else!

Go here …http://crvshmusic.com/music/ .. It’s #15 on the playlist. So much love to all y’all … xoxo (I also love #1, #2, #3, #4)

P.S. – Stay tuned for a beautiful interview right here on my blog with CRVSH! Can’t wait to share it with y’all!

Heartfuly Inspired™,

Camilla
Spread Love Everywhere You Go!

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Mindful Living: Inspired By A Slice of Bread

(Picture of our Reno Sunset … I’m hugely inspired by nature … So full of love)

One never knows when messages just right for us and answers to our questions will surface in our life. It’s much more common than we think. It’s happening continually on a daily basis. One of the secrets to receiving the messages and answers is to know they are there and to be mindful in the present moments of life.

For lunch yesterday I made Thomas a grilled cheese sandwich. He and I were commenting on how yummy the bread tasted. I’m always on the look out for bread without corn syrup, preservatives, artificial ingredients, and bread that has low to no sugar per slice. I read the ingredients out loud to him and noticed there was a brief description about the owner and how the bread company came to be; which nearly brought my eyes to sweatin’!

The bread is “Dave’s Killer Bread“. Although it has 3 grams of sugar per slice, thought I’d give it a try as the ingredient list seemed so good, yummy and healthy. I prefer 1 or 0 grams of sugar per slice. Here are the ingredients:

Organic whole wheat flour, organic cracked whole wheat, water, powerseed mix (organic flaxseeds, organic ground whole flaxseeds, organic sunflower seeds, organic pumpkin seeds, organic un-hulled brown sesame seeds, organic un-hulled black sesame seeds), organic fruit juices (pear, pineapple, peach), organic oat fiber, organic vital wheat gluten, organic rolled oats, sea salt, organic cultured wheat, yeast.

Here’s the story from the back of the package which I didn’t even notice when buying it:

I was a four-time loser before I realized I was in the wrong game. 15 years in prison is a pretty tough way to find oneself, but I have no regrets. This time around, I took advantage of all those long and lonely days by practicing my guitar, exercising, and getting to know myself – without drugs. To my utter amazement, I started liking what I was seeing. It’s been said adversity introduces a man to himself and I found this to be true. If I had not suffered, I can safely assure you that you would not be reading the label on a loaf of my killer bread. A whole lot of suffering has transformed an ex-con into an honest man who is doing his best to make the world a better place … one loaf of bread at a time.

This really spoke to me. I began thinking, “Look! Wake up! If a man who has spent 15 years in prison can finally decide to BE himself and know his passion, YOU sure as heck can do it!”

Reading his story on the back of that loaf of bread inspired me. It flipped a switch inside of me. There’s nothing holding me back but staying stuck in old stories of who I am, who I’ve been told I am, and how I erroneously think life has to be. These things are all illusions. I can choose to release them and let the true me rise to the surface instead of being buried underneath all this sludge.

That’s what I plan on doing. Like an acorn that discards it’s outer shell to reveal the oak tree within, I choose to release those old layers and discard them. Even if it takes 15 years or longer. That’s the purpose. That’s the journey.

I am so grateful and appreciative of moments like this. This moment inspired me. Plus it got the whole Team TLC discussing usually-not-discussed topics in a natural “organic” way …. the discussion simply flowed from … a …. tasty … slice ….. of … BREAD!

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I Am An Artist

As I completely lean into writing and blogging, I am tweaking the website a bit to bring more clarity to the type of content one can expect to find here.

“Be Mindful … Super-sized thoughts with a wee bit of photographs, recipes and tips.” (And, possibly soon, some other type of art. We shall see where my experimentation leads with this.)

This website and blog bring together all the pieces of my life, like a snapshot. I am a writer, author, blogger, photographer, an artist, and a life coach. I am Mom to 8 year old Thomas and 12 year old Lillian. (**Update: Lillian is 14 years old now and Thomas is 9 years old.)

Lillian has a chromosome abnormality simply called 18p-. This means she is missing a piece of the short arm of chromosome #18. Her younger brother, Thomas, is an amazing and loving helper!

I love taking pictures with my mobile devices. Currently an iPhone 3G and a Samsung Galaxy Tab (mine is a Model gt-p3113). I purposely shoot all photos with these devices as I don’t choose to invest in a fancy camera and/or deal with and learn all the details involved and to show others we can easily and economically capture the beauty and awe of nature anywhere and anytime. (**Update: Now using an iPhone 4G and I have an instagram account for posting pictures as time allows … @camilladowns …)

I love writing about mindful, inspired, simple living as it relates to the choices I make, daily living, being a parent, experiencing nature and …. food.

I am inspired by this place I have chosen as our home … Reno, Nevada. When he was 7 years old, my son, Thomas, summed it up with one beautifully crafted comment. “It’s like we are at an art show and nature keeps changing the art for us.”

I freely and openly share my journey as I sail through life. The ups, the downs, the loop the loops. I have good days, I have bad days. I share in the hopes that you will find at least one nugget to take away and apply to your own life. My wish is that you become inspired, your own passion to simplify life is ignited, or a path to mindful living is illuminated.

I am available for freelance writing opportunities and guest blogging. I’m a life coach too! Contact me here to inquire further.

**Disclosure: I am not an expert on how anyone should be or could be living their life; except for my own …. and that’s only sometimes! I attempt to be non-judgmental and to allow others to BE! Go forth and BE MINDFULLY YOU!

(To help support my blogging I will include an Amazon link to items I use or you will see google ads from time to time. I LOVE sharing my journey and choices with you and this just helps to keep me going!)