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Parables For The New Conversation (Chapter 33: The Ocean)

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The following is a chapter from my book ‘Parables For The New Conversation.’ One chapter will be published every Sunday for 36 weeks here on Collective Evolution. (I would recommend you start with Chapter 1 if you haven’t already read it.) I hope my words are a source of enjoyment and inspiration for you, the reader. If perchance you would like to purchase a signed paperback copy of the book, you can do so on my production company website Pandora’s Box Office.

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From the back cover: “Imagine a conversation that centers around possibility—the possibility that we can be more accepting of our own judgments, that we can find unity through our diversity, that we can shed the light of our love on the things we fear most. Imagine a conversation where our greatest polarities are coming together, a meeting place of East and West, of spirituality and materialism, of religion and science, where the stage is being set for a collective leap in consciousness more magnificent than any we have known in our history.

-->Watch a free sneak peek of our new course: Our latest course focuses on how to improve your critical thinking and become more aware of bias. Click here to check it out!

Now imagine that this conversation honors your uniqueness and frees you to speak from your heart, helping you to navigate your way more deliberately along your distinct path. Imagine that this conversation puts you squarely into the seat of creator—of your fortunes, your relationships, your life—thereby putting the fulfillment of your deepest personal desires well within your grasp.

‘Parables for the New Conversation’ is a spellbinding odyssey through metaphor and prose, personal sagas and historic events, where together author and reader explore the proposal that at its most profound level, life is about learning to consciously manifest the experiences we desire–and thus having fun. The conversation touches on many diverse themes but always circles back to who we are and how our purposes are intertwined, for it is only when we see that our personal desires are perfectly aligned with the destiny of humanity as a whole that we will give ourselves full permission to enjoy the most exquisite experiences life has to offer.”

33. The Ocean

On this morning like most every morning since the beginning, the ocean rolled its waves rhythmically onto the beach on the island of Allandon. Over time the waves had milled the sand into tiny granules, making the beach a pleasant conversation-space for the ocean and the island.

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“Today I am at peace with the rush of your waves upon my shore,” the island said, his tone on this day alive with curiosity and bereft of bitterness. “But other days it brings me unease. Why is that so?”

“I commend you for your growing awareness,” the ocean replied. “You are starting to see that ours is necessarily a relationship of love and of fear, of joy and sorrow, of acceptance and denial.”

“I don’t fully understand,” said the island.

“Of course not,” she laughed. “What would be left to do if you fully understood?”

And as had happened many times before, the island fell into silent frustration.

“My dear island, if only you could see that understanding is no greater than confusion, then you could just revel in your search for understanding.”

Still, the island was silent. And the ocean tried to soothe him with the gentle sound of her waves.

“Behold the life that has been created upon you, the trees, the flowers, the creatures that walk and buzz about.”

“Do you wish me to thank you for it?” the island asked.

“That would hardly be necessary—if you could see that you have created it.”

“And how can I see that? When I fully accept that I am a part of you?”

“It is no longer a question of accepting that you are a part of me,” the ocean said tenderly, “but rather of fathoming that I am a part of you.”

Nobody ever said the game that is the evolution of consciousness was an easy one to play. However, in a very real sense, it’s the only game in town. And we have all chosen to participate in it, just by being here. We are at a fascinating stage of the process, on the cusp of our definitive awakening, which will bring us to a collective awareness of ourselves as the fountainhead of consciousness itself, playing out as separate beings in a material world.

The great difficulty of this part of the process has been facing the intense loneliness and isolation, more profound than at any time in our history. It’s like moving out of childhood, when we get weaned off those things that give us a sense of security and belonging, and have to stand on our own two feet and become responsible for our lives. As conscious beings we have been driven ever further from the womb of creation, plunged into the darkness in order to forge a complex ‘I’ capable of self-awareness.

To make way for this move to a heightened self-awareness many of the traditional structures we have relied on at other times in our history have broken down. Blood-line ties are no longer the bond they once were. Religious structures have lost much of their power and have become splintered and fragmented. All manner of social conventions have been challenged. And those things that we once relied on to bring us together, our nationhood, our culture, our values and beliefs, are also being brought into question. So many of us feel the discomfort, either from clinging to beliefs that we have outgrown or from sensing there is no belief that we can count on at all. It is no wonder that ours is a society driven to distraction, rushing and competing, fighting and acquiring, using each other simply as a means of validation, all the time getting less satisfaction from it all.

Perfect.

For it is amid the disappointment, the despair, the dissatisfaction and the desperate seeking for something real to believe in that the definitive awakening occurs. When we grow tired of the tried and untrue avenues and feel like we have nowhere else to turn, we may finally choose to look into the teeth of our loneliness with a sincere mind and an open heart, and truly be humbled by something beyond ourselves. It is at this moment that, in spite of our disdain for religious dogmatism, we awaken to the fact that we are never really alone, that there is a loving presence that has been waiting patiently for us to open our heart in order to guide us. Once this is grasped, or more properly when it is deeply felt, a new doorway into possibility opens for us. We suddenly understand what it means to pray to be an instrument of a greater purpose.

This guiding presence answers our most sincere and probing questions, in the quietest and softest of our internal thoughts. The tone is much more subtle than our interaction with the physical world—and that is as it was meant to be. It is only when we perceive our interaction with this guiding force in freedom and choice can the experience truly impact the evolution of our consciousness. To follow the dictates of a higher force out of obligation or duty is often a helpful experience, but to do so fully out of choice is pure and utter bliss.

We have personified this guiding force in many ways: as a god such as Krishna of Hinduism or Zeus of Greek mythology; as a transcendent master such as Jesus, Buddha, or Mohammed, or the founder of a spiritual tradition that has spawned a long line of gurus; as spirit guides or angels, or even a departed loved one; as animals that cross our path or indeed nature itself, the wind and the sun, the moon and the stars; as signs that emanate from our physical bodies, or our dreams; even as the synchronicities that occur in our everyday lives.

All can be valuable in putting a face to the faceless One, the Brahman, Allah, God, Dao. Which is the right one? Simple. The one that personally resonates with us the most. For they all provide clues that guide us in the direction we really want to go. All we need to do is decide whether to pay attention to them or not. This is our ultimate choice, the foundation of our free will. Do I go with the flow, or against it? Do I choose Love, or Fear? Do I live consciously, or unconsciously?

I have called this guiding force our Dao Self, and I do so to particularly emphasize that our guiding force is actually who we really are. But because we have forgotten who we are, we don’t fully recognize the Dao Self as Our Self, we see it as an Other Self. This allows our Dao Self to guide who we think we are—our Ego Self—into the experience of being alive. In fact it is the only way experience itself is possible. Our Ego Self is really our ticket into the material world, but in order to have the experiences that we most deeply desire, it becomes essential to let the Dao Self lead and the Ego Self follow. As the Ego Self gets more complex, it becomes more capable of choosing whether or not to follow—which then makes following the Dao Self an increasingly profound and exhilarating experience.

Our Dao Self bathes us in guidance with the regularity of waves on the beach. But this is done ever so quietly, patiently and without judgment, providing a space for us to step into when we are ready. In this way, our conversation with the Dao Self is like the new conversation. In fact it is the original new conversation, a model that has been with us since the birth of consciousness, since the first day the island awoke and noticed that it was separate from the ocean.

From that moment we have had a deep longing to return to oneness, but life itself has a longing of its own—for ever greater diversity. In the evolution of all species there is a pull towards greater variety, greater complexity. Our lives are animated by the dance between the longing for unity and the longing for diversity. Today, this dance is moving us towards a more integrated and functional relationship between our rationality and our intuition, our darkness and our light, our Ego Self and our Dao Self. These polarities are getting closer together as our evolution proceeds, but like an exponential curve on a graph, the curve approaches the axis but is never able to touch it.

While the guidance of our Dao Self can come through gods and prophets, spirit guides and angels, more and more today it is coming through each other, for we too can serve as personifications of this guiding force. Despite all our flaws and foibles, faults and failings, we are becoming better placed to be a face and voice of each other’s Dao Self—after all, we share the same Dao Self. There is only One.

For this to work, we are called to establish a sacred trust in our conversations, one that grows the more we create a space of non-judgment, and live from a paradigm that is inclusive of all others—just like our Dao Self does. The better we get at doing this, the more we are able to provide one another with the leverage and traction to evolve, to move into a self that is much bigger, more powerful, more loving than we know ourselves to be.

Certainly we are free to try to go it alone, to insist that our path is uniquely ours and we cannot be following someone else. This may get us a little ways down the path, but eventually it will leave us stranded. If we are to fulfill our deepest desire to unite, part of our mission will always involve accepting help from others. And when we become lost or stranded, the best way to find our way again is by helping another to find their way. Our purposes become ever more entwined as we get closer to the top of the mountain and sense our profound connectedness.

Brave climber, fret not

When the slope is steep and,

Anxious to ascend,

You reach up for that helping hand

And find none.

For this moment too is precious.

It invites you not

To reach up but down,

To another who may be searching

For your helping hand.

For we chase the heights together,

Tethered by purpose,

And moderated by a rhythm

That delivers the most and least likely among us

As one to the view from on high.

Herein lies the perfection of our universe. If we look at the miracle that is the human body, we see billions upon billions of individual cells working together, each with a very specific function and purpose. And these cells are in constant communication with each other, governed by a single mind, checking and testing that their own functioning is perfectly aligned with the purpose of the organism as a whole. Every one of these cells are organisms themselves, which are graced in the same way by the synchrony of each atom and molecule that constitutes them.

From on high we can see that the entire universe is a living organism, where the individual destinies of its component parts are bound by a unified purpose. From the microscopic to the macroscopic, there are organisms nested within organisms, atoms and molecules, our individual bodies, our communities and nations, our planet and our solar system and in the universe beyond. Uni-verse literally means ‘one song’, and represents a stage where we are all part of one great and harmonious choir. Chief Seattle was right when he said ‘Everything is connected’.

What is special about human beings is that we can be fully conscious of our role, and actually have been given a choice as to how we will participate in this grand process. Here we can finally understand why the all-powerful, omniscient Creator doesn’t step in to set things right when the planet goes out of balance and we are not working together. It is because we are meant to have the opportunity to realize that we are the all-powerful creators of this world.

Like the cells of our body, we are all connected by a single mind. We are forging new pathways of communication with each other in order to unite around our common purpose. The mandate of the new conversation is to bring a critical mass of people to a certain threshold, one that will rouse the whole of humanity to its definitive awakening. While we certainly don’t need to talk to every person on the planet to reach this critical mass, every human being is invited to step in whenever they choose. One conversation at a time, we are waking each other up from the slumber of unconsciousness, so that we can be present together to the wonder of our creation.

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Consciousness

New Moon In Aries: Taking Bold Action

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

We are having a New Moon in Aries during the later hours of April 11th in the Americas and on the 12th everywhere else in the world. This is initiating a 29.5 day lunar cycle and new wave of energy for the coming month; however, the astrological configurations mentioned throughout this article will be more prominent over the following two weeks. This cycle will include a Full Moon in Scorpio on April 26th/27th.

Aries season began at the Equinox (on March 20th globally this year) as it always does, as per the framework of the Tropical Zodiac. Being the first of twelve signs, and initiator of a transitional season, it begins the Astrological New Year. However with this New Moon actually occurring in Aries as well, it will crank up the energies of this sign even more so in comparison to the previous weeks that were initiated by a New Moon in Pisces.

Aries is the domain of self, independence, and individual needs. As a Cardinal Fire sign ruled by Mars, it is assertive, courageous, direct, pioneering, and leading. It is initiating, quick, bold, energetic, and warrior-like. Negatively, this energy can be inconsiderate, selfish,  hot tempered, combative, restless, impatient, aggressive, and overly competitive. Aries lacks thoroughness due to its quick forward energy. .

New Moon Conjunct Mercury & Venus In Aries

This New Moon is close to both Mercury and Venus. This can reflect a period in which our social interactions and engagement with others can be more lively. Both Mercury and Aries have a busy moving type of energy and we may feel more active, physically and/or mentally, as a result.

The conjunction of both of these planets with this New Moon also means it is tied into cycles that each of those planets have with the Sun. Venus recently joined the Sun in the last week of March and it is now travelling ahead of it in zodiacal position.

In recent weeks this has been a time in which we experienced shifts, developments, endings, beginnings, or more clarity around Venus areas of friends, love, social dynamics, values, worth, or financial matters in some cases. This New Moon and the weeks following can continue this process, especially when it comes to beginnings or newer ways of expressing ourselves in these areas.

Mercury is now approaching the Sun as they will make their conjunction on April 18th/19th. At that time we may experience developments, which may be significant, connected to what has transpired during its previous retrograde in February and how things have unfolded since then. From there, these things may develop further with a better perception, or circumstances may indicate lack of sufficiency, not what was anticipated, or that something needs to change.

Planets In Aries Square Pluto & Sextile Mars Trine Jupiter

This New Moon, along with Venus and Mercury, are in a square with Pluto and sextile with Mars and Jupiter. Pluto combined with Aries and Mars energy can reflect a period of intensity. However, it can also play out as issues around power, control, manipulation, jealousy, insubordination, or subversion.  It can also be revealing, psychological, compulsive, transforming, and purging.

The sextile with Mars in Gemini adds to the lively, assertive, instinctual, and energetic expressions of Aries. The Aries’ planets sextile to Jupiter, which is also trine Mars, can be good for applying ourselves in a way that is expansive, optimistic, educational, philosophical, explorative, freedom seeking, or centered around beliefs. New doors may open up and it can even be lucky for some people.

Uranus square Saturn (mentioned here in a previous article) is still in the backdrop as it will be throughout the year. Although it’s not in one of its strong periods, themes of ‘freedom/rebellion/revolution being at odds restrictions/limitations/traditions are still playing out. This may get activated in different ways by this new lunar cycle and the Aries energy that has already been present over the previous weeks following the Astrological New Year.

Making Intentions & Things To Consider

How would you like to grow and expand and what do you need to change to get there? In what areas do you need to be more bold or courageous? What have your relationships shown you in recent weeks? What is important for your individuality? What are your personal needs? What do you stand for and should you be fighting for it? Do you need to be a leader in any aspects of your life? Are there any new things that you want to explore?

These are just some examples of what to consider or focus your intentions on at this time. However, it is good to reflect on anything else that is coming up for you. It is generally best to make any intentions within the first 24 hours following a New Moon. The exact moment it will occur is 2:31am Universal Time on April 12th. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

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Consciousness

A Symbiosis of Humans & Technology – Changing The Conversation

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Have you ever noticed that discussions about transhumanism tend to focus on technology more than humanism? The journey to reaching our highest potential as a species is usually focused externally on the technology rather than internally on our conscious evolution. This is probably because people assume that conscious evolution is more about spirituality whereas technology is more having to do with the things humans create. The two paths are interdependent so we need more conversations between experts in each of these fields. It will only be through a recognition of the symbiotic nature between humans, their technology, and the environment that we will avert self-destruction.

trans·hu·man·ism (n.) 1. A belief that humans should strive to transcend the physical limitations of the mind and body by technological means. 2. A movement of people who espouse such a belief.

Standing at a Crossroads: The influence that technology has on society and culture is called, technodeterminism. Most of us carry mini supercomputers in our pockets called smartphones. These devices act as external brains which seamlessly integrate into most aspects of our life. Most of us are completely dependent on them for travel, work, communication, entertainment, and beyond. Take a moment to consider the future implications of augmented reality, artificial intelligence, machine-learning, mass surveillance, automation, genome editing, nanotechnology, and their potential influences on society, culture, and our environment.

When I think about these things, I can’t help but ask:

Why aren’t people like the Dalai Lama, Deepak Chopra, and Dr. Andrew Weil conversing more with people like Ray Kurzweil, Elon Musk, and Steve Mann?

Ancient Futures: It will become increasingly imperative for our most advanced technologies to be informed by the natural ethos of indigenous people blended with the emotional-intelligence of our enlightened spiritual masters. We must remember that the first humans who captured fire to light their cave, stay warm on a cold night, or cook their food were using technology. Anthropologists proudly call us humans “tool-makers” as one of the attributes that make us distinct from most species.

Paradigm Shift: Conscious evolution will require a concerted effort to communicate across silos and disciplines. Cooperation and collaboration towards collective goals will need to take the place of competition for personal gain. What are we hoping to accomplish, and at what cost? We are a risk-taking species and that drives us to exceed all our limitations. Let’s make these be calculated risks because with our technology also comes a great responsibility.

Start Within: Even our most sophisticated technology does not possess the complexities of organic systems. Computers and machines can do many things for us but they will never be able to feel for us. The realm of emotion is central and unique to our human experience yet it is only now starting to be recognized as a valuable form of intelligence.

Emotional intelligence (EI) is the ability to recognize one’s own and other people’s emotions, to discriminate between different feelings and label them appropriately, and to use emotional information to guide thinking and behavior.” -Andrew Coleman A Dictionary of Psychology

Research in multiple fields of study shows that curiosity, creativity, taking initiative, multi-disciplinary thinking, and empathy are skills that will redefine traditional beliefs about intelligence. The ability to accommodate new information requires a certain level of mental flexibility, humility, and ultimately character. It is through our ability to feel and process our emotions that our higher intelligence flourishes.

SuperHumans: Any sports fan knows that there are individuals who possess superhuman gifts. Think of popular sports stars like Michael Jordan, or any of the various extreme sports heroes who somehow manage the seemingly impossible. We also have the various musical or art prodigies who express the skills of a master before the age of 10. We have seen humans walk on red-hot coals with bare feet, walk a tightrope between skyscrapers, and exhibit mind-boggling feats of mental-focus, and will-power. Did you know that Wim Hof ran a half marathon barefoot on ice and snow, with a time of 2 hours, 16 minutes, and 34 seconds? Humans are capable of amazing things when they channel discipline, practice, creative brilliance, fearlessness and focus. We have barely scratched the surface of what is possible!

Global Meditation: This simple practice of quieting the mind, and bringing presence to one’s breathing has a long list of documented benefits that include enhanced neural connections, deep feelings of connection and well-being, as well as a strengthened immune system. When we compound this focused intention to include tens of thousands of people all over the world, we begin to literally shift planetary magnetic resonance. The science does not lie, we are potent electrical beings with the ability to focus consciousness and create beyond our wildest imaginations.

Everything technology offers is a reflection of the technology that we, as humans are. Learning to laugh at ourselves a little while delving into our emotions and to make room for possibilities beyond our currently held beliefs is essential for this journey. In order for us to create technology that is aligned with all of life and our planet, we must first become aligned with ourselves and each other. Global meditation is where we practice together!

We can no longer claim that a technology is advanced if it is destroying our skies and rivers or perpetuating harmful practices like war and domination. These are examples of misguided technologies. Our DNA has been informed by countless generations of evolution. It is time that we focus our consciousness towards the natural wisdom kept by indigenous people, while embracing the presence of enlightened spiritual masters. This will allow us to infuse our science and highest technological advancements with ecological and emotional intelligence for the benefit of all life.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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Consciousness

A Proven Technique To Neutralize Draining Emotional Reactions

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CE Staff Writer 9 minute read

In Brief

  • The Facts:

    We'll explore a simple scientifically proven technique to help neutralize emotional reactions that often drain our energy and reduce our ability to think clearly and make effective decisions.

  • Reflect On:

    How often do you check in to how you're are feeling? Do you feel you are able to self regulate your emotions easily?

Before you begin...

Coherent icon

Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

Do you notice that you sometimes feel tired or fatigued but are not sure why? Maybe you can have a restful sleep and still wake up having a sense that your energy is not quite there? Maybe you notice yourself being reactive, having a short fuse and feeling unclear about what decisions to make? Maybe you say things to friends, family or people online that you later regret or didn’t truly mean. Much of this can have a lot to do with how we’re feeling emotionally on a regular basis. Emotions that are happening just a touch outside our conscious awareness.

Let’s just do a very quick check in to see what I mean. If you stop a take a moment right now to ask “how am I feeling?” What do you notice? Are you feeling good? Energized? Do you have a background tension? Are you a bit stressed? Annoyed? Are you relaxed and calm? Are you perhaps relaxed yet feeling blah? When we do these check ins we bring awareness to how we might be feeling. This is something we typically don’t do that often and thus are simply not consciously aware of how we feel. If we were a bit more consciously aware of how we felt, we’d have a greater understanding of what we could do to feel better as we know where we’re at.

Energy Loss

This is important because one of the greatest unrecognized sources of prolonged stress, fatigue and physical wear and tear on our bodies comes from living our day to day lives in a state where we consciously or subconsciously experience what we might call ‘draining emotions.’ These are emotions like worry, fear, anger, resentment, or sadness etc.

For each of us, we’re likely going to experience these emotions at some point in life, and this is normal. Typically when we experience these emotions, we’re getting an insight into ourselves. Since what triggers these emotions can often be subjective, we can learn something about our current self by paying attention to these emotions. For example, someone might cut us off while we’re driving on the freeway. On one hand, one person might react aggressively and become very angry, while another might simply see it as a mistake on the part of the other driver and move on with their day.

Why some of us react and others don’t typically comes down the the story we’re telling ourselves about why that person cut you off. Perhaps they take it personally, perhaps they see it as an attack in some way – who knows? You. Only you know, and you can get closer to knowing what that is so you don’t harbour that draining emotion for the rest of the day, and even remove the trigger to begin with so you don’t necessarily have to go down that angry road every time something small like this happens.

I want to be clear here, we’re not looking to avoid emotions or never experience them, we’re looking to gain awareness around why they come, and ultimately have the choice over what gets us bothered and what might be better to simply let go. There is a difference between momentarily feeling an emotion like this, and letting it become a ‘background state’ of being that slowly begins to shape our attitude towards unhealthy and draining tendencies.

We can likely go on all day about where we should ‘honor’ some emotions in some situations or stand up for ourselves in others – I’ll let you decide that within yourself for each situation, but what the focus here in this piece is to simply look at how we can neutralize an emotional experience so we can stop it from draining all our energy and gain greater clarity on why it might be happening.

The exercise below is geared towards improving our self awareness around situations and how we feel, so we can learn to self-regulate emotions at anytime, as well as turn off triggers that might not really be the greatest to have to begin with.

Remember, we’re going to stick with a situation where we are cut off in traffic, but you can use these steps for anything. Maybe you realize you are fearful about a situation. Maybe you notice ongoing worry about something that’s happening or may happen – whatever it may be, the steps can be applied.

A Quick 3 Minute Exercise

We’ll go through the steps, this might seem long at first but it’s actually very short once you get the hang of it. This method is based on decades of scientific researching involving the heart and the benefits of creating coherence through good heart rate variability. You can learn more about that here under the section “Coherence & Optimal Function.”

1. The first step is becoming aware of the fact you’re having the emotional experience. What we’re doing here is by reading this we’re setting up a bit of an increased self awareness in our minds that can help us remember to check in when we next have an emotional reaction to something. Perhaps the car cuts us off while driving, and we react, but then shortly after we remember that we want to have a closer look at that emotional reaction and perhaps choose a different response instead of going down an energy draining rabbit hole. So the first thing we want to do is become aware that the experience is happening.

2. The next step is accepting the experience that’s happening. What this means is, if the person in front of us cuts us off while driving and we get angry and realize we’re angry, bring to your awareness that this is OK. We’re not looking to create a judgement about what happened or what we’re experiencing, instead we simply want to see it for what it is, an experience that happened and we’re now aware of and sitting as an observer of it. What this does is it empowers us to be able to look a little more closely at what we’re feeling and why. After we become aware, take note of the emotion you’re experiencing and name it. Is it anger? Is it worry? Is it fear?

As a small kicker to this, just imagine that the intention here is to turn down the intensity of the emotion so we can go in a take a look at what’s going on in the same way that a firefighter will spray water onto a burning house to stop the fire and cool it enough to go in and assess what the source of that fire was.

3. Next we’re going to take a moment and place our hand or a couple fingers over the areas of our chest, around where your heart is, and use the placement of your hand as something to focus on. With your eyes open, take some comfortable yet slightly deeper breaths. Feel your breath moving in and out of the area of your heart (where you hand is). To do this, don’t worry too much about how perfect the breathing is or whether it’s exactly going in and our of your heart area, just sit with a gentle focus that your breath is moving in and out of the area of your heart. Our goal here is to bring awareness to the physical heart and begin to influence its rhythms ever so slightly. Breath into your heart for about 30 seconds.

4. Next we want to continue our heart focused breathing while also imagining the feeling of calm or ease enter into our bodies. Spend the next 2 minutes or so breathing in the feeling of calm or ease into your heart with comfortable breaths. Notice the calm and ease come over your mind and body. What this stage does is it shows us that we have the ability to produce our own emotional regulation by creating a physiological state that is more synchronized and favorable for introspection and clarity.

After step 4 you should feel a lot more neutral in your feeling, but it may be possible you’re still annoyed or upset about the situation, this is great and in many ways the point of the exercise. Remember the firefighter analogy.

If it’s a really small situation, this awareness might already help us choose to simply let it go. If it’s a larger situation, this exercise helps us reduce the intensity so we can gain a bit more clarity about what’s going on and stop us from simply circling the experience over and over again in our minds, potentially increasing our anger and draining our energy.

Now as a final step, you can take a moment to just assess, what is the story you have been telling yourself about the situation? What might be a more effective way to approach or think about the situation? In the case of getting cut off in the car, was it really personal? If so, how do you know? If it was a mistake, is anger helping you or just providing an undesirable experience? If you had the freedom, would you choose anger at the other driver or to just let it go and maintain better health?

The point here is that with awareness we get clearer on who we are and how we function. This inevitably gives us a choice in how we choose to react.

For more information on this and to build a bit of a deeper practice, you can check out a short course I produced in our members area called CETV. The course is called Improving Daily Self Awareness, Presence & Connection. 

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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