Friday, December 2, 2016

Evolutionary Awakening

The concept of 'Awakening' is a favorite for me.  I wrote hundreds of thousands of words about this topic a few years ago, along with doing a lot of research.  At the time, there were very few people talking about the concept and it was just beginning to take hold of individuals around the world. Many of the sites and facebook pages of persons going through the awakening process were just starting to build their followings.

Most of them have many thousands of followers now and the awakening process is now widespread around the globe.  This is huge part of the 'mental health epidemic' we are in the middle of.  As we go through the awakening process we internalize our emotions and feelings as we observe the world around us with a new set of eyes.  It causes much dissonance within us and is likely the reason that mental health issues such as anxiety, depression, ADHD, mood disorders and so many more are growing at such rapid rates.

Because most people have never been through an awakening finding your way can be quite difficult, and the journey can be a very frustrating one.  There are many prophets from our past and present who have walked the path of enlightenment, and people all around planet Earth are looking for someone to show them the way.

Be careful who you use to show you the path.  We have religious figures who have offered answers and solutions, as well as philosophers who have attempted to answer all of life's questions through logical reasoning.  I have used many ideologies from figures of the past, but who do we have in the present world that 'gets it'.  Although the Dalai Lama is one of the most enlightened people on the planet, Eckhart Tolle and Deepak Chopra have shared a lot of excellent information with the world, from an enlightened view as well.

The other factor we need to understand is what the awakening actually is.  It has long been theorized to be a 'spiritual' awakening, and it is my belief that this where much of the confusion comes in.  Spirituality is faith based and subjective, and therefore finding facts can be difficult.  The spiritual awakening process is left open to subjective thinking and reasoning, and therefore finding concrete theories can be almost impossible.

I theorize that the awakening process is evolutionary in nature.  We are adapting to a much faster paced world with immense amounts of information being passed around each day.  Our brains need to function at a much faster pace just to keep up with day to day routines.  There is a common saying that we only use 10% of our brains.  If this is true then there is room to grow.  It is my belief that we are learning to use more of our brains out of necessity, and therefore are consciousness is becoming more aware.

If you are going through something that feels like a greater understanding of the world, you are not losing your mind, and may not have any mental health issues at all.  Our inner selves are looking for something more and we need to let it.  Being mindful and meditating to find the present moment work very well when trying to find that inner self.  Follow the teachings and practice of those who have been through the process already.

Enlightened people share only solution-based and positive information.  If someone is teaching goals that don't quite seem right to you, their path is probably not right for you.  My personal favorites are Buddha, Jesus, Gandhi, Socrates, Eckhart Tolle and I also like to follow the Dalai Lama on social media.  Each one of these individuals is showing a path to being a better you.  You don't have to stick to one teacher, gain as much information as you can from an array of prophets, in order to find answers for yourself.

We may be in the midst of a spiritual awakening, and may learn answers that will amaze and astound us.  I think it is more likely that the awakening is evolutionary and we need to simply get through it.  Nothing good every comes easily, but an awakening of consciousness is well worth the effort and wait.

Blogging For Better Mental Health

Blogging or journaling can be great ways to reduce stress and calm your mind, as opposed to when we are reading.  Although reading can be a very relaxing activity, it can add information to a mind which is already full.  Blogging or journaling on the other hand helps you to take the thoughts down from your mind and put them in front of you.  As you are writing you will begin to empty thoughts from a likely busy brain.

People have been keeping diaries and journals since the beginning of time and they can be essential to our mental health.  Maybe you are able to share and trust another that you prefer to share yours thoughts with, but for the many of individuals that are social isolated, this can be the outlet you are looking for to ease your busy mind.

I am working on having a couple of individuals start their own blog so they can begin writing every day.  My first purpose is to help them improve their state of mind and become more content in their lives.  My second purpose is to monitor the process and see if, and how much it truly helps the state of mind.  I do this for my own mental health because I have many ideas that I can't let go of until I work them out for myself.  Mental relief follows every time.

We use one part of our brain to form and write our words, but another part to read and absorb what we have written.  Writing our thoughts helps us to work out our inner conflicts inside of a physical platform.  Writing down your thoughts is similar to taking marbles out of the bowl like in my previous article.

I write each day for several reasons.  I like to help others and feel that the common sense approach that I use is hopefully helpful to those I share with.  I have helped many others one on one so I am hoping this platform will do the same.  I also write for my own mental well being.  I have a barrage of thoughts going on in my head at times just like you do, and working them out in a common sense style helps me to remove a lot of the clutter in my brain.

If I feel I have been rational in my thinking, then I publish the article in the hopes that my own successful step will offer you the possibility of the same success.  You are smart and can rationalize things any time you try.  Give it a shot and see what happens.  It has been a successful tool for many and can be for you.

Peace to all

p.s.  Two new blogs have been added to the right of this page.  Check out their writings over the next few days by clicking on their links under New Blogs.  Hear real stories from real people!

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Climbing Out-Part 3 'Think' to 'Feel' Better

I have slowed down in my writing over the past week due to health issues.  Every once in a while I go through physical relapses that sap all of my strength, and I am unable to complete simple tasks that I would normally do.  It is quite frustrating because my inner drive wants to do things, but my physical abilities are almost non-existent.  This is the plight of invisible illnesses.

We often get pegged as lazy or unmotivated, and all this does is make the situation worse.  On top of that, others attempt to comfort and tell us everything will be okay.  Although I am able to stay mentally strong for the most part, it is almost impossible to fight the negative symptoms, and keep a positive attitude.  I am thankful that I have spent years fighting my anxieties and staving,off major depressive states, because it has given me the resiliency to make it through the relapses.

I am developing 'Climbing Out' as I work my way back out of my own pit.  I can see the path like many others can, but taking the steps required are especially difficult when our physical state of being is not accommodating us.  Our sensory feelings and overwhelmed emotional states keep our physical being down, while also pulling our mental state down with it.  This is where the challenge of our past struggles give us the ability to strengthen our resolve.  Every day we struggle, the more we can endure.

For me, it creates a fog in my brain.  When I am suffering a relapse it is difficult to focus on things I would normally do because the symptoms keep dragging me backwards.  Mentally I continue to push forward each time until something improves.  I am able to control my anxieties for the most part and use them as fuel to find some forward movement.  My body continues to tell me what 'i can't do', while I constantly remind myself what 'i can do'.

When we are in a 'down' state of being, it is simple to focus on what we can't do.  This is why I start 'Climbing Out' by getting better control of our minds first.  We can learn to control our thoughts and create a positive attitude, but we can't control our feelings, we can only affect them with our thoughts.  So if we want to 'feel' better, we need to think better first.  I may not be able to do much physically at the moment, but I can spend time trying to improve my thinking.

I can see my barriers so i will come up with solutions to overcome them.  I will use a 'can do' attitude and see where it goes over the next few days.  I have been practicing the first two steps of mindfulness and taking control of my thinking, so now I can start forcing better thinking processes.  I can only assume that better thinking will lead to stronger mental health, and better mental health will lead to a more balanced body.

Every time we fall down, we can start with these steps to climb back out again.  I hope you will see the results of my attitude change over the next few days as I try to take the third foothold in my journey out of the pit.  I want to show how these steps can be used by anyone who is stuck in the pit as well.  This process takes time and determination, but because it our health we are talking about, it is worth all of the effort.

If you are having a difficult time trying to determine which voice to listen to inside your head, try screaming at yourself quietly.  Observe where logical reason is coming from and which voice is providing solutions.  If your body is suffering, it will likely be forcing negative thinking into your mind, so listen to the voice that is trying to be reasonable.

Use that voice to find solutions to your inner issues, and work on having a 'can do' attitude.   Taking these three steps will help you to 'feel' better, and to have better control over your emotional states.  As we begin to feel better our strength will increase.  As our strength increases the next steps will become more natural and effortless.

Again, practice these steps until you can do them easily.  They will help us gain the initial footholds to pull ourselves back out of the pit each time we fall.  What can't we do?  Control our feelings and physical illnesses.  What can we do?  Improve and better control our thinking processes.  Improve our thinking processes and we improve our overall state of being. `

Building perseverance comes from this process and will be the next step.  Use solutions and a 'can do' attitude and build on your strengths a little at a time.  The more we work at this, the quicker we will be able to see the top of the pit again.  Seeing the top of the pit provides hope and can re-energize our inner resolve.  Don't stay stuck at the bottom of the pit anymore.  Take on the challenge and reap the rewards!

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Nothing Good Ever Comes Easily

If you want anything good to happen in this world you have to work at it.  It would be easy to tell you that there are quick fixes and cures for all of the ailments plaguing the world right now, but I can't do that.  I will continue to tell you that if you want better health, either physical or mental, you will have to work at it.  I also realize that most people say that they want the truth, but really most people want at the very least, a sugar coated version of the truth, or to hear what will make them feel better.

So we continue to enable poor behaviours and actions of others by 'being nice' and not really telling others what they need to hear, only what they want to hear.  Who does this feed?  It feeds the ego and not the soul.  It feeds those that want power and gain for themselves  It feeds the sociopaths and narcissists that run the business world and governments.  Telling people what they want to hear feeds the wrong people.  We should be feeding the spirits of those other good people who are trying to improve themselves and make the world a better place.

Mental health issues are rooted deep within and are often the result of something that happened early in our lives.  The things that we learn through our childhood become the platforms that we base further learning on as we age.  If we have learned things wrong during the early stages of our developmental growth, the misinformation carries forward.  If you learn that a fish is a tree and nobody ever tells you differently, you will always believe that a fish is a tree.

Our mental health issues are similar to this.  For example, if a person is physically abused for years, they will believe the behavior to be normal until learning otherwise.  If we have deep rooted fears or sadness from our younger years, this can be projected throughout the rest of our lives.  Because these behaviors and beliefs are deep rooted within us, they are difficult to change, but they can be with effort.

The world is somewhat chaotic and is a difficult place to live each day.  All we have is ourselves.  The better our state of mind, the easier it is to deal with the negativity that surrounds us all.  If you feel the need to push yourself to get out of the pit, then start with putting effort into yourself.  Take the deep rooted misinformation and start to correct it.

Use your own wisdom and experience to correct values and ethics that you learned incorrectly in your youth.  Be a realist and look at the world from an objective standpoint.  You will make better decisions and start to work out the cognitive dissonance that is berating your mind.  Be good and kind but don't let others take advantage of your goodness.

I apologize if I am a little off track today in my writing.  I have been struggling physically for a few weeks now and focus is not always my friend right now.  I am still 'selling' the idea of blogging for better mental health because I can look back at my posts from the past few weeks and clearly see which days were good, and which ones I struggled through.  It certainly keeps the mind clear during the low times!

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Climbing Out-Part 2

Would we not consider that if we create a pathway out of the pit with our calm and rational minds, that we could use it over and over again?  Anyone can come up with a few tricks and find their way out of the pit, but often will just fall back in again.  The 'pit' has become part of who we are and that is why we choose to live there.  Yes, believe it or not, we are 'choosing to stay there, not because we have to, but because it is where our feelings of stability lie.

We don't even realize that our 'ego' has made us believe that we need the darkness to survive.  We are stuck in the pit of despair of our own making.  So if it of our own making, can we unmake it as well?  There is no simple answer to this, but of course we can!  Can we find our way out of the pit and stay there?  Absolutely!

We already know that a  calm mind and body will give us the first major foothold to climbing out.  With a cool and rational mindset we will make better choices and decisions for ourselves, this part is not in question.  The next step takes a little more work or may feel somewhat uncomfortable, but that is why we need to start from a peaceful state of being.  We need to start experiences our senses and feelings in relation to our thoughts.

No matter how calm we feel, when we are in the pit there are numerous negative thoughts that will continue to try and keep us down.  If the negative thinking were not there we would not be in the pit in the first place.  We need to identify what the negative thoughts are so we can more forward and add another foothold.

Start with simple questions of yourselves in order to take control of the negative thoughts.  Ask how you are going to get out the pit and identify the feeling that comes with it.  The thought could come with anxiety or depressed feelings and we need to learn how to identify and differentiate them.  Anxiety will provide us with worry or fear of some impending future possibility, whereas depressive thoughts will drive you to more negative thoughts and feelings of sadness.

If I am feeling anxiety then I need to find out what my worry is.  If I am feeling depression I need to identify what past event is causing the negative reaction.  So what is my next foothold that will create a pathway out of the pit?   It is taking a modicum of control over my thinking so that I can begin rationalizing information in a positive way.  If we reason things logically then we are starting to control our thinking rather than allowing it to control us.

Taking control of our thinking forces us to react more closely with our feelings, and this is tough to do.  The feelings we are experiencing are what keeps us down in the first place.  The feelings and emotions are in reaction to learned thought processes and need to be altered.  If we ask ourselves a simple question and get a fearful feeling, we need to sort out why it is causing us fear.

Start to take control of your thinking because it will make you more mindful of the present moment. Taking control of your thinking will provide you with the next foothold on your path out of the pit of despair.  This will work every time you fall back down, because we will fall down a few times before being successful.  The important part is to keep getting back up because it is for you!

Every time you hit the rock bottom you can start your journey back out by using the same pathway.  First you will want to find as much calmness and peace as you can muster up.  Then we will work on taking control of negative thinking.  Ask deep questions or things that interest you, and force your thinking to positive things if need be.  Once we can rationalize and direct our thoughts, we are well on our way to developing a plan and path.

How are thoughts relate to our feelings and emotions will be the next foothold.  We need to change our thinking in order to change how we feel about things.  It will also help us to get better at controlling our thinking.  We are two steps out the pit and hope is growing!

Mental Health 'Professionals'- What Is A Professional?

There are thousands of counselors, therapists, psychologists, and other mental health professionals.  I like to think that they all got into their profession because of their empathy and understanding for others, but this is not always the case.  This is a profession where compassion and empathy are crucial to being a good helper.

In order to be a good helper, it is my belief that person doing the helping needs to have some experience in what they are providing help for.  Our system is filled with young people with little life experience trying to help others 'get better'.  I applaud them for their education and drive, but theory alone is not going to help someone who is suffering.  You need to know what it feels like before you can truly understand it.

Our system here does not put nearly enough weight on experience in what they are teaching to others.  Would you want someone who has never swam before to teach you how?  If are learning to play a sport of any kind, do you want to learn it from someone who has never played the game before?  Of course you wouldn't!  So why would you want mental health professional teaching how to suffer less when they have not truly suffered themselves yet?

I am not saying that young people have not had their share of suffering.  In this hectic and chaotic world of ours, young people experience much more suffering each day than ever before in history. But until you have lived life as an adult, or have been a parent, you have not really experienced life yet.  Young people are easier to train, but what they are being taught protects the system more often than the individuals.

The societal system here teaches 'confidentiality' in everything and causes professionals to almost stress over it.  I agree that clients and patients have an absolute right to confidentiality but it needs to be clarifies.  In any office setting, all personal information should always protect the privacy of every client, but the 'client' needs to be taught something different.

As someone who is experienced in life and also has an education in mental health, I have formed my own opinions.  My opinions are based on what I have experience in life and what I have learned from books.   I create theories and practice them in my everyday life.  My opinion is that we need to teach people to be open about their mental health issues.

The more we talk about them and bring them into the open, the better chance that others around us will become more understanding and empathetic of us.  The less we hide, the less we suppress.  Suppression is what holds the anxiety and depression inside.

I have thrown a few ideas out here and now will bring them all together.   Anyone who has lived life, suffered, and learned lessons is already a mental health 'professional' in their own rights.  Don't be intimidated by the 'system' just because it does not consider you a professional.  If you have suffered through an invisible illness and found the other side, then you should be able to share your 'professional' advice with others who are suffering the same way.

Only be a 'specialist' in things you have lived through and truly know about.  If you have created coping mechanism or have simply found things that work for your illness, share your words with others who could use the help.  Tell them you understand because you have been there.  Anyone in the 'pit' will appreciate help from someone who truly 'gets it'.  We may not show our appreciation at first, but a hand up from someone who has been there is always worth the effort.

This is like a 'call to action'.  Educate yourself about your mental health issues or others close to you.  Use your experience to give others a hand up, and be a mental health 'professional' yourself.  Share your background so others will be at ease with you.  I hope to get people helping each other all around the world.

If you have been depressed and have good ideas to share, share them with a depressed person.  If you suffer from severe anxiety, but have created successful coping mechanisms, then share them with someone else you know who is also suffering.  Become a Mental Health 'Professional' and make the world a better place on sufferer at a time.