Life just seems so….stressful!
Well, take a deep breath and get ready to find that inner-peace with the help of Melbourne author and meditation artist Carmen Warrington.
The answer you’re looking for lies in affirmations, believes Carmen, who has bundled up a stack of her best “mini-meditations” in her indispensable new book Today I Will…
Here are 10 of her favourites to get you started:
Delight in making a gift with my hands
Draw a picture, pot a plant, make a toy, give a foot massage, sew, invent a new dessert, decorate something, or make greeting cards. Perfection is not necessary. Give your gift from the heart and complete the circle of love. Let your loving intentions permeate your creation. It is definitely the thought that counts. Gifts you make are priceless.
Rearrange part of my material world
Rearrange your desk, your drawers, photos, pot plants or furniture — experiment! If it’s a shared space, get everyone’s agreement before you start. There’ll be tidying and cleaning involved, so allow time for it. Make a change. Spark up a stagnant space. Shift energy blocks. Set a new rhythm in motion.
Affirm positive messages about myself
Notice how many times you put yourself down during the day. Include what you think and say, and words spoken in jest. Pay particular attention to how you react to your mistakes and poor choices. Think of yourself as a child who is learning to walk; you need encouragement — not criticism. You will become the person you believe you are. Affirm positive messages about yourself. Treat yourself gently and with respect. You deserve it.
Accept what I see in the mirror
Are you dissatisfied with how you look? Is your self-esteem too bound up in your physical appearance? Love your body; it is the extraordinary instrument through which your spirit expresses itself. Accept the inevitability of ageing. Broaden your concept of beauty. Be at peace with yourself as you let go of impossible self-imposed standards. Live in the present, not in the past (how you used to look) or the future (how you will look when you find time for more exercise).
Recognise the small achievements I have made recently
An achievement can be as simple as doing a task well, bouncing back after a disagreement, or following a routine all week. Self encouragement is the key to self-esteem. Praise yourself for small achievements to create a feeling of success. As you feel more successful you’ll become more daring. Focus on the things you do well and you will thrive.
Wholeheartedly embrace alternatives
Consider the possibility that your way of doing things is not the only way. Other methods may be just as valid. Think about how you want the chores to be completed, your opinions about what makes good driving, or the way you communicate. Consider deeply your personal rules — are they so essential that everyone should do the same? Acquire tolerance, become less set in your ways, learn to adapt and be in harmony with others rather than trying to control them. Respect alternative points of view.
Put a full stop on the past
Whatever happened cannot be changed; it is now part of your history. Your past has shaped you and brought you to this moment. Cast from your mind phrases such as ‘I should have’, ‘why didn’t I’ and ‘if only’. Accept the lessons you have learnt from past choices. Make peace with yourself.
Disentangle yourself from regret, shame and guilt. Shake off the past and move forward with peace of mind.
Free myself from the subtle chains of an unfinished project
Perhaps the unfinished project is no longer relevant or necessary, or has been given a much lower priority. Decide if the project is still worth investing your energy in and, if not, put it to rest once and for all. Is the cause of your procrastination fear or confusion? Invoke the appropriate virtue or power needed to complete the task. You are a powerful soul.
Claim my right to nurture myself
Take a bubblebath, have a massage, cook yourself a special meal, read your favourite poetry, meditate, potter, or do something nice for yourself. Tell yourself you deserve to be nurtured. Give your desires a high priority in your day. Enjoying a good quality of life is just as important as fulfilling your responsibilities. Keep a balance between expending and replenishing your energy. Treat yourself well and enjoy life.
Simply let go
It’s great to be in control, and it’s great to let go. Let go of your expectations and fixed ideas about how things should be done. Don’t try to force things to happen. Just do as much as you can, then step back and see what takes shape. If you feel responsible for someone else’s moods or emotions, let these feelings go. Relax and allow new influences and options to emerge. Let your destiny steer you.
- Today I Will…published by Hachette Australia, paperback $16.99, ebook $9.99