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Tag Archives: Heart Opening


Five-Minute Try-It: Matching, Relating, Fusing

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PURPOSE: Open our awareness to our similarities rather than differences. We are much more like each other than different. When we recognize viscerally our similarities, the ability to make progress together – particularly around money – expands.

Minute one: Recognize your magnificence and blessing on this earth. Recognize the magnificence of others.

Minute two: Bring to mind a tree – any type. Root your feet and body. Feel your spine, strength and the ground.

Minute three: Be a Master Martial Artist; move like a master. Try the fluid movement of Aikido.

Minute four: Bring to mind a person who you feel neutral towards. Notice what arises in your body when you relate to them.

Minute five: Bring to mind someone or something you love: open your heart and move with the gestures of this other.

Complete your practice by recognizing our seamless and continuous connections with all others and with all of life.

 

 

Five-Minute Try-It: Body Appreciation

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PURPOSE: Our body is always present and available to communicate with us about what is nourishing and what is not. Let us attend to this precious instrument, appreciating the wisdom and value it abundantly offers.

Minute one: Notice the entire felt sense of your body. Recognize the inevitability of aging and death. Smile – you and your body are alive!

Minute two: Focus on your feet. Touch your feet with your hands and appreciate that these feet transport you every moment you walk. How are your feet responding to your awareness?

Minute three: Focus on your belly and touch it with your hands. Appreciate that the food you choose to eat passes through your digestive track, extracting nourishment to give you energy. What wisdom does your belly hold?

Minute four: Focus on your heart and touch it with your hands. Appreciate your heart for beating and for pumping blood through your system, keeping you alive and vibrant. What does your heart know?

Minute five: Focus on your arms. Hug your arms. Appreciate your arms that allow you to embrace others. Where do your arms want to hug?

Complete your practice by recognizing the preciousness of your body. Commit to sustained body appreciation and notice how your body responds.

 

Five-Minute Try-It: Still Calm Spacious

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PURPOSE: To build awareness about the concept of sufficiency and engage a somatic practice that leads to embodied sufficiency.

Minute one: State the word – Sufficiency – out loud several times in different tones and inflections. Notice how sufficiency feels in your body. Do you have a sense of lack? Do you feel ease?

Minute two: Open to the truth of sufficiency by slowing your breath and feeling this moment of stillness. Right here, right now. Access stillness. Be still.

Minute three: In the practice of stillness, calm arises. Breath slows down to a subtle rhythm and presence. Movement is slight, yet your mind is bright.

Minute four: Stillness and calm give way to space. Saturating in stillness and calm, recognize the spacious quality of your mind and body. Space permeates you.

Minute five: Reflect Abide in spacious, still, calm moments.

Complete your practice by recognizing this is Sufficiency. The concept of sufficiency is not just a concept but a way of being. Commit to embodying Sufficiency.

It won’t be Perfect, but it will be Better

08/08/2019

Six months ago, a dear friend who lives thousands of miles away, a gifted potter who began her passion later in life, sent me two gorgeous pieces. The five-inch green square and three-inch blue rectangle sat on my desk receiving my admiration. One day last month in a hectic frenzy they fell to the ground. The five-inch square broke into three pieces.

I can fix this. I moved the ceramic to another table for repair… when I had more time.

Today, after confirming plans to connect with my potter friend, it was time. Gorilla glue, rubber bands, wet paper towel, dry rag and toothpicks—the damaged tray and I consummated the repair. The work was not hard, but the result was not pretty. In a focused but “need to get done” state of mind, the repair broke apart—three pieces became five.

Though not headed in the direction I intended, the phrase, it’s not perfect, but it will be better came to mind. I glued unskillfully. I did not pay close attention to how the ceramic pieces fit together, and the last two broken parts did not fit in the tray. No problem. Let me glue this together with my creative juices, and with my new teaching: it is not perfect, but it will be better. And it is. The tray is glued back together. Not perfect, but better. (See below for a capture of my creative expression.)

All too often, our efforts seek perfection. Our brilliant minds create ideas about what we want, and that want gets amplified with a concept of perfection— often unrealistic perfection. Perfection misses delicious sideroads, off-the-trail surprises, and spontaneous potentials. Perfection grasps. Perfection clings. Perfection excludes. Perfection exhausts.

Sometimes, all the situation requires is better. Better offers us a way in, a deeper breath, a warm space. Better is better. Better allows us elbow room and with that openness comes perspective. The work of money is a perfect place, pun intended, to explore the idea of not perfect, but better.

Let’s move in with a metaphor. What happens if we view the mountain top as perfection? What happens to the ascent and descent of the climbing experience? How long can we stay at the top of the mountain and survive boredom, hunger, weather? Often in our money journey we seek a top (usually retirement) attached to a number. We might miss the ascent—spending on current life experiences, saving for the future, and giving generously. In the process of accumulating and navigating money flow and growth, we might miss our “better.”

You may recall the well-known phrase and teaching called, the myth of arrival. This idea of perfection will be experienced when this _________ (fill in the blank) manifests. At the top may occur the myth of arrival experience, and the glow of achievement begins to fade. This is perfect! I can see for miles and miles, from here to eternity—the horizon beckons me! And then, just like that, we begin a descent. We fail to recognize that on the descent – spending, saving and giving are the same activities held with fresh eyes. Is climbing down a mountain a problem?

With better, when we know that we cannot make a mistake, we gain access to better decisions. Most harmful decisions come from the belief that there is only one right answer. Right answers close down curious possibilities. When we finally make a decision with a “right answer,” the ability to change is near impossible because we were seeking the perfection of that one right answer.

Now, as this missive comes to a close, consider better in an open curious way. Consider how better might be best. Consider what possibilities might emerge in decisions when we soften the grip of “right” in service of … restorative, rejuvenating, replenishing, revitalizing, revolutionary, reverent.

My repaired ceramic mishap does not appear perfect, but it is definitely better than broken or discarded. And I love it!

                     

Bettering life,

 

 

 

 

Five-Minute Try-It: Feel Truth in the Body

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PURPOSE: To build a more intimate and honest relationship with your body. Practice learning what truth feels like for simple statements, building muscles to be applied to more complex matters such as money.

PREPARATION: You need five minutes, space to put your body in, and the willingness to listen closely to your body.

Minute one: Name three truths and three falsehoods. Do not fret for the “right statements” – spontaneously allow them to emerge. Write them down if it helps to remember.

Minute two: Stand, feel your feet on the ground, spine elongated, top of the head reaching to the sky. Select the three truths and state them out loud. Note, these do not need to be profound – eye color, favorite food and movie will do. Notice what truth feels like in your body.

Minute three: Remain standing. Speak your falsehoods out loud. State them clearly and loudly one at a time. Notice what a lie feels like in your body. Compare and contrast the feeling to your previous experience. (Hint: notice breath, tension and constriction).

Minute four: Return to your truth statements. State them out loud again. Pay close attention to the distinct and subtle body imprints that signal truth.

Minute five: Recognize and register at least one body feeling of truth and one body feeling of falsehood to build your body-truth relationship.

Complete your practice by abiding in body-truth. Commit to building your body-truth relationship in service of embodying Sufficiency.

 

5-Minute Try It: Straws and Other Plastic

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PURPOSE: To gain awareness of our planet, and in particular marine life that struggles with human plastic use.

PREPARATION: Ask yourself, am I open to learning and seeing a new perspective? If so, watch my rant with an open heart and mind. Then, begin your own practice following these steps.

Minute one: Arrange your posture as described in Belly-Heart-Spine 5 Minute Try-It (click here for audio file.)

Minute two: Centering your body, reflect on this wonder question: hmmm, I wonder how my use of plastic serves me? Hmm, I wonder how my use of plastic serves others?

Minute three: Allow answers to arise. Return to centering, reflect on this wonder question: hmmm, I wonder how my use of plastic harms me? Hmm, I wonder how my use of plastic harms others?

Minute four: Allow answers to arise. What sensations (movement, pressure, temperature) arise in your body offering new information about the use of plastic? Allow new insights to arise.

Minute five: Reflect on this wonder question: hmmm, I wonder what new behavior around plastic would better serve others, the world and me.

Complete your practice by integrating your new insights and committing to a new relationship with plastic.

5-Minute Try It: Connect

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PURPOSE: To practice and gain mastery of connection in the flow of presencing, connect and play. Connection is the immediacy of attention.

PREPARATION: Now. This is it!

Minute one: Begin with presencing for as long as you feel.

Minute two: Connect with what is arising right now. Give attention without judgment, evaluation, or desire.

Minute three: Repeat.

Minute four:  Repeat.

Minute five: Repeat.

Complete your practice by recognizing connection is this moment of giving attention. Simple and profound.