Self-Forgiveness (Burnt Eggs)

When we make mistakes, there is a part of us that wants to believe that 1. We cause our own struggles by making mistakes 2. Because of this there is something fundamentally wrong with us and, finally, 3. We should pay for these mistakes with emotional suffering. It is embedded into the Western worldview to see ourselves as conditionally lovable and worthy of dignity and respect. In this view, we must always guard ourselves from our underlying nature, which is conflicted, flawed, and even dangerous. From the Buddhist tradition, this is part of our ego’s game of appropriating every difficulty—and victory for that matter—to demonstrate that there is a solid and enduring self that we can rely on. In ego’s logic, it is better to be fundamentally “bad” than to not exist at all. For those of us who are prone to spells of self-aggression this worldview—and the actions that come from it–cause seemingly endless heartache and depression. However, I would like to offer a couple of remedies to the blues we get when we’ve made mistakes. The first is to take a step back in our lives and to recognize that as humans we will always make mistakes. We can also realize that everyone else is making–and continues to make–their own version of those mistakes. From there, we can reorient our minds towards the connections and commonalities we have with other people. And ultimately realize that our mistakes are generally not so big and definitely not worth the aggression we give ourselves having made them.

For example, you burnt the scrambled eggs this morning. This might seem trivial, but if you watch your mind, often times you will notice how something so simple can lead to a general state of frustration, anger and anxiety pretty quickly. So the eggs are burnt, you’re angry and frustrated. Start by taking a deep breath and relaxing, even for a moment. Rather than making a colossal trip out of this mistake you might realize that countless other people have made the same mistake on the same day and throughout history. People are breaking eggs from Bangladesh to Bangor, Maine! You can empathize with them and realize how much frustration and anguish they went through in that moment. You might even offer them a kind attitude in your mind, like “it’s not such a big deal, they’re just eggs!”. Offering this attitude towards others can be the beginning of offering it to one’s self.

Often times, there are bigger emotional difficulties we experience throughout our day and we can apply the same attitude of sympathy with others, connection to the struggles we all have, even humor when those situations arise. So when we overdraft our checking account and pay penalties, we can remind ourselves that countless others are going through the same situation that day and multitudes of others have done so over time, including people we care for deeply. Ultimately, it is the attitude of sympathy and forgiveness that liberates our mind and our energy to be present for life’s situations. This attitude can be difficult to cultivate and our minds often will try to make self-forgiveness into a huge hassle, but even then we can think of how many people struggle with self-forgiveness. When you notice you’re feeling bummed about something you’ve done, try connecting with others in your mind and offering yourself the gift of self-forgiveness. See what happens!

Nikolas H. Maslow, M.A., LPC, CGP
Founder Acumen, LLC
nikolasmaslow.webs.com
Therapist at New Beginnings Health & Wellness
newbeginningshealthwellness.com

Relationship Enrichment

As the season is changing we are blessed here in Colorado with long days and warm nights and a number of outdoor activities that allow for creative and fun activities to enrich your relationships, provide more quality time with your family and connect with your community.

Here are just a few:

1) Invite your partner to go on a walk  3-4 times per week. This will not only allow you to enjoy the weather and each other but will also get your muscles moving and provide a daily dose of vitamin D.  Take advantage of the beautiful sunshine!

2) Plan a picnic or outdoor BBQ. This is a great way to break out of your evening routine and include the whole family in preparing a fun and healthy meal. Bring along a few games, a deck of cards, or art supplies to continue building relationships and create lasting memories.

3) Plant an outdoor or indoor herb/vegetable garden. Creating a small herb garden or a planter for fresh vegetables is much easier than one may think. A few fresh organic herb sprouts can be as little as $5.00 at your local natural foods market or hardware store and a packet of seeds for planting range from $0.40- $2.00. This is a hands-on way to educate your children on sustainable living and impart taking responsibility and caring for the environment.

 

For the singles!

 

1) Designate a few evenings a week to visit your local dog park or the park closest to your community. This is a great way to meet new people and enjoy some time outdoors.

2) Take up a new sport or hobby. Sign up to walk or jog in a local 5k, challenge a friend to a tennis game or join your nearest Rec Center. There is a great sense of accomplishment when you set goals or learn something new.

3) Throw a summer themed dinner party! There are a number of fresh and easy summer recipes to be found online that take no time at all. Turn it into a pot luck or have everyone join you in the kitchen to prepare the meal! This will not only enrich your current friendships but may even spark some new ones!

 

 

 

Enriching your relationships and your life is up to you! There are a number of fun and easy ways to move forward and there is no better time than right now!

 

Blessing!

Cydney Morgan, Counselor and Wellness Practitioner

Healthy Veggie Dip

 

Melissa’s Yogurt Dip

1 32oz container of Plain Yougurt (I like organic greek style)
1Tbsp chopped organic parsley
1Tbsp chia seeds
Salt & Pepper to Taste

With a Cheese Grater or Micro Plane Finley Grate Organic Veggies
¼ small Red Onion
½ Carrot
¼ Bell Pepper (any color is great)
1 clove of Garlic (add more if you like the spicy garlic flavor)
¼ Cucumber

Mix all ingredients together. You can eat this dip right away however it is best when you let it sit for a day.

Become Your Own Witness: 50 Ways to Heal from Television Addiction

 
I read an article recently in USA today that the average American home has more televisions than people. According to the A.C. Nielsen Company, 95 percent of the U.S. population watches some form of television every day. A.C. Nielsen Company also reported that the average American home has a television on for nearly eight hours a day.  The average adult watches nearly five hours of television per day. This adds up to about 6 whole days of television watching a month on average!
When I started reading these statistics, I wasn’t shocked because I understand how prevalent television watching is in American society. I don’t have anything against watching television, but I do see how it takes a lot of time out of life which could be devoted to more meaningful pursuits. I do not own a television and for the most part I am bored with almost everything I watch. I get it—our culture works hard and people are tired and just want to sit on the couch and engage in something mindless for a few hours a day. I have had people look at me with shock when I tell them I do not own a television, for me it is just a preference and I probably would hardly use the damn thing even if I had one. I honestly don’t have any time or desire anymore to sit around and watch television. So I have come up with 50 activities that are soothing to do after a long day, or even a day off…without the big box on. ENJOY!
1.      Exercise
2.      Prayer/meditation
3.      Cook a meal
4.      Have a  meaningful heartfelt conversation
5.      Have a silly laughter-filled conversation
6.      Paint—or finger paint!
7.      Have a good cry
8.      Have a good laugh
9.      Take a class—something you always wanted to learn and would feel excited about!
10.  Make a plan to change careers, if you’re feeling drained by the one you’re in.
11.   Read something inspiring
12.  Make your home your sanctuary
13.  Find little and big ways to make your home sustainable
14.  Garden—anything from flowers, herbs, veggies, just get your hands dirty!
15.  Take long walks alone
16.  Travel somewhere local you’ve never explored before—e.g. a poetry reading, music event, exotic tea house, cathedral…
17.  Focus on your life purpose
18.  Call your mama
19.  Call your best friend
20.  Observe the phases of the moon every night
21.  Take long, amazingly healing baths
22.  Practice Yoga
23.  Practice yoga in the park
24.  Practice Yoga naked (especially if you live alone, and especially if you don’t!)
25.  Make a gratitude list—from small to big—keep adding to the list every day!
26.  Ride your bike without a destination
27.  Talk to a stranger and share something meaningful with them
28.  Talk to a stranger and make them laugh
29.  Leave a flower on a random persons car
30.  Make a list of your priorities, and make time for them
31.  Fall in Love with someone ❤
32.   Listen to someone you think you know like the back of your hand and realize they are still an amazing mystery
33.  Write down 50 things you can do without a television
34.  Make corny mix cds and dance your ass off
35.  Make a mix cd for a person who would least expect it
36.  Write out your dreams and start to live them
37.  Create a vision for a positive future, and live it.
38.  Get your favorite people together and enjoy your community
39.  Make love with your partner for hours
40.  Get to know and talk to your neighbors
41.  Organize a community event
42.  Write, journal, muse— A LOT
43.  Find a spiritual path and devote more time to that path
44.  Get support for an addiction you are ready to let go of
45.  Find a swing set and play in the park (alone or with friends!)
46.  Make an amends to someone
47.  Plan a weekend getaway to a natural wonderland with friends
48.  Contemplate your role in our expansive universe
49.  Ask meaningful questions, and listen and watch how the answers appear in unexpected ways
50.  Tell everyone you love just how much you love them.
These are just a few ideas to rid our lives from television addiction. I invite you to create your own list and watch how your life begins to transform into something exciting, fun, and FULL to overflow with more of YOU! Your life is the best reality show there is beyond your wildest dreams…
By: Rebbeca Norton

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