Tag Archives: anxiety

Day 431: Jumping Off The Stress-Train

I have been working with anxiety/fear/projections last week. I have realized that the key to stopping anxiety/fear/projections is to stop the train of thought and bring it back here. The emotions need thoughts to become fired up – they need some image or vision of something going to shit – and by not going there – the emotions remain small and easy to direct.

The solution is simple – the application can be tough – because it is easy to go into that train of thought and the justification is usually that it is somehow needed for me to protect/prepare myself. However – that is the illusion – that feeling of need – because there is really no need to think of anything – it does not make things better or worse. Thinking about things just perpetuates a state of feeling. For example – if I have a test I need to prepare for – thinking about the test will perpetuate a state of stress/tension and it will not increase my chances of passing the exam. The only thing that will increase my chances of that is actually sitting down and studying. And that action is not itself associated with anxiety/tension – it is simply what it is – sitting down and studying.

The same goes with the test – it is what it is – me sitting down doing a test. Though when we think about it – that is when the demons start coming out of the woodwork. Suddenly the test seems to be too big, and there seems to be a grave shortage of time. What to do, what to do? The stress starts seeping into every cell of the body and corrupts every moment with a foggy state of being half alive and half zombie. That is no way to live – that is survival – and why even be here if it is only to survive? We are meant to be and do more than that. Life is about exploration, experience, expansion and movement – it is about finding out what we are all about and the difference we can make. And to get into that zone of expression – we must drop the thinking – it is only holding us back.

I have understood that in order to stop feeding the stress-demon – I must be consistent in my STOP-application. The train of thoughts leading me down into the rabbit hole will move again and again – and each of them will try to lure me away on a small trip to stress-land. Each train will have its own unique attraction – something that creates that desire to jump on and find out where it is going. When that desire arise, that is the moment to step in, take a breath, and hold the reigns. Because if I go into that desire, I will start feeding the monster – and soon enough – I will yet again be engulfed in an experience and not able to live and experience each waking moment with the presence and clarity that it deserves.

The interesting thing about stress is that we believe we need it. We have created this idea that we need competition, we need to fight for our survival, struggle, or exist in austerity and lack in order to get going – and hence – we created capitalism in our image and likeness. Capitalism which is the very essence of the struggle to survive and the glorification of the winner at the peril of the loser. And we believe that we get some many fantastic things out of capitalism; advances in technology, creature comforts, more and better food – though what is growing inside of everyone is the tension/anxiety/fear – the understanding that in a capitalistic world no one really matters.

We do not need stress or fear to create awesome things. We do not need these demons to push us forward – we can do that by ourselves. All we need is our common sense – and our body will take care of the movement. Thus – I will continue to embrace and live a life-oriented living where I focus on the creation and enjoyment of living instead of living with fear/stress.


Day 430: Sparking Life in a Survival World

It can be challenging keeping the spark of life alive and growing as we become adults and enter into the survival system of the world. All around us is designed in the principle of survival. All of the words we hear, designed in the principle of survival. You put on the news, you hear about survival. The moments where you are allowed to for a moment just be yourself and enjoy a moment are very few. However – we cannot blame the world as it is. We have to learn how to live our spark of life within what we do – and also – to schedule in moments of unconditional expression into our lives – we must treat it as something important – something we need to blossom – and not see it just as any kind of hobby.

I would say that our desire to survive limits our ability to live with a spark. If we would be less concerned about survival, life would open up. There are so many things we avoid, so many things we do, so many things we want to do that we do not, because of, fear of survival. Children do not care about that. They are childlike and not yet afraid of death. We can learn a lot from them. However, it is important to be realistic. We cannot live and express the same as children, because adults, our realities expand and we are required to take on responsibilities. The trick is learning to live with a childlike spark and still remain functional in the adult world. And that is something I have been working a lot with.

I have realized that most of my dreams/visions for the future exist because I have suppressed my childlike expression in the moment. In my dreams, where I have for example gotten a particular position in my career, I feel alive, wholesome and content. And thus I strive to create that, believing that it is only by manifesting my dream that I will be able to feel that way. This is the mistake. The truth is that the dream is only a projection, a form of postponement – the real change is waiting to be made in every moment of every breath. Few children have dreams of the future – because they live fully in every moment. Why dream of something more when there is no lack in this very moment? It does not make sense. Hence – most dreams indicate that there is a state/condition of lack existing within self.

I am not saying that all dreams are bad. We live in a practical reality – and practical changes will have an impact on our well-being. Earning more money can for example open up possibilities – meeting a partner can be a gateway to new experiences. What makes dreams deceptive is when we believe that they will change our self-relationship – change the experience we have of ourselves in every moment. That is something we take with ourselves everywhere we go – and it cannot be changed by external forces. It is a job that must be done by ourselves.

In my process I have spent a lot of time decoding my dreams/visions to understand what they are showing to me about my expression. For example – when I greatly desire to buy new power tools – this tends to be because I have had a moment of unconditional expression/enjoyment working with wood. My mind then takes this expression and translates it into a energy/desire – and if I am not careful – I will start believing that the gateway to more enjoyment is by purchasing new things. The reality is that my enjoyment/expression is dependent upon me – and it is something that I open up and create – and for that I do not need a particular power tool. This is something I apply to all of my desires/visions/dreams – I look at what they are saying about me and whether it is a genuine and practical vision of the future that I have. A desire to travel abroad can for example imply that I do not accept and allow myself to live adventure/stimulation in my everyday life. And then instead of creating that to be a part of my life – I want to experience it by traveling to a different country.

If I go back to survival – my initial point. This is a system that suppress our expressions and our spark of life. Practically speaking, survival is necessary – however – from a life-perspective – survival is not the reason why we are here. Survival is a means to an end – it is not the end in itself – and that is important to remember when everything and everyone else in the world seems to be convinced that the only thing of importance in life is to survive.


 

Day 426: The Spy

I am in the midst of watching a new series on Netflix called ‘The Spy’ starring Sacha Baron Cohen in the lead as Eli Cohen. The latter is based on person that have existed for real and that was one of Israel’s most successful spies. In the series we get to follow Eli Cohen has he goes through some nerve-wrecking encounters with death.

The series effectively transmits the experience of constantly being in danger of exposure that is part of the espionage trade. And being caught spying has always been treated with some of the most severe punishments available. Not only that – being caught spying also implies that your entire social network will turn against you in a moments notice. All of the relationships you have built up with your spy persona will crumble and you will be all alone in a foreign country. And that is a constant fear for the spy – because he knows he is different – he carries a enormous consequential secret that he cannot share with anyone – because if he does – he will be punished.

It is this experience of anxiety that has been the biggest takeaway for me – and it has opened up some aspects of how I function. For example – to me it is important to be honest and genuine. It is also important to have harmonic relationships and thus I will seldom do things to risk my relationships – mostly because of anxiety. And by watching this series I have been able to face some of that anxiety and understand it better. The thing about Eli Cohen is that he does not care about what others think about him. He is completely certain in himself and in his mission. He does not care about losing his relationships. He only cares about completing what he set out to do. And even though that is a limiting and destructive way to see things, when taken to the absolute as Eli Cohen do, it is something that I am able to learn from. Because with me, I care too much about how others see me, and too much about having balance and harmony in my relationships.

If there is something I want to practice and push in my life it is to be less moved by what others might think about me. I want to make my own decisions and live my life with my own self-honesty as my guide and not be moved by what others think is right or wrong – or by the emotional outbursts of others. When I am afraid of what others think about me – I end up living the life of someone else. And what is the point of that?


 

Day 444: Insecurity = Not Seeing Me

Some week ago I received praise from a colleague as to my ability to handle certain tasks at work. I became moved and felt very happy and also surprised, because I did not see myself the same way my colleague did. Later, I reflected on the event, and I have come to see how these reactions of happiness and surprise, actually indicates a deep seated insecurity.

I look at it the following way. If I would have been secure within myself, if I had recognized my weaknesses and strengths, and known what I was capable of, would I then have reacted the way that I did? The way I see insecurity is that it has a lot to do with undermining, devaluing and diminishing myself, and hence because of this, missing/not seeing WHO I AM. Thus, when someone else comes into my life, and tells me that I am really good at something, I get thrown off my feet with gratefulness and satisfaction. The real question though is why I have not accepted and allowed myself to give these expressions/words to myself – why wait for someone else to do it for me?

In Sweden we have a mentality called the “tall poppy syndrome” – which means that if you do acquire skill/status/money or similar above the average, it is seen as bad and socially unacceptable to speak about it and recognize it. This mentality pervades in the Swedish society. It is thus interesting that, many rich people in Sweden, live as if they had an average income. This mentality obviously becomes a problem in the sense that excellence and success many times, at least silently, is shunned and repressed – and if someone does reach excellence – he or she will not speak about it. However, suppressing stories of success actually depraves everyone of the opportunity to grow and learn through the example of another.

From what I can see, I have internalized this tall poppy syndrome because fact is that I am very good at my work, I am thorough, I am self-reliant and assertive in handling my responsibilities – though – I have not recognized this for myself. And obviously, this tendency of mine, to not see and evaluate myself, and give me credit when credit is due, also has the consequence that I am not as open to seeing and recognizing my weaknesses. Because, what is the point of changing a weakness into a strength if I do not recognize it for myself? Then it is better to keep everything average, takes less effort.

Another consequence of me not recognizing what I am good at, my successes and achievements, is that I do not want to recognize such in others as either. Instead, when another achieves, grows and expands, I become jealous, and feel bereft. And then I want to bring another down to the level of average, in the belief, that this is what I am, and that I cannot become more. Though, what is missed is that I can obviously learn and become inspired by the successes of another. And the expansion of the life of one person is not only of value to that particular individual, as we live in a interconnected reality – and hence – when one of us becomes better – this will ripple into the lives of everyone else as well.

Thus, insecurity, it is when I do not give myself credit where credit is due, because I believe that I am not worthy/respectable/good enough to do it for myself. And then I instead wait and hope for others to do it. I strive and fight to achieve some form of recognition, all because I did not give it to myself. A solution that I see for myself when I receive positive feedback, is that instead of going into a feeling of happiness, pride and joy, to instead look at the feedback objectively – to bring it within me and then see if I agree with this feedback – and if I do – to then recognize my ability/skill/success for and as myself.

And then, I can expand this point even more, by then looking at how I can improve/move/further/strengthen my point of success even more. Because why accept myself to be satisfied with being really good at something, when I can most likely, become even better at it? And further – to also push myself to recognize my weaknesses, and actively practice changing these weaknesses into strengths. That is how I can start recognizing myself instead of needing others to do it for me.


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Day 442: Slowing Down = Speeding Up?

In my work, one thing that I have noticed, is that mistakes and errors most of the times arise as a consequence of wanting to move too fast. When I want to get more things done than what I am able to handle, and more speedily at that, mistakes will be made. Thus, to be slow, structured and steady is really an art-form – a valuable skill – especially in today’s world where everything moves faster and faster.

I have realized that having a clearly defined structure and a simple and grounded method assists and supports a great deal with keeping a steady momentum. An example would be the way I have decided to set up my proof-reading technique. I always proof-read everything I write, and I do it one, preferably several days after I have done the writing. That will give me space to forget and reconsider what I have written, so that I can re-read it with fresh eyes. Further, I always proof-read first thing in the morning, because that is when my mind is fresh and alert – ready to catch any small inconsistency and mistake. I then read through the text and mark each mistake or change I want to make. I read through every line – and push myself to be attentive and concentrated – and really READ all of what I written – which can be very hard to do. The reason being that it is easy to start reading on a automatic pilot, to begin to assume that words have been written that have not. For me to proof-read effectively, it is of essential importance that I am HERE – and that I am not stressing or hurrying to get to anywhere else. Hence, the importance of pace. If I move too fast, I will miss points, and create mistakes.

For me, the challenge has been to push through the state of urgency/stress I experience sometimes when I am at work, with deadlines and responsibilities, because when I am in such a experience, it feels like there is just not enough time for me to slow down. Though, the opposite is actually true. To slow down, and do things properly and effectively ONCE, actually means that I am able to speed up. The speed though is simply a outflow of being precise, concentrated and focused – SLOW and DELIBERATE – and not rushing and being all over the place.

Slowing down is what allows for real speed and efficiency. And I have seen this in my work time and time again. If I am slow and deliberate, I only have to do it once, and it will be done, all points and dimensions considered and directed. However, if I do it in a haste, there will be mistakes, things I have forgotten, and it does not help that I might feel confident or self-assured, because when I move too fast, mistakes are unavoidable. Perfection requires a steady movement, a movement and pace that allows for deep concentration.

Another important point to consider is to not fear making mistakes. The fear of making mistakes actually supports the state of rush/stress and is hence NOT conducive of slow, efficient and precise self-movement. Many seem to believe that the fear of making mistakes is supportive when it comes to developing thoroughness and focus. Though, consider the following, we have a body and a mind, our tools that we use when we work. These tools have a limited capacity – there is only so much physical energy at our disposal – and when that is used up – we have to rest in order to regain our strength. Thus, if we are continuously in a fear of making mistakes, this is going to use up part of our limited energy capacity – and thus – there is less energy at our disposal to be focused/directed into concentration and focus – and hence – we are actually increasing our risks of making mistakes by fearing to make a mistake.

The best possible approach is to be fearless. When we are fearless, we can place our focus on that which MATTERS – the MATTER at hand – and put all of our attention unto what we have in front of us.

Self-forgiveness

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to feel empowered when I become anxious and fearful of making mistakes, and think that this fear is my fuel, my power, my motivation, that will guide and assist me, and be my guardian angel that I can rely upon when things get tough – instead of seeing, realizing and understanding, that this fear of making mistakes is actually causing me to make more mistakes, because I do not have my full focus and attention HERE

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to trust my fear of making mistakes and see it as an asset that I can use – instead of seeing, realizing and understanding that I become inefficient when I move myself from within and as this fear of making mistakes, I become irrational, and I start making decisions that are based on fear instead of common sense

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe that my fear is empowering, and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to continue to be in my fear and anxiety, to hold unto it, to fear letting go of my fear and anxiety, in the belief, that if I let go of my fear and anxiety, I am going to lose myself, my motivation and my drive, and I am going to start making a lot more mistakes, and I am not going to do anything worthwhile with my life what so ever

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see, realize and understand that I am strong, capable, and able of directing and moving myself effectively, be specific, focused and concentrated, WITHOUT fear of making mistakes – because I can make decisions as to who and what I am – I do not need nor do I require anxiety to exist within me and be a part of my life – because I can live in the physical and create myself to live and be what I want to be and what is best for me as well as others

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to believe that fear and anxiety, that survival stress, will help me to be more specific and exact – and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see, realize and understand, that in accepting and allowing survival stress to rule and determine my life, and my world – I am more prone to make mistakes – I am more prone to miss important facts and facets of a problem or decision – and thus more prone to create things in my life that I do not want in my life

Self-commitment statements

When and as I see myself going into survival stress, when I begin to move myself hastily, from task to task without no flow, ease and without deliberate action – I immediately stop myself, I take a breath and I bring myself back here – and I see, realize and understand that this survival stress is holding me back from being effective in my life and from creating myself – because when and as I have this survival stress within me – I miss what is HERE in my life – and I miss MYSELF – as my living becomes focused on and around this survival stress – and thus I commit myself to deliberately slow down and to practice grounding myself back into the physical – and to practice moving myself from within and as BREATH – each and every time I notice that I go into survival stress/anxiety


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Day 440: Changing Insecurity Into Security

This week I have looked at the word insecurity and how it plays a part in my life. Initially, I did not consider insecurity as a major influence in my day-to-day living, however, I have noticed that insecurity takes on many shapes and forms.

One point that I had not seen as insecurity before is my tendency to desire positive feedback from superiors and older colleagues, and to have someone who I perceive to be higher up in the hierarchy give me direction. Without the affirmation, I tend to doubt myself, and without someone that I perceive to be higher up than me, I tend to change my decisions, because I become fearful and worried that I am not doing the right thing. Thus, for me, insecurity is connected with doing the RIGHT thing – and somehow I have concluded that I cannot be the one that decides that what I am doing is the right – I have to be approved.

Insecurity is limiting, and from what I am able to see, insecurity is in its essence about not not seeing myself as an equal individual, but instead trying to have others approve of me, and using the small bursts of energy that arise from such occasions to build up an illusion of security. Though, fact is, that when the support is removed, when the feedback becomes negative, when the superiors and those I have used to create the feeling security change how they look at me, then it all comes crashing down. Then, I experience fear and anxiety instead, that which I otherwise would try to hide by getting the approval.

However, insecurity does not only take the shape and form of following and relying on the judgments/opinions/ideas of others, it also comes through in stubbornness – in wanting to blow myself up and build up a facade, an illusion, to make myself and others believe that I am secure. This arise from the mistake of believing that being secure means that I always know what to do, have the solutions, and see the right way ahead. However, self-security is not necessarily about knowing what to do, or about taking the lead, or about always being certain and doing things my way. Rather, self-security is that deep and untouchable comfort and calm, stemming from knowing that regardless what comes my way, it will not change who I am, it will not change my base values and principles, it will not sweep my off my feet.

I see, that for myself, a priority when it comes to security and living this word, is to stop comparing myself to others, and stop believing that what I want/see needs to be confirmed/accepted from another for me to go through with it. I do not need the perceived added value and weight of anothers perception for me to make a decision and follow through with it. That is not to say however, that I must now know everything myself. It is important to be able to ask for perspectives and receive input, though, the decision as to what I am going to do must be my own. If I do not stand with my decision, then when the tide turns, I will fall back on it – because it was not real – it was not actually done for me.

Security thus, would be to, among other things, trust myself to make decisions for me and to not use others agreeing or disagreeing with me as a reason to make the decision, but to rather take their perspective/information/input and to assess it independently, and then make a decision for and as myself on the basis of my own reasoning.

Self-forgiveness

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to rely on others for me to make decisions, to rely on others to give me input, an opinion, a decision, so that I am able to lean upon them, instead of developing effective and self-independent reasoning skills, where the input and perspectives of others, are resources that I utilize in my own process of assessment and not reasons in themselves as to why I should or should not make a certain decision

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to be concerned about the opinions of another, in the sense, of fearing that I will make a mistake and do something that will be considered, by another, as a bad/wrong/stupid/inadequate – and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowing myself to base my sense of security on comparison – as to comparing myself with others – and if I find myself to be/do/live similar to what I believe others value positively – to then feel secure/safe/and on the right path

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see, realize and understand, that if I am to stand as my own chief and boss, as an entrepreneur, I require to change this point, and transform it into real security, real trust, real acceptance – where it is thus not about acquiring a life/way of living that I perceive to be right by comparison – but instead living a life for and as myself that I KNOW is an expression of and as myself – because I know myself – I have reasoned and concluded my own decisions – I know where I am going – and I know what I am going to do with and as myself

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not see, realize and understand, that in order to make decisions that I can stand by consistently, long term, I have to make certain, that I do not base those decisions on a comparison, where I use the ideas/opinions/perceptions of another as my sole point of reason – and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not developed and create my own reasoning abilities – to push myself to create self-independence within and as myself – where I am secure – in the sense that I am able to learn from and take from others what will support and empower me – however I make the decisions within me and do not accept and allow someone else to take that role within me

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to follow instead of being my own creator – and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to feel more secure in following – instead of seeing, realizing and understanding that following is always a point of dis-empowering myself – where I believe – that only because I do what another tells me to do – I am safe and on the right track – because I fear listening to and trusting myself – and fear developing my own reasoning abilities and making my own decisions – because that would imply that I am fully and wholly responsible for myself – my life – my consequences – my creation

I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to want and desire to have someone make decisions for me, to want to have someone to follow, so that I do not need to be responsible for the decisions I make, for the direction that I take, for the consequences of my actions – but so that I always have someone to blame if things go wrong – and thus I forgive myself that I have accepted and allowed myself to not take a breath – bring myself back here – and see, realize and understand – that it does not assist and support me to follow – and that even though I follow – I will still have to walk the consequences of my actions – because even though I convince myself otherwise – its still my actions

Self-commitment statements

When and as I see myself moving within myself to use another as a reason for me making a decision, where I rely upon another, without me assessing and looking at the point first, I immediately stop myself, I take a breath and I bring myself back here – and I see, realize and understand that this tendency of mine, to want to follow and use others as a reason, it dis-empowers me, and sets me off, spinning around, moving in directions that are not supportive, and eventually, I do not act or live the way that is best for me, because I follow, instead of direct – and thus I commit myself to DIRECT myself – and practice developing my own critical reasoning abilities – where I make decisions for and as myself – and assess the information received by others – not use it as my prime reason to move

When and as I see myself want to follow, rely upon, move myself because of the feedback of another, I immediately stop myself, I take a breath and I bring myself back here – and I see, realize and understand that when I do, I create consequences for myself – I live in a way that is not supportive to me – and I make decisions that I later fall back on because I have not made/created them for me – AND – I miss out on actually LIVING and BUILDING my life for and as me – because I instead follow – and thus I commit myself to stop following and to starting living – to stop relying upon and instead develop my own point of movement and direction – where I make decision for and as me – though obviously – utilizing the perspectives and living of others as a inspiration and point of assistance and support


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Day 428: Changing Competition

I have now been back at work for a couple of weeks, and one point that has opened up, which has not been present during my vacation, is competition. I have noticed that I compete with my colleagues in many respects, and most of the the time I am competing for attention/recognition/praise from a superior.

This week I have actively challenged my tendency of becoming fearful/anxious/judgmental when I receive criticism by my superiors at work. Usually, I would react in fear, stress or anxiety, and then go into a judgment, and then try to improve that particular aspect of my work so as to not repeat the same mistake again. The way I have challenged this behavior is to, instead of looking at how to change/improve my professional skills to avoid criticism, I look at and push myself to find the core problem and issue within me that is responsible for me making that mistake in the first place.

An example would be how I made a mistake when writing a report at work. My superior came into my room and showed me that I had missed some information. I wanted to go into anxiety and self-judgment, however I stopped myself and instead decided to look at the core issue. What I found was that, at times, I will have this fine feeling/experience that I have missed something, that something is ‘off’, something is not as it should be. The mistake I have done in those moments is that I have brushed that feeling over by saying to myself: ‘No, no, I have done the necessary work, let’s just get done with this now’. Hence, in-fact forcing myself to move forward, when there is a part of me signalling that I am not completely finished. Hence, I made the commitment to start practicing listening to this fine part of myself that comes through at times, to take it seriously, and put more effort and time into investigating and proof-reading, when I ‘suspect’ that something is not as it should be.

What I could also see, as a core problem, was that I at times, too fast throw myself at a conclusion, because I want to get done with it, and because of that, I make unnecessary mistakes, when I could have avoided that mistake through a bit more of research, consideration and deliberation – in essence – CALMING myself down and daring to MOVE and DIRECT myself as SLOW as is needed. There is no meaning or sense in rushing something. However, it takes a commitment, it takes breathing, it takes being steady and stable, to move slowly and comfortably, to dare to use my time and invest it into the various projects in my life, and not haste, believing that I will be able to ‘do more’ if I haste.

Thus, instead of competing, I bring it back to myself. Instead of trying to beat others, I place my focus on challenging myself, and ‘beating’ myself – doing better than what I did in the past – and pushing myself to continuously create myself, and move forward, regardless of what it is that I am doing – there is always room for expansion and momentum. And instead of trying to achieve respect and attention from a superior – I make sure that I give these things to myself – earning my own respect through the way I live – and giving myself attention through literally – paying attention to myself and what I am going through.

 


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