Spiritual Mastery! What?

What is Spiritual Mastery? Why is this important to my life and my happiness? In many of the previous blogs, I have written, “Whether you know it or not, YOU are a Master!” My Spiritual Guidance keeps this on the front burner for me in my dictation of these blogs. Your Happiness and Your Joy can be enhanced by accepting this message, not with your mind BUT with Your Heart! Spiritual Mastery is NOT a process that requires that you meditate in a cave for 20+ years or cut yourself off from relationships to prove worthiness and piety… No, you will find a way to “Remember” that you are a part of the Divine Wisdom and this can come in an instant! (Though figuring out how to live this “Enlightenment” 24/7 can take many lifetimes…)

You caught me using the term, “Spiritual Mastery,” and may be intimidated by the concept which I throw out to you, seemingly, lightly. Not lightly at all! My guidance reminds me that we are “perfect” and have the “Divine Wisdom” within us. “All” we have to do is to remember the connection to the Divine and the Wisdom which dwells within our souls. That’s “All.” We agreed to incarnate into this life to learn our lessons, from our challenges, and THEN to share this wisdom, knowing, and unconditional Love with the fellow “pilgrims” we connect with in this life… Simple and Easy! Not really!

First, our conscious minds and “ego” try to remind us that we are separate and should be fearful because this is how the mind and “ego” survive their small 3 dimensional existence. You are so much more than the petty limitations which you have created in this false “reality.” Did I say “false” reality? The mind tells you that its perspective is “real” and based in survival and fear of loss… When you remember your “epiphanies” in those brief moments of connecting with the Divine, you realize that you are connected to a Universal Wisdom that has a difficult time in your day to day life, but it is more real than a 3 dimensionally limited view which our human incarnation can understand. When you do understand or rather “Remember” and “Know” you are closer to your goal of “Enlightenment.” (Boy, there are a lot of “Quotations” in this blog!)

Bliss and Your Joy and Happiness can be more 24/7 when you accept your true self and the Spiritual Mastery which lies within your heart and your soul. You are a Master! You are a Blessing! You are more powerful and more important than you often are willing to remember. The Masters of the Journey is a community which supports you in remembering and knowing your perfection, your power, your Joy. We will now use Spiritual Mastery as our tag line until YOU remember your full perfection. (Wow, when you do an internet search for “Spiritual Mastery” a lot of stuff pops up. Some is excellent and some is commercial and expensive!) No matter what you find as you search for Spiritual Mastery, know that you already have this wisdom within you and unlocking it is your challenge which starts with accepting that YOU are a Master of Your Journey! And, it helps to have “Extreme Curiosity” with an insatiable appetite for truth. Are you “open” to awareness and willing to ask lots of questions? Tuning into your guidance (and intuition) can assist you in your process of remembering your Divinity.

Tool: You can benefit from a regular practice of “checking in” and “grounding out.” To learn to quiet the mind’s chatter is not always an easy practice but you develop this skill. Meditation (in any of a variety of forms) is the best way to reconnect with the treasure of Divine Wisdom deep within you. The “quiet mind” is also a restorative experience that assists you physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Please meditate and reconnect with your internal wisdoms. While you are at it, live in and with Love and compassion as much as you can. It is a good habit to develop.

If you are READY and looking for a supportive community where you can share your story, your wisdom, and grow spiritually in a non-religious environment, consider Masters of the Journey.
You are a Blessing! You are a Master!

The Masters of the Journey has events which are updated on our Facebook page which is found at: www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney Please comment on this blog and share, if appropriate. More of our blogs are based on spiritual consciousness and can be found at www.dstress.com/blog

Do You Want to Be “Right” or Do You Want to Be Happy?

This discussion has been going on for a long time. Do you have the burning need to be “Right” even with the possibility that you may create difficulties? May people will choose Happiness. The desire to be Happy outways the NEED to be Right. This does not mean that you can not “get your way” or sacrifice your beliefs and deeper values. It means that you do not ALWAYS have to get the “Last Word” in a disagreement. Gently make your point but do not demand that you are the Winner. (As I write this I realize that Winner and Whiner seems similar as they roll off my tongue…) You can have your “Beliefs” without Demanding full acceptance by everyone in the room, or even the world… (Because you ain’t gonna get that anyway…)

Judgements also get in the way! Relationships with deeply held “Judgements” are not often relationships that breed longterm happiness. Judging other people, their words, their activities, their lifestyle, their beliefs, even their “Looks” can get in the way of deeper connections which can be beneficial, for perspective, if nothing else. Sitting in Judgement separates you. You may feel superior or “Right” but there is ALWAYS another point of view! Be careful when you Judge. At the very least, know when you are “Judging” another person so you can learn from your limitation. (Your limiting view of the world…)

To be Happy is to share your joy! Try to love unconditionally. Try to accept without qualification. For acceptance connects people and differing opinions in a way where there views can become tools for learning and growth. Be “Right” by finding the emotional, mental, and spiritual space to allow for differences.

This is NOT easy and requires compromise in the decision making process. BUT, being too polarized and too “Black and White” is a Judgement that will get in your way to finding deeper peace and a Happy Life.

Blessings and Namaste my Friend.

Masters of the Journey is a worldwide community which supports all people on their spiritual quest with the belief that we are all Masters with wisdom and experiences to share… Join us online or in person. Connect with our Non-religious community and share resources with our members.

Work: Being True to Spirit at Work

Much of our time is spent working. We spend more of our time with our fellow employees, employers, and clients than we do with our family, children and friends unless we work at home. As we focus on our work we often lose track of what we are here to learn. We can get caught up in the superficial thoughts and requirements of commerce rather than basking in the divine spirit. The egos which surround the work environment can draw us away from the consideration of the perfection we can find within the heart and soul of those we interact with while at work.

Are money and other forms of financial success at the core of why we came into this life? Is the separation from other people due to business competitiveness the satisfying answer to our spiritual needs? Can we bring to the workplace the love, gratitude, acceptance, and deeper feelings of “oneness” which we strive to learn in the lessons of this lifetime? These are difficult questions to answer when we may have two differing tracks in our lives, work life versus spiritual practices. But, can we find a balance?

Work requires our time and attention for long periods during many of our days. But setting the tone as we begin the day may be a big part of the solution. A day begun with quiet reflection and meditation which includes a review of activities of the coming day seen in the most peaceful and mutually successful way can set the the best spiritual environment to find success. It sets a positive loving tone for the day and can benefit the energy that vibrates out in all directions. The opposite of holding on to anger, fear, anxiety, and frustration sets the vibration of your energy off in the another direction, which may not prove beneficial to positive outcomes.

Sharing your most positive feelings can help to reduce the negativity that pervades the business climate in most work places. Caring about fellow workers and clients demonstrates the most basic, positive spiritual practice because this demonstrates that we are all in this together and even the act of work does not have to create separation. Connection, acceptance, and gratitude for others in the work place is the blessing that provides for higher consciousness. Even the difference of opinions or beliefs can become an opportunity for learning and provide movement along your spiritual path.

Ask yourself if acquiring possessions and creating a large bank account will really be satisfying and fulfilling. In many wealthy communities, the residents are torn emotionally by their “need” for more and the “need” to protect their property. This often gets in the way of relationships, life satisfaction, spiritual growth, and good health (mental and physical.) Your heart will tell you, if you listen, what makes you happiest and healthiest.

Blessings as you follow your path and use work to connect rather than to separate yourself. Find the ways to serve and assist all of the fellow travelers that you meet along the way.

Consider our supportive non-religious spiritual community, Masters of the Journey or visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney.

The Art of Being Present

What is the advantage in being Present? How do you achieve the state of Presence? In moving along your path in life, when should you strive for “being fully in the Moment?”

Have you ever had the telephone conversation or the face to face meeting with another person who was clearly “somewhere else” and not tracking your communication? In our busy world, this happens all the time. You have to repeat yourself or you feel insecure that you were not fully heard or understood. You have to question your communication partner to “check in” and to know that they were not so distracted that they did not receive your important communication. People clearly have a great deal on their mind and they are being torn away by the invasion of of text messages or other manifestations of interrupting technology. We are so “plugged in” that it is difficult to invest fully in the conversation with the person in front of you or on the other end of the telephone. A client may not feel fully connected with you if you are lost in another thought and this may cause a transaction to go poorly. Your friend or family member may get frustrated with your lack of focus and may lash out at you in frustration. These situations happen all to frequently. Many people do not have the awareness, and then the control, to be able to quiet the distractions and really focus on the present moment and this is sad.

Missing the moment that will never come again is a loss that you can not ever recover!  There are times when you can multi-task but human interaction is very important and should not be short changed by your distracted and disrespectful pursuit of multiple thoughts or activities. Remember when this happened to you and how you felt this lack of respect and consideration! If for no other reason, you will miss out on the most joyful and satisfying moments in life if you are not present!

Achieving the state of “Presence” requires that you reduce internal and, if possible, external distractions. Begin by NOT thinking of your answer or response before your communication partner finishes their statement. Listen! Listen with ALL of your senses. If you require clarification, ask supportive “open ended questions.” Make eye contact. It is rude to not focus your vision upon the person who is speaking. If possible, feel the emotion of what is being said. Use your intuition to read “between the lines.” There are many times when you may need to clear your mind and relax your body to reduce internal distractions and this may benefit from learning how to meditate and to find yourself in the present moment. If you can be present, you will be happier and healthier. Your relationships can improve. You can find interpersonal success more easily.

Being fully present can become more a positive habit if you practice and learn more about what is distracting to you, AND, learn to let this go. Remember, that the respect you show in listening and interacting can be beneficial for personal learning and will improve your relationships. It will even SAVE YOU TIME in the long run. Try it and see for yourself.

If you manage other people or want positive outcomes with your family, learning to be fully present is a mandatory skill and life enhancing experience.

Blessings to you on your path and watch most carefully each foot step on your journey toward consciousness.

More information and support can be found at: www.mastersofthejourney.com and our Facebook page www.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney

Letting Go a Meditation

(From a meditation on a beautiful Fall day… and, for future meditations to find peace…)
Consider this meditation by reading each line slowly and pausing to experience these words/thoughts.

Experience the feelings of being angry.
Experience the feelings of fear.
Experience the feelings of being sad.
Experience the feelings of being anxious.
Experience the feelings of the lack of control.

Learn the lesson of anger and accept it.
Learn the lesson of fear and accept it.
Learn the lesson of sadness and accept it.
Learn the lesson of anxiety and accept it.
Accept the lack of control. Accept that death is the outcome of living. It is not the enemy, it is an important transition.

Let go of anger.
Let go of fear.
Let go of sadness.
Let go of anxiety.
Let go of frustration.

Now say:
I am letting go of my anger.
I am letting go of my fear.
I am letting go of my anxiety.
I am letting go of my sadness.
I am letting go of my frustration with my lack of control and I am learning to accept the process of death for my loved ones and for myself. If possible, find grace in the final transition.

I am Joy!
I am Love!
I am Blessed!
I am Peace!

In my heart, I feel the glimmer of peace from acceptance…

Unique Path to Higher Consciousness

Are you happy with your life and find joy every day? Do you know YOUR “purpose”? Do you wish there was something more in your life? Perhaps: peace, connection, community, spirit, or even life balance? Have you considered what you could be doing differently to find greater fulfillment?

Or, would you like to better control fear and anxiety? Would you like to live each day with greater personal satisfaction?

If these questions stimulate something in you then maybe you are on a path to develop your higher consciousness. Would you be open minded enough to look at a spiritual development program (and community) that is NOT based on religion, churches, gurus, celebrities, ashrams, denial, rigid philosophy, or old school mind control? There is a new way to connect with higher consciousness that does not follow older, controlling dogmas or ego filled leaders. Masters of the Journey: A Transformational Community allows you to be the Master. The process invites you to celebrate and share your past life lessons with other fellow pilgrims who are on the path toward raising their spiritual consciousness. These fellow Spiritual Warriors are available to support you and to be witness to the story of your learning. The value to these fellow pilgrims comes from the sharing of stories and the trainings that enhance the process of growth.

Trainings will vary from: stress management, meditation skills, communication techniques, learning to be present and grounded, development of intuition, using biofeedback, and learning how to control anxiety while tapping unconditional love and higher consciousness. The Master of the Journey believe that we are all interconnected (and one) and it benefits ALL of us to assist and support all the fellow travelers. We will set up webinars, conference calls, trainings, retreats, and Master Mind groups so people can participate in ways that are best for their individual requirements. BUT, most importantly, the trainings and the community offer you an opportunity to live your life with greater purpose and satisfaction!

So are you ready to participate in this new endeavor? Would you like to move forward every day of your life? Would you like to join a community of pilgrims moving more consciously through life?

Contact us through our Facebook page at Masters of the Journey’s Facebook pagewww.facebook.com/mastersofthejourney and look for website (in development) at www.mastersofthejourney.com You can also contact us through the Stress Education Center at www.dstress.com Anyhow, good luck on your journey. FIND your unbridled passion for life!

Being Present: Key to Mindfulness

Have you ever suffered from anxiety, fear, or major stress? If so, then the chances are good that the fear or anxiety were born out of an experience from the past, as a learned response, or from fears of some future unknown or uncontrollable event. Throughout our lives we suffer great or small traumas and our body learns to respond to similar scenarios as if we were having PTSD (post traumatic stress disorder) reactions. In deed, we may have mini-PTSD responses to fearful or difficult events even if these past events were not life threatening. Most importantly, if we ruminate on past events then we are not totally “present” in our bodies, in present time. Our bodies will then attempt to make us “present” by dragging us back into the present moment with an irritating, if not worse, symptom like an anxiety attack. This symptom is not necessarily the enemy, but it is a warning sign that we are not paying attention to our bodies, in the present moment.

Fear of the unknown or the uncertainty of what can happen in the future will also trigger a symptom of fear or anxiety. Since we can not predict the future with 100% accuracy, our flight-fight response can be triggered and physical or emotional symptoms can be exacerbated. When we lose track of the present moment, our body can force us to consider the present in rude ways.

Conversely, at the heart of every stress or anxiety management technique are simple activities designed to bring us back into our bodies in the present moment and in a “positive way.” One strong example is the request to take a deep slow breath and to feel the cool air as you inhale and the warm breath as you exhale. This simple, but powerful, request asks that you release thoughts regarding the past or expectations of the future and to feel the subtle difference of a slow inhale and exhale. This act of Mindfulness can back you away from your fear or anxiety especially when this has been rehearsed enough to become a habituated pattern.

Being Present or practicing Mindfulness is easier said than done, but the concept is not difficult to understand and with practice not too difficult to learn. Being prepared to “let go” of fear, anxiety, or traumatic thoughts can be very useful and can succeed when the skill of “Being Present” has become a positive habit.

Other techniques for mindfulness would include feeling: muscles relaxing, heart rate slowing, hands and feet warming, stomach tension releasing, and sensations of slowing down of distracting thoughts. Techniques which can lead to this state of mind and body, when practiced, include: Meditations, Autogenic Training, Progressive Relaxations, Visualizations/Imagery, forms of Self-Hypnosis, Breathing techniques, Yoga/Stretching, biofeedback training, and other types of focusing and observations. The secret is to find the one that works best for you, master it, and then use it preventively on a regular basis.

Information at the Stress Education Center’s website wwww.dstress.com may prove helpful to you.

“A Dash of Cinnamon for Peace”

Excerpt from “Pink Hair & Chocolate Cookies” by Laura Lavigne (of the Center for Happiness, Anacortes, WA)

Many years ago, through the course of one of life’s strange turns of events, I met a woman who worked for an adoption agency. During while of our conversations, she unknowingly gifted me with some powerful insight regarding the importance of our attitude.

One of the cases she was managing involved the open adoption of twin baby girls. The girls were placed in two separate homes; part of the open adoption agreement stated that the agency was to provide the birth mom with regular reports about the girls.

When the girls were three years old, both sets of adoptive parents were contacted and presented with a series of questions. One of the questions concerned their appetite.

When asked about her daughter’s eating habits, the first mom expressed her distress: meals, she said, were always a struggle and created much family tension. The little girl would not eat anything, no matter how she prepared it – unless it had cinnamon in it. This made life very difficult and she could not seem to break her child out of the strange habit.

Presented with the same question, the second mom stated that her little girl was a joy to feed: mealtimes were usually pleasant as all the mom had to do was sprinkle a little bit of cinnamon on her daughter’s food in order for her to eat pretty much anything. In fact, she was now keeping a shaker of cinnamon on the table, next to the salt and pepper.
Wow.

The “bigness” of this struck me like a bolt of lightening. Within an instant, I felt as though I had possibly been handed the secret to a happy life. Or to a miserable one.

Stress, I knew, comes mostly from “resisting what is.” Ease, then, possibly comes from creatively celebrating the same. Not always an easy task, not even always a feasible task, but what if it were something we could achieve, let’s say… some of the time?

What if we were to say “to heck with the neighbors and to heck with all the voices in my head” and simply aimed for peace?

What if we weren’t scared? Scared of losing control, scared of looking soft, or like fools, scared that “this” could lead to chaos and anarchy?

What if we were more interested in being happy than in being right?

What if peaceful meals and happy interactions were worth a shaker of cinnamon on the dining room table?
I know that we don’t always choose what comes our way but we almost always choose our reaction to it, and that can mean freedom.

I invite you to take a look, today, at the places in your life where you may be choosing stress; where you may be choosing to be right. And where you may be able to choose to be happy instead.
And who knows? Maybe cinnamon tastes great on mashed potatoes.

“Excerpt from Pink Hair & Chocolate Cookies, by Laura Lavigne. lauralavigne.com” $14.95 – Signed copies
For a personalized inscription, email me.

Anacortes Center for Happiness

Copyright © 2014 Laura Lavigne Life Coaching. All Rights Reserved.

Having Emotional Balance at Work

In many companies, the work culture includes many difficult requirements. Long hours, intense competition, conflicts, changing priorities and trying changes which create the need to adapt. If you do not have “Emotional Balance” you run the risk of burning out or getting into other physical or emotional difficulties. “Being Centered” or balanced are concepts that are easier said than done. Most of us do not even know what emotional balance is, what it feels like, or realize that it is an ever changing situation that we have to continuously pay attention to and change with. The pulls from “internal” company needs and “external” (outside work) expectations can feel insurmountable. Each of us are different and the way we respond to the various sources of pressures will also be unique. To beat being a victim to these pressures we must:

1. Understand specifically how you respond in your own individual and unique habitual way. By knowing this you can find the systems that hold this habitual response and learn to minimize, if not eliminate, the negative manisfestations of the pressure.

2. Learn what Balance feels like so you can determine if you are off-balance. It is difficult to learn to relax into a “balance state” but it is worth it for most people because it feels good and saves so much time and energy.

3. Find the 8 essential areas of your life and learn to honor the ones that you do not make time for in your life. This will help to re-prioritize your life and give you greater balance as you pursue your long term goals and aspirations. The 8 essential life areas include: career, finance, family, friends/relationships, education/life long learning, health, creativity/aesthetic, and honoring the spirit. If you do not have a plan for honoring each of these 8 areas then you may not have balance and may have to fight to sustain emotional and physical health and well-being.

4. Finally, you must take (or make) time for yourself. Often, by taking time to regain balance you find that you SAVE TIME and ENERGY. Many people forget this principle until a major negative manifestation takes place. The body will get your attention in rude ways if you do not honor your commitment to self-care and maintaining balance. No time, is the excuse most often heard and people hide behind this idea.

Finding your balance and re-prioritizing your life goals is not an easy task and often can not be done effectively without external counsel, coaching, or mentoring. It is worth your investment of time, energy, and resources if you want to be most productive and have the best quality of life. If for no other reason, you may want to be a positive role model for the important people around you.

There are many principles taken from Sports Psychology that can help executive leaders to find their balance and to get the pressures and competitive forces to have minimal impact on their performance. These same principles help “world class” athletes move ahead of their competition. Just attend to the upcoming Olympics competition to find that more than 60% of the athletes training involves the “mental side” which helps to create balance for the winners. The mental side of training trims away the unnecessary distracts that rob the athlete of energy or the flexibility needed to win.

Emotional Balance reduces distractions that can lead to team turn-over, increased replacement costs, health cost containment, better communication and leadership, increased productivity and enhanced performance, and increased bottom-line in sales, services, and productivity.

If you find that you would benefit from coaching support, considering contacting the Stress Education Center at www.dstress.com or call 360-593-3833