Have you ever known someone who complains a lot?
There is always something happening to this person, some wrong that the world has done them that they need to tell you about in great detail. It could be the parking ticket they just got or how their boss treats them at work or how their spouse treats them at home. Maybe they don’t feel well physically…again, and the amount of money they are spending to get someone to fix them is creating even more stress. You may have great empathy and love for this person, but at some point you realize there’s a pattern here and it doesn’t seem to be shifting.
Maybe you have caught yourself being this person. If you have and it feels difficult if not impossible to change this habit, then maybe what is needed is a new perspective.
Here’s a thought about personal responsibility: Run after it. Chase it down. Take it. Own it. Claim it. Do everything in your power to look for an opportunity to be response-able. If you have a challenge in your life, ask yourself, “What can I learn from this challenge, which I have brought into my life? If you have a disagreement with someone, ask, “What is this person trying to teach me about myself that will help me to grow?” Being response-able is to claim ownership of your whole life even when sometimes you’d rather not.
By claiming 100% ownership over the circumstances of your life you place yourself in a position of power to be able to do something about it. The minute we blame others for our circumstances, we then throw our power away and become victim to forces that we no longer can control.
In disagreements with others, as soon as you are able, take responsibility for your part in whatever the conflict is. Sometimes, we have to journal or consult a friend, life-coach, teacher or spiritual guide before our part in things become clear. As soon as it does though, own it and, whenever possible, disregard the other person’s wrongdoing altogether. Great things will come to pass in your relationships as you develop this capacity.
So, we have a choice – see ourselves as victims and complain or see ourselves as co-creators of our life and claim it.
If we are to be response-able, then we focus on what we can control: our breath, our words, our actions and our reactions to life. Since we cannot control people, places and things outside of ourselves, we let go of blaming and complaining. This is what it means to own your life and it is a key to your success in all things.
I wish this for you.
(Republished from The Daily Love)
The energy of addiction and all its causes lives in the body and mind. It is with us all the time until we do the physical work necessary to get it out of our tissues. This requires more than simply putting down drugs and alcohol or the addictive behavior we are struggling with. It will be necessary to employ a proven path of recovery such as The 12 Steps in order to help us recover from the addiction. This then allows us to pursue a deeper physical and energetic detoxification of the body and mind, which is brought about through the practice of Yoga and meditation. This process is called Recovery 2.0 and this site is devoted to it.
The 12 Steps are an incredibly effective tool to overcome addiction. If one follows these steps to the best of one’s ability, good things tend to happen. However, what has been lacking in the 12-step approach is specific instruction on how to connect to the physical body through movement and breath. The steps do not provide information about diet, cleansing, exercise, sweating, breathing or about how to tap into the infinite pharmacy within – our endocrine system. Through powerful yoga sets and meditations, Recovery 2.0 focuses on these aspects of being human. It seeks to provide key insights for people in recovery about the Human body – how to use it and how to take care of it. Please enjoy the site and take advantage of all that is provided here. If you find anything here confusing, please email me. If you find anything offensive, please disregard it. If you find anything helpful, please use it.
Please Note the following two disclaimers:
a) Recovery 2.0 is not meant to change the 12-Step program, the steps themselves, in any way. The steps already work to help people overcome addiction. Recovery 2.0 will help to strengthen one’s recovery even further by adding important information and education to the recovery process.
b) Recovery 2.0 is not meant to be a replacement for someone’s recovery program. It is meant to be supplemental only, so work your program!
Love and Strength to you on your path,
The old adage goes: You can judge a person by the company they keep. Let’s amend that to read: “You can judge the consciousness and happiness of a person by the company they keep.” To varying degrees, we are all susceptible to the positive and negative influence of others. When we are young in sobriety and often for a long time afterwards, this susceptibility is pronounced. In 12 step programs, they say “stick with the winners” and “hang around the people who have what you want.” Indeed, this is good counsel. To be around people who are in support of each other as a group, but also in support of each other as individuals is a rare thing to find. At their best, 12-step meetings work this way.
Consciousness is not usually something you just get. It has to be caught. (There are exceptions to this rule. I’ve met some of them. They seem to gravitate intuitively toward the higher frequency and their path is not the path of addiction recovery.) We catch the higher frequency in places where it congregates such as 12-step meetings, meditation centers, yoga centers and spiritual retreat centers.
On the shadow side of this, it is easy to catch the lower vibration in our world. It happens anywhere (like in your living room in front of the television) but especially in places that prey upon human weakness and addiction. Of course, Las Vegas is one of those places – Strip clubs, Casinos, Bars, but darkness exists anywhere people are caught up in ego without a teacher or teachers to guide them out of it. I was one of those people and I got into very serious trouble. Fortunately for me, I was blessed to find many great teachers and with their guidance I was able “to catch” the consciousness of true recovery.
Having a great teacher who can take you from darkness into light is the greatest gift. If you have been blessed with such a person in your life, you have an opportunity to grow in leaps and bounds, and here’s the best part, once you are lifted up, you will be free, not indebted. A great teacher liberates people, but with no price attached. You will likely be inspired to go out and help other people as you have been helped, but there will have been no agenda on the part of your teacher to control you or your actions in any way. This is the mark of a truly exceptional teacher and I have been blessed to have several such as this. Unfortunately, there are also misguided teachers in the world and I’ve had a few of those along the way as well.
The point here is that if you want to develop as a person, it is helpful to be around other people with that interest and who carry the consciousness you want to move toward.
All hail the committee, that not-so-unified, loud, annoying collection of opinions and voices in our heads. You know, the committee. It seems to wake up before you. It goes to bed after you and if you didn’t know any better you might think the committee was actually you. Well, it is not. The committee is in part the result of a society built upon too much caffeine, sugar and online social networks! 100 years ago our ancestors took in the same amount of information in their entire lifetime as we now do in about a month. This means that practices such as meditation, which train us to find quiet and develop calmness and focus are now becoming mandatory practices for those who relish their very sanity. We need these practices more than ever.
For some people the chatter is louder than for others, like for people who are challenged by addictions (me, for example). There was a time in my life when that chatter was more powerful than me. It overwhelmed me. It was my master. Then about 7 years ago, I was turned on to a form of Yoga called Kundalini. The promise of all spiritual paths is transformation. With Kundalini Yoga, the transformation was quick, precise and thorough. I was about to discover the neutral mind. My life was about to get really, really good!
Within the powerful teachings of Kundalini Yoga, there lies an illuminating description of the 3 minds – negative, positive and neutral, which has relevance for anyone who has ever wished there was a way to turn off the committee and get to the heart of you. Say you have a decision to make like should you cross the street or not. The negative mind will show up saying things like, “are you sure you want to cross the street? There’s a lot of traffic and you might get hurt? What’s so special across that street anyway?” Meanwhile the positive mind kicks in. “Look over there. It’s amazing across that street. Let’s go over there. Doesn’t look dangerous to me. It’s an adventure. Let’s have at it.” You see, the negative mind, despite its name, is neither bad nor good. Rather, it is the part of your mind that tells you the reasons not to do something. It is the protective part of your mind. People who are too heavily in their negative mind are over-protected. They are risk-adverse and will miss some opportunities that life presents, but they rarely get too burned. The positive mind, on the other hand, is also neither good nor bad. It simply tells you the reasons to do something. It is the creative, adventurous part of your mind. People who are too heavily in their positive mind rarely miss opportunities because they see and are willing to take them on as they arise. These folks have very adventurous lives, but they have a hard time committing to a long-term process and because they are willing to take risks, will take a whooping from time to time. Then there’s the neutral mind, which we can only access by getting still and quiet. The neutral mind listens to the testimony of both the negative and positive minds and then from a centered place makes the decision which is always the right decision because it honors and bends toward the will of your highest Self – that part of you that has your Absolute best interests in mind.
When we are balanced in all three minds, we allow our inner calling to come through.
So ask yourself, do you have a decision to make today? Do you tend more toward the positive or negative mind? How about taking 3 minutes sitting still, closing your eyes, breathing deeply and allowing the input of both your positive and negative minds to come in without interference. Do not try to make an answer come, rather allow it to come. Be patient. Accessing your neutral mind is a new habit that requires you to build the skill of meditation and stillness. Once you act from the clarity of the neutral mind, you are immediately able to live in the full expression of YOU and to let go of the results of your actions. Enjoy your freedom.