Body & Soul Renewal–Day Seven

Create a goal that you can achieve in three days and discuss why it is important.

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In my never-ending quest for self-love, knowledge and compassion I have begun to realize that relaxation is something I sorely lack. I have been trying to foster more relaxation in my life, going so far as to attempting to learn to meditate. While some people can naturally find that calm space in themselves, I struggle with it. For some reason I can’t seem to get my head around how you stop your thoughts and maintain a serene state of mind while focusing on nothing. Needless to say, meditation has been a real challenge for me. Although I have been practising both meditation and deep relaxation breathing for a few months, I still haven’t reached a state of deep relaxation, regardless of the varied methods I have tried. But I will keep on trying. If millions of other people can do it, why can’t I?

cuteI think I have mentioned before that I have a depressive mechanism (thought pattern) that keeps me mired to the hopeless spot I find myself in by constantly telling myself that while something might be good or work well for others, it won’t work for me. I think that this thought pattern may be at work when I try to meditate or relax. I don’t think I really believe that meditation or deep relaxation is possible for me.

I am hoping to counter this thought pattern my setting goals. In setting goals I hope to give myself a sense of achievement, something I can be proud of even if the something seems rather minute to others. All that matters in setting these goals for myself is that it is something I believe in and want to accomplish for myself alone. I have read various articles on goal setting and the method that is both the simplest and seems the most worthwhile to me is the S.M.A.R.T. method. It is actually kinda brilliant in it’s simplicity. Basically when making goals you have to make sure that the goal is Specific, it should be as defined and detailed as possible with no generalizations; Measurable, so you can track your progress and definitively see results; relaxationspotAttainable, otherwise it will just be discouraging and an act of self-defeat and futility; Relevant, it has to mean something to you or you won’t be motivated to achieve it; Time Sensitive, there needs to be a time line and a point where you have successfully achieved one goal and can move on to the next, which is why you break bigger future goals into smaller time-sensitive ones.

With all this in mind, my goal for the next three days is: To spend five minutes  practising meditation and ten minutes practising deep relaxation every day. I will record each session, one in the morning and one in the evening, in my Wellness Journal. Within one week I will increase each practice by five minutes. To combat the thoughts of either not working for me I will acknowledge the thought, smile at it like I would a child and ask, “Why ever would I think I wasn’t worthy of what every other human being is? What makes me so un-special?” Then I will lovingly let it go and go back to what I am focusing on.

sSpecific: Meditation and relaxation for specific periods of time at specific times of the day.

mMeasurable: Log duration, ease of practice, reminders for next time and overall impressions in Wellness Journal.

a

Attainable: Very! It will only take twenty minutes a day, broken up into two sessions. There are no physical limitations or pain control issues.

rRelevant: I really do need to learn to relax and centre myself. Getting to quietly observe my thoughts may help make some impending decisions.

tTime Sensitive:  In three days I will reflect on my progress and within a week I want to increase the duration of each practice by five minutes.

The first step to change for me is recognizing what needs to change and consciously acknowledging when I engage in the behaviours that keep me bound in depressive thought patterns. Hopefully over the next few days I will be able to recognize when I employ this depressive mechanism in relation to meditation and relaxation and in turn I will be able to cut off the thoughts before they taint my view of the feasibility of either working for me. Because, after all, why would I be any different from anyone else? I am just as worthy and deserving of moments of peace and tranquillity.

Here’s hoping that I can maintain this positive outlook over the next few days!

082-Relaxation           relaxation

relaxation1          undone

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8 thoughts on “Body & Soul Renewal–Day Seven

  1. Caroline says:

    I can’t remember if I’ve suggested it before but I’ve found these hypnosis downloads very good. They’re cheap! They do a lot on relaxation and pain management etc

    http://www.hypnosisdownloads.com/all-downloads

    The SMART system is very good and really helpful so go for it!

    • S. says:

      Hi Caroline,
      You have suggested it and I checked out some of the free stuff. My problem with both life coaching and hypnosis is that I just can’t afford it. I know it sounds like an excuse but after my bills are paid I have $149.56 a month to buy food. I live more frugally now than I did as a student!
      I can’t tell you how much your support means to me though. Really, I am so grateful for you being here.
      Best,
      xoxo – S.

  2. singingbones says:

    ahh, yes the old SMART system… I heard about this years ago…. well i wish you the best on this latest part of your journey! I think all of the methods and systems you try are good for a shot…. of course many people find a lot of help in their lives from having a meditation practice. It may also be helpful to remember that there are many paths which lead to the goal (the goal being a more grounded, centered, joyful you) and that there really is no one way which is ‘right’ and other ways ‘wrong” it just depends on what you yourself are wanting and needing in your life. in other words, don’t beat yourself up if you keep imagining you aren’t doing it right…. I think that as long as you are working on yourself then you are doing what is good, you are becoming more and more conscious of your SELF… and in the end, that is really the goal. SB

    • S. says:

      Hi SB,
      Thank you so much for your insightful and helpful comments.
      I have been trying to learn to meditate/deeply relax for months. My mind is just too busy. I have tried many methods of finding a more calm, peaceful, content and grounded me but I have yet to find her. I feel like I have done a lot of growing over the last little while and it has been sort of like I have been on the precipice for a while but I haven’t taken the plunge, nor have I climbed back down.
      I don’t know how to find what i want and need. I don’t know how to define my core values. If you have any advice I would love to hear it!!
      Best,
      xo – S.

  3. benzeknees says:

    I found it nearly impossible to reach the state of total relaxation where my outside thoughts did not intrude until I tried hypnosis. Because I suffer from Panic Discorder, at the time I sought help from a hypnotist, I was experiencing 20 – 30 panic attacks a day & just about ready to pitch it all in. For me the hypnosis was a 10 min. window every day where I had no stress or anxiety. What was even better was when the hypnotist taught me self-hypnosis (which can be achieved once you are well practiced in being hypnotized) so I could relieve my stress myself whenever I needed to. I can now put myself into a totally relaxed state just bordering on sleep whenever I need to relax. It’s wonderful & I would highly recommend it if you are still having trouble getting there by yourself.

    • S. says:

      Hi Benzeknees,
      Thank you so much for your comment. I have been thinking abut hypnosis for a while, that and reiki. My issue is that I just don’t have money to pursue either. When I say I don’t have money I literally mean after rent, hydro, internet, phone and transportation (bus) I have a total of $149.53 a month for food and everything else.
      Because I am on workman’s comp and still healing from the two level spinal fusion that I might have to redo in August I can’t increase my income at all. I could move to a cheaper place but I don’t have much help and I can’t pack or move by myself. And I live in a fairly cheap place really.
      Anyways, I wanted to say thank you so much for sharing your experience and I truly appreciate your advice. If you have anymore I am all ears!!
      Thanks again and I hope this finds you calm, well and happy!
      Best,
      xo – S.

  4. I like what you wrote. I think it’s common for women to be too vigilant resulting in the inability to wind down – rest, muse, dream. You said it all very well. It’s an appreciated reminder.

    • S. says:

      Thank you so much, Susannah! I feel the same way. I want to enjoy my downtime instead of stressing about what could be done. I think relaxation should be a priority just like working out. The mind body connection has become very apparent to me throughout this back surgery thing.

      Thanks for you comments, I sicerely appreciate you as a reader. I love your writing too but it touches me that you take the time to read and comment.
      Best,
      xo – S

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