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Mindful mastery tools…what are they and how will they help conquer life’s challenges?
Mindfulness we know has its roots in Buddhism but through the work of Jon-Kabat-Zinn and his programme for Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction, countless studies have documented the secular practice of mindfulness and the benefits to our health and wellbeing.
And that’s what we’re talking about today, the simple secular mindfulness described as the quality of being aware.
And if you’d like to know how to use mindful mastery to help you conquer life’s challenges, stick with me.
Fact is life brings challenges. Fact is ignoring them doesn’t work in the long run. Fact is, regardless of whether we are ready or not, stuff happens.
But what if you were the kind of person who could look at life’s challenges without flinching and conquer them? How sweet would that be?
And what if you were the kind of person who could be happy in the moment and let that be enough for you?
And you could be that person with a few mindful mastery tools at your disposal.
I’ve been paying a lot of attention to this lately as one challenge after another kept rearing their little heads in my life – well not all of them were little if I’m being really honest.
If it wasn’t some surgery or another, or some household challenge it was something else. All of which were sent to try me, I swear.
But as a lover of happy endings, I decided I needed to go back to basics and grab those tools from long ago that might need a little dusting off, but I knew would still work well.
I learned a valuable lesson in all of this…growth and expansion doesn’t mean you let go of the very things that helped you grow in the first place!
So getting back to you and how you can conquer life’s challenges without losing your peace, especially without losing your peace, here’s 4 mindful mastery tools to help you remain centered and full of hope and great expectations regardless of the challenges that life throws your way.
We’re told by many that we can’t control our minds. That our mind is designed to think. True enough, but the idea that we can’t regulate our thoughts is most definitely not true, based on my own experiences and of those around me.
And regulate, doesn’t mean control. There are probably those highly evolved beings on the planet who can control their mind, but for most of us we’re better off concentrating on some regulation.
And you can start with some simple re-framing techniques. Starting with the small stuff. If your friend isn’t returning your text or calls for a few days instead of assuming they have a problem with you, or feeling annoyed, simple assume your friend must be really busy.
Learning to reframe those little things that usually spark negative energy in you is one of the simplest things you can do to keep yourself in the flow of ease and grace.
This accomplishes two things, it feels better for one and secondly you retain your peace. Another super cool reward is you tend to discover more good in others, start to see life’s challenges as opportunities, and lift your own spirits when you’re feeling down.
2. Disentangle yourself
The challenge is to stop letting your mind be totally entangled in things that aren’t working, things that are tough and things from the past that destroy your peace. At least for a moment or two, however briefly.
To do this you choose an activity that you do regularly in your day and use it to take a pause, rein in your mind and direct it towards either paying close attention to the action you’re taking or towards an affirmation of something you’d like to experience or simply to imagine a happy, joyful scene. This way you disentangle yourself from the old paradigm of stressing over life.
And the end result? A bit more mindful mastery. Yay.
For instance I step away from my desk every 50 minutes during the day and move around, or use my rebounder for 3 minutes or so whilst I affirm an experience I desire.
You could practice disentanglement every time you checked your clock for example or each time you ate something or got yourself a cup of tea or coffee or water. You get the picture. Use some action you perform regularly as your cue.
3. Be your own Hans Christian Anderson
Hans Christian Anderson used the power of positive constructive daydreaming to manifest some of the best children’s stories ever told.
And here you are, telling yourself stories all the time, and often it’s stories that magnify the stresses you feel or exaggerates the challenges life has thrown your way.
Case in point. I’ve been a traveller ever since I was a babe in arms. My dad was in the Royal Air Force and every two years or so, we packed up and moved on. Mostly to far flung countries. So travelling was in my blood.
Yet, on what should have been happy pre-travelling trip, it began. I was getting ready for what in the scheme of my travelling life was a short trip, Florida to California. It should have been a piece of cake, except it wasn’t. I was feeling stressed.
I didn’t pay much attention until the next time I was packing for a trip and found myself feeling the same way. Stressed. No clue why.
I was wondering what the heck was going on when I had one of those light bulb moments…don’t you love those?
I’d become mindful of my thinking. Of the story I was telling myself and it wasn’t using the power of positivity. I was clearly no Hans Christian Anderson.
I was saying to myself…I mustn’t forget…whatever it was…and oh yes I mustn’t forget something else and on and on.
My mind was on a “mustn’t forget loop!”
Boom I got it.
Energetically the concept of forgetting something was stressful. It was self-imposed. Nothing to do with traveling. And the minute I switched that inner conversation to…I’m so glad I remembered…the stress melted away. Because the vibration of energy I was occupying had been altered. Amazing, right?
Don’t groan! I know affirmations are being written about by what seems to be the whole world…but let me tell you more about why they are a great, easy and simple tool for mindful mastery over life’s challenges.
When you first truly try affirmations and they work, it seems like magic. And I get that. But the only real magic is the magic of universal principles doing their thing.
Affirmations work best when they’re about deciding rather than wanting.
Think of the Queen of affirmations. Louse Hay. She taught us how affirmations help us retrain our mind to look at things differently, using them to heal herself and her life.
And you can use them as a reminder of your deepest desires in life, as a focus point for your energies, and a mental life saver when you’re beginning to sink from life’s challenges.
You already have an awesome and natural ability to manifest the life you want, though truth be told I haven’t yet managed to manifest a life that’s challenge free!
But, honestly speaking, even when I would never knowingly ask for some of the challenges life has dumped on me, I always and I truly mean always ended up having a wonderful outcome.
And yes, sometimes it took a while, but I suspect had I been more aware of some of these mindful mastery tools at the time, it would have been a whole lot quicker! Especially with this affirmation tool.
Have a number of simple affirmations on hand to rein in your mind when it’s heading down a negative track, remembering you want to attract the things you desire so the vibration you occupy must be in accord with what you want.
Your manifesting ability depends on how you feel, how willing to receive what you want without second guessing, struggle or fear. And that’s where affirmations will serve you well.
Make your affirmations first person, present tense. Don’t do what many do, and say “I will,” this indicates you’re currently not, instead say I am healthier every day, I am successful at all I do, I am a powerful manifester, I am managing this challenge. Affirmations are most effective when repeatedly telling yourself you already are able to do or have the very thing you want.
It’s direction to your subconscious mind, which is the connector between you and the creative ability of the universe. And your subconscious mind has no clue as to whether something is true or not, if you say it is, often enough, it will believe you.
5. Final thoughts on mindful mastery
Tuning into these powerful mindful mastery tools will have a positive affect, not only on handling life’s challenges with aplomb, but on better relationships, greater life satisfaction, a decrease in anxiety, and an overall happier, fulfilling, richer life. And who would say no to that?
Stop looking outside yourself for answers and open the door to those limitless possibilities that await. Too often we get hung up over needing to take action now, when if we start within by using some of these tools, the action to bring us the results we want will be revealed. It’s just a matter of being open to universal guidance.
Encourage one another.
Thank you for this, Elle. I strongly advocate mastering your mind with whatever way works for you: regulation, affirmations, thought reframing, mindfulness, etc. I like the distinction you make between regulate and control. No, we can’t control what happens in our mind – but we can choose our response to it. As you know, when you can consciously choose your reactions and behavior, you can better handle whatever life throws at you.
So true Debbie. Attention to what is happening within us and without is vital for our ability to as you say handle whatever life throws at us more easily.