💪🏼The Strength of Forgiveness💪🏼

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“You will begin to heal when you let go of past hurts, forgive those who have wronged you and learn to forgive yourself for your mistakes”.

“You have to learn to select your thoughts the way you select your clothes every day. That’s a power you can cultivate. You wanna come here and control your life so bad, work on the mind. That’s the only thing you should control. If you can’t master your thoughts, you’re in trouble … stop trying. Surrender”. – Richard from Texas

What is forgiveness?

The first step to forgiveness is admitting that we have blamed someone or ourselves for something.  We are filled with anger, resentment, blame, hatred. Forgiveness is about letting go of these feelings we have been carrying around. Releasing yourself of these heavy thoughts of revenge or bitterness. We do not even have to come in to contact with the person we are trying to forgive. We do not have to tell them we forgive them or tell anyone at that matter. It is for your sanity and happiness that you need to forgive. The more we talk about how people have done us wrong and hurt us, the more negative thoughts and emotions we bring about in ourselves. Of course let off some steam and vent to your best friend about it when it is fresh and new and reflect. That is also a part of healing. But then forgive. Let the space be filled with love. Let it go.

Forgive and Forget?

Forgiveness doesn’t come easily for everyone, but the kind of forgiveness that really matters is the forgiveness that resides in your own heart. Self-compassion is what will enable you to learn and grow and become the best version of yourself. I will dedicate another post for self-compassion SOON. Forgiving someone does not mean you approve of the wrong they have done. It can mean different things to different people. For me, it means I forgive those who were not in a good head space at the time or had portrayed their inner demons through their behaviour. Sometimes I might view it as the person not being on the same emotional maturity as I am but that sometimes can come across as a bit arrogant. It is not that you feel sorry for the person either. It is about building awareness that peoples behaviours are usually a reflection of their inner selves. The same way if any of us have a bad day they might snap at the next person who asks them a question. If you are feeling sh**t about yourself you might criticise others just to make yourself feel better. Kind of like those bullies in school. More than likely they had a lot of stuff going on for them, either in their head or at home. Forgiveness is not about sympathising with people but about empathising with them.

sympathy: feelings of pity and sorrow for someone else’s misfortune.

empathy: the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

I also understand that some people commit horrible crimes and do outrageous things to people that cannot be empathised with. Some people might blame themselves for things others have done to them and might feel the horrible abuse or mistrust was deserving. In this case the person to forgive is yourself.

FORGIVE YOURSELF FIRST

Forgive yourself for believing you could have stopped what had happened. Forgive yourself for  believing you are not worthy. Forgive yourself for believing you were deserving of what happened. Forgive yourself for being in this negative mindset. Forgiveness is a journey. It is something that needs to be practised daily. You don’t just wake up one day and have forgiven and healed yourself and everyone around you.

I watched a movie recently called ‘Eat, Pray, Love.’ There was a scene where Julia Roberts (Liz Gilbert) was speaking about how upset she was that she had left her husband and she felt he would never forgive her. This was something that was bothering her throughout the majority of the movie until she met this nice man (Richard from Texas) at a retreat in India who thought her she did not have to come in contact with her husband or hear him say he forgave her. She simply had to forgive herself.

 Liz Gilbert: I’m waiting for him to forgive me, to release me.
Richard from Texas: Waiting for him to forgive you is a damn waste of time. Forgive yourself.

“We all want things to stay the same, David … settle for living in misery, because we’re afraid of change, of things crumbling to ruins. Then I looked around in this place, at the chaos it’s endured, the way it’s been adapted, burned, pillaged … then found a way to build itself back up again, and I was reassured. Ruin is a gift, ruin is the road to transformation”. – Liz Gilbert

Self Reflection

I have learned to forgive friends who chose boyfriends over our friendship. I have learned to forgive my Dad for making decisions I felt were wrong when it came to family and marriage. Work colleagues who had outbursts of rage towards me. But most importantly I have learned to forgive myself for making ill decisions in the past, for not taking responsibility for my own happiness sooner, for thinking I needed a boyfriend before I could find happiness and contentment. By letting go of all these negative feelings and thoughts I had towards these people and myself, I have become the happiest I have ever been. That, alongside mindfulness and other self healing practices. Happiness is not a destination, it is a journey. You too will have your own journey.

As Kylie Jenner said ‘2016 is about realising stuff’. And I certainly have realised A LOT this past year!

 

J x

Tai Chi: An early morning I spent pretending I was a bird🐥

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 Recently I attended a free introduction to Tai Chi session in The Dublin Holistic Centre . I was recommended by a friend to try it out as it was “calming” and “right up my street”.I YouTubed it and instantly I was attracted to it. Like minded people, standing in a small group, slow moving, in a deep relaxed state. I HAD TO TRY IT!

So what is Tai Chi? 

 Tai Chi is known as a mind art which combats stress, tiredness, sadness, anxiety and addictions. It focuses on posture, breathing, awareness and powerful whole body movements. It’s basically an internal Chinese martial art that is practiced for both defense training and its health benefits. You may have seen it in movies such as Jackie Chan or the Karate Kid. It is comprised of 37-postures, or movement patterns, which are repeated to the left or right to create the 108-movement sequence.

 Supposedly, it came about when a crane (a type of bird) and a snake came into contact with each other. The snake 🐍 attempted to attack the crane. The crane remained still and gently moved away from each attack the snake made. Eventually the crane wore the snake out and he was able to kill the snake. The aim of Tai Chi is to become the crane. 

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 So off I went at the crack of dawn, one cold Wednesday morning, to see how I could become a Crane. Beforehand I had pictured myself in slow-mo dancing around a room with old men in white clothing and long white beards becoming at Awe with the universe. When I arrived, I was greeted by a very pleasant man man dressed in navy and no beard. He explained the benefits of Tai Chi and what exactly the introductory class would entail. There were four people in attendance. The room was smallish but cozy and appropriate for its use.

 We started off by doing some meditation exercises to relax our minds and bodies. This included slow hand movements and breathing exercises with our eyes closed. Once we had all become grounded and calm, we began the Tai Chi exercises.The more relaxed your body and mind are, the more abundantly your energy can circulate. This is the first stage, known as Regulating the Body. Eventually, if you are interested in following the traditional path, you can progress through the stages of Regulating the Breath, the Mind, the Qi (the energy), and the Spirit. It can take up to three years to achieve full energy enhancements and full health benefits (a very long time).

 I was informed that it would take around 6 weeks to learn one movement but today he would explain a few different movements to give me a taster. SIX WEEKS TO LEARN ONE MOVEMENT. The thoughts of this was off putting. We started off with slow arm movements and different movements to shift our energies. He played relaxation music in the background which is fav! Eventually after 1 hour and 30 minutes, we had completed one complete move. One move contained several different movements. Each of these movements would take up to 6 weeks to conquer. Good posture is the main component of Tai Chi. If you are aware of the 7 Chakras (the wheels of energies in our bodies), you will know how important it is to have your spine straight and in line with your pelvis and head. Energies are transferred (Qigong – energy work) from the Crown Chakra (crown of your head) to the Root Chakra (base of your spine).

I will dedicate a future post to Chakra’s alone but in the meantime here is a brief overview of what each Chakra represents, its location and the emotional issues they bring about:

1. Root Chakra — Represents our foundation and feeling of being grounded.

  • Location: Base of spine in tailbone area.
  • Emotional issues: Survival issues such as financial independence, money and food.

2. Sacral Chakra — Our connection and ability to accept others and new experiences.

  • Location: Lower abdomen, about two inches below the navel and two inches in.
  • Emotional issues: Sense of abundance, well-being, pleasure and sexuality.

3. Solar Plexus Chakra — Our ability to be confident and in control of our lives.

  • Location: Upper abdomen in the stomach area.
  • Emotional issues: Self-worth, self-confidence and self-esteem.

4. Heart Chakra — Our ability to love.

  • Location: Center of chest just above the heart.
  • Emotional issues: Love, joy and inner peace.

5. Throat Chakra — Our ability to communicate.

  • Location: Throat.
  • Emotional issues: Communication, self-expression of feelings and the truth.

6. Third Eye Chakra — Our ability to focus on and see the big picture.

  • Location: Forehead between the eyes (also called the Brow Chakra).
  • Emotional issues: Intuition, imagination, wisdom and the ability to think and make decisions.

7. Crown Chakra — The highest chakra represents our ability to be fully connected spiritually.

  • Location: The very top of the head.
  • Emotional issues: Inner and outer beauty, our connection to spirituality and pure bliss

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 Tai Chi is all about the movement of energies in order to remove negative energy and increase positive energies. This energy in our bodies is derived from the food we eat and the fat we burn, combined with the air we breathe through the metabolic process. In addition, with every breath you are inhaling air, which is a gas, which is made of molecules, which are made of atoms, which are made of energy. You inhale positive or negative ions all day long. We also receive some percentage of our body’s energy from the sun and moon, and our body’s energy is influenced by the radiation of our surroundings, both natural and manmade. In fact, the human body is a living bioelectromagnetic field.

The next bit I have just copied and pasted off a website that explained how energies move within our bodies. I tried to rewrite it in my own words but I found it very difficult to explain.

When you want to move your body, your mind generates an electrical impulse through the spine to the muscles, and suddenly you are Grasping the Sparrow’s Tail. Your intention to move first creates a brainwave – this is an electrical frequency usually between 1 – 20Hz.  The impulse then transmits instantaneously throughout the body in a complex process that utilizes your body’s energy to facilitate movement. A typical modern way of measuring your energy is with an EEG (Electroencephalogram), which distinguishes brainwaves by measuring the speed with which neurons (nerve cells) fire in cycles per second. Alpha brain waves range between 7 – 12 Hz, which relates to deep relaxation. The Alpha range is also the base frequency of the Schumann Resonance, which is the vibrational frequency of the earth’s electromagnetic field. When you are deeply relaxed, your Alpha brainwaves resonate in sympathy with the earth’s EMF, producing “constructive interference” which amplifies the vibration.

Qi circulation
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Whether you view the body’s energetic activity from a chemical, spiritual, or purely mechanical viewpoint, understand that this energy within the body is the Qi we are referring to; Qi is not some special “other” kind of energy. This subject has been widely misunderstood, sometimes because of the limited understanding by students of these concepts since Tai Chi came to the West, and largely due to cultural and language barriers.

Don’t keep searching for your energy when you practice. Realize that you are energy.

You are not a human body experiencing a spirit. You are a spirit experiencing a human body.

Thus, when you understand a Tai Chi posture clearly, your will mind generate the correct intention, and you will energize your body all the way to the fingers and toes more efficiently. This will gradually improve your circulation to the extremities, and help to permeate your body with healthy circulation of blood, energy, and nutrients.

 The class ended with a guided meditation exercise following with a closing of our energies. We basically inhaled positive energy and moved it into our bodies with arm movements then we closed ourselves up again.

Tai Chi Tips

  • Practice out in nature and get some fresh air, preferably near mountains, forests, or water for an increase of negative ions.
  • Close your mouth loosely, and touch the tongue to the roof of the mouth gently.
  • Breathe naturally. Don’t worry about your breathing until later in your practice.
  • Tai Chi is whole body exercise. Movement is initiated in the legs, directed by the waist, and manifested in the hands.
  • Upper body is light, the middle body is flexible, and the lower body is solid and heavy.
  • Energy follows consciousness, or as its put in qigong study, “The Yi Leads the Qi.”
  • Stay relaxed and don’t frown from concentrating too hard. Tai Chi is fun!

Overall thoughts:

 I found Tai Chi was not for me. It was waaaaay too slow. I love meditation and yoga but this was completely different all together. Maybe I need to slow myself down a bit more? Maybe I should not have went before college as I had a lot on my mind that day? Small groups do sometimes make me a bit anxious. I had to repeat some postures a few times as I was not doing them correctly so this also put me off. Another thing may have been that I attended with my friend. BIG MISTAKE. Awkward silences led to me and him looking at each other and giggling. He would stand in front of me and we would have to move at the same pace with our eyes closed by bonding our energies together without looking. I opened my eyes a few times and seen him doing the postures and found it hilarious. We would glance at each other the odd time both thinking ‘WTF are we doing here?’. Overall I don’t think I will be going back. Yoga and light meditation is as far as my inner ZEN will be going.

J x

The act of Self Love: ❤️ Part 1

 I first came across the act of self love around Christmas time last year. Myself and my best friend felt we were in a bit of a negative cycle. We were bitching about everyone, being depressing f**ks, and just being very negative towards ourselves. We decided enough was enough. 

 I began to research how to love yourself, how to be more positive, and just how to be happy in general. Self love popped up several times so I decided to look into it further. I had heard Khloé Kardashian speak about it before so of course I was extra interested. If Khloe does it then I need to do it? Along the way I came across Charlie Chalpins poem and Gala Darlings book on Radical Self Love. There was endless blog posts on how to love yourself and step by step guides. After reading everything there was to read, I came up with my own idea of self love. In a recent post I described simple steps to loving yourself and introduced you to Charlie Chaplains poem. I decided to write about my understanding of self love and how I have incorporated it into my daily life. I will seperate the post into parts as I don’t want to bombard you’s with a lot of information all at once. I could write for days about self love so trust me this way will ensure you won’t get bored half way through. 😂

I believe the goal of self love is to become your own best friend. Treat yourself like you treat your best friend. If your best friend was having a bad day you might organise something fun to do that they like or you might just go around to their place and have a cup of tea and a chat. If you feel yourself having a bit of an off day, listen to yourself, bring yourself on a nice walk, put on your favourite movie to cheer yourself up. All the relationship advice you’ve give your best friends over the years, give the same advice to yourself. Stop going back to that same guy who’s treating you like sh**t and have more respect for yourself. Practice what you preach and all that jazz. 🙌🏽

 Be kind to yourself. Treat yourself with some relaxation like booking a spa treatment or having a bubble bath. Go to yoga or do some meditation. Do something that relaxes you and takes your mind off the  hussle and bustle of life! Go for a long walk or go hiking. Try to do something nice for yourself at least once a month. Give yourself something to look forward to. Practicing mindfulness is also an act of kindness to yourself. You’re allowing yourself to get the most out of life. I’m currently doing a 52 weeks of living mindfully challenge so have a look over my previous posts if you’re interested in learning more. 

 Stop judging yourself and stop judging others. The more we criticise ourselves and others, the more negative energy we create within ourselves. Our thoughts and emotions are connected. If we think negative thoughts how are we supposed to feel happy? Friends who sit around screenshotting ugly photos of people on Facebook and are constantly judging others, are people you should try limit contact with. It’s like indirect bullying really. Negative friends like this will create negative energy and this energy will be passed onto you once you’re in contact with them. As I always say, self awareness is key. If you feel you’re speaking about someone or even yourself in a negative way, try stopping in your tracks and thinking: Is this comment really necessary? What good will come of speaking bad about this person? Like don’t get me wrong, if someone has been mean to you and you’re feeling angry and upset at what they’ve said or done to you, then by all means vent. But if all someone has done is post an innocent picture of themselves, is it really necessary to comment? Probably not. Tabloids and magazines are constantly judging celebrities so it’s no wonder we all do it. Social media has turned us all into hypercritical lunatics.

  Why did no one like that picture I posted? Oh ew I’m not liking that picture she looks ugly. Omg I can’t post that look at my eye. My face looks fat in that delete it! 

I suppose self criticism stems from having low self esteem which I have discussed in detail in a previous post. I have also given tips of how to improve your self esteem. I don’t want to repeat everything again in this post so do have a read back over it if you are interested. Improving your self esteem is defiantly all part of love yourself. How can you love yourself if you think negatively about yourself? Makes sense really. 

I’m going to leave it at three main points for this post as I don’t  want to bore you to death. Keep a look out for part 2 ❤️
J X 



💕As I Began to Love Myself – Self Love Poem by Charlie Chaplin💕

As I Began to Love Myself – Self Love Poem by Charlie Chaplin

As I began to love myself I found that anguish and emotional suffering

are only warning signs that I was living against my own truth.

Today, I know, this is “AUTHENTICITY”.
As I began to love myself I understood how much it can offend somebody

As I try to force my desires on this person, even though I knew the time

was not right and the person was not ready for it, and even though this

person was me. Today I call it “RESPECT”.
As I began to love myself I stopped craving for a different life,

and I could see that everything that surrounded me was inviting me to grow.

Today I call it “MATURITY”.
As I began to love myself I understood that at any circumstance,

I am in the right place at the right time, and everything happens

at the exactly right moment. So I could be calm.

Today I call it “SELF-CONFIDENCE”.
As I began to love myself I quit steeling my own time,

and I stopped designing huge projects for the future.

Today, I only do what brings me joy and happiness, things I love to do

and that make my heart cheer, and I do them in my own way and in

my own rhythm. Today I call it “SIMPLICITY”.
As I began to love myself I freed myself of anything that is no good for

my health – food, people, things, situations, and everything that drew

me down and away from myself. At first I called this attitude

a healthy egoism. Today I know it is “LOVE OF ONESELF”.
As I began to love myself I quit trying to always be right, and ever since

I was wrong less of the time. Today I discovered that is “MODESTY”.
As I began to love myself I refused to go on living in the past and worry

about the future. Now, I only live for the moment, where EVERYTHING

is happening. Today I live each day, day by day, and I call it “FULFILLMENT”.
As I began to love myself I recognized that my mind can disturb me

and it can make me sick. But As I connected it to my heart, my

mind became a valuable ally. Today I call this

connection “WISDOM OF THE HEART
We no longer need to fear arguments, confrontations or any kind of problems

with ourselves or others. Even stars collide, and out of their crashing

new worlds are born.Today I know THAT IS “LIFE”!

🔮Love Yourself Mindful Yoga & Meditation 🔮

‘The perfect workout for body, heart and soul’

 Recently I attended a ‘Love Yourself Mindful Yoga and Meditation’ workshop with Sophia Pollaro in The Elbowroom, Brunswick St, Dublin. From reading Sophia’s profile online I discovered she was a qualified Yoga Teacher for the past ten years. While practicing various forms of meditation, she discovered the benefits of Mindfulness Meditation and its direct connection to the body. Yoga, and its endless benefits, was the next step on her path. Sophia’s teaching places emphases on a deep connection with the breath, stillness and clarity of the mind, strength, balance and a mindful flow of movement. Her classes include asanas (practice of postures), pranayama (breathing techniques) and dhyana (meditation). Clothes wise, I wore yoga pants, socks with a grip underneath them (yoga socks), and a loose t shirt (comfy clothes). I also made sure I didn’t have a heavy meal beforehand. Just some fruit and yogurt or you could even have a smoothie maybe an hour before. No one wants cramps or indigestion at their first yoga class!

 We all know how to love others. We love our friends, family, partners and even pets but it is a bit more difficult to show love towards ourselves. This workshop thought me how to cultivate the healthy and healing self-attention we all need. Our awareness of breathing was the core skill thought to enhance relaxation (its importance was spoke about in an earlier post). To start off a full body scan was done to check in with ourselves and relax each part of our body (examples of this was mentioned in previous posts) Meditation was also brought in at the beginning followed by asana flow (a type of yoga). It wasn’t too difficult. Iv never done yoga before and I wouldn’t be the most flexible but I was able to do most of the moves without cutting off my breathing or looking like a twisted upside down fool (you don’t really go upside down, slight exaggeration). The meditation focused on self-compassion and love to ‘quiet the mind and nourish the heart’. Sophia asked us to pick one thing we did not like about ourselves. We sat with that thought. We thought about how it manifested in our daily lives. How it made us feel, what actions or behaviours it caused. Then we took a deep breath in and exhaled that negative thought. We were told to imagine someone close to us was sitting in front of us disclosing that they did not like that similar part of themselves. I imagined my little brother sitting on the mat infront of me. I became tearful when I imagined him with similar feelings about himself. Whatever way we responded to our loved ones telling us this information we were then to respond to ourselves when we had these thoughts. Sophia thought us how to be kind to ourselves, show love and compassion and to acknowledge these negative thoughts about ourselves. We were also thought how to show affection towards ourselves with this gentle pose: 

Sophia then repeated an affirmation of self love we all had to repeat in our heads as we meditated:

May I be happy

May I be safe 

May I be kind to myself

May I love myself just as I am

To end the Workshop we done another full body scan followed by the listening of a self love poem. This poem is the extended version of the one I have on my home page (Charlie Chaplain):


 On their website they said this workshop would leave you feeling ‘deeply relaxed, emotionally and physically stronger’, which i most certainly did.

 I have added the link below to the workshop and website if anyone is interested in attending in the future.

Love Yourself Yoga & Meditation Workshop

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J x

 

💕Steps: Learning to love yourself💕

 The following steps will be explained individually in future posts. I understand a lot of these steps aren’t for everyone and may come across a bit ‘away with the fairies’ but just be open minded and read them anyway…

  1. Stop being so judgemental and talking about any creature that walks by. Negative attitudes bring negative vibes.
  2. Do what you want. If you don’t want go to town with your friend then don’t.
  3.  Be content in your own company. Stop depending on others to do activities.
  4.  Treat yourself. Stop waiting for your knight in shining armour to buy you flowers and bring you for dinner. Buy yourself the flowers and bring yourself for dinner!
  5. Nourish and look after yourself. Keep active. Put good food in your body it will make you feel good.
  6. Get to know yourself. Spend time alone doing things you like.
  7. Meditate. This doesn’t mean you have to sit in silence for hours. I’ll write up some easy steps to meditation in a later post.
  8. Be mindful. Acknowledge your surroundings. Focus on the now. I’m doing a 52 week mindfulness challenge at the moment which I’ll also discuss in a future post.
  9. Take up a new hobby or interest. Iv wanted to join yoga for a long time now so I have finally booked in for a yoga course in August. Excitement!
  10. Show affection. Tell others how you feel.
  11. Use affirmations to make yourself happy. Sometimes mind over matter really does work.
  12. Remove negative relationships from your life. This doesn’t mean removing a friend who is a bit of a ‘fart’ but maybe minimising the time you send with them as their negative and unmotivated vibes ill defiantly touch off on you.
  13. Stop being so dependent on others. If you want some flowers go buy them! If you’re bored sitting in and no one wants to do anything, bring yourself out!
  14. Do not depend on others for love and affection. Yes of course it is amazing to be loved by others but loving yourself should always come first. By loving yourself first it will help you avoid all those toxic relationships and will build a steady foundation.
  15. Self assessment and self awareness is key! Be aware of your own prejudices. Know what you like and don’t like. Know your reactions, facial expressions (my weakness).
  16. STAY AWAY from those back biting conversations with friends and work colleagues. This creates negative environments which is a feeding ground for negative toxic people. BEWARE!
  17. Have goals! Make a list of things you want to achieve and give yourself time frames.
  18. Organisation is key! Keep a diary. Organise your room, personal life and work life. Tidy room = tidy mind.
  19. Don’t neglect yourself. I am not one for wearing make up everyday and I barely wash my hair but I always make time to moisturise and the odd face mask.
  20. Get out of your comfort zone. Earlier this summer I decided to do something that has been on my bucket list for a while now. NUDIST BEACH. Me, a rock, the sea, on a tiny island off Croatia NAKED!!. It was AMAZING!
  21. Be active. Join a gym, go for a walk, sign up for a marathon. Exercise releases ‘happy’ energy.

J x

💫Words of wisdom from Matthew Silver💫

 My first blog post will be dedicated to this remarkable individual who has succeeded in spreading self love and creativity throughout the streets of New York City. Mathew is a passionate performer who uses a ‘non-serious’ approach when playing with taboos, rules and social norms. He parades around the streets of New York City in his under wear, creating smiles, laughter and loosening peoples judgements and superiority. He believes each individual is important, along with their their dreams, relationships, friendships. Matthews theory on the meaning of life is ‘To live in the magic of now’. You can’t get away from your heart so do what it loves.

‘We should encourage each other instead of judging each other’.
Love now, create, inspire. It repeats itself.

J x

 

See the links below for snippets of Matthews performances…. Continue reading