The Live Today With Faith Letter On Mental Health

Dear Reader,

Missed last weeks post. Sorry about that.

It has been a stormy six months.

It’s got to the point that I have stopped watching TV all together. Yes, maybe that sticking my head in the sand but the world has lost its mind completely. Never has it been more important to look after your mental health.

Today I would like to share another one of my habits that has helped me to be happy and care free 99% of my life.

In my last post I talked about road work, its importance and benefits. But it came to my attention, I can often write without thinking. So, if you have never done any road work, running walking jogging, then I would recommend starting small.

Maybe 20 minutes, 10 minutes away from starting point, then turn and come back. Building up to 1-hour total over time.

If you start your day this way, it will get you off to a great start and vastly improve the rest of your day since it will drain off a lot of tension and anxiety. In general, it will clear out your mind so you can think better all day long!

Plus, after you get into it, it will make you feel great!

So anyway, here are some other good health habits that I think you should get into right away.

FASTING – after road work fasting is the single most powerful thing that you can do for your mental and physical health.

Now there are many different types of fasting. All are beneficial. Some people will say to do 24h fasts, others will say intermittent fasting is best. What I have learnt is, do what feels comfortable.

Like road work start small and build up.

All spiritual walks of life have fasting as a part of their practise. Why is this? Fasting brings you into the presence of God. Rather than worrying about problems or bills. Or what your friend or neighbour said or didn’t say, you become focused on the present moment.

The reason for this, in my opinion is, your body will send out strong signals that it wants food, soon it becomes the only thought you can think about. Of course your mind may drift but it will come back to the feelings of hunger.

Benefits of Fasting

When you fast, you begin to normalize the body’s functions and also, you develop a certain self-discipline that will help you in most other areas of your life.

The first few days you try fasting it will be difficult but if you stick with it that body adjusts. For me it is excellent for mental clarity, and refocuses my attention to the gift that food is.

I intend to write a lot more about fasting in later posts but, for right now, I want to encourage you to begin immediately too fast one day every week.

Here are some tips.

Firstly, start on a day off. It’s easy to think that a day you have a lot on will make it easier but this is not the case. As the body uses a lot of energy, and energy comes from food.

(Personally, I started with a 16h fast. So after 8pm on Friday I didn’t eat again until 12pm the next day. Water and black coffee are allowed.)

Secondly, I suggest you do not tell other people what you are doing. Most people don’t understand fasting, and all you will get from them on this subject is a lot of ignorant nonsense. People have been fasting for centuries with great benefits.

Thirdly, I feel that you should do very little (or no) athletic exercise on the days that you fast. You see, your “Fast Day” is the day you set aside to give your mind and body a rest. You don’t have to stay in bed all day or anything like that, but you really should take it easy both physically and mentally.

Extra Time And Increased Productivity

What I do on my fast days is read and take time to pray. Also, I have found it an excellent time to take care of those nagging little chores and errands that seem to accumulate during the rest of the week.

In other words, I think you should do road work every morning to more or less “order your day” and fast every week to “order your week”.

I’m into my fifth decade on earth and the two things I have written about so far in this series are by far the most important things I have ever learned.

Mental Health & Well Being

Most people know the power that the mind has over the body. When your stressed or anxious for example you can hardly eat or have very little energy or enthusiasm.

Then on the flip of that, when you are happy or excited you have unlimited energy and could go over 24 hrs without sleep.

What few people know however is the body has just as much control over the mind. So when you are anxious or worried about a problem, going for a long walk can clear your thoughts and help you think more logically.

Road work and fasting have so much more to offer than getting in shape and losing weight. Both are helpful with mental health issues.

So if you have problems with depression or anxiety I recommend that for the next 7 days you add both road work and some fasting to your weekly routine and notice the difference that it makes.

Many people want to be happier and more successful but fail to realize their health is the foundation. Focus on improving your energy and mental clarity and you will not believe how fast your life will change.

Until next week take care and remember even small steps in the right direction will get you to your destination.

Enjoy your week.

Disclaimer – I’m not a health professional, always get advice from your doctor before going on a fast or making a significant change to your diet.

The Live Today With Faith letter — Life lessons

Dear Reader,

This blog post is going to be the first in a long series of posts in which I will attempt to communicate to you a lot of the important things I have learned in the last 40+ years.

I am going to try to teach you what I have learned about spirituality, getting and staying healthy, how to get along with people, and, in general, how to have a good life without getting yourself all screwed up.

Well, anyway, this all leads me to the first and most important thing I want to write about, which is improving and maintaining your health and physical fitness.

I’ll have a lot more to say about this subject later, but today I just want to “warm-up” a little bit and tell you a few good ideas that you can start using every day.

The first thing I want to talk about is “road work”.

Road work is walking, jogging and running. And, in my opinion, you should do about one hour of road work every day of the week except Sunday.

I believe the best time to do your road work is right after you get out of bed.

In fact, in my opinion, the best groove to get into is getting out of bed, (early) wash your face, brush your teeth, use the bathroom, etc., and then, eat a piece of fruit (I think a banana is the best) and then hit the street!

That’s it.

Just get out that front door and start moving. Walk, run, jog. Keep moving for about a half-hour and then turn around and come back. You know, I do believe this is the very best way in the world to start the day.

It cleans you out, it settles you down, and it gives you a beautiful glow that will stay with you throughout the day. It will also make you more clearheaded and improve the quality of your thinking.

The benefits are enormous and, believe me if you start doing this right away (like the day after you read this post!) it won’t be long at all till you become positively addicted to your early morning workout.

By the way, this addiction is not just psychological. It is a real honest-to-God drug addiction.

But don’t let that scare you.

This is what’s known as a positive addiction. A positive addiction is simply being addicted to something (like exercise) that improves the quality of your life. A negative addiction, on the other hand, is being addicted to something (like cigarettes) that lowers the quality of your life.

What happens when you do road work is that, after about forty minutes, your brain begins to secrete what some people refer to as “survival chemicals”.

The names of these chemicals, as far as I know, are beta-endorphins and norepinephrine.

Some people say these chemicals are 200 times more potent than morphine and without any frame for reference, all I can say is, nothing comes close to the mental clarity I have after some road work.

All negative thoughts are gone. Solutions to problems come rushing into my mind. I’m relaxed, calm and happy. If I seem to be going on and on about this, it is because it is so important, and it is something you can do right away!

And, actually, of everything I have learned about in my entire life, this stuff about doing road work the first thing in the morning is very close to being the most important thing of all, when it comes to mental and physical health.

So, I hope you get started on this morning road work program as soon as you read this post. If you challenge yourself to keep it up for 30 days I guaranteed that you will be happier and healthier than you have been in years.

I also hope it becomes a habit for the rest of your life.

I wish you Good Luck!

RJM

Gaining Trust

It’s so easy to let the troubles of the world get to us. We can become worried, anxious and depressed. Thinking that we have made too many mistakes.

Locked in the past, we are unable to move forward.

Without growth, we become unhappy, unaware of what went wrong.

A lot of our problems in life is when we become too attached to our feelings. It’s essential in these moments to connect with nature to let go, trusting that the ideas, the inspiration, the right people will show up to help us on our way.

Keep trusting and moving forward. 🙂

Find Peace of Mind And Inner Calm in Tough Times — Free Relaxation Audio Download

It is a very stressful time for everyone at the moment. Some people are more stressed than others. Many have lost their businesses; millions around the world have already lost their jobs.

Usually, a person that likes to keep up with current events I have stopped watching the news altogether as its just a wall of fear.

We all know that we need to relax, but this is easier said than done.

Many months ago, I was working on a project that, for one reason or another didn’t get finished. The main idea was to do an audio cd for relaxation but only one track got finished

Listening back today, on the first listen, I was very judgmental thinking it was narrated too slow, but on the second listen, I decided rather than judge the delivery. I would follow the instructions so pressed replay.

Until I listened to the piece, I knew I was a little stressed by the lockdown. It’s only natural. But It was only listening back did I realised just how much stress I was holding in my body.

By the end of the audio, my mind was more peaceful than it has been in months. It’s hard to describe. Often stress can build up so slowly that we can be unaware that it there.

Daily Rituals

It’s more important than ever to take time daily to do something that relaxes you. It could be taking a warm bath, listening to some soothing music or walking along a beach listening to the water crash on the shore. Whatever works for you.

We all need time to relax, time to release all the tension and stress that can build up. Otherwise, you can become withdrawn, indecisive or inflexible. Stress can make you feel angrier or more aggressive than usual, which can affect the way you interact with your close family and friends.

As we all have experienced stress for a prolonged period in the last three months, you may notice your sleep and memory are affected, your eating habits may have changed, or you may feel less inclined to exercise.

Stress is often overlooked but just as important to treat as any other ailment.

If you have a spare 5 minutes, I highly recommend that you give the audio below a listen, and let be know any changes that you felt in the comments.

Thanks for reading. Enjoy your weekend.

2020 In Four Verses

O GOD, Your land has been conquered,
people in every corner slaughtered.
leaders inciting violence and death,
watching the news I can’t find my breathe.

I know you have a plan that is bigger than me,
but can you please make my heart less weighty?
Give me the wisdom to guide others,
as most are now hiding under their covers.

They say the night is darkest before the dawn,
but its looking like you have sent a black swan.
Everything seems to be coming at the same time,
looking like were about to enter a new paradigm.

The waves are plenty crashing on every side,
and I’m not alone this is worldwide.
Please awaken and calm the storm,
put an end to this funny farm.

You Don’t Have To Attend Every Argument You’re Invited To

You have 7 seconds after a thought to make a decision, and in my opinion, it all depends on the type of person. Some people don’t think— they react.

The more spiritual you become, the more that you will notice the gap, now that’s not to say you will not still react to something that you don’t agree with, but if at that moment you feel the need to reply as you know the person is wrong or have their facts wrong.

Take a moment to think… will me replying help the situation? If the person is sensitive or doesn’t take feedback very well, no matter how you correct them, it will not go down well.

Many people in my life can not take being corrected, so what I have learnt to do is go along with them.

Now I’m not perfect, I still reply when I know it’s the wrong thing to do, but the more that you can bite your tongue, and keep your thoughts to yourself the happier you will be.

If someone is continually annoying you the best approach you can take is wait until the right moment to give them constructive feedback, there is a better chance of a good response, and your feedback listened too.

How to Hear The Voice of God

It was Saturday night 23th May, when I heard a loud bang outside my window. My mind filtered through all the sounds that it could be, none of them registered.

It was very loud but didn’t sound like it came from outside my window. This got me worried, as a sound that loud, to not be close, would mean that something serious must have happened.

I went outside, looked around the house and down my lane to the main road, nothing. Looked up, maybe it was an aircraft, again nothing. The night was calm. It got me wondering was it just my imagination, but I knew that it wasn’t.

I went back inside, confused. Unsettled, I went back to watching TV.

Later that night I went to check my emails, no Wi-Fi so I just used my phone data not thinking much about it. Next morning same thing again, no internet. Went to check my hub no signal, and the landline was dead.

So, I rang my phone and internet provider to report the fault.

They informed me that with Covid-19, there were fewer people on the ground, but work would be carried out within 3 days. Then a neighbour told me that on Saturday night, a joyrider had crashed straight into a pole, and the pole was down.

That was the sound I had heard the night before.

The pole in question was a reasonable distance away from the house so it must have been some crash to create the level of sound I heard. It was good to link the two as it had been playing on my mind.

My next thought was the internet engineer. If they came out to fix a fault to find that a pole would have to be replaced first, it would probably delay the job, meaning having no phone or internet for longer.

So, I called up the internet provider to let them know. Long story short it took several phone calls to sort out and a week without internet.

Up until this week, I would class myself as a person that doesn’t use the internet much; it’s only when I went a few days without it did I realise just how much I use it.

The Voice of God

With the time I would usually be browsing the internet, I spent going through old notes and records, which resulted in me discovering some files that I thought were lost. That helped me with the current problem I was having.

A series of events had to happen to lead me to the discovery of the files. A joyrider had to crash into a pole at high speed, meaning that rather than a usual couple of days fixing time, it took a week, long enough for me to find the records.

This, for me, was my prayers being answered.

There is no way I would have went through and tidied up my old files for months, and by that time, the records that I found would no longer have helped.

I found out many years ago that if something goes wrong, if you are slowed down in a certain area not to fight it. Of course, you need to resolve things, but if you find yourself getting stressed or becoming impatient can be a sign to change direction.

Many people would have become stressed over the fact that they had no internet, they would have asked their neighbour to use their internet or for their internet password, but I have learnt that in my life that God can speak through events and people.

Answers to prayers can come in so many different forms; God doesn’t speak to us with a loud booming voice like in the movies, its through subtle messages that most do not pick up on.

I think technology is a fantastic thing, without it you would not be reading these words, I would not be writing these words in this medium, but on the flip of that, it has separated us from the spiritual, from the metaphysical.

I believe that God is speaking to us at all times, but we are too busy to hear the subtle messages. Even the sound of traffic is enough to distract you from hearing Him. That is why moments of silence is vital each day.

Turn off the notifications, the internet, the TV.

Only then can we connect with our inner vibrations, only then can the stress and anxieties that build up begin to fade away. Only then can we appreciate the gift of health that is keeping us alive.

Take a deep breathe in…

HOLD the air in your lungs for a couple of seconds…

then slowly exhale.

This simple exercise relaxes the mind and connects us to the world around us, as we can so easily get caught up in negative thoughts.

Enjoy your weekend.  

Living Life One Step At a Time

“There is only one world, the world pressing against you at this minute. There is only one minute in which you are alive, this minute here and now. The only way to live is by accepting each minute as an unrepeatable miracle.” ~Anonymous

Reading this quote had a deep impact on me.

There is only one minute in which you are alive, this minute here and now. How very true, yet easily forgotten.

Most of our lives we spend worrying or planning for the future, or looking back at past hurts or mistakes. “If only certain events hadn’t of happened. If only I had made this decision or that, how my life would be different?”

I have spoken to people that still have not forgiven someone that hurt them 40 years ago. And if you talk about forgiveness, they will say, “but you don’t know what they did to me.” And their right i don’t. But to allow someone to affect your thinking after 40 years?

This is not a piece on forgiveness so I will leave it there. You can find more on forgiveness here.

This is a piece on accepting each minute as an unrepeatable miracle.

Before my brother moved house I used to visit him several times a week. He is a graphic designer which means being on his laptop. But when I was there he would be checking his phone while watching the tv.

In the beginning I would mention it as personally I could not work with that much distraction, but thats how he had always worked, and who was I to judge.

Have we got so used to distractions that we don’t know a world without them?

In my own life I have found that if I’m stressed or anxious, a walk in a forest or along a stream, or in nature in general has a calming effect on my mind. I never gave it much thought before now, why this was the case but in reflection I come to the conclusion that, for me a walk in nature connects me to the present moment.

While walking in the forest (my favourite place to walk) my mind has so much new information to process. As each step below my feet is different, meaning I need to use my arms for balance. Then depending on the weather there could be several puddles of water on my path that I have to avoid.

The air within the trees is at its purest which is instantly noticeable as it almost feels lighter, a strange feeling which has to be experienced, hard to put into words. On top of all that trees have a way of blocking the sounds from nearby motorways and amplifying the sounds within the forest itself.

All of this influx of sensory stimulation has my mind on overdrive and thoughts of worry or anxiety fade away, and a new web of thoughts are born. Thoughts of connection, thoughts of nature, thoughts about how magnificent our creator is.

Very often after my walk the negative thoughts return but compared to the powerful thoughts I experienced in the forest they seem so insignificant.

Noticing Your Cycle

When I’m going about my week, my days are fully booked, I write a list first thing in the morning. My plan for the day, all the things I would like to achieve.

Then on top of that there is distractions, I get an email I must reply too, or somewhere I have to go that I hadn’t planned. Or a news story catch’s my attention that changes my mood.

Without a break from this information overload the worries and anxious thoughts build up. Resulting in me not being as patient as usual, not as focused on my work, haven’t got the same drive or energy.

Over the years I have become better at spotting when I need a break and connect with nature. Just that connection to something that makes me realise just how insignificant my problems are in the grand scheme of things.

For me its walking in a forest, for you it could be climbing a mountain or swimming in the sea.

It’s all about finding that one activity that engages the senses and connects you to nature. That helps you to live life one step at a time rather that in fast forward.

Thanks for reading.

“There is only one world, the world pressing against you at this minute. There is only one minute in which you are alive, this minute here and now. The only way to live is by accepting each minute as an unrepeatable miracle.” ~Anonymous

Read this quote at this excellent blog with helpful advice from Dr. Eric Perry.