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.

Do You Really Want To Return To The Carnival Of Sin?

NORMAL

People are so desperate to return to quote on quote, normal.

What is that exactly?

Our heads in the sand, avoiding what is happening in our world?

The destruction of rain forests. The endless dramas that get more and more violent and sexual as the years go on? There is nothing wrong with sex its a natural part of a loving relationship, but nowadays losing your phone is a bigger deal than losing your virginity. Children as young as 12 are reportedly watching pornography on their smartphones.

In my opinion, we as a species are not evolving; we are de-evolving back to the material part of ourselves.

Jesus referred to this as sin.

The divide between the spiritual and material world is getting bigger and bigger. And if you mention it in conversation, most peoples response, “this is just the way things are now, stop living in the stone age.”

Really?

Is the world better now with no morals? Where you can become a celebrity simply by sleeping with someone? Where most children are brought up in broken homes leading to social and mental problems?

Am I missing something?

As the week’s role on, and this lockdown continues, the clearer and clearer I see— this world needed this virus to halt the madness.

Hopefully, it stays long enough, so people wake up from their materialistic slumber, and put a stop to their endless consumerism.

And most importantly a Return To Their Faith.

Never, in as long as I can remember, have I heard so many people mention God on the TV. Maybe the next step will be trusting Him; realising that right from the days of Moses; there has been plagues, war, and death.

Far worse than it is today.

And guess what?

The human spirit got stronger and lived on.

What makes people think now is any different?

The world needs to realise that God is in control. That nature has been pushed to the edge, and if we don’t change our ways, soon,

A war with nature is coming, and sadly there will be only one winner.

The real worry for people should not be this virus, humans have survived a lot, lot worse, the real concern is that we return to the carnival of sin.

What can I do, I feel fearful?

Turn off the news. One. 

Two. Connect with nature. Reading the Word of God daily, immerse your mind with positivity.

Three. Limit your time with the people that are negative. 

Enjoy your weekend.

Thanks for reading.


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How To Activate A Flow State And Lessen the Feelings Of Anxiety At This Time

calm

Like most people, the last few weeks have been an anxious time for me. I’ve never been a person that can take too much negativity.

A friend recommended that I check out some content by Jason Silva. He is best known for hosting National Geographic documentaries: Brain Games and Origins.

Jason talks a lot about the flow state.

A state of peace, where you are relaxed and think clearly. Able to perform at your highest level. I found his thoughts and views exciting and very entertaining.

For him, he goes into flow state whenever he goes walking in nature. I gave it a go but felt no real change.

Thinking of a way to get my 30 minutes of exercise each day, I decided to go for a run. It has been years since I went running, but I dug out my running gear and left it out for the next morning, so I had no excuse.

At the start of my run, my thoughts were still racing, but as I got into my second mile, my mind went calm. All the build-up of anxiety left me.

It was such a beautiful feeling. It felt like the feeling Jason described. Ideas came flowing through my mind; I saw all my current concerns through a different lens.

With such a shift in my mood, I decided to work out what had happened. Ask and you shall receive.

I remembered an article I read a few years ago about the brain and how it works. (The power of the mind has always interested me.)

The article stated that the brain takes in trillions of pieces of information from the environment every second, to help us navigate throughout the day. But when it is the same environment, day after day, the brain stores most of the information as memory.

I bet you could direct someone around your room to find something you left behind.

This memory is what allows us to drive to our local shop, for example, while on autopilot, thinking of something else.

This can become a problem, though, because when the brain doesn’t have to work processing new information, the mind takes over and starts to overthink.

This can be good sometimes, but with current events, it can create a negative thought loop in your mind: the beginning of most mental health issues.

On my run, my brain went into overdrive. It had no time to overthink. It was given so much new information to process.

My body was activating muscles that hadn’t been used for months; my lungs and heart had to work faster. Then on top of that, the beautiful scenery, the air flowing through my hair. My feet pounding on the ground.

By the time I was 15-20 minutes in, my brain had so much to process that the negative thought loop that had been playing for weeks broke down.

I connected to my spirit, that unchanging part of me that has been with me since birth. Words don’t describe the feeling that came over me, but I would like you to feel it too.

Connecting with nature worked for me so I think it will work for you too. Learn to activate the flow state so you get ideas that will help your productivity, and general happiness.

Worry or anxiety has a way of building up almost unnoticed most of the time. One minute you’re feeling fine, the next, you have a tightness in your chest.

And if you’re not aware that anxiety can give you them feelings, you could easily get panicked—the last thing you need at a time like this.

I just wanted to share my feelings, so that it may help someone else, to navigate a way through this challenging time.

Connect with nature this weekend and see the difference it makes.

Take care and thank you! If you could leave your thoughts below. 🙂

How To Deal With Criticism

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2 Timothy 2:3 NKJV
Endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

There are two types of criticism: constructive criticism and destructive criticism. One builds you up the other tears you down. Be wise in how you respond to unfounded criticism and gossip.

When your critic wants to remain anonymous, they’re not worthy of your response.

The story told of a pastor who received a letter that contained one word — FOOL! Next Sunday he held it up and said to the congregation, I received the strangest letter this past week. He read the one-word text and said, ‘Somebody wrote it and forgot to sign it!

You say, but they are attempting to hurt my reputation. D.L. Moody said, if I take care of my character, God will take care of my reputation’ (see Isaiah 54:17) Any time you’re involved in a worthy cause, people will not only try to beat you down, but keep you down.

In training Timothy for ministry, Paul told him ‘endure hardship like a good soldier of Jesus Christ’.

Difficult people are placed in our path not to defeat us, but to develop us. Leaders know this, so they stay and finish the job regardless of the cost. Just like the captain goes down with the ship, the true leader stays until the work is done.

You say, ‘Then how should I respond? By praying for them! Jesus said, ‘Bless those who curse you, and pray for those who spitefully use you…and you will be sons of the Most-High’ (Luke 6:28, 35 NKJV).

Enjoy your week.

Do You feel Held Back By Worry and Have a Head Full Of Doubts?

Two monks were returning to the monastery in the evening. It had rained, and there were puddles of water on the roadsides. At one place a beautiful young woman was standing unable to walk across because of a puddle of water.

The elder of the two monks went up to her, lifted her and left her on the other side of the road, and continued his way to the monastery.

In the evening, the younger monk came to the elder monk and said, “Sir, as monks, we cannot touch a woman ?”

The elder monk answered, “yes, brother”.

Then the younger monk asks again, “but then Sir, how is that you lifted that woman on the roadside ?”

The elder monk smiled at him and told him” I left her on the other side of the road, but you are still carrying her.”

Like the monk, we can easily fall into the trap of carrying our worries around with us. Draining our energy and making us tired. Over the weeks and months, our fears can eventually affect our physical and emotional health leading to a whole host of problems.

It may seem like things will never get better, like things will remain the same as they have always been, but I would like you to know today it doesn’t have to be that way.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. It may seem like you will never overcome your relentless worry or crippling anxiety, but I would like you to know today that you can. But you can’t sit inactive.

It is pleasant to daydream, wouldn’t it be amazing to be without worry or anxiety, but to make your daydreams come true, you have to start walking in their direction. You have to take action.

You have to take the first step, and then the second, the third, and all the steps that separate you from your goal. This is valid for every improvement you would like to make, small or big, relating to your job, health, finance, self-improvement or spirituality.

Take a step today and download my book, How to Stop Worrying, on Amazon. Currently on free promotion. Click on the image below.

Gain the knowledge to strengthen your faith and cast your worries to one side.

Thanks for reading, and enjoy your week.

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How to Stop Worrying and Clear Your Head From Anxious Thoughts

worry cover edit

I was brought up in a family that would worry about day to day problems. So, I thought that’s what worry was. Thinking about whether someone was ok or whether a family member would get to their destination safely.

It’s not until a few years ago did I find out how bad worry could get. It all started the moment that I decided to stand up for myself.

Normally a people pleaser I started to say no, as I felt that certain people were taking advantage of my good nature. That simple action started a series of events that took me to my knees.

If someone would have told me the results of standing up for myself, I may never have. Doing what others wanted me to do would have been such an easier option.

Some people, I have discovered, only want you for what you give them. Their friendships are based on a set of conditions.

When you break them condition’s they will make your life very uncomfortable. Certain people tried their best to push me back into the person I was. The people pleaser that never said no, and always did what I was told.

Bullying and emotional abuse is what followed. Not the terms I would have used at the time but terms that my doctor and councillor gave for what the people were doing to me.

At first, I worried whether I had done something wrong, so I decided that keeping out of their way was the best thing to do, but this seemed to fuel the problem.

Of course, I was annoyed and upset but I didn’t think what was happening would lead to anything serious. Then I started to have a pain in my throat and chest. I went to the doctor about it, who said it was stress and to take it easy for a while. So, I did.

When I returned to my regular life it started again, I became afraid of meeting the people giving me so much hostility, so much so that one day I took a mild panic attack.

I returned to my doctor, explaining the situation. He said that what I was describing was bullying. Not until that point did, I regard what was happening as bullying. Now looking back, I was in denial. I never thought that close friends would bully me, but they did.

Getting myself out of that situation was only the beginning. Something had clicked within me. Usually a confident, happy, life loving person, I began to feel anxious, disconnected, and vulnerable.

Every moment of the day was filled with fearful thoughts, I was overflowed with insecurities, and self-doubt. Physically I felt a tightness in my chest most of the day. I was having trouble sleeping and my body was too anxious to enjoy food.

Day after day the feelings were relentless and exhausting. I was trapped on a never-ending emotional rollercoaster and couldn’t find any peace.

Anxiety makes you feel that there is something wrong when there isn’t. It eats away at your confidence and affects every area of your life. I was scared of my own thoughts and bodily sensations, constantly on red alert for the next panic attack.

I spent my days trying to gain back some control by monitoring my feelings and avoiding situations that made me feel anxious.

The turning point came when I decided that I didn’t want to live with anxiety anymore. That decision took me on a quest of discovery. It helped me gain the discipline to do what was necessary to make a recovery.

For me, my anxiety manifested itself because I needed to make certain changes in my life that I didn’t have the courage to make on my own. I was surrounded by people and circumstances that were not good for my mental health. My growth was limited.

What started out as a negative experience turned out to be a positive one. The negative people needed to be removed for me to reach the next level of my destiny.

A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. It may seem like you will never overcome your relentless worry or crippling anxiety, but I would like you to know today that you can. But you can’t sit inactive

It is pleasant to daydream, wouldn’t it be amazing to be without worry or anxiety, but to make your daydreams come true you have to start walking in their direction. You have to take action.

You have to take the first step, and then the second, the third, and all the steps that separate you from your goal. This is valid for every improvement you would like to make, small or big, relating to your job, health, finance, self-improvement or spirituality.

Make that step today and download my book on Amazon by clicking on the image below.

htsw-RJM 2