Tag Archives: Painful

Silence and Meditation: 24 Ways to Do It

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Yesterday we admitted that one of the reasons we don’t have a regular meditation practice is because we’re afraid it may be painful–sitting in one twisted position for hours (days!) on end…! We talked about several different types of meditation and that one of them might be just the ticket for you.

I also wanted to draw your attention to the fact that there are plenty of ways to meditate, to “sit” in silence, that don’t require sitting in one position for a long time.

Here are some suggestions, 24 to be exact:

Taking a slow walk – being aware of the sights, sounds, aromas…

Observing nature – closely watching squirrels, birds, ants, bees…

Moving your body – dance, walking, yoga, gentle exercise…

Doodling – making random marks or shapes;

Studying closely a favorite photograph – of loved ones, a landscape, flowers…

Repetitive activity – gardening, cleaning, folding laundry, kneading dough…

Making sounds – hum one or two notes, play with wind chimes, experiment with pots and pans and empty bottles…

Still water – fill a bowl with water and make ripples, waves, splashes, or gazing into the stillness…

Running water – let water run through your fingers or dangle your feet in a pond or in your bathtub!

Gazing into a flame – a candle flame, flames in a fireplace or fire pit

Gratefulness – counting your blessings instead of your troubles

Laughing – yes, this is a valid meditation technique AS WELL AS yoga technique! Even if you aren’t in a good mood or feel stupid laughing at nothing, force yourself to do it anyway. Soon, you’ll be laughing on your own. If you need a boost to get started, there are YouTube videos of people laughing.

Focus on a peaceful image – water gently lapping on a beach, a burbling brook, a field of flowers swaying in a playful breeze, a beautiful spring day, a peaceful snowy evening…

Memory – remembering and re-living a happy event: the holidays with your loved ones, a special vacation, the birth of a baby…

Listening to music – classical music, sacred music, uplifting music…

Guided meditations – many, many choices on YouTube

Breath – focusing on your breathing, counting your breaths, breathing deeply and slowly…

Rhythmic playing – gently bouncing a ball, easy tossing and catching a ball by yourself, looking through a kaleidoscope…

Letting go – letting your body totally relax, feeling as if you’re melting into the chair or floor or bed…

Daydreaming – softening your focus and gazing out the window

Holding an object – rosary beads, smooth stone, special object…

Rocking – by yourself or with a loved one in a rocking chair, standing and shifting from foot to foot…

Human contact – hug yourself, hug a loved, hold a friend’s hand…

Ponder – an inspiring thought, a sacred passage, something a friend or loved one said that has resonated with you.

 

The point is that there isn’t only one right way to meditate…although the one right method is the one that works best for you (there can be more than one right method for you).

Choose several of these types because you may find that when you’re in certain moods that some methods work better than others for you.

Experiment and have fun with this! Then commit to doing some type of meditation every day; you’ll be very glad you did!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Memorials and Remembrances: Back by Popular Demand, Quotes About Gratefulness

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In keeping with Memorial Day, we’ve been talking about people who have helped us–those people we know and those we’ll never meet–as well as talking about when Forces Beyond Us seem to step in and either prevent a disaster or push us ahead much further than we could have done ourselves, even with the help of others.

In yesterday’s post, I encouraged us to celebrate all the goodness in our lives, whether its roots are in happy surprises or disasters averted. Today, I’m encouraging us to keep a grateful heart and to commit to staying in this frame of mind going forward throughout our lives.
Is that a big challenge? Taking a look at it relative to the rest of our lives, then, yes, it’s overwhelming. However, if we take it one little step at a time, then we can do it.
Here are some steps to consider integrating into our lives:
~Begin each day with gratitude and thankfulness that we have another shot at accomplishing our Mission on Earth;
~End each day with gratitude and thankfulness that we gave it our best and our all;
~Throughout the day, take a moment for gratitude and thankfulness that we’re making progress, even if we can’t quite see it yet;
~If the day is going badly, take a moment to breathe slowly and deeply and focus on gratitude and thankfulness. If we’re having trouble thinking of things we’re grateful for–because everything seems bad and headed for disaster–let’s be thankful for things such as crayons and scissors and glue and sparkles and that kids in the world are using these to make masterpieces for their families to enjoy; be thankful that there are flowers blooming, even if they’re “weeds” alongside the road; let’s look around us and be thankful that other people are busy working, caring for their loved ones, and trying to make a difference in the world.

Ok. You get the idea. Now, go out there and be thankful today! Remember to commit to being grateful and thankful for the rest of your days, one step at a time!

You CAN do it, I am VERY sure of it! I believe in you!

Below is the original post of gratitude quotes that was published on September 20, 2016:

Be thankful for your allotment in an imperfect world. Though better circumstances can be imagined, far worse are nearer misses than you probably care to realize. ― Richelle E. Goodrich

I like this quote because it reminds me that Life is no respecter of persons and can be quite capricious at times. It reminds me to be humble and grateful because I don’t always know when Grace and plain old dumb luck have prevented a worse situation from crashing down upon me.

There is no such thing in the world as a “self-made man” or a “self-made woman”. We’ve received so much from so many for so long that we can’t even keep count. But, simply because we can’t keep count, doesn’t mean we discount. ― Sharad Vivek Sagar

This is another quote that reminds me to be humble and grateful to the people I know who have helped me–and still may be helping me–but also to send out thanks to those I’ll never know how they’ve helped me. Just as I don’t always know when Grace has saved me from a terrible situation, I don’t always know from whom I’ve received a helping hand. Sometimes people’s help is so subtle, I may not make the connection. For instance, it could be an acknowledgement in passing from a stranger–a smile or the person ahead of me holding a door open for me–that lifts my mood enough that I’m able to feel the nudge from my Inner Guidance that then puts me on the path of my Next Best Thing.

She taught me that life goes on, and that I had a choice: To lament what I no longer had or be grateful for what remained. ― Louise Penny

Maybe the secret to life is embodied in this quote. Perhaps the purpose of life is not whether or not we acquiring things real or ethereal, or transcending the world. Perhaps the purpose is to see how often we can turn our backs on loss and the negative and firmly turn our faces toward gratefulness of what remains and for what lies ahead.

Do one of these quotes strike a chord with you? Do you have another that resonates deeply with you? Please share your thoughts in the comments below. Thanks!
Your Friend and Pep Pal,
Lauren

 

12 Quotes of Inspiration

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The number one reason people fail in life is because they listen to their friends, family, and neighbors. ~Napoleon Hill

 

You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it. ~Margaret Thatcher

 

Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no help at all. ~Dale Carnegie

 

Our greatest fear should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter. ~Francis Chan

 

Develop success from failures. Discouragement and failure are two of the surest stepping stones to success. ~Dale Carnegie

 

The only place where success comes before work is in the dictionary. ~Vidal Sassoon

 

Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone. ~Pablo Picasso

 

All progress takes place outside the comfort zone. ~Michael John Bobak

 

Your problem isn’t the problem. Your reaction is the problem. ~Anonymous

 

When you stop chasing the wrong things you give the right things a chance to catch you. ~Lolly Daskal

 

If you want to achieve greatness stop asking for permission. ~Anonymous

 

The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away. ~Anonymous

 

Which quote resonated with you? Keep it handy throughout your day and refer to it frequently. Let it give you the boost you need!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Playlist for When You’re Anxious or Frightened

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Life can be scary, especially when we let our imaginations go and conjure all sorts of disasters waiting to befall us. Or, our imaginations can be more petrifying by not dishing up anything specific but yet terrorizing us with the Nebulous Unknown.

I hope one or all of these selections can help you feel grounded and safe when you’re in the throes of fear and anxiety:

 

The Cradle Song composed by Brahms

 

Ave Maria composed by Franz Schubert

 

Ave Maria composed by Bach/Gounod

 

Canon in D Major composed by Pachelbel

 

Clair de Lune composed by Debussey

 

Let it Be composed and sung by The Beatles

 

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star sung by Jewel

 

Over the Rainbow as sung by Judy Garland

 

Angel Standing By as sung by Jewel

 

 

If you have favorite songs that help you feel calm and safe, please share in the comments below.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Playlist to Harness Your Anger

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The power of anger can feel almost uncontrollable, and that can be very scary. As a result, oftentimes we feel we need to “stuff” our angry feelings because we want to scream, shout, and throw a fit…but we know that won’t solve anything. But yet, what do we do with all that energy?

One of the best ways to release the steam that builds up when we’re angry is through music and movement. Here is a short playlist to help you do that.

Even though some of these songs are about love gone wrong, feel free to substitute words and names so that the song is customized to you and your situation.

Remember to use the energy to help you take the next step!

Enjoy this playlist!

 

These Boots Are Made for Walking sung by Nancy Sinatra

 

Gonna Wash That Man Right Outta My Hair sung by Mitzi Gaynor

 

You Better Be Good to Me sung by Tina Turner

 

My Boyfriend’s Back sung by The Angels

 

That’ll be the Day sung by Buddy Holly

 

That Don’t Impress Me Much sung by Shania Twain

 

Change sung by Taylor Swift

 

Me, Too sung by Meghan Trainor

 

Shake it Off sung by Taylor Swift

 

Confident sung by Demi Lovato

 

 

Feel free to share your playlist with us. Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Back by Popular Demand: Playlist for When You’re Feeling Discouraged

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Following on the heels of yesterday’s post of a playlist for when you’re anxious and filled with dread, here’s an updated playlist for when you’re feeling discouraged. Please note, the original of this post was published on March 29, 2016.

I hope one or more of these selections stir you to take the next step toward your dreams!

 

Ride of the Valkyries composed by Wagner

 

William Tell Overture composed by Rossini

 

1812 Overture composed by Tchaikovsky

 

In the Hall of the Mountain King composed by Grieg

 

Flight of the Bumblebee composed by Rimsky-Korsakov

 

Sabre Dance composed by Khachaturian

 

 

And whether or not you’re American, there’s nothing like a John Phillip Sousa march to get the old juices flowing again! J

 

Stars and Stripes Forever composed by John Phillip Sousa

 

 

 

Here is the original post and playlist published on March 29, 2016:

 

~Never Surrender – Corey Hart

 

~Hold on Tight – Greg Holden

 

~Hall of Fame – The Script feat. will.i.am

 

~Keep Your Head Up – Andy Grammer

 

~Stand – Rascal Flatts

 

~I Won’t Back Down – Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers

 

 

Feel free to share your favorite playlist with us.  Thanks!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren

Back by Popular Demand: Playlist – 24 Additional Songs!

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Please note: this post was originally published on April 27, 2014. To update it, I’ve added more songs as well as links to all of the songs listed. Enjoy!

 

Do you have a playlist, one that’s specifically geared to fueling your enthusiasm for your goals and dreams? If not, it can be just what you need to help you keep taking steps on your path.

Here are 24 NEW suggestions (scroll down for the 24 songs in the original post):

 

“Tubthumping” (I Get Knocked Down) by Chumbawumba

“Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” as sung by Diana Ross and the Supremes

“My Way” sung by Frank Sinatra

“Before the Parade Passes By” sung by Barbra Streisand in Hello Dolly!

“Oh, Happy Day!” from Sister Act II

“When You Wish Upon a Star” as sung by Jiminy Cricket

“Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious” from Mary Poppins

“The Wonderful Thing about Tiggers” from Winnie the Pooh

“I’ve Got the World on a String” as sung by Frank Sinatra

“Get Happy” as sung by Judy Garland

“Happy Days are Here Again” sung by Annette Hanshaw

“The Trolley Song” sung by Judy Garland in Meet Me in St. Louis

“I’m a Believer” by The Monkeys (the original song)

“I’m a Believer” from Shrek (remake) sung Smash Mouth

“It’s a Beautiful Day” sung by India Arie

“I’m on My Way” sung by Phil Collins from Brother Bear

“Don’t Worry, Be Happy” as sung by Bobby McFerrin

“Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles

“Oh, What a Feeling” as sung by Irene Cara in Flashdance

“Simply the Best” sung by Tina Turner

“We are the Champions” by Queen

“Can’t Stop The Feeling” as sung by Justin Timberlake

“I’m Still Standing” as sung by Elton John

“Happy” sung by Pharrell Williams

 

Here are 24 suggestions from the original post:

 

“Good Morning” featured in Singin’ in the Rain

“It’s a Great Day” as sung by Peggy Lee

“Zip-A-Dee-Doo-Dah” featured in Disney’s Song of the South

“What a Wonderful World” as sung by Louis Armstrong

“Climb Every Mountain” featured in Sound of Music

“Roar” as sung by Katy Perry

“R-E-S-P-E-C-T” as sung by Aretha Franklin

“I Can See Clearly Now” as sung by Johnny Nash

“Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor and featured in Rocky

“Jump” as sung by Van Halen

“Walking on Sunshine” as sung by Katrina and the Waves

“Celebration” as sung by Kool and the Gang

“Don’t Stop Me Now” as sung by Queen

“I Believe I Can Fly” as sung by R Kelly

“Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now” as sung by Starship

“Magic” as sung by MoZella

“Do You Believe in Magic?” by the Lovin’ Spoonfuls

“Life is What You Make It” as sung by Hanna Montana

“Don’t Rain on My Parade” as sung by Barbra Streisand in Funny Girl

“So Long Dearie” as sung by Barbra Streisand in Hello, Dolly!

“New York, New York” as sung by Frank Sinatra

“Dream” as sung by Ella Fitzgerald

“Smile” as sung by Nat King Cole

“On the Sunny Side of the Street” as sung by Judy Garland

 

Feel free to add others that are your favorites. Sometimes as I sing and dance along with these songs, I tweak the lyrics to make them more powerfully specific to me. Feel free to do the same!

Your homework today is to make a playlist for yourself, one that’s filled with songs that motivate you toward your goals and dreams. If you already have one, then update it (Please remember to respect the hard work of the artists and download songs from reputable services). Have fun with this!

Play these songs first thing in the morning to get yourself charged up for a great day and to catapult you into taking the next step toward your dreams. Also, play the list throughout the day to keep you going.

You can do it!

Post in the comments section the songs that are your favorites for feeling good and motivating yourself.

I’m so proud of you—rock on!

Your Friend and Pep Pal,

Lauren