Finding your life pulse
“Learning that we have enough - money, time, love - may be our most important lesson.” - Dr. Cecile Andrews
How alive are you? I am certain that you can physically find your pulse at this moment, but can you find your spiritual pulse? How about your emotional pulse? Your passion pulse? Can you right now find what we at Hyp-Yoga call your “Life Pulse”? Your Life Pulse encompasses all of the elements that contribute to your enjoyment and presentness in your own life at THIS MOMENT.
As we learn in and through our yoga practice, all we have in life is the present moment. We have no ownership of our past or our future, but we can shape our future and be comforted by our past using the moment we are in right now.
What Weakens our Life Pulse
The biggest thief of our enjoyment of the present moment is anxiety. Even when we are not aware of it, anxiety or stress is always there - causing us to eat faster (or more), multi-task, drive faster, lay in bed awake at night, and/or consume more. Take a minute now to sort through what is currently in your mind, even what is on the back burner, and see how much of it is stealing from your current peace of mind. Are you feeling anxious about the future, or is what you currently have enough? (Remember what you have is this moment.)
What Strengthens our Life Pulse
The strength of your pulse will be affected by your awareness/consciousness of life and at the same time the engagement of your subconscious mind. These two ideas really work hand in hand when they seem to contradict each other until you truly understand their meaning. Being conscious of your life means being mindful in your current activity. When you are eating, focusing on the delicious textures, smells, tastes and colors of the food. When you are practicing yoga, listening to your breath and feeling your prana, your life force, through your entire body. When you are working, giving your all and finding joy and passion in your activities without being anxious about the outcomes. (Yoga Sutras 1.12-1.16)
Once we have learned the process of becoming more present (and it is a process or a journey that will never end) the second element we develop in our lives is our subconscious mind. This is the part of your mind that is always working, even when we are not thinking about it. It regulates the autonomic processes in our body such as our heartbeat, metabolism, blood pressure, liver functions, breathing, etc. It also is holds our motor skills and learned behaviors such as walking, driving, reading, etc. Most importantly for our discussion, it is the place where our emotions and beliefs are developed and stored.
In order for us to fully enjoy life and feel alive, we need to change our beliefs and attitudes towards time. When we live in constant anticipation for the future, we feed ourselves harmful ideas that include the concept of time as money, regret, fear, guilt, and greed. All of these ideas are firmly planted in our subconscious minds and are reinforced daily by our own words and thoughts.
Changing your attitude is important and will take lots of time and patience, but it is a joyful journey that can and should be enjoyed! You may have years of damage to undo and for this reason, I would suggest tapping into your subconscious mind with the help of tools such as yoga, hypnosis, (try a Hyp-Yoga class!), self-affirmations, and self-hypnosis. You can learn more about these elements at hyp-yoga.com or at the library. You will be amazed at the power of your mind and its ability to help you in your journey to being more alive and enjoying every minute of it.
Take your Pulse: a practical way to be mindful of our Life Pulse
Here is an exercise to try this week to encourage you to be more consciously alive. Set an alarm that is near you most of the time to go off at a random time such as 9:56 am, 2:43 pm or 7:38 pm. Many of us have watches with alarms, cell phones with alarms or office/home clocks with alarms. (I know my cell phone has 5 different alarms to set, so as a personal check-up, I have chosen today to set my alarm for three random times.) When the alarms go off today stop and say to yourself, “This is it. This is my life. What am I doing to enjoy it right now?”
Taking your Life Pulse, daily might give you incite to your relationship with anxiety. Some of us might find we have an addiction to rushing, or a habit of living on auto-pilot. What ever you learn, feel free to share it with us in a comment on our Hyp-Yoga Newsletter Blog found at www.blog.hyp-yoga.com.
Carly Halleen Cummings
President, Hyp-Yoga Inc.
Co-Director, Omaha Yoga School