ALTERED PERCEPTIONS OF STRESS
“Altered perceptions of stress,” you say? What if I told you that you could alter your perception of stress and calm yourself? Would you believe me? Well, it’s true. A good portion of our stress is created by us! We work ourselves into a lather over things that, thank goodness, are not likely to happen. We need to take sour lemons, make lemonade, then sweeten it with enchantment.
THERE’S NO STRESS IN THE PRESENT MOMENT
Dr. Stephan Rechtshaffen
Stress is reduced by living in the present moment and reacting to something as it occurs. Ruminating on the past and worrying about the future are time-stealing activities that the Dragons of Stress orchestrate. Mistakes made in the past should not be used as ammunition against you to destroy your present existence. They need to be viewed as learning tools. It’s true that some mistakes are much greater than others. We all know people who minimize their mistakes and never take responsibility for them. Equally, we encounter others who beat themselves up so severely about every little mistake, that there’s no room for growth. Then there are those who are so busy worrying about, rather than planning for, the future, that the present moment is completely bypassed. We must make our plans and return to now.
DO YOU LIVE IN THE PAST, PRESENT, OR FUTURE?
Where are you on that continuum? While what you’re about to read may not be new information, it’s certainly important. Here’s the newsflash: You get to alter your perception of where the line is on your continuum and move it to where you’d like it to be. That’s somewhere between the past and future, at the still point of now.
GET PRESENT TO YOUR STRESS
We’re using Enchanted Key #2-Altered Perceptions and combining it with Enchanted Key #1-Mindfulness, as we take our midweek Enchanted Breath. Draw away any tension from your physical body, your mind, spirit, and the emotions. See yourself being calibrated to the present time. Orient yourself to right now. As your breath moves in and out of your body, observe places in which you are holding tension. Breathe into those places and release. Repeat until you are calm and relaxed in the present moment. Once you’ve arrived at the place of Ahh, you will recognize that you’ve been practicing mindfulness and altered perceptions.
REST, PRACTICE, LIVE
Rest into that place. Practice it for the rest of the week. Then practice it for the rest of your life. Share your experiences with me, with all of us in the enchanted community, or in your private journal. Next week we will move into our exploration of Enchanted Key #3-Journaling.
In the meantime, be calm, keep making lemonade, and stay enchanted!
Enchanted Breaths are the “ahh, the haha, and the aha! of life.”