Saturday, November 30, 2013

How to Find Balance and Ground Yourself

We all can feel lost and distracted in life. Our focus can become distorted and our flow can be disrupted by trivial mind chatter and meaningless novelty. This state of confusion and interruption is caused by a lack of grounding. If we take the time to ground ourselves and "calibrate" our moods and thoughts, we can reclaim the clarity and inner peace essential to a happy existence.

Are You Approaching Life in An Imbalanced Way?

Sometimes our goals and ideals cause us to behave in ways that actually lead us to deviate from those very ideals. We may value success, but we go about trying to pursue that success in a way that causes us to suffer and utterly miss the fruits of our labor. We may value some sort of social ideal, such as the ideal of a perfect lady, but we might lose ourselves and deny ourselves of our true essence while trying to fit the ideal.

So as not to lose ourselves in the pursuit of our goals and ideals, we must ground ourselves. When we ground ourselves, each step becomes an enjoyable and fulfilling step on the journey- not just another trait or quality or task we have to cross off our to-do list. So here are 3 ways to get out of your own way.

1. One way to ground ourselves is through a calibration of extremes. It sounds fancy, but it is really simple and pretty fun. When we chronically err towards one side of the spectrum, we lose balance. The middle path has balance. An easy way to find that middle ground is the swing to the extremes of both ends of the spectrum, experiencing it in a way that leads us to let go of our former imbalanced position on that spectrum and let ourselves settle for the middle ground. I DO NOT MEAN that you need to actually take actions representative of both extremes. For example, if one is too held up trying to be on the good, right side of the spectrum, I do not mean that one should behave very badly to explore the opposite side. When I speak of exploring the extremes, I mean so in a way that has no real consequence on the outer world/other people. This is strictly a personal thought experience/game. You are an actor, and to warm up your expressive capabilities and really function from that sense of knowing and control, you must feel out the extremes of the spectrum.

If you have been too hung up on the ideals of hard work and success and find that you have wound yourself too tightly, try spending a day watching total slacker films. Stay in your pajamas. Don't bathe for a day or two.

If you have been too hung up on the ideals of, say, a perfect lady and have wound yourself too tightly, try watching interviews of relaxed manly actors you would want to actually hang out with. Let yourself be unladylike in your own presence.

This exercise really helps you loosen that tight grip on ideals and find balance. You center yourself naturally.

2. Another way to find balance is to immerse yourself in peace and balance. Hang out with balanced, happy people who go about their lives in a streamlined but relaxed manner. Send yourself to the spa. Listen and watch the interviews of relaxed people. Seek our their quotes and extract that vibe. Steal that vibe; adopt it. It is often easy to adopt a vibe that you have an example of.

3. And to get to the nitty gritty- journal about your imbalances. Ask yourself where these imbalances come from and why they have become so rooted into your way of life. Ask yourself why your grip on certain ideals are too tight. The answer will 99.9% of the time be a fear based reason. Maybe you are scared of not being good enough, of acting in a way which you consider inferior, etc. Be patient with yourself as you learn more about yourself and be gentle.

I hope these 3 simple exercise help you to find balance. They really work if you give yourself the chance to explore and play with the concepts and give it an honest go. Remember, life exists on both ends of the spectrum, but life really thrives in the middle path of balance and moderation. So I wish you a happy, peaceful, and sustainable way.

All the love,

Sunday, November 24, 2013

How to Deal With Wanting to Be More Than Friends: In Love With Your Best Friend

Sometimes we develop very deep feelings for people we have already established wonderful friendships with. This is natural- you get to know somebody whose company you really enjoy and someday you realize that you want to be more than friends. Maybe you've always wanted to be more than friends. Maybe you can't stop seeing them as someone you want to spend a great deal of your time, or maybe even your life, with. Maybe you find yourself constantly thinking about them, wishing they were with you. Maybe you spend a great deal of your time thinking of ways to make them happy, or maybe even thinking of ways to confess your feelings.

But maybe you don't want to ruin a great friendship.

Like all important decisions in life, you need to ask yourself a few essential questions.

Are You Willing to Take the Risk?
Are you willing to take the risk of telling your friend about your true feelings knowing that they might reject you or that your friendship might end?

Sometimes when one friend doesn't feel the same way about the other, repulsion can be created. Your friend might be taken aback by your romantic attraction, and they might feel a bit awkward or strange or even violated. For some, this situation might be similar to a cousin or sibling expressing their love and attraction for them, and they might feel a bit repulsed.Once they know you feel this way about them, they might be a little freaked out and not want to be around you. Before you decide to confess your feelings, I would advice finding out a bit more about your friend's stance on you attraction-wise. Test it out a bit. Stand very close to them or attempt a loving but more intimate gesture (like brushing their hair behind their ear or stroking their face). If they do not accept your gestures and create distance, I would err on the side of safety and assume that the mutual attraction isn't there.

You also run the risk of upsetting your friend. Some friends might respond with a bit of anger or frustration because to them, it may seem like their friendship wasn't enough for you. These cases are stated in order to prepare you. If you do come across similar situations, you must be prepared to further explain and clarify your feelings and intentions, and you must be patient with your friend's response.

Are Your Intentions and Feelings Clear to You?
Are you sure that you really want to be more than friends? Or is it a fleeting feeling, impermanent and temporal? If you really value your friendship, I suggest that you really think this through and let it mull over until you are fully confident that you do want to be more than friends.

Why Do You Want to Be More Than Friends?
Do you feel like you could make your friend really happy, or do you only focus on how happy your friend makes you? Do you want to save them from their trouble-some relationship? Do you feel like you want to get to know them more and be there for them? Just ask yourself why you want to be more than friends.

An intimate friendship really does pale in comparison to an intimate romantic relationship. Having an intimate romantic relationship with someone really does open up a whole new set of doors and windows into other facets of their personality. The person that is a friend to you may not be the person who is the partner of another. People are different people around different people. Are you prepared to meet this new person?
Sometimes friends find it hard to expose the sides of them easily seen by romantic partners to a friend because they are very used to being a certain way with their friend, and this is completely natural.

The point is that even though you may really like your friend, you must be prepared to face the possibility that it just might not work because you've already established a friendship. It can be like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.

Tell Them Tactfully
You know your friend. Tell them about your feelings in a manner that promotes their sense of comfort and ease. Be thoughtful while confessing your feelings, and be clear. If it hurts you to not take the chance and never find out, please just tell them. Sometimes best friends turn into lovers. But I will warn you by saying that the signs are usually there. Test out the waters before your full confession- see how they react to romantic and intimate gestures.Maybe ask their other friends for advice and honest opinions. Be honest with yourself, and don't read into things that aren't there.

Best of wishes,