Saturday, 31 October 2020

How can I be fully present in this moment?

Andrew's article not only went on to be a New York Times Bestseller, but a PBS documentary too. At the time of this writing, the audio article version of War Letters has even been nominated for a Grammy. And, while Andrew thought he'd left his film career behind, the Universe had a different plan. Andrew is currently working with the highly acclaimed Sundance Institute Theater Program on a dramatic performance based on his article. Andrew's values of community and family have changed the lives of many. Not only has his work contributed to veterans and families affected by war, it touches us all by underscoring the strength of the human spirit to live through the worst, most inconceivable circumstances. You can learn more about the Legacy Project (and how you can contribute your letters) by visiting his website at: www. PUT YOUR VISION INTO ACTION As a result, social interactions are too uncertain and unpredictable for him to manage; But looking deeper, we also see the self-fulfilling prophecy at work. Schemas that other people impose on us alter how they treat us and consequently how we behave. Schemas that we impose on ourselves can similarly constrain us. In Max's case, he seems to have convinced himself that he lacks the capacity to establish emotional intimacy; Finally, Max's character illustrates a simple but important point: People do not simply like order; Sol tries to convince Max that the world is extremely complex and chaotic, but Max's search for order is unrelenting. Driven by purpose, he becomes more restless, disheveled, and paranoid. He is beset with debilitating migraine headaches, hallucinations, and blackout attacks. Is Max that different from the rest of us? I want to do this (you infuse desire). I love doing this (you confirm that you love doing it).

I choose to do this (you take responsibility and reclaim your power). What if I could do this? Imagine if I could do this? How can I do this? What would I need to believe to be able to do this? How would it make me feel if I could do this? Now, imagine if you were to use these expressions above every single day. How would they change your life in the long term? Once you've identified your vision, it's time to put your heart and soul behind it by aligning it with your values and developing an action plan. You don't need the perfect plan or a ground-breaking idea, you just need to take action. To do this, pick a project--a values-based project--that will allow you to fully express your vision. The size of the project doesn't matter. For example, my client Ashley values nature. When she created her vision statement, it looked like this: I want people to live in a clean and healthy world. To fulfill her vision, Ashley created a simple project: Every morning, as she takes her daily walk, she takes a bag with her so she can pick up any stray garbage along the way. She calls this project Operation Clean Up, and uses it as her way of contributing to a cleaner environment. Her friends are aware of this project and when they join her on these walks, they're required to bring a bag too! As we've noted in this article, people certainly differ in how much they prefer well-structured knowledge to unstructured knowledge. Yet within all of us lies a pit of fear that drives us to search for patterns in the environment, piece things together in coherent and predictable ways, and react negatively toward anything that threatens to unravel the order underlying our experience.

We see these tendencies every day: gambling, betting, religious quests, the creation of conspiracy theories, scapegoating a bad guy for a hazardous outcome, or simply turning our noses up in disgust at a visually chaotic artwork, such as the movie Pi itself! Max's search for mathematical order highlights some aspects of reality and obscures others. The rest of us may not be so fanatical, yet we all use schemas to filter our perception of the social world. Mood and Social Judgment In addition to psychological motives, moods can play an important role in shaping social judgment about a given event or person. A mood is a generalized state of affect that persists longer than the experience of an emotion. For example, the happiness a person experiences after finding a dollar bill on the ground lasts a couple minutes, but moods can continue to resonate for much longer. And although emotions usually have a clear cause, sometimes we just find ourselves in a bad or good mood, and we cannot quite put our finger on why. Exercise: change your self-talk Complete the exercises in the corresponding section of your action guide. Develop self-compassion Previously, we saw that self-criticism is an ineffective strategy. So, what is an effective strategy? The answer is self-compassion. As a rule, we tend to be much too hard on ourselves. Developing self-compassion is a wonderful way to start creating a healthier internal relationship. Self-compassion is a tool that gives you emotional flexibility. It will help you will bend like a reed instead of snapping like a dry twig. Take Action! Create a Values-Based Project

As you review your vision statement consider the actions you'd like to take to fulfill your vision. If you're not sure what to do, ask your partner or Life Makeover Group for help with ideas. Share your vision statement and your essential values with the group. You might even hold a brainstorming session to get a variety of ideas. Here's how to get started: Decide on a project. Give your project a name. Use the three-step process from article seven to create a plan for action. THINK ABOUT Why might humans have evolved the ability to experience moods in the first place? For one thing, moods may inform the person about the status of things in the immediate environment. Think about this from the evolutionary perspective. Being in a positive mood is a signal that everything is okay, that there are no immediate threats to be concerned with. Negative moods, on the other hand, signal that something is wrong and might be deserving of one's attention. In fact, over the course of our species' evolution, positive moods might have promoted exploring the environment, expanding hunting territories, and trying unfamiliar foods--behaviors that, when well attuned to cues in the environment, would have facilitated the success of the species. Likewise, negative moods might have promoted greater vigilance against attack, protection of the tribe, and more conservative eating habits--behaviors that would also increase the chance for survival when the threat of danger is real. As a result of these evolutionary pressures, people today may be oriented to use their mood as information in their judgments (Schwarz & Clore, 1983, 2003). Whether they realize it or not, they are listening to their moods when making decisions and forming judgments. Self-compassion is a much-needed safety net, and one you definitely need in your life. Practicing self-compassion provides a number of benefits and will enhance your life in many ways.

It will help you remain motivated when things don't go as planned, and it will discourage procrastination. Rather than staying in your comfort zone and trying to please everybody around you, you will be more likely to take the plunge and try new exciting projects. Because, even if you fail, you will be able to comfort yourself and bounce back quickly from disappointment. In my own life, self-compassion has been a valuable tool. It has allowed me to feel better about myself and to persevere despite multiple setbacks. You can benefit in the same way. When you notice you're being hard on yourself, do yourself a favor--be self-compassionate. Nobody's perfect, yet we all try so hard to hide this fact to the world. The three steps are: Start with small steps. Don't worry about doing things perfectly, just focus on taking action. To help inspire you, let's look at some examples of people who are making a difference in the world by putting their values to good use. Lorraine White grew up without positive role models in her life. Raised in a stressful environment, Lorraine struggled through her childhood and adolescent years. At age thirty she sought the help of a good therapist when her marriage hit a crossroad. The experience was a powerful one. The therapist became a loving mirror who reflected back Lorraine's greatest qualities and gifts. As a result of this life-changing experience, Lorraine was inspired to provide the same kind of support to others. By this logic, mood states should affect both the content of a person's social judgments and how motivated the person is to engage in effortful processing of information. If people are feeling good while considering whether they like the party they are attending or the person they just met, they are more likely to view each of them positively.

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