Over the last 20 years positive psychology and positive thinkers have suggested that by simply following a number of steps ‘Happiness’ is in our grasp. Who would not like the idea? But wait a minute …. if there were only 3, 5, or 7 steps to Happiness, would people not have achieved it by now? People are not stupid – at least not the majority. So what is wrong with the picture?
Happiness is not a commodity, a trade-able good that can be acquired by following a prescribed formula – like how to start your car’s engine. (more…)
“Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” This quote from Stephen R. Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change) describes succinctly the problem most people have when communicating. Most courses and trainings refer to ‘active listening’ as a desirable practice, yet it teaches people to listen to the words, the content, and then repeat it back to the speaker.
In contrast, deep listening as I understand it is listening for the meaning behind the words, is listening for the feeling that the words are pointing it. In a way, it is listening with a sense or curiosity WITHOUT checking with our own mind whether it makes sense to us, we can relate to it, whether it is stupid/reckless/naive to name just a few examples. If we would listen that way (checking with our own mind) we would only listen to our own thoughts about something and not to the other person. (more…)
The Auckland Three Principles Meet-up Group (check out here their website) is a place to learn about and deepen your understanding of the Three Principles as formulated by Sydney Banks and practiced today in many countries by a growing number of facilitators / coaches / counsellors in a wide number of contexts: business, personal growth, prisons, schools, families, sport, and high performance activities.
We had an interesting meeting last Friday during which we explored how people sustain their well-being. I would like to share one topic that comes up really frequently and … hence again last night as well: Why it is not useful to look back! It is easy to say “don’t look back – you are not going that way”, but people seem to get caught in trying to understand the thoughts that caused their distressing feelings. (more…)
Stress is bad for you! It is a major health hazard of our time. Stressed people don’t think clearly, make un-wise decisions, have strained relationships, and engage in unhelpful and unhealthy behaviours.
Contrary to popular belief we don’t have to contend with stress. There are very few areas that are as much ridden with myths as the area of feeling stressed. Can you imagine that sitting an important exam, being stuck in traffic, being late for work, facing a financial crisis, dealing with chronic illness, seeing your marriage under threat, or learning that your child is in big trouble is not leading to overwhelming stress but peace of mind resulting in wise and creative actions?
Let me show you in my 3 Hour seminar how you can put a stop to being stressed. There are no techniques to learn; just bring your open mind to understand how stress is created so you can un-create it. Whether you are 14 or 64, when it comes to being your best at school, in exams, at home, or at work, you need to be stress free to be at your best.
Book you place in my STRESS BUSTER Seminar. For the month of May I have a facebook page action offering this seminar for $49 per person. Get this ‘50% off ‘ voucher by liking my page. After April the seminar will be back to the normal price of $98.
This summer I went with some of my family canoeing down the Whanganui River. This particular trip is one of the Great Walks of New Zealand. If you are interested in some days of quiet surrounded by majestic nature steeped in history, I can highly recommend this trip. It has been on my wish-list for over 10 years – which might explain my enthusiasm and excitement. There are several options people can choose from. We chose the 3-day/2 nights trip.
Whilst I was prepared for 3 days of hard exercise in one of the most stunning National Parks, I was – and still am – amazed about the deep insights I had about the fundamental principles of life and about my fluctuating level of consciousness affecting my state of mind moment to moment. (more…)
This morning I came across an article called “How energy vampires drain your spirit and soul” suggesting that negative, demanding, inconsiderate, and un-boundaried people drain your energy, leaving you exhausted and depleted. To protect yourself from such drain it is suggested that you limit contact, set boundaries – indeed the author came up with 11 ways to do so. The only thing missing was garlic.
Of course, like all vampire stories, the idea that a person can drain your energy isn’t true either – even though there may be a lot of people who believe that other people, circumstances or events can ‘DO’ something to you. However, human beings are just not built like that. Sorry! We don’t come with power sockets or USB ports that other people can – without our consent – plug into and upload or download files, feelings, thoughts, or for that matter energy. (Actually, in ‘the land of psychiatry’ the notion that someone can make you do things or gives you thoughts or feelings, is an indication of psychosis). Let me show you what I mean:
When I talk about stress I mean all these feelings that come as ‘entourage’ of thoughts of worry, fear, anxiety, and all forms of obsessive thinking. Most people, when they think about it, see that their feelings are directly connected to their thoughts – thoughts about circumstances and events people consider worthy of feelings of worry, fear, or anxiety.
The next question I often hear is “How can I stop them?” quickly followed by some ideas how to think positively, to go for a run, meditate, do DBT or EFT, mindfulness, or some other interventions depending on what ideas people are leaning towards. The idea is – and it is a reasonably good one – to change the problematic thought. Think positive, reframe, meditate, or go for a run, to name just a few. However, as most people know, today’s problem is quickly replaced by tomorrow’s dilemma … and so on, and so on …! (more…)