Awake in the World

Awake in the World

When Life Races By Replace Stress and Anxiety with Gentle Awareness

posted by debramoffitt

Even though I’m a seasoned traveler I still get stressed before trips. It’s not big jitters, just a general anxiety about: 1) Did I pack everything? 2) Will my travel connections go smoothly? And 3) What about the unexpected? Movement brings agitation. Sitting in meditation is easiest for me for quieting the mind. But as I pack for transatlantic travel, I can’t sit on a cushion and be still. So I have to bring awareness into my movement, into packing, into setting alarms to go off at 3:45 a.m., and into laying out clothes to wear.

Slow down fast travel with conscious awareness.

As I feel my mind stress with worry and “what ifs”, my muscles tighten up in response. Instead of spending the 24 hours before a trip totally stressed, now I’m learning to gently pay attention, to breathe, and to simply be aware of my body and where I’m holding stress. Often just being consciously aware of that my mind is leaping around between one side of the Atlantic and the other is enough bring my mind Home and shift me into a more expansive, comfortable place. It’s like a wiser part of me says, “Okay, I see there’s some stress. But it’s okay. Everything will be okay.”

The stressful thing about travel is that most of it is out of my control. I can’t pilot the plane or even drive the shuttle bus from my home city to the airport. I buy the ticket and then go along for the ride. In many ways life is like this too. We have a little bit of maneuvering room, but much of what happens around us is out of our control. It’s only possible (sometimes – and with effort) to acknowledge thoughts and feelings and allow them to pass on or change them.

But the idea of letting go and surrendering or accepting what happens while on a journey isn’t all bad. Once on a gondola in Venice I sat back and let myself by piloted around the lagoons and through the canals by a skilled gondolier. I had no idea where we were going, or what would happen, but in that moment of grace I simply let go and let myself float along merrily. A sense of joy overcame as I relaxed into the experience. Often I think back to this moment and wish I could accept life’s daily experiences with the same sense of ease and acceptance. Then I would live in a state of constant joy. It’s something to strive for. But I’m not there yet.

Bio: Debra Moffitt is the award winning author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life and “r, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices, writing and creativity in the U.S. and Europe. More at http://www.awakeintheworld.com and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/DebraMoffittAwakeintheWorld

From Zero to Hero: Spiritual Attitudes That Change Your Life

posted by debramoffitt

We make choices everyday to be a zero and make no effort, or to become spiritual heroes to ourselves and those around us. Elevated souls like the Buddha, Jesus, Ramakrishna, Mohammad, Krishna and Guru Nanak were all spiritual superheroes. They approached life’s many challenges with love, compassion and Self-confidence. From the point of view of a spiritual superhero, they stood strong during the most terrible trials that life threw at them. Their lives tell stories of how attitude and divine inspiration buoyed them up. Buddha’s forbearance as he sought out enlightenment under the Bodhi tree reveals a solid, unshaking inner force. Despite demons, temptations and tempests, he remained unmoved until the light within rose and with it brought Self-realization.

Ramakrishna, an Indian saint who lived in the 1840’s held fast to a very simple life as a temple priest. As a worshiper of Kali, he also explored other ways including merging with Jesus. He became very sick with throat cancer. The suffering made his devotees cringe, but he continued to sing devotional songs to his beloved Kali and inspired many people for generations to come. Not once did he complain of the pain or lament of his physical suffering.

Women saints have also inspired. Mother Teresa is world-renowned for her compassionate service to thousands and thousands of India’s most sick and destitute. She fearlessly embraced the ill and shared her love with them equally. Her Nobel Peace Prize was the ultimate recognition of her spiritual superhero status.

What kind of spiritual superhero would you like to be? What qualities will you need to develop? Go for it!

Bio: Debra Moffitt is the award winning author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life and “Garden of Bliss: Cultivating the Inner Landscape for Self-Discovery” (Llewellyn Worldwide, May 2013). A visionary, dreamer and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices, writing and creativity in the U.S. and Europe. More at http://www.awakeintheworld.com and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/DebraMoffittAwakeintheWorld

Looking For Love? Maybe It’s Time to Marry Yourself

posted by debramoffitt

Do you think that you need someone else to make you happy? Why not marry yourself instead? Nadine Schweigert, a woman in South Dakota who had been through a divorce created a wedding ceremony to marry herself. If that sounds strange to you, then maybe you’ve never abandoned your true Self. But if you’re like me you may have found yourself in relationships where you separated from your authentic Self to please others and make them happy. Self-betrayal is no way to have a healthy relationship with anyone. So the woman in South Dakota invited a small group of friends and family to join her in a celebration of vows to herself. The vows included a commitment to love, respect and cherish her Self.

How often do we think we need someone else to love us to be happy when what really need is to make the big steps to care for, nurture, and love ourselves? This kind of Self love is not the narcissistic kind that focuses on taking care of selfish pleasures. It’s about going deep and learning to give the kind of love that we yearn for from others to ourselves. When we marry our Self and develop the relationship between our self and that higher, Divine Self, that wise Self will guide and dance with us. Life becomes magical and alive with synchronicity. It may not always be easy, but Nadine says that through kindness to herself she lost 50 pounds and stopped drinking.

If you were to fall in love with your Self and write a love letter, what would that look and feel like? I challenge you to at least begin to look at yourself with eyes of kindness that look for and develop your qualities. Why not give your Self a hug and say, “I do”?

Register to win copy of Debra’s new book, Garden of Bliss on Goodreads.

Copyright Debra Moffitt, May 2013.

Bio: Debra Moffitt is the award winning author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life and “Garden of Bliss: Cultivating the Inner Landscape for Self-Discovery” (Llewellyn Worldwide, May 2013). A visionary, dreamer and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices, writing and creativity in the U.S. and Europe. More at http://www.awakeintheworld.com and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/DebraMoffittAwakeintheWorld

Writing for Emotional Health and Joy

posted by debramoffitt

Writing can help to heal the heart. Research related to health and wellness has proven that writing is a way to face illness and grow. I first learned about this through Dr. John Evans, who created Wellness & Writing Connections conferences and workshops. Inspired by Dr. James Pennebaker’s research on how writing can help people heal, Dr. Evans began using writing to heal from his own illness and found that putting pen to paper brought big benefits. The upside was so good that he decided to share his results with others and encourage them to write as well. Today he works with Duke Integrative Medicine Center doing workshops for caregivers as a way to relieve stress. He also presents workshops like “Transform Your Health: Write to Heal” through the International Association for Journal Writing and writes for Psychology Today.

Dr. Pennebaker, Professor at University of Texas at Austin, inspired a lot of work around writing and healing. He said, “Emotional upheavals touch every part of our lives. You don’t just lose a job, you don’t just get divorced. These things affect all aspects of who we are—our financial situation, our relationships with others, our views of ourselves, our issues of life and death. Writing helps us focus and organize the experience.”

One of Pennebaker’s exercise goes like this: Over the next four days, write about your deepest emotions and thoughts about the emotional upheaval that has been influencing your life the most. In your writing, really let go and explore the event and how it has affected you. You might tie this experience to your childhood, your relationship with your parents, people you have loved or love now, or even your career. Write continuously for 20 minutes.

Sometimes we’ve avoided the emotions linked to difficult experiences so they remain blocked inside. Writing is a way to release them. One of the important keys is to write affirmations and focus on the positive even in difficult experiences. It’s a way to change perspective and take away the gems and lessons from situations that might seem challenging.

I love to write and have long used it as a way to process my experiences. I believe that the explosion in the number of people who want to write books is due in part to the way that writing helps us to discover ourselves. Have you had this experience? It can happen sometimes in conversation too, but writing has a power that helps to heal and to also discover what’s going on in the sometimes mysterious workings of our inner self. I find my notebook (no lines please!) is one of my best friends. It listens without criticism. It allows me to express what I feel. It never ever chides me for being wrong, or mean, or gushing, or anything else for that matter.

Writing is especially helpful to help me sort out big events and traumas and gain perspective. When I can explore the tough stuff on paper it’s a way of finding revelation. When I can get the words out of my system it unlocks pain and frees me to be more content. My words are not always pretty and positive. They reveal fear, pain, depression, despair, but they also reveal moments of transcendent joy, an appreciation for beauty, and love. Without words on paper it would have been much harder for me to understand my experiences and paint the shades of my emotions.

Writing as a therapy is more and more recognized and I highly recommend it either in an organized group setting or on your own. At its best it can open the way to a deeper experience of life.

Bio: Debra Moffitt is the award winning author of Awake in the World: 108 Practices to Live a Divinely Inspired Life and “Garden of Bliss: Cultivating the Inner Landscape for Self-Discovery” (Llewellyn Worldwide, May 2013). A visionary, dreamer and teacher, she’s devoted to nurturing the spiritual in everyday life. She leads workshops on spiritual practices, writing and creativity in the U.S. and Europe. More at http://www.awakeintheworld.com and on Facebook at: http://www.facebook.com/DebraMoffittAwakeintheWorld

Previous Posts

Discovering You're Enough with a Leap of Perception
If you’re feeling hemmed in and know that there’s much more to you than what you’re currently experiencing but don’t know quite how to access it, then “Leap of Perception,” by Penney Peirce deserves a read. Penney wrote about working with dreams and intuition long before working with eit

posted 10:16:51am Sep. 18, 2013 | read full post »

How Joy Finds Us: Interview with Mark Nepo
The things we need arrive at the right time, and so it has been with Mark Nepo and his work. For those of us on a spiritual path, Mark’s writings possess the power to immediately move us into connection with a subtle and powerful awareness at the deepest, most soulful level. Though Mark Nepo‘s w

posted 9:42:16am Jul. 16, 2013 | read full post »

Hot Rituals to Celebrate the Summer Solstice
Can you feel the excitement in the air? The days are hot and sunny, and summer officially begins this week on June 21st. It’s the longest day and the shortest night in the Northern hemisphere. I love this day. In the South of France it’s celebrated by jumping over bonfires as a way to gain cour

posted 7:27:32am Jun. 20, 2013 | read full post »

When Spirit Moves Us Out of Our Comfort Zone to Grow
Stepping onto the spiritual path isn’t all peace and roses. It pushes us into a place that moves us beyond our usual comfort zone. As we attune to the highest within us and listen to inner guidance, that guidance sometimes pushes us to try new jobs, to stretch into new creative projects, and to so

posted 8:04:01am Jun. 18, 2013 | read full post »

When Life Races By Replace Stress and Anxiety with Gentle Awareness
Even though I’m a seasoned traveler I still get stressed before trips. It’s not big jitters, just a general anxiety about: 1) Did I pack everything? 2) Will my travel connections go smoothly? And 3) What about the unexpected? Movement brings agitation. Sitting in meditation is easiest for me for

posted 5:26:35am May. 28, 2013 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.