A transformative personal practice can be anything.
What is programming your life and mind? The manifold answer includes everything you are exposed to and automatically accept as valid. Media, well-meaning advisors, past experience, teachers, doctors and others are all sources of programming.
Personal practice is one way to reprogram your mind and change your experience.
There are chapters in our lives when the time and attention required for personal practice is illusive. Whether the practice is yoga, music, meditation, martial arts, tantric sex, journaling, expressive art or one of many others you cannot find the time and space for practice. Prioritizing joy generating activities is essential to coping with depression. One way to create time for personal practice is to transform a high priority and necessary activity into a personal practice.
A transformative personal practice can be anything. It is a matter of your intent and attention.
One of my personal practices is food preparation. Like martial arts, developing systems software or being a monk it is not for everyone.
There is a lot of truth in Shakira’s cautionary statement: “Don’t go in the kitchen, you will never get out of there”. I am glad she took her own advice and made her personal practice music. She rocks! In our home, I rock in our kitchen!
We can elevate any activity in our lives to the level of personal practice by setting boundaries around it and bringing joy, focus, intent and attention to it.
The boundary part is key. Personally, I won’t talk on the phone, watch or listen to TV, or worry about things I cannot change while I am preparing food. It is a simple boundary and the results are delicious.
Personal practice of any kind is a place to meet your inevitable limitations, frustrations and aggravations with disciplined patience, curiosity and forgiveness. When you do, feelings of joy, empowerment, and peace unfold setting the stage for your big reveal … the “rockstar” in you.
So much of our experience in life is a direct result of the thoughts we have. When something good or bad happens, we have thoughts about it, and those thoughts will lead to feelings, good, bad, or indifferent. Those feelings might make us take action, and those actions are going to be good, bad, or indifferent as well. Since all of these life experiences and actions originate in our brain, and our brain is like layers of software that spits out thoughts, what if we could change the software? Do we have to swallow everything that comes out of our brain hook, line and sinker? Is our brain so perfect that we are absolutely 100 percent certain our thoughts are always spot on perfect about everything we think about?
This is where a personal practice comes into play. A personal practice helps us to go through the slow and gradual process of finding the software that is working, the new stuff we want to install, and the software in our head that needs to be debugged, or un-installed altogether because it just isn’t working right. This work can’t even begin until we realize it is even possible in the first place. This realization can come from a variety of activities, for a variety of reasons, but these activities all have in common the ability to give us that experience.
What most people don’t realize is that they need to be looking for this experience. So while two people may be doing the same activity, only one may actually be doing it as a personal practice while the other isn’t. And of course some activities, such as meditation and yoga, were designed specifically for this purpose and make it easier.
excerpted from “Who Is Progamming Your Brain” – David Smithstein
Reveal your inner “rockstar”! Focus on your personal practices and intentions at BRIGHTERSTEP.com