Episode 85: How to relax and pay attention

Every 5 episodes I introduce a practice or an idea that can yield a five-fold impact in your life. This week, we explore states of consciousness and how the ability to relax and focus can heighten and elevate every other aspect of your life.

If you want to step up your game in life, the answer may be in a direction you weren’t expecting: try stepping back for a few moments and paying attention through meditation.

Listening with the ears of the Spirit – finding a balance between goalless practices and purpose-driven action

One of the “prime directives” of religions and faith traditions all through history has been to find ways of “transcending the ego”, to move beyond our limited perspective and into a more expansive relationship to the truth of the Spirit.

This week, we explore the dance between those two fundamental drives as we deepen our own walk of faith.

Episode 84 – How to recover from an argument – this skill might be more important than avoiding conflict in the first place

According to John Gottman, fights happen even in the best relationships.

As the dust settles from an argument, try taking on the role of other to start to really get what is going on for the other person. This can be a profound spiritual practice as well as a foundation for trust, understanding and intimacy in a relationship In this episode, we explore a couple different ways to use a conflict to build an even stronger relationship.

For a good dive into the different kinds of “healthy conflict” and warning signs about when conflict has gone toxic, definitely check out John Gottman’s article “What Makes Marriage Work – It’s how you resolve conflict that matters most”

Episode 83 – These unforgetable experiences remind me of how deeply we are connected to those around us

In this episode I share a few stories about the powerful connection we can have with those around us. They show us a surprising glimpse of what is possible when we pay closer attention to our spiritual hunches.

If this is something you want more in your life there are a couple simple ways that to open up surprising connections between us and those around us

 

Episode 82 – Stepping Out Of The Spiritual Casino

A lot of spiritual stories and practices are attempts to gain peak experiences – moments of incredible insight, expansive emotional states and spiritual unity.

Chasing after these “highs” of the spirit can be great goals that provide us with incentives for practice and discipline…they can also be a distraction that causes us to miss the opportunity to really step outside ourselves, to grow and to connect with others

Episode 81 – Next time you’re stuck in a boring conversation, try two simple things and see what happens next…

While taking on the role of other, have fun with it! Let the alchemy of attention and curiosity take the lead.

In this episode, we explore how relaxing out of our evaluations (I recently heard it called the “blah blah blah inside our heads”) opens us up to really hear what is going on for another person. It can be the simplest thing in the world to create connection and understanding, it just takes a willingness to press pause on the autopilot (the “blah blah blah”) and pay attention to someone else for a few minutes.

Episode 80 – When asked for the highest spiritual practice, two great teachers 2000 years apart agree on the same thing

Modern day mystic and philosopher Ken Wilber was asked to share the most essential and powerful practice available today, and in response he laid down the challenge: take on the role of other. Step into another persons shoes, get their experience and explore the world from their eyes. It is a timeless and unfolding practice that accelerates your growth through spiritual stages of development

It’s fascinating how strong an echo this is of the challenge Jesus laid down over 2000 years ago: he declared that all of the law could be summed up in two things 1) Love God 2) Love your neighbor. A lot of religious effort is spent on the first one, but sadly the second one gets a lot less attention – probably because it requires us to step outside of our comfort zone, it challenges our lukewarm, convenient and simple ideas of God…but it is so worth it, because we also engage more directly in the powerful work of bringing heaven down here to earth.

Step into this five-fold episode to explore the widespread and transforming effects that this practice can have on our own lives and on those around us

Episode 79 – Setting The Stage For A Living Faith

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Photo origin – (Kingpeng on DeviantART

It is really exciting to discover something sacred, something that has great meaning and value to us. We have moments of enlightenment, of truth, and yet so often then the glow fades and we get lost; quickly confused and distracted by the various moods and impulses that suddenly capture our attention.

In this episode, learn how to anchor in to what is meaningful to you so that no matter what the state, you can return to center and stay actively engaged in a living, thriving faith.

Episode 78 – How To Measure Your Faith

A living faith will leave evidence all over our lives, bearing good fruit that is nourishing to us and to those around us. It is actually pretty easy to determine how active and effective our faith is.

In this episode, learn two easy ways to test how much our actions express the values that are most important to us