Take this time to reflect!

“Freedom is instantaneous the moment we accept things as they are” – Karen Maezen Miller

I know I know, just what you need, another self-help type blog post. But before you click the x and go back to your daily social media scrolling, take a couple minutes and hear me out.

Trust me, I get it. There are TONS of articles and blog posts being sent out about health, fitness, diet, nutrition, immune systems, business plans, courses you can take, you name it. What they all have in common unfortunately is this conception that because you have all this “time” being quarantined, you “should” take advantage and be “productive”. Notice I put time, should, and productive in quotation marks. That’s because those three words are all relevant to what each particular person is going through. Productive for one person might mean having a clean house and dinner ready by 5 pm, while for others may be just simply getting out of bed by noon and taking a shower. (We’ve all been there). Constantly seeing and reading these posts can have a negative impact on our mental health and psyche. We WANT to be productive, but we’re also just trying to survive. I get that.

Here’s where we can start to shift this mindset.

What if I told you that you can be productive without actually doing anything at all?

You would think that’s a trick right? There has to be some type of catch. NOPE. No trick, (treats optional 🎃 ), just facts. Or words. One word actually. That word is embrace. Yes, really EMBRACE this quarantine. The world has slowed down, dramatically. Events are cancelled, weddings are postponed, schools are online, restaurants are take-out only, gyms are closed, the list goes on. While this is not great for our economy, it IS great for us. We are finally given this opportunity to really SLOW down and REFLECT on our current lives.

But D-rob, how do I embrace the quarantine?

By first ACCEPTING it. You need to accept the current situation for what it is. It’s not going anywhere. No matter what our leaders are saying, it seems that the virus will not fully go away until we get a vaccine, which can take up to a full year. I know when people hear that time frame, they start to worry and get anxious about what that will look like. Try not to think that far ahead. Accept that time frame. Your anxiety and thoughts will not change that.

Okay, so I’ve started to embrace this, now what?

Awesome question. Once you accept and start to embrace this, you’ve already won half the battle. Now you can look inward. Really look inward. Slowing down naturally allows us to reflect on our life. This is where you can start to ask yourself some important questions. Notice I just said ASK. Not answer. You don’t have to answer anything that you are not ready for. By simply asking yourself these questions, you will trigger your subconscious to actively start answering these questions without you thinking about it. I like to call this process “marinating”. Just let those questions marinate for a while. Your answers will come to you when they are ready.

I want to reflect and ask myself the right questions, but I’m afraid I won’t know what to ask. What are some good questions to ask myself?

This process can scare people away because we don’t know the correct questions to ask. And for each person the questions will be noticeably different. Here are three general questions to get your ball rolling. (Physical Education teacher reference 🏀).

1) Are you happy with your current _____?

Simple, but effective. Are you actually happy? Happy with your job? Your relationship? Friends? Health? Weight? Whatever the topic is can apply. Happiness is something that gets overlooked. We get comfortable with our current situation and are often blinded by that level of comfort. However, comfort is not always happiness. Ask yourself that question with each topic and let those marinate for a while. No rush to answer. Remember, you now have all this “time”.

2) If you can change anything in your life, what would that be?

Change scares us. Just seeing that question probably made you cringe. That’s normal. Hopefully for you, the weight of that question is lifted somewhat because you do not need to come up with an answer. Just ask the question. That’s it. Simple.

3) What is your DREAM ______?

Same concept as question number 1. Fill in the blank with your life, relationship, job, health. Many times, we lose track of what our dreams are, or simply become off-course. This question jumpstarts the process to get back on track. Your subconscious is filled with your inner most dreams and desires. It’s time to wake them back up.

How do I ask these questions? Do I read them aloud? Write them down? What works best?

Each person will have a different approach. What I have found that works best is writing them down with a pen and paper, like in a journal or notepad. For some people writing it in their phone works best. For others, repeating the questions aloud helps them. Find what works for you. The key is being relaxed when asking these questions. Right before you go to sleep is often the time when you are most relaxed. Use that to ask yourself these questions. As you sleep, your brain is doing ALL the work for you. Answers will come. (Just like that father who appeared in a baseball diamond in the middle of a Iowa cornfield 🤔⚾️🌽).

I hope this post serves to help you in this reflective process. Reflecting doesn’t have to be this big scary thing. We naturally are reflective creatures, the trick is quieting the noise around us. And in this time, that is the hardest part.

Be patient with this process, and be patient with yourself.

Peace and love,

D-rob ✌️🧘🏻‍♂️

If you liked this post and want to learn more about what questions to ask yourself, you may be interested in my services as a Life Coach. A qualified Life Coach will continue to help and guide you in this reflective process making sure you are asking all of the right questions. They will help you create and work towards new goals and dreams to start improving your life. If you’re interested in what I have to offer and what makes me different, click on the menu tab and select “Who is D-rob?”. That will bring you to my bio and contact information and fill you in a little bit about me. Leave your contact info or shoot me an email! I hope to hear from you soon and look forward to helping you live your best life!

The quest for happiness (inner peace) 🧘🏻‍♂️✌️

Today’s blog won’t be long, I hope. I just wanted to write. You ever get that feeling and REALLY listen to it? You know, ACTUALLY give in and do it. I feel a lot of us put that feeling off because we get sidetracked with the regular demands of life, but simply forget that the number one demand in this life is US. Yes, YOU. That person staring back at you in the mirror (which is probably dirty, windex people 😝). What makes that person in the mirror happy? What drives them? Do more of that. For me, it’s a combination of being creative, and inner peace. That includes writing, reading, meditating, drawing, coloring, jigsaw puzzles, etc. I need to use the right side of the brain regularly or I drive myself mad. And you don’t want to see me mad? (Just take my word for it okay 😂).

What I wanted to write about is simple. The inner peace portion. How do we find it? How do we maintain it? All that good stuff. To some, it seems like mumbo jumbo. To others, it’s not. To me, it’s something I’m continuously seeking, finding, researching, and learning about. The search for happiness is a myth. But the search for inner peace is fact. Don’t mix up the two. You can be happy and peaceful or unhappy but still at peace. On the flip side you can also be sad and still at peace or sad and not at peace. We hold the cards. We decide where we fall. This is the part that people seem to confuse. Many of us are on this unreachable quest for something to make us happy. We’re looking at the next goal, the next day, the next job, the future vacation, the future accomplishment, whatever THAT is, DOES NOT EXIST. And do you know what happens when that future day comes? You don’t magically become happy. You just find another future event to mark on your little iPhone calendars (or Androids 🤦🏻‍♂️), and start looking ahead to that day. Which comes and go’s and now you’re in this cycle that is not making you happy. And notice how I said quest to make us happy. I didn’t say at peace. That’s because you can’t relate to it, yet. And that’s okay. This post is to help you get started on that journey.

Okay, here’s what I want you to do. Close your eyes wherever you are. Take a deep breath in through your nose. Expand your ribs and stomach so it becomes big like a balloon. Now exhale, let all of that air rush out of your nose and squeeze your stomach pulling your belly button towards your spine. As you are breathing really listen to the sound of the air going in and out your nose and throughout your body. Listen closely to any sounds around you. What can you hear? Really try to listen. Good. Now on your next breath observe how your body feels. Are you tense anywhere? Sore? What hurts? Try to pinpoint these areas visually in your head as you are breathing. Perfect. Now repeat this two more times. Open your eyes. How do you feel? Less anxious? More calm? I hope you do. If yes, congratulations, you just spent your first minute being at peace. If no, that’s okay too! Repeat again and again throughout the day until you get that YES!

The reality of searching for inner peace is simple, but not really. Confusing I know but hear me out. Yes, sometimes all it takes is a simple breathing exercise that we just did, which is called mindful meditation. Being mindful is being aware of your surroundings, your body, your breath, just flat out aware. You’re not a zombie in an endless search for your next meal of human flesh (sorry, I just saw Zombieland 2 and it IS almost Halloween). Snap out of your snooze fest. The minute you stop your brain from thinking in the past, or thinking about the future, you have won the battle for inner peace. Do more of that throughout your day, and watch what happens in your life.

There will be times where I will expand on this topic even more, but there are two books that I have read that I recommend to you if you are serious about finding inner peace. They are “The Untethered Soul” by Michael Singer, and “The Power of NOW” by Eckhart Tolle. Inner peace is a real thing. No matter what has happened throughout your life, you can be at peace. Or you can be happy. Whatever you want to call it, just stop searching for it. It’s already here. 🤓🧘🏻‍♂️✌️