Quick Steps to Meditate

Single and Stress-freeFollow these guidelines to quickly learn how to meditate and establish your practice. As with any practice, it takes practice to ease into a meditative state. In the beginning, use these steps to help you. Remember to be gentle and kind to yourself as you begin your mindfulness practice.

It’s helpful to have a corner or a room if you have one to spare, for your practice. If you want to use a mandala as a tool to relax yourself, keep one there near your sitting place. Decorate with inviting and comfortable items to encourage ease and regular visits, such as a painting, candle, crystal, special chair or cushion, plant, or incense. This serves as a welcoming signal to your body-mind-heart shifting you automatically into a calm readiness for your journey inward.

Give into your practice without stress over the time, attire or positions.  Just be comfortable. Meditate for 5 minutes or 50 sitting in a chair, on the floor or lying down and make whatever you are wearing comfortable. Time disappears in meditation, so if you need to be aware of it – set an easy soft alarm on your phone, a bell is nice.

Lastly, let go of expectations and of judgment of your meditation experiences. In this way you will find one of the benefits of meditation, non-judgmental contemplation naturally brings ease and joy with appreciate of life.

 

HOW TO MEDITATE

  1. Sit easily and comfortably with your spine straight and knees comfortably resting at hip height – you may need to prop your feet up with a pillow or block or sit on to of a pillow depending on your height (if in a chair) or support your knees if sitting on the floor.
  2. Place your hands gently in your lap with hands open and easy or in a preferred mudra. Make an intention if you want – but it is not necessary. Use a mandala or conscious breathing to further ease your mind and when you are relaxed, close your eyes.
  3. If you have a mantra, begin repeating it silently. If you don’t have a mantra, follow your breath or look – with your eyes still closed – to your third eye. That place just between and slightly above your brows.
  4. Observe your breathing as it flows in and out you will automatically and naturally feel calmer.  As thoughts and physical impulses arise, allow them to leave on their own by putting your attention on your mantra, focal pint or breath.
  5. If you have an intention for your meditation – such as healing, gently direct your attention to what wants and needs healing. Whether it is your body , mind or heart or someone or something else – send your love there.
There are many benefits to meditation. A regular practice brings a singular clarity, a calm unified body-mind-heart. This clarity keeps you inspired, enthusiastic and loving life. Move beyond being simply motivated to living passionately.  To learn more about meditation, mindfulness practices, or get a personal mantra contact me.

10 Tips to Nourish and Strengthen Your Liver

SONY DSC Most of us harm by overburdening our Liver without realizing. We live in a stress-filled, toxic world. The demands made on our bodies and emotions by our lifestyle, water and food supply, prescription and over the counter drugs, toiletries and cleaning products, have our Liver working overtime. Some of the tell-tale effects of this O.T. are weight gain, foggy brain, skin and digestive issues and a seemingly immovable swollen waistline. Eventually, if not managed, you can develop a disease. Help your liver, lose weight and stay healthy with these ten practices:

  • Eat several small meals throughout the day.
  • Stop eating and drinking a few hours before sleeping.
  • Reduce foods high in saturated fats such as animal products and nut oils.
  • Eliminate ‘bad’ fats and oils such as hydrogenated and other poor quality fats found in spreads such as margarine and butter substitutes, as well as rancid oils. Unless unrefined and organic all oils are usually rancid. Processed foods and often prepared foods use rancid oils and hydrogenated palm oil – avoid them.
  • Limit your intake of nuts. Unless you shell the nuts just before eating, they are very likely to be rancid (toxic) – especially true with peanuts. Also, this includes most spreads made from butter such as peanut butter.
  • Buy seeds in small amounts; they go rancid quickly. Don’t store for long periods of time and if possible fresh grind for use.
  • Drink pure water. Filter your water when possible. Distil Avoid the plastic bottles when possible and if you don’t have a filter, add a drop of grapefruit extract to your water before drinking or washing, soaking food. A shower filter is an inexpensive way to limit harmful chemicals into your body.
  • Eat as many whole, organic, Non-GMO Foods. You are putting your health at risk otherwise.
  • Choose alternative medicine practices when possible to avoid using prescription drugs unnecessarily. There are times when these drugs are necessary, just be mindful of what is truly necessary and helps or hurts you in the long run. You will know this naturally when you practice living mindfully.
  • Find a mindfulness practice to help you manage stress such as deep breathing, meditation, walking, yoga, swimming or dance.

Learn mindfulness practices with me in person, by phone, or with my book. Which ever way choose to learn, mindfulness is an easy, gentle, effective and fun way to improve your health and life.

A Small Change Delivers Big Goals

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Last night I received a link via Twitter to Donald Hoffman’s Ted talk, Do we see reality as it really is?  Hoffman’s experiments suggested something other than ‘energy’ or God behind life as we see it. He stressed that how we perceive truth or reality depends on our eyesight.

He ‘proved’ that our vision largely is the basis for how we perceive reality and that we actually recreate our reality over an over again based on what we remember seeing. This was truly pivotal for me in many ways. Just putting on pair of glasses shows us that one level but then you can go deeper – and he did. Last night I fell asleep thinking about one small part of his talk – small things and how they create the big world, our thoughts and our lives.

I awoke suddenly from the blasting of a fire alarm.  It’s sole purpose seemingly to wake me out of the  dream. After shaking the sleep and dream off, I unconsciously made a change to my routine. I turned on the television – something different for me – I generally check in with the world on my laptop.  My mind wandered back to Hoffman’s talk  as  I stared into the screen announcing news about the confederate flag, slavery, and the technical glitch on the stock exchange.

As I navigated through the news from station to station – small increments of information formed a trail and picture of events in the world for me. I followed the like breadcrumbs on a trail that guided me for 15 minutes and ended at an interview with Danielle Strickland. She talked about her life, mission and new job with the Salvation Army in L.A. She also included a wonderful cupcake story that brought tears to my eyes and laughter at the same time.  She is fresh, funny, authentic and on fire with a mission.

After the interview ended, I went to her website and saw her book mentioned, A beautiful Mess. Another synchronicity for me as I almost bought the book and saw a shop in my neighborhood with the same name.  Another crumb on the trail, I went to her website and read a few posts – one that stood out for me today as it was in line with my thoughts – small things matter.

Our days and lives consist of events – many small ones.  We can consciously create these events and make small changes to change our lives in a big way.  Whether you want to change unwanted behavior or addictive behavior, lose weight, improve your health of reach another life goal – small changes can make a big difference in our life experience. I know this from experience both professionally and personally – even just one small consciously made step can produce a huge and positive shift in your life.

Change is my middle name. Call or contact me if you need help moving towards, making or managing a change.

Denise Demaras, CHC, AADP

 

 

Be the One True Magnificent You

through the mist you feel; something here is not real

Painting and Poem ~ Denise Demaras

Live Your Truth

Through the mist you can feel

Something here is just not real.

Meditate to know how you feel –

Understanding this is the deal.

To feel love and joy in what you do

And from the ones all around you

Question feelings that are sad or blue

Look within – the answer’s inside of you.

If things are not what they used to be

Let them go and be free.

Allow life do what it likes to do –

Flow and go all through you.

Be the one and only true –

Wonderful magnificent you!

Breathe and Step Back to See the Whole Picture Before You Make a Change

“The devil is in the details” and so is God. But if we get stuck on the smallest Oak Creekdetails without seeing the whole picture, we can lose the picture. The only way to see the details for what they are and keep the picture – is to breathe and step back time and again.

As a painter and truth seeker, I know you have to step back to get a good perspective of the painting or situation. Focusing on one detail or many small details, can ruin a painting,  a moment or a belief getting you lost and confused or sad and disconnected.

In the case of a painting, focusing on a perfect leaf without bringing the tree  into perspective can distort it. The same holds true when you are contemplating a change in your life.How will the change alter all the parts of your life?

Take time out this summer solstice (June 21) to stand still with the sun and look at your life.  Take a deep breath and ask yourself if:

  • Each part fits together
  • It’s balanced
  • Something is missing
  • A part needs updating or eliminating

Sometimes all we need to do is step back to get a fresh new look at what we have created to see where it – our life- is headed.  You might just find a new appreciation for  the beauty or significance of each part of your life.Or you might see where a tweak here and there will get you on course.

As in the sky with the sparkling stars,  some parts of our lives stand out more than others but they need the blank contrast of darkness to shine.When I feel the darkness more than the light, I’m sometimes tempted to toss the canvas and begin a new. I’ve leaned the hard way that it’s best to step back and look at it – another day before I let it go. Summer is upon us – use this time to step back and see the picture you’ve created – that is your life.

It may be uncomfortable at first, as the mind whispers “not yet” or “never mind” or “not again” or “I don’t want to” but do it – step back – before you let it go or lose it. Often this is the step you need to love what you are creating or create what you love.  You can find answers, solutions or insights to whatever is off-balance in your life (or painting) when you breathe and step back.