BREATHE by Bryan Moss


 You get to your place of work. Parking your car you notice the time on your dashboard and you’re barely on time. You were hoping to come in early to prepare for a presentation to give at a quarter past the hour. So you feel a little rushed, but at least you are on time and not late. Just as you slam the car door shut…actually, it’s the in-between time from releasing the door to when it shuts…you realize you left your keys in the ignition. SLAM!  Your car keys are locked in your car but you don’t have time to deal with whom to call to come get your keys out. You have a meeting your speaking at in less than 15 minutes. You decide to deal with it after the presentation. On your way to your office you swing by the break room to pick up a cup of coffee. The wall clock shows you have 5 minutes to pick up whatever materials you need, from your office, before heading to the conference room. As your taking your first sip of java—-oops! A coworker bumps into you and your nice hot cup of coffee spills all over your blouse or shirt. Wiping the liquid off, you manage to get the materials from your office and head to the conference room. Visions of giving an important presentation with a coffee stain in full view embarrasses you. Then you have that familiar feeling————-your stressed out!
 Similar scenarios have happened to me. One thing after another, and another, and another just pile up. And when there’s a deadline involved..yikes! I know for me, neck and shoulders tense up, my adrenaline is flowing,  my heart’s racing, all of this while I feel perspiration under my arms and across my forehead. I get irritable but, because it’s a formal situation, can’t express the frustration and anger.
 Then victimhood moves into my brain’s neighborhood. “Why does this always happen to ME?” “It never fails. There’s always something that happens when I’m about to do something important.”
 I use to wonder ‘how can I manage this onslaught of life’s events’?
 Then I discovered…to BREATHE. No matter how rushed you are, it’s possible to take a quick ‘time out’ and inhale slowly, filling your lungs to capacity, then slowly exhale. Doing something so simple can help “reset” the moment. Putting your system on “pause” can slow down the momentum of life’s onslaught of events, helping to take the edge off.
 Remember to SLOWLY fill your tummy with air first and then continue on up your lungs, taking in as much as comfortably possible. Then release the air in reverse order. Slowly exhaling the air from the lungs and then out of the abdomen. Pause….repeat again. But this time, pause a moment or two between the inhale and exhale. If you must, do it again.
 Did you know when exhaling it’s mentally impossible to think a thought? That brain noise ceases to exist for a moment. Often it only takes that brief period for your whole system to regroup and reset your thoughts and feelings. In the above scenario, when picking up the materials in your office, right after the coffee spill and before heading off to the meeting, it would’ve been the right time to drop everything and spend 30 to 60 seconds resetting through slowly breathing. Consciously breathing, and slowly at that, brings me back into the “moment” without thoughts of past or future events. Instead of going into “Why me?” that simple act can help put things into proper perspective.
 In the conference room, instead of worrying how I would look to others with a big stain and wishing it would go away, perhaps I would address the ‘elephant in the room’ and refer to it. I’d point to it and comment, “I bumped into someone while having coffee. My shirt is more awake than I am so my shirt will be doing the presentation this morning.” Having to bring everyone’s attention to it WILLINGLY takes away the embarrassment and discomfort of having to talk with a noticeable stain, therefore, having everyone focus on your presentation instead of the stain. Not to mention the awkwardness is removed from your mind so you’re able to give them your full attention.
 The meeting is finished and all went well. After returning to the office, perhaps I would take a couple more of conscious, slow breaths and ‘exhale’ the residue of the meeting out of my system. Then call AAA or a locksmith to arrange a time to fetch my keys out of my locked car. Doing this simple technique of breathing will also prevent me from taking out these mishaps out on another coworker or, more importantly, holding it all in for the rest of the work day only to take it out on a loved one when I get home.
 The kids are running around playing and screaming, the dog’s barking, the T.V. is on too loud?….BREATHE.
Standing and waiting forever in line at the market?……BREATHE.
Stuck in traffic?…….BREATHE.
It’s simple, takes a moment of your time, and effective. Try it. BREATHE. It’s a beautiful thing.
with love and respect,

April Monthly Message – Letting Go vs Holding On

Letting go or Holding on…

by Shiela Reed

This message has been coming in for a week or so and ironically kept being vague about how to write about it… So I hope this information lands in “just the right spot” for you to get what you need.

The topic is a tricky one – since it has a classic connection to ego, which adds to the layers of “stuff” to work through.  After all, the ego prefers to have a say so in this stuff right?!

SO, how deep does the concept of “letting go vs holding on” really go?  Honestly, as deep as we each can take it…

In reality every decision has an element of both.  As we gain knowledge from a learning experience, we “hold on” to that, even if we “let go” of some parts of that experience.  We also find that emotions, feelings, behaviors, habits, people, things, and all other parts of our being and lives, eventually tend to come to some place of needing our attention regarding this exact topic….

Therefore, do we hold on to that or let it go?

Over time I have found that HOW we do this makes a great deal of difference and surprisingly (or maybe not) each one of the situations may just require a little bit of a different approach.  So no wonder it feels daunting and like something we end up “avoiding”!  Even if we deep down know that NOT making a decision, is actually STILL a decision…  right?

Here’s an example.  Lately I have been thinking a lot about things, people, feelings, behaviors, etc.  that I really need to put through this course of thinking.  Maybe it’s the natural element of newness, clearing, cleansing and so on associated with the Spring season (here in the Midwest of the USA at least)…  yet, I continue to just “think about it”.

Regardless, WHEN the time “hit’s you” and there is an inner prompting to take heed of this process regarding something in your life, do your due diligence and check in with your true self/“inner you”/heart space for true guidance before jumping in.

How many times have you made decisions hot from an emotion?  We say something without thinking, we spontaneously quit on something out of anger, or we hold on to items for years and don’t even know why….   Without that “north star” point of reference for ourselves, we are basically left at the mercy/whim of our ego, emotions, and any other random mechanism we grasp for in a moment of panic or desperation.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.  We really can take a moment or more to really “feel into” what it’s about and find our inner voice which can give us an idea or at least an understanding that is deeper and more meaningful, and ultimately provide us some much needed guidance for making a decision that deep down we really can live with.

So, as you “spring clean” your physical, emotional, and/or mental space, take 5 slow deep breaths, blow each one out as if you were blowing out birthday candles, and THEN ask yourself, do I “want” this?, do I “need” this and if so WHY and for what purpose?  Do the answers fit with your true heart direction or goals?  (be clear on a “want” and “need” as defined by YOU)

Spending some time assessing this part really can make a difference in not only our feelings and satisfaction in knowing we have followed our “heart”, but ultimately in our ability to “move on” or “stick around” with people, feelings, emotions, tasks, behaviors, etc.

For me, I have discovered I have a lot harder time letting go of things than I realized.  From clearing my phone of pictures (which I had already backed up in 5 other placed mind you) to cleaning out my closet to making a much needed change in my work life…. It’s been a process of going just a little deeper each time I would think about the topic and eventually I found my way to the root reason I was still “holding on” – that was when I found the freedom to make a choice… I then knew WHY I was holding on and then I and only ME could decide if I wanted to continue with that or not.

Yes it takes time, work, diligence, and consistency for it to become “second nature” but since we are all a “work in progress” anyway, why not dig into the deeper reason behind why we “hold on” vs “let go”?  After all – each effort is one step closer to a true heart connection and increased inner peace.

Sending you peace in the process