The mind is a powerful tool, and when brought into alignment with the heart, it can allow you to create the joyful and happy life experiences that you desire. As you cultivate a practice of quieting the mind and deepening self awareness, you can go beyond the limitations of the mind, and connect more deeply with your Heart.
The thoughts and beliefs that you focus on direct the flow of your life energy, creating the experiences that reflect these beliefs and thoughts. Your life experiences, your relationships, even your physical health are all reflections of how you are focusing your attention.
Sometimes we find ourselves focusing on negative thoughts from the past, or anxiety about the future, that cause suffering. Sometimes these negative thoughts seem to be beyond our control. This can point to repressed emotional trauma being held in the body, which is being expressed through subconscious (and often repetitive) thought patterns. In order to heal these wounds, it is necessary to release the emotional energy that has been repressed or pushed away. By releasing repressed emotion and bringing acceptance to our past experiences, you can bring the subconscious parts of our mind (the broken record) into our conscious awareness, allowing the old thought patterns to be dissolved.
Changing certain negative thought patterns may simply be a matter of overwriting the old programming with thoughts that are self loving and positive, while other negative patterns may require deeper investigation in order to heal the unresolved emotional wounds.
Guided visualizations, meditation, breathwork, intention setting, and mindful awareness techniques, all help to increase self awareness and bring greater understanding to subconscious thought patterns and repressed emotion. The more we become the conscious observer of our mind, the less control our subconscious mind has over us, and the more we understand what thoughts and past experiences are motivating our current behavior. Through the process of healing we can uncover our mind’s creative potential. It takes practice, awareness and commitment, but the results are life changing!
The ego is part of the mind that believes it is separate, and is constantly trying to prove itself worthy of love. Our ego develops early in childhood as a natural and instinctual function of survival (in order to feel love from our parents we compete with our siblings for our parents affections). This aspect of our minds can eventually become a dysfunction, manifesting as mental, emotional, and physical illness.
As we grow older our ego becomes more subtle and fine tuned. A pat on the head from our parents becomes competing for our teacher’s approval in school, or for our boss’s approval at work, for more friends, or for the perfect partner. The ego constantly searches for representations of love in the form of attention, approval, role identification, success, material possessions, and sensory gratification. The anxiety that drives us to achieve this “success” takes a toll on us mentally, emotionally and physically. These negative thoughts and emotions can ultimately cause dis-ease within us. The process of mental and emotional healing is undoing these patterns of the ego, uncovering more of who we truly are.
What is to be done about the ego? All that is required to dissolve the ego is to become aware of it. As you do, you will begin to see how the ego is actually keeping you imprisoned in limitation, causing anxiety, depression, and dis-ease within your body. So begin a daily practice of watching your thoughts.
What does it mean to watch ones thoughts? It means that you take a moment after you have a thought to simply notice the nature of the thought. For instance, as you have a thought in the form of a judgment, “that person is so annoying, I can’t stand them,” take a moment to stop and notice the nature of that thought. Was that a negative thought or a positive thought? How did it feel emotionally and physically to have that thought? You may notice that judgments feel good in the moment (they temporarily strengthen your ego–a brief feeling of superiority) yet ultimately leave you feeling drained, tense, and dissatisfied.
Ego thought patterns to notice:
-Judgements of other people, judgements about yourself, your body, your health, boredom, irritability, frustration and anger with other people, overly controlling, comparing yourself to other people, attachment to the past, or obsessing about the future, sensory gratification (earning or spending money, eating, sexual gratification).
The more you can see what is motivating your thoughts, emotions, and actions, the more choice you will have, and the more likely you will choose to create the energy and lifestyle that does not cause suffering (this happens in every moment as a decision to release negativity and tension, allowing love to flow into your body through self acceptance). This is a powerful step along the path of healing. The counseling work I do guides clients through this process, back towards a state of greater health. I consider myself a holistic therapist or counselor, but all of this type of work can be considered that of a healer, bringing about healing in an individual.
My path as a holistic counselor goes beyond the field of mental health. Through my own process of healing I have come to a greater understanding of how energy flows. In this way I have also become a teacher or healer for others. As each one of us awakens through our own healing, we then have the opportunity to help and guide others who are suffering. Giving back, through my service of holistic therapy, has been a very rewarding and uplifting experience, one that I am very grateful for. As a holistic counselor, or holistic therapist, I have been using these techniques towards my own healing journey. This form of natural healing takes time, and setting time aside for meditation and positive visualization will reinforce this transformation.