Tuesday, November 29, 2011

How you perceive “reality” and “illusion” will change the quality of your life

Reality is all about perception
When you were born into this life you probably learned that what you see in front of you is “reality.” But this is only a partial truth because reality is also determined by your attention and perception.

You and I could be looking at the same thing, person or situation, but it doesn’t mean that we will perceive or interpret it the same way. How we perceive something or someone becomes our “reality” — the factor that either motivates or discourages us. And the interpretation of reality that we choose to believe will inevitably affect the quality of the life we live.

We’ve been taught through generations, by society and authority figures, that what we see is real. Perhaps this is partly true, however, there’s more to this notion than meets the eye; and it is this missing part that isn’t really taught to us. We have to figure it out ourselves through trial and error.

And through heart-breaking trials and errors of my own, and of others, I have certainly made my share of valuable discoveries, and can today confidently share my experiences in hope to contribute to the quality of your life.

With that said, let me ask you this:

What if life could be even more rewarding if only you made a slight shift in the way that you think? Would you make this shift? Would you be open enough to adjust your perception of life?

It is the heart and mind
that controls the
external reality
What if what you see is not “reality,” but is only a vision that presents a challenge so that you are reminded to make the best decision you can, given the circumstances? What if what you see is an illusion, and what you choose is the ultimate reality? How would you live life then?

Would you spend time complaining and dwelling on the very displeasing thing that is happening before your eyes? Or would you see it as an opportunity to choose something that feels better to you?

You see, it is not what you see that creates your reality; it is the choices you make from what you see that creates your reality.

This means whatever displeasing thing you see, no matter how real it may appear to you, can only remain real if you choose to spend your energy (thoughts and emotions) there. In other words, you're most likely gossiping or complaining about it, and/or feeling strong emotions toward it. Simply put, you’re spending your energy in "that place.”

Whatever you spend your energy on can no longer remain an illusion. Instead, it becomes your reality.

And while you’re there (in this displeasing illusion you’ve given so much of your attention to) you begin to attract more events and people that don’t seem to make things any better. And so, of course, this “illusion” then becomes even more of a “reality” to you.

So you see, the thing that matters most is not so much what you see, but what you choose. The minute you choose to direct most of your attention to a subject, you are then in that moment energizing it and it will sooner and later become your reality. Without your strong attention to it, it remains powerless, still somewhat of an illusion.

And even in making new decisions, keep in mind that it may not always be a choice that makes you happy right away. And that’s okay. It need only be a choice that makes you feel a bit better than the moment before.

In every moment, you can change
the course of an event by making
a different choice
Then from there, in that next moment, you choose the next thing that makes you feel a bit better than the moment before that. The key is to deliberately repeat this method of decision-making from one moment to the next, and not give up part way.

This kind of deliberate consistency can become very powerful as it creates a positive momentum. And slowly, but surely, these so called “little” steps will start to take shape in your favor.

These “little” steps are the moves that will set your sails in life. When you make a conscious effort to use what you see in front of you as an opportunity to set your sails in a direction of your choice, then, when the wind blows (as it always will), you can be certain to sail where you wish to go, more effortlessly.

As you go about your day, just remember: In every moment, you can change the course of an event by making a different choice. After all, it is the heart and mind that controls the external reality.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

10-Minute Home Workout Series 6: Bad to the CORE

Finally! It's okay to be bad! Try this "Bad to the CORE" workout. Who knew being bad could be so good for you? ;) You only need 10 minutes to increase your strength and endurance, while tightening your core. A strong core can give you more power and stability in every move you make, whether it be in or out of the gym. So go ahead and be bad to the CORE!

List of exercises for Bad to the CORE workout:
- 8 Plank jump-jack
- 8 Palm plank with knee cross-drive
- 10 Knee-high (running on the spot)
- 5 jackknife
- 8 torso twist

Repeat as many rounds as you can in 10 minutes. Try to beat your own record each time you execute this workout. ;0)

Penny shares this workout from her series of 10-Minute Home Workout videos as part of her "Join the Wellness Movement" campaign. This campaign was created to motivate you to "move" — to encourage you to consciously choose the things in life that fulfills your overall well-being — to inspire you to stay fit, stay strong and stay well in mind, body and spirit.

Join the Wellness Movement! Start here, right now, with this 10-Minute Home Workout Series 6: Bad to the CORE.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Thought For Today: Don't be so hard on yourself...

Just when you think you got a grip on how life works and you're ready to be calm and confident… you trip! Or something doesn't go your way and you find yourself “losing it” all over again. And then, you get mad at yourself for it. Please stop. Don't be so hard on yourself…

Realizing your higher Self, attaining inner peace or achieving divine confidence... in other words, "being more spiritual," does not make you or me better or right. It simply makes us more aware. That is all. Nothing more. It is what you do with that awareness that determines the amount of joy you experience in life. With deep awareness, you can make better decisions.

I've come to learn that no matter how much we find our way again, we continue to lose our way at some point, only to have to find our way again. Sometimes this "down time" lasts only a few seconds, sometimes days, months or even years. And so I've come to realize through my own life's trials and tribulations that…

Life is indeed a continued journey of inquiring, discovering and re-discovering; fighting so you can get tired of fighting and so surrender to life's higher intelligence and divine order; losing so you can experience winning all over again; getting off track so you can again experience the joy of getting back on track.

Life is indeed a journey of losing yourself so you can experience and re-experience the deep peace and inner fulfillment that comes with finding your Self again. You will see for yourself no matter how "good" you get in life, you will still lose it at times. Just know that's okay. That's how life works; a journey of repeating joy, of discovering and re-discovering your state of balance again, and again.

This is the only way your spirit can build more courage, strength and wisdom. There is no other way. So embrace the paradox of life. Embrace the light and the dark… Light can only appear when it is dark, and darkness can only exist in the absence of light. In other words, both “good” (light) and “bad” (darkness) are necessary to create a whole picture. And so it is that you, too, have to be the “good” and the “bad” in order to be whole. See the irony here?

So don't be so hard on your Self. It isn't you, it is just the way life works. Don't fight it or over analyze it. Just embrace it and it will embrace you back tenfold. This much, I know for sure.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Try this tasty tomato snack with amazing health benefit

This video is dedicated to the fans in Italy, and Steve and friends from the prestigious Harbour Wellness and Fitness Club in Milan, Italy. Thank you for your following and continued support! Apprezzo tutti voi! The article for this video is provided below in English for those who don't speak Italian. :) Grazie!

Here's a delicious snack you can also have as a light meal when you're grazing through the day. Aside from its obvious yumminess, it is also less than 200 calories, nutritious, easy to make and will keep you satiated. Fresh, juicy tomato on toasted multigrain light rye bread.

• Lightly spray the toast with low-fat butter
• Place sliced, fresh tomatoes on the toast, and lightly spray again
• Sprinkle onion powder, sea salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper (if you like it spicy)

What exactly makes this snack so good?

The tomato carries a set of health benefits of its own including prostate cancer prevention and cholesterol reduction; it can serve as anti inflammatory and anti thrombotic (helps prevent blood clot); and has an alkalizing effect in the body (helps neutralize acidity in the body). 

Tomatoes are an excellent source of vitamin A (helps your skin, eyes and immune system stay healthy), vitamin C (helps your body fight infection, increase your iron absorption, maintain the health of your connective tissues, improve your skin, and reduce stress), and vitamin K (helps maintain the strength of your bones). 

They are a very good source of dietary fiber (keeping your cholesterol and blood sugar levels in check), and important minerals such as chromium, manganese, potassium, and vitamin B1. 

In addition, the high fiber bread helps stabilize blood sugar levels, helps in weight control, minimizes the risk of heart diseases and improves gut function. Not to mention, all the sprinkled flavors also offer a list of health benefits of their own.

Just for fun: Go ahead and add a 4-5 oz piece of salmon, and that would make this a tomato salmon opened-face sandwich! Salmon’s health benefits include loads of protein, B vitamins and good Omega-3 fats. With this, this delicious, healthy “snack” becomes a great meal for well under 500 calories! A great addition indeed! :)