Posts Tagged ‘Desire’

3 tools for calming the nervous system

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I know of three ways of depleting cortisol and adrenaline.

First is our diet, what we eat and how much body fat around our belly is influenced by our cortisol levels. Certain foods help deplete cortisol.

Second tool is Slowing the breath, focusing intently, activates our parasympathetic nervous system, applies the brakes.

This calms us, settles us down and lowers cortisol and adrenaline. It’s called meditation, it has many variations.

The third way is purely physical, aerobic exercise works like a charm.

Aerobic exercise to near failure works like a miracle. Start slow and adapt, then build up so you can exert maximum energy.

We have to want to heal more than any desire we entertain. I have never read that in any psychology book.

Therapy and my two therapists, one in San Diego then another in Eugene , helped me on my journey. I was encouraged to explore and try new things outside therapy.

Aerobic exercise and meditation were my two most valuable skills. Being a former pro jock, aerobic exercise was easy for me.

All my friends doubted I could ever meditate, I was always amped up, excitable and kind of high strung.

Do not let other people’s judgments rule our behavior. We get lost and run over by others because we are different, stay strong and try like hell in the face of worry and doubt.

I laughed at my friends, you think focusing on the spin of a baseball while hitting with 25,000 screaming fans can not be turned internally.

For a jock, being told we can not do something, is not something you want to bet against.

When my mind was frozen from trauma, my legs could still move and my willpower drove me to exhaustion.

Mechanically I can calm my body completely down.

We can not separate our mind from our body, they work as one.

There are many skills or tools we can learn to improve.

Yesterday, I started hiking to exhaustion again.

It’s half mental and half physical. It builds willpower.

How bad do you want to heal?

What is your level of commitment, are you in a little, a medium involvement or are you all in.

Intensity is a necessity for optimum results.

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Focused and Fearless by Shaila Catherine: “I” am

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“Make a note of moments when the thought “I am” forms.

How much of your thinking is recreating and reinforcing the story of being you?

What would the experience of your life be like without the burden of incessant becoming?”

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My two cents: “I” (Ego) am the one who loses balance, perspective, direction.

I turn desires into needs with excessive craving.

Ego tells me through irrational thoughts, his existence is paramount.

60,000 thoughts cross our path daily, coming from some nether land deep inside our mind.

Many of these thought are the Ego’s selfish needs and outrages.

When I go deep in the woods, that bear or nature could care less, I am Marty.

We are so much more than the small, rigid Ego.

Thoughts?

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What drives your desires

Pixabay: wirdefalks

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Can we say desires have different origins and consequences.(yes)

Some desires are beneficial in proper perspective, bringing depth and purpose to our lives.

Some desires can be dysfunctional, destructive for us and others.

Desires mixed with emotions always have our Ego heavily involved.

Do desires lead to wellbeing or suffering?

Both!

Let’s look at the mechanism:

Take a wonderful buffet: The smells, colors, and presentation of the food invade our senses, creating desire.

The important part is not in the selection of the entree, it is the quality of our satisfaction that determines our behavior.

The first banana split was delicious, the second wonderful and by the middle of the third, a belly ache ensued.

Satisfaction never meets desire and definitely does not last for long.

That is mans issue, nothing satisfies for long, so desire never ends

Even with a buffet, stuffing my face, I will be hungry, possibly starving in a week.

Our ultimate desire, the need for oxygen (breath) goes unnoticed everyday.

Our Ego craves more satisfaction than is healthy for us.

Our Ego may desire to harm others who have wronged him.

So while desire is a necessity, moderation and perspective are always needed.

Mindfully we could choose desires that lead to Wellbeing.

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PTSD is the biggest thief in the universe

https://pixabay.com/users/ken_lecoq-5288289/

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If you follow this blog, my decade long healing journey, triumphs and losses have been shared. I healed twice in that decade, great joy and accomplishment filled my being for a while.

Underneath my supposed healing, I felt PTSD still had power. Then four months ago the final piece of hidden trauma from college exploded. The most humiliating betrayal of my life.

It feels like my whole life has erupted into trauma and suffering again.

My childhood abuse changed the way my (your) brain wired. Our nervous systems became super sensitive to danger.

Our worry circuit was overdeveloped, danger was always close.

Instead of pursuing pleasure, we spend our time on point, protecting our being from attack.

Our mental resources focus to much in survival mode, which shuts down enjoyment and security (normal life).

We never really feel safe, feel like we are worthy or deserving. We are different than other kids.

My father isolated me more, severing my attachments at school.

The ACE study details how abusive childhoods will have more suffering, addiction, mental disorders, cancer, alcoholism, prostitution and suicide.

Birth is the ultimate lottery, some win big, others are severely abused.

Personally, being the target of daily criticism and violence, created a negative self image.

How do you spin a self who feels worthy out of constant criticism from your dominant first caregiver.

My life feels like it has been mostly pain and suffering to the point I have huge resentment Now.

In the middle of PTSD, life is bleak and irrational.

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healthy and unhealthy Desire

Pixabay: pinterastudio

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The Buddha made a useful distinction between two kinds of desire.

First, there is healthy desire, such as trying to be more patient and loving.

Second, there is an unhealthy desire–the craving mentioned in chapter 2–that causes so much suffering.

For example, this kind of desire is active when we run away from or fight with what is painful, get driven about or addicted to what is pleasurable, or keep trying to impress other people.

So the issue is not desire per se but rather:

.Can we desire what is beneficial for ourselves and others?

.Can we pursue it with skillful means? For example, there might be a positive aim, such as helping a child read, but if a parent goes about it yelling, that’s not skillful.

.Can we be at peace with what happens? Different parts of the brain handle liking—-enjoying or preferring something—-and wanting, in the sense of craving.

This means it is possible to aim high and be ambitious without being consumed by pressure and drivenness.

Sure, there could be disappointment about not achieving a goal, but there can also be acceptance— and enthusiasm for the next opportunity.

from “Neurodharma” Rick Hanson

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Me and Victimhood

https://pixabay.com/users/jendigitalart-6490932/

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I have waged a battle, an intense effort to never be a victim for long.

Realize we have no way of protecting ourselves completely from being traumatized.

My traumatizing childhood did not stop me from becoming a professional athlete.

My chronic pain did not take my life away for long. In front of 15 group members, I said we need to throw away the opioids and exercise. One guy followed me out.

Being paralyzed with Guillian Beret, I got up and took three steps when doctors and specialists told me I would be in a wheel chair for a couple years.

For the last two plus months with my college trauma exploding, I have been a victim.

I HATE THAT!

All my tools and skills have not slowed the onslaught of fear and humiliation.

Now, my flag is planted against feeling sorry for myself, being numb or feeling worthless.

It takes me awhile to recognize where the real battle is being fought.

The battle is inside my head, not external.

Physical challenges are second nature to me, the emotional, betrayal trauma is my kryptonite.

While in rehab, paralyzed with intense pain, I thought why me.

No way to heal when, Why me is our mantra.

I was a pro jock and a seasoned meditator, Why not me.

Once you accept the challenge in its entirety, the battle of wills begins.

Victimhood ends. We do not have to win but keep battling.

Some periods of my life are filled with times of never giving up.

Playing defense, not making decisions and increasing my effort every time trauma enters my space, is the way I exist.

This usually leads to more wellbeing.

How about your experiences?

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Part 2: narrative based and immediate based selfs

https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/en/

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Neurological research using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) has shown that these two forms of self-awareness—narrative-based self and immediacy-based self—are located in two separate areas of the brain (Farb et al. 2007).

Using neuroimagery, which can detect which “self” people are operating from, this study compared novice meditators to people who had participated in an eight-week program in mindfulness meditation.

When participants shifted from a narrative focus to their immediate experience, fMRIs indicated that the experienced meditators had less activity in the region associated with the narrative-based self.

In other words, through the practice of mindfulness meditation we can disidentify from the self we’ve created with our stories and discover a new sense of self based in the present moment.

The narrative-based self lives in a continuum of past and future, and as such is the source of wanting, dissatisfaction, and judging—in short, suffering.

The immediacy-based self exists only in the here and now.

These two orientations in the world are fundamentally (and neurologically) different.

The immediacy-based self lives with the inescapable emotional pain of being human, yet it is also present for the breeze on your face or the birdsong that you cannot feel or hear when you’re preoccupied with thoughts and stories.

The narrative-based self can help you avoid much of the emotional pain that’s inevitable when living in the here and now, but you pay the price, as you must instead live with the suffering that self-limiting stories create.

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Have you ever practiced, Not being Special?

https://pixabay.com/users/Prawny-162579/

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From “Buddha’s Brain”

“Consider renouncing specialness—including being important and admired.

Renunciation is the antithesis of clinging, and thus a radical path to happiness.

Say phrases like these in your mind, and notice what they feel like:

I give up being important. I renounce seeking approval.

Feel the peace in this surrender.

Love the person you are, much as you would care about any person dear to you.

But don’t love the self or any other mere mind-object.”

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My two cents: That mere mind-object (Ego) wants to be the most important person in the room.

He/She believes achievement, power, approval and status are connected to happiness.

It was most difficult for me to not overachieve, trying to make up for my unworthiness.

I was always trying to win worthiness through achievement.

My father wanted me to be a great professional baseball player, I was so attached to that goal, it became me.

Happiness or contentment never visited me.

All that energy, emotion and intent made suffering a constant companion.

I learned happiness only visits one time zone, the present moment.

Needing to achieve is always in the future.

Extra credit: https://ptsdawayout.com/2020/01/06/aloneness-is-not-for-those-who-want-to-be-special/

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Politics have always been a battle between _______

Jaws” released by Universal Studios in 1975 directed by Steven Spielberg

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The year 1975, the place Amity Island, the battle is the same as now, profit (economy) versus safety. Who wins?

 

Indecision or greed costs lives then and now.

 

The masses rarely have insight into the real danger, the scope of their privileged decisions at our expense..

 

Maybe, why some think used car salesman have more integrity than politicians.

 

Hard to think a spiritual leader like the 14th Dalai Lama in Washington politics.

 

A human being who has devoted his life to having less “Ego” and more equanimity, would not waste his life in politics.

 

Greed, status and power have no foundation in his life.

 

Even my humble spiritual journey sees politics as a cesspool of ultimate power!

 

Politics attracts huge “Egos” competing for status, power and legacy.

 

Happiness seems rare in this backstabbing environment.

 

Mard Gras this year is an example:   https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/13/us/coronavirus-new-orleans-mardi-gras.html

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The CONTRAST before and after HEALING !!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

https://pixabay.com/users/maria-anne-595075/

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Severe childhood abuse impacted how my mind wired together, besides filling my amygdala with trauma laced implicit memories.

Even after healing, remnants exist in the recesses of my mind.

Before I healed, suffering was compounded by thoughts that were endless, intrusive and completely unworthy in nature.

Severely abused kids carry the damage not only in the mind but throughout our bodies.

Hard to describe an upside down nervous system erupting double digit times everyday.

Healing was long, arduous and painful for me.

The contrast before and after healing, Startling.

Just the elimination of intrusive thoughts seemed Euphoric.

The absence of suffering can be considered Exhilarating on its own.

The cessation of never feeling good enough Ecstatic.

This concept like PTSD can not be described by words but experienced in real life.

Beyond the euphoric and ecstatic, the ability to let the noise go and enter this moment unencumbered by unworthy thought, seems miraculous at first.

Yes, I came back to earth after a while.

Learning to accept and not question or resent my childhood abuse was not easy.

Moving forward, my childhood still can be awakened and unleashed.

This lives a short existence now, but I admit, yearning for happy go lucky moments, still overtakes my desires.

I guess we all wish for things we will never experience.

That desire is not a need and fades as quickly as unwanted thought, now.

Moral of the story: Never give up, never give in, fight for your wellbeing.

It is the journey we need to improve, not the destination.

The destination is always death, so enjoy the ride as much as possible.

That does not mean chasing pleasure but have enormous gratitude and be a world class giver for a start.

Have a good journey today.

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