Cleaning House and Cleaning Your Mind

It seems we spend more time cleaning our house than cleaning up our mind.  It’s nice to come home to a clean house.  But you don’t spend all your time there.  You spend a lot more time with your own mind than you do your house.  It makes sense then that you would spend some time making it a nice and enjoyable place to be.

For practical steps and exercises on cleaning up the fear based beliefs in your mind do the exercises in the Self Mastery course.

Cleaning Your House and Cleaning Your Mind

 

Making Personal changes

How do make personal changes in your life?

Sometimes making changes in your beliefs, emotions, relationships, and elsewhere in your life is counter-intuitive.

When you are riding a bicycle,,, how do you turn the bike to the right?   You turn the handlebars to the left.    How do you change the negative thoughts in your head?   We’ll maybe you get the best results in a similar way.  Don’t try to push more positive ones on top of them.  Sometimes when you do you end up going in a negative direction.

Turning the handlebars to the right in order to turn the bike to the right makes logical sense if you aren’t aware of the other factors like the gyroscopic effect of precession.   Don’t know what you are doing when it comes to changing your beliefs or emotional reactions and you are likely to end up goring in the wrong direction.

The Self Mastery Course can help steer you in the right direction.  Some of the things might seem counter-intuitive, but they will make more sense when you have more awareness of how belief systems operate.

Originally posted at Making Personal Changes

ToltecSpirit.com, a resource for living by the Four Agreements.

 

Four Agreements Companion Book

A question from a subscriber to my on line course in Self Mastery,,,

Hello Gary,

I started reading The Four Agreements Companion Book yesterday and noticed that it had exercises like your Self Mastery program.  The first exercise in the book was dealing with image of perfection but I’m still about ten sessions away from your Image of Perfection session.

I am aware that the sessions in your program are in an order for a purpose, so I wasn’t sure if it would be okay to continue reading the book or not.

Should I… continue reading the book and do the book exercises with your program? or stop reading the book until I finish your program?

Thanks for your time,

Curious

Hi Curious,

The Four Agreements Companion book is great and I recommend that you read it.  However most people I’ve talked to that have attempted the exercises have gotten overwhelmed.   They see so much of their belief system so fast without first having control over their attention that they slip into a victim point of view.  That induces a feeling of overwhelm, powerlessness, and then hopelessness.   Then their inner judge kicks in and berates them for failing.   They lose motivation and close the book,,, stop the exercises…  defeated.   They end up feeling worse than when they started.

So that’s one of the reasons why I don’t start with the  Image of Perfection beliefs.  It’s also why I have people develop some other skills over their attention and beliefs before trying to change their whole belief system.  It’s like eating beef.  It’s much easier to do one bite at a time so you don’t get crushed by the whole animal.

By all means read the Four Agreements Companion Book.  But, I’d suggest doing the exercises in the Self Mastery before starting the exercises in the book.  And if you want to challenge and dissolve your Image of Perfection beliefs, (which is a necessary step to eliminating self judgments) then I suggest the using the steps in the Advanced Series of the Self Mastery program instead of the Four Agreements Companion book approach.   In the Advanced Series I not only walk you through changing the Image of Perfection beliefs, but also walk you through the different issues of resistance that come up to letting these go.

After that, you’ll be better prepared to do the exercises suggested  in the Four Agreements Companion book.

Hope that helps,

Gary

Original post at ToltecSpirit.com a Four Agreements resource for Spiritual Warriors
http://www.toltecspirit.com/2009/12/four-agreements-companion-book/

The Four Agreements – Why is it so Hard?

Living by the Four Agreements,,, why is it so hard?

We read the book the Four Agreements and feel better by the simple clarity it presents.  It tells us something about our self, other people, and the world that we have always known, but not been able to put into words.  With that clarity we have a sense of hope and excitement about changing our life and our relationships.  It is possible to end the drama of emotional suffering and be happy.

We take the next step and adopt the four agreements as principles and practices that we continually live by.  We are excited about the possibility, but then the reality sets in. Living our lives by the Four Agreements is challenging.  It can even appear impossible.  Why is it so hard when they are so simple?

We Make Endless Assumptions

It is because we have been practicing doing the exact opposite for almost our entire life.  From the time we were 2 or 3 years old we have been making assumptions.  We do it so continually we aren’t even aware how automatically we do it so often.

We Take Everything Personally

We also assume that we are the center of the world.  We assume that people do things because of us.   People react to what we say or do and we think it is about us. We aren’t aware that they have their own beliefs and interpretations that cause them to react.  This assumption blinds us to personalize everything to our own point of view.  We have done this for years and practiced it until we do it automatically.  We have become masters of taking things personally.

We don’t believe we do our best.

The judge in our mind has been hard at work telling us what to do for years.  It has been a constant reminder of what we should and shouldn’t do.  In our child hood we learned to follow it as a god like authority in our life.  We wouldn’t dare question what it tells us we should be.  Because our obedience to that inner judge we never feel like we are doing our best.

Living by the Four Agreements is a Life Changing Commitment

All of this, making assumptions, interpreting everything from our own personal point of view, and living by the voice of the inner judge is the exact opposite of the Four Agreements.  And we have been doing it for years.  Practicing it every day for years,,, the exact opposite of the Four Agreements.

When you decide to adopt the Four Agreements you are changing the course of so many of the habits of your life.  You will not make these changes in one day, or even one week.  However, if you work at it over time, you can make extraordinary changes in your life.

If you decide to adopt the Four Agreements as a means to change your relationships and your life, don’t do it for a day or a week.  Decide to do it a little bit each day for a year.  Then see how much you have changed.  To attempt to measure your results in a week, or a month is to make a gross error assumption in the magnitude of your undertaking.
For practical exercises in implementing the Four Agreements take advantage of the free sessions in the Self Mastery Audio Program.

This post originally posted at The Four Agreements by Gary van Warmerdam

Positive Thinking

Proponents of self help espouse the benefits of positive thinking.  I don’t argue with the benefits of focusing your attention on something positive, and making a positive expression.   However, what I propose is that there is something more valuable.

What about all those moments when our mind wanders and where our attention has strayed?  What are we creating in those moments we are not aware and in control of our conscious expression?   I say that is is far more valuable to become aware and gain control over your attention in every moment of your day.  Eliminate all the negative expressions and unpleasant emotions in those moments of unconsciousness, and you will do far more to change your life.

Positive thinking can certainly help you to create more happiness and beauty in your life.   However it first requires that you have control over your attention, so this is the place you should start.

Do Better Next Time

“I’ll do better next time.”   It’s an optimistic thought.  However, without a good dose of healthy self reflection on what happened last time, we are likely to repeat the same mistake.

Doing better next time takes more than just a commitment to the idea and goal.  Without awareness of the lessons learned about the past, there is little chance that we will break free of these patterns.  Surprisingly most self help courses or advice doesn’t provide any tools, systems, or techniques for reviewing past patterns, learning from them, or making changes in our self based on what we find.  Most just rely on the hollow, but well intentioned, commitment.

Without awareness of the things you overlooked in your past choices and patterns of the past, you will miss those same things next time.  A committment, no matter how well intentioned probably won’t take you as far in doing better as awareness.

Do better next time,,,  reflect on past patterns and choices until you see where you went wrong.  Then reflect on your self until you can see why you missed those critical observations in those moments.  That will be a start.   What assumptions did you make, why and how did you make them?  When you can see how your mind projects assumptions in the moment and you can suspend your belief in them, that is awareness.  And that is when you will have an opportunity to make a better choice next time.