Control of the mind is said to be the highest Yoga.
It is like control of an unruly horse which must be made to obey its rider.
-Bhagavata Purana, XI.20
And a new year begins…New years is known for resolutions. Most of us resolve to lose weight or to begin an exercise plan and get in shape. We plan to end annoying habits and make ourselves better. While these goals are admirable, why not resolve to be happy? You can. Just decide that you are going to be. When you take control of your mind, you take control of your life. Start by changing the way you see yourself and your world.
My magical friend Anna once told me, the best attraction spell is to simply decide that you are attractive and radiate love. I tried it. (Of course I took a shower, did my hair, dressed up and dabbed some essential oil of rose on some key places) but I believed I was desirable and you know what, she was right. No one can resist you when you simple ARE. So how do you BECOME? That's easy you just decide TO BE. Sound odd? Not really, in fact modern psychology accepts and even treats the harm done by negative thinking. So why is society so cynical when it comes to the benefits of positive thinking? And it is so easy. Just let go of your fear and worry and put your energy toward a positive outlook. Imagine yourself in positive situations with people acting positively towards you. It is a self fulfilling prophecy. Through conscious awareness of our thoughts we are able to focus our experiences in the desired directions and create a positive, vibrant, radiant self/ life/ existence. Through positive thought and creative imagery we can change our reality.
So first resolution – Be happy. Simply be and then make the small changes you need to make to become this new amazing person that you have been all along. It is the small changes we make today that fosters big changes later on. Look in the mirror and decide what is important to you. Write your goals for this year down and post them where you can see them every day.
Next, take time to meditate. Through the practice of meditation we can renew our spirit. Our bodies are so much more than meets the eye. Of course we are flesh, blood and bone but we are also Spirit and within our body lies and an amazing network of energy centers or chakras. This energy system ensures that our organs, cells, and tissues stay strong and healthy. When there is a block in an energy pathway, the organ system that the pathway corresponds with will also become blocked. Through meditation we can heal and balance our own bodies by drawing energy to the energy center or chakra point that is not functioning to its fullest potential and healing it.
How do you begin? You can start by quieting your mind and simply listening. Listen to your breath. Follow the air as it travels in and out of your body. Close your eyes and focus on your breath as it enters your nose and fills your lungs. Gently exhale, and as you exhale, allow any tension you might feel to leave with your breath as your mind remains still, fixed on the moment. Continue breathing with a series of even inhalations and exhalations until you are calm and relaxed.
Notice how it feels as you breathe in and out. If thoughts or worries intrude, notice them and then bring your mind back to your breath. You can also focus on different parts of your body: on the beating of your heart, on the rise and fall of your chest, you can even practice a walking meditation.
And lastly, allow yourself to be happy. There is no reason for stress to get you down. Smile. The simple act of smiling is proven to lower your stress level and a smile makes you more attractive. So smile and be grateful for all you have and the potential for all you have to be because it’s a fact that cultivating gratitude is a simple way to a greater sense of emotional well-being.
The benefits of letting your heart swell with gratitude are many. When you are thankful, your troubles fade and your blessings will seem to multiply. Your positive attitude will draw additional positive things into your life. You will succeed and accomplish more of the tasks you take on. The people you encounter will be drawn to you and will respond to you with positive reactions. Your relationships will be strengthened all because you have decided to adopted an attitude of gratitude.
It's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life and let days, weeks and even months slip by. As John Lennon said, “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans”. So be happy in this moment. Be grateful for your blessing and smile. Within each of us lies the spark of the Divine and as this New Year dawns, quietly consider the cycle of life. Meditate on the wheel of the year and the journey of the Sun. As the days lengthen and grow light, focus on renewing your light, the spirit of your being, as the sun itself renews. Consider the year behind and put it to rest. Now look to the year ahead and let your heart swell with hope. Only you can make your life better. You can make your life into the life you desire. Indeed You have the power to change the world!