Friday 16 January 2015 – 11 Daily Practices

CREATING THE SPACE

A new year has turned its tide, how will you embrace your own personal evolution? There are specific practices that one may engage in daily or regularly that lead to a life where one is content, fulfilled and aware of existence in such a profoundly deep manner that empathy, understanding and gratitude are naturally postured. Not only does this occur, but one’s senses are also broadened and consciousness expanded upon…

These are known as daily practices that support the opportunity to query all aspects of life and existence deeply and in an interconnected manner. Below are a number of habitual practices that you may engage in; note, that there are additional habits that can add great benefit to your life, but concentrating on these will be of great assistance in the interim.

1. Arise with the Sun
Or better still, arise prior to the Sun. Awaking early is about quiet time, it is about creating a space where you may be able to practice some of the habits mentioned below. Awaking with the sun is evolutionary, it is conditioned within us and it aligns with our circadian rhythms.

The Labyrinth of Life - Stefanos Sifandos

2. Meditate 
The act of engaging in practice that is introspective has tremendous value for building greater levels of self awareness. When we become more quiet within and reach a deeper understanding of self, we begin to realise our expansive capabilities and infinite potentiality. We are able to connect not only with ourselves, realise what inspires us but also understand others greatly. Our levels of empathy and connection increase, therefore increasing our social value and the quality of our relationships.

3. Read & learn
The Universe is an expansive place, with so much to gain, so much to be exposed to… You should be reading every single day. Never let a day go by that you don’t grow in some area of your life. Perhaps after your meditation, set some time aside to read; 30-60minutes perhaps? Read in meaningful literature an information that aligns with what truly inspires you… When we read truly deep works of art about our cultural roots, philosophy, history, our Universe, our existence, the mind; when we read deeply, we query and query leads to discovery…

When you read you help stimulate your thought processes, and you may be surprised by the ideas and creativity that are rise to the surface of your minds eye.

4. Move with intent
Even if it is just for 30 minutes, it is important to start exercising daily. Exercise can help release endorphins that can naturally boost your mood and your energy levels. Build yourself up to engaging in physically based intensity training. Push your boundaries, push your limits, push your perceived barriers. The mental resilience achieved in this realm can translate and transmute itself in to other key areas of life. It leads to a greater understanding of self and increases your confidence in to your capabilities…

5. Practice gratitude
One of the most important practices you can partake in is the practice of being grateful. Whether you lay your head to sleep at night and verbally speak the aspects of life you deeply appreciate or whether you awake in the morning and have a journal dedicated to gratitude. List your daily appreciations with intent and attention; They will transform your life beyond measure.

6. Plan your day
Planning your day is important, it establishes your successes for that day, importantly it places you in a position to learn from all experiences that you will encounter. Preparedness leads to awareness and familiarity familiarity leads to comfort (we make what may be uncomfortable comfortable); and comfort leads to greater accuracy in execution and a deeper knowledge of those circumstance. This is where growth occurs…

7. Focus on high-priority tasks first
Many people actually often put their high-priority tasks on the backburner and end up saving them until the last minute. This may be because the task is daunting, or because they think they will have more time to dedicate to the endeavor.

No matter what the reasoning is, challenge yourself by starting with focusing on your high-priority task. Get it done first and then focus on smaller things. After being in the mindset of tackling a high-priority project, your less demanding tasks will be easier to complete.

8. Give

Contemplate what you can do or be for someone today? How can you assist them in evolving. We are relational beings, we are dependant on each other’s intuitive kindness, collaborative natures and assistance to grow and flourish. This process of sincere giving will evolve your own being and provide you with greater insight in to the inner workings of existence.

9. Be ‘better’ than yesterday
This does not mean you must constantly improve, or compare against your old self or others with a harsh frame of reference. What this means is aim to evolve, to learn, to grow. Be humble in this process, realise that life is a multitude set of experiences that require attention and if we can gain value from each experience, we can take our leaning to the next level. This process is slow, methodical and requires patience… So be kind to yourself.

10. Spend time with nature
It is imperative that we spend time with what has given us and provided us with life. Our natural world substantiates our existence, it provides us with the ability to love, be, act, think, create. It is our foundations for life… Connecting with nature provides us with deeper insight in to who we are, where we have come from, where we are going, our potential and it gives meaning t our journey. It defines our place and importantly, it allows us to discover an intrinsically deeper inclusive respect for what provides us with breath.

The Labyrinth of Life - Stefanos S. Sifandos

11. Post reflection is a must
At the end of each day, reflect on the moments of the day. Don’t dwell, but rather observe the lessons from that day. Closely linked to number 9, post reflection is critical in understanding one’s self in relation to the world around us… When we reflect upon our day, we realise what we want our dayton be filled with, we realise what needs to be done to improve, enhance, rebalance our day and we can strive towards that. This process also leads to apophatic reasoning, which can assist us in deducting who we don’t wish to be in our lives…

The world needs you to be your best… Your ‘time’ is valuable. How will you move through yours…? SS.

The Labyrinth of Life - Stefanos Sifandos

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