Obstacles to (psychological) freedom include:
Judgement: A small tree isn’t inferior to a larger tree, so it is with all of nature, things are as they are. That’s it. And, things are as they are according to the particular environment and seeds or intentions present. While it may be difficult not to judge people and situations against your values, standards, and desire for a happier world, you need to accept that which you cannot change; and realise that people are acting from their present level of consciousness and conditioning in making any unwise choices.
Attachments: Attachments have a hold over you and can therefore cause you emotional pain if their existence is threatened. In true freedom we are free of our attachments. We can never be free if we really need and cling to something – what we want to possess, possesses us!! And in possessing us it can tease, terrify and frustrate us with feelings like disappointment or resentment.
Our attachments can include:
- “Comfort zone”
- Addictions to drama in relationships, our ailments, sex, food, drugs, etc.
- Mind-chatter (see “Rumination” below), likes and dislikes, and limiting beliefs
- “Needs” identified by Maslow, McClelland, Herzberg and other psychologists such as physiological (sex, sleep, food), security (money, property, etc.), belonging, social affiliation and approval, power or control, achievement; recognition and fame, self-actualisation.
“Moderation in all things” is a good adage to live by, although that expression isn’t necessarily to act as a curb on healthy desires. The best thing is to have and enjoy things without needing them or causing unnecessary waste.
Resistance: As the old saying goes “what you resist persists”
These three key obstacles can be remembered by the acronym JAR, and the word “jar” may be thought of as a container of these undesirable, potentially painful elements, or mind “baggage”.
Rumination on painful thoughts about what has happened, or will happen, will cause you to suffer. (Rumination can be regarded as part of the “attachment” categorisation above, through identification with your story, for example). That is not to say that you don’t have valid concerns that you need to pre-empt, based on clear thought and assessment in the present, and through enlisting external resources if necessary. The past has gone and, if the memories are unhappy ones, then you can just observe the temporary associated emotions and choose to let them go. You might consider reframing them if they are persistent and difficult for you to let go of. You need to look for the lesson, changes or avoidance strategies for the future, and the associated blessings too.
In what I jokingly refer to as (Eckhart) Tolle’s let out clause, you can be free to follow your preferences in many “non-acceptable” situations. (In one video clip, Tolle gives the example of when he moved to a different seat on a bus to avoid proximity to certain individuals liable to challenge his peace).
Environmental toxicity: This can refer to social, political, economic, physical, climatic, cultural, work-place and family conditions. Hopefully you live and contribute your gifts in a country and place where you can feel safe and supported and experience growth. If not, you need to find a solution to your situation while developing your inner strength and coping skills. You may need to walk away from a situation, however painful, consistent with your values and vision, yet be very careful of the potential pain for others, especially innocent people, and act responsibly. This may be a difficult call.
To be or not to be in our Comfort Zone … that is the question? I think that we do need to get out of our comfort zone sometimes, though I would not necessarily advocate making oneself “scared every day” as some life coaches suggest. Approached the right way though, it could really be quite exciting to be making regular breakthroughs through challenging fears.
Yet, infinitely better than getting out of your comfort zone is for you to actually expand your comfort zone, so that you feel comfortable growing through bigger challenges for the benefit of yourself and others, without undue stress. Our goal is to help you expand your view of what’s possible without scaring yourself to death! Indeed we advocate authentic, fearless living as far as practicable, doing what’s right for you. Enlisting a good coach to help you reprogram your beliefs and to stay accountable to your goals and dreams is a great way to expand your comfort zone and achieve success.
Living as forever-Being in cohorts with the permanent Oneness is arguably the best antidote for combatting fear. There is safety in trusting the permanent! Even the best and most well-intentioned people may let us down quite innocently, such as by dying on us, or some other unanticipated turn! So let your sense of forever-Being be your new comfort zone. How can this be put into practice? Be a Spiritual Warrior determined to do the inner work, knowing that the main enemy is you!! Examine your emotions and the underlying beliefs, thereby making the unconscious programming conscious so that you can examine it and change it for the better. Drop everything that is not you. Fight the good fight to eradicate negativity, unkind judgement and habitual resistance to what-is. Be the best that you can be for your sake - and for others in your presence!
It’s important that your ladder of purpose is leaning against the right wall so that your time and energy are put to good use.
In practical terms, as we go through life, we find ourselves dealing with people and situations.
In dealing with situations and events that are not to our liking, we can adopt a “LUCKY” attitude. This is an acronym to remind us to firstly, (and primarily), to have gratitude for how lucky we are, and then to come into situations from a perspective of Love, Understanding, Compassion, Kindness and JoY. Gratitude for what we have, have had or will have, is really important when confronting difficult situations where we sense loss. And, whatever is happening right now, why not remind yourself that great things are about to happen.
When people issues come up, we may need to practice, Forgiveness, Acceptance, Calmness, Empathy and Support to wellbeing and happiness, which can be remembered by the acronym FACES. This doesn’t mean that you have to agree with people all the time if you see things differently but you can at least try to understand the other’s perspective. Instead of automatically resisting and rejecting another’s idea for example, try to find a way to accommodate it. You might come across a more acceptable idea that builds on the intentions of the one presented to you. Or you might say something like “you may be right” unless you’re absolutely sure of your facts.
The acronyms LUCKY and FACES can be applied to yourself too. As within, so without. You show up according to how you feel about yourself.
In dealing with both people and situations we can operate from a positive stance embodied in the acronym SCHOOL: Smiling, Confident, Happy, double Optimistic Lover of Life.
So there you have it: LUCKY FACES SCHOOL.
How wonderful to experience a life of true freedom - freedom from anxieties borne out of fear, guilt or worry; freedom to live life on our own terms giving free reign to our talents and aspirations; loving what we do; freedom to choose a lifestyle that provides us with a full life of wellbeing while contributing to the happiness and quality of life for others.
When we feel totally free, we are happy, content, joyous, engaged, one with what we are doing, present, and thriving with no anxieties. We feel good, are in the flow, connected to our divinity, and not resisting or arguing with anything in our current reality. We love everyone and everything and potentially petty woes and concerns, our resistances to love, die to nought.
The starting point for the various freedoms outlined above is psychological freedom, an element of mind-set. The biggest obstacles to feeling free that we will ever face are of the mind and body which is to say our thoughts and emotions, and our moods. With the right mind-set, (conscious, creative) and mood, (poise, bold-calm), one can learn to be happy no matter what and to change things where necessary, for example, if faced with an untoward social, work, home or general living environment. Happiness only requires a few basic conditions and the decision to be free, happy and blissful. So to experience freedom, we must work on getting the right mind-set and mood while engaging with life in a way that is purposeful and meaningful.
Read more: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LW7JUSW