life coach

Boost Your Cup of Coffee!

It's no secret that the people of Vancouver love their coffee! However, in abundance, coffee can trigger feelings of anxiousness - after all you are forcing your body into a wakened state. Here's what I do to hack my morning cup of coffee to last the entire day!

In your morning cup of coffee: + 1 tsp of Turmeric + Dollop of Manuka Honey (for taste)

How to Curb Anxiety and Paranoia

Anxiety is a mental health issue which affects over 40 million American Adults, 1 in 4 Canadians, 4.1 per thousand in Indians, 6 million in the UK, and approximately 100 million people in China. That’s already 200+ million people worldwide! I became curious about the global statistics as I seem to be dealing with more clients here in Vancouver and The Lower Mainland, who are battling this mental disorder on a regular basis.

Many of my clients visit my office looking for an alternative way to manage their anxiety and reduce paranoid thoughts. Imagine feeling like, believing even, that the whole world is already against you, and then being able to trust someone who hands you pills to numb these feelings. Though anti-depressants work for some they don’t work for all and let’s be honest, they don’t cure the disorder, they just suppress it.

Until I entered Life Coaching, I hadn’t realized how many different types of people this disorder affects. From business professionals and entrepreneurs, through to students and the everyday family member, it would appear that any of us can fall victim to severe panic and fear.

I’m a “look at the bigger picture” sort of guy, in fact, that’s how I help my clients step out from under their insecurities and march on forward toward the lives they’ve always dreamed of. So, when I started getting clients seeking support for their paranoia and anxiety, after having tried many other traditional routes, such as psychiatry for instance, I had to understand how mental illnesses fit into the picture.

One of the most remarkable things I’ve learned about people, is that we’re all living in different versions of a mutually shared reality. We’re all experiencing life through our own senses; we literally only see the world through our own eyes. Therefore, we can only interpret the world through our own senses too, for example, what one person sees as an opportunity, another can view as a threat. And with access to so much information and knowledge at the very end of our finger tips, we’re discovering how differently each and every single one of us interpret the world. So no longer are we alone in the way we think, it’s not so easy anymore to just dismiss our troubled thoughts.

Is it any wonder we’re becoming a more paranoid and anxious people? I mean, with so much contradicting information thrown at us on a daily basis, it’s becoming increasingly difficult to trust anything completely. Only just the other day I had back-to-back sessions with clients who were feeling anxious over the decision to go to college vs. independent online study. Back when I was growing up, obtaining a higher education from a recognized institution just made sense, and if you had the grades and could afford it, you seized the opportunity. Whereas today, it’s definitely not the only way to secure your future, in fact, in many cases it’s becoming detrimental because of the amount of debt one acquires.

I even remember back when Trump was elected president of the United States, I literally had clients concerned about this representing the beginning of the end of the world. Looking at what’s presented in the news today, it seems I can’t easily convince individuals to dismiss these feelings as paranoia. For all the information that is out there, there’s enough to justify and fuel our paranoid thoughts. From “Fake News” to Political propaganda, who and what can we have faith in today?

Perhaps this is what conscious evolution looks like? Maybe we’re in the midst of a shifting paradigm? Or maybe we’re just overworked and exhausted? Whichever way we look at this, we must learn to deal with our troubled mental processes more effectively. Otherwise, they’ll consume us to a point where we’ll start exploring more harmful ways to shut them out, because we are unable cope.

When you come across a paranoid thought, I wouldn’t be so quick to try and dismiss the paranoia. I think if your mind has entered into this perception of reality, then perhaps it’s drawing on information that you’ve consumed but have not yet processed. Almost likened to the evolutionary theory of dreaming.

I suffered from anxiety and paranoid thoughts when I was younger, and the only vice that worked for me was meditation. However, this is not what I’m suggesting to you (though I do recommend you try it), it’s how learned to interpret these thoughts through meditation, which enabled me to detach from them and keep them from infecting my conscious experience.

Each of us are experiencing the world differently, no two beings (not yet anyway) can occupy the same conscious or physical space at the same time. Think about when you go out for dinner with a friend, you sit at a table across from each other, or side by side. Though you’re having a mutually shared experience, how it is experienced physically is already quite different. Through your eyes you see your friend, but your friend through their eye is seeing you. So already our individual experience of the world is very different from each other.

Now think about all those individual experiences across a lifetime, what each of you have seen, heard, tasted, touched, and smelled, it’s all going to have an impact on the way you think and operate. So not only is your physical experience of the world going to be different, your conscious experience of the world is going to be very different from anyone else’s too.

Therefore, if you think about it, there are an infinite number of ways to experience the world, and an infinite number of way to interpret the experience. It’s so easy for an innocent dinner between two friends, to turn into a nightmarish experience for either one of them. It’s common to feel threatened by something that was said, or something that was seen for instance, simply because of how something was interpreted. No one believes that they're the bad guy and I think this is why, because our experiences justify our view of world.

When you look at paranoia and anxiety objectively, and a lot of other mental illnesses for that matter, you realize that these troubling feelings can only grow, based on how much you invest into a perceived thought. The validity of which, is based on a collection of individual experiences you’ve already had. So, one way to break the grip of paranoia and anxiety, I’ve discovered, is to develop objectivity over them.

How do you develop objectivity?

1.     Acknowledge and Accept

The first step is to acknowledge that these thoughts and feelings a quite real, after all, you feel them as if they are. Whether you believe the world is laughing at you, or you feel like the world is rigged against you, you have to accept and acknowledge that you feel this way. Don’t bury it, don’t dismiss it, acknowledge and accept that this is how you feel. This will then ease the pressure of trying to protect yourself from the thought and give you the energy to actually investigate its validity, and help you decide what to do next with more clarity.

However severe it may be, accept how you feel so that it doesn’t go unacknowledged. The reality that your mind has constructed is very much present and to deny it, only causes you to distrust your own mind and weaken your self-belief.

2.     Investigate and Learn

Remember, you’re reacting to a perceived reality which hasn’t manifested around you, it’s just present in your own mind, for now. Right now, in this moment, are you literally being laughed at? Are you literally being stopped from seizing an opportunity? If so, then you’re not being anxious or paranoid, it’s actually happening. If not, then investigate the world that your mind has created. Raise questions within until you get an answer, and with each answer, you raise another question until you develop a pathway back to conscious clarity.

The questions are a series of, who, what, when, where, why and how? Most of the time, we only ask one or two questions in this series, and then give up when we cannot arrive at any conclusion. To know the answer, you have to raise the right question. If you want to know the source of your fears, then you need to dive in and investigate the fear. Like a good reporter, you keep digging until you unveil the truth, also like a good reporter, you detach yourself from the story you’re investigating.

The answer may not come from the question, “Why am I being paranoid?”, nor may it come from “How have I become paranoid?” but it may just arrive from, “Where have I developed this paranoia?” or maybe even, “Who is making me paranoid?” – When you feel you’ve stumbled on a fragment of truth, you’ll have connected something you feel to something you’ve actually experienced, then start the series of questions again with this new information. However, this time, you’re learning how you arrived at the experience and as a result, you’re learning about the way you navigate through your life; you’re essentially developing your self-awareness.

As you explore your conscious experiences, you become aware of your conscious experience, thus, you arrive at conscious clarity.

3.     Take Action and Regain Control.

When you feel like your mind is once again clear, and you have successfully eased your troubling thoughts, you must make a decision. A decision supporting a truth you have uncovered about yourself/your life, so that you do not continue to fuel an insecure fate, or, continue a life of ignorance. If you have discovered that it’s something you’ve done, or taken perhaps, then you stop it. If you realize there’s a person in your life who is causing you to feel this way, then you move your life away from this person. If you realize that the sum of all your fears comes down to a behavioural pattern, take it as an indication to change behaviour. If you’re still unsure as to why you feel this way, then take it as an indication to seek support and maybe someone else can help you develop objectivity.

If all else fails…

…enact what I call “The Fire Drill Theory” which is something I derived from spiritual teaching. Basically, the higher-self; your imagination; the subconscious mind; or whatever other function of consciousness is at play, is working/are working together to create a ‘sub-reality’ of sorts. A reality of which you need to prepare for in case this sub-reality becomes your actual reality. Therefore, similarly to playing a virtual reality video game, you’ll need to enter your mind and successfully navigate yourself through this nightmare world, that your mind has created. For example, if you feel as though the world is laughing at you, then how are you going to do to deal with it, in a way which reduces most harm? Similarly, to the reason we have fire drills, how are you going to handle the situation and make it out alive? Preparation is confidence, so take your anxiety and paranoia as an opportunity to prepare, as a way for your mind to increase your conscious tolerance. Sort of like a contingency plan, if you will. Should ever this nightmare world become a reality, at least mentally, you’ll be ready to handle it.

Are you ready to reach your true potential?

Mental Health: The “Silent Epidemic” Killing Men

Mental Health in Men

The epidemic may be silent but enough is enough, men, we need to continue and raise the conversation on mental health. Did you know that suicide rates are higher among men, than in women, and that this seems to be a global trend? Furthermore, the suicide rate is steadily increasing with age, which means, guys, the longer we keep bottling up our emotions and suppress what we feel, we’re only more likely to arrive at that point of no return. There's hope though, but keep in mind my advice and concern can only go so far. In truth, only you can truly save yourself, but you’ll have to drop the ego to do so, and let go of every way in which you define yourself as a ‘Man’.

Despite what we’ve been led to believe, we’re not born fearless heroes and we’re not born to rule the world. I promise you that the world will not fall apart if we express a little emotion and communicate the truth about how we feel. In-fact, we’ll be doing the world a favour by doing so, making it more equal and life more liberating for all.

I coach a wide variety of clients internationally, but this year alone I have worked with more men. The number of men I worked with in Vancouver alone has also significantly increased, and first off let me tell you, mental health does not discriminate. Whether you're white and powerful or you’re brown and proud, no one is protected from this. If you're old and wise, or young and resilient, you are not protected from this either. Money, sexuality, what you do for a living, your relationship status, your good morals, your tough exterior, your balanced upbringing, and whichever other way you define and associate yourself with, will not protect you from the emotional ailments that feed on the suppression of truth. So if you think that this does not apply to you, you are very very wrong, and is just another reason why this problem among men has been dubbed a “silent epidemic

Coaching both men and women, I’m constantly learning of the many perspectives people have of the modern day man, and the issue restricting men really comes down to representation and how it shapes expectation. For example, what parents expect of their sons, what partners expect from their men, and what men expect for themselves is something that is probably learnt and not naturally inherited.

Hero

Everywhere we turn there seems to be a representation of men being brave, bold, strong and successful, predominantly fearless in the face of a challenge and affirmed in his character. Physically weaker men and emotionally sensitive men are often portrayed to desire a stronger more masculine exterior, for they’re usually presented as inadequate and unattractive; as the ‘lesser-man’. Watch nearly any mainstream superhero or action movie, and it won't be long before you see these characterizations.

Men with emotional ailments are taught to “man-up”, because, again, it is taught that it isn’t natural for a man to suffer emotionally. It seems the message we receive as boys teaches us that our self-worth is determined by our masculinity, and what it means to be a “Man” - which is a message that is very much incorrect. Now I’m not saying that these representations are negative traits, I mean as men we have little to complain about when it comes to positive representation, but if that’s all we’re represented as, then is it any wonder we have a difficult relationship with vulnerability?

We’re rarely represented in a vulnerable light, which is why the world doesn't expect us to be vulnerable, nor do we really know how to be vulnerable without compromising our emotional integrity. It’s why we fear being seen as vulnerable too, because it conflicts with our learned expectations. As men, we need to widen the representation pool and campaign for more vulnerable depictions of the male identity, and we can only start this process when more of us open up about how we feel behind closed doors. It seems as if we’re programmed to forget that feeling vulnerable is a human trait, and that every man is human. Which I suppose is an accurate statement to make, as we only have to look back at religious texts dating back many millennia - the media of the day - to realize that most Gods and God-like characters in society were referred to as “he” and depicted as men.

God

I work with motivation for a living and as my career develops, I realize everyday the fundamental mistake we make when defining ourselves as men and why so many of us, all genders included, fail to attain any sense of self-realization. Truth is, we put our gender identities before our very own existence. We somehow fail to realize we’re human, and that our conscious experience is a human experience first and foremost, not just a gendered one. Any emotions you see depicted, and every single emotion you experience, they’re all human emotions, and any emotion that humanly exists can impact any one of us at anytime. It’s entirely a myth to believe that men aren't affected by certain emotions, such as: insecurity and anxiety, nor are we resilliant to depression, because they’re all human traits designed to help us navigate through life. Therefore, to deny or suppress such emotion is, from my experience and understanding, an extension of self-harm.

Being a “Man” is the equivalent of playing a character, and it’s when you don't feel like that character, is when you fail to perform - in every interpretation of the word. It’s a human trait to want to survive, so if you’re not feeling like you can go on any longer, and you’re losing the will to live, then drop the role and realize you’re having a human experience, instead of a male one. Don’t think about resolving your issues like a man, you must resolve your issues like a human, unbound by gender.

Crying is a human trait; sadness is a human trait;  fear is a human trait; expression is a human trait; desire is a human trait, and anyone who judges you (yourself included) for any human trait, is just another being who has lost touch with their humanity, and submitted themselves to a restrictive human-like character.

Our human potential is where our focus and attention should be, and exploring life as a human as opposed to just a man, will detach us from the roles and ideologies which meddle with our self-worth and esteem. Deal with your emotional ailments as any human would, and set yourself free from the limiting beliefs of Man.

5 Alternative Ways to Improve Communication in A Relationship

Relationship Goals

It’s no secret that the dating scene in Vancouver is pretty bad, but rarely do we speak about the state of actual relationships in our beautiful city.

As a relationship coach, I’m incredibly aware of the difficulties people face behind closed doors and I wanted to write a post in an attempt to remind people why we need each other.

I apologize if you’ve navigated to this post looking for dating advice, because this is not a post on dating. However, now that you’re here, you may as well realize the purpose of being in a relationship since you’re looking to be in one.

A relationship is supposed to be the safest place for you to bare your soul. To be able to express yourself openly and honestly so that you can fulfil your desires and expel your demons.

This is why, for example, it hurts so bad when you’re cheated on, and why people cheat - it’s all connected to truth and it’s ability to be expressed and accepted. The motivation fueling most relationship problems are the result of either an unfulfilled desire, or the compulsion of an inner demon or a mix of both.

Actually, here’s a free dating tip: if you don’t have a partner, find an avenue to express yourself and as you progress down this avenue, you increase your chances at bumping into someone on the same path.

You can really pinpoint a lot of relationship problems to one’s ability to express themselves honestly, so here are my 5 alternative ways for you and your partner to learn about each other and communicate:

1. Bathe your partner.

1. Bathe your partner.

1. Bathe your partner.

It’s romantic bathing with your partner, and a great way to spice things up in you relationship, but if your partner is going through something, bathe them. There’s a certain nurturing involved when bathing someone, and bathing your partner may just help them open the door to their vulnerability, just enough to let you in to understand what they’re going through.

This presents an opportunity to open up about mental health issues and personal truths which cause an inner torment. Also great to ease moments of intense distress, i.e. loss.

2. Lights out.

2. Light out.

2. Light out.

One of the most difficult things to switch off during conversation is perception, because our senses are constantly picking up on information and interpreting it. Limit bias from sensory input by turning off the lights and having a conversation in the dark. You’ll notice very quickly how much easier it is to listen and communicate, when you’re not concerned with interpreting facial expressions and body language.

This is a great way to communicate inner desire more confidently, as well as a great way to discuss and open up about difficult circumstances.

3. Be Antisocial

3. Be Antisocial

3. Be Antisocial

Will your relationship survive without bragging rights? Is your relationship worth more than the number of likes you get for that romantic shot you so carefully constructed? The world has outstayed their welcome and it’s time to kick them out of your relationship. Wipe the existence of your relationship from your social media platforms and focus your attention on your partner. You’d be surprised how hard this is for people to do, because often it makes you face a truth you really don't want to face.

Reclaim ownership of your relationship, kick the world out and start talking. It’s shocking at how many relationships depend on the validation from others, which I think makes being in a relationship ironic.

This will highlight a lot of key issues within the foundation of your relationship, or, help you realize how solid it actually is.

4. Break routine.

4. Break Routine.

4. Break Routine.

How many times have you repeated the same evening over and over again? There’s tons of ways you can break routine but the idea is to encourage conversation. One of my my favourite recommendations to couples, is to face the sofa away from the TV and enjoy time and space together. Get into a reflective mood, and relax in each others company - do everything to spend the most time in this space: order take out food, light candles which can be easily blown out, grab a bottle wine and a couple of glasses - have everything you need within reach.

Breaking routine is a nice way to refresh energy and enter a reflective conversation; an opportunity to approach unresolved issues.

5. Meet the parents.

5. Meet the parents.

5. Meet the parents.

This one’s a little tricky, but, if feasible, build a relationship with your partners parents. Really want to learn about your partner? And want your partner to really understand you? Then spend some time alone with their parents. Spend enough time and you’ll learn about their influences growing up, clues into trauma, and how they may have developed certain behaviours and habits.

If you ever want to learn about someone's outlook on life, spend time getting to know the people they were exposed to growing up.

I call this one the grenade, the saving grace, the very thing that could make or break your relationship. Why? Because you don't know what you’ll uncover. If you do this, proceed with caution.

I hope these tips help you and your partner open up about the world within, and if you need further support, do not hesitate to reach out and schedule a complimentary consultation.

Hack Your Reality: We're Sponsoring Jason Silva!

Jason-Silva-Vancouver

What an amazing year it's been so far, and what a great way to enter fall.

I'm a fan of Jason Silva's YouTube series, Shots of Awe, and I'm glad that we're sponsoring his event right here in Vancouver. He's touring Canada with a series of talks designed to teach you how to 'Hack your Reality' so that you can create a life of "freedom, happiness and abundance"

He opens his tour at Vogue theatre tomorrow, October 14th @ 6PM and I have no doubt that it's going to be an impactful show, full of high energy, and leaving you feeling inspired to "spend more time in the present".

Jason has this unique ability to activate a flow state, practically on cue, and I for one cannot wait witness a stream of consciousness live and direct. As you've already gathered I'm pretty excited about this event, because it's going to be brilliant!

For my local Vancouverites, you can get your tickets here, and for my lovely's around the world you grab tickets to the Live Stream here, and join us in digital spirit!

See you there!

Newsletter: Getting Social, #techforacause, and moving.

Greetings!

It’s been an incredibly busy summer and I cannot express enough gratitude for all the support I’ve received thus far. There’s been some exciting developments this year and I’m excited about the new projects VanCity Life Coach Inc. is going to be launching and be a part of.

So, what’s new?

-       A new blog post on taming the Ego! - Success can significantly alter our path, and it’s important to keep the Ego in check to ensure we remain true to who we are and our intentions.

-       Introducing the VanCIty Life Coach YouTube channel! – I am trying to make more of an effort with social media, so please do help me spread the word.

-       I’m also very excited to announce that I’m working with the Commonwealth Bank of Australia’s Innovation Lab, to develop an app to help prevent and reduce domestic violence – a cause I’m deeply invested in.

-       VanCity Life Coach Inc., now also accepts Bitcoin for all coaching programs and packages!

-       New Burnaby Mountain workspace! I have finally opened the doors to my new coaching sanctuary for both clients an coaches-in-training alike, and a place I also call home.

-       Lastly, I want to introduce Sonia Hayre as my new Administrative Manager, and VanCity Life Coach in training! Sonia will be heading a lot of the operations in the new year, and soon the Group Coaching program. Sonia will also train as a Life Coach with a focus on family and relationship coaching! You’ll be hearing more from Sonia in the new year!

There’s more to be mentioned as we approach the fourth quarter, so do keep in touch for more news.

I hope everyone has had a great summer here in Vancouver, and wherever you are around the world, I hope the middle months have treated you well.  As always, do reach out if you’d like to schedule a complimentary consultation; learn about your potential and how you can navigate your life into fulfillment.

 

Always,

Terry Sidhu

Life Coach, VanCity Life Coach Inc.

 

Now accepting Bitcoin!

Life_coaching_Bitcoin

We now accept Bitcoin on all coaching programs and packages!

Contact booking@vancitylifecoach.com to schedule a complimentary consultation.

How I keep my Ego from controlling my life.

Feeling like I'm on top of the world...

Feeling like I'm on top of the world...

Vancouver is a wonderful place to call home, and I've found a lot of success here. However, I can sometimes lose sight of who I really am, when the "success" is all that my life becomes. I'm a great Life Coach, I can say that confidently, but it's not all who I am...

Click here to learn about how I keep my Ego from taking over my life, and what you should start doing to navigate your life into a happier, more fulfilling direction.

What is Integration?

At the start of 2017 I officially launched a complete integration program, and started harm-reduction consulting as additional services of my life coaching practice. Traditionally, I’m serving clients engaged in, and/or post, psychedelic therapy. However, upon developing the integration program, I've found that the needs of this service actually stretch beyond the revival of the psychedelic and spiritual revolutions.

In my work, I define the service of integration as helping people integrate an awareness of two or more ‘systems’, for lack of a better term, into one. These systems can be likened to an individual connecting with different truths; ideas; beliefs; ideologies that cause an unsettling. Being aware of each system causes the individual to question one, or the other, or all systems, in order to seek a truer understanding of themselves and/or the world around them.

A further personal conflict arises when an individual believes that they must commit to just one system, therefore first, integration helps us acknowledge and accept that each system coexist. Then, the process guides them on utilizing the positive aspects of each and develop from the negative aspects of each to reduce harm and difficulty in life. Thus, successfully integrating the alternative system(s) into the primary one; helping you develop a new equilibrium if you will.

For example, say you spend most of your life believing that if you go to school, study hard and get a really good education, that you’ll secure a good job with lots of benefits. A job that will provide you with a lot of money, give your life purpose and meaning, and allow you to live happy and fulfilled. Let’s call this your primary system, the one you've spent most of your life investing in.

Then, let’s say you meet someone who proves to you that there is an alternative way to achieve happiness and fulfillment, a way that doesn’t rely on money perhaps. They have now presented you with another system, and your belief in their system now causes you to question your primary one. So, you find yourself feeling unsettled because you have a belief in two systems that are causing you personal conflict, because you’re unsure of the direction moving forward:

  • Do you dismiss your primary system? To which you’ve already invested most of your life into.
  • Do you dismiss the alternative system? Which you also believe in and is personally desirable.
  • Which system is better for you? As they both seem to offer personal benefits.
  • Which direction should you take? As each system causes distrust and uncertainty upon the other.
  • What if that person is wrong or was misguided?
  • What if you’re wrong and have been misguided?
  • How do you decide?

It’s like these systems are people who have both positive and negative influences on you, and integration is the process of evaluation and reflection to establish who is most beneficial to you, and when. Like who you can turn to for motivation when you need it most, and who can help you maintain your responsibilities, and who will inspire confidence, and so on. Integration enables you to give each system purpose, and by doing so it works to reduce a lot of inner conflict.

I like to refer to integration as finding a healthy balance, or middle, by merging very distinct life experiences into a mindful one. After all, it’s our experiences and beliefs that shape and navigate our identities, and we shouldn't dismiss parts of who we are just because it doesn't fit with a certain life model. Perhaps, you could consider my integration service as helping you develop your very own life model to live by. A safe process that allows you to accept and explore each system openly, to understand and utilize them, and encourages you to be your best self, and to live your best life.

Our minds are designed to think openly and without restriction, and when we shape our lives to the minds design, we realize our human potential.

If you wish to learn more about my integration services, please email: info@vancitylifecoach.com. To learn more about the role of psychedelic in the treatment of mental health, check out the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies, (MAPS).

Disclaimer: Please note that VanCity Life Coach Inc. does not condone the use of illicit drugs. It is recommended that drug use, of any kind, be under the observation/recommendation of a licensed professional, and in accordance with the law.

An Understanding of Depression

Depression

Depression is a heavy burden to carry. Day by day it breaks away at our identities and pulling ourselves out of a depressed state, is incredibly challenging when we struggle to recognize our own self-worth.

From my perspective, depression, along with most other negative mindsets, develop from the disconnect between the mind and body. I firmly believe that our emotions are the true senses of our consciousness, and that our physical senses merely help us navigate our conscious experience. With this in mind, I’m learning that depression and other mental structures alike, are the result of neglecting the truth.

Our life experiences should invigorate our identities. We should be constantly learning new things and expanding our zones of comfort to learn more about ourselves, and what we were put on this planet to do. This is how we strengthen our minds against negativity. Most of us know when we’re in a situation or environment that isn't right for us and restrict us from developing who we are. When we go against the feedback from our minds and physically remain in restrictive situations or environments, we stunt our human experience.

It’s not entirely our fault though, all of us start our lives in a blissful state but when we naturally go in search of meaning, most of us are derailed. The messages we receive from very early on in life cause us to feel insecure. There’s not much room for self-exploration and self-expression, in a world that often dehumanizes anyone who doesn’t fit the profile of what it means to be human.

When we force ourselves to live life against our true nature, the mind soon takes notice and wants us to do something about it. It may start small, perhaps in the beginning we brush off our negative thoughts as being ungrateful. However, the longer we neglect the truth the harder the mind will try to encourage the body do something about it, and a few negative thoughts grow into destructive ones. Eventually we begin to develop a desire to run away and get away from it all, but the insecurity keeps us attached to the lives we’ve invested so much in. Soon enough, we're stuck in a cycle of thought and our minds start to disconnect from the unrecognizable lives we’re living, and the false identities we’ve developed. As we continue to neglect the truth within, the wounds of this neglect deepen and the mind will want to end this neglect and will start to look for a way out.

We should investigate the motivation behind these negative thoughts, and what we’re fueling our minds with. For example, if our minds are telling us we’re not good enough, chances are we’ve fueled this thought by exposing our physical senses to this belief. If we’re feeling like we don't belong, chances are we’re not being encouraged to be ourselves. We're more consciously involved than we like to admit, we just have to become consciously aware to navigate change.

My advice, if you have the opportunity to travel and explore, do so. If you don’t and you have responsibilities, then break into new territory in your home environment. Put simply, if your current practice of living isn’t working, then change as much of it as you can. Try new things and experience the energy of new people. Fuel your sensory inputs with new stimulus and if there is nothing that engages you, be the creator of something new.

This post is just the start of a much lengthier discussion, but I hope it encourages you to evaluate and reflect on a few things. I’ve said this many times before but it’s worth repeating: you’re only conscious of this one life so make the most of it. Guide your physical experience to where the spirit yearns to go, and reconnect your mind and body to embrace your soul.

How to Cope With Isolation

man-1394395_1920

You may notice that I tend to disappear for a while and I hope that the message in this post will help you understand why.

I grew up feeling segregated because I didn’t feel connected to the world the same way my peers did. I remember my insecurities developing because of an eagerness to fit in and become like everyone else. I would find myself trying to adopt trends I didn’t agree with and personas I didn’t I identify with, just to associate myself with what felt like a herd heading towards their own slaughter. Each day I denied myself the opportunity to be me and do the things I wanted to do, I restricted my potential and kept my aspirations at bay.

Although I found success through traditional pursuits, the success never felt genuine. It felt more manufactured and less actualized because it lacked authenticity; it lacked me and my presence. As I followed the rules and marched on like a good corporate soldier, I could feel my identity slipping away.

Living a life I was unhappy with, I began feeling the negative burden of isolation quite quickly. Mentally, my thoughts would always wander into a depressive abyss. Always reasoning with negative thought, I would convince myself that I was alone in feeling this way and that I should feel more grateful and fortunate for my situation, even though I felt like crap.

Physically, I’d become incredibly aware of my isolation. When we’re physically alone it’s hard not to face the emotions we shy away from, so naturally I filled my time with as many distractions as possible: going out and connecting with the wrong type of people, binging on alcohol, fueling my body on the worst kinds of food and indulging on unimaginative TV and media. These were the vices I funneled my misery into.

Needless to say I was becoming increasingly frustrated with the way I was living my life and decided to neglect many aspects of it. From my health through to my relationships, I felt like there wasn’t a reason to take care of any of it. When we face struggles like this in life, awareness and acceptance of the truth is what we must face.

I remember being offered a promotion, or at least the option was on the table and I thought to myself “This is it. This is what my life is going to represent.” There was no excitement, just expectation. There was no passion, just resistance and I’d never felt more disconnected from the aspirations I once held for myself. I’ve always wanted my life to mean something, I believe we all do, and I just felt like I couldn't dishonor my own existence anymore.

What turned my life around and helped me nurture the confidence to make the bold decisions that drastically altered my destiny, was my relationship with isolation. I figured, if the world I’m living in doesn’t understand the way I’m feeling, and I’m feeling like I don’t fit in, then my isolation will be the safe haven to exercise my identity.

Rather than reason with my negative thoughts I embraced them, I lifted up the rug and faced the emotions I had swept under it. At first, trying to cope with them internally felt crippling so I started to externalize my thoughts by writing them down. I would end up writing thousands of words about how I felt and without really noticing, I was developing and facing an awareness I had long spent avoiding. Upon reflection it was like writing a tragic novel and it was about my life! Seeing my misery displayed back to me was incredibly awakening, and I could foresee where my life would end up if I continued to perpetuate a life I was unhappy with. Whenever I would return to my life and exit moments of, what I started to call 'therapeutic isolation', I’d feel uplifted.

Slowly I started feeling like myself again and although I wasn't ready, rather unsure about the next step I should take, I knew I wanted to continue down this path I had embarked on. I started to make use of my isolation to research and construct my next move and change the course of my story. The first step was quite simple and it was to stop fueling my own misery, first thing to really change were the people I surrounded myself with.

In my isolation I felt empowered and excited. I was always exercising my own identity and connecting with stimulus that encouraged me to think freely and openly. I felt my isolation also acted as a form of measurement, of who I am against the reality of who I was becoming. Eventually I began falling in love with the freedom I felt when alone, so I began gravitating towards a life that felt the same way.

I felt encouraged to connect with people who allowed me to think and live as freely as I could on my own. Anything less than acceptance and understanding wasn’t enough for me. I eventually started to move into places I connected with and in these places I seized opportunities that truly spoke to me. Through honest challenges, I eventually found success that did feel genuine.

Today my isolation is my sanctuary: a mental and physical space to explore the depths of my identity and engage a state of flow. Moments to set myself free and exercise my own potential. A time and space to explore and develop my ideas so that I fully understand them first, then prepare myself to confidently present them to the world.

You don't need to feel trapped when you feel isolated, nor do you have to view isolation as a negative aspect of your life. Use moments of isolation to refuel your identity and realize that you can develop a life worth living.

This post was written by Terry Sidhu.

Don't be shy:

How to Make Decisions

Post by, Vancouver Life Coach

right-way-wrong-way2

Life is full of choices, and it’s the choices we make that shape our lives. Therefore the question remains, how do we make the right choices?

I’ve been asked this question over and over again. At first, I couldn’t give anyone a definitive answer because mindful-decision-making stems from the root of your identity. To know if you’re making the right choices in life, you must first evaluate your own identity:

  • Do you feel liberated and free to be yourself?
  • Are you restricting your identity just to fit in?
  • Are you struggling to open up about your problems and restricting yourself from seeking support?
  • Are you making meaningful connections with others?
  • If you’re in a relationship, does your partner see you for who you are?

In summary, are you yourself completely?

Before making a decision in your life, reconnect with yourself. Become self-realized and aware, and establish how much of your life is being experienced by you, versus a version of you that appeals more to your influencers. Think of influencers as things in your life that restrict, or have the potential to restrict, who you are and the great things you’re capable of. From people through to places - are you a product of your environment, or is your environment an extension of your identity?

Work to understand and unleash your identity and you’ll realize how to make the right choices. Whatever decision you’re faced with, you must always side with the choice that keeps your identity intact.

For those that have a responsibility to others such as children, ask yourself if a positive impact on your own life will strengthen your relationship to those you’re responsible for. You shouldn’t make your decisions out of obligation, but rather so that you can fulfill your obligations happily.

Many people come across this blog seeking answers, but the answers readers seek are buried within themselves. Hence its purpose is to encourage readers to be themselves; tune in to who you are, and you’ll find all the answers you’re looking for. Tune into your identity and you’ll begin to recognize happiness as an emotion waiting to be set free, rather than an aspiration to work towards.

Vancouver Life Coach

The Key to Maintaining Health and Happiness

Post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com

Awareness

Sometimes we find ourselves in a state of lasting bliss when all aspects of our lives, have reached a level of fulfillment we’re satisfied with. Although we may not be exactly where we want to be in life, health and happiness will seem to flow easily and we’ll begin feeling assertive and aligned with our aspirations.

When we arrive at these blissful moments in life, we’re prone to complacency and avoidance because moving forward may involve risk, which could disrupt this new equilibrium. Therefore it’s crucial to develop a healthy awareness of self, others and the world around us, in order to continue our pursuits to that dream life we’ve always envisioned.

Awareness is an extension of mindfulness and it teaches us to pay attention to how we impact our own lives. Whether or not we’ve reached a stage of fulfillment, our choices have dictated this destiny that’s currently being played out. Awareness helps us upkeep involvement and control over life; paying attention could be the difference in feeling like life is falling apart, and feeling like life's falling into place.

Awareness begins with honesty. The first step is to focus on emotion, because it’s the emotions we feel that highlight the truth. When we hurt ourselves physically, we’re often very quick to notice the imbalance and work to resolve the pain as effectively as possible. However, how many of us can honestly say we do the same with our own state of mind.

As a relationship and life coach, I come across many broken souls living life irritated and insecure as a result of avoidance and complacency. On the other hand, I have clients that feel great within themselves but struggle to pursue new opportunities, in fear of losing something deemed safe and secure. The next stage of awareness, after uncovering present emotion, is to look back on the journey up until this point in time.

Many of us may not realize it, but our pasts hold many of the answers we seek to find about ourselves and our lives. How did I end up here? Why do I put up with this? How can I move forward? Why am I…? However poignant the question, the answer could be lurking within a previous moment in time. Investigating the past will help develop an awareness of motivation, uncover the triggers to motivation and we’ll learn how to avoid or promote certain behaviours.

If you’re looking to maintain health and happiness in your life, or if you’re looking to secure it, assess your current level of awareness and you may just realise where your life is headed. Today choose to take control, choose to eliminate fear and choose to overcome the insecurity you live with; Pay attention to how you contribute to your own misery and bliss, and you’ll become aware that you own your life.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach

Why Personal Advice from Friends and Family Is Often Biased

post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com

Advice

As a Relationship and Life Coach, guiding others is a job I find incredibly fulfilling and I’m always eager to support my clients. I coach passionately and as a result, what I do has sewn itself into my identity and has become a part of who I am. As this becomes more evident, I’ve noticed more people within my personal network are coming to me for advice, albeit their intention or not.

It’s difficult for me to ‘switch off’ from what I call “Coaching Mode”. I’m often like a child who has discovered something new about themselves and I’m eager to share it with everyone I run into. Therefore it can get difficult leaving “The Coach” behind, when connecting/reconnecting with people within my personal network.

Think about the number of times friends and family have come to you seeking your advice or opinion. Now, for instance, think about the number of times you’ve had to lie or bend the truth in order to protect their feelings.

Before stumbling onto this path, I never had an issue with saying and doing the appropriate thing in order to protect the people I care for from getting hurt. However, what I’ve learnt about myself and other people through my work and professional experiences, the appropriate thing to say and do, isn’t necessarily the right thing to say and do. It’s a fine line that I’ve become weary of in recent years, as I continue to connect with people in my personal network both past and present.

As a coach, I’m hired to give my honest and professional opinion. I’ve been hired for a specific reason and to achieve results, complete, and sometimes brutal honesty is required at all times. As a neutral party, my only concern is the well-being of my client and his/her actual responsibilities. However, in my personal network, whereby I’m emotionally tethered, maintaining neutrality is very difficult. In some circumstances where I’m asked for advice, support, guidance or even just an opinion, I find myself facing the following dilemmas:

Do I, a. Compromise my work and what I know and do well, just to keep those nearby happy and content? Or, b. Advise with complete integrity and run the risk of stirring up conflict within my personal network?

I’ve learnt that the answer to either question often depends on how I’m regarded among those close to me. For instance, to my parents, as their youngest child, I’m still very much the “baby” in their eyes. Fortunately my clients don’t see me that way, otherwise I’d make a terrible coach, however this entire adjustment has made me aware of two prominent biases that arise when advising friends and family. Biases we should all be aware of when seeking or giving advice.

Bias #1: Personal Gain.

Most of us probably won’t admit it, but we run the risk of advising friends and family based on personal gain. Or, to avoid the perception of personal gain and potential blame and conflict, we also run the risk of sharing biased advice.

It’s often difficult to offer an unbiased perspective when we’re personally involved. For example, think about the people in your life today and how convenient it would be for you, if they changed certain aspects of their lives? Changes although convenient for you, could result it disastrous consequences for them.

Personal gain is something to be very aware of with advice you offer or receive, as there are a number of ‘sub-biases’ that can lead to erroneous advice. Biases such as: personal insecurity, strength of relationship, trust and access to multiple connections within the same personal network, are to name a few.

Bias #2: Nondisclosure.

Full disclosure is important when seeking or offering advice. It’s important for the advisor to develop a complete awareness of the problem or dilemma and it’s the responsibility of those being advised, to make the advisor fully aware. Therefore, complete honesty and openness is required in order to understand and to be fully understood.

If you feel restricted or reluctant in any way, then already you’re adding layers of bias to advice. For example, think about asking your parents about relationship advice, but leaving out all the intimate details of your desires, because it feels too inappropriate or awkward to discuss. Again many of the ‘sub-biases’ that arise with personal gain are also relevant here too, especially when sharing advice among an established peer group.

In conclusion, to avoid, or at least limit bias when exchanging advice with friends and family, both parties must learn how to emotionally detach in order to establish mutual understanding. However, keep in mind that you also run the risk of jeopardising the personal connection too, because once something is shared, it cannot be taken back, and you have to rely on and preserve trust in order to maintain the relationship.

Therefore in summary, establish authentic trust before seeking or giving advice and be aware of these prominent biases.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach

How to be Happy

post written by, VanCityLifeCoach.com

smile

Every single person is on the same page when it comes to life. The details of our individual lives probably differ drastically, but the emotional experiences in which we wish to encounter, they're exactly the same.

I’m happy. Perhaps not all the time, but nowadays I can say with confidence that I’m living blissfully most of the time. I’ve walked away from the dark places I had convinced myself I was safe in, and I’ve stepped outside of perception and sought out truth. Many people make the mistake of “searching for happiness”  as if it’s some mystical treasure waiting to be found, but I’ve learned now that the key to happiness is much more internal, we just have to face it and let it out. It was the smartest thing I ever did.

To be happy, I needed to...

…accept and be proud of who I am.

This was the most effective contribution to my happiness. I grew up in an environment of expectation, everything from how I was expected to act and what I was expected to achieve in my life. To follow tradition and fulfill a role I simply wasn’t born to play. As my own identity did not fit the criteria of such expectation, it caused conflict within my mind which led to anxiety and depression...and up until a few years ago, it ruled my life. Today however, I feel free and unburdened, I can confidently explore life to seek answers; I am free to do what I want and be who I am. As a result I’ve found purpose and passion, I’ve learned about myself and what it is I love to do. It all began when I decided to live life by the traits of my own identity, it allowed me to define my own aspirations and as I progressed down my own path, I began uncovering a sense of pride and self-respect.

…find joy in not knowing and embrace the freedom of discovery.

If you look at how kids explore life, you realize the fun and joy it is to discover and seek answers. When I went traveling, I would freely ask questions in order to understand what I didn’t know. Each and every time I learned something new, it added a new layer of awareness to my identity. A sensation that made me feel empowered to explore life further, to immerse myself in the unknown so that I could understand and connect with the world a lot better. I’m not saying travel changed me, but it encouraged me to raise questions at home and in my everyday life whenever I had any feelings of doubt and uncertainty.

…place emphasis on mindset and its key role in success.

I reflect back on moments I first shared this blog with my friends on Facebook, and how much I feared judgement and ridicule from those who thought they knew me. Today I share it with the world and also coach individuals into fulfillment. I realized that if I want to be happy, I should stick with what I love to do. Although coaching is an avenue towards bigger aspirations in my life, I love the process. Everyday, at this current moment in time, I feel I’m doing exactly what I’m supposed to be doing with my life. Rarely do I fear how life will end up, because however long it may take, at least I'm on the right path. Happiness isn’t something you can earn or accumulate, it’s something you contribute to and on this path, I'm contributing to my own happiness. 

…submit to fact and adapt my behavior accordingly.

Living blissfully in ignorance is not happiness and personally I think we choose to be ignorant. They say misery needs company, however ignorance actually has it and plenty of it, and it's easy to join a herd to feel like you belong and fit in. However happiness is personal, you won't find it following trends or chasing myths.

I started my own journey for my own peace-of-mind and happiness, for nobody else. The proof is in my own well-being and if whatever I pursue turns out to be wrong, I've learned to move on until I discover what's right. If corporate gigs made me miserable, then I had to accept that to move forward. I did, and I ventured onto something far more valuable. It took me about 5 years to figure it out, but that time is experience, it signifies growth, it means something, it doesn't feel wasted and I already have so many lessons to share from them and I continue to learn.

Perception can be and often is blurred, waking up to reality and adapting my behavior towards the truth, definitely led me to a happier life. If something is factual and proven, and there’s no logical reason to challenge it, accept it and move on.

…take the time to better understand others.

Understanding other people better and getting to know them for who they really are, allowed me to better understand their actions, their perception of others and of me. For example, I realized that malicious intent was more about an internal conflict than it was about causing harm. We all desire happiness and fulfillment, but sometimes our own insecurities and troubles can make us act out in unintended ways. If you work to understand how much a person isn’t happy and fulfilled, you’ll be able to connect with them and reason with their actions.

If you take the time to learn about someone, you can learn to accept and communicate to them. In many cases, you could probably help them. There’s an empowerment that comes from this, because you begin realizing that we’re all more alike than we’re actually led to believe. It helps you ease the pressure of living with what other people think of you and it makes you feel less alone and more connected.

…overcome fear and make it a priority.

I don’t have many fears today and now I’m currently learning to overcome my fear of snakes. However other fears, like the fear of what people think of you, the fear of not succeeding or even the fear of not fitting in, will soon eradicate if you nurture the “law of awareness.” Put simply, you only need focus on being present and in the moment, for it’s the choices and actions of today that impact your future and control your past.

I’ve spoken to enough senior members of society to conceptualize regret, so get your head out of non-existent moments in time, wake up to now and allow your emotions to guide you through your reality. Which is how I made overcoming fear a priority, because overcoming it helped me regain control. Now I feel there isn't much that can stop me from chasing down my aspirations, especially no-one. 

…directly challenge those that threatened my vulnerability.

There are a lot of prejudices in the world and a reason why a lot of it still exists, is because many people feel powerless to direct change. However, if you’re unhappy, perhaps change is what you actually need. I personally grew tired of people trying to understand me through the connotations that came with my skin color. I grew tired of keeping my emotions at bay, because of the connotations that came with my gender. I grew tired of having to accept everyone’s definition of success because I had my own ideas. With tiredness came frustration and frustration led to self-doubt. So I decided the only way out of this endless torment, was to face those that made me feel inferior in any way.

We’re all equals, that’s what I grew up learning and that’s what I ended up exploring and accepting. Any opportunity someone had to put me down, I simply asked them why? I’d respond in an attempt to understand rather than with a negative emotion like anger. When you give people the response they want, they win. Don’t give them the response they want, they’ll provoke. Challenge their motivation and intent and in my experience, they’ll back off.

In situations around the workplace, among your social circles and even at home, attempt to understand, educate and hopefully inspire. I don’t have time anymore for circumstances that make me feel worse about myself. I’ve learned to pay attention to how I feel, my emotions are the most honest thing I can rely on, so I’m going to protect them.

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As I navigate my way through life, I may come across a more concise way to discuss how to be happy. However, what I realized as I put this blog post together, to be happy, I never really had to ask for or do much, I just had to allow myself the opportunity to be me, to be happy.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach

How to Discover your Passion and Purpose

How to find your purpose

If you want to live passionately with purpose and reason, then you need to access the traits of your very own being. You need to listen to and respond to your emotions, as you navigate your way through different experiences in life.

The journey into fulfilment begins with mindful experiences. You must be and feel fully engaged, in each and every experience you encounter. You must be completely invested and emotionally present through every experience, to determine what speaks to your identity and what doesn’t.

I’ve come across too many irritated individuals living life on auto-pilot, complacent in routine and living numbly. I know this feeling because I used to live this way; a life not worth living, lacking fulfilment and wasted potential.

We’re all beings with untapped potential and within us is the determination and drive to become all that we aspire to be. If you’re noticing that life seems to be passing you by, then you just need to regain control and pay attention to what your emotions are telling you.

Throughout my life, the one lesson I’ve relied upon to stay on track with my aspirations, is to listen and pay attention to emotion. Emotions indicate your truest intent and genuine desires, therefore ignoring how you feel will only lead you into an unfulfilled life and further away from discovering your passion and purpose. A deception that will blur your identity and cause you to drift away from what you truly desire.

Thought vs. Emotion

You can change and manipulate thought, even if a negative thought enters your mind you can counteract it with a positive one almost instantaneously. To demonstrate: if I ask you to think of a Lemon, you can do that without effort. Now if I ask you to think of a Red Lemon, you can also do so instantaneously and change the perception of reality within your own mind.

As thoughts can be manipulated, altered and misdirected so easily, what you think you want, may not necessarily be what you truly want. This is why it’s incredibly important to pay close attention to emotion in order to maintain control over your life. Your emotions are like truth-tellers, they can help you navigate your life towards the bliss you’re in search of, and into the fulfillment you desire. I can’t tell you to be happy because we’re not really capable of altering emotion like we can thought. If you want to change your emotions, then you may have to change your reality.

In Summary

To discover your passion and to find your purpose in life, you must pay attention to emotion. Your thoughts may rationalize a negative experience, however we cannot fully trust thought as our thoughts can easily be manipulated and influenced. However we cannot deceive emotion, therefore as you navigate through life’s experiences, pay attention to what you're feeling. If you find that an experience contains no emotional fulfillment, then move on and keep experiencing until you discover the fulfillment you seek. Until you uncover your passion and define your purpose.

VanCity

What We All Want.

VanCity Today, I led a discussion and met with people living very different lives, about life and relationships. Although there were so many differences, we stripped back experiences until we hit raw, genuine, emotion. Some cried, some got angry, but we all laughed, and as we explored everyone's identities, we discovered what we all truly wanted from our lives, from others and within ourselves.

Since, coaching and connecting with people from all around the world, it's never been more evident that we all strive for the same thing. To just live our lives, as ourselves without compromises.

I'll admit, people's perception about what I do got to me. Even I began to think this whole coaching gig was going to be about helping people set a few of goals and motivate them to achieve it. However, today I was reminded of why I got into this in the first place and I can't even put into words, how it feels to see someone leave a session, with more confidence and excitement about their own lives moving forward.

Over the last few weeks, a mother understood the influence she has on her child, a son understood the pedestal he was placed upon and someone who had lost their identity to their career, learned that they had much more to offer than what was expected in exchange for a paycheck. Someone dealing with loss faced their guilt and finally felt ready to accept what they could not change. Another was awoken to the negative influences impacting his life...

After achieving what I had today and over the last few weeks, I’m more than happy and confident to end this note with:

Kind regards,

Terry Sidhu – Relationship and Life Coach.

How to Master Your Own Mind: 5 Ways to Maintain Control

post by, VanCityLifeCoach.com

Mind

Over the last few weeks I took a break from writing and I spent time with family whom had visited me from England. I wanted to be present during each moment as they were only here for a short while. I didn't want to escape a moment to experience gratitude. Life is about balance and prior to them arriving, I had spent most of my time working towards my own passions and building my career; I had severely separated from a crucial part of my identity and neglected the very support that kept me grounded. My family visiting me was an opportunity to reconnect.

The last time I had spent this much time away from my writing, was when I suffered a severe case of doubt and fed the belief that I wasn't really good enough. The difference this time, I was in full control of my own mind, I mindfully stepped away from work because I knew what I needed to. When you become so passionate about something and push through the negative infiltrations, fear transitions from not feeling good enough, to the fear of losing what you’ve built. Spending the last few years developing my own mindset and pulling myself out of unprogressive thoughts, has taught me that I can’t live life motivated by fear. I can harness it to trigger motivation, but I cannot allow my life to be driven by it. Today I proclaim to live life awake, aware and in abundance; I’m learning to master my own mind.

#1.  Objectify your Thoughts

A habit I’ve been getting into, is evaluating and reflecting negative and destructive thought. Whenever my thoughts turn sour, whether it’s about myself or negatively towards others, I dance around it with thoughts of understanding. I’m not simply replacing negative thoughts with positive ones, as far as I’m concerned, there’s a long line separating the two. What I choose to educate myself with to interpret thought, is what keeps my mind balanced and still.

When a thought enters my mind that causes me personal conflict, I acknowledge it. I make myself fully aware that I’m experiencing some sort of disconnect with my own identity and it’s time to evaluate and reflect. I personally externalize the thought, put it on a piece of paper and begin to understand how I came to such a negative assumption. When you decode these thoughts, you begin to weaken their impact, almost like repeating a word over and over again, until it no longer sounds like a word.

We often give certain thoughts more power than others, usually the negative ones get the most attention; like how a baby gains more attention by kicking and screaming. By making yourself aware of thoughts, you begin to question them, you’ll circle around different thoughts with questions; theories and ideas, until you stumble on the truth. And you’ll know when you've reached this "aha" moment, because you’ll feel very much empowered.

#2. Conceptualize Perception

Nothing feels more real than entering a flow state. When working on something you're passionate about, the world around you seems to flutter away as you engage your inner genius, as your heart, mind and body is working in full synchronicity. If you regularly engage a flow state, you’ll become increasingly aware of how blurry perception can be. This is my 123rd blog post, I’m 7 chapters into writing my first book and I have invested countless hours a day talking about what I’m passionate about. Each time I come out of a state of flow, the world around me seems that much more distorted.

I’ve learnt to conceptualize perception, for one, I don’t waste time on what people think. It’s impossible for me to know what thoughts are motivating other people’s perception of the world, without spending time to get to know and understand them first. When you’re negatively impacted by others, you’re often focused on one recurring, internal thought. You’re boomeranging your own thoughts as you convince yourself that everyone shares it.

Don’t be naïve, focus more on doing the things that engage your passions and fill your life with bliss. If at every moment you’re engaging in an activity or thought that doesn’t fulfill you, you blur your perception of reality even more. Life becomes complicated and you’ll find yourself scrambling to understand why you don’t fit in.

#3. Experience Detachment

For the longest time I’ve been trying to understand the term detachment, that I failed to practise it. It’s not letting anything have rule over your life that'll steer you away from truth. In my opinion, detachment is more of an experience rather than a practise, it allows you to experience liberation like never before. Imagine; complete and utter freedom and no rule from thought, desire, emotion, people and even your own possessions.

I always say detachment feels the same as taking your clothes off in public, you have nothing left to hide as you strip away everything you’ve ever held onto, that kept you from exposing the most vulnerable part of who you are; your truest form. Detachment finally allows you to exist, uninterrupted nor influenced. Detachment guides you to peace of mind.

To start experiencing this today, begin to understand your relationship with everything you give meaning to, starting with your material possessions is the easiest way to begin. Evaluate your desire for these things, ask yourself why? Question the very purpose of how things define your life, not your lifestyle. The more rule you have over your life, the more rule you have over your mind. The more you latch onto things, people, desires, and thoughts and so on, you weaken your mind because you deter from what’s truly meaningful.

#4. Awaken your Imagination

Ever had a crazy thought, idea or put together an insane, out of this world theory and shrugged it off as silliness because you’d think people would think you’re insane, paranoid or just stupid? Yeah me too, but there is so much fun to be had if you just let your imagination roar. Regularly exercise your mind by freeing it from the shackles of reality, I always note down my "insanity" and store it in a folder called "Chaos".

Your imagination is vital to unlocking your potential, eventually one of your ideas, or crumbs from several ideas will guide you to self-actualization. If you let your mind regularly do its thing, you’ll eventually stumble across something you’ll feel confident expressing.

Why compartmentalize your imagination to fit in with the current trends and ideologies when, the advances we have in the world today came from the individuals often once thought to be insane. The world isn’t flat, the earth revolves around the sun and society is finally coming to terms with the fact that, we may not be the only ones living in this universe.

Imagination leads to discovery.

#5 Open your Mind

Last but not least, be curious, because when your mind opens up, you give fear the opportunity to escape. Connect with engaging stimulus; read more books, listen to more people and accept more fact. Try new things daily and test old practises rigorously. If you want to advance your mind, you need to stimulate it with something new. Expand zones of comfort and never be afraid to understand something by asking questions.

I grew up around warped cultural traditions that caused prejudice and inequality, the moment I moved away from it, was the day I began to discover my identity and my place in the world. And never hold anyone else back either, especially if you haven’t gained the experience or exposure to conceive any genuine opinion. This is your life remember, it’s up to you to discover what it’ll be about.

VanCity

Understanding Detachment and the Meaning behind This ‘Spiritual’ Philosophy

Post by VanCityLifeCoach.com

“Attachment is the root of suffering.” - The Buddha

Detachment

I’ve been reading a lot about detachment, or non-attachment if you rather and like most, I've always believed the philosophy of detachment simply meant not letting material possessions have rule over your life. Which I guess is true, but teachings suggest that detachment roots much deeper than that. That one must detach oneself from people, emotions, thoughts and desires…basically, all the things we latch onto that give our lives meaning and purpose are none and void, if we wish to experience true freedom; liberation.

I was beginning to feel a little bewildered by the concept because it conflicted with a lot of my own ideas and beliefs. For one, I thoroughly enjoy connecting with people, so does this also mean that love keeps us from ever reaching this experience too?

After raising more questions and failing to firmly grasp the concept, I continued on with my day. It was only when I began my daily meditation that the concept re-entered my mind. As I sat there, cross-legged and awkwardly ready to achieve stillness and serenity, I was overcome by answers.

Detachment doesn’t necessarily mean living life a recluse and closing off connections and interactions to the world around us. Nor does it mean finding a spiritual place to live out the rest of our days trying to reach a higher level on consciousness. I began recognizing detachment as building a more mindful relationship with life, and how that journey towards mindfulness begins from within.

I always talk about identity and living life by the true values of who you are, by doing so you guide your life in a more fulfilled direction. I still believe this and it aligns with everything I’ve learned recently too.

Detachment is not about creating distance, I feel it’s more about understanding the true significance of life so that we better connect to it. For instance what do my possessions mean to me? Well if you think about it, they don’t actually mean anything. As a living organism; as a force of life, my possessions really have no value.

So feeling like I learned something amazing, I shared this conclusion with a friend of mine and he said “well what if you were on a life support machine, you’d need that wouldn't you?” Ah...that got me thinking and the thought kept me up for a couple of nights as my mind was once again riddled.

A few days had passed and I was writing a letter to a client of mine. I was fully engaged in a state of flow and out of nowhere I found the response to my friend’s question: ‘Well why am I, or would I, be afraid to die?’ That one realization blew my understanding of attachment wide open, particularly how attachment causes us to fear/avoid one of life’s uncomplicated and inevitable outcomes. At that moment I felt completely present. I finally understood the significance of detachment and how it fits in with life’s most basic principles, right up there with death and breathing.

I started to look at my life much more closely, everything from brushing my teeth in the morning through to picking up my nephew for a cuddle after work. What does it all mean to life, not my life, just life in general? My nephew has only existed for several months and now I feel I can’t live without him…how and why does this impact my life so much? How and why does this rule my life? Each answer only raised these same questions.

The more I broke down my life and especially as I delved into my past, I noticed how little control and influence I had over it. I clearly wasn’t grasping what life meant at all. I was living life attached and as a result, I was indeed suffering: from my lack of confidence (controlled by what other people thought of me), to the fear of paving my own path (expectations from and responsibilities to those around me)...it all made complete sense.

I’m thinking that maybe we could all use a little less attachment in our lives, to step away and embrace actual life. Maybe I’ve got it completely lost in translation or just maybe, I’ve stumbled upon the beginning of something more definitive for myself.

I am also realizing that detachment has just as much, if not more to do with the physical realm than it does with the spiritual. I think detachment isn’t this glorious concept that I’ve always thought it to be, I think the true beauty and power behind this philosophy lies within its simplicity.

Either way, this recent experience has at the very least, taught me to keep my mind and my eyes wide open; to be more mindful and aware, and that outcome alone is priceless.

VanCity

Are Your Motivations Man-made?

Thinker

Have you ever wondered how much of your life is man-made? Ever considered how much of your life is driven by man-made philosophies that guide your choices, mould your identity and overrun your emotions and natural desires?

Take the institution of marriage for example, it’s not necessarily an innate desire, we’re taught to long for this lawful union. Religion too, people submit lives, generations even, towards words written by man. Our careers maybe, are they driven by our thirst for power and purpose or do we slave away for the sake of climbing a social ladder?

I was on a date a few weeks ago and the girl I met was nice enough, she was pretty, very intelligent and I would say she was text-book perfect. Problem was, I found her very reserved, afraid to open up and let out what she truly wanted from life. It seemed she was conditioned to believe marriage was one of life’s natural wonders, so when I posed the question, “What if the entire concept of marriage didn’t exist, what would be your drive for companionship?” She stared at me with the blankest expression as if her mind had been formatted, I felt like I had insulted her.

It got me thinking about how many people in my life have very similar views, I don’t think a week goes by where a family member or a friend asks me about my marital status or how many digits occupy my bank account. Is it not enough to just accept that I’m happy, healthy and human, surrounded by a truck load of love and that I now live with a mountain sized passion for life? It’s like many cannot accept that I could arrive at this level of fulfillment without having followed certain ideologies.

Is it that difficult to comprehend, that we can drive ourselves simply by the honesty we carry in our emotions? That life is actually a lot simpler outside the flow of man-made principles.

I’m beginning to wonder if humanity has lost touch with the very things that make us human. How is anyone supposed to reach self-actualization and fulfilment, if we’re so conditioned to live life dictated by man-made values, popular movements and lean our desires towards marketable trends?

OK, maybe I’m heading off on a frustrated tangent here, but think about it, when was the last time you did something unstructured and genuinely honest? How much of your life is innately motivated?

Give yourself the opportunity to ponder this thought and tap into your true intent, before making your next life decision.

Vancouver Relationship and Life Coach