Prevention is better than Cure

October 25, 2011

Written by Paula O’Sullivan

At the time of writing this, we’ve had some pretty heavy rain showers where I live. It was during one of the prolonged heavy deluges that I chanced to look out the window, and in dismay realized that the drain at the end of my driveway was blocked, causing a flood. I could see that the flood was spreading and was working its way down the street and was now outside a neighbours house two doors down.

Action was needed and even though I was warm and cosy indoors, I knew if I didn’t do something at that moment, that I would be causing a great inconvenience not only to myself but to others too, as the flood would continue to spread. So out came the wellington boots and the rain jacket, and armed with a garden fork and a spade I waded in. Within about ten minutes of loosening the debris, I cleared the blockage and all was well.

Now the reason I’m telling you this, is, that all through the summer, I had noticed that the shore was blocked, I could see that the leaves from the overhead trees had over time, turned into compost and had blocked the shore solidly. I passed it many times and said, I’ll do it another day. And every little rain shower would cause a little flood just outside my door, and still I didn’t act, until I was forced to take action.

This got me thinking about how many of us go through life like this. We notice something small going wrong with our car and we ignore it, hope it will go away, and then eventually the car breaks down, or we notice that things aren’t right in a relationship, and we ignore it and hope it’ll resolve itself, and it doesn’t and the relationship fall apart, or we notice that we are feeling tired lately, and we are getting colds, or headaches, or tummy trouble etc and we ignore it, hope it’ll get better and then our body protests, and we become ill. I have many clients who come to me to quit smoking after they’ve had a heart attack etc.

I’m asking myself, are we all addicted to drama or what? We notice these things, we keep telling ourselves I hope my car doesn’t break down, or my relationship break up, or my health doesn’t fail, or in my case my drain doesn’t flood the neighbourhood ! And yet we don’t think in terms of prevention do we? We wait until our backs are up against the wall and we can’t go any further and we are forced to face the situation.

What I mean in terms of prevention is this, in my case, check the drain regularly for debris,  get your car serviced, keep your body, mind, and spirit well, find a good balance between rest, exercise and nutrition, get  medical check ups, check in with your thoughts, are they making you feel good or bad ? Choose thoughts that make you feel good. Think in terms of being a survivor who copes, rather than a victim who gets picked on, if you believe life isn’t fair, then that’ll be your reality. I’ve been there I know this! Ask yourself, how best can I cope with what happens. Don’t put off doing something you’d love to do, this will bring your spirit into balance and help you feel good. Deal with stress before it deals with you! We get so caught up in the chaos of it all. If you’re getting tired, having headaches, frequent colds etc, your body is telling you to slow down, take it easy, find a balance before you trip over!

If something is not quite right in a relationship, communicate with EACH other! I know so many people who will spend hours with friends, telling them what is wrong with their relationships, yes male and female, but they won’t tell their partners, oh no, they have to mind read, they should already know this shouldn’t they ? NO, they don’t, many of us have to work on building our psychic abilities, and most of us can’t read minds! Tell them what you think and feel or forever drift apart!

I’ll leave you this quote. ‘To insure good health: Eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life.” William Londen

Tapping into our Inner Power

October 18, 2011

Written by Paula O’Sullivan

Our power comes not from suppressing others but from uplifting them -Sakyong Mipham Rinpoche (Quote)

It is only the fear that we have something to lose that makes us try to suppress another person. Real power is the power of love. It is stronger than fear and has a much nicer effect. When we become aware of this inner power, we awaken to a new world, it begins with self love, not egoistical, arrogant, vain or selfish, simply put, just being kind to ourselves, saying nice things to ourselves, being supportive of ourselves…why?

Because if we don’t actually like ourselves, if we rise each morning and look critically at ourselves in the mirror and don’t like what we see, if we speak to ourselves in a way that we would be mortified if anyone could hear us, if we say things to ourselves that we would never dream of saying to our friends, I’m talking about the unkind things we say to ourselves, if we are doing this daily then we will find it difficult to sincerely uplift others, we may feel that we can’t actually even give a simple compliment to someone and if someone gives us one, we feel we don’t deserve it. Now we can’t give and we can’t receive. Are we happy ? Some of us are just unaware, drifting through life day by day, maybe have a drink or take to drugs or other forms of escapism to dull the pain, some lash out, unhappy and bitter. Some become numb, die inside.

Some of us become armed with expectations and special conditions we greet our world and the world must play by our rules and if it doesn’t we get hurt and the cycle of fear continues. So in our fear we start grabbing, looking out for number one, dog eat dog, and we start thinking if anyone is going to get suppressed well it ain’t going to be me ! So we put down another person and we feel good, or do we ? It’s a constant battle. This isn’t power, this is weakness.

Real power is love, loving yourself, accepting yourself, changing attitudes, perspectives if necessary, learning and growing, free of expectations, free of special conditions, allowing people to be themselves, not judging, not criticizing, yourself or others, learning to give not grab, seeing that there is abundance, not lack, only fear sees lack, seeing what you can do to help others, without expecting something back, fear tells us we’ve given too much, love tells us to give regardless of return. Start with yourself, see that you have a power within you that can help our world, see that we are one and the same, each human, equal, there is no class system in the graveyard and we’re all heading for the same destination, we do not have to suppress another to be powerful, there is a better way, there is nothing to lose, we do not have to listen and be ruled by fear. We do not have to listen to fear telling us that it’s not ok to be kind to ourselves, we can choose to listen to love, the power within, and we can choose in any moment to start working with each other not against, and we can choose to start uplifting not suppressing. If you’re not uplifting yourself are you suppressing yourself? If you are suppressing yourself, are you able to really, truly uplift others? Think about it!

Free from Fear

October 16, 2011

Written by Paula O’Sullivan

Looking back on my life so far, I can see that most of the important decisions I had made in the past were led by fear. Whether it was, relationships…I must get married… or I’ll be left on the shelf… I must have kids… or I may get too old… I must buy a house now… before prices go up…. I must put up with that behaviour… or I’ll be left on my own…I must not apply for that job or course… I may not be smart enough….my life was full of must and shoulds… and all for the wrong reasons…. fear of something is not a good basis to make decisions on… and looking back now… even though I can be grateful for the hard lessons fear has taught me… I can see that my life is very different now…. and I’m much happier and can make wiser choices and decisions, because I’m free of fear.

I’m sharing this with you now, just in case you are like me as I was then, maybe it’ll save you some unnecessary heartache, and yes I know we must all walk our own paths, but if my insights help you in any way then I’ll feel good inside, my effort has been worthwhile.

So how do we become free from fear? I mean it’s all around us, we are being bombarded with worse case scenarios everywhere we look, television, newspapers, radio, even most conversations overheard, contain fear, and it’s so easy to become overwhelmed in it all and to allow it to affect us in so many ways.

Well my understanding of fear is this: We picture something and then we picture ourselves not being able to cope, not being able to handle the situation, we see ourselves, weak and powerless and a victim…. as losers not winners…. and when we do this, fear grips us tightly and won’t let go !

To become free of fear we need to start putting pictures into our minds of ourselves coping, being strong, imagining the best possible outcomes, the best possible situations, and yes sometimes thinking ahead, and saying to ourselves, ‘well if this happens I will see myself coping in this or that way’, and putting strong pictures in our minds of being a great survivor, knowing that we will handle anything that happens. Very few decisions are actually life or death decisions. And while some things happen that make us feel uncomfortable, it’s usually not the end of the world, even though it may temporarily seem like that! If we take the time, we can reason most things out and take the phrase ‘wouldn’t it be awful if?’ out of our conversations and replace it with the phrase ‘wouldn’t it be brilliant if?’ instead. Because sometimes we are just not content enough that something has gone wrong, we have to develop that fear even more by saying to ourselves ‘ and what if this happens, and what if that happens too ?’ And we make the pictures more vivid in our minds and they become worse than the reality, and we find it more difficult to deal with, as these brighter pictures evoke stronger feelings of fear, which make it appear more real. And so putting the better solution pictures into your mind will work in a similar way over time only they will evoke powerful feelings of inner strength and courage which will make you feel really good., so I just wanted to make you aware that you have a choice of what pictures you can to play in your mind and how they can effect you.

I’m reminded of this quote “When I look back on all these worries, I remember the story of the old man who said on his deathbed that he had had a lot of trouble in his life, most of which had never happened.” – Winston Churchill

If you can see yourself coping, if you can see yourself surviving in your minds eye, then you are already half way there, and you too can be free from fear!


Are you still looking to be saved?

October 3, 2011

Written by Paula O’Sullivan

‘A man caught in a flood prayed to God for help. While he was on his knees praying, a police officer came to the door and offered to evacuate him, but he said, “No thanks, Officer, I’ll stay here, God will deliver me” and resumed his prayers. Then a person in a rowboat came by as the waters were rising, and the man said, “No thanks, I’ll stay here, God will deliver me” and continued praying to God for help. The waters continued to rise and the man had to climb onto his roof. At last a helicopter came with a ladder and the pilot told him to climb aboard. He again refused, all the while sitting on the roof and praying to God. Finally the waters covered him and he drowned. After he got to heaven he told God how disappointed he was that God didn’t answer his prayers. God said, “What do you mean I didn’t answer? I sent a police officer, a rowboat and a helicopter; what else did you want?”(Author unknown)

Now whether you believe in God or not, if you make an effort to become aware of the things that have happened or are happening in your life, you may notice that there have been occasions when you could have saved yourself. Whether it is from suffering, anguish, being hurt, being broke etc, etc. And while this can be a painful awakener, it may eventually lead us to a position of empowerment.

Now there are many for whom this is a difficult task, and I know because I used to be one of them. It was easier to be a victim, a poor me, blaming everyone and everything else for the predicaments I found myself in, it was easier to get low or depressed, easier to become ill, it all just helped me to make excuses as to why my life was the way it was. I was looking to be saved, I was looking for a magic wand to appear and solve all my problems, and this left me feeling powerless.

And if you are reading this and are like that and are happy to stay that way, well who am I to judge, I am merely only a moment of awareness apart from you, and that is all it was that changed me, a moment of awareness, a flash of insight that showed me how to save myself. A flash of insight that told me, you can lose your house or you can talk with the bank and make a deal. A flash of insight that told me, you can remain unemployed, complaining at the lack of opportunities, or you can re train and create your own opportunity, a flash of insight that told me you can remain in debt, struggling and being overwhelmed, or you can pay it all off in small manageable amounts, you borrowed it, no one forced you, now pay it back graciously, and like a dripping tap into a bucket it will all make a difference at some stage. A flash of insight that told me, you don’t need a magic wand, you are the magic wand, you are part of the problem and you are also part of the solution, a flash of insight that told me, you can sit mulling over your problems, and that is what they will remain, a flash of insight that told me, if you take action, you will at least feel empowered, you will feel more positive, and somewhat in control, and if you can just stop running away and hiding, if you can just muster up enough courage to turn around and face the issues, you will become stronger and more able to cope, because no one is going to save us, it’s a hard truth, no one can save us but ourselves. So if you are still looking to be saved, you may well end up disappointed in your search, maybe this article will help you learn to save yourself, like I did, I hope it does! I’ll leave you with this quote to mull over!

“No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path.” Buddha


Becoming Stronger

October 1, 2011

Written by Paula O’Sullivan

I was asked a while back, ‘How do we become strong?’ I just love being asked this kind of thing, it throws my mind into a mad swirl of questions! I would consider myself a very strong woman, but I hadn’t ever taken the time to analyse just how I got here! Until now that is!

Becoming stronger, and notice I didn’t say strong, as I believe we all have inner strength within us, admittedly sometimes untapped. We are merely unaware of our own strengths and capabilities that’s all. Becoming stronger begins, I believe with the thought or thoughts that tell us ‘I am becoming stronger’… ‘I am strong in the face of adversity’…. ‘Each and every day I get stronger and stronger in everyway’, for how can we be strong if we are always telling ourselves that we aren’t strong? Our subconscious minds believe everything that we tell them, whether it is good for us or not, they just believe, never questioning, always accepting, and are always ready to act out on our orders!

Oh and I know some of you are probably saying words won’t change anything, and I’ll agree with you there, words on their own, won’t change anything, the next thing that has to happen, is that you can imagine being strong, to become strong, put the right kind of thoughts into your mind, tell it what you want to achieve, then get into the feeling of it, if you are visual, if you find it easy to put pictures in your mind, see, hear, feel, imagine that you are in the process of becoming strong, and yes some of you may find this difficult, and if you do… let me ask you to define your interpretation of strong. Write it down on a piece of paper, what do you want to be? Not what you don’t want to be, state as clearly as you can what it is that you want to become, how do you want to act in situations where you need inner strength? Now do you know anyone who is like that, an actor, a neighbour, a partner, a parent, a child, someone you admire for that quality that you seek.? Think about the kind of things they say and do, how do they hold themselves, do they come across as a victim or as a survivor? Do they stand up straight and look someone in the eye or do they slouch apologetically avoiding eye contact at all costs? Observe and see what way you can be like them.

Please note :There’s a difference between being strong and being hard, being assertive and being aggressive, so just to be aware of this. Being strong, doesn’t mean being rude, or selfish or pushy, we can be strong and we can remain nice people!

I’ll leave you with this quote, ‘ It’s not what you are that holds you back, It’s what you think you’re not ’ – Denis Waitley


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