Self Criticism? How to Overcome Your Inner “I’m Not Good Enough” Voice

Worth Reading – from off the Web!

Instead of going down the beaten path of self-blame and self-punishment for not being “good enough”, we can rewire our brains to think and behave differently.

We live in a world where the theme of unworthiness shows up in all areas in life. As kids, we proudly show off our high marks and perfect behaviors knowing they will earn us praises and approval from adults, and as adults, we constantly judge and punish ourselves for our lack of wealth, success, relationships and others’ good opinions of us. In my healing and coaching practice, the most common story that is told over and over is the one of “I’m not good enough.”

That was the story of my life as well, for over 3 decades. Having grown up in an Asian culture in the 80’s where being an overachiever was encouraged, the accepted, even celebrated method to motivate children was to subject them to harsh criticism and belittling (ie. “who do you think you are”, “you are nothing until you prove your worth so you can be something”, etc.) As a result, I not only internalized the disempowering belief that “I am not good enough” but I also made sure it dominated and manifested in every area of my life — without fail.

As powerful as this or any belief can be, it is only a belief, and we can choose to liberate ourselves from it – simply because it isn’t who we are. If you are constantly battling with a similar story, I invite you to read and practice the following steps to take your power back from that self-limiting belief.

Signs, Signs Everywhere

The first sign is always what we call a negative feeling. Our feelings are intelligent communications from our bodies to indicate to us whether a belief is in or out of alignment with who we are. How we feel at any moment is filtered by our thoughts and our thoughts derive from our existing beliefs. When our beliefs are no longer serving us, our feelings – being the language of the soul in a very literal fashion will give us a little (or large) kick to raise an alert. When I am in a coaching session, whenever a story comes up that is out of alignment, I always ask my clients how it makes them feel. The answer is always along the line of “it makes me feel crappy.”

The signs can range from physical ailments such as lack of energy or tension in various parts of the body to mental and emotional symptoms such as procrastination, depression and anxiety; or they can be a combination of conditions from all levels including feeling a tight knot of anxiety in the stomach that is often accompanied by digestive issues.

Our beliefs also have clever ways to disguise themselves as positive as well as socially approved motivations and behaviors.

Perfectionism is one of them. For the longest time I unconsciously chose to tell the story of “I am a perfectionist” which allowed me to get away from the harsh voice of “I am not good enough.” Yet time and time again when I ruthlessly put myself down for every little perceived failure, I finally realized my perfectionism was only a sugar coated version of “I suck.”

Another common disguise is altruism, or people pleasing behavior. We convince ourselves it is noble of us to place others’ needs before ours as well as compromise our own happiness because it earns us praises such as compassionate, kind and selfless.

Some of us have the tendency to give ourselves up or lose ourselves completely in relationships. Our society has a very powerful reinforcement system when it comes to encouraging selfless behavior without addressing the fundamental notion that our first relationship is always the relationship with ourselves. Without loving, cherishing and respecting ourselves, there is no relationship with others. When we do not know how to value ourselves and make the highest choices for ourselves, how can we honor others as loving, deserving and worthy?

There is certainly nothing wrong with giving our best in circumstances and relationships. However, it is helpful to always do a little honest self-inquiry and ask ourselves how each decision makes us feel. And if it does not feel uplifting, what belief is underneath that decision?

When we practice consciously acknowledging our old patterns every by listening to what our bodies are trying to tell us, we are stepping out of the unconscious and reactive way of living so we can compose a response that allows us to freely create based on who we want to be rather than recreate past scenarios of who we were told to be.

Instead of going down that old beaten path that leads to nothing but a stinking swamp, aka the self-blame and self-punishment for not being worthy, we can choose again and create a new path. The more we can catch ourselves on auto pilot, the more we can rewire our brains to think and behave differently.

Decisions, Decisions

Read more here: Self Criticism? How to Overcome Your Inner “I’m Not Good Enough” Voice

How Get The Most From Your Life!

Dreaming Into The Life You Want Most

Will Give You The Most

 

discipline

What Do You Want In Your Life?

It might feel a bit uncomfortable to become “conscious”  of what you want the most from life, but Not knowing might land you somewhere else.

Dreaming Into The Life You Want Most Will Give You The Most!

The greater the clarity of your dreams, the more likely you’ll make choices along the way that honor your vision. The following instructions will help you get started.

Ask yourself these questions:

1. Where do You want to see yourself in 6 month? … 2 years? … 5 years?  Try to visualize yourself in the future.

Imagine walking into your home five – ten years from now…

Imagine arriving at your home –  where is it located?  Is it a house, an apartment…?…

Walk in the front door. Who lives with you?…

Reflect on your day. What was it like?  If you work, take a moment to dream into it. Or were you doing something else?… were you with friends, family…?

What will you do in the evening? Again, just imagine the perfect situation.

2. What are the necessary qualities you will need to achieve this vision?

If, for example, you see yourself in 5 years with a different career, you may need schooling. If you see yourself as part of a couple, you may need to work on your interpersonal “issues”. If you see yourself as healthy, you may need to give up a bad habits. List a few of the qualities that will help you get there.

See it to become it!

Letting Go Of the Past to Appreciate the Present

Suffering doesn’t make us grow –

But what we do with our feelings could make us grow. ⚡️💡

It’s an interesting saying though. Where did it come from?  Perhaps it’s because anguish and acute awareness sometimes occur near one another, in time and space.dreamstime_m_43975880

For me, however, what makes us grow is understanding our feelings, questioning the thoughts behind them, seeing the cause-and-effect of it all. If we utilize this information the next time these feelings arise (anger, sadness, depression, confusion, fear), we can remember the awareness, aha moment, or insight we discovered before. We can  notice that what we are experiencing in the here and now is separate from the past.

Uncomfortable feelings are nearly always preceded by a stressful thought, and when the feelings come, we can isolate the stressful thought, idea, or assumption and question it thoroughly.contemplation

I find journaling a powerful aid here. Just write your rambling thoughts about a situation that made you uncomfortable (in your mind or in reality – doesn’t matter). Then let it set. You probably will already feel better because the act of writing is cathartic. But for true growth to occur, go back later and read what you wrote. Pretend you are a scientist!  Your job is to (compassionately) dissect your writing to find the threads of connection… Try asking these questions:

 1.  Have I ever felt this way before? Are there any other similarities? 

•   Personal example: going to son’s junior high school to deliver his ADHD medicine – it left me with a racing heart, a sense of urgency to complete the task, and an overall sense of shame. It made no sense in my logical mind.

 Have I ever felt this way before? Are there any other similarities? 

Turns out yes! Junior High was very scary for me. I was picked on by other girls and I was even beaten up a number of times. The threats often occurred when students were moving from one class their next, so I was especially scared when that bell rang!

2.  What were the beliefs/thoughts around the event? 

Thoughts– that caused the racing heart, urgency and intense fear. 

(BTW – I think I ‘should’ be embarrassed to share this, as the discovered back-thoughts seem so clearly absurd and immature… but, I wouldn’t have known these were the thoughts if I hadn’t compassionately listened…)

I might be attacked!.. Did I do something wrong???… If I can become unnoticeable, I might make it…             

Well – pretty obvious right? But my body didn’t know that , so:
junior high = made mistake (let son run out of meds)  = fear….

Let me say, I’m not reactive to junior high’s anymore.

By listening, compassionately, to your own mistaken, innocent mind, you can become free… from this, then that, then…

 

 

 

If you wrote it Autobiography, What Would the Chapter Titles Be?

What links your life together?

Start with ten.  (This is one of the assignments I frequently give my clients.)

You can choose life events, demographics, influential people you’ve known, talents, even “aHa” moments.

Mine might be:

  1. Born female, in the USA, to a progressive, liberal mother.
  2. “Abandoned” at four years old (for a year).
  3. Abused by my stepfather, resulting in their divorce.
  4. Moved, age 10, from a middle-class neighborhood to poverty neighborhood. I was suddenly a “minority”.
  5. My mother worked 18 hours a day, so my siblings and I raised ourselves.
  6. Growing Up in the 70’s.
  7. Studied spiritual philosophies, finding an affinity with Christian, Buddhist, and Taoist ideas.
  8. Became a mother of twin boys.
  9. Started my own business as a psychotherapist.
  10. Killed a person in a car accident.

(Wow! I just did that off the cuff! Very powerful!).

Next, you fill in the chapters. What about (That) affected you? What characteristics were created because of ________? You might ask yourself:

  • How did ____ influence you?
  • What did you discover about yourself?
  • What did you have to learn to overcome?
  • How did ______ wound you? Strengthen you?
  • Define your gratitude for these occurrences/events

Using one of mine as an example:

Yes, I killed a person in a car accident

  • I discovered that life can change – drastically- in an instant. And in THAT particular instant, I didn’t even know it. For a long time, I’d have terrible dreams, I’d have flashes of people appearing in the road before I could do anything about it… I struggled with my connection to God (I’d like to have made it through my life without killing someone).
  • I discovered that I loved and understood myself, even if society didn’t. I confirmed my value of always telling the truth, as I knew it, and that I continue to do what I think is right – even if others disagreed (I wrote to his family against the advice of my attorney, who thought such an act would be misinterpreted as guilt).
  • I had to learn to live with knowing most people would make up stories about me that weren’t true (“she must have known!”, “She must have been drinking!”).  I had to overcome needing people to understand me.
  • I will always have this heavy burden in my soul. 
  • I am grateful for the people in my life that tried to help me. I’m grateful to learn that other peoples  opinions of me no longer affects what I think of me.

     What have been the greatest influences in your life? What ties your life all together?

     

    Awareness, Authenticity, and Assertiveness

    As I’ve discussed before…

    Without becoming aware of our thoughts and feelings, we are little more than a computer program: Life provides input, our brain rapidly calculates the meaning, and the body responds appropriately.

    For example, if I see a snake during a moonlit walk, my body will rapidly prepare me for potential crisis – drenching my body in fight-or-flight chemicals. If I then realize it wasn’t a snake at all but just a fallen branch, my sigh of relief arrests the automatic response.

    (Worth reading – from Off the Web!)

    Being authentically you is perhaps one of the greatest gifts you can give, not only to those that mean the world to you, but also to the people in your life in general – and especially to yourself.

    dreamstime_m_211796

    What does it mean to be courageously and authentically you, and why is this a precious gift?

    Authenticity is the permission you give yourself to be real, to be who you are, aware of warts and graces. This permission frees you to give and to live in relation to your self and others, especially key others, from a place of love, and not fear.

    It’s precious because how you relate – give and receive – directly impacts the balance of your life and relationships.

    And, speaking of fears, our deepest fears are not about spiders, snakes or bridges, which are surface fears in comparison. Our deepest fears have to do with intimacy and our deepest yearnings for meaningful connection, contribution, and relationships; they are matters of the heart.

    To choose to live authentically is conscious choice to love authentically, a conscious way of feeling safe enough to love and give with your whole heart.

    And that means safe enough to set judicious limits, say or accept ‘no’ and ‘yes’ as viable options. Loving authentically with your whole heart means taking essential steps to consciously:

    • Treat others and, at the same time, yourself with dignity and care.
    • Give (to others and self) from a place of love – not fear.
    • Remain open and empathically connected rather than defensive (triggered) when you face what most personally challenges you in relational contexts.

    Why set healthy limits on your giving? When you set healthy limits, you  Give and Express yourself from a place inside you that is authentic. It is rooted in your love rather than fear, shame or guilt.

    Being an authentic you has a lot to do with getting to know and to fully accept and to love yourself and life in ways that allow you to authentically connect with courage to love with your whole heart.  It is only when you take one hundred percent responsibility for your inner emotional state and responses that you allow yourself to experience emotional fulfillment and personal transformation. It means  Standing up for yourself  from a place that intentionally sends a message that you like and respect yourself enough to treat yourself and the other with dignity even in challenging situations when emotions are pulling at you from another direction.

    One of the most important ways to express authenticity is in how you relate to your self. Others know from how you present yourself , what is okay and not okay, in terms of how you want others to treat you.

    When you nurture a healthy space inside you, as well as around and between you and others, you send a clear message that you like and respect yourself, that you know what you want and do not want, and, most importantly, that you are aware of what you most need and value in life.

    Thus, when you love with your whole heart, a required skill to cultivate, is the capacity to remain open and vulnerable in triggering contexts  without getting triggered.

    Nurturing healthy limits in the way you love, give and express yourself is one of the most important ways to improve your relationships and your life, thus, your happiness.

    Setting healthy limits simultaneously conveys respect to others as persons, even when you strongly disagree with their viewpoint or feel pain in response to actions they took.

    This is impossible to do, if you do not come from a place of deep respect and honor for yourself that is completely not dependent upon whether the other is treating you in the way you most want and deserve to be treated.

    There are a number of things you can do to ensure that stress does not negatively affect your personal and relational well-being. You can schedule regular fun time. Eat healthful, nutritious meals. Exercise. Stretch. Breathe. Meditate. All of these are essential practices are proven by a substantial body of research to be effective.

    A lifestyle of conscious caring for your health helps remove much of the intensity and reactivity, and needless anguish. When you care for your body, you care for your mental health. You are strengthened to withstand the everyday pressures of life and relationships.

    Much of the suffering we experience in relationship conflict, however, is related to limiting belief, and old ways we have learned to think and to talk — to ourselves — and to one another. In addition to a healthful lifestyle, your ability to communicate can be your greatest asset if you want to protect your happiness, and to more effectively deal with the challenges you face in relating to those closest to you.

    In other words, what you say and, especially, how you say things matters when it comes to your happiness. It sets the tone for your giving and receiving – in other words, how you relate to your self and others.

    Do you nurture healthy boundaries and limits in your relationships? Do your actions send a message that you respect and value yourself, your time and contribution? Do your actions similarly convey that you respect and value others and their  contributions? Do you know how to “teach” others to respect you, or how to communicate your respect, especially in moments when you or others are seemingly unlovable?

    Pause for a moment to reflect on the following statements; then use the scale below to rate how true each statement is for you:

    0 – Not at all
    1 – Occasionally
    2 – Somewhat
    3 – Moderately
    4 – A lot
    5 – Nearly Always

    ____ I find it difficult to stand up for myself.

    ____ I tolerate hurtful or sarcastic comments out of fear or worry.

    ____ I say “yes” to things I do not want to do, then resent it.

    ____ I feel powerless around pushy people and do what they want.

    ____ I feel others must be shamed or intimidated to do what is right.

    ____ I avoid ‘rocking the boat’ and go to great lengths to stop conflict.

    ____ I think “rocking the boat” is the only way to get things done.

    ____ I feel unsure and hesitant when it comes to handling conflict.

    ____ I say what I want, when and how I want to say it.

    ____ I think I must “please” others to feel okay or to not guilty.

    ____ I take what people say to me or about me personally.

    ____ I worry about what people are thinking of me.

    If your score is higher than 10, you may benefit from developing more courage to be authentic and to set healthier limits. If your score is higher than 20, taking steps to nurture healthy limits and authentic connections with your self and others may need urgent attention. Your personal and relational happiness and well-being depend upon it.

    When you are authentic, you love with your whole heart, you feel safe enough to remain open and vulnerable. Authenticity is about fully owning the power you have to make choices at any moment regarding how you will respond, or relate, to yourself and to life around you.

    Choose to give the gift of being authentically you, to transform your life and relationships in ways that may surprise and delight you.

    Awareness is key when it comes to authenticity.

    It takes courage to live and love authentically. Essentially, authenticity is a continuous balancing act. It requires you to be willing to remain empathically connected even when you –  or others – are seemingly unlovable. It’s a conscious way of feeling safe enough to get to know you, and to love – give authentically – with your whole heart.

    To live in balance and harmony in your relationships, it helps to become aware of the people and situations that tend to challenge your ability to be true to yourself.

    To live in balance and harmony in your relationships, you need to know how to calm your mind and body, to feel safe enough to set judicious limits in your interactions with others, for example, to say or hear the words ‘yes’ or ‘no’ without getting triggered.

    The first step in setting limits is identifying the specific situations that challenge or trigger you when it comes to either standing up for yourself with courage and/or doing so in a way that treats the other (thus also your self) with dignity.

    Generally, these are certain situations or actions by others that unnecessarily trigger your body’s survival response. They may result from a missed opportunity to express your feelings, to say what you did or didn’t like, or to make a request. In other cases you may have “stood up” for yourself, however, you did so in an impulsive way that blasted, belittled or demeaned another, thus, it left you feeling worse than before.

    The purpose of the exercise below is to identify your triggers, that is, the situations in which you do not set healthy limits at this time.

    Exercise: Identifying the Triggers

    Instructions: Below are four incomplete sentences followed by examples of possible responses. For each sentence, check all responses that are true for you, and feel free to add any of your own in the margins.

    I feel guilty when …

    “I see a look of disappointment on a loved one’s face”

    “I’m asked to do something and do not want to”

    “I say no”

    “I notice someone I care about looks angry”

    “I get angry and say hurtful things”

    “Others do more than I do”

    “A loved one looks hurt or unhappy”

    I wish I had more courage to ask for …

    “Quiet time for myself”

    “Someone to stop yelling or making demeaning statements”

    “Help around the house”

    “Privacy”

    “More information before a purchase”

    “Someone to listen without judging, giving advice, or trying to “fix” things”

    “An apology when someone has acted in a hurtful way”

    I get frustrated or resentful when …

    “Someone dismisses my opinion”

    “I am not included in an important decision that was made”

    “Someone takes me for granted”

    “I say yes when I want to say no”

    “Someone says no to one of my requests”

    “I get overwhelmed by too many tasks”

    “Someone talks over me or interrupts me when I talk”

    I wish I had more courage to ask others to stop …

    “Blasting me with their anger”

    “Invading my personal space”

    “Criticizing or judging me”

    “Going through my personal belongings”

    “Putting me down, correcting or humiliating me in front of others”

    “Avoiding discussions to solve our problems”

    “Making off-color jokes or comments in my presence”

    “Blaming me or telling me I am responsible for their unhappiness”

    Look over the triggers you underlined or added above. Then rank order the triggers from the most challenging to the least, with “1” being the most and “10” the least.

    STOP letting your brain go into ‘protective mode,’ and you in a defensive mode.

    The “triggers” you identify here are the specific situations you want to work on to develop an action plan for being “authentically you.” By mastering the moments when you need to face core fears that surface, you can do so without triggering your body’s stress response, also known as the “fight or flee” system, which puts your brain in ‘protective mode,’ and you in a defensive mode.

    * Edited for readability

    Sources – http://blogs.psychcentral.com/relationships/2011/12/a-key-aspect-of-being-authentically-you-identifying-your-triggers/ 
    http://blogs.psychcentral.com/relationships/2011/06/five-essential-steps-to-authenticity/ 
    http://blogs.psychcentral.com/relationships/2011/12/the-ultimate-gift-giving-the-gift-being-authentically-you/
     http://blogs.psychcentral.com/relationships/2011/06/the-secret-to-being-authentically-you-part-1/

    About Athena Staik, Ph.D.

    Relationship consultant, author, licensed marriage and family therapist, Dr. Athena Staik shows clients how to break free of anxiety, addictions, and other emotional blocks, to awaken radiantly healthy lives and relationships. Dr. Staik is currently in private practice in Northern VA, and writing her book, Safe Enough to Love™: Breaking Free of Addictive Love in Couple Relationships. To contact Dr. Staik for information, an appointment or workshop, visit  www.drstaik.com, or visit on her Facebook fan page DrAthenaStaik

    “Good To Be Alive Today” 

    Amazing video… Click the link, then read the lyrics HERE

    It’s Good To Be Alive Today!

    “Everyday I wake up and turn my phone on

    I read the news of the day, just as it’s coming down

    I do my best not to let it get me down

    I try to keep my head up, but it’s  Babylon

    This world’s in crisis, we try to fight it, this changing climate

    The scientists and politicians divided by it

    So many ways we could solve it but they would never sign it

    This mountains tumbling down, but still we try to climb it

    It’s in the Torah, Quran and in the Bible

    Love is the message ; But some how we turn to rivals

    It’s come to people always picking up their rifles

    Another school getting shot up; homicidal
    Some people trying to fly, some people trying to get high

    Some people losing their mind, some people trying to get by

    And when you look in my eyes, you see the sign of the times

    We’re all looking for the same thing
    But what if this song’s number one…

    Would it mean that love had won?

    Would it mean that the world was saved?

    And no guns are being drawn today?

    What if everybody had a job?

    And nobody had to break a law?

    What if everyone could say…

    That it’s good to be alive today?
    Oh, Is it good to be alive today?

    Oh… Is it good to be alive today?
    People used to feel safer when they would hear a siren

    Like help is on its way but now they only think of violence

    Another youth in the streets and police are in a conflict

    And now they hear the guns click.

    Ebola crisis and ISIS is taking heads off

    A drone is bombing a village and now the kids all

    Signing up to be soldiers, all willing now

    To do the killing now, now are you willing now?

    Some politicians out there making up some problems

    And trying to tell the people that they can solve them

    With TV shows and soundbites and quotes

    But everybody knows that it’s all about the cash flow

    They telling you and me, they’re making progress

    But tell it to the millions of jobless

    It’s like a players club with billions of dollars

    To get the votes you got to make it rain in congress
    Some people trying to fly, some people trying to get high

    Some people losing their mind, some people trying to get by

    And when you look in my eyes, you see the sign of the times

    We’re all looking for the same thing…
    But what if this song’s number one

    Would it mean that love had won?

    Would it mean that the world was saved?

    And no guns are being drawn today?

    What if everybody had a job?

    And nobody had to break a law?

    What if everyone could say

    That it’s good to be alive today?

    Oh… Is it good to be alive today?…

    And we all say: One day, we all will say
    That it’s good to be alive today

    One day, one day

    One day, one day

    One day, we all will say

    That it’s good to be alive today”

    https://vimeo.com/168031157

    Mindlessness Versus Mindfulness

    Ellen Langer and mindfulness

    Ellen Langer studies the Science of Mindlessness and Mindfulness. She asserts that the idea of being in the moment doesn’t feel very instructional because when we are not in the moment we don’t notice. Same with the idea of being present.

    Instead, Ellen suggests “noticing.”

    As children we have a very instinctual, natural way of noticing things and people. Then they begin to teach us that these things are called names and then they give us their opinions about them which we take as being the facts, or the truth.

    Our Experience of Everything is Formed by the Words and Ideas We Attach to Them

    Dr. Langer’s take on mindfulness has never involved contemplation or meditation or yoga. It comes straight out of her provocative, unconventional studies, which have been suggesting for decades what neuroscience is pointing at now: our experience of everything is formed by the words and ideas we attach to them. What makes a vacation a vacation is not only a change of scenery — but the fact that we let go of the mindless everyday illusion that we are we need to be in control. Ellen Langer has shown it’s possible to become physiologically younger through a changed frame of mind; and to find joy in what was experienced as drudgery by renaming it as play.

    But if you go home tonight and pretend you don’t know anything, no words, no concepts, you will experience a new level of being alive! My husband and I did this for fun the other day. We looked at our houseplants with as few concepts as we could muster. Suddenly the various colors (of green) became vivid. The textures were also alive.  The light danced on the leaves, revealing various twists and bends, shine and mute-tones. It was amazing.

    As we evolve, we eventually have the wisdom that there are different ways of looking at things yet our personal way of looking at things remains somewhat constant. When we become aware that there are different ways of looking at things, she calls it “awareness of uncertainty.”

    Awareness of Uncertainty

    Ellen suggests that we look at uncertainty in two ways – there is personal uncertainty and universal uncertainty.  

    Personal uncertainty is “I don’t know – maybe you know” or “I don’t know and I’m gonna pretend I know.”  These are ways of organizing and stabilizing the universe.

    Universal uncertainty is “I don’t know you and you don’t know me. In fact in some ways we can’t ever know.” 

    From a place of universal uncertainty the conversation proceeds very differently. For example if you do something and I look at it in a kind of a mindless way I’m going to resort to my personal uncertainty and I’m going to think that I know your motives and make all kinds of conclusions about why you did what you did and whether not it meets my approval.

    From the universal perspective I can’t know what you did or why you did it, but I can know that, for you, given your life, it makes sense for you, from your perspective. From here ask yourself “why would a reasonable, logical person do such a thing?”

    Ellen Langer is a social psychologist who some have dubbed “the mother of mindfulness.” But she defines mindfulness with counterintuitive simplicity: the simple act of actively noticing things — with a result of increased health, competence, and happiness. Her take on mindfulness has never involved contemplation or meditation or yoga. It comes straight out of her provocative, unconventional studies, which have been suggesting for decades what neuroscience is pointing at now: our experience of everything is formed by the words and ideas we attach to them. What makes a vacation a vacation is not only a change of scenery — but the fact that we let go of the mindless everyday illusion that we are we need to be in control. Ellen Langer has shown it’s possible to become physiologically younger through a changed frame of mind; and to find joy in what was experienced as drudgery by renaming it as play.

    DR. LANGER: I don’t think you can make a decision that I’m going to be present. What does that mean? People who tell you to meditate assume that over time,  you will become “present”.

    But if you’re actively noticing things, you’re going to go home tonight and if you live with somebody, notice five new things about that person. Be very specific. What will happen is the person will start to come alive for you again. And that will improve the relationship.

    Article Sources:

    Mindlessness and Mindfulness – On Being with Ellen Langer

    Ellen Langer and Mindfulness -Harvard

    Books by Ellen Langer