2 shortcuts that changed my life
WARNING: I use expletives. Sorry, not sorry. I hope you appreciate the authenticity.
I had a lovely conversation with an awesome waitress at Ace Hotel, London which triggered me to write this... Thank you :)
We all have our own neuroses and struggles that we want to get a grip on, but the key question is “where do I start?”. Meditation is well-publicised now but tends to feel like a time-consuming and effort-intensive practice. Getting started, or re-started once you’ve fallen off the wagon, doesn’t feel accessible. And let's not touch the problem of perfectionism - “Am I doing it right? Fuck, I’m thinking again. I’m no good at this. I’ll do it later when I have more energy and more time…”
What’s the laziest way to level-up your mindset?
Friends will know that I’m always playing with at least 20 new techniques at a time. They would probably say I’m faddish - they might be correct. I would say I experiment a lot and learn fast, but who cares...
The important point here is that there are 2 things that I keep coming back to when I dip low:
- Practicing recognition
- Practicing loving oneself
And I mean when I really dip low... I feel overwhelmed, I feel empty, I feel crushed, I feel like I have 99 problems and I can find another hundred, I haven’t got energy for anything, I don’t want to be where I am, I don’t want to be who I am…. blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Endless fucking stories…
Recognition as an alternative to meditation
This is a technique directly lifted from Bentinho Massaro’s Trinfinity Academy (which is a free and fantastic resource). Bentinho is a spiritual teacher whose stuff I really like. Huge thanks to him for sharing this knowledge with the world and being so influential on me.
In a nutshell:
- Meditation is essentially a series of moments of recognition back-to-back
- A moment of recognition is where you realise that you exist
- We can experience blissful moments of recognition without a meditation practice.
To quote directly from the lesson:
- "[Recognition] refers to taking 2 to 5 seconds away from your thinking mind and naturally recognizing the space of the Here and Now itself—which becomes obvious when you choose to remain uninterested in thoughts for a brief moment"
- "In just 2 to 5 seconds of complete dedication to ignoring thoughts and instead noticing/recognizing the aliveness that is already here, a great deal can be accomplished towards Self-Realization, especially if these moments are repeated throughout the flow of your day"
So we do not need to meditate for an extended period of time in order to experience recognition. In fact, Bentinho says:
- "I recommend 12 or more moments of recognition each day. In total, this means a minimum of 24 to 60 seconds per day that I encourage you to spend on honoring your existence—on recognizing the simple but brilliant truth of Now, seated right here, beyond the realm of the busy thinking mind. Not too much to ask for, right?"
Here is what I tend to experience:
- Freedom from the pressure to meditate.
- A simple and easy practice that I can weave into my day. Doing a small action many times actually leverages B.J. Fogg’s Tiny Habits methodology - Fogg has advised businesses and his models are used to coax us into developing strong habits when using technology. Since recognition is a bitesize action it can be repeated often and repeated actions are hammered into your mind as default behaviours. This means it gets easier to do and it's a nice morale booster. There’s no need to beat yourself up because you didn’t meditate this morning and you’re in a tailspin. Just drop all thoughts and tune into pure presence for a few seconds.
- The ability to tap into tranquility (or stillness or source or whatever you call it) at will, at any point during the day. I can get outside of myself, outside of my bullshit. You might call this escapism, however, the ability to tune out of the chaos of one’s mind is a very useful power. And when you return to your mind you feel different, you feel refreshed. People who meditate know that it alters the perspective through which you see thoughts - you feel less like a victim of the thoughts. You can see the stories as opposed to be fully absorbed in them. Recognition does the same thing, except it is accessible at any time, in only a few seconds.
- I have to admit that I don’t practice recognition all of the time, however, when I’m diligent with it it bleeds into my day. I find that I pick and choose which thoughts and stories are important. Moreover, I can always call upon recognition when I need immediate relief.
It’s difficult to put into words how profoundly effective this tool is. I believe you will feel it for yourself after doing it for a week or so, which is a maximum of 7 minutes of your time!
Loving oneself changes everything
Marisa Peer says that the biggest disease affecting humanity is the belief that “I am not enough”. It might sound too simple. It isn’t. It’s true.
Our doubts, our worries, our destructive behaviours are all very often traced back to this simple idea. We have a multitude of experiences and stories which support this belief. But this belief does not serve you. So there is no reason to retain it.
To heal, we need to let go of the stories and introduce the voice that says “I am enough”. It may not feel believable at first but the more times you say or see something the more familiar your mind becomes with it. And your mind loves what it is familiar with, so it then starts to play this back to you. You begin to appreciate yourself and without needing a reason.
Self-love differs to self-confidence in this way: where confidence is conditional on one’s situation or circumstances, true love is unconditional and always available. For example, a gifted athlete may have all of their self-confidence resting on their physical prowess. If they suffer an injury and cannot compete anymore, will they retain any confidence?
An individual who loves themselves unconditionally, however, does not need validation or seek highs and joy outside of themselves. Everything they do is an expression of joy which they already hold inside. This might smell like selfishness to you, except: when you have self-love, you don’t feel the need to be stingy in offering affection to others, so your affection is both more abundant and more authentic. This is the way that I want to be, and is now the foundation of most of my daily practices.
This is how my lazy journey to loving myself has evolved:
- I first came across Marisa’s work in late 2016 and got hold of a ‘Lovability’ hypnotic recording focused on immersing one’s mind in the thoughts and feelings of being enough and loving oneself deeply. It is literally the easiest thing to listen to a recording for 25mins before bed.
- I didn’t realise how deficient I was in self-love until I noticed that I was behaving differently. For example, I found I was betting on myself more, finding more things to be grateful about and being more appreciative of others.
- Every time I do a cycle of listening daily for 30 consecutive days, I experience a tremendous amount of change. This eventually drove me to learn Marisa’s method and practice Rapid Transformational Therapy. I can’t thank Marisa enough for literally changing the trajectory of my entire life.
I am positive that if you take steps to develop self-love, that you will have similar experiences. It alters how you show up to every situation and how you feel about every situation.
Take some action
If the above resonates with you, I implore you to do the following:
- Watch Bentinho's videos on presence (2mins) and recognition (3mins), then start practicing
- Optional: iOS users can download the recognition app for reminders; Android will have to set your own up
- Optional: Start a what’s app group with a friend; ping each other once you’ve done your recognition
- Get the Lovability hypnosis recording by clicking here. Aim to listen to it daily for 30 days, then as often as you like thereafter. I find that listening to it before bed gives me the most enjoyable sleep.
- Optional: Develop a morning routine which you offer to yourself as an act of appreciation. (Post on morning routines coming soon)
Thank you for reading. I hope these ideas will help you find relief, show up fully and enjoy life more.
If you have any thoughts to share, feel free to reach out via email or social media.
Much love and play bigger x
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