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The Conscious Living Foundation

Conscious Living

The Newsletter of the Conscious Living Foundation

Issue Number 107

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What Do You Think?

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Personal Consultations and Life Coaching

If you are interested in having a personal consultation regarding the practice of meditation, affirmations, or other matters having to do with spiritual practice or personal growth,  or just need help in getting your life back on track, please email us to talk about it.  

Telephone consultations are available for those who prefer to talk on the phone or who live outside the Southern California area.  The cost of consultations is based on ability to pay.  

The initial discussion will be at no charge, so that both of us can determine whether the relationship can be of service.  

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Thinking In A Certain Way For Wealth - Wallace D. Wattles

 "Many people fail to impress Thinking Substance because they have themselves only a vague and misty concept of the things they want to do, to have, or to become.

 It is not enough that you should have a general desire for wealth "to do good with"; everybody has that desire." -  To read the complete article, click Here.

Think Positively To Avoid Memory Loss

In a study published in the journal Experimental Aging Research, they found that seniors who do not believe in the negative stereotype that memory loss is a natural occurrence in old age did better on tests than other elderly people.

'Older people will perform more poorly on a memory test if they are told that older folks do poorly on that particular type of memory test,' Dr Tom Hess, who headed the study, said in a statement.
He and his team tested memory performance of adults 60 to 70 years old and others who were 71 to 82. In addition to doing more poorly in tests if they bought into the negative stereotype of aging and memory, seniors also performed poorly if they thought they were stigmatized, or looked down on, because of their age.  To read the complete article, click Here.

The Power of Silence

 Modern humans have lost touch with their inner "true  self". Silence and stillness are a means to recovering happiness and contentment.

In the modern world silence has practically ceased to exist. The human race has stamped its authority over the planet Earth not just by covering its surface with concrete and destroying its plant and animal life, but also by burying the natural sounds of the Earth beneath a cacophony of man-made noise. We live our lives against the background of this cacophony, with the jagged mechanical sounds of urban-industrial society continually assaulting our ears: the roar of cars, aeroplanes and trains, the clanging and thudding of machinery, the noise of building and renovating, the chatter of radios and TVs in other people's cars and houses, and pop music blaring from every conceivable place.  -  To read the complete article, click Here.

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The Conscious Living Foundation

The Conscious Living Foundation was created to encourage living with more awareness - to wake up to the joy and positive significance of each moment.

 Regardless of how you are able to interact with CLF, whether through our quotations and affirmations, newsletter, telecourses, free e-books, prayer and affirmation pages, email, videos or CDs; we encourage you to join us.  It is our intention to provide products and services, at prices that are within reach of everyone - that will in practical, pragmatic ways serve you on your path to growth.

The wisdom that we seek is already within us. All that is needed is the process of uncovering it. By joining the threads of our mutual wisdom, shared in a compassionate supportive way, deep positive growth is possible.  To discover more about what CLF is, click Here.

This Month's Article: Improving Concentration Through Efficiency

It seems that the human mind is designed to continuously flit from thing to thing; idea to idea; perception to perception.  

However, we all know that to achieve anything worthwhile, we must concentrate.

The ability to concentrate controls our ability to succeed in life.  One who has a strong ability to concentrate will be effective and continuously improving in all aspects of life - work, relationships, family, peace of mind, confidence and a deeper relationship with Spirit.

Our day-to-day consciousness is cluttered with distractions, habits, interruptions and unexpected outer stimuli.

While attempting to achieve our primary purpose of the moment, whether a work goal, driving to a destination, preparation of a meal, or having a conversation; most of us are distracted by thoughts and feelings about other things.

We've all been told the obvious: "concentrate on one thing at a time".  Unfortunately, that's easier said than done.

However, the instruction is accurate.   Eliminating distractions is the key to concentration and concentration is the key to eliminating distractions.  We can only hold one of those two mental states at a time - they are mutually exclusive.  Either we are concentrated or distracted.

One way to learn to concentrate more effectively is through attempting to optimize whatever it is we're trying to do in each moment.  That act of attempting to be more efficient, naturally causes the mind to concentrate.

So, we are presented with opportunities to practice and improve our concentration by every moment's experience.

For example, If you are driving to work or the market, think about the elements that you can conrol to make your driving more efficient.

Make sure you use your turn signals at all appropriate times.  Consciously choose the speed at which you drive.  

Make the decision to turn off the radio or mp3 player to eliminate distractions from concentration on your driving.

Validate that everything that you should do to reach your destination efficiently, has been done.  Should your headlights be on?  Is the heater or air conditioning set correctly?  Have you taken the optimal route to your destination?  Is your seat adjusted precisely the way you want it?

If you're driving on a freeway, are you in the correct lane?  Are you driving too slowly for your lane; or too quickly?  Are you aware of the speed and driving style of the automobiles around you?

By doing everything possible to make your driving precise, efficient and optimized; you apply much more concentration that usual.

Just by optimizing every aspect of your driving, you are exercising the muscle of concentration.  And, exercise brings strength.

Another example:  getting ready for work in the morning.  Suppose that you want to accomplish the following tasks:  wash your face, brush and floss your teeth, wash your hands, shave or apply make up, put away any utensils you've used and clean the sink area.

Before you begin, think about and decide the order in which you'll undertake these tasks.  Don't rely on your habitual approach; instead look for the most efficient process to fulfill your multi-stepped goal.

As you go through each step of the process, make each motion of your body as precise and accurate as possible.  As you brush your teeth, be aware of each brush stroke, its movement, the location on the teeth, the pressure of the toothbrush, the number of repetitions.

Apply the same level of intention of efficiency to each of the tasks and to the process that connects those tasks to each other.

These examples may appear mundane or even silly.  However, if our goal is to lean how to concentrate, the best way to start is with small efforts and small goals at which we are likely to be successful.

There are three components to this practice of efficiency and concentration.  First, analyze what you want to do and become consciously aware of all the factors you want to control.  Then, secondly, develop a course of action that incorporates all those factors into an efficient process.  And, thirdly, implement your plan with total concentration on each moment and step in that process.

This process of applying awareness to small, commonplace activities is the perfect training ground for learning how to apply greater awareness and concentration in communicating with others, achieving work tasks in a timely and successful manner, or in practicing affirmations and meditation.

It's possible to carry this practice to extremes, however, for most of us, an exploration of how to make all the small details of our lives more efficient is a fruitful ground for improvement in our concentration and awareness.

Don't forget your goal: to live each moment of your life with more awareness, with more appreciation for the beauty and joy that is hiding in each experience.  

This goal can be achieved by concentration on the full experience of each moment.  And, concentration is a skill that can be developed and deepened through practice.

As we reduce the clutter in our homes, work places, and vehicles; we reduce the clutter in our consciousness.

As we make our daily processes of living more efficient; we make our thoughts and decision making more efficient.

Everything we do or say or think, is connected to every other part of our life.  Any time that we can improve any part of our life, we are improving all of our life.  Attention to the small details pays large dividends.

And then, there is one more component you might consider adding.  As you undertake each small task, remember that the Lord is there with you.  Remember that everything that is, is Spirit.  

As you drive, imagine that God is riding in the back seat - or even, that He/She is driving the car.

As you wash your hands, practice that you are washing the hands of God.

With this additional element to your concentration practice, a new sanctity, prayerfulness and relaxed joy can enter the moment.

There will come a time when you will be able to apply your concentration like a bright search light on what ever you choose.  With that focused concentration you can accomplish whatever you wish to attain.  The power of concentration and its immense benefits are yours.

Holding you and your loved ones in Spirit's ever-lasting light and love,

bill

William Simpson
Founder and Director of the Conscious Living Foundation
Author of "From The Path - Verses on the Mystic Journey"

 

The Conscious Living Foundation

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