It’s been a long time since I packed my backpack with notebooks and sharp number two pencils and headed off to school – but September always puts me in a learning frame of mind. Even if you’re not starting school in the traditional sense right now is a good time to expand your awareness and knowledge.
It’s easy to get stuck in your comfort zone, after all, if you’re like me you’ve been navigating work, home, and relationships for decades! Change can be uncomfortable, even scary – so how can you make sure you’re always open to learning new things and embracing new perspectives?
First of all, understand that knowledge is key to growth – and you HAVE to keep growing if you want to evolve at a personal and soul level. As I write this, the term “The more you know the more you grow” popped into my head. I think I’ll make that my mantra for this month, and I invite you to do the same. So where to start?
Here are a few techniques to broaden your horizons and encourage growth at the deepest level:
Change Your Perspective by practicing conscious detachment.
Have you ever been in this situation? You’ve made a major blunder at work, are having trouble with a relationship, or have gotten hopelessly lost when going to a new location – and you felt so overwhelmed that you couldn’t even think straight? When that happens, you know you are letting your emotions get the best of you.
Chances are, after the crisis has passed and you look back calmly with 2020 hindsight, you realize you could have handled things better!
Here’s how to achieve that perspective WHILE YOU ARE IN THE SITUATION.
When you feel panicky or overwhelmed, your emotions are in control, and fear, insecurity and self-judgment are in the driver’s seat. The fix for that is to train yourself to step back and observe yourself in the situation as if you are watching a play. It sounds funny, but trust me, it works! With a little practice, this “conscious detachment” will allow you to keep your cool and make smart decisions even in the most trying situations. You’ll start to notice your default reactions to stress and pressure, and change your behavior to get new (better) results.
Don’t judge others, or yourself.
It’s hard (impossible) to be your authentic self when you’re constantly worrying about what other people are thinking about you. That kind of focus interferes with your soul wisdom and effectively mutes your intuition. It’s difficult to let go of the expectation that you have to be perfect or live up to a certain standard – but this is a skill worth learning! Start by being conscious of how you judge yourself and others. Make compassion and acceptance your default, and you’ll find that you have a deeper understanding of yourself and others and you can operate from a place of enlightenment, rather than fear.
Get in the habit of challenging your beliefs.
You might have read the last few paragraphs and said to yourself, “yeah, that’s great, but my situation is different. I can’t quit my job, or get out of this relationship because (insert limiting belief here).” Or you might think that other people really do have valuable insights about what is best for you. Before you discount my advice, add one more skill to your tool-box. Learn to question your assumptions! Ask yourself questions like:
- What am I afraid of?
- What is the worst that can happen?
- How likely is it that the worst will happen?
- What do I stand to gain?
- Am I doing the same thing and expecting a different result?
Question, question, question! It’s the best way I know to break old patterns and grow.
If you need a little help going “back to school for the soul,” The JVP School of Mystical Arts has online courses that you can take from anywhere, at your own pace. You can explore spiritual topics from mindfulness to personal transformation, intuition and mediumship – and more!