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How to Avoid Fake Growth and a Life of Endless Seeking

How to Avoid Fake Growth and a Life of Endless Seeking

    Standing before you is a game filled with a complex network of mazes and ladders.

    When you came into this world this game was already established.

    All of the rules were set in place. A path was laid out before you, and as you grew, you slowly became indoctrinated into that world, into that game.

    It was a game not designed by you, but you played it anyway. You played it because it was what everyone else did.

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    Then at some point along the way you started to realize that something was wrong, kind of like Neo in the Matrix, you sensed that something was seriously flawed with this game.

    Not only did you not have much of a say in the way you were living, you also began to sense that you were seeking success that didn’t exist. It was an endless chase.

    A carrot on a stick always one step ahead of you.

    Always another job. Another house. Another promotion.

    It eluded you. Endlessly.

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    Then you woke up

    You started to realize that you didn’t have to live this way. And you began to test your assumptions about what was possible, and what wasn’t. You found that many of the rules in the game were breakable without any negative consequences. They weren’t rules at all really, more like agreements.

    You noticed that when other people “leveled up” in the game not much of anything changed. They thought they were growing, but it was more like fake growth than anything. The things in their life were more like fake plastic trees than living things.

    Every event completed to collect trophies, each won in an attempt to complete a master checklist in the game.

    However… the checklist is never complete

    When you’re playing someone else’s game, there is always a sense of incompletion. You can always do it better, faster. There is always a way for you to compare your success with the success of others.

    It’s a slippery slope down that rabbit hole.

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    Here’s the deal… it’s easy for me to talk about creating a life on your own terms. It’s easy for a bunch of people to create a big song and dance about opt-ing out of a template, creating your own path, blah blah blah.

    And the sad reality is a lot of people replace the game of conformity with a game of non-conformity. Nothing’s really changed, has it?

    If you really want to create a life of freedom, there is no formula. Sorry.

    The truth about systems

    The truth about systems is that you were not born to follow one.

    You can’t follow a system for not following systems. You feel me?

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    Anyone that tells you they’ve created a system for your happiness is probably full of it. It’s the honest truth.

    However, I didn’t write this to just make you depressed. I can give you a small but potent bit of advice: surrender.

    No, not surrender in a passive, fatalistic way. Surrender in a powerful, really submitting to your path way.

    • What was it you were born to do?
    • What do you feel excited about, in this moment?

    Listen. Then surrender to that. Have the courage to see where it leads you.

    Living on your own terms is hard. It’s a lot easier to have someone else tell you what to do. But you weren’t born to play someone else’s game, now were you?

    (Photo credit: Stairway to the Sky via Shutterstock)

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    Last Updated on December 9, 2019

    5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

    5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

    Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

    Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

    Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

    1. Get Rationally Optimistic

    Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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    This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

    In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

    The result: no more mental stress.

    2. Unplug

    Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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    How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

    It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

    Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

    3. Easy on the Caffeine

    Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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    Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

    4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

    That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

    How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

    • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
    • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
    • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

    While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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    5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

    This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

    The result: mental stress will be gone!

    So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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