Self-help Practice

Do you work on self improvement? What do you think about self-help?

I do like it and I need it very much in my life, especially now.
However, I’m not here to talk about how amazing and great for you to do that. I’m not going to force people to do the practice just because I’m trying to work on it.

I was introduced to the famous book, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne not long after I left Japan and moved to the Netherlands. My mother sent me a copy of that book. And that was the first time when I learned about the “Law of attraction” as a concept.
When I come to think of it however, I kind of knew how things and/or life work as a elementary school girl. My grandmother taught me a spell/chant to say before falling asleep in bed. She told me to repeat those words for 3 times and then pray/wish by expressing gratitude in my mind.
It quickly became a habit. I kept doing it as long as I can remember almost every night unless I was very exhausted and fell asleep instantly. I don’t remember when exactly I stop taking time for that… I still do it, but way too little. I should bring that. habit back.
Because it helped me a lot to go through my tough time growing up. And it vamped up my good mood and gratitude when I was having great time.

What I was praying/wishing were small things really. It went like this.
“(After the spell/chant) I’m very grateful for today. I’m grateful that I had a good day today. Thank you very much. Please bring me another good day tomorrow. I thank you for that. I wish to be able to wake up on time tomorrow morning. I’m grateful for my family. Please protect them from bad things to happen. I wish happiness, health, and all the best for my family. Thank you. Good night.”

Yep, that’s pretty much I was wishing for every night. And yes, I did ask for “universe” to help me waking up on time.
I changed things up sometimes depend on my needs.
While I was doing it almost every night, my life was good most of the time. (Even though I went through tough time when I was being bullied.)

These days, I’m bringing back another old habit of mine. And that’s keeping a journal.
I wrote about journal in this blog before, however, that was more about “Morning Pages” and “Stream of Consciousness Journal”. I tried the latter for a while. Then, I switched it up to gratitude journal. I liked doing that one, too. And now I’m back to a good old fashion way of journal.
I used to keep a journal when I was between like 10 to 15 years old. The 10 years old me knew the power of positivity somehow, so I decided to write mainly about good things from that day. I remember writing mostly about my crush. Haha! Like, “I had fun talking with him today”, and “I’m so happy that our eyes met so many times!” Very cute.
I remember that I really loved the way I wrote in my journal. It was like having a deep secret conversation with myself, or more like another me, maybe. It clearly suited me well because I kept doing it for 5 years.
So, I’m writing the way I used to do, but I also added an element of “Stream of Consciousness Journal”. Which means, I don’t think much about how to write. It doesn’t have to be neat. I just fill a page with my own words.

What else did I start doing?
Oh, yes! Podcasts! I love listening to great podcasts.
There are tons of podcast channels and episodes out there. Because of that, it might makes you feel overwhelming to pick one.
I already knew what I wanted to listen to. Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations (on Spotify, on iTunes) and TED Talks were the first ones that I looked for.
I listen to them when I get ready to go to work, and/or on the way to work and on the way home. I bike for about 40 to 45 minutes total per day when I go to work, which is perfect to listen to them!

Even though I’m a big fan of Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations and TED Talks, some of the episodes didn’t really interest me much. I’m totally fine with that, because I don’t expect them all to be my cup of tea.
If I listen to something and if I find it’s boring, then I just stop it and try something different. There are many motivational podcasts out there, but some of them are just blah-blah-blah. (I’m not talking about Super Soul Conversation nor TED Talks.)
When I listen to something really great however, I keep replaying it over and over. So that I can understand the content much better.

Do you listen to podcasts?
Do you have any favorite way of self improvement?

It’s quite exciting when you feel like having a powerful “A-ha!” moment. It feels like as if your mind, heart, and soul are getting to understand very important things about life and a way to happiness. Not your brain.
It’s interesting experience, really.
I’d love to be able to feel more of those!

Have a great day and weekend!

Love,
Ayako

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