Joy Ignites Success

Are you beating the fun out of yourself?

By  - Thursday, May 17, 2018

Are you beating the fun out of yourself?



Would you like to have more fun? Are you waiting and waiting for it to happen?
Most would say they’d like to have more fun. But most are also tyrants with themselves. Thoughts like “there’s no time to play”, “there’s too much to do” and “I’m too tired” rule the day. And too often, the belief is that the way to get things done is to just buckle down and do it.
This is the opposite of the truth. Fun is one of the best (if not the best) motivator there is. Pause for a moment to consider this- someone invites you to an event and it sounds like a lot of fun. You’re likely to say yes immediately, or figure out how to move things in your schedule to get there. In a different scenario, the same person invites you to an event, but this time you think to yourself “I should go because _______”. It doesn’t matter what you fill in the blank with, as soon as you tell yourself you should go, you’re in trouble. Read More

How Do We Let Go?

By  - Tuesday, January 23, 2018

In 30 Ways or Less


It’s one thing to know you should let go and to even want to let go and it’s another thing to know how and actually let go. In this post, you'll find a summary of the three primary ways to let go and a list of 30 suggestions based in movement, play and Sedona releasing.
1.    Move it!
Emotions live in the body (for more about this, check out Molecules of Emotion by Candace Pert). One of the most effective ways to let go of a feeling is to physically move it. Whether you dance with it, run through it or hike it up a mountain; getting conscious to what’s happening in your body will help you to let go. Suggestions 2-4, 11, 12, 18, 19, 22-24 and 27-30 all involve moving.
2.    Play with it!
Many of our habitual patterns developed when we were little trying on adult behaviors. Playing into stuck-ness is a natural way to let go. “In play all definitions slither, dance, combine, break apart, and recombine.” (S. Nachmanovitch, Free Play) Because of its spontaneous nature, play takes us out of strong habitual patterns and brings us into the present moment, where we can make a new choice. Suggestions 5-7, 12, 13, 17, 21, 25 and 26 all stem from play.
3.    Release it!
The Sedona Method is a phenomenal technique for letting go of unwanted thoughts and feelings. I have written many articles about and incorporating the method. The first two are the basics: 5 Ways to Release and The 4 Programs (that underlie thoughts, feelings and behaviors). This link takes you to 25 blogs that reference the Sedona Method. Suggestions 1, 2 and 16 are examples of Sedona Method releases.
 

30 Ways to Let Go of Unwanted Thoughts, Feelings, Sensations

1. Be with what is here is this moment. Allow the thoughts and sensations to do whatever they are doing.  Let go of wanting to change what is.
2. Just drop it. (pen analogy)
3. Use your arms to Give Up. (arms in air)
4. Shake or bounce it loose (thoughts, feelings and sensations).
 Read More

Let Go Feel Good

By  - Thursday, November 30, 2017

Why Should I Let Go?




Welcome to part one of Why, How, When and Where to let go. As with anything, when it comes to letting go, the mind wants to know “why should I?” And, of course, if anyone tells you that you should do something, you will likely resist. So finding your own motivation to let go (or release) becomes critically important. In my personal experience and in the experience of my clients gains from releasing have been numerable and significant. Perhaps my personal favorite gain is having let go of a lifelong habit of worrying. Clients have reported new ease in relationships, more clarity about what they want in life, freedom from grief and anxiety and so much more. Here are 5 reasons you might consider letting go:

  1. When you hold on to anger, resentment or hostility in any form, the person who suffers the most is always you. Yes, you might be simultaneously punishing another (though often they don’t even know), but the bottom line is that the feeling of anger is being experienced in your body, not theirs. And the feeling of anger in the body is uncomfortable and can lead to physical and emotional distress.
  2.  Read More

Making Fun of Yourself

By  - Wednesday, July 05, 2017

In a most delightful way!



Do you take yourself just a little too seriously?
Most of us do. We think that what we think, what we believe and what we feel (emotionally and physically) is significant, unique to us, and therefore very special.
And I’m certainly not going to be the one to suggest it’s not. But what if you did? What if you could see the humor in your life experiences? Do you think life might just get a little easier? A little more fun? If you’re open to giving it a try, here’s some ways you might be able to play with yourself (yes, I said that).
1. Turn the disturbing thought into a song (using a familiar tune from childhood works well)
2. Use a little sarcasm with yourself (e.g. “really, Melanie, I’m sure you are the only person on the planet to have ever felt this way”).
3. Bounce the thoughts in your mind’s eye, or physically bounce your body (it’s almost impossible to hold onto a thought while bouncing).
 Read More

Washing the Dishes as an Act of Self-Care

By  - Thursday, February 09, 2017



At the time of this writing, I am on a mini retreat of my own. I find that taking myself out of my normal routine and environment is most conducive to a productive writing experience. The act itself is a monumental act of self-care. Being willing to leave the day-to-day running of the clinic and household to my husband is no small task. The ego self likes to believe things will fall apart without my presence for a day. The wiser part of me knows this is a lie and that taking care of self is indeed the most important act for well-being. And individual well-being is the foundation for relationship, community and world well-being. We build outwards from where we stand. If standing on shaking ground (which results from a lack of self-care), we cannot build the world we wish to live in.
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2017-The Year of the Pause

By  - Tuesday, January 24, 2017


I recently completed reading the entire text of A Course in Miracles. This was a huge task and one I had set a goal of completing by the end of 2016. A bit out of character, but I completed it. The next task was to read the Manual for Teachers. On January 1, when I opened the book, I immediately felt some resistance. And a deeper voice, saying “not yet”. On exploring this, I starting pondering how quickly we jump from one thing to the next and specifically, from one year to another. I realized that as much as I was ready to be done with 2016, I was not yet ready for 2017. Like the pause between the exhalation of breath that comes before the next inhalation, I needed a pause between years. Read More

What would happen without an opinion?

By  - Tuesday, August 02, 2016

 

If you stop to notice, you might realize that most of your feelings of upset are related to having an opinion about what is right and wrong or good and bad. But what if you didn’t have an opinion? (The verse “I wonder if you can” from John Lennon’s Imagine comes to mind.) What would not having an opinion be like? And do you believe not having an opinion is wrong? In other words, do you have an opinion about not having an opinion?

We have layers of beliefs about our beliefs. But, what if, even for just a moment, you could rest beyond beliefs? What if you could recognize that all your beliefs are based on the past and on limited information? What then?   
 Read More

Break the habit of looking for happiness

By  - Wednesday, July 06, 2016

What do I really want? (and how can I get it?)

 

“I need, I want” are mantras for most living in this century. Almost nobody would say they don’t want more of something and less of something else. But most of our wants are at the surface level. It’s rare that we stop and ask questions such as, “If I had more money, what would that give me?”  “If my boss were nicer, how would that affect me?”
Most of the time, when we drill down far enough, the answer to all the questions is the same. If I had more money, I would be happier. If my boss were kind, I’d feel safe and have more peace. If my husband would bring me a present, I would feel joyful.  We all ultimately want peace, joy, love, happiness.
 Read More

I Could Choose Peace Instead of This

By  - Thursday, March 24, 2016

 

 


Many, many years ago, while I was still single and living in NYC, I read Gerald Jampolsky’s book, Say Good-Bye to Guilt. Of the many brilliant things he wrote about, one piece I chose to work with at that time was the 34th lesson from A Course in Miracles “I could see peace instead of this”. Somehow in my mind, I had translated the word see to choose, but I don’t think it had an effect on how I worked with the lesson. Over 30 years later, I still find this to be one of my most useful lessons.
What the lesson tells us is that peace is always an option because it is an inside job. The ability to find peace even in the most tumultuous situations lies within. This is poignantly demonstrated in the book, Man’s Search for Meaning, by Viktor Frankl, a concentration camp survivor who writes about psychologically overcoming even the most unbearable of situations.
 Read More

Attitude or Gratitude?

By  - Friday, November 20, 2015

 5 Tips for Allowing More Gratitude in Your Life



Last week I had an appointment in Boulder at 9am in the morning. At that hour, they say it will take about 65 minutes to complete the 35 mile drive from Lakewood. I made a conscious decision not to complain (especially not to myself). So I woke up bright and early, got ready and hit the road. The drive up Route 93 was perfectly fine, and I took the turn-off in South Boulder that took me through the back roads that feel very rural. As I was driving, I experienced a profound wave of gratitude. The sights were beautiful, my body was happy and comfortable in my new car and I was excited for my day.
I was consciously aware of how good I was feeling and grateful to be feeling grateful. Definitely something I would be happy to experience daily.
We all know how good gratitude is for us. (To learn the proven benefits, check out these articles http://bit.ly/1Facc2H , http://happierhuman.com/benefits-of-gratitude/) But sometimes, we just don’t feel grateful. And trying to force gratitude when you’re not feeling it is a bad idea.  Read More


About MSI

Melanie Smithson Institute is dedicated to enriching lives through embodied education and training; using movement, play and releasing to connect with innate wisdom and joy.  

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