Revisiting Success: How to Enjoy What You Do

sandcastleIt’s easy to get stuck in a cycle of shame and self doubt, especially in a culture that rewards our accomplishments, physical appearance, and bank balances.

As a result, our days are spent striving and pushing toward an end goal. So much so that we infrequently focus on the present moment. It’s so easy to lose sight of our feet on the path with our heads buried in our iPhones.

Is happiness conditional?

“If only I could make a million dollars, then I’ll be happy.”

“If only I could make vice president, then I’ll be happy.”

“If only I could lose those 10 pounds, then I’ll be thin (and happy).”

I know I’ve been guilty of uttering at least some of those phrases and I’m certain you have, too. We think our future is this rosy place of unicorns, happiness, and fulfilled dreams. I’ve got news for you: it’s not.

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Focus: The Antidote to Multitasking

distract-drivingHow long can you go without checking your smart phone? Two minutes? Maybe five tops?

I’m amazed I can even focus long enough to dress myself in the morning, let alone function throughout the day given the number of distractions that occur.

Research points to the detrimental effects of multitasking–your IQ can decrease 10 points when you’re distracted by an incoming call or email. What’s worse, most of us lose more than two hours a day due to distractions and let’s not forget that driving while using your phone is like having a blood alcohol level of .08%. (Typically two drinks.)

By focusing for a few seconds on one thing and moving to the next, our fight or flight instincts kick in and we’re essentially operating for our entire day on adrenaline and dopamine.

This, in turn, increases hormone levels, decreases our ability to process fat, and adds to our risk for heart disease, stroke, or other stress-related illnesses.

The world isn’t slowing down anytime soon. Take one of my new favorite social media sites Vine (which you can see in the clip above) which lets you film a six-second looping video clip. If You Tube videos are too long, this six-second increment is perfect. Look! I can speed my entire morning practice up into a short six seconds. It’s really quite addicting.

Because my job requires me to use social media daily, these distractions aren’t going away for me anytime soon. Between six-second videos, tweets, email, Pinterest, Instagram, and Facebook, and multi-tasking among these sites, how often do we stop the brain’s churning to really focus on one thing?

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Goodbye Insomnia! Try This Routine to Bring Sound Sleep

can't sleep?It’s said that nearly one in three adults in the US has insomnia at some point. Our addiction to technology, gadgets, and lack of work-life balance isn’t helping matters and definitely contributes to our tossing, turning, and wide-eyed nighttime restlessness. (And next-day zombie-ness following a poor night’s sleep.)

Ayurveda would approach this in terms of energy. By setting a routine to bring your restless brain from rajas (a state of movement, thinking, and doing) to a state of tamas (heaviness and tiredness), you can sleep soundly. Those who have insomnia stay in perpetual rajas. Here are some tips to bring tamas and sleep to you.

These are some of my favorite tactics for relaxing after a long, busy day. If you can dedicate just a half hour to this routine, or just try the steps that sound most appealing, you will fall asleep and sleep more soundly.

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