What is your wakeup call to slow down?
Hi! That was life itself, calling me, waking me up. It was about 3 am in the early morning when, in my New York City apartment, I suddenly awoke, sweating, and experiencing a terrible feeling that I am going to die.
I silently scream inside; this minute will be my last. I will not see the sunrise again. My family will find me dead in my bedroom, wondering what happened to me. Did he have a heart attack or self-suicide? They would want to know what happens.
My entire life cycle flashes in seconds in my head. Shaking with extreme fear, I jump up off my bed and dash for the bathroom mirror. I got to see what is going on with me! What I saw in my mirror was a hard shell of a man face looking back at me with a terrifying look in his eyes that says, If you don’t stop looking at me like that, I am going to reach out through this mirror, snatch you and strangle you by the neck. Move dam it!
I stumble out of the bathroom into the dark hallway feeling demoralized. What the hell is going on with me? Is this how death feels? I ask myself. Then I heard; You are not afraid of dying. You are fearful of leaving your body before doing your work. Stop hiding in your self-made cave, go out, and take care of your business.
Standing there alone, feeling shameful and angry, I began to chastise myself with years of regrets pouring out of my head. I have made a fool of myself all these years! Lying to myself and never finish anything I started! Enough of the bullshit, I said after I finish punishing myself. I never wanted to go through this awful feeling ever again. I had received a swift kick in the ass, wide awake that morning.
If you ask me, what or who’s the voice I heard in my head, I would say that was my father reminding me to slow down, move forward with intention, and don’t look back. If this sounds weird, don’t judge it. You will understand later.
Before my father left this third-dimensional world, he told me, “Don’t be afraid of doing whatever you want to do”. I have forgotten his advice for “donkey years” This phase is the Jamaican way of saying, many many years ago. I came through the womb once again on that early wakeup call, forcing me to slow down and to break through my self impose cave.
There is a great seen in the movie “Kill Bill,” starring Uma Thurman, where she was buried alive underground, in a wooden coffin. Facing death and nobody to rescue her, she slowed her breathing down, quiet her mind, focus all her attention on her fist and punch her way out to safety. The brutal training she received from her teacher that pushed her to get beyond her limitation, now paid off.
As hard as some experiences may seem, there is always some merit in lessons learned. Reason be, our past did not vanish into the nothingness, but I believe advance into our future present. We only have to slow our lives down and draw from our past the valuable lessons embedded within.
As a member of the human family, we all have something of value to contribute to the greater good of humanity. The things that seem insignificant may require a teacher or a coach to help us navigate through the obstacles and help make the path clear. We cannot always see our own blindspots even in the broad light. We become resourceful in the worst of times to experience the best within us.
Life always gives us choices. I decided to go the route of investing in the gifts I have received. Sharing them with others is the greatest reward. We all received the same awards, that is, the rewards of our own internal energy reservoir.
Disciplines Create Magic
Here are three disciplines that can create magic in your life if you practice them.
- Practice observing without judgment.
- Listen without reacting by keeping some of your attention on the inside.
- Look from behind your eyes.
What your eyes revealed is often a reflection of your design reality. Reacting to social behaviors or situations usually shows the emotional state we are in, that is, energy in motion. Looking for solutions on the outside, and you will forget to look inside where all your needs reside. Again, these disciplines work only if practice them.
Reverse Daily Meditation
Practice this simple but very effective meditation I called, Reverse Daily Meditation. It can help you increase your concentration.
Just before going to sleep, review your daily activities in reverse, starting with the last thing you do before bed and work backward to the first thing you did when you got up in the morning. For example, you took a shower before going to bed and then view all your main activities back to when you used the bathroom first thing that morning.
Don’t underestimate this exercise. It may seem simple, but try it for a week, and you will discover how challenging it can be.
I asked a friend to practice it, and he reported to me that he found it very hard to do. He had difficulty remembering his actions during the day. I advised him to review his reverse day in trunks of 3 or 4 hours instead of small and details activities.
Changing Unpleasant Experiences. If there is an incident during your day that was unpleasant, imagine it to be a happy outcome and continue the reverse viewing. This meditation can also help if you are having trouble sleeping. Maybe there are some uncomfortable moments in your day that you are having difficulty letting go of, or you are trying to force something.
Occasionally, I will drift off to sleep somewhere in the middle of this exercise. Give yourself a chance to feel it through. It’s a mental weight lifting workout without weights. You may find discovery for yourself as I did, that you are becoming more attentive to your daily actions.
Have fun fine-tuning your concentration. If any stress or tension that comes up, relax and smile inside. I encourage you to listen to the call and remember that this is your life, your design, your reality.