Amazing Zen Habits

AAEX001038 © by jessebezz

I admit it! I am a great fan of Carl Jung and his theories. Furthermore I really like his openness to the unknown and unexplainable. He has the right attitude to live a good life and he really did contribute a lot to the world we live in today because of his research in religions and the supernatural.

This post is not really about Carl Jung, but when I look for inspiration I like to surf the net and very often Carl Jung makes it to the search bar. Today I found I blog about Carl Jung where the blogger wrote a bit about Jung’s research in spirituality and Buddhism. Jung believed that spiritual experience is essential to our well-being and on this site I found 12 simple Zen habits that contributes to your well-being.

You can find the Jung site here and the original source here.

The 12 Zen habits:

Do one thing at a time. Do not multi-task; when eating, eat; when walking, walk; when cutting fish, cut fish. This will help you relax, excel and focus.

Do it slowly and deliberately. Take your time and move slowly, it will help you to keep focus. I like to do things slow and in a flow. E.g. sometimes when I cook I visualise what I am going to do next. This helps me focus on the task and to keep the process dynamic. I believe that the world is in a continuous flow and that we improve our well-being by living in a flow of energy. This method also helps me if I need to hurry; by working in a focused flow I can increase the pace if needed and still keep a cool head.

Do it completely. Put you mind on the task and finish it before starting a new task. Mind that there are different ways of finishing a task; e.g. if you are writing a thesis you cannot finish it before eating. But if you have set up a list of goals and to-dos in the process then you can finish one of those and then eat.

Do less. Do not fill your day with tasks that you do not have time to accomplish. By doing less you can concentrate and do things better. (I have to work on this one – what about you?)

Put space between things. Do not make a tight schedule; I have made a rule of planning I call the 25 % rule. People often get stress because they do not plan time for the unexpected. My experience is that things almost always take 25 % more time than we estimate.

Develop rituals. This will prepare you for the task you are about to do and helps you to focus and to do things well. E.g. I have a ritual when I cut vegetables: I line up the vegetables in front of the cutting board and on the right side of the board I line up the knives I am going to use.

Designate time for certain things. There are things that are so important that you want to make sure you do them every day. E.g. eating, cleaning and working. Designate time for these things. (Another one I have to work on!)

Devote time to sitting. Do any activity you like to be present. E.g. meditate or run. I recommend reading “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle.

Smile and serve others. A smile will bring you positive energy and giving to others will make them want to give something back.

Make cleaning and cooking become meditation. Put your mind into the tasks and do them slowly and completely.

Think about what is necessary. Keep your life simple and think about what you really need. Most people have a lot of unnecessary things cluttering up their life, both physically and mentally.

Live simply. Get rid of unnecessary things; clean up the clutter and make room for the essentials of your life.

How to Be Successful: Willpower

Focus © by toolstop

My last post covered persistence and being persistent takes a good deal of willpower. Sometimes you have to do things you do not want to do in order to reach a long-term goal. E.g. read a certain book to get that university degree. You can postpone the reading again and again, but you now that you have to read it eventually. This is where you need willpower and just do what needs to be done without getting distracted.

Willpower is about focus; if you get distracted you need to exercise willpower to stay on the track. E.g. if you want to fit your bikini next summer then do not get distracted by that chocolate bar. Bring focus back on your long-term goal.

Worrying is one of the worst distractions you can have. E.g. you are reading a book and while reading your mind is constantly thinking about the birthday present you forgot to buy or if you forgot to turn of the oven or if you have enough money etc. It is impossible to focus on what you are doing if you worry. You have to be present here and now; nothing else is more important than what you are doing now.

There are many ways to practice being present and shut out distractions; you can meditate; you can do physical exercising; you can read literature like Eckhart Tolle’s “The Power of Now” or you can study a raisin. Just practice your willpower and ability to focus every day.

3 tips to refocus and exercise willpower:

  1. Write your distractions down. If your are working on something and distracting thoughts are popping up, then write them down on a piece of paper and deal with them later.
  2. Make a deal with your distraction. E.g. a friend calls you to chat while you are studying, tell her that you are studying but that you will call back in an hour.
  3. Eat. Make sure that your blood sugar level is high or you will loose concentration.