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The Gratitude Challenge – Donna Quesada

by Donna Quesada: The Three Minds

Donna Quesada 520In my most recent video, Tools of Kundalini Yoga: A Mantra for Inner Peace, I spoke of the mind, and specifically, the way that my tradition of kundalini yoga conceives of it—its not just one mind, but rather, three: The Positive Mind, The Negative Mind, and the Neutral Mind.

The Negative mind tends to be the loudest! Its very easy to see whats wrong in any given situation. We are critical of the world, of others, and also of ourselves! That’s the Negative Mind hard at work. Admittedly, when we feel the world is falling apart, it is sometimes difficult to know where the ground is between what is objectively true and what is simply a fixation of the negative mind. In other words… Are we seeing things correctly? Is is hard to know, when that critical reflex is on automatic. Finding the good is a habit that needs to be cultivated.

To loosen the grip of the Negative Mind, Kundalini Yoga has tools for strengthening the Positive Mind, which sees the good, and ultimately the Neutral Mind—which opens the door to that space that is beyond the dualities of good and bad, altogether.

Some of these tools include affirmations, meditations and mantras, some of which which I have shared with you here on Awaken, but the most simple and beneficial is right in front of us… It is the practice of gratitude, and I have a special way of putting it into service, which I will explain below, along with a journaling challenge!

Gratitude immediately dissolves the power of the Negative Mind, in order to activate the Positive Mind, in any given moment. Gratitude is requisite in order to feel good. And scientists are seeing now that it actually changes our neurochemistry and promotes greater resiliency, along with a higher quality of life.

It is also the ultimate anxiety antidote. I call this particular practice, which is shared below,Active Gratitude.”

Like any spiritual tool, in order for it to work, it must be consciously employed on a daily basis. Thats why it is calleda practice. “A practice,” not an accomplishment… Because sometimes it will be more challenging, and we will definitely slip.

How It Works (The Challenge)

When the negative mind pipes up, you immediately turn it around into something to be grateful for. This alone starts to stretch your consciousness. You become more conscious, as your awareness begins to catch those automatisms…

So, for example, when the negative mind pipes up, you immediately replace it.

A few examples…

“Unbelievable, the commercials just go on forever!” becomes something like I am here, with access to a movie and Im so cozy.”

I have no willpower, Ive gone and eaten too many sweets again” becomes, My eating habits are greatly improved from the old days and I will continue to make progress.”

I dont like being stuck in this waiting room” becomes something like Thank God I am healthy and strong and able to be of service.”

The turnaround is simply to find an antidote.” In my work as a teacher, when I have to grade papers that were done with very little effort, sometimes I simply have to say to myself,

Thank God I have work.”

Gratitude is an important component of self-care and psychological hygiene. It frees us from self-imposed despair, victim consciousness and the overall gloominess that often sabotages our ability to have fun, enjoy our lives, and be of service to the world.

Try the turnarounds as a daily practice and record them in a journal! At the end of the day, you can write about them, along with how they shifted your mood. You set the timeline… perhaps, starting with one or two weeks is a reasonable duration, or if youre feeling ambitious, maybe go for a month and take it from there!

As an extra, Donnas Gratitude Affirmations are here:

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Source: AWAKEN


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