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Cultivating contentment


In the cold days of winter, the energy can be low, there is not as much creativity and creation as in the spring and summer. Do you find yourself struggling with a lack of motivation or self-loathing about not being as productive as you’d like to be? I do.


And when I’m in the depth of it, I try to reconnect with the small things, the things that make my soul happy, like playing music I love, burning a candle, tidying my house, and appreciating the small things, like right now, looking out the window and watching the myriads of different birds we have in our area coming down to the bird feeders under our big oak tree.


However, there are times, when even the small things don't feel enough.


And when I find myself in "not-enough mode" - you know, that state of being where your mind tells you: you’re not doing enough, you’re not smart enough, not productive enough, etc. - I use a practice of heart attunement and contentment.


Disclaimer: it doesn’t always work, especially when I’m in a bit of a PMS funk but it often does, so it is worth trying!


The practice involves 2 aspects.



1. Heart attunement


The first aspect starts with shifting your awareness from your mind/headspace to your heart space. From the intellect of the mind to the wisdom of the heart. Simple feeling your breath in your heart space, feeling your ribcage expanding and contracting. And noticing the energy of your heart center.


(Btw, did you know the heart's electrical field is about 60 times greater in amplitude than the electrical activity generated by the brain [source: heartmath.org]?)


It is important to practice being in our heart space on a regular basis because the energetic shift we are attempting to create here does not merge at the level of the intellect, it is a heartfelt experience.



2. Feeling of contentment


The 2nd aspect comes once the connection with the heart is established. It involves bringing in the feeling of contentment in your experience.


What do I mean by that? Think of the part of your life that is difficult for you right now or the part of your life you feel you’re constantly working on and never seemed to be satisfied with. For me it is my work area; for others, it is being a good mom or meeting their soulmate.


Now imagine, being content in that area. I’m not saying imagine you have everything you want, but simply being content. This means you haven’t “arrived” at the lofty end goal but you are okay with the way things are.


In the example of being a good mom, you’re not reaching for being the perfect mom and having everything under control. Instead, you’re reaching for being content with the way you are as a mom: you are able to see the qualities you bring to your children’s life while being at peace with the setbacks of yelling at them or getting frustrated by them.


Note: This is not something you can intellectually conjure. You actually have to feel it from your heart space for your energy to shift.



3. Heart + Contentment


Take a moment to tune in and draw the feeling of contentment in your heart space.


It isn’t a high happy feeling, nor is it a low depressed one, it is right in between, in the space of equanimity.


Now while you do this, your mind will want to come online and will let you know all the reasons why you shouldn’t even consider being content right now because you’re not where you want to be (re: not enough above). Take note of the mind-generated thoughts and let them drift.


If the thoughts are so present that you aren’t able to experience a glimpse of contentment, write them down and use practices such as tapping to clear them.


And remember this is a practice. Just like a muscle, the more you attune to the contentment in your heart, the more you are able to experience it on a daily basis.



Conclusion


I hope this is helpful! If you still feel stuck and can’t seem to cultivate an ounce of contentment on your own, let’s get on a discovery call so I can help you activate the parts of your being that are ready to move forward and experience more joy and ease.

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Stephanie Labay helps women at a crossroads who are feeling stuck, and ready for a change, create a more fulfilling & meaningful work life, have an impact, and feel energized instead of stressed and exhausted.

With a Master's in Engineering, close to a decade in the corporate world, and another decade teaching wellness & mindfulness practices, she combines neuroscience, performance optimization, EFT, and mindfulness in a unique blend to help women redefine what is possible and transition toward their vision with clarity, ease, and confidence.

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