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Hold Your Own Death Cafe

Many Eastern spiritual traditions talk about the value of confronting one's own mortality or celebrating the process of death as just another aspect of life. Within the field of psychology entire branches or fields of study as well as therapeutic models (Existential Psychology) have arisen which acknowledge not only the psychological and spiritual value of embracing death, but how approaching death and dying with an open-mind, rather than fear, can lead to a more fulfilling and happy life.

#death #mortality #dying #terrormanagementtheory #psychology #existentialpsychology

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Pathways To Bliss

When most people hear the word “myth” or “mythology” they think falsehood, something not true. Although this is a common use of the word, it is clearly pejorative and does not represent the true meaning of the word mythology.

“A myth is a story, often enacted by a ritual, and shared among a community which represents timeless truths about man’s relationship with nature, the cosmos or his own authentic self.”

#spirituality #happiness #bliss #mythology #herosjourney #josephcampbell

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Is Desiring Happiness Making us Miserable?

"In short, yes! Our drive to feel or appear a certain way has become the focus of our lives and has disconnected us from what actually does make us happy: connection, sense of self, commitment to our morals and values and a bigger vision for our lives."

#happiness #joyful #desire #attachments #psychology #transpersonal

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The Essence of Happy Living

"When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the clo-sed door that we don’t see the one which has been opened for us." ~ Helen Keller

#happiness #joyful #psychology

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Visiting The Beach Improves Mood

"We all know that spending time outdoors is good for you on both a physical and mental level, but the benefits of spending time specifically at the beach have just been revealed."

"That incredible feeling of peace and calmness that you experience at the beach is now being referred to as “blue space.” That’s what scientists have dubbed the effect that the combination of soothing smells and sounds of water have on your brain. The blue space is enough to make you feel at ease in a hypnotic sort of way."

"When you notice how relaxed you feel at the beach, it’s not just all in your head. Science says that it’s a change in the way your brain reacts to its environment leaving you feeling happy, relaxed and reenergized."

#psychology #happiness #outdoors #beach #joyful

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Choosing Happiness

"What is happiness? Happiness is not truly defined. What brings one person happiness may bring another person heartbreak. What makes you happy? I’m sure we could all list many and many of things that make us happy, but how do you react when those things don’t happen? Do you get upset, or do you look at the positive side of the situation? Life is filled with unexpected curves and punches, but we need to learn to ignore those little things and think about what is truly important to us and what makes us happy."

#happiness #joyful #psychology #transpersonal

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Authenticity is Linked to Happiness

One of the sayings I often use to describe the most important aspect of a good relationship (IMO) is: "With trust you have everything. Without trust you have nothing".

But how can trust be developed?

Trust grows when we open up to another and show our authentic self, and are fully accepted as who we are. Then again, it is trust which allows someone to feel safe enough so they can be fully authentic with their partner. I suppose this begs the question of which comes first - the trust needed to be authentic - or - the authenticity which builds the trust. My personal belief is the latter. In order for someone to demonstrate trust, we must take a gamble, put ourselves out on a limb by being authentic, and observe how it is received. This is part of my own personal philosophy which drives my unapologetic honesty, emotionality and expression, often about things many would consider deeply personal. But I have also found that being open, honest and authentic in how I express myself, tends to encourage others to do the same.

"When we fear that we can't think and act as we truly are, we put parts of ourselves on hold. Here's how we can begin to let go of expectations and pressures and tend to our wants and needs with kindness."

"Did you know that authenticity is inextricably linked to happiness? To be authentic is to feel at home in your body, accepted into a particular group, and to feel true to our sense of values. It is a kind of confidence that doesn’t come from attaining something outside of ourselves, but knowing deeply we are enough whatever our particular feelings, needs, or skills are and that we add to the greater whole of life and matter. We can be true to our own personality, spirit, or character despite external pressures."

"Authenticity is one of the most important ingredients in creating a healthy and sustainable relationship. Yet it can also be one of the most challenging to practice on a day-to-day basis. Why? the answer is simple: fear. We fear that if we showed up as we truly are—saying, doing, and feeling the real things that are going on within us without augmenting or censoring ourselves in any way—that others might disconnect from us, feel upset with us, or even leave us."

#relationships #authenticity #trust #love

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Gerotranscendence is a theory of human aging which suggest that as we age and we begin to re-prioritize the activities, goals or people in our lives, there is a potential for significant personal growth, even self-transcendence or gerotranscendence. Very compelling research that I intend to look into more as I continue to redefine both my personal and professional life.

"Dr. Tornstam describes the characteristic as “a transcendence of the borders of time” and argues that old people who experience these changes (including greater spontaneity and playfulness, less self-absorption, and feelings of “cosmic transcendence”) take greater satisfaction in their lives."

"The theory suggests that human aging includes a potential to mature into a new outlook on and understanding of life. Gerotranscendence implies a shift in metaperspective, from a materialistic and rational view of the world to a more cosmic and transcendent one, normally accompanied by an increase in life satisfaction."

"According to the empirically based theory of gerotranscendence, the individual moving toward gerotranscendence may experience a series of gerotranscendental changes or developments. These include a redefinition of the self and of relationships to others, as well as a new understanding of fundamental existential questions. It is not farfetched to associate this with a kind of transpersonal development. Gerotranscendence, however, does not imply any state of withdrawal or disengagement, as is sometimes believed. It is not the old disengagement theory in a new disguise. Rather, it is a theory describing a developmental pattern that goes beyond the old dualism of activity and disengagement. Research in various parts of the world confirms the existence of gerotranscendence, and lately a promising new type of counseling based on the theory has been created in countries as widely dispersed as Sweden and Taiwan."

Maturing into Gerotranscendence:

#aging #joyfulliving #spirituality #gerotranscendence

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A Good Laugh

"When you attain Satori, there is nothing left to you but to have a good laugh" (Alan Watts)

#joyful #laughter #happiness #satori #awakening

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Happiness Through Acknowledgement

The field of transpersonal psychology has deep roots in positive psychology, or the psychology of happiness. Transformation is also an important topic area for transpersonal psychology. For most people, a personal "transformation" implies a shift or transformation towards a HAPPIER state of existence and consciousness. Many people believe happiness comes from material wealth, or physical beauty, but studies have shown consistently that this is not the case. In fact most studies have shown that permanent and long term happiness is strongly linked to the quality of our social relations. Happiness has also been shown to be strongly related to how we feel about ourselves, our values, the purpose we ascribe to our lives. And although we can readily self-congratulate ourselves, pat ourselves on the back for the qualities and values we like most about ourselves, there is nothing like the feeling we get when our best qualities are acknowledged by others. And since we also know that we are connected on many levels and that our individual happiness is linked to the well-being and happiness of others (Ubuntu), by acknowledging the qualities of those around us, we not only elevate their levels of happiness, but our own as well.

So make yourself happy, by making others happy, through acknowledging their gifts, their qualities, why they matter to you.

#happiness #joyful #acknowledgement
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