The first part of this post is written by me (Holly) and the second is written by CTWM’s founder Michelle.

Holly:

Since December 14, 2012 (the Newtown tragedy), my local community (and other communities far and wide) have been trying to find a way to change the world we live in. Aside from the laws, regulations, resource availability and everything else that can potentially be addressed by laws and legislators, many have acknowledged that people need to change.

We have heard a lot of talk about changing our collective consciousness and trying to work on society as a whole. But how can we change the world? It seems like a colossal and impossible feat.

I believe that we can change the world. We just need to do it one human being at a time.

“You have the power to guide your path. Use your mantra to make a positive impact on yourself and the results will ripple out to the world around you. Be the change that you want to see in the world.”

My point is that we must start with ourselves. We can create a societal shift towards peace and away from violence by working on our own consciousness first.

I am a pen and paper person. I like to write things down. I have a physical “gratitude journal” at my bedside that I write in and jot down my mantras and personal mindfulness goals. My wife, however, feels no need to write her “gratitude’s” down. She says “they are in my head and I go over what I’m thankful for every night, why bother writing it down?”

Everyone is different. I can’t tell you what your personal goals are but I can help teach you about what’s working for me in hopes that it might help you too. Over the next few weeks Michelle and I plan to help educate readers about HOW to be more mindful, HOW to meditate and hope to give you practical advice to reduce stress. Stay tuned!

Michelle:

When Holly asked me to help out with this new mini-series I was thrilled! As an avid believer in meditation as a tool to reduce stress & get rid of anxiety, I think that approaches like learning mindfulness and discovering how to live in the present moment can make a huge impact on our lives.

I started taking meditation classes 7 months ago and it changed my life. I know, I know, that sounds a little crazytown but it’s true. Learning let go of negative thoughts as well as angry & resentful feelings and really, truly working on developing universal compassion has allowed me to become an even better person. A person with less anxiety (I’ve struggled with anxiety for many, many years) who feels much more relaxed. Meditation has helped me deal better with anxiety more than any medication I tried in the past, because my anxiety stems from the way I THINK. Medication works well for some people but for me, it couldn’t change my thought patterns, only I can do that. Changing the way I think has been the single biggest factor in reducing my stress level.

I can’t say I’m a total expert on this stuff but I’m more than happy to share some of my insights with you all over the next few weeks. I’ll leave you with some food for thought:

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Stay tuned for more!

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