‘The Art of Tree Planting is Soil Preparation’

Student, Landscape Gardener c2009

Making It Easy!

If you are reading this page, it likely that you or someone that you care about is experiencing difficulty. In education, when things seem strenuously difficult, our first task is to find a viable starting point.

The first step is to note how our way of thinking can produce the strain. How so?

If  we believe that what we seek is impossible, no amount of strain is going to lead to success. It is better to do something else.

If we believe that what we seek is possible, then strain is not necessary and is likely to get in the way of attaining it.

From this perspective, we can approach any question not from its point of difficulty but from the starting point of the resources we have available to us to clarify and accomplish what we want.

And what are our most fundamental resources?

Our mind and our body, of course!

Our mind and body are complex arrangements with phenomenal capabilities, most of which are at our service without our being aware of them. As we look after them well, they do all the work and we enjoy the benefits! Our question then becomes one of how to prepare our resources of mind and body effectively to accomplish what we want.

Preparing for Ease of Study

If we want to accomplish with inspiration, there are simple steps that we can take to ease the way. All the following pointers do their work immediately, whenever we do them and have even better effects when we do them consistently.

Put in the most basic terms:

For your MIND to be able to offer you clarity and dexterity, it needs stillness and structure.

The LINKS below – most of which are free – offer ways to calm and direct the mind and care for the body. You may find others that you prefer or enable you to build further.

All the resources listed here imply some form of STRUCTURE, whether in rhythm, frequency, good posture or in the physical structures that we commonly understand. This is because in order for your ideas to work in practice, your mind and body need to use basic structures to organise and coordinate them. Thus, some basic attention to structure is one of the easiest and most profitable elements to invest in, repaying with infinite rewards.

STILLNESS

  • Breathing: Taking 15 minutes before you start your day, you may sit or lie down in a comfortable position- rest your thoughts and focus on your breathing. This is transformative in itself and it’s easy and it’s free. With this, other things become easier and easier, and new and inspiring ideas will come to you.
  • Learn about Breathing from a diving champion: breathologyworld.com
  • Guided Breathing Meditation: Raising mood and inspiration with a few minutes at the beginning of your day and/or before you sleep allows calm and clarity on which to build. Here are some examples.
    youtube.com/watch?v=Ce12PW3Whe4
    youtube.com/watch?v=gAD53Ka9AOQ
  • For the BODY to be eager to sustain work, it needs basic care, including movement and REST. Our movement finds its precision against a background of stillness.

APPRECIATION

  • Respect for our body is a profitable investment.
  • Sleep – sufficient for you to feel fresh and rested;
  • Movement – even a few minutes of movement stimulates and coordinates your mind and your body.
  • Posture – even basic awareness of good posture will have subtle effects;
  • Fluids – preferably water, not stimulants;
  • Food – nutrition relative to your bodily needs;

Neck Practices

Breathing, ease of posture – ergonomics, improved alertness, relaxation:

youtube.com/watch?v=JnhUmq0va4A

UN International Day of Yoga – 21st June

Complete Upa Yoga video – if you found the video above interesting, the full video is available here:

youtube.com/watch?v=zu6ft1GlPBw

Relaxation, Concentration:

Solfeggio 528hz – Harmonic scales for becoming at ease; uplifting and grounding. This can be played at low volume in the background while sleeping or studying:

youtube.com/watch?v=b-6B2zyoFsI

Tibetan Singing Bowls - Qi Music Meditation for Balance | Himalayan Singing Bowls [ASMR]

youtube.com/watch?v=JXm5-jqkfPY

Ergonomics

Raising awareness of posture when working at a computer:

youtube.com/watch?v=P721qUkJD28

Mind Training

Links to short videos with some basic ideas and exercises for developing your natural abilities.

Your Focus – The cardinal principle of focus is: Focus on what you DO want (Not on what you DON’T want);
Your moment-to-moment attention is one of your most powerful assets. When you observe something that you don’t like/want, ask yourself, “What Do I want in this situation?” Re-focusing your attention to conceive what you do want is your 1st step towards accomplishing it.

Your Mood - You have more influence than you think. You can set your mood for raising capability – Short, Funny and informative – Ted Talk

ted.com/talks/shawn_achor_the_happy_secret_to_better_work

Harmonic Resonance – Tibetan Singing Bowls

If you want to find your tone (for centring), you can visit the shop of Little Tibet at Old Spitalfields Market, London UK thelittletibet.com/collections/Tibetan-Singing-Bowls

The immediacy and power of sound and vibration was brought home to me as an amazing personal discovery (duh) when I met the owner of The Little Tibet at a Mind, Body, Spirit event at Alexandra Palace a couple of years ago. I sought out the stand because my companion had told me about his singing bowls a few days before.

The Bowls (Standing Bells)

I wanted to bring a bowl home with me, although I didn’t know much about them at all. I asked him about the bowls. He said that there were two types of bowls; one type was machine-made and the other type was hand-made. The tones of the bowls relate to musical notes. A, B, C, D, E, F, G. With the machine-made ones, it was possible to order the precise tone of the bowl in advance. With the hand-made bowls, the maker did not know what tone the bowl would ‘sing’ at until the bowl was completed.

Choosing a Bowl:

I asked his advice to choose a bowl. He told me that he could not, as the soul has to choose the bowl! The way to choose was to play with the bowls and see what happens. I didn’t expect that this could happen on demand just like that, but I knew I would be happy with whatever I walked away with. So, I was open to experimenting a little. I didn’t expect anything more than the beauty that I saw before me, and that was enough.
Surprisingly, the field began to narrow quite quickly. I had a preference for the handmade bowls in terms of look and feel. Also, my companion had taken to one of the machine-made bowls and was playing it. The sound felt very solid and impactful. It resonated as though it was at some distance away, even though she was standing next to me, and I felt distinct physical discomfort. With a little further conversation, he showed me some bowls in the tone that was most relevant for me. He then played one and then another, and then another two. With the third bowl, I experienced a very clear physical feeling again. This time, it was like a well-spring of joy. The choice was surprising, amazing, and very clear! There could be no other bowl for me.

PG, May 2019.

Your Imagination - Imagination is our ability to see beyond what our strictly physical senses tell us. It is vital for the resourceful thinking that we need for learning, work or responding to new situations. It is sometimes discouraged as we are growing up, and this leaves us less able to accomplish what we want.

5 exercises + 1 youtube.com/watch?v=wWBoxUkTEXY

Your Attention Span - Extend your ability to hold your attention. (see 1st exercise for contemplating any object for 5 minutes)

Your Action - Develop your ability to put your (best) ideas into action. (see the exercise of giving yourself an instruction to carry out.

6 basic Exercises - youtube.com/watch?v=Pjo3iy4kfdM

Jigzone

Jigsaw puzzles can aid concentration, focus attention, bring calm and clarity for ease of study. Whilst this is not a substitute for the physical/tactile version, students find them very useful and accessible.

www.jigzone.com

ROMBi

ROMBi puzzle is an exceptional study aid, custom-designed from the elements in our work that have proved most effective and user-friendly for students aiming for success.

Easy to use for learners and professionals, it works by enhancing perceptual organisation/integration. Correlating the blocks to the puzzle patterns, following the process through perceptual obstacles enables their dissipation; aiding concentration, bringing calm, clarity and structure for ease of study as well as other daily tasks. Integrating the subtle operations of mind and body enhances your ability to put your ideas into practice. ROMBi can be used within the context of specialist tutorials/mentoring and for independent work/study for building capabilities.

For further information: www.rombipuzzle.com

Access 1st declares an interest in this resource.

Basics of Juggling:

If you want to take bodily coordination further, learning to juggle can assist with raising mood, focusing attention, coordination of mind and body, living in time, holding your intention while handling multiple perspectives.

youtube.com/watch?v=rafHfpzreXs