The Power of Gratitude NOW
Hi everyone, it’s Brian Marc Zimberg, author of “Stop Smile Breathe Be” and creator of Access Points, The Modern Life Meditation Plan.
In today's episode of Awake Life I want to talk to you about something that you probably have come across in your spiritual journey or, if you're on a self-help journey and that is this notion, this practice, this idea of gratitude. Odds are, on your journey you've learned about gratitude, that it's good to be grateful, that you can maybe have a gratitude journal, we talked about back in the 80s it was a big deal. We know to be grateful brings joy, brings connection, brings some kind of healing even. So, we've learned these things. But, what I’d like to ask you right now is to kind of just drop all your ideas of gratitude and everything you've learned in the past about that. What I mean by that is, just listen with fresh new ears so that - my goal for this video for you is for you to be able to grasp, utilizing gratitude in a deeper and more profound way that can really create a lasting transformation in your life.
Everything we do here on Awake Life is to really wipe away the dust, the misconceptions, the myths that keep us from experiencing directly our infinite divine nature, that which is already whole and complete. To point you in the direction of recognizing that meditation and the infinite peace of who you are, what I like to say lately the nectar of your own Divine Self, Oneself is available right here and right now.
And as I talk about in Access Points, as we learn to shift our attention out of our mind and let our attention rest in being itself we recognize that, just like in the center of the hurricane, in the center of the storm there's complete stillness, that the truth of who we are, our True-OneSelf is already still whole and complete and actually the ground that holds everything. Gratitude is a doorway right directly to the connection of your own Divine Self.
I want to take a look at gratitude on multiple levels today. First of all, we need to kind of have a conversation about the ego. We don't need to go into an entire ego conversation and explain what the ego is right now, we do that in some other videos and that could take a little while.
Let's just talk about the ego being the mental mind structure, I like to call it in Access Points, the survival animal that keeps your attention stuck in your mind and it's constantly on the look for survival. It's protecting you, of course, it's protecting your physical body and it also protects your identity of being someone and something separate. It's maintaining its identity in your mind but I'd love for us to take a look at and to understand is that the ego is constantly in fear and operating from a place of lack, it's constantly in need. We talked about that one of the main patterns that keeps us stuck in our mind is that the mind is constantly, either creating a problem or solving a problem. The ego is creating a problem every moment or solving a problem every moment. The ego is constantly judging the moment, finding and looking for imperfection. Again, it's looking for imperfection in problems because it needs to protect itself so it's already assuming that something's going to be wrong, it's constantly in neurosis. In that neurosis the ego is in a lack mentality. The ego is in need, it needs something to be different, it needs something to be better, it needs to make sure it is okay and in that lack mentality we have fear, we have unworthiness, deep shame because there's a sense of lack, there's a deep sense of lack that is running the operation.
Gratitude is like magic in this notion because gratitude, in the moment you're grateful, in the moment you're grateful there is no need, there is no lack, there is actually complete contentment. To have no need means that for that moment you are free, you’re abundant, you’re whole, there's no problem, there's no issue. Gratitude is such a key tool to utilize on our journey in our daily life, to open the doorway to our True-OneSelf, to experience the inner peace of meditation that is available right here and right now. One of the most beautiful things about being grateful, it stimulates this place of no need, therefore it also stimulates you being in the moment because for a moment in gratitude you’re present, you’re here, you're full and we all know that being present brings us closer and closer to the infinite. When we're present there's a timelessness that exists and that timelessness has a vibrancy to it. It allows you being more alive, more appreciative, more grateful so to live in gratitude is to actually live in peace. Imagine if you were able to train yourself to become more grateful, not just more grateful about some things but to actually become grateful all the time. It's a beautiful thing to become more grateful all the time. You start to come to a centered space and yourself as abundant, not lacking.
Let's take a look at gratitude on a couple stages, on a couple levels and then we'll bring it in someplace where you can really start to have gratitude so often, that'll become a regular thing for you. You can implement this starting immediately in your life and I can promise transformation for you, if you really hone in on this.
First off, I want you to take a moment and just be grateful for somebody in your life. There's scientific studies now that say that listen, writing down something that you're grateful for about somebody works. In fact, the studies show that the more specific you can be the better the effects it will have on creating more joy, more fulfillment and as I'm saying more openness, more beauty in your life. Take a moment right now and think about somebody that you care about. Great, and just, if you want to, if you're someplace and you're not driving a car you can close your eyes for a minute if you’d like to, you don't need to and just for a moment tell yourself in your own head, I am grateful for, say the person's name so, for me I'll be grateful for my wife right now. I am grateful for Barbara and just notice when you say that to yourself what it stimulates in you. You might be saying, well you chose somebody you're not congruent with or you're angry with, that's okay. Let's get more specific. I am grateful for Barbara's smile. I am grateful for the way Barbara enjoys my hug so now you. You are grateful for somebody, you say it to yourself, I am grateful for – great. I am grateful for something specific about that person, go ahead and say that to yourself now. Great. Notice, when you were grateful in that moment, was there a problem but it's stimulating you. Say it to yourself again, I am grateful, something specific about them, say it to yourself again and right away check, any problems, any issues in that moment? Infinite reality that is right now already is okay, already is perfect, already is whole and complete and the utmost truth of who you are you’re awaken, conscious self is already whole and complete. Gratitude is a doorway to the infinite.
That is something you most likely have done before, written in a gratitude journal, taking a moment to be grateful for someone. We have Thanksgiving in America, we teach our children, we were taught as children to say thank you and to be grateful but it's lip service in some ways until we really can connect to gratitude. How often do we take that in deeper, really deeper, a deep gratitude where we're not so distracted by all our thoughts and everything we think we got to achieve in our life and everything we got to take care of and we actually just take a moment, it could be 20 seconds, 30 seconds, a minute for gratitude. I want you to really start finding and inquiring into gratitude in your life and the experience of gratitude in your life, we're going to blow up gratitude so clean and big it's going to become a real doorway to happiness and a real doorway to freedom for you.
Okay, we've looked at level one of gratitude, how we can be grateful for somebody. You can also be grateful for a circumstance in your life, like grateful for your home, grateful for your business and again you've probably done this kind of gratitude before. I want to take it closer to you. One step closer to you is, I want to take a look at being grateful for breathing. Now, when you're grateful for breathing, since breathing is happening all the time there's a possibility to start being grateful all the time. Let's take a look at this together for a moment. Have you ever had to do anything to breathe? Of course not, right, breathing happens on its own, breathing is constantly happening and that which holds everything together, the universe, the cells in your body communicating with each other, your own breath happening. On this journey you may have learn about breath techniques and how we can rewire our nervous system with breath, you've maybe done yoga and you've done breathing and there's a certain kind of breath there that helps center us. Breathing is obviously crucial, it brings oxygen to our brain and to our body, we cannot be alive without breathing so breathing happens on its own, it is divine gift – breath. Ah, can't hurt you right. Go ahead for a moment with me, take a breath.
Now, I want to ask you to be grateful for breathing. Take a breath. Take a second breath, take three and say to yourself I am grateful for breathing. I am grateful for breathing. Focus your attention on your breath. You can do it the way I like to do it, notice that nostrils and the air as it passes inward and outward or out of your lips as it passes inward and outward and just say to yourself as you're breathing, I am grateful for my breath. What is your experience, when you just say I am grateful, I am grateful already there's that openness and there's that movement towards no need, freedom from the ego, open spaciousness and beauty is available. I am grateful for breathing, such an intimate thing, so close to us, our breath, it’s right here, always available, always given to us from the moment we were born to the moment we die. Breath is just given to us. Isn't that something to be so grateful for. I want you to really get this. You can cultivate being so grateful for the fact that you breathe. We're so concerned with what's going to happen in some future, in some other time, with what we have and don't have, with what we need to get and this idea of reality based on just bills that need to get paid, things that need to get done, those things all will get taken care of, one way or another, good or bad, circumstances of good and bad will come and go in your life and breath will happen straight through without issue or problem. God forbid if there's problem, then that's a whole other issue but breath will continue to happen on and on. Let's cultivate true deep profound gratitude for our breath. So simple but such a key and a doorway to your profound happiness. Tomorrow, set an alarm clock on your phone, it's with you all the time anyhow and just remind yourself three times tomorrow to be grateful that you're breathing and check, are you breathing. It takes – what does it take to see if you're breathing? Do you have to think about it? Do you have to think about if you're breathing or you can just shift your tension, it's an instant thing to notice that you're breathing, it's right here with you always given to you, it's always here so cultivate gratitude for breathing, that you breathe. Excellent.
Okay, so we can be grateful for a person in our life, we can be grateful for a circumstance or a place or a thing, sure. Now, bringing it closer we can be grateful for breath which is given to us, the same thing that holds everything together in the world, that it has everything being perfectly okay as it is right now, it allows us to breathe. Something so pure and beautiful when we just could take a moment just to drop everything, drop the future and drop the fear, drop concern, drop the mind. In Access Points I really implore you and show you how to stop believing your mind. When we stop believing our mind we connect to our True-OneSelf and the background the infinity of who we really are comes to the front and gratitude is a doorway to having an awake life, living awake life. It's beautiful, you're beautiful.
The next stage of gratitude, I want for you to be grateful for being alive and we're going to get that even closer, when we're going to be grateful that we are, grateful that we exist. That is the way in which we're going to be grateful for being alive. We start that with the breath and now we can even come closer, closer than your breath. What is closer than your breath? There's an exercise I do with people and you may have seen before so let's do that for a moment. Let's focus on our breath, inner nostrils, out of our mouth. Move your attention and feel coming in your nostrils, out of your mouth and then, as you're focusing on your breath, continue to do that and I ask you the question what is closer than your breath, what is right before the breath, even closer than your breath? When you do that and you just notice for a moment there's a spaciousness, there's beingness. We don't have to try to be present, who we are is present, we're here now.
In Access Points, one of the fifth access points is called simply being and I teach people how to sit for one minute, two minutes, five minutes and eventually they can sit for 10, 15, 30, an hour or 2 hours in the simplicity of being, simply being. In fact, if we learn to move our attention out of our mind, how to be a density of thoughts and we can rest in simply being an appreciating being, absorbing in just what we are. I'd like to call it just the simple sense that you are. If we start cultivating and inquiring into what is this simple sense that we are, just that you are here, that you’re here now, that you be, that you are being, that you are, just that you are. Think of a moment earlier today, maybe driving a car or going someplace, doing something, picture yourself there for a moment, be there for a moment. You can be thinking about what you're thinking about, heading where you're going, listening to a radio, in a conversation but you were there. You may not experience presence or whatever you think that is but you were there, just like right now as you're listening to this or watching this you are here, you're here. The sense that you are isn't necessarily a physical sensation, it's not an emotion or a feeling, those can be associated with it but you are – you are being. There's no separation in being. The floor is being, it is. Look around where you are at anything is it as it is, it is, everything is just being, the space is being and in that there's no separation in being, everything is connected in isness, in being.
We want to become grateful for being, we want to cultivate gratitude that we are, gratitude that we exist. If you're someone who has depression and sadness, that all happens in the past and the future. So your argument of sadness or anger, or that you don't really appreciate and like yourself, even if it feels phony at first, that's okay because that's a mental argument and I'm having you say I'm thankful in my mind. But eventually, you won't even need to say, I am grateful for being, you'll just notice that you are and seep like water into sand, seep more and more into beingness, presence that you are. It's sweet, it's full, free of all problems, no need, no lack. What would it be like if you could simply be grateful right now that you are so I'm asking you right now, we’ll say it in our minds first, say, I am and I'll say I am grateful that I am, I am grateful that I am here. I am grateful that I am. I am grateful that I am here. Receive that for a moment. You're always here. If you can learn and cultivate being grateful for being here, that gratitude again has no need, there's no need in gratitude. The ego can't be in control when you're grateful that you are and now, just like breathing, take a look – what do you have to do to be? Someone will say to me, well, I have to eat in order to be, no, you have to eat in order to stay alive but when you're born, when you're doing anything you're doing, when you're exercising, when you're reading a book, when you're going to work, when you're with a loved one you are, you are, you be already. You don't have to do anything to be, just like you don't have to do anything to breathe, it's happening right now, that you are, that you be is a gift that was given to you that is always present and if we explored even deeper, it has no beginning and no end, it's timeless. It's the timeless nature of your True-OneSelf, being right here. I am grateful that I am being. So beautiful, try it on. Again, set an alarm clock.
Tomorrow, start with the breathing and then the next day set an alarm clock for three times just that you remind yourself to say to yourself I am grateful that I am but don't just say it, take a moment and just notice are you, are you here. Don't try to make yourself be present and feel some feeling and feel connected. I'm not asking you to do that, don't try to get anywhere or do anything. You've done enough of that, you practiced enough things, you've worked hard enough to be here, you're already here, right? Be here now, you're already here. Receive that you are, it's like receiving your own self, receiving being, take it so close to breath and then we take it close to and even closer, just that you are, cultivating gratitude that you are, being thankful that you are, it can change everything, it can shift anything.
Let me know how it feels to take a moment to be grateful. Let me know how it goes for you the next few days and even if you did some of the exercises right here as we worked together today, if you need access to me, you can leave a comment below, jump on Facebook, on Instagram you can hit email and it'll email myself and my team. I am here in service and here to support you and I'm going to reach out to you in every way possible that I can to help you learn that meditation is here now, that you already are whole, that you are always being and that there's multiple doorways, portals to access, infinity of your own heart, one heart, one true self, oneself. Until next time, here's to living in Awake Life from your True-OneSelf and into the greatest expression of you.
Hey everyone, it's Brian Marc. Did you like that episode? If you did, you can do three things right now to continue your journey. First, you can subscribe right here to my channel which I hope you will so I can keep sending you videos on a weekly basis to help transform your life. Second, you can go to my website BrianMarc.com and sign up for my newsletter so that I can send you free offers, free products, free programs, updates on my events, podcasts and basically everything that we don't do on my channel here. You can find the link to BrianMarc.com in the description below. Third, if you want to go deeper on living inner peace and freedom then register to attend my latest seminar for free by clicking on the link right here. I look forward to seeing you on the next video. Be sure to hit subscribe for weekly videos and click on the button to register for the free seminar now. Here's to living Awake Life from your True-OneSelf and into the greatest expression of you.