Achieve “Impossible” Feats

A guest post by Sera Hwang

How much do our beliefs shape how far we progress?

I recently attended a Tony Robbins event in which he shared the story of Roger Bannister and the four-minute mile. Back in the day, many doctors and scientists believed that it was physically impossible for a human to run a mile in less than four minutes. While many tried, no one had achieved that feat.

In 1954, however, Roger Bannister achieved the seemingly impossible. He ran a mile in less than four minutes, with a time of 3:59.4.

Incredibly, after that, others were able to do so as well. Once Bannister ran the mile in under four minutes, others knew it was possible to do so and thus more easily did. This is an example of how something may seem impossible until someone does it. To quote Joel Runyon, “Once you stop believing something is impossible, it becomes possible.”

How often do we limit ourselves by believing that something is out of reach or impossible?

When have we decided not to throw our hat in the ring because we didn’t think we were good enough or qualified – essentially telling ourselves that it would be impossible for us to be chosen? While our “impossibles” are not about breaking world records, they are still incredibly significant and can affect the trajectory of our lives. What would happen if we took “impossible” out of our vocabulary and lived life believing that everything was at least possible?

Audrey Hepburn said, “Nothing is impossible, the word itself says ‘I’m possible’!”  

This is especially important for women to internalize.

According to various studies, women are far less likely to negotiate their salaries than men are. Linda Babcock, an economist at the Carnegie Mellon University, states that, “by not negotiating their job at the beginning of their career, [her graduate students are] leaving anywhere between $1 million and $1.5 million on the table in lost earnings over their lifetime.”

Think about that.

So I encourage you to reach for what you desire – stretch yourself further than you believed possible, even if you do not think you can obtain or achieve it, or loved ones tell you that you’re wasting your time.

Because something may seem impossible until someone does it – what if that someone is you?

 

Sera Hwang, an MIT graduate and former lawyer / entrepreneur, has a healing practice in which she provides Arcturian energy healing, Akashic readings, and intuitive guidance to her clients. After developing a debilitating case of carpal tunnel nearly a decade ago, Sera learned about the mind-body connection, which began her spiritual journey down the rabbit hole. Now Sera is excited to share with you the same spiritual tools that helped her tremendously.

Take 5! Give Yourself a Break from the Stress

As we transition into fall, things can get pretty overwhelming pretty fast. The hustle and bustle around you, people hurrying to and from work, students hitting the books again – all of these energies affect us, maybe more deeply than we realize (or care to admit).

When you sense your stress levels going up, when your mind is working at a pace more frantic than you'd like, or if you're being pulled in more than one direction, take a quick time out to give yourself some space from the external stressors and reengage with your body.

All it takes is 5 minutes to listen to my free Body Scan meditation (my most popular meditation!). You'll feel better and be able to retackle your work with increased focus and efficiency. And, of course, the more regularly you practice mindfulness (even if it's a few minutes a day), the more physical and mental health benefits you'll reap, too!

To create a shortcut on your smartphone's home screen so you can instantly access this and other meditations, use these easy-to-follow instructions for any smartphone or tablet.

Good luck out there!

If you find yourself struggling...Remember that, while transitions can be challenging, you have survived countless transitions before. As you take on what you're now facing, know that you are better equipped than you think!

And if you'd like more guidance, please don't hesitate to drop me a line!

5⟡5⟡5 (part 3)

Three sets of 5 little tips for living a happier life, living a right life, living your best life. My version of Triple5Soul :)

Here's your third and final installment (part 1 here and part 2 here).

5 Practices for Nurturing Happiness from Thich Nhat Hanh:

  1. The first method of creating joy and happiness is to cast off, to leave behind, to let go.
  2. We can selectively water the good seeds in our consciousness and refrain from watering the negative seeds.
  3. With mindfulness, breathing in becomes a delight, and breathing out can also be a delight. This is joy and happiness.
  4. Concentration is born from mindfulness. Concentration is power and energy.
  5. Insight is seeing what is there to liberate us from afflictions such as jealousy or anger, and allow true happiness to come. Every one of us has insight.

Want to Increase Your Luck? Put Down Your Phone

a Guest Post by Annie Levin


In a ten-year-long study on the nature of luck, Professor Richard Wiseman found that a key difference between lucky and unlucky people came down to attention. 

Self-described “lucky” people had a relaxed, open attention that allowed them to notice unexpected opportunities arising in their environment.  In contrast, self-described “unlucky” people displayed a tense, narrow attention that obscured even overt opportunities.  For instance, one experiment asked participants to count the number of photographs in a newspaper.  Page Two featured a half-page ad that said, “Stop counting. There are 43 photographs in this newspaper.”  Lucky people, open to the unexpected, tended to spot it; unlucky people tended to miss it because their attention was focused elsewhere.

I’ve been increasingly troubled by the narrowing effect my cell phone use has on my attention—how often I’m eye-locked to a screen and oblivious to my environment.  Eager to open my attention and reconnect with the world around me, I attempted my own experiment:

No phone in public places for one week. 

Here’s what happened in just three days:

Day One:

Riding the subway to work, I notice the man beside me is reading a book I love.  I comment on the book, we engage in a lively conversation, and we exchange emails to share information on topics of mutual interest.  On his way off the train he comments, “I’ve been trying to get away from using my phone on the train.  This was the first day I read a book on my commute in months!” “Me too!” I shout, as the doors close behind him.

Day Two:

Leaving my office to grab a late lunch, I turn onto bustling Sixth Avenue and see a twelve-year-old boy who looks remarkably like the son of a dear friend who lives in a rural New Mexico town of fewer than 10,000 people.  I’m certain it can’t be him, but the resemblance is so strong I have to ask. It is in fact my friend’s son, traveling the country with other relatives for the summer; he’s in New York City for a single day.  We snap a photo and send it cross-country to my friend, who was just that morning thinking about her son and wondering how he was doing.

Day Three:

In between the subway and my office, I lock eyes with a former co-worker I haven’t seen in years.  She tells me she’s about to begin a new job at an organization where I happen to know several people—I give her the names of friends to send regards to, and she gives me a lead on a freelance project I may find interesting. 

And that was just the first three days.  The opportunities and connections continue to arise—moments I would have missed if my attention were laser-beamed at my phone.

Plus, a post-script: remember the man on the subway reading a book?  Two weeks later a newfound friend invites me to a 40th birthday party she’s hosting.  Do I even need to tell you that the birthday boy is the man from the train?

Put down the phone, friends.  The everyday magic of open attention—what we like to call “luck”—awaits.

 

Annie Levin is an attorney/doula/pollinator who works with individuals and organizations to bring creative, cross-disciplinary thinking to the complex challenges of our times. She is a curator for the collective, The Emergence Network, and the host of Precipice, a show on Voice America's Revolutionary Wellness Talk Radio.  Annie is a graduate of Harvard Law School and a scholar at the Orphan Wisdom School.

5⟡5⟡5 (part 2)

Three sets of 5 little tips for living a happier life, living a right life, living your best life. My version of Triple5Soul :)

Here's your second installment (part 1 here).

5 Little Shifts that Will Make Your “Stressful” Life 5 Times Easier from Hack Life:

  1. Focus inward for a few minutes every day to find clarity.
  2. Allow most things to simply be the way they are.
  3. When you stop chasing the wrong things, you give the right things a chance to catch you.
  4. Forget your big goals for a while and just focus on the small daily rituals that support them.
  5. Every evening before you go to bed, write down three things that went well during the day and their causes.

Let's give these a shot – I will if you will ;-)