Weightlifting, Golf, Tennis, Volleyball, Mental Health, Health
The Benefits of a Spiritual Mind
As the author of a children's book about a Lemur named Blue that learns how to play tennis while overcoming a series of challenges, The Wonderful Adventures of Lemur Blue, I find that I apply some of the lessons and philosophies in the book to observations in my daily life.
In Chapter 2 of my children's book, Blue is about to arrive at his 1st tennis lesson but got butterflies, anxiety, uncertainties, doubts, and fears that developed in his little lemur mind. I, too, have had situations where I've been anxious, uptight, or doubtful. I struggled with these feelings in the past, until I became more aware of my True Self and thoughts, delusions that disrupt peace of mind.
Why did the anxiety exist? Never intentional, but in my earlier days, I would sometimes speak up and say the wrong thing or act the fool. It was the middle to the end of summer in 2010 when I was leaving Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University where I was attending. I was studying to achieve an Aviation Management Degree. I struggled at this very academically challenging school. I moved from Daytona Beach to Sarasota, FL. I decided to transfer universities and complete my BA in Aviation Management at Everglades University in early 2013.
In Chapter 2, I symbolized Blue's being awakened to another dimension, a place of Peace, with the appearance of twelve birds or spiritual guides in the elevator ride up to the penthouse tennis center. He was doubting himself just before he was about to begin his 1st tennis lesson ever. My lemur character had normal human-like emotions. Blue had fears, doubts, anxieties, and despair. He was raw with fear and got uncomfortable as he was about to experience a challenge, something new, an unknown. These spiritual birds that flew in from the sky and stars above the snowstorm outside delivered the message, "Stop your doubt, stop your worrying, and relax." The birds chirped turning Blue's frown upside down into a smile. This was his moment to shine. The bird re-booted his Mindset, his Emotional state, and Outlook from a Negative and Worried state to a Positive attitude of Gratitude.
When I was growing up, there were certain situations when I had a lot of doubts, fears, and feelings of uncertainty. There were questions that I did not know how to answer. These doubts spanned from my toddler years to teens up to in my 20's and 30's. An overwhelming thought, person, place, situation, or thing would lead me to worry or feeling unbalanced.
One day, I learned there are valuable tools that I, you, and others have access to. We may not realize these tools are available. We just go with the status quo because sometimes we feel that's just the cards you are dealt in life. We all learn through different experiences along our paths.
So what are the tools to deal with anxiety or doubt?
Whether it's a religious God, a higher power, or some other form of heightened enlightenment, I urge you to explore your spirituality. Begin to use a spiritual life and continue to practice it enough until it's automatic, natural, or strongly developed. I feel that embracing a spiritual life will help you rebound from negative thoughts and emotions to a strong mental position and the added benefit of joy added to everyday life.
To put it in sports analogy, it's just like hitting an excellent forehand for an easy winner, a good wood shot down the fairway, a home run, a spike to win the volleyball match, or sinking the free throw to win the game with 0.1 seconds left. That feeling of joy, that success you achieved through the relentless practice of your sports skill, can also be achieved through the relentless practice of your spirituality. This spiritual practice develops a mechanism for a much more relaxed, and peaceful life, with less stress and worry.
There are valuable tools in the 12 step programs that I was fortunate enough to have found at the age of 33. During my 30s, I learned key valuable lessons and found the answers to the questions I had in life in developing character and simplifying matters. Among one of the most valuable tools I've learned along my pathway to peace, is to "Accept" life on life's terms and surrender. Ask for help toward the things that disturb or struggle you. When I became aware that accepting the world, the people in it, places, and things around me, I was awakened to the fact that it led me to overcome odds. I learned tools to use in my newly developed toolbox which was a keystone to the arch to my happiness and awareness today.
Instead of fighting the situation in my mind, instead of trying to wrestle with it or change it or control it, I returned to my spirituality. It helped me practice awareness. It taught me that it's good to talk about the problem with the right person about the issue at hand. Talking and embracing the problem with a spiritual mindset can cut the problem in half by getting it out of your system. It gets it out of your mind and thoughts. It allows the feelings to take less time or to pass through quickly as opposed to keeping them stuck or paralyzed in your mental status. Dealing with the issue in a spiritual way allows you to snap out of it.
Back to the sports analogy, in tennis, if you lose a point and stay angry or give your energy on the past mistake, you won't have a focus in the moment to succeed moving forward in the match.
Let the feelings of making that mistake pass through fast, accept it, and do not chastise yourself. Pick yourself up and soldier on. We can learn to grow from mistakes.
In life, don't view yourself as a victim. Don't let negative thoughts ruin your peace. Calm your mental state. Getting in the right mindset and preparation is key to operating optimally during competitive sports play, practice, or in any situation in life.
So why am I suggesting to tap into YOUR spirituality…whatever form that may be?
Because when I developed a relationship with a higher power greater than myself - God. It changed my actions, my relationships, my performance, my health…it changed my life for the better. It gave me balance it gave me peace.
Spirituality isn't necessarily religious. I think it's vital that people explore their relationship with God or new higher power. I find that by acknowledging and addressing this higher power, it can help assist in what has been heavy on your shoulders or burdening you or holding you back from completely developing into the man or woman you were always supposed to become!
Whether you practice your spirituality through Christianity, Islamism, Hinduism, or Judaism… the practice of religion/spirituality can bring more peace into our lives.
I recommend a healthy prayer life, meditation, or just quiet time. I recommend helping others find their peace. When helping others, we take our problems off of ourselves and our own worries or issues and replaces with feeling good for helping another.
I have a genuine heart that really wants to Help the World grow together. Deep down I truly feel that if we were to globally collaborate with peace in our hearts, humanity could find some paths of fair and equal balance for society's betterment. I want everyone to manifest peace and love.
Grand thoughts and aspirations…yes! So, to help contribute I share what I feel are valuable tips and solutions to key issues everyone faces in life. This is why I wrote a children's book and developed several speaking programs. Maybe I can share my experiences – both failures and successes – and impact people with the possibility of positive change in their lives.
Like Blue learned in my book…
Coach Kip's Tips:
- Do Not Listen to the Negative Thoughts - the clutter rattling upstairs in your brain fizzing like a soda pop waiting to explode.
- Replace the Negative Thoughts with Positive Thoughts Automatically - regardless of the situation!
- Then Analyze and Act–
- Negative thoughts gone
- Replaced by positive thoughts
- Then Analyze the situation thoroughly and Act accordingly.
"There is little difference in people, but that little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative."
– W. Clement Stone