Anti-Social Media     

Anti-Social Media     

I’ve been taking a social media vacation. I needed a break. The more people I speak with, it seems that I am not alone. Others are also spending less time in their online communities yearning for a simpler way of life without the need for constant connection.

How is it that the very thing called social media has actually created a world that feels more lonely than ever before? Why does it now take effort to post, click, and interact, when it used to be light and fun? Why are many of us feeling anti-social with a need to disconnect?

There are a number of factors at play. The main reason this is happening is because we are actually having less and less physical interaction and the cyber world of likes, friends, and emoji’s has attempted to replace communication and connectedness. The bubble we’ve created of online dating and socializing has finally hit us hard. We’ve become burned out from this seemingly artificial way of feeling loved.

The problem is that we have forgotten what it’s truly like to bond and have intimate relationships which can only be created by speaking, listening and being present with another human being. Instead, we partially get involved when in truth, it isn’t a complete relationship. If we aren’t talking on the telephone, facetiming, or meeting up for coffee, then it’s somehow inadequate. Is it better than nothing? Probably. But when it comes to feeding our souls and uplifting our spirits, it may just be having the opposite effect.

With an increase in depression and suicide rates, it has shown that over time, this world of online chatter can magnify our feelings of loneliness, and leave us feeling depleted and unsupported. To top it off, if we’re already feeling down and then tune in to other’s fabulous lives on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter, it only deepens our isolation.

Maybe it’s time to do a social media detox. Here is how:

  • Take a Break– Especially if you’re struggling emotionally or spiritually, stop scrolling through your social media accounts. The world will not end if you take 7 days away from your feed.
  • Replace it– Once you start your week long detox, replace your social media time doing something else. What excites you creatively that you’ve been putting off? When was the last time you read a book or took a class? How can you get back into real life instead of your online one?
  • Stop the Habit– Any habit or addiction takes work to overcome. You’ll need to literally make conscious efforts to leave your phone in the car or in a different room in order to be more fully present in your life. If you’re out with friends, stop with the impulsive need to check your accounts and BE HERE NOW.
  • Back to Basics– Start booking lunches and hikes with friends and make a point of bonding physically. Reach out to old friends in order to reconnect. If you’re looking to date, spend less time on the dating apps and more time at networking events or social gatherings. There is nothing more important than that we have physical connection, especially with those that lift us up.
  • Change Your Routine– It is so easy to do the same thing over and over again and sometimes structure is a good thing. But during this cleanse, force yourself to do something different. Finally book that group bowling or karaoke night or take a two-day getaway without the need to post every single detail about your trip.
  • Delegate – If you use social media for work purposes, hire somebody to help. There are plenty of people who can take over and assist with your online messaging. Learning to let go and asking for help will free you up and make room for exciting new opportunities and relationships.
  • Selfies to Selfless– For goodness sakes, stop with the selfies already. Feeling the need to capture every moment of your day is just boring and truth be told, nobody really cares about what you ate for lunch. Instead, be present in what is and breathe in every second instead of looking for the perfect lighting and backdrop for your next photo.

If you’re like me, you may feel more isolated and disconnected than ever. While it’s easy to blame social media, we cannot be held captive any longer. We must make a conscious choice to break free from this modern way of being and get back to living life fully. Spending time in nature, enjoying community, relaxing over candlelight and wine, and listening to soothing music are some examples of how to do this.

If you’re feeling burned out it’s up to you to make choices that lift you back up. The very thing that we have come to rely on to make us happy and to give us a sense of support, is doing the opposite. There is no better time to take a break and see what it’s like to enjoy yourself without the busyness of our online world. Day by day, start to cleanse and recreate new habits that are life-enhancing, heart opening, and ultimately, the way things were meant to be.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness and Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

 

 

Life Without Goals – Is It The Way To A Happier Experience?

Life Without Goals – Is It The Way To A Happier Experience?

Lately I’ve been sitting in a place unlike anywhere I’ve been before. I literally live my day-to-day experience without concrete goals, ambitions, or a particular destination in mind. This is the first time in my life where I have “no place to go” and I am surprisingly present and calm.

If you’re like me, you have thrived on pushing yourself towards achieving some type of future vision. You’ve found motivation through mental images of your dream home, the newest model of your favorite sports car, a perfect wedding, or manifesting the ideal physique. Whatever it is, most of us have been taught that desires equal a fulfilling reality. While I’d agree that as humans, we are often energized by new things, anytime we place our happiness in the hands of stuff yet to be accomplished, we are sure to be disappointed, and we may never find ourselves fully present in what is.

So how do we live more in the here and now and will we still attract a good experience if we stop trying? I have always been afraid to take a break from wanting with fear that my life would somehow go backwards, thinking that if I didn’t dream or desire, I’d simply shrivel up and die or at the very least, live some type of mediocre existence.

In fact, the opposite has occurred. I feel more alive than ever! Taking the pressure off to BE SOMEBODY, GET SOMEWHERE, and HAVE MORE STUFF has created an unparalleled presence and joy in THIS moment unlike anything I’ve felt before.

We’ve all heard about allowing enlightenment in through meditation and spiritual practice, and in theory, we understand what this entails. But unless we actually experience it, it’s difficult to grasp what it really means to live in the present.

This may come with age and maturity, and I’m in no way saying that I have mastered it, but when we can just slow down, take a breath, and realize that there is NO PLACE TO GET TO, and that everything outside of us is an illusion of sorts, then we begin to gain the wisdom that is described in ancient texts around the world. Knowing that we are enough just as we are. We are enough with or without our stuff, whether we are single or married, healthy or sick, rich or poor. We are enough because we are here!

Yes, we are physical beings having a spiritual experience and chances are that we will always have dreams of people, places, and things that we want to attract because we desire expansion and growth. But we may also find a time when we can simply allow these new manifestations to show up authentically without pushing or pressuring ourselves or others.

Nothing is more important than that we feel good. When we can sit in such a high vibration, we no longer worry if positive occurrences are ahead, because we understand that like attracts like. Happy attracts happy. Peace attracts more peaceful encounters. And at the end of day, we stop labeling whether something is good or bad anyway.

What would your life be like if you hopped off the hamster wheel? Who would you be if you took time out to truly enjoy the fragrant roses, to be awed by the simple fact that you are here, and without the pressure to move forward? What amazing things would show up for you if you began to live differently?

They say insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, expecting a different result. Are you getting the results you want? Are you happy? Maybe looking for results is the problem.

I’m not suggesting that we merely sit back and halt all action, but when we can fully experience pleasure in what is, then shifts begin to happen naturally and we begin to act from a place of authenticity and alignment with less effort, stress, or strain to achieve.

Maybe, just maybe, it is time to contemplate a new way of being. Letting go. Surrendering. Living with ease. You may be in awe by the magic that begins to show up after releasing the lifetime effort of incessant striving. What would your life be like if you let yourself off the hook, made room for bigger and better things to appear while you’re busy, not being busy?

A life without goals may just bring you heaps of happiness and fulfillment, loftier than you could ever dream.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

The Voice Of The Bully – Are YOU Your Worst Critic?

The Voice Of The Bully – Are YOU Your Worst Critic?

Most of us have been bullied. It often happens during our adolescent and teenage years and can take form in both verbal and physical abuse. I was bullied from kindergarten all the way through high school so I can certainly relate all too well.

The tormentor that I want to bring light to today is that of our inner bully. The voice of sabotage, put downs, and painful, recurring messages that we direct toward ourselves.

Ironically, we learn early on from other bullies, one of two things; To either accept their cruelty as truth, or if we have enough strength and self-respect from a young age, to repel their destructive messages. Unfortunately, many of us take these mean and degrading words to heart and we begin to use them as weapons against ourselves.

Constant abuse of any kind can eventually play with our minds and cause us to go into a downward spiral of negative, habitual self-talk. Even with plenty of positive tapes playing in the background, the frequent, underlying message is that “we are not enough.”

So how do we stop the influence of our bully, making way for more happiness, success, and self-esteem?

  • Recognize The Voice– Become clear that there is, in fact, a voice that is getting in the way. Begin to see patterns in your thoughts, actions, and inner dialogue that makes you feel bad. Listen to those voices but don’t buy into them. Start to recognize how you bully yourself and put yourself down on an ongoing basis.
  • Don’t Believe it– The next step is to STOP believing these messages. The routine we have fallen into is a toxic pattern of self-abuse and it has to stop! Begin separating yourself from the negativity and understand that it isn’t the voice of truth or reason. It is simply negative programming.
  • Befriend The Bully– Make friends with the bully. Hear what they have to say. Get sensible and send the tyrant gentleness. Like all bullies in our life, all they really need is recognition and love. What we resist, persists. What we love and forgive, dissipates.
  • Practice Feeling– Pay close attention to how you feel. What thoughts and words empower and energize you? Which ones drain you and make you feel tired or sad? Eventually, with a little practice, you WILL be able to create a new pattern of positivity, self-love, and becoming your own best friend and support system.
  • Spend Time Being Confident – Extend more energy doing those things that make you feel confident. If you constantly push yourself into areas that make you anxious and insecure, it’s fine to a point because it causes you to grow, but make sure that you are also doing many things that you’re great at! Somebody with low self-worth tends to continue patterns that emphasize their feelings of lack. Shift gears, you ARE amazing at many things! Start doing them more often.
  • Re-Charge– Continually re-charge your emotional and spiritual batteries. Create a daily practice that keeps you plugged in. Pray, meditate, journal, do yoga, read uplifting books, sing, get creative, and do whatever it takes to keep you balanced and open-hearted. With consistency, you will keep your batteries from becoming dangerously low and therefore avoiding the fall back into old patterns.

From somebody who has lived most of my life feeling unworthy due to early programming, I can tell you that THERE IS HOPE! It will take some consistent effort on your part but if you keep on, keeping on, you will most definitely make positive strides in the direction of regaining your natural state…that of confidence, self-love, worthiness, and a knowing that you are enough just as you are!

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

Choose LOVE Over Fear

Choose LOVE Over Fear

This week, I got to thinking about the motivation behind my passion for health. I realized that some of the energy that I put in, the supplements, organic food, alkaline water, and even exercise, is partly based on fear. Thoughts like “I don’t want to get sick” or “I want to protect myself from that” often sit just below the surface.

Every day I read articles about health and wellness and how we can avoid disease. Studies about cell phones, chemicals, stress, and vaccines make headlines regularly, leaving us confused and sometimes, a little panicked.

If we look at the law of attraction, what we think about expands. While we may be focused on good health and longevity, if the underlying, unconscious message is “I am afraid of getting old,” then the Universe often hears those concerns and may eventually bring us evidence that matches those fears.

I speak a lot about finding gratitude and focusing on the positive and while that isn’t always easy, perhaps it is time to do this with our wellness and lifestyle practices.

For example, when taking your daily superfoods or supplements, quietly give thanks to yourself for the blessing of these vitamin-packed nutrients which will naturally override that tiny voice that says “I have to kill these damn free radicals that are attacking my cells.” The inside conversation can be quite humorous if we really look at it and maybe it is time to lighten up about the entire situation.

I’m all about taking proactive measures that increase our odds of living a long and vital life, but perhaps we can let up just a bit and begin enjoying the journey more fully. We can rest assured that most of our prevalent fears will NEVER come true and the BIG one that we’re all trying to avoid, death, cannot be escaped anyway, so why not LIVE fully now, in love.

Take the time to feel good about things like exercise, sleep, meditation, healthy eating, less cell phone use, unplugging from social media, spending more time laughing and enjoying your friends, and clearing your house of toxic chemicals, but don’t fixate. Instead, find a happy balance while knowing that you are doing the best that you can.  Don’t let your obsessive compulsive nature, anxiety, or fear ruin the joy along the way.

By all means, make smart choices, continue to educate yourself so that you and your family can be protected but then let go! Relax. Breathe. If you can’t afford that latest miracle superfood powder or replacing your home water filters with the latest and greatest, it is okay. You are going to be fine. Our bodies are resilient and what gets us more than the latest cancer-causing chemical, is the stress that we create trying to avoid them.

Honor yourself enough to make everything you do for your health, a positive and loving ritual. Stop, give thanks, bless it and know that the energy that we infuse into each moment is far more vital and life-changing than missing a day of yoga or exercise. Choose love and not fear every single time and what you focus on will expand and grow.

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living in Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!

What IF This is as Good as it Gets?

What IF This is as Good as it Gets?

I am ALL for being optimistic and thinking positive. I believe that we can to some degree, create our destiny using affirmations, a focused mindset, and the power of intention. But if you’ve tried to implement the law of attraction you may have found that things don’t always go as planned.

Sometimes life can take us in a totally different direction than we wanted, and often, it ends up being exactly what we need.

Lately, the message that keeps coming to me is “what if this is as good as it gets?” What if our life doesn’t improve from where it is today? How would we feel if that miracle job, relationship, or adventure didn’t happen at all? I don’t mean to revert to a negative or pessimistic attitude but rather, I’d like to create a new way of living and thinking, one that brings us back into this moment. The ONLY moment we have.

When we spend time wanting, desiring, needing, and day dreaming about things to come, we totally miss what is directly in front of us. And even if the current situation is challenging, we can learn to find within that moment, truth, growth, pain, acceptance, and perhaps even more love and gratitude than we ever thought possible.

We wouldn’t be human if we didn’t have dreams and I am not suggesting that we ditch those fantasies because in many ways, they are what sustain us. An underlying faith that life will get better keeps us from sinking too low when times are tough.

But there is a certain amount of surrender that needs to take place once we’ve set intentions for something new to come. We can learn to envision it, feel it’s presence and then gently let it go with a deep knowing that it will show up…or perhaps something better. And by better, I don’t necessarily mean what appears positive to those looking on. Better may mean something that trumps the fancy car, ideal mate, or windfall. It may just be the thing that we need to help us grow in a totally new direction.

What if this is as good as it gets? Would you be okay with that? Would you be able to dig deep and find love, joy, appreciation, and satisfaction in what may seem boring, monotonous, or disappointing? Being present, accepting what is, and squeezing every bit of juice out of our day-to-day experience may be the key to living a full and rich life.

Chances are very good that your life WILL improve and that many of your dreams will come true. But just for today, why not live as if this is as good as it gets and see what comes of it. I have a feeling it may open you up to a whole new depth of richness and beauty in even the most mundane of experiences.

 

Jay Bradley is a Youthful Aging, Wellness & Lifestyle Coach Living In Los Angeles. http://www.JayBradleyLifestyle.com

He is the Best-Selling Author of LIVE LOOK FEEL, The 12-Week Guide to Live Longer, Look Younger & Feel Better!