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The “Pebble” Series

Part 1: What pebbles are in your bucket?

By: Lars Gustafsson

“Discovering and taking out the stresses of your body and mind is like taking pebbles out of a bucket to allow it to carry more water…  water being the metaphor for optimal health, vitality, joy, abundance and freedom.”

As Jeff Sutton – my close friend and health mentor – said these words in our last bio-feedback consulting session yesterday, I was instantly struck with the profound nature of this comment.

In this analogy water represents health, abundance and a life filled with joy and vitality… while the pebbles represent all the layers and levels of stresses in the many forms they take in our bodies, minds, consciousness and hearts… consciously or unconsciously.  The inner emotional aspects to pebbles in the bucket are the most profound limitations in our lives… keeping us from expressing our highest and greatest natures.

In the course of our lives there are many, many things that stress us that we take for granted, many brought about by the influence of a paranoid society, TV, ridiculous inundation of negative news, loving and often well meaning adults, parents and leaders … and many, many other subtle forms of habits, environmental, work and life dynamics, and beliefs we absorb and make our own.

As children we are inundated with a plethora of fears to ‘hold’ us within a pattern of living that supposedly keeps us ‘safe’.  I recalled in my discussion with Jeff how as a child growing up in the village in India, I was constantly allowed the freedom to ‘disappear’ for the day with my tribal friends.  We explored areas of jungle, rivers, streams, fields, roads, and paths laden with dangers the average Canadian parent would “freak out” at!  Everything from extremely venomous snakes to dangerous bugs and spiders were lurking under every rock and bush that we came across.  I am certain that in our modern times the leash we have on our children would make my childhood seem like a very, very ‘wild’ time.

Jeff was reminiscing about his childhood, and how the leash his parents had on him was virtually non existent.  He was commenting how the society we live in imposes a reality that forces him to keep a fairly tight leash on his children, simply by virtue of all the ‘dangers’ imposed on us by our ‘modern’ times.  He talked about how, as a child, he would walk a mile to and from school four times every day, roaming through bushes and forest, and spending the entire day outdoors… far from the ‘safety’ of adult or parental supervision.  He said that he has met many people who have known and unknown phobias from all their restrictions and constrictions that literally confine their life experience into a very, very tiny existence!   He and I both recognized that our jobs as health guides are occupied mostly with helping people find and remove these pebbles from their lives … so that for once they can “see” beyond their own limitations and allow more health, abundance and joy into their lives.

We both came to the agreement that because of our ‘free’ childhood our ability to identify and honestly look at all the ‘pebbles’ in our bucket is much, much easier than many who grow up with a tighter leash imposed on them.   We also recognized that what you may be doing in one area to experience freedom may be adding more pebbles to your bucket.  This is especially true in the area of health and nutrition.   May people we have met, over exercise, take way too many supplements, and lead lives of incredible restriction in the futile effort to be as healthy as possible … when in fact all of these things and the beliefs around them may in fact be the very stressors that will eventually catch up with them.  Perhaps you’ve heard or read of people who literally ‘drop dead’ from a heart attack in the midst of the plethora of ‘healthy’ things they are doing?  We have!

Instead of dropping all of these healthy things there are many other layers to this that you may not be aware of.   Many other pebbles in your bucket may be ‘edging out’ the ‘good’ you are trying to do … and some of these ‘good’ things may be part of the adding of the pebbles!

So how honest are you willing to be right now with yourself? 

How important are your goals of living in an expanded reality?  

How many pebbles are in your bucket?

Give yourself a moment to take out a pen and paper and jot down as many ‘rules’, nutritional and life habits, beliefs, situations, relationships, financial, self imposed expectations, expectations from others, work and life dynamics, environmental and spiritual beliefs that cause you to feel any sensation of discomfort, dis-ease, pain, fear, guilt, anger, resentment and ANY sensation that you are being ‘boxed or fenced’ in.

Here’s a short list to get you started…

“I find myself feeling guilty about eating or drinking _____________.”

“I can’t stand ‘so and so’ at work, home or the gym.”

“I wish my boss would recognize what I do and my value.”

“I worry for my kids and the things they are doing, thinking, etc.”

“I worry about the economy, political situations in the world, and uncertainty.”

…. Ok, you get the idea … now it’s up to you to write as many things down as you can think of … and keep this list going … it’s your key to freedom.   You may instantly recognize that you can ‘toss’ some or all of these away … and as you do you will literally FEEL the relief and “openness” wash through you.  This sensation is literally opening up your genetic potential, allowing your body to absorb more nutrition, and enabling it to heal, repair and Detox.

When we knowingly or unknowingly ‘agree’ to hold on to too many habits and beliefs we begin to add way too many pebbles to our buckets.   Every one of these things you have listed is keeping your bucket filled up, and no matter how much you exercise, how perfectly you eat, or how immaculate your life may look and feel on the surface … your bucket may be full!

No matter how hard you try, strain, or how much pain you attempt to endure … you really are not emptying out the fundamental stressors that are always keeping you from truly experiencing the full expression of your genetic, emotional and human potential.  You MAY be loading in more!

In the next parts of this series I will begin to provide the specific processes and steps to identify and remove these pebbles in your life.   Some are bigger than others, in fact they may seem at this moment to feel like huge rocks, but you will find that we can get them taken out and solved with new nutritional, mental, physical and spiritual habits.

You will learn how to use just a few very simple habits to not only find and remove ALL the pebbles in your life, but prevent them from ever being put back.

For now — contemplate the list you have made.   Take time to look at each item and ask yourself how you can switch that situation, habit, belief or dynamic around and release it… or the limiting emotion around it.  Often it’s simply a perception shift, a new way of looking at things from a broader perspective that will help you easily and effortlessly take out each pebble one by one and toss it.

I’ll close for now, wishing you the ultimate life, free of all the pebbles in your bucket!

In health and inspiration

Lars Gustafsson

Founder: BodyMind Institute


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From Fashion to FitnessBodyMind, Health and Diet issues, to Women & Dating, in The 50 Zone you’ll find ongoing, updated, relevant articles and information.

This issue, take a boat ride with Ken Eddy in Thailand to a small island that would ultimately be ravaged by tsunami. Find out about fitness and keeping fit enough to run road races and participate in triathlon well into your 60’s. Follow Bob Gurney as he helps us determine where to begin our journey to remain healthy in our 50’s. Cjames Kelly gives us an overview on where to find fashionable clothing for all occasions at affordable prices.

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