Thursday, January 15, 2009

Journal of my journey

This is my journal of the journey I am undertaking, moving from my present position in which I am taking practically every refusal as an insult or a threat to my ego. I hope (soon) to reach a place in which I do not take a refusal as a threat but rather, just what it is, some set of circumstances that decree that my desired outcome is different to the actual outcome.
15th Jan. 2009
Today, I wanted to put my car in the underground car-parking whilst out of the country on holiday. I was refused, on various grounds, all of which I found odd and disagreeable. As the phone conversation went on, it became obvious to me that I was not going to be allowed to park my car, despite my having done so several months earlier when I went to England to bury my mother.

This time, the outcome was different – the manager, for whatever reason, would not allow me to park my car. I took this personally, thought of him as being against me personally for some reason/s, some of which I guessed at without any foundation of truth. This all resulted in my getting ‘hot under the collar’ as we say, and I increasingly felt unwell.

The only explanation I came up with is that by virtue of my feeling personally threatened and insulted, my physical and emotional response was to initiate a fight/flight readiness which resulted in what felt like an adrenalin rush – most unpleasant it was.

I later went back to the office, met the manager face to face and apologized for being rude to him during our phone conversation. I also added that as I still thought it was not too much to ask, but plainly too much for him, I told him politely that I wanted nothing more to do with him.

That last repost was, I fear, still illustrative of my heated state, though I was upset inwardly rather than showing any anger to him.

It is a step. Not a very big one, I grant you, but a step in the right direction, though I do not feel I can rest on my laurels, as we say. Far from it, I feel that such circumstances present me with a test which I must undergo, the better to come nearer to my ultimate goal, which is not allowing my ego to speak for me. Only Robert Leslie Fielding may do that, not some inner mechanism over which, as yet, I still do not have as much control as I am going to have at this journey's conclusion.
Robert L. Fielding

Partial explanation

The onset of a stress response is associated with specific physiological actions in the sympathetic nervous system, both directly and indirectly through the release of epinephrine and to a lesser extent norepinephrine from the medulla of the adrenal glands.

The release is triggered by acetylcholine released from pre-ganglionic sympathetic nerves. These catecholamine hormones facilitate immediate physical reactions by triggering increases in heart rate and breathing, constricting blood vessels in many parts of the body - but not in muscles (vasodilation), brain, lungs and heart - and tightening muscles.

An abundance of catecholamines at neuroreceptor sites facilitates reliance on spontaneous or intuitive behaviors often related to combat or escape.
Normally, when a person is in a serene, unstimulated state, the "firing" of neurons in the locus ceruleus is minimal.

A novel stimulus, once perceived, is relayed from the sensory cortex of the brain through the thalamus to the brain stem. That route of signaling increases the rate of noradrenergic activity in the locus ceruleus, and the person becomes alert and attentive to the environment.

If a stimulus is perceived as a threat, a more intense and prolonged discharge of the locus ceruleus activates the sympathetic division of the autonomic nervous system (Thase & Howland, 1995). The activation of the sympathetic nervous system leads to the release of norepinephrine from nerve endings acting on the heart, blood vessels, respiratory centers, and other sites.

The ensuing physiological changes constitute a major part of the acute stress response. The other major player in the acute stress response is the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.

When secreted into the bloodstream, it rapidly prepares the body for action in emergency situations. The hormone boosts the supply of oxygen and glucose to the brain and muscles, while suppressing other non-emergency bodily processes (digestion in particular).

It increases heart rate and stroke volume, dilates the pupils, and constricts arterioles in the skin and gastrointestinal tract while dilating arterioles in skeletal muscles. It elevates the blood sugar level by increasing catabolism of glycogen to glucose in the liver, and at the same time begins the breakdown of lipids in fat cells. Like some other stress hormones, epinephrine has a suppressive effect on the immune system.[5]

Although epinephrine does not have any psychoactive effects, stress or arousal also releases norepinephrine in the brain. Norepinephrine has similar actions in the body, but is also psychoactive.

The type of action in various cell types depends on their expression of adrenergic receptors.

Robert L. Fielding

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Living in the present - making a start on the road to success

Living in the present


Robert L. Fielding

This is a short conversation I had with my mother, Beryl Fielding, some time before she passed away.
RLF: What we call the present is the here and now, isn’t it?

BF: Yes, but when we speak in what we call the present tense, we speak of a present that includes the recent past, depending on how recently we are speaking of; the actual present, and some short, foreseeable way into the future.

RLF: So, when I say, I live in England, I mean that I live in England at this precise moment, and that I have lived here for some time and intend living here for some time to come.

BF: The present continuous tense is little better. I ask you what you are doing now, and you reply that you are working at a university in the Middle East, and I am meant to realize that you have been working there for some time, and will go on working there in the future.

RLF: Yes, the present in language covers a much wider vision than how I want to use the word.

BF: What do you mean by the present?

RLF: Only what you are experiencing now, this very moment, even though the moment quickly evaporates into the past. Really, I call the present that which can be sensed. If you can think about it, or better, recall it through thinking, then it already belongs to the past – the immediate past.

BF: So, what I can see with my eyes, touch with my hands, taste with my mouth, hear with my ears, and smell through my nostrils is the present.

RLF: That is it, yes. If you close your eyes and breathe in through your nose, you will smell the present. If you are standing in a field of newly mown grass, you will smell the earth giving up its own. If you take a bite of an apple, you will taste the sweetness of the Earth. Drink water, which we say, has no taste, and you will taste purity of the Earth.

Look up at the sky, at the clouds or the clear blue sky with the sun blazing at everything, you will see the environment of God's Creation.

Touch the ground barefoot, and you will be touching the beginnings of life in all its forms. Listen to absolute silence and you will be hearing the Earth before man trod across it. This is the present, and it is this that should be lived, given thanks for, enjoyed, glorified in and sensed through the eyes, nose, mouth, ears and through the skin. Let thoughts intrude, as they will, and you immediately move, or try to move away from the present.

You think of something that has happened, or you plan what you would like to happen, or worry about what may happen, whereas if you stay in the present, your thoughts will attune with who you are and the world in which you live and you will be happy. Too much of what troubles is stems from too much wandering in the past or the future.

BF: But we need to think about what we are going to be doing ahead of doing it, surely, and in learning how to do it properly, we recall what we did in the past and how we did it. How can we go about our everyday business without doing that?

RLF: Of course, you are right, we could not survive in life if we did not continually refer back to past, learned experiences, even mistakes. It is in how we refer to the past that affects our life in the present. Thinking rationally about how to bake a cake while we are in the process of baking it is not going to give us grief, unless we include in those thoughts what someone said to us to upset us whilst we were in the kitchen – and in that case, we have left the rational, ‘cake-baking’ of our thoughts and allowed our minds to wander to what needn’t concern us.

Scientifically, physically, if we recall the ingredients of the cake, and measure them out, mix them and then place the mixture in a baking tin and place it in an oven that has been pre-heated at a specific gas mark for a precise amount of time, then we will have baked ourselves a cake every bit as delicious as the last one we baked, and to which we referred to in our mind when baking this one.

However, the same is most definitely not true of the incident we recall from the kitchen on that occasion – when our friend said something nasty to us, perhaps in retaliation for something we had said. It is difficult to remember - more difficult than remembering how to bake a cake.

This is my point. The conditions in which we bake a cake can be recreated practically exactly and therefore inform us how to bake this cake now. The conditions which preceded an argument between you and your friend in the kitchen cannot, and therefore it is wholly pointless and futile to dwell on them.

Only refer to the past when it is helpful to do so for present purposes. If we only did just that, we would find little to complain about in this life. Good luck with the cake. Good luck with your life!
Robert L. Fielding

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Be successful

Quotes on Success and Attaining Success
Remez Sasson

When the mind thinks of success, the outside world mirrors these thoughts.

Success is the outcome of thinking, visualizing, planning and taking action.

Your mind is the generator of failure, and also the generator of success.

What you think today is what you live tomorrow.

Happy thoughts make your life happy. Miserable thoughts make your life miserable.

The image you have of yourself is responsible for the way people see and treat you.

Choose your thoughts carefully; they are the builders of your life.

Success manifests in small daily events, not only in the accomplishment of great ambitions.

The mental movie in your mind is the cause of everything that happens to you.

Nurturing a feeling of success attracts it into your life.

Nothing can stand in the way of absolute belief and confidence.

Your inner world controls your outer world. Learn to improve your inner world, and your outer world would be affected too.

The mental movie that you play in your mind is the life that you will live tomorrow.

When you rehearse failure in your mind, you meet failure.

When you rehearse success in your mind, you experience it in your life.

Thoughts fuelled by desire and motivation make things happen.

What you get is determined by the scope of your thoughts.

Rehearsing success in the mind, produces it in the material world.

Success is not only more money, promotion and social status. It is also more happiness, harmonious relationships and spiritual growth.

Change the mental movie that you keep viewing in your mind to one that you like. Keep playing in your mind, and before you know it the movie turns into reality. Do not undervalue the importance of success in small matters. It proves to you that with persistence, greater success is possible too.

Play a movie of success in the projection room of your mind, and soon this movie will turn into reality.

Your mental movies are the trailers of the future.

Your thoughts and mental images create your circumstances. Master your thoughts and mental images, and you gain power over your circumstances.

Attaining peace of mind, happiness, satisfaction, inner strength, spiritual enlightenment and realizing the inner self is spiritual success.

Attaining good health, love, good relationships, promotion, status, money and possessions, and realizing desires and ambitions is material success.

Your outer circumstances are the mirror of your inner world. Change your inner world, and you change your outer world.

Ambition is the fuel the feed your thoughts, visualization and actions.

Willpower, persistence, patience and work bring your desires into manifestation.

Visualize your goals clearly, add desire and faith, and you will surely achieve them.

Attaining peace of mind, happiness and good relationships also mean success.

Robert L. Fielding