7 Ways to Access Higher Consciousness Without Spending Money

By now most people are aware that working ourselves ragged in the pursuit of financial prosperity is not a recipe for long-term happiness. Numerous studies have concluded that people adapt to their standard of living and tend to have a baseline happiness that they experience regardless of their situation. Even becoming wildly rich ultimately only effects people for a short while, after which they return to approximately the same level of happiness.

access higher consciousness

Happiness, real happiness, is found by establishing routines, building relationships and engaging in patterns of thought that can ultimately change that baseline happiness. Below are seven free and practical pathways to achieve a higher consciousness that clinical research has shown to lead to greater happiness as well as producing a number of health benefits.

1. Start improving your sleep

The first and most basic thing you can do to access higher consciousness is to improve your level of consciousness throughout the day. And the way to do this is to make sure you’re getting enough sleep, and to do everything you can to improve that sleep. You’re never going to get started with the rest of these steps if your sleep health is in a total mess and you constantly feel like a zombie.

Despite all the evidence suggesting that solid sleep habits are one of the most important factors in a happy, healthy life; people still tend to overlook their sleep schedule when trying to improve their lives. The first step is obviously to set aside enough time to sleep in the first place, but doctors also say that avoiding caffeine for 8 to 10 hours prior to bedtime and alcohol for 4 or 5 hours can be a huge factor in getting better shuteye. Here are a few more tips:

• Dim the lights one hour before bed and let your brain know it’s time to wind down.
• Do yoga, breathing exercises or stretching before bed.
• Have a light meal in the evening instead of a belly-filling heavy dinner.
• Don't use your phone in bed – that bright LCD screen stimulates wakefulness in the brain.
• Remove clutter from your bedroom to promote mental spaciousness.
• Add sleep-inducing things to your bedroom that make you feel cosy; things like a lava lamp or lavender scented products.

2. Learn to let go

Learning to let go of things can literally change your life. Each of us is the narrator of our own lives and we get to choose what life is about. If we focus on things that we can't have or that we're failing at then our story becomes one of loss. In this respect, it is very possible for two people with very similar lives to have completely different levels of happiness.

It's no good trying to move on if you're still living exactly the way you did before minus that one big thing you're missing. If you're perpetually in this place, your whole life becomes a tragic memorial service for your loss. Instead, try to embrace it. You don't have to like it but since it has happened make the best of it. If you're single now then get out there and mingle. If you've lost your job start filling up your day with things that you used to dream about having enough free time to do. Create your own narrative.

3. Cry it out

There is no way around psychological trauma. You can either allow yourself to experience the pain in a concentrated burst or try to close it off, only to experience a slow trickle over months or even years. The reality is that in order to really move on from a loss, you may need to cry about it - even if you're brave and muscly, roar! To bring on those tears and cry it out, sit down and take a moment to rehearse the whole situation over in your head and see if you can stir yourself up a bit. Are there any particular thoughts that you avoid at all costs? Simply stop avoiding them in this moment and allow yourself to unload in a safe place.

4. Start cultivating compassion

Have you ever noticed how much easier it is to find solutions to other people's problems than to fix your own? People are social animals and the most effective relationship between any two conscious beings is one of compassion. You can be very deliberate in your efforts to start showing compassion and helping others; all it requires is a bit of action. For example, sign up to do some volunteer work, or even just take some time out to think a little deeper about how you treat people. Just thinking about the welfare of others is a pathway to higher consciousness.

5. Engage in Mindfulness

I'm the sort of person who's often lost in thought, and that isn't always a bad thing. But if you allow yourself to constantly make plans for the future and ruminate on the past, you'll end up missing a lot of the finer things about the present. Statistically, you'll also be a lot more prone to depression and anxiety.

There are all sorts of resources available for how to cultivate a more mindful attitude, but many of the studies that suggest these types of practices don't involve anything too complex. Simply set aside some time and try to focus on external things only. If you begin to think about the future or the past or theorize about the nature of being, just stop yourself and replace the thought with some observation that is readily available; think sights, smells, sounds, sensations and emotions are all acceptable. Alfred James has some great advice on his blog.

6. Go Hiking

I say hiking rather than simply running because I find nature to be a key part of the equation. If you're passing other people every couple of minutes and dodging cars as you cross the street, it doesn't have the same psychological effect, though regular exercise of any type is good for you.

Hiking in nature is a great alternative to mediating, and in many ways is a meditative exercise in itself. In my personal experience I try not to put any particular expectations on a hike; just get going at a steady jog and allow yourself to think about whatever comes up. Do your best not to allow yourself to be drawn back into those everyday stressful and fearful thought patterns.

7. Be Quiet a while

If you don't already practice yoga or meditation, then simply taking a few moments of silence can be a good way to get started. Start small and work your way up. To begin with try to just avoid anything that attempts to divert your attention. It's best to sit comfortably but not in a position that might allow you to drift off to sleep. There’s no need to focus on anything in particular or start chanting or anything like that, just sit quietly and watch the world go by. This practice will help you de-stress and defragment your mind, paving the way for clearing thinking, better decision-making and higher consciousness.

Some Final Thoughts...

There are plenty of resources out there to help you start elevating your consciousness and improving your life, but as one final piece of advice I'd suggest that you keep it as simple as possible. Don’t focus too much on getting things right, and don’t get caught up in expectations of becoming a Zen monk. When it comes to higher consciousness I'm not sure there is a right way, but if trying to de-stress or be more compassionate is stressing you out then you're doing it wrong.

Keep things simple. Engage in the above practices and allow your mind to evolve naturally, adding in your own ideas and innovations to bring about a more balanced, stress free, spiritual existence. What’s important is that you take action and get started, and once you’re heading in the right direction, life’s positive energy tends to take care of the rest.

Written by Jim Landers ~ Ennora contributor.

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