Vajra Blue

Mindfulness and Compassion. Understanding trauma in young people.


Attention and focus: the complications of trying to stay alive


Challenge is the pathway to engagement and progress in our lives. But not all challenges are created equal. Some challenges make us feel alive, engaged, connected, and fulfilled. Others simply overwhelm us. Knowing the difference as you set bigger and bolder challenges for yourself is critical to your sanity, success, and satisfaction.
Brendon Burchard

Staying alive has always been the greatest challenge for any creature. All species have developed systems to detect danger and potential threats. One of the most effective of these, is the appropriately named “fight or flight response”.  This prepares us to do exactly that, fight or run for our lives.

We detect threat by analysing the incoming data from our environment, both from the external world, and from our inner world of thought, emotion, and knowledge. Our conscious brain can only manage a tiny percentage of the information that we receive from our senses, the rest is processed at an unconscious level.

Our focus is constantly drawn to the events in the world around us. However, the systems that we use to assess threat are designed for a different world. A world in which we were prey animals and not the top predator on the planet.  They are certainly not designed for life in a modern, technological, stimulus rich world, and not for a self-aware creature, whose own thoughts and emotions can be mistaken for a threat. Is that tiny spider really a danger to life?

Continue reading

Mindfulness, moment by moment.


Mindfulness is the practice of having greater awareness and of being more present in our lives.

The ability to be mindful requires that we place and hold our attention where we want it.

It is the ability to switch off the running commentary of our minds and to return to the present moment.

Continue reading

Thinking: the fault lies in our logic – not in our stars


Begin challenging your own assumptions. Your assumptions are your windows on the world. Scrub them off every once in a while, or the light won’t come in.

Alan Alda

Thinking is a three-step process.
Continue reading


Mindfulness for all


The unexamined life is not worth living.


Mindfulness has gone mainstream. No longer the preserve of ancient and inscrutable oriental monks or bearded hippie weirdos, it is now being taught in schools.  Several leading US companies are providing training to their workers and it is touted as the cure for many of the ills that affect modern man.  Even the United States military are training their soldiers in mindfulness techniques.

Adapted from Buddhist teaching and increasingly applied to psychology and then to the mundane world, mindfulness is advertised as helping all psychological disorders from depression, where it is described as being as effective as antidepressant medication, through eating disorders and drug addiction to ADHD.  Although it is less helpful for physical disorders, if you believe the newspapers and the internet, it is said to help with heart disease, cancer, lowering blood pressure, chronic pain, sleep and a myriad of other conditions.  It leads to a longer life, better health and  a much greater sense of wellbeing.  Mindfulness boosts the immune system, leads to sporting prowess and better parenting, reduces anger and sets free creativity. The scientific evidence suggests that it is a key element in happiness.

Has mindfulness become a twenty first century panacea?

Continue reading