Sheena Oxer

Sheena Oxer

I believe that every person has the right to a peaceful and happy life and be set free

One step to peace of mind

I offer this blog in the hope that it will reach people who feel stuck and that life is difficult. I want to connect to people who are searching for a different way to look at life or who feel that they need to change something about themselves to feel better. This is how I felt about life and what I found was that I didn’t need to change myself at all, all I ‘needed’ to do was understand myself in a different way and the changes happened to me via insight.

I was looking at my mothers magazine a few months ago and saw an article ‘10 steps to Peace of Mind’. My reaction was a strange and a new experience. I haven’t really seen self help articles recently, I haven’t been reading books or magazines, as the search for help outside of myself is stopping. In the past I wanted to do something about my lack of peace and I would pour over such articles taking notes and wondering if I would be able to get to the peace of mind the writer was referring to.

10 steps sounds like we can really get on with doing something about it. But what if we didn’t need to do anything? What if peace of mind is available to us in any given moment just by insightfully knowing one thing about ourselves? Would you be interested in find out more about that?

In fact what I have insightfully seen is that there is only one step to peace of mind. This one step is to know where my experience is coming from. I can only experience life via thought in the moment. Thought always comes with a feeling and a feeling always comes with a thought and that is, in essence, all I need to know for peace of mind, regardless of the emotion that is coming up. Well that doesn’t sound life changing! But it is.

I had been innocently taught that a feeling comes from the past, or it comes from my child, or what someone did to me. But in fact this is not the case. Logically if we look at this – it doesn’t make sense. If my husband could make me feel something then surely he would make me love him. He cannot make me love him, and in the same way he cannot make me angry. The only thing that can make me feel is a thought. A thought that I am having about my husband. Another example is that if my child can make me angry, then how is it that I get angry with my child at a time when my husband does not, and vice versa. It is my thinking about my child that makes me angry and my husband’s thinking about our child that makes him angry. When we look at our experience with this logic in mind, a lot of what I said or thought about doesn’t make sense any more.

My feelings cannot come from the past, they come from my thinking about the past. This incredibly simple missing link changed everything for me and I went from feeling bound by my past to feeling freer and freer from it. People who I have facilitated with this understanding of life express such a relief knowing this about themselves in the same way as I feel relief.

When we get interested in this and start learning through insight we can get stuck, feeling like it is us making ourselves feel things that we don’t want to feel. But we can and do move past this when we see this understanding more deeply, that it really isn’t talking about ‘what we are thinking about;’, it is talking about ‘the fact that we think’. That ‘thinking’ is the only way I can experience life. If I didn’t think then I would be dead. I used to want to stop my thinking as I was judging it and sometimes it came with feelings that I considered intolerable. But now I see thinking and feeling in this moment is the only way I can experience life, and actually I don’t need to be concerned about feelings so much as all they are telling me is what I am thinking about right now. Nothing else.

This isn’t very sexy, it isn’t very glamorous. One of the educators of this said – if it was a box on the table, it would be the dullest box among other boxes made with gold and jewels. But inside this box is a depth we have never experienced before. The jewel of who we really are and how we can experience life at all. We see the miracle of life and fall into gratitude for it.

If this sounds interesting to you and you would like to know more I offer one-to-ones and intensives.

I also co-run Exeter Three Principles Meetup every month in Nancy Potter house, Topsham Devon.

This is a monthly Blog and if you would like it to conveniently plop into your inbox next month please do get in contact with your email address:

This sounds like mindfulness

Every person is searching for peace. Some are aware of it more than others. I was acutely aware of my search and the emotional pain that I was in.

Some of the time when I am describing what I do in my facilitation of others, I get the response ‘that sounds like mindfulness’ or ‘that sounds like Buddhism.’ It might, the vocabulary we use might sound the same but this is entirely different. I am sure what we are attempting to describe is the same, however with mindfulness and Buddhism I always here something to do:

Let go

Allow and accept

Be in the moment

Sit quietly

Observe your thoughts

Detach from your thoughts

If I am asked to do something and I can’t I then see it as a problem. Then it becomes something that I need to fix and I search for something outside of myself to try to fix it.

However, what I do is I educate others about how they are already working, how they are experiencing life. It is a description, not an instruction of what to do. In my experience, when clients see that they are already working beautifully, they automatically become more in the moment, they become more accepting of all their emotions. I say educate as we already know this and all I am doing is reminding. The word Educate comes from the Latin word Educaris, to bring out (from within). The client sees from within themselves that this is true through insight. As this is insightfully remembered there is nothing to do as such. We just get interested in one thing: Where do I think my feelings are coming from? If I think that they are coming from my child, my messy house, my husband, my work or something stressful that happened an hour ago, then I am innocently misunderstanding my experience of life. I can only feel what I am thinking right now. This knowing through insight brings me into the present moment as it is the only place I can truly experience life.

There is of course nothing wrong with mindfulness or Buddhism. But it is useful to know that this is different. That even though you may have tried the others and they didn’t ‘work’ for you, there is still something different to try. There is hope.

We can have an insight reading a cereal packet, in the same way someone can have an insight in a relaxation class, or through mindfulness, but it is through the insight that we really change. So I am not saying that this works for everyone (even though we all work in the same way). What I am saying is that we all follow our own unique paths in our search for peace. For me, this understanding was an entirely different path to peace than mindfulness and Buddhism, as I didn’t get insight through those.

Since understanding how my mind works, that I can only ever experience thought in the moment, I have found a peace of mind I didn’t know was available to me. Without meditating and without learning the Dharma.

If you would like to know more, Paola Royal and I are are running a two free webinars the details of which can be found here.

We are also running a 6 week beginners course, click here for more information.

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