March 6, 2015

Using Mantras to Create Our Life Dreams.


Five Steps to Creating a Mantra.

A mantra is a repeated thought, used to focus the mind.

It is classically used to help the mind during meditation, repeating words such as Om or Hari Krishna, Krishna Hari, to concentrate on the most holy.

A mantra is meant to connect our consciousness to the supreme consciousness.

Mantra can also be used in our native language, for practical application in our daily lives.

How do we want to change personally? What new habits and ways of being would we like to embody in order to reach our goals and dreams?

Mantra is a powerful tool that can harness the mind and direct our energy towards those goals.

When repeated regularly and deeply felt, mantra can birth new and improved ways of being. A mantra is a seed that grows from subtle to gross, moving from thought into the physical realms.

By changing our thoughts, we change our world.

Mantra has helped me in my yoga practice.

My first two years of yoga were unreal. My life changed, in what felt like an instant.

I was looking better, feeling better, having better relationships, more friends, great conversations and heightened sensitivity to life. After those first two years, however, the acceleration stopped and I was coasting. I became a bit uninspired, a bit bored and lazy.

I forgot that I’m living in a constantly changing body-mind and that it never gets boring. I forgot that if I don’t practice, time slips by quickly and is taken for granted. I lost my intention. I forgot that when I fall out of practice, life creates me instead of the other way around.

Me creating my life.

Yoga gives us an incredible opportunity to create intention and devotion in our lives.

No matter where we are, we have a body, thoughts, emotions, relationships, actions and habits. There is also intention and devotion, but without clarity, it’s muddled and swirled up in the soup of life.

Yoga is about taking small steps to clarify that intention and devotion, in order to create the life that we want. 

Yoga directs the change toward our goals and dreams.

In order to direct that change, the mind needs peace. 

A peaceful mind has the infinite capacity of the universe—less stress and more infinite creativity.  Especially in the Information Age, the mind is a lot to handle.

Steps to creating a mantra. 

Step 1: We begin by pinpointing something that is disturbing the mind’s peace.

“Mind cramps are obsessive negative thoughts that consume the mind over a period of time.  Using awareness, first we notice when one of these arises.” ~ Erica Kaufman of Lila Yoga

The goal is to reverse the mind cramp.

Step 2: Take time and space to reflect on this mind cramp.

Do this without falling into the habit of distracting ourselves. Take a few moments alone.

Allow the emotions (coming from either a fear or desire) to cycle through, otherwise they will freak out and expose themselves at some later date. (This is psychology.)

When we honor our emotions, positive change will take place.

Step 3: Dig a little deeper and ask ourselves what is at the root of this fear or desire.

Cycle through, and dig. Cycle through and dig again.

Step 4: Find a positive thought or action to replace the negative.

It’s easy to create negative patterns.

Our nature is to be in harmony, so when we are out of harmony, it is very obvious. Our mind obsesses over that disharmony, creating negative thought cycles.

We can turn it around, and create positive patterns, by checking in, admitting and facing the problem. Create a positive phrase—focused on clarity, allowance, letting go, balance and strength. This is the mantra.

Bonus: To take our mantra to the next level, we can go do something good for us, that we love—like riding a bike, going to a yoga class, or jumping in the ocean, repeating the mantra for as long as we can remember.

Step 5: Create a reminder.

We want to remember our new mantra, in order to develop a thought pattern in the brain.

This is habit science: how to turn these positive thoughts into habits.

A note on my bathroom mirror says, “You are perfect and beautiful, exactly as you are, right now.”

And even though I didn’t believe it at first—fake it ’til you make it—really works; slowly I began to believe.

Practicing out mantra replaces energy stealing mind cramps, with positive thoughts create our dreams.

It’s a small step. It’s not going to change our entire life. It’s not going to turn us into master yogis or enlightened beings overnight.

But,using a mantra is an important step, on the path to our dreams. Give it time and honest effort. When we have succeeded with this specific mantra, try another one.

Slowly let our mantras become more refined and focused on our deep goals and dreams.

And we can never get bored. Relax and allow the universe within to unfold—the good, the bad and the ugly.

How do you use mantras? Do they work well for you in practical, day to day life?  Leave comments below.

Credit to my teacher and inspiration Erica Kaufman.


Relephant read:

F*ck It (& 4 Other Mantras for When Things Get Tough). 


Author: Ashley Szlachta

Editor: Ashleigh Hitchcock

Photo: courtesy of author


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