Lights On with Mitra Manesh was born to shed light on the challenges and magic we call life. Mitra is a mindfulness expert, storyteller, coach, executive trainer and UCLA teacher at the Semel Institute School of Neuroscience and Human Behavior with 35+ years of experience. These sessions are taken live from Mitra’s keynote talks, classes and some studio recordings. They are real questions, real answers, and real challenges people are facing. We hope you find value in the coaching and teachings offered. From today forward let’s move in the direction of lights on, facing what’s in front of us and more importantly inside of us.
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Music for Episodes 1-36 by:
Title of the song: 22:22 (from the EP Enmore20)
Music for Episodes 36-present by:
Pablo Guadalupe & Ariel Zutel
Do you feel happy at other people’s unhappiness?
Have you ever felt happiness at someone else’s misfortune? It could be as simple as taking the last parking spot, and everyone else is still looking for parking. There’s a German word for this emotion: schadenfreude. Schaden means damage and freude means joy. This state of mind only exists when we live in a state of survival and fear. In fear, the misfortune of others equates to our fortunes. The more misfortune someone else has, the less chance I have of being unfortunate. On the other hand, in order for me to feel fortunate, I need to feel that someone else hasn’t taken all of the good fortune, because that means there won’t be enough left for me.
If you ever find yourself in a schadenfreude moment, l invite you to take three steps. First, notice when this behavior shows up. Always start small: for instance, when you get the last parking spot and everyone else is still looking for parking. Then, identify what you are happy about. For example, other’s lack of luck in finding a parking spot and your own luck in having found it. Finally, turn your schadenfreude poison into loving kindness medicine. Simply wish the other person what they need or what they are looking for. “May you also find a parking spot soon.” Send them loving kindness words in your mind.
Do you prefer unhealthy familiar to healthy unfamiliar?
When we live in fear, we see changes as unlucky, unfortunate, and destructive. This is why people stay in unhealthy relationships and unhealthy jobs, because they prefer the unhealthy familiar over the healthy unfamiliar. When we live in choice, we accept change as part of life. If life was unchanging, it wouldn't be life. If we are afraid of change, we are afraid of life.
Join Mitra as she offers three suggestions to help you embrace life's changes. First, right before you fully wake up in the morning, remind yourself that you have a choice to walk the streets of today with awareness and knowingness. Second, pick one area of your life and start living it with choice You can start small, like taking three breaths before making a decision of adding a few steps to your daily movement. And finally, if you are suffering in any area, ask yourself what choices do I have at my end to end my suffering? Oftentimes, there is a decision to be made that we have put off while waiting for somebody else to change.
Is your “Love” your “Life”?
When we are in a state of fear and survival, we look outside of ourselves to find love and value. We feel like we need other people to tell us that we are worthy. We overfocus on these other people, be they our children, family members, or our lovers. We make this person the only source of our happiness and worthiness. If this person returns our attentions, we feel good, but if they don't, we feel unworthy and unloved. Often, this turns into a vicious cycle of feeling rejected, then hyperfocusing on this individual even more.
Even though we may believe that all of our worth and happiness relies on this one person, we need to take a step back and realize this simply isn't true. Letting go of our obsession and overfocus on this person frees us to live a healthier life. It doesn't mean that we don't love this person anymore, it just means that we broadened our attention so that we can see our choices to be happy beyond this one individual. It means that we have freed ourselves to pursue our own interests, and enjoy our own lives.
Do you imagine in fear or in choice?
Imagination means new ideas, images, or concepts that are not available to our senses at the moment. Key word: new. When we are in a state of fear, our imagination goes to a state of worry. It is limited to what we’ve experienced before- what we’ve seen, what we’ve heard other people have gone through. When we are in a state of choice, we are open to a new way of seeing and imagining things. So how can we access this different kind of imagination that is helpful and healthy? Take a moment to ask yourself what the best scenario of your situation could be. Engage all your senses while you imagine this best possible scenario. Put a gentle frame around this mental picture and use this as a point of reference for every time your mind drifts to survival mode in fear, reminding yourself that this is the better possibility.
Do you know how to say “NO” kindly?
When living in survival mode, saying no can be a hard thing to do. There is a fear of being rejected or rejecting someone, of disappointing someone, of losing someone if we do say no. However, when we need to say no and we feel like we can’t, then we may begin resenting the people that we don’t want to disappoint. However, when we approach saying no from an Attentionist mindset, we can reframe the word “no” into a healthier and more positive mindset. Join Mitra as she explains that saying no means having healthy boundaries or respecting ourselves and the people surrounding us. Listen today to discover how to give and receive the word “no” as part of your everyday life.
Compelling and Inspiring Guidance - MITRA MANESH!
I had the privilege to meet Mitra Manesh some time ago. She is one of the most fascinating people I have ever met.
Mitra is so beautifully open and grounded. She is committed to sharing what she knows with people who want to know - I love this!
Mitra’s Innermap’s Lights On podcast is among my favorites. If you are looking to achieve better self awareness and to learn how to be more mindful and true to yourself, I encourage you to give a listen. Mitra encourages us all to “stay curious.”
Schadenfreude Apr 7
I take pleasure in seeing criminals get their comeuppance and watching indictments fall but tend toward empathy, sometimes to the point of becoming angry that someone made me feel so badly for them. Go figure.
Calming and Clear
This podcast with Mitra helps us to find a calm inner sense of what we want and need to say. She is a great guide that leads us to the truth that resides inside.