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August 3, 2013 / glennlim thots

Have you built your inner ‘Core’?

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Today’s Straits Times article “Build Core Strength” captured my attention. Core abdominal muscles are essential for both functional activities (walking, jumping, climbing) & competitive activities (running).

There is a similar parallel in our psychological development that centers on our inner ‘core’ too. We often attribute our well-being to external circumstances. Eg) we are happy when positive things happen to us. Conversely, we get upset when we go through negative experiences. People who lead this form of ‘reactive’ lives are dependent on what happens to them. And as we all know, happiness is rarely an external phenomenon that ‘happens’ to us. It comes from a deeper inner ‘core’. Real joy & contentment is one that is experienced even in difficult moments. In fact, it is easy to spot a person who has a weak core. He/she can seemingly be surrounded by blessings & favour, yet still feel discontented and unhappy.

“A weak core usually translates to poor posture, which would affect running biomechanics (and other activities).”

What is the state of your inner ‘core’ today? How have you been building or strengthening it? Do you have a core-building workout routine?

These are important questions because all other human functions rely on the strength of your ‘core’. More so if you are in a stressful environment or season like a competition.

I submit my own inner ‘core’ workout here. I’ve practiced them over time, and it has helped me tremendously to build a more stable ‘center’ especially under pressurizing circumstances.

1) MEDITATION – What this entails is more than a mind-emptying activity or relaxing exercise. I use an arsenal of ‘centering’ exercises like Power-Centering, Psycho-Spamming & Visualization techniques. I also utilise the influence of my environment, incorporating sound (music, self talk, prayer), visual-triggers & kineasiology. When I’m not using a sequence-based routine, I usually rely on some form of ‘guide’. It could be my bible (I’m a Christian), or a devotional guide. Meditation is a daily ritual for me, lasting anywhere from 10mins – 45mins, depending on the luxury of time I have. They can be broken up into mini-blocks of morning slots, lunch breaks, or ‘in-betweeners’ (before meetings etc). Of course my meditation or quiet times are planned ahead of time. I realize when I do this everyday I become more prepared for the day’s unforeseen developments or challenges.

NOTE: It you are really interested in learning some of these techniques, you MUST attend my next Power-Mastery seminar here!“Power-Coding your Mind”

2) REFLECTION – This is different from meditation. This involves intentional recollection of past happenings. And it’s usually done nearing the end of each day or week. It exercises & stimulates my hindsight faculties, develops my evaluative skills, and builds my analytical & strategizing competencies. This is where I learn from my mistakes. I also learn from others too. Again, I use a suite of different methods & tools to aid in reflecting. My favourite being journaling. In fact I keep at least 4 different types of journals – Personal Principles, Psycho-Learnings, Business Philosophy, Spiritual Journey. I have a few other sub-journals too, but they are more ad-hoc. I need to categorize my reflections this way because all my journals are actually translated lessons from my personal experiences & studies. I incorporate my research (youtube, articles, book-readings etc) into my reflective habit. Today I have also built into my reflection library online journals & archives (this blog being one of them!).

3) GRATITUDE – Choosing to see my cup ‘half full’ is an active decision of my will. Over time, it becomes a habit as I condition my mind to count my blessings every day. When I lay my head to sleep at night, my mind is tuned to a frequency of appreciation for what happened during the day. It could range from a pleasant conversation I had with someone; a nice simple dinner; a productive meeting; making new friends; encountering new experiences; learning something new etc. What this does for me is cultivating a spirit of gratitude & positivity that builds up my psychological & spiritual immune system. It becomes easier for me these days to re-frame a negative situation into something more constructive & supportive. It helps me to see the best in people. It tutors me to see issues from a creative perspective, and find solutions even in complex problems. It guides me to see strength out of every weakness.

Today, let’s learn to build a tougher, resilient inner ‘core’…Our well-being depends on it!….Glenn Lim

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