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Lesson 24 of 24
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Section 6 Intentions

Trevor November 19, 2020

Section 6 – Reminisce on the past – Savour the present – & Visualise your future

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Pictures and memories were always a huge part of our home growing up. I am the youngest in my family. There is 16 years between my eldest brother & I. When I was a child, I loved looking through older photo albums any chance that I got. I really liked seeing pictures of my family before I was born. It fascinated me that they were doing all these things before I arrived. As I got a little older, photos started to mean so much more to me. I still love to reflect and look back at old photographs today. 

Our home house was and still is covered in family photographs. Some of us may say that a few are a little embarrassing, but really we all love them. These photographs were special to us all for many reasons, but the main reasons was because our sister sadly passed away from Cystic Fibrosis at the young age of 12. I was only a few months old at the time and I don’t have any memories of her, but I always remember her picture taking pride of place in the middle of our sitting room. 34 years later and that very same picture now takes pride of place in all of our family homes. I grew up very afraid of that picture because of the thoughts and feelings I had created for myself around it, but as I got older I was able to change my perception towards it. That picture is now so important to me and a comfort to us all. 

When I grew up, I went straight from school to work as a photographer. ”More than likely the law of attraction at work here” I was fortunate and unfortunate enough to be involved in a lot of family portraits where a member of the family was terminally ill. Many of the family’s would speak to me about the regrets they have of not having pictures of them all together over the years. It was an honour for me to do this for those people. My mission now is to encourage people to be present and make the most of their lives and remember to document all of the happy moments that they live together on a daily basis. Dont simply save it for social media and the highlight reel of their lives. It is unbelievable the impact pictures can have on peoples lives and I have witnessed this first hand both personally and professionally.

‘’ In my opinion, Pictures and Memories are the most important thing you can have in life. When all else is gone, your pictures and memories will stay with you forever ’’

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”Scientists say that our brain weeds together memories of our past and thoughts of our future, to determine our sense of self in the present moment.”

As mentioned previously, everything we see and do, first originates as a thought in our mind. An amazing feature of our mind is its ability to think about the past and the future in pictures. Below are some mind tools to help you build better experiences in your life. By doing this, you are developing a better sense of self in the present.

Reminisce on the past

Reminiscence is defined as the enjoyable recollection of past events. Our capacity for creation, memory and reminiscence is what separates us from all other living creatures. It enables us to balance the past with the present and to have meaning in our memories. Reminiscence is one of the main reasons that people like photography.

While a lot of what we have looked at so far has been focused towards the importance of living in the here and now.This does not mean that looking back over our past isn’t beneficial also. What is important, is the approach we take. By keeping the central focus on our positive, happy and good memories, it enables us to experience these happy times again. 

We recall aspects of our memory with our conscious mind and our subconscious mind also helps us to recall the feelings we have associated with these memories. This is where the benefits come from. Associating feelings with our memories is an amazing and very achievable thing for everyone who practices Mindful Photography. 

Focusing on positive reminiscence has its own health and wellbeing benefits

  • Helps your problem solving.
  • Gives you personal validation.
  • Boosts mood.
  • Improves self-esteem and self-belief.
  • Encourages communication.
  • Helps re-establish meaning in the memories.
  • Highlights accomplishments.
  • Pays tribute to those we have loved and lost.
  • Aids us in maintaining a positive state of mind.

Using reminiscence, can instantly trigger the feelings which you felt the moment the picture was taken. You can simply look and feel the full experience each and every time you see the photograph, or you can use the exercise below.

Exercise 

Sit still. Place one hand on your belly to feel it expand. Hold the picture in your free hand and look at it for a few moments. When you have the picture in your mind, close down your eyes. Use the 4-7-8 breathing technique we gave you previously for a few breathes and then relax your breathing. Bring your mind right back to the moment the photograph was taken. Remember what was happening, who was there with you, what were you seeing, smelling, hearing, tasting and feeling.

Now get back in touch with your emotions in those moments. Soak up the feelings of happiness and practice gratitude again.

Stay there for as long as you like. When the time is right for you, bring your attention back to where you are now. 

”That is Reminiscence”

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Savouring the present

‘’Life is just a series of moments so make the most of your moments’’

Savouring is a simple but powerful tool you can use everyday. Savouring simply means that we attempt to fully feel, enjoy, and extend our positive experiences as they are happening in the present moment. Savouring helps you to develop long-lasting streams of positive thoughts and feelings. Practice gratitude in these moments to make the feelings last even longer. By taking a picture during these moments, it means that you have captured a moment and memory that you can look back on forever through reminiscence.

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Visualise the future

‘’We think in secret and it comes to pass. Our environment is but our looking glass’’ – James Allan

We can also experience positive feelings and emotions when we strive for a goal or intention. This can even happen before we have achieved them. Because our mind sees everything in pictures, we can also create what we would like to happen, inside of our minds first. This is also a practice of ”The Law of Attraction”. When what we are thinking about does eventually comes to pass, we are ready for the moment and not surprised by it. This is simply because, we have already seen lived and prepared for it in our mind.

Exercise

Similar to when we did reminiscence. Sit still. Place one hand on your belly to feel it expand. Close down your eyes and use the 4-7-8 breathing technique that we gave you previously for a few breathes. Start visualising a better future for yourself today, next week or even next year. Imagine the photographs, you would like to see of yourself as you go through your timeline.

What feelings do you want to have felt? What moments would you like to have lived? Try to get in touch with what you are feeling in these moments. Soak up the feelings of happiness and practice gratitude again in these moments. Stay there for as long as you like. When the time is right for you, bring your attention back to where you are now. 

You have just imagined a happy life and now it is up to you go and live it.

”That is Visualising Your Future”

Developing your eye

‘’ This is your life and your journey so make the most of your moments and don’t forget to be kind to yourself along the way”

I love how this video by The School of Life reminds us we always have a friend in ourselves  – 

You have learned so much through out this course it’s now time to develop and focus on how you like to practice. Daily, weekly, routinely, sporadically, in new places, in your favourite place – there is no wrong. Discover what works for you and go for it.

Enjoy your practice and remember to use the community. Post, comment, support and encourage others in their journey. 

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Intentions and Activities Overview

Intention 1 – Continue to use the G.L.A.D Technique in your life.

Intention 2 – Write Your Perception for each of The Core Features.

Intention 3 – Your Mindography Focus is to discover your favourite way to practice. How, when, where etc.

Intention 4 – Find or print the pictures that you happy memories around.

Intention 5 – Continue to contribute and Interact With The Community. 

Intention 6 -Practice Reminiscence, Savouring and Visualisation for a better sense of self.

Resource Overview

Videos

Ira Glass – The Creative Process – Click Here

The School of Life – How to be a friend to yourself  – Click Here

Articles

Scientific America -”What Does Mindfulness Meditation Do to Your Brain” –Click Here

You Did It !!!

You did it. ”You reached the mountain top”. Well done you. You are definitely qualified in having the ability to FOCUS ON HAPPINESS. Although the certificate you will receive isn’t a CPD certified certificate. This is definitely an amazing achievement and a certificate that you can be super proud of. Congratulations!!!

Where will your practice take you?

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Hey there, were excited to have you here

Join a positive social media space & focus on your happiness through photography!

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