Thursday, July 5, 2018

Ocean Meditation - an Easy Way to Create Peace of Mind and Body

One of the best gift you can give yourself is peace of mind and body. An easy way to find that gift is to visit a place that is soothing, calming, and even primordial. For me, there is no better place to relax, release, and recharge than the ocean.

Experience Calm Peace of Mind and Body

If you would like to experience the calm peace the ocean offers, I suggest you watch and enjoy the, "Ocean Meditation" video below. As you allow your awareness to go deeper into the relaxing experience, close your eyes and allow your mind to wander back to a time when you were looking out over the ocean.

Bring to mind a time you were walking on a beautiful beach. Recall the sounds. Recall the magnificent ocean's roar. Recall the sound of never ending waves breaking on the beach as if Mother Nature was singing a magic song for you and you alone.

Tune your attention to other sounds. Recall the ceaseless calls from countless seagulls soaring with easy grace. Recall the unique sounds of the beach breeze with it's rhythmic musical beauty. 

Feel the Sand, Breeze, Aroma, and Warmth

Now turn your attention to the felt sense of the sand. Notice the temperature of the sand and how the sand feels as you take a step and then another.

Now allow yourself to feel the ocean breeze. There's a special sensation to the breeze and it's soothing magic.

Allow your awareness to sense that special ocean aroma. 

Breathe in and allow the full experience to calm mind and body...

Experience the Ocean Meditation Now

Let's begin now by activating the, "Ocean Meditation" video and then allow your mind to drift into that special place of calm and peace.

Direct YouTube Link:

If you enjoy the video, please sign into your Gmail account and click the "Thumbs Up" icon. You have to be signed into a Google service to rate videos on YouTube.

For more calming videos and audios, visit our "Mind Over Stress" podcast site at and our Stress Solutions, LLC site at

Stephen Carter

Stress Solutions, LLC | | 

Monday, June 18, 2018

Make Life Less Difficult or Make Life Easier? Choosing Words Carefully

The Victorian writer George Eliot - whose real name was Mary Anne Evans - asks:

"What do we live for, if it is not to make life less difficult for each other?"

If we think about Eliot's question - which is really an admonition - we see making life less difficult for others is the foundation of every successful business, every religion, and every act of loving kindness. It is the glue that holds together families, communities, and even nations.

Framing Eliot's Question in a More Powerful Way

As powerful as Eliot's admonition is, I invite you to consider whether it can be framed in a more positive and even more powerful way. The words, "less difficult", presuppose that life is difficult, life is hard. The best we can do is make life, "less difficult"

Yes, there are aspects of life that are difficult. But there are also aspects of life that can be enjoyable, fun, and joyful. 

An Invitation to Make Life Easier

Eliot invites us to help others by making their lives less difficult. I invite you to help others by making their lives easier. 

When we focus on "less difficult" we're looking at the, "Life is Difficult" continuum. This continuum goes from difficult near the point of impossibility to difficult, but doable. Our mind is locked into the energy of "difficult".

Focusing our creativity and problem solving on making life "less difficult" may generate beneficial ways of helping others and ourselves. At the end of that effort, we've likely moved toward difficult but doable on the "Life is Difficult" continuum. That's good, but can we do better?

Here's a little experiment: say out loud or at least whisper these two statement and let your awareness settle into your body for four or five seconds after saying each statement.

"Make life less difficult."

"Make life easier."

Repeat these two statements again and really feel each one. Now, simply say,


and then say, 


How do the feelings differ? Which statement feels lighter and better?

I'll bet the, "Make life easier" statement feels better. I'll also bet if you enter into an idea generating process to identify ways of helping one other person, a group, a community, or even a nation, you'll create far more and better ideas when you're focused on, "Make life easier" rather than on, "Make life less difficult".

How to Use This Insight in Your Life

When looking toward changing circumstances or identifying opportunities for yourself or others, ensure you're framing the issue, challenge, or opportunity as simply and as positively as possible. For example, asking, "How can I get out of debt?" means you're focusing on debt. 

Asking, "How can I improve my financial situation?" or - even better -  "How can I create sustained financial abundance?", opens your idea generating mind to a far wider and better range of options.

When thinking about helping someone else who, for example, is suffering from a serious illness, ask, "In what ways can I help make life easier for her?" rather than, "How can I stop her suffering?"

On a neighborhood or community level, ask, "How can we create a safer community?" rather than, "How can we stop crime?".

The way we use words to craft the questions of life matters. Framing questions in a positive way opens the mind to richer, more powerful possibilities.

How Are You Using Questions to Create a Better Life?

How are you using questions to guide your life? I'd love to hear from you through my Twitter handle, @swcarter or by email.

Stephen Carter

Stress Solutions, LLC | | 

Copyright Stephen Carter. All rights reserved

Thursday, April 26, 2018

Will You Love and Accept Love to Make the World a Better Place?

William Glasser, MD, a noted psychiatrist, postulated decades ago that the two deepest needs humans have are to love and to be loved. 

Years after publishing his original work describing Reality Therapy, he distilled those two simple needs down to one: the need to belong.

How to Bring Love and Belonging Into Your Life Every Day

In this 4-minute episode of the, "Make the World a Better Place" podcast recorded in a Barnes & Noble cafe', I expand on how we can bring Dr. Glasser's insights into reality in our own lives by sharing positive heartfelt words of approval with family, friends, co-workers and others. 

In sharing words of approval that tell others we love them and we are open to accept love from them, we truly do make this world a better place.

Click the audio player below to learn the simple actions that will enrich your life and lives of others.

Listen Here:

Stephen Carter | Stress Solutions, LLC |

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

Why Stress Matters & a Guided Meditation for Stress Release

Click Player at End of Post to Listen to, "Why Stress Matters & Guided Meditation for Stress Release", episode 1 of the "Mind Over Stress Show" podcast.

This show is born out of my desire to help everyone live a healthier, happier, low stress life. As a former trainer for the Maryland Police Training Commission, I was tasked with developing the first stress management training program for police supervises way back in the 1970s. 

In developing that early stress management program, I learned and experienced many stress reduction methods including hypnosis, meditation, and somatic or body-based relaxation methods. For more than 40-years, I’ve been an evangelist for encouraging people to take control of their own wellbeing.

Why Chronic Stress Matters?

If you enter the search term, “stress and health” into the Google Scholar search service, you’ll see nearly 4.6 million results. The science is clear: chronic stress robs us of a zest for life, health, and happiness. 

A chronically stressed body can be a seedbed for physical and emotional disease. One key reason for increased disease risk relates to the immune system. Under chronic stress, the immune system can be degraded and in some cases virtually shut down entirely.

Study after study link chronic stress to increased risk for heart disease, cancer, and other serious conditions. One study found toxic workplace stress could take 33 years off of your life expectancy.

Stress creates a mental and emotional environment of anxiety and depression. There is a direct connection between our level of stress and our sense of happiness and emotional wellbeing. 

Stress Makes us Stupid

Stress makes us stupid and reduces our ability to perform in an optimum way. Why? Because under stress, there are physiological changes that include redirection of blood from the brain to large muscle groups in the body in preparation for flight or fight. We simply don’t have the same brain power when we’re stressed.

How You Benefit From Listening to This Show?

You and I just explored the bad news about stress. The good news is there are proven, effective, and easily done methods for dissolving stress and enhancing physical and emotional wellbeing. 

That is what this show is about. In every episode, you’ll learn the tools, techniques, and mindset to create optimum wellbeing. 

Some episodes will include interviews with experts who will share their stories of healing and offer proven methods to achieve a happier, healthier life. 

In other episodes, I will share the latest stress related research and provide easily done ways to dissolve stress and create positive, life-affirming states of mind and body.

First Stress Technique - Yawn, Sight, Stretch

Speaking of dissolving stress, let’s experience our first stress dissolving technique followed by a short guided meditation.

As simple as this is, the fMRI evidence tells us it's a powerful method for energizing the prefrontal cortex (executive function area of the brain) while relaxing the body. You simply yawn, sigh, and stretch. Yawn even if you don't feel a need to do so. Repeat two or three times for instant stress relief.

Guided Meditation - Audio Time Stamp 5:08

Please don’t listen if you’re driving or engaged in other activity requiring your full attention. Listen later when you can give 100% attention to this Relaxation Response experience.

To listen to this guided meditation for stress release, click the player below. If you want to go directly to the meditation section, go to the 5 minutes and 8 seconds position in the audio file.

You can also listen by going to

How to Share This Episode and Subscribe

Please share this episode with friends and family.  The easiest way is to simply forward this blog post.

To subscribe, go to and select the “Subscribe” page.

Blessings, light and peace,

Steve Carter | Stress Solutions, LLC | 

Thursday, March 29, 2018

Your Child or Your Phone - Which is More Important?

Click player to listen:

In this short episode of "Make the World a Better Place" podcast, you meet a mother who cares more about her phone than her child. We explore how turning off the phone and connecting with our children and other loved ones really does make the world a better place.

A four-year old boy was desperate to gain the attention of his mother. As the mother waited to pick up their order at McDonald's with her face buried in a cell phone, the boy called out to his mother, pleading with her to look at the toys in a display. He was excited to share with his mother which toy he wanted.

As he called to her again and again, she ignored him. Her face stayed buried in the cell phone. In desperation, the four-year ran to his mother and pulled on her pant leg crying out, "mom, mom, please look!".

The boy's mother finally raised her head from the phone and shouted at the boy, "Can't you see I'm busy? Leave me alone!". She turned back to the phone.

Crushed, the boy walked back over to the toys, turned around and just looked at his mother.

The Important Lesson - Be Present for Loved Ones

As part of this, "Make the World a Better Place" short 3-minute podcast, I encourage everyone to learn from this story and evaluate what - and who - are most important to us.

In my view, there is nothing more important than giving our complete attention to our children, our loved ones, and our friends who are with us here and now. By turning off the phone and really connecting with others in a committed, loving way, we find a greater sense of happiness and inner joy.

How to Make This World - and Your World - a Better Place

In connecting with those with us in the here and now, we truly do make the world a better place for others and for ourselves.

Steve Carter | Stress Solutions, LLC |

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

International Day of Happiness - How to Be Happier!

Listen to Podcast Episode

Listen to "International Day of Happiness - How to Be Happier!" on Spreaker.

March 20 is the International Day of Happiness. In this episode, you'll learn how this special holiday came to be and how it literally unites the world in the goal of increasing happiness around the globe.

Each year the United Nations publishes their survey of international happiness for each world nation.

The United States ranks 16th in the world with an average of 6.88 out of 10. This year's U.S. score is the lowest since the United Nations began publishing their International Happiness Report in 2012. Each year, the U.S. score falls compared to the previous year.

Who is responsible for ensuring people are as happy as possible, not only in the United States, but across the globe? While national governments can play an important role, the most important role has to be played by each of us individually. Each of us is responsible for our own happiness.

In this episode of the, "Weird and Wacky Holidays Show" podcast, you'll learn what the research tells us about happiness. You'll learn the single, most powerful action you can take every day to increase your sense of happiness and why that single action is so effective in creating your personal, "Book of Joy".

Stephen Carter | Stress Solutions, LLC |

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Why Self-Talk Matters

While we usually are careful about what we say to others, how careful are we when we engage in self-talk? Do we choose self-talk words that are kind, caring, and loving? Usually not. 


How many times do we engage in self-talk in an average day? People who study such things offer estimates ranging from 25,000 to 50,000 times a day. 

Think about your own self-talk. How often do you recycle the same internal self-talk monologues: "That was stupid!"; "How could I be so clueless?"; "Why am I such a loser?"; "Life sucks then you die!". On and on it goes.

Every Thought Creates Emotional and Physical Reactions

Every thought, every internal monologue, every time you engage in self-talk, your subconscious mind is listening and your body is responding to every word. 

When you say to yourself things such as, "I'm a loser", your subconscious mind hears that proclamation. Unless you consciously challenge that proclamation, it sails into the negative beliefs bin and contributes to low self-esteem and a disempowering self-image.

When you ask a question in self-talk such as, "Why do I always fail?", your subconscious mind - always the faithful servant - goes on a hunt through your memory bank and negative beliefs bin. It returns answers based on the premise of your self-talk question. 

Everything the subconscious sends up to your conscious mind is in alignment with the underlying assumption of the question. To use a computer term, the subconscious mind operates on the GIGO principle; GIGO is short for, "Garbage In, Garbage Out".

How to Change Self-Talk From Negative to Positive

Here are five easy steps to help you create more empowering self-talk.

  • Set the intention to pay conscious attention to your self-talk.
  • When you notice a self-critical proclamation or question, say boldly in mind or out loud, "STOP!". 
  • Breathe in and exhale slowly.
  • Ask in mind or out loud, "Is there a lesson? What if anything do I choose to do differently?" Wait for an answer.
  • Say in mind or out loud, "I choose now to let it go" as you again breathe in and exhale slowly.

How You Benefit

Taking these simple steps will interrupt the negative self-talk, allow time to put the situation that led to the negative self-talk in better perspective, and calm the emotional and physical stress response created in the wake of the original negative self-talk proclamation or question.

In a future post you'll learn how to properly phrase affirmations and take other steps to build a strong positive self-image. Until then, each time you take the steps you now know to neutralize negative self-talk and calm the stress response you'll be moving toward increased mental clarity, and enhanced emotional and physical well-being.

For more Stress Mastery tips, scroll through other posts on this site and visit our Stress Solutions, LLC site at,

Blessings and light,

Steve Carter

==> P.S. To ensure you never miss a post, join our Stress Mastery community by simply entering your email address in the "Follow by Email" box on the right. No spam, low volume high value.

==> P.P.S. If you would like personal attention to help dissolve emotional issues holding you back, email me at No obligation, zero pressure. We'll talk about your specific situation and identify a way forward that makes sense.

Stress Solutions, LLC | |