Richard Enion – An ENRICHD Mind

Intro-ing 

You know, I’ve been thinking about this almighty article for a few weeks now and I often find that my way of beingworks so well to last minute deadlines. Andy gave me generous date, 30 or so days in advance now, and here I am right up to the deadline with what I believe to be a highly useful read for you 

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Mind, the observer and drumming

We are all so similar yet so different. Your commitments, your food choices, your work, your levels of joy towards the things you choose to spend you time on….
And so what? Well, I’m going to tell you a few stories and share some little insights into some of my personal experience so far during this existence and how I enrich mine…
Isn’t it interesting being a human being? Our limbs, hands, fingers, eyes… how an intention can activate them, move them. Try it now, you have the intention and it happens. Go deeper, your digestive system – it just does what it does, the heart – beating away, doing its thing, the body breathing – even when we sleep… and of course the mind – seemingly having its own little party based on past and future events.
Have you ever considered what you are. If it’s your body. What are you? If my body hurts or my body feels good right now – what are you? The observer?
The first time I really felt the observer is probably when I was a feisty 12 year old, learning to play the drums. I could read the drumbeat on the music, I could mouth it (sing it) but my physical body was unable to perform the task that was in my mind’s eye. Now more than 2 decades of drumming later “watching” my body play the drums while I – the observer – observes the physical in action. It’s one of my greatest fascinations. 
What is that which is watching? Watching myself drumming, noticing the texture of the keys as I type these very words? That which is able to observe myself as delight or anger comes over me. Is it life itself? Soul? Source energy… who’s knows.

Meditation

During a 10 day silent retreat of a meditation practice called Vipassana (my first experience of actual meditation) I experienced a couple of life changing moments. 
It was my first time meditating and I had dived in at the deep end with 10 days of silence, no eye contact, no exercising (I LOVE to exercise/train/move), no phones, computers… simply meditate, eat, walk a little and sleep. Repeat. (You can find a link to a 7 minute taster meditation here or at the bottom of this article).
On day 5 of the 10 days I cried continuously for around 20 minutes. It began after the first meditation as I was walking into breakfast. I could feel the emotion building so I walked off to find a quiet place to cry it out. For an onlooker watching me trying to find a private place to cry, it probably looked like a comedy fast-silent-walk-stride… 
I remember trying to walk as fast as I could and as far away without disturbing anyone, because the other 50 or so gents in breakfast sure didn’t need to hear me cry a big snotty cry. 
When I was far away enough, wow, it was a full on deep soul cleansing blubbering, and it felt SO good! Not during the crying so much as that bit felt quite upsetting, though afterwards, the relief was incredible…. 
Then, that night during the evening meditation something miraculous happened. As I got deeper into the meditation, not craving pleasure, or trying to avoid pain (which is a key part of the meditation), “I” kind of disappeared into my leg where it began to feel REALLY GOOD.
Note: I’m well aware after telling this story a number of times at talks that “disappearing into ones leg” might sound a bit odd, but it happened – roll with it). 
I was in there. It was like nothing I’d felt before… a buzzing, a blissful vibrating, almost the greatest pleasure on Earth, deep inside my left leg! 
When that meditation finished I remember walking around with an inane smile for about 2 hours. It was uncontrollable joy beaming from my face. Extraordinary.
Often we speak of skill sets and abilities, well, I believe one my most useful achievements so far (and something I strive to share and deepen through mindfulness and meditation like Vipassana and tea meditation) has been being able to observe “reactions” rather than simply acting out the reaction. 
Observing the sensations expressed through the body, noticing my heartbeat rise and blood flow to my limbs, signs that the nervous system has entered the sympathetic part, and then noticing that there is no physical threat, nothing outside of me (unless there actually is a physical threat right there and then), simply seeing that it is an emotional reaction based on thought.
Meditation, especially Vipassana – try it – maybe 😉

During a 10 day silent retreat of a meditation practice called Vipassana (my first experience of actual meditation) I experienced a couple of life changing moments. 
It was my first time meditating and I had dived in at the deep end with 10 days of silence, no eye contact, no exercising (I LOVE to exercise/train/move), no phones, computers… simply meditate, eat, walk a little and sleep. Repeat. (You can find a link to a 7 minute taster meditation here or at the bottom of this article).
On day 5 of the 10 days I cried continuously for around 20 minutes. It began after the first meditation as I was walking into breakfast. I could feel the emotion building so I walked off to find a quiet place to cry it out. For an onlooker watching me trying to find a private place to cry, it probably looked like a comedy fast-silent-walk-stride… 
I remember trying to walk as fast as I could and as far away without disturbing anyone, because the other 50 or so gents in breakfast sure didn’t need to hear me cry a big snotty cry. 
When I was far away enough, wow, it was a full on deep soul cleansing blubbering, and it felt SO good! Not during the crying so much as that bit felt quite upsetting, though afterwards, the relief was incredible…. 
Then, that night during the evening meditation something miraculous happened. As I got deeper into the meditation, not craving pleasure, or trying to avoid pain (which is a key part of the meditation), “I” kind of disappeared into my leg where it began to feel REALLY GOOD.
Note: I’m well aware after telling this story a number of times at talks that “disappearing into ones leg” might sound a bit odd, but it happened – roll with it). 
I was in there. It was like nothing I’d felt before… a buzzing, a blissful vibrating, almost the greatest pleasure on Earth, deep inside my left leg! 
When that meditation finished I remember walking around with an inane smile for about 2 hours. It was uncontrollable joy beaming from my face. Extraordinary.
Often we speak of skill sets and abilities, well, I believe one my most useful achievements so far (and something I strive to share and deepen through mindfulness and meditation like Vipassana and tea meditation) has been being able to observe “reactions” rather than simply acting out the reaction. 
Observing the sensations expressed through the body, noticing my heartbeat rise and blood flow to my limbs, signs that the nervous system has entered the sympathetic part, and then noticing that there is no physical threat, nothing outside of me (unless there actually is a physical threat right there and then), simply seeing that it is an emotional reaction based on thought.
Meditation, especially Vipassana – try it – maybe 😉

Foods and the mind…

When I think of foods and the mind I think of hormone balance and gut health (as well mushrooms like Lions Mane and Reishi).
There are foods we can choose that naturally support gut health and those which may hinder the gut microbiome. 
The most basic way I’ve found to improve my gut health is by choosing foods that feelgood. Sounds so simplistic. And it kind of is though know that I’m not talking about instant gratification junk foods that may feel good to you in the moment. 
Note: For me, junk food actually disappeared as a “food option” about 15 years ago. Friends often say I will “break” or give in at some point which is rather amusing because junk food as you probably know it is akin to eating a bag of washing up liquid with seasoned toilet paper inside it. It’s just not food.
To continue… When I say feel goodI mean foods I eat that feel good in the moment, shortly after, and that seem to support the body in feeling good for days after that too. 
Sounds a bit far fetched? Sure most people have eaten a food at some point that made them feel bloated or farty. That’s an example of a food that doesn’t feel particularly good. Take onions for example, onions, especially when raw, they make me bloated – so I just choose other foods instead. It might take a bit of time at first to tune in but you will quickly start to notice some of more gross sensations that can fairly easily be replaced with more desirable sensations.
That’s not to say foods that currently bloat me are off the menu forever, simply during a particular phase of digestive ability. 
Maybe a few weeks or months later my digestive strength will be greater or the season will have changed and those foods will seamlessly take their journey. 
I consider my digestive health like I do my physical strength and flexibility – I’m often working to support and develop it, and it has become very apparent that the health of the gut may be directly connected to emotional balance.
Interestingly, gut health is directly linked to the immune system, some suggesting that up to 80% of the immune system, is dependent on the health of the gut, others saying that up to 80% of the immune system is actually IN the gut. 
The connection is powerful and when we tune in and tune up these areas of our physical being, life just seems to feel better.

Sleeping it up!

Of course as well as all of those delightfully esoteric (and very real) experiences there is a simply magnificent way to find greater balance, and that is through sleep. 
We all know how a number of disturbed nights sleep can affect us, well what if unwittingly we hadn’t been getting much “proper sleep” at all. Not duration, but depth and quality. 
Now, there are buckets of online resources for digging into sleep and I’ve noticed there are a few environmental changes that make a huge impact for me.
Lights, phones, temperature, pets, stimulants too late, bed, bedding, pillows, position, eating too late are some of the things that can disturb restorative sleep. 
My own personal experience has been to fine tune the art of sleeping over time, experimenting making the room cooler room, phone off, all lights off, LED’s off or covered, pets out of the room (or at least not on the bed), enjoying my last tea around 4 or 5pm (to limit late night stimulants), natural non-synthetic bedding, sleeping on my left side, and giving myself 3 to 4 hours between my last meal and sleep. Of course I’m flexible with all of that and feel and listen to my body, so if I fancy a late night 1980’s Shou Puerh tea then I may indulge 😉
Good sleep affects and can support the awesomeness of everything. Perhaps experiment a little to see where you can upgrade your sleep. One of the changes above might lead to a greatly enhanced physical experience.

To Conclude…

To conclude that little journey you’ve just been on while reading this article is one of the most logical steps that I have found leads to a more flowing life: Free yourself from arguing for your own limitations, and support those around you in being free from arguing for their own. Think about it for a moment then try it.
Satisfied and eager for more.
Rich
EnrichdSuperfoods.comEnrichd.org
Meditation Link and reference:

Link to the 7 minute Enrichd meditation:https://www.instagram.com/p/B0Tn_x3B0DC/

Role of the Microbiota in Immunity and inflammationhttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4056765/

Model: Richard Enion Photographer: Jevgenija Kuznecova Make up/Retouch: Demi De

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