5 Ways to Reverse Your Biological Age

Wouldn’t it be fun to go back to your 20’s or 30’s and have more wisdom?

What if you could look younger, feel younger, and yet be wiser than you’ve ever been? I would say that is the dream come true for most of us.

It is entirely possible to reverse your biological age, while increasing your IQ, as well as emotional intelligence. 

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Valuable Lesson I Learned From Being Consumed By a Serpent

Valuable Lesson I Learned From Being Consumed By a Serpent - Misha AlmiraValuable Lesson I Learned From Being Consumed By a Serpent

Can Destruction Exist Without Fear or Violence?

Endings happen, loved ones die with and without warnings. It is painful. We experience many levels of grief throughout our lives and this will not change.

But, have you ever found yourself asking, “Do I have a choice in the matter?”

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7 Steps To Go From Burnout To Extraordinarily Driven

7 Steps To Go From Burnout To Extraordinarily Driven

7 Steps To Go From Burnout To Extraordinarily Driven

Burnout is an indication that you need a break. It will only get worse the more you ignore the signs of burnout.

You may notice being irritable for no reason, having an unusually short fuse, not enjoying your work, or just exhausted. You may fell “off” or unlike yourself.

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What To Do When You Freak Out During an Ayahuasca Ceremony

What to Do When You're Freaking Out on Ayahuasca - Misha Almira

What To Do When You Freak Out During an Ayahuasca Ceremony

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What can you do?

When I made plans to go to Peru in May 2016, I did not know what I was getting myself into. All I knew was I had to go. It did not take long into my first ceremony to realize this was not a drug like LSD, Mushrooms or anything I’d even heard about. There was a level of freak out I was headed for that I did Not feel adequately equipped for. I was certain my body and mind would not survive this one. In fact, my mind was so far removed I wasn’t even sure of what I was anymore and felt certain I would never be the same again. This was not a good thing either. The freak out moment was coming and fast with or without my approval!

I’d read quite a few articles about Ayahuasca before going and thought I could get a good idea of what to expect. I was especially inspired by Graham Hancock.  I originally thought I would do one ceremony and be done with it. I just wanted to see what it was like. Ayahuasca was definitely calling me, but I thought one ceremony was enough to answer.

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However, after learning more, I was inspired to do multiple ceremonies  and I’d decided with certainty to do them in Peru. At the time, I thought I was the one making all the decisions but in reality there was a much deeper plan unfolding and I was not in control of any of it.

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In hindsight, I truly believe you can never outsmart Ayahuasca the Teacher so there is always going to be an element of the unknown. Plus, each ceremony is completely different. I chose to go through 8 ceremonies for my first Ayahuasca retreat and not one of them was the same and dosage mattered very little, at least in my case.

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 Powerful Tools

Ayahuasca was the most intense experience of my life and there is nothing that can truly prepare you for what you will go through. However, I do know of some powerful tools to help you before, during, and after. It can make the preparation, immersion, and integration somewhat gentler on you. These were priceless tools for me and I would not want to have gone into this experience blindly without them as many people often do.
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Meditation - Misha Almira
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1. Meditation
Meditation can be very important before during and after an Ayahuasca ceremony. It has the ability to be your umbilical cord connecting you with what is ultimately real while spinning in a sea of madness. I am not saying your lessons with Ayahuasca will be a tumultuous mind fuck, but if it is, meditate. It can be the only  gentleness you remember if you do feel lost in the depths and a way to come back to self.
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Dramatic? Yes, but our Egos can throw some pretty stirring episodes our way while traveling through the psyche. Not to mention,  Mother Ayahuasca holds nothing back. She likes to show us what is really going on with no sugar coated edit buttons. I recommend being prepared for a wild ride with all the safety gadgets, life jackets, and mechanical tools you can find.
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I have been meditating for years, but I had let my practice slip. I went from meditation sessions of 3 to 6 hours each day to barely 20 minutes. In hindsight, this should have been a priority in preparation for 8 Ayahuasca ceremonies. I am telling you this so you can have a gentler and more enjoyable experience.
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The thing I noticed while at the retreat was the individuals that had a strong practice of regular meditation had a much easier time adapting to the experiences they went through in the ceremonies. They were able to be more objective during the intense parts and integrate it faster. They were able to be fluid with the expansive aspects of Ayahuasca as well. It was truly inspiring to watch. There was an ease in embracing what the teacher presented and diving into the psyche was not as traumatic on their nervous systems.
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I was able to pull myself into an objective state with the help of simple meditation mantras. It took conscious focus and repetition. It was very difficult for me to remember my exact intention while I was in the ceremony, so I was very grateful for the mantra. It gave me perspective, centered awareness, and solace.
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Some of the experiences were overwhelmingly blissful and expansive. I had never experienced this level of positive overwhelming sensation. All I could do was hold the mantra, “I am love” in my mind while Ayahuasca moved me. It is an essential tool to have. Because the teaching was so profound, it took months to integrate after I came home.
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Meditation was the key to fully understanding and assimilating all of it. There is no way to make sense of it with the analytical mind. It is a teaching that must be processed in every cell of the body and meditation allows enough relaxation in the body, mind and spirit for this to happen.
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Breathe Misha Almira
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2. Breathing
Our wonderful facilitators led us in a simple meditation of watching the breath. We practiced this for 20 minutes before our first ceremony which was invaluable. When the medicine starting coming on for my first ceremony, I could sense the intensity that was about to hit. I started breathing deeply and slowly.
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Then, nausea hit hard and my breathing became even slower. It helped me to stay present in my body which is very important. It also acted as an anchor to the room I was in. At any moment, I could remind myself to breathe and would be back in the room aware of my surroundings.
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It is very easy to lose all sense of self within the experiences of Ayahuasca and having an easy reminder to breathe can make a world of difference. It is the difference between freaking out or adventurously riding the wave of what comes next.
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Surrender Misha Almira
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3. Surrender/Trust
Before leaving for Peru, I was given some advice from my mentor and Shamanic Healer. She said if it gets too intense, remember to say, “I am willing.”
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At the time, I did not even realize the value in this advice. You see, if you resist what Ayahuasca is trying to show you, it can get ugly real quick. If you do not trust her or fully respect her, she has a way of demanding that you do. It will bring you to your knees in reverence when you fully see the power of the plant medicine. I have met no greater Teacher this far. There seems to be nothing hidden, forward and backward in time.
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With that said, I would highly recommend this be your first choice of tools when meeting the Mother of Teachers. She will be the most beautiful being you have never imagined of if shown the much-deserved honor, respect, and trust. She can also be the epitome of your worst nightmare if you choose to control, mistrust, calculate, or command your experience.
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She will wait and let you choose but you will be accountable for the choice you make in every second of the journey. “I am willing and I trust you, Ayahuasca.”  These can be your most essential keys to the unbelievably magical aspects of Ayahuasca if you choose. I have never known anything like it. I am convinced that English was not meant to describe such an experience because our language cannot contain the essence of Universal Knowledge.
Thank you for reading. Please subscribe to receive updates and my ebook “Notes of a Shaman Student” by filling out the form to the right.

9 Ways to Slay the Dragon of the Ego

Slaying the Dragon of the Ego- Misha Almira

9 Ways to Slay the Dragon of the Ego

We are not talking about the Ally Dragons as I spoke about in a previous Ayahuasca experience article.
The Dragon we are talking about is the Dragon of the Ego.
It seems that its sole mission is to torment us and drag us down.

It can be so subtle that we don’t even recognize that it has us by the neck and is scorching us with deadly fire.

I think on some level we are all familiar with this little foe. What do we do about it is the question.
Other than chopping our own head off, how do we manage to gain back our sanity?

Overcoming the Ego &
Ascending to Higher Realms

Here are 9 suggestions below as an alternative to beheading. Even practicing one of these diligently will make a difference.

The trick is to take your focus away from the advice of the ego and manage to give it a mission.

Then, you can put it to work for you instead of against you.

1. Stop Being Defensive

When we feel the need to explain ourselves or prove our point, we are completely acting out of ego. It is closing off and demanding that our way is the right way.
There is no room for growth or understanding. It is putting up a wall between you and the other individual.
It is very difficult to just stop and not defend ourselves.
I remember getting so angry when I heard stories about Gandhi. I thought he should be defending himself, but there was so much I couldn’t see yet.
When we are seated in contentment and peace, there is never anything to defend. All we have to do is Be.
That is what Gandhi, Christ, Buddha, and so many of the great Teachers have tried to teach us by example.
I urge you to just try this for a day. It may not feel easy, but it is very effective at putting ego in its place.

2. Be Consistent

Ever notice how difficult it is to stick with something? Let’s use exercise as an example.
You decide to start working out and after two weeks, you find every excuse not to go to that class or the gym. It is easy to start but consistency can be difficult.
The truth is, you will never get good at anything if you do not master consistency.
The ego is really good at giving excuses and justifications but does not produce success. Set a goal to be consistent with something for 30 days.
You only have to put in 1% on the difficult days, but you have to do something every day for 30 days.
It truly is rewarding to see the results of consistent action.

3. Serve

We have to get out of ourselves to give to others. It is a way of surrender and abundance. If we have enough to give to others, we must be abundant.
If we have enough love to give to others, we must be full of love. We can look around right now and find ways to give.
I was staying at a friends house and everyone had gone to bed. I curled up on the couch with my little blanket and noticed how cold it was.
The next thing I knew my friend was covering me with a bigger blanket. This little act of service or giving meant so much to me.
We never know how much a little action can do for another. We can always give in some way.
Often our ego talks us out of it telling us we have nothing to give. If we give what we can, we feel like we are enough.
It is truly a fulfilling. try it right now.
Look around you and see what you can give to another person right now. Make this your new habit.
This is also a nice trick to give the ego a job to do. Put it in charge of the finding. Then, practice it.

4. Yoga

The experience of yoga can blow your mind. If you have never tried it, your ego will convince you it is a waste of time, not a real workout, not for you, only for flexible people, crazy and so forth.
After you have experienced it, you will know.
It nourishes the body making it stronger, more supple, agile, open and increases balance.
We often underestimate flexibility and balance until we break a hip.
It nourishes the mind by quieting the thoughts, opening our genius mind, and increasing happiness.
It nourishes our soul by aligning body and mind so we can see what is beyond.
It allows us to tap into Cosmic Consciousness and see reality from a broader perspective which can disintegrate limiting thoughts, beliefs, and programs.
Try it 2 or 3 times a week. You will notice the difference in your life.

5. Silence

This is going without speaking for a certain amount of time.
The first time I practiced silence was in 1997 and it was more profound than I imagined.
I combined water fasting and silence for 3 days. It doesn’t seem long, but it will surprise you how time slows down when you are not eating.
When we are not talking we realize how many wasted words there are all around us.
We get to a place of discerning what really needs to be said and what doesn’t.
We begin to notice chatter and gossip as unnecessary. We stop settling for focusing on negative chatter within ourselves. We begin to allow flow with less judgment.
Then, we sink even deeper into inner observing of who we are. We begin to receive revelations and insight.
We decipher voice of ego and voice of inner truth. The experience can unfold in unlimited ways.
I would highly suggest trying this for 3 or more days. It is even better to practice silence in nature. You will hear so much.

6. Fast

Fasting is the ultimate test. It brings you face to face with the Dragon you’ve been trying to avoid. All that you have been running from will present itself.
It is the fast track to facing your shadow, healing addictive habits, and unhealthy habits.
There is no more escape and you get to see what you are made of.
After a fast, you will know that you are made of strength. It leaves you with not only better health but a feeling of true accomplishment.
You have faced your fears and overcome them. You will not be the same after a good fast. It also can leave you feeling more peace and calm. Your mind chatter subsides as the release continues.
You gain control over the mind instead of the mind controlling you.
It is an empowering feeling. You can start with short fasts. I highly recommend the Master Cleanse. It gives the body just enough to sustain it while still allowing a powerful cleanse.

7. Give Up Competing

Many think competition is healthy and gives you and edge. It gets adrenaline going and brings the fight or flight out in us.
Yes, it might feel good, but there are many things that make us feel good that do not set us up for health, wealth and happiness.
When we are in the mindset of competition, our focus is on being the best. This automatically sets others to be below you.
This is all EGO. This might be controversial with some. If you are one of them. Why are you reading this? Do you want to slay the Dragon or not?
It is easy to take this to a level of doing whatever it takes, which includes knocking others down to get to the top. It is ultimately a place of lack.
There is no abundance in thinking there is only one spot at the top. Striving to be the best we can be is healthy to an extent, as long as we do not get caught in beating ourselves up for being less than our expectations.
The ego loves to convince us that we are not good enough, every chance it gets. We have to become aware of it when it happens. Competition will ultimately get you nowhere. Just let that go.

8. Meditate

Meditation is the art of stilling the mind. It pushes the mute button on the ego chatter. It is a beautiful moment when we sink into complete peace and stillness.
A whole new world opens.
That is when we can really start tapping into our potential. When we start the practice of meditation we do not instantly still the mind. It can happen very quickly but often times it takes a little more practice.
We would not expect to walk into a gym for the first time in our life and instantly be able to run for an hour, do a 45 minute crossfit class, or be perfect in a hot yoga class. It would take consistent practice.
Then, we would start tasting the potential with a healthy fit body. Meditation is an excellent way to consciously gain power over the mind.

9. Allow

This is a big one. This alone can neutralize the ego. When we stop running and allow we open up in ways that can be very surprising.
I am mainly talking about allowing what is happening inside of us. So often, we feel a certain way during the day but judge it as bad.
This is another way the ego gets us. We decide that we don’t have time to feel this, we have to get the kids breakfast. Then, we stuff it down and go on with our day.
When we continue this process for years we end up with a volcano of emotions deep inside us.

Then, one day out of the blue it erupts.
Normally it is over something menial.

We have a complete meltdown while driving our kids to school.

They don’t understand, you are beating yourself up for completely overreacting and your husband is just staring at you in horror. This does not help.

The funny thing is if we just allow that feeling when it first comes up, it moves very quickly.

Then, we don’t have to have a huge eruption later on. It can be very simple and  we can avoid a lot of drama. The ego loves drama though because then you beat yourself up.

That is not to say it is wrong to overreact. We may have repressed emotions from childhood stored in our body and it is good to just feel it fully.

Being present with our feelings and allowing them is a way of slaying the Dragon of the ego. You can find simple techniques for doing this here.  In the moment, it might not always feel that way.
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To work with this on a deeper level, go here

How to Gain Power Over Your Addiction

addiction

How to Gain Power Over Your Addiction – Slaying One Dragon at a Time

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Let’s talk about addiction. Have you ever watched yourself doing something you know is bad for you but you do it anyway?

Do you ever find yourself not being able to stop thinking about that drink you are going to have when you get off or the chocolate cake you are going to eat tonight at dinner?

Have you ever decided to go to a party just for the food or drink? Come on admit it, you have at least done this once right? What about being more excited to have popcorn than the actual movie you are going to see?

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In the Mind of an Addict

What Happens in the Mind of the Addict?

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There are tons of books and meetings to tell you all about addiction and how to manage it. I have read a lot and I have been to the meetings. I do not disagree with any of the advice I’ve gotten from many of these sources.
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Today, I want to talk about what happens in the mind of an addict. For me, addiction starts with an emptiness. It is easy to miss.
Most of the time, we skip over the feeling and go straight to the escape, which is what substances promise us.
They promise that we will instantly feel different…better. We will feel full again. You can pick a different substance each week if you want, but it is still the same emptiness.
That is why there is addiction even after we quit drinking or taking those pills. The emptiness stays and the want to escape can make us crazy especially if we are just trying to stay away from the substance that gave us the quick fix.
Here is the deal. Feeling empty is uncomfortable.
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 Escaping Addiction - Misha Almira
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No one wants to go into a black hole or the unknown.
We don’t know what is going to jump out  or consume us. We might not ever come out! Instead of just facing the big scary empty hole inside we start to obsess about escaping it.
It starts with one thought. Then, we lose half the day just thinking about our escape.
Everyone else becomes a nuisance getting in our way of “truly being happy.”  We don’t even see what is happening.
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Now I’m going to tell you what I have discovered.
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There are predatory entities or spirits that feed on emptiness, fear, doubt, shame, guilt, remorse, hatred and disgust.
They want us to be swallowed in the emptiness so they have more to feed on and can get control over our minds.
They want to destroy you. If you have ever been deep in an addiction, you know this is true.
They are just waiting for us to start thinking negative thoughts about ourselves and about others.
They also love to feed the addictions. Alcohol, certain drugs, or anything we take too much of can become energetic portals for entities to slip through.
Ever had that feeling like you weren’t being yourself while under the influence?
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They especially love it when we obsessively think. They come in and start feeding us thoughts that perpetuate our misery.
They entice us with unhealthy thoughts of how that drink will make us feel better.
This is how we lose control of our lives through addiction. It starts with a thought and then we give our power over to these predatory thoughts and powers that influence them.
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This is not a religious thing, but if you watch it while it is happening it becomes very clear.
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I will give you an example. The other day, I was sitting at my computer and started feeling bored and hungry.
I started having thoughts about how I had no food in the house and no car to go get any. I was getting mad because my boyfriend had the car. My thoughts were just bombarding me.
I was going to go the store and get nachos and cookies. Maybe I would order pizza. Blah Blah Blah.
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Food Addiction - Misha Almira
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Then, I stopped and asked myself what was going on? I took a breath and noticed what I was feeling. I felt desperate inside, bored, hungry, and empty. There it was. Big dark and lonely emptiness.
Then I asked myself if I was okay with just feeling desperate, bored, hungry, and empty.
My body relaxed,  and I breathed in deeply. I instantly felt relief. Just allowing our current experience can give us relief. One of the bravest questions we can ask ourselves is, “how am I feeling right now?”
Our first response might be something like, “I feel like getting the hell out of here!” or “I feel annoyed by these people taking in my way!”
There is always something beneath these types of escape thoughts. They can mask as feelings. The trick is to go deeper.
Do you feel sad?
Do you feel angry?
Do you feel guilty?
Do you feel lonely?
Do you feel scared?
Our ego likes to tell us how ridiculous this is, but I dare you to really try it. I don’t mean ask yourself and then get distracted with better things. I mean ask yourself and truly feel the answer.
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If we do this often enough, we will start to realize the emptiness is the key to our ultimate fulfillment.
Each time we feel it, it becomes a little less scary. Then, all that emptiness can be filled.
We will notice our creativity coming back and our joy. We all want happiness, fulfillment, and love.
We can start by acknowledging where we are feeling empty. Then, we can work on filling it.
It sounds simple and it actually is, if you are willing to stop right now and notice. We can set an intention of filling ourselves with Divine Love.
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For information about meditation go HERE