Chris Nelson is the founder of Ashiyana, a yoga retreat in Goa, India; and founder of SOAR.
What is happiness for you?
Real happiness, as opposed to the temporary blip of calm and happiness yielded by ‘things’. It’s when I have a calm mind. It’s not about what I’m doing, but rather about being inwardly connected, sensing my breath and my own presence of being.
How did you come to your current level of positivity and what did you have to overcome to achieve it?
I’m actually more interested in calmness of mind than positivity. Positivity is a state of mind that comes and goes. But in a sense, you could say that when I’m at ease inwardly, there is a positive glow 🙂
This is not a place that I’ve “reached” though, it is, in my experience, an endless quest to find the inner world more interesting than the outer world. So if there is anything to overcome, it’s the endless seduction of my attention by outer stimuli.
What tools and techniques are you using daily to keep happy?
I recently wrote a book within which the primary tool is called SOAR:
S – slow down (preferably sit down and close your eyes)
O – observe inwardly and connect with your breath
A – accept all that’s arising without judgement or resistance
R – relax deeply and sense your inner peace of being
This is a tool that I use throughout the day to calm my mind and relax. Often, I simply spontaneously pay attention to my breath – “O”.
How can your book and the app help people on the path to positive thinking and happiness?
I believe that we all need to create a “personal support system” for ourselves – a system characterized by three elements:
Self-responsibility – SOAR’s UX has been created with the intention of supporting the user in making their own choices as to how they evolve their wellbeing.
Holistic – The SOAR App has been designed according to Chris Nelson’s book, “Wake Up and SOAR”, which offers three keys to master your wellbeing – RELAX (learn to calm your mind), NURTURE (create a supportive lifestyle) and FLY (pursue your dreams and heartfelt desires). These keys embrace all levels of a user’s being – mind, body and spirit.
Personalised – SOAR’s cutting-edge AI (which includes voice-activation) means that the user’s feed within SOAR Cycle ™ is unique and personalised to each user. According to how they answer the pushed questions, and use the app in general, the AI will generate their wellbeing index, feed and notifications. This means that each user will always have a completely personalized journey.
How can one stay positive in challenging circumstances?
Create a potent personal support system as above 🙂
Ultimately, everything that we are truly searching for comes down to one thing, or, is yielded by just one thing – peace of mind.
When we’re experiencing peace of mind and we meet challenges, we recognise whether we need to change a situation, leave the situation altogether, or accept it in the realisation that we have no other choice. With peace of mind, we sense our heartfelt desires and what we want in any given moment; we also have focus and resolve since we have clarity of purpose. So whether we need to take action, or sit quietly in surrendered acceptance, it begins and ends with peace of mind 🙂
You can buy the book Wake Up and Soar here