Having Compassion-For Ourselves

perhaps feeling more compassion for ourselves is an important step in ceasing the quest for love and acceptance from outside of ourselves

In times of crises like we are now living in so many of us are filled with compassion for the suffering that we witness all over the world and perhaps in our own communities as well. Of course this is natural and a wonderful opportunity to open our hearts to those who we share the planet with, and to do whatever we can to alleviate suffering.

But do you also have compassion for yourself?

I was recently reminded of how important this is in two separate incidents. The first was just this morning, and the inspiration that brought me to write this. I was reading an article about Krishna Das in The Sun and he mentioned that when people ask the Dalai Lama about compassion, “he says the first person who deserves compassion is ourself.”

How do you treat yourself when you are in crises, and in your daily life? is your heart open to you, to your needs, desires and dreams? Do you have the same understanding when it comes to your struggles and suffering that you offer to a loved one, or a stranger you see in need?

The second incident involved myself more directly and it had to do with allowing myself more freedom, encouragement and opportunity to follow my heart in work that I have recently discovered that I love to do. I was with a friend and this came up in a conversation. Do I have the compassion for myself to allow myself to dive deeply into this? I had felt that I did but I discovered that there had been a part of me resistant to this. That part that wanted me to “finish what I had already started” when in reality there was plenty of room in my life for all of it when I come out of time constraints that I had placed on myself…life after all is a journey without a real destination other than self awareness and awakening.

I think that for many of us we have lived in an “either / or” paradigm rather than one that was more inclusive….the “and this too” reality. Do you exclude important elements in your life that bring you joy and/or personal growth, or maybe more vitality in how you approach your life.

If your best friend, beloved or child said to you “I love doing this” would you tell them that they should wait for another time in their life to experience that? what do you say to yourself….

If someone you cared deeply for told you that they were suffering about something in their lives how would you respond? do you respond this way to your own pain?

Perhaps it is time to really take in deeply those wise words from the Dalai Lama….be compassionate first and foremost to that person who looks back at you in the mirror,  you are more than worthy.

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Facing our Fears…Experiencing Who We Truly Are

Free yourself...face your fears.

Imagine that in facing our fears, and not running from them, we get to truly experience why we are here…to grow, to learn, to embody our full radiance, which cannot be known completely until we drop our fears by facing them.

Yesterday I was thinking about love and how there is often so much fear around love.
Will I be loved?
Will I be rejected?
Will he/she leave me?

And on and on fears show up around love (and of course other areas too) and for me the question arises,
Can we truly love with all of that fear?
Isn’t fear the antithesis of love?
It’s like saying it can be dark and light at the same time. As far as I know the only place I have ever experienced this is inside of myself, and that is where this mixture of fear and love tries to co-exist.

And in the end many of those fears may never be totally put to rest because they are in effect possible…
Our beloved may leave,
they may die,
or we might.

Sometimes our own growth propels us forward and that might include changing what our life looks like. Don’t you also want the same for those you love? even if it is just what they think is best for them, but we cannot hold them back from where their lives flow

So why not totally embrace the experience of love and just observe those fears when they arise (and whatever other emotions come), since ultimately they serve no purpose except to keep you from who you are and from truly experiencing all of the love and beauty that is around us. Let the thoughts, the fears arise and just see what happens when you don’t run from them.

When we allow the fear to literally enter and pierce our body, and we feel all of the pain that comes, we find out that it will eventually leave our bodies, and then our minds.
But when we let fear dwell in our minds, take over our thoughts and actions, and allow it to linger and lurk-not fully accepting it, it usually doesn’t leave, but rather settles in deeper. We also can begin to fall victim to our fears that may never even come to pass–and then we miss what is right in front of us.

Now I am not saying that this easy, but it also isn’t easy walking around carrying those fears for years, decades or lifetimes. If we can face that worse case scenario in our minds and bodies and survive it, and we do survive it, then we tap into a part of ourselves that we may have forgotten was even there. We find that inner strength that is really love, and who we truly are. The more times that we can go through this process the more we come to know ourselves and to see that our worst fears may never come to pass, and if they do there is probably a good reason for it in the long run. As we allow ourselves this experience we also seem to move through the painful times more rapidly and grow stronger.

Lately I am experiencing a sense of some sort of divine master plan in my life.  I can step back and view my life as a big picture, or movie, as more pieces of the picture are slowly but surely being painted in. With some distance, and grace, I can see that everything in my life has been for my betterment and development although it might have hurt like crazy going through it, I am who I am today as a result of all of those experiences. This has also facilitated my being to honor all that I have gone through.

Today as things happen… from disappointments to joy, I try to embrace it all. There is even a sweetness now to the suffering when it comes for I know that to feel this I was truly engaged in my life and feeling it all. And isn’t that what life is really all about? Living it fully.

I have faced many fears in the last years, actually the last decades, and I know deep in my bones (and even deeper than that) that I am never given more than I can handle and it is my choice to say yes or no to whatever experience I am presented with. Not to worry if I say no, the opportunity will return as surely as the sun will set and then rise in the morning and I will get another chance if this experience is part of my destiny..
So most of the time I am saying yes, and experiencing  so much while feeling the bliss of living a truly authentic life with all that it brings.

There is a song By Edwin McCain called I Want It All
and one of the lines is
The good, the bad, the happy and the sad
… I want it all.

Life can be a wonderful, fulfilling adventure lived from a place of embodied love and power when we are willing to face it all….

I just had a friend send me this beautiful piece from Rumi. I found it quite appropriate here.

The Guest House
This being human is a guest house. Every day is a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary awareness comes as an
unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all! Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house empty
of its furniture, still, treat each guest honorably. He or she may be
cleaning you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door,
laughing, and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.
Rumi

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Exploring Our Secret Dreams

What are you dreaming about to bring into your life?

Do you have some secret longing locked away in your heart? Perhaps it is something that you have always wanted to do, or some place you have always wanted to visit. Maybe it is a different kind of work than you have always done, that you feel would satisfy you more and bring more to those you work with or a larger community. It might be something as simple as visiting your local museums, getting out in nature more often or learning to cook, paint, knit or learn a sport.

I know that today many of us are so busy with our lives that some days we barely have time to catch our breath…in fact if it wasn’t automatic most of us would just stop breathing altogether.

But how does this make you feel?

I can tell you for myself when I get into one of those really busy times that feels like a whirlwind, I get pretty exhausted. It might be exhilarating at first, but then there comes this sense of, what am I doing, and does it really matter? It also takes me to a place of evaluating what really is important in life, and whether or not I am living that.

I recognize that times come when things just happen and we get a bit swamped…I have had a week like that and it is only Wednesday morning, but I am speaking about when it goes on and on and anything non-essential gets put to the bottom of the list, and often those are the things that really nurture our spirit and heart.

But is this quality living and what of those secret dreams and desires for something else in our lives?

For me I have recently jumped into one of those long held wishes and I have experienced a part of myself that feels more like me than almost anything else I have done in my life. I always felt a pull to artistic work but felt that I did not have any talent in this area so I never pursued it. I appreciated art, and beauty in any form has always been important to me and something that fed my heart. But to do something along those lines…I never even attempted it since I felt I had no ability. I also was caught up in the busy-ness of life, and so if an inkling came to take a pottery class (at least I would not need to draw anything) or something else along those lines, well I was just too busy.

This all changed for me around the beginning of the year when I started a collage, my first “art project” probably since elementary school. On one of my many visits to the art supply store I was told of a collage class that was starting in about a week, and so I emrolled. It has now been about five weeks and I am having such a wonderful time with this, it has opened a part of myself that I always felt was there but never had let out.

What has been equally important is the opportunity to take a look at the blocks that I had allowed to prevent me from exploring something that I had always felt pulled to do.

Why would I not pursue something that I always wanted to do?

I have seen that I carried some very false ideas about creativity, talent and being able to learn something new. Somehow I had the idea that you either had talent to do art or you didn’t. In hindsight it seems ridiculous since people go to art school to learn how to create art.  I never put being an artist in the same category as being a doctor, lawyer, even a chef…These were all something that one could say I want to be a _________ and then go to school to learn how. But somehow art seemed different to me.

I realize now that there had been a part of me that assumed we innately know certain elements of what we wanted to pursue. It never entered my mind to consider going to art school because I love art and learn how to be an artist. Somehow more creative careers didn’t have the same approach, in my mind, but they do in reality…we can learn just about anything if we really want to and are willing to make the time and take the risk.

I share this in hopes of inspiring others to take the leap to explore what it is that has slept in their hearts for far too long and is time to wake up. There must be a reason that we carry certain dreams. Imagine it is because we are meant to experience them, that they are an integral part of our being and a necessary part of our self expression and development.

We all want to live more authentic and fulfilling lives and this just might be one way to come closer to that experience. What have you been dreaming of?

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Valuing Ourselves

what are you thinking about yourself....

How much do you value yourself?

It may seem like a strange question, but I see it as one worth asking. So many of us have been taught to put others first, as well as their opinions, and often in the process we can lose a sense of our own value…

Often everyone else seems to become more of a priority than ourself.

Not that I am endorsing narcissistic behavior but rather a realistic balance between our own needs and the needs of those around us, whether we are speaking of family, friends or our work. Try to remember that in the long run this is to everyone’s benefit who we share our lives with.

Has it been a while since you have listened to your heart’s true desire?

Is there something that you have been longing to pursue but somehow it seems to be continually postponed until you have more time…how long has this been going on? Maybe time in fact is not the real issue, but how you feel about yourself.

Often in the end we just give up on our dreams and in a way that means that we give up on our truest self. If we can’t value ourselves it is hard to imagine how someone else can and we begin to create a self fulfilling prophecy, that was based on a falsehood to start, that we really don’t matter.

My experience is that as we begin to take more steps to follow our heart, we reconnect with our true nature. Once this begins to happen there is no way that we cannot value ourselves more. We are all valuable and have something important to contribute in our lives…even if it is to be the one who says good morning to a stranger and maybe change that persons day, which just might have the power to change their life.

Here are a few inquiries to consider ….

Do you often do something other than what you really want to be doing to please someone else. This is lovely to do, but how many times do you forsake your desire?

If you were going to prepare yourself a cup of tea, coffee, a snack or a meal do you put less effort into it compared to if you were doing this for a friend, lover, family member. Why not treat yourself as well?

When you are tired, maybe even feeling exhausted, do you push yourself to “do one more thing”? Would you ask this of someone who you cared about?

Do you put undue pressure on yourself even when it is not necessary?…somehow it has  just become habitual.

Do you give far more to others than yourself? This can be in so many ways, our time and attention, our money, our compassion and care, our thoughts. I am a firm believer in the amazing gifts that come our way when we are giving and compassionate, and this is often a beneficial pathway to find more value in ourselves as well, however we can fall into a pattern of doing this at our own neglect and this is what I refer to here.

When we are more loving to ourselves it just happens that we are more loving to others.

When we are more compassionate to ourselves it just happens that we become more compassionate towards others.

As I was writing this I had an opportunity to live what I am writing about, which quite often happens. Last night I had hoped to finish this and post it on the website, but it was a bit late and I was tired. I kept writing a bit longer and then I realized that I was REALLY tired and I decided to go to bed and finish this is the morning (which is exactly what I am doing right now). Now, believe me there was a time when I would have made myself a cup tea, taken a few deep breaths outside and got myself back to writing so that this could be completed last night.

But what I realized was that it really didn’t matter if it was posted last night or this morning. Apologies if anyone out there was really disappointed when it was not in their email inbox this morning…

I let myself go to bed when I was feeling tired, wake up fresh and probably complete this more efficiently today and definitely feeling better than I would have last night. In many respects this is so obvious but the things that we do and patterns that we create often become so subtle that we don’t even think about them anymore. No wonder a lot of people are walking around angry, fearful and with so much personal discontent.

We get upset when others don’t treat us with respect, yet do we treat ourselves with that same respect we want from others?

As we begin to value ourselves more, we take better care of ourselves as well and this can only bring more good to those around us. I think that we all are aware of how depleting stress is and how harmful to our health. Some say that 90% of all illnesses are related to stress, and also one source of depression…so no amount of medication can really offer a cure if something that we are dealing with is stress related.

It may also be that something that we have done in the past to “treat” ourselves may now be creating stress and need to be re-thought. Perhaps a dinner out was a way to let go at the end of a busy day. But what if today the cost of that dinner is creating stress for you, can you really enjoy it? It may be time to spend an extra evening at home creating a beautiful, less expensive meal, reading a book or taking a long bath. What can you do in your life to relax yet not create financial pressure. A short walk may be all the medicine that you need to unwind during a hectic day.

Many of us are rediscovering, or wanting to rediscover more joy and happiness in our lives. One key element in this is listening to ourselves more so that we really have a chance to explore what truly makes us happy and joyful. This is not a subject that we often talk about, but when it comes to living in a more fulfilling way this is important to explore. More and more of us are realizing that many of those outside things are not necessarily making us feel any better, in fact often they become a burden and steal away our precious time.

This is a short story from Utne Reader about one country that is actually making their citizens’ happiness one indicator of the countries success and growth. Imagine this in the U.S., a lot would need to change but the benefits would be so far reaching to many.

We are in an exciting time right now with many changes happening all around us. The protests in Egypt and other places are one indicator that people are tired of being treated as if they do not matter, as if they have no value–there are other issues as well but in some ways this is really one of the underlying core issues in many places. We could not have homeless people or hunger if we valued every being more. We also could not destroy the Earth, or support its destruction with the things that we buy or eat, if we placed more value in what the Earth offers to us.

As with most things in life we must start with ourselves….

Ask yourself, do you value yourself and do you treat yourself as if you do?

If you answered yes – thank you for being a catalyst for others to do the same. And if you answered no, why not take a few moments right now to realize just how special you truly are and deserving to be treated with love and respect, especially by you.

Sending love and light…….

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Meeting Ourselves, Embracing Ourselves

In order to truly blossom we must be willing to open...to life.

In order to truly blossom we must be willing to open...to life.

Yesterday I was telling someone a story from my past that had to do with a humbling, and at the time a slightly humiliating experience. We began talking about the word humiliation and then humility…surely there is a relationship between the two.

For the sake of clarity I am not talking about humiliation in the broader sense of the word such as when a group or individual is subject to humiliating treatment that sets them apart with the intention to belittle them or possibly worse…this is not the experience that I refer to. But rather humiliation in the narrower sense of the word, maybe we could call it extreme embarrassment that causes us to feel humiliated. Often when we can go through that experience, survive it, and have our friends or family still love us, we realize that we can gain something from it.

Isn’t it interesting how we are averse to feeling humiliated but somehow humility is good? Maybe there isn’t that much of a difference…don’t we gain humility allowing ourselves to feel a bit humiliated on occasion. They can be two sides of one coin.

Could this be something that we are missing in our world today? a bit more humility. Many of us are too afraid to risk feeling humiliated so then we play it safe…Perhaps a little bit too safe to really experience life in its fullest and juiciest.

How powerful is that fear if it can hold us back from trying to live our dreams. Why do we not pursue that which puts a smile on our face and in our hearts. How many unfulfilled, and untried dreams are out there?

My experience is that at some point the fear of not living my life as I dreamt it could be was far more scary than going for it.

At this point I must confess that this is not where I planned to go with this writing but I like this exploration so my original idea will just have to wait.

I see that humility is a process that de-emphasizes the ego, that chips  away at it, which allows us to discover that we are something far beyond the ego. Usually in this process we gain something…some insight, some awareness to fill that space previously occupied by the ego in our inner world.

When we gain the knowledge, and acceptance of who we truly are, we recognize our value…We are empowered yet at the same time humbled. If we can give ourselves permission to experience that self humiliation and still remain aware of our being-ness and our worth we can also experience that sense of humility, which I know as very peaceful and centering. I am amazed again and again what power emanates from that place of being-ness.

Once we connect to ourselves this way we gain such a sense of freedom that we are willing to dare being humbled, even if that means risking the potential for a taste of humiliation. We realize that in effect everything in life is an opportunity for us to grow and live more aware and awakened lives…usually our greatest fears never come close to manifesting.

I don’t know about you but I am willing to take that risk, to make that leap to live a truly authentic life. The ego may get a bit nervous, but in effect as more fun, joy and contentment comes into my life there is an aspect of my ego that likes it too and then surrender just comes.

So maybe you are willing to step out a little from your comfort zone to experience more of who you really are. In the big picture of life when we are willing to dare, it is evidence that we are trusting something bigger than our fear and that is always empowering. Who would have thought that we can go from humiliation to humility and then to empowerment…

And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.

Anais Nin

It's time for us all to blossom.

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Accepting our lives in this moment

When the time comes for a break, I can enjoy it completely.

When the time comes for a break, I can enjoy it completely.

Lately I am realizing that I am often feeling as if I always seem to have something, and usually many things, to do….sound familiar? I go about my daily life in a pretty relaxed manner but recognize that I often seem to be spending more time taking care of those “to do” things than the things that I really want to be doing or love to be doing.

I am growing more and more uncomfortable with this situation and that is a great catalyst for changing something, but at the same time I am experiencing a powerful lesson in self acceptance and patience allowing this to be just the way things are for right now.

I also acknowledge that I do have a lot on my plate, as many of us do today…

I recently began taking new clients for coaching (one of those things from my “I love to do” list) and have even taken an office here in Santa Fe.

I also have a non-profit project on sustainable living that has taken a good amount of my time over the last year or so.

And I recently, recently as in since 2011 began… have started my very first art project, probably since I was in elementary school. I don’t remember if I had art in junior high school (and that was decades before all of the recent budget cuts) but it was never something that I felt confident doing.

On top of this over the last two and half years I have pretty much created an entirely new life returning to the U.S. after living in Europe for a number of years where I had a holistic center. When I came back to the states I chose to return to a new city (I had lived here only briefly in the past, but always loved it and felt drawn to be here) and I have been so fortunate to create an amazing community of friends and new family here in my adopted city, in spite of the fact that I have been traveling as much as I have been at home.

In effect on the outside an entirely new life exists, but I must say that the greatest journey has been the inner transformation that has been taking place for some years now…and this comes with me wherever I may travel or live.

I am sure that this is why I can see through the busy-ness that is a part of my life today. Often we have times when this is more pronounced, but when we bring our consciousness to it we can transmute each thing that we do, regardless of how mundane, to something that provides an opportunity for inner growth or awareness, or whatever you choose to call it.

I do not mean to imply that we need something, or we need to change something but in the sense of expansion or greatness, being able to recognize the beauty that surrounds us…even in the face of the horrendous.

To me this is truly a gift to live life in this way

Sometimes we also just need to give ourselves a break. That break can be from giving ourselves a hard time for what we have not done or not completed and sometimes we just have to stop. And I mean really STOP.

Right now, just stop for a moment. Sit back and take a deep breath and become aware of what is around you.

What do you smell?

What do you hear?

What kind of taste is in your mouth?

Try to linger in this place for a few minutes and experience returning to who you really are…in addition to all of the you’s that you live each day.

When we can bring our full awareness to whatever we are doing (even if the doing is stopping what he had been doing) it becomes so much richer. Even the laundry and washing dishes give us something in return….ourselves, when we do them being really present.

So as I venture more deeply into this new year I am filled with excitement and more of a sense of myself than ever before. I may have a lot to do but it all is so wonderful and rich when I remain grounded in myself doing them.

I may have preferences of what I would like to do. Would I rather go for a walk along the stream, under the beautiful blue sky and see the snow on the ground or go do some errands?

I would love that walk, but at the same time I know that doing the errands will take care of so many things so that when I do take that walk I will be more free than if I took it right now. I might take a walk around the block while doing my errands just to experience the day in a fuller way than just in and out of my car at each stop that I have to make. There is no reason for deprivation at the price of getting things accomplished.

This is one area that I have so enjoyed learning and experiencing… and that is the power of allowing myself to take a break, whether it is five minutes to sit back and experience my senses and myself, to take a short walk or a special, very conscious and present cup of tea or coffee. These small actions bring me back to myself and to the moment and then I really can experience the fullness of life whether it is while I run errands, return phone calls, take a bath or do my work.

Most of the time the gift of life is all around us, if we are willing and able to receive it.

Lately I am realizing that I am often feeling as if I always seem to have something, and usually many things, to do….sound familiar? I go about my daily life in a pretty relaxed manner but recognize that I often seem to be spending more time taking care of those “to do” things than the things that I really want to be doing or love to be doing.

I am growing more and more uncomfortable with this situation and that is a great catalyst for changing something, but at the same time I am experiencing a powerful lesson in self acceptance and patience allowing this to be just the way things are for right now.

I also acknowledge that I do have a lot on my plate, as many of us do today…

I recently began taking new clients for coaching (one of those things from my “I love to do” list) and have even taken an office here in Santa Fe.

I also have a non-profit project on sustainable living (SmartLifeways.com) that has taken a good amount of my time over the last year or so.

And I recently, recently as in since 2011 began… have started my very first art project, probably since I was in elementary school. I don’t remember if I had art in junior high school (and that was decades before all of the recent budget cuts).

On top of this over the last two and half years I have pretty much created an entirely new life returning to the U.S. after living in Europe for a number of years where I had a holistic center (atmando.com). When I came back to the states I chose to return to a new city for me (I had lived here briefly in the past) and have been so fortunate to create an amazing community of friends and new family here in my adopted city in spite of the fact that I have been traveling as much as I have been at home.

In effect on the outside an entirely new life exists, but I must say that the greatest journey has been the inner transformation that has been taking place for some years now…and this comes with me wherever I may travel or live.

I am sure that this is why I can see through the busy-ness that is a part of my life today. Often we have times when this is more pronounced, but when we bring our consciousness to it we can transmute each thing that we do, regardless of how mundane, to something that provides an opportunity for inner growth or awareness, or whatever you choose to call it.

I do not mean this in the sense that we need something, or we need to change something but in the sense of expansion or greatness, being able to recognize the beauty that surrounds us…even in the face of the horrendous.

To me this is truly a gift to live life in this way

Sometimes we also just need to give ourselves a break. That break can be from giving ourselves a hard time for what we have not done or not completed and sometimes we just have to stop. And I mean really STOP.

Right now, just stop for a moment. Sit back and take a deep breath and become aware of what is around you. What do you smell?

What do you hear?

What kind of taste is in your mouth?

Try to linger in this place for a few minutes and experience returning to who you really are…in addition to all of the you’s that you live each day.

When we can bring our full awareness to whatever we are doing (even if the doing is stopping what he had been doing) it becomes so much richer. Even the laundry and washing dishes give us something in return….ourselves, when we do them being really present.

So as I venture more deeply into this new year I am filled with excitement and more of a sense of myself than ever before. I may have a lot to do but it all is so wonderful and rich when I remain grounded in myself doing them.

I may have preferences of what I would like to do. Would I rather go for a walk along the stream, under the beautiful blue sky and see the snow on the ground or go do some errands?

I would love that walk, but at the same time I know that doing the errands will take care of so many things so that when I do take that walk I will be more free than if I took it right now. I might take a walk around the block while doing my errands just to experience the day in a fuller way than in and out of my car at each stop that I have to make. There is no reason for deprivation at the price of getting things accomplished.

This is one area that I have so enjoyed learning and experiencing… and that is the power of allowing myself to take a break, whether it is five minutes to sit back and experience my senses and myself, to take a short walk or a special, very conscious and present, cup of tea or coffee. These small actions bring me back to myself and to the moment and then I really can experience the fullness of life whether it is while I run errands, return phone calls, take a bath or do my work.

Most of the time the gift of life is all around us if we receive it.

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Awakening Within

Leaf in creekI am back…..
It has been quite some time since I have written on this site but that will be changing.

I have been really involved creating SmartLifeways, a web site dedicated to informing and inspiring people to live in a more sustainable way. I will be offering sessions in “greening” your life – from your kitchen, office and all around your home – for those of you who maybe don’t even know where to begin or are ready to take the next step.

I came across this beautiful writing from Rudolf Steiner whose work has brought us Walden School, Anthroposophical Medicine and Biodynamic farming-he was a busy man. This was written in 1910 and I find it extremely relevant for today.

Hope you like it …..

“We must eradicate from the soul all fear and terror of what comes toward us out of the future.

We must acquire serenity in all feelings and sensation about the future.

We must look forward with absolute equanimity to everything that may come.

And we must think only that whatever comes is given to us by a world-directive full of wisdom.

It is part of what we must learn in this age, namely, to live out of pure trust, without any security in existence.

Trust in the ever-present help of the Spiritual World.

Truly, nothing else will do if our courage is not to fail us.

And let us seek the awakening from within ourselves, every morning and evening.”

(~ R. Steiner)

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The light at the end of the tunnel

sky-light1I realized today that it is three years, maybe even to the day, that I began the journey of a huge life transition. Since yesterday I have had the feeling that my life is falling perfectly into place, that I am really living a life in grace and on my way to experiencing many dreams.

In no way has this been an easy transition but there was always a willingness to go through what was necessary for clarity, insight and moving forward out of old patterns that no longer served me. I had people tell me that I was courageous and I didn’t really feel this was accurate since I felt as if I had no choice. But maybe that is where courage comes from…when you see that there is only one direction and you will do whatever is necessary to make your way on that path, that is how I have felt.

While this has probably been the most painful two years of my life, it has also been the most rewarding as well. It sounds so cliche but it is the truth.

Whatever you may be going through persevere and don’t ever give up on yourself or your tomorrow.
Look for guidance and a hand to hold, but if neither shows up look to your power that lies within.
If you have no one to share your secrets and fears, write them down and share them with the universe.
When a hurricane of emotions arise let them rain down with fury, and remember… this too shall pass.
All that we feel are divine gifts and when we can let them move through us we realize this.

We are here to grow and become more of who we are. Just as a blade of grass can make its way through the concrete our spirit can hold us and guide us through anything. Find inspiration and just keep on going, there really is a light at the end of the tunnel-and that light is YOU.
Love and blessings

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Seeing with new eyes

“The only real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

Marcel Proust

What can you see new today?

We have the opportunity to discover something new about ourselves and the world around us every day, if we can open our eyes and see without the veil of our past and our conditioning.

No easy task, I am the first to admit, but one if cultivated will bring immense rewards.

A good way to begin this is to simply try to step back and become more of an observer, of what you see around you but also of yourself. Try to relinquish your judgments, especially of yourself, and just allow a witness to emerge from within. As you nurture these new eyes from the inside you will gain an insight about the things you do and think and suddenly the world, and perhaps yourself, will become new.

Let me know how this process of discovery works for you……..

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Willing to sit with it

Sometimes we need to be willing to sit for a period of time with what may be uncomfortable feelings in order to understand our lessons in life, so that we can then receive the gifts that follow…

When going through a challenging time have you noticed how difficult it often is to just sit with your feelings, to allow them to come to full bloom or maybe even eruption? There is a magic in the exploration of what is really being shown to us, since quite often it is something beyond what seems apparent on the surface. Think about it, when you are challenged in almost any way, in a relationship, at work, or even just driving down the road, and your feelings get charged up, isn’t there often a component that you could adjust? Try to linger there when feeling emotionally challenged, a lesson may await you that brings you deeper insight into unchartered areas within yourself that will allow you to live a more relaxed, joyful, satisfying life.

Take for example, driving down the road in traffic, your reaction might be anger or frustration but what can you do about the traffic anyway? What could this situation be indicating about you? Maybe you need to allow yourself more time so you don’t feel the stress of worrying about being late. Perhaps you need to slow down a bit and accept things as they come, especially those situations that are out of your control. Can you use this time as some sort of opportunity for yourself…listen to music you love and be glad that you have this time to really enjoy it, practice breathing in a conscious way, send out a desire that all those surrounding you in traffic reach their destination safely and peacefully. This is a chance to change your immediate, internal reality without being a victim of your external circumstances.

Perhaps you have a situation at work, or in a relationship, that keeps coming up. What could that be saying about you? Perhaps you need to confront a situation that you have been avoiding. Or maybe you need to dig a bit deeper and look at something totally unrelated to this immediate situation, which is just a trigger to bring your attention to something else. It is always interesting how we quite often are given opportunities that we ignore, but they keep returning.

As Pema ChÖdrÖn writes, “nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know.”  Why not be observant, and willing to get the lesson sooner rather than later so that you can move on to the next beautiful opportunity life will present you…but be ready to sit with it for a bit to see what is being shown, about yourself.

This is in no way a judgmental exercise about ourself, how we are “bad” or must change. Try to see this as an opportunity to tend to a garden, pulling out the weeds so that more attention can be given to the beauty of the flowers and plants. We are all beautiful gardens that often just need a bit of care to come to our full glory. Give yourself this time to sit and be with yourself, you may discover a treasure calling you, that is you.


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