Changes

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However it’s brought to our attention, I believe there will be points along our journey when change is necessary. If we are adamant against change then we are denying our own growth. There we remain, stilted and stagnant. And even when we try to use our logical mind to support our resistance, we know deep inside that we are subjecting ourselves to a life that’s not fulfilling its potential.

There are times in my life when, all of my own accord, I readily release my worries and follow the flow of change. And then there are times when I try to remain seated behind the walls of resistance, thinking myself safe and smart in doing so. The former, almost always, leads me down an easier path. The latter generally requires the Universe to make my life so miserable that I literally feel pushed out from behind the wall.

Knowing all of this as I do one would think I would never fall prey to throwing up resistance of any kind, and yet that is not the case. I, like many of you, abhor the fear that encompasses certain changes. Inevitably, fear is always trying to show me why the change is necessary if I’m to grow into a fuller expression of myself or enjoy a long-awaited for dream, Even so, my reaction is to analytically process matters, then harden instead of release.

As humans we always want to know what rests around the corner. We want to know if our decisions are one’s that will bring about the outcomes we want most to see. Truthfully, faith says you must live without knowing in advance. Faith says to trust first, then you will see. But I must warn you, don’t accidentally trust your fear as a harbinger that change is not good and necessary. Trust that fear is revealing your deepest concerns; not so you’ll be a prisoner to them, but so you’ll identify the truth behind the fear, heal, then let go; growing stronger and wiser from the process.

If possible, dear reader, the best road is always the former; the one where you listen to your heart. It won’t lead you astray. Your heart will always take you in the direction of your purpose, your bliss, and those smiles that seem to spring from nowhere. But even if you have accidentally passed that road and are now faced with a road more daunting, the same support that showed you the easier road by way of promptings from the heart is with you now. Instead of sandals you may need to wear boots to walk it, but you’ll be fine. The two roads take you to the same place, if you allow it.

In many ways I believe we create our fate. Perhaps its our higher self that drops the dream within our mind or causes our heart to spring to life, but it is for us to make the change.

Sane

Reflective Surfaces

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These last few years have been a hike in the wilderness of finding myself. It has been treacherous. It has been glorious. I’ve curled up in caves. I’ve stood atop mountains with arms held wide. My deepest truth throughout it all: Love is all there is. Often we look outward for such a thing. Yet, the most important love is found within.

Loving from such a place is heaven on earth. Not because it’s always easy. But because it is exquisitely divine. So, for those considering Valentine’s Day I want to say: Love you. Take a moment and access your life. Ask yourself the deeper questions. Make the changes necessary for you to feel love – inside and out.

Tonight, I’m sharing the blog I wrote two years ago. I won the WordPress Award for this blog. But I won’t lie, I felt wretched the night I wrote it. Yet, the voice of spirit spoke. And I wrote what was said. Love is God. Love is Life. Love is all there is. So love you.

Life reflects our beliefs. So, remember, believe you deserve the best. Believe you are beautiful. Believe you are worthy. I can assure you, you are irreplaceable. And if no one sees this within you – maybe it’s because you don’t yet see it within you.

Love is what makes life worth living. Love is what makes us smile during the worst of times, and causes our heart to fill with unspeakable joy. Love gives us courage. Bring love into your world. Bring it into your heart. You can do this. Say it with me, “Yes, I’m scared often. But I love me. I love this motley mix that gets turned sideways at times. I love my darkness. I love my light. And I love me. I love my dreaming heart. I love my trembling hands. I love the all of me. And I deserve to feel good. ”

Sane

Below, unchanged, the post that brought so many of you to me. Thank you, dear readers. I love you.

Loved By Me

February 13, 2013 § 209 Comments

If, like me, you find yourself alone on Valentine’s Day, please do as I do – treat yourself well. As the spotlight shines down and reveals that you have yet to end your day looking into the eyes of your life’s love, or even that of a mere lover, use the day to look into yourself. And when you do, please do so with kindness. Fall in love with you.

It almost seems like a superfluous concept – to fall in love with one’s self. And yet, it is your self that will follow you wherever you go. It is yourself that will talk to you when no one is there. Your self will damn you. Your self will love you. The belief you have in yourself can cause you to crumble or it can cause you to reach unprecedented heights. The energy and perspective you put into you – you will receive from you in the form of inner knowing, conviction and peace.

On this day, instead of giving free rein to a mind that critiques and reminds us of our failures, come to peace with those moments when the outcome for which you had most hoped didn’t manifest. Think about giving yourself credit for having survived something that, at the time, felt like death. When you look in the mirror, instead of seeing the effects of time and stress, see a face that has viewed some of the ugliest of circumstances, and yet can radiantly shine when caught up in laughter. And when you look down at your body, try not to see those things that cause you disappointment. Try to remember that your body is giving you it’s very best, dependent upon what you are giving it. Furthermore, if your body is like mine, it has moved through hell and back, perhaps more than once. And when the time comes that you are confronted with your life’s love, they will see your beauty – because doing so is inherent to the nature of who they are. A divine love is divinely given, and thus sees the divine in us even when we falter and struggle to see it for ourselves.

Go easy on you. I would recommend that you take every day to treat yourself well. But if not, then please use tomorrow as a celebration of the love you are cultivating for you. Making peace with yourself. Loving your many attributes, thoughts, hopes and dreams is the beginning of the most important relationship one can have – the one we have with ourself. You will be with you during your greatest successes, your deepest disappointments and upon your final day. And if you are blessed to meet up with your life’s love, you’ll then be coming from a place not of insecurity, but of acceptance. You’ve accepted you, which will allow you to accept them.

I won’t deny that the favorable ending for tomorrow would be in front of a fire or wrapped in the arms of one’s lover. That would be my chosen route. But instead, I will endeavor to treat myself well. I will remind myself of my own beauty. My triumphs. My successes. My gifts. I will also spend the day spoiling me as I would wish to be spoiled by a partner. I will stop off and enjoy the taste of something delectable; it’s a fair assumption dark chocolate will be involved. I will peruse my favorite boutiques and I will allow my body to get pampered. Most of all, I will go easy on me. And my hope is that you go easy on you. Whether you are loved by many, loved by one or only loved by you – never forget – you are quite special.

Sane

Rebel Spirit

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I am blessed; not because of the things that’ve come easily into my life or because things have always fallen into place. I am blessed because I’ve come to the point in my existence where I can see the larger picture. I know who I am.

I can see why those who support me have been brought into my life. And I can see why those who try to tear me down have entered in. I have come to the point where the work of my soul sits front and center within my mind’s eye.

Recently I stood before someone who took delight in attempting to throw me off-balance. In that moment, I felt my personal power slip from my hand. I would be lying, dear reader, if I said it didn’t sting. And although I didn’t play into the moment, the moment stayed with me for days. I prayed. Then I allowed myself to ask the questions that needed asking.

While we are busy paying our bills and turning the channel on the tv, Life remains busy trying to honor the requests of our soul. And our soul wants to experience, evolve and heal those things within us that have not been healed. This work takes lifetimes for the soul. Never once is it held against us, though. The mind keeps score, the soul does not. The soul stays steady on its journey, and silently beckons to the universe to bring another opportunity our way. The soul knows life gets better when we heal and expand. New doors are opened. New joys are found. Things we never believed were within our grasp suddenly land in our hand. The soul knows this. The mind, does not.

I am thankful for this person who mocked my sensitive soul. I am sensitive, no doubt. I am sensitive to the ways of this world and the gentle energies that surround others. I am strong enough to consider this a gift. This took decades. I spent much of my life feeling less than due to this gift. And this person touched upon that. However, this person reminded me of one of the reasons why my heart continues to beat – to remind you – to never hand over your power. The complete body of my spiritual work, all my writings, and projects have always been marked by one similarity: reminding you of your worth. I will never tell you its easy. But I will tell you that within you rests the strength to claim who you are. But first, you must know who you are.

Let me introduce you to the words that are yours to own, if you so choose: I am worthy. I am more than enough. The Divine rests within me. I am strong, even when I feel weak. I am guided by my inner source. And that source is part of the larger source that guides the waves, the stars and growth of leaves on a once snow-covered barren tree. I have a right to be happy; to feel love; to give love. I am worthy. I am beautiful. I am enough. 

When I looked at this person I saw the work his soul was attempting to do in him, but I also saw the work my soul was attempting to do in me.

Never hand over your power, dear reader. No one can take it from you unless you release it and hand it over. Never believe yourself to be less than. And most of all – remember – you are not alone. And if you don’t believe it, I’ll be around. And I will remind you.

Sane

Stepping Forward

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I ended last year writing the post, Fuck It. The End; the second most read post on this site. I started 2014 lifting anchor and setting sail. I’m still sailing, dear reader. But doing so on relatively calm seas.

As I float along I’ve looked back over the year. I’ve given careful thought to where I’ve come up short and where I stood firmly within the shoes of my Higher Self. As its meant to do, my view of Life has grown clearer, and with greater understanding. It is with more wisdom that I see how Life has presented me with many experiences that held potential for my growth. In each moment rested an opportunity for all players involved to grow spiritually and as a human beings. It was and is not my job to control the responses made by others. My job was, and always will be, to give careful consideration to how I respond. My work rests with me; it all ripples outward from there.

Even now, Life has presented me with an opportunity to further align myself with God, and All That Is. The closer in alignment I am to God the further my soul expands, the greater my life becomes. I feel better when I live from a place where my center-point is closely seated to God. God is unconditional love, compassion and understanding. Generally, when I stray I notice I’m filled with angst, doubt and fear. There have been times over this last year when my mind overshadowed my soul and I stepped away from my inner-place of knowing. Those moments were not wrong. I can still cultivate good from them as long as I allow myself to learn from them.

Take a moment, dear reader, and think about some of the moments that have come your way over the last year. See yourself. Now, look at the version of you that stepped forward.  Maybe you haven’t always liked how you have shown up. Maybe now, with reflection, you see how you sold yourself short, compromised yourself or another. Maybe now, with time granting you objectivity, you see things differently. It’s okay. Just honor yourself enough to grow and learn from what you see. The value from those moments isn’t lost because they have come and gone. Truthfully, those moments remain because they remain within you. The energy exists, and always will. Now, are you going to use that energy for good, honoring yourself, God and All That Is. Or are you going to use that energy to further separate yourself from God and All That Is.

Right now, today, you have the power to completely change everything. It is never too late.

My hope is that the upcoming year continues to provide you the opportunities to grow. And it will. My deeper hope is that you use those moments to grow your love, compassion and understanding for yourself, and others. This doesn’t mean hugging those you loathe. They are loathsome for a reason. Perhaps they are there to give you the resistance by which you learn to stand stronger within yourself, and how to do so with grace. Maybe you will experience the one that makes your heart swell and sing. They’ve come your way for a reason too. Maybe so you learn to trust and allow it in. Perhaps things come your way bringing you joy, thereby indicating the direction in which your soul was meant to go. Likewise, things may come your way that fill you with emptiness and hurting to indicate you’re straying from your center-point. These opportunities exist. What matters is how you respond. What version of you shows up. When your name is called, who steps forward.

So with that, let me end this first post of 2015 having reminded you that you are not here by chance. You are here so that you can use all of these many moments that Life brings your way for guidance and to grow, not just as a person, but as a soul.

Sane

Just Checking

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Life is troubling at times. One doesn’t have to look far to see those busy manipulating for selfish gain. It could easily cause one to wonder as to the reward in walking an honest road. What’s in it for those who stand in truth? Everything.

Some people think God tests us. And maybe the energy that is Life does. I prefer not to look at it that way. Instead, I feel as evolving souls, the Universe checks in on us. Opportunities come our way during which we are given the chance to respond. In those moments – who shows up? One standing in love, compassion and truth? Or, one cloaked in fear and selfishness? Either we choose to expand our soul or we stay right where we are.

And as easy as it would be for me to say that there is a right answer, correct choice or preferred person the Universe is hoping to see – I don’t believe so. The energy that is Life always gives us another chance, and in time sends a similar opportunity our way. Either we choose in a way that brings us closer into alignment with All That Is or not. We are presented with the opportunity – we make the choice. It’s up to us.

For some its easier to take the low road. And I could damn them upside down and around, but it’s not for me to do. They pick the road and pace of their journey, and I choose mine.

As the soul expands and the mind grows more wise, standing in truth is the only place that feels right. As a great teacher once said, “Do unto others as you would have done to you.” Doing so requires truth. It also requires courage. The good thing is, I’m convinced the same energy that holds the stars in the sky, transforms tiny seeds into towering trees and causes babies to form their first smile, is the energy that will support you along the way. You are aligning yourself with the energy of Love. And Love is truth. Love means loving one’s self enough to never give others less than what we would give ourselves. Dear reader, life reflects back to us more than our actions; it reflects who we are inside. Be Love. Be Truth. You’ll get it back. That’s the reward.

Sane

Go Slow. Breathe.

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I enjoyed teaching yoga. It was only for a brief time, yet what it gave me I possess to this day; the ability to better read people and understand the body’s role in our spiritual journey.

Reading people isn’t easy. We aren’t like comic strips that can be scanned at a glance. It takes a good deal of knowledge to truly understand another; especially considering we don’t easily show our pages. Standing before a class teaching yoga pose after yoga pose and breath work on top of breath work allowed me to view people from a unique angle. Not all instructors do this. I have to imagine the greater part of me knew I needed this particular schooling, so although I was the instructor, I was also was brought there to learn.

What I learned, in part, was that we never can set aside our body. It travels with us wherever we go. Yet, it’s so often mistreated and overlooked. We take it for granted. However, not only is the body one of the primary filters by which energy moves through us it’s also part of the foundation upon which we stand. If you don’t understand what I mean, consider the times when you’ve tried to work or pray or carry on with friends while ill. Your foundation won’t hardly allow it.

Also, the workings of the human body provides us a beautiful metaphor that mirrors the workings of the soul: softening allows expansion. Rigidity hardens and constricts.

Time and time again I watched as a student dropped their mat quickly and pushed hard and fast into the stretch. My eyes would fall on them and I’d smile while telling the class that the muscle won’t respond well to force or quick movements; one must go slow and breathe into the stretch to get where you’re wanting to go; give it time and dedicated practice. And thus is true with the soul.

It’s my belief we are here, on this planet, for the purpose of expanding our soul, its wisdom, its level of compassion and its grace;  none of which comes quickly, but all of which, when allowed, provides us a better foundation upon which to stand and a more open filter through which the energy of life can move through us.

Open. Soften. Breathe. This is the way of a healthy muscle. This is the way of a knowledgable mind, and this is the way of an expanded, wise soul.

You will feel when something causes you to instinctually harden. You know when your body goes tight. Sometimes through fear, sometimes through anger. If this is happening to your body, please know that your soul can not expand if the vessel its using to experience this life is hardened and constricted. This does not mean one has to be a yogi master. But one must have reverence for their body, and treat it well. Although the soul does not live within the confines of the body – it uses the body to move through this life experience. The two must be in alignment. Keep the body open, soft and flexible. The soul moves and expands more easily.

Those things for which we have reverence and treat with kindness tells a good deal about who we are, internally and externally. The ways in which we move through life are like sentences on a page: readable, and almost always revealing who we are on the inside, your personal story line. What we fear and what we hold with value. Where we’ve grown and where we’re currently being schooled.

So take care of your body. Stop ignoring it. It won’t go away. Life won’t go away. How you treat these things often reflects how you treat your inner being.

Sane

The Choice is Ours

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I don’t believe we ever compartmentalize our emotions or life experiences. I understand why so many make this attempt, believing in a successful outcome. But each and every life experience, and the subsequent emotions that live within that moment, become a part of who we are – like it or not. So I say, sit with the experience. Work through the emotion. Allow it time to heal, then release it. Even then, those emotions do not dissipate as the words might lead us to believe.

Emotions are energy. Energy never disappears, nor remains stagnant; regardless of how strong our compartmentalizing abilities may be. Instead, over time they permeate every cell in our body. Even when we believe they are completely stuffed away and hidden from view, their impact on us is life changing. They reshape our view of each and every thing that comes before us. And yes, those who are perceptive enough see the very thing we hope is kept from view.

But when we allow the emotion its due, when we refrain from reacting, and instead sit with the emotion, processing it, learning from it, allowing it air – it heals. Then what is left is something that adds to our being instead of takes. The emotion, that when compartmentalized skewed our view, now becomes an emotion that deepens our take of the world.

I must warn you, the mind does not like to sit with an emotion other than those that are pleasant and bright. Our logical mind will approve to us having surgery to heal physical damage. Doing so is logical, it says. It makes sense. Your emotional being requires the same. Painful, negative emotions metastasize if not treated, much in the same way as a cancer cell does within the physical body. We would never dream of ignoring a cancer cell; concluding we’ll be just fine. Yet, we do, when it comes to our emotions.

As you move through your life, take the time to tend to your emotional health. Close your eyes, then look within. How many boxes of unfinished business do you have blocking your way. Hurts from others. Hurts from your youth. Events that ended in failure.

These boxes carry a two-fold problem: they block those that love you from getting in, and they block you from every getting out.

You may ask then, how these events could possibly add to your experience. That’s easy. Within every experience carries the potential to expand your soul; to broaden and deepen or restrict and constrict. It’s up to you. It’s always been up to you. I know many people who have been through the worst of the worst. Moments in time that altered everything; moments so crushing it could have shut them down completely, causing them to live a constricted life of fear and resentment and hurt. Instead, they chose to allow it to expand their compassion and deepen their understanding. They sat with this complex, evolving, evolving emotion, sometimes for years, and learned, and saw, and grew.

I’ve had quite a few hurts and events that have brought me to my knees. But after a time of recovery, I expanded and opened – letting the energy flow. Those moments have strengthened me, and softened me; strengthened my faith, softened my compassion for others. That choice was mine. We’ve got one shot at this life. Dig in, live it. The choice is yours.

Sane

For those who are curious, this blog was written while listening to: Into the Mystic by Van Morrison, Drift Away by Dobie Gray, Home by Phillip Phillips, Dirty Paws by Of Monsters and Men and Seasons by Future Islands.