After years of moving through my life at a fast and deliberate pace, I have spent the last couple of years discovering the power of meditation for clarity and purpose. When I discuss this with people, most respond with comments about how they could never get their mind to be still for that long, or how they don’t really have the time. Believe me, those were my exact feelings about it! Ironically, it is the very act of meditation that will train the mind to be still, so our job is to make that daily commitment and keep showing up. Thankfully, the benefits occur long before we ever perfect our practice!
We are complex creatures who can easily get so caught up in our own thoughts, experiences, and stories that we can soon get stuck in patterns that don’t serve us well or allow us full freedom of expression. Then there’s the busyness that consumes us until minutes turn into hours, days, or weeks spent reacting to life rather than consciously creating our soul purpose. Meditation is a way to reset ourselves from all of that, sweeping everything off the surface of that proverbial cluttered desk so we can begin anew with clearer intention. We accomplish more and our lives shift into proactive creation.
Please let me know if you find this helpful to you in beginning your own meditation practice, or share other effective meditation links below.
Do you ever find you’re getting sucked into seeing yourself as society views you? A lean body is success; excess weight is failure. Money in the bank marks success; low funds denote failure. Being involved with someone romantically is success, while being alone indicates failure. There’s no end to these examples, and even if we usually disagree with them, we may give them a little too much consideration during moments of weakness or insecurity. Once that begins, it’s a slippery slope downward until we struggle to even find hope in our gloom…even though all that’s really changed is our perception.
Since launching Journey of Possibilities, I’ve experienced setbacks, dry spells, times I felt more like I was moving in reverse than going forward, and even times others may have viewed as complete failures. I suppose my recent decision to cancel Illumination Houston 2013 may be seen that way by some. This roller coaster ride prompts me to blog about what I’ve been learning:
Success and failure are relative, and our social measures for that change every few decades. In truth, I’m highly successful in emotional and spiritual growth, happiness, and clarity. I’m more focused and know myself better than ever. My relationships are richer, and my experiences more fulfilling than I’d dreamed possible. Materialism has never given me the joy I’ve had this past year, although my increasing financial success will now be enjoyed with a new level of gratitude.
There is no shortage of people ready to criticize, discourage, redirect, and (mis)guide you. Ignore them; these are not successful people. Successful, happy people help others achieve the same. They do not belittle others to feel better about themselves. Insecure people do that.
Contrary to popular media, many good people exist. I’ve been supported and encouraged by complete strangers with such heart and spirit I feel honored to meet them. Rest assured this world is in many good hands, whether you hear about them on the news or not.
Every up and down strengthens us and shows us what is and isn’t important. We learn gradually to ‘let go and let God’, and gain much clarity around what we do and don’t have control over. We learn to work better with others and trust. Aren’t these beautiful lessons learned through ‘failure’?
Meditation and prayer are survival tools. When the judgments of the world begins to eat away at our confidence and strength, finding cracks in our armor and chipping away at us, meditation and prayer center and ground us again while showing us how meaningless people’s opinions and judgments really are. Following our Divine Path never misleads us, yet an earthly perspective suggests otherwise. Beware heeding that and changing course; the prize is likely around the next corner.
When we’re willing to let go of the big thing we have our eye on and trust God, we are then shown what a really big prize looks like! This does NOT happen until we have heard the call and taken our leap of faith.
Illumination Houston 2013 may be cancelled…for now…but Journey of Possibilities is becoming more successful every day. We are excited about our new projects and can’t wait to share all of this with you. Thanks for joining us on this Journey!
Earlier this week you were invited on our Facebook page to ask your Higher Self (the Soul within you thru every human incarnation) to write your lower self (you in this lifetime & body) a note about Who you really are…without your looks, achievements, career, hobbies, desires, dreams, feelings, or history. The root question was, who are you at the CORE and WHY do you believe you’re HERE? How did that go? Any surprises?
It surprised me how many of my initial responses were about my education, family, friends, dreams, lifestyle, looks, etc. Did you catch yourself doing that, too? We sure can get caught up in all the distraction and busy-ness of Earth School, can’t we? Anyway here’s my response as promised:
I am an old soul here for experiences that raise my consciousness and advance me in my Journey with the Divine.
How SIMPLE! Was that anything like what you ended up with? Amazing how all that we find so terribly important in our daily lives pales in comparison. Thankfully we are evolving through our relationships, or we wouldn’t get anything accomplished once we got down here and lost ourselves in the hustle and bustle of these complex social structures we’ve created. Isn’t it fun to get a fresh perspective on what really matters in your life?
That is what I do. I help people get a fresh perspective on situations in their lives where they keep getting stuck. If I can help you with that, please reach out. I don’t give answers, only clarity to find the best answers within. Have a great week!
How timely to finish reading the adventures of a young man faithfully following his deepest dreams in Paulo Cuehlo’s fabulous (and subtly, deeply spiritual) book The Alchemist just as we enter this powerful full moon in Virgo, sun in Pisces, and Mercury retrograde in Pisces. This is a time for inner reflection and healing from the lessons we are gaining here in earth school through our connection with all of life…a time to really go into our hearts to heal and integrate our own Life Paths.
We get so caught up exploring the emotions of our hearts and the expansion of our minds that it’s easy to forget why we’re here. As “spirits having a human experience” (de Chardin) we are clearly here for our own spiritual evolution. In that great journey which lasts hundreds of years and many incarnations, we can really get so caught up in this incredible Earth School we may miss many of the great lessons themselves. If instead we see our heart as the Divine Inner Compass, our mind as a Computer Processor, and our body as the beautiful living, breathing Vessel allowing us to have this experience, we can let our heart (compass) navigate us along the unique path for our own Highest Good without being so caught up in the why’s and how’s. The course of our Perfect Path has been lain, and our only responsibility is to follow it with much love and good intention in our hearts.
So how do we keep this heart pure and loving in the face of the challenging and sometimes truly horrific experiences we see and feel here? It is NOT by getting as busy as we can trying to make a difference, although that is beautiful when done with a heart full of love. It is NOT about the many, many ways we can busy or numb ourselves so that we don’t feel the experience, for emotion is the teacher that drives the soul lesson home within so we don’t have to go through it again! It IS turning to that inner spark of God within us each day in meditation to lift up all our cares and the suffering of this world to the great Master Healer. It IS spending time in quiet meditation connecting with the Divine as God speaks to us through our hearts. It IS humbly, boldly following the Path before us without worrying too much as to why and how, those are not our concern in this moment. It IS sending forth God’s Love and Light to the world each day to strengthen and comfort all in need. It IS silencing the busy mind of getting itself lost in the past and busily troubling itself over the future, so that we are in THIS moment, grateful for all that really IS right here and now.
Mercury in retrograde for three weeks makes a real mess of communication and technology, and this is not a time to start new projects or busy ourselves. Rather may this beautiful full moon Mother begin a time of greater inward reflection as we heal and grow along our life journeys.
Following my passions this past year__launching my own business, healing deep inner wounds, and keeping up with my house and financial responsibilities as a single woman along the way__has been a beautiful yet scary journey into my deepest insecurities. I quickly learned to give the reigns to God each morning, but by the next morning, or sometimes even the next hour, I’d discovered I’d taken them back again! How on earth does anyone move through all the doubts and fears our minds so busily create?
Meditating every morning helps tremendously. It’s so important in fact that we’d be foolish to consider it optional. If only for fifteen minutes a day to start, training our runaway minds to settle down is very important. If we do not calm that wild beast, it will run away with our dreams before we ever have a chance to pursue them. The mind wants to be in charge, yet its highest good to us is as a loyal servant to spirit. Meditation reinforces that.
It is equally essential to reprogram our silly negative mind chatter! Every time we hear ourselves thinking or saying that we can’t/don’t/won’t, we should tell our mind to ‘shut up in there’, and quickly replace that statement with a positive. Our thoughts create our reality, so we must diligently reprogram them to reflect the life we want, not simply the stories we’ve adopted over time.
It is really all about building new thought patterns and habits that will transform our insecurities so that we will become our own best friend! This video has other good tips:
Go after those dreams, and stick with it! Don’t be someone we hear about who quit just before success burst through. It does get easier, and you become a better person in the process. Know that you are absolutely worth it, and everyone will benefit as you confidently bring forth your gifts into the world!
Boy did I get stuck in the final weeks of 2012. As our energy levels were being raised further, I kept hearing how the old ways will no longer work and we must move into new ways of being. We will be shown almost instantaneously whether we are going the right direction or not. Believe me, I quickly realized I wasn’t!
The special event I’d created before Thanksgiving to carry me through the holidays was nonexistent. I’m not talking about lower sales than I’d expected. I’m saying I had NO sales! I’d done everything as I had with successful events, so I couldn’t understand what was wrong. This kind of ‘failure’ soon leads us into self-doubt, and when I continued asking Spirit for direction to co-create abundance, I was instead shown that I already had more abundance all around me than I appreciated. My home was full of items I rarely acknowledged or enjoyed, and I’d resumed squandering money on take-out food and other things without even really appreciating the food, nutrition, or my body. Going deeper into gratitude allowed me to see and release what I wasn’t really enjoying or appreciating, including many family heirlooms I’d inherited in the past. I could sell these beautiful items to others who really would love them, best honoring them and myself in the process. That’s exactly what I did, and that money carried me through my difficult time. To my delight, I’d learned about gratitude and abundance while also creating a wonderful new energy flow through my home rearranging and appreciating all I’d retained. I was reminded that stuff has energy, and releasing excess and all that we don’t really love and appreciate can create space for fresh energy and a new flow to a place.
Back to my events and income generation…at a pivotal time in this process, I was guided to watch a special by Andrrea Hess that really resonated with me. She discussed allowing more flexibility in our work to respond to the energy of the moment, and following Spirit guidance in every moment regardless of how brain/ego may judge the messages we are receiving. When I really opened after Andrrea’s webinar to seek deeper Spirit guidance about my events, I knew exactly when and were to create them and flow was restored that very week! I share this with you as a woman with a graduate degree who spent much of her life learning the processes that lead to success. It’s not easy to throw it all aside when Spirit guides us to do so, without any logical reason, and yet I’m here to tell you that is the only way to true abundant flow. All this education is great once we’re moving int he right direction, but we must stay in Spirit guidance or manifestation will definitely cease…and these days it is almost immediate!
I hope that sharing these experiences might help you recognize some aspect of your life in which a bit more gratitude or Spirit guidance can really open you up to increased Possibilities. 2013 is really going to be an amazing year!!
How do people react when you stand up for yourself or ask for what you want/need? I’ve been working on this a lot these past few months, and even more since my meditation retreat (see my video Why Meditation Causes Natural Healing). I’ve come to realize how much I freeze up when it comes to asking for what I want or need, and yet how eagerly I help everyone else do so. In fact, I have a new agreement with myself that I can only help others fulfill their needs and desires when I am fulfilling my own. I can only help others love themselves more when I am loving myself. It’s like the old adage that people in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones, only with a positive, self-love spin. If I don’t honor and respect myself, how can I honor and respect anyone else?
Speaking up for ourselves is so important, but that doesn’t make it easy. In fact, the only thing harder than speaking up for ourselves is not speaking up! When we do not speak up for ourselves, often it’s because we feel the relationship is more important than our issue. How silly! If we don’t speak up, what happens? Resentment builds, frustration builds, and then one day when we finally do speak up, we are fed up and really do damage the relationship. Isn’t it better to speak up right away in a calm, loving way? Our truth is our truth, and it isn’t likely to change. Anything based on less than our truth is merely an illusion, not a deep, loving, mutual relationship.
So then, how do speak our truth and do the least damage possible if we know they may not like what we’re going to say? Saying things as gently yet firmly as possible, coming from a place of love is a great start. It often helps to consider how it would feel if the person were going to say the same thing to us. How would we want to hear it? Saying things like “I feel…I need…I want…I love…” are indisputable truths about you, rather than critical statements about the other person that usually begin with, “You always…you never…why don’t you…”. This compassion helps as much as anything can, as does understanding that it’s not personal! No matter how much it may feel personal, their response is about them and where they’re at in life and growth. (See The Four Agreements for more on this).
Once we’ve had our difficult conversation, silence often follows. I’ve recently been reminded of how that silence can grow into misunderstanding. I understood it as withdrawal from my life, and it was actually an attempt to give me the quiet and space the other person thought I wanted. Lesson? Gently break the silence and observe what follows objectively. We may be quite surprised at what follows, but we won’t know if we don’t take a risk and go there. We both felt silly for our misunderstanding and peace is now restored.
The final piece is usually the hardest….patience! We have no control over how another person feels after we speak our truth. They deserve the same time to process what has been said and feel their way through it that we had in developing our approach and timing initially. They may want/need hours, days, or even weeks. Eventually, one of two things will happen. Either they will get past their hurt, resolve any anger, feel your love and return to an even stronger relationship based on reality and truth, or they won’t. The deepest and most genuine relationships heal stronger than they were; less authentic relationships not intended for our path any longer show themselves as longer true for us and move out of our lives.
Often as we grow deeper in self-love and rediscover/use our voices, those in our lives who are used to (often unconsciously) molding us to theirwill become uncomfortable with these changes. They need time to get used to the shift and then ultimately decide if they wish to share a more mutually respectful love with us or move on to someone more easily manipulated to their desires. This is painful to recognize, I won’t lie, but these are the changes we must allow to unfold, standing in the comfort of endless Divine Love and our own self-love to comfort us through the transition. Thankfully, beautiful new relationships also appear in our lives that reinforce the amazing feeling of giving and receiving healthy, respectful love. When we allow this new joy as well as any pain that may surface to unfold, we transform our relationships within and without, finally embracing authentic connection and joy. This is a gift we can only give to ourselves; if not now, when?
Have you had an experience like this? Maybe you’ve tried this but met with challenges? Please share your comments, experiences, and ideas with us as we Journey together in this amazing experience of life. Sending you Divine Love and Light!
Walking with a handful of U.S. tourists behind our native guide through the Amazon rainforest to experience macaws and parrots visiting a salt lick in their native habitat was deeply moving. As my feet navigated the trail in and out of muddy places, my legs often sank deep down into the soft earth. Each time, I felt some of my confusion, busyness, and modern life dissolve into the forgiving soil. With each step I felt ever more cleansed and reunified with my deepest self and truth. What began as awkward footing soon grew in certainty until I was able to balance myself without handholds returning across the bridge pictured here. My nerves, so frazzled that morning from lack of sleep and the painful past experiences that had arisen the night before in ceremony, were now steady. I felt rooted in this place.
Divine Light and energy entered through the top of my head and flowed so easily down through every area of my body, including my midriff (cleared the prior night after almost four decades of being blocked by emotional trauma). Energy flowed through my body, down my legs, and out my feet into the earth with each step. When I felt uncertain, I had merely to pause and reground myself…like a tree rooting itself…and then I could gently proceed. I was effortlessly aware of an ant ‘freeway’ making its way busily down the trail below me carrying leaves, and I avoided trampling them. Moths, mosquitoes, and many other insects landed on me, honoring my silent request not to bite me and my choice not to wear poisonous repellents on my skin when visiting their home. Birds came close and exchanged long glances with me when I was in a quiet and isolated place, distanced from the others chatting noisily, snapping their photos, and otherwise loudly disrespecting the peaceful environment.
Occasionally I reached gently to the trunk of an ancient tree, sending forth love and thanking it for steadying me along my walk. I assured each that some humans still honor and respect them and their wisdom, and thanked them for being so forgiving as we remove more and more of their kind in a seemingly insatiable appetite for consumption. I commiserated that this is a game with no winners.
Pachamama and natives throughout South America implore us to awaken to the clarity of our irreversible planetary destruction. They urge a more symbiotic coexistence with nature that can bring about deeper and longer lasting joy in humanity.
We cannot all board a plane to the jungle or feel this experience. However, returning ourselves to the sights, sounds, feelings, and smells of nature is the easiest way to awaken the same awareness no matter where we are. Within each of us is a dormant dreamer lulled unconscious by years of modern programming. Allowing her/him to slowly awaken and hearing our deepest dreams and truths is where all hope for our future really exists.
Throughout my conversations this week, a recurring topic has been the beliefs we hold as truths in our lives and whether they serve us well. Sometimes we’re aware of them, like when we say we’ll never meet the person of our dreams because all the good men/women are already taken, and other times, they are ‘shadow beliefs’ that run in the background programming us without our awareness. For me, one of those has been the hidden belief from childhood that there’s not enough (fill-in-the-blank: food, money, time, energy, love…) and there may never be enough. Today I want to impress upon you the difference it can make in every day of your life, in every way in your life, to root these out, shine a bright light on them, and see how and if they hold up to careful scrutiny.
Let’s play out how this has looked in something I’ve been working on so I can better explain what I mean. My belief that there is never enough wasn’t anything I was particularly conscious of, even though I would actually say things like, “there’s no money for that”, “I/you/they can’t afford that”, “what if we run out”, etc. For me to continue holding that belief would mean that I would not be able to truly own that God and the Universe are generous, and abundance is just as possible for me as anyone. Maybe the fallacy of this is obvious to you, but trust me that it wasn’t to me. One interesting things about our core beliefs is just that: they are often obviously false to others! In my reality, asking for things and accepting things has been hard because that didn’t fit my core belief. I have been unable to actually ENJOY my time, money, etc. because I’m always worrying it is going to disappear and there will be no more. This belief actually came to me from a loving parent who had experienced it to be true and wanted me to be cautious and frugal so I’d be safe and guarded. However, it didn’t come into me as a LESSON someone else had learned that MIGHT serve me well to consider. It came into me as a FACT that I NEEDED to live as truth. Even learning about the Law of Attraction (from teachers like Mike Dooley) and its biblical basis for hundreds of years (from Florence Scovel Shinn) had not really eradicated this belief because , I had not taken this into my heart and healed that belief. Until I did that, nothing could shift.
There is no time better than the present to really look at the area of your life in which you most urgently want to see a shift, and get very still and clear about what beliefs (those you see easily and what may underlie them) you hold that may not be universal truths, but rather ‘facts’ you learned from a specific experience you had that may or may not ever recur, or as a lesson through someone else. By seeing these as situations and not universal truths, you can weigh the price of holding that belief as truth against the possibility of releasing it and replacing it with any other selection from the Universe of all possibilities.
This post is inspired by my own continuing Journey to Self, and as a key part of my visualization activity and vision board creation for the first Journey of Possibilities nature retreat next month. By the way, there are still some openings to attend for ladies who may be ready for a day of rejuvenation and some activities that will help you take your life to the next level. Whether or not you are able to attend, spend a little time this spring shining light in the dark corners of your deepest Self to see what lingers there that might be brought out, reexamined, and shifted. A brighter day awaits you on the other side!