Last week I gave you simple wisdom for returning to a state of peace.
This week I want to acknowledge that even "the best" of us struggle.
What separates those who prevail, and even come out "better" on the other side, from those who do not?
I've said this many times and in many ways...we become what we think. And what we think IS our perspective. So in effect, we become our perspective.
Another way to understand this is to think about the story of the 2 wolves.
Have you heard it? Here it is in brief:
There are 2 wolves.
One wolf is full of despair and darkness.
The other wolf is full of hope and light.
Which wolf succeeds?
The one who gets fed.
Got it? Which one are you feeding?
Let me know what you notice :))))
On Saturday during our protection workshop I realized something rather profound.
It occurred to me that as we start to awaken to our life, whether we embark on a spiritual quest, or simply begin to see with new eyes, often the person we need to protect our-self from most is....our self. Yes!! Shocking to some.
Yet, I have found unless I know myself fully---the triggers/hot spots as well as the sweet places, I am more open to absorbing/taking on the dark energies. Know what I mean?
This is one reason I advocate meditation for everyone as a daily practice (even if only 5 minutes).
Why? To get to know our-self and therefore be able to discipline the unruly mind.
Once we get to know who we are, then we have an advantage.
How so? We can manipulate our own thoughts (which are energy) in the direction we want. Thoughts become words, words become actions, actions become habits...and habits make our life.
Who cares? Well, if you want to be in charge of your life, you must be able to direct your attention...mental, energetic...etc. You must be in charge!! Not your mind, your mom, spouse, boss, etc.
As we embark on this journey of knowing thyself, often it requires many cycles of letting go/release. My shamanic mind says, the letting go and releases are mini deaths of the old self: ways of thinking, doing, being, seeing, etc. Little deaths so we may live our life fully and when the "final" death comes, we will be free and unafraid...because we have truly lived.
Having said all this, the New Moon happens to be today!
If you are interested in a simple New Moon Ritual to release, try this:
1. Light a candle. Disconnect from all distractions.
2. Take a few minutes to meditate / write about what you wish to release. For example, feelings of unworthiness or fear...old patterns that no longer serve...
3. Say out loud as many times as you need to "I release all thought forms, words, actions and energies of unworthiness and/or fear".
4. When you feel "complete", say "thank you", and blow out the candle.
Notice what shifts over the next 2 weeks. Keep a journal.
Repeat this process as often as needed, varying what needs to be released.
PS: Save the Date Thursday, Oct 5, 2017.
I will be hosting a Full Moon Ritual @ BWS. To stay in the know, email me.
Last week I encouraged exploration into YOU, also known as self-discovery with the question: do you know who you are?
What are you noticing?
This week I want to keep it real simple. As you continue to make the most important investment of your life-- exploration into yourself, I offer these 2 quotes as a way to help you return to peace...when all else seems to "fail".
"When you really pay attention, everything is your teacher." -Ezra Bayda
"Gratitude as a discipline involves a conscious choice. I can choose to be grateful even when my emotions and feelings are still steeped in hurt and resentment. It is amazing how many occasions present themselves in which I can choose gratitude instead of a complaint." -Henri Nouwen
Last week invited you to play with another concept: do what makes you feel good!
How is it going? Do you know what makes you feel good?
This week I encourage exploration into YOU, also known as self-discovery with the question: do you know who you are?
In my coaching practice, this question is one of the first things I ask clients. Do you know what I usually hear as the reply? Prolonged silence. Then, " I don't know" which leads to, "I am a parent, spouse, worker", etc.
These replies lead to my next series of questions that do not include our roles and responsibilities. Those questions lead to replies such as, "I am a lover, peace maker..." See where I am going? It's beyond what we do in the world.
So, why do I ask you this question? In my experience, knowing who we are beyond what we do gives us peace when our roles change and shift. Who are we when our children grow up and no longer "need" us the way they use to? Are we able to let them go or do we hold them too tight because of our neediness? This can also happen in intimate relationships when one person is growing and healing and the other is seemingly "not". What then? Do we stay? Or go? Or learn new ways of being? Hmmm....
And, who are we when we retire, change jobs, move, get divorced, experience loss of any kind?
These are deeply powerful life transitions that naturally shape the foundation of who we "think" we are. It's not a bad thing. It's simply something to be aware of so when we find ourselves lost in the fog of doing life, we are able to return being life.
How do we return to being life? By asking "Who Am I" without all the labels.
And by taking the class, reading the book, getting the support we need to navigate the new territory.
In exploring who we are, and perhaps more importantly, who we are becoming, we must allow our defenses to ease a bit. We must stop fighting with our self!!!
Fighting our way back to who we have been is depressing, dis-empowering and won't work. Instead, the empowering path forward is the one where we accept who we are.
The past several months have been a time of major transition for me on all levels so I am having lots of practice at this!! When I accept who I am, and who I am becoming: a change maker, instigator, provoker of truth, passionate lover, peace maker, risk taker, intellect, inspired action oriented person, then peace prevails. And yes, I also accept the challenging/shadow parts of my personality which also make me who I am: impatient, controlling, complicated, judging, highly sensitive. These shadow parts create the polarity that makes me be me. I can't "delete" them. I can only be aware of them and balance them out. Many of you are nodding :)
When I resist who I am because I am afraid to be myself or I am afraid of making someone else uncomfortable, I feel depressed and dis-empowered. Trying to fit into someone else's idea of me, quite frankly, has not ever worked. Yet at times I have lapsed and fallen into that dance since I am human too. Sometimes reality bites and yes, loss hurts. Bad. And yet...
In the dizziness that comes with big change, having the courage to be who we are ultimately puts us exactly where we need to "be" in order to "do" that which we were born for. It's freeing my friends!!
We step into the fog and eventually move through it...until the next phase of self-discovery returns and the fog rolls in yet again. It's a cycle we experience often when we accept.
A final note in case my writing isn't (yet) clear enough. A movie, "The Last Word" with Shirley MacLaine speaks so beautifully to this idea of how much of our life we spend fighting who we are to realize at the end, it is exactly who we are that was the most blessed gift to those around us and to our selves.
Perhaps the key is to realize this before "the end", you know? Or perhaps not? Some of us, perhaps myself at times, thrive on the polarity and the dance of dark and light. Meaning, my challenging traits of wanting to be in control enable me create massive movement in the direction I desire. Not good or bad. Simply is...and I am aware of it.
Know thyself. Be true to you.
Upcoming Events to Explore YOU!
Em-Path Workshop, Bronxville, NY on THIS Saturday, Sept 16th 2017
Sweet Retreat: Tulum, Mexico, October 31st-November 5th, 2017
Last week I shared a simple and practical paradigm for understanding what it takes to move from thinking about something to taking inspired action toward that something: Rest Root Rise
This week I invite you to play with another concept: do what makes you feel good!
What do I mean?
Many of us force ourselves to "do" things that don't make us feel good. Something or someone else is the CEO of our life. You know what I mean?
We engage in behaviors that either don't give us energy or even worse, dis-tress and drain us. These "behaviors start with our thoughts and end with our actions (or non-action). It happens in all areas of our life from relationships and personal health to hobbies and career.
Why/How does it happen?
Many reasons. Often it's because we have seen others "suffer" and perhaps we feel it's how life ought to be. Maybe we don't know what makes us feel good!! And sometimes it's simply that we don't value our self enough to find out and promote our self to CEO of our life!! In short, we are afraid to fully be our self.
Doing what makes us feel good is actually so simple most of us miss it.
I am a prime example of missing it at times
How? My tendency to over do: over think, over analyze, over complicate; and sometimes the over doing is me putting someone or something else in front of what makes me feel good.
Are you relating?
While this way of being has certainly reaped its rewards for me, it doesn't last and it really does not make me feel good!
A good example of this happened over the summer. Some background-- I love teaching group yoga. Since splitting my time between NY and IL earlier this year, the logistics have been a bit challenging and I haven't been teaching as much. I miss it! It makes me feel good. So, after exhausting myself trying to figure out how to teach in one place every week, I came up with a short term solution. Teach yoga every Sunday on the beach in NY. I knew I would be at the beach July and August and I was able to commit. I decided to make it free, and spread it by word of mouth. All that was needed: beach towel, water bottle, good vibes...simple. Well, it was an amazing experience (see picture above). Teaching yoga on the beach combines everything I love!!! Hence the upcoming Tulum Retreat with me :)
What to do?
Reflect on an area of your life that doesn't feel good. Perhaps you are working really hard or feel dis-engaged from your work and you want/need to take time off yet feel unworthy/afraid to ask, etc.
Perhaps the time off will reap big rewards like re-connecting you to your life purpose. Or maybe you simply need rest and relaxation to feel renewed. Whatever it is, go for it.
Commit to doing what makes you feel good in one area of your life. It doesn't have to be a big thing. Start small if that is your comfort zone. And like me, maybe it's a short term solution that will lead to a longer term one. The key is to choose something, one thing, and do it. Remember, the universe rewards action.
Watch, "Hello My Name is Doris". This movie made me feel so good!! It was a reminder that whenever we say, "Impossible", what we really mean is "I'm possible". Believe in you, I do!!