Tuesday, July 29, 2014

What To Do If The Shoe Doesn't Fit

Since taking a sabbatical a few months ago, I've been kicking around ideas and trying to get clear on what's next for me.  A few ideas have been very intriguing but things haven't quite lined up yet.

Admittedly, they may not have lined up because it's not what I think it should look like.  So, I'm trying to be more mindful of letting go of pre-conceived notions and simply allowing events to unfold.  And, I take a few steps in the direction that my heart's desire says I should go, waiting to see where this path will lead.

In the meantime, as I say yes to everything that comes my way, I'm starting to feel that my commitments are stacking up.  And, with my personality, it's not a great fit.  I start to feel edgy and not clear on which obligation I should tackle first.

The funny part about this is I have been taking small breaks for some rest and relaxation.  In fact, we just got back from the Napa Valley area yesterday.  My issue?  I've been carrying my to-do list with me wherever I go.  So, while I might be in Napa, I'm still logging hours toward things I've promised to do.

Here's the cool thing I'm learning from this.  Not every thing that I do during my day means it's something that is "meant to be".

What I'm noticing is that if I don't consciously claim what I want, sometimes what shows up in my life feels "not quite right" after I've spent some time working on it.  It's almost like wearing shoes that are too small or too big.  The shoes might be workable but you can also end up with blisters from the rubbing and chaffing.

Knowing this, I've decided that if the project or task I've committed to doing starts to feel like an ill-fitting shoe, I'm going to return it - just like I would do with a real pair of shoes.

Then, I can look at what DIDN'T work and consciously make a better choice, believing that the Universe is always conspiring for my good.  That frees me to leave some commitments behind and creates the space for a more balanced approach to how I spend my time.

The balance also allows me to remain open to new ideas and new possibilities for my life as I get a better mental picture for what I want.  I absolutely love this path that I'm on and I celebrate my journey every day, in part because I'm given so many opportunities to choose from.

And - I feel like I'm gaining the courage to live a little, trusting that something within me knows when the shoe is the perfect fit!

So, where in YOUR life are you wearing shoes that you need to return?

Today, I set the intention to step forward in life with confidence, knowing that I can always make a new choice if something is not a good fit.

"If day by day we have a greater understanding and a clearer concept, 
if daily we are realizing more of Truth and applying It in our actions, 
then we are on the right path and eventually we shall be made free." 
~Ernest Holmes, The Science of Mind

"You are led through your lifetime by the inner learning creature, the playful 
spiritual being that is your real self.  Don't turn away from possible futures 
before you're certain you don't have anything to learn from them.  
You're always free to change your mind and choose
 a different future, or a different past."  
~Richard Bach, Illusions

Affirmative Prayer:
Settling into the now, into this moment, there is a spark of recognition of the life of Infinite Intelligence.  It spreads like wildfire, coursing through all that is with passion and with purpose.  It is all knowledge and surpasses understanding, a Divine Wisdom that is perfection and grace, beauty and joy.

As I sit in the stillness, there is a connection with this Intelligence that opens my eyes to the Truth of who I am.  I am perfect love.  I am perfect peace.  I am bathed in the brightness of a Source that reveals the unlimited wonder of Spirit.  And I am carried forward, in faith, surrendering to this Presence within that guides and sustains and directs my life.

Accepting that the power of the Universe is within me, anything that has held me back from my perfect path disappears.  I now see that all the answers I seek are available every moment of the day.  This adventure that I call life is filled with wonder and awe as I take small, steady steps forward. Daily, I am given so much goodness and prosperity in every area of my life, all Divinely appointed and filled with joy and bliss.  I welcome the confidence with which I make choices, aware that I can always make a new choice if needed.   And I live life to its fullest, letting things unfold as they may, trusting that my future is bright and vibrant and filled with possibilities.

Feeling my heart overflow with love and life, I am filled with thanksgiving that my conscious choices manifest in amazing ways.  I am deeply grateful for the easy flow of abundance that is revealed as I let go and let God.  And I am thankful that I need only say Yes and a perfect way is made on my path, everything working together for my good.

Knowing it is done as I believe, I release my word to the Divine Action of the Law.  My word cannot return to me void; the answer is always provided.  And I let it be so.  And so it is.

Photo courtesy of Carmen Jost/Flickr

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Have An Abundant And Successful Weekend

Napa Valley here we come!  We are off for a weekend of wine and golf at the Silverado Resort.  While my golf game may be lacking a bit, my wine-tasting skills are pretty darn good.  It's weekends like these that make me grateful for the beautiful part of the country I live in.  Hope you have a great weekend and here are a few inspiring and fun posts from around the web....

Why it's good for you to be kind to others

Have you ever seen an Amur Leopard?

Children keep us in the moment. 10 life lessons learned from kids

10 positive consequences of NOT improving yourself

How to enjoy the journey and stop getting ahead of yourself

Be a celebrity -- or just rent their home

Elvis Presley's custom built Rolls Royce could soon be yours

I see why this little guy has a pretend friend

Most of us think we're patient....until we have kids

This dog apologizing to a baby for stealing her toy is the sweetest thing that ever happened

Why you need challenges (life's unkind mirror)

To truly work through issues, change your perception

Could this finally be the end of crocs?

And a final note on success.  Success in life goes to the one who is willing to pick themselves up and try again.  So, "Start where you are.  Use what you have.  Do what you can." ~Arthur Ashe

Photo courtesy of Jeff Hurn/Flickr

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Does Prayer Change Anything?

Yes.  Absolutely.  Definitively.  Prayer changes things.  Prayer makes things that you thought were impossible, possible.  It opens doors, and sometimes windows, where there was only a wall.

But, most of all, prayer changes me.

I have been a bit freaked out lately with everything going on in the world.  Between the fighting in the Gaza strip, the Malaysia Airlines plane being shot down and a whole host of scary news, I started to feel uncertain about my safety, my finances, my children's well-being and on and on.

It became hypnotic to listen to other's opinions and theories and speculation.  And, before I knew it, I was waking up anxious in the morning.  I was going to bed with worry in my heart and crazy thoughts of panic sitting in my gut.

You would think that with all of my spiritual practices, I would be less inclined to go down this path of fear.  But something was triggered in me that wouldn't let me NOT go down this path.

And this is life.  Life happens and it happens in ways that can bring me happiness or have me concerned.

So, I'm thankful that I can turn to prayer.  One of the things I love most about New Thought and The Science of Mind is affirmative prayer.

I can take the issue I'm concerned about and put it into a context that lets me see the abundance that is everywhere.  It lets me turn away from the worries about the global economy and my finances.  And it allows me be grateful for recognizing that through it all, the sun still rises every morning and the ocean waves continue to crash on the beach.

In prayer, I can say anything and claim what I desire without being scoffed at.  I can claim peace for those affected by the airplane crash.  I can claim resolution to the fighting in the Middle East.  I can claim for those in Europe whose economy is struggling from these events, that they realize an abundance and prosperity in spite of outward appearances.

It's a way for me to make a shift in the Universe and have an impact.  And I am changed as I realize there are MILLIONS of people who are thriving in spite of recent events - including me!  The knot in my stomach eases up and I can roll with what happens without having to get all worked up about it.

So, I'm praying a lot this week and keeping my vision steadily on what I would like to see manifest in the world.  And I have enough faith to know that the Universe is supporting everyone on this current journey and something beautiful will emerge from a seemingly "bad" outer condition.

Do YOU believe prayer changes things?

Today, I set my intention to pray without ceasing, having faith that prayer makes the best out of a bad situation and cannot help but change me for the better.

"I will be honest with myself today.  I will not think that I already know 
what must remain beyond my present grasp.  I will not think I understand 
the whole from bits of my perception, which are all that I can see.  Today
 I recognize that this is so.  And so I am relieved of judgements that I cannot make.
  Thus do I free myself and what I look upon, to be in peace as God created us."  

"Never let the future disturb you.  You will meet it, if you have to, 
with the same weapons of reason which today arm you against the present."  

Affirmative Prayer:
In the things that are seen and unseen, in the invisible realm beyond our vision, there is a force for good.  It is the divine over-flow of Spirit that feeds all creatures, great and small.  It is the light and love of the Universe, always revealing more than enough, no matter where and no matter what.

I live and move and have my being in this light and love of the Universe, knowing I am more than enough in every moment.  I am the freedom of Divine Choice that shows me how good life is, all of the time.  I am joy, circulating happiness and peace through every situation in my life, always guided to my greatest expression of Source as me.

Keeping my eyes fixed on the good and the joy, I accept the changes that are happening in my world and see the beauty unfolding in every event.  In this human experience, I welcome the resiliency to bounce back from anything, knowing at my core I am one with Spirit - perfect, whole and complete.  As I pray each day, I remain steadfast in the vision I have for peace and harmony that spreads like wildfire into every region of this world.  And I am humbled as I see big and small miracles revealed in ways beyond what I can even imagine.

Affirming the highest and best for me and for those who read these words, I am grateful for the clarity that prayer brings to every situation.  I give thanks that each day, my next steps are clear and I can accept and allow things to be just as they are.  And I am filled with gratitude for the positive results that are manifesting in my life and around the world.

From this place of gratitude, I release my word to the Divine Action of the Law, knowing it is already done.  I let go and let God. And I let it be so.  And so it is.

Photo courtesy of Marjan Lazarevski/Flickr

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Have a Lovely Weekend

We're in San Antonio, Texas this week for our son's boot camp graduation from the Air Force.  Talk about hot...and humid....and thunderstorms!  It's been a whirlwind of hurry and wait but it's awesome to see him chase his dream.  Hope you have a weekend that makes you happy and here are a few posts that I enjoyed from around the web....

Sniff test.  Humans make friends for weird reasons

The best way to make-up after any argument, and the one word never to say

Why it's smart to start small and/or sucky

Are you always assessing how life should be?

Lincoln, FDR and the power of a well-timed vacation

A book to help you make decisions about what helps or hinders you on your path

Deaf, formerly mistreated pup is so happy in new home he wags his tail in delight as he sleeps

Made me laugh

Because I'm tacky.....lol

Happiness...best dog ever helps mother change diaper

Love this from Paulo Coelho

The essentials for a happier life

And a happiness quote that always makes me feel empowered: "Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself, in your way of thinking."  ~Marcus Aurelias

Photo courtesy of Jim Nix/Flickr

Monday, July 14, 2014

Allow Your Spiritual Eyes To Create Your Life

Now that I am on a sabbatical from work, I have some time to take a close look at what it is I've created in my life - and more importantly, to determine what I'd really like to create for my future.  I used to believe that I had to follow the steps for success that my parents laid out for me - go to college and get a degree, get a corporate job, marry a nice guy, and on and on.

Looking back, I can't complain.  I've got beautiful children from my first marriage, a wonderful husband who has picked up the slack financially so I can spend time re-discovering myself, and I live in an awesome resort-style community with great neighbors.

And for some, there is joy in school, corporate work and raising a family.  But, I also know, for me, there is so much more to life than where I am at currently.  Life is filled with possibilities, after all.  And that can be a little daunting at times.

Why?  Because I have to let go of old stories that say I can't have what I want.   I have to let go of programming that tells me, "What you see is what you get."  And what if I turn left and not right?  Will I miss my one chance at my dream?

I also have to accept and allow that I might be wildly successful.  What does that even look like?  If you trust our news media, sometimes it can look absolutely messed up!

 So, I'm sitting in the midst of choice.  I'm letting go of old thinking and attachments to how life "should" look and, I'm more and more, looking instead through spiritual eyes.

My life through Spirit means I live in the present moment and keep visioning for my highest and best potential.  I have to allow and embrace all of the changes that WILL happen (there's no doubt about that one).

I must continue to believe in myself, remain grounded and let go of self-doubt.  I'm sure I'll question if I'm making the right choices at times but I know that the Universe wants the best for me so ultimately, there are no WRONG choices.

I will not miss out on my true purpose for being here at this time just because a decision I made did not turn out as expected.

And, my hope, is that I also get to shine a light on other's highest and best vision for their life.  We are all one in life, moving in the divine creative flow.  Those soul urges that call to each of us, when shared, I believe uplift ALL of us to living our dream life.

Bottom line - it's up to each of us to expand our consciousness; to stay rooted in the possibilities that ring true (even if society says, "What are you thinking?") and to make our own choices, allowing a Power which is bigger than us to direct and guide our way.

The choice is yours.  What will you choose?

Today, I set the intention to be mindful of living in the present moment, knowing that the thoughts I think are creating what I will see in my everyday life.

"The vision that you glorify in your mind, the ideal that you enthrone in your heart
 - this you will build your life by, and this you will become." 

"We already live in a Perfect Universe, but It needs to be mentally seen and 
spiritually experienced before It can become a part of our everyday life."  
~Ernest Holmes, The Science of Mind

Affirmative Prayer:
Turning within, there is a Universal Presence that exists in the silence, the voice of an Inner Knower.  It is truth and grace, infinite supply and unlimited possibility.  It is always available and ever eternal; the freedom of the soul whose only wish is love.

In this moment of silence, there is a realization of my oneness with the Infinite; a conscious unity with the One Perfect Life.  I am a miraculous being of light, allowing the beautiful music of the Universe to sing through me.  I am joy unspeakable, filled with the all-good of Spirit that expresses as me, right here and right now.

Stepping forward into building a life of purpose, I accept the gift of freedom that allows me to discover my true potential.  I am an unlimited being, growing and evolving on a beautiful journey of exploration.  I welcome each new experience and flow with the changes easily and effortlessly.  I accept the harmony and joy that are revealed as I remain available to the present moment.  And I affirm that the highest and best vision for my life is is clear as I am guided by Divine Intelligence.  Everywhere I am is exactly where I am meant to be.

I am deeply grateful for a life lived to its fullest potential and I am thankful for the beauty and grace that surround me as I keep my spiritual eyes fixed on the truth of the Divine Presence within.  I am filled with gratitude for the endless possibilities available to me, knowing I am always safe, no matter what choices I make.  And I say Thank You Spirit for this experience.

With a feeling of reverence and awe for this moment, I release my word to the Divine Action of the Law, knowing it is already done.  Life keeps getting better and better.  And I let it be so.  And so it is.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Have A Wonderful and Happy Weekend

My youngest daughter turned 21 last week while we were away in Lake Tahoe so we're celebrating this weekend with a pub crawl.  It's such a different celebration as our children get older - not so much about cake and more about what they've longed to do as an adult (like being able to order a cocktail at a restaurant!)  It's been a beautiful, challenging, interesting, frustrating, humor-filled journey and through it all, I feel blessed by all three of my kids.  I hope your weekend includes something that makes you smile and brings you joy...and here are a few posts I enjoyed from around the web.

The email that could help you live longer

The greatest airline pilot ever orders pizza for stranded passengers

Loving yourself means warts and all

Is happiness the secret of success?

10 things dogs teach us about what matters most

5 things you probably didn't know about watermelon

20 signs you're a spiritually healthy person

The novel, Freaky Friday, is highly under-rated

The great toilet paper scare of 1973

What really turns you on?

Why she's the luckiest person on the planet, Redux

Deepen your prayer and see where life takes you

You are not broken and neither is the world

At 54, "To Kill A Mockingbird" is an e-book

And, I saw this in O Magazine and love it - "I don't drink, and I don't smoke, but around 5 P.M., on a particularly tough day, I get my fix of kettle-cooked salt-and-vinegar potato chips - and crunch away my stress."  Kelsey Nixon, host of The Cooking Channel's Kelsey's Essentials.

Photo of Lake Tahoe taken on the Rubicon Trail

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Why You Should Deliver Honesty in Small Doses

One of the life lessons I'm learning is that, while honesty is a good policy, you don't always have to speak the whole truth every time you open your mouth.  As a Sagittarius, I'm prone to the "open mouth, insert foot" syndrome so just being aware that I can deliver news in smaller, more palatable ways has allowed me to cultivate beautiful, thoughtful relationships with others.

Looking back at how I reached this awareness, there are three key take-aways.

Persistence:  It's not easy to create a new habit.  When given a chance, we fall back and cave into what we're comfortable with.  Acknowledging I wanted to change my communication style when sharing information honestly, it required that I was steadfast in my commitment to be mindful when speaking with others.

I found it helpful to create a mantra that I could use daily as a reminder as to how I wanted to show up in talking to others.  The one that worked for me was familiar, short and sweet - "think before speaking."  Don't feel you need to create a beautiful, long affirmation that becomes difficult to remember.  Often, one or two words can work better, especially if spoken with passion.

And use it every day until you're saying it in your dreams.  Persist until it becomes second nature.

Humility:  This was one of my favorite realizations.  When speaking with others in the normal course of the day, we don't get to rehearse what we're going to say.  The beauty of conversation is the natural ebb and flow that occurs spontaneously.  Remembering the give and take in sharing information means giving the other person a chance to be heard.

If you're sharing some honest information, allow the other person to share back.  Ask how they feel about your comment.  Don't be afraid to allow some silent space while they gather their thoughts for their reply.

And, add some heartfelt emotion to the way you deliver your news.  Whether it's humor or sincere compassion, the feelings behind the words carry an energy of their own and can soften the edges of honest communication.

Cooperation:  Why is it that we're more brutally honest with the people closest to us?  We lob a shot, they throw one back.  We up the ante and pretty soon, the honesty you were trying to share has escalated into a full-blown argument.

It usually comes back to ego and our burning need to be right.  If you turn it around, who safer to be vulnerable with than our family, friends, partners and spouses?  If you can let go of ego, and the notion that your are competing to win in your honesty, you can come from a place of cooperation instead.  I believe it's Wayne Dyer who says, "Do you want to be right or do you want to be happy?"

I always think of  that statement when I make the choice in how MUCH I want to share and exactly HOW I want to share with those who matter to me.

Going forward:  What I can truly appreciate is that this is ongoing work for me.  There will be times when I will likely have to apologize for blurting out what's on my mind.  But - the intention I hang on to is that when speaking honestly, I will be less about drama and more about grace.

So how are YOU choosing to communicate honestly?  Any good lessons you've learned along the way?

Today I set the intention to speak the truth to others in smaller, more palatable ways, remaining mindful of the energy behind my words at all times.

"Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak.  
Courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen."  

"Every day, think as you wake up, I am fortunate to be alive, I have 
a precious human life, I am not going to waste it.  I am going to use all 
my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; 
to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings.  I am going to 
have kind thoughts toward others, I am not going to get angry or think
 badly about others.  I am going to benefit others as much as I can."  

Affirmative Prayer:
Trusting in the perfection of this moment, I turn within and surrender to the love that enfolds all that is.  It is the One Perfect Life that is tolerant and patient.  It is the Infinite Power of excellence and strength.  This Perfect Life and Infinite Power fills life with kindness and grace, with harmony and peace.

Surrendering even further, I dive deep into the knowing that I am one with the Divine Spirit that dwells within.  My actions and my thoughts reflect the truth at my core - that Creative Intelligence seeks to experience life THROUGH me, that this Source that I call God shows the way and guides AS me.

In every area of my life, I remain open to speaking my word from a place of trust and integrity.  My spiritual practice of mindfulness acts daily as a reminder that I am the essence of love and peace in the words I speak.  I welcome the feelings of compassion and humor as I strengthen my honesty muscle.  And I affirm that the humility of my actions lets the brilliance and the light of Divine Spirit shine through in every encounter throughout my day.  My smile is more radiant and my inner world more serene as I linger in a sacred place of knowing that all is truly well and good.

Remaining open to the all-good of the Universe, I am filled with deep gratitude for every minute of the day.  I give great thanks for the ease and grace that flow through the words I speak and I am grateful for the wonderful experiences revealed in my life as I maintain integrity in my communication with others.

In faith and trust, I release my word to the Divine Action of the Law, knowing it is already done.  I see evidence of my prayer in the steady flow of good returned to me.  And I let it be so.  And so it is.

Photo courtesy of Alison Oddy/Flickr