Friday, February 19, 2016

Thanks A Lot, Eckhart Tolle…

                                                                 Source: Eckhart Tolle
So things in my life are starting to make sense. I mean, in the BIG picture, cosmic, my place in the Universe kinda way. I’ve been feeling pretty good in general. Yes, despite a few minor setbacks, life is good and I’m excited about my future.

Then one of my friends reposted this from Eckhart Tolle’s page on Facebook:

“Challenges are here to awaken you and even if you’re awakening, life continuously gives you challenges and then the awakening accelerates and deepens.”

So of course I type “Yes to this” in response to my buddy’s post. I want to look cool and all.

Then I think, “WHAAAT?!?!”

“Now wait a minute, Eckhart,” I say as I continue the conversation in my head. “You’re considered a spiritual master by many and we all know you’re super smart, but are you SURE about this? I mean, really, are you VERY, VERY SURE this is true?”

But I know he is.

No matter the heartache, regardless of how much we think we’ve suffered and despite how spiritual we are…no one in human form is exempt from life challenges. No one.

I think challenges are just part of this life thing. I don’t believe God “tests” us, but I do believe we encounter events, people and experiences that give us an opportunity to choose how we react.

We invariably have an opportunity to grow and deepen our understanding of this life, and what’s beyond. Although I can’t say I’m a big fan of challenges, I do see them differently than I used to. My reactions have shifted from what they’d have been even a few years ago. While I don’t always hit my mark, I do always intend to react from love and with love. And sometimes I can do just that. I’m starting to get it. The crazy part is, I’m starting to appreciate the process.

I’m not going to lie.

I still much prefer to learn from a joyful experience than a painful one. But I still learn. And most of all, I am deeply grateful for the lesson and learning that results.

Thanks a lot for the reminder, Eckhart…

Friday, February 12, 2016

Write a Love Note to Yourself

Ok, I know this may sound weird, especially around Valentine’s Day when we’ve been taught to buy flowers, candy and cards for the important folks in our lives. This holiday do something different. Write a love note to yourself.

Yes, be sure to let others know how important they are to you on Valentine’s Day and every day, for that matter. Just don’t stop there.

Too often we look for validation from others before we can accept what we like or admire about ourselves. I hope you have very loving and supportive people in your life. You need to be on your support team.

If you’re like most people, you’re quick to reprimand yourself and constantly remember every little mistake while you hyper focus on what you don’t like about yourself. Self-reflection is healthy, repeatedly beating yourself up is not.

Do this. Get a beautiful card with an image that resonates with you and take the time to write yourself a note. A handwritten note. Yes, I know this takes longer but spending time on this exercise enhances the benefit. Trust me.

I’ll give you some content suggestions and then we’ll discuss your next step.

The note to you could be:

· A list of ten things you admire about yourself. Think of personality traits, acts of kindness and causes you believe in. Yes, you can mention your beautiful eyes, but think about what’s in your heart. What do you like about the type of person you are?
· A note congratulating yourself on how far you’ve come and what you’ve learned from your  challenges. Celebrate your successes here!
· A note to your younger self giving the advice you wish you’d have known 20 years ago. Think big picture and concentrate on what’s surprised you and gone better than you expected.

Carve out some time when you can be undisturbed. Decide on the type of note you’ll write. Get your card, sit down, shut your eyes, take a couple deep breaths and connect to your heart. Write what you feel from a place of healthy self-love.

Now for the fun part! When you’re satisfied with your letter, close and seal it. Put your name on the front. Next, choose one of the ideas below and take the action:

· Put the sealed letter in an area of the house you won’t see for a while. Perhaps with the old photo albums you never see until the family reunion July 4th weekend. You could put it on top of your Christmas decoration box.
· Address the envelope to yourself, stamp it and give it to a friend. Ask them to mail it to you whenever it feels right for them to do so.
· Put the sealed envelope in a dresser drawer and add this note to the front: “open New Year’s Day.” Or pick another day that has significance for you.

Think of this as a scared gift from your soul.

When the note shows up in your life, read and enjoy!

I’ve done this myself with magical results. I wrote my note and months later, the envelope arrived at exactly the time I needed encouragement. It was amazing! I had completely forgotten what I’d written and the message was perfect for what I was going through at the time. The Universe delivered the message I most needed through my own words. Incredible.

I know you have lots to do. But do this. Love yourself enough to take a few minutes and reflect on what you love about yourself. Celebrate your success. Embrace the beautiful unique spark of God you are.

Now go find that card….

Friday, February 5, 2016

Fell Off My Unicorn Again…Hate When That Happens

I have friends who are supportive of my work, but worry I’m “a bit out of touch” with reality. Too “woo woo”. Even naïve. They think I’m “riding unicorns over rainbows” and I need to get my head out of the clouds.

I respect their opinion, but I don’t agree.

I have found that exploring my own spiritual path and teaching about it does come with some special challenges.

It’s not easy facing life’s twists and turns. That’s when I fall off my unicorn, but I’ve learned to get up when life knocks me down, brush myself off and saddle up again. Sometimes it’ll take longer than others to get up. Sometimes I’m down a looooong time. But I get up. Eventually.

Let’s be clear on one thing. I don’t like falling off my unicorn.

Annoying, frustrating and scary things happen. And I still choose to trust everything is happening for the highest and best of all.

During these times is when I remember:

· I believe that God/Universe/Source/Creator is the eternal, intelligent, creative energy of love.
· I choose to see God in everyone and in every situation, whether I understand it or not.
· I believe that all human beings are created from the same Divine energy of love, which makes us “all one.”
· All creatures are from the same Divine source. (Even spiders and snakes.)
· No individual is greater than, or less than, any other.
· The Universe is always working for the highest and best of all.
· Our goal is to recognize the Divine within and live from that space in human form, as best we can.
· Love transforms the energy of fear and is more powerful than hate.

What if every person, place and situation in our lives gave us the opportunity to choose how we’ll be in the world? That doesn’t mean it’s an easy choice. It’s heartbreaking to see a loved one suffer with a terminal disease, watch a family deal with the loss of a child or see the effects of long term physical pain.

Believing that good can come from even the most horrific situation doesn’t mean I ignore the human suffering that it causes. I do believe the way to help others, and myself, is to look at life through the eyes of love to find helpful actions.

“What does love look like here? Love for myself and love for others?” is the inquiry I use when a challenge arises. And most importantly I ask, “How does love move me forward?”

Using love as a filter does not mean you deny that the pain or suffering exists. It simply gives you direction on how to proceed.

While I haven’t always reacted with love, that’s my intention now. I’m not even sure what that means in all situations. I just do my best and keep going forward.

I invariably get stuck. And I start over by asking, “What does love look like here? How does love move me forward?”

Maybe that does make me seem naïve. I’m OK with that.

Time to get back on my unicorn….