Tuesday, March 29, 2016
"Yes and No. If you can use these two words appropriately, you have mastered life." Sukant Ratnakar
Sometimes it's hard to say No...even when you want to. Some people only learn to say Yes, and they end up in situations they don't want. Then there are those who say No most of the time and deprive themselves of involvement with others. Two extremes, and neither a winner. Both put themselves in the victim role and miss out on a life of authentic self-expression.
By saying yes when you need to say no, you cripple the most important relationship in your life: the relationship between you and you. Nea Joy
Too much Yes: Discomfort saying No denotes fear of something--fear of offending others; fear of criticism; fear of not being accepted, even loved; etc. This fear can create a people-pleasing personality to avoid any sense of rejection, and it can rob you of functioning as your authentic self. You live in a self-imposed prison, pleasing others, where your own thoughts, feelings and actions are deprived of expression.
It took me a long time to learn that it's okay to say No. As a child, I was taught to be agreeable with "Yes, ma'am", no matter how I felt. I was afraid to express my true feelings, and I couldn't be me. Now when I read some of the poems I wrote, I feel the anger and sadness I felt then. Old habits are hard to break, but after years of repressing my feelings, I began practicing No sometimes, and it felt really good. I'm still not cured 100%, but I'm much more comfortable in my own skin, and there's still time.
If you always say no, you'll never say yes. Ryan Higa
Too much No: Saying No most of the time also denotes fear of something--fear of making a mistake; fear of being used, hurt, or taken advantage of; fear of losing the safety net you build around yourself; etc. And fear can create a distant personality where you feel safe in your own world. You may feel safe, but by saying No too often you also live in a self-imposed prison that deprives you of feeling close and connected to others.
Our life dreams tell much about how we see ourselves and the kind of life we want. Some are lofty and grand. Others appear small and insignificant, but every bit as important. You may dream of expressing your authentic self without mental and emotional hang ups holding you back. Reaching your dreams depends a lot on the wise use of those magic words, Yes and No, and decisions you make today shape each tomorrow. So even small decisions are worth your careful attention. And the better you know yourself, the better you'll handle daily situations.
Knowing yourself: You may be surprised if you stop and ask yourself what kind of Yes and No person you are. Is there any discomfort with either of those words? Do you fear making a wrong decision? Imagine yourself answering Yes or No in a difficult situation, and notice if there's any fear inside. Think of past situations. Was there any discomfort then, and if so, what were you afraid of?
There are times we need to be reminded of the truth about ourselves. Do you know that you're special? You're unique,valuable, and important. And your life matters. So when making choices, you don't need anyone's approval. And if you hear in your head any negative childhood messages to the contrary, confront them, deny them, affirm who you are, and choose your own Yes or No with confidence.
When making a decision: First gather needed information when you can, Then, depending upon the situation, there are several ways to answer. You can say a flat Yes or No, or leave the issue open with statements such as, "I don't know. I'll have to search further on that," or "Maybe...I'll let you know later," etc. You're in total charge of what you want and don't want. So don't give away your right. You'll make mistakes, you'll goof up, you'll feel awkward. And that's okay. You'll win more than you lose. And even with your mistakes you can have your dreams and never be a victim of fear again.
I wish you dreams fulfilled instead of fear.
Monday, March 21, 2016
Each morning we are born again. What we do today is what matters most. Buddha
When you woke up this morning, did you hear a little voice inside say, "Congratulations. You have a new day to re-awaken to your true self, create new experiences and add joy to the already familiar ones?" Oh, you didn't hear that voice? Well that's what we're told every morning, but most of us just feel a push to get up and get moving. And we miss a spectacular chance to experience a rebirth in our life.
Everything in the universe moves in cycles, and each cycle offers some kind of rebirth. Many are subtle and go unnoticed,but each brings a change of some kind. The moon tells the oceans when to ebb and flow, the seasons tell us when to sow and reap, and darkness tells us when days end and nights begin. Over time, we see our body's external changes, but seldom aware of the many internal changes happening everyday.
"Spring is far more than just a changing of seasons; it's a rebirth of the spirit. Toni Sorenson
My favorite time for rebirth comes each spring. That's when trees turn green, flowers burst forth from buds, bears come out of their caves, butterflies emerge from their cocoons, and newness of life is everywhere. If you pay attention, you can feel your spirit longing for rebirth.
In the cold of winter I anticipate springtime when my azaleas will bloom. They run the length of my driveway, and about 12 feet high. Every year when I see their rebirth, I feel this in myself like we're part of each other in God's great universe. And I have hope in my heart for another year. But this year I found them invaded by a stubborn fungus. I had to get them sprayed, and I was concerned they may not come out this time. But those beautiful plants overcame the fungus, fought for their rebirth, and burst forth in all their glory. How could I have doubted their ability to survive another year...and how can I doubt my own. Nature is a great reminder of how much more we are than our human awareness tells us.
Yes, nature is beautiful in the spring with rebirth everywhere. But do you ever think about rebirth within yourself, or are you content to continue living in the old script you've written for your life? We may have dreams of how we'd like to change our script, but much of the time those dreams fade away, and our springs come and go as they always have without our awareness of their message.
We must let go of the life we had planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. Joseph Campbell
Rebirth doesn't require drastic measures to occur, but sometimes this is what it takes to get our attention. Suppose you made your life plans, and you've got your heels dug in. You may defiantly shout to the world, "Nothin's gonna change my mind." And that's when something blows in like a Florida hurricane, and your plans go out the window. It may be an illness, a sudden divorce, a job loss, any unexpected situation. And you fight to stay on track until you're too tired to look anywhere except inside. And there you find your forgotten self. You experience a rebirth.
Re-Birth...when the old you is leaving and the new you is awakening because you have started to remember who you really are. Kelly Martin
Within each of us is a light so bright you can write a whole new script for yourself and experience rebirth with those visions and dreams you may have allowed to go unfulfilled. Get in touch with that inner light through developing conscious awareness with daily prayer and meditation. Listen to your heart and be willing to know more of who you really are. It's springtime. Think about what rebirth within would mean to you. Then embrace your rebirth and blossom in your own way. You are truly beautiful.
I wish you a journey filled with wonderful awakenings.
Monday, March 14, 2016
There are things known and there are things unknown, and in between are the doors of perception. Aldous Huxley
Everyone's life holds a unique story like no other. We write each chapter with visions of happy times, and we expect each one to unfold as we intend. But some become struggles when nothing we do turns out the way we planned or wanted. We goof up, and our fellow characters don't act the way they're supposed to. And what could have been a good experience turns into a nightmare. The whole thing seems to make no sense, and we throw up our hands in confusion.
Every story needs some kind of conflict or struggle to make the winning worthwhile, but too much is too much. It's really hard going through the senseless times when it feels like that's all there is and it will never end. It doesn't seem fair but, whether we like it or not, we're involved in every scenario.
If someone tried to hand you a bag of smelly garbage, you could back off, curl up your nose and say, "No way. I'm not accepting that." But what do you do when life throws you a curve? Do you stand there and ponder the sense of it, or do you change what you can, accept what you can't change, and work on creating something better?
When we struggle to make sense of things, life looks on in repose. Unknown
Sometimes things don't make any sense.
They're squandered in the air.
And then they make me realize
That life just isn't fair.
I wonder where I'll go from here.
A new way on my path?
Will I cry another day,
Or find a way to laugh?
You know it isn't up to others.
It's really up to me.
I have it all inside.
The way for me to see.
It doesn't have to make any sense.
It doesn't have to be fair.
So give up all the questioning,
And just make sure you're there.
Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase. Martin Luther King Jr.
When you can't dodge the bullet and you're going through one of those painful times, you may not be able to change the situation or your character's actions. But your answer is not in the situation or their actions. Your answer is in your response...your approach to the problem. Take a note from Arthur Ashe who said, "Start where you are. Use what you have. Do what you can."
Even when you stumble, you have the power to make everything better than what it is, because you really do have inner resources you may have never used or even know about. So how about being more the creator and less the 'emotional responder'. You can step up and re-write this chapter to contain your inner strength and a sense of peace and hope until you get to write one of those happy chapters with a better outcome.
Marianne Williamson says, "The more you truly show up for life--not hanging back but really investing yourself heart and soul--the more life will show up for you." So when things don't turn out the way you want or planned and you're sitting in a seemingly helpless place of confusion, give up any fretting or self-judgment, listen to your heart, and draw on that inner part of you that knows how to deal with life's challenges. You're a marvelous being, capable of writing the greatest story there is...your life. You can create a good one, even when it makes no sense.
I wish you easier times on a happier journey.
Monday, March 7, 2016
Sometimes I get upset...really upset about how casually we think about love in our culture today. Love has become a word we rarely use and then without much passion or meaning. We mean well, but we're busy, and we forget. I'm old enough to remember when love was considered the most important emotion we feel...a gift with power to move our most dreaded evils.
Over the years, we've experienced dynamic social change, and what we're fed now has changed our thinking from "love your neighbor as you love yourself" to "screw the other guy before he screws you." Gone are the days of love songs, family radio and TV shows, and visiting with your neighbors across the back fence...now thought of as pretty stupid. Today it's hard to find anything in the media except negative "ain't it awful" news filled with fear and hate, and entertainment vividly illustrating gory spine tingling details. But that's what brings in high ratings and profits. So it sells.
I will be the LIGHT that shines in the dark...for my heart knows nothing but UNCONDITIONAL Love. Tish
Love doesn't stand alone. It involves the heart. According to Psychotherapist Linda Marks, MSM, "Research by the Institute for HeartMath in California has shown that the heart is the most powerful generator of electromagnetic energy in the human body. Having a greater understanding of the role of power of the heart sheds light on how to think about a wide range of human experience."
Considering love, Marks goes on further, "Love is more than an emotion. It is an electromagnetic phenomenon. When someone is coming to you from a place of love, it feels different than when someone is coming to you from a place of indifference or dislike. The energetic current transmitted from one person to another varies with their state of heart. And when we touch one another with safe, respectful, loving intention both physically and emotionally, we call into play full healing power of the heart." Love from the heart restores health in all areas of life, and without it, every part of us suffers. How often do you say the words 'I love you' without the necessary healing energy behind them?
People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. Maya Angelou
Loving others: Who are the others...family, friends, relationships? What about people you don't even know? Your love is energy, and it can travel over the world and touch anyone in need of a hug and heartfelt love. And what about animals and nature, all living things that need your love? Clothe your love in a sea of light and watch it move out into the universe to heal suffering wherever it's needed. And to those people in your life...say the words often, but say them with your heart, and feel your own joy in loving them. It's a beautiful miracle.
Loving self: Do you feel uncomfortable loving yourself? You don't deserve it? You feel guilt, shame? Have you forgotten who you truly are? Never mind your mistakes, your shortcomings. You were created beautiful, amazing and definitely lovable. So decide now to give yourself the heartfelt love you deserve. Put your arms around you and say, "Self, I love you with all my heart," and feel your body, mind and spirit saying thank you.
See, feel, and experience the power of love plus intention as a powerful change agent in your life. Lynne Namka
Within you is the power to change your life through giving and receiving love. Not with empty words, but with love from your heart, felt deeply inside yourself. When you give love, you are as greatly blessed as those receiving your love. And when you open your heart to love yourself, your whole life can change. That's the way it works. Some believe the words are enough, but they never are. Love must come from the heart to heal suffering and bring the blessings we long for. When you realize your power and use it, miracles happen.
I wish you meaningful love in your life.