Sunday, November 9, 2014

The Un-Mom

I've been contemplating changing the name of this blog to 'The UnMother' or 'How to UnMother your Children'.


Because most of the thoughts I have lately relate to unmothering my children.  UnMothering is likely not a word or even a societal concept.  It has become one in my household.  After 20 years of mothering I have had enough.  I'm done.  Toast.  Totally over it.

I've never considered my kids spoiled.  If they have the latest gadgets it's because they paid it themselves.  And still at the end of the day they lay around while I clean the house; leave dirty dishes on the counter and their dirty clothes on the bathroom floor.  Normal kid stuff really.

There was one area of mothering where I finally snapped.

It happened about a month ago.  After hearing "What's for dinner?" and "There's nothing to eat in this house!" for the millionth time in a week I realized I needed to make a change or heads were going to roll.  I was (am) fed up with being the only person in the house that could see a full pantry and refrigerator.

My children all know how to cook for themselves and are quite creative when they need to be but unfortunately if food doesn't fly out of the cupboard and land on their plates ready to be devoured they just don't have it in them to bother.

This is where I decided to 'unmother' the food situation in the house.

I decided it was high time (my boys are ages 14, 17 & 20; perfectly capable and might I add old enough) that I put the responsibility on their shoulders to make sure there is always food in the house that they WILL eat.

Two weeks ago I handed each of my boys $40 in gift cards to a local grocery store to last them two weeks.  The deal?  Every two weeks they will receive $40 for groceries; they have to plan and budget and prepare what they purchase for themselves.  I will still provide the necessities of course; bread, milk, cheese, eggs, crackers (basically ALL of the regular groceries I normally buy).  I am no longer in charge of lunch foods and anything they would want to eat for dinner should they find themselves not liking what I've cooked for the family.

PS - I have never cooked separate meals for the boys.  It's always been like it or lump it.  We don't live in a fast food restaurant and yet they still have it in their heads that one of these days I will magically change my ways.

I'm pretty impressed with the way this 'unmothering' experiment has worked out actually.  They get out the weekly flyers and look for things on sale.  They get their own carts and shopping bags and set out in the store on their own in search of the things they want and need.  Not once have I had to step in and give them more money.  And I don't analyze what's in their carts either.

Today is grocery money day.  They are patiently waiting to go grocery shopping tonight.

The youngest was actually excited to be learning how to budget his own money and being able to have control over what kinds of snacks to take in his lunch.

My husband had some reservations about this experiment.  He thought they'd spend all of their money on crap food.  They might.  They have.  I don't care.  The release of stress from my life with regards to the food situation is totally worth it.

In two weeks I have not heard one "There's nothing to eat in this house".

That's blissful.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Your Legacy

Years ago while enroute to our cottage with friends; their vehicle suddenly began experiencing some trouble along the highway.  It just happened that we had stopped just past the cut off to my brothers home in Orillia.  My brother also just happened to be apprenticing as a mechanic at the time; so we called him to see if he could help.  He told us to have the tow truck (that was already on its way to us) drop the vehicle off at his shop and he'd take a look at it.

It turned out the issue wasn't a simple one to fix and parts needed to be ordered.  We discussed how we were going to proceed with our trip without missing out.  We only had a week to spend at the cottage and still had about 6-7 hours of travel time to get there.  Out of the blue my brother offered his girlfriends car for the duration of our trip.  He said he would see to it that the vehicle was ready to go by the time we were coming back through to head home.  Since he and his girlfriend had two vehicles he figured it would work for them to share a car for a week in exchange for us not having to change our plans or miss our vacation altogether.  I have no idea what kind of discussions went on during the week between he and his better half but I would imagine that the situation was worth it; my brother being kind hearted would have endured any amount of personal hardship for the sake of helping someone out.

We transferred our gear to the new ride and were on our way the next morning.

I was reminded of this story out of the blue the other day.  It's not uncommon for me to think of my brother.  I miss him very much.

The other night as I drove home from a meeting with a friend; she and I were recalling the generosity and kind heart of a friend who had passed earlier in the year.  She was telling me that she will never forget the kindness of this man and his family in making her and her family feel at home in the community.

The story of my brother and the words of my friend recalling the kindness of another brought into the forefront of my mind what it means to leave a legacy behind.

I used to think that what I 'did' for a living would be what people remembered of me once I was gone.  That somehow being a 'healer' or a 'life coach' was going to be the thing that set me apart in the world and would have people talking at my funeral.  What I have learned (it seems to me this would have been a 'no-brainer' however....) and what I have come to believe is that whether or not you are the best lawyer, teacher, mother, friend, security guard, store clerk or garbage man; the only thing that you will be remembered for is whether or not you were kind.

Just once.  To be kind just once means that you will be leaving behind a legacy.  That one person, that one time will be enough to get you through the pearly gates without incident.

My husband remembers the apple pies that his grandmother used to make for him when he would visit her.  He remembers these pies not only because they tasted good but because they were also baked with kindness in mind.

I remember stories of my father always helping people in moments of crisis.  He always seemed to be in the 'right place at the right time'.  He never hesitated.  I know he is remembered for his kindness.

Our legacy.  What we leave behind us is rooted in kindness.  We live on in the memories and minds of others through our kind gestures.  Whether they be random acts of kindness once in a while or whether we make kindness our religion; it will be enough to be remembered.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

Follow The Bliss...


For a long time the sound of that word made me cringe.  The mere mention of it on the lips of a self help guru would launch me into a panic and what at the time seemed like a never ending need to jump into every situation with both feet without thinking; for the sake of finding MY 'bliss'.

No matter how much I jumped, it seemed that 'bliss' was completely out of my reach.

I think back to those years and know that all of the time, effort and creativity was not wasted (nothing ever is).  Instead I think of the invaluable gift of contrast that I received.  Going through the motions for things that gave me little to no satisfaction so that I would know beyond a shadow of a doubt what it was that truly would give me satisfaction and purpose (when I found it).

Through my journey I have learned that everyone's bliss looks different.  Each of our blissful states is as unique as our individual DNA.  That what is blissful for one may certainly not be for the other.  With social media being what it is; I believe it's highly likely that most of us at one time or another will look at another individual displaying their bliss filled lives for the entire world to see and wonder 'What is wrong with me?' or 'Why can't I be that happy'.

If you find yourself thinking those thoughts and you are anything like me you will immediately start a mental list of all of the things that are wrong with you.  Once the list is complete you start looking for ways to prove to the Universe that you are worthy of the same level of bliss that everyone else on the planet seems to be experiencing.

This routine becomes painful (that's putting it mildly).

Bliss is defined as 'perfect happiness; great joy'.  The trouble with this definition may be that our perception of what 'perfect happiness and great joy' is; is totally out of whack with reality.

We may have forgotten that perfect happiness and great joy comes from being present in the moment we are in.  As you sit on your deck, sipping coffee; instead of looking at your tattered deck boards and wondering how on earth you will be able to afford a new deck.  Allow yourself the pleasure of being present bringing your awareness to the feel of the breeze on your skin and the taste of coffee on your tongue.  This is bliss.

I know this is bliss because I've experienced it.  My life is far from perfect.  I stumble and fall and more importantly get back up again.  I am not perfectly happy (in that way that we perceive perfect happiness to be) in every moment.  Though when I hang my laundry; pick the weeds from my garden or marvel at the improvement a coat of paint makes on a wall I feel warm inside.  I feel blissful as though nothing in life could be better.

These moments that we are being summoned to acknowledge the gift of life; to find and follow our bliss.  They are the simple moments filled with simple things.  Helping a friend; preparing a healthy meal for your family and even standing up for yourself and taking time to nurture the precious gift that you are.  These are where you will find your bliss if you allow yourself to.

And I promise you that once you find your bliss you will want to follow it everywhere.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Old News

I heard the news of Robin Williams death while I was on vacation.

Good people die when I'm on vacation.

I'll never forget hearing about Princess Diana's death; sitting by the front window in my father in laws cottage; rocking Evan to sleep.  And it's not only 'celebrity' good people that die while I'm away.  People I've known practically my whole life; people who have shaped me and nurtured me have all passed while I've been away.  I've come almost to expect some kind of sad news.

The news of Robin Williams death was a shock.  It's always a shock when someone takes their life.  Immediately the news catapulted me to the moment I heard of my own brothers passing.  I thought of Robins family and how they might be taking the news.  Then my thoughts turned to how easy it was for him to be silly and cultivate laughs in others.  He made it his lifes work to make others happy even and I'm guessing especially when he himself was having a hard time getting out of bed.  I thought about what kind of pain that would cause someone.  To be so good at providing laughter for others and yet not be able to find it for oneself.

All of this musing pointed me directly to the times in my own life where I've 'grinned and beared it' for the benefit of others.  No one wants to hear MY complaints (my brain reasoned) after all hadn't I heard many people say in passing 'it doesn't do any good to complain?  I've hidden my tears from my husband and sons on many occasions.  The rare time that I let them fly and put my whole emotional self on display I felt ashamed; weak and afraid.  If you read through our cottage journal you will read all about our fun times; not once will you read about the countless panic attacks that gripped me while we vacationed.  No one wants to read that stuff.

But maybe we SHOULD read that stuff?  Maybe I should put the 'truth' into that cottage journal.  Right next to the 'Fish Tales' portion where we list who caught what and how big it was.  Maybe I could dedicate a section of each visit to how many hours my panic attack lasted while we were on vacation?  How many times I threw up or how many times I slept through most of the vacation because I was living on Gravol?

I think the only way to combat most mental illnesses like depression is if we talk about it.  The fact is that life sucks sometimes; sometimes it's too much and we are mentally and physically exhausted just thinking about it or trying to figure it out.  I think that's what is missing in society today; the ability to connect with others and have others help you in your time of need.  I imagine a society where people are comfortable sharing their challenges with others and those others showing up with a casserole or an outing planned for the kids or even an afternoon in their schedule where they listen quietly while those who are challenged get to talk it all out.  Unfortunately, we are more apt to look the other way hoping that whatever it is isn't contagious.  God forbid something interrupt our own version of the perfect life.

I wasn't sure I was going to blog about this.  I knew by the time I got to a computer enough time would have passed that Mr. Williams death would have been 'old' news.  But I couldn't help but think about all of the people I know; myself included who deal with this everyday.  All of the people I know who deal with the loss of a loved one to depression or other mental illness situations.  So, whether it's old news or not and whether you've heard enough about this or not; here I am opening the wound again so that we can take another look at it.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

My Week of Manifestation

This week I manifested some
beautiful curtains for my cottage and a pair of Schwinn cruiser bikes for my hubby and I.  AND I manifested them all while dealing with crazy emotional mood swings and generally not feeling 'good' at all.

For anyone, myself included who has ever listened to or read anything about manifestation you will know that we are told we have to be in a positive mind set that we have to be convince ourselves that what we want will appear when we are thinking of what we want to manifest.

I can tell you honestly that I did NONE of that.

The curtains arrived within a day or so of me laying in bed one night going through a list of things that might help me create a beautiful bedroom space in my cottage Up North.  As I thought about changing the room; painting the walls and adding a piece of artwork I am creating just for that space I felt excited and anxious to get started.  I didn't think specifically about the curtains.  I didn't concern myself with what they were going to look like or where I was going to get them although I did mention to my husband that I would need to take some time to do some second hand store shopping to see if I could find what I was looking for and if I couldn't I had some curtains here already that might make the grade.  Then I fell asleep.

A day or so later I was in to visit my friend at the local Good Will book store and I was sharing with her my idea of transforming this room and she said to me 'I think I may have just the thing you are looking for'.  Remember that we are in the BOOK STORE.  We are not in the general household items Good Will store.  She comes out of her office with three panels of the most beautiful curtains I have ever seen.  She says that she found them in a donation box and thought they might work for her home but they don't so she brought them into the store in case anyone came in who needed them.

Yes I did need them.  They are perfect.  Thank you my friend!

I'm in need of getting into better shape.  Part of my idea to accomplish this was to get up early every morning and get on my bike.  Three days had passed and I still hadn't managed to get out of bed early enough before needing to go off to work.  But yesterday I did it.  I managed to get on my bike for a half an hour.  I haven't rode my bike all that much.  Sometimes I take it to the grocery store or to run to the post office or something but to  use it solely for exercise and to spend an uninterrupted half an hour on it made my butt hurt.  Also, the angle at which my hands use the handlebars caused my hands to go numb.  My whole body tensed as I pedaled; heaven help me if I hit a bump!  Every once in a while I would have to release one hand at a time to get the feeling back into my fingers.  I remember at one point I thought to myself "tell John to pick up one of those huge bike seats when he runs to Canadian Tire and ask him if he can raise the handle bars to a more comfortable height".  The thought of a bigger, more comfy seat coming to me in the near future eased my mind enough that I was able to make it home feeling accomplished for having done what I said I would do.

Two and a half hours later I am standing in my cousins home.  She is in the middle of prepping for a move and we were going to work on moving stuff to the garage for a sale.  I can't remember if I mentioned the bike ride and my sore butt; I probably did because she says something to me about having a couple of Schwinn bikes to get rid of.  So we head out to the garage to take a look at these bikes and there hanging in the garage are two gorgeous, brand new Schwinn cruiser bikes complete with BIG seats and high handle bars!!!  I may or may not have started jumping around like a five year old at Christmas.  I know that I did when they delivered them to our home last night.

I wanted to share these stories with you because I was shocked at how quickly these things manifested for me given the fact that I didn't do the normal 'write it down, chant a prayer, be a good girl' technique.  What I think happened (but it can't be scientifically proven) was that because each time I had thought about what I needed I also had an idea of how I could find a solution on my own.  

With the curtains I knew I may have to go looking for them.  I also knew I didn't have lots of time to do that however I was willing since I really wanted curtains.  With the bikes I had solutions available to me for both the seat and the handlebars.  I wasn't thinking 'I need a new bike' I was thinking 'this is a good bike, it just needs a few adjustments'.

The 'write it down, chant a prayer, be a good girl' technique may work for some; for me it has flaws.  Being a 'good girl' is hard to do when I don't feel like being a good girl.  Also, it leads me to believe that who I am and what I am doing isn't enough already and that I have to complete some special assignment before I can have what I need.  The bible tells me that I am made in the likeness of God.  Gurus tell me that I am the Universe.  So why then do I need to participate in a ritual that may in the end make me feel less than God and less than the Universe?  It seems backwards in my brain.  

Knowing what you want, having a plan for a solution or a way to achieve it and then letting it go seems to me the best manifestation technique available to me.  It may be the best technique available to you as well if you've ever felt like your rituals or techniques aren't satisfying the manifestation Gods.

I feel the need to tell you that I didn't get the curtains or the bikes for 'free'.  It doesn't always work that way, but sometimes it does.  The curtains were a delicious $10 and the bikes I will be happily working off helping clean and paint my cousins new condo.  There is still an exchange of energy happening here.  This is how we show our appreciation for the gifts we have received.  It's a win/win.  

Wednesday, July 30, 2014


Last night I was SO angry that I cried.

This is unusual for me.  Usually I am so angry that I eat.  Maybe this is progress in my quest to express my emotions in a healthy way.

I'm going to guess that my anger was fueled mostly by hormones because it came out of the blue.  It could also have been that I had just had enough....of everything!

I was having a hard time falling asleep because I could hear my son and his friends playing video games in the room above me.  It's normal for this to be going on and normally I don't have any difficulty falling asleep to the sound of shouting and video game gunfire but last night I just laid there; seething.  First I went upstairs and asked them to quiet down.  After another hour I marched upstairs and told the friends to hit the road and head home.

Maybe that last part is normal mom behaviour because they didn't flinch.  They just finished their game peacefully, got up and left the house.

I got back into bed and realized that my husband was only giving me about a foot width of bed space to sleep in.  He was sound asleep sawing logs (as per usual).  Again I laid there seething.  And crying.  Don't I deserve more than a foot of bed space?  Doesn't he know he's only giving me a foot of bed space.  His elbows were in my way and I couldn't get comfortable unless I was laying on my side which just gave him more room to inch closer to me.


Around midnight my middle son got me out of bed.  He was upset about something that happened earlier in the day and needed some comfort.  I was in no shape to comfort anyone as I myself was having my own little meltdown but I listened to what he had to say and I gave him some quick advice; apologized for my straightforwardness and blamed the fact that I was so tired I could hardly think straight.  I gave him a hug; sent him to bed and headed into my bedroom for one last attempt at falling asleep.

What I found when I got back to my bed was my husband laying smack dab in the middle of the bed.  No room for me on either side.  I grabbed my pillow and headed to the couch.

As I laid on the couch and closed my eyes I wondered what was making me feel so angry.  I felt as though I wasn't being appreciated or acknowledged.  I secretly fantasized about twin beds and knew immediately why it was that hubby's grandparents had opted for twin beds all those years ago.  Twin beds equals sanity sometimes.

I woke up this morning; groggy and tired.  A full day of housework ahead of me and in no mood to do anything for anybody.  In fact, if someone were to offer me a golden couch surrounded by servants to fan me and feed me grapes I would have happily taken that deal.

I honestly don't know why I wanted to blog about this.  Most likely just to get it off my chest.  It's kind of funny now that I think about it (that could be the red wine talking).

What I'm noticing about my emotions now that I'm getting older is that they aren't willing to be ignored anymore.  They come on strong and insist on being heard.  Like I said; in the past I've been able to eat my way through emotions; especially the not so nice emotions.  I don't think there would have been enough chocolate cake in the world to squash my anger last night.

For a long time I've been seeking for ways to feel comfortable expressing emotion.  It seems that Mother Nature will find a way for me.

Hang on to your hats!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

New Moon Desires

This new moon tonight is all the rage.  I've been hearing for almost a week how this moon can and will influence your desires.  Maybe help you achieve your goals a little quicker.

I have to admit I've never been one for ritual; let alone a moon phase ritual.  I'm much too lazy to follow rules or a step by step process to honoring the moon so that I can get what I want.  I even have trouble with long drawn out meditations.  I believe this is just the way I am built but every once in a while the hoopla gets to me and I find myself scrambling for a ritual to make sure that I don't miss out on an opportunity to have the Universe hear my desires.

So today I sat down and quickly jotted down my desires for this new moon and then added a list of things I am grateful for in my life.

That's it.  Ritual done.

In my last post I talked about not having dreams.  That hasn't changed.  It probably never will.  I find the same thing is true for desires.  I have a really tough time coming up with a burning desire.  Not because there aren't things I want.  Of course there are things I want.  But the word 'desire' makes me feel like the something I ask for should be something exotic; intimate; divine.  I wouldn't put a new mattress in that category.

What I did write down for my hearts desire was to feel more alive and at peace with who I am and the moments I live in.

The interesting thing for me is that when I write something like that down I instantly realize that all we really need in order to feel more alive is to decide to feel more alive.  The only way to be at peace with who I am is to decide to be at peace with who I am.  No new moon miracles required.  Right?  Well, not exactly.  

What I know about moon phases is that whether you are aware of them or not they are working in your favor.  So that desire to feel more alive can be assisted with a little push from the new moon to release whatever is keeping me from making the decision to feel more alive.

Get it?

It's not that you don't have what you truly desire.  It's that something is in your way so that you can't see it.  So journaling about your desires helps you to align with the new moon so that you can work cohesively instead of being all over the place. 

I don't have any expectations when it comes to what my 'feeling alive' will look like.  It might be more laughter or a lazy day on the deck reading and enjoying the moments that tick by.  Whatever it is will be perfect.  And to the things that I will be releasing in order to feel more alive I say to you 'farewell'....don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Dream Big or Go Home

Something I've been thinking about lately is dreams.  The kind that are like goals; not the kind that are like movies that play in your subconscious while you sleep.  The kinds of dreams that are pie in the sky ideals of who and what we wish to become or contribute to the world.

I don't have any of those pie in the sky ideals.  I've looked into it many times.  I've written out 100 goals that I've wanted to achieve in the past and after a couple of years I've looked at them again and thought "why did I write that?  That's not me."

Maybe it's just me but the more people tell me to 'dream big or go home' the more frustrated I get about life.  The biggest dream I ever remember having in my lifetime was to become a wife and mother.  Been there...still there actually.  Maybe that's why I don't seem to have room in my heart for another dream.  Being a wife and mother is never ending.  I will be doing it until the day I die and even then someone will still be calling me 'Mom'.  Right?

My biggest dream in the past month has been to move the compost over ten feet.  I accomplished that dream today with the help of my hubby.

Maybe that doesn't qualify as a 'dream'.  But it kinda sorta feels like it does in my world.

We're told in this 'be all things to all people and make money doing it' society that if we don't have a dream we are like a ship without a rudder drifting aimlessly across the ocean with no direction and no destination in mind.

When I see my friends accomplishing their dreams I stand in awe of them.  Many of my friends are reaching their goals; fulfilling their dreams.  They are landing themselves on the front pages of magazines; single handedly feeding the hungry and clothing the poor, changing the world, etc.  And I wonder why it is that I don't have a rudder?  Am I directionless?  I don't feel directionless.  Do those who have no direction know they have no direction or do they feel like I do.  Do they feel like things are going just fine?

It's kinda funny to think that I am having these little conversations in my head while I look around at who I am and what my life looks like and realize that I am quite content with all of it.  I remember a time when I wasn't content with any of it.  My THEN certainly doesn't look like my NOW.

Maybe it's enough that I simply want to live happily and be the best version of 'me' that I can be (whatever that best version looks like in any given moment).  That might not be enough for the next guy/gal but it seems certainly sufficient for me at this moment and maybe, just maybe that is enough of a rudder to keep me on course in this big ocean of life.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Be The Love That You Seek

It must have been about two years ago now.  I was sitting in a coffee shop with a dear friend and she was telling me that she was at her wits end with her sons behaviour.  This was something she had been dealing with for many years and it seemed she had come to a point where it seemed she just couldn't do it anymore.

She asked if I had any advice.  I did (don't I always?).  I asked her if she could love him just the way he is.  All he needed is her love and her approval; would she be able to give him that in the circumstances they were in?  She left that coffee date feeling much better about her situation.  There wasn't any magic pill or technique that she needed.  She didn't need to pay thousands of dollars to an 'expert'.  All she needed to do was love her son.

I was reminded of this conversation last night and it brought me back to the realization that all any of us really needs is love.  A great reminder for anyone struggling right now.

What makes life interesting is when we decide the only love we need is the love from someone outside of ourselves and if we can't get that love then we must not be worthy of love at all.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

The truth is that we embody the love that we seek and NOTHING changes that.  Not a break up or a rejection can take the love that lives within you away from you!
What I've learned in the past is that when someone has rejected me it hasn't been about 'me' at all.  It's been about them.  There was something inside of them that brought them to reject me.  I was being myself.  Which is all any of us can do in any relationship.  If being yourself makes someone respond with rejection (or anything else that doesn't resemble love) then they aren't worth your time and effort (in my humble opinion). 

I can't tell you how many times I have put on my circus clothes for another person.  I would become master of every disguise just trying to find the one disguise that would earn me some lovin'; whether it be from a boss, my spouse, a child, a parent or a friend; I was willing to put who I was aside in order to become the person someone else would have liked me to be instead.  The trick is that person you are trying to please doesn't even know themselves, so how can they possibly know you?

This was the conversation topic as my husband and I walked the dog last night.  We spoke about relationships and how frustrating it can be to try and appease everyone.  We discussed how we could shift those relationships and at that moment I was reminded of the story I started this post with.  I remembered that in order to shift the circumstances of her sons behaviour, all my friend had to do was simply and profoundly love her son.  It gave her new eyes with which to see her little boy.  

I think that's all there is to it folks.  I think that anytime you are in a situation where you are feeling like you are part of some invisible fight for love (and any struggle of any kind is a fight for love); just be the love that you seek.  This isn't about being right or being the more 'spiritual' one (whatever that means!); this is about being love and giving that love to those in your life who need it the most.  In giving it away you end up having more!  TA-DA!

Monday, June 9, 2014

The Vault

Waking up with dread or fear of lack is NOT a fun thing!

This morning as I was doing my morning routine I was thinking about this fear and the countless times it has taken over my day and crippled me with...well....fear.

I thought about the many times I've said "I need to make more money" or "I need to earn more money".  The idea of these sentences seems ridiculous really.  I don't even know how to physically 'make' money AND if I got paid for all of things I do around here I'd never need to earn another penny because I'd be stinking rich!

This musing became a meditation that I thought I'd share with all the folks who sometimes find themselves ensnared in the fear of lack game.  EnJOY!

*Imagine yourself standing in front of a large, silver vault.  You can see that there is a combination dial on the front of the door and you can also see that you don't need a combination because the door is opened slightly so that you only need to pull it open with your hands.

The door opens easily and freely with little to no effort at all.

Inside of the vault is brightly lit and is jam packed from floor to ceiling with stacks of freshly 'made' and 'earned' bills in various denominations.

Notice how you are feeling at the sight of this treasure.  There is a guide that is standing at the door waiting for you.  He/she tells you that this is the money that you have earned and deserved and have yet to claim/receive.  You step forward and your guide tells you to take as much as you desire and that no matter what you will always be free to come back for more when you feel you need to.

Take a moment and receive the money that you need/desire and turn to walk out the door.  As you walk out you notice a satchel hanging on a golden hook by the door.  The Universe thought of everything and has provided you with this satchel to carry your money in so that you aren't burdened by it overflowing in your arms.

You deposit your money into the satchel and pull the strap across your shoulder.  You notice that there is still room in the satchel for more money and that it's not that heavy to carry so you return to the piles of money to select more.  As you return you notice that where you have already taken stacks of bills they have already been replaced.  The vault is a never ending supply of financial abundance that is all yours.

You turn around and exit the vault.  Your guide gives you a hug and wishes you well on your journey reminding you to return as often as needed/desired.  She/he gently pulls the door to the vault so that it sits slightly open as it was when it first appeared to you.

You give thanks to the Universe and your guide for being so generous.

Take a deep breath and come out of the meditation feeling fulfilled and abundant.*

I did this impromptu meditation this morning and this afternoon I received cash in the mail.  Cash I had been expecting but totally forgot about.  Coincidence?  I think not :)

Saturday, June 7, 2014

Release Through Acceptance

There are lots of catch phrases that are being tossed around these days.  The 'let it go' and 'just be' movements have caught me off guard MANY times!

How do we just be?  I think I blogged about it here one day so I won't go back into it today.

The frustration of not knowing how to let things go and just be has had me in a tailspin for the last few years.  Every once in a while though I do find myself easily moving through experiences and letting things go.  It passes too quickly for me to catch it and bottle it up.  I wish I could do that sometimes.  Catch those blissful moments of clarity and shove them into a bottle for safe keeping.  At least if I had it in a bottle I could access it on purpose instead of tripping over them sporadically.

A number of years ago I was moving through experiences of panic and anxiety for what seemed like no reason at all.  At one point on our way home from a vacation I turned to my husband and said "I think I'll need to be medicated the next time we vacation."  I was just coming down from a three day panic attack that resulted in us leaving our cottage a few days early which infuriated my husband.  I haven't had a panic attack since.

What I learned from that experience was that the key to 'letting go' is in accepting what is.  In the moment that I admitted that I may need some help with my panic attacks via conventional medicine I was accepting my position.  I was accepting that my life had become unbearable under the weight of the panic and anxiety. Until then I was in denial.  I was blaming other people for my circumstances.

I believe that when we accept where we are we are demonstrating self love.  Allowing ourselves to own our emotions and take responsibility for where we are.  When I was fighting against my position I wasn't focusing on how to be gentle with myself.  I was being harsh and that harshness was fuelling the fire.

Owning our emotions and taking responsibility for where we are is like the big red circle on the map that says 'you are here'.  It is a starting point in which to gently evaluate ourselves; a place to push off from.  A place to get to know yourself a little better so that your next step is more aligned with what you need in that moment.

Letting go isn't about forgetting or severing the circumstance from your mind.  It's the opposite.  It's the acceptance and embracing of the circumstances that free you from yourself, your fears and your worries.

I don't see acceptance as giving up by the way.  Acceptance is compassion.  We release what we no longer need through acceptance because it leads us to compassion which leads us to the love that we are.

To let go of a fear you need to look at it; observe it from a different perspective then walk right up to it and give it a hug.  That fear is telling you something about yourself.  It's a teacher.

The same thing is true for worry and also for those other emotions we hang onto like guilt, shame and remorse.  You can do this same thing with relationships.  You can do this with past experiences that you are still hanging onto and still dictate your life.

What I know to be true is that we are all human.  We are all walking around on this planet like bumbling idiots (yes even those of you who think you have it all together).  And we haven't a clue what to do about it.  The only thing we might know for sure is that what we have been doing up until now hasn't really been working so well.

Maybe it's time to switch it up and try something new.  Next time you are faced with something that you just can't seem to let go of; try compassion.  Try embracing it and see what happens.  You might be surprised!

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Secret To Affirmation

Affirmations.  This is one of those topics that really stirs things up for me.

We've been taught to use affirmations as a special magical tool to get whatever we want out of life and if you've ever watched the movie or read the book 'The Secret' you'll know just what I'm talking about.

The truth is affirmations aren't something we use only when we 'want' something.  Though we do tend to make up 'special' affirmations when we are feeling in need of something.  We are actually using affirmations all of the time during our day.  Whether we are thinking about how we look in an outfit or verbalizing how we are feeling at any given time we are affirming what our life feels and looks like to us.  And those affirmations bring about more of the same since those affirmations are actually more powerful than the ones you are 'forcing' yourself to repeat.

Every time you hold a thought in your mind you are affirming something.  So all of those unconscious thoughts that swirl around inside your head all day are actually producing/manifesting/creating your reality.  Eeek!

I've been thinking a lot about affirmations lately since I 'tried' to use a few while dealing with a recent job opportunity.  My outside voice affirmations were saying things like 'this is going to be a great opportunity to meet new people and have a new experience' and 'this is going to be life enhancing'.  But my inside voice affirmations were saying something like 'oh I really would rather work from home and be my own boss' and 'I really don't like having someone else tell me where I will be spending my time'.

Do you see the misalignment in these affirmations?  Guess which affirmations held more power?  If you guessed the second set you are SO correct!  The truth is that the affirmations that swirl around in our mind have lots of power, mostly because we are unaware of the way they make us feel and that they are making us feel really deep emotions most of the time.  Plus, these inside voice affirmations have been playing over and over again in our minds for years and years.  Lots of power being stored there!

If we are being honest with ourselves most of the affirmations we make up for ourselves are born out of fear.  We see that our life isn't going the way we would like and we want to make a change so we go for the affirmations like flies on a dung pile.  We make up affirmations and we chant them and sing them to ourselves and we put on a happy smile and life is good.  But then nothing happens.  A couple of days later you find yourself a little worn out and a little more than disappointed that this 'affirmation thing' didn't work.

We are an impatient bunch aren't we?  Worse than being impatient is that we are totally disillusioned as to where our focus really needs to be.  Yes you can use affirmations to create positive change in your life.  Of course.  But in my opinion that is only going to happen if you can look at what you already have and be grateful.

I have learned that the key point in making affirmations work is feeling at peace with where things are at in this moment.  Looking around you and saying 'you know, this is all pretty spectacular.  I am pretty spectacular.  You know what would make it all much more fun?  Some money, or some weight loss or some love from a significant other'.

When my husband and I talk about our future we say things like 'Won't it be nice when....' or 'Wouldn't it be great if....'.  We do this naturally, don't ask me how we came onto it but when we start talking like this I get a little bubble of excitement inside of me because I know that we've done it before; we've teamed up to create some wonderful things in our life and all because we are already loving what we have and dreaming of something that would add a little more 'fun' to it all.

So next time you find yourself 'lacking' and in need of an affirmation take some time and write a list of gratitudes and sink in to how that feels to you.  Then you can add a list of things that would make your experience a little more 'fun' like the car, the money, the world peace.  Whatever you like.  Just begin your affirmation with gratitude and then watch the real magic happen :)

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

What We Most Need To Learn

"What we most need to learn is also what we most love to teach."

I once read this ideal somewhere in a book.  It made me pause and recall all of the things I love to talk about and all of the things I love to share with others as well as all of the times I had felt uncomfortable sharing  because I considered myself extremely inadequate at teaching what I felt I didn't have a firm grasp of in the first place.

Forgiveness; self love; gratitude; non-judgement; worthiness.  These are all things I love to talk about and if I am following the late Debbie Fords genius advice and I 'attend my own lectures' I learn a whole lot about myself; my fears, beliefs and dreams.  Attending my own lectures shows me where I am holding myself back and what is propelling me forward.

In my opinion, when we attend our own lecture it is the equivalent of sitting at the feet of God.  It is like you are tapping into the wisdom of who you are and being shown where you need more self love.

For a long time I believed that the opposite was true.  I believed that the teacher would need to have already learned what they were wanting to teach.  I felt as though I was unworthy of sharing anything because I wasn't an 'expert'.  I needed more courses, more certificates, more books on my shelf to be 'qualified'.  Didn't I?

After getting a hold of the idea that what I most need to learn is what I most love to teach; I began to pay more attention to my sharings.  I began to realize that the more I learned the more I taught and the more I learned, the more I taught, and so on.

I believe that this is how it is designed to be.  We are here for each other.  To lift up, support, hold, comfort, embrace, guide and love.  We do this through sharing; through saying to someone 'hey I remember that happened to me and this is how I dealt with it and this is how I learned from that dealing and this is how I may have done it differently now that I know what I know'.

This is like sharing your sand pail and shovel in the sand box at the park.  It's a bridge to human connection.  It is sometimes a lifeline for someone in need.

So while there is a whole lot that I DO like to talk about there is an equal amount I don't want to talk about.  Personally, I am working on letting people see my darkness.  It's dark in there.  Scary dark.  I'm scared that everyone will run and hide from it.  So I don't share.  I don't share on purpose and what happens when I don't share?  There is no learning and there is no healing.

So my promise to myself is to share more of that darkness.  To shine a little light on my vulnerability.  Who knows I may learn something {wink}.

Inside Is Where The Power Is.....

This morning I wrote in my journal:  "The ego's needs are never satisfied and will never be satisfied".  This was the answer to my questions "When am I going to feel like enough?  When am I going to feel like I know what I'm doing?"

To the ego; there is never 'enough'.  There is an ever present need for acceptance and acknowledgement.  I consider this my addiction because when I am feeling 'less than' I look to something outside of myself to fill that void.  Sometimes I seek it through people and sometimes (lots of times) I seek it through food.

Seeking approval from people is deeply satisfying....for a split second.  Receiving praise for a job well done and getting a pat on the back feels wonderful....that feeling quickly leaves me even more empty than before.  Food...the same thing.  It is deeply satisfying to finish that ice cream cone and it takes only a few short moments for that deeply satisfying feeling to fade into self loathing for eating the ice cream in the first place.

Have you ever found yourself in this trap?  I'm pretty sure it's a common human 'thing'.

For me; my addiction is about love.  I so desperately want to feel loved that I seek it outside of myself.  I am addicted to acceptance from others because that acceptance (as short lived as it can be) is feeding my need for love.  I get temporary 'highs', if you will from external praise and appreciation.  In order to get these highs I do whatever it takes to make someone else happy; despite my own needs of which I am happy to sacrifice for the high that I seek.

Unearthing this truth is crucial to finding true love for myself.  It's uncomfortable to admit to it.  I feel a little ashamed admitting it out loud because it feels like a dirty little secret AND at the same time saying it out loud and putting it out there feels liberating and honest inside of my heart.

What I learned this morning from that simple question and answer is this; I will never find myself outside of myself.  I will never be satisfied by what is on the outside.  Because ego is driven by what is on the outside.  Ego exists in the way things 'look'.  Ego exists in the way things 'should' be.  True love.  Which is where I want to live from, knows only what is on the inside.  True love is in the feeling of things.  True love can only be found by going inside and getting comfortable there.  Inside is where the power is.

Monday, March 10, 2014

All The Soul Wants

I don't know about you but I've found myself on more than one occasion feeling inadequate in this life.  It's not uncommon for me to feel like there's something I should be doing or something I should be changing about myself because I might miss something really important if I don't keep myself busy.

Many of us spend our days pounding our heads against the wall.  How do I become more productive?  How can I squeeze more things into the day?  When will I feel comfortable in my own skin?  How much more do I have to read?  How many more workshops must I attend?  How come I can't just BE?

That last question is a real mystery.

I've tried to BE through meditation.  I've tried to BE through prayer.  I've tried to BE through yoga.  I've tried to BE through reading.

I'm trying to BE so hard that I think I'm missing the point.  Does this sound familiar?

What has become very clear to me in the past few months is that there is nothing you need to do in order to BE.  And 'being' really isn't the problem here.  There isn't a moment in the day that you aren't 'being' who you were meant to be.  Have you ever tried NOT TO BE?  It's impossible not to be who you are! 

I think the real problem that we face is that we don't recognize that WHO WE BE in life is the miracle and there is no way that we will ever not be who and what life wants us to be.

We spend so much precious time trying to change who we are.  We are trying to change a perfect creation.  Doesn't that sound silly. Read that again.  Let it sink in.  We are trying to change a perfect creation.

And by perfect creation I mean a Soul that has chosen to inhabit a physical body in order to experience life as a human being.  Now some of you might look at your physical body and say 'there is nothing perfect about this creation' and you wouldn't be further from the truth with that statement.

Your body has systems and processes that are so perfect it would blow your mind!  How are you even breathing right now if not for the perfect process of the lungs.  Certainly if you are dealing with health issues you are not perfect.  Wrong again!  Those health issues are perfect messages and perfect learning tools for your life.  Use them.  Learn from them.  Don't let them go to waste!

As for our attitudes and beliefs.  I've spent many years blogging about how to change your attitudes and beliefs.  Now I see how silly and arrogant of me that was.  Attitudes and beliefs change on their own; with the flow of the seasons and the blowing of the wind.  They change as we move through life; as we have more experiences; as we gain more momentum.  Change...whether it be in your attitudes, beliefs or self inevitable. 

The easiest path through change is to love who you BE.  Right now.  In all of your busyness and all of your seeming imperfection.  Love who you BE when you are angry and frustrated.  Love who you BE when you are happy and compassionate.

Allowing yourself to behave the way you are without judgement feels like pulling on your favourite sweater.  The smell is familiar and the softness makes you feel safe and protected.

All your Soul wants is for you to love.  All your soul wants is for you to know that you couldn't possibly be more magnificent than who and what you are being RIGHT this moment.


Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Somehow it all fits

Not a day goes by that I don't wonder what the heck I am doing here on this planet!  Take my creativity for instance.  How did I become an artist?  If what I want is a successful life; is this time of addictive creativity part of it all or am on some wild goose chase or delusional?!?!

I'm fluent in 'you are where you are' language and 'if you weren't supposed to be here you would be somewhere else' philosophy.  However, even with that knowledge and those teachings in mind I still question what I'm really up to.  How is what I am doing affecting the world?  Is it?  I don't want to live a life where I am not positively influencing the world.

These may all be nothing more than the musings of insanity and with it occurring so frequently it is hard to ignore.

How do I become so utterly comfortable with where I am that I no longer question it?

That question leads to another.  Do I want to become so comfortable that I no longer question it?

The irony of continuously wondering who I am and what I am here for, is that it does propel me to try new things.  Create more.  Reach out more.  Be brave and courageous.  Say out loud 'I am an artist'. 

I have to admit that without my insecurity I probably wouldn't be where I am today.  Without this little bit of doubt I probably wouldn't be moving forward in baby steps to find out what's next. 

I can look back on my entire life and see that every thing I've ever accomplished came in baby steps.  Many times I wondered why I was where I was, doing what I was doing.  To me; life seems to be a constant miraculous mystery; one step leading to another.  One person leading to another. 

Somehow it all fits; especially when you don't know what the heck you are doing!