How often does the voice of “not enough” whisper that you should be doing more, or doing better? How often does the perfectionist within rear its head to invalidate your accomplishments because things haven't turned out quite like you imagined they would?
Contrary to what the voice of “not enough’’ sometimes tells us, we aren’t meant to do everything perfectly. You already know this, yet it bears repeating. Often.
We are all evolving in our own perfectly imperfect way.
We are all here to learn. We don't have to have it all figured out right from the start. We learn by experimenting, playing, creating, striving, sharing, and, yes, by making mistakes. Sometimes really big clumsy ones.
This is the path of engaged evolution. The foundation of this path is knowing that everything is already well and good in this very moment, even when pain, sadness, or hurt are involved. Even when we feel alone or vulnerable. Engaged evolution is firmly anchored in this fundamental sense of all rightness. Yet at the very same time there is a subtle awareness of something fresh emerging, moment by moment.
The ultimate question becomes: Can we truly nurture that freshness, and with fiery passion engage in this naturally evolving process; or do we keep doing the same tired dance on the same worn out ground we have intimately known for a very long time?
A fulfilling life is all about progress, not perfection.
I feel the most joyful when I am making progress. For me, progress means learning new things, being more authentic every day, nourishing precious relationships, trying on new moves, tastes, spices, and colors, going deeper, taking solid steps forward with my creative inspiration, and being more present, vulnerable, and loving.
There is no perfection whatsoever in this process. It is messy. It involves stumbling. And pain. And correcting course. Often.
Even with all that messiness, this process is also dynamically alive and joyful, fulfilling and beautifully expansive. Simply taking your next step in a clear and positive direction is deeply satisfying.
The challenge of engaged evolution is to step forward knowing the ground you are standing on right now is already perfect.
When we do this, we are lovingly catapulted forward by the mighty and unstoppable force of self acceptance.
With true love,
Change has definitely been the keynote of the Summer of 2016.
Whether the changes have been sudden and jarring or long expected, transitions have been the name of the game over the last few months. Areas of life that seemed so solid, secure, and predictable a short time ago are now radically different. Whether the changes are related to your relationships, professional life, health, or living situation, day-to-day life is different than it was a few months ago. This may be happening in your life, or the lives of those in your inner circle. Probably both.
The interesting thing about these transitions is that they often have an unexpected twist or turn of events that you didn't see coming, and certainly didn't plan for. I have been watching myself, my clients, family, friends, and the global community navigate these sometimes jarring events. If you are reeling from recent changes in your life, be sure to read on for some perspectives to bring you back to a more solid center of joyful acceptance and gracious adaptability.
What's Not Working...
Resisting the events that have been thrust upon you never really works. It is easy to go into the tight jaw, white knuckle mode of meeting change when it isn't showing up according to the neatly scripted life plan in your head. When the scenario isn't unfolding quite like you imagined it would, the first response is often resistance. This very unhappy voice of resistance goes something like this:
"I sure don't like this."
"How could this be happening?"
"I didn't ask for this."
"Something went wrong."
"What did I do wrong?"
Shake Up Your Thinking...
If you're having these kind of grumpy and less than embracing thoughts about recent changes in any area of your life, it's time to reframe. These changes are not the result of bad karma, or part of some dark scheme to make you miserable!
The catalyst for these changes is the sacred force of evolution that is guiding us all to move on from life circumstances that no longer serve or support us.
Amidst the chaos, instability, and messiness, can you dare to trust that these changes are leading in a positive direction, even when you can't see it? Change is often a catalyst for a more fulfilling and juicy way of living.
Life on this planet is not about finding stable and solid ground to stand on. We live on a spinning planet! Success comes from learning to navigate the inevitable instability of life and turn it all into an exquisite, though sometimes clumsy dance.
Ask yourself a few of these kind of questions to shake up your thinking a bit:
"What if this change has no negative impact on my well being or happiness?"
"What if this truly is a positive change?"
"What if I could totally accept this new situation?"
"What if I could experience a happy, joyful, fulfilling, and creative life in spite of this situation?"
And then accept, embrace, praise the Lord, thank the Mother, do a happy dance, or whatever it is you do to show gratitude. In that place of gratitude, we see the light shining through the shaken up, unstable world we always live in. That light beaconing us forward into new territory.
There is a vast creative power moving through everything. When we see the beauty of that awesome force and dare to trust it, and maybe even wildly dance with it some days, so many delicious co-creative opportunities open up. When the changes come, you may cry and grieve and lament a while, but ultimately, surrendering to what is emerging is the catalyst for developing the strength, love, and wisdom to wisely navigate any new scenario.
Our hesitation to really know and be known by another is the greatest hindrance to full blooded, exuberant love. Yet knowing and being known by another comes with the territory.
Revealing yourself, especially your tender parts, is inherent in love, and it is rarely easy.
We have tender hearts that can be broken. We have egos that can be bruised. We have long standing wounds that do not want to be disturbed, much less be poked at. So we hide.
We hide our tender parts. And rightly so sometimes. There are times when self protection is a healthy practice. When you are in a hostile environment, self protection may be the best approach.
Yet, an open heart knows that which is real can never really be hurt.
Feelings come and go, thoughts come and go, and life circumstances come and go. The internal stories we tell come and go. Yet the essence of who you are is resilient and enduring, and strong beyond measure. Realizing there is something within and through every part of you that cannot be wounded can bring about an openness that invites deeper love and connection. This knowing can give you the courage to love boldly, even in the face of an unpredictable response. Even in the face of possible rejection, hurt, or abandonment.
If you want to love more (and who doesn't?), a great place to start is by letting yourself be known more fully. And to honor the inner longing to know life more fully, even when it comes in a crazy array of expressions; some dark and some pretty, some barren and some lush.
The answer is always... just love.
What does this mean to just love? It means being willing to open and unite with all that is within you and outside of you (as if there really is an “outside”). It means loving every sensation, every person, every sound, every sight. With nothing resisted and nothing blocked out. Nothing.
Can you embrace every experience, trusting all has come into your sphere of awareness with a reason and a purpose; as a gift and an opportunity for awakening?
To your beloved’s messiness… say YES! Merge with it until it doesn’t matter.
To your longing for peace.... say YES! Embrace it in the midst of chaos.
To your children’s whining... say YES! Unite with it and really hear it for the first time.
To your anger... say YES! Allow it the space it needs to teach you.
And most of all, to your pain…. say YES! Embrace it and allow it to make you more humble, real, and tender than ever before. Just love.
The invention and wide spread use of PCs was definitely a game changer. The world wide web was another game changer that most people couldn't have imagined not that many years ago. The iPhone was another game changing technology that has radically changed the way we live, connect, and create.
It is hard to imagine what communication was like before these game changing technologies became as commonplace as telephones, paper, and pens.
Most of us are plugged in most of the time now. Maybe you love your devices and all they do for you, or maybe you simply tolerate their necessary presence in our cyber drenched, fast-paced culture. Either way, there is no denying their usefulness in our day-to-day lives.
In recent years, these kind of rapid advancements in technology has been happening in many other areas as well. In medicine (think X-ray to MRI), in transportation (the gas guzzling 1960s station wagon to the new Tesla), and also in the area of psychospiritual growth and transformation.
In this field, which I so dearly love, powerful game changing technologies have emerged that can radically changing the way we live and grow. There are innovative new techniques available to reduce stress, rewire your brain, and heal unhealthy relationships patterns so you can experience greater health, well being, and happiness. These innovative techniques can help you choose more positive and life enhancing responses to day-to-day challenges.
These powerful tools are key elements in the emerging field of Energy Psychology, which is being hailed as a powerful new force in individual and collective transformation.
One of the keynotes of Energy Psychology is that it can actually change your physiological responses to stress, leaving you calmer and more capable of finding healthy, life enhancing solutions when challenges inevitably arise on a day-to-day basis.
In 50 peer reviewed scientific studies of numerous techniques of Energy Psychology, there were positive outcomes in 48 of those studies!
These are overwhelmingly positive results, suggesting Energy Psychology is a power force for healing and growth.
I have found Energy Psychology techniques to be powerful tools for creating rapid positive changes in my life and in the lives of my clients. Energy Psychology has helped clear long standing, debilitating issues for my clients, sometimes in as little as one or two sessions. These techniques are easy to learn and practice with a trained guide. Once you have been taught the techniques, you can use them on your own to accelerate your growth, healing, and awakening. Contact me if you would like to explore this leading edge psychospiritual technology.
The collective heart is getting warmer every day.
We sense something is different about life these days, but we can’t quite find the right words to describe the changes. The trivialities that once consumed so much of our attention are quietly fading away. A bright new loving radiance is playing upon our isolated personal kingdoms, quietly breaking down protective walls as it weaves new threads of unity and community through our lives. These awakening heart forces enlivens us and bestows the strength to give and forgive anew.
Yet, amidst the warmth of the awakening global heart, there is confusion and pain, deeper and more easily felt than ever before. If our collective heart is opening, why are we still suffering? Why is there so much strife in every corner of every land?
We may naively assume heart awakening could only bring peace and serenity, comfort and joy. Not so.
As the global heart stirs to greater life, every person is inwardly asked to choose to join in this planetary heart warming, or not. When we make choices that are aligned with the heart, joy enters in. When our choices emerge from a heart constricted by fear, suffering rears its head. Joy and suffering dance side-by-side as we repeatedly wrestle with this choice over and over again. We are repeatedly asked to choose to be part of the new radiance of the awakening heart, or to wither and die on the vine, clinging to fear generated patterns that outlived their usefulness long ago.
When we freely give, we make a choice that strengthen the global heart. When we boldly create, we make a choice that expands the global heart. And when we recognize the pure essence of whoever is right before us, we quicken the pulse of the global heart. Sounds like a really simple plan, doesn’t it? So why isn’t it easier to consistently do these things, moment by moment? Why the uphill fight, with ourself and others, to pump new life into the collective heart? Why is it sometimes so hard to actually live the good, the true, and the beautiful; the magnificent, the wondrous, and the extraordinary?
Our collective amnesia keeps us from remembering the real intention of the game we are playing. No one pulled us aside in the delivery room to say, “This is Heart Awakening 101. Love gets you an 'A'."
To truly be free, we are called to consciously and repeatedly choose the red pill… the bold and brazen truth pill that reminds us of our real purpose for being. When we swallow it whole, all the illusions we have swallowed for so long suddenly seem rather silly.
What exactly was so interesting about “looking good”, "staying safe",“having more”, or “being better than…”? When we seek truth, love, and kindness rather than our fear induced illusions, we instantly wake up and remember we are here to joyously reside in the warm and vibrant pulse of the awakening collective heart.
Anything else is merely a distraction, a contraction, and a disconnect. These twisted byroads are sometimes interesting, but never truly satisfying.
The interesting twist to this tale is that we can’t awaken the heart forces alone. The very essence and fiber of the heart is unity, and community.
Every doorway into the heart demands a password infused with loving communion. Every expansion of heart demands greater connection.
Love really is the answer we’ve all been looking for. For where there is love, there is unity. When we make choices that awaken heart, we get connected to a wider, richer sphere of experience where love and unity naturally flourish.
As the collective heart warms and expands, it releases wave after luminous wave of loving kindness upon the world. And as we dare to open and move to its powerful rhythm, the radiance of the expanding global heart penetrates our lives anew and nothing is ever quite the same.
We often go looking for love, longing for its delicious warmth and glow. Yet our release from this ravenous desire comes from remembering that the journey of the heart begins with loving connection with yourself. The first step is opening in loving communion with every part of yourself—the depth of your own breath, the warm delicious feel of your own skin, the rawness of your pain and hurt, the inspiration of your grandest vision, and the fiery radiance of your own expanding heart.
As we create a sea of love within and around us, we open to a force of love beyond what we’ve ever known. This is the heartfelt path that beckons us all.
With big love,
The last tree in the yard finally opened its tiny green buds in honor of Spring. The rest of the land came alive weeks ago, vibrant with tight buds of the exquisite shade of green that only reveals itself as a beaconing of the warm days ahead. As the rest of the trees were dancing in the delight of Spring renewal, this one tree was still stark and bare. This one tree was still resting while the other trees were boldly awakening.
As I looked at this still dormant tree one day, standing in stark contrast to the verdant finery all around, my perception of the tree suddenly shifted. Instead of seeing it as a dark barren tree, I suddenly saw it as the most beautiful love infused tree ever. Its dark bare branches suddenly became the embodiment of love. Its sap was dripping with pure love, and its root were wrapping the earth in love.
Sometimes love is dark and barren on the outside, as a tree in winter. A person or situation may seem to be void of love, without vibrant green leaves, fruits, or flowers. All you can see from the outside are stark, bare branches. Yet deep within, love is resting quietly, waiting for the return of the warmth and light to help it branch forth in new ways.
The naked tree in winter is love, despite its barren appearance.
The vibrant tree in full flower is also love, through and through.
It is easy to recognize love in its fullness, yet can we also recognize love when it is resting or slowly unfolding?
Resting love and awakening love are both still love. It is our judgements that separate one version of love from another, and convince us one form of love is better than the other, that a tree in full flower is more beautiful than the bare, still tree in winter.
The mind separates and judges, yet the heart includes all, and sees beauty in all. That very capacity to see beauty in the way life is unfolding right now, even in its bareness, is a powerful force that comforts, awakens and inspires.
A powerful spiritual opportunity is opening up over the next week. The full moon in Taurus-Scorpio is considered to be the spiritual highpoint of the year by many people around the world. This week is a powerful time for deep reflection, contemplation, and inner stillness.
On the day of the full moon, as well as a few days before and after, potent energies pour forth on subtle levels. This inner light can be consciously received, embraced, and used as a catalyst for awakening, growth, creativity, and the fuller embodiment of your most heartfelt vision for yourself and the world.
Illumination is the keynote of this full moon. The abundance of inner light present this week makes it an opportune time to be particularly open and receptive to the deepest impulses of your heart and soul.
To make the most of this opportunity, take time to pause. Lighten your schedule. Give yourself permission to do less and to simply be. Create time and space for meditation, writing, and quiet time in nature. Let yourself be carried by light and inspiration this week, rather than obligations and busyness.
It is also a great time to set aside any preconceived ideas about the way you “should” be living, and to be truly open and welcoming of the next phase of life that is unfolding for you. Where you are headed may be very different from where you have been. Notice what deeply resonates and energizes you in the coming days and weeks, and embrace it wholeheartedly.
The Taurus-Scorpio full moon is this Thursday, April 21st at 10:24 pm PDT (05:24 UT 4/22). I invite you to meditate at this time, joining me and others around the world who will also be meditating at the exact time of the full moon.
In the light of love,
At ten years old I was a pretty miserable child.
A latch key kid from a “broken home”, I was pretty shy and awkward. My older brother picked on me, my parents worked a lot, and I was throughly bored in school. A creative type at heart, I was not amused by worksheets and multiple choice tests. I couldn’t sit still in class and got in trouble quite a bit. I yearned to sing (even if it was off-key most of the time), and paint and play in the orange grove in my back yard.
All that changed the day my new teacher arrived wearing ultra cool John Lennon glasses and a ponytail down his back. Richard was pure magic in my ten year old world. His smile hinted that he knew every secret in the entire universe worth knowing. He was unlike any teacher I had ever known.
In Richard’s class we explored color and sound, and created delicious sensory feasts of all kinds. We painted and sculpted and danced. We sang “Here Comes the Sun” at the beginning of class as he played his guitar. We made stapled together booklets called Poor Dickie’s Almanac, and filled them with the prose and poetry we wrote. We even made a super 8 movie. One of the high points of my childhood was when he cast me as The Queen, surely to coax me out of my shyness.
That classroom was alive. I was alive. We were alive… together!
As a gift for each child’s birthday, Richard wrote a poem. When my birthday came, he reverently read my poem, and then presented me with a calligraphy copy of this brief and touching verse. Decades later, I still remember every word.
Winter in and frozen stream,
but sunlight sees right through,
To a world of warmth beneath,
and lives come true.
When I heard the verse I was stunned and elated all at once. I instantly knew that Richard saw me in a way no one else did. He saw deeply into the shy and fumbling little girl I was pretending to be.
Richard really saw me! He recognized my heart and soul. He saw me as the warmth that could make lives come true! The moment I realized Richard saw deep within me, I saw myself in a new way.
Love is sometimes hidden deep inside; crusted over and frozen. Yet in the tumultuous ebb and flow of life, we have infinite opportunities to recognize and bow down to love in its many forms, within ourselves and all around us.
We all have the opportunity to be the warmth of love that "flows and makes lives come true". Richard did this for me, and in so doing invited me to recognize the incredible power of my loving essence.
He was a catalyst for my tender heart awakening. Before Richard came into my life I knew I was loved, but he helped me to know that I am love. In this simple and magical way, Richard changed my life forever. After that birthday, my young heart would never beat as it had before. I could never again truly believe I was less than I was, or small, or insignificant.
The simple act of courageously recognizing the heart of love in one another is a deeply significant gift, which is so easy to forget as we whirl through life, trying to grab the many shiny and tempting brass rings in our ever spinning lives.
And yet, what is the alternative? We can go on judging, condemning, and criticizing each other. We can be competitive, petty, and uncaring. We can even be angry because the people in our lives don’t always give us the love we want, in just the right package.
Or we can be the "sunlight that see right through", even in the deep cold of winter.
As a young woman, my ideas about love were throughly conditioned by the romantic notions of Western culture. In my young mind, love was all about "happily ever after." The height of love was an idealized version of romantic love with my perfect partner.
As I went through life’s inevitable challenges, I began to have a wider, richer understanding of love. As fulfilling as romantic love can be, a bigger and bolder version of love began to bubble up in my awareness. As my internal vision of love expanded, I looked for ways to bring fuller expressions of love to each moment and situation, rather than perpetually looking for love to show up in the ways I expected and projected.
As I began to look at life through more loving eyes, situations that used to seem hopeless and disappointing became powerful opportunities to share love.
How I defined love kept getting bigger and bigger until one day I realized love encompassed every interaction, every thought, and every feeling I ever had. Period.
Love truly is everywhere, in everyone.
Even the painful disconnected moments that don’t feel very loving are part of love's ever present dance. Every heartache has love at its core. And every person is the embodiment of love’s ever expanding grace.
The moment we realize love really IS everywhere, wanting more love shifts to realizing you already have it.
When we really get this, the ultimate love challenge shifts from finding love, to igniting a fuller, richer expressions of love in every situation.
Searching for the perfect lover is transformed into exploring ways to activate the sometimes hidden and elusive love within and all around you. Wanting love is transformed into being love, and shining its warm radiance in every direction.
Love is the very substance of our world. It is the essence of earth and air, fire and water. Love is the essence of every human heart, mind, and body, however ailing and pain ridden they may be.
Love is the essential force that unites all and make us whole.
Love's mighty force is activated simply by recognizing it. In a world that seems to be turned upside down with perpetual suffering, recognizing love can seem like a small and insignificant act.
Yet, the simple act of recognizing love unleashes its miraculous healing force and activates the creative power we’ve all been searching for, whether we know it or not. This simple act can have profoundly positive consequences in our collective evolutionary journey.
The simple recognition of love has the power to heal, to awaken, and to transform lives.
On this Valentine's Day I recognize you and me, and all the chaos and suffering in the world as love in the process of bursting through into greater expression.
In the light of Love,
In celebration of Valentine's Day, I'm sharing a video that is near and dear to my heart. Several months ago, my daughter and her sweetheart were married.
Although I have married many couples over the years as a licensed non-denominational wedding officiant, it was a profound honor to marry my daughter, and to share deeply in this heartwarming and really fun celebration. This joyous day was incredibly inspiring, and one of the high points of my life.
I share this with you with the hope that it will inspire you to awaken and cultivate greater love in all of your relationships. Enjoy!
I like to write. When I write I feel calm, clear, tuned in, and vibrantly alive.
A few friends and clients have mentioned that some of my blog posts are too long for this fast-paced, plugged in era. So I will be writing periodic posts that get right to the heart of the matter. Short and sweet. I love digging deep and getting to what is essential. So here goes!
Trust is one of the most significant qualities needed to cultivate healthy relationships. Trust takes time to build, nurture, and sustain. In this humorous and insightful video renowned researcher, Brené Brown shares powerful insights about how to cultivate trust with the significant people in your life. It is well worth taking the time to watch.
On the first day of the new year I played at the beach. I walked upon the sand on a bright and sunny Southern California day, pondering how I would navigate the year ahead.
Contemplating a multitude of attractive options, I felt like the man on the beach waving a metal detector, patiently waiting to hear the sounds that would hopefully lead him to gold. As I walked, I keenly listened with heart and soul to discover where the rich veins might lie in this new year. Few concrete goals or intentions called out to me this year. Instead, I felt drawn towards more fully and completely leaning in to my life, just as it is.
In 2016, I will lean into the vastness of life. Not just the pleasant, happy, or consciously chosen experiences, but all of it.
So many times I turn away from what is right here, right now. There are moments when I turn from fear, and also pain. I even turn from love sometimes because it can be all consuming and jarring to my sense of safety. The shift away is often slight and subtle, yet this turning is clearly a way of saying "no" to what the vast intelligence of life is constantly offering. Turning away is softly saying “no” to the fullness of the sacred journey I said “Yes!” to long ago.
Turning away comes from a lack of trust. Trust in myself and in life itself. When I am harnessed by a lack of trust, I miss so many incredible gifts and opportunities that are sweetly being offered in every moment.
Each time we turn away from what is right in front of us, our lives shrink. Our hearts get a bit smaller, our choices more limited, and our sight narrows. Each time we lean in as fully as possible (especially when some part of us doesn’t want to), we find unknown strength, fresh wisdom, and wide eyed expansion. Always.
In 2016 I vow to lean into confusion and not knowing, as well as clarity and vast knowing. I will lean into tedious tasks and mundane moments, which I often try to avoid. I vow to lean into bill paying and wild ecstatic dancing with equal enthusiasm.
I will lean into kale with as much passion as I give my favorite salted caramel dark chocolate bar. I will lean into my reckless yearning for love and my pettiness; my trembling guarded heart and my bountiful giving heart.
But most of all, I vow to lean into trusting that whatever is right here, right now, has a place in this wild sacred ride. What are you willing to lean into in this new year?
Please join me in a free Telegathering and Meditation on Winter Solstice Eve, Sunday, December 20th at 6:30 pm PST.
Come together with others from around the globe to meditate and celebrate during the solstice period. This is an opportunity to pause and go deep into the beauty and silence of the season. There is no charge for this event and all are invited. Feel free to pass this invitation along to friends.
The call in phone number is: 1(302)202-1104 (your usual long distance charges apply). The conference code is: 910612. Be sure to add this to your calendar!
To read more about this powerful time of inspiration and spiritual renewal, click the link below:
With big love,
Winter Solstice is a deeply sacred time of the year when humanity's quest to live in greater light converges with the cycles of nature to create an opportunity for great insight, inspiration, and spiritual renewal.
The Winter Solstice is the shortest day of the year in the Western hemisphere. It represents the end of one cycle and the beginning of the next. As the sunlight lessens each day, there is a natural impulse to turn inward and go deep within to connect with and strengthen our inner light - that pure radiant spark within.
That inner spark was here long before we were born into these bodies, and will be here long after we die. It always has been and always will be. It is the true point of cause in our lives and the catalyst for all loving acts and creative labors. This inner spark is essentially the ever present light of love.
This light is celebrated by cultures around the world through many different Winter festivals and rich seasonal traditions. During the window of opportunity that opens during this period, we can more naturally and easily connect with the inner light than at other times of the years. How do we prepare for and make the most of this powerful cyclic opportunity?
During the season of light it is easy to get caught up in the busyness and hectic nature of the season and miss the insights and revelations that are there for us in the stillness and dark of the this time. Here are a few tried and true practices to savor and help you experience the fullness of this powerful time:
Pain is the inner darkness we often run from, afraid it will overcome us and steal our aliveness and the precarious sense that all is well. Yet in every experience of pain and darkness is the potential for liberation and the revelation of greater light. The ongoing cyclic process of contraction into darkness and expansion into light is a powerful catalyst for grow and evolution.
Rather than avoiding the painful situations or feelings in your life, simply allow them to be, with full and loving acceptance. Loving acceptance often dissolves the pain and contraction, and creates the optimum conditions for the next cycle of growth and expansion into greater light.
A powerful question to ask around the time of the Solstice is: "What can I shed in order to more fully nourish life within and around me?" Maybe you are ready and willing to release a negative habitual way of thinking or an addictive tendency. Maybe it is time to release a friendship that is no longer enriching in order to create space for a more nourishing friendship to grace your life. Simply being willing to let go is a powerful first step.
Now imagine traveling through the same tunnel. This time you are holding the hand of someone you love. Your companion is not there to save you or show you the way out, but is simply there to share the experience. The darkness may still be oppressive, the ground still uneven, and the dripping water still startling, yet somehow it doesn't seem as scary or difficult. That is the power of connection.
Who needs you to take their hand right now? Love and connection may be exactly what is needed to rekindle their light... and yours.
The call in phone number is: 1(302)202-1104 (your usual long distance charges apply). The conference code is: 910612. Be sure to add this to your calendar!
Until then, may these practices be a powerful catalyst for many great moments of inspiration and heartfelt connection with others.
With love and holiday cheer,
One of the greatest challenges we face in our ultra-busy, fast-paced, cyber drenched world is to simple stay grounded and present in the moment. Our thoughts have a tendency to pull us into the future. At the same time, all the experiences we haven't dealt with or integrated act as an undercurrent pulling our attention to the past. We often spin and swirl from one activity to the next, missing out on the pure delight and wonder of the present moment.
This powerful embodiment practice only takes a few minutes, yet it cultivates a sense of grounded well-being and vitality, especially when it is done regularly. Doing this practice is a great way to start your day. It is also helpful to do when you are feeling stressed and anxious. Click the link below to listen to a recording of this simple practice.
The impulse to "get back to work" has been strong in recent weeks. I am savoring this vibrant energy and enthusiasm, which is nourishing the birth of projects that have been calling me for months.
Are you feeling this too?
If so, you are naturally tuning into the natural creative cycle of the year. From the perspective of the soul, Spring is a time of inner awakening and inspiration, while Autumn is the time to embody and manifest that inspiration through creative activity.
Spring is the "Inspiration Phase", while Autumn is the "Embodiment Phase" of the yearly creative cycle.
We are now entering the fullness of the Embodiment Phase. This is a time to take clear and focussed outer steps towards embodying and manifesting our most creative ideas and inspiration. Autumn is a time for doing!
When we tune into this powerful yearly cycle and consciously work with it, all of our creative endeavors are greatly enhanced and empowered. We feel carried along by positive unseen currents, like we are sailing with the wind at our backs.
Amidst the creative thinking and focussed activity of recent days, a tender loving voice within has been urging me to also remember the deeper "work" of being human.
This deeper work is the call to awaken and embody that which is most authentic within me, to follow the deepest pulse of my heart, and to live more soulfully each day.
Recently, I have been busily going about my days, scurrying around feeling a bit like the squirrels on my land that are preparing for winter and vigorously attending to their survival needs. I love this kind of purposeful activity, yet it is so easy to get lost in it and lose touch with the inspiration behind the activity.
When that loving inner voice reminds me of why I am really here, it is easy to surrender to the expansive impulses and inspiration that are always within and all around me. Instantly, my breathing deepens and expands, and I feel more grounded, clear, and light.
It is easy to get lost in productivity, and just as easy to find ourselves again through the awareness of why we are really here--to love, to evolve, and to create.
Bring this expansive awareness to our most active moments connects and aligns our infinite creative power with our inspiration, and is a catalyst for deep embodiment and the manifestation of what matters most.
While "doing" can distract us from what we most value, it can also be a vast doorway to further awakening. We get to choose... moment by moment. The practice below is a helpful reminder.
Embodiment Practice - Linking Inspiration with Action
Before you start each new activity today, ask yourself: How does this activity align with and support what matters most to me? The simple practice of asking this question creates new energetic connections between your inspiration and your creative activity; between "being" and "doing."
Expanding your awareness in this way strengthens healthy vibrant connections between your heart, soul, mind, brain, body, and nervous system. Rewiring these internal connections is what Integrated Energy Psychology and Coaching is all about.
Autumn often sparks a deep sense of gratitude and appreciation for the joy and abundance of this crazy beautiful human journey. As our lovely Mother Earth ripens and graces us with the bounty of yet another growing season, I am moved to celebrate the many blessings of my life.
This year, I feel a deep and pervasive gratitude not just for the “blessings”, but also for the many challenges I have faced in recent years; the tests and trials, the grief, and ultimately, the letting go it has demanded.
As the season turns, I remember and celebrate the heart wrenching times when life has been anything but joyful; the days when I felt anything but strong, wise, and awake. These were the days when I felt like I was going through a meat grinder, over and over again. Despite the pain, I am grateful because these trying times have broken down yet another layer of protection around my heart, led me to greater self awareness and compassion, and tenderized me like nothing else could.
As the season turns, I also celebrate the colorful foliage dropping all around me. As these freshly liberated leaves dance on the soft wind, I am gently reminded to shed all that I no longer need. In those sweet moments of remembrance, I know that just like the falling leaves, the released parts of me are on their way to becoming the compost that will nourish the new growth that is sure to follow.
My mantra for this fine, crisp new season: “let go, let go, let go”. These simple words reaffirm my commitments to embracing the fullness of life which includes fresh beginnings as well as completion. I notice how much I prefer fostering new life rather than allowing that which has completed a cycle to fall away. Who doesn't prefer falling in love to breaking up? We want to hold on to the freshness, and run from the endings.
Yet, the urge to let go is always an appropriate response; to joyous births and rocky deaths, to all that feels good and all that hurts. Letting go is a nourishing way of life and a powerful pathway to more fully embodying and expressing our deepest essence.
As I say this powerful phrase to myself over and over, “let go” somehow morphs into “let glow”. This brings an inner smile because letting go allows the inner light to shine brighter than ever.
Finally and most significantly, as the season turns and the nights grow cooler, I celebrate the inner warmth that is sparked each time we reach out to touch another by courageously being real. When we are willing to be vulnerable and authentically offer up whatever we have been hiding or quietly holding back, whether it is our shadowy parts or our magnificence, we claiming our true strength and power. In the instant we choose to authentically share, love enters in and changes everything.
All transitions, from the rhythmic change of season to major and minor work and relationship transitions, call us to adapt, to let go, to release, and to open up to whatever is next. The change of season offer a delicious opportunity to consciously say yes to the impulse to move, to shift, and to free ourselves from yesterday’s feelings, habits, moods, and obsolete creations.
Using flowers essences is a great way to support this process. The essences help set a new tone and vibration within your energy field, making it easier to gracefully let go of whatever no longer serves you. My favorite flower essences come from Findhorn Flower Essences in Scotland. They provide a wide variety of essences that are effective and easy to use. A few drops in your water glass once a day is all you need to provide the healing and transformational support to make changes more gracefully.
Simply chose an essence from their website and use it each day until it is gone. Check out their website here: www.findhornfloweressences.com.
With love and good cheer,
In recent weeks I have been taking plenty of time to travel, play, rest and rejuvenate. A lighter summertime schedule has given me more time to read, reflect, and to just be.
I’m home now, feeling deeply renewed and inspired by the growth and deep embodiment that have unfolded over the past few years, in my life and in the lives of my clients.
This is definitely a time for unveiling your unique brilliance, and daring to more purely and powerfully share who you are. We are all being called to do more of what really lights us up, and to empower others in the process.
Doors that have long been tightly closed are now ready to open wide for those who choose the way of liberation and creative contribution. The more we authentically step up and into fresh territory, the more we quite naturally become a catalyst for others to do the same.
I wonder, what is opening your bold and beautiful heart these days? Are you giving yourself permission to courageously follow your fiery inspiration? What inner impulses are you saying “YES” to?
Today I’m sharing what has been opening my heart and mind during these long, warm days of midsummer.
What I’m grateful for…
The opportunity to love deeply. This week marks the three year anniversary of the unexpected passing of my beloved partner. Since that day, I have faced the grieving process head on, over and over again, only to find ever brighter love, gratitude, and appreciation for the opportunity to intimately know and love, and be known and loved by a truly courageous and wise soul. It was, and continues to be, an honor to stand as one with Douglas Brady.
What I’m celebrating….
Having the opportunity to officiate at the wedding of my daughter later this month. There is so much joy in our family right now as we prepare for this grand love fest. As a mother, officiating will be the powerful completion of a cycle of nurturing my daughter’s growth in a very active way. It is fulfilling and exciting to joyfully release her into a new cycle of life with a loving man by her side. This is definitely a summer of love!
What I’m reading…
There is much written about emotionally dysfunctional relationships, yet this thought provoking article offers a clear and refreshing take on what is is like to be an emotionally healthy grown up:
With fiery love,
Warm summer greetings to you, my friend.
These past few weeks have brought on a cycle of deep emotional clearing for many, myself included. Maybe this is true for you, too?
The other day, a friend mentioned a woman who recently “broke down in tears.” We have all heard and probably spoken this common phrase many times.
When I heard it that day, I was struck by how often the underlying collective assumption is that the display of deep and raw emotion is an indication of brokenness, and “breaking down” is a clear and irrefutable sign that something is terribly wrong and needs to be fixed.
We live within this assumption as the fish lives within the sea, unaware of the wetness all around.
Even if we know in our clever, over active minds that deep emotion does not equate to brokenness, most people are still conditioned and wired to live as though this were true. So often we hide, suppress, anesthetize, or close down at the first hint of a wild raging storm brewing within.
When we begin to feel emotional and unsettled inside, how often do we think, “what’s wrong?”
Maybe, just maybe, those intense emotions are emerging because of what is right in our lives; because of what we are letting go of and releasing.
Deep and authentic emotion is often a sign of full bodied living, not brokenness.
Raw emotion (as opposed to rehashing the same old tired drama) often wells up when we get in touch with a deeper truth, maybe one we pushed away long ago because we did not yet have the strength to courageously face it and embrace it.
These waves of emotion call to be acknowledged, accepted, and loved just as they are. The simple act of being with deep emotion rather than running from is often exactly what is needed to free up and release the pain; and then quite naturally and gracefully let ourselves be guided on to our next evolutionary step.
The challenge is to lean in to these feelings simply as there are, as physical sensation.
Can we feel the hot sting of tears without adding a tragic story? Can the pain in our gut be simply that… a pain in the gut? Can we breathe into and deeply feel these sensations without fighting them or wallowing in them?
Maybe there are warm wet cleansing tears, yearning to flow through you right now. Maybe there are rough and ragged fears stuffed way down inside, longing to be held within the unconditional embrace of your own tender heartedness.
Maybe, just maybe, it is possible to fully embrace and intimately know every nuance of these untamed waves of emotion, and in the process of being fully present to our raw and authentic feelings, simply allow them to naturally return to the vast ocean of human experience, leaving us cleansed, invigorated, and broken open rather than broken down.
You have embraced a path of personal growth and spiritual evolution.
You know you are here to awaken your capacity to love, and to express your creative potential as you enjoy the fullness of life and to make a positive impact wherever you go.
Despite having experienced years of personal and spiritual development, you still struggle with relationships sometimes.
Let’s face it. Having consistently satisfying and loving relationships can be challenging.
The good new is that there are fundamental keys to creating successful relationships.
Unfortunately, most people failed to learn some of these important keys in the early years of life.
Fortunately, these vital keys to creating healthy relationships can be learned and cultivated by anyone, at any point in life.
As a relationship coach and energy therapist, I help clients create deeply satisfying, loving and empowering relationships of all kinds.
You would like to…
If you answered yes to any of these questions and are serious about getting the support you need to heal and move forward into greater love, I would love to speak to you.
In June, I am offering a limited number of free introductory Integration Energy Psychology sessions. This is an opportunity to discover if we are a match for working together to bring more love and connection to your life. If you would like to schedule an introductory session, you can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The three people I have loved the most in this world (not counting my parents) were all born within 24 hours of this moment...
My daughter Alison was born on June 2nd. Three years later in the wee hours of June 3rd, my daughter Breeana was born. My beloved Douglas, was also born on June 2nd.
I find this fascinating, and also heartbreaking tonight as another wave of grief for Douglas moves through. I am letting this wave have its way with me and my misty eyes, hoping it will gracefully fade into gratitude as it has so many times before.
This life is indeed such a great mystery; unknown and sometimes completely unknowable despite my ever-present wondering and inquiring mind. I have spent a lifetime trying to figure it all out.
Yet beyond the unknown and uncertain, beyond the surprises and disappointments, there is great trust in the exquisite pattern of life, more interesting and complex than our wee human minds could ever imagine or engineer. So tonight, on the cusp of three precious birthdays, I stand in awe of the vast intelligence that guides and governs our world.
And I bow in gratitude to the vibrant Geminis who have graced my life... past, present and future.
Over the past week an intense mix of feelings and insights has been stirring within. The warm precious days leading up to Easter are always deeply transformative for me. This time of the year is often filled with moments of deep inner silence and sweeping insight.
This year has been no different. The usual intensity even increased as we approached the full moon and lunar eclipse during the Easter weekend. I had precious moments of silence and insight, yet this year the highs and lows of extreme oppositional forces engaged in a vigorous battle within like never before…
The impulse to step out and connect was pushing up against the desire to retreat and feel deeply safe in my aloneness.
The inspiration to create was juxtaposed with the knowing that something big inside of me is calling to die and be liberated.
The heartfelt desire to open to new love dissonantly lived right beside a new wave of grief for the man I love who is no longer by my side.
Part of me wanted to take strong action to make things happen, while another part knew I simply needed to be still and accept whatever comes my way.
Connection and aloneness, creation and destruction, birthing and grieving, intention and acceptance have all been moving through me, vigorously crashing against each other.
I watched these parts rear their heads. At times one or another were vying for dominance. I observed. I loved them all. I did my integration practices, knowing these battles would indeed pass. I have learned to embrace all of this, and even to celebrate these times for I know these tumultuous interludes can catalyze deep integration and expanded awareness.
Oh, yippee! Another spiritual crisis! Some say these kind of dissonant times are a sign of progress and deepening into being more authentically present and alive. Oh, yippee, again I say.
The inner battle continued until the profound light of the full moon worked its powerful magic on the dark of my deepest shadows. The seemingly oppositional forces momentarily snuggled up to find wholeness, peace and comfort.
The fiery competitors within decided it was more interesting to form true partnership, and to move and dance together. The clashing about did its powerful work of revealing and breaking up the concretized patterns of thought and feeling that were no longer viable. It was time to make way for weaving and connecting new patterns of wholeness and unity.
The destroyer gave way to the creator this morning. And, of course, I am both. On this clear Spring day I celebrate both destruction and creation. I allow both to have their way with me, knowing that in surrendering to both of these co-conspirators my greatest aliveness and joy is unleashed.
Surrender ended the inner battle.
In that scary place of surrendering to the seemingly contradictory forces within, we step forward blindly, never knowing what these forces of destruction and creation may do with us. In the uncertain moments of surrender, we are blind to the future. The goal is unclear. We do not know how everything will turn out. Will we even survive the wild interplay?
Yet the moment we let go of the need to see what the future will bring, we are suddenly more present to what is right here, right now.
When I courageously embraced these seemingly oppositional forces, they suddenly became unified as two necessary sides of the same coin.
When I gave up trying to control these forces and simply allowed them to move through me, an invigorating fullness emerged that was deeply comforting. This fullness carried a powerful reminder of the preciousness of the moment….
The sunlight on the cherry blossoms outside my window… exquisite.
The sounds of my dog’s breath as he sleeps at my feet… comforting.
The feel of the pen in my hand… invigorating.
The love pulsing through my heart… expansive.
I am surrendered. I am blind to the future, yet fully present, right here, right now.
On this fine Spring day, I pray for the courage and strength to continue to surrender, and to allow these ever present seemingly oppositional forces find their Oneness within me.
Shining big love,
Happy Spring, my friend.
The first few days of Spring are always a vibrant and joyful time. As nature energetically bursts forth anew, our enthusiasm for living is sparked like no other time of the year. Anything seems possible at this turn of the yearly cycle. As the warmth of the Sun increases, we are given the strength and optimism needed for renewal and expansion after the inward darkness of previous months.
To remain fresh and fulfilling, our relationships need continual renewal and encouragement.
The fiery warm inspiration that is naturally abundant this time of the year can be a powerful catalyst for strengthening and deepening our closest relationships.
Recently, a longtime friendship went through a challenging period. For years, this friendship had been naturally and easily loving, fun and enriching. Yet in recent months I was feeling discontent with our time together. I was sad and deeply disappointed about what I perceived to be a lack of compassion and understanding in my friend’s attitude towards me. As I was contemplating the situation I remembered some relationship advice I was given when I was 18 years old…
“When you want something that you are not getting in a relationship, the most powerful first step is to freely and abundantly give what you want from the other person, to the other.”
This sounds so simple. Yet the moment I heard this powerful idea I knew it was a game changer. This has proven to be true over the years as this simple idea has been immensely helpful over and over again. Embracing this idea has melted resistance, ended power struggles, and opened up more positive experiences than I could ever count.
By simply giving what you want more of, the relationship turns into a fertile field where the very quality you desire can flourish for both of you. When we quit wanting what we aren’t getting, the other person often gives that very experience back to us without even being asked. In this simple act of giving we move into the heart, which brings a loving, giving quality to the relationship. As the energies of the heart flow more freely in the relationship, everything changes for the better.
If you want more respect, give more respect.
If you want more acceptance, give more acceptance.
If you want more kindness, give more kindness.
If you want more nurturing touch, give more nurturing touch.
I’m happy to report that as I gave my friend more compassion and understanding, she gave it right back to me in beautifully enriching ways. Without drama and trauma! Sometimes additional steps are needed to deepen and strengthen a relationship, but this is always a great place to start.
Maybe you have a relationship that could benefit from this kind of renewal. Probably more then one. :-) So why not give this approach a try? I would love to hear how it works out for you.
With love and warm wishes for your Springtime renewal,
An energy therapist, relationship and spiritual life coach, Ariana is a lover of love in all of its many delicious forms; self love, couples love, family love, community love and ultimately, the universal love that pervades all.