Lack of forgiveness causes almost all of our self-sabotaging behavior.
– Mark Victor Hansen
When I first read this it took me by surprise. I thought but self sabotaging behavior is what I am doing to myself. Why would lack of forgiveness be behind it? So I went to my earliest memory that created the pattern of “it isn’t safe to be seen”. Okay my logical mind threw into my face, how is this created from lack of forgiveness? I had walked into my moms room after I woke up from my nap at 4 yrs old and exposed her adultery. From that experience came the life self-sabotaging pattern “it wasn’t safe to be seen”. Bad things happened according to my 4 yr old little girl, since soon afterwards my parents divorced. What did I have to forgive myself for?
A critical key to achieving success lies in your ability to activate your potential to create the results you seek . . , start by being aware of your self-sabotaging patterns.
– Lauren Mackley
For years I had thought that I was responsible for the divorce. As an adult I finally learned that what caused the divorce was that my mom got pregnant and my dad had gotten a vasectomy, partly because he thought my mom might be betraying him and partly because there were four little girls and he thought that was as big a family as they wanted. So when she got pregnant, it was pretty apparent that he was right. So even though I had wrongly assumed responsibility for the divorce, I knew I wasn’t. So why lack of forgiveness for the continuing pattern of being invisible?
Self-sabotage is the proverbial hammer over the head that finally wakes us up, demanding that we pay attention. For most of us, it takes something devastating to crack us open, to get us out of our minds and into our hearts.
– Debbie Ford
What I discovered as I dug into this thought, was that this had layers and layers of lack of forgiveness. Unfortunately what you will discover when you unwind your own patterns of self sabotage, it that it is never a “one and done” kind of journey. Every single time I think that I have unwound the tangled mess around fear of being seen, a new thread of yarn appears and I am again unwinding some small aspect of this pattern to discover another thought, such as this one. If the pattern is still showing up, then something is still attached waiting for me to find the end of the thread and being unraveling it.
As painful as it is, it’s easier to live in a world of unfulfilled potential than to open yourself up to the possibility you have no potential. It’s easier to tell yourself you “would” have done better if “if” you’d worked harder, than to work your hardest and see what happens. It’s easier to tell yourself you “would” be happier with your body “if” you are healthy, than to eat healthy and see what happens. It’s easier to tell yourself your life “would” be better “if” you woke up early, than to wake up early and see what happens. The fear of failure is worse than failure itself. Be willing to fail so you can see that you probably won’t and if you do, that it’s really not that bad.
– Sam Brown
Entwined within the pattern of “it’s not safe to be seen” is fear of failure. I find fear of failure is like that weed that you can’t get rid of. It sneaks into everything. A lot of people think that fear of failure is simply what it says, the fear to fail. But hidden within that weed is another noxious substance that feeds into my “it’s not safe to be seen”. It is fear of success. The fear that if I am successful it will put me into the spotlight and that spotlight will follow me around like a hidden camera just waiting to expose some defect. It invites attention like the circus barker with the mega phone calling everyone to come under the big tent and watch as Sheryl tries to fly to high on the trapeze and falls to her sudden death. All of those people will sit on the edge of their seats just waiting to find a flaw with my performance. To tell me in detail about my inadequacies. To in short, put me back into the comfort zone never again to explore my hidden potential.
Like most other creatives, I struggle with self-sabotage, self-doubt, and feeling like an imposter more often than not. I struggle with expressing myself, because it does sometimes feel easier or safer not to.
– Jeff Jarvis
Everything is negotiable, you have a right to stand up and say, “this doesn’t work for me”. If you want to make changes in your relationships with friends or family; lay down rules at work to how you are treated; get out of the debt that is ruining your life, or any other situation that has become just too much – you have to do a reality check on yourself. It is an inside job. I know that it sounds like that isn’t the answer, but our self sabotaging patterns set us up to get the same experiences over and over, designed to keep us in our comfort zone. You might think it is the “other” person who is making us miserable. But you have to stand up and start asking for what you want, not what the self sabotaging habits are telling you that you deserve.
This is how women self-sabotage and self-destruct. Unless we have constant witnesses to our hard work, we are convinced we pull off every day of our lives through smoke and mirrors.
– Sarah Ban Breathnach
I spent my entire childhood both trying to be the perfect child, and trying to do whatever my mother was failing to do with my siblings. I became the mom I thought we should have. I was the “one” my mother would constantly tell me she could count on. The hidden message that I had gotten from my mom was that if I was too much trouble, if I made any waves at all, she might divorce me too. She was married five times, so that was my social proof my fear was real.
Your create self confidence by
doing instead of procrastinating.
doing instead of over-planning.
doing instead of self-sabotaging.
doing instead of complaining.
doing instead of feeling sorry for yourself.
One day I decided that wasn’t going to buy into my story anymore. I changed my expectations one inner dialogue at a time. Whenever I felt the spotlight, I turned into it instead of away from it. When I got the criticisms, instead of letting it beat me up, I said “today I am a mirror to their problems and they are finding their own faults in me”. I looked critically at what was said or done (like if the silver spoon had any spots that needed polishing) and thought, ok – “if one thing in this dialogue might be even partly true, what would it be”? Then I would see if I could find that thread in my self sabotaging pattern and work on just unraveling that single thread and let the rest of the editorial go into recycling.
This is a reminder to myself that I don’t have to be negative, or worry, or argue, or self-sabotage.
It’s ok to be happy and to have fun and to just enjoy life.
– Hanna Anerod
I started creating self-confidence and owning who I am, and that who I am is a “perfectly imperfect” person. I will make mistakes. I will have failures. Spellcheck will fail me. My grammar will drive someone crazy. Even though I read through this blog 20 times, it will still have some mistake. And someone who isn’t putting themselves out there like I am, will catch it for me. And I will say thank you, because I still want this to be perfect, even if I’m not. I will grow by stepping outside my comfort zone. I will have huge successes. I continue to worry about loving myself and I will keep letting go of the feeling that everyone else has to love me too or I am not worthy.
At some point in your life you’re going to have to start demanding what you deserve and be willing to walk away if what you require can’t be provided.
= R.H. Sin
Interpret this quote only to how you treat yourself – amazing to put a different spin on something that was written for those outside of you. Demand your inner voice, your patterns, your self-sabotaging habits start listening to what is acceptable in terms of the inner you. To actually completely engage in a life of self-exploration, you need to get curious. To ask questions that dig deep into the soul level. To unravel one thread after another. If you want to go beyond the surface of answering these questions, join us in our next “Catching The Perfect Wave” online course. We dive deeply into exploring transformation and listening to our souls voice with weekly group calls to go beyond the simple answers and explore what we all have hiding beneath the surface.
Benjamin Franklin has a famous saying,
In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.
– Benjamin Franklin
I would amend his quote to include change. Change happens whether we want it to or not. It is necessary for growth, and without it there can be no life. A seed is planted, the seeds shell breaks open, and a shoot pushes its way out of the soil. The shoot becomes a thriving plant through continued growth. With the right amount of water, nutrition and sunlight, the plant produces a bountiful harvest.
Growth only comes from adversity and from challenge – from stepping away from what’s comfortable and familiar and stepping out into the unknown.
– Ben Saunders
The seed stepped into its destiny by not remaining dormant in the ground. It did not let fear keep it from cracking the hard protective shell. It pushed itself out of the limitations of the seeds shell. It pushed itself past the fears that resided in the darkness of the soil, thrusting up into the light.
Stepping into your destiny really is the only real, true, authentic way to live. Fear is all that holds you back and holding on to that is really what keeps us stuck in the dark.
Growth and change can be painful, but they do not have to be. You have a choice in how you react to it, and how if affects you. Change is the law of life. But all change is not growth. That is because change isn’t always forward movement. Sometimes change takes us backward, instead of forward.
Knowing others is intelligence. Knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power.
– Lao Tzu
Having an open mind is necessary if you don’t want the growth that happens when you change to be painful. This is because if the mind is closed, then you are forever being controlled by the things that the mind refuses to give up. Wisdom is knowing ourselves so that we spot our patterns of self sabotage. Mastering ourselves is when we spot the self sabotage and instead step through the gateway of transformation.
Your vulnerability is a powerful gateway. Stepping into it invites growth, freedom, healing, your greatest love. It is a pathway born from courage, connecting your truth + being to the magic already living within you.
Think of a baby bird. It is a soupy glob inside the egg. It transforms into a baby bird. If it doesn’t transform, the egg goes bad and never has life. Once it transforms it still needs to peck its way out of the eggshell. If it doesn’t get out of the eggshell it will die. Then once it is out of the eggshell it grows to the point that it needs to use its wings and learn to fly. All are components of constant change and growth. The prize of growth, is in the freedom of flight that the mature bird has.
None of us are perfect, but I value those who make growth a priority . . . They push things forward, they show us that it’s better to die in your truth than to live by what cowardly people deem to be “right” . . . You’ll always be crazy to people too scared of reality to dream . . . Your mistakes will always be dumb to those who fear trying anything new . . . But there’s always a prize for those that persevere . . . Greatness is infatuated with those that have the discipline to stay focused and the work ethic to consistently get better . . .
– Rob Hill Sr.
This is a great illustration of change. Some of the changes are beyond the control of the bird. it has no say about changing from the soupy glob and into the baby bird. Instinct has it fight and peck itself out of the shell. The bird could fight against the changes, but doing so would lead to its death as it needs to eat to survive. It goes through change and transformation after change and transformation. It has the freedom of flight. It has the wind beneath its wings lifting it up into the sky. The reward is in the fulfillment of its destiny.
Personal growth is not a matter of learning new information, but of unlearning old limits.
– Alan Cohen
What it comes down to is how the attitude that we have about change and life, speaks to the kind of life we have. The attitude of survival actually fights against change, because our focus is on avoiding what we don’t want. We avoid disease with drugs, we try to avoid war by creating better faster ways of killing our enemies, so that we aren’t killed by them. Weapons of mutually assured mass destruction.
All change is preceded by crisis.
– Soren Kierkegaard
A different attitude would be to focus on thriving. In thriving we seek out ways to live a happier, healthier way of life. We seek the good things we want in our lives, instead of avoiding the bad things we don’t want. We seek to cooperate with others in love and peace, connecting heart to heart. We become pioneers of a better future. Assumptions need to be cleaned out of our thinking process, because they serve as blinders and we miss vital information.
Be the change you wish to see in the world.
– Mahatma Gandhi
Growth and change are very scary. You will trip and fall and bruise yourself. Others will make fun of you, stating that you can’t change the world (you are a pipe dreamer). They use fear as a powerful motivator to stay where you are. Because they themselves have a lack of self trust, they will say that you can’t trust others. Because they are themselves bullies, they will say that the bad guys will win, if you don’t act in a forceful way. Since they don’t have a life experience of safety, they will say you won’t be safe until you destroy what the others have. They will say a lot of things, to push you backwards into a cage of fear of loss. They will push you back into the cage of what they falsely call safety.
Laugh at what you hold sacred and still hold it sacred.
– Abraham Maslow
Goals are what we reach for, but the real prize is how we change to achieve them. I always think of Imagine by John Lennon. What if,…. we all really do have infinite potential? What if we really can do anything? What if we can make our dreams come true? What if, changing you, really does change the world?
That is the kind of world I want to live in, and what I find is that the more I create that space inside of me, the more I find others who are doing the same. I really do believe that someday we will be living life in peace, and sharing the world with each other, and the world will really finally be “one”.
Success is a journey, not a destination. The doing is often more important than the outcome.
– Arthur Ashe
Every year I go on several trips to seminars that are usually three – four days each. This year they arrived all at once. One of them I was supposed to go on last year, but my body had other plans (back surgery) and so I was unable to attend. So they transferred me to this event. The second one is part of the coaching plan I am on and I wasn’t able to travel yet with the event last year (on restrictions from said back surgery) and the third event is an annual American Indian Retreat I do every year.
Sometimes, it’s the journey that teaches you a lot about your destination.
I go on these journey’s each year to recharge my batteries. To open my mind to new learning. To get away from the everyday life, so I can relax and let come in from the divine the messages I am too busy to hear when I am involved with a fulltime job at the bank as well as running my LemonadeMakers page. When I am out of my element, I see things I am missing at home. I meet new people since I go to most of these events by myself. I get to travel and see what in my life needs to change.
Your soul knows the geography of your destiny. Your soul alone has the map of your future, therefore you can trust this indirect, oblique side of yourself. If you do, it will take you where you need to go, but more important it will teach you a kindness of rhythm in your journey.
– John O’Donohue
So no surprise, with attending a four day event (Thursday – Sunday) three weekends in a row in three different states, I woke up to some things in my life. I have always loved trees. It has always seemed to me that they talk to me. They are so relaxed and go with whatever mother nature sends their way. They connect to other trees through the root systems and even send nutrients to other trees far away that need them. Some of the recent scientific studies show they actually create community and support each other. Every home we have purchased it was because of the trees on the property, not the houses that I fell in love with. So imagine my surprise when I realized that lately trees haven’t been talking to me, water has.
The best journeys answer questions that in the beginning you didn’t even think to ask.
– 180 degrees south
When I was at my first event outside of Albuquerque, New Mexico at Tamaya, located on a Pueblo Indian Reservation, they had strong winds blowing. I had opened the door to my hotel room and was listening to the wind, rain and thunder storm. When I closed my eyes and listened I heard the sound not of the wind, but of strong waves breaking against the seashore.
When I flew into Phoenix for my next event, the winds were blowing and I still heard the ocean in the air.
At Joshua Tree in California, I spoke to Chief Roberts and his wife Terri about how I was hearing the ocean everywhere I went. I knew water was calling but I didn’t know why. As one of our outdoor activities we were to walk a labyrinth. As I walked it I was looking down at the rocks that outlined the path. All different kinds of rocks, different minerals and crystals in them. All shapes. They spoke to me about water. How it had loosened them from the soil. How it had carved and shaped them transforming them, exposing them to the elements and revealing what they were deep inside. How sometimes the changes happened rapidly like a landslide and other times it was slowly drip by drip that changed occurred.
Even in my planning for where we are going to live when I retire, water has been showing up. First as I wanted to live in Northern Oregon or Southern Washington along the coast next to the ocean. Then my son sent me a property listing outside of Astoria Oregon on the John Day river for a houseboat. It was like water was saying, if you don’t want the ocean, how about living on the river?
I felt like the mom in the kitchen making dinner and my three year old kept grabbing my pant leg, saying “mommy, mommy” over and over. And I kept saying, in a minute, I’m really busy right now. Water was not letting me get away. It just kept trying to get my attention.
Your journey in life is not set in stone, you can change direction.
– Steven Aitchison
As I traveled round and round the labyrinth I started thinking about when water had started talking to me. How had it been showing up in my life? This winter has been the wettest winter since we have been living in California – the amount of water this season has been comparable to all the water we have gotten the last 10 years or so combined. My patio kept getting flooded over and over again.
Then I thought about how we just redid the logo and website and Facebook page design and it has the ocean with breaking waves on it, whereas before it was the trees in the forest. Then I thought about the webinar video I created and again it was about “Catching The Perfect Wave”. Even right now with my remodeling of the bathroom I just discovered that I have to replace all of the drainage pipes as they used cast iron when the house was built and they are all damaged with rust and corrosion.
In a recent deep meditation class I asked my intuition what I needed to know. I am very visual and it showed me this vision in which I had already given birth and was now expelling the afterbirth. Childbirth has a lot to do with water – LOL. When I looked up the meaning behind this it validated my thoughts that I am in the middle of a big life transition. I have been told for the past 6 months that I am probably going to be laid off from work. I have been preparing for this liquidating our other properties we own, paying off debt and getting everything ready for the possibility.
Be brave. Take risks. Nothing can substitute experience.
– Paulo Coelho
I think that this is why water is showing up for me, Big changes are coming. Everyone I was talking to at all three events were experiencing big changes in their lives. They were all in the midst of some transition in their lives. I am taking a leap of faith in my own transition that it is time for me to devote full time to LemonadeMakers. To finish the online courses I am writing. To find a new publisher for my first three books, that I had ready to print when the company that was doing it sent me an email that they shut their doors. To begin coaching life transformation full time, instead of part time. This is a big risk as I have never been self employed. It is a big risk, because I have no idea where this journey will take me. I just know that water says I have to go.
No one knows what changes, big or small, lie ahead.
One thing is certain, our journey’s not over.
Enjoy each and every step.
So my question for you is this – what is trying to get your attention? What are you ignoring because you are so busy doing, that you are forgetting to take the time to listen?
Take the time to look behind you for signs. Listen to what keeps occurring in your life. See the doors that you walked past not realizing they were there. Realize that you are probably in the midst of a transition yourself. Be brave. Go someplace even if it is simply a walk in the woods and get away from the everyday part of your life. Ask yourself what do I need to know for the next part of my journey.
Come attend our next webinar and explore what we have to offer to take you to a new level of self transformation. Click on the link below to learn more about our next webinar to “Catch the Perfect Wave”.
Consult not your fears, but your hopes and dreams. Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential. Concern yourself not with what you have tried and failed in, but with what is still possible to do.
– Pope John XXIII
Everyone has dreams. How many times have you said the words, “I thought of that idea, but didn’t know how to accomplish it” – or “that could have been me being rich and famous, I thought of that idea years ago”? I believe that the universe downloads great ideas to many, because most of us will never chase the dream into a reality.
We may place blame, give reasons, and even have excuses, but in the end, it is an act of cowardice to not follow your dreams.
– Dr. Steve Maraboli
When we are dream chasers we realize that the person who we are, has just been constructed out of myths we have told ourselves since we were children. That this person who was created out of ideas, beliefs and images – is not really who we are. Those myths don’t define us, and they are not who we are deep inside our souls. The dream is our souls way of clearing out all of the things that no longer serve us. It draws out of the center of our soul who we really are.
Walk with the dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground.
– Wilfred Peterson
When we decide to become dream chasers, it changes our life forever. This is because this decision means that we have decided to become someone different than we have been. We realize that in order to bring the dream into reality, we have to become who the dream is calling us to be. Someone who is brave enough to follow her own wild and crazy ideas. Someone who has the courage to put as much effort into doubting the fears that come up when we go outside the safe zone in our lives, as we put into doubting our dreams. Someone who puts her visions of what is possible onto the world stage.
Without leaps of imagination, or dreaming, we lose the excitement of possibilities. Dreaming, after all, is a form of planning.
– Gloria Steinem
We realize as dream chasers, that our dreams are a verb, an action needs to take place. We need to serenade our dreams, ranging from the simple love ballad to the romantic symphony, reflecting the intensity of our love for the dream we are chasing. We bleed the words of our souls poetry onto the page of our dreams, spilling out our hearts desires. We float across the dance floor of our dreams, with the intensity of the Paso Doble. The paint of our dreams swirls across the canvas, blending in the colors of our life as we paint it into existence. As the conductor of the orchestra, with the baton leading the intensity of the music, we create a tapestry of tones and colors across the mind.
Dreams are valuable commodities. They propel us forward. They give us energy.
– John C. Maxwell
All of this art creates the souls wishes from deep inside of us, out into the world stage. The distance between our dream and reality is bridged by action. Small steps become long distances, when we just keep walking. Remember the joy of the babies first step? Then we hold out our hands and just keep walking backwards one step to encourage them to take another and another. The next thing we know they are running across the room, the yard, and the world. Small steps become long distances, when we just keep walking.
What is most needed at this moment, is for all of us to let lose our passions, and come alive. Come alive and go out and do what you see needs to be done. Don’t wait for someone else to solve your problems, or your neighborhoods problems or the worlds problems. Come alive and do something. Join an organization to help others; get involved in volunteering, in politics, in raising your hand and saying, “I can do that”.
The biggest adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams.
Refuse to let the fears and nightmares of other people’s lives distort our dreams. Don’t apologize for having dreams. Don’t stop chasing them because others don’t want us to try to bring them into reality. We realize that chasing our dreams is hard work. That chasing our dreams will change our lives, and the lives of every person we impact. We don’t stop chasing our dreams because they excite our spirit. We have a deep hunger that can’t be satisfied in any other way. It is our road, our dreams, our life.
Don’t follow your dreams; chase them . . .
– Kunal Patel
Dreams are all about transforming. When we listen to our souls voice, we see these dreams play out in our imagination. Our imagination is the illustrator to the book that your soul has written out on your heart. It is up to you to read the blueprint designs, and go out into the world and build them into reality. Negative people are like termites. If you let them into your dreams, they will destroy what you are building. You are far too smart, to let the negativity of your own mind or that of others stand in your way.
Keep your dreams alive. Understand that to achieve anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination and dedication. Remember all things are possible for those who believe.
– Gail Devers
Remember that God put that dream into your heart. He whispers to your soul what the next step is to bring it into reality. You just need to listen, believe and go out and do what you can do. God will make sure the right doors open, but you have to step through them. I encourage you to check out our LemonadeMakers Club. It is being designed with helping each of us to dig deeper into hearing our own inner guidance. To learn to understand the directions of the divine through our souls voice. To better understand not only how to access it, but to see what in our lives is undergoing transformation and learn to work with it, instead of against it.
We all want to be liked and accepted. This internal need that we have to be loved, sometimes causes us to put on a mask of who we think that they want us to be. The perfect little girl. The shy teenager. The smile pasted on our face, that life is wonderful, when inside we are screaming in frustration.
Your need for acceptance can make you invisible in this world. Don’t let anything stand in the way of the light that shines through this form. Risk being seen in all of your glory.
– Jim Carey
It is hard to show up without any masks, but it is vitally important for us to be true to who we are. These masks are the cause of so much unhappiness. We meet someone we like, but if we are both wearing masks, then neither of us is communicating who we really are. We fall in love with the mask and not the person. We communicate to the mask, and what the person is trying to say never gets heard. We create so much drama and trauma to ourselves and others that way.
If you are not living your truth, you’re living a lie.
– Joseph Curiale
If you just say what you really mean, life gets so much easier. The truth is that I may not be who I want to be yet. But I have come a long way from where I used to be. And I want to continue removing mask after mask and burning them up, so that who I show up as, is always the real me.
Loving ourselves through the process of owning our story is the bravest thing we’ll ever do.
– Brene’ Brown
What I loved about this photo is that they people in it are being crazy. They are being stupid and silly and weird. But when you look at each face you see that they are also being happy. How many times do you catch your face in the mirror or a reflection on a window and see that kind of happy expression on your face? On others faces that you love? We all need to be who we are and find those happy faces more often. When we let the world’s conflicts and tragedy’s be the things we focus on, we lose that happiness. The news focuses on hyping the negative, and giving us very little of the positive things that happen every day.
Every day a new mom and dad have this wonderful new baby come into their lives and change them forever. Every day a child does something wonderful, like riding a bike for the first time, or winning a race, or making a home run. And they celebrate with their loved ones what they achieved. Every day a police man or a fire man or the driver of an ambulance saves a loved ones life, and they celebrate they have another day with their loved ones. Every day someone is doing something wonderful, brave, heroic, and we lose sight the of the wonderful. We need to celebrate all of the wonderful things that happen in our lives and the lives of those we love. Don’t let those who are still sleep walking through their lives stand in the way of your awakening.
Closing with this quote, because “I see you” needs to be something that happens to us and we need to see others.
If there is any need that is perpetually unmet on this planet, it is the need to feel seen. To feel seen in our humanity, in our vulnerability, in our beautiful imperfection. When we are held safe in that, a key turns inside of our hearts, freeing us from our isolation, transforming our inner world. If there is anything we can offer each other, it is the gift of sight. “I SEE YOU” – perhaps the most important words we can utter to another. I See You.
– Jeff Brown
We need to stop being invisible, and we need to let those who are trying to be, know that we see them as a human being deserving of love and respect. We don’t have to agree with everything that they have done in their lives, to still give them love and respect. How many people in nursing homes, living in the street, eating their lunch alone in the café – how many people do we pass by that are not being seen? How many just need a hug, and someone to say, I See You? I SEE YOU!
You are capable of far more than you know. Don’t be afraid to unleash your greatness.
There comes a time when the desire for transformation demands action. Never let your fears be the deciding factor, of taking that action.
Never give up on what you really want to do. The person with big dreams is more powerful than the one with all the facts.
– Albert Einstein
This is so important when you are looking at the big dream, because 99% of people will tell you all the reasons why it can’t be done. What Albert Einstein was really saying, is that the big dreams lay outside of the box of rules on how things are done.
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.
We shared a story about a pilot who was born without arms and flies with her feet at the controls. Another story featured a woman born without legs who surfs and skateboards competitively. These two women have big dreams and accomplish them because they believe they can find a way to make it work. They defy the odds. They don’t let missing arms or legs be a limiting factor to their dreams.
More recently on America’s Got Talent there is the wonderful story of a young woman who lost her hearing as a teenager, who writes her own music, plays ukulele and sings beautifully. She spent a few years raging against the world for taking away her dream to be a singer and then figured out a way to do it anyway.
Janine Shepherd is a public speaker and author of several books including “Defiant: A Memoir”. Shepherd had been an aspiring Olympic cross-country skier. She was nearly killed when she was hit by a truck during a training bike ride. Paralyzed and immobile for six months, she was given a grim picture for recovery. Not only did she teach herself to walk again — she learned to fly — becoming an aerobatics pilot. Her TED Talk is: Janine Shepherd: How Can We Redefine Ourselves After A Tragedy? Her story is amazing because she took her story and reformed it to continue to push the edges of her potential, not settling for the Janine Shepherd, disabled story.
The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life. Attitude to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances, than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company . . . a church . . . a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past . . . we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude. I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it. And so it is with you . . . we are in charge of our Attitudes.
– Charles R. Swindell
So what are some tools you can use to lasso those big dreams into the barn? One suggestion is to have either a half day or full day block of time to write and brainstorm about the ideas on how to accomplish your dreams.
Another suggestion I read recently was to have what they called “implementation intentions”. We have all heard of intentions being set to bring something into your sphere of influence to assist you with a goal in your life. This is setting an intention with steps to implement the intention into reality. I have done this in my life without realizing what I was doing.
Dreams become reality when intentions turn into actions.
Years ago one of my sons got engaged in the month of February. The wedding date was set for August and my goal was to save enough money to be able to pay for their honeymoon for them. I had it budgeted out and while it was a little tight I knew that I could stretch and make it happen. Then in March they decided to move the wedding to the end of May. I looked at the numbers and I had no idea how I was going to be able to pay for it in less than 60 days.
I sat down and starting writing out how happy I was that I had come up with a way to pay for their honeymoon. I wrote about how wonderful the wedding was and how much they enjoyed their honeymoon. I put ever ounce of energy into the writing, with the words emoting all five senses as I wrote out how they loved Mexico – the sound of the surf, the smell of the flowers, the tastes of the spicy food. I expressed thankfulness and gratitude with every sentence.
After I finished the letter, I still didn’t know how I was going to do it, but I had my intentions pulling in all possibilities. About a week later I received a phone call out of the blue about a property that we have in Upstate New York. We owned a 10 acre parcel next door to our second home free and clear and the neighbors across the street wanted to purchase it for $17,000 and do a fast cash closing. With that money and what I had in savings, the honeymoon was paid for.
Set your intentions, be open to miracles, let go and let God take guided action. Let your dreams unfold like a beautiful flower.
– Anna Taylor
That was a big dream that scared me, because I had no idea when the date changed that I could make it happen. I still am amazed at the timing of how it all worked out. I think that this is how all of the really big dreams happen. We start out with the idea, which becomes a goal, which becomes an implemented intention. We get really specific in our minds as to what happened and leave the hows to the universe, while at the same time, using all of our tools to bring our dreams into reality.
Every morning you have two choices: continue to sleep with your dreams, or wake up and chase them.
There is a Native American saying, “give thanks for unknown blessings already on their way.” So dream so big that everyone thinks your crazy. Don’t let yourself or anyone else limit you. The time is now to follow your passions. Lasso that dream and bring in home. The goal is to die with memories, not just dreams of what could have been.
Have you ever been so lost in a relationship trying to be who they wanted, that you lost yourself?
Have you ever been in a job, where you were constantly biting your tongue so that you didn’t lash out at a coworker or your boss who was bullying you?
Did you spend your childhood trying so hard to be the perfect child, that you pushed and pushed all of your rebellious self into a tight box and nailed that lid shut?
We are only as blind as we want to be.
– Maya Angelou
I think that most of us could answer yes to at least one of those, if not all three. I spent my entire childhood trying to be the perfect daughter with my mom, because my experience of her was that if you made her mad, she would divorce you (she was married five times).
When I met my husband, I spent the first few years trying to be the perfect wife to him, and the perfect mother to our children. I put unrealistic expectations on myself. I exhausted myself and the not so funny thing about it, is that my husband never voiced or indicated in any way that this was something that he wanted. I have had jobs where Sunday night I got stomach pains or headaches just thinking about going into work on Monday and having to deal with that toxic environment.
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we allow these kinds of situations to develop? Are we actually setting them up in the first place? Why do we stay in them way too long?
You can’t change what’s going on around you until you start changing what’s going on within you.
What I discovered in myself, was a pattern of behavior on my own part. I was taking subconsciously that pattern of behavior with my mother “being the perfect child so you are liked and loved” and I transferred it to my husband and children. I even transferred it to work, thinking that if I just worked harder, smarter, faster, they would like me and treat me better.
You have the ability to quickly change your patterns of thought, and eventually your life experience.
– Abraham Hicks
The first step to change is to recognize your patterns. We all have them. They are a part of our human nature. They begin in childhood. Most of us had that one parent that we wanted and worked at getting to love us. We wanted their attention. We did whatever we had to in order to get it. Sometimes it was being the perfect child. For others it might have been being rebellious, because being the perfect child didn’t get you any attention. You had to be the squeaky wheel. Maybe you were the family clown, to make everyone laugh and defuse your environment in some way. What is the pattern of behavior that you had with that parent? Now look at your life now. How is that pattern of behavior showing up for you?
Once you see the pattern, how it shifts and changes in every aspect of your life, you can begin to shift it. I called my pattern Cami – because she is so good at camouflage. I might think that I have rooted her out, but she still shows up. The thing about patterns is that they have become masters at disguise. So I am always finding her same old pattern dressed up in different clothes. When I find her, then I can scoot her out the door, and work on changing the situation that she has created in my life. It has become a kind of game. I don’t fail at shifting my pattern. She just keeps camouflaging how she shows up, and I get to play detective and find her.
Everything has changed and yet, I am more me than I’ve ever been.
– Iain Thomas
Now that I know and recognize the patterns, I see how I have set things up in the past to repeat the pattern of behavior. It was what I was comfortable with. I know how to act and react within it. I find that now I recognize it before it sets itself up. I can sidestep most of it, because I now know what to look for.
The 3 C’s in life: Choice, Chance, Change. You must make the Choice, to take the Chance, if you want anything in life to Change.
– via Curianocom
I recognize that “the everything that has changed” is me. I changed my own self destructive behavior by recognizing the signs before I activated it. When you know what to look for, it is surprising how clearly you can see it. My husband used to clean carpets for a living. Everywhere we went, he would look at the carpets and comment on them. It was automatic behavior. We all have it, and making very small incremental changes to that automatic behavior shifts it into new and different patterns. Slowly over time after he no longer had that job, he just stopped noticing whether a buildings carpets were clean or not. It was no longer a focus of his behavior.
One of the happiest moments in your life is when you find the courage to let go of what you can’t change.
So when you look at your own daily routine, what is holding your patterns of behavior in place? What small incremental changes can you make in your life? Do you have the courage to let go of the “safety net” your patterns are holding for you? Do you have the courage to do something different? Do you have the courage to release the chains of patterns of behavior that are anchoring you in place? Great changes in our lives don’t come from remaining in our comfort zone, and it takes courage to walk away from the certainty of our lives, for the unknown that beckons to us.
At some point in your life you’re going to have to start demanding what you deserve and be willing to walk away if what you require can’t be provided.
It really is as simple as looking at your life. You know what you don’t want, even if the knowing what you do want part is not totally clear. You know what you have done to create what you now have. You also know that getting something different is just as simple as asking and then implementing actions to achieve it. You might have a harder time accepting that you deserve the best things in life. But you do. So stop settling for less. If you still have parts of you buried, dig them up. Get to know who you are at the most basic parts of you.
Will it be easy? Nope. Worth it? Absolutely.
– Elite Daily
Be courageous enough to live the life that you have always dreamed about. It might not happen overnight, but step by step, accepting what you deserve and working at the small changes, you will progress to living the life of your dreams.
“Waking up to who you are requires letting go of who you imagine yourself to be” – Alan Watts
You are on a spiritual journey of unlearning the fears created by your past life, and learning to accept yourself as who you really are. At some point in your life, probably multiple times, you have let someone else tell us you were wrong to believe in the things you do. They abandoned you. They betrayed you. They ridiculed you. They said and did hateful things. They made you feel that you were not good enough, that you were stupid, a waste of space, not even useful as garbage.
“Whenever there is fear, there is opportunity. When there is great fear, there is great opportunity” – Andy Stanley
It may be that you didn’t live up to the expectations of your family, or at school or work, or with your so called friends. So you became a victim and were abused, bullied, and treated disrespectfully. Or it may be that they were so dysfunctional and unhappy that they didn’t know how else to treat you. And you let it happen. You believed them, you listened to them, and they shattered you. Then in an act of self preservation you gathered up all of the broken pieces of yourself and put them deep inside a cage, so that no one could cause further destruction.
“To let go does not mean to get rid of. To let go means to let be. When we let be with compassion, things come and go on their own” – Jack Kornfield
Then your negative mind talk took up where the others left off. It seeks to keep you inside of that cage, because it thinks by doing so you won’t be hurt again. That it will be able to keep you safe. But at some point that small child inside the cage starts making some noise. It wants to be free. It wants to come back into the light and start pursuing your dreams again. At some point you start becoming conscious of this desire that is building up inside your soul You have to start taking some risks. You come to know that you can change your life. That it is a possibility, and not as hard as your mind wants you to think it is.
“Being strong means rejoicing in who you are, complete with imperfections” – Margaret Woodhouse
In order to trust in the dreams, you go on a spiritual pilgrimage. A spiritual journey of discovering a path to happiness. Of creating new paths of your own, breaking your own trail. Of making changes even though they terrify you. You discover doors to open that you never saw before. You set yourself free from those shackles. You used your key to unlock the cage you had locked yourself into. You know in your bones that you deserve to be free and happy.
“Survival mode is supposed to be a phase that helps save your life. It is not meant to be how you live” – Michele Rosenthal
With every choice, with every small change you will go on a new heroes journey. You begin to discover the possibility of a new life. You stop being who you were and start uncovering who you really are. Hope begins to find a home inside your soul again. You know why the caged bird sings – because it’s about to experience true freedom. You begin to love yourself without boundaries or restrictions. You open up to the possibility of being loved, and loving others without boundaries.
“Hope is the magic elixir that energizes dreams, fuels possibilities, and lets you live beyond the limits of your historical thinking. It is not a promise that something you want will happen – it is an invitation to enjoy the possibility of what you want while you and life negotiate the eventual outcome. There is never a good reason not to hope!” – Michael Neill
This begins the life of taking second chances. It is the most powerful gift you can give yourself. The opportunity to amplify your love. To see life from the place of your restored hope. To live a life of value, redeeming those qualities and values you abandoned. To be made whole again. To change the story of your life. To expand out past your comfort zone, (the cage you imprisoned yourself in) and begin living a life of potential and possibilities.
“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance” – Alan Watts
Close the chapter in the book that contains the story of your being a victim. That might have been who you were when you lost your way. But now with your transformational compass firmly in your hands you are navigating your way to start living a life of purpose and meaning. You are climbing back up the mountain in your heroes journey, refined. Like the phoenix rising from the ashes you take flight. You are starting out on a new journey, a new sacred destination of fulfilling your destiny once again.
“Never be limited by other people’s limited imaginations. If you adopt their attitudes, then the possibility won’t exist, because you’ll have already shut it out – you can hear other people’s wisdom, but you’ve got to re-evaluate the world for yourself” – Mae Jemison
You look back at your life with gratitude, even for the stuff that was devastating. You now see it was all a gift. It bestows reverence on how God works with everything that happens, and turns it into something valuable. It allows you to see the world through love, and creates these transcendent moments of awe that change you right down into the DNA of your cells. You experience the world in a different way. It becomes a daring adventure. You become the brave hero exploring the new world. Yes, you will fall down. Yes, you will be hurt. Yes, you will find yourself working to regain your vision. But now you know that you can choose your thoughts. That you can keep what brings you joy, peace, and happiness. That never again will you find yourself having to imprison yourself to save yourself. That you can release the things that make you suffer, let them take flight and be free.
“I wish for the same thing I’ve hoped for since the beginning. I wish for a life so brave, so unpredictable, so full of unexpected joys and unforgettable love that no box could possibly contain all my memories. Such a life won’t be perfect. It’ll be something better. It’ll be my own paradise” – Patti Smith
Shel Silverstein is one of my favorite poets. My kids all read his poems when they were little. This is one of his poems that I wanted to share, because it is now part of my life with my dad.
The Little Boy and Old Man
“Said the little boy, Sometimes I drop my spoon. Said the little old man, I do that too.
The little boy whispered, I wet my pants. I do too, laughed the old man.
Said the little boy, I often cry. The old man nodded, So do I.
But worst of all, said the boy, it seems Grown-ups don’t pay attention to me. And he felt the warmth of a wrinkled old hand. I know what you mean, said the little old man.”
Recently I crossed over from being a daughter to being a parent for my father. Some changes in your life, tear your heart into tiny pieces. 22 years ago, my mom went on to her next adventure. She passed away at 56 yrs old from cancer. I stayed with her and took care of her the last three months of her life. My aunt and my mom’s best friend stayed with me as she needed around the clock care. With them by my side, while I had hard moments, it wasn’t traumatic. I miss her so much with each new family event. My kids graduating high school. college, marriages, and of course grandchildren and now great grandchildren. She missed it all.
It was a family understanding that when my dad retired from work that he would move in with us. And because he had poor heart health, having a triple bypass, he actually retired a little early with disability and came to live with us. At first he had a motorhome that he lived in, so he could keep his independence. We had a motorhome pad, with electricity hook ups and everything. Then came the day he had to move inside, because his health was deteriorating.
Then we purchased a hospital bed because he was having problems breathing at night, with a lot of coughing and this would allow him to raise it up enough that he could comfortably sleep. Then more ups and downs. He acquired a walker because he couldn’t walk more than a few steps before he was out of breath. Then back and forth to hospitals, ER’s, tests and more tests. Changes of medication when they damaged his kidneys. Changes of medications to help his heart failures.
My dad has a phobia around hospitals. An intense fear. He refuses to go, wanting to stabilize himself with drugs at home. So that is very trying as it usually means intense discussions with both me and his cardiac specialists. The drugs have started causing kidney damage and they have to dial back the dosage. I feel horrible that he becomes defeated. He sits in his chair and watches TV all day and I know he has feelings of depression and being defeated by his body. Sometimes I feel like the worst daughter in the world, as I crossed over into being his parent. I am his advocate when he doesn’t or just can’t understand what is happening and why.
There is a moral task of caregiving, and that involves just being there, being with that person and being committed. When there is nothing that can be done, we have to be able to say, “Look, I’m with your in this experience. Right through to the end of it.
Dr. Arthur Kleinman.
Why do I do this? About 52 years ago, my dad married my mom. She had six little girls, all eighteen months apart with a set of twins. My dad has a lot of faults, like all of us. But he also has some amazing qualities. One is that when they got married, we were his daughters. Not his step-daughters. His daughters. Not once in 50 years has the word “step” exited his mouth. I think that many who read this will not understand how important that is to a child. For me, putting the word “step” before me, makes me less than his own child. I know how lucky we were that we were never step children. When my mom died, 22 years ago, we were still his daughters. No words can express this kind of love. Believe me, if you met some of my sisters, you would understand how amazing it is, that he still calls them his daughters – lol.
Of all the lessons I’ve learned through my years of caregiving, the most important is to keep the love connection going. Just tell them that you love them again and again and again. You will never say it too much, ever.
It is scary to cross this transition from daughter to parent. It was different from my mom, as I never felt I became her parent, I remained in caregiving mode. It is scary to see that in the near future, he will go on to his next great adventure, leaving all of us behind him. We are both scared right now. What happens when we let our fears get ahold of our mouths? We shout, we get angry, we say hurtful things. But it is just us being scared. Caregiving is hard, but it is also so rewarding. I can remember when I was taking care of my mom, that some of my sisters were absent because it was too hard to watch the lung cancer take away her ability to care for herself. I learned what the true meaning of words like grace, dignity, love, sacrifice really were deep under the surface of the meanings we usually give them. I am again reminded of it now everyday.
To care for those who once cared for us is one of the highest honors.
I wanted to share my story because I know that many of you are doing the same as I am. Day by day watching a loved one fade away. Sometimes with a fight and sometimes with a whimper. It is hard to watch, and harder to experience it happening to oneself. I wanted to say how while all of our experiences are different because of the people involved and other circumstances, I know how hard this is. I know how fulfilling it is one moment and utterly draining the next. But this is still a gift. A gift of grace, love, and all the other virtues.
Caregiving often calls us to lean into love we didn’t know was even possible.
You are not alone, even when it feels like it. If you feel overwhelmed, please join a caregiver group, whether online or up front and personal. It helps to share what is going on and they can help you with getting assistance when it is needed. Believe me, it is hard to find help when you don’t even know where to start and what is available. Even the strongest person can have the weakest day of their life and having access to someone who knows and understands what is happening is priceless.
Remember the power of your angels. Remember to be guided by love and take strength in the good memories, when those you care for are having a bad day and giving you waking nightmares. And remember the grace of how those things we can’t change, can change us.
When we are in a state of severe loss, of pain and grief and a darkness of the soul – that is when life is at its hardest to bear.
But if we just take a deep breath, followed by more deep breaths we can walk into the middle of the chaos. It’s messy in the middle, but in the middle we have the space to start working through the story of our loss. And as we walk through the story, we eventually reach the end.
The end is the place of new beginnings. Our life has been forever changed by our tragedy. We must remember in this space of pain, grief, and loss that the new beginning will be waiting for us.
The sun will shine. The stars will shine brightly. New people will come into our lives. We can see the light at the end of the tunnel, if we only will open once again to breathe in the love.
It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dream of meeting your heart’s destiny.
– Oriah Mountain Dreamer
Orian Mountain Dreamer is one of my favorite writers. I invite you to read her books, they are small but mighty. The Invitation is what this quote is from. The poem is a wonderful deep dive into important questions that probe who we are and why.
If light is in your heart, you will find your way home.
Our words have power. When we hide how we feel, what we think, we are trying to live our life using someone else’s light. We can’t find our way home that way. There is always some truth behind the words that are followed by “just kidding”. When we say “I don’t know”, there is always some knowledge that we judge as being incomplete and so we say we don’t know – when in fact we do know something about it. When we say, “I don’t care” we are not being truthful. We think if we put our emotions in a cage and don’t let them out we can’t be hurt. The reality is that we are hurting ourselves. When we tell others that we are “ok” when we aren’t, we rob them of the opportunity to help us.
May you always be guided by the light that shines forth from within you.
Life is always about the meaning that we give to it. If you take a lamp as the analogy, our soul is the light inside the lamp. The things that happen to us are the glass that surrounds the light. That glass doesn’t matter, it is the heart and soul – the light that matters.
We tell ourselves stories about the events in our life, to give us some meaning to what is happening. Some of us are writing horror stories, or stories that leave us drained from fears and worries. Others of us, write stories about the gifts we received as we travel through life. From the wonderful things that happen to us, as well as the tragic things. The best way to count your blessings is to look at life through a variety of lenses. To bring things into and out of focus. To look into the depths of our souls to see what the storms dredged up for us to look at. When we sift through it all, we can let go of everything that doesn’t serve us, realize the lessons we have been taught, and grow into who we came here to be.
Harness the power of today! Seize the blessings of today! Make something happen, enhance your life, make someone laugh, help a friend. Love, love, love.
– Dr. Steve Maraboli.
There is a big difference between making something happen and forcing something to happen. Forcing something to happen isn’t natural. It is like forcing yourself into something that doesn’t fit. Have you ever laid on the bed to force your stomach to be flat so you can get your jeans buttoned and zipped up? Or forced your foot into a shoe that you loved, but doesn’t really fit? You might be able to get the jeans fastened, but it hurts your stomach when you try to sit. You might be able to walk in those shoes for a little while, but eventually you have to take off the shoes because they hurt your feet so badly. What you will left with is blisters to prove vanity isn’t a good idea to live your life by.
And I know how broken you are, how heavy you feel, but still, you have to find the light in you. You have to hold on to it with care and never let it go, even if it drags you to the end of the world.
– r.m. drake
But making something happen is all about taking small steps to bring into reality what you are dreaming of. It is catching the light of your soul and holding it up into the darkness, so that you can see where to go. It is taking the voice or dancing lessons because you want to be in theater. It is taking leaps of faith when you don’t know how to do something. It is going for the brass ring as the merry go round flies around and around. It is learning a foreign language for a trip of a lifetime to a foreign land. It is taking big, medium and small actions, not just dreaming about it, You don’t just sit there doing nothing to make it happen.
Whenever you hear or read anything of a spiritual nature that moves your soul you are not learning something . . , you are remembering what you have always known. It is a gentle awakening.
Have you ever went somewhere new and experienced deja vu? That feeling that what is happening at this moment, has happened before? Have you ever learned something new and it was just so natural and easy that you didn’t even need instructions to do it? For me, it feels like something that I have dreamed about, is now happening in real life. That my mind already knows and sees the connections, like it was programmed into being. I think that when this happens, we need to pay attention. That we are in that moment doing something that is important, even if our minds do not understand it.
The Words I Speak Are All In Languages I Do Not Speak
And yet, when you get here, you are not given instructions. There are no diagrams about how you are meant to live each day or directions on how to assemble some semblance of happiness. You are not even told what colors to paint your feelings or given a purpose and a reason for your life. You have to make all of it up. You have to make all of it up yourself.
– Iain S. Thomas, from “I Wrote This For You”
No matter if we are in the first month or the last month of the year, take the time to reflect on what the year so far has been for you. To see the places where life has been a blessing. To see the places where you let your dreams fall by the wayside. Pick them back up. Dust them off. Find within them the things that you are looking for. Go beyond your means to make them come true for you. Draw down deep within the story of them and bring it into reality. Transform the pain and regrets of this year and past years into the blessings and joy of a new year.
Years end is neither an end nor a new beginning, but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instill in us.
– Hal Borland.
The journey of life teaches us that growth happens when the dream is bigger and brighter than you ever thought it could be. In the pursuit of that dream, it will illuminate your heart, capture your mind, and free your soul from the small box that you held it in. You will discover that there are hidden maps within your soul. That there are clues and invitations to walk through doors that will open your mind up to things you never dreamed could be true. But you can only make those kind of discoveries when you listen to your heart.
That is my wish for all of you today. That you listen to your heart; that you hear the whisper of your soul and find the dream that is so big, that you too can grow beyond who you are today and enrich the universe.
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