Category Archives for Hero’s Journey

Serenity Is Peace Amid Life’s Storms

 

_I must be a mermaid, I have no fear of depths and a great fear of shallow living._ Anais Nin

Updated 8/09/2018
When you look across the ocean with the sunrise or the sunset, you see their colors mirrored on the surface. This is like our appearance, beautiful when calm and serene. But if you dive down deep, into the depths, that is where the true beauty of a person lies, in their soul. This is the beauty that we miss, when we make surface judgments about someone.

Your heart is the size of an ocea
n. Go find yourself in its hidden depths.
  – Rumi
 
Self knowledge is the place to start. We need to dig down deep within us, and question all of the stories we have told ourselves about our life. What do we know to be 100% totally true? 

If we seriously ask and listen to the answer to this question, most of us would have to acknowledge that most of our stories about life are made up. We make them up to make sense of the things we have seen, done, and experienced.  We think we know ourselves and know others, but we really don’t.
 
The more I see, the less I know for sure.
  – John Lennon
 
This is because the more that we learn about life, the more we see that most of our knowledge is surface knowledge. The deeper we dive, the more we see how much more complicated and interconnected our understanding of life is.

Knowledge is knowing the depths of the ocean. Wisdom is knowing where to swim.
  – Saleem Sharma
 
Sometimes life can be hard to navigate. When the storms come in, the waves churn up from the bottom of the sea bed. Things come to the surface that have been long buried. We are like this when the storms of life blow in. All those things that we stuff down inside of us, because we either can’t, or don’t know how to deal with them, come churning up to the surface.
 
Shallow people dwell on the surface of false perceptions.  And they will always see something sinister in you, regardless of the truth your heart contains.
  – Jonny Oh
 
I think that shallow people see something sinister, because of the truth that you bring up from the depths.  They prefer to live on the surface, because they are afraid of what their own depths contain.  Drug and alcohol addiction sometimes starts from that place of wanting to hide from the truth.  To not feel anything.  So some people need to make you wrong in some way, for dredging up from the depths the things that you want to change in your life.  If they can convince you that the shallows are the place to live, then it makes them feel good that they are continuing to live there, and not face the truth of who they are. 
 
They muddy the water, to make it seem deep.
  – Friedrich Nietzsche 
 
Instead of being afraid of what we have buried, we need to rise up and calm the waters. Be still. Breathe. Be at peace. Realize that God never brings anything into our lives that we can’t handle. Wake up to your dreams. Live them out in your reality.  We need to release those who refuse to dive deep into their lives, and want to remain in the shallows.  Let them stay where they wish, as we seek out those who believe against all odds and evidence, that there is more to life than shallow living.
 
“The Hidden Clocks” by Iain S. Thomas
Don’t Stop Searching.
There is no comfort in giving up.
There are large parts of you that don’t exist yet.
The greatest you you could be, is still waiting to be found.
Get up and look.

Lean on the divine, and on those who love us. Change what can be changed, release the rest. See the hope of a new day, the beauty that lies within each of us, and the love that never dies. Remember that you can do anything you “think” you can do, and impossible really means “I m possible”.

Move Outside Your Fears, Enter Through The Door Of Your Dreams

_Beyond drama and chaos, beyond anxiety and fear, lies a zone of endless peace and love. Let's all t

Updated 8/05/2018

So many times we ask the divine for help, for guidance.  The door is open, right there in front of us, but we don’t enter.  It could be that what we see beyond that door is not what we were expecting for the answer.  It could be that we are so caught up in the drama and chaos that we don’t even see the door.  We remain in our self imposed prison, feeling sorry for ourselves, and we are the only ones with the key.

Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.

  –   Corrie ten Boom

I was reading a book recently and one of the sub plot lines was that one of the main characters had seen in a vision that he killed one of the other main characters.  Sometimes what we see is a still point scene, meaning that it is just a flash of what the scene is about.  But we don’t see what happened before or after it.  Like this photo we just see a green mist.  It isn’t until we step through the door that everything becomes clear. To refuse the journey because of what we think might happen, is to live our life with fears chains limiting every move.  Be brave.  Trust who you are at the heart and soul level.  Unlock fears chains and walk through the door.

Fear knocked at the door.  Love answered and no one was there.

  –  Dr. Wayne Dyer

In the book I was referencing, she had been poisoned with a drug that would affect her brain in such a way that she would become a killer, no moral codes, insane.  And the same time, the sane part of herself would know everything that the insane part of her was doing.  She asked him to kill her.  Our divine destiny sometimes leads us to places unexpected.  Without knowing the whole story we look out that door and see a scene that we reject wholesale.  We judge it without an understanding of what is really going on. 

It’s better to look back on life and say, “I can’t believe I did that” than to look back and say, “I wish I did that”. 

  – Lessons Learned In Life

We need to walk through that door to begin the long journey to ourselves.  To unfold our own myths.  The ones that you grew up with.  Your sibling is the smart one (which made you the dumb one).  Your sibling is the athlete (which made you clumsy or uncoordinated).  Your sibling is musical (which made you tone deaf).  We could go on and on with the comparisons between you and someone else as you grew up.  The teachers who told you that you couldn’t do something, weren’t talented enough, whatever the rejection was that you accepted as fact.  Then there are the myths that you just told yourself, based on your own low opinion of who you are, and what you are capable of. 

If someone offers you an amazing opportunity and you’re not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later.

  – Sir Richard Branson

And of course there are the hopes and dreams of those that love us, that aren’t the same as our own hopes and dreams.  I remember in the book, “Love, Medicine and Miracles”, one of the true stories was of a young man who had terminal cancer.  He was in college studying to become a doctor, because that was what his parents wanted.  When he found out he had cancer he quit school and went to play his violin which was his dream and passion in life.  Funny thing happened, his cancer went away.  When he started living his life purpose, he starting living his life. 

When opportunity knocks, don’t let fear hold you back.  Open the door and embrace the opportunity that has come forth.

 –  Live Life Fully

When he stopped letting fear of disappointing his parents stop him from being who he really was, he opened the door to the life he was supposed to be living.

Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker.  Failure is delay, not defeat.  It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. 

  – Denis Waitley

The other thing that keeps us from walking through that door is the voice that remembers that one time we fell on our face.  A complete laughing stock failure.  You don’t want that to ever happen again, so take no chances on walking through the door.  We need just enough courage to open that door and step through.  We need a new definition of what failure is.  Failure is a temporary detour.  It is the realization that failure is just a part of the process on the road to success.  Failure is not a stop sign.  It is a learning experience that we need to fully embrace.  To hold it in our arms, to hug it tight.  We don’t die from failure.  We do however stop living, if we let failure be a stop sign.

I’ve failed over and over and that is why I succeed.

  – Michael Jordan

In basketball you miss more shots than you make and you are still a success, why?  Because you keep trying, and you don’t sit in the stands and watch, not taking the shot.  You keep trying and you even though you miss some of the time, you also score some of the time.

Let the people discover you!  You might have the key of the locked doors in their lives!  Open yourself to the world; you might be the magic the world needs! 

  – Mehmet Murat Jidan

So many of us walk through life, trying not to be seen.  We are afraid of being judged, as not being worthy, of thinking more of ourselves than we should and being found a fraud.  But that is just a lie.  The more that we let people in, the more our life opens up.  The more that we be who we truly are without the limitations we put on ourselves.  The more that we help ourselves, the more we can help others do the same.  That is the change that the world needs.  To live out loud, who we are in our souls.  When we do that, we give others permission to do the same.

When you do things from your soul, you feel a  river moving in you, a joy.

  – Rumi

Walk through that door.  Don’t let the fear of change, of the unknown. of possible failure, keep you from living your life on purpose.

Dreamers Touch The Stars And Change The World

 

For many people, authentic life starts at the time of death – not our own, but someone else’s.

  – Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.

This is so true for me.  It was the murder of my nephew that changed my whole life.  Up until that time my lived was lived by following what others had either taught me or expected of me.  The lesson I learned from my mother that drove me, was to have a career that earned a great income so that I would not be like her and end up homeless with her children.  In her mind her only option was to return to a marriage that she had left behind because it would provide support for her children. 

At first after my nephew died, it was all about helping my sister survive the storm of grief that ripped her world into tiny pieces that we couldn’t put back together again.  Then once we all knew that she while she wasn’t fully recovered she was surviving and learning what her new life would be, it was time to deal with my own grief.

 

I change the world by changing myself.   I am changing the world by loving myself, by enjoying life, by making my personal world a dream of heaven.  I change myself, and just like magic, other people start to change.

  – Miguel Ruiz

 

I knew that I wanted to bring something positive out of his death and so I started writing my way through my own changing and evolving world.  I had wanted to be a writer since I was a small child.  But I didn’t have any confidence to begin the journey.  Each time my heart and soul drew me into that space I had a ready excuse as to why I couldn’t do it.  I have four children to raise, a fulltime career and husband to take care of.  So I would lie to myself about the reason why I didn’t have the time to write. 

 

People will kill you over time, and how they’ll kill you is with tiny harmless phrases like “Be Realistic”

  – Dylan Moran

 

First it was when the kids were all in school, then I would have time to write.  Then it was when they all graduated high school, then I would have time to write.  Then it was taking care of my dad who had retired early with disabilities, so now I had a new obligation to put off this dream of writing my own stories.  Always there was something more important to be done.  Besides I told myself, be realistic, “no one will want to read what you write”.  As I wrote my way through changing myself and posted it on my personal page, I kept being told by others to do more.

 

The secret of making dreams come true can be summarized in four C’s.  They are curiosity, confidence, courage, and constancy; and the greatest of these is confidence.

  – Walt Disney

 

Self confidence is something that Walt Disney had to have had.  He had businesses that failed and ended bankruptcy. He lost most of his employees and a big contract to a film producer that had been working with him.  What he discovered and what I discovered was that when one door closes another opens.  For him that lead to the creation of Mickey Mouse, who actually has his own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.  For me, it was discovering that this dream that I had buried as not being worthy of was in fact possible.  The writing on my personal page, created the self confidence to create the LemonadeMakers page here on Facebook and a website that we are slowly expanding to create even more material for our followers.  

 

In the words of Chinese Philosopher Lao Tzu:

“When you let go of what you are, you become what you might be.”

 

As I walk this journey of following my dreams, I get ideas of where it might be taking me, but I don’t really know what I am becoming.  I still feel constantly as though I am in the chrysalis and becoming something new.  I am still being stretched into unknown realms.  I am constantly learning, adapting and regrouping.  I fall down on my face, but I keep getting back up.  I brush off the dirt and dust and look in the mirror.  It is the act of constantly letting go of the life I thought I should have, that I am able to embrace the life that is waiting for me.  It is the constant asking of these three questions that keeps opening new doors of discovery for me.

 

  • If I knew – honestly accepted – that I would succeed at whatever I did, what would I want to do next?
  • If I knew – honestly accepted – that I had millions of dollars in the bank right this moment, what would I do next?
  • If I knew – honestly accepted – that I only had 6 months life to live in this life, what would I do in that time frame with my life?

 

When you ask those questions, sit with them in silence a few moments and see what bubbles up to the top for you.  When you boil some sort of vegetable, a lot of times there is this film of stuff that spreads across the water.  A sort of scum that I always ladle out of the boiling water.  This is what happens when we sit in silence with a question.  Our minds floats up a denial.  It floats up a distraction.  If floats up fears.  Just look at them without judgement and scoop them out and let them settle into the earth. 

Now return to the silence and contemplation and see what bubbles up next.  Write it down and see what else floats up to the top.  Keep writing until you have a list of things that you would do next. 

 

Dreamer:  (n)  A person who visions their ambitions to plant the seeds of their future

/ Dreams are realities in waiting/

 

Now take that list and put the items into two columns, column A and column B.  So that if you had 10 items, you would now have 5 lines with an answer under column A and B for each line.  Now ask yourself which draws me more – item A or item B and circle that answer for each of the five lines.  Now you should have 5 circled items left.  Do the same process, only now taking the first circle item to the next circled item, and keep picking between the choices until you have only one circled item.  You now have the winning thing you would do next.

 

Know what you are doing.  Love what you are doing.  And believe in what you are doing.

  – Will Rogers

 

So lets say just for sake of example it was learn to fly a plane.  Now google local flying instructions and make appointments to interview them.  Pick one and take your first lesson. It’s really that simple to let go of who you are, a dreamer with no action taken to accomplish his/her dreams, and a dreamer who makes a phone call and gets into a plane and takes their first lesson.  If it turns out that you discover flying isn’t something that “rings your souls bell” then go back to your list and go through the items again to see what else might be the next dream to accomplish.

 

Want to join with us in further exploration of living the life of your dreams?  See below to check out our next event.

Dreaming With Your Eyes Wide Open Is Self Empowerment

As children we believe that our parents are invincible and indestructible and that they will never let us down.  Then the unthinkable happens and they do.  Then when we are older and we think wiser, we fall in love for the first time.  As we view this person through rose colored glasses, seeing no faults, but only the perfection of our love as we place them upon a pedestal thinking that they will never hurt us.  Then the unimaginable happens and they break our heart. It isn’t our parents or our best friend, or our first love that let us down.  It is our own expectations, which were unreal.  We are broken hearted by our own projections of who they are, something that no one could live up to.

The strongest source of empowerment is that which we find within ourselves.

  – Brett Blumenthal

What we discover is that it is unfair to put someone else in charge of our life.  It is unfair, because each of us is responsible for ourselves.  Handing it off to someone else will only hurt both them and us.  When you build your house upon the foundation of your soul, then we can add those we love to our souls home.  We add our spiritual beliefs, our family, our friends, our career – everything we want in life, but the empowerment that comes from that foundation is what makes everything run.

I came to believe that my identity goes beyond the outer roles I play.  It transcends the ego.  I came to understand that there is an Authentic “I” within – an “I AM”, or divine spark within the soul.

  – Sue Monk Kid

The roles we play, being a wife or husband; being a mother or father; being a son or daughter, being a grandmother or a grandchild – those roles can make us happy, but they are not the source of the happiness.  The source of the happiness comes from within.  Otherwise we are burdening our happiness on the expectations of those roles, burdening our loved ones unfairly with the responsibility of making us happy.  That is dooming ourselves to be the perpetrator of a broken family filled with trauma and drama.

We simply can’t control what comes out of people’s mouths.  However, we can control how we feel about what they say.

  – Scarlett Jones

The same thing is true for our friends and those we work with.  We can’t base our happiness on what those around us say, or do.  Or don’t say or do.  Have you ever worked really hard on a project at work, and no one noticed your brilliance?  Were we trying to be brilliant to have others laud us, or because we loved exceeding the expectations of others?  I love it when someone notices I did a good job, beat the deadline, came in under budget, etc. . , but it needs to be for our own empowerment that we feel good about it.  Then if someone else does notice, that is whipping cream on the dessert, good when it is there, but not necessary to be enjoyed as a great dessert.

The creation of authentic power is the creation of a life of joy.

  – Gary Zukov

Have you ever planned a trip with the girlfriends and then were disappointed when others didn’t contribute and left all of the work for you to do?  What really caused the unhappiness?  Miscommunication, unrealistic expectations of others?  What about if we come from the viewpoint of creating an experience of joy?  Being authentic enough to ask for help when we need it, without expectation of how the help shows up.  Creating from that place is a gift to yourself and to those others who will be there.  It takes all of the drama out of the experience, leaving a space of “WOW” for what is created.  It makes us vulnerable to the beauty of what happens next.

What makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful.  There’s a word for it. . . . Authentic.

  – Tim Brown

Going back to the analogy of the butterfly.  The caterpillar is vulnerable in creating the chrysalis, not knowing how it will all turn out.  Knowing that the transformation is necessary, doesn’t make it any easier to do it.  The butterfly is vulnerable as it fights to get released from the chrysalis, and dry its wings so that it can take flight.  It is a beautiful creation that can’t see the brilliance of the colors and designs of its own wings.  Putting our own human thoughts into the analogy, this transformation into something new would be terrifying.

Your authentic self is the source of your brilliance.  It’s the universal you – the person you always thought you could be before your fears and beliefs about what is really possible reined in this brilliant reality.  Getting in touch with the source of your brilliance and staying connected will make you shine every day.  Tapping into your intuition is how you will discover your authentic self and your true brilliance.

  – Angela Artemis

There is no manual provided when we tap into intuition and transform our lives from the ego driven life, to the life of being self empowered and fueled from within.  It is a journey of self discovery.  It is scary and terrifying because we will almost certainly fall down and have to get back up many times.  But we also have the joy and satisfaction of knowing that it is our own magnificent journey.  There is a tunnel that you drive through when you travel to Yosemite National Park.  On one side of the tunnel you have beautiful mountains and trees and you think this is what the park is about.  Then as you emerge through the tunnel it is like arriving on another planet.  While what you saw before the tunnel was beautiful scenery it pales in comparison to the vista that opens before you as you exit the tunnel.

If you push through that feeling of being scared, that feeling of taking risk, really amazing things can happen.

  – Marissa Mayer

Discovering our true authentic self and living from that place is like coming out of that tunnel.  You thought you were happy before, but it pales in comparison to the true source of happiness when we live from within.  Every day we connect, lose connection and reconnect to that brilliance of our souls intuition.  We learn to believe in our future self.  It is like the beauty of that butterfly taking flight.  Miracles take place every day.  Tap your true potential.  Spread those wings and fly.

Being A Warrior of True Strength

What I love about this quote with the photo I found, is the dichotomy of how part of her seems to be like the ancient stone and part of her is golden and light filled, looking like she is still alive fighting her battles.  When we are fighting a desperate battle, sometimes it feels like we can’t take one more step.  Like we have turned to stone.  Like the internal battle between what we know we have to do (taking the next step) and how we feel (we can’t move another step) is literally dividing us and tearing us in two.

Remember how far you have come, all the battles you have won, the fears that you conquered, and tell that person who is trying to bring you down to go to hell.

  – Unknown

We all have several groups or individuals who tear us down.  Those well meaning friends and loved ones who don’t want to see us get hurt, so they tells us that we can’t or shouldn’t try to be successful in our chosen endeavor.  That we are risking too much.  That we are doomed to fail.  That it is impossible, so why take the chance of evitable failure?

Be the person who stays strong even when you have every reason to break down.

  – Unknown

Then there is that group that just can’t bear for someone to be successful and so they tear down others to make themselves feel better.  They are too afraid to take any kind of risk that would have the potential of making them look bad.  Bullies fall into this category.  They can’t stand seeing someone better at something than they are, so they tear you down whenever you show any desire to have a better life or be a better person.

Our greatest battles are those with our own minds.

  – Jameson Frank

And lastly the worst group of all, our own minds.  That voice inside of our head that tells us all of the reasons why we shouldn’t try.  That reminds us of every failure we have had starting at birth and going forward through time to this very moment.  That tells us the horror story of everyone who has tried and failed in the history of mankind.  That voice that will not shut up and that we can’t escape from.

You may have to fight a battle more than once to win it.

  – Margaret Thatcher

It doesn’t matter how many battles we fight and lose.  It doesn’t matter how many battles we have to fight over and over again.  What matters is that we fought. That we learned something from it.  That we not only survive the battle, but that we thrive after we have either won or lost it.  I heard this analogy and I loved it.  Everything comes out in the wash!

Fear makes the wolf bigger than he is.

  – German Proverb

Every problem that we see as something that will take us out of the battle, that seems insurmountable, think of the problem like a washing machine.  The problem may twist us in a knot, it may spin us around until we lose our balance and fall down.  It may knock us down the hillside, and as we roll through the mud, as the rocks cut at us, and the nettles sting us, in the end, we will come out cleaner, brighter and better than before we entered the wash.  This is because “everything comes out in the wash”.  Meaning that coming out the other side, meaning that whether we win or lose, we were not defeated.  We are only defeated when we quit.

In a society that profits from your self doubt, liking yourself is a rebellious act.

  – Unknown

I love this!  All you have to do is watch commercials to see how profitable self doubt is.  We are taught to have a “lack mentality”.  The saying that you can’t be rich enough or skinny enough, or beautiful enough.  That we need to spend more money on things, to have the latest cars, the latest gadget, to sculpt our bodies with surgery, to move to a bigger and more expensive home, to ask our doctor for the latest designer drugs that have more side effects than the issues they are supposed to cure.  All ways to make us happy, when none of those things will make us happy.  The place to start is to love ourselves and then build from that space the life that spreads that happiness out into the world.

When life demands more of people than they demand of life – as is ordinarily the case – what results is a resentment of life almost as deep-seated as the fear of death.

 – Tom Robbins

I was asked today what LemonadeMakers is all about.  This quote really states it pretty well.  When my nephew was murdered, and when anyone in life has such a life shattering moment occur, you really have two choices.  You can demand more of yourself, and surmount the problem.  If you don’t, then the second choice is defaulted to.  You fall into resentment, victimhood, depression, etc. . , you stop living life and you start existing until death takes you out of life.  I didn’t want our family to fall into that deep crevasse and be buried alive until they died.  I wanted us to transform what had happened to us, into something that happened for us.  I wanted to bring something positive out of that debilitating experience and share it with you.

Life is 10% what happens to me and 90% of how I react to it.

  – Charles Swindell

Successes in life come from struggles.  The butterfly has to fight to release itself from the chrysalis.  If you open it up, the wings become deformed and it can’t fly.  We are the same.  The fight to transform life’s lemons into lemonade is what strengthens us and makes the transformation more than a temporary change.  When we have struggled to fight the inner demons; when we have fought the uphill battle of addiction; when we have taken step after step through the mud and swamps of personal failures – we know that we will never, ever, go back there.  That we will never again, ever, allow anyone to make us feel like we aren’t worthy of a seat at the table.

“Too many times we stand aside

And let waters slip away

’til what we put off ’til tomorrow

Has now become today

So don’t you sit upon the shoreline

And say you’re satisfied

Choose to chance the rapids

And dare to dance the tide . . “

  – Unknown

Who Are You Becoming?

We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.

  – Max Depree

I love to read great books.  I have love affairs with the characters, watching them undergo their transformational hero’s journeys through the pages to the end of the story.  I get great ideas from the authors words, that send me speeding down the side roads of my own life.  Every year I look back at what in my life I shed like an old skin, and what ways I have changed as I try to improve my own life.

The most important question to ask is, “What am I becoming?”

  – Jim Rohn

I have a rule, that I can’t bring a new thing into my house, unless I let go of something that is already there.  I love to send boxes to the goodwill or some other second hand store.  I think about the clothes I give away as going to a new person who will enjoy them just as much as I did.  I think about the books I have read, laughing and crying my way through them and how they will stir the emotions of another reader.

I love the person I’ve become, because I fought to become her.

  – Kaci Dianne

 

In this same way, I look at my beliefs, my habits, my lifestyle.  When I want to get healthier, work on improving my finances, grow in my own self knowledge, I realize that in order to make these transformational changes in my life, I have to let go of something that is no longer serving me.  I have to step outside the comfort zone and pay the tolls to walk down a new path, to undertake a new journey.

I know not who I am, simply that I am forever becoming exactly what I am meant to be.

  – Becca Lee

There is so much more to us than we are aware of.  I like the word developing.  Like the developing of film.  When we look outside and take in a scene, there are certain things that attract our attention.  We miss most of the scene we are looking at because we simply see what our filters let us see.  But if you snap a photo and enlarge it and go over it and over it, there is so much more there than we were aware of.  If you were to grid out the photo and examine each block of the grid, you would probably see insects, birds, small animals and lots of plants.  You would look deeply into the shadows to see what is hidden in the semi darkness.

Dear Self,  This is going to be your year.  So dust off your sh*tkickers and let’s get started.  All my love, Me

  – Unknown

Taking that same view into our own personal lives can be a real eye opener.  We are all worthy of being fully developed into the magnificent beings that we are capable of being.  I remember that when I was growing up I had two of my sisters and my brother develop into artists through classes in school.  I can’t draw a stick figure and I was always jealous.  My mom always wished she could draw and paint like they could.  Sometime in her early 50’s she was talked into taking an art class with her best friend.  I have hanging on my wall in the living room a painting that she did.  It is amazing that what she discovered and developed from one art class, is that she could in fact draw and paint.

Always go with your passions.  Never ask yourself if it’s realistic or not.

  – Deepak Chopra

Inside of all of us are these amazing talents we don’t know we have.  We just haven’t taken the time and energy to do that thing we always wished we could do.  We just don’t have the confidence and courage to step out and take the chance that we might be really good at something that we think we are terrible about.  We just haven’t decided what is behind fears door #1, #2 or #3. 

Think of three things what you have always wanted to learn how to do – play a musical instrument, learn how to dance, learn a craft of some sort, paint, pottery, woodcraft – whatever it is.  Now take photos of those things and paste them on a piece of paper and then cut out some doors from a magazine and tape the doors over the three things you have always wanted to learn how to do.  Now just sit there and free write all of the “reasons” why you can’t learn about what is behind door #1, then do the same thing for door #2 and #3.

I began to realize how important it was to be an enthusiast in life.  If you are interested in something, no matter what it is, go at it fullspeed.  Embrace it with both arms, hug it, love it and above all become passionate about it.  Lukewarm is no good.

  – Ronald Dahl

Now I am giving you a magic wand that is called enthusiasm.  I want you to waive it over the three doors and grant yourself one wish.  Open up the door that most calls to your heart and soul and write down how you will feel when you are doing this thing.  I want you to write it in the present tense, that you have taken the classes or lessons and now you can play the piano, or dance the waltz or you just built a cabinet or rebuilt a car engine.  How happy and joyful do you feel?  Now go back to all of those “reasons” why you can’t do what is behind that door.  Cross through each one as you name the fear behind it.  Fear of success, fear of failure, fear of not being good enough and so on.  Now go out and learn what you need to know to bring that dream out from under the bed, dust it off, shine a light on it, and figure out how to do what you need to do to “get it done”.

If you want to be successful, it’s just this simple.

Know what you are doing.

Love what you are doing.

And believe in what you are doing.

  – Will Rogers

 

Ability And Inner Guidance Know Best

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Updated 2/10/2018

Your life is yours to live, no matter how you choose to live it.  When you do not think about how you intend to live it, it lives you.  When you occupy it, step into it consciously, you live it.

  – Gary Zukav

Take a moment to think about this past week in your life.  How many things are habitual that you do?  How much of your life is lived on autopilot?  You get up in the morning, shower, brush your teeth, . . .  daily habits that we don’t think about if we should do or not do.  Now think about how much of your life you actually thought about living?  Did you do anything new?  Did you plan out a trip to somewhere you’ve never been?  Did you drive down a different street going to or from work that you’ve never been down before?  Did you do anything different than the previous week, month or ever year?  How much of your life is lived consciously?  Can you say like Alice in Wonderland, “I knew who I was this morning, but I’ve changed quite a few times since then?”

There is a saying that we have two ears and one mouth, because we are supposed to listen twice as much as we speak. I think that this ability to listen also applies to listening to our inner voice. I know that this is something that I constantly practice.

Trust your instincts.  Intuition doesn’t lie.

  – Oprah

Do you ever have that nagging feeling as you are walking out the door to go to work or run errands? That feeling that you are forgetting something, but can’t think of what it might be? Do you run down your mental checklist and don’t see anything that you have forgotten? Then later, something happens and you realize what it was you forgot? Happens to me all the time. That is the inner voice talking, but not being listened to.

The more you trust your intuition, the more empowered you become, the stronger you become, and the happier you become.

  – Gisele Bundchen

It is the same voice that tells you stay away from that person – you know the one that makes your skin crawl? It is like a radar warning you away from danger or from a bad relationship. Have you ever pushed that voice down saying, “there is nothing wrong with this person” to yourself, only to regret later not listening to it?

The intuitive minds is a sacred gift and the rational mind is a faithful servant.  We have created a society that honors the servant and has forgotten the gift.

  – Albert Einstein

When I worked for a major bank in San Diego years ago I had that feeling about a new hire.  I was a mortgage loan supervisor at the time, and every new loan would come across my desk and I would assign the set up clerk and loan processor for the file.  This new hire literally made my skin crawl.  I told the branch manager that there was something majorly wrong with this guy, but he passed the background check, so that was all he cared about.  So I went through each new loan submission this guy turned in and rejected almost all of them as having something wrong with the documentation (translate loan fraud). 

Our office was on the 15th floor facing the freeway.  There was a side road that ran along the freeway and one afternoon everyone was at the windows watching something going on down below.  When I went to see what was going on, this loan officers Porsche was alongside the chain link fence next to the freeway and it was on fire.  The fire department was there and as they were shooting water at the car, I could see these funny sparks shooting out around the vehicle.  Pretty soon I saw the police arrive and they handcuffed the loan officer and put him in the back of the police car. 

Turns out he had several hand guns and rifles in the trunk of the car along with ammunition.  It was live ammunition going off that was creating the sparks.  It was a few days before he came back to work, and he was fired.  I never let my branch manager forget that I had told him that there was something wrong with that guy.  Sometimes we just know intuitively when something isn’t right. 

Problems are the gifts that make us dig out and figure out who we are, what we’re made for, and what we’re responsible to give back to life.

  – Tony Robbins

This inner voice is the key to having a life of transformation that doesn’t throw us into “dark night of the soul” transformations. When we listen to this voice, reflect on what it is trying to tell us we can save ourselves a lot of trouble.  I love Tony Robbins quote because it puts a slightly different spin on knowing ourselves.  We need to understand our place in this world, in order to figure out what we are responsible to do with our life.  The biggest changes we have made in our life usually come out of the biggest challenges.  It shows us who we really are when we pull back the curtains and stop pretending to be the “All Powerful Wizard”.  It shows us how to pay it forward and do good with our life.

Knowing yourself means being able to separate the true from the false in yourself – love from emotion, joy from sentiment, will from desire.

  – Barry Long

I am sure that most of us have heard of the saying, take 10 deep breaths, then talk. It is critical that we pause before reacting. What is so important about taking the deep breaths, is that it helps us step out of the whirlpool of emotions that we are drowning in.  We can step back and see from a less emotional viewpoint what really needs to be said, or done at that moment.  It allows us to reconnect the heart and mind, so that we can make good decisions instead of emotional ones.

Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.

  – Aristotle

When I was growing up, there was a lot of yelling and fighting between my parents. It was one of the things that I used to say, “I won’t be this kind of parent when I grow up.” When my kids would do something that made me mad, the house rule was they had to go to their room. When I was done being mad, and able to have a conscious conversation about their behavior then I would go to their room and we would have a talk about what had happened.

When you know yourself you are empowered.  When you accept yourself you are invincible.

  – Tina Lifford

I think that the hardest part of this quote is not the knowing oneself, it is the accepting part of it. It is also the most critical part. I don’t know about you, but if you are like me at all, it is hard to acknowledge the parts of me that I don’t want others to know about. Like if I hide it from myself, no one else can see it either – reminds me of the fairy tale of “The Emperor’s New Clothes”. LOL


Every Great Dream Begins With A Dreamer

The World Needs More Dreamers and Doers. Above All, The World Needs Dreamers That Do.

In order to save myself, I must destroy first the me I was told to be.

  – The Dreamer

 We are all born dreamers.  All you have to do is watch any small child.  You can see their dreams, their imaginations running wild.  They create whole worlds with blankets and pillows, some Legos and Hot Wheels, Dinosaurs and some plastic green Army Men.  Whatever they can get their hands on.  If you give them a few tools they will cut and saw out some boards and hammer together a space ship, then put on their capes to go out to save the world from alien invaders.  But the horrible thing that happens to some of us, is that we let go of our dreams.  We become realists and make our possibilities into a small safe comfort zones. 

There are only two kinds of people in this world.  The realists and the dreamers.  The realists know where they are going and the dreamers have already been there.

  – Robert Orben

We need to destroy our comfort zones and remember that we are dreamers and we have unlimited potential.  Your dreams were designed to custom fit your personality.  If we let them, they will continue grow and expand as we do.  They will follow us all of our days, growing greater and grander as we do.  When Walt Disney was laying in the hospital dying, he had his newest dreams taped up on the ceiling so that he could look up at them and continue to plan their realities.  As long as you continue to learn, to grow and expand, so will your dreams.  Dreams are our future realities, waiting in the wings to come out on the stage of life.  

The dreamers of the day are dangerous people.  For they dream their dreams with wide open eyes, and make them come true.

  – D.H. Lawrence

I am always amazed when I read an old science fiction book or look at some of the drawings of someone like Leonardo Da Vinci.  He created on paper the bicycle, the helicopter, and an airplane.  What powerful dreamers they were.  At the time, they were writing about a future they could only see in their minds eye.  They made up inventions that had us deep within the oceans, that had us exploring the galaxy, that had us beaming a person from the land mass of a planet, up through space and into the interior of a space ship. 

Great dreams of great dreamers are always transcended.

  – A.P.J. Abdul Kalam

Over time, inventors have been catching those concepts or thoughts, and they have been bringing them into reality.  They invented deep sea diving suits, and submarines and special mini subs that could go even deeper.  We have the ability to see the ocean floor from satellites deep in space.  They took us to the moon and back.  Now we go back and forth on a regular basis to a space station.  I saw a news piece about how someone is building personal small helicopters that will fly themselves and be used in the near future to take us to work.  While this isn’t the flying car that turns into a brief case we saw on the George Jetson cartoons, it is getting closer to a reality.

All successful people, men and women, are big dreamers.  They imagine what their future could be, ideal in every respect, and then they work every day toward their distant vision.

  – Brian Tracy

When you are a dreamer that puts action steps into your dreams, you discover a number of things.  You discover what hard work really looks and feels like.  You discover the real cost of sacrificing everything to make the dream into reality, and you discover that the price isn’t as large as fear told you it would be.  You discover that every time you fall down, every time it doesn’t work out like you thought it would, that every single failure, is just a way to show you a new viewpoint into what you are bringing into the worlds reality. You discover that failures are just stepping stones to greatness.

Do not let the fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark in the hopeless swamps of the not-quite, the not-yet, and the not-at-all.  Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserved and have never been able to reach.  The world you desire can be won.  It exists  . .   it is real . . .  it is possible . . . it’s yours.

  – Ayn Rand

Every night you tossed and turned trying to figure out the right way, and all of the struggles you have or will go through, are in the end are the price tag of the ever expanding new you.  Each and every price tag that you pay for .. . every single failure, is what is leading you to the mastery of the idea, and the fulfillment of the concept.  The steps of the completion of the dream, becomes a part of the never ending journey to which we all sign up for.  You gain a true understanding of the words, “it is not the destination that matters, but who we are becoming along the way”.

Yes, I am a dreamer.  For a dreamer is one who can find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world.

  – Oscar Wilde

Dreamers Steer By The Stars, SO . . .

Follow your Dreams

Make a Wish

Dream Big

Take a Chance

Believe Big

Make a Change

Taste the Sky

Find the Fire Within

Follow Your Passion

Hold the Vision

Trust the Process

Step Into The Wild Unknown, Become Who You Are Meant To Be

When you go beyond what you think is real - what you can see, what you can hear, what you can tThere is a saying, if you want to change your life, change your thoughts.  Thoughts are like a series of stepping stones across a river.  Some of the stones are slippery from the moss as the water runs over them.  Some of them are unstable and rock as you step on them.  Some of the stones are tilted with edges that cut like a knife and hard to walk across.  Some of the stones are firmly planted like a foundation stone.  We can’t cross the river without stepping on the stones.  We choose the stones to step on.  Each stone we walk across, becomes part of our life’s path.  Some trip us up and we fall into the water.  Some support us, some don’t.  Life demands change, but it always comes back to us choosing.

We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what we are.

  – Max Depree

I am listening to the Lord of The Rings soundtrack as I write this.  The Lord of the Rings is one of my favorite books and it really exemplifies change, with the journey of the characters.  Some like Frodo and Samwise were challenged to greatness.  They had failures when it seemed like the evil of the ring would destroy them.  They wanted to give up, because what was asked of them was so hard.  They kept walking towards their destination and that journey forged them, like a hammer hitting them again and again as they walked through the fiery tests. Each challenge brought them closer to the great characters they had the potential to be. 

Inspiration and growth only come from adversity and from challenge – from stepping away from what’s comfortable and familiar and stepping out in the unknown

– Ben Saunders

Boromir failed in his duty.  Gollum swung from bad to good to bad again.  Saurman fell from being a protector of the world to its destroyer.  So many were tested and found wanting, not because it was their destiny to fail, or that they were inherently evil.  It was because they stopped trying to be good and wise.  It was easier to let the bad take over.  Sometimes we think that we have lost of the best part of us, like when Gandalf went down into the fires with the Balrog, and we don’t know how we can continue.  It seems like all is lost.  But like Gandalf coming back as a new being, we can always be reborn.  As long as we keep walking, the way will open before us.  When we push the edges of the known universe, we discover new lands to explore.

I always find beauty in things that are odd and imperfect – they are much more interesting.

  – Marc Jacobs

Have you ever monitored the thoughts that cross your mind?  The things you think, but filter and so don’t say?  An interesting exercise is to sit on a bench at a mall, park or beach – somewhere where there are lots of people.  Turn on the recording button on your phone and just record your thoughts as you watch the people walk by.  When you replay it, notice if the majority of your thoughts were positive or negative.  Where you funny?  Quirky? Profound? Think about your favorite TV shows or movies.  The characters in the book, movie, TV shows that you remember and fall in love with, are the ones that are quirky – Spock or Data from Star Trek, or maybe the science nerd from NCIS Abby or Dr. Mallard.  Punky Brewster with the funny socks.  The characters on The Big Bang Show.  The list goes on and on.  Find the beauty in you being you. 

Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.

  – George Bernard Shaw

Asking yourself questions about your thoughts can provide useful insight into thoughts that you can work on changing.  Whenever anything went wrong for my mom, she had a habit of saying, “I could just kill myself”.  She didn’t even realize she was saying it until one day my son said to her after something happened, “I know grandma you could just kill yourself”.  She was horrified that she had said this so often that her young grandson said it back to her, and she stopped saying it.

Close some doors.  Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because they no longer lead somewhere.

  – Unknown

As you get curious and not judgmental about the thoughts, dig beneath them to see what patterns are in your life that you didn’t realize were there.  We all have them.  How many times have you been driving to or from work and realized that you are missing moments in your drive – that suddenly you are home or at work and you don’t remember part of the drive?  Shifting the patterns is what makes real transformation of your thoughts.  I have hated spiders since I was a kid and got bit when I was sleeping on my hand.  When I was talking a college creative writing course years ago, they had us read a book by Sue Hubbell.  Her husband and her were both professors at a University and he decided one day to walk away from tenure and go live in the Ozarks.  A few months later, he left Sue also and she wrote about that year in her life where everything fell apart and she was left with no money and no job and a house in the middle of nowhere. 

Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.

  – Wayne W. Dyer

Each chapter was written around something in nature.  One chapter was about spiders.  When I finished that chapter, my relationship with spiders changed.  While I still don’t “like” them, I am no longer terrified of them.  This chapter for me highlighted the fact that when we learn more about something, it changes our relationship with it.  It takes the fears away, because we removed the unknown from the equation.  When you go beyond what you think is real, you step into the unknown.  While the unknown is filled with fears, each day our relationship with it changes, because more becomes known.  Like walking down a path through the fog – we may not be able to see far into the distance, but each step reveals what was hidden before.  Just keep stepping on the next stone, taking the next step in your life.  Make this quote your mantra, and you will have an amazing life.

Today I create a WONDERFUL NEW DAY and a WONDERFUL NEW FUTURE.

  – Louise Hay

Don’t Be Afraid To Dance Your Own Dance Of Life

The JourneyBetween who you once wereand who you are becoming,Is where the Dance of Lifereally takes placeIn order to save myself, I must destroy first the me I was told to be.

  – The Dreamer

When you were this girls age, you had dreams about who you wanted to be when you grew up.  You may already have been singing, or dancing, or wanting to be a doctor or lawyer.  Between this age and actually growing up most of us have our dreams dashed in some way.  It may be that someone teases us that we can’t carry a tune, or we are doing the dance wrong.  Or maybe they tell us that we should choose a less challenging career than a doctor or lawyer, because we really aren’t that smart.  Or it could be more subtle where we are being directed by our parents into the career that they want for us.

Maybe the journey isn’t so much about becoming anything.  Maybe it’s about unbecoming everything that isn’t really you, so you can be who you were meant to be in the first place.

  – Unknown

Along the way we also learn to hide who we are.  We learn that others judge us, so we put on masks to conform to who they want us to dress like, look like, act like.  We hide our dreams so that no one can destroy them any further.  We learn not to trust our hearts to be in others hands.  We give up on what is possible and settle for what is conforming to the needs of others.  We forget who we are and what we are here for.  We no longer take part in the dance of life, but settle back against the wall and watch those with more courage or talent dance it in front of us.

Ten years from now, make sure you can say that you chose your life, you didn’t settle for it.

  – Unknown

There is only one way to truly know who you are deep down inside.  You have to get in touch with your own soul.  You need to be by yourself, and sit with yourself, and just listen.  Looking back at your life, find the places where you were really happy.  Find the things that are so easy for you to do, that others find hard or impossible.  Trace back all of the threads that have your name engraved upon them.  Start picking out and removing all of the threads that are not you.  Look for the gold and silver pieces and toss out the dross.  Now look for the patterns that are left.  The amazing thing is that it usually takes you back to this age.  The age when you acted out who you really were, before society broke you like a young colt and told you who to be.  The threads of genius that are all you, can now be taken up and made into whatever pattern you want.  It is never too late to be who you were meant to be.

To make the right choices in life, you have to get in touch with your soul.  To do this, you need to experience solitude, which most people are afraid of, because in the silence you hear the truth and know the solutions. 

  – Deepak Chopra

Sometimes when you make this journey deep into our soul, we discover that our lives have to be completely shaking up.  We are covered in dust and debris that needs to be removed.  We need to rearrange almost everything.  Change almost everything.  We need to go to the place we are supposed to be.  A close friend of mine relocated from Los Angels to Italy and she loves it.  The best thing to do is to remove what doesn’t belong and then figure out how to rearrange what does.  It is an individual journey that defines who we are in a totally new way.  We discover our truth by looking for it down deep within and then integrating it into our life.  We are on a life adventure.  This journey is for you alone.  Embrace it and life it fully.

The spiritual journey is individual, highly personal. It can’t be organized or regulated.  It isn’t true that everyone should follow one path.  Listen to your own truth.

  – Ram Dass

There are some that will say that living your life purpose, is being selfish.  That we are ignoring the wishes of others.  But actually the reverse is true.  Each one of us was given as part of our life journey a divine destiny.  We were born into the place and the family that would give us the tools to accomplish this purpose.  Some of those life lessons come through adversity, some come as part of the journey of rediscovering who we are really meant to be.  But if we don’t take the risks, make the changes and transform our lives, then our destiny will not be fulfilled.  And we will not be living the life that God sent us here to live.  So it is actually selfish to not live up to our full potential.  To not find out who we are supposed to be.  To not utilize our power to its full capability. To not live out loud and up front our God given destiny.

. . . it’s a life’s journey of finding ourselves, finding our power, and living for yourself, not for everyone else . . . 

  –  Mariska Hargitay

Celebrate The Hero In Each Of Us, That Voice That Is Brave Enough To Say “Enough” And “No More”

No magic potions. No fairy dust. No one to do it for me. Just me. I will push you and show you%Strength doesn’t come from what you can do.  It comes from overcoming the things you once thought you couldn’t.

  – Rikki Rogers

Life in a Jar . . .  a play written by school children in Kansas.  Tells the story of Irena Sendlerowa who saved around 2,500 Jewish babies from Nazi death camps.  Saying that what she did was nothing special, she said “I was brought up to believe that a person must be rescued when drowning, regardless of religion and nationality.  The term hero irritates me greatly.  The opposite is true.  I continue to have pangs of conscience that I did so little.”  She was captured by the Gestapo and beaten, breaking and crushing her legs and feet, and then driven away to be executed.  One the way, she was rescued.  She was never able to walk without crutches afterwards.  I think that most of us wonder if we would have had the strength and courage to do what Irena did.  Risk our lives for children that we didn’t know.  To survive that kind of beating.  To have the attitude of thinking that we could have done more than rescue 2,500 children.  She is a special kind of hero.

The women whom I love and admire for their strength and grace did not get that way because shit worked out.  They got that way because shit went wrong, and they handled it.  They handled it in a thousand different ways on a thousand different days, but they handled it.  Those women are my superheroes.

  – Elizabeth Gilbert

As brave as Irena was, think for a moment of being the mother who had to decide if she could give up her child.  What guarantee was there that this would in fact save their child?  Where did such inner strength come from?  Most of the parents who gave up their children did not survive the war, and lost their lives in the death camps.  Put yourself in that place for just a moment, could you have given your child to Irena?  Their story is told in the PBS program, “Irena Sandler:  In the Name of Their Mothers”.

Life is very interesting.  In the end, some of your greatest pains become your greatest strengths.

  – Drew Barrymore

Harriet Tubman is another amazing woman.  Born a slave, she ran away leaving her husband and children to escape slavery.  Walking almost 90 miles to Philadelphia with no map, directions or help.  She returned to the South at least 19 times and lead her family and hundreds of other slaves to freedom via the Underground Railroad.  She was very intuitive and had dreams that would tell her when to leave the road, or that a particular way was not safe.  A movie about her life was made, called “A Woman Called Moses”.  She is an inspiration again, for standing up for what is right with bravery and courageous action.  After rescuing her family, the fact that she went back again and again, with a large bounty on her head for over 10 years makes her a monument to courage and determination.  She was also involved in helping women get the vote, working with Susan B Anthony.  

Believe in yourself and all that you are.  Know that there is something inside you that is greater than any obstacle.

  – Christian D. Larson

We could write story after story about amazing people who showed tremendous resilience and courage.  Who dug down deep within themselves to find their inner strength to live through trials and tribulations.  Who fought through the inner and outer darkness of their lives.  In fact, all of us have such stories within our own lives.  We may think that what we have done in our lives doesn’t compare to the stories we have heard, the ones that we have labeled as heroes.  I am sure that if you were to talk with Malala Yousufzai, she would insist that what she did standing up in defiance to those who wanted to prevent her being educated, was nothing notable.  We are all Irena’s, and Harriet’s, and Malala’s. 

Every woman had infinite potential to achieve anything she wants.  She just needs to stop underestimating herself and discover her true inner strength.  She will find within her an unlimited capacity to achieve.

  – Aarti Khurana

Maya Angelou is another courageous woman, my hero.  Her writing and her wisdom are so inspiring.  One of my favorite quotes of hers, “I can be changed by what happens to me.  But I refuse to be reduced by it”.  We all face in our lives numerous times that test us.  Things happen that can shatter us, that can pierce our souls.  But nothing that happens can reduce us to something less that we are. 

A strong woman knows she has strength enough for the journey, but a woman of strength knows it is in the journey where she will become strong.

  – Unknown

Like the water in a lake.  Something can cause large ripples that disturb our peace, that shatters our emotions.  The cause of the disturbance, like a large rock, might sink to the bottom of our lake, our souls.  It might forever change us, but it does not reduce us.  We still have the power to return to our inner and outer peace.  To continue to learn, grow, and transform our lives.  To be curious as to what else is possible in our lives.  To be an intelligent, courageous, loving woman who teaches others by being her best possible self.

You are a woman of strength, courage and dignity; one who values herself and fights for what she believes in.  A woman who won’t give up on her dreams regardless of how many obstacles stand in her way.  If that doesn’t make you beautiful and magnificent, I don’t know what does.

  – Unknown

 

Have Faith That Everything Will Work Out For The Best

_If I've learned one lesson from all of that's happened to me, it's that there is no such thing as%

There is an inner beauty about a girl who believes in herself, who knows she is capable of anything that she puts her mind to.  There is a beauty in the strength and determination of a girl who follows her own path, who isn’t thrown off by obstacles along the way.  There is an inner beauty about a girl whose confidence comes from experiences, who knows she can fall, pick herself up and move on – Unknown

I love the last line.  When we step outside of our comfort zone, when we take a leap of faith, there are times we fall down.  It is part of the process.  When a baby starts crawling, then climbing up and walking along the furniture, they display the perfect attitude.  They take a step or two, with wobbly legs and almost no balance.  They fall on their butts.  They may cry.  But the next thing you know they are back to trying to take another step. 

We tell them “come to moma” and they get the biggest grins on their faces, so excited.  They take a wobbly step after wobbly step into the moms arms.  This is what walking outside the comfort zone is about.  Taking a first step and another, wobbling along the way.  Crashing and burning and getting back up until we can walk with perfect balance and ease.

She was unstoppable. not because she did not have failures or doubts, but because she continued on despite them  – Unknown

No matter how many defeats we encounter, we can recover.  We are resilient and we don’t “cry uncle”, we figure out another way around the obstacle and continue on.  Along our life journey we can expect that there will be times when we become lost to our purpose and passion in life.  We may encounter some sort of addiction problem; we may go through the loss of a spouse or child that sends us off the deep end; we may have severe health issues that make us wonder if we want to continue living; we may encounter mental health issues.  What we need to understand is that there isn’t any mistake or issue in our life that we can’t rise up out of.

Strong Woman – you may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated.  In fact, it may be necessary to encounter the defeats, so you can know who you are, what you can rise from, how you can still come out of it  – Maya Angelou

Recovery from anything goes through a process.  Good days, bad days.  You will sometimes feel all alone and maybe even abandoned by others.  The flip side of that feeling is that you are now empowered to help others who are struggling.  Your friends and family may not understand what you are going through.  Instead of bottling up your struggle or judging them as insensitive, you have the opportunity to try to explain in a million different ways.  Sometimes if they haven’t walked in your shoes, it is like trying to explain the fax machine to a two year old.  You can explain how it works a million different ways, but they won’t understand.  So that has to be ok.  Sometimes we just have to accept, “it is what it is” and move onward.

Whenever we begin to feel as if we can no longer go on, hope whispers in our ear to remind us that we are strong – Robert M Hensel

Your problems won’t magically go away, but as you recover they will become more and more manageable.  The days of overwhelm will get fewer.  As you go through the process of recovery, you will change in many small and large ways.  It is hard to see the changes yourself.  It is like when you have a 12 month old who is learning how to walk, run, and talk.  They are growing like crazy, but we don’t really notice until nothing they have fits.  But if you were to go on a trip for two weeks and come back to that toddler, you would immediately see all of the changes in growth and things that they are doing.  Others notice the changes faster than we do, because they have the space away from us.

Working hard for something we don’t care about is called stress.  Working hard for something we love is called passion – Unknown

The important thing to remember when we are going through any kind of recovery, is the end result that we are working towards.  What we are fighting for.  Working out everyday at the gym results in our becoming happier, healthier, stronger, as step by step we are recovering.  There may be times in the fight where we miss guarding ourselves and get punched.  We may fall to the ground, breathing heavy, wondering if we can get back up.  What we have to remember is that as long as we get back up, keep fighting for our wholeness, we have not lost.

Sometimes when you’re in a dark place, you think you’ve been buried, but you’ve actually been planted.  – Unknown

Take the time to breathe.  It seems simple, but have you ever we taken a yoga class and been reminded that you are holding your breath and you need to breathe?  Or maybe doing something on a machine in the gym and the instructor is reminding you to breathe?  There are times were we seem to hold our breath, because something is somewhat painful.  There are times when are so excited or angry that we forget to breathe.  The proverb of taking 10 deep breaths before speaking or acting comes into play here.  When we take really deep full belly breaths it somehow seems to disconnect us from our runaway emotions and allows our brain to reconnect and begin to direct our thoughts. 

We either make ourselves miserable or we make ourselves strong. The amount of work is the same  – Carlos Castenada

If we take those 10 deep full belly breaths right now, you will see what I mean.  It will allow you to see some patterns, some logical reasoning comes back into your space and you can see how although the recovery was painful, it does have some wonderful jewels buried right alongside of you.  There are some positive things that you have learned about yourself on this journey.  Today is the best day to celebrate with gratitude those gifts.  Believe in yourself again.  Love those around you and most importantly love yourself.  Live, Laugh, Love and celebrate life again.

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