Category Archives for Passion and Purpose

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

 

The Gift Of Self Transformation

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Updated 2/10/2018

Transformation gives you the chance to rewrite the story of who you are and who you are capable of being. There are many things in our life that we give negative meanings to. But what if you gave pain the definition that it shows you that which is not right for you? This would be a positive thing to know – what doesn’t belong to me or my life. It is hard to leave something or someone behind you, to let them or it go.  It is hard until you decide to do it.  Then it becomes easy.  It isn’t the leaving that is hard, it is the decision.

Envy is another word that has a bad rap. What if envy simply shows you things which you may wish to empower in your own life? That would be a great thing to know – things I want in my life and can empower myself to obtain.  In our lives we have the habit of settling.  We settle with that 10 lbs of weight that we can’t seem to lose.  We settle with our job, thinking what we have is better than nothing.  We settle, settle, settle, because the reality is that we don’t know what we really, really want.

I am always stuck.  I am always stuck between giving people everything because I am dying to create meaningful relationships, and giving them nothing at all because then if they leave, at least I’ll be left whole.

  – (via yoymenoyhoy)

Transformation comes when we are totally honest with ourselves.  It comes when we face the things that we don’t want to face. It comes from taking responsibility for all our actions and inactions. It comes when life forces us to look at what we are doing, when our WHY we need to change becomes an imperative.  There is a game that we can play where we write down a series of things that we want in our life (write down as least 25, and try for more).  Then we pick two and ask, which one is more soul catching?  The one we don’t pick is scratched off.  Then we take the next two and so on until we just have the ones left that we picked.  Then we do the same thing to that list, and we continue with this process until we only have three left. 
 
It is not what you say out of your mouth that determines your life, it’s what you whisper to yourself that has the most power.
  – Robert T Kiyosaki
 
Those three things are what pulls most on our hearts and souls.  Now comes the transformation part.  Who do we need to become, to draw those things into our life?  What fears do we need to face down?  What action steps do we need to take?  Who do we know that can help us?
 
The greatest gift that we can ever give ourselves is self transformation.  We all have scars both interior and exterior.  Like road maps they tell a story of the journey that we have been on.  The scars from being uprooted, of moving away from friends and family when you were a child.  The scars of being bullied, both by others and by our mean selves.  The scars of falling down.  The pain of getting back on our feet. 
 
Some of these scars are healed, and they are barely visible.  They tell a story that we have transformed from a scary movie or nightmare of desolation, into a comedy in which we star.  We can touch those scars, remember and still smile.  But others still need to be healed, to be transformed.  When we touch them, it is like touching a hot stove.  The pain is barely tolerable.  Even though that scar looks healed from the outside, inside the pain still lingers. 
 
That is where self transformation is the gift.  We can go into the chrysalis and heal.  We need to look at the space of where we are honestly.  Then look at the space of what it is we want in our life.  Then instead of becoming lost in the space of longing, we transform it into the space of an inspiring journey.  The bridge is built by our being willing to give up the pain, to let it go.  To transform it into something beautiful.  To gift it with wings of color, patterns of joyous beauty.  To let it take flight and leave us.
 
One of the most courageous decisions you’ll ever make is to finally let go of what is hurting your heart and soul.
  – Brigitte Nicole
 
 
The being that is forming in a chrysalis is no longer a caterpillar. For the Butterfly the past is truly a place of reference. It can no longer live there, because that body is gone. Within the chrysalis the caterpillars body literally melted into goo, and then formed a totally new body. As the butterfly’s body grows into its new shape, it becomes cramped as the wings want to expand out. It isn’t a place of residence for the butterfly, so it has to break loose and spread it’s wings and find a new home.
 
I tell you this to break your heart, by which I mean only that it break open and never close again to the rest of the world.
  – Mary Oliver
 
The butterfly had to break out of the old place of residence and begin a brand new journey, where everything is experienced for the first time. It must break open its heart to begin this journey, because it has to trust its intuition for flying, for finding food, for making a new home. Literally everything for the butterfly is a brand new experience. 
 
…, something very beautiful happens to people when their world has fallen apart – a humility, a nobility, a higher intelligence emerges at just the point when our knees hit the floor.
  – Marianne Williamson
 
Transformation is a scary business. Because I am a perfectionist, I hate doing something new for the first time. I am doing the best I can with my posts, knowing that I will have spelling errors or grammar mistakes in my writing. I can proofread this a dozen times and the minute I publish I find something I missed. Sometimes when I am reading an old post, I will find more than one missed error and it taunts me.  Can you hear it?  Neener, neener, neener, you can’t catch me?
 
I am living with being imperfect in order to just get the post out there.  If you are a grammar queen or king, and see something in these posts that is an error, please don’t just tell me how my writing drives you crazy when you see the errors.  Please tell me what it is that needs to be corrected.  I am just a lowly knave doing the best that I can.  I am open to correction.
 
You can’t connect the dots looking forward; you can only connect them looking backwards. So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future. You have to trust in something — your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever. This approach has never let me down, and it has made all the difference in my life.
  –  Steve Jobs
 
If we just do what we know, then we confine ourselves to remain the same.  It is striking out into the unknown, trying new things, doing things differently that allows us to be free to grow into who we are meant to be.
 
Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery.  But today is a gift.  That’s why we call it The Present.
  – A.A. Milne
 
 

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


Like Treasure, Brilliance is Uncovered…

like treasure brilliance is uncovered

Updated 01/27/2018

Have you ever felt like you have a recurring theme in your life?  Something that keeps showing up over and over again?

All of us have gold hidden within, but we have to dig to get it out.

 – Joyce Meyer

When I was 4 years old I went through a trauma that said it wasn’t safe to be seen or heard. I then spent most of my adult life trying to figure out why I always seemed to have one foot on the gas, and one foot on the brake. Most of us experienced something in our early childhood, from conception through the 8th year or so, that became an unconscious program running in the background of our decision making process.

Scars are just a treasure map for pain you’ve buried too deep to remember.

  – Jodi Picoult

I went for professional help because I had buried the memory, and could remember nothing of my childhood until my first day of school. Once I uncovered the memory, I could see how this one experience had impacted my entire life.  I had become stuck in my own life, and it was like the car stuck in the mud.  The wheels were spinning, but all that was happening was that I was throwing dirt all over the place.  Now that I could see how the car was stuck in the mud, I could use tools to get back onto the dry road, and get moving on my own journey of personal transformation.

The moment that you feel that, just possibly, you’re walking down the street naked, exposing too much of your heart and your  mind and what exists on the inside, showing too much of yourself.  That’s the moment you  may be starting to get it right.

  – Neil Gaiman

We all have these buried treasures that we were gifted with to share with the world. At some point in our life, someone or something happened that convinced us they were worthless pieces of trash.  So feeling guilty, embarrassed, ashamed, and afraid, we buried them deep inside of ourselves.  Piece by piece, they must be dug up, polished up, and shared. It is these treasures which will shift the world to a better place for all of us. I write to share my treasures with everyone. I am working very hard to help the nonprofits be able to share their treasures with the world.  Elizabeth Gilbert in her book “Big Magic” called this “strange jewels” which are buried within us, waiting to be uncovered. 

You have extraordinary treasures hidden within you. Bringing forth those treasures takes work and faith and focus and courage and hours of devotion.

 – Elizabeth Gilbert

Most of us spend our lives looking outside of ourselves for fulfillment. If we are the perfect child, the perfect student, the perfect spouse or parent, or the perfect employee, then we will be fulfilled. Nothing outside of ourselves can really provide long lasting validation, security or love. We can get temporary fixes which fail, and then we are on our way to the next partner, or job. Or we condemn ourselves as failures and stop seeking any kind of love, security or fulfillment.

Sometimes we spend our whole lives running away from ourselves and the pain that lives within us.  We bury it down deep and convince ourselves that it too much to bear.  But in that pain is great treasure.  There is beauty in the depths of our souls, where we have hidden our gifts.  The great religious leaders recognize the truth of this.

We are all jars of clay, fragile and poor, yet we carry within us an immense treasure.

   – Pope Francis

Every moment of our life is wrapped up in change.  Every truth of today, will not necessarily be the truth tomorrow.  New discoveries in science, uncover and shifts the foundations of what we know.  Technology is constantly changing all aspects of our life.  In the same way, as we dig and uncover what lies deep within ourselves, we reach new truths about ourselves.  We become more conscious, more awake.  The Founder of Agape International Spiritual Center, Michael Beckwith took it a step further in reflecting that these divine gifts and priceless treasures were given to us to help shift not just our own consciousness, but the consciousness of the world.

We are on the planet to …, wrap our consciousness around the divine treasure within us.

  – Michael Beckwith

We all have these treasure maps inside of us, which lead us to the divine treasure of love. Love of Self, Love of God and Family, Love of the World. We are all diamonds in the rough, and the journey through this divine love reveals the beauty of the diamond within us.

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

Live Your Life In The Light Of Dreams And Possibilities

While you breathe,SING WITH YOUR SOULWhile you live,LOVE WITH YOUR HEARTWhile you workSHINE YOUR LIGHTWhile you walk,DANCE IN POSSIBILITIESWhi

Sometimes you just need an adventure to cleanse the bitter taste of life from your soul

  – Unknown

One of the processes many of us go through at the end of the year is to go through the year that is passing.  We look at our highlights, both good and bad.  The successes we celebrate and the failures we sift through for the good pieces hidden in the ashes.  I think that one of the things to plan for the new year is an adventure.  It could be as simple as a hike up into the mountains where we can just sit in the silence and commune with our soul.  Or it could be that we take a trip to somewhere we have never been.

It could be within driving distance of where we live or we could travel to a foreign country.  What it needs to be is an experience that is something totally out of our comfort zone.  Doing this gives us a new perspective in our life.  It shifts our viewpoints and sometimes it changes our life in unforeseen ways.

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

When we take the time at the end of the year or the beginning of the new year to look at our life, we need to be gentle with ourselves.  Going deep within using Disney’s four C’s will unlock things in our heart, soul and mind that we didn’t know where there.  In talking to my life/business coaches a thought floated to the surface around money.  Years ago, when I would be in a discussion around money with my husband, I would say I wanted to have something physical to show in my hands for the money that I spendt.  I haven’t said this for years, but it brought to the surface a belief about money that was hidden within me that needs to be released.  When you approach these hidden beliefs without judgement, but instead curiosity it becomes so easy to let them go.

To breathe your own truth is your heart’s most burning desire.  To live your purpose is your soul’s lifelong dream.

  – Dodinsky 

Don’t be at war with yourself when you look at the blocks that you have.  We all have some beliefs, which block the path to our soul’s dream.  Instead get curious.  Give your basic life tools the chance to work, by working with them.  Meditation, journaling, routines to take care of your health, living in gratitude for what each day has brought to you.  Instead of challenges, you believe that you have opportunities for growth.

Live your truth.  Express your love.  Share your enthusiasm.  Take action towards your dreams.  Walk your talk.  Dance and sing to your music.  Embrace your blessings.  Make today worth remembering.

  – Dr. Steve Maraboli

Taking down the walls you have been building your whole life to expose yourself as you really are.  True freedom doesn’t have limits to who you can be.  Taking up the practice of something new to grow your soul is completely dependent on your realizing it doesn’t matter that you do it well or badly.  Just that you do in fact do it.  You are the one who decides that an experience or change in your life is personal growth, or that it creates personal fears.  Get curious and give yourself the love that you give so freely to others.  Be a soothing balm to your soul.

Don’t be beautiful.  They keep saying that beautiful is something a girl needs to be.  But honestly?  Forget that.  Don’t be beautiful.  Be angry, be intelligent, be witty, be klutzy, be interesting, be funny, be adventurous, be crazy, be talented – there are an eternity of things to be other than beautiful.  And what is beauty anyway but a set of letters strung together to make a word?  Be your own definition of amazing, always. That is so much more important than anything beautiful, ever.

  – Nikita Gill

Audrey Hepburn to me is what this quote is talking about.  She grew up in Belgium and was involved in fighting against the Nazi’s.  She was a professional dancer and began acting just to help support her mom.  At the time she wasn’t considered a beauty.  Her body wasn’t the right shape, her eyebrows too bushy.  But she lived her life as she wanted and because she wasn’t afraid to be who she was, she became an icon..  She won a Tony, an Oscar and Grammy and is one of only 12 people to win all three.  She insisted that Hubert  de Givenchy design all of her clothes for the movies she was in.  She later stepped away from Hollywood and concentrated on he work as a goodwill ambassador for UNICEF.  I love her quote, “I’m Possible” for impossible as well as several others.  She was an eternity of things, including beautiful and to me a wonderful example of living her life on her own terms.

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

Don’t Worry, Be Happy

Life is about momentsdon't wait for them,create them

Happiness  is not something ready made.  It comes from your own actions

  – Dalai Lama

Most of us as adults would look at all the clean laundry on this bed and sigh, thinking that it all needed to be folded or hung up and put away.  But my two grandsons didn’t see a pile of work to do, they saw fun.  The smiles on their faces make my heart burst with joy.  Can you remember being this age and thinking that everything in and around your house was just waiting for you to figure out a way to have fun with it?  As adults we need to get back that lens of seeing things as something ready made to make us happy.

Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do, are in harmony

  – Mahatma Gandhi

One of the things that I love about watching small children, is their ability to just be themselves.  They aren’t hiding who they are behind a mask, no fake smiles, no hidden agenda’s.  If something does happen that makes them sad or mad, their emotions flow straight through them.  The don’t pout in the corner waiting for someone to coax them back into a good mood.  They have their moments when a tantrum hits them, then they immediately get distracted and two minutes later they are on the bed rolling in clean clothes and laughing about nothing. 

Laugh at yourself and at life.  Not in the spirit of derision or whining self pity, but as a remedy, a miracle drug, that will ease your pain, cure your depression, and help you to put in perspective that seemingly terrible defeat and worry, with laughter at your predicaments, thus freeing your mind to think clearly toward the solution that is certain to come.  Never take yourself too seriously,

  – Og Mandino

They don’t have baggage that they carry around with them, that slows down their emotions.  They don’t find themselves trapped in an endless loop of replaying a bad experience over and over again.  They don’t let their emotions send them into an endless spiral of judgment and negativity.  They don’t spend their days getting triggered by something unimportant. They don’t let a single thing cause them to spend the rest of the day in a bad mood.

The best thing that you can do to this world is to be joyous.  Being joyful, is the greatest offering you can make to the world

  – Jaggi Vasadev

Have you ever been in a terrific mood, driving down the freeway as you go to work?  Then someone cuts you off.  You might mutter under your breath.  Or maybe you yell at the driver shaking you head or hands.  Or maybe you drive right up on their bumper to let them know how angry you are.  A few weeks ago two drivers were going down the freeway, and I don’t know what started the argument, but they were taking turns cutting each other off, then they pulled their cars over and one man got out with a baseball bat.  Fortunately, there was a highway patrol behind them and he was able to stop it from escalating even further.  Why do we let someone else’s actions destroy our good mood?  Why do we feel the need to somehow get back at them for their either unthinking or aggressive driving habits?

Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves you, grows you, or makes you happy.

  – Unknown

It isn’t easy to let things go as fast as they happen to us.  But if we remember these two rascals and a load of clothes just out of the dryer, maybe, just maybe, we can be like children.  Feel the emotion, and let it flow out of us.  Take back our self respect and don’t allow anyone to push down the rabbit hole of negative emotions.  Just walk away.  Just because someone invites us to argue and fight, doesn’t mean we have to accept the invitation.  Self Awareness allows us the space to check in within us and choose happiness.  To chose not to worry.  To chose the “easy button” in all aspects of living our life in joy and happiness.

Life does not require you to sacrifice or compromise your joy to get what you want.  Joy is what you want, so when you choose in harmony with it, you are fulfilling your life purpose.

  – Alan Cohen

When we choose to live our life from the place of gratitude it helps us to shift our energy to bring in more of what we want in our life.  As we walk down our chosen path, the journey of life brings us many things.  Not all of them are meant to stay.  Everything in our life currently is serving some sort of purpose.  Part of the journey is figuring out why it is in our life.  What it is supposed to be teaching us, and once we know and implement that knowledge, then it is time to let it go.  What an interesting thing it is to recognize that in every moment we have choices laid before us.  We can choose anger and frustration, or we can let the negative emotion roll in a wave over us and past us to the shore and then watch as it takes all of the negativity back out to sea.

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

  – Carol Castenada

Sometimes happiness is a feeling. Sometimes it’s a decision.  Don’t let stupid things break your happiness.  If you really look at life, while we all have tragedy happen in our life, most of our unhappiness from day to day is our being triggered by something stupid.  

If you want to, you could find a million reasons to hate life and be angry at the world, or, if you want, you could find a million reasons to love life and be happy.  Choose wisely.

  – Cari Welsh

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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