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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 15, Know Thyself

i realize that I am highly analytical and not everyone who shares this planet with me shares that … er … attribute.  There are a few benefits to being so analytical, however, and one of them is being able to help yourself.

As you know already, I believe that the sooner you catch something, the better.  That’s true if you’re trying to treat an illness or if you are trying to modify your behavior.  It’s true if you have having a strong emotional response, and it’s true if your water heater is failing.

if you happen to know of yourself that you don’t really know your triggers, that you blow things off or stuff them for too long, take a dip in the pool of … let’s call it awareness.

Become more aware, first.

Then try dealing with it sooner rather than later–for emotions, you can use EFT, homeopathy, Bach flower essences, crystals, psychotherapy, or whatever resonates for you; for bodily injury you can use conventional medicine, homeopathy, cranial osteopathy / craniosacral therapy, etc.  For your house and car, most help is standard!

Notice the reward of simply addressing something as soon as you notice it is happening.  If you notice that every sickness starts with a little something in your throat, you can boost your immune system at that earliest sign, thereby increasing your chances with the virus.

There are numerous rewards for catching something early, and the rewards for figuring out the predecessor to your repeat ailments is even better.

If you notice that every time you yell at your kids, it was preceded by a “yes” that should have been a “no,” hold your boundaries firmer and avoid the disconnect that happens when we yell.  If you notice that you are cranky, try to figure out why so that the relationships with those around you don’t suffer on account of your singular frustration.

We were even highly rewarded by having an inspection done on our house 12 years after we bought it, just because I suspected there were problems brewing we didn’t know about and wanted to fix early.  The inspector found several problems that should have been caught when we bought the house, including some pretty big stuff.  We surely were glad to get all of those things fixed before they became a glaring problem!

Ya, we’re busy, yes the kids need to get here and there and we do too.  But if you can take a moment to initiate a practice of awareness, it’ll pay for itself many times over with workdays salvaged, vacations enjoyed, cars running when you need them, and let’s not forget plenty of hot water when you need a bath to relax!

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 14, Be Inspired

I gotta tell ya’, my daughter amazes me sometimes.  Well, actually, a lot.

Many people look at her, look at us, and see what isn’t.  Believe me, I do that my fair share too.  Isn’t feeding herself.  Isn’t walking independently.  Isn’t talking the way we do.

But I gotta tell ya’…that girl has gumption.

I mean, she started her life with two medical mistakes that each threatened her life but she left the hospital defying all odds [they guessed she’d have a permanent g-tube, for instance, but she was nursing full-time, the hardest method of feeding for a baby].  She literally was bucked from a horse — during therapy! — and got back on.  Not only that, but she stayed in-touch with the horse [she can see Spirit, angels, etc.] and let me know when the horse was having trouble digesting the food in its new home [by the time I told the therapists, the new owners had figured it out].

Still sandy but smiling after showering off.
Still sandy but smiling after showering off.

Recently, she was so excited to try her walker at the beach that she suddenly ran for it, from a smooth paved path.  She literally tipped face-first and ended up with circles of sand around and in both eyes, both nostrils, and her mouth.  [Sore shoulder too.]  A nearby shower came in handy, and she was cooperative through the whole thing.  Never cried, never complained.  Walked away in her walker, laughing about it and also grimacing at the grit of sand in her mouth!  [Luckily, I had my little homeopathic first aid kit handy for help with her shoulder.]

We often see other people’s burdens as a reason to feel grateful for what we have.

But I am suggesting that you to do more than that:  Be inspired by people who seem to have something less than you.

We all have our gifts–notice theirs, appreciate them, and be grateful that they share this planet with you.

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 13, Newsworthy

When my children were young, I avoided the news because it was too stressful for me.  I sequestered myself so thoroughly from current events that my mother and husband each made a point to let me know when nearby Mt. St. Helens was spewing smoke!

Then, a year or two ago, I started reading the news again.  It was tough for me. I decided to switch to the BBC news app so that I could get my news in brief–and even then, I had to shield myself far and wide before I checked the news.

But lately even the news headlines and those thumbnails deliver some dreadful images and horrendous news.  It’s rather unbearable for me.  I even awoke last night, worried about some of what is going on in the world.

So, how do I regain my footing when something like this happens?

It helps to start off with a good grounding.

The first thing I do is I pray for the people who are, have, or intend to commit wrongs against others.  I sometimes also ask that they are unburdened from any promises, perspectives, or experiences that tie them to their wrongdoing or intent to commit wrongs–in all direction sod time and for everyone involved.

Then I try the same for myself.

If that isn’t enough, I usually reach out to someone.  What helps me most is to connect with family.  It is especially helpful to hug my kids — they feel so safe and loved.  It is a good reminder, because most of all, I am worried about their safety and wellbeing.  It brings me back into the present moment, and I can feel to my core how safe they are.  By hugging them I also get back into that place of love and connection that keeps me steady in God’s light.  It’s grounding in and of itself–brings me present, centered, and in God’s light.

I also try to remind myself that we are all here fulfilling our purposes for God.  I know this:

Fear keeps us out of God’s light.

Staying on my path adds light.

Light beats darkness every time.

 

Sending out light and love, hoping we can spread it together ….

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 12, No More Sorries

My youngest is very much against the word, “sorry.”

I have been reflecting about this and am starting to see his point — sorry is a platitude.  We kinda want sorry to fix it so we can forget it.  Worse yet is the, “I’m sorry you feel that way,” putting all the onus on the person who is upset.

Growing up in my house, we learned to acknowledge our part in any conflict then discuss with the other person[s] in the conflict until we agreed to some sort of solution.  That had its pro’s and con’s, because some people were more comfortable with conflict than others.

Iyanla VanZant suggested three steps that are similar but I think better, and then I’ve tweaked them a bit further with the aim of clearing the conscience so that we can more fully do the work God has planned for us.  I believe very strongly that every person, children and adults, should know these three steps for those reasons:

Acknowledge

Apologize

Amends

Often, our egos are waaaay too weak to be able to acknowledge our part in a conflict or problem.  But, most of the time, it takes [at least] two to tango.  Is someone treating you poorly?  Why are you letting them?  Did you offend someone?  All things a learning opportunity.

If you grew up in a household with a narcissist or getting blamed for things that were not your doing, etc., it can be easy to become protective and defensive.  So this first step will be a challenge for you.  But admitting your wrongdoings or poor choices to yourself is a really big deal–without acknowledging to yourself, you are stuck stagnant and outta luck.

So acknowledge your mistake to yourself.  Then acknowledge it to the person or people whom you wronged.

Yup, apologize.  I’m definitely not talking about platitudes, and I’m definitely not talking about accepting more responsibility than is yours to own.  Explain your feelings:  “I am ashamed that I …”  “I regret that I >>>>”  “I am disappointed that I responded by —-”  “I wish you had ___ and that I had ____.”

Finally, make amends.  Do what you can to compensate for your mistake.  That isn’t always a tangible, visible action item.

Additionally, or if it is your only choice, determine any changes you need to make in future choices.  Determine your triggers and either eliminate them or figure out how to deal with them before they become a problem.  Figure out what got you into this mess and how you’re going to avoid something similar in the future.

Is it to yourself that you need to apologize?  Rinse and repeat.

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 11, Meet Your Angels

I don’t know nearly all there is to know about angels, but I do know for sure that we have a mighty number of angels looking out for us every day.  Take a moment to acknowledge your angels and all that they do for you every day.  Welcome them into your life.  You’ll never look back.

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 10, Spread the Love

I’m a big fan of expressing gratitude — thank you notes, texts, emails.  This idea is one I want to do but haven’t done yet.  The basic idea comes from Shawn Achor.  During his interview with Oprah, he mentioned a couple of simple happiness practices that imprMahaloove overall happiness if practiced daily for at least 21 days.  One of those is writing a one-line thank-you each day.

I do want to do that!

But today, what I am suggesting is a version of that:

Write one thank-you note to someone who helped you and to whom you have not expressed either your appreciation, the full extent of your appreciation, or the extent of their positive impact on your life.

Write one more thank-you note to someone who initially affected you negatively but whose actions ultimately were beneficial to you.  You turned lemons into lemonade.  You learned a lesson the hard way.  Whatever it may be.

You needn’t send either note, of course, I only suggest that you write it.  Then ‘send’ it off however you wish–with a prayer, a little fire.

But most of all, just hold it and enjoy it in your heart.  Acknowledge it, and know that you have, can, and will do the same for someone else.

 

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 9, Your Life Purpose

HiddenSymmetryBirthdays
Birthdate Chart for determining your 3 numbers — the last number is the one that contains info on your life purpose

All you need is your birthdate to know your life purpose?!

I heard an interesting radio show that led me to a book called, “Your Hidden Symmetry,” which I first borrowed from the library then purchased on iBooks [$9.99].  It’s also available at Amazon.

This book has been so helpful to me in the short time I’ve owned it.

If you have wondered about your purpose in life, this is a helpful book.If you are determined to fulfill your life purpose or frustrated because you cannot figure out your life purpose, this is an incredibly helpful book.  Even as a parent, this book was very helpful to me in knowing whether we had or how we could encourage our children along their life paths.

When you do lay your hands on the book, find your 3rd number and look it up in the relevant chapter.  That’s where you’ll see your life summed-up on 2-3 pages!

If you are nodding your head, nodding your head, and then completely befuddled by your actual life purpose, chances are that you really had no idea what your life purpose was.  This is a guiding light for you.

If you are reading about your 3rd number and nodding your head and then keep nodding your head, or opening your eyes wide and saying, “Oh, that’s why!” or other such responses to your experience and efforts being validated, chances are you already are on your path.

Either way, the information is extremely useful in my experience–but then again, fulfilling our life purposes is a really big deal to me.

And by the way, one’s life purpose can be achieved either in a career or outside of it.

Cover and the portion of the Table of Contents pertaining to Life Purpose
Cover and the portion of the Table of Contents pertaining to Life Purpose

There’s way more in the book, and all of it can help you figure out what your major challenges are and your strengths too.  Where you go in times of stress and some tools or alternatives that will be more helpful to you.  It can help you understand why everything has seemed so hard or why you start a lot of projects but finish a few. It can even help you understand the lessons that you are supposed to be learning so that you can embrace them quickly when they come along or recognize new opportunities to learn [hopefully through joy!].

As an example, I was just talking to someone whose 3rd number indicates that her life purpose is around appreciating and teaching others how to appreciate beauty and, specifically, the beauty of the moment.  At the moment, she is going through a major transition in her life and has felt that the lesson was all about trust.  But what if it is about staying in the moment?  I bet that would make it easier for her to do and learn, and it would push her further along her life path.  When I offered this to her, she felt that it brought greater clarity and can now stay more clearly in that centered place of trust and presence.  How beautiful is that?!  [And the ripple effect, in circles of light, will mean that more people will learn from her about staying in the present moment.]

Beginning summary of my life purpose.
Beginning summary of my life purpose.

Knowing your purpose helps you to keep this priority in mind, to recognize opportunities when you see them, and in my case, to feel more sure of the steps that I want to take.  For instance, people often tell me that I should write a book, a sort of memoir.  But I have few external credentials for being an author and think of memoirs as being of interest only for celebrities.  When I read that my life purpose is to release the wisdom in my bones, the wisdom of the ancestors that has been passed down, I felt more certain that I do have something to offer even without external credentials.

Ironically, my father has the same third number, as does my daughter and a friend of mine.  It manifests a bit differently in each of us, but it is interesting now to see, “Oh, that’s why we have these resonances.”

Looking at the life purpose of my eldest son has been very helpful, because his purpose is to change the world.  I gotta tell you, it isn’t easy raising a kid whose destiny is to change the world!  But we have tried very hard to support who he is, his interests, and to trust his path.  This book was an incredible validation for him and for us that his profound frustrations with “what is” are the basis for an incredible ability to help humanity.  But it also is a validation for the guidance that we have felt our son needed, informed perhaps a little more now.

For one more person who has been very successful in his career but also felt very lost in terms of knowing  his calling, his life purpose, this book was a big eye-opener.  The other descriptions were so exactly right, it was remarkable.  Then we get to the life purpose section of the 3rd number and see that some of it resonates but it is actually quite distant from his actual work.  We can see hints of relevant interests, career desires, etc., but he is so far from

So I do hope that you will find it at your local library, borrow it, get a copy for yourself, or maybe call in to that radio show for a live reading.

I’d love to hear your stories, too!  Meanwhile, enjoy!

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 8, Students of Joy

I took for granted the notion that learning always came through hardship, that gain came through pain.  So I was very much caught by surprise when I heard the suggestion that we learn through joy.

But when I started thinking about it, I realized it is possible.  It doesn’t mean there isn’t hard work involved — joy and hard work can be simultaneous!

I propose it now to you … in those moments of joy, of pleasure, of fulfillment, of contentment, know your happiness, revel in it, and seek more of it.

Know what feels right, know your path, stay in God’s light, and learn from doing what feels right.

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 7, Forget Forgiving

Forgiving is a beautiful choice when you can make it, but I think that we have a lot of baggage associated with the word, the concept, and the action.  There are so many definitions of what it means to forgive–and what it does not mean to forgive.  I just barely use the word any more.

So, when I feel wronged now–and I’ve thrown my fair share of pity parties!–this is pretty much how I handle it:

I often shield myself if I still feel vulnerable.  Otherwise, I simply remind myself of my connection to God.  [Using the Protect & Ground method described on this post.]

I sometimes follow this with various ideas of why the person might have acted that way, trying to accept that a person simply may not have the resources to have behaved better.  I also look at my responsibility in the matter and what I could have done differently.

So, for instance, yesterday a child pointed at my daughter and laughed, nudging her friends to join in.  Is this because my daughter has wronged her by having difficulty with walking and moving her body?  No, most likely it is because the girl has seen or experienced being teased for being different.  In a certain way, mocking others is a protection for her.

Here’s another example.  I write an email to someone and don’t hear back.  Is it because I’ve offended her or because she simply didn’t have the time/thoughts/space to respond?

Oprah opened my eyes to this, actually.  She was talking about a scenario like this with Sarah Ferguson–that Ms. Ferguson assumed a non-response meant she’d done something wrong.  But Oprah said, “It’s not always about you!”  I found that shocking and offensive until Oprah explained that sometimes there are other things going on in a person’s life that interfere with or interrupt what otherwise might occur in a relationship.  Good point!  It isn’t always about me [or you]!

Then I pray for the other.  The first time that I undertook this, it was really hard!  Someone had been deeply hurtful to us for many years.  We committed to a daily prayer for one month for her, and we could hardly think of anything to say.  I literally posted on a Facebook page asking for help.  Someone–a stranger–suggested that we pray that the person be lifted up out of fear.  That made sense, that fear is basically the basis of harmful choices [including the overdose given to my daughter, BTW!].  So we started there — that the person be lifted up out of fear and eventually added that she would be able to open her heart.

My go-to prayer, then, is something like this, “God, please lift this person up out of fear and open her heart so that she might fully know the joy and love of Your presence in her life.”

Finally, sometimes we need this prayer for ourselves!

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21 Days of Fantastic: Day 6, Stretch

I have found that a little bit of stretching is beneficial to body, mind, and spirit.

Stretch Your Body:  Stretching before we get out of bed is actually good for us!  Before I get out of bed, I spend a moment to bring God into my heart.  I like to follow that up with a Sun Salutation.  [Here’s one that is longer than the one I learned.]

At the end of the Salutation, I say a prayer asking that God light my path and help me to serve Him in all that I do and all that I say.

It is helpful to stretch throughout the day, as well.  The Mindful Moon app sometimes includes that suggestion, or you could add it to your list of beneficial alternatives to anything you are doing that is unhelpful to you.

Stretch Your Mind:  Constantly learning stretches the mind.  For me, it’s more than just factual knowledge.  Stretching the mind can be about stretching the heart.  Keep an open mind, keep an open heart, and that helps me to stay free of judgment.

Stretch Your Spirit:  Some years ago, I got stuck in a place where I felt I couldn’t take my kids to the playground by myself safely.  After reading a synopsis of Cheryl Strayed’s book, Wild, I took a concept from it…Just put one foot in front of the other.  It’s a bit like staying in the moment.

Just stretch your comfort zone a little tiny bit.

So I figured out two small playgrounds that were enclosed and where I could park nearby–that way I could keep a good eye on my young toddler and his shenanigans with his much older [but helpfully safety-minded] older brother while helping his older sister move her body.  With the car right there, I had a safety net nearby.  I decided we’d stay for only 45 minutes so that I wouldn’t max-out [in body, mind, or spirit].  It was incredibly liberating for all of us.

 

Before I sign-off, remember to be safe — even stretching sometimes needs medical clearance, so check with your doctor first.  And make sure you stretch your spirit safely too!

 

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