A Dying Woman’s Wish for Everyone

Sometimes we get caught up in or allow what’s going on around us to dominate our lives, then I read this message shared on Facebook reminding me of how sacred life is. Kerri, whom I do not know, crossed over in 2021 from brain cancer, her words touched my soul. I believe that the most soulful and authentic words come from the humbleness that comes with leaving our earthly life. Kerri spoke her truth and in turn inspires us to live whole heartedly and bravely. This is a very worthy read.

“If you’re reading this, this fu$king brain cancer probably got me.

But let me be crystal clear while I’m able: I did not ”lose a battle” against cancer. This is a ridiculous, steamy pile of horse shit that society has dumped on cancer patients. Western medicine, and Western culture, especially, is so uncomfortable talking about death that instead it created this “battle” analogy that basically shames people who die from cancer.

News flash: None of us gets out alive from this rodeo called life.

There is no shame in dying from cancer – or any serious illness. And it doesn’t need to be a battle. It’s a transition that each of us will go through. I was asked by a shaman, whom I spoke to after my second brain surgery, “Are you running towards life or running away from death?”

Whoa! That got my attention.

There’s a BIG difference. I got it wrong more often than not.

Don’t let fear fuel your choices. Live fearlessly. Run TOWARDS life. Don’t worry about what people will think. Trust me, it doesn’t matter.

Focus on you. Be true to yourself. Be your own best friend. People who tell you you’re selfish are not your people. If the voice in your head says these unkind things, get a new voice. Honor your mental health and seek out a good therapist with the same vigor you’d search for a romantic partner.

Speaking of, be intentional about cultivating friendships that lift you up. As those friendships grow and change, don’t overlook them while you search for that “great love of your life.” (No, I’m not suggesting you sleep with your bestie. But you do you!)

Another unhelpful message that we get from society is that we need a “love of our life,” as a romantic partner.

Single and childless when I was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, I looked around my life and came up sputtering and sobbing from the wave of grief washed over me. I thought I’d be doing this alone… no husband, no kids, no “great love.”

How wrong I was. At the first appointment with my neuro oncologists, one of the nurses diligently hauled in chair after chair for the great loves of my life who came with me that horrible day and many days after that.

I sat and listened while the doctor explained the 12-month treatment plan, focusing on my breathing, then looked around the room…. filled with great loves of my life: incredible women friends whom I had met at various stages of my life.

Surround yourself with people who contradict that unkind voice, people who see your light, and remind you who you are: an amazing soul.

Learn how to receive these reflections from your people. Because they are speaking the Truth.

Love yourself, no matter how weird and silly it might feel. Every morning, give yourself a hug before your feet hit the floor. Look deeply into your eyes in a mirror. Say to yourself, out loud, “I trust you.” That voice in your head might say you’re a dork. Ignore it.

As I prepare to leave this body and embark on this mysterious journey of my soul, I hope these observations from my deathbed are somehow useful.

What I know, deep in my bones, is that learning to love myself has led me to be able to say this: I’m so proud of how I lived.

May you, dear reader, feel the same when you head out on your soul journey, too. Until then, enjoy the ride. And always eat dessert first, especially if there’s pie!” Kerri Grote

The Ultimate Serenity; Unconditional Self-Love

Self-love isn’t arrogant, selfish or egotistical, it is complete acceptance, caring about and believing in yourself. Laura Putman

Your Key to Joy

Beginning a life of authenticity is a journey to true happiness. Whether there are “others” in your life that expect conformity lovingly or unlovingly, no one’s opinion of you but yours matters. Unconditional love of self is about liberating your individuality with joy and acceptance from head to toe, inside to outside. Unconditional self-love is believing you’re worthy of love and accepting your uniqueness. There is no one like you, so it’s incumbent upon us to bravely and boldly peel away the false front to allow ourselves to be just as we are, that is unconditional self-love. That is the foundation for happy and healthy relationships with yourself and others and that truly transforms your life.

Oh, to love myself

I’m finally completely at peace with who I am, at long last I have confidence with my uniqueness. Even though feeling this way could have happened at any time in my life, I didn’t believe in myself enough to allow it to be. One example of a memorable life experience happened years ago when I took myself out to dinner one evening. I love Irish food and music, so one evening I decided to go to my favorite Irish pub. I was enjoying a delicious meal when things unexpectedly changed. The pub owner (who was from Ireland) pulled up a chair in a corner not far from where I was sitting to sing and entertain the diners with some of his favorite Irish tunes. For some reason he looked directly at me and asked across the room if was dining alone, I felt awkward but I answered yes. He said so you’re having dinner with your best friend. I should have been flattered, but the restaurant was full of diners and I was humiliated that my being alone was pointed out. I was so uncomfortable that as soon as I finished eating I left the restaurant. While that might not seem like much, to me it was devastating and a glaring example of a complete inability to love myself. That was one of the many experiences I had to bring me to where I am now.

Choosing to nurture your well-being

Did you know that when a caterpillar enters the chrysalis stage, their DNA completely transforms as they become a beautiful, amazing butterfly. Your DNA completely changes with self-love reversing the effects of stress, anxiety, self-deprecation and the lack of self-respect. Your brain and DNA are completely transformed with healthy thoughts, shifting from toxic/[prone to disease to healthy/prone to a life of well-being.

“You’re speaking to your genes with every thought you have. The fast growing field of epigenetics is showing that who you are is the product of the things that happen to you in your life, which change the way your genes operate. Genes are actually switched on or off depending on your life experiences, and your genes and lifestyle form a feedback loop. Your life doesn’t alter the genes you were born with. What changes is your genetic activity, meaning the hundreds of proteins, enzymes, and other chemicals that regulate your cells.” Huffpost

How your brain appears with toxic thoughts and with healthy thoughts.
How your DNA appears (LEFT) when you’re stressed and unhappy and when your DNA has recovered when you change your self-perception and ways of thinking (RIGHT).

Build your path to self-love (From Wanderlust.com)

1. Identify Your Why

If you want to make the shift from desiring self-love to embodying self-love, you must be emotionally connected to that journey. Why is self-love important to you? The answer to that question strengthens your ability to seeing it through.

2. Commit

Be 150 percent committed to your journey to self-love. No excuses. Make self-love a major priority in your life and treat it as such. Don’t let anything get in the way of you and your relationship with self.

3. Forgive

How can you expect to move forward in your life if you’re being weighed down by anger and resentment? It’s simple. You can’t. It’s time to forgive. Forgive yourself, and forgive others. You’re not condoning their behavior when you forgive other people for their wrongdoings, you’re simply giving yourself permission to let go and move on. This is a tough step, but a very mandatory one.

4. Take Back Your Power

Drop the victim mentality and take ownership of your life. No more pointing the finger at others or blaming your circumstances. It’s time to own up and take control. The moment you take ownership is the moment you gain back the power to create change.

5. Let go

Let go of anything that is not serving you in the highest good. This includes relationships, friendships, habits… Get rid of all that is holding you back. This step can ignite feelings of loneliness, but that will pass. Replace toxic people with good people; replace destructive habits with good habits.

6. Surround Yourself With Good

Immerse yourself within the company of uplifting people; people who serve you in the highest good. Surround yourself with people who truly love you, support you, and respect you. If you don’t have those people around you, find them. Seek them out and don’t stop until you do.

7. Practice Self-Compassion

Go easy on yourself. Instead of being your toughest critic, be your own best friend. Talk to yourself the way you want to be talked to. Treat yourself the way you want to be treated. And continue to forgive yourself along the way.

8. Take Care of Your Needs

Do what you need to do to take care of your needs yourself. No more waiting for others to fulfill those needs—you can do this. Honor your needs as they arise and don’t push them aside for any excuse.

9. Set Healthy Boundaries

Boundaries are incredibly good for you. They protect your needs and honor your worth. Never hesitate to set healthy boundaries. A tip to help you recognize when a boundary needs to be set is to listen to your intuition. If an interaction feels icky, a line has been crossed. Take that as a sign that you need to set a boundary.

10. Commit to Daily “LoveHabits”

Daily acts of self-love (“LoveHabits”) are a beautiful way to show yourself the love, respect, and level of care that you truly desire. Plus, they make you feel really good. Select LoveHabits that work well for you—habits that feel uplifting, regenerative, and/or energizing. The key is to unapologetically commit to daily LoveHabits.

Self-love is your divine responsibility. When you commit to a deep, loving relationship with self, your entire life will positively shift in the most incredible ways. Follow these 10 steps to cultivate self-love and live a life that truly honors your highest good.

Real life experience

Finally, most people don’t have the capacity to love themselves because they create their lives based on what someone else perceives them to be. This TedX talk is confirmation that self-love and living authentically are creating the best life ever for yourself.

On January 22nd of this year Thich Nhat Hahn left his earthly body, leaving a hole where his spiritual teachings filled many with love, joy and hope. These are his rules for life.

Self-Care Has Never Been More Essential

“When we care for ourselves as our very own beloved—with naps, healthy food, clean sheets, a lovely cup of tea—we can begin to give in wildly generous ways to the world, from abundance. —Anne Lamott, author

Since 2020 there have been so many uncommon adversities that we’ve all had to deal with that self-care which was once dismissed as a luxury should now be considered a vital daily practice. It takes effort to feel tranquil, balanced and collected which happens when we create practices to care for ourselves. Self-care is a very personal and intentional practice of improving our physical and mental health.

I believe in leading by example, so I’ll share my recent journey of introducing self-care into my daily practices, hopefully it will inspire you. Since I’ve healed from my self-created back injury, I’ve taken time to reflect on how I was thinking and why I was filling my days with a rigid agenda and unreachable ideals. To change that I knew I had to take some serious steps. So, starting that week I began spending more time doing things I used to consider luxuries. Since then I’ve added an assortment of simple and doable self-care practices and so far I’m more aware, tranquil and really enjoy each day. I can now say without a doubt that I am happier than I’ve been in a very long time. Even though the chaos continues in the outside world, there are ways to soothe and pamper ourselves that I believe can only make us a better person for ourselves and those around us.

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete. Jack Kornfield

If you’re ready to begin your journey, start by carving time into each day to indulge your five senses with purposeful self-care. There is no wrong way in doing self-care, the list I created below are my ideas, you can create from this or create your own ways of pampering yourself. Caring for yourself doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated, this is just about finding simple ways to give attention to yourself. Practicing self-care is about doing something for yourself that evokes positive emotions. I sincerely believe that if we feel good and are at peace, we can bring that into everything we do. And if for no other reason, Adam Feldman says, “Self-care also helps us sharpen our mental and physical health through better self-esteem, stress management, and overall well-being.”

Luxury at Home – Nurture Yourself

  • Get plenty of sleep, when you can, turn off your alarm
  • Spend time with your pet(s)
  • Have a good cry
  • Take time when eating to enjoy the taste of the food, savor the joy of nourishing your body
  • Scented or unscented candles and flowers can make any room feel special
  • Set some time aside to read a funny story, watch videos or shows that make you laugh out loud
  • Enjoy a midday break, treat yourself to enjoyable refreshments
  • Make your shower or bath luxurious by using a special soap, scented lotion, include items to slough your skin, play music, use soft lighting, have live plants and super soft towels
  • Give yourself spa treatments, a manicure or pedicure, a facial treatment, a foot massage, a footbath, or a soothing body massage,
  • Spend some quiet time reading, meditating or writing
  • Take a leisurely walk
  • Read a book
  • Educate yourself on something you’re interested in
  • Declutter, add live plants, some pictures or colorful items to lift yourself
  • Take some time to appreciate yourself, compliment yourself, it’s a healthy and simple thing to do that will lift your spirits
  • Set time aside to do nothing
  • Make an indulgent meal, something that you might usually have for a special occasion
  • Plate your meal for presentation as you’d receive it in a fine dining restaurant
  • Use linen spray in a scent you love
  • Enjoy time in nature
  • Rub CBD oil where you may have aches
  • Put on comfortable Loungewear
  • Take a nap

True luxury is being able to own your time – to be able to take a walk, sit on your porch, read the paper, not take the call, not be compelled by obligation. Ashton Kutcher

The following lists are from Alastin Skin Care

The Psychological Benefits of Self-Care

  • Reduces feelings of anxiety and anger
  • Reduces instances and feelings of depression
  • Improves your thought life and direct it to more positive things
  • Increases your sense of optimism and hopefulness
  • Reduces negative thoughts and feelings
  • Changes your mood from bad to good
  • Helps you build stronger connections with yourself and others
  • Increases your self-awareness and ability to self-reflect
  • Helps you respond better to challenges
  • Increases your patience and tamp down on a short fuse
  • Increases your focus and productivity (so you can do all the things!

The Wellness Benefits of Self-Care

  • You’ll sleep better
  • You’ll strengthen your immune system
  • Your relationships will improve
  • Better finances
  • You’ll be able to think clearly and refocus
  • You’ll freely and copiously give more of yourself

“Practicing self-care can help you sleep better, improve focus, and strengthen relationships. That positive daily routine can support a happier, healthier outlook so you can enjoy the good times, too.” findyourwords.com

Thank you for reading my post, I sincerely appreciate your taking the time.

Becoming Vulnerable – to Have Healthier Friendships/Relationships

Relationships are complex, challenging and a source for growth. Going into any relationship in a state of unawareness, guarded and carrying baggage comes from making the same choices over and over again which only leads to heartbreak and turmoil. Stripping away habitual behaviors to become open and vulnerable is the only way to experience healthier, happier relationships.

Without vulnerability, relationships struggle. Vulnerability is, ‘Here I am – my frayed edges, my secrets, my fears, my affection. Be careful – they’re precious.’ In return, it invites, ‘Oh, I see you there. It’s okay, you’re safe. And here – here’s me.’ It builds trust, closeness and a sense of belonging. Relationships won’t thrive without it. Karen Young

Being vulnerable isn’t easy, exposing our most vulnerable self is a lot of work and doesn’t happen overnight, it is a process that happens as we build confidence and certainty that it’s okay to be ourselves and genuine around others.

If you view relationships as a way to become a better person instead of a way to fill a void or to make you happy, they will function better and differently and all of the relationship stumbling blocks most people experience will eventually fall away. This is effective for all relationships, not just those of a romantic nature, love and vulnerability aren’t limited to romance, in fact, they are the true nature of humanity.

Healthy relationships are always growing and changing allowing for introspection, personal growth and the ability to shift our way of being. The key to healthy relationships is that they be backed with consciously chosen meaningful intentions where everyone is always seen and heard and feels secure knowing that no matter what is said or discussed, there are no judgments, conditions or opinions that will diminish the heart of the connection between you.

First, we should be in a strong and wholesome relationship with ourselves, that will open the door for healthier relations. As we become vulnerable we will learn that our happiness and accountability in a relationship is our responsibility. then we will lift the burden of expecting anyone else to care for our happiness and feelings. Unfortunately, a majority of relationships are unconscious, revolving around feeling safe and relying on the other person to make us happy, that is what we’ve come to expect and what strains most relationships. Healthy relationships of any kind are grounded in consciousness, unquestioning trust, giving space to each person to be authentic and feeling completely accepted.

Vulnerable relationships are different asking that we be conscious, aware of our emotions, actions and words and that we are able to be ourselves. I recently read a quote that helped me put into words the way I approach relationships now, it was something like we must understand that relationships are not to make us happy but a part of our lives for us to learn and grow from.

Redefining a relationship isn’t easy, no matter how mindful we are. For me, the best way I’ve found not to conditionalize a relationship based on past experiences is to work on myself towards well-being and self-confidence and always remind myself this is a different person and situation. Because I live in awareness, I make sure to treat people as I want to be treated. Being aware and conscious is a great part of vulnerability and a constant effort meaning we can never slip into unconscious oblivion again. I can suggest trying what I’ve discovered, ask yourself questions like what will happen if say this or how would I feel if someone treated me this way before I say or do anything.

A major factor that changed the dynamics and the type of relationship I have with myself was when I chose to create boundaries such as not letting what others thought of me or my choices interfere with what I decided or how I thought of myself. I also took another big step toward being true to myself by reducing the number of people I was surrounded by. For me, that was a fairly significant move that led to a smaller circle of trusted friends. Becoming conscious and vulnerable is going to bring an obstacle course with everyone in your life, this is where you will experience the most change and weed out those people who aren’t on the same page with you.

Owning our story can be hard but not nearly as difficult as spending our lives running from it. Embracing our vulnerabilities is risky but not nearly as dangerous as giving up on love and belonging and joy—the experiences that make us the most vulnerable. Only when we are brave enough to explore the darkness will we discover the infinite power of our light.”― Brene Brown

Being vulnerable is tricky, we can’t configure or manipulate our authenticity in any way to be accepted by another. We have to be happy with ourselves and then do the work at remaining genuine to attract the healthy relationships we deserve. Another major step is to not allow the years of self-protection from pain and toxic behavior that caused us to shut down and close people out prevent our progress to being a happier person.

Finally, I’d like to close with a video I watched and another part of the process of developing healthy friendships/relationships, Frientimacy: The 3 Requirements of All Healthy Friendships by Shasta Nelson

Thank you for reading my post, always live your life with your mind and heart connection in the forefront.

When was the last time you played? The positive effects of play for adults

Of all of the personal development or self-help activities we can engage in, fun and play are probably the most underused and disregarded. Contrary to what people think, adults aren’t being lazy or thoughtless when we turn our attention to activities that are recreational and entertaining, we’re tapping into one of the greatest resources for our overall health.

For many adults, letting go of being serious and focused on adult responsibilities isn’t easy or in the forefront of importance. I promise anyone who incorporates play into their life on a regular basis will be much better prepared to handle whatever issues come your way.

Along with the emotional benefits, there are a variety of health benefits by adding play into your life. According to helpguide.com, play:

  • Relieves stress
  • Improves brain function
  • Stimulates the mind and boosts creativity
  • Improves relationships and your connections to others
  • Keeps you feeling young and energetic
  • Helps develop and improve social skills
  • Teaches cooperation with others
  • Heals emotional wounds
  • Boosts innovation

Jack Canfield, author of Chicken Soup for the Soul books, Entrepreneur, Motivational Speaker and Corporate Trainer shares his thoughts on the positive effects of fun and play.

For many years I allowed the seriousness of my responsibilities to control my way of being. Then the opportunity arose to make a significant change in my life away from the considerable and weighty issues I had to deal with. During that transition, I felt the need to liberate myself and embrace playfulness and the wonder of life, be curious and have fun. Now, I don’t think twice about being spontaneous and having fun. I’ve created a sense of harmony and balance by injecting play into my life, no matter what’s going on around me, I am always sure to incorporate laughter and enjoyment into my day.

Imagine a billion people pushing for play time, not in a frivolous way or a way that negates progress, but in a way that supplements and allows us to make even more progress. It’s time to put play back into our lives. Jared Keller

According to Dr. Stuart Brown, a play researcher and psychiatrist out of CA, adult play may actually increase our intellect.

“Of all animal species, humans are the biggest players of all. We are built to play and built through play. Most obviously, it is intensely pleasurable. It energizes and enlivens us. It eases our burdens.”

Here are some innovative ideas for you to pick and choose from that incorporates play into your everyday life.

make play a part of your day – from Genuisofplay.com

  • Use unscheduled time to be creative, to daydream, reflect and decompress
  • Appreciate playtime – whether it’s alone or with other adults or children
  • Smile and laugh often throughout the day
  • Try new things and experience the unexpected
  • Participate in a variety of arts/sports/activities whenever you can to expand your horizons
  • Make mental connections (e.g., “how else can I use this,” “what else can this do?”)
  • Sing and dance just for the fun of it
  • Spend time with the children in your life, observing them as they play, listening to their conversation, and following their train of thought
  • Cultivate a happy, joyful, positive attitude, full of gratitude for even the smallest, everyday things
  • Plan to make play part of your day, whether it is indoor or outdoor, solo or social, active or quiet

Finally, the human experience is spiritual, play is spiritual. Play is a time when we take a break from thinking, essentially connecting with all that is. It’s a great way to relax and enjoy life and move away from the grind of work and the pressures of everyday life. Laughter and play are necessary parts of life and a time to reflect on all of the things that make us happy to be alive.

It’s never too late to have a happy childhood.” ~ Wayne Dyer

Thank you for reading my post, I appreciate your time, namaste.

A Time for Mindfulness, The Sky Isn’t Falling, Maintain Serenity

Grocery shopping, usually an enjoyable experience for me was a journey into self-mastery. because I absorb and am naturally very sensitive to the energy of those around me. As I quietly walked through the store, the fear and anxiety were palpable. I witnessed out of control, panicked and worried people collecting multiple carts with several family members, pushing, shoving and racing through the store scooping large quantities of merchandise into their carts as if the world was coming to an end. While there was a temptation to find fault and judge, for my own self-protection I remained focused on what I was doing, stayed to myself and concentrated on departing when I was done.

The condition of the store (images below) was unthinkable. As the cashier was ringing me out, we chatted about the state of things, she said it is the “Chicken Little” story come to life.

“The moral of the Chicken Little story is to have courage, even when it feels like the sky is falling.

To make things worse, the media is exploding with a steady stream of inflated piffle and misinformation that frightens and upsets people. This only increases unnecessary fear that brings extreme psychological stress and out of control anxiety only increasing weakened immune systems. Fear spreading is the real danger, calm and common sense are the catalysts to avoid extreme situations that can and will take place if fear continues to dominate a very controllable circumstance.

EFFECTIVE MINDFULNESS Practices

Exercise such as:

  • Yoga, stretching, walking

Aromatherapy, use these scents to increase calm:

  • Lavender
  • Vetiver
  • Bergamot
  • Roman chamomile
  • Neroli
  • Frankincense
  • Sandalwood
  • Ylang ylang
  • Orange or orange blossom
  • Geranium

Take supplements to increase wellness:

  • ashwagandha,
  • omega-3
  • fatty acids,
  • green tea
  • lemon balm
  • valerian
  • kava kava
  • Reduce caffeine
  • Laugh
  • Eat and sleep well

Practice mindfulness through:

  • meditation
  • unplug, be present in the moment
  • watching your thoughts when they wander

Create a mini arts program for yourself:

  • play games, read a novel, relax with music

As with every difficult situation we are challenged by, It’s important to remember all we can do is our best, continue to live our lives and expect the best outcome. Whatever your spiritual practices, we can all contribute by withholding judgment, remain considerate, compassionate and understanding.

The truth is:

“The vast majority of cases are going to be mild, and people are going to recover just like they do from a cold or flu-like illness.”— Dr. Amesh Adalja

Stay well, be at peace; find the sacredness and joy in everyday life.

Never Undervalue the Power of Failure or Success without Pretense

Success is Not Final, Failure is Not Fatal: it is the Courage to Continue that Counts – Winston Churchill

When we’re born, our views of success and failure are already in place, not in our genes or DNA, but within our culture and the people we are raised by. In whatever capacity they’ve learned to handle mistakes, failure and success is what we are taught to believe, accept and the way we think of ourselves.

However, we can transform our beliefs and encounters with failure and success by learning to appreciate the power of creativity and unplanned life experiences. Failure is really about gaining wisdom, knowledge and understanding that mistakes are life lessons that encourage our growth. Success is not only about money or power but living your passion and purpose and knowing that it’s always there no matter what direction your life goes in.

Failure gives you courage, insight and character to keep trying but we have to stop worrying about how long it takes to achieve success and being focused on the lack of it.

There mare many facets of success, personal success is remembering who you are, where you come from, growth and improvement, while balanced success is being grateful, honest, faithful, loving, loyal and.maintaining our individuality,

One of my journeys with failure and success was my struggle with not having a perfect body as society defines it. My learned belief was that I would only enjoy a happy life if my body was that ideal yet unrealistic image. With each attempt to achieve that expectation there were failures filled with sadness, self loathing and frustration that I felt I had no way to overcome.

Then about two years ago I finally experienced peace of mind after I participated in a workshop focused on self love. I had an epiphany that helped me to focus on the healthy and strong body that I have. I saw myself as a deserving person, worthy and happy just as I was. I realized that the failure I’d been living was in my mind and it was up to me to allow myself to experience happiness no matter my body’s imperfections. My desire for fitness has never been to have an ideal body, but a very healthy one, so despite myself, I’ve achieved that outcome.

For me belief in a higher power is instrumental in achieving success. I’ve learned to recognize that I am a child of the Universe, created with the same components as I see in the stars and trees, an inherent presence with a purpose where mistakes are learning tools and success is about doing your best for the best outcome. A conscious definition of success is well said below:

“To live the lives we truly want and deserve, and not just the lives we settle for, we need a Third Metric,” she says, “a third measure of success that goes beyond the two metrics of money and power, and consists of four pillars: well-being, wisdom, wonder, and giving.” Ariana Huffington, founder Huffington Post

Anyone who has read or seen Harry Potter knows the power of an extraordinary imagination and enormous success. However, you may not know the epic failures that J.K. Rowling experienced on her journey to the fairy tale life she lives now.

We struggle most of our lives trying to overcome failure to achieve success in whatever area of life we are passionate about. Take small steps, build your confidence, keep moving forward and don’t allow the outcome to be the focus of your attention, you never know what gifts failure and success will endow you with.

Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. Steve Jobs

Our world is full of opinions, they dominate everything in our lives from the clothes we wear to how we practice spiritually. Speaking your truth and maintaining your beliefs is a brave and courageous thing to do. A great example of caring less what others think is Greta Thunberg a climate activist who boldly speaks her truth. As you listen to her speak, you’ll notice that rather than going with the flow of the opinions of others, she powerfully maintains her individuality and voices her perception of climate crisis. Her strong words and opinions evokes anger and fear, so there are multitudes of critics, however she lets none of that stop her, she pushes on and keeps going.

The biggest deterrent to aspiring as a unique individual is to rely on what others think. Building confidence in ourselves, our thoughts, ideas and points of view means being vulnerable and being okay with it. Your individuality and creative spirit is why you are here, in a world where we are all expected to be like everyone else, be daring and confident with what you think.

Allowing the opinions of others to determine our choices is because we’re afraid we’ll make a mistake, say the wrong thing or make the wrong choice. There is nothing wrong with that, being determined and deliberate gives you the power of choice and the situations you end up in.

The Universe is always on your side whether it seems that way or not, your growth as a person unfolds with every decision made whether it’s by you or someone else. It helps to remember that what is right for someone else is most likely completely wrong for you.

Life evolves as we move from one situation to the next, so the choices we make are a key component to our soul’s growth. Our life path is very unique, so it’s vital that we become confident with our inner wisdom. When we fall prey to the beliefs of others, we give up our uniqueness.

On my journey to trusting myself and my decisions, it wasn’t until a few years ago that I valued that and gained the confidence to care less about the opinions of others. The person that unintentionally taught me that, spent all of her time trying to conform me into another version of herself, when I realized what was happening; I pulled away. She became very angry with me because she lost the control she thought she had. When I began relying on myself and my observations, the path became clearer for my growth as a person.

While it isn’t easy to unlearn a deeply ingrained belief that what others think is right for you, be captivated by the freedom of relying on what you think, being completely who you are and the driving force within you that guides you every day. It doesn’t mean that life will be easier, it does mean that you’re living wisely and intentionally for yourself.

“If you begin to believe what others say about you, they will begin to control you.

Not everything that appears in your mind is true. Do not let someones else’s opinion rule your life.” Haemin Sumin

Let your opinion be the only one you hear

Remember someone’s opinions and beliefs comes from the way they perceive themselves, what they think and say has nothing to do with you. You’re life and the circumstances you’re in are not the first and foremost in someone else’s mind. It helps to remember that whatever the outcome of a situation, you’re the only one who’ll be living with it.

Make a conscious effort to be unique

  • Be comfortable with vulnerability, life isn’t certain, there are no solid answers or perfect solutions, the opinions of others only clouds our ability to be alright with being vulnerable and knowing that whatever we decide, no matter the outcome, it is a part of our life path and everything will work out in the end.
  • Keep in mind that you’re not the most important thought in other’s minds. When someone blurts out their opinion or says unkind things to you, it has more to do with their self-doubts, insecurities and concerns about what others think about them.
  • Don’t filter out the good and focus on the worst case scenario. Pay attention to your thoughts, are they negative and focused on an unfavorable outcome? When you’re doubtful and reach out to someone for their opinion, remember that what you’re asking for help with is still just in your mind so their response will have more to do with them and less to do with what you.
  • Perfection is an illusion, no matter how much you want things to be perfect in your life, that is never going to happen. So, rather than put pressure on yourself to be perfect and ask someone what they think, remember no one knows you like you, how people perceive you is coming from their experiences and points of view.
  • Learn to let to go of judgment from others. When you make a decision are you worried about what others will think? What do you want or what do you like? Are you making your decisions based on pleasing or impressing someone? When you choose what you truly like or want, what others think will never matter.
  • Finally,don’t allow anyone to shame or challenge your choices There may be people who aren’t able to understand or let go of trying to control your life. That is their problem to resolve, not yours. Firmly let those who debate your decision to go solo that your life is your choice, you’re very capable of choosing the direction you want it to go in.

To Conclude

Stop worrying so much about what someone else thinks, it’s necessary for your sanity and your physical health. Once you stop trying to cater to other’s opinions and what they think, you’ll feel much better, you’ll know who you truly are and you will finally be able to breathe deeply and feel at peace.

Thank you for reading my post, I appreciate your time.

Climate Change Grief, Honoring the Pain and Moving On

Climate crisis anxiety and related PTSD are very real and growing mental health issues affecting people of all ages, especially young people. Between unexpected climate-induced disasters, the media and scientific reports focusing on bleak situations of impending environmental catastrophes, people are experiencing increased feelings of distress, anguish and helplessness. It is natural to want to put our heads in the sand to avoid the stress, but a healthier way to live is to reduce the amount of time spent focused on the negative and address what we are feeling so we can move beyond the paralysis of fear.

Being fearful and anxious are natural reactions to the overwhelming issues we are faced with, grieving, pain and emotional anguish are a part of the process we must go through. But, like anything difficult we are faced with we have to find ways to deal with what we’re feeling so we can move into a place of purpose and create a practical, positive vision for the future, empowering ourselves to take effective action.

Part of that action is moving away from the mindset that the government or other agencies are going to correct the environmental wrongs, if we are honest with ourselves and take responsibility, climate change developed with human expansion and the industrial age so we are all accountable; the solutions are up to all of us.

Eco-psychologist Joanna Macy teaches useful frameworks for facing up to disturbing realities and finding capacity for action. First there is the gratitude stage, which focuses our attention on those aspects of life and the world that nourish us. Then there is a stage that honors the pain that we are experiencing. The third and fourth stages relate to exploring new possibilities and finding practical actions to take. (from theguardian.com)

Ways to contribute that I’ve found useful:

  • Sign environmental and wildlife petitions
  • We don’t run the A/C, the house does get warm, but its livable and ceiling fans keep us comfortable
  • Create a garden of native and edible plants
  • Use bird feeders to supplement what food isn’t there
  • Unplug appliances and electronics wherever and whenever possible
  • Use cloth grocery bags
  • Reuse whatever I can, reduce, then recycle
  • Significant reduction of food-waste and trash
  • Use nature friendly products
  • Monitor water and electricity usage
  • Combine trips to town
  • Use photography as a medium to convey conservation information
  • Grow native plants in my garden

My well-being and happiness practices:

How we feel and think makes a tremendous impact on our ability to be clear, deliberate, wise and sensible. I focus on a variety of ways to take care of myself so I am able to practice what I preach.

  • I pay attention to how I feel
  • Spiritual practices that allow me to attain internal peace
  • Stay in the moment
  • Practice deep breathing and meditation
  • Maintain a clutter free, beautiful environment
  • Get enough sleep
  • Be in the moment
  • Go out in nature for a walk
  • Listen to peaceful and relaxing music
  • Share any feelings of distress
  • Practice gratitude
  • Read about achievements and successes in conservation and sustainability
  • Instead of worrying, I search for solutions that I can apply

This man-made wetlands is just minutes from my home and one way I take solace that there are positive signs of progress. This is reclaimed water from my neighborhood, it supports a large variety of wildlife and native plants. Even though it seems minuscule, this is a part of my “solutions based program” because I feel uplifted by the efforts that the Game and Fish Dept. put into it to make this small area a part of the solution. Because of this area, my neighborhood does what we can to take steps to help keep the area as trash free as possible, do volunteer projects to help clean up public land, use chemical free cleaners and do whatever we can to honor and protect wildlife and nature areas.

 Climate change is the single biggest thing that humans have ever done on this planet. The one thing that needs to be bigger is our movement to stop it. – Bill McKibben

Moving on is beneficial not only for you, but for the planet. Healing takes time and is a step to be mindfully and heartfully whole again. Connecting your mind with your heart is a way to help yourself feel like what you’re doing matters.

How you can relieve the stress and feelings of helplessness:

  • Daily self care practices
  • Have good eating habits
  • Get plenty of exercise
  • Maintain healthy sleep
  • Take a walk in nature
  • Talk with someone who shares your ideals about how you feel
  • Remember one person can make a significant difference
  • Practice gratitude and appreciation
  • Reduce the amount of time spent on negative media
  • Seek help if you’re unable to resolve any internal issues

Create your own personal conservation program:

  • Promote change – sign petitions effecting the environment and sustainability
  • Reduce your use of fossil fuel
  • Be efficient – maintain your vehicle
  • Purchase Energy Star appliances
  • Weatherproof your home
  • Grow your own food
  • Use native plants and edibles throughout your garden
  • Reduce, reuse and then recycle
  • Offset your fuel consumption by donating to Green Projects – here is the link to help you find a project you’d like to fund: https://offset.climateneutralnow.org/
  • Use public transportation when possible, walk or ride a bike
  • Unplug electronics and appliances when not in use
  • Learn about what your local businesses are doing to improve their environmental practices
  • Speak with your local authorities about what they’re doing and find ways to participate

While people may believe that doing these things is small and insignificant, imagine the effect if millions of people practiced these steps every. So do your part, proudly, knowing that you’re contributing to the better good of our planet.

We have to believe that even the small actions we take are making a difference and helping the environment. Develop strong social connections with family, friends and your neighbors, that will propel you to want to promote positive solutions and encourage everyone around you to be mindful of the way they live.

In a world of more than seven billion people, each of us is a drop in the bucket. But with enough drops, we can fill any bucket. David Suzuki

It’s Time for People of Conscious to Change the Direction of the World

I have a deeply held belief that through forward-thinking, coherent measures and ethical conviction, we can empower ourselves not only in our country but globally to redirect our energy toward humanitarianism, compassion and inclusion for everyone. Igniting the heart to be the forerunner for humanity to co-exist peacefully rather than to continue living in separation and fear.

I recently read an article that exemplifies my belief that great change is needed. The story was about a young migrant father and his baby daughter drowning in the Rio Grande on the Texas border, no one knew they were there. They’d traveled from El Salvador; the father was desperately trying to find a way to a better life for his daughter I felt a sense of defeat and asked myself what can be done to stop situations like this from happening. Rather than blaming or finger-pointing, my thoughts went to the Declaration of Independence and what it meant not just for Americans but for humankind.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.

My interpretation of this very profound text is that it is up to people to bring about effective change by responding morally, consciously and humanely through mindful, principled and compassionate steps. We must reinstate our rights and fully participate in making a difference in education, climate crisis, healthcare, the economy, and all of the other challenges we are faced with. Imagine a world where enlightened, kindhearted people are in the forefront, imagine the outcome, we can be the change we are all are seeking. Momentous changes came from impassioned, ordinary individuals such as Mother Teresa, Margaret Higgins Sanger, Susan B. Anthony, Emily Davison, Lucretia Mott, Martin Luther King, Rosa Parks, Nelson Mandela, Mahatma Gandhi, Malala Yousafzai and Alexander Fleming to name just a few. Not one of these people imagined the effect of their efforts, they were just passionate and committed and they changed the world.

I believe, as a woman who has been on a path of conscious choice for quite a few years, that I am here to share my insights with others to see mindfulness as a way of life, not based on any specific agenda or definition, but strictly by living in the realization that we are all the same despite any regional or cultural differences. A woman is a woman, a man is a man, a child is a child, blood is red, all hearts thrive or decline, love is love. Let the way of humanity be known for finding the connections and similarities to create a world where love and unity are dominant not secondary.

it is crucial that we embrace our rights as human beings through mindfulness and take a stand for doing what is right, simply because it is the right thing to do. No matter the action we take or on what level, know in our hearts that it does make a difference.

consciousness that is centered around ethics, integrity, values and an impartial lens is in favor of equality for all of life. I believe that people care so much and want to do something to change the way things are, but don’t know what to do or how. It all begins within ourselves, through attitude and our daily interactions. My personal journey began with self introspection and personal change and now I see myself as an agent of change, working each day in the name of love and goodness to effect the people around me in a beneficial way. The way we consciously change the world is by taking action in whatever way we can, whether it’s in our home, our neighborhood, our community or the world.

I would like to finish with a quote that embodies the way I live my own life:

“Love is what we are born with. Fear is what we learn. The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts. Love is the essential reality and our purpose on earth. To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life. Meaning does not lie in things. Meaning lies in us.” ― Marianne Williamson

All images in this post were gotten from the internet.

Thank you for reading my post, I sincerely appreciate it.