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I Don’t Care What You Think!

Feeling Vulnerable Without Fear

Sometimes the protective coat of armor doesn’t cover the fear created within the mind.  I think when you’re young, you are most susceptible and vulnerable to the outside influence and/or opinion of others.  So much so that the slightest comment can feel like a horrible criticism directed at you to make you feel inadequate.  I know because I’ve felt that and maybe those that have made the comment may not have realized the magnitude in which they’ve affected me and maybe those that have made the comment meant nothing negative but I just took it that way.  I think that only time, maturity, personal growth and the always “under construction” parts of your “self” as in esteem, worth and confidence is the key to finally breaking away and feeling vulnerable without fear.

tongue has no bones

Growing into the reserves of strength I know we all have is a difficult road and maintaining confidence through your steps and missteps is a challenge in itself.  However you choose to help yourself along through the emotional conflict you’re likely to experience I think that as long as you continue to try to be better than you were the day before then you are progressing, even if it doesn’t feel like it.  I don’t think any of us realize how much inner strength there is to tap into and how much adversity we actually have the ability to withstand.  Until you are really tested, you just don’t know.

Recognizing how far you’ve come from where you were is something you can look back at after some time to mark in your mind and heart of your progress.  Any progress in a positive direction is something to be acknowledged and celebrated because you could have gone in a negative direction and that would have benefited no one.

Everyone wants to be seen and heard and not for any kind of ego boost but because it is a big part of connecting with others, the part that lets you know you matter and the part that lets you know they care.  It doesn’t take a large amount of energy to be compassionate or kind towards others and it will cost you nothing.

So how do you get to the point of saying “I don’t care what you think”?  It’s not really as derogatory as it sounds more like I’ve grown into myself enough to know that what others think of me doesn’t define me, doesn’t make me more or less of a person and isn’t going to change who I am.  It’s not a challenging attitude but rather a more “self” reflected and strengthened version, humbled and content enough to quiet the thoughts of doubt.

I think too often the focus is worrying about how others will perceive and whether or not they will like you, the bigger question is, “do you like yourself”?  If your answer is yes, there is nothing left for you to worry about, you are enough and those that matter will recognize that.  If your answer is no, then I believe self-reflection is the beginning, at some point in your life you had to have liked yourself, find your way back there and re-build from that point.

the roar of freedom

Vulnerability lies in many corners of the heart and mind and at a moment’s notice it can change your nice quiet, calm and contented self into a scared little child.  Of course there are variations of that fear and I think many of us don’t get as far as the scared little child but you get the idea.  Fear and vulnerability or fear of vulnerability, however you want to link the two, they are usually connected in some way.

FEAR:             to be afraid of (something of someone)

                        to expect or worry about (something bad or unpleasant)

                        to be afraid and worried

 

VULNERABILITY:     easily hurt or harmed physically, mentally or emotionally

                                    open to attack, harm or damage

I think both of these definitions are valid reasons for not wanting to leave yourself open to fear or vulnerability but while you may be protecting yourself from others and the possibility of something negative.  You are also protecting yourself from others and the possibility of something positive.

While you may feel protected and comfortable within the walls you build to protect your heart you are also keeping everything else out.  The most magical things happen outside your comfort zone!

stepping into your greatness

 
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Posted by on March 19, 2016 in Blog

 

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Simply the Basics!

An Integral Part of Life

There were so many before us that passed forth great wisdom for the purpose of making the world a better place. Below is a poem that was recently given to me, I had not seen it before but so much of the content resonated so strongly that I wanted to share it. It’s a really good wake-up to the call of your higher self and the real importance of this life.

If – Poem by Rudyard Kipling (1865 – 1936)

If you can keep your head when all about you

Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,

If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,

But make allowance for their doubting too;

If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,

Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,

Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,

And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream – and not make dreams your master,

If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;

If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster

And treat those two imposters just the same;

If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken

Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,

Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,

And stoop and build’em up with worn-out tools; 

If you can make one heap of all your winnings

And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,

And lose, and start again at your beginnings

And never breathe a word about your loss;

If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew

To serve your turn long after they are gone,

And so hold on when there is nothing in you

Except the Will which says to them: “Hold on!”

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,

Or walk with kings – nor lose the common touch,

If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,

If all men count with you, but none too much;

If you can fill the unforgiving minute

With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,

Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,

And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son!

My take away from this poem is the value and importance of integrity, holding your head high in good times and in bad, keeping yourself from getting lost in the emotional aspects of life that are there to teach you your greatest and most difficult lessons. All the while remembering that which you came from and honoring your true self without giving in to fear. Trusting wisely but not loosely the value of all your relationships, specifically those that are properly balanced.

Nothing of great value or importance was created in a day, patience and hard work whether it takes longer than you’d like is always rewarded.

truth, honesty, integrity

 
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Posted by on July 22, 2015 in Blog

 

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Something’s Gotta Give!

When You’ve Gone Too Far Down the Rabbit Hole

Ever get to the point where you feel so overwhelmed in every area of life that the only resolve seems to be that “something’s gotta give?”

Life gets busy and sometimes you’re so hectic that you dig yourself so far down the rabbit hole you can’t see which way is up or out.

This kind of stress puts a significant strain on every part of your mental, spiritual and physical health which can manifest in a variety of ways producing outcomes that can challenge the state of your mindset. I’ve had experiences that have been extremely challenging and at times have caused me moments of what felt like extreme anxiety, finding an effective way to cope can be difficult but very necessary.

There are many areas of life that can cause stress; work, money, health, family, etc., and even though these are all valid stress points in life they can take a greater toll when you push back against what is meant to be. I believe that everything we go through happens for a reason, whether difficult or not, they are all there to help you gain a greater understanding and connection to your life and everyone in it.

The duress of this emotional baggage when constantly compiled on the soul eventually must find a way out and be purged, whatever outlet that may be through. For me, I write and that seems to be a great form or therapy because purging emotional stress is usually done through some form of communication to simply “get things off your chest”. Writing or journaling can be an effective outlet especially if you do not have someone to talk things through with to help you release it.

Alternatively it may not be that you don’t have someone there to talk to but rather some things just don’t feel like they can be communicated and/or articulated, sometimes you just have to find your own process for letting things go, put your faith in a higher power so that you can free yourself from that which is holding you back.

dark place

Not everything difficult is there to bring you down, maybe sometimes to humble you a bit if your ego gets a little too inflated, but ultimately there is some form or wisdom attached and if you don’t embrace it you’re going to keep going through it until you finally do. I don’t believe that these lessons are meant to break you but rather break you open so not only are you vulnerable but there are no walls left to resist what you are meant to learn and grow towards.

I think everyone has the moments of feeling despair but those moments are only part of the process and not supposed to continue on forever. At some point if you aren’t transitioning toward the next phase it means you are resisting and I know that resisting feels like the natural response and for a while it serves its purpose by allowing you the armor that protects while you digest and adjust.

Once you reach the point of when you are no longer able to continue your resistance this is when the lesson breaks through, it is the emotional equivalent of “rock bottom for the soul” because there is finally nothing more standing in the way of the healing that is now able to come through. Following healing comes enlightenment, “aha” moments and a stronger feeling of connection to not only the universe but all the people in it.

The humbling aspect of lessons is that they teach you gratitude, appreciation, compassion and empathy for others, what is released is judgement, anger, entitlement and egotistical rule.

Sometimes I think you can see what phases of these kinds of processes (experiences) others are in because it’s almost like those that are at the most wound up are almost at the beginning and on the verge of being broken open and those that breathe love and lack of judgement are just coming through the end.

Whatever phase you may feel you are in during a dark or difficult experience know that the only way to get through is to let go of your resistance. Know that there is wisdom, clarity and peace of mind on the other side of the storm but only if you allow it to crash and bang when it needs to, take cover and when the light starts to come back know that you won’t be the same person that went in.

All things happen when they are meant to and how they are meant to, you will never miss something that is truly meant to be in your life it will always finds its way to you and in the right time.

same person from the storm

 
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Posted by on June 1, 2015 in Blog

 

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Below the Surface

Is Where Negativity Finds a Way In

Your experiences are meant to teach not trap and when you are unable to find the wisdom within them you prevent yourself from the growth meant to take you to the next level of your life’s journey.unforgiveness

If you are unable to even think of an experience, let alone talk about it without feeling re-affected because the hurt or disappointment from it was so significant then you haven’t allowed yourself to fully feel, grieve and let it go.

It’s very important to allow things to process out of your system, not just physically but mentally and spiritually too. All experiences have a direct effect on all three states of your well-being and if allowed can fester and grow resentment, bitterness, grudges and unforgiveness.

Feel the Pain:  Experiences that have deeply hurt your feelings have to be acknowledged, you can’t just push them aside, focus your attention elsewhere and will them to go away. They re-surface again and again in your life through similar cycles and patterns and eventually you come to a point where you are forced to deal with them. The question is are you finally going to? Or are you going to push them down deeper?

Happiness, peace of mind and balance will always elude you if continually resist the Universe’s message.

Grieve the Loss:  It’s important to allow yourself time to grieve the loss that you feel from any experience, there is always some level of expectation in any exchange and when it’s not met resentment can occur. It’s important to acknowledge those thoughts and know that they are not wrong and are a natural result. You are allowed to feel how you feel from any experience.

Let Go:  Any Loss is loss.  Once you’ve allowed yourself to feel the pain and grieve the loss you’ll find that letting go is the easiest part of the process. It allows the weight of resentment, bitterness, grudges and/or unforgiveness that you’ve carried around to be lifted from where they do not belong. It’s a bigger burden than you realize and one that will make you feel a whole lot lighter, less cluttered and overwhelmed within your mind.

releasing a grudge

Regardless of how much pain was caused from an experience you cannot allow it change you so much that it negatively affects any area of your life. When you choose not to forgive, you are also choosing not to let go and by doing that you are allowing the experience to still own an aspect of your life.

Do you really want to let a negative experience interrupt your life daily, weekly or monthly, at all? When you can’t find peace with something that’s what it does, it causes a rift in your soul, that rift can affect all your relationships, is that fair to you or to them? If you think about it the negative experience is being allowed to not only continue to hurt you but to now hurt others through you, even if you don’t mean to.

The rift in your soul can cause you to feel unbalanced and that is your spirit trying to find way to be heard, validated and soothed before you spin yourself into an unmanageable state. These signs manifest through your physical, mental and spiritual well-being and can cause and/or mimic serious afflictions within. There is a significant amount of stress you place on yourself through resistance and if you knew all of this from the beginning you would likely choose to feel, grieve and let go but your emotions are the wild card that you can’t control.

I’ve learned that even though my emotions are strong, my spirit is stronger and the voice of reason thankfully is within my spirit, not my emotions even if they do send me off on a tangent every once in a while.

Recognizing and acknowledging my emotions during times of adversity is important and having a really excellent friend to be the additional voice of reason next to your spirits’ is a blessing. At the very least an open ear of someone you can trust to help provide you with a healthy perspective can help you to help yourself find a way into the process and eventually toward letting go.

Even if you don’t reconnect again it’s important to let an experience run its course through all the phases or you risk losing the whole purpose of it. You’ve already endured the worst why stop short of the finish line when your blessing for making it through all adversity is the wisdom that comes at the end.repeating relationship patterns

When starting anew it is important to leave the past in the past and face new experiences with an open heart and mind. It’s wise to remember past experiences and retain the lessons and wisdom you have gained but placing and/or comparing a new experience with a previous one carries overtones that have no place or reason.

New experiences also bring new people, new behaviours and new circumstances and none are comparable to anything from the past, they are new, treat them as such and bring your wisdom!

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2014 in Blog

 

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Every Chapter of Your Life

Brings in More Depth

I’ve noticed that the “meaning of life” has become deeper and more meaningful as time goes on.  This is something I had never anticipated when I was a teenager because my experiences then didn’t carry the wisdom I gained later in my adult years.  As a teenager or young adult I didn’t realize the depth that life would eventually bring because I was preoccupied with trying to find my place in the world, looking for my independence.  That period of my life gave me the freedom to learn and discover how to find my way, and the struggles that I encountered along the way helped to build my determination to succeed in attaining the life I had envisioned.  Actually that vision hasn’t changed much, yes there are a few improvements to the plan and the only reason it took me so long to reach my desired goal is because I got distracted trying to help others build their dreams.

dhirubhai ambani quotes

In the case of the above quote I wasn’t hired, my natural instinct is to help especially if I see someone struggling and I think there’s something I can do to assist.  The downfall is that as much as you may want to help someone where you can, you may be doing them more harm than good because how can they build their own determination if you are doing all their work.

I’ve learned many life lessons so far that have definitely challenged me and I’ve discovered that there is so much more to the relationships we form with others than just what we see on the surface.  I’ve found that my favorite relationships are those that are truly authentic and authenticity is not something that can be fabricated.  These are the relationships I aspire to and those that were false have been unable to sustain any challenges and have fallen away and/or ended.

Not all endings are sad, some endings are closure to a challenging time, some endings signify personal victory and some endings reinforce your faith in direction of life.  Like “Semisonic’s” lyrics say, “every new beginning comes from some other beginnings end”.  Endings must occur in order to create room for the new beginning and that new beginning is an unopened present from the universe, full of opportunities and choices that are yours to embrace.  Every opportunity can branch out into so many other areas and most of us either don’t attempt to explore them or don’t notice they are there because we too busy looking back at the last ending.  Everything happens for a reason, everything begins for a reason and everything ends for a reason.  The learning offered with every new beginning can literally change your life and it’s usually for the better.  There are so many beautiful things out there for us to learn and to remain open is the best way to enjoy all that life has to offer.

If you are feeling like life owes you than you are doing more to deprive yourself of the enjoyment of it than any one person or group could.  Pay attention to the gifts that you have already been given and are living, you may be taking more for granted than you realize.  Living in gratitude for the basics is the best way to increase your appreciation for the bigger moments.  When you are grateful for the smaller gifts in life it makes the bigger gifts that much more spectacular and meaningful.

I’ve found that other people’s ideas of who I should be don’t have value for me anymore and what matters most is how comfortable and content I am in my own skin.  With that comfort and content comes the confidence that allows me to embrace the depth that life has been offering, the depth that provides me with greater clarity and direction.  There is no pretense to who I think I should be or who I think others think I should be, my comfort with who I am allows me the freedom to explore and determine the types of relationship I seek and those relationships are the ones with true connection and meaning.  True connection can be found in the moments when nothing monumental is happening but you feel drawn and connected to another soul for an inexplicable reason except that it feels natural, comfortable and familiar.  There are some connections I’ve encountered that I don’t know why I feel the instant connection and I think that’s because sometimes our souls recognize that familiar soul before our minds or hearts do.

One of the changes I’ve discovered in myself over the last 10 years is that the people that I truly connect with are not those who I used to and those that I used to I never really knew.  It’s not that I was closed off before it was that I hadn’t truly been opened up, it takes experiences to bring wisdom.  Monumental and life changing experiences can propel us onto a path that we never realized existed and into the lives of those we never really noticed were there.  The people I’ve noticed now are truly authentic and have more depth than I ever realized I would see or feel.

I believe the path that our experiences propel us onto is where the universe has always meant for us to go and the people we encounter on that path are there for a reason.  Some of them are meant to stay and some are meant to leave but all are meant to help us get to where we are meant to be.  I don’t believe in coincidences, everything happens for a reason, and all reasons eventually become clear when the time is right.  There are some reasons still left to evolve in my life and I look forward to the clarity when it comes because so far I haven’t been disappointed.  All of my life lessons have brought me greater awareness and insight and with each of these lessons I develop a greater appreciation for the things I took for granted.  I think we all forget at one time or another and take the simplest thing for granted, not because we are unappreciative but because life is busy and hectic and it’s the pace that keeps us from stopping and taking it all in for what it really is, a gift.

I know that my comfort and contentment with where I am in life right now will only increase as time goes on and as much as I don’t want to rush the future I look forward to the gifts, blessings and insight that are to come.  As much as I know this chapter has brought depth, the remaining chapters in life will bring even more clarity and substance.

life-is-not-about-the-amounds-of-breaths-you-take-beauty-quote

 
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Posted by on October 8, 2013 in Blog

 

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Thank-You for the Experience

Your Presence was Necessary!

There are many times I’ve wondered to myself and aloud what the greater reason is behind some of the challenges and/or experiences I’ve had and actually as I write this I’m thinking that I’ve never wondered why when it’s something easy or delightful only when it’s something that has been difficult.  Although I guess the difference is that I’m not always thankful for the challenging times at the beginning like I am with the blessings.  It takes some time to figure out how to adapt and accept when there are bumps in the road but when I come to that moment of clarity is when I realize the greater purpose behind the newest challenge or difficulty and I can be thankful for the experience because it has brought me to a greater awareness and understanding.

Not everything is easy and I don’t think it’s supposed to be, if it was our lives would be too predictable, and without the challenges we wouldn’t experience the lessons or growth.  We all are here for a purpose, figuring out my purpose was something that I struggled to discover for many years and I believe that until we find our calling we remain wandering and wondering.

I do believe that there is a higher purpose and plan in place and that everyone in our lives plays out their part as if we were all in a big play, we have the scenes where some enter and some leave but all are an integral part in each of our life plans.  That includes everyone that is in our immediate circle of family, friends and those that cross our paths briefly; from a look, a moment, a conversation, an encounter or a relationship, it is all part of the grand design.

painful goodbye

To those that have left my life, I wish you well and I understand that you weren’t meant to stay.  When people leave our life, whether it is our decision or forced upon us, I believe the reason is because their purpose has been served, not just in conjunction with our lives but theirs as well and we are no longer essential to each other’s growth and must move forward onto the next leg of our personal journeys.  For both people involved when we move out of each other’s lives an opening is created for the next person that is destined to come in for the next scene of our life plan.

To those that have come into my life and those that have taken up permanent residence, you’ve brought me more joy and blessings than I could have imagined.  Your continued presence in my life is a sign from the universe that our lives are not just a point of juncture but rather a circle of light, love and learning.  Your impact is continually evolving yet steadfast and true, I look forward to all the new adventures we will share and our future of “keeping it real”.

To All:  Without our shared experience I may not be in the place I am today and regardless of whether or not the experience was easy or difficult I know that I would not change it, nor do I have regret because ultimately it helped me to grow.  The lessons, experience and wisdom I gained from your presence in my life has helped me to develop a greater understanding, perspective and clarity of my direction and focus in life.

Thank-You!

life quote

 
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Posted by on January 22, 2013 in Blog

 

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Is it really a Failure, Mistake or Divine Intervention?

All Experiences Carry Wisdom

Have you wondered why you are where you are, wondered why certain people and experiences enter or leave your life?  Every experience carries wisdom with it and the bigger question to ask is at the end of every experience; do you recognize the experience has played out and do you finally see the wisdom?

everything happens for a reasonFor the longest time I was very hard on myself when it came to any sort of mistake or failure, I never adjusted well, nor did I see the wisdom at the end.  In the last 10 years I’ve started to see things from a different perspective that has led me to question whether what I’ve viewed as failures in the past are not actually that of divine intervention or destiny.  I’m a huge believer in “Everything happens for a Reason” and that would mean that mistakes (big or small) aren’t actually failures but rather part of the grand design that is in place to help us progress in the direction we are meant to go so we can live the life we are meant to live.

One thing I’ve come to recognize is that the people I admire, look up to and respect can feel like lifelines at times because we can relate to each other in a very specific and identifiable way.  Their energy is not only magnetic but familiar and comforting and there are times when that is just what I need to balance me out.

I listed some of my favorite quotes from Oprah’s Master Class, there is so much to we can learn from others experiences and lives, whether they are successful at times or not.  It’s learning from the experience; that is the success.

Honestly when I was younger I didn’t have enough confidence or comfort level in my own skin to maintain my beliefs.  I knew I believed in some of the quotes below, although some of them I wasn’t even aware of because I just didn’t have enough life experience but those I believed and wanted to stand strong on fell to the wayside.  I needed to develop inner strength and learn how to set boundaries, and I wouldn’t have learned how to without the life experiences I’ve had so far.

Oprah Winfrey:  (Every Life Has a Story) – Everybody has a story and there is something to be learned from every experience.

Jay-Z:  (Be True to Yourself) – Knowing who you are, that’s the foundation of everything great.

Simon Cowell:  (It’s Better just to be Honest) – Emotion is absolutely key to this, trust your gut instinct.

Condoleezza Rice:  (Faith Helps) – You can’t plan every step in Life.

Maya Angelou:  (You Have to Live your Teaching) – When you learn teach, at our best we are all teachers.

Sydney Poitier:  (Instinct Guides Us) – Instinct is a force that lives within us and we call upon it when we need to.

Diane Sawyer:  (Be Curious) – Wake up curious and wake up determined to try to get an answer.

Lorne Michaels:  (Art is Like Life) – There’s always just ahead of us the chance for redemption.

Oprah Winfrey: (Learn from Every Experience) – Use your Life as a Class.

I believe that as long as you are being true to who you really are inside and not who you present to the world then you will have true happiness, inner peace and a blessed life.

what lies behind us

 
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Posted by on January 8, 2013 in Blog

 

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