I sense a beauty in this world, underneath all the noise, the damage, the fear.
I sense a rich, deep earth nourishing and holding us, while our toxins try to hurt.
I sense a bold fearlessness within each of us, begging to take the lead and break us out of the holds on our hearts.
I sense love in the dark.
I sense light finding its way through the cracks.
I sense hope and freedom......
Our future is built on the gifts of each one of us. Not the unconscious gifts of forced "should be's" and false goals that do not truly align with us. The gifts that come from the very core of our being, that birthed us. Empowered gifts that hold no inner conflicts. A way of being that knows its path, its Truth.
What are you doing to connect with that gift, those gifts, on a regular basis? Is that not the purpose and habit trajectory of our lives? Every day we connect with these gifts and, when we think we got it, keep going. For 40 days, 90, 120, 1000.....and gain mastery. Mastery over our subconscious minds, mastery over the noise, mastery over our external environments prodding, pushing, forcing its way upon you...no.
Pause. Create pause. Create spaces. Breathe. Breathe. Breathe slow, deep, long.....claim your space.
the roles that I've adopted....mom, friend, sister, spouse, auntie, teacher, coach, my age, my race, my look. I am none of those things and all of those things. I am, I am. The meditation "I am, I am" is a wonderful reminder that I am. Period. Just as the tree just is, the worm just is, the fruit IS. As part of a whole...no. As the whole in one part. It is my favorite Rumi quote: "You are not a drop in the ocean but the entire ocean in one drop". Identifying as something isn't the depth of who you are. It's a container.
As "mom", this container gives me anchors for my life journey: live as an example, nourish my children with love, wisdom, strength, food, water, clothing, shelter, care when they are ill and when they are not, support for their ups and downs, etc. Lest we flit around in the wind like a kite whose lost its holder, its tie-down, an anchor provides a temporary positioning whereby I can live and grow with presence, in the present. Like a biodegradable pot for my starter plant--it holds her and offers a simple guidance. She begins to extend her roots down and reach up towards the sun as a beginner of something....what IS this world? And what is this present moment? She grounds and she reaches, expands, breathes. And as she grows, grateful for the path and
"Untangled" by Lisa D'Amour, PhD, I expand to define our experiences as adults. Some of us may not have even mastered some of those teenage strands. Regardless, we are each on a journey of evolving strands. I may be further evolved on one strand but less so on another. And someone who I think is somehow "better" may be more and less evolved on opposing strands. It matters not. There is no judgment or comparison. There is only our experience. And, with awareness, we begin to appreciate our evolution of experiences.
Our American culture comes with a drive for competition. I'll focus on the one that calls for each of us to aim for our personal best. We compete against our own experiences to improve each time, to learn from our mistakes and failures, to lift ourselves back up with courage and compassion, to allow rest and reprieve as an active habit. There's a motivating force when seeking our personal best. I believe you can live in complete satisfaction and love with who you are and what you've achieved in this moment, today, this minute, WHILE ALSO seeking your personal best over time. There is no misalignment here to seek to evolve your experiences and become more elevated in consciousness through these evolutions, while also feeling "successful" in your present. When you seek to compete against others, your happiness is tied to an external presence outside your control. What is in your control is to develop and strengthen your habits, your physical and mental stamina, the edges of your own personal container-- where's the discomfort? how much will you push it today? Which strand are we evolving? Which needs attention today?
I sense there's an understanding, a shift, a loving pull to connect with our inner wisdoms.
I sense there's an openness to see it, feel it, embrace it.
I sense there's change happening and, for those of us who connect deeply within with curiosity and awareness, bold and beautiful things await. And Are. Here. Now.
I sense we are breathing more deeply, grounding with our nourishing roots and expanding from that place of connection.
I sense love is winning.
When I think about the decisions I've made in my life, there are some that bring me joy and pride and others that make me think 'what on earth was I thinking'?!? I can now reflect on those latter ones and realize I WAS, in fact, THINKING --and not feeling. How often do we know deep down what we are meant to do yet we ignore those inner messages for our brain's more logical-seeming demands? We don't want to be looked upon as irrational or --gasp-- emotional! No, do what people expect and can make sense of. Right. That's what your ego keeps saying.
To be clear, I wouldn't change a thing about these past decisions because I know they were the lessons I needed at the time.....AND at present. To be able to reflect back on those experiences and how my decisions shaped my life, I can honor those lessons today. Today I'm in a space where I can listen self-compassionately and understand the message, know how it has shaped my values and beliefs--- and make better decisions going-forward that support and develop a more elevated experience, a more true-to-me experience, an evolved experience, a purposeful, life-fulfilling experience. In other words: Joy. Peace. Freedom.
To get to where I am today, I had to look deeply at those feelings I ignored or stuffed down or escaped from through whatever self-sabotaging means I could. It's scary to start such an endeavor-- but it's so worth it!
Clearing old feelings by meeting them stops them from haunting you further. It frees you from the subconscious reactions, responses, and personality malfunctions that make you wonder, 'why did I do or say that?'. Instead you stand tall, get clear, and feel assured in your ability to meet all challenges (even emotional ones) and are able to create a life you were born to love.
Nowadays, I'm looking for: More fun. More openness. More healing energies in everyday life. More gratitude. A shift out of 'the way things have always been done' into a more free and loving world. I can choose this life that I desire, making new decisions that inspire and uplift and hold me in my Truth. I can listen to and talk with my emotions safely because I now know clearly that they are the voice of my soul, guiding me and crying out to protect me. I need only pause, breathe, and quiet the noise to hear.......and then decide.
I am queen of my sovereignty. I decide.
Wealth Consciousness or Poverty Consciousness? Which will it be?
It's interesting to wonder about these two opposing states of consciousness. Of course you'd CHOOSE Wealth Consciousness, as in you'd like to think you have that. Maybe you do. But, in actuality, where are you now?
You might be inclined to think you're somewhere in the middle. Sometimes I can feel so strongly about manifesting something or someONE that it happens and I'm not surprised. Other times, I try to talk myself into believing I CAN or I WILL HAVE and yet my body doesn't get the message.... as they say, "it's all in your head". That doesn't work. Lastly, there are times when I feel downright pathetic and I can't stop myself from believing in the limiting thoughts. Poverty.
I recently invested in a serious coaching program to help me create my Life Coaching business. I'd already started the seeds of this way back when but, saying I'm doing something and actually doing it are two different things. Making a truly effective business requires commitment, effort, consistency, experience, ......and a strong mindset. The part of this program I didn't realize was going to be so important for me was the mindset shifting into Wealth Consciousness. Now I know that that middle space was really not so-- I just had moments where I unintentionally thought something with conviction and, voila, I manifested. At least, I did recognize my ability to do so--- I CAN do this if I can make the consciousness shift stick.
Like everything, this is a work in progress-- you find success, you find another challenge, you peel back another layer, another success, another challenge, another layer, and on and on. The best part is, with each success and each challenge that breaks through another deep-seated layer, IT GETS EASIER TO DO AND TO BELIEVE. AND..... YOU SHIFT YOUR CONSCIOUSNESS.
This isn't just about money wealth (or poverty). It's about connection with others, connection with Self, growth/self-development, joyful living, time, love, etc. Notice where you are in these areas-- are you in Wealth or are you in Poverty? Notice what's working for you and what's not. Notice what you manifest. What you give attention to is what grows!
Your beautiful life is waiting for you. Seek Wealth. Shift your consciousness. Don't know how? Ask me! Here's a hint: start with getting in touch with what you DesIre.
I recently posted about my mindset shift to accept (as I know deep down to be true for me) that waking up at 8AM is too late for the mastery I wish to achieve. In that post, I wanted to come up with a good mantra for myself to really embody this but I just couldn't land on it at the moment. A bit later in the day, I came up with:
8 is late; 5 I'm alive.
Now, I could've chosen 6AM which is the time I've been getting up lately due to this new meditation support group I've joined called the sadhana huddle (which has been seriously awesome and a godsend). I could've chosen 7AM just to ease my way into early-rising. But no, somehow intuitively I thought 5AM was right.
And so the mantra has been spoken. And apparently it's been heard.
Ever since I uttered those words aloud, I have been literally waking up without alarm between 4:45 and 5AM every day. It's been kind of shocking, to be honest.
Here's the dig-- now I need to shift my mindset to actually be okay with GETTING UP when I wake up at 5AM. I've been lying in bed, sometimes trying to do a breath meditation lying down.....but falling asleep, and other times just trying to get myself to go back to sleep so I can wake up for my 5:45AM alarm. And now, when my alarm goes off, I'm actually more tired.
So, Universe, hear me: 8 is late; 5 I'm alive.....and thrilled to get out of bed and start my day. I've got things to do, joy to share, Soul to care for immensely.
**On a separate note, out of frustration with entrepreneurship the other day, I proclaimed out loud without thinking: "I need a job!" Having voiced that and feeling like I released something (-kind of like letting out an "arghhhhh!"), I mentally moved on.
MOMENTS LATER, I opened up my email and the first one to pop up was from a friend with the subject line: "Employment Opportunity". Jaw drop. It wasn't really the job for me but it reminded me that the Universe listens. And that I had better be more specific with my requests. :).
I hate mornings. Picture Garfield* with his grumpy face and low eyelids.
*For those who don't know, Garfield is a comic cat character created by James Jim Davis
In my yoga practice with its connection to Ayurvedic practices and the Vedas, there's always mention of waking up in the peaceful, ambrosial hours between 3-6AM: Amrit Vela. I've done it before as a discipline. For a period of time, I woke up every day at 4:30AM and did my yoga practice. Did it feel good? Did it make my day better? Yes and yes.
Did I continue with this practice? No. As I said, I hate mornings.
Considering the positive impact it had to my days, I struggled to balance it with my feeling loathe to get up "so early". The pivot I needed, I have since realized, is to recognize that it's all about "how you feel" and "what you tell yourself". That your thoughts have a deep impact on how you feel: "I feel loathe to get up".
I've always hated getting up in the morning, although by 8AM, my body feels ready to go. By that time, my mind lets go of feeling loathesome to feeling like it's time to do stuff, live life. And I generally feel happy to do that then.
But 8 is late. During the school year, my kids would need to be dropped off at school by this time already. My earlybird spouse would've had a couple cups of coffee and done a ton of computer work already. My dog....well, my sleepy dog would be waiting for me, probably ready to pee. Good boy. :)
"8 is late" and some other helpful thought for the magic of the early start is what I need. (I haven't yet landed on a good line to go with '8 is late'). When I was doing my 4:30AM start, I was forcing it....pushing through the blockade of negative energy and difficult thinking. No wonder I couldn't stick with it.
Letting go and opening the blockade is as simple as "8 is late" and "bring on the morning magic" (ok, phrasing still not landing.... I'll let it lie for now). Removing the blocks so that, even if feeling tired, I can ease onto my yoga mat and start. That'd be one less, enormous struggle to getting there.
As is often said, "mindset is everything". Changing your mind is like removing ten obstacles in your path. Its impact is huge. Struggling mind = huge obstacles. Mindset shift = clearer path. Simply by thinking it so.
Keep in mind: you DO have to believe it in your body as you think it. Thinking it so without believing it is just seeing/intellectualizing the shift without "physically" making the shift.
8 is late. So it is.
PS. This is my story, not a judgment of your story or wake-up time. What mindset shift are you needing in your day?
Imagine what could be. Imagine the impossible being possible. Imagine with creative abandon. Imagine with passion. Imagine Love. Expressed.
Image of darkness. Image of light. Image of whatever is right in front of you. What do you see? What is in your vision? What vision does your mind create? What if you hone that vision to see clearly? What if you expand that vision with a -nation, the image your mind sees? Image expands to imagination.
Do-ING, Be-ING, Live-ING, Imagine-ING. Create-ING. Go forth with -ing like zing with wings. Sing.
Re-do. Re-be. Re-live. Re-imagine. Re-create. Re-birth. A vision was seeded, spread, nurtured and created. Does that vision fit the change of times? Does that vision continue to meet our needs? The needs of who? Is there Love and Compassion and Integrity for all in that vision? Must we re-imagine, re-image, re-seed, re-visit, re-create, re-birth? A nation, a people, a culture, our very own Souls? We inside are deeply perfect, just as we are. Yet some of us have yet to meet the Soul of perfection that we are. Re-engage. With Self. As you had done in utero and at birth. Re-ignite the wisdom of that spark of light that is You. And each of us together can imagine and set in motion a re-evolution of the systems that oppress and hold us back. We can re-imagine a world of Love, Compassion, and Integrity so that each of us will know Joy.
Re-joice. Re-imagine. Everything.
In reimagining, draw on your visions (literally and figuratively). Practice exercising your eyes to stretch, lubricate, and relax the six muscles around each of your eyes. Connect your movements with breath, keeping yourself aware and connected with your practice. Here's a beautiful daily practice by Nathan Oxenfeld you can try.
As you practice, notice your breath and also be consciously aware of any resistance that greets you. Meet the resistance with curiosity and wonder. Feel how it touches you internally-- what emotions come up, where in your body does it go? Embrace it, acknowledge it, and affirm its truth for you. And then, let it go. Repeat this noticing, acknowledging and letting go throughout the rest of the practice.
Do a few warm-up stretches for your body: your neck (head rolls, which also stimulate your thoracic nerves), your pelvis (pelvic rolls, standing, which also stimulates your sacral nerves), your hamstrings and spine (stretching up and folding into a forward hang, always leading the downward motion with your naval center), the flexibility of your spine (standing or floor cat-cow), and shoulder drops (to release tension in the neck and shoulders). Stay attuned and in rhythm with your breath throughout these stretches.
A yoga and meditation practice. There are so many to choose from. The point is to allow for movement of your physical and energetic bodies in order to balance, circulate, and nourish every part of your body. I like to practice kundalini yoga and meditation. Ask me if you are looking to practice this with me. Here is one you can try meanwhile: Surya Kriya.
This kriya ends with a deep, self-healing meditation in silence, following the breath. If meditation is new for you, ask me and I can share a meditation great for beginners.
Stay connected with your breath throughout your day and drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and clear. And take hold of your own reimaginings. Invite others - you don't have to do this alone. In fact, it often requires the support and spirit of community to ignite positive change. Imagine and re-imagine. You are Love, Light, Compassion and Integrity in the perfect Soul that is you.
Thich Nhat Hanh's shares: There is a well-known Zen story about a man on a galloping horse. Someone watching him ride by shouts to him, "Where are you going?" The rider turns and yells, "I don't know, ask the horse".
He goes on to share that the galloping horse is called "habit energy". Habit energy pushes us and decides everything for us and we go along with it. This energy may have been passed down from parents or earlier generations, or it could be one you've created on your own as a way to manage or cope.
It is important for us to become aware of this habit energy and not let it push us around. Thich Nhat Hanh encourages us to engage with this "habit horse" like this: "Hello there, my habit energy, I know you are there". And begin the connection and conversation from there.
I often like to think of us humans as trees. Moving trees with a brain.
If you consider the wisdom of the tree with its far-reaching, nourishment-attaining, stabilizing roots; heart-centered, strengthening trunk; and expanding, generative branches with life-giving leaves, shade, beauty and fruits or flowers, you can consider in what ways we all have these qualities and how we develop from seed to our fullest potential as a matter of course.
Of course along with the trees and plants, there are the other kingdoms of minerals and animals, of which our body contains as well. Innately. Each living in their wisdom and be-ing just as they are.
As humans we have this additional aspect that is our brain. Beyond the animal survival instincts of what's known as our "old brain", we have a "new brain" evolved for higher cognitive functioning.
But consider this: the kingdoms of mineral, plant and animal have existed before the evolution into human. The first humans learned to live amongst nature, with nature. Grounding, surviving, creating to survive and to understand the nature of creation and our life in it. As humans evolved further using "big brain", as my 11-year old likes to call it, we've brought ingenuity and innovation into existence and marveled at our own capacities. Indeed, it is a marvel! This "big brain" however is the least evolved of our entire existence.
As we use this advanced function of mind to discover and unlock through science all the mysteries of nature, we become so enamored by what we can prove and what we can experience with our 5 physical senses that we lose sight of our inner nature--the parts with the most wisdom. It's like we've pulled our deep roots (connected to the truth of our relation to all) out of the Earth and walked too far, shortsightedly allowing our connections to shrivel up to the soles of our feet.
We need to root down regularly and be in touch with our deepest wisdoms. High-speed advancement in place of our innate, inner wisdoms destroy our life-supporting connection with earth, minerals, plants, animals, fellow humans and the Universe which we so desperately need. Advancements in pace with and rooted to the deep connections we have with all existence is not only a responsibility but a means for survival. This means we would be advancing with consciousness and integrity, in alignment with our natural world. Indeed, evolving our "big brains" to understand this deep-rooted, tree-like connection to all life is THE marvel.
Like a pendulum having swung so far from the start of human existence, it's time to come back to a more balanced and rooted connection and understanding of life. All life.
Where are you on this pendulum? How conscientiously connected are you with your inner world that aligns with the rest of the natural world?
AWARENESS: Our "big brains" are the least evolved aspect of our existence in this world of mineral, plant, animal and human. Honor the magic of our mind's clever workings without losing sight of and connection with our more evolved and wise inner wisdoms. Check your roots.
Inspiring, powerful, reflective, alliterative, genius. Not to mention a profound reminder of the power of art, voice, youth, and the message of unity. Thank you, Amanda Gorman, for this beautiful presentation of your insightful picture on our country and democracy.
I love to observe the parallels between our macro and micro worlds. Micro--our work on connecting with our inner compass; sorting through large and subtle internal, historical and ancestral traumas; finding our outward expression; and creating an empowered life aligns with all that must be done to unite our people, country and our place in the greater world--the macro. In the trials, the polarities, the conflicts seen in the world, if we pay attention we can see and feel these same struggles in ourselves. We work on ourselves powerfully to create powerful change beyond us, no matter what that looks like. Each of our contributions matter; each of us matter. As the newly sworn-in US President stated, unity amidst a deep divide is critical. Alignment and balance within ourselves require this attention as well. Notice your inner conflicts. notice the divides where your heart and mind are at odds.
The inaugural poem. I've never truly felt the need to memorize and recite poetry but this one..... yes.
With highest respect and hopes that I've captured it correctly,* I've transcribed the poem here:
"The Hill We Climb"
Amanda Gorman, poet laureate
When day comes, we ask ourselves:
"Where can we find light in this never-ending shade?"
The loss we carry, a sea we must wade, we braved the belly of the beast.
We've learned that quiet
isn't always peace;
and the norms and notions of what "just is"
isn't always Just-ice.
And yet, the dawn is ours before we knew it,
somehow we do it,
somehow we weathered and witnessed a nation
that isn't broken
but simply unfinished.
We, the successors of a country and a time
where a skinny Black girl descended from slaves and raised by a single mother
can dream of becoming President,
only to find herself reciting for one.
And yes, we are far from polished,
far from pristine, but that doesn't mean
we are striving to form a union that is perfect.
We are striving to forge a union with Purpose
to compose a country committed
to all cultures, colors, characters and conditions of man.
And so we lift our gazes
not to what stands between us
but what stands before us.
We close the divide
because we know to put our future first we must first put our differences aside.
We lay down our arms so we can reach out our arms
to one another.
We seek harm to none and harmony for all.
Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true:
That even as we grieved, we grew;
That even as we hurt, we hoped;
That even as we tired; we tried;
That we will forever be tied together, victorious.
Not because we will never again know defeat, but because we will never again sow division.
Scripture tells us to envision that everyone shall sit under their own vine and fig tree,
and no one shall make them afraid.
If we're to live up to our own time,
then victory won't lie in the blade, but in all the bridges we've made,
is the promise to glade,
the hill we climb if only we dare.
It's because being American is more than a pride we inherit.
It's the past we step into and how we repair it.
We've seen a force that would shatter our nation rather than share it,
would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy.
And this effort very nearly succeeded.
But while democracy can be periodically delayed, it can never be permanently defeated.
In this truth, in this faith, we trust.
For while we have our eyes on the future, history has its eyes on us.
This is the era of just redemption. We feared in its inception
we did not feel prepared
to be the heirs of such a terrifying hour.
But within it we found the power
to author a new chapter, to offer hope and laughter
to ourselves. SO --
while once we asked, "How could we possibly prevail over catastrophe?" Now we assert:
"How could catastrophe possibly prevail over us?"
We will not march it back to what was
but move to what shall be, a country that is
bruised but whole,
benevolent but bold,
fierce and free. We will not be turned around or interrupted
because we know our inaction and inertia will be the inheritance of the next generation.
Our blunders become their burdens but one thing is certain....
if we merge mercy with might
and might with right,
then love becomes our legacy
our children's birthright.
So let us leave behind a country
better than the one we were left.
With every breath
in my bronze-pounded chest,
we will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one.
We will rise from the golden hills of the West;
we will rise from the windswept Northeast where our forefathers first realized revolution;
we will rise from the lake-rimmed cities of the Midwestern states;
we will rise from the sunbaked South.
We will rebuild, reconcile and recover. In every known nook of our nation
and every corner called our country; our people diverse and beautiful.
We'll emerge battered and beautiful. When day comes,
we step out of the shade,
aflame and unafraid.
The new dawn blooms as we free it,
for there is always light
if only we're brave enough to see it,
if only we're brave enough to be it.
THERE IS ALWAYS LIGHT.....LET'S SEEK IT OUT CONTINUOUSLY, AND THEN "...LOVE BECOMES OUR LEGACY".
*I'll edit once I see the poem released by Amanda Gorman.
I am the Essential Soul Mama. I am a mama, a soulful-spiritual teacher, an intentional storyteller, and a lover of stories of all kinds, in all forms. I write about emotions, parenting, natural health options, mind-body-soul connections, and anything that elevates our lives.