Relationships

The Age of Attraction

What is happening? I was recently discussing sexuality, which I think isn't discussed enough, with some friends.  We were talking about vaginas and the power of owning your sexuality.  The discussion led to the fact that shame is prevalent whether we admit it or not, in relation to sex and sexual expression.  There are so many rules, roles, assumptions that it is difficult to know what we actually want.  Admitting what we like, where we are in our sexuality and what we think about it is something that is shunned aggressively.  We are, after all, a society that will fine someone for flashing a nipple (at the same time we cover our children's eyes from seeing the .00005 seconds that it was shown) but watch news footage about 26 people, many of them children, being gunned down.

Like the universe works, I perused Facebook where a friend posted an article about a 6-year-old being in love with a character from Glee.  Sexuality seemed to be in the air tonight.  The 6-year-old is a boy and the character on Glee is a boy.  The article goes on to discuss how the mother and father love their son and have no problem if he is gay or isn't.  I think that it is great that parents will love their son even if he is gay, I just look forward to the day we don't have to announce that parents will love their kids even if they are gay.

So, after reading this I then scrolled down to the comments and stopped at one that touched on several things in regards to the article.  First they were not pleased with a 6-year-old watching Glee, then with the idea that a 6-year-old was obsessed about anything especially liking someone.  Third that, even at 11, that would be too young to have attraction.  Ok, I had to breathe after reading this, and after having had the conversation about shame that had happened earlier in the evening.  I know that attraction is as natural as breathing.  If you are a part of a family you (hopefully) see love, coupledom, partnership.  Children mimic adults.  It is how they learn to talk, walk, think, behave, love.  How in the world are they too young to be attracted?  I liked boys and girls for as long as I can remember and I certainly had attractions to all manner of things before the age of 6.  I liked certain colors, foods, music, and people.  The idea that attraction has an age is a funny, funny thing.  Babies are attracted to certain colors and sounds.  We are attracted to love and repelled by hate.  When we see something that resonates with us we are drawn to it.  This is being human.  The idea that we would want to discourage this natural way in others due to them being younger than we think they should be to have the feelings that they actually are having is ridiculous (yes, I am totally judging).

As a parent you may be nervous, because of your own hangups and judgments, around the truth of your child being inherently sexual.  I mean, the damn person was made while you were having sex.  How in the hell can we not be SEXUAL.  What is the problem people???  Let's take our heads out of our asses and start discussing sex, sexuality, love, desire, attraction in a way that doesn't make it shameful, scary, wrong, or inappropriate.

Here is a story that I love to share:  My sister is a massage therapist.  Her son, Miles, used to love to be massaged and loved to give massages, and he was very good at it as well.  There is nothing better than little hands on your shoulders massaging away your worries.  So sweet.  Anyway, during a massage she was giving him he asked if she could massage his penis.  Instead of getting all weird (which I think many of us would) she told him that she wouldn't because that was his to massage.  She let him know that he could massage it in private and that no one else was allowed to until he really wanted them to.  Or some such lovely message like that (I am sure my sister would correct the verbiage).  Either way, the message was clear:  She didn't make him feel that what he asked for was wrong, bad, inappropriate.  She used that moment to let him know the boundaries of his body.

Let's stop being craycray and start empowering one another in love.  Can we do this please???

xo

a

Why Jealousy?

Holler! Jealousy, ahhh, good god, what is it good for?  Absolutely nuthin', say it again!!

Man, I have been jealous before… and every time there was good reason.  It was a loud signal to get the heck out of the relationship.  When I have felt jealous there were a lot of other things that weren't working in the relationship, and, for me, jealousy was a great way to sound the alarm.  The only issue is I learned all of these truths for myself because I stayed in the relationships until they imploded sometime later.

Jealousy is defined as an emotion that refers to negative thoughts, feelings of insecurity, fear and anxiety over the anticipated loss of something that someone values… usually in reference to a human connection.  Inadequacy, anger, resentment and helplessness often accompany jealousy!! Oooh, sounds so yummy, doesn't it?  Thought this description is rather unappealing to me, I have heard many people say that jealousy is actually pretty healthy, or "I kinda like when my partner is jealous."  WTF???  Ok, I get you want to be desired, but to have someone in your life that feels anger, inadequacy, resentment?  Really?  I would have to say I would rather see what was behind door number 2 than have a jealous partner.  Maybe I will win a new car…

In my past relationships where jealousy came up the trust was destroyed in my relationship(s).  Jealously, for me, was a sign that I hadn't been nurtured in the relationship the way that I wanted to be, first by myself and then by my partner.  Jealousy destroys bonds, it doesn't preserve them, and jealousy can give rise to relationship violence (Psychology Today).  When you feel less than, when you perceive a loss, that loss is now truth.  When I was married I was jealous of everyone around my spouse.  Turns out everyone around my spouse (the few close friends that were in her life) would have preferred to be in my position.  I was later cheated on and left for one of those folks that I had felt concern around.

It has taken me some time to recognize that jealousy is information and a bit longer to recognize that the information I get may not be the information someone else will get when they have their own feelings of jealousy.  We are all different so we need to interpret our emotions individually.  For someone else jealousy could signal memories of abandonment.  For another it could be a way to self-sabotage.  Either way, jealousy isn't something that signals 'all is well' on the home-front.  What it is telling you is that something needs your attention and usually, 99.9% of the time, that something is you.

When was the last time you were jealous?  What was it surrounding?  How did you handle it (or did it handle you???)?

xo

a

Our Responsibility

Hello, We are responsible for each other in a way that may not seem obvious.  I don't mean as mother and child, husband and wife, brother and sister.  I don't mean in the way of volunteering by handing out food and clothing to the disenfranchised.  I don't mean by taking care of an elderly neighbor's lawn in the summertime or helping someone across the street.  All of these things are wonderful and natural ways we show love to one another but there is a responsibility that I feel we have failed miserably in meeting.  We don't allow others to be who they are.  We don't give people the space to become who they are and support needed to blossom into their ideal selves.

What we do is quickly give humans the rules to what is right and what is wrong.  Humans get bullied from very early on.  Before we ever find out what someone wants we tell them what is and isn't ok to want.  We set up a system (in every culture) that is  based on things we were told, that were based on things that the ones who told us were told, etc. without giving that much thought to whether or not most people are ok with the system or whether the system actually works.  When someone doesn't fit into the structure that was set up before they existed they are either crazy, evil, an abomination, wrong or a misfit.  There isn't a lot of room to be accepted when you don't fit the norm in most societies.  When we create right we create wrong.  You cannot say something is good without deciding that there are things that are bad.  When you create an extreme you create it's opposite; is this what being responsible for one another means?  To determine who is bad and who is good.  What do we base it on?  What the majority are doing or not doing (that they will admit to)?  What some religious document says?  What happens to those who are wrong in our society?  What happens to the misfits?

I truly believe that we are responsible for those who feel left out, bullied by a society that never gave them a chance;  told that they were wrong for feeling, thinking, saying something that went against what society has determined as ok to say, think or feel.  When we set up a system that automatically rules out certain types of people as worthy in a systematic way (the way that we do in this country) we have neglected our responsibility to love each other as ourselves because we are connected.  We have forgotten that we cannot exist separate from one another.  We are all necessary and important and responsible for each other in a deep way that never touches on aiding with groceries to someone's car… though that is important and it does matter.  However, we are responsible to each other in the way to not cause harm, to not destroy, to not judge.  When we decide that someone is less than we tear a part of them away.  We build up rage that at some point will have to come out.  We create dangerous situations and hazardous environments when we push others down for being who they are.

I believe we need to allow what is.  We need to allow everyone to communicate who they feel they are, what their desires are and how they see the world.  We need to learn boundaries at a young age so we can become aware of where I begin and you end.  We need to help others love who they are and find their own voice.  We need to discuss what it means to be aware.  We need to be very careful with each other's hearts. We need to take ownership of our feelings and not blame others for the things that don't belong to them (like our feelings).  We need to understand when we judge others we are judging ourselves.  We need to understand that we cannot always be comfortable and things aren't always going to be the way we would prefer them to be, nor are people.  We need to understand that it isn't our responsibility to put one another down or to marginalize each other, but to uplift and propel each other forward.  I believe we need to first do this for ourselves, once we are no longer in the direct care of others.  Once we have given ourselves permission to feel what we feel and be who we are without the judgement, we can decide if it is what we want to keep or not.  Acceptance is power; the power to change, the power to heal; the power to move on.  Our responsibility, in my opinion, is to accept each other.  Embrace each other.  To love.

xo

a

Can You Hear Me?

Hi, How often do you need to ask someone to repeat something?  How often do you have to repeat yourself to others?  Where did your mind go right now?  You were thinking, correct.  Which means you weren't listening.  Luckily I am not talking and you are simply reading.  If I were in front of you I would see that you were elsewhere and I would wait.  Obviously you would need a moment if I asked you a question.  However, we do the same thing, go off into the recesses of our minds, when no question is asked at all.  We drift off, thinking about ourselves, our experiences.  While someone is talking to us we make judgements, we get offended, we get excited, we apply everything they are saying to how we feel or think about it as if the world revolved around us.

Well, our world does revolve around us.  My world revolves around me and your world revolves around you.  For me to hear you I have to come out of my orbit for a bit and listen, hear, repeat and remove myself from what you are saying.  If someone is telling you about their sick rabbit you don't want to be thinking about your sick cat at home.  Though comparing is nice in certain situations (like the Match game) it isn't actually listening in the aforementioned scenario.  Hearing someone means removing yourself and being another ear, an open heart, a sounding board that echoes back what they are meaning.  Asking someone how old the rabbit is, what the rabbit is named, how it got sick, how they are feeling, when did they begin keeping rabbits… etc… that is going to bring the person speaking immeasurable comfort.  When you are interested in someone, i.e. listening to them, they open up more or at least feel a stronger sense of connection (as long as the questions aren't creepy or invasive (overly private)).

The next time someone talks to you, see how long you can keep yourself out of the conversation (as long as they don't ask you questions about you, that is).  See how long you can keep the focus on the person you are speaking to.  See what comes when you remove your ego and truly open yourself to being there, listening, hearing someone without the need to be the focus or focused on in any way.  We all like attention, we all need it.  Start by giving it to others and see what comes.

xo

a

Look at ME!

Howdy! I have said that the only difference between me and someone else when it comes to wanting attention is that I demand it and am not ashamed that I want the floor and your undivided attention.  Other people act like they don't want attention and instead they manipulate and usurp the spotlight on a regular basis.  When you admit that you want attention you are better able to give it to others.  You don't feel cheated out of it, you don't feel resentment towards those you give to and get nothing or close to nothing in return.  When you own your needs, they are more likely to get met.

When you let someone know that you are upset with them and they immediately get upset what do you do?  It seems like a normal response to a conflict, right?  Well, on better examination the person that was originally upset is now faced with be upset and alone (because their partner/friend was not able to hold space and comfort them, even just listen) or they can comfort the partner that they were upset with originally.  Crying, getting hurt, being angry and openly displeased when someone you love tells you that they aren't happy with something that involves you puts the focus on you and your feelings instead of the partner that was upset originally.  Most people aren't doing this on purpose.  Most people who don't hold space don't realize that they don't hold space…and they believe that they have the right to be upset whenever they are upset.  I agree, but there is a time and a place for everything and, depending on what they are going for, manipulating a situation isn't they kind of attention that serves either person.

When you admit that you want attention you are able to ask for it in a way that allows you to receive it.  You can ask your friend/partner to listen and to hold space.  You can ask to be focused on directly instead of indirectly diverting attention to yourself. You can give attention and shut off your need because it is being acknowledged as existing and is now out of the shadows.  Acknowledging what you need, who you are, what is happening for you is the only way to begin to keep, change, or let go of what you want to.  Once you have come to understand that you too need to be focused on, you can relate to others in that way.  We all need to be the center of attention sometimes.  When we allow ourselves to get the attention we need without stealing the spotlight from someone else we are better able to allow others to do the same.  If you have trouble holding space or are someone who claims to not need attention, check to see where you are getting it without asking for it… and possibly what relationship is suffering because of that denial.

Thank you for your attention.

xo

a

I Want You Now

Howdy! I was recently discussing dating and relationships with a friend when I mentioned that I am transparent when I meet someone, no building myself up here.  I basically consider false advertising lying.  I think that when a woman sucks in her stomach to seem thinner or a guy says he is taller in a personals ad, they are setting themselves up to fail.  Show yourself if you want yourself to be accepted.  I have been in many relationships, some great, some awful, all ended for one reason or fifty.  Either way, I never left the relationship feeling or being told that I hadn't communicated who I was.  Often it was the opposite.  I was often dating someone who wasn't who they said they were, but who they wanted to be.  I am not one to promise tomorrow when today is all we have.  So, I expect the same in return.  That expectation has proven difficult to meet in my journey towards love and intimacy.

I have spent relationships hoping for something that wasn't, waiting for someone who might never show.  It puts everyone at a disadvantage when you are hanging your hat on the future and hoping the present will hurry up to it.  The person who is being asked to be who they aren't yet is not happy.  Who would be when they aren't actually being loved for who they are?  The person waiting is, well, waiting, for someone who may never pop into existence.  Besides, if you want a love, a true love, I believe you have to truly be you without the promises of a you that is 'better' in your mind.  Promising a you of the future to someone puts so much stress on the relationship.  It is amazing how many of us feel that it is ok to try to change someone, or try to change for someone.

In past relationships I have massaged my partner regularly, written doting love notes, bought expensive jewelry, danced and made up songs, cooked elaborate meals, pampered in numerous ways, yet, when I meet someone now, I truly wouldn't think about saying that these are all of the things that I do.  They are things that I have done, that I know I am capable of doing but what I do now is work… a lot.  I write.  I listen to a lot of music and I talk… I love conversation.  The rest is to be discovered, not sold.  If someone doesn't like the person I am without them, then I certainly am not going to try to get them to.  At this point when I meet someone, I look at their life right now and believe that they are living it the way they have chosen to and that if I don't like it I may do better to move along.

We tend to believe that we are not enough as is.  We have decided the things that we judge unattractive should be hidden.  How on earth will we have the love we want when we don't show up to receive it?  I always admit that I am an asshole, a great friend, a loyal confidante and a Gemini who has to have her freedom.  If that doesn't work for someone then it most certainly won't work for me, regardless of what a great catch that person might seem to be.  A catch, in my opinion, is someone who wants me, that I want equally and the relationship works the way we feel it needs to.  Otherwise they are just fish in the sea.

xo

a

Help Me

Hiya! In the past when I felt swamped or overwhelmed I would often stop reaching out, stay home, answer few calls and keep to myself.  In theory it is a good idea to cocoon myself so that I could renew myself.  However, reaching out can help make whatever I am going through smaller and more manageable.  When you let others know what is happening in your world you allow your world to shrink, not seem so daunting and you might just see a way out of the stress heap you are under.  Admitting that I needed help was hard, asking for help was harder.

As a life coach I am there for anyone and everyone that needs me to be.  I hold space for people so that they can better view their world and make the changes that they would like to make.  I help take their stress from keeping them stuck to motivating and initiating change.  I am always inspired by the amazing people who reach out and ask me to help them.  It is a HUGE deal to know that you cannot do it on your own, that you don't need to do it on your own.  Life is so much sweeter when lived with others… when you understand that we are here to learn about ourselves through our relationship with others.  When you allow help, when you give permission, you receive it faster than you can imagine.  Usually the only thing that is standing in the way between you and your ideal world is you not asking or asking for others to participate; giving permission for others to help you.

For some reason (conditioning from our society) we believe that we are here to do everything on our own.  The truth is we are dependent on one another no matter how much we would like to think we stand alone.  We need each other and always will.  You have what I need and I have what you need.  It is about sharing, assisting, helping.  Are there ways in which you could use help but you have a judgement around asking?

I ask for help now.  It is more fun to be a part of  team.  I like the fact that others are just as excited to assist me as I am to assist them.  Life is easier with help.  More fun.  Less overwhelming.  Better, overall.  Giving others the permission to assist was a big step from struggling to make it in my chosen life path and success.  Asking for help made me stronger than I ever would have been on my own.

xo

a

Thanks

Happy Thanksgiving! I have been overcome with gratitude today… I am a pretty grateful person but today has been different.  I feel like everything slowed down and I was able to see the awesomeness around me.  I taught an amazing class this morning with so many beautiful souls flying to loud intense music.  Sweating on their day of thanks.  I trained a client who looked like a shining star when I walked in to begin.  She is losing weight, gaining confidence, pushing through her world to create the one she desires.  I am inspired by her dedication to herself.  I drove in my car, that I love, smooth, fast through the barely populated streets.  Past various gyms and fitness centers.  I realized how blessed we are to have so many choices of places to get gas for cars, food for our bellies, equipment to work out on, streets to drive on, sidewalks to walk along.

I am blessed for three furry animals that are in my care.  They love me without reservation which is more than I can say for myself with them.  They annoy me and I have to clean up after them and walk the little teeny itty bitty chihuahua, not how I want to spend my days… but they love me and just want to jump on my lap (all the damn time) and give me snuggles.  I am blessed to have as many vegetables and as much fruit as I can stuff into my stomach at any point during the day or night.  I stay up late which means I eat a LOT… more hours in the day to eat means more food.  I am blessed to receive Facebook messages, phone calls and text messages sending love and thanks.

I am thankful that I love TV and lack the desire to judge others for hating it :)  I enjoy my movies, TV shows and music videos.  I am blessed for my iPad with more crap on it than I can use but options are always grand.  I am blessed to be able to enjoy beauty and see it everywhere in just about everything.  I am blessed to be able to sit and listen to any song from anywhere at the push of a button.  I am blessed and grateful to love what I do everyday and to continue to get better at it.

I am thankful for forgiveness.  For forgiving others and others forgiving me.

Most of all I am thankful that I can and do share.  That I share me with you and that you receive me.  Thank you, thank you, thank you.

xo

a

Family Time

Howdy!!! During a time when family comes together we are sometimes reminded of why they spend time apart.  When you are close to people they know you.  They know you so well in some ways… especially the parts of you that you don't enjoy and they seem to have a knack for bringing those parts to the surface.  We may not want to have times with our families that are stressful, especially when the focus is giving thanks.  However, it isn't by accident that we are triggered by our loved ones.  It is because of the closeness, the connection, that we are shown the things that we must work on within ourselves if we so choose.  Being around your family is a gift, even if it doesn't come with a bow tied around it.

It is more the case than not judgement will be made when families come together.  Either you will be judged or you will judge.  It might seem innocent, you may feel like you are helping or giving an answer to some question or another.  But, as I told a friend earlier today, if you are giving information to your family and it isn't about sharing then you may be guided by ego.  You may be telling them what to do without actually getting permission to do so.  For some reason we believe that we have the right to say whatever we want to our families.  Everyone feels judgement and everyone (healthy) resists it.  So be careful, know why you are saying what you are saying.  Operate out of love, curiosity and a desire to give.  Your family won't feel so resistant to you if so.  Additionally, know that everyone is doing their best… it may not be what you want, but it is where they are and it is their best in that moment."

Know that you are where you are also.  Give thanks for you being you, knowing that without them you wouldn't be who you are.  Who you are is precious, beautiful, deliberate.  Since this is true for you, this is true for your family too.  Remember how hard it is to change yourself… not imagining trying to change someone else.  Use your holiday time as a time for healing, for crossing over the stream of life and learning what things you never ever leave behind.  You just cross it at different grades on the ascent to wisdom.  Life is a never-ending, ever-changing, momentary thing.  Take the time you have with the ones you love and love them.  Love the parts you don't enjoy and love the parts you love even more.

Happy Thanks Be Given :)

xo

a

You, All Of You

Howdy! How much do you hide in order to be loved?  What about yourself are you ashamed of and would prefer to never see the light of day?  When did you recognize this thing that you so revile was a part of you?  Do you claim it or do you try to ignore it away?  Have you ever been with anyone that has something similar to that thing you have that you try to deny?  How did they handle it?  We are very sensitive souls and we are very afraid little beings in so many ways.  We all at least one thing that we do, have done, would do, that we would prefer no one know about (maybe you have done your work and have gotten through it, but we can all relate).  There are lengths that one goes to in order to get rid of something that they are ashamed of and those lengths are never long enough, never deep enough to hide who we are and push away what we need to accept.

Love, we all want it.  We all crave it.  We all go in search of it.  Some of us have found it, others are on the hunt.  We do things specifically to get it.  Much of the time what we do lacks in authenticity and is covered in judgement.  We show others the parts of ourselves that we have decided are lovable.  We withhold the areas we would prefer to not have from the one we would like to have.  We try our damnedest to be all that we want to be instead of embracing who we actually are.  We don't share with others the parts that we think they would judge as harshly as we have.  Still, we want to be loved fully.  How is it possible for anyone to love us fully if we don't actually do the same.  You are  telling someone that you don't love yourself but you would like it if they could love you.  That is telling someone that you don't want to be yelled at and yelling at everyone else around you.  It is hypocritical.  You are not doing it, you aren't loving yourself.  You are hating on something you are or a behavior that you display and yet you want to be loved fully.  If you don't see how all of you is worthy how will anyone else?

There may be things in your life, history, behavior that you would prefer to change, this is the case for all human beings.  We are always working on progress.  Hating it won't actually make it disappear.  If you want something to change you will need to actually look at it, find out what, why, when and where.  You may find that you don't want that behavior gone or the history erased.  It actually makes up who you are and in some way has a purpose.  We are here and we are deliberate.  We are not mistakes.  When this is a reality in your world it is easier to look at all of you and allow the various parts to be acknowledged and even given space to exist in a way that allows them to show up when you want them to, not on accident.  The very thing you have been trying to hide usually bites you in the ass at some point, so you might as well make friends with it so that you can be its master instead of the other way around.

You may also want to show this to the one you would have love you.  If you aren't showing someone who you are, really, how will they have the opportunity to love who you are, really?  When you decide for someone else what they would or wouldn't like you don't give them the opportunity to decide for themselves.  You may have failed relationships (intimate or otherwise) that have more to do with your inauthenticity than anything else.  Be yourself, be brave, be fearless and you will be loved.

xo

a

Great Expectations

Hello!! Best laid plans...  So often we want something to happen, we hope something will happen, we expect something will happen… and then something else happens.  Disappointment ensues.  Sadness follows and, depending on the gravity of the disappointment, an alteration happens within us.  It may be small at first, but as it get compounded by more and more disappointment we begin to expect the disappointment.  Before expecting it, or sometimes after, we then start to paint the things that we were focused on being what we wanted them to be as inherently disappointing.  Or as a disappointment waiting to happen.   We will find ways to avoid the potential disappointment by saying we don't want what we want (which is not true and doesn't work), we stop having expectations (outwardly) or that hope is a waste of time and a little foolish.

The thing is disappointment is information (like everything else).  It tells you that you had an expectation, hope, want, desire that wasn't met.  Maybe you didn't communicate what you needed clearly enough to be heard by whomever didn't do what you wanted, desired, expected etc.  Maybe they don't want to give you what you want, need, expect etc.  Or maybe it isn't a person that you are expecting, needing or desiring anything from.  The bottom line is you are being given insight into yourself when you are disappointed.  You are being shown things that are deep, you may even regress a bit when you become disappointed.  If you are regressing then you really want to pay attention to and acknowledge your feelings.

Once you notice where you go when you are disappointed (ages 3-9 usually) you can communicate effectively around the issue or area that triggered the disappointment.  I know that I rarely am disappointed but when I am it is hard to come out of.  I feel like the whole world has conspired against me and that everyone and everything should have known what I wanted, needed, and felt.  Then, I grow up.  This happens whenever I grow backwards.  The truth is you have to own your disappointment and know that you are in charge of your happiness, your wants, your needs.  It is your job to get those needs met.  It is your job to make sure people who you expect things from are aware of what you want so that they don't suffer the ridiculousness of not knowing what you want but being held responsible for it.

So, say what you mean, mean what you say.   Know what you want and make sure you communicate it to the people, the universe, anything or anyone else that can possibly help you get it.

xo

a

Life Is What You Make It

Howdy! When people stop looking back they can move forward.  I have been guilty of looking back at past relationships, lamenting over what did or did not go well.  I have wondered if my life would have been different if I had made different choices.  I have been that guy who tried to rekindle a past relationship in case I had made a mistake.  I have spent time living in days long gone.  I know what it is like to not want the moment I am in to be when in reality this is all that is.  Because I have been here, it would seem like I would be super understanding when others dive into shoulda, woulda, coulda as well.  I am not.  I mean, I understand, but I know the damage that it causes all too well.  Tell me, would you let someone play with fire if you have been burned?  Would you not warn someone about the water being deep and the rapids fast so you could seem understanding?  I want to shine a light on the time wasted when spent on looking back, living backwards and being less than present.

I have heard so many people say so many things about wondering how things would have turned out.  I have actually been told that things would have been easier if I hadn't been born (by a loving family member).  That may have been the case, if it had been the case… but the reality is I was born and I am here.  The past doesn't change.  You can either get over it or you can live in it forever and ever and ever.  There is a way to integrate what has happened with where you are now.  There is no dishonor in not being depressed by your history, being happy in the moment and dealing with those things you have the power to change while letting everything else go.  This acceptance is truly freedom.  This freedom is a gift.  I would like to give that gift to you if you are open to receiving it.

One of the issues is that receiving the gift of accepting where you are right now and that you cannot change what has happened is you have no one to blame, no thing to blame, no past or situation to blame for your world right now.  All you have is power and responsibility.  This may seem exciting on the surface, but with power and great responsibility comes a shitload of work.  You have to take care of the now.  You have to own what you do, why you do it and know that the only constant in your world is you.  You are the only one who has put you where you are now.  It is a harsh reality.  I think that most of us would rather be depressed about the past than own our present and create our future.

Take a good hard look at your life.  Where are you placing the responsibility of your life?  Who have you allowed to be in charge.  Where do you see yourself, victim or ruler?  You do have a choice whether you choose to believe it or not.

xo

a

You First

Hello, When it comes to loving others, truly loving and being able to hold space or take care of what it is they need, the order would have to be you first.  Trying to give to someone something you deny from yourself isn't sharing love.  Trying to be what someone else wants when you don't know what you want isn't sustainable and at some point it will be too much for both or one of you.  Being there for someone requires that you know what that feels like, that you do it for yourself and/or have had someone be there for you in the ways you need them, not how they wanted to.  You are that someone…always.

Before you venture off trying to save the world, save yourself.  I am always baffled by the amount of giving people do for one another and at the same time think that giving to themselves is a sin or not the direction that they need to focus on.  Please understand, we are here to assist in the development of the whole but not by sacrificing ourselves… we are the whole.  Look at the world like a fractal, what I do to me just repeats and repeats on all levels.  And, it goes on and on and on.

Be that person that listens well with yourself.  Be the one who is always kind, with yourself.  Notice how well you treat you.  See if there is room for improvement in every aspect.  Do you like to be picked on?  Nagged?  Told that you suck?  Then why would you do it to yourself?  How would you trust someone who doesn't trust themselves?  Do you trust yourself?  Do you feel worthy of love?  Of joy?  Of happiness?  How would someone else really find that in you if you haven't found it in you?  How could you ask for something you yourself won't do?

You are the source.  You are the alpha and omega.  You are where the pain begins and where it can end.  You are where the love begins and where it can spread.  Focus on what it is that you are needing, feeling, seeing, hearing, afraid of, loving, wanting, deciding, thinking.  Make your work you.  Accept the things that you wish to change with the joy of a child.  Be curious about yourself.  You are amazing.  There was a day where your being born was the highlight.  You are enough just because you are… you exist.  Now get on with working on this existence, making it the best one you could imagine.  Share yourself and your growth so that others may shine their own light as well.  When we forget who we are chaos ensues.  When we believe that someone else holds the key we remain locked in place, rigid, unmoving.  We are the key, the lock, the sun and the moon.  When you feel yourself, whole, nothing can penetrate that.  You are much more effective when you are full of love than when you are looking for it.

See where you are taking care of or neglecting yourself.  Then look at your world.  Do you see you reflected?

xo

a

All Grown Up

Howdy! Sometimes you feel like a kid, like everyone is going to see right through your grown-up body and realize that you are just pretending to know what is up, where to go, how to do this or that.  Sometimes you feel small and the world seems so big and you just want someone to take care of you.  Sometimes you feel lost and lonely and believe that you are alone.  You have learned to pretend, you have learned to fake being an adult (whatever that is) and mature but every now and then the masquerade becomes a bit overwhelming and you just want a break.  Sometimes you are tired.

We are rarely kind to each other around the very things we ourselves go through.  It is amazing how we will see someone doing something that society has deemed inappropriate and we will judge it all over the place.  We will decide that we are better because we don't have the same issues (or no one knows about our issues).  We will decide that we are more enlightened or smarter, more spiritual, kinder, etc. because of someone else is demonstrating human qualities that we would rather hide.  If at these moments of self-righteousness we could remember feeling small, feeling like we didn't know it all, and relating to 'being found out'  we could be better at connecting, stronger in supporting and brighter in our show of compassion.

What are you afraid of others knowing about you?  What have you been taught to judge as wrong that you, yourself do?  How does that make you connect or disconnect from others?  Do you find yourself putting someone else down who has similar secrets. Often we do this to distract from our own shadow.  Point the finger at someone else feeling small so that you don't bring attention to your own insecurities.  The thing is, we can embrace feeling like we are faking it.  We can accept that we have faked it before and that being a grown up isn't what we have been taught and that there aren't hard and fast rules that one must follow.

When you accept that you feel small, alone, lonely and phony you will be able to communicate to others and find out how not alone you actually are.  Your fear becomes less scary and less exhausting.  We all understand what it is like to feel unprepared for life.  We all understand what it feels like to be overwhelmed and unsure.  We just have to call it up when we are with others who are feeling that way so that we can remember to be understanding and accepting instead of being judgmental and condemning.

Love each other… love yourself.

xo

a

Resonate

Howdy! We have all felt stuck.  We have all felt like we weren't able to get out of wherever we are.  We have all annoyed our friends because our lack of action to move away from what is seemingly hurting us.  The bottom line is you will stay where you are until you are ready to leave.  Period.  Know this.  No one can make any choices for you and you cannot rush being ready to choose.  There are things that you are learning, valuable things that you will never forget… it is hard to have perspective when you feel that you are in the middle of hell.

Remember that how someone behaves towards you is an example of how they are treating themselves.  It is hard to remember to not take things personally when you are the one being treated one way or another… but we are all bringing to us what we need to learn from and that is the difficult reality that most would choose not to face.  The universe hears us and has a completely different definition of love and compassion than the ones we would like them to have.  The universe knows that love is giving you what you need to learn what you must in order to move forward.  The universe doesn't play favorites, it isn't biased.  It answers our soul's longing for growth and creates what we resonate.

Resonate.  Resonate.  Resonate.  This is my message for you today.  Imagine you are a guitar being strum.  What notes will you produce if you were being played?  What music does your heart make?  If you were being played in a music hall, who would come to fill up the seats and listen?  What type of crowd would line up around the block to hear one note from your symphony?  Would you have people who were crying and lamenting being drawn to you?  Would your audience be pensive or melancholy?  Would it be a crowd that was filled with angst and anger?  Or would you have a crowd that was so filled up with love and joy that you were lifted up by their presence as they are by yours?  Resonate.  Resonate.  Resonate…on purpose.  Because you do it anyway.  Make the music you want to hear.  That music you make changes the 'where you are' to the 'where you want to be'.

Have a great day!

xo

a

My Hand In Yours

Hello, Reach out, when you are low.  Reach out, when you are lost.  Reach out when you are feeling like you have no one to hold onto, not even yourself.  Reach, and someone, something, maybe your self will reach back.  The thing is, and this is something I am guilty of, when we need to be reached we sometimes cut ourselves off from connection.  We push others away, we close ourselves off, we don't give our concerns, worries, issues a chance to be shared and held by our community and in turn dissipate.  Talking, sharing, giving others the chance to assist actually allows our souls to let go of the burden and brings to the issues a perspective that is hard to find when we carry them alone.

We aren't just here to struggle through the world alone.  Look around, see how many of us are going through the same thing.  We are all mirroring each other.  We bump into the energies that are most like our own.  We are, right now, all of us in contact with others that are in similar places, that are dealing with similar things, that are feeling a similar way.  If each of us, opened our mouths and were vulnerable, if we were honest, we would allow others to do the same and in the same way, hold our pain, share our pain, and help release it… and we can do the same for them.

Be open regardless of whether others are open with you.  In other words, don't wait to be held to hold.  Don't wait to find that one that can hear you or love you to hear or to love.  Be bold, be honest, reach out and when someone does the same, be there and reach back.

xo

a

Personal Space

Great Day All!!! Not everyone understands boundaries at the same time everyone understands boundaries.  There are a lot of different kind of boundaries, energetic, physical, political, emotional… and our boundaries grow and change and sometimes disappear.  Boundaries are supposed to be put in place to keep us safe.  When we no longer have use for them it is important to let them go, individual boundaries that have no purpose can create walls and isolation.  I am someone who has learned how to have clear boundaries after years of feeling violated in one way or another.  I have found that even though I state what I need for myself there are those who have no desire to respect or adhere to my boundaries.  I have also encountered many people who have more than a difficult time setting boundaries and walk the earth feeling victimized and put-upon by friends, family and anyone else they encounter.  Usually the ones without boundaries feel like they know about you, will tell you things you didn't ask them to and expect to have access to you and your life in ways you don't feel comfortable.  There is a feeling of entitlement to others that goes beyond day-to-day, person to person interaction for the boundary violators.

I have been followed, chased, touched, harassed, raped, obsessed over, told that I have no right to push someone out of my life (by that someone I was pushing out), verbally assaulted for setting boundaries and more in my 38 years on this planet as Aina.  I have learned that boundaries are helpful for me to move about my world with a sense of control.  Obviously, we can violate one another whenever we choose, if we choose.  Boundaries, however, can serve as a deterrent for those who would choose to cross the line.  Boundaries are not a sure thing but they certainly have a high success rate of keeping one safe.  The first thing we must understand is that we are born with the right to set boundaries where we see fit in regards to ourselves and as fellow humans we are somewhat obligated to respect the boundaries that others set.

In order to respect others right to boundaries we must remind ourselves that all of us that walk this earth are equals.  We all have the same rights.  I was just setting a boundary with someone recently when they replied with a stipulation in regards to respecting my boundary.  They wanted me to understand why they did something (that triggered me needing to set a boundary) in order for my boundary to be accepted by them.  Boundaries aren't up for discussion.  They aren't there to be haggled with and they most certainly are not about the person that is being told what the boundary is for someone.  Boundaries are specifically about the person setting them.  There is never a need to ask for understanding when someone is asking for safety.  Safety is personal.  We each have individual needs in order to feel protected and safe.  As humans on this planet together we can all relate, and we would all want that.  It is important to not allow our own fear of not having something override our ability to relate and be empathetic.

When you are faced with either setting a boundary or being asked to respect it see what happens for you.  Are you uncomfortable?  Do you have fear around the idea of setting or respecting?  Why?  What goes on for you when you ask someone to follow a rule you have set for your life.  There is much to be learned in the setting of boundaries and the ability to honor the boundaries of others.

Enjoy the exploration.

xo

a

Go Forward, Move Ahead

Hello, What have you decided you can or cannot accomplish?  What or who do you use as your guide to move forward?  Are you looking back at what is for others or what can be for you?  What is the key, how do we create our reality?

Often when I ask someone about their health and fitness goals they will tell me that they want to lose weight and get toned.  That is the usual desire for most people.  I also hear that some feel that they are in a better place than the people that they know of the rest of the US.  People also say things akin to that about their job being ok and that they cannot expect to like all of it.  I hear people talk about their relationships being work and that you have to go through those hard times and stick with it.  People tend to take the worst situation or the most mediocre and compare their lives to it to feel good or accomplished.  I am asking you to take the highest ideal and look to that for guidance.

Why would you compare yourself to the majority of people who are very, very, very unhealthy?  Wouldn't it make sense to shoot for the moon and have an honest assessment of where you are in relation to where you want to go?  We are so often looking to not feel bad for neglecting ourselves that we look at those doing a worse job to say that we are better than they are.  Well, I have to say, it doesn't actually take much to be at a better spot than most Americans, health-wise.  That type of comparison doesn't actually get you somewhere new either.  You end up just surpassing the bottom rung and having a difficult time elevating much higher.  Get over where you are, accept it without comparing it to someone who has yet to get to your level and look forward at where you want to go.  If you tried to drive to Florida by looking at where you were before and not the road that would take you there, where would you end up?

This is true for relationships as well.  Why would you want to have to effort your way through?  Is love an effort or is it simply abundant.  Maybe you don't believe it is possible for love to simply flow from one person to another and back without effort.  I believe we have all experienced that type of love somewhere in our worlds.  It may be a friend we have where the love is just overflowing.  It may be a family member that we adore with our entire being.  Wherever you have memory of that effortless love, bring it up, to the surface.  Feel it as a reminder so you know when it is and is not there.  If you want to compare, use your highest desire as a directional tool, not the lowest memory you can find.

Work, ahh, work.  We really do believe that we cannot possibly love all of our work… that there will be parts that we simply dislike and that just is the way it is.  If you say so.  I know that you can love what you do just like you can love the sunset or the sunrise.  You can enjoy the details, the big picture and your part in it completely.  We are so afraid of having high expectations that we don't get met… we create a world where we do not get what we want and then we wonder why we don't get what we want.  It is amazing really.  If you believe that there isn't a possibility to love what you do 100% then you are correct.

First, dream.  Where do you want to go?  What is your big daring feeling for your future?  Second, feel the accomplishment of the dream.  What would it feel like to be where you want to be?  Third, dream some more.

xo

a

Blanket Them In Love

Howdy, It is interesting how the child who does well in school is never focused on if there is one that isn't doing so well.  As a rowing coach I remember spending more time on the athlete that was having the hardest time understanding the stroke.  The ones that were solid, that had picked things up quickly, would not be coached nearly as much.  They held the boat together while the ones who weren't at the same level were showered with suggestions and coaching.  You can look at just about any situation or any relationship, the one that isn't working is the one that sucks our attention.

I have, in the past, dated the squeaky wheel often because it was a great distraction from my own rickety foundation.  Often we don't know why we do what we do, but there is always a reason.  Who is sucking your attention right now?  Who is the squeaky wheel that you are putting your mind and attention towards.   Is there someone else in your life that is consistently awesome, someone who is always there and doesn't need help?  They seem to never have issues and are there for you when you do?  I have a little secret, they need your love.  They need your attention.  They need your lifting up.  They are the ones who never really get it or have a hard time hearing it.

We don't realize how the ones who shine need just as much polishing as the ones who are crusted over.  After a while, the bright shiny ones put on a protective and see through coating that keeps them where they are but never allows them to grow under the sunlight of all of the love that is out there.  The are able to reflect the love they do get but it often doesn't penetrate because they are expected to be awesome and usually it isn't paid that much attention.  That lack of attention wears on them as it would anyone else.  They work hard to stay bright.  They love themselves and shower themselves with attention but may have a hard time receiving from others because they aren't used to it on the same level someone who is constantly being assisted is.  The saying God takes care of fools and babies says it all.  If you aren't a fool or newborn you are on your own.

Love is warm and cozy and everyone needs it.  Love is soft and fuzzy when everyone feels it.  Who can you show you love and adore that already seems to know it?  How can you support someone who doesn't seem to need it in the same way the energy drain in your life does?  See what happens when you blanket those bright stars in the bright light of love you have to offer.  Try it and see what shines.

xo

a

Leave Them Alone

Howdy peeps!!! Do you ever feel like you need to fix someone?  Like you see someone and you know all the crap that they should do to feel better.  You know that they just need a, b and c.  Then they would be just fine!  You may have even let them know that you know what they need.  You know and if they listen they would know too.  Have you given that advice, told them what to do, only for them to ignore it?  Did you get pissed off?  Did you feel insulted?  Did you, at some point, judge them for not taking great advice and decide that they just wanted to be where they are.  Did you judge the fact that they stayed where they were as a problem or that they just wanted drama?

Maybe they did want the drama.  If the above relates to you then you too want drama.  Most of the time when you or anyone gives advice that isn't asked for then you are doing something without permission.  When was the last time someone did something for you/to you without your permission?  Did you like it?  Did it make you feel uncomfortable?  Depending on what it was you will have different answers.  Most folks aren't going to be upset if someone bought them a car, no strings attached, without permission.  Most of us aren't going to be upset if someone we knew and loved gives us flowers.  Most of us, however, have no desire to be told that we suck and that we wouldn't if we only did a, b, and c without first asking someone to help us or give us advice.  When you give advice without permission, when you tell someone what to do directly and then support it by judging their life, do you expect a showering of love?  Even if the advice is sound, well thought out and pertains to the person's life, they may not be ready for the change that you are pushing them towards.

Now, I always say you only get what you can handle and that everything happens for a reason.  I believe that when you get advice that is unsolicited there is a reason… maybe it is to hear it and then to ignore so that you sit in the place you are in longer to get out of it whatever it is trying to show you.  The bottom line is, we are where we are supposed to be, doing what we are supposed to be doing, even if family and friends want you to do it differently.  We can only go where we are ready to go.  Once we accept that we are the ones keeping ourselves where we are we will better be able to leave at will.  When you are done with a relationship there is nothing that can keep you in it.  When you are no longer receiving you cut off ties.  If you are holding onto a relationship/situation there is a reason.  Remember, it isn't for everyone else to know why, that is personal… and you may not even know why yet, you just know that you aren't ready to let go.

Often those who give unsolicited advice may need to look at themselves and their lives a bit harder.  There are things we are trying to avoid when we begin bossing others around and deciding that we know best for them.  When you feel the urge to get someone to change who hasn't initiated it themselves, you are projecting.  I am sure you can remember a time where you were in a situation/relationship that wasn't working for all intents and purposes but for some reason you chose to stay in it.  When you did decide to get out of it you were ready.  No one can decide when the right time to change your life is.  No one can make you see something that you aren't ready to see.  Just trust in the process of growth.  You cannot always see the plant growing, but it is steadily, persistently, continually growing… constantly changing.  What if we told the tree to hurry up?  Does that make sense?  Do we feel like we know how to tell a rose to bloom or when?

Leave us alone.  Leave them alone.  Go bother yourself :)

xo

a