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

I Want Some Things

Howdy! Tis the season to get stuff right.  Oh, I know most of you would say 'to give' but let's be honest… you want some things too.  We have this funny way of trying to be altruistic when it is a big ol' lie.  Seriously.  You weren't put here to not want something.  We want lots of things and there isn't anything wrong with it.  I mean, if you are being selfless and giving to others, who are the others and wouldn't they be trying to do the same thing if wanting things were so bad?  I believe that one of the reasons we 'get' things is because we are open to receiving them, and, if you look around, how much do you get?  I am sure you get a lot of things, which tells me that on various levels you feel deserving, you feel worth receiving.  Make the fact that you do want things something that you own instead keeping your wanting hidden in your subconscious (like a dirty secret).  When you bring it to the surface you are able to direct it a bit more, you can be more specific about getting your desires met.  Getting isn't a sin, wanting isn't a sin, asking isn't a sin.  When you want (which is all of the time in so many different ways) you are giving someone the chance to please you… and you, the altruistic one, knows how giving someone something they want or need feels.  It feels amazing.  We not only want to be loved, we desire to give it as well, in its various forms.

I believe that a life of service doesn't mean a life of struggle.  We have decided that those who want to help others shouldn't want to help themselves as well.  They should be selfless, oftentimes poor, in only a bit better spot to those they are helping.  How would anyone be an example of success by not being successful?  How is it wrong to have abundance and be of service.  Wouldn't you believe the person who has figured out how to have what they need would be able to tell you a thing or two about getting somewhere that you are not, like a place of abundance?  It is like asking someone who doesn't love themselves to love everyone else.  When you have done your work, figured out how to meet your needs or ask for help, serving is done in a much purer way.  It isn't being used to squash the very real fact that you don't feel deserving on some level; it isn't covering up a deep feeling of guilt.  In any case, that isn't really giving, in my opinion.  It is being selfish in a deep and unconscious way.

Own your wants.  Ask for what it is that makes your heart sing without judgement.  No one is served by denying who they are.  Speak your truth.  If all else fails, and you don't believe that it is ok to want, look at it like this.  The world isn't lacking in anything.  We have more people, more stuff, more food (regardless if it is getting to everyone or not, the capacity to feed is infinite), more ideas, more than ever before.  Scarcity is a lie.  When you have something it takes nothing away from me.  It is the argument of gay marriage somehow hurting heterosexual marriages.  One doesn't take away from the other.  There is enough marriage to go around and enough love to sustain the relationships that want sustenance.  My wanting stuff, experiences, my way, doesn't mean you cannot have your stuff, experiences or way.  We can all be in a place of abundance if we just wanted it, openly, without judgement.

xo

a

What's Good???

Good morning! It is Tuesday!!  :)  Gratitude breeds more gratitude… isn't that awesome?   This only  takes a few moments to do but gives to you for much, much longer.  So put down whatever you are doing and take a couple of minutes for yourself.  Every Tuesday morning I am going to ask you to write down 5 things that you are grateful for and email them to me (keep for yourself as well).  What are you feeling gratitude around?  Here are mine for this week:

Sleep.

Taking Risks.

Fountain Pens.

Love.

Redecorating.  

There are no right or wrong answers.  It is about what you are grateful for.   It is proven that doing this once a week for three months (actually just 9 weeks) makes you happier, healthier, exercise more and less sensitive to perceived slights.  You will sweat the small stuff less and focus on what really matters.

So… what are you waiting for???

Food for thought:

We are all deserving of love.  We are all worth someone loving all of who we are, without changing.  You never need to be something for someone except all of you for yourself.  Remember to ask yourself if you are happy, if you want what you have where you are?  Don't settle because you think you cannot do better or because you are hoping that someone will become someone they are not.  Love what is… that is all you have and it is enough.  It really truly is.

xo

a      

We are exactly where we are supposed to be doing exactly what we are meant to do, right now. :)

Be Happy Now

Hello there, How many times a day do you say no, silently, to your world, your life, to others?  How many times do you wish for something that isn't happening at the moment?  How often do you try to change what has already happened by going over it in your head and remembering it differently.  How many times do you try to get someone to be someone else, including yourself?  How do you think your world is affected when you deny, refuse, resist and consistently try to wish away what is?  Is life, your life, that unsatisfactory that wanting something other than what you have is more fun, more rewarding and overall more enjoyable?

Happiness is not something you shoot for.  Joy isn't a goal.  These are states we have always within us, totally accessible.  We spend so much time choosing to dislike what is that we never see the beauty in the moment.  We take for granted all that supports, loves and appreciates us because it isn't exactly what we want it to be or how we would like it to be.  The truth is we may never get where we want to go, we may not be around long enough.  Nothing is promised, certainly not an amount of time in this human experience, so, though planning for the future is important, being attached to it isn't.  The future has a mind of its own and it is better to bet on what is right now.

Learning to love this moment brings you to that state of being we call happiness.  Loving the moment doesn't stop you from wanting the moment to change or be something else.  It allows for you to spend less time efforting change.  When you are happy, when joy seeps from your pores the world is yours.  What you thought you had to force now flows easily in your direction.  What you thought was going to take forever and be a struggle is done with joy and realized sooner than you thought.  Most of all you forget to be miserable when you are busy being happy.  You forget to worry when you trust in the moment you are in.  When you give up resisting your life, your life stops resisting you.

Be expansive, be joyful, be love.

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

Keep On Moving

Howdy There! So the wheels may have come off during this holiday weekend.  You may have found yourself sitting in front of an empty pint container of ice cream or you may be eating more leftovers than you need to.  Studies show that you eat more in a group setting than when you are alone.  Soooo it is no wonder why we gorge ourselves during the holidays with all of the family and parties and groups of people munching away on food.  We often overdo it and then the guilt sets in.  We feel derailed from our normal workout/eating routine and we are faced with a big decision:  Stay off the tracks and off-road it for a while or get back on the rails and back to your life, your health, and your fitness.

One, two, or three days (or more) of crazy eating doesn't actually set you back, what sets you back is how you think about it.  Get over the fact that you are human, make decisions based on emotion and that you sometimes don't keep your goals at the forefront.  Get back to where you were, just do it, don't talk about it.  Move on and let the past go.  Sounds simple doesn't it?  It is.  We make things more complicated than necessary.  Usually the complication is the judgement.  Imagine your fitness goals without judgement.  Imagine your holiday feast and the next day's workout without judgement?  Imagine not letting your past dictate your future.  Imagine being absolutely supportive of the choices you make.  Imagine trusting yourself to do what is best for you.

When you trust, support and let go the ego doesn't have a lot of room to eat away at you.  You are able to make choices out of love instead of guilt.  You are able to let go of not doing something "right" and just doing what you would prefer.  When ego isn't in charge happiness has a way of surfacing and life has a way of falling into place.  So, have your cake (and mashed potatoes) and eat it too, then get on the next bike, or treadmill, or open road, or yoga mat and keep on keeping on.  You will be fine.

xo

a

Know Yourself

Howdy, Who actually spends time figuring out why they do what they do when they do what they do?  Why is it important to know?  Well, let's see… we are, most of us, walking around with the desire to be loved (it is more like the end all be all for everyone) and understood.  The thing about those desires is that we don't often love ourselves (which I have written about) and we most certainly don't always understand our motivations, reactions, feelings and inhibitions.  We actually spend very little time asking ourselves, "Why did I feel that?  Where are my feelings coming from?  Why did I say that?  What do I want?  Why do I want that?  Why do I need that?  Do I need that?  Do I want that?  Do I feel that? Do I care?  Do I want to need that?  Do I want to feel that?  Do I want to do that?"  It can go on and on and I feel that it is important to go on and on in the discovery of you.

If you were to ask yourself these questions regarding your every behavior a few things would come to light.  One, you don't know yourself that well and you probably should spend some time with you figuring you out.  If you don't know you, who the hell else will?  If you don't ask yourself these questions, who is running the show?  Are you purposeful in your interactions or are you willy nilly and wondering why things don't work out for you the way you would want them to?  So often we believe that because we are experiencing it we should operate from that experience being reason enough to react towards others in one way or another.  Rarely do we stop and ask if we want to go where we are going emotionally.  Too often we are reacting to something other than what is actually happening.  We spend so little time on finding out what is up with ourselves that we don't notice the blame game that we play on a regular basis.  We don't realize we put our work on others and then blame them when they don't know what we don't either.

Take a look at any situation you are currently experiencing.  Where is it stemming from?  It could be awesome it could be horrendous, just look at it and find out where the root is.  We associate.  It is what we do.  Something happens and it reminds us of something else.  If that something is pleasant all is well… if it isn't, all is hell.  I have, in a number of relationships, been told that thinking about everything that is said is exhausting.  So is running, biking, doing yoga, harvesting food, blah blah blah… it doesn't mean that you don't need to do it.  Your work is you.  Find out why, how, what about yourself.  Learn about you if you ever want someone else to.  If you don't think about what you say, why you say it and for what reason it is being said, what are you doing?  Just because you don't know the answers to the questions doesn't mean there aren't reasons for your feelings and behavior.

Knowledge is power.  Knowing yourself is a blessing, a gift, the culmination of persistent attention.  You deserve to pay attention to yourself.  You deserve to be the center of your universe.  You deserve to reign yourself in so others don't have to bear the weight of your not knowing.  No one deserves to have to figure you out.

You do you.  Thoroughly please.

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

What's Good???

Good morning! It is Tuesday!!  :)  Gratitude breeds more gratitude… isn't that awesome?   This only  takes a few moments to do but gives to you for much, much longer.  So put down whatever you are doing and take a couple of minutes for yourself.  Every Tuesday morning I am going to ask you to write down 5 things that you are grateful for and email them to me (keep for yourself as well).  What are you feeling gratitude around?  Here are mine for this week:

Tattoos.

Movies.

Fruit Smoothies.

Sleep.

Reading.

There are no right or wrong answers.  It is about what you are grateful for.   It is proven that doing this once a week for three months (actually just 9 weeks) makes you happier, healthier, exercise more and less sensitive to perceived slights.  You will sweat the small stuff less and focus on what really matters.

So… what are you waiting for???

Food for thought:

During this time of year we are reminded to give thanks.  Thanks for the people in our lives, for the stuff we have accumulated, for our health, our earth, for any and everything.  I think that it is fantastic that we have a season for gratitude, after all being grateful sometimes is better than being grateful no times :)  If you are thinking about giving back, saying thanks and sending love now, why not try to bring this to your daily practice of life.  See what shifts for you when you spend all year saying thanks, loving each other and spreading peace.

Happy Holiday To You :)

xo

a     

You are love, you are light, send it out and shine it bright.

Dreaming My Dreams

Howdy, Do you remember your dreams?  What did you want to be when you were a child?  I wanted to be a journalist.  My best friend and I decided that when we were older (21 years old was 'older' to us at the age of 11) we would live together.  Our basement would be an ice rink and there wouldn't be stairs that led to it.  Instead there would be an ice slide from the bottom floor to the ice rink basement.  I can remember the conversation like it was yesterday and I still kind of want that ice rink basement idea. :)

Over the years I have had many dreams.  I have reached some (working out for a living) and let others go (School of Journalism at Columbia University).  I have noticed when I limited my dreams based on societal things and worked hard to allow my mind to wander into anything that would sound interesting to my soul.  I remember when I found out that Elmo was a black guy named Kevin Clash.  I was watching a talk show years ago where he was the guest.  It wasn't until that moment that I realized that I hadn't ever considered becoming a puppeteer because somewhere inside I had judged it as something black folks didn't do.  I had never seen someone black doing it and had completely counted it out as an option.  The funniest part was I am, in no way, stereotypical with how I live my life.  Still, no one is immune from those judgements about what is or is not possible.  We are surrounded by limiting factors every day.  After that moment, which was profound for me, I knew that I had some digging to do within myself.

Dreaming is so important.  Being limitless when you dream is the key ingredient to finding out what you really want to do.  Taking away the need to know how is the hardest part of dreaming.  We always want to make sense of something, so much so that when we dream we forget to just feel what you feel, think what you think and then see what shakes out.  So, I challenge you to dream.  Dream big.  Make a list of what you want to do, what you want to be, where you want to live, how you want to feel.  There are no limits, there is no right, there is no wrong, there is just you.  Before the phone existed someone wanted to talk to someone else who was far away.  Before hot air balloons someone wanted to float around in the sky in a basket.

You just never know where your dreams may take you…

xo

a

Ownership Has It's Privileges

Howdy, I was speaking to a relative about communication the other day.  She had never communicated what she wanted or needed but harbored much anger toward those who weren't meeting her needs.  I tried to give her insight into the idea that no one can be held responsible for anyone else's lack of action.  We are all responsible for ourselves and communicating our own needs.  Yet, through our culture of blame it is much easier to see fault in someone not just "knowing" what you need instead of owning the fact that you have to do the work to communicate (as many times as you have to in order to be heard) what it is you need… even if that means risking not getting your needs met.  See, speaking your truth doesn't mean it will be accepted by others… but you cannot get anywhere without trying, without risking, without speaking.  You most certainly have less of a chance of getting what you need if you never actually admit to having needs.

The fear, however, is so great that we hide behind the idea that people should know this or should have know that.  We actually believe that other people should be mind readers even though we don't do a good job of understanding what someone else wants.  We get angry with each other and literally resent people for not knowing what they were never told.  We argue over things being common sense or not, when the reality is, did they know?  Were they told?  Nothing is really obvious when it comes down to it.  If it isn't explicitly communicated you cannot expect it to be understood (even then you may need to do some work around it).  We spend so little time communicating our needs that we don't truly know how to.  Our fear of not being heard or our fear or judgement that we aren't deserving, mixed with our resentment for not getting our needs met create a scary combination.  It is a wonder how any relationship survives (in my opinion).  How many times have you expected someone to treat you one way or another only to have them do something else?  How did you respond?

We are a culture that blames.  We blame the government, the weather, God (if you have one or more), fast food, alcohol, other people, TV, guns, etc.  I don't believe I have ever turned on the TV or listened to the radio to hear our media discuss how each person contributes to their own personal issues, let alone the world's joys and pains.  I don't believe I have ever overheard a conversation where someone was saying, "I must take a long hard look at myself and what I am bringing to this situation that is perpetuating it."  I have heard that they did this, or they did that or they need to stop doing these things and everything would be ok.  It is no wonder why we oftentimes feel powerless over our lives.  It is no wonder why we go to war or have road rage.  It is no wonder why our world is in such turmoil.  We are all pointing the finger at someone/something else, rarely seeing where we can start to make a shift in the world.

How can you take ownership for yourself today?

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

What's Good???

Good morning! It is Tuesday!!  :)  Gratitude breeds more gratitude… isn't that awesome?   This only  takes a few moments to do but gives to you for much, much longer.  So put down whatever you are doing and take a couple of minutes for yourself.  Every Tuesday morning I am going to ask you to write down 5 things that you are grateful for and email them to me (keep for yourself as well).  What are you feeling gratitude around?  Here are mine for this week:

Direct Communication.

Self Awareness.

Nature's Miracle (to clean various cat or dog 'accidents').

Hope.

Intentional Thinking.  

There are no right or wrong answers.  It is about what you are grateful for.   It is proven that doing this once a week for three months (actually just 9 weeks) makes you happier, healthier, exercise more and less sensitive to perceived slights.  You will sweat the small stuff less and focus on what really matters.

So… what are you waiting for???

Food for thought:

It is sometimes difficult to find peace inside or outside ourselves.  It takes a lot of focused energy to calm the storm that we create with the information we get from the outside world.  Take the time to breathe, focus and have faith that there is a purpose, there is information to be gathered from your life and the happenings in it.  Know that if something brings up a charge in you it will more than likely have to be dealt with at some point.  Know that feeling triggered is a gift and within it lies freedom.

xo

a      

You are in charge of your world, your life is the creation of your mind, your thoughts, your feelings.  Go, have fun :)

ReConditioner

Hello there! There are many ways to look at a situation.  You can look at it from the perspective that it is happening to you.  You can look at it as if it is happening around you.  You can also look at it as happening inside you.  Even still you can look at it as if it isn't happening at all… that it is all imaginary.  I tend to look at it in all ways, going through one to the next pretty quickly.  When I am faced with a stressful (my perception) situation I feel victimized for a very short time and then quickly move to what I can control.  It is hard to stay the course when so many things seem to be thrown at you to knock you off course.

Our minds are tricky things.  Thoughts zoom by at the speed of light.  It seems to be impossible to slow them down let alone to stop them altogether.  Often we have thoughts that stem from feelings arising and we immediately believe that everything that is happening for us is true or has to be true.  We are conditioned beings, we have been taught that one thing means another, we have associations that at some point were created not inherent.  In order to free ourselves from the conditioning we have to allow the feelings and thoughts to exist (they are rather persistent) and look at them with curiosity instead of giving them our complete trust.  When you can let go of what you have always believed to be true about a feeling or a thought you can start recreating your life and undoing the conditioning that may be doing you in.

All of this is easier said than done.  There will be things that push you where you feel weakest.  You will be in the middle of a bad week and something will come along to show you just how not bad it really was in comparison.  You will find yourself in a place where you look around and recognize barely anything, where nothing makes sense, where you feel a bit lost.  You will find yourself off track.  It is hard to not panic in these situations, it is hard not to find something, someone else to hold responsible for it.  Personal responsibility isn't something you can pick and choose to have.  You either practice it or you don't.  If you can move through the series of feelings and thoughts that keep you stuck and twisting in the wind you just might see the blessing in it.  You are being given another opportunity to create the world, the life, you claim you want.

Much love,

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

Now Is The Power

Hi there, In the moment that you feel lost you can be found again.  When you relinquish control of knowing, of what will, should, could happen, you find that space of what is.  In this you can find freedom that exists only when you accept each and every detail of each and every moment.  It is not something that we learn to do, we do it from birth, we actually have it taught out of us.  We get told to look back and look ahead and rarely do we get told to be where you are… sit in it and enjoy each breath.  If you do that for your family, bravo… it is a gift and a rare occurrence.

In our society the things that are imaginary take front and center.  From having holiday cards out in September to candy canes right after Halloween.  We have to prepare for our future… college funds, 401k's, etc.  We set goals based on a certain future when the two words together sound ridiculous to me… there is NOTHING certain about the future.  We create it as we go, though we keep on repeating what we know, instead of creating something new.  We are asked to tell others what we did over the weekend, last year, when we were kids.  Basically most conversation is built around things we cannot put a finger on anymore… things we can distort and things that aren't happening right now.  We focus so aggressively on the past or looking forward that we rarely see what is happening for us right now.

I used to run to audiobooks…  I was listening to Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now some years ago and trying to be ok with my situation (working at SUNY Buffalo for a verbally abusive Head Coach).  I kept having to go back to the part where he told me to just observe my thoughts.  Don't judge them, just allow them to happen without diving in and joining the noise.  I listened to it over ad over and then turned it off.  Then, I practiced.  I would run and just pay attention to each breath, each flower I saw, each step I took.  My breathing became easier.  The noise became quieter.  I became more empowered and finally left that crazy place.  When you are in your moments you can see where you are and what is happening for you.  When you are in your moments you can change them.

xo

a

I Am A Writer

Howdy, We all have a voice that lives inside of us and is aching to come out.  We all have things that we must put down on paper, shout about or sweat out that cannot be pushed aside.  Speaking what is true for us is freedom.  We all have a story or stories that long to be told, to a friend, lover, sister, brother.  We all have a story that brings us closer to our truth, that describes our selves… that reminds us of who we are.

I remember feeling like I had to write a certain way if I was going to be a writer.  I would need to be able to describe things in-depth, be super-duper articulate at all times and basically write like my mother.  It is funny how we try to model ourselves after various people in our world that have had some major impact.  My desire to write in a similar way to my mother actually stopped me from writing.  Every time I would sit down to try to write in her voice I became stuck.  It didn't work.  I am not descriptive in the same way, I am more conversational.  I don't have the fancy way about me that she does, I write, as I have been told, in a more raw fashion.  I live that way too.  It wasn't until I gave up trying to be someone else that I was able to write like myself.

Once I was done trying to be other than me I was able to write about anything and everything that excited me.  I could write about love, about pain, I could write about philosophical ideas or how annoying it is when someone touches my hair without permission. I could write about things that I have lived through and things I want to accomplish.  I realized that writing was a way to create the world that I wanted and remember the world I have lived.  It was a way to make sense of what seemed senseless.  It was and is a way to stay grounded.  Writing can be a way to connect, really connect to the world, to yourself, to the one.  We are all writers.  We are all speakers.  We are all story tellers.

What do you want to say?

I Want To Write by A.C.

I want to write about books and the way they smell when you love them. About the dog-eared pages that save my place, and how I wish that I could dog ear points in my life.

I want to write about infatuation and adoration and stupidity and trickery and the torment of knowing a lover too well.

I want to write about singers and songwriters and a musician that rocks back and forth with soul as if it were her mother.

I want to write about the sound of the ocean when there's no one else in sight and my hair is tangled and my lips are salty, dry and quivering.

I want to write about starfish and the rocks they cling to.

I want to write about mothers and daughters and safety and unconditional everything forever and ever amen infinity.

I want to write about lunacy and madness.    About rocket ships and words on arms and mathematical equations I will never understand.

I want to write about her and her and the one that walked away with no wounds, and left me with all of mine to lick alone.

I want to write about want and need and co-dependence, about turtle shells and animals that protect themselves with outer layers, that at times I wish I had.

I want to write about faceless people, I have tried to forget,the ones who haunt me in the nite as I fight with sleep.

I want to write about cold hearts and hot coals on the bedroom floor.

I want to write about a girl, my girl, and the words that fall short each time I try to tell her how I feel.

I want to write about needing, and wanting and aching and yearning.

I want to write about capital letters, punctuation, and form.

I want to write about death and birth and what matters most between the two I want to write about writing and how painful it is. About how necessary it is.

xo

a