Being Open

What's Good???

Good Morning!!! Tuesday Gratitude Practice is here!!! How will you take what you are grateful for through the rest of your day? This isn't just about writing it down and sending it back… put it out there! Let the world feel your appreciation! Let's make a difference.

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:

Sydnee. Staying Up. Sleeping In. My Guitar. Tuesdays.

There are no right or wrong answers. It is about what you are grateful for. It is proven that doing this once a week 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:

I may be chronologically 39 but in reality I am ageless. I enjoy my life and everything in it. This acceptance and ability to go with the flow keeps me bouncing around the same way I did when I was 30 years younger. I enjoy the unknown (it is like christmas morning to me) and love surprises. I look forward to playing and am never bored. Life is best lived in the moment and our moments are so abundant that it is like winning the lottery on a daily basis to me, this life. So much to see, learn and do. So many people to love and to love you back. Growing up is fantastic if you never let go of love and curiosity. The thing is, many people believe that growing up means leaving the parts of life that were fun, silly, experimental, wondrous and curious behind. I believe that aging, in part, is due to the cutting off of the vital energetic flow. We prepare for and accelerate our demise with the present day belief of what growing up is.

If you are someone who spends most of their time unimpressed with the things around them you might be suffering from "grownupitis" and there is a way out; it doesn't have to be terminal. You can find your way back to love, joy and fun no matter how far down the path to stagnation you have run. The first thing you will need to recognize is that love, joy and fun are never far from you… they are residents inside of you. You may have neglected them but they won't leave, they just need to be nurtured, watered as it were. One of the best ways to nurture love, joy and fun is to do something that you deem immature or childish… or that you may believe is for kids only, like hopscotch, swings, jump rope, trampoline, thumb wrestling, making faces, juggling, playing with putty, coloring or simply dancing around your house. Do something that takes away any sign of appropriateness away, like a whoopie cushion in a board meeting! Let go of trying to control an outcome and just do some stuff for fun. See how it feels to be free.

The second thing that can help you live your moments with reckless abandon is to own your feelings and let others own theirs too. When you release the need to control others you have more time to have fun. Seriously. When you stop trying to get everything to work out in some way or another you have more time to do the things you love. We make things so complicated and we resist the abundance of ease that actually exists. When you love something love it, when you don't, don't. We put up so many walls to love, joy, fun and wonder based on beliefs that are absolutely arbitrary. Create the reality you would like to live in and then live in it! This is your journey, your path, your universe… explore it, love it!

happiness_boy
happiness_boy

xo a

Fear of Flying

Hi! When you let go of the idea that you will be safe if you have a relationship with someone who understands you, who gets you; when you stop worrying about things that are not happening right now; when you remember that all of this is temporary fear pops up and then bounces away. It is the exact opposite of what happens for those who believe that a relationship will fulfill them, "knowing" will calm them or that what they hold onto will last forever; for those people, fear consumes them. The notion that there is safety, security and fulfillment in all the things that truly are temporary, whether you consciously get it or not, would bring up fear because there is no truth to it. We grab onto one another hoping that in the other we will find ground and stop the fall. What we don't understand is that the one we are holding onto is falling also and couldn't stop your internal struggle no matter how much they wanted to. You are the one who can catch you, make you feel secure and loved fully. You are your savior.

We live in a world where most things are unknown yet we try our best to control all. We put rules on everything in order to gain some semblance of being the boss of all. Then life happens, people leave, die, things end, begin, magic happens. We are so set in believing that we KNOW things that we call anything that goes outside of what we have arbitrarily decided could happen, unexplainable, not true, made up, fantasy, conspiracy or some other such definition that usually has a negative connotation. We actually chastise people who refuse to think like the rest of the society we are in. It is understandable then that deep down we are struggling within this box that we are in. Boxes are cramped and somewhere in our soul we see the expansiveness of existence. We know that the world is bigger than the box but because we don't know what lies outside of it, we freak the f*ck out and basically refuse to leave the 'safety' of it. The box says that if you do certain things then certain things will happen. Well, there may be a possibility that those things are going to happen but there is a possibility that other things would happen too. The world is mysterious, exciting and surprising.

Letting go of our illusion of security is a process for most. You can practice it by doing things that challenge you in various ways. You can do it by changing your language around love, relationships, and the world. You can let go of the idea of security by recognizing that the only control that you have is over you and how you respond to your world… Or you can learn through the fact that the world will stop at nothing to get you to see it. The world, universe, will take things away, bring things in, create chaos and then bring order whether you want it or not. The universe will give you opportunity after opportunity to learn how to let go of our attachments. What you call falling I call flying. When you open up to possibility, to understanding that it is the moment that is precious, not the imagined future, you can stop the drop and begin to enjoy the journey. It is your choice to bury your head or spread your wings.

flyowl
flyowl

xo a

One Foot In Front of The Other

Hello, Keep going.  I know how hard things can feel.  I know how sometimes you think that it is all for naught; that you are just going in circles.  You aren't even though it truly doesn't seem like any forward movement is happening.  Then there are times where you know you are moving forward but it just isn't at the pace you would like it to be.  You want quicker results.  You want the results to fit into your expectations, you want what you want and anything else seems like failure.  I get it but cannot support it.  We set ourselves up for failure on a regular basis and don't take responsibility for managing our own expectations around our growth, success or advancement.  When you expect to be rid of something you only just recently learned you were embodying for most of your life you are setting yourself up for disappointment; you can at least give yourself a similar amount of time to get above what you don't like as it took to make what you don't like a habit; 5 years of making something a habit takes is going to require longer than a few months to truly unlearn.

This isn't for you to become discouraged.  On the contrary, it is so you understand patience.  When you are working on learning how to live a life that is new in a large number of ways, the last area of your life to truly shift is your emotional life.  How we view the world, how we see ourselves, what we want, feel, desire, all of these things are deeply embedded in our core.  Changing how we respond to present situations so that we aren't repeating behaviors of the past is difficult and an ongoing process.  You mustn't get ahead of yourself and, at the same time, you must dream bigger and see farther than your present state of being.  In other words, you must stay rooted in the present moment but peer over it to see that there is light; faith is needed.

Anything you want to change, grow, learn will take time.  You will have to put energy into whatever it is that you would like to attain.  Giving up, deciding that it isn't happening fast enough, becoming discouraged, losing faith are the enemies of love, life and the pursuit of emotional, spiritual and physical evolution.  As you stumble, recognize that there is something that slowing down will show you.  As you feel like you are spiraling or having a setback, know that you need to gather more tools for your journey and this is an opportunity to do so.  There are no mistakes if you are consistently learning.

Keep going.  The only way out is through.

LeapOfFaith
LeapOfFaith

xo a

Mirror Mirror

Hello! You will have to deal with your sh*t no matter what you do to get away from it. Everyone in your life is a reflection of you… everyone. They tell you where you are by being who they are. This may not be what you want to hear, which means you really want to listen. You are where you are supposed to be, doing what you are supposed to be doing, reading what you are supposed to be reading. You are meant to finally own up to your choices, where you are in your world, what you have ignored, judged, denied, refused, cut out, brought in and pushed away. None of these experiences or choices are meant to shame you or throw you into a spiral of guilt. They are lessons, they are gifts, they are alarms for you to pay attention to.

We have people who come into our world that challenge, excite, depress or ignite us. We don't always know why we are drawn to the same type of person over and over again, we may not yet see our patterns, our repeats. Take a look, see if you are going over your past in different iterations. We may wonder why we like the things in others that we do or find some people unappealing and repelling. When you find these strong feelings rise up in you, pay close attention. These feelings signify areas in yourself that are in conflict or that you need to address. It isn't about the people you like or dislike… it is that you like or dislike that is telling. Your inner struggles, your inner work is played out in front of your eyes everyday. What you struggle with will show up as your lover, your best friend, your nemesis. It will show up in your career, your pets, your health. Your emotional self becomes your life in every possible way. Just as nature finds infinite ways to express beauty, your soul finds a multitude of ways to manifest itself.

Look at the world with the filter that it is all about you; not in the way of taking responsibility for what others say, do or feel; not in the way of wanting everyone to focus on you... Instead see the world as your reflection and then change it for the better by going within; heading to the source. If everything is reflecting your deepest self, working on you and shifting that core perspective changes everything. You have the power, you have the ability, you are omnipotent, you are the creator. You are able to make your world bright or absolutely dim your light. Why do you choose what you choose? What brings you to a place where you often lose? What are you trying to show yourself? Learn what your motivations are so that you can use them to carry you through to your ideal self.

Keep opening up, keep owning your stuff, keep looking within, keep letting love and light in.

reflection-ocean-tree-moon

xo

a

Kidding

Hi there, One of the reasons I enjoy speaking to children so much is that they are so much easier to talk to, share ideas with, create worlds with.  They dream, they speak their dreams, they sing, dance and have fun for no reason at all.  They laugh easily, make jokes that aren't funny but end up being hilarious because they just enjoy the ridiculousness of it all and make friends easily.  They are far from innocent but they believe what they cannot see because they know that there is so much more… they feel their way through the world and acknowledge that they don't know when they don't know.  They are forever curious.

The older I get the more I enjoy being around children or those who are in the winter of their life for a few reasons.  Old people don't always give a rat's ass about what others think anymore and kids certainly don't.  Somewhere in the middle we get freaked the f*ck out about each and every move we make.  We fear the unknown, we don't dance without being drunk, we second guess our every thought and move.  It is exhausting to think about how much grief each grown-up give themselves for not being perfect.  At what point were we supposed to master perfection?  When were we supposed to learn it all?  We get jobs that pay us and we get set in a lifestyle and we forget what it was like to just be happy.  No one thing needed to happen to be happy, we could just see what is unseen, the fairies, the beauty of the world.  We forget to sing songs into existence and dance to rhythms that only we can hear.  We stop being open to someone who we are drawn to.

Don't wait until you have grown out of the fear and into your later years to regain your joy.  Do the things that are scary, be new at something again.  Bring back that feeling of wonder… live your life like you are in charge because you are.  Know that you cannot make a wrong move if you are learning from every step.  Life isn't about planning and waiting.  Life isn't about pretending to be something you aren't.  Life isn't about competing and comparing.  Life, when you are truly living is scary and thrilling and surprising and rarely, if ever, boring.  Dream again; dream BIG then do what you have to in order to realize that dream.  You have a life to live… it is short, really, and it is worth the risk of failure in order to risk living your dreams.  The tradeoff is not even close.  Nothing beats doing what you truly want to do.  Kids know this… when did you forget?

kidsplay

xo

a

What's Good???

Good Morning!!! Tuesday Gratitude Practice is here!!!  How will you take what you are grateful for through the rest of your day?  This isn't just about writing it down and sending it back…  put it out there!  Let the world feel your appreciation!  Let's make a difference.    

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:

Having Many Talents.

Being Ready.  

Home.

Social Media.

Early Mornings.

Coach Aina Body Camp - http://coachaina.com/body-camp/ 

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:

Take your time.  Breathe.  Let your feelings come to the surface?  What are they?  How often do you check in with yourself?  How often do you just let things be what they are.  We are so busy racing around, doing this, doing that; in this meeting, and that event.  When do you allow time to pass while checking in with yourself and allowing feelings to move through you…?  Better yet, how often do you sit with an idea, an intention and block everything else out and let only what you will in?

What are you running away from?  What keeps you from spending time with you, thinking, feeling, getting down to what is happening under the surface and deeper.  If you never stop to find out how will you move through it, beyond it?  How will you find peace if you aren't willing to look at what is disrupting it inside of you?  Spend consistent time with yourself letting the thoughts come and observing them, not judging them and acknowledging them.  You are the first person in your life you are in relationship with.  Your feelings matter for you.  Your ideas, thoughts, desires and inclinations are important to you.  When you aren't aware of what any of those are it is difficult to truly meet your own needs, let alone have anyone else try to really support you.

You don't need to sit in that place of observation forever.  At some point during your mandatory "you" time you can put your energy into what you want to become, what you want to bring into your life.  Cutting out all of the extraneous chatter and bringing in only what you want to hear, see… what serves you and your highest good.  The practice of focusing your mind and relaxing your mind allows you to do both at will.  We are absolutely lazy when it comes to our thoughts and mental ability.  It is time to shape up mentally in the same way we shape up physically… by practicing everyday.  Anything you want to change, anything you want to create takes energy, takes you seeing it into existence.  Do the work and the work will be done.

xo

a

You Never Know

HI there, I grew up in Cleveland, OH on the westside in Riverside Projects.  Now, I don't know why it was called riverside because the only thing we were next to was an airport.  Ok, not directly next to it, but planes would come so low overhead that I felt like I was going to be hit by one.  I became so scared of a plane missing its landing and hitting our house that I started freaking out about death in general.  I remember that I was more afraid of the plane hitting the house when I was in situations that I thought would be compromising.  I really never wanted to be found on the toilet, dead, so I would get nervous when I went to the loo.  That fear passed and would come back here and there.  We lived at Riverside for 13 years.

857723_4583016815500_1004559366_o

When we finally moved out of Cleveland and out of the projects we went to North Carolina.  We had high hopes to live in the house my mother was raised in, restore it, and live a life farming, loving each other and living dreams we hadn't dared to dream yet.  When we arrived we were greeted with an unwelcoming committee (my mother's uncle who, like a lot of her family have a chip and are simply an unhappy lot).  We moved into the projects of Dunn, NC and it started again; save for this time we were in 102 degree heat in the middle of a little town that wasn't at all familiar to me.  I struggled through depression for years in NC.  It was some of the darkest days (until my early 20's) that I had experienced.

During the time I spent in the projects, which was up until I was 14 basically, no one ever asked me if I was going to college or truly cared about what I would do with my life.  It was assumed that life was pretty much decided for me… I would probably have babies early and repeat a cycle that I was actually not a part of, but believed to be because everyone is a fuck up in the projects living off of welfare, right?  Well, my mother had me when she was 31 and grew up middle-class.  She didn't finish college but she is off the charts IQ-wise and had a strong sense of self-worth.  She had/has shitty taste in men (yep, my father is great in ways and not in others) and ended up raising her babies alone.  It is not an easy thing, being a single parent, and so she lived where she could afford and did what she needed.  I am glad because I am a badass because of it.

You never know what someone has gone through to get to where they are.  You never know the journey it takes to live the life someone is living.  We assume so many things about each other and never stop to ask questions, to be curious.  I went to college and have traveled the world, I am able to relate to any and everyone because I am everyone.  I see myself in the person on the street begging, the woman about to get her child that is crying after waking up from a nap, and the President of a Fortune 500 company.  I know that the idea of separateness that we hold so dear and we believe keeps ups so safe actually does more harm than anything else.  And, at the same time, without all of the rejection, discrimination and classism I have experienced I wouldn't be the compassionate soul that I am today.

Before you decide that you know something about someone you have never met or someone who you have; before you look at statistics instead of individual people; before you write someone off because they aren't familiar to you; before you get all f*cking judgmental think about me or someone else you know that defied odds, ignored statistics, who wouldn't quit.  Maybe your kindness, your inspiration is just what they need to move forward.  Then again, maybe your being an ass is what they need to move forward too.  Either way, evolution, development and growth are happening for all of us at different rates in different ways.  You don't have to be open to the variety of ways there are to get somewhere but life sure is more exciting when you do.

For my part, I am going to inspire.  It is more fun.  What are you going to do?

xo

a

What's Good???

Good Morning!!! Tuesday Gratitude Practice is here!!!  How will you take what you are grateful for through the rest of your day?  This isn't just about writing it down and sending it back…  put it out there!  Let the world feel your appreciation!  Let's make a difference.

 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:

Admiration.

Music… I breathe it.

Commitment.

Industrial Fans.

Coach Aina Body Camp - http://coachaina.com/body-camp/ 

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 not enough to know something intellectually.  Our intellect is limited, so very limited.  We can read books, we can have conversations, write poetry, blogs and books but until you live your ideas, your words, your thoughts all of that intellect is just smoke.  Poof, it can go in an instant, and often does, when life throws us a curve ball.  I have seen all sorts of people espouse love, joy, and self-fulfilling prophecy talk only to be handed a dramatic situation and fall apart from top to bottom.  I have seen the philosophy of man become a song and dance routine when life becomes a bit too real.  It is time to live differently, not just speak differently.  It is time to own your power instead of giving it away.

Saying you understand manifesting and then saying shitty things to yourself is counterproductive, unless what you really want are shitty things.  Knowing, intellectually, that things happen for a reason and then refusing to see the benefit of all things in your life, including losing your job, a loved one, money, having an accident, breaking up with someone, etc. is a sure way to be in conflict with the universe and yourself.  This may be hard for those who feel that there is a right and a wrong and that it is wrong to expect grace in situations that are difficult, or expect composure when life is hard.  How about looking at it like this, life IS.  That is all.  It happens all the time in every way.  We put judgment on it and say it is difficult when what is actually happening is we aren't trusting that this is what we need in order to learn, grow, blossom and know.  Imagine actually living the words "things happen for a reason."  Imagine having that be a daily acceptance, a moment to moment understanding, a belief, your truth.

You can have a different life without anything outside of you changing.  You can have a more purposeful existence without ever asking someone to do something different.  You can be a happier, more contented person when you shift your understanding.  You can live the life of your dreams when you take away the intellect and you replace it with action, with doing, with living.  We think and think and think and it gets us nowhere so often.  Live, do, decide to accept your power, the power of others, the truth of the universe and stay curious.  When you are curious about what is happening instead of intellectualizing it, you can gather up the juicy goodness that exists in all things, people and experiences.

Have fun if you want to,

xo

a

No Know

Hello, What is it in us humans that makes it easier to believe that we know it all instead of understanding that we know so little that to use the word know is actually humorous?  Knowing belies the fact that we are actually just gathering from our experience.  As our experiences increase our knowing shifts.  So how is it that we know anything and why is it important that we do?  Maybe it is just semantics, but words are important.  The first meaning of know is to be aware of through observation, inquiry, or information.  The second is to have knowledge or information concerning.  The last definition and the one that most people use when they are using the word know; to be absolutely certain or sure about something.  This last definition is what most people are thinking when they use the word know.  Absolute certainty is something that just isn't absolute.  We have all been sure about a lover, a job, a choice only to have time show us otherwise.  Knowing isn't all it is cracked up to be.

We get a sense of security when we can say that we know.  Knowledge feeds our egos and helps us believe that we are somehow in control and dominate our surroundings.  When we feel absolutely sure about something we get this feeling of comfort and familiarity.  It feels good to know.  Our response to what we don't know, or the unknown, tells you how scary it is to go farther than we have.  When you open yourself up to not knowing it is possible to discover that knowledge is less important than curiosity.  You might discover that knowledge is actually a trick to stop magic from happening.  Our dogged desire to understand, to predict, to control keeps us from seeing the fairies, spirits and different dimensions that exist.  Because we feel that it is necessary to be absolutely certain about things in order for them to be true we lose so much experiential information.  Is it true that you love your cat or dog.  Can you be absolutely certain about it; can anyone else?  Knowledge is a distraction, a hurdle, something to get over having to feel.

knowing-gods-will

What if you looked at the world with curiosity?  What if instead of knowing you observed patterns, you had ideas, you didn't know?  What if you recognized that knowledge is always and forever changing, therefore absolutes weren't possible.  What if you stepped out of your comfort zone; how would you experience the world then?  Knowledge is a limitation.  Being open to not knowing is an invitation.  We couldn't possibly, with our limited senses, know anything for certain.  We can't even see in the dark, let alone things we don't know exist.  Everyday you learn something new, something that prior to that moment you didn't know.  If knowing was a relationship we would all be polyamorous, we change our knowing so often.

Accept the invitation to trust that we are always learning, exploring and expanding.  Trust that you don't need to know for sure to believe that all is possible.  Try it, see what comes.

xo

a

Be Honest

Hey there, When was the last time you asked yourself the tough questions?  When was the last time you asked yourself what you would change if there were no yucky repercussions?  Have you ever asked yourself a question like that?  So many people are so afraid of truth that they won't even let it into their own heads.  As soon as something that doesn't fit within their idea of what they should do, feel, think or say pops up they push it down.  When your own truth is too scary to acknowledge consciously it begins to find its way to the surface unconsciously.  You will have to deal with your feelings, your actual thoughts and wishes one way or another.  

The truth is you cannot get away from what you really want, think or feel.  You will have to address it at some point.  The resistance of it ensures that it will grow stronger until you have nothing but that thing you have been trying to deny.  It is not a mind over matter situation when it comes to denial.  Even the reasons we give for never wanting to admit to what we are thinking, feeling, desiring.  Relationships could change (will change), lifestyles might have to shift, you may have to get used to letting go of what you once thought made you, you.  Finally owning up to what is actually happening for you holds a lot of weight and some of that may be frightening.  Let me assure you that only great things truly come from owning and accepting all of who you are, even the parts of you you still choose not to share.  

There is nothing like being able to answer the tough questions without running from them.  In order to live the life of your dreams you will have to admit what your dreams truly are.  You may have to admit that your life, as it is, is not what you would truly pick for yourself anymore.  Owning this fact doesn't mean you have made any mistakes, it doesn't mean that you did anything wrong.  Knowing what you really want, feel and think allows you to align your life up so that you are truly happy.  When you no longer have to deny what you feel inside you can get busy living your fullest most authentic life.  When you are honest with yourself you can be honest with others.  When you are honest about who you are, what you want and where you are going you will have a much easier time being who you are, getting what you want and getting to where you are going.  Life is what you make it… so make it what you really would like it to be.  

acceptance

xo

a

How I Feel

emotions

 

Hiya,

Your feelings matter.  They do.  I mean this wholeheartedly.  Now understand that I am not saying that anyone is to blame for your feelings, on the contrary… your feelings are all about you.  They are about where you are, what you want, what you haven't gotten, what you expect, how you see the world and how you filter information that comes in.  Because of all of these facts your feelings truly do matter.  They are your language, your way of interpreting things that you are perceiving.  They are also a way for you to create what you believe in.  Our feelings are our magic wands and we would all do better to look at them as the information givers they are.  You are a creator, you are a meaning maker, you are a magician and your feelings are your tools.  

What happens when you deny what you feel?  What happens when you tell someone else to deny what they feel?  Invalidation is damaging no matter the direction from which we receive it.  Whether someone else is telling us our feelings aren't valid or we are discounting what we feel because there are children starving in a 3rd world country.  Saying that one person's feelings aren't valid because someone else is in pain somewhere far away isn't helping either person.  Pain isn't about comparison, feelings aren't meant to be in a contest yet we do this to ourselves and one another on a regular basis.  We make fun of someone complaining about their car being damaged by telling them that they are having first world problems…  Well how in the hell are they going to have 3rd world problems if they aren't living in a 3rd world?  Should they only be upset when they find themselves starving with flies landing on their face?  Is that the point, to shame one another for being where we are?  What the hell people, there has to be a better way to help others gain perspective that isn't a put down.  

Why don't you stop and remember what if feels like to be told that your feelings don't matter.  I bet you that a large number of criminals felt small, powerless and invalidated at some point (or at most points) in their lives.  It is a dangerous and violent thing that we do when we tell someone that they don't matter.  That is what we do when we invalidate one another.  Instead of feeling our feelings and recognizing them as momentary, not as big as we may believe and getting out of them what they are meaning to show us we are pushed to either defending or denying them.  It is exhausting when you think about it.  Instead of having space held for us we suck the life out of one another and expect each other to breathe like nothing happened.  Honestly, how many times have you belittled someone for feeling a way you thought was insignificant?  

My motto is "suck it up" and I mean it.  That doesn't mean I want you to ignore or deny your feelings.  I want there to be a healthy detachment from programmed meaning of our feelings.  Instead of thinking that feeling tired means giving up I want being tired to remind you that you are on the right track… and I want you to remember the feeling of pushing through the fatigue to a new world.  Feelings are like messages in a language that isn't native but it necessary and filled with wonder.  Look at what you feel in a way that allows you to maintain perspective.  Are you dying?  No, ok, then does it serve you to behave in a way that makes it seem like things are that dire?  We can choose our response to our feelings… that is when you begin to come into your own power. 

Once you are able to see your feelings (by first owning, admitting and never denying them) as tools you will be more curious to dig into them deeper than before.  Feelings are truly our gifts.  Feelings are our creative power.  Feelings are the beginning of all things.  Let's begin to feel them fully to create a more purposeful and fulfilled life for ourselves and support others on their journey to do the same.  

xo

a

You Hurt You. Stop.

Hello lovely, How long would you tolerate a relationship where you were told that you weren't living up to the expectations of your partner.  What if you worked hard to make progress to attempt to appease your partner and they still found fault with you and refused to validate the work you had done thus far?  What if you told your friends what your partner said to you.  That they called you fat, lazy, unorganized, stupid and other such things?  What would they advise you to do?  If your friend came to you with this information, how would you advise them?

self_harm2

Emotional abuse is far more damaging overall than physical and most of us are guilty of perpetrating it.  Usually we have the where-with-all to keep it a secret and only do it in our safest most private places… in our own hearts and minds.  We cut ourselves down so swiftly most of us don't even recognize that it is being done but it is.  We are victims to ourselves.  No matter where we go there we are.  Looking in the mirror, eating dinner or a snack, walking to and fro, doing the work you have chosen, you are there putting yourself down when the chance arises.  We fill ourselves full of doubt, we imagine the worst.  We believe we don't deserve all the great things and when they come along we often have a hard time accepting them.  We may feel ok to have what "makes sense" for the work we have put in, but any more than that and we upper limit ourselves and create reasons for not being able to push past certain points in various areas of our lives.  

Do you need to break up with you or do you have a chance to be rehabilitated?  You would advise your friend to leave the lover who was abusive, emotionally or otherwise… so I am advising you to do something similar.  Treat that side of yourself as you would someone who is unbelievably insecure and lashes out regularly.  That part of you is like a person drowning looking for anything close to push down on in order to get above the surface.  You are going to have to be disciplined and diligent when it comes to either cutting off the nasty comments or reframing them and reprogramming the responses of your own personal bully.  When you are able to do this the world will open up in ways you never realized it would.  When you are supportive to yourself you can breathe, you are lighter.  

How would anyone fare being abused daily?  Ok, now look at your life and the areas you would like to be improved, would support help in this area?  Would some positive reinforcement be a motivating force?  I believe so.  Try it, what do you have to lose except that abusive bully that lives inside you.  Your higher self is waiting.

xo

a

How Are You Doing?

Hello there, Have you ever had a friend who was going through something potentially devastating?  How did you connect with them?  Did you connect with them?  What were the first words that came out of your mouth or were texted from your fingers?  So often we immediately respond with sounds and words of lamentation.  We say we are sorry, we take on what we feel the appropriate response to whatever the situation is that we are being told about.  Other times we communicate what we believe we would feel if we were going through what our friend/loved one was experiencing.  Psychologists say that this show of empathy is supportive.  I agree that empathy is important, indeed.  My concern is for the person going through whatever the fuss is about.  How do they actually feel?  What if they feel differently than the societal norm?  What if they aren't sad, angry, confused?  What if they were ok with the situation or felt a great sense of peace.  If they go against what others would believe appropriate they not only have to deal with their own judgment of their response but the judgment of someone else who has presupposed a certain reaction.  

I tend to be someone who doesn't react to things the way that society would suggest is normal.  I know that everything happens for a reason.  I rarely lament my situation or experiences.  I am never a victim and I feel like I can change my world by changing my view.  When I am faced with news or a situation that would be perceived as challenging I usually move through it quickly.  Even when I am crying or angry or quiet and sullen I am choosing those feelings in order to absorb the importance of the experience as well as allow the emotions to run their course and not block them.  I feel deeply and quickly move on.   Most of my close family and friends understand that I am overall consistently content.  Others just don't get how I am able to see the shining light in every seemingly dark night.  Well, first you have to look for it.

I prefer to be asked how I am feeling about a certain situation before anyone decides to feel any which way about it.  After all, whatever has happened hasn't happened to you, right?  Why take it on before you know how I or whomever, is handling it?  What if someone finally broke up with their boyfriend after years of being done?  What if they never told anyone that they were ecstatic at the prospect of being away from a toxic environment?  You wouldn't know these things without asking how they were feeling about the breakup.  Asking how someone is doing before deciding that the situation is awful is a good rule of thumb.  The question demonstrates that the focus is on the person going through the drama.  The answer to the question is a great guide on how this person needs to be supported.  If they tell you that they have never felt better you are now off the hook for feeling bad… you can rejoice with them.  If they are feeling down and out you can help lift them up…

We project our feelings onto one another all of the time.  Rarely do we give each other the opportunity to own their own responses to life's ups and downs.  Try asking how someone is taking a life event before deciding to place your own personality and ideal response on it.  You just may be surprised and they just might get supported.

xo

a

openness

Your Job Is Great

Howdy, When you do a good job on something that is good for you the thanks come in the form of improvement.  You don't actually get external praise for taking care of yourself.  I do think it is only natural to want to get some love for a job well done.  We all like positive reinforcement.  We all want love.  The thing is, at this point a job well done is a job that truly is just getting the basics done.  Most people aren't even touching the surface of going beyond what is necessary to just exist and feel great.  Feeling great is actually an accomplishment these days… and one that isn't reached very often.  We live in a world where people are sick and exhausted, unhappy and unmotivated, malnourished and obese, and believe that this is just living…  So when someone doesn't feel crappy, doesn't eat crappy, doesn't think crappy praise is sometimes desired.  I believe you need to praise yourself and move forward and not expect it from anyone else.

Your work is you.  You and only you, not even your kids.  In other words, the only person who you can be attached to an outcome with is yourself.  Your body, your mind, your heart and your soul are all yours to take care of at the very minimum.  We have gotten so far away from our selves that we think we aren't even our responsibility.  By the time we get around to recognizing that we have to take care of ourselves we are in a state of disarray.  Our bodies are hurting, our minds are slow, our emotions are stunted.  It often takes a big even to even alert us to the fact that we are gifted with this body, this heart and this mind and it may be able to take a lot of abuse but we do break at some point.  What if you didn't wait until you broke to keep everything running smoothly?  What if you didn't think it was a big deal to do the bare minimum to stay great?  Imagine that world where we are all running around feeling, looking and thinking our best.  What if breaking was a rare situation, the exception instead of the norm?  

We praise father's for not leaving.  We praise people for losing weight.  We praise people for getting good grades.  We have really low expectations it seems.  We have made doing the bare minimum as a person an exceptional feat.  At this point the ones that are doing their work steadily and succeeding are the exception and nothing to write home about.  I do believe in positive reinforcement, but with self-care, that is the by-product, end result, the point, everything.  When you take care of yourself you are taken care of.  You don't need to be told that you are awesome, doing a great job or coddled by anyone, though it is always nice, it isn't necessary or needed.  Your own self-confidence (another result of self-care) is plenty.  Your own sense of well-being is the reward for being great to you.  When you live your life as if it was the miracle it is and treated it with the utmost of care we would live in a different world.  

How can you stop taking yourself for granted and making excuses?  How can you stop comparing yourself to the broken ones around you and begin to look skyward with confidence?  How can you imagine something bigger something more for yourself and believe that not only is it a possibility but it is your destiny?  The only limits are those your mind can dream up, the only obstacle is you.  What will you do to get beyond yourself so you can fully rise to becoming your Self?

xo

a

sky-clouds-3wax

Letting Go of What You Know

Hello, How are you responding to your life?  Are you resisting or accepting?  If you aren't sure then think about the ease of your life.  Is there any or are you stressed and generally unhappy?  We tend to resist change and accept what we have grown accustomed to (even when it doesn't make us happy).  We resist change so much that it often comes in the form of big life events that are difficult or impossible for us to ignore.  We humans actually believe that we have some control over the movement of the universe, that we can make things happen how and when we would like them to.  We have some influence, indeed.  After all we are all co-creators of this world.  In reality we are waking up to a new possibility each day, one where the best tool in your bag is curiosity.  

In order to live a life that has a bit less struggle and a lot more snuggle :)  (I sometimes just like to rhyme) you are going to first come to the understanding that you don't need to know everything.  You can trust and have faith that things are happening for a reason and to be open to understanding later.  You can also recognize that as time passes your information will change.  What you know to be the case now will not necessarily stay the same in the future.  Each day brings with it surprises.  Planning is important and valuable, being attached to the plan is a hinderance when plans change (note that it isn't "if" plans change).  Everything is in motion.  Nothing is the way it was yesterday, or two minutes ago for that's sake.  Our desire and efforts to keep things as is is futile on every level and on every layer.  When we are curious, this truth that the only constant is inconsistency or change, becomes less fear making and inspires more creativity and risk taking.  

 

This brings me back to whether you are accepting or resisting your life.  When you accept change as a way of life you live a life with so much less fear.  You become curious about what the change that is presenting itself means.  This doesn't mean that you aren't sometimes afraid, resistant or unhappily surprised.  It just means that you are able to let go of these old programmed responses quickly and come to a place where you begin to see that there is more to change than shock.  There is a depth of acceptance that resistance simply cannot appreciate.  Acceptance is where growth begins.  Growth can only happen when you have an understanding that there is more than what is and curiosity is the gift of staying open to all of the information the situation you are in has to offer you.  You are like a sponge from the day you are conceived.  You soak up information and choose how to use it throughout your life.  As you age you begin to either continue to absorb or dry up.  Imagine absorbing throughout, being as curious, as accepting as a baby is.  How would you see the world differently if you believed it was a never-ending all-knowing school?  How would your life change?

xo

a

2013-05-24 20.23.20

Newbie

Hi there, I am always learning something.  There is something in my life that I am just beginning, have been doing a while and then there are the things I am an expert at.  As a coach I am working with people at various stages in their lives.  Some have never been asked the questions I ask, given the challenges I give or had to do the work I assign. So they are basically novices in the process that I take them through.  If I am not also where they are in some way I wouldn't be able to relate to them enough to help them move forward.  It is imperative that I know what if feels like to need help, to stumble, to get back up and continue on.  Life isn't about coasting, not much is learned on the downhill.  

I understand that a lot of grown-ups like things that are familiar to them and strive for a life where that is all that surrounds them.  They want a schedule, they want predictability, they want to be viewed as skilled.  Being new at something does not make you look cool.  You will stumble, you may fail at first and you most certainly won't be the expert or go to person if you are trying something new.  You may need to ask for help also, which can be difficult for many grown-up egos.  You may need to work really hard (compared to not having to work that hard at the things you have been doing for 20+ years) and you may not pick it up as quickly as you would like to or think you should.  

Learning something new is like becoming a child again.  It can be exciting, stimulating, brain boosting, and fun, if you let it be.  You build new connections neurologically, you learn about yourself emotionally and psychologically and you learn something new in general.  You also, as a by-product, become more empathetic to those who are not experts in the areas you are.  You can relate to someone not picking something up quickly where otherwise you might just be impatient with them.  You see yourself in others that are not where you are.  Your compassion grows (or is born).  Learning something new pushes you to be more of all of you… it reminds you of who you were, are and can be.  

Being a novice is a fantastically humbling experience that I enjoy helping my clients relive.  Being somewhere new gives you perspective you cannot get with the familiar.  Challenge yourself, do something out of your comfort zone.  This is where the great stuff is.  You miss out on so much of life when you keep yourself shielded from being uncool, clueless and brand new.  Life is meant to be messy and sloppy and colorful.  Life is meant to challenge and change you.  There are so many things to do, so many things to try, so much life to be lived.  Try something new each day, week, month or year… you pick.  Try something that challenges your expertise and your comfort.  See how your life changes and becomes richer with these experiences and see how much closer you get to yourself as well.

xo

a

Play Hard

Howdy!! We all deserve to know what it feels like to be able to move our bodies without worrying whether we can or not.  I remember when I was a kid waking up in the summer and thinking about being outside.  I wanted to run, play, see my friends, get on the monkey bars or the merry-go-round.  My sister and I would have to be called inside to eat and would stay out until it was dark.  I remember waking up the next day and doing it all over.  At no point did I ever remark being too tired to have fun or concern myself with over-training.  I honestly cannot ever looking at my sister and saying, "Yeah, I think I need to sit today out, I played yesterday."  No child was concerned with overdoing it when we were growing up… you played until you passed out.  Really we were just recharging.  

Something changed.  We started sitting for longer periods of time.  Our bodies changed and our emotional worlds transformed as well.  We stopped feeling free to just run around and laugh.  Playing was discouraged and activity became a controlled and specific thing.  You played a sport for 'x' amount of time and you had a million hours of homework.  Rules were put into place around how someone behaves who is mature vs someone who is not.  Playing became something that you did as a child but not as an adult.  If you look around, kids are way more happy than adults.  They are doing something really well and it amazes me how we refuse to truly see what is in front of us all of the time.  Movement is joy.  Movement is fun.  Movement helps you be able to do more movement which allows you to have more joy and more fun. 

Look at your life… go ahead and do it.  Maybe you will want to sit down before you truly open your eyes to it.  If we were taking a walk and I asked you to race me to the next block what would your initial feeling, then thought be?  Most would be freaked out because you aren't a good runner, you aren't wearing the right shoes, you might get sweaty, you only run when chased…  What if I asked you to climb a tree with me or asked you to skip for a bit.  Would you be nervous to move your body or would you be excited to see how fast you could go?  We, as a society, are melting away.  We are so unfit that the younger generation's life expectancy is less than our generation.  We worry about overtraining and needing a day off when all we do is 30-45min of activity per day.  We think eating is the same as going to a movie.  We think wheat thins are food and that food needs to be convenient.  

We have a lot of things to untwist in our heads.  You don't need to eat things that aren't good for you, you want to… and just like someone who wants to do crack, it is wack so figure out a way to let that addiction go.  You don't have to sit on your ass all day everyday, you choose to.  Choose something else.  Seriously.  Stop making excuses.  You don't need to 'rest' from your 'workouts' you need to move your body more.  You rest at night and for the 8+ hours you stare at a computer screen.  What needs to change is your approach to your life, if you want your life to change.  With the right nutrition and mindset you would be bouncing off the walls, helping to create recess at your place of business, and taking breaks to do pushups, relay races and such.  Playing is much more beneficial than working 9 hours a day.  What you learn running around with others about yourself and them is invaluable.  Play activates much more of your brain than imitating a robot.

You deserve to feel great, look great and be great.  Let the excuses go and start seeing how far you can take yourself.  Prepare to be  not only surprised but amazed.

Have FUN!!!

xo

a

1280px-Ultimate_Frisbee,_Jul_2009_-_17

Go Get It

Holla! What are you willing to do to get what you want?  Seriously?  Are you ready to stop making excuses and actually accomplish what you want to?  So many things start with the reasons why you cannot.  What if you shifted your focus on the reasons you could do something.  What is it you want to accomplish?  What dreams do you have?  We have a million reasons why we don't do what we are truly hankering to do.  

Some of the reasons/excuses are: 

Not enough time, not enough money, not enough support, don't know where to start, too busy, not good at what you want to do, family or friends think it is stupid, too many people doing it already, desire to have a certain outcome, afraid of seeming selfish, you don't know what you want and many more.  This list is in no way a complete one.  There are many, many more excuses that I am sure you can come up with.  Regardless of the nature of the reason/excuse there are no ones that actually can hold a candle to the truth.  The truth is, of course there is no reason you cannot succeed at your dreams.  You are absolutely capable of doing whatever you set your mind to and are willing to work for.  The issue is with your excuses and your actual desire to be somewhere you aren't yet.

When you want something bad enough you won't stop to get it.  When you want your dreams as much as you want food to eat when you are starving, warmth when you are freezing, air when you cannot breathe, or love when you are desperate and lonely, you will stop at nothing make them a reality.  You won't worry about whether you got enough sleep or if someone thinks you are selfish for pursuing your dreams.  You will stop saying you don't have enough time and will use the time you used to use making excuses to get closer to realizing your dreams.  When you are done with the reasons you cannot you will only have the reasons you can…When you want something else more than what you have in this moment, you are well on your way.

I have always wanted to write consistently.  When I graduated from college I promised myself that I would write regularly.  It took me over a decade and a half to make that happen, but it happened when I was done with not having that dream be a part of my life.  It doesn't matter if I want to get sleep, I want to write more.  It doesn't matter if I am missing seeing my friends, I have a dream that needs my attention and I will give it that until it grows into what I know it can be.  Nothing and no one will get in the way of my bringing my dreams into this world.  There is no reason good enough to stop me from being happy.  No excuse valid enough for me to abandon what I truly want for myself.  My dreams are not about pleasing or making others comfortable.  It is about me doing what I want and loving it.  That is pure love, that is happiness. 

So, what did you say you wanted?

world fingers

xo

a

I Want...

Hola!

I want to do 1000 push ups daily and a million other physical feats that I will keep listing here and there.  I want to be a superhero and pole dance like Jenyne Butterfly.  I want to be able to be able to just lift off of the ground and hover until I decide to go somewhere, and then I want to just be there, in a flash.  I want to be able to pick everyone up around me and swing them like when they were little and loved to be held.  I want to give back massages to the masses and then free them from their desk jobs like freeing frogs from freshman biology lab.  I want to show people what life could be like if they loved themselves and enjoyed each and every moment, even when it was hard.  I want so many things and they are all valid and wonderful and possible.  

 You want things too.  You do.  You want to keep your relationship steamy and delicious.  You want to have work that you consider fun and forget that you get paid.  You want to feel worthy and deserving all of the time.  You want to be fearless unless it is necessary for your safety.  You want to be loved and be love.  We all do.  There are a lot of other things that you want that you refuse to admit to.  We censor so much of ourselves, judge it really.  We spend so much time deciding that what we want, what we desire is something that is impossible, not cool, acceptable or important that we forget that we create all of this, everything around us.  Someone somewhere decided that smells should be sprayed and we have perfume and air freshener.  Another person thought it would be cool to jump out of  a plane and not die… tada: the parachute was born!  Better yet, someone or something imagined us into existence and here we are.  Now, how do we go from the amazing miracles that exist in our everyday to believing that we cannot have what we want??

Look around, how many things can be explained to the source.  Really.  Even the idea of God… where, how, why?  Where does God come from?  Where does the universe originate and why?  What is this thing called existence?  If we can be here posing these questions with no certain or universally accepted answer then why can I not fly by just deciding it to be so (and working hard at it)?  Why can't we stop the madness of sitting for hours on end hating what we do and create a different paradigm?  Why do we keep doing the things that someone made up that we don't like?  Make something new up.  Seriously.  

I am going to keep on stating my wants loudly and proudly.  You never know who is listening and can help you bring your wants into reality.  Speak them for yourself, be unafraid and have fun.  This is life, no one is going to get out of it alive so what do you have to lose?

xo

a

ps - Two videos for your pleasure :)

Jenyne Butterfly being amazing: http://youtu.be/waIuhfoTMv8

Tee Major doing some pretty awesome shizznit: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POdzasJklxw

Imagine

Hey sweets, imagine 2

Quick answer these questions:  How would you describe yourself?  What are the most awesome things about you?  What do you bring to a situation that you enter into (take your pick on the situation)?  If you are stumbling over answering any of these questions, or would prefer not to, we have some work to do.  I am going to make a wild guess (honestly not at all wild, but you got my sarcasm I am sure) that you could answer these questions without hesitation:  What are the things you need to fix or work on about yourself?  What are your least yummy qualities?  What would you change about you if you had 3 wishes?  

It is interesting how we can find the issues with ourselves way quicker than we can find what is fantastic and amazeballs.  I have a hard time finding my areas of concern… mainly because I really enjoy all of me.  Imagine what that feels like, to enjoy who you are.  You wake up in the morning and you remember you are who you are and you smile.  You are excited because you get to be this person all day.  She is fun, funny, exuberant, energetic, healthy, active, loving and curious.  She expects the best and most days gets it.  She knows that anything is possible, that everything happens for a reason and that nothing is permanent.  She is on her way and the way is the point.  Imagine embodying that plus other delicious feelings, ideas, theories, etc.  How hard would it be to worry, fear, dread, and lament?  Pretty damn hard… and pretty damn useless.  

First, find out what your light (you are light so find out more about yours) does when it enters a room.  Does it get brighter, dimmer, is it turned off or is it shining on everything like the sun or the moon.  Discover what people enjoy about you and see if it is the same thing or things you enjoy about you.  Find out who you are when you are at your best… whatever you consider your best to be.  Spend time asking yourself questions like you are actually interested in finding out the answer.  Treat yourself like a beautiful stranger you would love to spend the rest of your life with.  Have fun with you, learning you, catering to you and your every need.  Then wake up to the you you would want to be… every day work to be all of the things you know about you that you love.  Honestly, it isn't hard, you just need to be intentional about it.  You cannot expect to get to the place where each morning you fall in love all over again with yourself if you are not willing to wake up and do whatever it is that is necessary to enjoy, cherish and appreciate all of you.  

We are very, very special and deserve to be focused on completely.  You aren't ever going to get the kind of love you can give from anyone else. Why are you withholding?  Why are you hesitant to let it pour out of you into you and out again?  We need everyone feeling special and great and loving unconditionally.  Imagine if the world had all the love we are holding onto like there was no more to go around?  Imagine if you took absolute wonderful care of you?  What would that look like, how would that feel… how free would we all be?

Imagine.

xo

a