Monday, 27 May 2013

Rainbows & Puppies + a Dash of Crap = Your Clear Vision

Feeling good about yourself and your life can sometimes be a toughy. Life isn't always rainbows and puppies. Sometimes there is crap. And I am so glad that you are getting your share of both.

                     Wait a min. Did she just say that she is glad that I am getting 
                     my share of crap?  Isn't she meant to be all positive and sunny
                     and make me feel good about there being rainbows and puppies 
                     around every corner? 

Yes. To both. I do wish for you rainbows and puppies, of course I do. If I could wave my magic wand and keep your magic and good stuff in overflow I totally would. But I know the secret and that is why I am glad you are getting a plate full of both. 

When all is good and you are in the flow, when all things are coming to you with ease and bringing with them nothing but joy, you know that you want more of the same. It's clearly a pattern that is working for you and it's easy to be very aware of the good things in your experiences. Conversely, when you are standing smack dab in the middle of  a lot of stress and dark crap, it's sometimes hard to see the gift that is being given to you. And you may not want to hear that there is a gift in there somewhere,  but there is. And though you may not be able to see it just now, you will see it eventually. The simple acknowledgment of it's being crap is a part of your growth process too and it's helping to get you to your better place. 

How do you know you don't like asparagus unless you have tasted it? Now that you have tasted it you can decide that you don't want to eat it ever again. But before then it would just be a guess and not something that you could have complete clarity about. That is how we narrow down the list of all possible desires to the ones that are right for us. Exactly the same way your mom had you try different vegetables in order for you to know what there was on offer and decide what it is that you wanted more of. The Universe too, has a buffet of experiences on offer to you. By having an experience you gain insight as to what feels good for you, what you can say taught you something about yourself that made you who you are today, what you would like more of and what you tasted once but never will again. 

In no way am I saying that you need to try every single type of experience that the Universe has to offer to anyone ever, in order for you to know that there are some things that you do not want to try. You don't need to try to be a drug addict living on the streets in fear in order to know that that is not a buffet item you are interested in. Yet a little bit of crap can do us some good. 

So you see, we do need both. And that makes the less good stuff valuable even though it doesn't feel good. Move through it. Learn what you needed to learn. Close the chapter and know that you have been there, done that, had that experience and now you know with certainly that you don't need to repeat that one again. Its kind of the way most of us feel about high school.  We did it. We learned a lot. Some of it was fun, some of it was crap. We are glad we did it, but we know that we learned what we needed to learn, and that we don't want to do it again.

                      So now what? Is she saying that I am meant to embrace with 
                      open arms the stress and crap in my life, 'cause there is X, Y Z 
                      happening and I don't want to embrace any of that.

Not quite. I am not asking you to be untrue to yourself or to try to love something that you have already decided is not serving you. What I am suggesting is that there may be something in there somewhere that is good for you. It might be disguised or buried deep, and it may be tough to see, but figure out what it is. Learn whatever it is that this person or experience has been brought to you to teach you. Find a certain appreciation for that part as it has been a key player in your own personal expansion. Take that part with you and leave the rest. 

Now that you have tasted this menu item tell the Universe whether or not you want more of it on your plate. If not then look at it like asparagus. You tried it and now you can, with clarity, cross it off the list of items that you want served at your party and move on. Use this time to focus yourself on asking for what it is that you DO want, and let that be the geography in which your mind lives.  

What stressful dark crap have you dealt with that you can now see as having done you a kindness in the long run? Is there something that you have done that you know was integral in making you the awesome person that you are today, but that you have zero desire in ever doing again? Without focusing on that crap but on the gift that was hidden in it, share your story below and maybe help another who is going through something similar now to see their hidden gift.

Monday, 20 May 2013

Waiting Room Chat That Left Me Questioning.

Making new friends or being friendly with strangers often is a result of finding our common ground and building from there. But why is that we we so often seek misery as our foundation for building? 

This week, as I sat in the waiting room at the Breast Cancer Centre, I really listened to what was happening around me. I was with my mom and we were waiting to see the surgeon for her post surgical follow up. (All of Mom's results were really positive. Thanks for asking.) This particular doctor is one who takes her time with each of her patients -- whatever time is needed. Often the wait can be long as she gets backed up as the day goes on. Waiting is fine with us because we know that when its our turn she will give her undivided attention to only those who are in the room, and answer every question more than once if necessary to be sure all are leaving her office feeling the very best that they can. The waiting room was a two and a half hour experience and it was so incredibly interesting to me.  

Hi, my name is Kate and I am an eavesdropper. ("Hi Kate").  I can't help myself. I am so incredibly interested in people, the way we think, and in trying to offer a perhaps new or alternate idea, that any chance to hear people share their thoughts on anything captures my attention. This was not only no exception, but it was an incredible eye opening experience. 

For years I have been learning and now teaching that what expands in your life is whatever you choose to give your attention to. (The Law of Attraction) And now here I was sitting in a room full of women who were in some stage of their cancer treatment and I couldn't help but notice that there was not as much focus on healing as I would have expected. My mother, and perhaps one other, were the only ones who were focusing on the good stuff that was going on. (I am convinced that that is one of the reasons that Mom's results have come back as wonderfully as they did. Her outlook has been exceptional.)

I was not at all surprised by the sharing that was going on. I think women are known for enjoying bonding time with each other. I think that that sharing is important in building any kind of expanded outlook or idea in the world. Sharing a new favourite wine, restaurant, hairdresser or blog is a wonderful way to find what's good. Sharing about what is "less loved" can also be helpful. Tried, tested and unloved is often a great product to avoid. But Ladies, where is your focus at????

The conversations were varied in topic and yet the ribbon theme was "lack" and the underlying energy was dark. On top of that, each topic was shared with a powerful emotional attachment. Uh oh.....

Topic + Strong Emotion = Manifestation

The ladies that I listened to complained about not only the long wait (which was mildly surprising considering the level of committed care we were all receiving in turn). They complained about Dr.s that they had not had to work with but had heard bad things about. They compared their individual levels of hardship in life as if they were competing for some sort of prize. They chatted about our heath care system in general, a likely topic on which to find common ground given the current hospital waiting room situation. But the conversation was NOT about how well they been cared for in our Canadian health care system or how blessed they felt to be here and not elsewhere. The conversation WAS about sharing stories of those (known or unknown) who were not in Canada and who were struggling to get the care needed for a multitude of reasons. To an outside eavesdropper it was so clear that each woman stood on the same side of every issue, yet not one of them talked about the side of their good fortune. A bond was so clearly being formed among like minded souls and yet the foundation being laid was in a perspective of lack.  From there they shared the same opinions of horrible news headlines from the recent weeks and of similar tales from headlines of years gone by . Headlines of murder and fear, not of the miraculous recovery being made by the three young women found alive after having been missing for 10 years. Again, each of them was of the same opinion but none of them was approaching the conversation from a place of power. Ladies. Focus on something else please. Talk about the sunny spring weather or something I am begging you. Put your energy somewhere more uplifting.

Why is it that we bond over strife more often than over success? Why don't we cut the modesty and share some good news? Is it that sharing the ugly stuff is some mixed up way in which we are trying to lighten our load, or have we really just become that much more comfortable with our suffering sides that that is the one we put forward to a stranger, in a waiting room, to build a bond?

I am certainly not in a place to say why anyone would ever contract a disease of any kind. And though my thoughts have wandered many times to the link between our healthy positively focused minds and our healthy positively focused bodies, I am not one who has done research in fully understanding the connection. But say we spend some time and energy in reforming some of our habits of thought. Maybe we put a little effort into deliberately changing our approach to a few things. What have we got to lose really? A few "less than awesome" habits that perhaps aren't serving us well anyway....?? Sounds like a gamble that I will take myself. 

I would love for you to use the section below to tell me about your approach to creating a bond with a stranger or a friend? What topics do you use as your foundation for building common ground? 

Monday, 13 May 2013

Why Winning Sucks Just as Much as Losing

Everyone wants to win. But not me. I think that winning sucks just as much as losing. Or at least, I am really trying that attitude on for size. What's up with that? It's not because I am completely self aware and totally Zen or anything. I am as competitive as the next girl. And it's not because of any fears of losing. I have considered that and I know that there was a time when that may have rung more truth bells than I care to admit. But because I am learning to love me as I am and that feels better than anything that I have ever won.

I am competitive. It's in my nature. I was (working on that and its going well so I am allowing myself the past tense as a kind of reward) also afraid to loose so I would try to be selective about competing when I could be. I have albums and boxes full of ribbons and medals I earned as a child in both synchronized and competitive race swimming. I was good at that and so that became my "speciality". Never a well rounded sportsman I stuck with what I knew. And it felt good to win, I won't deny that. I competed in everything that I thought I could win. That sent me out into the world competing only where I thought I had a shot at winning. Not trying what I thought I would lose. Sabotaging myself along the way if what I thought I had a shot at went south. And feeling bad about myself in areas that weren't meant to be an obvious competition but yet were. That last part seems to be a natural part of being a teenage girl, but its been many a moon since I was a teen and though I now know how to handle that part of me, that part still shows up once and a while.

Competing in sports is healthy. Sure, I get that. But can the competition be kept on the playing field? I'm not so sure that is the direction in which many of us are heading. We compete in school. We talk about it being a competitive job market after school. We compete for the promotion. Corporations compete for market share. We compete with the models in the magazines, with our neighbours and our peers.  Heck, kids now compete to even make it onto the playing field to begin with. And I have watched people compete to be next in line at the coffee shop. Really?! Do you think that guy is gonna get the last cup of coffee there is?

How do we then expect to grow up and not compare ourselves to each other in every way. She is prettier or skinnier. He makes more money than I do. They have more than we do. That's a nicer car than mine.

What do many of us do? We get comfortable with our competitive side and then follow those comparisons up with a big dose of blame to make ourselves feel 'better'. We say things like "You can't have it all" or "Life isn't always fair". It's not my fault.  His father got him that job. She doesn't have to work so she gets to go to the gym everyday. Their parents both have top jobs and so ____.  (For the record blame is the quickest path to feeling worse about ourselves not better)

When there can only be one winner there are usually many who are left comparing themselves and coming up short. How on earth can one have that kind of inner monologue going on and still grow up to be a truly comfortable and confident adult? Is it any wonder that so many of us end up in a place where what we DO feel is a lot of lack and what we DON'T  feel is a lot of love for ourselves.

Winner or loser, either outcome fosters our competitive side, and that side is not what leads us to a place of fulfilment. I vote we dial back the competition. What would a world feel like where nobody felt the need to "keep up with the Jones'"? Where we could all embrace exactly who we are? What would it look like if personal growth began in a place of wanting to feel good instead of in wanting to feel better than anyone else? How would it feel to live in a place where success was born in an environment of support and our only competition was the one that we were having with ourselves?

Competition leaves us striving for more not because finding that level of more will feel good but because we believe that losing will feel bad. Let's leave the competition among us on the sports fields and remember that the Universe is a place of abundance, and it can and does care of us all in exactly the way we allow it to. 

I don't want to consider myself a winner or a loser because 
I don't want to be a competitor. 

Where are you competing and how does it make you feel? Are you driven by the great feelings that winning will bring to you or by your wanting to avoid the bad feelings that might come with losing? Leave a comment and share your story. 

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Monday, 6 May 2013

How to Prolong the Fun

I had the very very very best idea for a birthday gift for my sister. OOOOHHH it was a delicious idea. She was going to be thrilled. The excitement we would all feel when she opened the gift bag and saw evidence of how much I love her and how well I know her was thrilling for me and I hadn't even been shopping yet! WOW! It was SO MUCH FUN to imagine. I played that moment over and over in my head like a favourite old movie. Each time was just as exciting as the last.  I was having A LOT OF FUN.

Where would I find this perfect present? There are three places I might find it. I decided I'd go to all three and be sure that I got the absolute best one.  I'd go on my treasure hunt next week.  In the mean time I Googled and admired and was so proud of my most brilliant idea. Planning the shopping trip was SUPER FUN!

Oh what a day! The sun was shinning, the radio was playing and I was singing right along. I went to all 3 shops and then back to the second one. Not only did they have the perfect colour they had the most beautiful gift wrap ON SALE!  Now this was WAY FUN!!

It's so perfect! And it's so pretty! I tied the ribbon just so and I added a little flower. Gift wrapping is always SO MUCH FUN!

I could hardly wait to give it to her. The anticipation was  SUPER FUN!!!

I told my mom what I had done. She was excited too and that was even MORE FUN!

Finally. Party time. I brought the pretty package to dinner. I watched as my sister eyed the wrapping, taking special note of her excitement. She had no idea how great it was inside. 

She opened the gift slowly. I was so happy that she loved the wrapping and was savoring her moment, but in the same breath I wished she was a ripper. The anticipation was palpable. This FEELS SO GOOD! Her reaction is awesome! Just what I was hoping for.  And then it was over. 

Just like that. I had spent so much time thinking and planning and shopping and it was all 
so much fun. Then the moment arrived, and in 3 quick minuets it was all over. I was thrilled that she loved it. My moment had manifested just as I had wanted. But now it was gone and as I was coming down from my high she opened a gift from her best friend.  It was identical to what I had given her. I came down a wee bit further. I dipped there for just a moment before I remembered
my fun.

I had had so much fun along the way. The manifestation of it all didn't work out exactly as I had planned, but I had had SO MUCH FUN getting there.

There are 3 AWESOME  GIFTS that I got for My Sister's Birthday 
  1. The fun along the way had lifted my vibration for days and that will have played a role in all other parts of my life. 
  1. My sister knows how much I love her and how well I know her. 
  1. My sister has me AND friends who also know her and love her.

So really, though it didn't pan out as I had imagined, it had worked out better than any script I could have written.

Did you pick up my message here?

Have some fun! Your life is about the journey and it's meant to be FUN. So enjoy the ride and be open the the manifestation, however it happens. We can plan and pre pave and script and practice and as powerful as that is, the exact outcome may not be as we had pictured it. The Universe is all knowing and has a plan for our highest good that we may not be able to see from where we stand. Focus on the joy of the journey and not the destination and allow yourself to be surprised and delighted along the way. IT'S WAY MORE FUN.

What have you done that maybe didn't turn out as you had imagined, but was SUPER FUN to do? Was the way it turned out even better than you'd thought it would be?