Take a deep breath.
Put your hands on your heart. Take another deep breath.
Feel into your presence.
Notice where you are.
Breathe into yourself and the present moment.
Pick a number between 1 and 100.
Got your number?
I'm currently enrolled in the mindbodygreen course 'Guided Visualizations' by Emily Fletcher. Visualization is a powerful tool that many professionals, particularly athletes, intuitively know is the key to a positive outcome.
I initially began with the video to help put a person at ease when interviewing, hoping it would help ease my anxiousness whenever I have to pitch a story idea.
At first I wasn't sure if it was working, but I have been noticing lately subtle changes in how I feel. I feel less afraid overall, which I think is in part because in the visualization she says to see yourself walking into the room and knowing you belong there . This in itself caused a big shift in how I view myself and my place in this world.
I stopped playing the interview video and decided today I was ready for the one that really scares me - public speaking. Eep! I have tangled with my fear of public speaking for years. What I know about this fear is it's the fear of being seen and not being liked. On a deeper level, it's the fear of confrontation, because I'm afraid I'll say something someone won't like and they'll want to confront me about it.
When I sat down to play the video I wasn't as nervous as I expected I would be. Yes, even the idea of visualizing public speaking makes me nervous. This tells me that perhaps the first visualization was doing more than I realized.
Emily began by talking about when she was nervous to give a talk at Google Headquarters, and her husband said something to the effect of, "Stop thinking of it as having only two possible outcomes - success or failure. There's a whole range of points on the scale in between!"
This shift in perspective released so much weight off of me. I could see how this more open perspective applies to so many things in life. More often than not, we do a good enough job. There are hardly any times when we do such an atrocious job that we feel we totally bombed. And yet, we approach most things with the expectation of either knocking it out of the park or blowing it in epic proportions.
And when we don't have a slam dunk success, we automatically deem it a failure. But what about all the shades of gray in between those two black and white points?
Before this, I really was fixated on two ways my public speaking (and most things in my life) would go - absolute success or absolute failure.
That doesn't leave a lot of room for growth. It doesn't allow me to start at hey I didn't pass out from nerves, that went better than I thought! It doesn't allow me to start where I am and then say, you know what, that was good enough. I got up there, I did my thing, and it was fine.
I know it's not exciting, but sometimes aiming for "good enough" is just what we need to calm our minds and stop the anxiety train. It feels great to know we nailed something and did the absolute best we could, but starting with "good enough" or even "I made it through" might be what we need in order to get to, "That was the best I've ever done!"
I'm going to try using this new approach when I feel overwhelmed by the fear and doubt that tends to creep in when I'm putting myself out there. I believe it could help take the pressure off, and when there's no pressure things tend to unfold as they're meant to.
This program is the only work outside of my own that I sell in my webstore. I personally believe in it and return to it all the time. If you'd like to learn more about the modules and visualizations head on over to mindbodygreen. The course is $59.99 and yours to keep for life.
Guided Visualizations with Emily Fletcher
How To Overcome Your Fears, Excel At Work & Have Mind-Blowing Sex
Breathe in the energy of a new day.
Breathe out all that's behind you, all that's done.
Today is a day you will be supported by the whole Universe.
Today is a day all your hopes and dreams will be heard by the Divine.
You are not alone today.
You are loved and supported by all that keeps this world alive and moving forwards.
Your deepest desires are held in the hands of your Creator,
where they are protected and nourished as they are brought to life.
Today is a new day, full of new possibility.
Today is a day of your own design.
What you think about today will create the world around you.
Think about what you love.
Think about what brings you joy.
Think about what makes you feel alive.
Think about the flowers blooming, the birds soaring, and all that is well, right outside your window.
Today is a new day.
Breathe in the energy of a new day.
Breathe out all that's behind you, all that's done.
I wish you many blessings and moments of joy and love today.
Breathe in the renewal
The season of blossoming is all around us
Seedlings pop out of the ground
Trees bloom with fresh flowers
Butterflies flit about, excited by all the sources of nourishment
Baby birds chirp in their nests, excited to be free of their shell
It is your time to bloom and grow also
Come out of your shell
Breathe in the fresh air
Breathe life into your dreams
Nourish them as the rain nourishes the flowers
You are a garden of possibility
Believe in yourself! Have faith in your abilities! Without a humble but reasonable confidence in your own powers you cannot be successful or happy.
- Norman Vincent Peale
I feel like the entire Universe is a big creative project that's on going.
There's this static state version of the Universe, which is the sort of Biblical idea of it, which says, "The Universe was created and then it stopped. And we're just rattling around inside of it." And then there's the actual truth about the Universe, which is that it's being created.
It's creating itself and it wants to be more complex, more beautiful, bigger, bolder, stranger, and so it's constantly working with new form. So literally every single piece of energy in the Universe is going in the direction of expansion, invention, creativity, the new, strange combinations that make no sense - this is what's happening in real time.
That's what the river and the current of energy of the Universe are. Whenever we step into that and make stuff and participate in that we are healthy because we're being backed up by literally all the energy of the Universe. And whenever we step out of that, and stop being creative, and become passive, the reason we get sick is because we're going against the entire grain of the Universe.
It's unnatural not to make art.
It's no wonder you feel heavy and depressed and lethargic when you stop your creative flow. It's because you're in the wrong direction. There's a field that's going this way, and you're going the wrong way or no way at all. And so when you enter into that stream, you're healed. You're healed by everything else that is also going in that direction.
Nothing that comes your way in life is too much for you.
We all go through challenges. Disappointments. Unfair situations. It's easy to let it overwhelm us, to where we think "This is too much. I can't deal with this illness. I can't handle this difficult child. Or, I can't take this traffic, it's driving me crazy!"
God would not have allowed it if you couldn't handle it. But as long as you're telling yourself it's too much, you'll talk yourself out of it. You've got to get in agreement with God. You are not weak. You are full of can-do power. All through the day, whether you're stuck in traffic or facing a major disappointment, you're attitude should be, "I can handle it."
I can handle this grouchy boss. I can handle this difficult child. I can handle these people talking about me.
You can't have a weak, defeated mentality. You've got to have a warrior mentality.
No person can keep you from your destiny. No bad break, no disappointment, no sickness.
My mother was diagnosed with terminal liver cancer in 1981, given a few weeks to live. She could've fallen apart and thought, "God, it's not fair. I've served you all these years. I don't understand it." No, her attitude was, "I can handle it. I'm not a victim I'm a victor. Nothing can snatch me out of God's hands." This week, we're celebrating her 80th birthday - still strong and healthy, full of joy, full of peace.
God is in complete control. The most powerful force in the Universe is breathing in your direction.
You don't have to get upset when things don't go your way. You have the power to remain calm. You can handle any situation. Quit letting little things steal your joy. Every day is a gift from God.
- Joel Osteen Podcast
"You Can Handle It" 3/27/19
Have you ever planted the seed of a flower? How did you know it would grow?
The seed has no brain. No eyes. No map to the surface. There's no switch you flip that says, "And now you are in soil so you will grow!"
The seed just knows it's in soil. But what is it that understands this? Again, there is no brain. How is it the seed understands that the pull of gravity is where roots go? How does it even sense gravity? What is it sensing this with? And how does it process this and react accordingly? What if the seed misunderstood and grew sideways?
What if it didn't understand what roots are for, and it didn't absorb nutrients from the soil? Worse still, what if it came thisclose to sprouting, but it gave up because it believed the darkness would go on forever?
The idea that a seed has no idea how to become a flower seems illogical.
We know the seed's roots will grow down and it's head will reach up. We know the soil pressing upon it isn't suffocating or crushing it, it's bringing it to life. Even though we can't see it, we know it's growing, we know all is well. We know that in a single moment it will break free of the darkness and spring forth into the light. No matter how long it takes, we keep watering it, because we know there are divine forces guiding it.
There's a magic to the whole process, a magic we rarely think about, we simply take it for granted.
And yet, when it comes to our own dreams, desires and lives we lose all belief in the magic of this world. That very same divine energy that guides a growing seed permeates us too. It has to. How else could we go from being one single cell to a dynamic and complex being with a head, arms, organs and so on?
We do not live by different rules than the natural world. We aren't separate from nature. We are as natural and divinely guided as every flower on this earth. We are created from that same magic and we are the magic. It's in our DNA. It's in our life force. So why do we doubt that our dreams have their own divine forces guiding them to the surface?
When things we want don't blossom right away we tend to fall into despair and doubt. The more we doubt the more we give up on the seeds growing within us. We turn away from them, refuse to nourish them, and believe there is only barren soil within us. We neglect our inner garden and allow it to be taken over with the weeds of fear, anger and disappointment.
But it's okay. No matter how deeply they have taken root, all weeds can be ripped out. The soil can be replanted with love, happiness and excitement. And even though we can't see it happening, we will know, our dreams will blossom. We ourselves will blossom.
All we must do is trust in the divine forces that guide everything and continue to follow our intuition. Our intuition is the same thing that guides a seed's roots down and its head up. As our seeds grow within we can nourish them with positive beliefs, loving thoughts and encouraging feelings.
That's all we must do. Trust in the magic. Believe in what we can't see. Nourish the good stuff. Keep the weeds away.
And when there is that moment, that single moment, when it all breaks free from the darkness of gestation and springs forth into the light, we might take a moment to marvel in the magic. To give gratitude to the divine forces. To give gratitude to ourselves for bringing forth roses and orchids in a world that too quickly expects weeds.
Sometimes you're tired. Sometimes you just can't get your enthusiasm up. Sometimes you just want to sit back and say, "to hell with it all."
Feeling low, tired, grumpy, sad, are all perfectly natural things to feel. There's nothing wrong with you. There's nothing you need to fix in your energy or your spirit.
All you need is to accept how you feel. Accept it fully. Love it completely. Let it be a part of you, and let it show you what it wants to show you.
Sometimes we want to smother our darker feelings with positive thoughts and intentions. Sometimes we become afraid of our anger, sadness, guilt, fear, and angst. We believe that to radiate negative feelings will only bring negative things into our life. But the anger is there for a reason. The sadness is there because a part of us has been denied. The only way to transcend the feeling is to surrender to it. To love it and let it show us what it's trying to show us.
To be spiritual does not mean to be at peace and zen all the time.
To be spiritual means to love and accept yourself fully, no matter where you are, and no matter what you're feeling.
To be spiritual does not mean you will never again feel a negative emotion.
To be spiritual means you accept all your emotions as valid aspects of yourself.
To be spiritual means you allow all your emotions to guide you, like currents in a river.
And just as you are a dynamic being, in an ever changing river of feelings, so is everyone around you. The more we accept the validity of all our emotions, from light to dark, the more accepting we are of all the emotions of those around us.
I hope this week ahead is full of many delightful surprises for you.
What was in the stars the day you were born?
You can now get an in-depth numerology report with the purchase of any two meditations. This $95 value is yours free with any two meditations ($5 each).
This is not like astrology, where you are given a sign based on a very general set of parameters. This chart is based on things specific to you. In some ways, it's like a map of what was in the stars the day YOU were born.
Your chart is derived from not only your date of birth, but from your full name when you were born. Unless you know another person who has your exact name, spelled the same way, and was born on the same day as you, then there is no one in the world who has a chart exactly like yours.
For more about numerology and to see a sample report, click "learn more" below. Get your two meditations, and then go back and fill in the form (this does not include the free I am the Universe meditation). I'll have your report to you within 24 hours. I won't keep this up for long, so check it out while you can!
Free Solo is the story of one man's quest to be the first person to climb El Capitan, which is 3,000 feet from base to summit, without any ropes or safety equipment.
It's just him and the mountain. The only thing keeping him on the granite as he climbs is his sheer will power and some tiny, often times imperceptible cracks. Watching him pull himself up and cling to the rock with nothing below him except air is incredibly surreal.
I've watched this film three times, and I could easily watch it again, with just as much reverence and awe as the first time. This is the kind of story that makes you question the limits of potential. We are all told we are capable of so much more than we know. And if we pushed those limits, what would we find?
As you look at the photo below, keep in mind there is nothing supporting him. If he slips, he's going to free fall to his death. He got himself up there by his own physical and mental strength, and only he can ensure he gets down safely.
It's incredible what we can each truly do. Which isn't to say you would or could do this - but you have your own personal version of free climbing El Capitan, and only you know what it is. And you will climb it, by sheer will and inner strength, as soon as you too believe that you can.
It's hard to explain just how powerful the images in this movie are. The scenery is breathtaking. The heights are dizzying. And the feat being accomplished will make you gasp and sit on the edge of your seat.
It isn't just the climb that's incredible. The team assembled to film this did so in such a way that you'll feel as if you're there. They got us in there, without ever being in the way of Alex. In several shots of the movie, you see the cameramen and just how precarious their situations were as well. To film this was an extraordinary accomplishment in itself.
It's no surprise this film took home this year's Oscar for best documentary.
Last night, I rented this and showed it to my family. I loved showing this to my nieces and nephew, and seeing them get inspired by it also. I loved feeling that energetic rush of knowing I just witnessed something powerful and ground breaking.
When you get a chance, check out Free Solo. It's currently available to rent, and might even still be showing somewhere near you. You can find a list of current showings here: https://www.nationalgeographic.com/films/free-solo/screenings
The Law of Attraction says that that which is like unto itself, is drawn.
In other words, that which you think, in any moment, attracts unto itself other thoughts that are like it. That is why whenever you are thinking about a subject that is not pleasant, more unpleasant thoughts regarding that subject are quickly drawn.
You find yourself, in very short order, not only experiencing what you are experiencing in this moment, but reaching into your past for more data that matches that vibration - and now, by the Law of Attraction, as your negative thought expands proportionately, so does your negative emotion.
It is natural that by knowing what you do not want, you are able to clarify what you do want; and there is nothing wrong with identifying a problem before beginning to look for a solution. But many people, over time, become problem oriented rather than solution oriented, and in their examination and explanation of the problem, they continue the perpetuation of the problem.
- Abraham & Esther Hicks
Money, and the Law of Attraction
Your smallest desires are heard by the grandest of sources.
Every whisper you make, every thought you think, is felt by the entire Universe.
Your biggest dreams are loved and cherished by the most minute of sources.
Each tiny drop of energy in the Universe is conspiring with millions of other drops to bring your dreams to fruition.
Everything is on your side.
Nothing is too big nor too small to help you.
It's all here for you.
Loving you. Holding you. Supporting you.
You got this.
You deserve to see your dreams made manifest.
I believe in you.
I hope the week ahead is full of love and blessings for you.
Wherever you are, whatever you're doing, it's perfect.
You are whole and complete, just as you are.
You are as loved, cherished, and divine as the flowers in the grass and the birds in the sky.
There is nothing a flower must do in order to be loved, cherished and divine. It just is. Just by being, it blossoms in harmony with the whole Universe.
You too are blossoming in harmony with the whole Universe. All the feelings you have, from light to dark, are a part of your symphony. Just by being you, the music of the Universe deepens and expands.
Wherever you are, whatever you're doing, it's perfect.
You are where you're meant to be. You are who you're meant to be.
You are loved and cherished, just as you are.
I wish you a wonderful day.
Several years ago I went through one of the deepest and most introspective periods of my life.
It was one of those “right time and right place” situations where all of the conditions conspired in my favor for this to happen. I’d just moved back from Holland, where I’d been living with my Dutch boyfriend. I was living back with my parents, and this gave me strong feelings of being both comfortable and safe. My time in Holland had been intense and brought up a lot of questions in me, particularly related to my happiness and my sense of self.
With my heart and mind full of questions and my spirit in a place that it felt safe to grow and explore, the call to go within was both very strong and very natural. I meditated several times a day, sometimes for hours at a time. This is very strange for me to think about now, because that kind of intense solitude and reflection feels like it was experienced by another person.
However, a powerful calling and urge to let go and go within came over me during this period of time, which lasted about two months. I am forever grateful I honored the calling I felt to immerse myself in this time of meditation and reflection.
Most of my experience revolved around the chanting of a mantra called HU.
HU is a primal tone, like AUM (or om).
It’s considered to be one of the sounds that, like aum, existed at the time of creation, and thus deeply and profoundly connects us back to the divine energy that was and is in everything that’s been created across all time and dimensions.
I had stumbled across HU on a bulletin board and I couldn’t deny a powerful feeling that it was important.
Furthermore, I felt a continual urging to meditate on HU every day for 40 days in a row. I was intrigued but also conflicted. How could I give up that much of my precious time to sitting and chanting? What if nothing happened and the 40 days was a waste? What if EVERYTHING happened and I was so overwhelmed I couldn’t handle it? What was even causing this urging? What was beyond me that was sending this calling to me?
It was this endless stream of questions that got me to begin my 40 days of HU. It was like looking at a guide book for an exotic land and knowing that if you traveled there it would forever change you. The desire to fulfill my curiosity propelled me on, and I had no idea then that this really would be an adventure. I was having my first experience with adventures in cosmic consciousness, and rather than board an airplane, I would sit each day and travel to the furthest reaches of my soul.
Each day of using HU I received profound insights that changed the way I viewed myself, this world, the Universe and even the concept of life itself.
Near the end I had one that opened me up in such a way that prepared me for the BIG one, the one that changed everything. In this initial moment of expansion, I continually heard the question in my mind during meditation, “What makes you amazing?” I tried to answer with what I felt were positive and honest things, such as I feel I’m amazing because I’m intelligent. I feel I’m amazing because I’m adventurous. I feel I’m amazing because I’m funny. And so on.
But I was receiving a distinct NO back, a tangible feeling that I was not tuning into the real answer, and these answer were based on a purely human perspective. I needed to go wider, and it was then that I began to open up to everything. I felt myself go deeper into my meditative state, but it was a paradox, because the deeper within I went the more my mind and soul opened outwards. I stayed within my body, I was aware of my body, but I was also one with the mountains and sky, the rivers and the forests, and all the while I was being shown that THIS is what makes me amazing.
I am amazing because I AM the mountain. I am amazing because I AM the night sky. I am amazing because I AM the fast flowing river that travels across continents.
It was only in this moment of deep meditation that, for the first time, I could feel what these statements meant. It wasn’t a beautiful thought where I looked up at the stars and pondered what it means to be made of star stuff. I was in the stars, and yet also, I was still me, sitting in my room, breathing so slowly and imperceptibly that I hardly moved.
It was on the 40th day of my meditation that the experience I had been leading up to was revealed to me.
I cannot say if it was the number of days that was important, or if it was simply because I leaned so deeply into the trust. I had no idea why I was keeping on for 40 days, and all I could do was trust that this period of self-discipline and self imposed isolation would be worthwhile.
As I sat to meditate on the 40th day I wondered once again what I was doing, and if anything would happen. I had no idea what exactly I was meant to do or even what I was grasping for. I could only lean further into the trust, and follow the feelings I was getting.
As I meditated on this day I tried something I never had. I tried pushing the edges of my spirit up and out so fast that it did something I can’t quiet explain. It was almost as if I was creating friction, in the way that an airplane flies fast enough that it is flying on the friction it creates. I continued to push up and out, and watched with awe as the world shrank away. But like before, I was still in my body. I was once again seemingly in two places at once. I was in my body, sitting in my room, and I was out in the cosmos, expanding my soul past the edges of the solar system, past the galaxy, past planets billions of light years away.
Opening. Expanding. Growing. Reaching. Flying.
All at a speed I cannot comprehend. It was all happening in a way that was beyond what I could consciously think about, it was just happening, and I was both a participant and a curious observer.
I went out so fast and so far that I came to the edges of the Universe. Unlike my previous enlightenment, when I felt I am everything, my breathing was not light. It was heavy, slow and long. My body became so hot that sweat beaded up on my forehead. It was clear that something was happening, something so visceral that my body was heating up and breathing deep in response.
At the edge of the Universe I faded through the edges and went… into the infinite.
This is where words fail me. Even what I’ve written so far was a struggle to find the right words, the right descriptions, but here, I cannot even attempt to try and convey a sense of where I was. I was everything and I was nothing. I was completely relaxed, but in a state beyond relaxation. I had no awareness of even a concept like stress or worry, and so to say I was relaxed is not quite right. It was more like I was in a time and place where the feelings of love and joy where the only things that existed. To say feelings of stress, sadness and worry weren’t real seems impossible as I write this, and yet, in that place, they didn’t exist, and nothing could have felt more real or more true.
I had a vague awareness of my body and the room I was still in. Everything was dark, but at the same time, it was not an emptiness. It was so full of rich feeling that every drop of air felt full of what I suppose can only be described as nirvana. There was no emptiness and yet it was all empty. I was bigger than the whole Universe, and yet, I was the Universe, and I was as small as the person I am now. There was no time. Before, after, now, then, none of it existed. I understood everything, but I had no thoughts. I understood in a way that I felt the knowing. I felt the truth.
Everything was so simple, so pure, so light and easy, but at the same time, it was beyond me, it was a paradox, because afterwards I did not understand at all. I was not able to retain the all knowingness, which makes no sense because how can you lose that? I don't know. I really don't. I can only share what I felt.
Despite the feeling of infinite time, it felt like I had reached this place for a fleeting moment.
As I came back it felt like I was dissolving through a thousand layers of silk and cotton. Floating back through the layers of reality I came back to me, even though I always was me in that expanded state. As I came back in I felt a sadness, a sadness so palpable I was surprised by it. I couldn’t understand why I felt so sad, and then I realized, this is how I’ve always felt. I was full of so much joy and love in that state I now had something to compare my natural feelings to. It was only upon my return, when the contrast was perfectly clear, that I became aware of how I really feel.
It wasn’t that I walk around all the time with a sad and heavy heart. It was just that the love I felt in that moment was so deep, so profound, that I couldn’t help but feel how far away from it I live in my everyday life. To even call what I felt love is undermining the feeling. It was something beyond love. It was like all the love I’ve ever known heightened, intensified, and expanded. I can only describe it as the love beyond love. Love is not the right word for it, but there is no word, and to say it was love a million light years beyond the love I have for my family or life or the earth is all I can say.
It was in fact so big and so deep that I didn’t feel ready for it, here and now, as the being I am.
For a few days after this experience I would get waves of that sublime, all expanding love, and it was so intense and overwhelming I became dazed by it. Not in a bad way. I was again so relaxed I was beyond relaxed. It was just clear to me I wasn’t ready to live in this state of expanded love and truth, and in many ways, I liked that feeling.
I like being here in this world, as I am, experiencing the rich vastness of emotions and feelings that are available to me.
Since I had those two experiences I have never slipped back into that all expansive, all knowing state. I have come close, and begun to feel my body turn into such lightness that I could feel myself fading through the layers of reality, but never again have I crossed that threshold. And yet, the experience is always with me, like a memory from a trip that dramatically altered the course of my life.
Sometimes I forget that I even had this experience, and I lose myself in the dramas and day to day realities of this world. Which is actually kind of amazing, because when I do find myself deeply rooted in what feels like struggle, it gives that experience of expansion and enlightenment even more richness and contrast. It makes it feel that much more alive and profound, and it is a continual reminder to me that this is a world of balance.
This is a world where we get to feel the unbelievably rich feeling of physical touch and reality. It is also a world where we get to awaken our spirits, to feel the exquisite lightness of our infinite souls.
If I could take this experience and put it in your heart for you to feel also, I would, because it was perhaps one of the most important moments of my life. It was the first time I truly felt not just who I am, but what I am. It was my first taste of how truly brilliant and magnificent and GRAND I really am.
It was my first sense of my power, my real power, not the kind of power that turns people into dominant leaders, but the kind that I could use to create my own reality.
The kind of power that lets me know I am so full of richness and resources that success is a given. The kind of power that lets me know that no matter what happens, I will be okay, because within me as a connection to the most infinite and divine resources.
But even if I could give you this experience, deep down you wouldn’t want me to. You wouldn’t want to miss out on the beautiful awakening that would occur within you to get yourself there. However, I don’t want to tell you this story and leave you feeling I have nothing to offer to at least assist you in your own cosmic consciousness adventures. It was after this experience that I began creating my guided meditations. Each one is like a light on the trail, and they will all help you to find your way, in the way that is right for you, to this source of the truth of yourself.
What you find in meditation will be what is right for you. What is right for you will continue evolve during your life. By relaxing, temporarily letting go of attachment to outcomes, and tuning into your natural self, you will find your own insights and awakenings about life. Yours will be different than mine, because we are all unique and all experiencing life from our own unique perspective. Which is what makes meditations so beautiful and perfect also. You can’t get it wrong, and when you share your insights, you expand my awareness, because you help me to see the Universe and life in a new way.
If you'd like to try a guided meditation with HU being sung in the background, I have incorporated it into my meditation "I am the Universe, the Universe is me." Click here to hear a sample and purchase the mp3 (or click the image below).