Today's message of Love is all about springing into action! Not in a hasty, power-through, gotta-get-shit-done kind of way. But in a decisive, intentional, step-into-the-ease kind of way. Work smarter, not harder. PLAY harder, with more effective results.
Take all of your creative energy, and design from it. Build on it. Get playful, and find a way to architect it into existence. Tune into your intuition -- which will never fail you -- and you'll KNOW what decisions need to be made. Don't waver or hesitate any longer, just make the choice and move toward it. Begin building.
Recognize that Grace exists, and because of that, you'll always have the opportunity to course-correct as needed -- nothing is ever permanent in this life!
Teddy Roosevelt once said, "The best thing you can do is the right thing; the second best thing you can do is the wrong thing. The worst thing you can do is nothing."
Message courtesy of Brianna Hall
Awhile ago, really mostly during the summer, I was posting a lot about the action steps I was taking. I made a lot of posts about managing fear in our lives, and how to work with the fear in order to get through it. After awhile it just seemed like I'd lost all gusto though, and I was getting down because everything felt like effort without the results I wanted. I wrote about this a little, and acknowledging the down times in your life, which inevitably led me to turn inwards, and to seek inside myself to figure out what was going on. My posts lately have been about tuning into your inner guidance, getting quiet, feeling good and reconnecting to self-love.
This cycle of outwards, inwards, outwards, inwards is something I often lose perspective on, and that's usually when I feel most frustrated, like everything is conspiring against me. But when I can remember to step back and see the ebb and flow of my life I feel a sense of reassurance in myself and my natural ability to get through any and all challenges, in the right time, and with incredible soul growing moments along the way. Each process always naturally flows into the next, and they build on each other, leading to greater moments of clarity and faith in myself. At this time, I feel that I've found the inner answers, or maybe even just the feelings, I was looking for, and I'm ready up for more outwards action.
Our outward actions and inner times of reflection compliment and work with each other so well, but only so long as we allow ourselves to see them through without feeling one is more important than the other. You may take several steps next week, or for the next few months, and feel like all you do is hit walls. This will lead you to stop and ask yourself - why is this happening? In which case you turn inwards, you find answers, limiting beliefs you didn't know you had, and you let them go and find more positive thought patterns. And then you go back out, make more steps, you go further. And then eventually you seem to hit more walls. And again, you turn inwards, you congratulate yourself on being in a new place, and you ask yourself how you can now go further, how you can get through these new obstacles. Something will always make you fedup of doing the same thing and getting the same results - thus leading to the inward focus. But if you only stayed inward - perhaps even trying to hide from certain experiences, you'd never gain the clarity, strength, and growth that you desire.
Today take a moment to reflect on the ebb and flow of your life. Try to see it as a growth process, rather than a struggle. Look back and see that even though you face a lot of challenges you grow each time. You are climbing a mountain and not just walking in a circle. That's really what's going on - each time you hit obstacles you are hitting the limits of where you are now, what's comfortable, what you know. And each time you resolve this you expand, gain new strength, you climb your inner mountain a little higher, opening your field of possibility and perspective.
You can't do this wrong and you always, always have enough time. If it seems like you haven't done the things you wanted, you haven't grown as much as you wanted, and time is slipping away, it might be because you're comparing your life to other peoples'. You are doing the best you can with what you know and who you are. You are having the journey that is perfect for you. And always remember, your greatest accomplishments may never receive an award or be written about anywhere. To feel we accomplish huge and well known things is great, but it's all the little things along the way that get you there that make up life. The happiest, most important moments of your life may be inner shifts only you know about, a moment you laughed with a friend, or just a small change you make in your daily routine that makes your whole life flow better.
"People are gonna have an opinion about you and sometimes it can be really sharp and sometimes eloquent in its painful approach. That's the way the pendulum goes, it's gonna swing back and forth. And if I didn't have those dark moments it wouldn't have propelled me to actually work harder to do this thing I love and enjoy. As I've gotten older, the moments in my life where I have felt the most purpose and the most accomplished came on the heels of all those negative moments."
I have to admit, I was one of those people with a negative opinion about Dane Cook. He seemed obnoxious to me, and the fact that he was everywhere at one point did not help that perception. I got this quote from this article, which gave me a totally new perception of him. I really enjoyed learning about how he rose to fame in the first place. It wasn't just hard work, but a complete openness to fans and potential fans. He was accessible and ready and willing to give to them, and in turn, they gave back! It's a great little article and a reminder that when things don't go perfect you'll still have an amazing and worthwhile journey.
“We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once.”
A few days ago I completed the 100 Day Dance Challenge, which I'm pretty amazed by. I have never stuck with a challenge for 100 days before, but because I kept getting positive results, it was not only easy but an incredible journey. What's really amazing is when I look back through my journal at how I was feeling and thinking right before it started. I keep my journal on my computer so I can look at it by date, and I went back to just over three months ago. There was a lot of anxiety in my entries, and a lot of desperation. A lot of feelings of being lost and always wishing I just knew what to do next. In the beginning of the challenge I had a lot of dark and intense dreams, often times about struggling or fearing for my life. I was surprised by this because I feel so different now it hardly even feels like me that was having that experience!I would say the most incredible change I went through from this is I no longer feel a longing for someone or something outside of me to lead the way. I trust myself and the decisions I make. I listen to myself. I'm way more in the moment and no longer pouring energy into future desires (or worries).
There are periods of time when I don't feel motivated but I feel everything's in a good and smooth flow. It's a time I feel happy to sit around, listening to music, and maybe doing a crossword puzzle, or maybe just catching up on Portlandia. I get to bed earlier and usually take longer to get going in the morning. It's not a feeling that I've reached a burnout and I'm just done. It's also different than the blah feeling of being depressed. It's a time I'm not interested in reading, meditating, writing or really much at all. I sometimes even skip my daily walks, which means I'm not even moving much. I've always felt it had to do with my spiritual journey, but I never could articulate exactly what was happening.
I used to really struggle with this and I wondered if something was wrong since I would get so tired, but not from ways I felt were normal (e.g. stress, lack of sleep, unhealthy habits, etc). Over the years I've learned if I trust and allow it to pass, it will. I've learned to go with these feelings of being quiet, being still, and just being. I try not to fight them or power through. Conversely, I also don't meditate and go into them. But I've always wondered, what is that? What does it mean to suddenly lose all of my passion, energy and drive and then have it just as suddenly return?
I was clicking around William Linville's site and I found this audio snippet. I played it and I thought, "Yes! It's me integrating with Me!" If you've been taking time lately to meditate on your Higher Self, your I AM Presence, you might get these "down" urges also. It seems that each time I shift and step into a new awareness, essentially when I open that bridge between me and Me more, it follows with that period of time where I'm calm, quiet and wanting to rest. I hope that made sense. If you get these quiet times also, which are different than introspective, meditative quiet times, then the little audio above might help (William sometimes talks really fast, just as a heads up). And please remember to listen to yourself, get extra rest when you need it, and drink lots of water.
The Violet Flame and Expect Miracles guided meditations can be bought together for $5.99. Click here to learn more!
The Violet Flame is one of the tools people use for ascension, or raising their vibration. It clears karma across all time, dimension, space & reality and transmutes energy on deep levels. Expect Miracles is a beautiful, heart warming meditation that can be used for grounding, connecting to your I AM presence, healing, transformation, opening and more. A wonderful way to also help with falling asleep & waking up feeling restored & refreshed.
The hike to the top of Yosemite Falls is one that ends with beautiful views of Half Dome and the Yosemite Valley. This year I went to Yosemite Point, past the Upper Falls lookout, for an 8.4 mile round trip hike. I'm not a super hiker, so when I look at that picture above I always go, "Wow! Look where I was!" I like to go on a long hike (long for me anyway) at least once a year. As I struggle to make it to the top it helps me remember my mantra for anything I want to do in life: one step at a time. So long as I approach my hikes, my goals, and my dreams with a one step at a time mentality they feel possible. It also helps me when I'm frustrated and not feeling I'm where I'd like to be in my life. When I look back at all the steps I've taken I feel happier and more supportive of myself. My self-criticism goes away and I remember, I've worked hard to be where I am, and every step I take, no matter how small, is important. Hiking up something that really pushes me also helps me to realize I'm far more capable than I allow myself to believe. Sometimes it makes me realize I'm not using my full potential, both physically and mentally. It reminds me how much determination I have, and that if I choose to, I can overcome any limitation.
In September I was hiking to the top of Yosemite Falls and it seemed so much harder than I remembered. I wanted to turn back a few times, but the thing that kept me going was the knowledge that I'd completed this trail before. Each time I came to a point I remembered I'd think, "I made it this far, I know this place, I can keep going."
This trek up the mountain reminded me in many ways of my trek out of the depths of depression. Coming out of an inner darkness really does involve climbing our own inner mountains. It feels like we start at the bottom, and to ascend to the top is going to take more strength and energy than we can ever muster up. But as I would make it through a day I would have a new point from which I could say, "I made it here, I can go a little further." Sweating, huffing and puffing, dragging my feet and stopping constantly to drink water on that hike reminded me of my fight to get my life back. I'd get through a day, and as I struggled the next day I'd think, "No matter what, I made it through yesterday. I know I can make it through today. Today is one day. I can make it. I've done it before. I can do this." As those days turned to weeks I could then gauge the distance I was able to go a little further. Instead of taking it one day at a time, I could eventually take it by the week, telling myself, "I made it all last week, no matter how depressed I was, I made it. I can do this." And then my point of expectation became a month. After awhile, I wasn't keeping track of the time at all. I was just living. I got through it, one step at a time. I still have rough days. But they aren't so scary now. I don't worry they're going to drag me back to that place where I'm in so much pain I just want it all to end.
Each day of coming back from depression was another steep ascent up. Some days I couldn't do anything, and I had to rest. I had to let myself restore and just be where I was, trusting I would get where I wanted in time. No matter how far something seems, no matter how tired I get along the way, even if I get lost, I can get there. I will get there. Hiking always helps me to remember that, and the endorphin rush from so much exertion is a definite bonus.
And sometimes when hiking things go wrong and it always helps me to know it's going to be okay. I got lost coming back from Yosemite Point and ended up descending much later than I wanted. The sun was going down and I was nervous. But the sunlight was making everything even more stunning. I really couldn't capture it with my phone camera, but Half Dome was glowing. I always try to hike with plenty of time, and I was concerned on the way back my phone wouldn't light the way enough if I really did have to go in the dark. I came across some other people on my way who had done the same thing (gotten lost and were way behind) and I was pretty happy to see them. It's funny how much effort I'll sometimes spend avoiding making a mistake when in fact the mistake is what helps me realize the most. Being with those people made me so glad I wasn't alone, and I really appreciated them and people in general. We walked the last mile down together, in the dark, but everything was fine. After all my years of thinking I would never be so foolish to hike in the dark, there I was doing it, totally fine and safe, and enjoying good company to boot.
This year when I went up it was amazing to me that my thoughts didn't turn to my journey back from depression. I know when you're in the depths of this kind of struggle, of any struggle, it can feel endless and like you'll never be on the other side of it. To have it be so far behind me I could hardly remember it is something I would have never, ever felt was possible ten years ago. This year as I went up I was instead thinking about what I want to accomplish, what I had accomplished, and what good and happy possibilities were all around me.
The thing that really uplifted me was that this time I went farther than I ever have on this hike. I have always stopped at the outlook over Upper Yosemite Falls. I'd be exhausted when I reached that point, unable and unwilling to take another step up. But this time I knew I could go further. I could make it that extra mile to Yosemite Point. When I got there I was taken aback by how this viewpoint was even better. It was so, so worth it. The really great thing is I now have a new set point for what I can do. I've expanded my comfort zone. I gained a new perspective, and the feeling was one I sat soaking in as my sore feet took a rest. Yosemite Point gets far less people because that extra mile really is an ass kicker. But the air felt cooler there, the view more open, Half Dome was closer, and the knowing that I went further led to one question that is what takes any person from daydreaming to dream fulfillment: "What else can I do? What am I really capable of? What step can I take now to go a little further beyond where I'm comfortable?"
The view from Yosemite Point. I sat where that boy is for awhile, just taking it all in.
Relax. Breathe deep. Just watch, and let your thoughts flow. If you feel like smiling smile. If you feel like releasing through tears let them flow. Keep breathing deep. There is no sea creature in that tank that has a college degree, a "perfect" body, a track record of achievement, fame, success, or an awesome meditation practice. None of them need to prove they're worthy of existing. When we look at them, we intuitively know their existence is the proof of their worthiness. Let yourself be aware that inside of you, is that same knowing about yourself. Deep inside, you know you don't need to be, do, pray, meditate, achieve or anything at all for the Universe to sing the praises of your incredible existence. Whatever you do in life, it's just a bonus to your already awesome existence. Breathe deep. Enjoy the video. Relax. This is your beautiful world. This is your home, and this is where you belong. You are a part of the beauty, whether you realize it or not. (p.s. this video is so much better on full screen - click the little square on the bottom right next to where it says YouTube.)
Meditation Monday is a series of blog posts to help you start your week off with the intentions of healing, relaxation and a deeper, more positive connection with yourself. I wish you a wonderful week!