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9/9/2022  The High Cost of Being Right.  

There is a running joke between me and some friends about the three little words that mean so much.  The words "I love you" come to mind, but the joke is "you were right."  

How attached are we to being right and what does being right mean? 

If you grew up in a trauma environment, then being right meant being safe.  You knew you weren't crazy or wrong.  If your family of origin dynamics were based on right/wrong, then being able to be right meant you were on the positive side of the equation.  Your guardians/siblings might push back, but YOU knew you were right and it helped stabilize your space in that moment.  Recognizing the value of being right (can't be shamed, put down, etc.), we began to cultivate ways to be right as often as possible. More facts, logic, becoming an "expert", pushing others aside to answer first/take a stand.  Shouting over others responses and then dismissing anything that wasn't in sync with whatever we were holding onto.  Great way to survive, but how many of us still do this today?  We are no longer in a trauma situation, yet we are still responding from a place of trauma. 

An acquaintance of mine told me recently (he is in his 60's) that he decided as a teen that in order to be successful, he was only going to do things his way.  And there's the trap. In order for you to be right, everyone else has to be wrong.  Being right means you are one up and they are down. It's no longer about listening to another's ideas, feelings, thoughts on anything the you are invested in being right about. It becomes all about controlling everything around you to make sure you're always right.  

There is no room for personal growth if we are wedded to being right because there is no room for dialogue, compromise or working things out. We are locked in this pattern and view all outside information as irrelevant, because if we even start to entertain any new ways of being, we run smack into our fear of being destroyed.  We are still stuck in that place of agony from years ago. We are isolated from others in all our relationships because we can't truly listen and still be "right".

If you find that you are still hanging on to being right, my hope is that this writing will allow you to perhaps take a closer look at why and how much this behavior is costing you in the quality of your relationships with spouse, children, friends, co-workers, etc. or more importantly, with yourself.  It is a very lonely place to be.

02/22/2023                The Power of Affirmations

Let's start with the mind.  When we are born, our brains are undeveloped and take years to completely grow. Our primitive brain is hard wired to sort for danger and we rely on our caregivers to keep us safe and teach us what is dangerous in this new place we find ourselves.  Part of that hard wiring includes "negative" bias, where we deliberately sort for danger in our environment.  Part of our learning includes the programming we get from our caregivers which, if you were raised in a trauma environment (verbal/physical/emotional abuse, neglect, abandonment, sexual abuse, alcoholism/addiction, and so forth), then these imprinted experiences also shape the definition of danger.  For example, to be seen is dangerous.  To ask for something can be dangerous. Our caregivers can be the danger. We learn to hide in place and do whatever we can to survive.

Unfortunately, these beliefs can still be active and erupt if the mind feels threatened.  If threatened, the mind then triggers the emotional body, which can also create a physical response, such as anxiety, fear, and other less than optimal behaviors.  Given that we have 60,000 to 80,000 thoughts a day, along with the negative bias, it can be difficult to move out of that "hamster wheel" cycle of thoughts chasing thoughts and escalating triggers in the body.

Affirmations create a conscious alternative choice.  Using an affirmation is consciously choosing a set of words vs. the more unconscious dialogue we experience internally.  When you use an affirmation, you are in present time, in the moment, deliberately focused on that affirmation.  This pulls you off the hamster wheel.  

We create our future one moment at a time.  We create from moment to moment, with each prior moment setting the tone for the next moment.  These intentional moments create positive foundations for the next moment and allows a more detached mindfulness.  It also starts to create the experience of being able to steer the mind into a state of discernment and if practiced, can then create the ability to recognize being triggered and a way to keep off the wheel.  YOU are NOW the author of  your own "programming" as you begin to override old dialogue.  This also benefits the entire system as it calms the nervous system and helps release the body from "fight/flight/freeze", allowing you to stay even more present.  

Another benefit:  When using an affirmation, you are using a higher vibrational intent.  The old dialogue is a lesser, negative based energy.  The system cannot simultaneously hold a negative and a positive energy. The  positive will always override the negative. In the this way, the affirmation creates the higher vibration (adding to the moment to moment foundation) as well as depriving the negative thought patterns any "fuel".  You also are adding the effort of homeostasis (balance) by using affirmations.  

One of the Principles of Energy states that a shift in the system eventually causes the entire system to shift.  This in turn is reflected in our external reality.  Conscious choice of thought creates these shifts and begins to enhance our life experience.  Continued practice of affirmations becomes ingrained and trains our minds to go to that place instead of the hamster wheel.  

Below are some Affirmations you may find useful:

  • In this moment, I am safe.

  • All is well.

  • All is well and all manner of things shall be well.

  • My best life is before me.

  • My best work is before me.

  • My best relationships are before me.

  • I affirm and confirm that I am recognized for all that I do.

  • I affirm and confirm that I am appreciated for all that I do.

  • I affirm and confirm that each thing I do, no matter how small, is enough and serves.

  • I affirm and confirm that no person, place nor thing, not even myself can come between me and my Highest Good. 

  • I am a beloved child of the Most High and am worthy of and deserve the blessings I have and the blessings that are surely yet to come.

  • I affirm and confirm that I am enough.

  • I affirm and confirm that I am that which I seek to be.

  • Good fortune is my lot in life and follows me wherever I go and is connected to all that I do.

You can use sticky notes and post affirmations wherever you need them.  You can post them into your phone to look at.  You can also create your own or do an internet search and find more.  ​

You have nothing to lose and everything to gain by starting now.  

03/10/2023             Wherever we go, there we are.

There was a man who was trying to meditate.  He got frustrated at all the interruptions whenever he tried.  He decided to go to a retreat because surely there, it would be peaceful and he could be undistracted.  He again found too many distractions and became even more frustrated.  At the edge of the retreat was a lake and he decided to row a boat out into the middle of the lake for there he would truly be alone, no longer bothered

and be able to achieve his goal.  He rowed out to the middle, set his anchor and closed his eyes. "Finally!" he thought and began to breathe and focus.  A moment later, his boat was bumped and in fury, he opened his eyes, ready to unload on the fool who had managed to hit his boat in the middle of the lake! He saw an empty boat.  It had become unmoored and floated into his.  

We take our consciousness with us wherever we go.  Wherever we go, there we are.  We are carrying all of our thoughts, feelings, perceptions within us and react to our reality from that place. When we can respond instead of react, then we are in a place of neutrality, of mindfulness.  In that moment, we are open to whatever the Divine is revealing to us about ourselves.  We have no control over another; only over ourselves and  how  we respond.  We can learn a great deal about ourselves in those moments and perhaps choose a more balanced way to respond. Not everyone will be willing to do this with you.  But, you are not responsible for their choices or reactions.  All you can do is choose what is authentic for you in that moment.  It may not go smoothly. You may get triggered, but you can still do the best you can in that moment and learn so that the next time you can bring your learning into your response.  We are all doing the best we know how, but the key is to learn to do better and then come from  there.  

04/05/2023                The Can of Soup

I was recently talking with a friend about how much goes on behind the "spiritual" scene that we aren't even aware of.  How amazing it is how things come together and manifest into our lives. That we need to trust the process.  

An analogy sprung into my mind:  I have never stopped to think about what has to happen for a can of soup to be on the shelf in the grocery store.  So much has to come together for a simple can of soup.  The earth that was prepped to grow the crops, to be harvested and the hours of labor that took.  Delivery of the ingredients, the factory that was built to be able to make the product, the workers that did their jobs, creation of the can, the label, the drawing of the label with the colors, the text, and so on.  How the soup was packed and shipped.  The logistics of the shipping, arrival, unpacking, data entry into the computers, and finally stocking it on the shelf.  So many pieces had to fall into place to create this outcome. 

How often do we stop and think about the work of Spirit to weave all the events in our lives to put that "can of soup" on your shelf. There are 8 BILLION people on the planet and there is a Divine Plan unfolding for all of us.  That's a lot of cans to put on shelves.  

  We grow impatient with the seemingly lack of progress, but so much is going on behind the scenes that we have no knowledge of and may never know.  The Divine is unfolding and our work is to stay centered, to keep the faith, remembering that we are all part of the greater Whole and that All is Well.  We are part of that creative process. In the midst of chaos, hold your center.  Affirm all is well and then do what is yours to do.  Every task can be an anchor to hold the structure in place allowing the energies to flow and unfold.  When each of us does this, we create anchor points for these divine energies and stabilize the world around us.  Let go and let God.  All is well. 

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