Inspiration for Spring

shallow focus photography of green tree

Photo by Alexandru Dinca on Pexels.com

Enjoy Danna Fauld’s words embracing the surging energy and potential that is Spring here in the northern hemisphere.

From Root to Bloom

Sap is flowing once again

from root to trunk, from

trunk to branch, to every

leaf and bud and blossom

on the tree.  The frozen days

are past.

 Now is the season

of flowering, when the full

force of energy moves up and

up to manifest its destiny.

It is everything to me, this

new life springing forth from

ash and compost, this chance

to nurture, weed, and prune,

to patiently receive the

miracle that blooms as if

no force on earth can

turn aside its beauty.

~ Danna Faulds

Time to nurture, weed and prune our outer and inner garden.

Namaste

Growth and Happiness

We all want to grow and become something ….. it seems to be a part of being human. Yet, what is that all about?

Some of us want to be successful in the eyes of others.
Others keep looking for the perfect partner, house, career, experience etc.

Some of us have a need to assert who we are and let go of the constraints of the past.
Others are drawn to acknowledge and appreciate all that has been, and the people who have supported them to where they are today.

Most of us want to be happy, but are bemused and confused at how elusive happiness can be.

I don’t have the answers, but what I do know is this. When we shift from looking for happiness outside of ourselves and start to question who we are, and what we have taken for granted, we are actually opening up a part of ourselves that has been hidden.

This part within us is yearning to be noticed. To be heard.
It may not be ready to be heard by our parents, siblings, partners or colleagues, but we must listen to it.

Honor and love this part of you.
This is who you truly are.
Let it flourish and grow.

Just When you Think You’ve Got it

unseen events

“Forests Edge” Photo by Mike Bizeau at http://www.naturehasnoboss.com

Many of us continue our path into 2019. We are on a journey of curiosity, inner exploration, trying on new ideas, committing to better behaviors, taking care of ourselves … and taking time out to nourish mind, body and spirit.

We see ahead clearly and then something comes along to bring doubt, temptation, discomfort or rejection.

So soon… Really?

The most significant lessons are unexpected. And they often come along just when we were hoping or counting on something else.

Let them be wake up calls rather than obstacles in your mind.

Be alert. Wake up.

The class of your life is in session.

Take time to pause and reflect on the real lesson waiting to be seen.

 

p.s. My thanks to Mike Bizeau for the permission to share this image.

 

Inspiration to Boost your Karma in the New Year

Karma domino effect

Free photo 921799 © Anthony Hall – Dreamstime.com

Every year I like to review this list to bring good Karma to the year ahead, and beyond. This year I have added more self compassion and kindness towards others. Let me know what resonates with you this year.
  1. Keep your word.
  2. Be curious. Listen to understand.
  3. Show respect to everyone you encounter.
  4. Be respectful of those you haven’t met.
  5. Be a good friend.
  6. Look for the best in everyone.
  7. Be kind to others.
  8. Be kind to yourself.
  9. Forgive others.
  10. Forgive yourself.
  11. When you make a mistake say, “I’m sorry.
  12. Pour out your love when someone asks for it.
  13. Put your children’s needs before your own.
  14. When someone is speaking to you, be fully present and listen.
  15. Express yourself joyfully.
  16. Don’t be cruel with your words.
  17. Be grateful for everything you have. It is more than enough.
  18. Share your wisdom with those who ask for it.
  19. Give away what you don’t need.
  20. Help keep the Earth beautiful and safe for generations to come.
  21. Look behind you, stop and hold the door open for others.
  22. Savor every moment. The good, bad and the ugly. That’s life!
  23. Don’t forget to bring the dogs in after you have let them out.
  24. Smile more. Laugh lots!
  25. Expect life to be good.
  26. Do the right thing, especially when no one is watching.
  27. Dance with abandon. Always.
  28. Share the love you have been given and pass it on to others.
  29. Learn from your mistakes, and grow from them.
  30. Lighten up!
  31. Share what you believe in.
  32. Relax. Breathe. And S-L-O-W down.
  33. Be true to the beautiful being that you are.

Teacher and Student

“The only difference between

A Teacher and a Student is that

The Student believes that

There is a difference whereas

The Teacher knows there is none.”

~ Wu Hsin

 

The best teachers in all aspects of life are perpetual students, open to learning and letting go of what they have been told is the truth.

Only the ego creates a hierarchy to uphold and defend.

It’s so freeing to step into an other realm where our conditioning doesn’t get in the way of our evolution … and we can play and learn together.

Namaste

 

Judgment, Approval and Growing into Yourself

person holding a green plant

Photo by Akil Mazumder on Pexels.com

The following is a story from Rachel Naomi Remen about how we judge, seek approval, hide our true selves – like spores. At some point, when the time is right, we grow by accepting all parts of ourselves and finding our way to become all that we can be.

I was in my forties when the light started to touch the spore in me. I was drawn to become a certified coach and to take up yoga. And then everything started to turn upside down, especially in my relationships with my husband and family.
Growth never happens in the comfortable. But I was lucky to have mentors to support me through this mid life confusion and into the transformation that followed.

Who would have thought that I would uncover such a big part of myself that was hidden. Or would now be calling myself a yoga teacher, coach, mentor and blogger! I am honored to be on this journey with you.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

“The life in us is diminished by judgment far more frequently than by disease. Our own self-judgment or the judgment of other people can stifle our life force, its spontaneity and natural expression. Unfortunately, judgment is commonplace. It is as rare to find someone who loves us as we are as it is to find someone who loves themselves whole.

Judgment does not only take the form of criticism. Approval is also a form of judgment. When we approve of people, we sit in judgment of them as surely as when we criticize them. Positive judgment hurts less acutely than criticism, but it is judgment all the same and we are harmed by it in far more subtle ways.
To seek approval is to have no resting place, no sanctuary. Like all judgment, approval encourages a constant striving. It makes us uncertain of who we are and of our true value. This is as true of the approval we give ourselves as it is of the approval we offer others. Approval can’t be trusted. It can be withdrawn at any time no matter what our track record has been. It is as nourishing of real growth as cotton candy. Yet many of us spend our lives pursuing it.

Some people spend enormous amounts of time considering the impression that their words and behaviors create, checking how their performance will affect their audience, playing always for approval. Others make a tiny gap between their thoughts and their words which allows them to say only that which they feel will please others. A great deal of energy goes into this process of fixing and editing ourselves.

We may have even come to admire in ourselves what is admired, expect what is expected, and value what is valued by others. We have changed ourselves into someone that the people who matter to us can love. Sometimes we no longer know what is true for us, in which direction our own integrity lies.

We surrender our wholeness for a variety of reasons. Among the most compelling are our ideas of what being a good person is all about. Sometimes it is not the approval of other people but the approval of a spiritual school or teacher which dictates which parts of us we keep and which we hide.
The natural self, a complex living interchange of seemingly opposite characteristics, gets whittled down against some acquired standard of social and spiritual acceptability. Few of us are able to love ourselves as we are. We may even have become ashamed of our wholeness.

Parts of ourselves which we may have hidden all of our lives out of shame are often the source of our healing. We have all been taught that certain of our ways don’t fit into the common viewpoint and values of the society or the family into which we have been born. Every culture, every family has its Shadow. When we’re told that “big boys don’t cry,” and “ladies never disagree with anyone,” we learn to avoid judgment by disowning our feelings and our perspectives. We make ourselves less whole. It is only human to trade wholeness for approval. Yet parts we disown are not lost, they are just forgotten. We can remember our wholeness at any time. In hiding it, we have kept it safe.

One of the most dramatic manifestations of the life force is seen in the plant kingdom. When times are harsh and what is needed to bloom cannot be found, certain plants become spores. These plants dampen down and wall off their life force in order to survive. It is an effective strategy. Spores found in mummies, spores thousands of years old, have unfolded into plants when given the opportunity of nurture.

When no one listens, children form spores. In an environment hostile to their uniqueness, when they are judged, criticized, and reshaped through approval into what is wanted rather than supported and allowed to develop naturally into who they are, children wall the unloved parts of themselves away. People may become spores young and stay that way throughout most of their lives. But a spore is a survival strategy, not a way of life. Spores do not grow. They endure. What you needed to do to survive may be very different from what you need to do to live.

Plant spores are opportunists. The life force waits in them, scanning the environment, looking for the first opportunity to bloom. But people may forget that becoming a spore is only a temporary strategy. Few check the environment, as plant spores do, to see if conditions have changed and they can find what they need to bloom and reclaim their wholeness. Many of us still hide the parts of ourselves that were unacceptable to our parents and teachers although our parents are long gone and their world with them. In the world of my childhood, boys never cried. Those that did were sissies. Of course, all girls were supposed to be sissies. The world we live in now offers far greater opportunities for expression, but we may still live in it as if it were the hostile terrain of our childhood. The saddest part is that we may have forgotten what it is like to be whole. What it is like to feel and to cry, what it is like to take initiative and have a viewpoint.

Reclaiming ourselves usually means coming to recognize and accept that we have in us both sides of everything. We are capable of fear and courage, generosity and selfishness, vulnerability and strength. These things do not cancel each other out but offer us a full range of power and response to life. Life is as complex as we are. Sometimes our vulnerability is our strength, our fear develops our courage, and our woundedness is the road to our integrity. It is not an either/or world. It is a real world. In calling ourselves “heads” or “tails,” we may never own and spend our human currency, the pure gold of which our coin is made.

But judgment may heal over time. One of the blessings of growing older is the discovery that many of the things I once believed to be my shortcomings have turned out in the long run to be my strengths, and other things of which I was unduly proud have revealed themselves in the end to be among my shortcomings. Things that I have hidden from others for years turn out to be the anchor and enrichment of my middle age. What a blessing it is to outlive your self-judgments and harvest your failures.

~ Rachel Naomi Remen*

 

*Remen, Rachel Naomi. Kitchen Table Wisdom: Stories that Heal, 10th Anniversary Edition (pp. 35-38). Penguin Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

Life is … Letting Go

I came across this earlier post and it made me pause and reflect today. Letting go is always a part of living, yet can be hard sometimes. I hope you enjoy this reminder.

oooOooo


letting go

Letting go is living life fully.

We let go of every exhalation in order to breathe in life.

We let go in order to sleep.

We let go of being held as a baby in order to walk.

We let go of our children so they can grow as adults.

We let go of old hurts in order to heal.

We let go of our armor so we can give and receive love.

We let go of attachments in order to be free.

We let go of the past in order to step into the future.

We let go in order to grow.

Sometimes we are afraid to let go because we experience fear of the unknown and the emptiness we might feel … But we do know in our hearts that when we resist letting go we resist living our lives fully.

What have you been holding on to that you are ready to let go of?