Today has been busy as I've tried to navigate techie stuff, avoid getting swindled and other things outside my comfort zone.
Day 14 of 30 Paintings In 30 Days leads me right back here to Captivated. Sigh!
Today has been busy as I've tried to navigate techie stuff, avoid getting swindled and other things outside my comfort zone.
Day 14 of 30 Paintings In 30 Days leads me right back here to Captivated. Sigh!
"She work up every mooring with the option of being anyone she wished. How beautiful it was that she always chose herself. "
I love this quote by Tyler Kent White,
This may sound easy, but when we've learned adaptive behavior that's caused personas, we might not even be aware our what is true on the inside. Another wards, we may think we feel one way only to discover below the surface another reality.
Through the process of truly, deeply listening and owning what is being conveyed on the inside, though it may have been previously denied and pushed down, we begin to come into congruence.
We aren't a bunch of pieces walking around. We are whole beings, but until we welcome the parts of ourselves we've orphaned, we will feel fragmented.
Practice giving yourself permission to listen and respond to the depths of what you hear. Be sure to stand in your own corner. Be sure to choose yourself!
Day 13 of 30 Painting In 30 Days, She Chose Herself
Years ago I intuitively began to understand that for my extraverted personality type it was necessary to proactively plan and schedule fun in my calendar. Being the type of person that can easily focus on work, spending a great deal of time alone, (focus is one of my top five strengths) and finally looking up for from my easel, computer, or a client coaching session, to realize I’d gone long periods of time without social interaction and was feeling blue.
Instead of merely revering hard work, I recognized that in truly caring for my wellbeing, I was in fact responsible for planning fun and connection with others instead of hoping it would just roll in. I was responsible for fostering joy in my life.
I began to value this necessary nutrient, as if it were my vitamins. I began to understand that because of a need and value for connection, the way I conducted business needed to be relational too, or I was betraying my core values. It was then that I actually began to make changes in the way I thought about and conducted business. Thus, a long history of the groups I’ve started, facilitated, hosted or participated in!
Brown tells us, “The absence of love, belonging, and connection always leads to suffering.” The absence of these basic needs are prevalent in our society, manifesting through a kind of scarcity mentality that keeps one isolated, disengaged, shut down due to shame, and comparison. All of which lead to sadness and suffering. Awareness is the first step in making necessary changes for ones wellbeing.
Sometimes I’ve been more intentional than others about my need for fun and connection, but two years ago when I began training in Brenè Brown’s work I was delighted to discover Brown’s definition of Wholehearted Living, “Whole hearted living is about engaging in our lives from a place of worthiness.”
The interesting thing is that worthiness doesn’t just happen. Brown tells us that it must be cultivated. Hence, based on her research the ten Guidepost for Wholehearted Living defines what she calls a practice. Putting in place practice helps us, remember and reawaken to the innate worth and value already bestowed on every human life. Most of us could use that sort of awakening, which can't help but release joy into our being and joy is said to be the signature of a grounded life.
The two Guideposts that are very meaningful to me as an extravert and an artist and where I see many clients needing self-permission are: Cultivating Play and Rest: Letting go of exhaustion as a Status Symbol and Productivity as Self-Worth and Cultivating Creativity: Letting go of Comparison.
Our society esteems productivity as a banner of worth, yet worth is intrinsic and can’t be won by performance or production. Creativity is also intrinsic and yet as soon as one compares oneself to another the creative flow is thwarted.
In her latest bestseller, Rising Strong, Brown tells us that those who are able to rise strong amidst their struggles are the ones who have “developed practices that enable them to hold onto the belief that they are worthy of love, belonging, and even joy.” Practicing wholehearted living means, honoring ones needs, establishing boundaries to maintain them, and caring for ones wellbeing.
If you think that your productivity is a sign of your worth, your ability to push yourself to the limit, ignore your deep need for connection and belonging, you might be living from a place of scarcity, rather than wholehearted living. Take a moment to consider the ten Guideposts below.
What practices (not perfection) might you need to put in place for wholehearted living?
I’M FINE, read the journal heading, but like the line crossing out the well-worn phrase, I knew I wasn’t fine. When your body shuts down it is because it has been sending you messages that you could not understand, or recognize previously and the only way it could get your attention was to stop you in your tracks.
Even before this shut down, I knew something was wrong when after being a songbird that sang, played guitar and wrote songs my whole life, I stopped singing. You don’t just shut down without reason. Then a few years later when the writing stopped, too, I knew I wasn’t fine.
I’ve been through some difficult transitions, disappointments and losses and so it’s understandable that I might have been affected. That’s is why when I decided to get trained in Brenè Brown’s work a couple of years back, I knew it would be vital for me personally if I were to rise strong and dare greatly and boy I was right. It’s taken time, five years to be exact, of slowing down, letting go of forcing life, and sitting with myself for my off-loaded and stockpiled emotions to surface like bobbers, so I could truly identify them.
Five years might have been the same amount of time it took me as a child to slough off my tender carefree skin and take on a world much too big for me to manage. That might have been the time I said goodbye to my untamed heart and decided I would bury it and instead perform and please all those around that never talked about their hearts and take care of those of us that were gaping for care. That’s when I chose the hero role.
When you’re a “feeler” and you decide to disregard the thing in you that feels, you’re in trouble. And no matter how hard you try to perform and ignore it, it’s just not going to work. Things will get jumbled up inside.
Even though my childhood gypsy costume expressed my untamed heart like my mother, what was modeled for me by the “respectable folks” was the antithesis, so it’s no wonder I choose to follow the acceptable crowd instead of the black sheep on the crazy train. Sadly, my heartbreaks for haven chosen wrongly, but I was a child lacking skills and grasping for survival, not meaning to orphan large parts of myself.
This recent five years have led me on my own train of re-discovery, recapturing the orphaned pieces I left off at previous junctions. The parts labeled cast off, I have now come to welcome, seeing that the crazy train isn’t all crazy. And now I’m even a little endeared to crazy, because all real courage and creativity often looks a bit mad.
A Safe Place
In the 80’s my husband Bill and I facilitated a group named, The Safe Place Group. I never knew then that that would be a reoccurring theme for my life. It’s only through connecting with safe people and making ourselves a safe place that we will be able to welcome the deepest parts of ourselves, such as our creativity and our own brand of crazy.
Breaking with the Pack
It’s from this safe place that we can break with the internal and outer packs that keep everything looking nice on the outside, while the inside decays. It’s where we learn to break with other’s rules, rhetoric, and dogma, because the law doesn’t speak heart, grace does.
It’s not a bad trade off, to finally give oneself permission to let go of being the hero and turning those hero antics in our own direction. It’s amazing to climb into the nurture that’s always been needed when we kindly give it to ourselves.
We can get a second chance to pick straws, slough off hero,ghost or black sheep, and show ourselves some self-respect. And amazingly there will be plenty of volunteers to rush in and carry the platters the hero throws down, earning the dubious accolades that keep the hero performing! However, one will never be feed by more duty. It’s only when the inner light is alive and we show up true that we will feed anyone, but first we must feed ourselves.
What I’ve found on this journey is that there are very few who are willing to show up, really show up to reveal the truth below the veneer, where there is a little child needing to be heard, seen and loved. I think that is largely, because few of us are truly safe places.
And there are few that recognize that I’M FINE is a lie and will sit across the table and speak about it, hold the space for others to show up and be seen. There are few with enough shame resilience to listen without spiraling into their own pile of shame, fixing, or offloading emotions with every tactic known to man and even when doing all of the above, circling back around to revisit the fall.
Those courageous enough to face their inner worlds are the people worth noticing. They are the ones that are learning how to stand tall in their own stories and how to become a safe place for themselves and others. They are the ones welcoming their breakdowns spiritual awakenings and honest enough to speak, reclaim and welcome their own kind of crazy. They are the ones that have returned home.
“What’s in the cave?” asks Luke. Yoda responded, “Only what you take with you.”
What one of us doesn’t enter the vulnerable dark cave of isolation, disappointment, anger, hurt and fear, alone? While standing face to face with the screeching shrill of our imaginings and italicized stories, we only truly face ourselves.
Many of us have spent a life time trying to out run the vulnerable darkness, redirect through pointed fingers, or flailing our way out of a deep resting look within, through busyness, perfection, attempting to control everything around us, acting out, or the sugary sweet niceness of denial.
As a child it was modeled and I was taught not to give voice, attention, or credence to feelings. Ever been told not to cry? It demonstrates weakness, or ineptness. Children don't understand that the admonition is purely sourced in the adult's discomfort of vulnerability.
Even as an adult I found environments that supported this kind of inner disconnection, therefore, I spent must of my life being a packer, tucking and stowing feelings and emotions, as if they were the enemy in hiding, best to ignore than stir up.
It doesn’t take a genius to recognize that society at large is uncomfortable with emotions and uses every means to avoid them. Take a quick look at addiction and you witness an emotionally stunted culture.
While most folks are working hard to avoid their inner world, there is nothing so freeing as to sit down with our stories, loosening the load of heavy-laden feelings that accompany them like a workhorse’s pack. When we say, “yes” to feeling what is without judgment, the grit and dust of emotion clouding our eyes falls away. In the end, emotions only have the power over us that we give them.
It’s only when we refuse to take the easiest and must comfortable route of packing and stowing feelings like the indomitable tick beneath the skin, that we can be at peace with what is right in front of us. As we bravely choose to sit with our emotions, recognizing and unpacking what we are experiencing, we will begin the empowering work of owning our stories and ourselves.
However, when our emotions have been shut down, we may be surprised to uncover the depth of incongruences that exist within us. It can be utterly alarming to discover the ways we’ve betrayed our inner world by complying with egocentric outer demands. To shut off our emotion is to attempt to compartmentalize our lives, yet as whole human beings we cannot cut off one part of ourselves without another part being severely affected and thrown off center. Sadly, many have never allowed the exposure of raw vulnerability to uncover their deepest, truest feelings.
I remember a time when I had convinced myself that it would be a good idea to attend an event, meet new people and build relationships. And so I spent the good part of the day rehearsing these points in my mind. Then all of a sudden a question arose from within, “Do you really want to attend this event?”
Suddenly I became aware of the fact that I actually did not want to attend the event though I had tried to convince my unsuspecting mind otherwise. When I gave myself permission to feel what I didn’t even know I felt, I instantaneously became elated with joy and the prospect of freely doing what was in my heart. I coached myself through the process!
Although this is a small matter, should I have denied this fact, or more likely been oblivious to the truth of my feelings, I would have acted from complete incongruence. Imagine the number of people that have entered into marriage, job positions, or a host of other situations without ever determining the truth of their feelings.
Feelings are not the enemy. We have them because they are powerful tools if we will recognize and listen to the information they are giving us. Instead of running from the cave of our emotions, what if we learned to befriend them and ourselves?
Through life coaching and the various upcoming creative retreats we will be offering, you can find the space to befriend yourself, your emotions and your story and walk in the beauty of personal ownership.
Sometimes we need a break from the current scenery to see things differently. Sometimes we need to get away and go the road of one extreme to the other to find the value of balance. But the truth is that you can get as far away as possible from the things that bug you, while the triggers are still back at home where you are!
It’s really no secret that the faith community (that I love) has also often been an irritant to me. I don’t mean to offend anyone, but to stop stepping in all the “shoulding” this community has flung on the sidewalk, I had to define my boundaries and life on my own terms, without worrying about the fear mongering or perceived wrath of God this might insight others to hurl my way.
Giving myself this permission (which was already mine for the taking) allowed me to get beyond group think, parroting and evolve (still discovering) into the person I was always meant to be. This growing up has resulted in a love awakening that has allowed me to see the world and all its irritants with new eyes. And why wouldn’t it? Love transforms everything it touches.
Imagine if your destiny was tied to the very people that irritated you the most, but you couldn’t recognize it until you fell in love with the very stone in your shoe. What if this people group would be one of the greatest means for your expansion into new depths and in turn you had something they badly needed as well.
“Someone I loved once gave me a box full of darkness. It took me years to understand that this, too, was a gift.” Mary Oliver
None of us can get where we are going alone and certainly we aren’t meant to. When the reality of being in this thing together and the powerful elixir of love crashes into our world to soften and awaken all the brittle places, we just can’t help but love.
My friend Blaise Forte said, "You are free to LOVE unconditionally, to walk confidently, and to judge NO ONE (even yourself) by their past or present circumstance or decisions" and here comes my favorite part, "You are free to manifest love freely because all have been loved unconditionally."
That’s the amazing thing about God’s love. Although man tries to define restrictive borders and barricades of should and shouldn'ts, grace poo-poos it. Ultimately we will become powerless to resist love’s coursing wave that crashes though our defenses and changes everything in its wake. And although Love will change those around us, it will always, always do its work to first change us, using every stone in our shoe as a gift.
My dentist said that when he was 6 years old he knew he wanted to be a dentist and by twelve he knew the exact spot he wanted to live and start his practice. Although that is amazing, it is extremely rare. Most of us need some time as adults for self- discovery and self-permission.
As a life coach I work with adult client after client that is redesigning, refiguring and rediscovering themselves and their lives. Redesign is a natural part of life’s transitions. Instead of shunning the notion, we should eagerly embrace it, because life has a way of throwing us into new experiences that cause us to shift and recalibrate our direction.
My friend Robert Ricciardeli said, “You don’t need to change who you are to become successful. You just need to live in the authenticity of who you are for success to find you.”
Recalibrating is often about leaning into your natural, God given passion, gifting and bent and seeing the design process emerge. For some this is highly specific, but for many this is the equivalent to throwing stuff on the wall and discovering what sticks, while being unafraid to try various possibilities. When you feel inspired, grab a chunk of life, give yourself permission, throw it on your wall and see what happens.
I’ve sung my whole life. For forty years I've written songs and even been awakened in the morning with new songs on the tip of my tongue, until about five years ago when the singing stopped.
I knew that something shut down inside, because for the first time in my life melody wasn’t bubbling up from deep within. Previously I sang when things were good and I sang when things were bad. I also knew I couldn’t "fix" the gift that I didn’t initiate in the first place, but I suspected that my trouble was mistakenly basing my outlook only on what I could see. That kind of perspective would dash anyone’s hope.
Hope is a powerful thing. In fact, hope has a lot to do with how we interpret circumstances, how we look at the future and define things that do not yet exist. I’m typically a Pollyanna, but sometimes when the manifestation of hope wanes, the lack I perceive through my natural sight causes a feeling of deficit. That’s when the opportunity presents itself to choose how I will interpret what I cannot yet see.
Even though I hadn't entirely recognized it, there had been tremendous fruitfulness in my life over the last several years. I only needed to recalibrate how I looked and what I saw. And that's when I heard, “This is the year of singing.”
My hope has been popping off the charts over the last year. It’s not that every circumstance in my life has fallen into place, but rather that my hope and faith perspective have recalibrated. Hope is the substance of things yet to be seen.
Hope is consistently singing over every single one of us if we will tune in to hear the new song. This is the year of recognizing and embracing hope. This is the year of the songbirds returning.
This morning I was thinking about the times I’ve been parched, but wouldn’t draw near to a water supply (wouldn’t get up off my *** to go the kitchen, turn on the faucet and drink!)
It’s said, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink. It’s a sad reality to be in the middle of an oasis, but not see it. It’s a sad reality to be gifted another day to live and be in such despair that it’s whittled away.
What might be the difference between those that have so little and yet live with full abandon and ecstasy and those that just can’t quite grasp their goodness portion?
I’ve had seasons were I remained in drought, because of my blindness and hard heartedness. I’ve had seasons where joy escaped my grasp, as I camped out in the mindset of lack. And then it happened! I began to recall the goodness I’ve experienced, the joy and elation from seasons past and joy couldn’t help but over take me. Then I started to build on that joy in every moment looking for pieces of beauty, whether in the garbage heap or the morning sunrise. It's there and if you look for it you will find it in every circumstance.
What might be keeping you from your oasis?
Do you ever wonder what stops the flow of inspiration? Why does the well dry up and you feel parched and dry when the water supply is within and not out of reach?
Sometimes I put myself through mental gymnastics thinking I am isolated and alone, much like I felt as a child. That is UNTIL I realize that even if I feel alone, I've never ever been alone, except in my perceptions.
I know its popular to talk about perception, mindsets and shifts these days, but its because we are waking up to a reality that has always existed, but we've failed to see. We’ve had the wool pulled over our eyes, while in actuality the veil no longer exists.
We’ve looked outside of ourselves for the mirror image that exists within. We’ve looked for inspiration outwardly, when inspiration is busting at the seams with breath and life, hope’s meter tapping away love's melody, wooing and including us in the passionate dance and resonance of life.
When I bump up next to you I feel the spray of breath, inspiration filling the air, new and alive, bumping up against the life of inspiration within me. It’s the patter of little feet, the baby in the womb stirring to the sound of the Father’s voice and likeness in each of us.
It’s asking you what you carry, what joy you're pregnant with and what life you have to deliver? Grace announces that lack has been rescinded.
Starving while the table is set, this gap forgetting where there is no lack.
Swallowed up in Trinity glory, friendship of fullness, ache subsided.
Wrapped in over-loved goodness, caressed and lavished inexplicably strong.
You are not far off as some might be. You are not a wonderer, not like me.
You are steady and sure and constant devotion, like the ocean overflowing the beach.
Lapped up in embrace, no morsels of rationing,
no short sale, no barter for goods. Love completeness, flourishing full.
This morning I woke up with the images of a dream still lingering within my reach. I dreamt that my family and I were in a helicopter. This was not your average helicopter, but rather one that seemed more like the size of a cruise liner.
On this helicopter we were able to ask for anything we wanted and were catered to, making sure we got whatever we asked for, as if we were known and highly revered by the staff. All the while the staff was ready and waiting to respond to our every word and need, protecting and providing care and support as we floated up above the world below.
What if there was a realm of peace and rest high above the clutter of the hustle and bustle below? What if in this realm there was the ease of maneuvering in and out of daily life as a helicopter maneuvers through tight spaces?
What if there was angelic staff assigned to support and help us in our journey, not only to protect, but also to grant our every need and wish? Would that alter the way we lived? What if instead of holding out, coping and trying to make it on our own, or piously choosing to resist making waves or demands because we imagined God to be a stingy Father, we instead availed ourselves to what has been given to us from the benevolence and generosity of an over the top giver?
In my book, it would be foolish to refuse such support, to refuse such opulent, loving grace, yet how many of us do merely by our ignorance and independence?
When I was a young women I suggested to my generous grandfather that I did not want to be included in his will. I did this because I wanted him to know how much I loved him with no strings attached. Being the generous and loving man that he was, he refused my request. Imagine if he decided to withhold his generosity and love towards me betraying his character. It just wouldn’t have happened, even to the degree that those family members that failed in love and kindness towards him still found generosity and favor as a member of the family. The gift came from his nature and not the nature of the recipient (even though as part of the family I mystically carry with the giver within my DNA.)
I certainly want to enjoy the heights, depths and lengths of this kind of generous love, to be favored and thought well of by God, not only for the effects that this kind of love has in me, but so I can demonstrate generosity of nature to others.
I don’t want to forfeit the ride of my life, because I refuse the giver the generosity of his nature. I want to enjoy being a helicopter mama on every level, not merely for my sake, but on behalf of the others that may benefit from this grand generosity.
“For He will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways.” Psalm 91:11
“Praise the Lord, you his angels, you mighty ones who do his bidding, who obey his word.” Psalm 103:20
I really don’t like it when people of faith shove their faith like a bitter cold slap in the face of others. I don’t like it when rather than love; there seems a need to prove something or to win an argument. When faith is expressed in mere words, instead of through love in action I find the reality incongruent and lacking.
That’s probably why I don’t generally push my faith outwardly onto others. I’ve been stung by religious pontificating as much as the rest of the world. I’ve disliked the faith community’s elitism that harmed my family and often continues to be threated by our lack of interest in rule keeping and many things that fly in the face of everything about Christ and the Trinity’s love for mankind.
And yet how do I live from a place that is authentic to me, my faith reality, my often struggle with this community and my love for the world in or out of my faith inclination? That has been the dilemma for sometime and so in 2015 I hope to embrace more love for myself in this space and for others who are willing to stand with open hands declaring that they do not know it all, or have the corner on the market. In my book, relationship is paramount (yes messy and imperfect) but without it I am not interested in any gymnastics that may seem spiritual but lacks the reality of love. Activities without relationship are usually counterfeit, or lacking depth at the very least.
The fact still remains that some thirty years ago I had a life encountering, rearranging divine appointment that took me from a suicidal mess, overcome by bulimia and uncontrollable binging, to being instantly healed of a six-year eating disorder that controlled and almost stole my life. Its one of those encounters that really can’t be explained and most certainly can never be stolen, because I know the impact of this divine intervention in my life. I also know the reality of the continuous daily divine intervention I receive, not to mention after being a 36-year-old widow with four small beautiful children carried through the difficult transition with love and grace. And then after seven years of single parenting miraculous being given a brave man to love my children and me when at the time it seemed like an impossibility, because most men ran for their lives.
I know the miraculously reality of coming through many a devastation with a settled sense of worth and identity and more love and joy than I could have ever anticipated. And I know that the joy in my life is no longer contingent on my successes, my circumstances, others opinion of me, or anything other than God’s faith and outrageous love that carries me and is alive within me. This bountiful love is still constantly being demonstrated toward mankind.
Having had such experiences has altered the way I live and see life. It's the reason I experience life as a joyous celebration. So as I look to 2015 from a place of belief, and a joyful and exuberant creative welcome to the new, I'd say its time to step into the abundance of freedom! Today's art journaling image above is not new, but I felt it calling to me, reminding me of the freedom and joy available to us should we choose to recognize it. Day 3 unspeakable joy is on my mind. What does unspeakable joy (even in hard times) mean to you?
So today for Day 2 of my creative journaling (somedays more play than art) 30 Days of Creative Expression exercise, I just can’t stop thinking about this too good to be true news, this ridiculously lavish grace that grants such outrageous entitlement that flies in the face of finger wagging, bemoaning of entitlement! It’s such good news we really don’t know how to receive it. We collect our add ons and our “buts”, because we fear being like those in this generation that we judge (walking in their annoying entitlement) as we spout, “Who do they think they are?”
But what if this generation with all its quirks (like the rest of us) is actually a blazing billboard, a burning bush pointing to the truth of this complete, grace-given life of Christ running through us? What if this generation was a trumpet declaring our very own entitlement! Are you thinking: heresy?
This grace gift is certainly not because we deserve it, but more likely because most of those that are broadcasting the good news have taken all of the good out of it and so this generation with its flamboyant finger grasping demands is actually a better broadcaster of this ridiculous free gift of grace!
What if we were to reconcile with the Life that has reconciled with us and let it fill our lungs completely. You didn’t think you had any part in acquiring your breath did you? What if we expanded the entitlement we’ve downplayed and let it open up more and more into the recesses of our being with its glorious goodness filling grace?
To have a change of thinking we have to completely disconnect from the old belief even when we don’t fully understand the exchange. We have to stand with open hands of faith willing to receive something better (rather than defend our blind spot) even when we can’t begin to comprehend how the exchange is possible!
We have to be willing to say, “I don’t understand this too good to be true gift of grace, but with every fiber of my being I say, Yes!” I will stop the rule keeping and miserly watching with tit for tat eyes, doling it out to those defined as worthy and instead jump in full depth, lap it up in every corner and splash around in this audacious tidal wave of love grace.
You can be an older brother keeping guard if you want to (I’ve been you and that’s why I’ve had to steer clear of you so I could instead float in the exuberant waters of refreshment!) Yes, that’s right, I’d rather drown in the intoxicating joy of this unequal exchange, this preposterous grace that I am somehow entitled to than hangout with the unbelieving righteous towing the line for the rest of the world. Honestly, it makes me gag!
Today I am joyfully reflecting on this over the top gift, this basking in the presence of love’s overflow, not off in the rafters of holiness, but alive within me. What glorious beautiful news! What do you think about this grace?
Once again I've chosen to start the New Year with open hands, not agendas, but the ease of grace rather than forceful self-will. It feels natural to start each day with a creative exercise or intuitive play, as an extension and expression of the creative Life within, as a process and experience, rather than a goal to be completed.
Each day this month, I will start the day with the idea of effortless, joyful connection, rather than reaching outside of myself for an encounter. I merely experience the Life indwelling within, singing onto the page or through the materials I choose.
This first day of 2015 expresses the creative journey of Believe (in the image above) that I sense evolving this year. This is a natural unfolding that comes easily as I choose to walk in the unforced rhythm of grace.
If you too want to resist the zealous thrust of self-will and move easily and organically into the New Year, you might also choose to spend the next days listening, creating or journaling what arises within you. Let this be the beginning of your road map for this glorious year of possibilities ahead.
Let it ring in with newness and color and joyful ease, instead of frenetic, forced striving.
Should you choose to engage in this fun creative expression let if evolve in your own way and by all means please share your new inspiration and creations as you go.
Wishing you the ease of grace and the overflow of love in your journey. Happy 2015!
Are you stressing out over the holiday season? Are you planning to strive your way through 2015 with a bigger "To do List" and grander agenda?
Why not sink into grace that reflects the wealth you possess, live and grow at your own pace, move into goal setting with the ease of enjoying the ride? Please accept my
100 Keys to Cease Striving and Enter Into Irresistible Bliss ebookas my gift to you this Christmas season. Get a little Moxie uplift and inspiration through this fun and lively ebook that will help you remember what this season and everyday is all about. Simply email me at:Kimber@moxieme.com with the subject line, Irresistible Bliss ebook and I will email it to you.
You can also print off my free Moxie Me Poster above as a reminder of what it means to own your beauty and to be a woman with moxie. I look forward to great things in the New Year in your life and in the lives of women! I hope you will join us in 2015 for the ride.
Wishing you and yours all the blessings of Christmas, a happy holiday and New Year!
Family is important to me. And although I adore my Brady Bunch family, it wasn't until several years ago that my life coach pointed out that family is actually the way I see that world and want to do business, reflected primarily through 1. Relationship 2. The atmosphere or environment of being social, such as a party! The truth be told, my best memories growing up were of the holidays spent in merriment and cheer with the large extended family and of every holiday party I got invited to! I am at my best within family and I believe it's meant to be that way.
Now living in a city built around the corporate structure of banking, you might not think this model for business and life is a good fit. I however, am thrilled with the prospects of what this perspective means. I am thrilled with what this perspective has done in my own life, as my vision continues to grow around community and family, not merely what I can create that might be obsolete in short order, but what a group of people (women my sweet spot) could do to change a city and the world. You see that’s what I believe family has the potential to do. You can see my manifesto about this here.
Family means a lot of different things to a lot of people. Those who have been hurt by it often want nothing to do with it. I have certainly lived in this reality concerning the instability in my family of origin, but I recognized that ‘s not the whole story. Family is so much more than one snapshot or necesssarily relatives for that matter.
Although like many folks, some of my experiences pertaining to family, have at times left me scattered, frayed and with a defensive posture to avoid being sucked back into a toxic whirlwind, whether through my original family or the family culture of “church” that I have been associated with for thirty years. I am however grateful for the enduring qualities and example of family, relationship and love that swallows up the negative. There is an opportunity we each have to be a part of the solution and not the problem. I saw this modeled profoundly through my Grandfather, the normalcy and consistency in my life.
It’s interesting that our values are often forged as a solution to a very real challenge we ourselves have encountered, thus, my coming to recognize that my struggle with family showed me that I was made for family. We were all made for family.
Although we exist within them, we were not made for corporate structures. We were made for family. We were made for relationship. And because we are valued and truly defined as those who are fully loved and accepted, we can live beyond our structures into something bigger, more satisfying, namely the beauty of relationship.
Remember the 1970 Stephen Stills song, Love the One Your With? Family is about recognizing and loving those around you, where you are. There are a lot of things that keep us from living in this way, especially the whiplash of previous failed attempts that have us looking over our shoulder, tentative, afraid and isolated, the very thing that keeps us separated.
However, when we realize that there is actually no separation from the One who made us, the Source of love, who is not somewhere off in the sky, but within us, all hurt and disappointment gets swallowed up by the expansiveness existing within this Love. Really, where can we go and be outside of this Love except in our mind? We are not far off; we’re swallowed up in love.
When we awaken to this reality it makes it easy to love right where we are. We can love the one we’re with!
When we understand any shortsightedness or misstep of love does not define us, we can awaken to the reality that we are a part of a big family (like it or not) and we are wildly and lavishly loved! Recognizing this creates a celebratory atmosphere where we want to live in shared merriment and joy. Welcome to the party! We are family!
I found this dandy sticker that says, Love to be surprised on a piece of junk mail and immediately rescuing it, stuck it on my bathroom mirror. I knew there was a message in the text before I even grasped the simplicity of it! Now I regularly stare at this little love note to self while brushing my teeth and putting on my makeup. I am reminded that I am loved to be surprised! Just thinking about the nature of love makes me giddy and sends me twirling!
The thing about love is that it goes beyond normal reality. Have you ever heard someone that’s fallen in love, describe mundane, rational thoughts or feelings? Love’s signature is that you fall. We say falling “head over heels” because we tumble over ourselves in the best of ways, so that head is no longer the leader. We move beyond our rational thinking and all it’s limitations. We return to being the girl or boy that believed the sky was the limit.
It’s when we return to love, that we enter into Love’s surprises and we enjoy the nature of surprise lurking beyond the lattice, watching and waiting to lavish goodness at every turn. Diving into the depths and heights of love we are able to move out of pain and disappointment, needing to “know” and needing to be in control. We simply bask in Love’s intoxication.
I love good surprises and I know that I am Loved to be surprised! Are you in need of a good love overhaul that banishes doubt and rationale for some overdue merriment and joy? Let the mere thought of being so fully, wildly, out of control and opulently loved cause you to fall over your head!
It's easy to look around and think something outside ourselves is the cause of our struggle or issues in life. I certainly have and still do at times. But when we begin to recognize our outer struggles are related to an inside perspective, things begin to shift.
We might think our lack of income, provision, health, or relational issues are the cause of what’s stopping us. We might be tempted to measure our reality by our surroundings, not recognizing that reality is not a fixed dimension, but an interpretation.
Hopefully our awareness and paradigms will continually expand and we will out grow the limitations we’ve previously perceived. (I continue to discover thoughts and perceptions that I didn’t know I had and regularly make the choice to reframe the way I see life and I hope you do to.)
It’s when our thinking is entrenched (actually stuck in a groove) that we’ve chained ourselves to an idea that becomes a law that rules over us. A belief only has power to master us if we believe it is the law, or authoritative rule. When we move out of a legal relationship to it, we immediately open ourselves up to experience a profound shift.
Suppose we recognize an area where we're stuck and even identify the thought or emotion that has been hindering us, how do we get unchained? Do we strain and try harder to think differently? No, trying harder actually tightens the grip of the negative or old way of seeing things.
When we stop focusing on the negative the negative stops being attached to us. When we open ourselves up to other possibilities we actually release ourselves from the entrenched thought or way of seeing and effortlessly begin to experience an exchange. When we release something there is actually a shift in our brain that allows us to perceive an alternative perspective.
Something only remains attached to us when instead of living in the expansiveness of love and the openness of liberty; we are living from the fear driven reality of a legal exchange. What do I mean by this? Notice the way doubt driven thinking measures things out in tit for tat, such as, “If do this, I am owed this” or “If I am not enough of this, this will be the result.” We all have some legal, punishment driven perspectives that hinder us until we awaken to a greater reality, beyond payment for a good performance and punishment for a perceived inadequate performance.
Many people never live beyond a legal, law, head relationship to life, as they process the world linearly, even reducing God to a rule keeper that keeps us disempowered and our hands tied, rather than owning the bad rap we may have attached to God instead live in the expansiveness, liberty and freedom intended for us. This is a big one!
A clue to recognize this perspective within yourself is to notice when you feel shame, “shoulding,” “not-enoughing,” feelings of powerlessness and victimization or internal or external judgment. These are signs that a legal perspective is hiding somewhere. (I just exchanged a legal perspective that was disempowering me for a dandy upgrade in my perspective this week!) When we get out of our head and move beyond dividing things up from a perceived knowledge of "good and evil" and awaken to true liberty, transformation takes place.
Living under the "law" is the same as willpower. It only works for a while, but can't carry you very far for the long haul. Fitness experts understand that lasting change requires a change and expansion in thinking and lifestyle. Self-help and trying harder will never lead to true transformation. Transformation happens on an entirely different plane. Even grasping this concept on a cognitive level doesn’t bring about transformation.
Transformation happens as we experience an exchange from a legal entity lens into the law of perfect liberty, which transcends intellect. This is the realm of love and faith, a reality beyond time and space or quantifiable dimensions.
It’s easy to focus on the negative because it's the lowest form of reality, but living in the negative (place of lack) and seeing the negative keeps us bound to the letter of the law rather than to life and liberty, which in my faith belief is Christ within me.
Science informs us that we can actually see the exchange take place in the brain from negativity to possibility. When we are thinking negative, low level thoughts our brain looks like a scorched, barren tree. Conversely, when we are thinking expansive thoughts of love, joy, and peace, our brain looks like a flourishing, fruitful tree.
When we choose faith, love and hope we let go of linear, control-base thinking and move into wide-open spaciousness, beyond limitation. Are you living in the freedom of perfect liberty or merely living under the law? Want help getting unchained? If something resonates in your spirit, but you're struggling to process the words through the wall of entrenched thoughts and ideas, take a risk, take a leap into freedom and get support!
What if all of you, every part of us is sacred, everything we do? What if we are the container and can’t divide up our coming or going, our cooking or hiking into sacred and secular, because the life within us is complete, worthy of awe and gratitude, as beholding in a mirror the image of perfection?
When we live from a place of perfect approval according to God’s complete knowledge of us (and the extent to which He went to prove it), we are set on the path of liberty. It’s only when we fall for or stay entrained to the tempting idea of “I am not” that was initiated ages ago, telling us that we are somehow far below who we truly are that we get seduced and held hostage.
Francois Du Toit says, “And so we have exchanged God’s perfect approval of us, based on his perfect knowledge of us, for our imperfect knowledge of ourselves and of one another…”
This seductive alternative perspective is one where we have to work to prove ourselves as if we could master our own being separated from our original Source. And it is this very idea of separation that keeps us striving to try harder and to please.
Honestly, sometimes I forget that I’ve left the speakers of the “I am not-tree-system” that Francois Du Toit coined, turned up. When I interpret life through deficiency, instead of through the Tree of Life lens of I am perfect, fully graced, loved, secured and accepted, I disempower myself and knock myself out of the race.
It’s this “not-enough” lens that burns with a feeling of alienation, shame, inferiority, and being set aside that trips-me-up every time I engage it’s taunts. It tricks me in two ways.
1. In thinking I need to work my way into favor that allures me to grasp for control, and the need to quantify and systemize everything. It’s this outdated vantage point that whispers secret ego enticements to get me to dance, and hustle and pull the skirt over my head to earn my keep; usually without recognizing I am even doing it.
2. Sometimes it throws me out of the game, or I throw myself out of the game when I believe I am separated and flawed.
Paradoxically, it is this very sting of rubbing me raw incongruence rubbing that causes me to harken to the truer sound, the beckoning whisper of Love that runs through every crevice of my being, awakening me to the truth and challenging the counterfeit with questions instead of answers.
For who can predict the day of their birth, or cause their heart to pulse beat after beat with unstoppable life? Who can separate themselves from the womb?
It’s this Love that initiates and celebrates what taunts of “not-enough” only swallow up and confine. It’s this Love that expands realms of possibility and discovery beyond my knowing, taking me on a honeymoon romp beyond time and limits.
When my mind has me detained by search light wardens and detention guards, I know that I have fallen for the “I am not” reality instead of my spotless design. It’s only arrogance on the lowest of level that causes one to calculate and measure insider and outsider, sacred and secular in others or myself.
What if love is the only reality that never ceases to breath, create, morph, and give life, while transcending all dimensions? What if our measuring the world up into our tiny reality isn’t even in the ballpark of what reality truly is?
Do you feel boxed in, because you keep putting yourself under the dead-end system of the law? Are you eating the rotten fruit from the “I am not enough” tree and want to eat from the wide-open spaciousness of the Tree of Life?
It’s time to think fresh! Register now for the Moxie Me Please! Awakening to Your True Identity Coaching Group beginning in Jan. 2015. Early bird pricing goes up Dec. 10th. Hurry and reserve your spot today! For information click here!
In 1997 the second year Christmas rolled around after my husband Bill passed away, my smart welding grandmother tossed out a new idea. Instead of having me slave in the kitchen for an elaborate Christmas dinner, we would order Chinese take-out. This idea became a family tradition that we continued to celebrate for years, along with serving up a smorgasbord of Hors d'oeurvre on Christmas Eve.
Now that the kids are on the West coast and I will be celebrating Christmas with my East Coast family, things look differently and therefore need to be reexamined. It’s been said that change is the only thing that remains consistent. To stay in sync with change, intentional choices must consistently be examined and exercised.
It’s important to look at your life regularly and evaluate what you are tolerating and what you would actually choose instead. Process the information in this manner:
1. Ask yourself, “What do I want?” Although this might seem obvious, you’d be amazed how many people shuffle along through life without addressing what has been placed in them to nurture and to live out.
2. After identifying what you want, it is important to: Determine where you are at this moment in relation to your desire, dreams, vision and goals.
3. Determine the next right step to move forward toward your vision or goals and take incremental, intentional action.
Even the most independent of us needs regular support in life, including those that live in the woods, provide their own food, and live off the grid. Each of us needs to link arms with those who have different skill and gift sets.
As you determine what your goals are in the season ahead, consider joining the Moxie Me Please! Coaching Group to help you unearth your gold, gain clarity and vision around your voice, your passion and your true identity, move closer to your vision, and get activated.
One of my goals for 2015 is to support more women in stewarding and activating the wealth that they carry.
Don’t deny yourself the affordable support you need, because you lack vision, intention, follow through or resolve to see your goals materialize. Join us!
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