💙 I am often asked this question: When I try to meditate, I fall asleep. What does it mean? The deep and enlightened answer to that question is: it means you are tired ; )
It’s the same thing when you finally make space for your creative work. You carve out a couple of hours or a few days out of your routine for it, and you get sick or you are too tired to focus or tap into your creativity. It means your body needs rest, attention, and support.
We are so conditioned to be busy, to fill up our days with tasks that often the first time we have a chance to stop and realize how tired we really are is when we hit the pillow at night. Chances are we weren’t very creative that day because soul-fuelled creativity requires us to be present to our being, to pause long enough to hear or feel the communication from our soul.
When I left my teaching job at the university for focusing on my passion full-time and become self-employed, I found it very challenging to go from “reacting” to “creating”. There is a huge difference between the two. When you have an employer and you have specific outcomes and times to be somewhere, you make it happen. You react to an outside demand. Someone else if setting the boundaries and that's familiar. If we were raised to believe we needed to find a job and that our creativity had to be a hobby, not the main thing, we have to become the advocate for that creative space, because the outside world will most probably tell us that it is not a worthwhile priority.
When you are working for yourself, writing a book, building your soul-centred business, no one sets your schedule, you can create your day in any way you wish. And that can be destabilizing. If I can be and do anything, how do I choose? What do I really want? Reacting is easier than creating. But for innate leaders and artists, reacting won’t be enough. It will always feel like something is missing.
It’s the same with parenting. We are so used to reacting to what our children need that when they don’t need us as much anymore or we get to carve out time for ourselves to create, it is often difficult to shift gears and create from within as opposed to react to an outside situation.
When I wrote my thesis, I had a thesis director to respond to, I had his comments and feedback to react to, I had his timeline to follow. Even though I had to self-motivate to write every day, I still had an external point of reference for what I needed to do and that would get me going. When I began writing my book, without a deadline or a book contract or any kind of income related to me writing, it was sooooo hard to make the shift.
I wanted to write about my heart’s musings and in order to hear the musings, I had to quiet my mind and still my body long enough to shift my focus. When I did that, I realized that my heart wasn’t the only part of me that had something to say: my belly was uncomfortable, my mind felt sluggish, my neck was in pain, I felt restlessness in my solar plexus, and all of it deeply frustrated me, made me feel so impatient, and I would often give up and tell myself it must not be meant to be. That’s why it took me 8 years to get my first book done and out!
I often felt like I didn’t deserve space and time to tend to my musings. Being creative meant I had to unpack and question conditioned beliefs and habits on how my days and my weeks were to unfold. I had to heal old wounds that had been begging for my attention. I tried hard not to make the contemplation and healing work another excuse to not carve out time and space to focus on the writing. I did the work concurrently. This is our life. Our daily commitment to be an artist in the medium of life includes the uncomfortable work.
Space is uncomfortable because space is love. And we are not used to so much love coming our way from ourselves. But we all know that if we don’t make the time, do the healing work, take care of our bodies, then the whispers of the soul will come back, and they always come back, but louder and bolder, and we will have to, one way or another, answer the call.
So let's answer the call. Do one or two things today that will support you becoming more comfortable in your being, more comfortable with silence, and do one or two things that if you do them, tonight, when you go to bed, you will be able to say: I honoured my heart today, I gave her time and space. 💙
New Year’s resolutions are typically goals that we set for the coming year, results we plan to achieve. For example: “This year I will exercise, meditate, or somehow succeed more… and I will stress, drink, and over eat less.” Optimistic and caught up in the spirit, 'New Year’s Eve You' makes promises on behalf of 'Future You', and Future You never has a chance, because goals set in the future often stay in the future, and we find ourselves making the same resolutions the following year.
There is only ever right now. That's why deciding what you will be in the future is never as powerful as making changes in the present moment. Start thinking about how you want to live your “nows.” The best way to make your intentions a reality is to re-conceptualize resolutions as daily commitments, more like a “New Day’s Resolution.”
Over the past 12 years I have gone through an incredible journey of deepening my connection to my soul. I consciously wanted to feel more inner freedom, to be more at peace with my emotions, and I wanted the assurance of knowing I am fully on my path. From year to year I have accumulated habits that have made this desire a reality. I’ll share a handful of them with you below - some of them might not be for you, but they all work minor miracles for me.
Before you read them, I invite you to ask yourself what it is you really want. How do you want to feel on a daily basis? Then, with love and intention, make small changes to your daily routine - and expect big, juicy results.
Here are 13 daily habits I want to share with you (arranged more-or-less chronologically).
As soon as you wake up take three deep and slow breaths. The first moments of the day are very sacred. You get the chance to set the tone for your day. A deepening of your breath will bring your attention to what really matters: your Being. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth. Reach for your in-breath from your lower abdomen, completely fill your belly and ribcage with air, then drop your jaw, soften the muscles around your mouth, throat, and neck, and breathe out through the mouth, softening your belly.
Feel gratitude in your heart first thing in the morning, after your 3 deep breaths. Say out loud, “thank you” three times and manifest feelings of joy and gratitude as you say the words.
Smile before you get out of bed: smile and allow even more of that joyfulness to come in. You don’t need a reason, you are simply training your being to attract and notice more situations that bring about joy, laughter, and contentment.
Ask: “How can I serve?” You came to this earth with gifts and you are meant to share them with the world. Beware of the question, “how can I get what I want?” which keeps you in strategy level thinking. Asking, “how can I serve?” will attract situations where you can use your gifts to inspire others and yourself. Being of service brings meaning, happiness, and a deepened connection to spirit.
Drink a glass of warm water before consuming anything else. It gives your organs a head start and aids digestion. When we support our digestive system, our body doesn't have to work as hard, and we have more energy for other systems in our body.
Drink a green smoothie. After the water, head to the Vitamix. A green smoothie that includes more green than fruit will awaken your digestive system with all the benefits of organic leafy greens. I have found that a daily habit of drinking green smoothies has added to my energy and vitality.
Come back to the breath and the heart as often as you can. When stressed or confused, when sad or angry, when nervous, anxious, overwhelmed, fatigued, or frustrated, when you feel out of sorts, or uncomfortable, bring your attention back to your heart and breathe deeply. When in doubt of anything, bring your attention back to your heart and breathe deeply. Even when you are feeling great, bring your attention to your heart and breathe deeply, anchoring this feeling in your being. Your breath in your heart is where your soul lives. This habit brings you back home to you, helps you reset your compass, and you can do it dozens of times a day. In fact, you can spend most of your time in that space.
Meditate: I officially learned how to meditate in 2009 at the Chopra Centre. I have used the Primordial Sound Meditation and the Chakra Sutras on and off for the past seven years. More and more, I see meditation as a way of living, of being grounded and aware moment-to-moment, as opposed to being reserved for a specific time and place. Each moment can be an opportunity to meditate. Try to bring and keep your awareness within as you go about your day: when you are eating your meals, driving in your car, having a conversation with a family member or a friend, brushing your teeth. If you need help with grounded and whole body awareness, here is a meditation I recorded: http://anneberube.com/meditations/
Stay active: I try to sweat three times a week, with Hot Yoga, running, or a power walk. I also have a stretching routine I do most mornings when I wake up. I am Kapha so I sometimes find it difficult to get my body moving. I have found that getting my heart to race for even a couple of minutes every day really has an impact on my stamina, my overall energy, and my ability to be even more active. Don’t make a big deal out of it but try to raise your heart rate every day.
Hug the people you love and make sure they feel seen and loved. Family is at the heart of my life. When the four of us are at peace with each other and everybody feels seen, inspired, happy, and well, the heart is healthy. When the heart is healthy, there is nothing we can’t do together. We tell each other that we love each other everyday and we hug a lot!
Don't eat after 7pm: Intermittent fasting is highly recommended by nutritionists and naturopaths. It gives your digestive system a rest so your body can focus its energy on other important functions. I have done a few 18 hour fasts but what I tend to do on a regular basis is to give my digestive system a full 12 hours of rest. All that is required is to resist the temptation to snack before bedtime.
Falling asleep with your desired feelings in your awareness. As Wayne used to say, you will stew for 8 hours in the state that you fall asleep in. Think about your desired feelings and allow those to be the last feelings you have before your conscious mind shuts down and your soul becomes even more active. Wayne had the habit of saying every night before going to bed: “Good things are going to happen.” He had a little sign made and it was hung on the wall beside his bed. If you fall asleep every night believing that good things are going to happen, they most certainly will.
Believe that you can have it all, then make a promise to yourself to not compromise or settle. You have a huge destiny to live out.
That’s it! These are things that over the years have become habitual for me. They are my antidote to New Year’s Resolutions. These practices accumulated in my life little by little over the years and I am so grateful for them. I’d be thrilled if even one or two could be helpful for you!
🔥 A few days ago, I had coffee with a friend, the best kind of friend, the kind that asks you huge questions like “What are you most afraid of these days Anne?” I went into myself to feel this question, and I stared at him for a little while. Then, from this ache in my chest, I said: “I am afraid of what my anger can do.” His question came toward the end of our time together, so after he left, I sat there by myself in a hot mess of emotions (Thanks a lot Nick ; ) but really, thank you ) and this is what I wrote...
I remember rage, in Grade 10. I was in Quebec city with my basketball team playing a tournament game against an all-girl private school team, and they were vicious. When the refs weren’t looking, they’d trip us on purpose and throw elbows in the rib cage any chance they had. None of the coaches were seeing what was happening, and I remember just steaming inside. I’d never experienced anything like that. Then, in the last quarter, I saw my friend go down in pain. One of the girls from the other team grabbed one of her breasts and twisted it until she was on the floor. Something in me snapped, and I unleashed. I ran towards the girl, screaming and cursing at her, and in a fit of rage, I began to pound on her until we were both on the ground and coaches pulled us apart. I was suspended for the rest of the game plus 2 more games after that.
I wasn’t so much concerned about the suspension. I was mortified by what I’d done. In that moment, when I went from zero to 60 in what felt like a split second, I didn't have any control over my reaction. The injustice of it all and the loyalty I felt toward my friend seemed to justify my actions and I did not for one second question what I was doing. Something in me was capable of violence and it scared the shit out of me. I felt ashamed that I displayed this rage publicly. After that, I became very careful in my environment. I feared anger, I didn’t understand it, so I decided to avoid conflict as much as I could. Better not unleash this beast again. I didn’t know then that this was simply the consequence of unexpressed anger I had kept at bay for years.
Fast forward to now. “Be Still And Know, I Am God” is my meditation mantra. So zen, right? Inspired by Joseph Benner’s The Impersonal Life, embodying divine light and love, inviting and allowing impersonal soul and all of Source to move and express through the personal vessel that is me has been my fascination and my practice, personally and professionally, for the past 3 years. Yes, it has expanded my experience of peace and stillness inside me in ways I could not have imagined…
Then this fall happens… and this zen girl blew up!
When my daughter went through her bout with anxiety this past September (she is doing much better btw) and I watch her go through the process of feeling this new intensity in her body and discovering her voice ON FIRE, it stirred up old wounds. Her unapologetic expression of self and her fierce advocacy and protection for her own non-negotiable needs was so inspiring and to my surprise, it awakened a sleeping dragon, a wildfire I had no idea I carried in me. The whole thing threw me off completely.
My first step was to discern what belonged to me and what belonged to my daughter so I didn’t project onto her what was mine so I could be there for her without the confusion of my own baggage. So separately but alongside her healing, I did mine, and I sat with this super uncomfortable hot mess of a feeling. And I discovered it was a lot of anger. I was pissed off and frustrated, but I didn’t know at what or who, and I did not like not knowing.
I am good with fully feeling emotions. It’s what I do, it’s my specialty. I have a lot of experience with joy, hurt, despair, shame, inspiration, shame, exuberance, sadness, even impatience, and frustration, but I realized I had very little tools to help my process anger.
I never thought of myself as an angry person. But looking back, I can see that I have always been a little restless and agitated. I developed means to transmute this unease, using writing, physical exercise, meditation, breath work, art, or going for a walk in nature, to allow the fire to move and settle in me. I took care of it quietly, on my own, in a controlled, subdued way. I can see clearly now that I avoided conflict, and my psyche was working very hard at keeping this anger hidden and under wrap. I never really needed another way to deal with it, until this fall when it peaked its ugly head out.
I asked for help. I opened up to someone I trust and I allowed my anger to be heard and witnessed, in all its childishness and pettiness. It was really hard. I was ashamed of these "ugly" feelings, and I realized I was scared I’d lose love if I showed this side of me. Speaking it released me and I began to see even more clearly.
I started to re-familiarize myself with this anger. I still couldn’t see the intelligence of it, and my ego wasn’t sure it was a good thing, but I knew better than to defy “what is.” I was feeling it, so I was going to stay with it until something new happened.
So when my friend ask me a few days ago what I was most afraid of in my life right now, and I answered: “I am afraid of what my anger can do,” I meant that I couldn’t see where all this intensity was leading me. I don’t have many points of reference for healthy anger, and I was afraid that this anger would make me bitter and that it might isolate me from the people I love. I was also fearful that it would now define me and make me emotionally unsafe for others.
So I broke it down. I am afraid of anger because… I do remember losing love over it. I remember that when I did express my anger, I did lose connection, attention, and respect from the people who’s love meant everything to me. I have carried in me a belief that in order to keep the love and therefore stay safe, I can’t let anger take over. Not to mention that it is not very sweet for a young girl to have a temper. Without a healthy mechanism for being on the receiving end of anger, I have also learned how to pull away from others who show this intensity, out of protection.
But what I realize now is that it wasn’t the anger itself I was scared of, it was the loneliness, and the abandonment anger could bring. It was the rage, the bitterness, and the manipulative consequences of anger I was fearful about. Because disembodied fire can hurt people.
Anger is fire, and I am quite excited about my fire, I just never had the opportunity to understand it like I do now. When fire is disembodied or un-grounded, it can be violent and hurtful. And when it is suppressed and left unexpressed for years, it can lead to bitterness and resentment. That’s the anger we fear. Not anger itself. Anger is healthy. Anger is passion, clarity, creativity, and gets things done. It's like a fire that burns out and leaves nutrients for something new to grow. When I speak anger I make light manifest. And I accelerate my becoming.
Last winter, during my extended hibernation healing cocoon, I was asking myself the question: who was I before I began to please others, and before others needed me? I came to understand that I was was pure joy, but now I know I also was angry. And back then, it felt right and expansive, not scary. It was pure light.
My new love affair with my fire is unfolding and now includes anger and it’s hot!
I see how all emotions, thoughts and spirited action, including embodied anger, are fuelled by divine light, the Impersonal Self, the I Am God Force. Nothing comes from darkness. Nothing. It is the fire of life-force that pushes through our body and attempts to fill the shadowy spaces that we experience as intensity. It has a strong will to reshape the landscape of past hurt in our being, wanting to express through the narrow passages of our beliefs, of our throat. The pressure we feel is what creates the suffering, and intensifies the ego that wants to blame and judge. Not the light itself. So when that light gets to be spoken in the very moment it rises in us, with the discernment of grounded intuition, we literally shape our world and create our destiny. We become.
“If you’re not angry, you’re either a stone, or you’re too sick to be angry. You should be angry. You must not be bitter. Bitterness is like cancer. It eats upon the host. It doesn’t do anything to the object of its displeasure. So use that anger, yes. You write it. You paint it. You dance it. You march it. You vote it. You do everything about it. You talk it. Never stop talking it.
I feel like I am finally in on a huge secret. I am excited for where this will take me, take us. Let's never stop talking it. Let's become, together. 🔥
Photo by Jeff Keni Pulver
It’s the holiday season and many of us find ourselves simultaneously excited and apprehensive about spending time with family. Navigating the emotional stress brought on by complex family dynamics and expectations is rarely easy.
We want the holidays to be fun, happy, and we want to share magical moments with the ones we love, yet many of us wake up in January with an emotional hangover. When it comes to family, the unconscious conditioned patterns run deep in our bodies. It seems like no matter how good our intentions are going into the season, emotions run high and we end up saying or doing something we didn’t mean and later regret. And it all happens so fast, it feels like we didn’t get a chance to choose to do things differently. Sound familiar?
Here’s something to think about this holiday season: there are two kinds of happiness. The first I call “externally referenced happiness”. This happiness is ephemeral, transient, and relies on outcomes and expectations; we depend on the external world to provide it for us. The second kind is the “internally referenced happiness”. It is the one that lasts and lives deep inside of us. It is permanently available within and it is our choice to connect with it or not.
If we follow any unhappiness back to its root, it will always end up being a need or a desire that hasn’t been met. When the fulfillment of a need depends on someone other than us, expectations are born. And with expectations comes disappointment.
Expectations are those “shoulds” and “shouldn’ts” that run on a loop in our heads, seemingly without our consent. They come from the conditioned beliefs we have about the world and how things should be. Many of them were acquired at a young age and have become an integral part of our inner dialogue and are the root of much of our thoughts, words, and actions. They are based in things being good or bad, right or wrong. They are especially acute during the holiday season because of familial relationships and the multiple, often divergent, traditions.
Here is the difference between expectations and intentions: expectations rely on others and intentions rely on you. Expectations are rigid, while intentions are flexible. Expectations imply judgements about yourself and others. Intentions imply a mind open to possibilities.
If you hold an expectation in your mind, it usually comes with a scenario and a story based on past experiences. And if it doesn’t unfold just so, you will be disappointed and prone to repeating the same situation in the future. In contrast, as you hold your intention clear in your heart, your mind will have an expanded filter and will see all the opportunities to manifest your intentions.
Our families and communities work together to set expectations and sustain the myths of holiday traditions. We are all accomplices. This year, let’s break the patterns of self-sabotage and remorse and experience the holidays on our own terms.
The following is a brief exercise that you can do to become aware of your expectations and arrive at a place where you can choose differently this time around.
Step one: To reflect on your expectations, you need first to get them out of your head and into plain sight. When we try to figure out emotional issues from within our own minds, we get discouraged very quickly. Our ego is really good at identifying with those beliefs and taking things personally. Getting them out on paper will give you the chance to become the observer of what is really happening. Take a blank piece of paper and write down in detail a stressful situation that happened once upon a holiday season--a situation you wish to transcend this year. Be honest with yourself and describe in great detail what happened: thoughts, actions, feelings, and outcomes. No one will read this, so be vulnerable and go deep into the emotional aspects of it. Trust me, just that first step will be cathartic.
Step 2: Put your paper aside and pick it back up later in the day or the next day. As you re-read it, circle the expectations/beliefs/desires that pop out at you. On a separate piece of paper, make a list of the “shoulds”, “shouldn’ts.” For example: he shouldn’t drink so much, I should be more patient with her, she shouldn’t talk to me like that, he should be more kind with her.
Step 3: Reflect on your list. Your first impression might be that each and every item on your list is a well-founded and a normal expectation. And they might well be. But the reality is that even well-meant and reasonable expectations can set us up for disappointment because we tend to form an idea on how things should unfold, how it will look and feel. Opportunities for true joy and love are all around but we often can’t see them because of our single point focus on how things should be.
Step 4: The yoga tradition teaches us about the power of setting our intentions, and the importance in detaching from the outcomes. Rewrite your list and change the language from “should” and “shouldn’t” to “I want.” This will empower you with your desire and intention, detached from other people’s behaviours or attitudes, taking ownership of your own needs. For example: I want kindness in my relationship with my father or I want to be more patient with my sister. It’s up to you! Feel your desired feeling and intention in your heart and let that be your guide.
Step 5: Let go of your expectations. Now that you are clear on your intentions, don’t worry about “how” they will manifest or plan out the way they will happen. Expectations take the fun out of experiencing something new.
You may wish to invite certain family members to experiment with this exercise as well. In the end, we all want to love and be loved, but it takes courage and vulnerability to be the first to change. By letting go of expectations, we also let go of self-sabotage. We create space for greater depth and authenticity in our relationships, allowing our most important wishes to be fulfilled.
I wish you a heart filled with peace and a deepened connection with your soul this holiday season xo ❄️💙
We often find comfort in conflict. Our bodies get used to it, intensity and contrast are all around us, all the time. For many of us, it has become our default. We come to a place where we feel more comfortable in the chaos of a dispute and an argument than we do in the stillness of our own being.
Often we pride ourselves with how much we can handle. Our backs are strong, people can lean on us. The more problems to solve, the better. We take it on out of habit, not necessarily because we want to, but mostly because we can. And when conflict outside settles, we realize we have forgotten how to thrive without it. Our subconscious seeks the familiarity of chaos.
I know this about me. I can push my limits quite far, until I can't anymore. I can ignore my desire for stillness and creative expression for a long while, distracted by fires, other people’s and my own. Fires who need fanning, need love, need witnessing. I am very good at that. It is comfortable for me. I’ve done it my whole life.
So when stillness is needed, in the silence I become aware of a background noise. When there are no fires that need me, I am left with my raging volcano, calling from inside, begging for my love, my attention and my life-giving breath. I am so skilled at ignoring it that I often miss it and its meaning. I have missed the extent of its intelligence for a big part of my life.
When for too long our fire has been measured, controlled, miss-labelled, and redirected to be “appropriate” and "acceptable", and we have fuelled too often on the fires outside of ourselves, something gives.
Our light gives, and the full expression of its force.
When I look at Pele expressing as volcano, tending to her own light with the grounded care and protection of a Mother and the fierce clarity and support of a Father, and I see her creating her world, literally shaping the land with her fire, I am reminded of what is possible when I give myself permission to stand in my fire, without the need for conflict.
It might be super uncomfortable to feel all that intensity flowing through without any immediately apparent reason, and to breathe deeply into this hot mess of urgency, of impatience, and of agitation, but I know there is no better way out than in and through.
And not just for the sake of healing. We sit and breathe in the heat not solely for transformation but to tap into a new way of moving through life, where change is joyful, where lessons don’t have to be hard-won, but learning happens spontaneously through the joy of fully feeling.
We know that if we want something new to be revealed, if we want to do justice to our creative heart and its unique song, we have to make an unbreakable commitment to our fire, first and foremost, daily, hourly. Can we draw the line in the sand even more clearly, to create the boundaries we need to make real our light? What does it look like when we allow the fire in our belly to rise, and rise, and voice itself, not because there is a fight to fight but because there is big-ass life to live?
You know you came here to serve, to inspire, to support. It has been your mission since you woke up and remembered who you truly are. But on the light-worker’s path there comes a day when you are called to shine differently. Although your desire to serve still burns strongly within you, the light of your work feels diffused and doesn’t seem to feed you in the ways it once did. This should not be taken as a sign that you are on the wrong path or that you are not supported, but instead as an invitation to take a step back and readjust, so you can share your medicine with even more precision and power. You are called to tighten your aim in order to widen your impact, with less effort, and to master your craft even more. Pause long enough to gain clarity, then shift from a personal to an impersonal expression of life-force. Instead of being the personal mirror for others to see themselves in your light, be the impersonal light itself that radiates uncompromisingly, like the sun that never asks the earth for permission to shine. What you will leave behind will be replaced tenfold.
This excerpt from my book is still true today.
I know that there are still ( and will continue to be ) places inside myself I haven't gone to yet, dark nooks and crannies of my subconscious that are wanting to come out of the shadows, wanting to be seen in the light, so I can grow through the goop and emerge anew. When it show up, everything in my body wants to shut it down. I catch myself blaming myself and others for the mess, for the chaos. And on top of it, it feels super unsafe to share my confusion with the ones I love the most, like I could lose a lot by doing so.
I don't so much worry that they will see the ugly bits, but that these bits are unacceptable, a deal breaker in our relationship contract, bits that could shake the ground of our reality and take us into a wild and lonely land.
Change is the only thing consistent about life. And these messes are not brought on by an essential darkness of life. NO. They are brought on by this fierce light, this unapologetic life-force within us that has no more time to waste. Underneath the fear is where this force pushes, trying to make its way through the tissue of our body, desiring to shape us in the true expression of ourselves.
So there is no other real way but through; going into the fear, in the destabilizing hurt, and being witnessed in all of our sadness and in all our shame; all the way to the stillness of the in-between space, not yet new but no longer known, where breath is the only thing we know for sure exists; to eventually, and only in time and with patience and continued love for self and this process, a place to land, a ground to put our feet down, like a newborn but in a brand new context.
We know it when our life force can no longer remain small in order to keep the peace, to keep things as they are around us. Often our outside world will mirror it to us. My daughter was the mirror this time. I didn't see it coming at all. And it shook my primary relationship up, the one I have with Paul. For weeks I felt I was in no man's land, navigating completely new and unknown territory. I tried not to rush it. I am still in it. But I can feel the intelligence at play. It always emerges, in time.
I know that this process will continue to be true for me for the rest of my life. I know I will keep coming up to a new layer of vulnerability, and it might be sneaky and try to go around me, convince me I am fine. But every time I dive in and go through it, I build more trust in my body's capacity to handle the transformation and my heart’s ability to process the shift in energy; I build more trust in the essential creative nature of soul and universe; and I build more trust in the incredible intelligence of this life-force animating my being.
I am raw, swirling inside, ungrounded. As I watched my 10-year-old daughter holding back tears as she walks out of the car and heading into school this morning, my insides are crumbling. She feels trapped, unable to find an exit from the overwhelming fear that has taken over her normally bright and fierce self these past few weeks. She can’t find her way through this heaviness, she feels not in control of herself, and it splits my heart open.
Is it pre-puberty, a new teacher and new classmates, the car accident she was in last winter, a sudden and new awareness of mortality, her older brother going through his own changes, me travelling, the recent encounter with a verbally violent neighbour, or is it a combination of all these things coming together in a perfect storm… whatever it is, it is bringing her to the edge of her own awareness of safety in her body, and of her sense of power in this world.
In this intensity, I feel my own shakiness, which dissimulates an anger I haven’t felt in a long time. I can trace back my own feeling of powerlessness, as a child in school, with a neighbour, the babysitter, my gymnastics coach, with an older boy when I was 13, with an older man when I was 17, in my car accident… this feeling of having no control and of losing my freedom and my ability to act on my own behalf, be the advocate for me and my life. Fire rises in me when I think about someone or something else having ownership of my person, even for a moment, whether it be because of physical force, emotional manipulation, or verbal violence… Yep, it’s in times like these, when I am witness to my daughter’s struggle, that I know it all still lives in me. I am angry and sad, and I struggle to find my footing.
I am vulnerable. Although at an essential level I know my soul is unalterable and eternally wise and safe, a long time ago my human self-realized, with great disappointment, that I was not as invincible as I originally thought I was. I figured that there were places and times when I would be helpless, small, scared, unprotected. It’s disorienting to feel this. But I know that my calling is to go deeper into my own sense safety inside. When the ground wobbles underneath me, I have an invitation to return even closer to the power and wisdom of my essential self, one breath at a time, one layer of emotions at a time. For me. For my daughter. For us.
In that raw space, today, I feel small. I don’t fully know yet what the best thing to do is but I am incredibly inspired by the testimony of Dr. Christine Blasey Ford yesterday. The feminine energy in all of us is screaming and begging to show up, we can't keep it in anymore. I saw in Dr. Ford a fire propelled by a deep sense of love and courage. She had nothing to gain in showing up fully with her truth, everything to lose. I hope she knows that we all gained from her bravery. The collective feminine witnessed her, breathed with her, held her while she spoke, and rooted itself even deep into the earth, giving us more strength and power, restoring a deeper humanity in all of our bodies.
One breath at a time.
I want my daughter to know she is strong in her softness. I want her to know she has the force of a volcano and the kindness of the most tender mother. I want her to know that she has a tribe of loving men and women around her who cheer her on, who see her for who she really is, even when she falls apart, messes up, and feels lost.
I can't protect her from her life, from trauma, from experiencing the ebb and the flow of this human existence. But I can be the mama bear and keep safe boundaries around her. I can be present to her and witness to her pain. I can remind her she is surrounded by so much love. I can continue to be close to what moves through me, by deepening my own sense of safety within. That I can do.
To quote @Jessica Dolan Clarendon "Dr. Christine Blasey Ford. May all of our daughters grow up without her trauma but with all of her strength."
💙🌟 So much of the truth of our experience is abstract and is felt beyond our five senses. Many of us weren’t encouraged to validate and trust the intangible feelings of creativity, of wisdom, and of spiritual truth, mostly because others couldn’t see, touch, hear, or understand what we were talking about. There is little in the outside world to show for this abstract energy within, yet it feels real to us, more than anything else in the “real world.”
This is the artist’s way. She knows how true her experience within is. So much so that she HAS to make it tangible to the outside world. But until she creates it, she is alone with her knowing. She is asked to believe in her feelings, in her inner vibrations, in the insubstantial vibes of her musings. It is her faith in the unseen that gives her the strength, the courage, and the patience to engage and manifest her knowing.
🌈You are the artist. Life is your medium and intuition is your muse. 🌈 No one else can fully know what you know energetically, because god expresses through you in a way that is unique to your body, to your mind, to your soul contract, to your soul history, to your skills and your gifts. You, and you alone, are the holder of that unique vision, the protector of that sacred seed, the nurturer of that latent creation.
For a while now, you have been experiencing life on a deeper level. You feel differently about yourself and reality. You know that there is more than meets the eye, but it all feels so abstract and so dam hard to explain to others. Your intuition is strengthening, and it has reached a level where it NEEDS to break out into the environment, to become tangible, tactile, real in the world, for all to see. You are invited to break into matter, to make the un-manifest manifest. Speak, breathe, move, share, write, draw, sing, express in any way you can. By yourself or with others, engage your fire.
You might be clumsy at the beginning. It might feel super awkward: remember that your biology was shaped to accommodate a more subdued version of your light, a more measured expression of your god-force. Give yourself time. Be patient. Allow healing and rest to take place. But don’t stop taking action from that place of intuition. Keep engaging your fire. Whether in small ways, like texting to yourself a nugget of insight that came to your awareness during coffee with a friend, or stopping on your walk back from work to look at that rose bush and breathe with her for a moment, be with her essence for a while. Or in big ways, like pressing “publish” on your soul revealing blog or Facebook post that contains your raw fire, your volcano soul-truth, or signing up for those voice lessons, or having that overdue conversation with your husband or your sister.
Whether small or big, keep engaging your fire. It will take you to your next step, your next bread crumb, your next expansion opportunity, your next soul assignment.
You are the leader of yourself, the leader of your medicine. You move ahead of your pack to stand alone for a while with what you know. Trust yourself like you trust life. Because you are life-force itself. No one else can manifest life-force through you like you can. xo
If you are anything like me and growing up you adopted "pleasing" as a way of being seen and validated by your environment, then pleasing has kept you safe for a long, long time. Pleasing has built walls so you could protect yourself emotionally, spiritually and perhaps even physically, and survive your world. And maybe you have embarked on a journey of letting go of pleasing others in this way that is not healthy for you, and you know that others’ happiness and comfort is not your job nor your responsibility anymore. Maybe you have realized that what you really want is to know yourself beyond this pattern and you want to be able to love in a different way, with healthy boundaries. I get you.
Then you might come to a point where you ponder this question: who was I before I began to please? Who was the little boy or the little girl before they fragmented into multiple “selves” to accommodate, to keep the peace, to manage others’ emotions? And when you ask that question, you might not know the answer... and that uncertainty might scare the shit out of you. Standing in such an existential unknown can be destabilizing like the ground is moving under you. In that moment, you feel that the protection and the safety you have worked so hard to build throughout your life is gone. Your thick skin has softened, your walls have come down, you feel exposed, more vulnerable than you have felt in a long time. And you wonder if this is good for you, if this is the right path.
I invite you to stay there. Stay right where you are. Don’t rush this part. This is the bridge, the gateway to remembering who you really are, who you were before you forgot. Remain with the uncertainty, in the in-between space of identity. You will emerge anew, in time.
But this is very important: during this time make sure you surround yourself with people who are emotionally safe and put yourself in environments that are nurturing, kind, life-giving, and expansive. If you can't find such people or environments, go for neutral. Neutral attention is better than emotionally abusive attention. The last thing you need during this period is to be walking on eggshells around people who need you more than you need them. Be selfish. You are tending to the most important of all relationships: the one you have with the mystery of life within you, who you really are. For now, you are your authority, your advocate, your bouncer. Ask for what you need, draw the line in the sand clearly, and stick to it. What you will discover in time will bring you more meaning, peace, and joy than ever before, and your strength, your power will return in a way that is even more grounded, like a volcano sharing her truth, uncompromisingly. Safety and protection will not be needed anymore, they will make way to clarity, focus, light, and power. You've got this.
Oh, this is a juicy topic. It is of the hour. I am so fascinated by our desire as human beings to put others on a pedestal, to give our power away in order to feel some peace, some respite from our suffering, some lasting joy.
I did it. Beginning with my mother, for a long long time, then with “mother figures" like Sai Maa, and Anita, then with “father figures” like Wayne and with priests in the Catholic church growing up. I did it with men. Oh did I ever betray myself in my teens and my twenties, when I crossed the boundary line between “I want to share love with you” and “this is not ok but I can't remember where to find my voice”. I even did it with Paul to some extent. It is hard-wired in me, conditioned deep in my cells, to feel like another has my answers, another holds my worth, the key to my success, to my ultimate happiness.
Sometimes these happenings have opened up doors within myself and gave me access to more profound dimensions of life. I saw with my own eyes my father’s heart being cracked open with one single hug from Sai Maa; I can’t deny the depth of the experience of unconditional love I felt when Wayne listened to my every word, seeing the deeper and truer essence of me; I know how powerful the acceleration of vibration feels inside when in the presence of a human who has accelerated their own vibration to such a place that we can, in their proximity, attune with divine love, and grace; and I know how much I have grown into myself from Anita’s self-love message, how incredibly powerful she is on stage, reminding everyone of their innate beauty. For those experiences I am so grateful.
But my conclusion is this: ultimately, I do not access lasting joy, healing nor inner peace when the source of these things lay outside of myself. Each experience have convinced me more and more how important it is to bring these figures down from the pedestal and at eye level; everyone and anyone we place up there, the people with whom we feel less then, even if we think it’s for our own good, and to KNOW that we are "’that” which we admire in them.
We are IT. We are the universe, we are god, we are the sun and the moon, the ocean and the volcanoes, the light and the dark, the fears and the exuberance… all of it. The journey of the soul in human form is to fully OWN and FEEL the experience of that HUGENESS. Yes, we can be inspired by a teacher or an artist that speaks a truth that resonates with us, that awakens us. Absolutely! That is why we are here, to uplift each other, to walk together. But we should always take that truth back inside, to bounce it off against our inner truth compass, and know that the teacher doesn’t hold anything we don't have and that learning how to DISCERN truth within (not without) is the ultimate gift of love and freedom.
The role of a teacher is to nurture the leader and teacher in others, not to gain followers, and not to indulge in the pedestal thing. What we need today are leaders, everyday people, who are self-examined, self-responsible, and self-accountable, people who are able to honour the personal and move through to the impersonal of the issue, to share with others authentic stories and expanded tools of “self, soul, and source awareness” so individuals can embody their own wholeness, lead themselves into emotional and spiritual autonomy, and be empowered by their own knowing, independent of the teacher, and perhaps inspire others to do the same.
Being immersed in a powerful spiritual context like religion, just like being immersed in a powerful social context like the film industry or politics for example, especially if it’s from a very young age, it is incredibly complex within oneself to find the discernment of truth, personal or universal, in the face of the authority figures, alive or dead, in that context. To the individuals who are emerging with powerful truths, with such courage, clarity, determination, love, and perspective … I am so incredibly inspired by you. You are the medicine we need right now. The leadership we need. These accounts, experiences, and testimonials are life-changing, mountain moving. Not just for the storyteller, but for all who are witnessing and have, in some way or another, experienced abuse at the hands of authority figures. Including me. To you, I say thank you. And how can I help.
We avoid the great big winters by honouring the small ones. We can tame the intensity of our great big storms by welcoming the daily ones, the moments that ask us to pause and rest, even when it feels so dam unproductive.
We avoid the great big winters by recognizing the days that demand stillness and observation, by honouring the weeks when we need to rest, not do so much, even if it goes against our well thought out plans.
We avoid the great big traumas and dramas by honouring the small ones, the very subtle nudges in the body, the impulse of frustration, impatience, the whisper that says: this is not working, so pause, go in, don’t move, stay here, for now. Receive. There is nothing to do, nowhere to go, but be. Be of service to our insides... And breathe more.
It’s so much more joyful and a hell of a lot less painful to ride the small winters when they show up than to accumulate the fire until it blows up and burns the whole house down.
I like that much more
The Celestial Sessions on North Caicos… man, what an adventure! Twenty showed up and dared to dive in and surrender to the ride of a lifetime… and it was! We belly laughed, a lot, we cried, a lot, we chanted our soul to the sun, we stomped our roots into the ocean floor, we sang our love for our heart, we declared our freedom out loud. We breathed like never before, taking in air through our skin, feeding our insides with life-giving oxygen like we didn’t know was possible. We frolicked, we played, hard, we held each other, we truly saw each other. We remembered our greatness and reminded others of theirs, gently, boldly, tenderly. We were courageous, we held each other accountable, we said yes to help, we said no to “no more, I’m done”, we asked for what we needed. And we loved. Oh man did we ever love. We loved deeply, feeling that love poured through our being, like the most beautiful light feeding every cell, animating the sleepiest parts of our body.
At every turn, we were met by the great mystery. We were reminded gently and sometimes not so gently that we are much much more than our bodies and our minds. We were shown that truth and reality are different from one person to another, and that they can all co-exist, not one is more real or more true than the other. As our consciousness expanded, we saw how no one situation, thought, or perceptive is black or white. We can to navigate the grey areas of our lives. The perspectives that felt so dualistic, trapped, un-negotiable before opened up in a 360 array of truths and realities. How amazing is that!
The veil is thin on North Caicos. Manifestation was accelerated, and nothing was left hidden. The good, the ecstatic and the not so beautiful peeked through so we could experience the wholeness of who we are, the exquisite wholeness of our wounded humanness. When the uncomfortable stuff showed up, we gained perspective so we could see that it is only the shadow side of our next enlightenment, the part of our wholeness that is out of our awareness, for now. How incredibly freeing it is that we know that, that there is never a final verdict on the state of things, that we are always, always, invited to move through and beyond our limited circumstances. In this expanded consciousness there is incomparable freedom, and we come to know that we can learn, heal, grow and create through joy, like we did as children. When we fully embody ourselves, when we allow the medicine and the wisdom that we are to be felt through and through, to be nurtured and shared from a place of deep authenticity, we come to know that joy is the propeller of all healing and creation, the force that brings us home.
I learned SO much this past week. I am so incredibly grateful for every single one of the participants who came to play with Jeff and I in the field of endless possibilities. I am grateful for my co-teacher Jeff for sharing his gifts and for imparting his contagious passion for the light in the sky and the light in all of us. And thank you Paul for nourishing our bodies with delicious food. Luxurious and healthy food support our healing so beautifully xo
Excitement is a fire emotion, a take action emotion. So is anxiety. At the emotional level, they are both arousal feelings. At the spiritual level, they are both the element of fire. Except that with anxiety, instead of feeling inspired, we are stopped dead in our tracks, we back away, our fire remains unfulfilled.
One week before I was to lead my very first retreat, 10 years ago, I was really nervous. And I was frustrated with myself because up to that point I had been really excited about finally making this dream of mine a reality. But it didn’t feel so good now, I even thought of canceling the program.
At the time I was working closely with Laura Kealoha, a Kahuna from Kauai, so I called her for some advice. She said: “Have you considered that this feeling you are having might actually be excitement, but it just feels different? Focus your anxiousness into a concrete action toward your goal, just as you would with your enthusiasm. Use that nervous feeling and put it into taking care of the details of the retreat, making handouts, finding imagery, writing the schedule, whatever is left to do. That energy you feel wants and needs to be actualized.” That simple yet brilliant piece of advice has stayed with me ever since.
See, before it is influenced by the judgments and fears of the outside world, the fire of our solar plexus is pure excitement. The excitement of newness, of adventure, and the possibility of making something, of creating. A healthy solar plexus chakra is an adventurous spirit, willing to take risks, to give it all up to create something new. It is engaged, daring, fearless. As young children, we engaged this impulse in the body with delight and exuberance. It was pure creativity.
Growing up, we begin to call the fire of excitement as nervousness, and eventually, we call it anxiety. We become more averse to taking risks because we fear failure, being judged, disappointing others, or losing people with care about.
As adults, this creative fire in our solar plexus is still there, it never really left, it's our light. But when we feel it rising, we fear its meaning, and we suppress it. Instead of seeing the positive things that could come out of making a change or putting ourselves out there, all we see are the things that could go wrong, what I could lose, and how unsafe that would feel.
We know it well: the intensity in the body rises, we hold our breath which doesn’t allow for the fire to do its transmutation work or to let us know we are safe. Our attention moves away from our body, goes into our thoughts and the next thing we know we are not in control anymore, and all of our being is engaged in a fight to flight response. The same fire that once was exciting and joyful, is now scary.
I remember asking a client this question: What if your dream, what you genuinely want, actually comes true, how would you feel? Think about it. You get the book contract with the perfect publisher, you are able to purchase the house you have always wanted, you get recruited for your dream job, or you have the stage at Super Soul Sunday… whatever it is... how would it make you feel? She said with delight on her face: I would be so excited! And then her face changed, and she said: I would probably be a little anxious. She wanted to feel excited, but that feeling bumped up against her sense of worthiness and her belief in her own capacity.
When we are nervous about doing something that is really meaningful but scares us, we are engaging the fire of our solar plexus that is giving us the energy and the vitality to engage this moment. Without the fire, the moment would be flat, lifeless. The trick is to address this energy, look at it, question it, and engage. Give it an outlet.
This is easier said than done, I know that! If you are having a panic attack, knowing this info won't be very useful. It’s tough to bring ourselves down from that place. But in addition to deepening the breath, slowing it down, and bringing your attention to the base of your spine, one thing I find works well is instead of trying to take the emotion from anxiety to calm, try to shift it to an emotion that vibrates at the same frequency, like excitement. Tell yourself, out loud: “I am excited.” And smile. I found that to be so empowering, like I had tapped into a superpower I didn’t know I had.
Three years ago I was backstage about to open for Wayne Dyer, and I felt that familiar feeling rising in me. My thoughts were running wild: “who do you think you are speaking in front of all these people who came to see him, not you. What do you even have to say that is helpful or even interesting." I caught the flu 5 days before, and I was still quite sick, so everyone would understand if I bailed. But I remembered what Laura said. I knew that really, deep down, I was freakin' excited about this! I wanted this really badly. The anxiety was my own self-doubt about my ability to do what I know I came here to do. My ego was doing its job, trying to protect me from what it thought was an imminent threat. But in reality, my soul was dancing with joy, and this fire in my belly was its way to tell me that it was with me all the way.
To this day, every time I am about to step on stage, I hear the self-doubt voice. It’s still there. I don’t try to make it go away. That makes it stronger. I say hi to it. I acknowledge it, I love it, I express my gratitude for what it has done for me, keeping me “safe” all those years. I tell it that it can come along for the ride… but my heart is going to lead today, my soul will guide this thing.
💚A morning like today reminds me of how incredibly stunning life is. I still have bills to take care of, those didn’t get magically paid while I slept last night. And my house is still a chaotic mess, laundry didn’t fold itself during my morning meditation. And I still don’t know how this project I am working on will see the light of day, genius ideas didn’t come pouring in as I planted the seeds of my intentions before I got out of bed. I live in the real world. The spiritual path is grounded in the real world, laundry and all! But my experience of the real world has become quite magical over the past decade.
I found that when I have the courage and the trust to follow the impulse in my body, to engage life from this knowing that is always there to guide me, that has never left me, the perceived failures and setbacks are magic too. I found that following the impulse and co-creating with god includes a huge array of experiences, emotions, and results, including long periods of time doing nothing and what looks like the opposite of success.
This inner impulse, this knowing has been with me since I was a little girl. Although I stopped following it when I became a teenager, it reminded me it was still there in the car accident, when for a moment, time and space gave way to my truth. And although I still didn’t know how to come back to this truth in the years after the accident, this knowing showed up again, it surprised me when I found myself in a mess of snot and tears 5 years later when I sat in a conversation about feminine leadership with a small group of women. See, the accident had shown me the “what” I was made of, it reminded me of the essence of peace and creativity that was my truth. That day in the circle with the women when I surrendered to my heart, I was shown the “how”. I was shown that my body was essential, it was the "how". I realized that the way to living this truth of mine was to go into and through, with a whole lot of love and patience.
So I began by consciously living like that. I intended, in my meditation, to come to a place where I could sit quietly with myself and feel inner peace. For a couple of years, that was my sole intention. I desired inner peace more than anything else. I needed to become best friends with my body, to let it know that I was there now, that I loved it now.
Year after year I gained my body's trust, and I loved it more than it had ever been loved before. And peace came. I stuck with it because every time I healed a layer of pain, I felt lighter and I knew I was getting closer to my heart’s desires.
Magically, the lighter I felt, the closer I got to my soul. My soul began speaking to me more clearly. Before, I did have dreams and flashes of intuition, but now, my soul was talking directly to me, through the instrument of my body. I began to trust the impulses of inspiration, following the breadcrumbs of peak experiences, those moments where everything feels so perfectly aligned and meant to be, regardless of the chaos all around or what my mind says.
Looking back, I see a pattern. There are seasons in my years. Each year there are months of confusion and stillness, followed by months of healing and letting go, followed by months of clarity and vivid imagination, followed by months of engaging with actions and focus, followed by months of slowing down again. These seasons have their own ways of letting me know it’s their time. My days also have seasons.
At the beginning, it would take me a long time to listen. I’d fight the season of slowing down and stillness because of my driven personality and my strong (limiting) belief that “not doing” is stagnation and stagnation is bad. I perceived space with no-thing as setbacks, failures. I was very hard on myself for not being able to “figure this out.” Resisting this made everything take longer, and it hurt so much more.
But with the years I re-familiarized myself with the way these seasons speak to me, like they did when I was a little girl. When I see the chaos all around erupting, that’s my cue to let go of control, stay still for as long as it takes, and breathe. I know chaos is the precursor to clarity, but I need to get out of the way first. And when sadness creeps up in my body, that’s my cue to take time out from the world, go in and incubate with this abstract information. And when expansion lights up my insides, when I cry with joy reading an amazing book or watching a stunning sunset, I know I am now an active vessel for source, I am a lightning rod grounding god-force in my world. When before I would use this surplus of energy to “do” more of the things that didn’t work before but made me feel safe, now I use this energy to feed my imagination, my soul’s vision, my heart’s intentions. It's so delicious!
We don't live in a society that gives credibility to this cycle, to this way of creating our lives. But it is the wisdom of the ancients, and so many of us know this to be true. We know in our hearts that we don't want to live any other way, even if it means standing alone for a little while, "failing" a little.
This morning is one of these mornings when I feel so grateful for knowing what I know.
You know so much already, you have read the books, done the healing work. Trust yourself. The trick is patience, kindness with yourself, knowing who you are and what you want at a soul level. Trust that the song you feel in your heart is real and expect it to come true. You are the creator of it, simply because you are able to feel it and envision it. Feed your vision daily with the energy our your love, engage that power when action is demanded of you. Ultimately, the how and the when is not up to you. But your faith in you is.
And when lightning strikes and energy and enthusiasm fill you up, direct it toward your heart-song, your soul's intention. Don't waste it on other people’s dreams.
Like Wayne said: " Don't die with your music still inside you."
I love you
💛One day I realized that my unconscious need to please was at the cause of my exhaustion, my disenchantment. I saw that I was betraying myself every time loving others crossed over the line into making sure they were happy. When the self-betrayal line was crossed, I no longer had access to my unlimited full-body-god-force-spiritual-energy anymore, but I was drawing from my emergency reserve tank, and that tank has its limits. Depleting myself was not love at all, nor was it loving. That day I decided I was done with betraying myself like that. I claimed it out loud so my entire being could hear me. I said: “I completely let go of the need to please” and I sent the words into the wind for the universe to hear too. The universe heard me. Right after I declared it, the things that had become difficult to do before, were impossible to do now. So I listened even more. I stopped doing what didn’t feel right anymore, even though my mind disagreed loudly. I listened to the impulse in my body that yelled : “Stop. No. Not now. Not Today. Not this week. Not this month. Not this person, for now. When the time is right, you will know. BUT NOT ONE MOMENT SOONER” So I stayed put. I stayed present.
During that inward period, during my time-out from the busyness of the outside world, I heard my body asking clearly for what it needed. Lots of stillness, contemplation, and writing. But when there was resounding “yess” in my body; when people, places, conversations resonated with my inside, I also listened, and I engaged the outside world, on my own terms. I’d check in with my body, always, to see if I truly wanted to be there, wanted to say something, or simply needed to breathe. To my amazement I saw that “pleased” was still happening, but in a different way, in a grounded, lower belly kinda way. “Pleased” was alive and well, but it was simple and easy, it was quiet and united, it was abundant, and all around. “Pleased” was happening on its own, it was a byproduct of presence and truth, and it wasn’t my responsibility. I wasn’t the manager or the director of it. This deeply changed me. Like Brenee Brown says: “I am not as sweet as I used to be, but I am far more loving.” Having untangled truly loving from the personal responsibility of another’s joy showed me that nothing is taken away. What is real and truly matters always remains. But we first, I had to let go.
Let go of the need to please, and all will truly be pleased.
Let go of the need to be needed, and all true needs will be met.
Let go of the need for connection, and remember you are connection itself, and you are never not safely whole.
I have heard many mothers say that something awakened inside them when their first child was born. She looked into his eyes, she inhaled his skin, she sensed his breath on her neck, and she knew this is something she hasn’t felt in a long time: true intimacy. They met each other in the unconditional space of the moment, where there is very little to do and very little to say, but BE and FEEL.
When Olivier was born and I placed him on my lap, we stared at each other for a long time. Our gaze was uninterrupted, solid, uncluttered with baggage. It was a straight shot between our hearts, and mine broke open. I cried. I felt weirdly calm, like I had arrived at some sort of destination I’d been wishing for, yet I was so incredibly terrified. I was broken wide open for the first time in a long time but I wasn’t sure I remembered how to live like this. I really didn't.
This unspoiled intimacy, this unbounded connection is often short lived, but can always be restored. No matter how old our kids are, that unconditional space is always there, waiting to be filled up with our grounded attention. We can only be emotionally intimate with others to the degree that we can be emotionally intimate with ourselves. The gaze is always there, always available, waiting to be met, but the world has left its imprint and we are tired, worried, lonely. In the moments we wish we could, we can’t sustain the intensity, we can’t remember where to put this kind of energy, how to let it in without loosing ourselves. It feels like it’s always a choice and there will always be a looser. It’s hard.
But every time we intimately take care of our own heart, we remember who we are and what we truly need. Every time we wrap our arms around the hurt little girl that lives inside us and tend to her wounds, we grow our capacity to meet that gaze. Every time we are patient with the wild and untethered fire that moves through our creative body, we rise within ourselves. Every single time we stop betraying ourselves and come home to our soul, we know what we are capable of.
For a moment, and a moment is enough, we know that the vaste infinity of the divine love we see in our child is a mirror of the goddess we truly are.
Rise Mother. Rise. Your heart matters.
Last July on North Caicos, I was sitting back in a lounge chair on the deck of my oceanfront room, making last minute tweaks to the program for the Celestial Sessions the evening before the participants arrived when I was startled by the voice of my teaching assistant Becky. She urged me to come down to the beach, telling me to come quickly before I missed it. What could be so urgent?Read More
I turned 40 last weekend. Although I usually love having friends and family celebrate with me, I felt the urge to be by myself. I couldn’t fully understand why but I was craving the quiet. The inner call was strong, "Go away in nature for a couple of days, be with the silence, your favourite book, a pencil and some paper." So away I went, and it was delicious!
I set the intention to quiet my mind and witness what was brewing underneath the business of my life. Were there soul words whispered so softly within I hadn’t been able to hear them? Was there another layer of healing waiting to be acknowledged and released? Could I sharpen my clarity of self, soul, and purpose even more, to invite and allow into my life what was looking for me?
Here's a confession, I am terrified of being alone in the dark in the country! The first evening, I kept the lights out completely so no one would know I was there. The other nights were fine but that first night opened me right up to the other “stuff” that was lurking in my own darkness, my shadow, the parts I can't see if I don’t stop, immobilize myself, and feel. I fear that wilderness in me, that unleashed, untamed part of myself that desires to run free… but I loved coming face to face with it.
I left the snowy oceanside with a lighter body, a still mind, and a journal filled with musings and insightful openings into my perception. I LOVED that I listened to and asked for what I needed. It was incredibly restorative and revealing.
Have you been contemplating retreating? Taking time away from your day to day routine? Do you have the desire to get some clarity, find inner peace, interrupt the noise in your mind, and simply stop and breathe deeply, breathe with intent? I would invite you to listen to that desire if it is coming up for you. It nags us and tugs at our awareness until we listen, take action, give ourselves the gift of space. And then we come home to ourselves again. We remember what really matters and what really doesn’t. We gain perspective and find some freedom. It is such a balm for our heart.
One last thing, if you haven't seen it yet, I shared a self-love meditation and a self-forgiveness visualization on Facebook live last week, here is the link. It is also accessible on my podcast. These exercises are very healing, they help shed light on the unconscious self-sabotage patterns.
In Divine Love,
Soul Reminder: You came here for a reason, find it, and know it's for you. Believe in what belongs to you. Be enthusiastic about it happening because you make things happen with your joy.