Category Archives: Uncategorized

Are Your Roots Healthy?

When I ask the question, “Are your roots healthy?” – I am referring to your basic thoughts, feelings, and expressions of life. How you are living, the choices you make, what you think about, how stressed you are, etc., all form the background of every minute of every day of your life.

Are you so concerned about what others think of you that you never stop to ask that question of yourself?

Roots are just like a plant: Unless you nourish them with your spirit, thoughts, and positive emotions, they can just wither away, drying out and draining you of your life force, every day in every way.

Nourishment occurs when you stop for a moment, take a deep breath, and look for something beautiful in your environment. Beauty brings peace, calmness, serenity, and joy into your life. When was the last time you did this? Do you remember the early morning sunrise or sunset at evening? Did you stop and smell the flowers along your path today? Did you notice a beautiful or unusual bird?

Or are you so busy with the every-day work demands, your families’ needs, soccer practice, making a cake for the bazaar to support your child’s activities,  dancing lessons for your little girl, football practice for your young boy, etc., that you have just gotten lost in the shuffle? You know we have all had our turn at having to perform those requirements.  The bad news is that it can go on for the rest of your life if you let it. You will not have much time to yourself to ponder your personal growth issues. In fact, that may sound like a joke to you as you drop wearily into bed at night.  Whatever you need is at the very bottom because everyone else’s needs/demands/wants  have to come first…or so you may have been taught to think that way, especially if you are a woman with a family or a man providing for same. The daily vicissitudes (wear and tear) of life can exhaust you.

So where do you begin to make a change in the above priorities? It all starts with thinking about it and writing it all down. Once written down, ideas come to mind as you look at the words. Perhaps you can begin to question how important each one is and decide whether or not to keep doing same.

Albert Einstein one said: “The definition of Insanity is to keep doing the same things over again the same way, but expect different results.”

So I am asking you to just step back from your life for a few moments, think, grab a pen and begin writing your observations of yourself/your choices/your life. If you are willing to do that, you are raising your awareness. Awareness of the need for a change is actually the beginning of a new life for you, living more according to your purpose, happier, and more able to actually support the loved ones around you because of your new vision. Are you willing?

God’s blessings upon your journey!

Maui Sunrise

Maui Sunrise

Bougainvillea with Palm Trees, early morning Waikiki

Bougainvillea with Palm Trees, early morning Waikiki

Red-Crested Cardinal - Beautiful Bird on Oahu, Hawaii

Red-Crested Cardinal – Beautiful Bird on Oahu, Hawaii

 

Driving Your Destiny or Yourself?

The question arises: Are you Driving your Destiny or Yourself!

Are you preoccupied with possessions? Do you know that what you own, owns you? You have to clean it, care for it, insure it, take dogs for walks or pay someone else to do it, etc. Stuff Rules!

Do you long for a simpler life? Do you feel that you do not have any time for yourself? Guess who can change that.

Life happens…a day at a time and a moment at a time. Yesterday is history and cannot be changed. Tomorrow is a dream which one can plan and work towards. Today is the only day that matters…this second as you read this.

If you believe that, will you act on it? Hug your child, tell someone you love and appreciate them, begin to do something that matters to you personally. Do you want to read a book or take a class? Pick up that book and begin it. Look for the class you want to take and sign up for it. Do you want to get in touch with someone that you have not spoken to in a while? Pick up the phone or send an email or letter. Don’t wait for the “perfect time” because that may never happen.

The only way your life will change is if you do.

Dr. Wayne W. Dyer states: “Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.”

Are you stressed out? The price of carrying that stress is high. It can cause significant health problems, if not your life.

How are you breathing? Your breath will tell you how well you are making choices in your life. Is it shallow and from the top of your lungs instead of belly breathing? If it is, you can be absolutely assured that you are shortening your life span considerably. Look for a yoga class you can do so you can learn to breathe better. Maybe you cannot get down on the floor, so look for a Silver Sneakers Yoga class in your area as they are everywhere. The poses are friendly to everyone who has physical problems, no matter the age.

This moment in this day is the only time you have to take a look at your priorities and assess what needs to change. Are you willing to get off the treadmill of your life and do it? Or is the treadmill going to continue just as it always does? If you are happy with the life you are living, I congratulate you for you are a rare bird. However, if you are not satisfied with the ways you spend your time, begin this second to look at where you are now and where you want to be. I am not talking about stuff and possessions. I am focusing on the one thing you cannot buy: More time.

Do you want to look back over the last few years of your life and wonder where it has gone? It happens to all of us, no matter the age. But you can begin to make a difference right now. Are you willing?

God’s blessings on your journey!

New yoga pose

 

2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 1,700 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 28 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Where Is Your SEED Being Spread?

Matthew 13: 3-9, 18-23 states: “And he spake many things unto them in parables saying, ‘Behold a sower went forth to sow; And when he sowed, some seeds fell by the way side, and the fowls came and devoured them up: Some fell upon stony places, where they had not much earth: and forthwith they sprung up, because they had no deepness of earth: And when the sun was up, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away. And some fell among thorns; and the thorns sprung up, and choked them: But other fell into good ground, and brought forth fruit, some an hundredfold, some sixty-fold, some thirty-fold. Who hath ears to hear, let him hear.’

‘Hear ye therefore the parable of the sower. When any one heareth the word of the kingdom, and understandeth it not, then cometh the wicked one, and catcheth away that which was sown in his heart. This is he which received seed by the way side. But he that received the seed into stony places, the same is he that heareth the word, and anon with joy receiveth it; Yet hath he not root in himself, but dureth for a while: for when tribulation or persecution ariseth because of the word, by and by he is offended. He also that received seed among the thorns is he that heareth the word; and the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful. But he that received seed into the good ground is he that heareth the word, and understandeth it; which also beareth fruit, and bringeth forth, some an hundredfold, some sixty, some thirty.’ ”

So, I ask you, which type of soil are you? Is your heart and mind open, ready for the good seed of words, thoughts, and deeds so that they may multiply? Or are you caught up in the daily vicissitudes of wear and tear, lack of money, somebody else got promoted instead of you, you see a gorgeous dress and know you cannot charge another item on your credit card because it is maxed out, etc.? Daily circumstances can wear you out to the core, creating lots of negative emotions and very few positive ones.

Words cannot help much with the stony places in your life, especially if you focus on what is NOT WORKING WELL.  The heat of the sun is living your life every day, trying to do your best – yet you are experiencing strong feelings of being OVERWHELMED and even HOPELESS. Each one of these feelings becomes a stone, impeding your growth and happiness.

The good ground is someone who, in spite of negative happenings, can press on and believe that things will get better. It may take time to unfold, but the possibility of change is enough to spur on that person as he/she seeks to know more and grow. How about you? Could you cultivate a better soil in you by slowing down, breathing deeper, meditate, do yoga, pray, or any other idea that occurs to you, like take a class, a workshop, or anything that will address the problems that exist in your life right now?

In Matthew 13:10 & 13-16, it states: “And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?”

It continues: “Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. And in them is fulfilled the prophecy of Esaias, which saith, By hearing ye shall hear, and shall not understand; and seeing ye shall see, and shall not perceive: For this people’s heart is waxed gross, and their ears are dull of hearing, and their eyes they have closed; lest at any time they should see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and should understand with their heart, and should be converted, and I should heal them. But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear.”

Do you have ears that hear? Do your eyes really see? That indicates a connection with the brain so that it begins to think about what is heard. Have you ever talked to a child or teenager, knowing that they do not hear a word you speak? You have to first get their attention, which involves the Hippocampus at the base of the brain. If you can get their attention (like take away their game boy,  electronic gadget, or turn off the computer, etc.), you can actually communicate. How about you? Is your mind so busy with all of the things on your To-Do-List, or other consuming ideas that you cannot be calm, quiet, and peaceful? Check your breathing. If your upper chest is breathing up and out instead of deep breathing from your stomach area, you are stressed out and in need of a change. Do you understand with your HEART? Only you can answer that question.

This is the time of the Summer Solstice and rebirth. You can see it all around you: The ducks and ducklings; geese and goslings, birds and baby birds, etc. Do you want a new beginning for you as well? You can have it every single day if you so choose.

Life does, indeed, happen, You are the only one who can see with your eyes, hear with your ears, and understand with your heart. Are you willing to take whatever action is needed to get off the merry-go-round of your daily life?  Think about your soil and the seeds. What is it you really want? Only you can answer that question.

God’s blessings upon your journey.

Baby Mallards

Baby Mallards

Baby Goslings

Baby Goslings

 

 

 

 

 

 

Instead

This poem comes from Jan Phillips, The Living Kindness Foundation (858-571-1417), http://www.janphillips.com:

Instead

Instead of rosaries and litanies
I will make every small move
a mindful one
every exchange a kind one

Instead of lighting a candle
I will light the way for someone
stand with a friend facing the dark
hold my torch like an umbrella
over both our heads

Instead of dropping coins in a collection box
I will clean out my closets and
empty my cupboards
giving away all that I no longer need.

Instead of kneeling in a confessional
to admit wrongdoings
I stand and confess my unabashed love
for all my soul mates and family of friends
I confess to an unbearable joy
at the sounds of spring
the sight of a redwood
the feel of a kitten’s fur on my neck.

Instead of processing to the altar
to receive communion
I call this earth my altar
and my intimacy with her creatures
the bread and wine of my life.

Instead of saying “I am not worthy”
I say let me live up to the challenge
TO BE,
let me remember I am One with What Is,
I do not need redemption,
nothing is wrong.

Instead of calling for help from a faraway God,
I sit in silence and feel the roar
of creation churning in my cells.

Instead of waiting for a priest to come
anointing the passages of life and death
I don the vestments of service and love,
I stand with others in a circle of trust.
We raise the chalice in a toast to earth,
we make the water holy with our humble hands,
we baptize ourselves as redeemers of peace,
servants of unity.

Instead of waiting for the world to turn,
we become its revolution
we spin new webs, build new cogs
with our feet in today
and our minds on tomorrow.

Instead of the old,
we bow to the Now
and turning within,
we create the new.

Jan Phillips

 

This has so many worthwhile suggestions, I wanted to pass it on.

God’s blessings on your journey!

 

 

 

Remember Lot’s Wife

The whole world knows the story of Sodom and Gomorrah. As Lot and his family were leaving the city, they were forewarned: Do not look back! In Genesis 19:17, it states, “Escape for thy life; look not behind thee, neither stay thou in all the plain; escape to the mountain, lest thou be consumed.” In Genesis 19: 24-26, it says, “Then the Lord rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the Lord out of Heaven; And he overthrew those cities, and all the plain, and all the inhabitants of the cities, and that which grew upon the ground. But his wife looked back from behind him, and she became a pillar of salt.”

There have been some astute astronomers who state that a meteor did, in fact, strike there. Who is to know for certain? It is a fact  that the whole region contains pitch, a petroleum derivative which is flammable and is still used in making torches and charcoal.

In the Lamsa translation of the Bible, it comments that, ” ‘She became a pillar of salt’ is an Eastern idiom which means, ‘She had a stroke, or she was paralyzed and dead.’ In the East, when a man becomes paralyzed or has a stroke, the people say, ‘He has turned into a rock.’ or ‘he has become like a stone.’ ”

It goes on to state:  “Lot’s wife had been reluctant to leave the pleasant gardens and orchards of Sodom. She had doubted her husband’s vision and the divine warning. Her sons-in-law had thought Lot had lost his mind and that he was mocking when he told them of the divine warning asking them to leave the city. Evidently Lot’s wife also did not believe the city would be destroyed.

When Lot’s wife disobeyed the divine command and stood up and looked behind and saw the city of orchards and lush gardens and everything which had been dear to her heart, on fire, and the smoke rising to the heavens, she had a stroke and she became hard like a block of salt or flint rock, which is also called salt, and she was dead. Such blocks of salt rock are still to be found in Sodom.

The catastrophe and the loss of her daughters, her sons-in-law, and her other relatives were too much for a woman who had been brought up in the luxuries of Sodom and who had no faith in the God of her husband.”

Emmet Fox states: “Never look back. Always go right ahead. Even if you are quaking, go right ahead. No matter how unattractive or how dangerous the road ahead may be, it is better than the road back. The road ahead may be veiled from sight; but you must teach yourself to regard the unknown as friendly. Remember that God is always on the road ahead.

Psalm 143:8  ‘…cause me to know the way wherein I would walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee.’ “

My point? Our personal histories have a way of projecting themselves from the past into each today and our tomorrows if we let that happen. All you have to do is focus on the past in lieu of the present. Very simple. Not hard. The past, no matter how good it was or how bad it was, is unchangeable. You may take lessons learned from your past and make better choices today because of them, but you cannot change history. Mostly, we concentrate on the bad stuff. Have you noticed that tendency in yourself? Actually, even the good stuff can influence and change your present as well. We try to hang on to it because we think it was better than our present. Then it becomes life defeating because it, too, is unchangeable in the mists of time.

Time does not go backward and does not tarry with yesterday. All you have is today to make different choices so it will change your tomorrow.

I fully appreciate Fox’s point: “go right ahead.” Regardless of your past, good or bad, you have to formulate a new plan of action so that you can begin again to live the life that God has for you. You must begin it NOW! The only place that will effect a difference is NOW!

Are you willing to let go of your yesterdays/history? REMEMBER LOT’S WIFE!  Are you willing?

God’s blessings on your journey!

Garden

Garden

Flowers

Flowers

 

 

Personal Rejuvenation

Springtime is here! What a wonderful time of year to zero in on your bad habits and look around for a better way to live!

We all do things on a regular basis that do not serve us very well. The bad thing about habits is that the more you resist them, the stronger they appear to be. I use the word, “appear” because it is just an illusion.

This goes for the all the “aholic” words you can think of: Chocaholic, workaholic, alcoholic, couchaholic, tv-aholic, game-aholic, text-aholic, foodaholic, phone-aholic, depressed-aholic, party-aholic, etc. Anything you do that does not serve you well qualifies.

There is an old saying that, “Too much of a good thing can become a bad thing.” Ergo, anything done to excess can become “too much of a good thing.”

Moderation can assist anyone who chooses to change. A piece of chocolate, a little tv/game/text/food/party time, etc.

Spring time is a time of renewal. It is, literally, a new beginning. A time when the earth awakens to begin another cycle.

You could choose to look at the illusions you serve and treat as a reality. You can move from concentrating on the problem to one that is looking for an answer. If you ask the question, God can answer you with a magazine article, a book, a person, a teacher, or a class.

Let’s say you want to lose weight, have tried many things unsuccessfully, and have an attitude of hopelessness — one that says you have not done it before, so what makes you think this time will be any different? You are concentrating on the problem, not the answer. There is ALWAYS AN ANSWER — one that will work for you if you consistently try something new. You could NOT eat the whole container of ice cream at one sitting because you are depressed. You could take a class that is appropriate for your physical condition…something that is gentle enough to help you begin to make a difference. You could take a meditation or a yoga class to calm yourself and learn to breathe correctly in lieu of stuffing something into your mouth to anesthetize your overwrought feelings. You could say the same for cigarettes, which everyone knows is detrimental to you to the point of death.

The problem is that the gung-ho attitude for change rarely works. Sooner or later, gung-ho gets weary and leaves. It is replaced by feelings of failure, sadness, hopelessness, etc.

In order to make some changes, you need to have a dialogue with yourself and be gentler. (No strong-arming yourself, please.) Look at the people on the Fastest Loser TV Program. They have given themselves an incentive to do what it takes. Why don’t you try to do the same? Surely, there is something you want that will help you to firm your resolve and take action for a change that is beneficial to your life, your livingness, and your longevity. Make a personal reward part of the program…make the rewards small enough and doable so they reinforce your long-term goal. The only question is, are you willing to take a look at your life, make a list (short or long) of what you want to change, and then come up with at least one suggestion that will help you begin…to take that first step, even if it is like a thousand-mile journey. Again, build in a reward program as well. The journey may be shortened considerably by improved attitudes, more energy, feeling better, liking how you look in the mirror, compliments from others, etc. Then you keep putting one foot in front of the other, moving along, step by step toward the NEW YOU…in looks, actions, etc. Make up new lists of action as you move towards your goal, always keeping the steps small enough that you will be successful, creating Synergy towards where it is you are going.

REMEMBER, THE KEY TO CHANGE IS CONSISTENCY!

Does that mean that, if you make a mistake and eat a box of cookies, you just permanently trashed your choice to be healthier? No, it means that you begin again, this moment, to fix a salad and a piece of meat for dinner. Failure only occurs when you give up.

MAKE A DECISION NOW TO NOT GIVE UP, NO MATTER WHAT! PERSEVERANCE IS THE KEY HERE!

Only you can make this Springtime a journey towards changing whatever it is that is not serving you well. Are you willing to make a list, look at it, and begin?

God’s blessings on your journey!

Tulips in Snow

Tulips in Snow

Growth Happens

Growth Happens

Signs of New Life

Signs of New Life

These three pictures show how Mother Nature perseveres: Growth continues in spite of the horrendous forces that can happen. You can see pictures of trees growing out of rocks and on impossibly steep cliffs, flowers and weeds growing up through the cement, etc. These should give us impetus in our lives to overcome, to begin again, and to go for it!

 

 

 

5 Ways to Turn Happiness into Advantage

This information came from the Huffington Post picture/suggestions on 3-20-14, and I heartily agree with them:

5 Way to Turn Happiness into Advantage:

1) Write down what you are grateful for. Write down three new things you are grateful for each day. (Research shows this will significantly increase optimism even 6 months later and raises your success rate significantly.)

2) Focus on the positive: Write for two minutes a day, describing one positive experience you have had over the past 24 hours. (This is a strategy to help transform you from a task-based thinker to a meaning-based thinker who scans the world for meaning instead of endless to-dos.)

3) Exercise 10 minutes a day. (Trains your brain to believe your behavior matters, which causes a cascade of success throughout the rest of the day.)

4) Meditate for two minutes a day: Focusing on your breath going in and out. (This will help you undo the negative effects of multitasking. Research shows you get multiple tasks done faster if you do them one at a time.)

5) Send a positive e-mail: Write one e-mail first thing in the morning, thanking or praising a member of your team/family/friends. (This significantly increases your feeling of social support.)

These five things take only a few minutes a day, yet the fruit you would get from them could not only change your life, but it would create a Synergy that could ultimately make a huge difference. Are you willing to try it?

God bless your journey!

 

Treasure Hunting

When TREASURE HUNTING is mentioned, what do you think of? Is it only materialism at its best? How about some golden doubloons, worth lots of money in today’s world? Or perhaps artifacts, also worth the same?

The context of Treasure Hunting for me is actually looking for whatever it is I value. I not only value my friends and loved ones, but I value the time we share. Perhaps it is a phone call or an email. It may even be a joke or two.

I also keep pictures on my wall about trips I want to take, and sayings that guide me daily. I have been known to do a collage that has the pictures of my goals in it. It serves as a daily reminder of what I wish to accomplish.

By keeping a POSITIVE ATTITUDE about my life, I keep good SYNERGY flowing to me. I use the Attitude of Gratitude to keep it going.

How about you? Do you have a trip you would like to take, or a goal that you would like to see achieved? It begins by putting it in front of your eyes, either as a picture or a statement, that you can focus on daily. Are you willing to give it a try?

Trust me, it works beautifully!

 

 

 

 

Live, Love, Laugh!

This particular threesome is visible everywhere – on cars, plaques, walls, etc. Sometimes it is:

Live Well

Laugh Often

Love Much

It could be very esoteric (beyond the understanding or knowledge of most people, as defined by the dictionary). It could just be that it is so simple, its deeper meanings are overlooked in the chaotic, busy world we live in. Certainly, many things occupy are thoughts from the second we wake up to the minute we go to bed.

But taking a deep breath and pausing, just looking at the three above phrases, ask yourself, “What comes to my mind?”

Live Well could immediately be translated into a materialistic ideal in lieu of being happy with your life and how you are living it.

Laugh Often could be nullified by the stress you are feeling at this moment over many situations in your life which you do not feel you have any control over, engendering a sense of hopelessness.

Love Much could simply be an erotic invitation to enjoy the flesh and its ecstasies, or it could make you think, “Have I told my loved ones today how very much I love them, appreciate them, enjoy them?” You know, with all the tragedies that have happened in this world in these past few years, I wonder how many people passed on without hearing that simple phrase?

Live, Love, and Laugh are my personal commandment for every moment of my day, every single day I am alive. I want the people in my life to know how very much I appreciate them. I do not want anyone to doubt that, ever. Each one is a gem in his/her own right – unique, special, one-of-a-kind.  No matter how small they are, or what age they are, or how I know them. It matters not to me. I want to cherish each and every one, and I want them to know it. Life is too short to do otherwise. I want to look each one in the eye and let them know that I am listening to what they have to say. Each relationship, no matter if it is a busy store clerk who is obviously having a bad day, or a long-term friend, deserves not only my attention, but a smile as well. (You might be surprised at the lift a simple smile can accomplish, or a small act of kindness.)

Life passes us by through simple inaction, words unspoken, feelings unexpressed, and good intentions never fulfilled because one runs out of time. That happens with every minute of every day as it becomes  history from this present moment.

You have to ask yourself, “Do I want to write a note today to just say Hi to a lonely friend, or a dear one I have gotten out of touch with, or even a note of forgiveness to someone (whether it is ever sent or not)?” Perhaps even a phone call,  an email, or a Facebook, Twitter, etc.

Love is more than a feeling – it is a state of mind. If you are coming from a LOVE perspective, you act differently than you would if it comes from any other point of view.

Laughter, alias Levity, is a cure-all of just about every negative emotion we can muster. Sometimes we feel like the tail end of the dog, instead of the nose or ears. We get wagged a lot – by others, by situations, by things we believe are not under our control.  Laughter has so many gifts to share. Yet, in this serious world so many of us live in, Laughter is the exception, not the rule. Isn’t that truly a sad state of affairs?

When I say Laughter, I also mean the state of mind known as JOY or Inner Joy. It is a sense that all is OK in your world. Is it? Or not?

You could ask, “What do I have to be Happy about?” Then follow that with a diatribe of complaints. Now I ask you, does that make you feel any better? Doubt it.

In your negativity, may I ask you, “When was the last time you went outdoors to experience Nature at her Best?” I find that even a trip to an indoor area where there are plants helps when the weather outside is adverse. When it is not, step outside. Find something from Mother Nature to admire. You will find your heart lifted like magic, your stress will disappear, and your perspective will lighten and improve.

Are you willing to make the move from the dog’s tail and go up to the ears or nose? You do control your destiny. Declare it to be so.

Look for my three friends: Live, Love, and Laugh in all their fullness. May your step be lighter, your heart happier, your breath much deeper, and your life more meaningful. God bless you on your journey!

Green Mtn Reservoir CO

Green Mtn Reservoir CO

Rocky Mtns CO

Rocky Mtns CO

Snowy Egret

Snowy Egret

Wild Sweet Peas

Wild Sweet Peas

Bee on Flower

Bee on Flower

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