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Be a Blessing

Be a Blessing:

Sometimes, thoughts come unbidden through my mind — ones which come from a criticizing, analytical background, which is how I was raised. From a small child, I was always criticized for always doing everything wrong and informed just how wrong that was.

Today, I realized that those same thoughts should change – they need changed very much.

It has been a known fact for centuries that thoughts are powerful and can affect the world. Great thinkers of every age have declared it so to be. Descartes said, “I think, therefore, I am.” Ernest Holmes and Thomas Troward, among others,  state that: “Thoughts are things.” If one were to contemplate the truth of this, it would surely make many positive changes in our world.

Following this train of thought, I believe that I should put forth greater effort towards others and mentally bless each one, fat or thin, grumpy or cheery, pleasing or abrasive, etc.

Isn’t there enough negativity in each day without judging others as being less than perfect, adding the power of that thought to an already poor situation?

I choose to change my use of the power of my thoughts, removing the condemnation and judgment of others. I choose to BE  A BLESSING. I sincerely believe that this will bring new life to my being, like baby barn swallows greeting the day.

How about you? What do your thoughts say?

God’s blessings upon your journey!

Baby barn swallows

Baby Barn Swallows – New Life

 

What Is Your Point Of Reference/Perception?

PERCEPTIONS are a wonderful key to personal growth because you will only be able to recognize in your reality whatever your point of reference is. It is your BELIEFS about your life that act like a fence – it keeps what you like/understand inside and separates whatever you don’t want on the outside. Then it gets confusing – we want something very much but believe we are not worthy. Guess what you get? You are right – ZIP – nothing. One cannot put opposing thoughts and emotions out there because they neutralize each other.

The dictionary defines PERCEPTIONS as: “mental grasp of objects, qualities, etc. by means of the senses; awareness; comprehension; insight or intuition, or the faculty for these; the understanding, knowledge, etc. got by perceiving, or a specific idea, concept, impression, etc. so formed.”

One example is religion – one tends to include everything in one’s life according to a creed or a set of rules/ideas promulgated by that specific church, synagogue, or mosque. All else is suspect and excluded, as are any people who do not believe the same identical way. Many then are urged from the pulpit or lectern to proselytize (to try to convert a person to one’s religion). In other words, others must act in accordance with your personal beliefs. The only problem with that is that GOD DID NOT MAKE US LIKE PRINGLES!

Each one of us is UNIQUE – as in one of a kind. We are a special blend of our positive and negative traits.

Some people are unable to look at their clothing choices, personality reactions and interactions, or even look at their reality clearly. They do not trust their own judgment to decide on what to wear, what to say, or how to act in given situations. Some people, particularly women, are put down so long that they begin to believe they are actually worthless, wrong, and hopeless. This sometimes happens to men, too, however. Lack of self esteem prohibits growth, absolutely.

In personal growth classes, we are given a form to appraise our personal attributes. Many times, I have seen others turn to their coworkers and ask them how to answer…Are they friendly? Are they personable? Do they dress appropriately? I was always amazed that self-evaluation is impossible for them. After the years have come and gone, however, I find that it all boils down to BELIEFS and PERCEPTIONS. Some of these were implanted in us by an authority figure when we were very young and unable to separate the good stuff from the bad.

“So what do I do now?”  You might ask. The answer is really quite simple. You must be ever watchful of your thoughts, behaviors, and actions. Personal Growth books, teachers, workshop leaders, etc., all may have a piece of learning that is right for you so you can analyze your life in order to begin modifying your reactions, words, and thoughts – dispose of those that are not in line with who you are today. When you catch yourself asking, “Why did I just do that?” Do not blow it off. Look at it. Think of other ways you could have done something differently. Do not think, “Well, that is just who I am, and it is too late to change now.” It is NEVER TOO LATE!

If you want to test how you feel about yourself, go to a mirror and study your reflection. Do you immediately start criticizing what you see there? Guess where those comments begin…from long ago and far away. The question is: Do you want to change that reflection? All you have to do is ask that question of yourself. Awareness that a change is needed is the beginning of it. Then you take a class, buy a different outfit, or make a list of what needs changing. It is not hard. You just have to take that step. Are you willing?

Our world is changing so fast. Information transmission has never been this good. News travels around the world in minutes. When you hear it, you have an inner reaction that is based on both your BELIEFS and PERCEPTIONS. Do you ever think about it from a different PERSPECTIVE? Do you buy into what the spin doctors are putting out? You must know that these people are in every political arena in the world. So think through your reactions before you send money, write a letter, or talk about it. WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT, YOU BRING ABOUT! DO YOU REALLY WANT ALL THESE NEGATIVE SITUATIONS TO GET WORSE? YOU ARE EMPHASIZING WHAT YOU DO NOT WANT!

Sounds crazy, does it not? You can pray for others and ask for guidance and comfort for them, including all others. You can take whatever action you deem appropriate for those caught in disasters, which seem to happen daily now somewhere in this world.

Life unfolds before us daily with each choice we make. Do you want to stay in your squirrel cage, just running around in a circle and getting nowhere? Or do you want to get out of that cage and begin anew. IT IS YOURS TO CHOOSE!

Just because you bought into your points of reference and perceptions at a very young age, does not mean you cannot change them. It just takes more effort. Are you willing to look at your daily life to see what needs a change in perspective?

I was taught from the beginning that I could never do anything right. It was always about being wrong. (Do you know anybody who parents like this? Of course, you do. It is as normal as apple pie.) Until I was 19, I actually believed that. Then I learned to ice skate. I could do something right! This was a life-changing event for me. From there, I have learned many things, done many hobbies, and had lots of adventures. I am grateful that I learned that I could change. I am ever aware, even now, of things that I need to change. I make a plan to achieve that end, and put it into action. Life is not static. All you have to do is look at the natural world to see how the seed becomes the plant, blossom, wilts, and goes to seed.  If you are taking personal responsibility for your life, you can institute a plan to begin today to make a difference in your life. Are you willing?

God’s blessings upon your journey!

Change Your Direction

Change Your Direction

Louise Hay: Changes

Louise Hay: Changes

 

Autumn - Metamorphosis: Change

Autumn – Metamorphosis: Change

 

 

 

Do You Want To Die With Your Music Still Inside You?

“Most of us go to our grave with our music still inside us.” (Oliver Wendell Holmes as found in http://artquotes.robertgenn.com)

Each of us is born with a lot of inner gifts inside of us, yet without effort on your part, the gifts stay all wrapped up and are never opened. They never see the light of day. Each of us is unique, like a snowflake = no two are alike. Only you can be who you are.

Sometimes a person believes authority figures in  his/her life, be it a parent, a teacher, or a boss. If told long enough that a quality is not part of their makeup, a person believes that and never unwraps the gift inherent inside, just waiting to be unwrapped.

I was nineteen years old before I knew for certain that I could do anything right. I learned to ice skate. I flew across the ice with wings on my feet and in my heart. No, I was not Olympic material, but I found something I could do. I was raised with the emphasis on negative programming,  as in everything I did was automatically going to be wrong. I was raised in a traditional Protestant religion by a mother who was raised in a Catholic Orphanage by nuns. Guess who believed that she was going to be WRONG for the rest of her natural life? Yet, I broke that programming, beginning with the day I learned to ice skate. From then on, I claim the right to try to do whatever opportunity comes my way. I have used personal growth books, workshops, lectures, etc., to that end. When an opportunity comes my way, I want to be open to its possibilities for me. I am unwrapping my gifts still. What a joy it is!

The opposite is true of someone who is stuck in fear of the unknown or who does not believe anything else is possible. The gifts inside stay there, dormant. If one gives away their power to outside authority figures, nothing becomes the reality.

When I was young, I had an art teacher named Mrs. Able. She kindly informed me that I should stay away from art when I was in Elementary  School. So I believed her, and I did…until I was in my 40’s. I took an art class at lunchtime. The teacher said I could put my work on display in an art gallery and made me promise to at least frame it, which I did. Just look at the wasted years! I could have been having fun with it all that time.

How about you? Have you kept your inner potential of gifts under wraps, hidden deep inside you? Have you explored what they might be? What surprises are waiting for you? All you have to do is begin to believe that you can do something about your dreams and wishes. Perhaps you could begin by writing them down. It also helps to raise your awareness of how you can begin to bring them to life. That enhances the Synergy of movement into being. Are you willing to do it?

Blessings on your journey!

 

 

 

Enthusiasm

Enthusiasm comes from the root for “En” = From and “Dios” = God. In short, it means that God is our inspiration of ideas and livingness.

The dictionary defines Enthusiasm as: “To be inspired as by a god; intense or eager interest; zeal; fervor.” That is pretty clear.

Yet, the daily wear and tear of life does not let us live our lives with Enthusiasm. That is a matter between the head and the heart. Stress denies its presence. Obligations required by our work, our families, our friends, outnumber the good thoughts we do have. Our electronic gadgets pervade every corner and every minute of our waking experiences…smart phones, computers in every form, gaming, etc.

The question arises: Having said all of the above, how can one participate in one’s life with Enthusiasm?

Answer: The first half hour after you wake up, you have a direct inroad into your subconscious. The same occurs at night: The last half hour before you go to sleep provides the same opportunity.

Can you arrange some quiet time for yourself at those time frames? It is an inroad to peace of mind and heart with quiet and deep breathing, positive thoughts, meditation, and dwelling on what is right in your life in lieu of that which is wrong.

Even 5 minutes could make a difference if you cannot dream of 30 minutes. It is your life. You alone must choose how you will live it. Daily prayers are also the “meat and potatoes” of your existence. How are you feeding your soul?

My vote is a quiet, peaceful existence with positive food for my soul. What will you choose?

God’s blessings be upon your path and choices this day!

Beauty in Action

Beauty in Action

 

God Is A Chameleon

The nature of a chameleon is to become like its surroundings. Its color changes accordingly. If you put one on a green leaf, it will become green…if put on a branch, it will become brown or tan. It will assume whatever color it needs to in order to fade into its background.

Humankind loves complications. It creates creeds, rules, regulations, ad infinitum, just to ensure that condition. It loves the words, “Right,” and “Wrong.” It continually wants “Mini-Me’s” in its surroundings.

God is simple. If one says, “God Exists,” that person then looks for his personal perceptions of reasons to believe it. However, if one were to say, “God Does Not Exist,” that person would not be able to see God as He would then become invisible to that person. It did not change the Nature of God, the Principles of the Universal Laws,  or the Identity. It would only limit the perceptions of that person. It would be like Harry Potter’s Invisibility Cloak…Harry still exists, but he cannot be seen. If one needs visible proof that God exists before you believe it, you are out of luck.

The essence of God is faith. The definition of faith is belief in the unseen. The dictionary defines it as: “unquestioning belief that does not require proof or evidence, complete trust, confidence, or reliance.”

Quantum Physics proves daily that God is present everywhere and manifests from the invisible to the visible. He is energy becoming form. What is the connection and where does it begin? Prayer.

The Bible says:  “And all things, whatsoever ye shall ask in prayer, believing, ye shall receive.” Matthew 21:22

Personally, I have prayed for things, looking for the answers, yet not being able to recognize them when they are there right in front of me. The joke is on me. Finally, I analyze it and change my perceptions. The answer then appears as if by magic. Is it magic? No, I had to grow into the answer. As I grow, I ca perceive differently. If I resist the growth, it will happen, just more slowly, or not at all if I resist too much.  Sometimes, my growth has happened quickly…and sometimes I have been drug there, kicking and complaining all the way. Nobody said we had to like the process.

How about you? Do you want to believe that God Exists? Go for it because only good can come from it. Do you want to cling to the opposite? God then becomes the chameleon and disappears into the background. What then? Guess who has to take that first step?

However you circumscribe Him, that will be what your connection is. Are you a miserable sinner, unworthy and undeserving? Guess what you get when you pray.  Not much. You set the parameters. What will they look like? It is all up to you.

As for me, I see the Presence of God all around me every day: Magnificent mountains, deer, beautiful flowers, colorful birds, the kindness of a stranger’s smile, the laughter of a child, a hug, a kiss, etc. He is not hard to find if you believe in one of His Names: Emmanuel–God Within Us. Are you willing to seek His Presence?

Vaughn Lake, CO

Vaughn Lake, CO

Mule Deer

Mule Deer

Rose of Sharon

Rose of Sharon

Red Winged Blackbird

Red Winged Blackbird

Pair of Wood Ducks

Pair of Wood Ducks

Learning to Love Yourself

That sounds like an oxymoron, but it really isn’t.

We are trained from childhood to look for what we do wrong and not for what we do right. We make inner tapes of those people who are our idea of authoritative/instructive figures, and they are unedited tapes. Every time you say, “I should have…” you are actually listening to those inner tapes once again. It does not matter if the tapes are unedited and may not apply to a certain situation. We listen to them once again and beat ourselves up inside for some perceived shortcoming.

A simple example of this is etiquette: “Don’t put your elbows on the table while you are eating.” So, even if you have your elbows on the table as you lean forward to participate in an interesting conversation,  you can look back on it later and say, “I should not have done that.” You then proceed to make yourself wrong after rethinking something.  That happens all the time.

I have had different people call me later and apologize profusely for some apparent misstep, which I do not even notice, let alone recall. So it is not that something negative occurred which is clearly labeled that way. It is just someone is looking back at an occurrence, and, because they are a good person, they feel an apology is required…not optional. That happens frequently to lots of people, male and female alike. It is the tapes, always. The stronger the tapes, the more you beat yourself up inside, telling yourself what a bad person you are. Is this constructive? I doubt it. Can it improve your behavior, based on a negative model? Probably not. It just plants more self condemnation (which is a curse to a good self image), that is reproduced again later in a more lethal dose to your spirit. (How can you build something up by tearing it down?)

Another example is, “I have to learn things the hard way.” Isn’t that a great affirmation? If you want some more of what you don’t really care for, say that one!

I was 19 years old before I found out I could something right: I learned to ice skate. What a joy it was! I could fly across the ice and just enjoy being alive. I felt like I was finally free of the negative issues that I was surrounded with. I had been raised by my mother, who was raised in an orphanage as her parents had died before she was 5 years old. She raised me in the only way she knew, which was not pretty. My father had died two days before my 8th birthday. My self image was not a good one. I knew I was wrong before I got up in the morning, and I would be wrong when I went to bed that night. My mother was a good, gentle person trying to do the best she could. Her best nurturing came when I was sick, so I was sick a lot, of course. (We all need nurturing.) I was raised with the script: Don’t Be (which is synonymous for Do Not Exist). That, by the way, is the hardest one to get rid of.  Heartache, Inc., is what it should be labeled.

Because the tapes are inside of us, they are difficult to access, particularly if we do not realize they are there. Could you sit down and write down your own personal list of “Should Have’s” and “Ought To’s?” That would be a nice beginning to the ability to recognize tapes, which become commandments in our daily living. (It should be noted that this happens at the subconscious level until we bring it to the conscious level so we can override it.) Once you write them down, you can begin to realize where and who they came from and just how much they control your life. You can make a judgment about whether that particular tape is worth keeping and what is immediately made trash-worthy.

Self analysis is an art, is not easily done, and is often confused by the inner voices/tapes from our past. The more difficult our past has been, the harder it is to know how to begin. The only way to do that is really more simple than you have been led to believe. You don’t have to “rake around in the old bones” of your past for years, psychoanalyze all of it to look for reasons for causes of your behavior, and crawl to a new beginning, ever so slowly. You can begin today to make a difference and to make changes to your life. All you have to do is to decide right this moment that you want to cultivate a good self image–the beginning of learning to love yourself, right where you are with all your faults and gifts which need unwrapping by discovering what they are.

Just a word about the difference between a good self image and ego/grandiosity in all its forms. EGO is defined as that part of you that experiences the external world through the senses, organizes the thought processes rationally, and governs action; it mediates between the pleasure and wishing impulses of the id, the demands of the environment, and the standards of the superego (inner tapes). GRANDIOSITY is described as seeming or trying to seem very important–the negative aspect of which is putting yourself down all the time–same thing just at opposite ends. Ego can be a good thing if approached with caution, extreme caution. It is an element of a good self image if it is  balanced with good ideas: The ability to see reality clearly and acting appropriately (as in not needing to puff yourself up at somebody else’s expense; not continuously putting yourself down because you are riding your own case constantly; getting your feelings hurt because of a perceived {and sometimes real} slight that somebody else has said or done to you).  In short, one can get confused easily by everyday occurrences in your life. You can assume guilt where there is none. You can be very selfish and not care about others in any way. You can put someone else down because they do not perform in accordance with your expectations, forgetting that they have their own ideas as well. There are many permutations of the above idea. You may discover many of them on your journey…in yourself and in others. Once discovered, you alone must decide their worth to you and to others–you can keep what you want and discard the rest.

Anyway, my journey to a healthy self image has been a very long one and continues today. Through life’s experiences, both good and bad, I have found out what does and does not work–what matters and what does not. I have used books, workshops, and church classes in my search for any information that will help me to become a better person and who I was meant to be. I have found so many things to love about my life and find great Joy in just being alive, in seeking Beauty daily in all her forms, and in caring about others, helping them to find a handhold on their journeys so they can grow. A healthy self image is a treasure for the rest of your life and is well worth striving for.

Are you interested in discovering who it is you really are, without the dictation from the inner tapes to control your every move subconsciously? As stated above, you must first make the effort to discover these inner tapes and make them conscious so you can edit them and make changes in your life. Are you willing to do that?

Life is a symphony. You can make sweeter music and unfold like a flower if you do.

Make sweet music and unfold like a flower

Make sweeter music and unfold like a flower!

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