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Archive for Overcoming Challenges

The new year breezed in with a gust of polar vortex air — frigid temperatures that brought challenges of their own. Plus a slew of unexpected everyday life obstacles.

So despite ringing in the energy of the new year on on optimistic note, writing my positive living article, I was — and still am — enmeshed in turbulence.

It was confusing for me a bit. I could not quite understand where these hurdles were really emanating from.

But I also know that surrounding energies and thoughts affect our personal space. And all that occurs reflects not just my own personal “energetic flow” but that of those around me.

And most of what transpired seemed apparently external in nature, beyond my personal control. A blackout burned out my refrigerator, and due to the holiday season — plus one very bad retail experience — I had no fully functioning refrigerator for 10 days!

Then some pipes froze and we were without cold water in the kitchen. The dishwasher burned out around the same time. And my wonderful trusty heavy-duty all-in-one printer that had been a work horse for nearly six years, printing my Reiki business certificates, flyers, forms in beautiful color — went into death throes.

Okay, so I was in appliance and technology hell — and perhaps still am.

Then my indoor/outdoor semi-feral kitty disappeared for three full days and I spent two days searching the neighborhood, posting flyers and almost thinking the worst… when he suddenly reappeared late one evening. A bit disoriented and completely ravenous, but okay… so I think he may have accidentally been locked in someone’s shed or garage. But it was not a fun few days.

And on the heels of that, Long Island endured another polar vortex with single digit temperatures, gusting winds and a 24-hour snowstorm. So I was out in those icy temperatures shoveling for hours. (The snowblower broke last year and we have not replaced it.) Sometimes young men with shovels who want to earn some cash come by and dig us out, but not one showed up this time.

I am physically exhausted and mentally drained as I write this. But in my heart, I know that this too shall pass.

Is there something for me to learn from these three or four weeks of constant turmoil? To maybe look at the bright side, that proverbial “silver lining” — my Reiki business has been greatly expanding. Our health is fine — and that is something to be immensely grateful for.

Life throws curves and challenges at all of us — no one is exempt. It is a question of how we react, how we persevere and how adaptable and flexible we allow ourselves to be as we traverse the winding road.

It is essential not to let yourself sink from all the constant hurdles. And sometimes a string of relatively petty hurdles does begin to seem like an insurmountable mountain of challenge.

Keep your sights set on something uplifting, whatever you can envision. The other night a friend posted a video of a sunrise on a beautiful, serene and unpopulated beach. For five minutes I watched the sun rise gently and brilliantly in this video and was amazingly soothed by it.

Take small, sweet moments that feel good to you and expand them. Stay present when there is a task to be done and don’t go into the “woe is me” frame of mind for that does not serve anyone. Ultimately, it will not help you feel any better.

Know that life flows and shifts in a constant tide of ups and downs, but enjoy the times when the sailing is smooth — let yourself deeply bask in the gratitude for those moments. Know that you would not be able to appreciate those feel-good moments if you don’t occasionally experience the opposite.

In the grander perspective, take some comfort in the fascinating and multi-textured weave that makes up the fabric of your life…

Affirmations:

  • I handle challenges that arise with ease and perseverance.
  • I learn important lessons from all phases and aspects of my unique life path.
  • By remaining flexible in attitude, I peacefully and wisely navigate any turbulent waves that head in my direction.

Okay, maybe you will never forget. And maybe you can’t imagine ever forgiving. But what about the possibility of simply “releasing?” Which is another variation on the theme of letting go of anger and negative feelings, an in-between point that may be far easier to embrace.

When you remain stuck in place of feeling and believing that someone has so wronged you (we are talking super, mega-wrong) you cannot find peace in the now moment, much less be able to move ahead in a joyful way. You are simply existing in a place of complete rage or outrage, only seeing yourself as a victim.

Being consumed by anger for someone else is self-destructive. I think it was Guy Finley who said that being overwhelmed by anger, resentment and hatred is like drinking poison and thinking the other person will die. You are only “killing” yourself emotionally.

I am not saying that it is easy to move away from this negative place, but it CAN be done.

But you must be ready to truly release and let go — to do the inner work of letting go of those feelings of fury, wrath and all those simmering negative sensations that accompany them. And you can set your intention to release the happening and the accompanying feelings into the past.

Ask yourself: If something positive at all is coming out of this situation and this challenge, what would that be? Did I learn a life lesson? Did I grow stronger because of this? There is always something helpful that arises out of these scenarios, but you may have to call upon your inner guidance to help understand it.

I heave heard both friends and clients make severe statements such as “he ruined my life” or “she destroyed my chances of…” When one succumbs to believing those things, you are giving your power away — meaning giving said wrongdoer an unbelievable amount of perceived power over you.  Yes, someone difficult may have cast challenges and obstacles along your path — and of course you need to deal with them. However, how reactive you become in response to these challenges determines the way you cope with them and how you feel about them. It is essential to stop making those kind of statements, because they are extreme “negative affirmations.”

Everyone has heard that old saying, “Forget and forgive… In some of these cases it is extremely difficult to even contemplate that compassionate action of forgiveness. Forgiveness doesn’t mean condoning what anyone has done. And no one need verbally forgive an “oppressor.” Forgiveness in this context implies emotional forgiveness directed toward the person from your heart of hearts.  In reality, it has only to do with you and what you are feeling.

And some think “Forget about forgetting. I will never forget what happened. I will never forget his/her actions.”

Embracing the act of releasing can be very healing. You will feel an amazing freedom when you consciously decide to emotionally let go of the event, the surrounding feelings, to let them become part of the flow of the past, and not something that will continue to negatively impact the present. Choose to be in the joyful vibration of the now moment and reclaim your personal power!

If you can do the inner work (and if you need some professional therapy, then get it) effectively, you will be able to move ahead with greater joy and confidence. And we are all worthy of having a joyful uplifting road in life. Releasing those overwhelming wrathful feelings is like emerging from the dark turbulence of a storm to be bathed in beautiful, warming rays of sunlight… Make the decision to embrace those rays of sunlight.

Affirmations:

  • I make a conscious choice to let go of angry, wrathful emotions and nurture myself with kindness.
  • I release all difficult feelings that no longer serve me — and strive to focus on the joy and blessings of the present moment.
  • Overcoming challenges and obstacles in my life journey influence me to be a stronger, more confident individual.
Jun
30

Self Empowerment – Expressing and Releasing Difficult Emotions

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Admit it — you get angry, frustrated and raise your voice on occasion. Or maybe too often. I am guilty of it at times, even though some people think because of my career path that I must be completely “zen” and calm always. Oh, how I wish that were true. And believe me, I am consistently doing the inner work of striving to maintain a sense of tranquility, non-reaction and the skill of being non-judgmental. But it can take a lifetime (and perhaps several) to learn some of these lessons.

As we are all members of this particular species — that is, human — and I say that with a smile, we are all prone to a broad spectrum of feelings, thoughts, behaviors and self-expression.

It is NORMAL to get cranky, angry, sad, frustrated and the like…

It is NORMAL to be dramatically reactive in certain situations…

We all have learned behaviors, ones we’ve brought with us from childhood on. Personally, any snapshot slice-of-life picture of my own childhood was far from peaceful and harmonious. My family thrived on drama and raised voices. For them, yelling was a socially acceptable expression of whatever frustration they were feeling at the moment. I thought that familial yelling and screaming was something everyone experienced and grew up with. I was quite surprised to learn such is not the case.

It has taken many years to un-learn some of my own ingrained behaviors. So, in my attempt to veer off into the other end of the spectrum and be this perfectly harmonious individual, I have discovered THAT is not normal either. So where is the balance? How can one achieve the middle ground? After all, to be totally zen, I think one would have to become a monk and live on a mountain in Tibet.

After much pondering and life experience, I have come to some conclusions.

1) I do believe it is important to slow down in life, as best one can, despite all the rushing and ultra-busyness of modern life. Slowing down allows you to catch your breath, get in touch with your inner guidance and also tap in to the wellspring of peacefulness or at least some semblance of calm that lies within.

2) DO strive to do the inner work of seeking and embracing tranquility/harmony/etc in whatever way will work for you individually. Maybe that is meditation, yoga, deep breathing, taking a walk, whatever feels right and peaceful to you.

3) It is okay to have periods of more dramatic and excited “self-expression” or negative self-expression. Permit yourself to raise your voice and show some anger or frustration if you truly need to do so and allow this personal release.

4) However, when you do need to release difficult emotion, keep it brief. If it should end up being directed at someone, be sure that person understands that you are having “a moment.” And that you still care about them. (And I am not condoning taking your frustration out on another, but I am acknowledging that as humans, we sometimes do this.) But try to keep any outbursts as something that you personally are experiencing as opposed to inflicting upon another.

One example from my own life was on particular occasion when my husband developed what I consider “domestic amnesia.” Which means he totally forgets about and distances himself from anything at all that may need to be done in the house, even small things that he is usually responsible for. I love him and he is a terrific husband, but occasionally… So this one time he was supposed to take care of something, actually a few somethings — and didn’t — and of course, I was feeling very frustrated. So I definitely got a little huffy and raised my voice but felt so guilty afterward. And then I felt guilty about feeling guilty. Because I do take care of most everything in the house since he works long commuter hours in Manhattan. So maybe he needed to hear what I had to say and maybe I needed to say it in a louder voice to get his attention and make a shift in his approach to taking care of a few things…

But my outburst was brief and it is infrequent that I allow such behavior to surface. And in the end, my husband DID respond to my requests and became more helpful.

The bottom line is that it is okay to permit some negative feeling to be expressed. Just don’t bathe in it, wallow in it and let it last interminably. Don’t become a victim to this behavior. And don’t let someone else bear the serious brunt of it. Let it come to the surface and then flow out… and be done with it.

And DO make every effort to find other constructive and gentler ways of expressing these emotions, channeling them into release before you get to the breaking point…

So acknowledge your “human-ness” and know that encompasses a broad perspective of self-expression. Choose the path of finding your personal voice in your own life — expressing your authentic self on an emotional level but in a way that you show up as a kind, caring, calm, considerate individual.

Affirmations:

  • I embrace an attitude of peacefulness and do the inner work of bringing tranquility and balance into my everyday life experience.
  • I acknowledge my need to express negative emotions and I do so as gently and constructively as possible.
  • My inner guidance helps me express my thoughts in a clear, candid yet tactful way.
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Feb
03

Positive Attitude – Finding Harmony and Peace Within

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So what happens when despite all your efforts to carefully arrange and coordinate the varied facets of your life, the Universe dumps chaos into your reality? Okay, that might sound a bit dramatic. But can you relate to this — at least sometimes?

As a holistic healer, one would think that I spend most of my time being zen and serene — perhaps tuned into the whisperings and secrets of the Universe as I sit cross-legged on cushions surrounded by incense and sage. I only wish!

The reality of modern life (particularly on Long Island) makes the attainment of peacefulness quite an interesting challenge. And on occasion, it almost seems beyond my energetic grasp.

Sometimes we get caught up in an intense swirl of momentum — ending up on the verge of overwhelm. As a positive living proponent, I dislike even writing about overwhelm because it gives way too much negative attention and power to that thought.

So how does one cope? How can one find any sense of tranquility with so many obstacles and demands?

The one consistent answer I have found in terms of that elusive quest for some semblance of tranquility is that the most profound place to look is right in your heart. Going within, tuning in to that abundant inner wellspring is sometimes the only way to tap into the flow of serenity. And going within can be as simple as affirming “I tune in to the innate peacefulness of my soul,” or “My light is strong and radiant.” “I can easily weather this moment, this bump in the road that will soon be past.”

By tuning in to your heart, I also refer to the knowing that peace is more a state of just being, not so much something to actively seek. It is simply a feeling, a sense of harmony with the world on a more broader perspective. Despite the temporary curtain of chaos that may envelop us, in our heart resides that pure seed of all that is calm, radiant, loving and compassionate. And we just have to pay attention to it for it to flourish and grow.

If you can take even ten to fifteen minutes a day to quiet your mind it will be a helpful boost to get you into the flow of harmony. Just breathe, focus gently on your breath. Put on some soft, calming music if that feels right to you.

Additionally, remember to stay in the moment. Be truly present. When chaos abounds, handle one thing at time — the most immediate priority and let all else wait. And do not feel guilty about it. One can only do so much at a time.

Whatever it takes, temporarily tune OUT the surrounding turmoil and tune in to YOU. Even a brief respite can give you a much needed dose of rejuvenation to see you through the day. And do not feel guilty about taking a little time for yourself.

Life is full of cycles, ebbs and flows. I always embrace that timeless adage that “This too shall pass.” For it will…

 Affirmations:

  • Peace and tranquility reside within my heart — and I am learning to easily connect with these feelings.
  • I know that on a soul level, I am always in harmony with my right life path.
  • I embrace the concept that serenity is a state of mind and heart, and is not dependent on external events.
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Dec
02

Overcoming Challenges – Learning Powerful Life Lessons

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Sometimes we lean into a shift– we choose it. Other times it is thrust upon us. Regardless of how something manifests, shifts can have a dramatic impact on our lives and can leave us with profound life lessons. But the lessons aren’t always obvious so sometimes you must closely examine the situation and find the lesson concealed within. And it can be very eye-opening and fulfilling to discover these lessons.

For me, there were three to four weeks of waves of challenge just surging in like a turbulent sea during a storm. My husband ended up in the emergency room — he was having a heart attack. It was a horrific and painful experience for him (and a very demanding and scary one for me.) He ended up spending a total of five days in the hospital, even though his heart attack was deemed “minor” and a best case scenario from a heart attack perspective. He finally was given the go ahead to be released (his heart rate had stabilized and lowered) and I brought him home.

Four days later we were hit with a major hurricane that left Long Island quite devastated in general, but left us without power, heat and hot water for fifteen days. The temperature inside the house dipped down to a chilly forty-something degrees on some of the colder nights. And my husband had to spend most nights out, as the cold was too taxing on his recovery. I spent a night or two alone in a very cold, dark house with my pets. Most nights we were like nomads, going from house to house, friend to friend. We depended on the kindness of neighbors, friends and nearby family.

Yes — life challenges change us – there is no doubt about that.

The question is does a particular difficult challenge change us for the better or the worse? Initially you may feel downright sad, angry, frustrated. So you need to move through much of the challenging time period first. But when you find yourself finally moving into clarity, and you are gaining forward momentum, ask yourself the question: what did I learn from this experience? And really feel into it.

Ask yourself questions like:

  • Am I stronger from the experience?
  • Did I gain insight into who I really am at my core?
  • Did this experience teach me how to appreciate the beauty, balance of normalcy and the simplicity of everyday routine life?
  • Did I  learn how to genuinely be present and to focus solely on the moment in order to survive?

For me, life during that “dark period” was absolutely a struggle, but we were so profoundly touched by the compassion of many people. One of the lessons we learned was that sometimes being “power-less” meant we had to completely surrender to the “powers that be” — to the Divine plan and also to the compassion of people we did not know well, but who gently and warmly came to our rescue. So though we were power-less, we were profoundly empowered by this knowing. We were enveloped by a warm blanket that was a sense of community that we had rarely experienced or acknowledged during the flow of “normal” life.

I learned to appreciate the modern conveniences in our lives. When our power finally came back on, my husband and I had emotional tears of relief in our eyes. We turned on every light in the house, just needing to soak up and absorb the feeling of radiant electric light. I know in my heart that this feeling of appreciation will last a long while as the lesson was deeply ingrained.

Make every effort to learn from your experiences — even if the experiences rock your world. Our challenges do shape us into who we are — and if we let ourselves morph into stronger, more compassionate, more alive, and more loving individuals — than we have powerfully reached for the positive result and will be happier for it.

Affirmations:

  • Overcoming challenges and obstacles helps me grow stronger.
  • I greet the ebb and flow of life with an attitude of flexibility and adaptability.
  • I strive to remain true to my integrity and my core essence, particularly when navigating through turbulent times.
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I am sure you can vividly recollect those dramatically turbulent times in your life when you experienced a myriad of challenges and obstacles. Times when you felt your life was just falling apart. Discordant, unbalanced, stressful periods. Those memories stay with us quite clearly but DO help shape who we are.

But have you ever experienced the opposite — a time when you have finally arrived at a point of harmony and balance — and now suddenly everyone around you is going through challenges. With no warning notice, the lives of others in your “circle” are simply unraveling with health issues, money problems, etc.

When we are in the graceful flow of life, we somehow expect and assume that everyone else is riding the same wave. And as we go merrily on our way, attempting to be in the joyful moment — WHAM — people are falling like dominoes (remember that old game?) around you.

Of course, that is all figurative language — not that people are dropping at your feet. I’ve been experiencing this myself recently. After getting caught up in the swirl of challenge after challenge with family and friends, I am truly wondering — is this part of the great energetic shift of 2012? Or is it just the normal stream of life showing up in difficult and tumultuous ways?

I first met these tough happenings with extreme resistance — which we all know is never an appropriate way to deal with anything. Those feelings of resistance bring to us more of the same, and more hardship too, if we do not move ourselves into a better mindset. And I do know better, but I reacted at a gut, emotional level as most anyone would do.

I have since been learning to navigate these choppy waters in a calmer way. But I constantly re-learn the lesson that life is always an adventure.

Here are six suggestions for coping during tough times:

1) Don’t bury your head in the sand and pretend nothing is happening. Do acknowledge what you are observing. But don’t let your whole heart get caught up in the negativity.

2) Be supportive to those going through the challenges. Extremely supportive. But don’t let their fear-based emotions become yours. Be compassionate, but not empathetic. Walking with others too closely along their rocky path is not healthy for you either.

3) Keep your own powerful inner light strong and radiant. Be a brilliant beacon of understanding and peacefulness to others — a port in their personal stormy sea. They will come to depend on you. But realize that they will regain their poise and harmony at some point. So you will not have to shoulder their burden indefinitely.

4) Understand that everyone has their own personal life path — some of it joyful and some of it difficult. Respect the unique soul journey of others. There are always powerful lessons to learn through overcoming hardship.

5) Continue to keep a keen focus on those aspects of your own life that are optimistic and positive — and take care of yourself. As much as you need to be there for others, make sure that your own needs are met. Or you will begin to feel stressed and worn-out.

6) Do keep in mind that this is all temporary. The ebb and flow of life is constantly changing. Hold tight to the knowing that the stream of joy and well-being is always there, that others can slip comfortably back into it at some point after they have bypassed the swirling turbulent eddies of challenge and turmoil.

And take to heart the simple, yet profound steadfast guidance of Abraham-Hicks as they say: “All is well.” Accept that concept and allow it to permeate your emotions and your senses. All IS well.

Affirmations:

  • I let my powerful inner light shine as a guiding beacon for others who are experiencing challenges.
  • I tap into my heartfelt sense of stability as I assist others in navigating through turbulent times.
  • I consciously and gratefully focus on the uplifting aspects of my life — all the blessings, the joy, and the people who love me.

 

A Personal Experience Story

My husband and I had been looking forward to this day for quite some time. We were celebrating my husband’s birthday with a mini vacation, several hours away from our home town. At the hotel spa, we had a luxurious side by side Swedish massage planned.

About 45 minutes before the massage, the cell phone rang. It was my daughter who was back in Long Island, panicked and speaking a mile a minute. She had my husband’s car and was traveling to another town for a lunch appointment. One of the rear tires blew out, was totally flat and the car was not drivable. She was on a parkway, a half mile from the nearest exit. In tears about how bad this all was, she lamented about how she had to cancel her lunch appointment with her former mentor/boss whom she hasn’t seen in a very long time.

(Now, you might be thinking that you have no sympathy for me in that my MASSAGE might be interrupted. But please realize this couple massage only happens perhaps every four to five years for us, and it was at the request of my husband who wanted it as a birthday present.)

So I had two choices – I could cry along with my daughter, getting caught up in her flow of  fear (the old me would have.) Or I could remain calm, practical and clear-thinking. Of course you know the choice I will make.

However, in some duel Universe in a different dimension, I could almost hear the other me carrying on with a litany of “oh no, I can’t believe this is happening right now.”

My first priority was to calm my daughter, reassuring her that I will get some assistance for her. And I did point out that despite this unexpected mishap, SHE is totally fine and unhurt. That is the most important thing. She does agree with that.

As we were speaking, I was noting the time on my watch, wondering if roadside assistance can get to her before I get to relaxing on a massage table. So I hung up with her and immediately called the roadside assistance where I  am a member.

This roadside service is not allowed on the parkway, but the helpful operator put in a call in to the only towing company that IS allowed on the parkway. We determine that the easiest course of action is to simply have the service change the blown tire and replace it with the spare.

After this was all put into action and we notified my daughter (she was quite relieved), my husband and I headed to the spa — a lovely, zen place fragrant with the scent of aromatherapy. We each headed off to our respective changing areas, accompanied by spa attendants.

Part of me wanted to simply blurt out and vent to my attendant: “I’ve planned this for so long and wouldn’t you know it — my daughter is stuck on the parkway back in new York. She is freaking out, and I  am nowhere near the zen state I had hoped to be in at this particular moment.” But I simply say nothing and quietly follow the woman to the locker room. As she explains how to choose a pin to lock and unlock the locker, I force myself to focus. Or I could just see all my belongings being stuck in the locker with me having no clue at how to get to them.

As I changed into a long white soft fleecy robe, I noticed a text flash up from my daughter that the roadside service had arrived.  I then moved into the relaxation room, sipping a glass of herbal iced tea but still nervously clutching my iPhone. As I sat and began to TRY to relax, I congratulated myself on remaining centered and focused during this minor, but distracting, challenge. I noticed the sign on the table next to me, which read something like “This is a relaxation area. Telecommunication devices are not allowed.” Inwardly, I managed an ironic smile, but I can’t possibly “abandon” my daughter until the tire situation is resolved and she is able to safely drive home.

As I waited, I noticed a text finally flash onto my phone “Done. I am going to drive home now.” And then I shut my phone and placed it in my locker (remembering the sequence to unlock) and awaited the voice of the massage therapist beckoning me to my hour of luxurious relaxation.

My husband and I thoroughly enjoyed the next hour (and I even opted for the “add-on” of some aromatherapy scented lotions) — it was pure indulgence. And I allowed myself to let go of the tire incident.

Unexpected things happen — that is part of life. And they usually don’t happen at a convenient time. After all, is any time truly “convenient” for something difficult to occur? Flexibility is a powerful life lesson to learn, but an essential one. As I always say, we can’t control everything that happens to us. But we CAN control our reaction to it. And it’s important to keep our perspective on these occurrences. A blown tire is an inconvenience to deal with, but the bottom line was that my daughter was safe and unharmed. From that perspective, it is easier to let these happenings go and to move back into the more harmonious flow of life.

 Affirmations:

  • I swim with the current of life, remaining flexible and adaptable.
  • I remain centered and calm during minor life challenges.
  • I breathe into the flow of life, acknowledging that everything is happening for my Highest and best good.

 

Apr
01

Self Empowerment – Confidence Along Your Own Particular Life Path

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Are you joyful and enthusiastic about where you are heading? Or perhaps you are just accepting, and sort of moving blindly along, not sure if the direction aligns with your true “calling”? Or, are you possibly just plodding through each day, filled with uncertainty?

There is a wide range of potential attitudes toward’s one’s life. Of course, the optimum is feeling genuinely happy, vital and self-assured about your own path, invigorated and knowing that you are living your soul’s calling. Knowing that you are doing exactly what you are meant to do, and are where you are meant to be.

A young woman recently shared with me that although she was basically joyful with her work, she had a nagging feeling that she should have been or done more. And where did this feeling come from? Of all things, a recent visit to a psychic — a woman who she must have paid for a reading, but who spouted only negativity. This so-called psychic had shaken her confidence, informing her that she should be in a different career entirely, and should have done many things quite differently.

I was appalled at this destructive reading as it was detrimental to this young lady who placed sincere emphasis on what the psychic had to say. So I encouraged this woman to forget about the reading and suggested she focus on moving ahead with her life. “Do you like what you’re doing?” I questioned her. She assured me that she does, and she had put quite a bit of studying and practice into her vocation to get to the point where she is today.

I know that many people place too much credence on the negative remarks of others — and these others aren’t necessarily psychics; they can be one’s friend or family member who might need some lessons in tact and supportiveness.

Personally, I believe that we are pretty much where we need to be on our live path. Not everyone is completely content — that is the usual human condition. But I feel it is important to trust that as we move along our road of both self-discovery and life experience, we  retain a clear understanding about the direction we need to follow. And often, we come to the figurative fork in the road and must make some personal decisions about which way to turn. And if you are truly not content with where you are, then you can always make a shift in another direction.

Embracing your path with confidence is essential for peace of mind. As I always say, tune into your own innate sense of self-guidance that lies within for assistance with what steps you need to take. If you are feeling strong and positive about your goals and plans, then you can easily let the remarks of “naysayers” roll off and not effect your self-assurance.

Not everyone is going to be your champion, and it’s key to understand that. That is why you need to be your own best and focused champion. Have confidence and insight into your own desires and wishes. And you may need to work on striving to ignore or be non-reactive toward those who cast obstacles in your path.

Yes, everyone wants to be passionate about their particular life path, but it is not always possible to maintain a high level of this as we move along our day-to-day schedules. If you can hold on to an overall sense of optimism in your heart, greet each day with even a little enthusiasm, then your life path will surely unfold in a gentle, welcoming, uplifting way. Be confident of this. Be sure of this. And don’t listen to psychics who tell you otherwise.

Affirmations:

  • I feel genuinely confident that I am aligned with my life path as I move forward each day.
  • Tapping in to my innate sense of self-assurance helps me overcome obstacles that I may encounter.
  • I gravitate toward those who are supportive and encouraging about my life choices, plans and goals.
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Dec
11

Self-Empowerment – Moving Away from a Victim Mentality

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Do you often (or even occasionally) find yourself making statements such as “Everything always happens to me,” “I never have any luck” or similar comments that undeniably cast you into the role of victim? I see this as the “poor me” syndrome and unfortunately it is something that appears to be all too common. Let’s face it, there are times we all fall into that trap of playing the hapless victim in our ever-shifting life story.

Mostly, we know this is not a healthy place in which to wallow. But sometimes we don’t know. Sometimes we are so caught up in the drama of the “woe is me” outlook that we can’t see or think clearly, and certainly have no clue about how to find a much-improved and joyful path upon which to move forward.

I’ve written much about this topic, but was inspired to revisit this after someone wrote to me the following — and I am paraphrasing: “What about those personalities who thrive on and exploit the compassion of others? How do you limit the damage they can inflict on you?”

Take a good, hard look at that question. What is it about the way it is worded that indicates that the writer of this might be stuck in a victim mentality? (Of course, my question is rhetorical.)

The lesson I have learned — and I am constantly continuing to learn – is that each of us has the power of choice. It is essential to begin to not just grasp this concept, but to profoundly embrace it with all your might and heart.

Well, you might think, we certainly don’t have the power to choose everything in life — and yes, that is a keen and true observation. But we have the power to choose a huge percentage of what happens in our lives. As for the rest, we have the power to choose our own REACTION. If something troubling happens, if a challenge arises, you can either meet it with fuming, raving and negative drama — or you can meet it with strength, understanding and perseverance. You can crumble under the weight of it, or you can take it in stride as a meaningful life lesson. Which outcome would YOU choose? (another rhetorical question that is a no-brainer.)

Another can only “inflict damage” on you if you allow it to happen. I’m not saying it will be easy to keep your cool and and stay in a mode of neutrality, but it is doable.

This is not to say you should enable a troubled or difficult personality or let someone walk all over you or abuse you.

As a powerful adult individual with free will and choice, you are capable of staying tapped in to your inner strength while holding the light of compassion in your heart.

You are capable of holding that peaceful, good-feeling sense of caring and surety within your being. You are capable of retaining a relatively harmonious outlook. You are capable of being peaceful and as neutral as possible when dealing with others who try to “inflict damage” on you. And did I remember to say “you are capable”!!!

It always comes down to doing the inner work to get to the place where you can cast off any vestige of a victim mentality and confidently take on the strength which all of us possess deep within. Sometimes it requires guidance or assistance from others (even a counselor or therapist) but it is certainly a positive path that we can all aspire to trod. Look within yourself — trust that your own personal strength vibrates powerfully in your heart. Genuinely make that commitment to tune in to the powerful, enlightened you that waits to come forth, especially in these spectacular, consciousness-awakening times.

Affirmations:

  • I knowingly tune in to my inner strength and guidance to help me make decisions that are beneficial for me.
  • Perseverance and patience are qualities that I consciously work on cultivating.
  • I am a powerful creator and use my ability of choice and free will to design a life experience that is healthy and joyful for me.
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“See the light in others, and treat them as if that is all you see.” – Dr. Wayne Dyer

How do we hang on to our genuine sense of caring and compassion toward someone, when we perceive some of their deeds and statements as being quite unkind? We all face this scenario with people in our lives. And I am not talking about distant friends or acquaintances, who will fade out of our life if the unkindness and differences become too pronounced. I am referring to people who are fixtures in our lives and who we basically love and care about.

Not everyone sees things our way — it would not be a good thing if we were all clones of each other. Life is exciting and dynamic because of all the varied personalities in our lives.

However, sometimes we need someone to be a little more tolerant and supportive of us. For instance, in my own life, as an animal lover and occasional rescuer, I am trying to understand someone who is quite the opposite of that. Now it’s one thing to keep discordant thoughts (ones that you know might be offensive to a person you are conversing with) to yourself. But it’s another to come out with them in a context in which there is no ambiguity about them being of the tactless nature.

So I am trying to rationalize some of these comments over time (they are only occasional, not constant) and certainly focus on the brighter spots of this individual’s personality. But when these uncalled-for comments just spout forward, it is disturbing to me. Yet I believe it is essential to be able to brush my own feelings of discord aside, as it is healthier emotionally. But it’s not always easy to do.

As a Reiki practitioner, my initial reaction is to send love and light to this person, envisioning that it is going straight to their heart center.

However, you don’t have to be a Reiki practitioner to work with this imagery. You can surround this person with the light of compassion, however you may be able to imagine it. Visualize that a radiant cord of compassion flows from your own heart to the heart of the other person. This can be powerful healing imagery. It sure beats the opposite of becoming antagonistic or down on a particular person.

As I began to focus on sending positive energy to this person, I genuinely felt like I want to take the next step. My goal is to try to awaken the innate sense of compassion, caring and understanding that I believe lies within the heart of that individual. I truly feel we are all born with the ability to be compassionate. But it depends on many other factors — upbringing, family values, social interaction and more as to how much that sense develops over time.

Another suggestion for diffusing any immediate discord while an incident is still fresh and painful, is to make a mental list of the most obvious positive qualities of this person. Maybe he made a tactless statement, but is diligent and has a great work ethic and he is always punctual for events. He just needs to perhaps do some further inner work, or become a little more awakened to the compassionate side of life.

Do you have anyone who is close to you that presents a challenge in this way? How do you deal that individual? Are you able to let go of discordant feelings? Are there any special techniques you use to help you remain peaceful and tolerant? Please post a comment here and let me know…

Affirmations:

  • I strive to remain calm and neutral in the presence of someone whose personality can be challenging to me.
  • I imagine that an ethereal, healing cord of compassionate light can link from my heart to the heart of another.
  • I do the inner work to become my most caring, understanding self.