Photo by Jon Jacobsen
“It is the stillness that will save and transform the world.”
Several years ago I lived with a good friend who spoke English as her third language. While she spoke fluently after years of experience, there was one phrase I used that she had trouble grasping at first: Just be.
As in, “After we finish grocery shopping, let’s go to the beach and just be.” She’d always want to finish the sentence. “Just be … relaxing. Just be … writing.”
When I explained what I meant, that I would really just like to sit, observe and exist, without any expectations, she was delighted.
This, she declared, was a very un-American, very un-Western thing to do, which would make sense that why after fifteen years of learning English she’d never heard the phrase.
Photo by Shannon
Guest Story By Ally Palmer
“When we’re in the grip of inspiration,
an idea has taken hold of us from the invisible reality of Spirit.
Something that seems to come from afar,
where we allow ourselves to be moved by a force
that’s more powerful than our ego and all of it’s illusions,
~Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
We’ve all heard of the traditional S.MA.R.T. guidelines for setting goals (making your goals: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely). It seems to be widely touted by personal development gurus and business professionals, however it may not be for every goal seeker.
A few years ago, I worked with a business coach to help me grow my business. I learned a lot, but I also experienced many negative feelings like the ones mentioned above.
When I didn’t meet my goals, I would get very down on myself. I felt like something was wrong with me. My self-esteem went completely down the tubes.
Photo by Alex Stoddard
By Kate Carpenter
“100 years from now – all new people.” – Anne Lamott
Think about that for a minute. Everyone in the world right now will be gone. Will they have left their mark — had an impact — made a difference? Maybe.
How much can one person matter when there are almost 7 billion people on the planet? At any rate, the people who remember them — were impressed by them, disgusted by them, helped by them, hurt by them, loved by them, hated by them — will all be gone, too.
What matters most to each of us is what happens to us today … here … now. The “long run” is of very little consequence. As Ms. Lamott points out — and as John Maynard Keynes is often quoted (out of context) as saying — in the long run, we’ll all be dead.
Photo by Hannes Caspar
By Kate Swoboda
“We are not meant to be perfect;
we are meant to be whole.”
It’s the crisis of the modern era: stressed-out, disconnected, working so hard and not knowing what, exactly, we’re working for. Entire lives are planned around promotions and pay raises, or around simply surviving the day-to-day, and then we look around and ask ourselves: Is all this work actually getting me where I want to go?
I’ve found myself in this position–the position of the person who has figured out how to work hard and achieve things, but has realized with a sudden and startling clarity that she doesn’t actually know that they are things she wanted.
What do you do when you’ve pursued the things you’ve been conditioned to want, and find that once you’ve got them–they weren’t what you really wanted?
Perhaps what you’ve sought was some outward measure of perfection, and now the journey is towards wholeness.
Photo by Shannon
Editor’s Note: I loved this article. Don’t miss this one. Enjoy.
P.S. Read it without any expectations. :)
By Kayla Albert
“Things turn out the best for people
who make the best of the way things turn out.”
Right around the time I reached middle school, when the presence and opinion of my friends trumped that of anyone else in my life at the time, birthdays started to represent something more than just a day I might get all the things my parents refused to buy me the rest of the year.
Birthdays suddenly became the one day that I expected to have an outpouring of love and adoration, the one day that my presence in the world could actually be validated.
Yes, friends and family could shower me with love on any of the other 364 days of the year, but if they didn’t do it on that one day, that simply meant they didn’t care.
Photo by Hannes Caspar
Guest Story By Britt Bolnick
“The authentic self is the soul made visible”
~Sarah Ban Breathnach
I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about visibility after a two-day retreat dedicated to bringing my business to the next level.
For women, visibility can be a very mixed bag. And until this past week I hadn’t quite connected the dots around how our beliefs and fears about personal visibility so deeply impact our ability to put ourselves (and our heart-centered businesses) out there.
I grew up in the West Village of New York City in the 80’s. As a pre-teen walking the streets of NYC I attracted a lot of unwanted attention from men.
Photo by Valerio Boncompagni
By Mika Maddela
“Expose yourself to your deepest fear;
after that, fear has no power,
and the fear of freedom shrinks and vanishes.
You are free.” ~ Jim Morrison
I was pacing back and forth after the plans were almost finalized.
I was going, finally, to meet this guy who I’ve been chatting with from an online dating site–my first foray into the world of online dating!
As soon as I hung up the phone with him, I was trying to talk myself out of going. I was trying to think of the possible reasons why I had to cancel.
The lame excuses included: I had to take my cat to the vet. There was a work deadline I had to meet. I came down with the flu.
Why was I being such a “Sissy La-La” about this?
I was afraid.
“Striving for excellence motivates you;
striving for perfection is demoralizing.”
My neighbor came to my door while I was baking my first loaf of gluten-free bread. She said she admired our diets and told me how she was doing more to eat less sugar.
“I’d heard from a lot of people that it makes a lot of sense for them,” I said, “but I just didn’t think I could cut another thing out. I mean, after getting rid of dairy, wheat, caffeine and sugar, what would be left?”
She laughed a little and said, “Well it’s all about just cutting yourself some slack. You don’t have to be perfect or anything.”
Here’s my confession: I have this compulsion to be perfect. Everything I do has to be just so, or I don’t want to do it at all. And I don’t think I’m alone in this.
“There is not one big cosmic meaning for all,
there is only the meaning we give to our life.”
What is MY purpose?
This is the recurring question I would ask myself over and over: searching, seeking, arm-wrestling with each day, in a quest to find where my place was in this grand universe.
I have read dozens of books over the years, complete with countless worksheets and self-development exercises to expand my sense of belonging in the world.
Photo by Hannes Caspar
Guest Story By Kaci Metzger
“The walls we build around us to keep sadness out also keep out the joy.” ~Jim Rohn
Not too long ago, I found myself sitting around with a group of friends playing the One-Word game—a game where each person uses one word to honestly describe another person in the group. Everyone goes around until they have been “worded” by everyone else.
It’s fun and exciting until you get labeled as something you don’t necessarily identify as positive. The word that kept coming up for me: Guarded.
I got it. It made sense. I have a difficult time opening myself up to people.