Meditation

When we lack balance in our lives it’s generally because we overthink, self-criticize, stress out or become anxious. Or we struggle with weight, diet, and have image issues that can fuel low self-esteem, doubt, and questions of self-worth. Regardless of what we suffer, our lives are negatively affected and our mental chatter can create deafening noise. We yearn for a safe and quiet space. Meditation is one way to find that quiet space.  As the quote says, “Prayer is when we talk to God, meditation is when we listen.” Meditation is the art of learning to listen.

For some the idea of meditation can bring expectations of extensive daily time commitment, an inability to “clear their mind,” or images of peace signs and hippies. None of these notions are true. A daily, ten-minute practice, which can include a mental mantra instead of thinking nothing, can change how we think, feel, and act. Clearing the mind is not a prerequisite and I know CEOs who meditate daily. There are many types of meditation and each one is as unique and different as those who practice them. There are also common outcomes. For instance, scientists studied a group meditation involving 7,000 people for a two-week period, and found it affected the city's crime rates, acts of violence, and death. There was an average reduction in all three by 16%. Other studies used MRI and EEG to observe brain function while meditating, and found that meditation appeared to be as effective in treating some forms of anxiety and depression as medication. The findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association in early 2014. Inspiring, right?!

      As a meditation teacher for over thirty years, I have learned three important truths. First, everyone can learn to meditate no matter how busy or loud they believe their mind to be. Second, a regular meditation practice can cure insomnia, depression, anxiety, issues with focus, and emotional struggles of many kinds. Third, meditation creates clarity, and allows us to experience a sort of quiet even when we are listening to a guided meditation or using a mental mantra. It’s not a “think nothing” kind of quiet, though one can attain that; it’s an experiential quiet. If you have wanted to try meditation I suggest a basic beginner’s method of candle gazing. You can begin with five minutes and expand from there. There are other ways to meditate, like gazing at a fish tank or fixing your gaze at the horizon of a setting or rising sun. Chanting is an effective meditation and using breathing patterns is also very good. Group meditation is a way to join others and share a collective energy. All of these options get us out of our heads and shift our perspective. Why not devote five minutes and give meditation a chance? Here’s a link to Meditation Hand Book for Beginners, which includes instruction on how to candle gaze and a few more basic method options.    Amazon http://amzn.to/2gFgTfI

   

Coping with Fear

The doctors bright blue eyes were weary with the truth of what she knew, and still, she listened patiently. We finished our story and she shook her head. She pointed at Dylans lip and said, “I’m sorry, but regardless what your skin specialist said, or the biopsy, this is advanced stage oral cancer and should be removed immediately.” She moved to Dylan’s side and probed beneath his jawline and throat for evidence of more cancer. “It’s grown to a stage where we worry about metastasis into his lymph system. We will need another biopsy but it will be just a formality.”

         Fear rose up sticking like a raw blister in my throat. I recalled the year before when the cancer specialist assured Dylan again and again, telling him he had nothing to worry about. After his biopsy, he’d returned again on two separate visits to complain of the sore that wouldn’t heal on his lip. I wanted to hurt that man. The year had already been the most difficult of our twenty-six-year marriage. Dylan had struggled to find a permanent chef position and had spent the year underemployed. We were blessed to have savings to help get us through, but our reserves were running low. Now this. Cancer. No job, no insurance. Oh boy.

     Over the next several weeks we raced to find doctors who accepted uninsured patients, see surgeons, get opinions, consult radiation specialists, have a PET scan, and, of course, swallow fear. Oh, and apply for state sponsored insurance. No small feat. Piles of paperwork, endless documentation, multiple phone calls, and hope that we were accepted immediately because Dylan’s cancer was too advanced to wait the normal six-week period. 

    Insurance came through in record time. His oncology radiation specialist, Dr. Mutiyala, the only doctor in Arizona who performed a procedure of, brachytherapy, made an exception and took the state medical plan. Dylan began intense radiation in three weeks after diagnosis. There were other miraculous things that happened during an arguably crappy year. Dylan received a session with the remarkable healer, Jerry Wills, who truly turned the tide for him, but that is another story that deserves its own page. Multiple friends and family members who came forward and gave of their hearts. They offered love, support, financial help, and opened their homes because we would need a temporary place to land soon. It had been a one, two punch. After more than a year of underemployment and cancer, we were financially tapped out.

      During the year of struggle, I released my third book, Habits That Heal. It’s about fear and anxiety that comes from fearful thinking. Funny, right?! It was like all things in my life, synchronistic. I won’t say I didn’t have my moments of fear because I did. I know fear. In fact, we are longtime acquaintances. I feared Dylan’s cancer, financial ruin, and an unknown future. But, they were moments. These are the times when fear and anxiety have the most power. When something unexpected occurs and we anticipate negative outcomes. Clients tell me, “I can’t stop thinking negative things. What if this or that happens? What will I do then?” I don’t disagree that life sometimes serves up scary events that leave us wondering, “what’s next?” We can overcome anxiety that springs from our fear.  I did not become lost in the sickening anxiety and dread. During the nights when fearful thoughts began their march, I told myself, “I am safe. I trust in the flow of life.” Those mantras led me back to sleep.

         I share this with you because fear has only the power we give it. In a week, Dylan will have another PET scan that I know will show no cancer and if I’m wrong, we will deal with it together. In ten days, we will move in with my little sister until we get on our feet. I know we will. We have received multiple blessings throughout our ordeal and have so much to be grateful for. Join me in 2017 with a commitment to embrace gratitude and release fear. We will do it together.

 

Uninvited Guests

I saw her in my peripheral vision as she sat on my couch as though an invited guest. Surprised, I spun to face her and watched as her form disappeared. Was this who had been disrupting things around the house the last couple of days?

The disruptions began the day before. Arms full from shopping, I had hurried to our bedroom to drop my purchases. What I saw stopped me in my tracks: a thick layer of plant pearls scattered across white carpet like a puddle of blood. Fear hammered a blow to the chest and my heart raced. The delicate plant had to be shaken or knocked into to release so many beads. Was there an intruder in the house hiding somewhere? I began to retrace my steps, careful not to make a sound. As I stepped quietly backward, I caught a glimpse of a fairy figurine in the mirror over our dresser. Something wasn’t right. And then I realized it was backward. It had been turned. Gooseflesh raced along my arms. Someone had been there, but the house was empty.

Although I knew the answer, I asked my husband, Dylan, if he had bumped the plant and not had time to clean it up.

“No,” he said. “Why?”

I didn’t answer and asked, “How about my fairy. Did you move her?”

“No. What’s up?”  

“There’s activity in the house again. Things out of place purposely. You know what that means. Someone is trying to get my attention.”

After twenty some years of marriage to a clairvoyant-medium, Dylan was accustomed to such events.

He asked, “Do you know who it is?”

“No, I replied, “not yet.”

There was no doubt about it, someone who had passed wanted me to know. A couple of hours later the phone rang. Christian, an old friend, came to the point quickly.

“Hello, Nita. Ingrid died two days ago. They think it was an aneurism.”

Ingrid was his older sister with whom I had worked and been friends with some twenty-five years ago.

“Oh, Christian. I’m so sorry. I believe she has been here. I couldn’t figure out who it was. Now I know.” I told him the story.

“I knew I was supposed to call you,” he said, “because when I got the call about her, out of nowhere, I flashed on the picture of you and Ingrid at work standing together at the end of the bar. Remember that?”

“Yes,” I smiled, “I do.”

Later that day, Ingrid showed up again so that I could take down a message to her family.

I’ve seen energy forms from as far back as I can remember, but taking messages came later. The first time it happened, a stranger manifested in the corner of my room. His energy felt frantic. It took a few seconds before I realized that he was talking to me. His words were extremely fast and it was difficult to follow at first. I grabbed a pen and paper and began to write.

 “My son found me. I didn’t know. I didn’t know it would happen. I’m so sorry.”

He shared some experiences of his life, relationships, regrets, and legal documents his family hadn’t known about. The information came in words, mental pictures and emotional energy that washed over me in waves and connected us. In this way, he showed me who he was.

I did not know the man but my friend, Wendy, did. We had planned on meeting that morning when she called and said, “I can’t meet for coffee this morning. Wayne’s father died. He was found face down in his driveway. Dead. I have to go over to their house. It’s just awful.”

“Wendy, I think he was just at my house. The soul body that was here just died. He told me that his son found him and that they’d had an argument moments before. He also told me his mom and sister were there to help him transition. Does that sound like him? Are his mom and sister on the other side?”

“Oh my God. Nita. That is so crazy. Yes, that sounds like Bones. That’s what we call him.”

I asked, “Can you take this information to his family? I can’t call and say, ‘Hi, I’m the psychic across town and your husband was just here.’ I feel really awkward about the whole thing.”

“Yes,” she said. “I will.”

Since then I have taken many messages for many families. There has always been some connection that links me in some way with the families though it can be distant. I also have soul bodies who I see and hear that give me messages which I can never deliver because I don’t know their people. This is the reality of my life.

There are varied opinions and reactions to my truth. Some believe that it’s all in my head. Others cry with gratitude and relief when they hear the words of their loved ones. Words they recognize that their person would have said. I know for some my ability seems amazing and they say, “How can you do it? How can you see them, hear them?” And I say, “How can you not?” I know of no other way to be. For me, it has always been. I didn’t learn it. I was born this way.

 

Yes, intuition is a thing

   The Eagles hit song, I Can’t Tell You Why, blasted over the radio as I pulled to stop at the light. I sang along with gusto, completely off key, you don’t have to worry just hold on tight, when suddenly I was catapulted across two lanes of traffic, landing in the center divider. A loud ringing exploded in my ears. My shoulder began to throb where my seatbelt held me tight. I didn’t hear the crush of metal or see the car as it barreled into the rear of my opal. I sat stunned and thought, I knew I shouldn’t turn here. The voice in my mind had said, don’t turn here. Wait until Tyler Boulevard. But, I ignored it and here I was.
       Intuition comes in different ways for each of us. Intuition is not instinct, it is a knowing. It can show up as a warning or as simple knowledge. Over the years countless people have shared their stories of intuition and then asking me, “Is it real?”
Most recently, a friend called me one afternoon and in an excited voice she said,
     “You’re not going to believe this. I was in Whole Foods at the checkout counter talking with the clerk when all of a sudden, I saw the image of one of my clients superimposed on the clerks face! It was completely random. I wasn’t thinking about that person at all. It lasted only seconds and in the next moment the person whose face I saw, walked past me from behind! It was crazy! Did it really happen or did I make it up?” 
    I said, “You didn’t make it up. It was your intuition.”
       Intuition is that spontaneous flash in our mind, or a feeling, or voice that comes seemingly, out of nowhere. It manifests as a feeling of foreboding, or a precognitive knowing of triumph. Intuition is the wash of goose flesh that races across our body, or an understanding that we have without empirical evidence to say that it’s so. It is an insight that reveals an otherwise hidden truth. However it shows up one thing is clear, we all have it. It is so common that it is hard to find someone who has not experienced intuition in one way or another. Why then, do we want to judge the experience as “woo-woo,” or “imagination?” 
     The single most asked question from clients is, “How can I connect with my intuition?”  The answer is that there are numerous ways we can learn to identify and improve our ability to connect with this natural part of ourselves. One way is to, “meditate.” Some will tell us, “Ask your angels or guides.” Others say, “Ask your dreams to show you.”  I am a fan of meditation but many people simply aren’t drawn to it. Another effective approach is to use directed thought. Using directed thought or intention is simple. It’s three steps and takes only a few minutes. 
1.    Focus your attention to the center of your chest. You may want to use your non-dominate hand and tap lightly in this area. When you feel your focus shift to this area take the next step.
2.    Visualize a funnel that begins at your heart center and opens upward toward the heavens. This opens a channel to your highest source. When you’re ready, take the next step.
3.    Mentally speak your directed thought, today I align with my intuition and allow myself to hear it, see it, or feel it, or I am open to my intuition however it may manifest. Remember your intent throughout your day. 
After that all we need to do is pay attention. Don’t be discouraged if your intuition doesn’t show up immediately. It takes practice. Practice the three step exercise every day. Notice how intuition manifests for you. If it is a feeling, where do you feel it in your body? Once you feel it, acknowledge it. If you hear it, how is it different from your thoughts? Again, it is important to acknowledge it. If you see it, accept it and acknowledge it. In the beginning we need only to notice and acknowledge when we experience our intuition. Don’t over think it or attach an outcome or meaning to it. Like, just before the phone rings we know who it is. Stop there and simply acknowledge. But then we go further and think, I know what they want….  Doing that tends to make us right or wrong. Start by observing and accepting. As we use it we learn to trust it and our intuition grows. Good luck! 

 

Learning to stand in our truth

    The adrenaline of fear thundered in her chest. Wearing gym shorts she leaned slightly forward on a bench outside of the batting cages where they talked. She ran her palms down the smooth muscle of her thighs before she slipped them beneath her legs to hide the shaking in her hands. Her mouth turned upward with nervous amusement and her light blue eyes searched his face for clues as she said,
        “You know, I’m not really looking for a hook-up.”
      Her pulse pounded beneath pale skin and she worried that it revealed her fear. At age thirty-three, she was just beginning to speak up for herself. It had been a long and difficult road to learn that she could say no, to sex on the first date which had happened so much of her dating life. Through some assumptions, she’d believed it was expected, and to say no suggested someone prudish and uptight. She wasn’t looking for a husband, but casual sex felt different now, like there was more at stake. She had begun to realize that every time she “hooked up,” there was an energetic exchange that could stay with her for long periods. It was an invisible plague that stuck to her soul and couldn’t be washed off in the shower. The power and worthiness that had come from feeling desired, she had discovered, was false. It was as thin as smoke. 
      Now the worst part was having the conversation with someone that she really liked. The truth was that she wanted to be desirable and interesting without needing to have sex first. But an imagined dialog ran over and over in her mind where only the worst outcome happened.
      “Ok, well I’m not looking for a relationship,” he’d say, or “That’s cool, I understand, but I don’t want to be tied down,” or even worse, he would never call her again like it was her who had the plague. As she thought about these scenarios her negative inner-voice said,
You’ll never meet a decent guy. The only thing they want from you is sex. Nothing more. You’ll always be alone. But this time she wouldn’t go there. She was determined to change her negative thought patterns, so she took a deep breath, pursed her lips and blew out the scary thoughts. She smiled and told herself, I am worth something. I am creative, funny, and strong.  I don’t have to sleep with him to prove it. If he doesn’t want to get to know me, then good riddance. He’s not taking a piece of me with him.
   Her smile deepened and strength filled her body. When the moment came, her heart hammered, her hands shook, and her mouth dried, she said,
     “No, I’m not really interested in “hooking up” with someone I hardly know.” 
He said,
       “Yeah, I get it. So let’s get together. When is your next day off?”
   She didn’t yet know how it might work out. Maybe he’s just another jerk who was counting on second date sex, but it didn’t matter. She felt strong and empowered. She would go forward and see what could happen. For now, she had triumphed over the fear of the future, fear of rejection, and fear of unworthiness. She had squashed her negative inner-voice. That she thought, was a pretty good start.

 

Death does not end us

    

                                                                                                     Death does not end us

The darkness outside created a luminous mirror in the glass of my bedroom window. In its reflection, I watched as a body of energy moved with me in a ghostly silhouette.

     "You know I can see you right?" I said as I turned toward the figure.       

     But in seconds, it was gone. I went to bed and woke before dawn unable to sleep. My cell phone displayed a missed call and message from a friend in Maine. Instead of listening, I touched the lighted screen that would return her call.   

         "Hello, Wendy?" I said. And suddenly I felt hesitant and slightly queasy.

       "You don't know yet do you?" she choked.

        And even though I asked, "know what?" I knew.     

       Hours later as I entered my office, sitting at a small round table was my friend, Kate who'd died suddenly, shockingly, and without explanation, that morning. I heard her voice strong and clear in my mind.

       "Nita," she said, "It's gone in a blink."  

       Looking at my pad and pen on the tabletop she went on.

         "I want to pick up this pen and write letters to my kids and Scott," she said, "but I cant. Will you do it for me?" She asked.   

       Though I'd written notes, information, and letters in the past for some I'd known, and some I hadn't, Kate's request broke my heart a little. Not for her, or death, but for her children. "They were as attached to each other as starfish on a rock."  Her husband later said. The loss of their mother would be deep and vulnerable. I knew her family’s sadness and grief would be unspeakable, and for a while, her children would be adrift, each alone in their pain and loss.  But I said,” Of course I'll do it Kate."    

       We linked together then and she showed me what had happened before her body died. My little sister reconciles the process of linking like this:

        "So, it's like in the movie Avatar when they plug their tail into each other and become one, experiencing what the other one feels, right?"

           "Yes." I reply, "It’s like that." 

       I knew that she’d been sick to her stomach, ached in her back and had congestion in her chest that made it hard to breathe. I knew too that it was her heart that had failed her despite suspicions of a killer flu. In the moment of her death, she panicked because death had taken her by surprise. Confused and afraid her consciousness had brought her to me and I hadn't known it was her in the windows reflection.  

          I wrote the letters for her listening carefully to her words, taking dictation, but my stomach had the quivers because it was such an important task and I dreaded making a mistake. Kate was and is an extraordinary mother. Though it appears that death ends us it doesn't, rather it begins us in a new discovery of so much more. Though we no longer have bodies that keep us grounded in the experience we call life, our soul life continues.  

        I will miss my friend Kate and the friendship we shared but I support her soul’s new journey where our bond will continue to grow and blossom. If you think you feel, hear, or smell, someone you loved that is gone from this life, you have. Trust that and know that they are with you, they love you, and you are still connected.                 

                                                      Nita Lapinski 

My Healing Angel

        I felt myself floating upward toward wakefulness. As I lay in bed the sheets were soft against my skin and my husband snored lightly beside me and I wondered, why am I waking up again? I remembered getting up at three thirty to use the bathroom and though my eyes weren't open I knew it was still dark outside and therefor still early.

      Suddenly a beautiful white light dominated my mind and I saw a mass of energy shimmering and bright, floating weightless and magnificent before me. I knew that I wasn't dreaming but I wasn't fully awake either. I watched in utter fascination as thelight swayed gently and I realized that the light was me. It was my soul body.  

        The energy was alive and seemed to flow in and out like breath. It was like watching fog dance and Irealized that someone was actually moving the energy. Is it an angel? I wondered. A guide? Someone is clearing my field. Oh, how beautiful and extraordinary. I thought.  

      As the white light swayed I saw a dark, muddy looking mass being lifted out. Seeing this alarmed me and I thought, what is that? Is it some kind of negative energy? But then I relaxed and let go. I watched the clearing of my energetic field until eventually I fell back to sleep.   

       Two weeks prior I'd ruptured a disc in my neck andstill woke up with pain each day. When I woke up again that morning I had no pain. I mean none. I was astonished and I hurried down the stairs,  

      "Dylan," I called, "listen to what happened last night. You won't believe it." I said to my husband as he made his espresso. "I have no pain."  

      I told him everything as we sat having breakfast.

      "Isn't it amazing?" I asked.  

      Before he could answer me the phone rang. It was my longtime friend Kaye Sturgis who is an astrologer,writer, and psychic among so many other things.  

    "Kaye," I said, "I had the craziest experience last night," and again I shared what I'd seen. Kaye laughed and asked, "How did you feel when you woke up this morning?"  

     "I felt great." I said. "I woke up for the first time in weeks with no pain. Why do you ask?"

       "Larry wanted to know because he did a healing on you this morning at about seven-thirty. I knew you wouldn't mind," she finished.  

Larry is Kayes husband and they are three hours ahead of AZ time which meant it was four-thirty our time. My skin hummed with goosebumps.   

     I was stunned at the news. I hadn't known that Larry was a healer. Kaye gave me the name of another spiritual healer that she recommended too. I didn't use that healer instead I happily paid Larry for more healing sessions. I was still experiencing some nerve pain which diminished a little each day. 

     I continue to progress and my pain is nearly gone. Even in my life of amazing things I was delighted and surprised with my experience. A thousand thank yous to my friend and healer Larry. Isn't spirit and the world truly amazing and full of divine design even if we don't understand it? I am deeply humbled by her mystery.    

An open letter to someone you love

     I know that I have imperfections and at times I'm too brash. I sometimes speak without thinking and state my truth before remembering you might have a different one. Occasionally I'm irreverent uttering inappropriate things and I have been known to voice beliefs that spark your anger. I am too honest for polite society and my life is easily judged. I disagree with many conventional wisdom's and I have an alternative understanding. But despite my limitations, I will always be there for you and I will not judge.

   I will accept you outright despite what others say and I will give you guidance when you ask. I will hear your heart cry out regardless of proximity and I will never be unkind.

   But, please understand that I cannot witness while an over indulgence becomes toxic nor validate half-truths. The aftermath of actions that leaves one empty and weak are hard to spectate and I cannot stand-by as you slowly disappear. I can no longer pretend these things don't change us or that the doing of them doesn't hold a deeper meaning. I will forever hold hope that self-worth prevails and happiness fills your heart.


Nita Lapinski

Aren't Mirrors Fun?

                 August in Arizona feels like the marrow is drying in your bones. Sitting, hour after hour at my computer I’d mindlessly scratch until my brain registered the scaly, raw, crust, raised beneath my fingers and I’d think, what is that?  Patches of eczema exploded on my skin much like an unstoppable plague.

               I’d been writing, rehashing deep emotional wounds that I thought I’d healed years before yet, for the first time in my life, my skin was screaming. I meditated to center myself and relax. I heard the familiar voice in my mind say, find an Ashram near you and go for a visit. I googled “Ashram” and found one an hour’s drive from my home and after calling and explaining my plight, was invited to attend Satsang and then stay the night.

            When I arrived I was greeted by a small, slender, man who was soft spoken and humble wearing bohemian clothing and glasses that were too large for his narrow face.

     “Would you like a tour of the facility?” he asked.

      “Yes, please. I don’t mean to sound ignorant but I’ve never been to an Ashram and don’t really know what happens here or exactly what Satsang means. Can you tell me?"

          The main room was large and open and on the farthest wall a throne like chair sat perched on a platform with a microphone on a stand beside it. About ten feet away from that, were several rows of plain medal folding chairs, arranged in a semi-circle and five feet behind them was a four foot high plexi-glass barrier behind which, another microphone and a dozen plush recliners sat.

          Pictures of Gurus in simple wooden frames, both past and present, hung above a rickety bookcase that leaned tiredly against the wall. I sat on a folding chair at the back of the room waiting to meet the Guru when suddenly, a very tall woman shaved nearly bald entered. I recognized her as the Guru from a photo on the Ashrams website.

         No pleasantries were exchanged and instead I was instructed to follow the Guru downstairs into a basement that was both cool and dank. Movies lined the walls in every title imaginable.

         The Guru glanced at me and said, “When you see a movie you are drawn to, tell me. I find that movies can have powerful teachings in them.”

       I followed silently feeling a little overwhelmed. Several momentspassed and I didn't feel drawn to anything. The Guru turned to me and asked, “Is there nothing you feel drawn to?”

     “Not yet.” I said.

     Abruptly, the Guru said, “I have to go, I have an appointment. I’ll return for Satsang this evening.” and with that she was gone.  I was stunned. Have I offended her? I wondered. What just happened?

         I went back upstairs empty handed and was met again by the intern who said,

       “Satsang isn't until seven so until then we can have dinner and then perhaps you would enjoy a hot bath in Sea Salts?”

    “That would be great,” I said smiling, trying to let go of the idea that I’d just done something wrong. After dinner the house phone rang,

       “Hello,” my companion said. “Yes, yes, I’ll take care of it. I understand,” he said and hung up the phone.

      With a look of apology he said, “That was Guru. I’m afraid you can’t stay the night and you will have to leave before Guru returns. She has had to have an emergency Chiropractor appointment because you have so much fear in your energy that you've knocked her out of balance.” 

         “Wow, you’re kidding,” I said as shame and embarrassment blossomed.

          Gathering my things I thanked him, we hugged and I left baffled.

        A few days later I realized that yes, I still had fear because of my past and writing awakened it. I became conscious that the physical layout of the sanctuary was symbolic of the emotional room I’d built within myself which had only created the illusion of healing. In truth I had distanced myself emotionally from a traumatic experience by building an internal “throne” and carefully insulating myself but never really healing as I’d believed. My inner-self was a replica of the Ashram sanctuary.      

          The Guru being “knocked off center” was what I experienced during my writing process, manifesting itself through bouts of eczema, interrupted sleep patterns, and disturbing dreams. I’d been guided in meditation to peer into a giant fun-house mirror in an opportunity to see myself in a different way!

           Sometimes when we have drama we need to find blame with others or criticize ourselves which keeps us from finding a deeper meaning. Life is full of mirrors and opportunities to see our experiences differently. I've learned that things aren't always what they appear to be, usually there is something more if we choose to look.

     

February 2014

                                                                Family Conflict

         Conflict within a family is as common as the family itself. Some battles explode eviscerating, emotional landscapes and the fall out can last a lifetime splintering the very core of our relationships. There are no easy answers for these tangled eruptions that are thorny, confusing, labyrinths of who is wrong and who is right. What is certain is that we each feel hurt and misunderstood and sometimes unable to see another view.

        Relationships are intricate, personal, mirrors, that reflect all that we are and frequently we resist or deny what we see as unfounded and not true. Unlike physical mirrors that adorn our homes, life mirrors aren’t always exact images. More often the reflections we see are exaggerated versions of something we need to understand. It’s no surprise that this can be confusing and something we turn away from.

      Sometimes what we need from relationships change and it’s then that we must decide how to move forward or how to let go. Either way, we don’t need to carry anger, blame, or resentment into our future.  If we can bear to see what we so ardently avoided or learn to accept another person for who they are rather who we would like them to be, then we have a better chance of reconciliation or moving on with love.     

      The hardest thing is to hold on to the rejection, hurt, anger,  and misunderstanding because as a result, we march forward shielded with lances drawn ready for battle and we are exhausted. If you can find your truth in a rift then you can forgive and go forward without battle wounds or scars and you can love.

October 8, 2013

 

                               

          What is the energetic impact of random sex?

         “Should we have sex on the first date or with a stranger we just met?”  The answer lies in another question, “What will we get out of it?” Everything is energy. There is no experience where we aren’t energetically impacted, sometimes positively, sometimes not. Most of us never consider what we trade cosmically, but frankly, a vibrational exchange can make you feel like you've wrestled in sludge or send you soaring.

          Have you ever met someone that you couldn’t wait to have raw, unattached, sex with? And regardless of the sex itself, later, you felt low, tired, headachy, and depressed or lonely? What you experienced was likely a spiritual hangover from an abundance of energy moving through you. Sometimes, the opposite feeling occurs and you are strangely energized feeling like you’re riding an electric current. Either way, you are deeply affected, but most of us shake off the sensation and attribute how we feel to something else. Although the physical exchange has passed, the energetic one has not. It’s become an energetic imprint staying in your field. It’s become part of who you are.

        When we are intimate with someone, we are sharing energetically all that they are and all that we are. Everything that you’ve experienced in life is part of your energetic footprint.

       Now, some of us never consciously feel or acknowledge this fact, but others do and can’t reconcile just what it is. The energetic swap happens whether we know it or not. So the next time you indulge, consider the fact that you will give and take energy that will affect you. It’s really not just random sex. It’s something more.

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September 13, 2013

                                      Five Behaviors That Help Us Heal

         Many of us are unable to overcome our struggles with pain, anger, and unresolved negative emotions. We develop behaviors that keep us from healing and create anxiety such as: gossiping, judgment of ourselves and others, the need to control, and negative self-talk. One way to begin the healing process is to use conscious intent to create new habits that replace the ones that don’t work.  Applying conscious intent means mindfully choosing an intention each day.  For example, I release the need to judge myself and others. It is the act of bringing a thought into the conscious moment and creating intent.

        Our habit of gossiping is energetically connected to feeling powerless. When we talk about others — exposing people’s secrets or spreading rumors— it gives us a false sense of importance and shifts the focus away from our own experiences. For most, there is no malicious intent in the habit.  In fact, people are unaware of why they even want to engage in gossip. A way to shift that behavior is to begin your day with conscious intent by speaking positively about people, no matter what others are saying.  Each time you find yourself encouraged to engage in gossip, respond with something positive or redirect the conversation onto something else. You will empower yourself and others by finding a positive aspect.

       Judgment is a common behavior in which we all engage. Judgment is energetically connected to the fear of being wrong. Judgment is always about the person making the judgment, and never about the person being judged.  We are taught to judge from an early age and frequently tell ourselves, “I am judging out of love.” To transform the energy, use conscious intent and when you judge the behavior or choices of another person, exhale, allowing the judgment it to lift from your body. Replace the thought with something loving. Do it every time, no matter what.  No judging, even if you think that it’s out of love.           

           Anxiety keeps us from being in the moment. Anxiety is energetically connected to fear of failure and loss. We create energetic barriers by mentally projecting into the future, outcomes to events that have not yet occurred. The result of creating anxiety is a feeling of constant dread that paralyzes us. The habit is a way of affirming fearful, negative results. Even when failure comes through someone else’s setback, like our children or family members, we are certain that we are responsible. To shift this pattern, use your intent and focus on the moment you’re in. Feel your body connect to the ground while noticing your heart beat and allowing your lungs to fill with air. Stay present and release the future.        

         Control issues stop us from experiencing life as it happens.  Control is energetically connected to low trust threshold. We don’t believe things will work out without our intervention. Our habit to be in control does not allow life to flow. We lock the energy up tight and take on responsibilities of others exhausting ourselves and limiting those around us. Using conscious intent, affirm trust in the process of life and allow others control even when you see they may fail.     

      Negative self-talk can be constantly debilitating. Negative self-talk is energetically connected to an inability to stay in the seat of our authentic self. The pattern keeps us from speaking our truth to others out of fear that we are not good enough. To drive out the fearful voice and shift the behavior, use conscious intent and at the first negative self-thought, stop. Visualize your mind crossing off the thought as though written on a blackboard. Write or state a new positive thought. Breathe out the old thought and take its power away.

                                                    Conscious Intent

The exercise can be done in five minutes or you can incorporate it with meditation for longer periods. Find a comfortable place to sit or recline. Focus on breath as it fills your lungs to capacity, and then simply let it go. Notice your body relax with each exhale. Stay with your breath for several minutes. Bring your focus from your mind’s eye to the center of your chest. Feel this area expand and open like a flower. You may feel fluttering, tingling, or tightening. You may even feel mild pain.  Stay with your breath while you focus on the heart center. Feel love flow from your heart out into the world. Breathe that energy for a few moments.

           Next, mentally speak your intent, “I release fear, anger, resentment, sadness, etc,” or “I respond with love, compassion, patience, understanding, etc.” Repeat your intent as you breathe. Visualize a funnel of light that begins at your heart center and opens upward toward the heavens. Affirm your connection with God, spirit, or divine self. Breathe.  When you’re ready, close your hands and hold the energy within you. Know that you will carry your intention throughout the day. If during your day you forget to practice your intention, don’t worry, simply reaffirm your intention mentally and anchor the thought in your heart.

July 17, 2013

                                      We are all addicts

       Ad-dict (adikt)  To be or cause to be, a devotee, to do or use something habitually.

      Ad-dict-ed (a-dik-tid)  Doing or using something as a habit or compulsively.

       Do you know anyone who is an obsessive thinker, over exercises, worries continuously, always gossips, or talk’s non-stop? We are addicted to constant drama, compulsive organizing, negative thinking, perpetual ailments, and habitual daily use of everything from diet soda to a pack of cigarettes. All accomplish the same outcome. Self-avoidance. 

         Some behaviors can be more harmful, like addiction to alcohol, tobacco, food, shopping, and gambling. We practice every kind of drug addiction, from prescription to the street variety. Some addictions result in starving ourselves of food, goods or even love. As far as I can tell, there are no shortages of habitual behaviors.

        All of these actions help us escape living in the moment and experiencing fully. We cleverly disguise our deeds by not addressing them for what they are.     

        Affairs are another addiction. We become involved outside of our partnership and overcome with a feeling that we must be with this other person no matter what. We tell ourselves, “I need to see him or her so I’ll feel better.” And for a moment, we do. Then desperation sets in and we will risk everything for just “one more time.”

       Why do we do it? What’s the answer? I’m not a shrink but, I’m familiar with addictions and creating behaviors that don’t serve us. One reason for these addictive activities is to keep us from feeling pain, fear, disappointment, grief, sadness or discovering that we are unhappy. We do it because we are afraid to look at our lives and admit that we need change because we might have to do something outside of our comfort zone.

      Recognizing our patterns can be a positive catalyst for change that brings us closer to the truth of just who we are, and of who we want to be. Addictions are a note to self- to take a closer look.

May 31, 2013

                     Why does staying in judgment keep us from forgiveness?

     “What an idiot! I look fat in this, I hate my hair. I’m such a crappy mother or I can’t get anything right.” Most of us judge ourselves more frequently than the regular doses of criticism we dish out to others. But that is the point; because judgment is all about us.

          “You must be picking up on my biological father. He is a complete scumbag and with any luck he’ll die in pain soon.”

     Those bitter words came from a sweet lipped, pretty faced, young woman who responded to a question I’d asked. She was completely unaware of her vitriol. Her response was as casual as if she were talking about ice-cream.

     Old anger and resentment was so deep in her that she had no idea the judgment she held for her father was a reflection of her own belief. It was her fear that she wasn’t good enough. That was the message she heard from her father’s self-destructive behavior. Her pain was so imbedded that she missed the truth that his actions were about his own self-hate; not about her worth.

     Sometimes we wield our judgment like a sword cutting down the perpetrator while looking for validation of our feelings from others.

    “My father is a liar and hurts people. He only calls once a year promising to call back but never does.”  The raw pain that resides in the young woman hides behind her angry words and her nonchalant stare.

    A listener might say, “Yes, he is a jerk, a loser, better not to have him in your life.”

     In this way we hold onto our anger and pain feeling justified about our judgments. We completely miss our lack of self-esteem which is a byproduct of our dysfunctional relationship. It’s likely that our self-loathing wreaks havoc in our other relationships too. Generally, we blame that on our crappy father or any other likely culprit which keeps us from forgiving, letting go or learning to love ourselves.

     We swear that our ex-friend, sibling, neighbor, parent, co-worker, boss or ex-partner is hateful, a drug addict, an alcoholic, a liar, a cheater, a thief or any number of behaviors which will support our reason for judgment and personal dislike. It is why we claim to keep our distance because as long as we can judge others, we never have to forgive or consider our own opportunity for growth because we can substantiate our feelings through the seedy behavior of another.   

    What we may overlook is that everything in our lives offers a choice of who we can become and our judgment, no matter how many people agree with us, keeps us from forgiving. Judgment is always about us and so we have the choice to forgive and allow love. I chose love. What will you choose?

April 22, 2013

                                     Astrological Natal Charts for Newborns

       It always seems as if someone I know is pregnant and entering the queue for her turn on the wild ride of parenting. It’s a rare and exceptional feeling when a baby growing deep in your belly moves, hiccups, kicks, stretches and turns over in hopes of a satisfying position. It is an indelible experience that we never forget.

       The wonder and excitement is no less for those parents who wait, hope, dream, fill out adoption forms in triplicate and wait for their child. You can be sure those tiny souls will find the family that they have chosen, who will help them love and grow and master their souls intent.

        No matter how we come together, children are the giver of treasures that we are at times happier to receive than others. My children are the greatest catalyst of personal change and growth in my life I have known, and I am eternally grateful for the grace they bring.

       Without a doubt, the arrival of our bundles of joy changes our lives completely, usually in ways we cannot foresee. In the beginning, we sacrifice everything by putting their needs first. Our sleep, our freedom, personal time, romantic time, the simple ability to use the bathroom or brush our teeth seem to come second, third, or we forgo them altogether. Parents go without so their children don’t have to and we do these things happily and without question.

      When I am invited to baby showers to celebrate the coming event, I like to give a little something different than the usual, but necessary fare. In the past, I scoured baby websites, bookstores and specialty shops to find that one special gift. But now I’ve discovered what I’m pretty sure is the perfect new baby gift that will likely not be repeated at a shower, a gift certificate for the baby's Astrological Natal Chart, which will be based on the baby's upcoming birthdate, time and place. .

     It’s highly unlikely that we are born in the same place and the same second as another human being, so our birth charts are an astrological fingerprint or map of the potential in our lives.         

      I can’t believe it took me so long to decide on this unique gift that will help mom and dad understand and prepare for that special someone who will be part of their life forever and who comes first no matter what.     

      You may know a talented astrologer but if you don’t, I highly recommend my longtime friend, Kaye Sturgis. You can find her on www.KayeSturgis.com.

      For all the new parents and soon to be parents, I wish you luck, happiness and the most extraordinary ride of your lives.

March 17, 2013

     “What is my purpose?” Diana asked while her hands lay gently over mine, during her reading. “I mean, what am I supposed to be doing?”

      I wish I had the answer to, what I believe is, a commonly misunderstood notion that we have a single purpose. In my experience, there is no one purpose or single karmic intent instead, there are many. We get to choose how we will master our soul intent which can shift and change as we go through life. Further, most of us live completing some of our intent, without consciously knowing all of the parts which is why judgment is never helpful.

      One of my clients confided something she’d been told by a psychic during a reading. “My guides are angry” she said, “because I’m not listening to them and doing what I’m supposed to.” Self-judgment rang in her voice and my heart went out to her.

     I have never received guidance or information that suggests in any way that our guides or angels or highest-self, have any judgment, period. Never. We judge ourselves. I think it is deeply ingrained in us that there is right or wrong or good and bad. We believe that we have a hidden purpose and that if we don’t find and fulfill it, somehow we have failed.

     To find an inner purpose is important and I do encourage you to align with authentic-self so you may discover a direction or path that allows you to uncover one of yours. How you do that is again, your choice.

     Personally, I define purpose as a thing I do which brings me joy. When I realized an ability to give readings, I made a commitment to practice, study and to walk my talk. I do this because as a result, I am able to offer a clearer and open channel to receive information and helping others in this way gives me happiness. So perhaps the question is, “what brings you joy?” When you identify that and do it you will find your purpose.

      It doesn’t matter what it is. I know a lady that makes cookies for school bake sales. She has no children in school but she loves baking treats that benefit others and I’m willing to bet that through her delicious endeavor, she finds purpose.

     So, seek guidance through meditation, prayer, angels, church or some sort of self-reflection but find your joy, practice it and maybe share with others and in that, I believe you will find purpose.

March 10,2013

                                                 Seeking Guidance

     What am I going to do? I think as I flop like a boneless fish on my couch. I feel like an island floating to nowhere. Sheesh, this sucks, my brain informs me. I hoist myself up, head into the kitchen and pour myself a drink while I cook. This does not help my need for clarity.

    It’s remarkable and maybe just human nature that we over think an issue and bury ourselves in mental debris, leaving us far away from what we feel. As a result we don’t connect with our inner-self, god consciousness or highest source. It doesn’t matter at all what we name it, what is of interest is that we separate from it, even when we know better.

     I began to feel un-moored and adrift after publishing my book. For the first time in a couple of decades, I had no idea what to do next. It was like graduating from school with no plans for the future. All you can hear are crickets.

     I’d diligently mailed out dozens of books in hopes for promotions that went unanswered. I was ambivalent about the book thinking, what if it can be better? Maybe it needs a publisher’s edit or more story development or more this and more that? And my mind uncharacteristically rambled on and on. 

      Busy with readings I’d enter my office every day to meditate and center myself so I can align with guidance and be of service to others helping them along their path. Somehow it didn’t occur to me to ask for direction for myself so instead, I waffled and I wane.  

     Worse, was knowing what came next but distrusting what I knew. Sound familiar?

     No matter how much we practice working with our intuition, meditating, affirming a clear and open channel, we are in this thing called, the human condition and sometimes we simply forget that all the information we need is available to us. We need only to ask and align with our authentic self and wait.

     If you struggle with your process, you’re not alone. It takes practice and trust and sometimes a gentle reminder. For me it meant creating a clear space, which sadly didn’t include alcohol. I do enjoy an adult beverage from time to time, but to really find my clarity required quiet meditation and asking the Angels and my higher-self for assistance.

     Fortunately all fronts delivered and I’m no longer throwing myself around.

Thank you self.

March 3, 2013

                                                         Transformation

          Her head was wrapped in a scarf, covered in tiny flowers protecting her bald scalp. Head tipped back and mouth wide open, I could see the gentle arch in her teeth that probably resulted in a slight overbite. A sound of joy and relief rose from her belly and flew into the sunshine filled air. “Oh my God!” she exclaimed into the cell phone she gripped in her hand. “Well, I just knew it! Thank you so much! For everything really”…. Her voice quieted some and I kept walking through the park veering away from the stranger on the bench. “Wow” I thought, and I knew she’d just come through a life changing illness. She’d experienced transformation.

 A quote from the book Illusions by Richard Bach reads, “What the caterpillar calls the end of the world, the master calls a butterfly.”     

     What is in the meaning of the word transformation? Is it a subtle shift in belief, a crushing change of life style or a new direction entirely?

     Most of us experience at least one transformation in our lifetimes. When I see transformation energetically, in a reading for instance, the energy is always progressive, multi-layered and beautiful. To say it’s magnificent and fascinating doesn’t do it justice. The energy can look like a tsunami of moving patterns traveling hard and fast or it can be a more gentle, steady flow, both resulting in irrevocable change.

     In some cases our transformation is forced through an act or event we may or may not see coming like sickness, death, divorce, birth, fire or an accident seemingly out of our control, and suddenly we find ourselves in a severe cycle of change whether we like it or not. And in those instances we may go with the changes or resist them with all that we have, refusing to comply.

     In other circumstance, the shift is a result of a conscious decision to transform who we are, what we want, where we are going and how we are getting there and frequently, who we are going with.  Either way, transformation can be exhilarating, magical, terrifying and earth shattering, scattering our existence and all we have known into the wind.

     I think transformation is a gift even though it may not seem so in the beginning. And regardless of how it manifests it gives more than it takes if we allow it. If transformation finds you, embrace it and hold on tight and see where it can take you.

February 24, 2013

                                                Whose voice is that anyway?

    Minty toothpaste slipped from my lips in a pasty glob hitting the sink with a satisfying splat. Glancing at my own reflection I thought, you are so ugly. Suddenly, I recognized why I’d avoided mirrors! I didn’t want to look at myself because my self-talk told me I was ugly every time! I was stunned by my discovery.

      Have you ever wondered whose voice runs in our head like a ditty we despise but can’t stop? For some of us, the debilitating speak is so old, so common, that we accept the hateful thoughts as our own. 

          After that morning I couldn’t ignore the negative voice than looped in my mind. You better be careful, I’d think, you’ll make the wrong decision. The crippling thoughts ran wild.  I should have known better, I’m such an idiot. I don’t try hard enough, I’m not pretty, I’m too fat, I’m not smart enough, nobody likes me, I’m a crappy mother, I will always be alone, I’m a loser, I will always be broke, and the fearful negative talk went on and on.

     Where do we adopt these limiting thoughts that create feelings of un-worthiness? More importantly, why do we give them power? Maybe we will never discover the origins of our self-hate and I don’t think it matters. What does matter is to recognize that WE are in control of the self-talk. We don’t have to listen to the nasty un-supportive voice, we can replace it with the, I love myself unconditionally voice!

     One of my favorite teachers of this positive way of thinking is Louise L. Hay. She wrote a book decades ago called, “You Can Heal Your Life.” It’s a must read.  I gave the book to a dear friend of mine who kept it for fourteen years before she was ready to read it. When she became exhausted with her un-loving thoughts and negative beliefs, she began to silence her fearful self-talk and replace the doom and gloom predictions with, “I trust in the process of life” and “I am worthy of love.”

     Since we are all individuals and resonate to different things, it might not be a book that shifts your inner-speak and that’s ok. But, if you start today with one loving thought about yourself and banish the negative one, you will begin a shift. If you stay with the decision that a negative thought will be immediately replaced by a loving thought, your life will change and we will have begun our transformation.

    And if we refuse the hateful self-talk and allow only positive self-speak, we strengthen our inner voice one thought at a time. I love myself, I trust in the flow of life, I give and receive unconditional love….

February 16, 2013

                                                  TWO EARS

     “God gave you two ears and one mouth so you can listen twice as much as you talk,” said the creepy church lady who smelled like oatmeal. She leaned toward me, starring me down with eyes that bugged from their sockets and said, “God loves a good listener and if you pay attention, you might learn somthin others missed cause they were too busy talkin.”

     I have to say, the woman made an impression on me and I thought about what she said, hearing her voice ring in my mind while I blathered on about nothing. It didn’t however keep me from talking to anyone who’d listen nor was I able to heed her advice for a very long time.

      I think about her now when I’m listening to someone go on and on wishing they’d just make their point or when I rudely interrupt because I want to make mine. Two ears, I tell myself, two ears! Because what I’ve come to learn is that the oatmeal lady was right, if I listen twice as much as I talk, I do learn something.

     Another thing about two ears is that sometimes people really need a listener, another person who really hears them, and then something special transpires between the giver and the receiver. It’s a unique connection that only comes from letting someone talk, and their understanding that you heard them, thereby witnessing their strife or love or epic event and that they’re not alone.

     And for me the best part is that when you listen, you discover the very core of a person and you become part of that and you are made sweeter somehow, richer than you were before and a part of you blossom’s in the acknowledgment of who they are and who you are together. And if you’re really lucky and you hang on, you uncover something about yourself and it’s a surprise gift that you didn’t expect so it becomes a treasure to truly behold.  Two ears, I tell myself, two ears.