A Midnight Ponder: Gratitude, Passion, and Why Self-Help Breaks My Heart

Well Hello There Beautiful,
     It’s almost midnight and I’m lying in bed right now, a full heart beneath a nearly full moon, unable to fall asleep just yet because my mind keeps taking detours to deep thought. I can’t help but smile as I reflect on the past few weeks – they have been so full of love. My aunt has passed on and I’m sick (but making a swift recovery) and these things have only fortified my gratitude for all that I have. However because of these things I have taken some time to myself to allow the healing process to do its thing; being away from outside influence always puts me in a very reflective space.

         Something else has been fortified within me – passion; a passion to serve and spread love in whatever ways that I can. Whenever I scan through the Facebook status updates and Twitter feeds I literally feel a tug on my heart-strings. I am quite blessed to have some of the most inspiring people I have ever met all in my life at the same time, but I realize that a lot of them don’t cut themselves a break. I’m beyond sure that everyone I know is tired of hearing me go on and on about self-love and self-care and yadda yadda yadda, but it’s not self-indulgent chatter. In fact, I really hate that I need to tell anyone to love and respect themselves. It breaks my heart that it’s necessary for anyone to be reassured that what they want matters. Hell, I’m just going to say I wish the self-help industry would tank completely due to a sudden drastic uprise in love, acceptance, and overall happiness. Honest to God, I would love for everyone to just get it, step into their own power, slay their limiting beliefs (or not have any), take time for themselves, etc. My goodness what a beautiful world that would be.
     In my Utopia everyone would love themselves first and because they only saw love in themselves they would only project love onto others. They wouldn’t see their crap buckets reflected in every person. No bullying, because no insecurities could thrive. No war, because tolerance and acceptance of all different paths would be innate. No comparison, no judgment, and no fear.
     We’re a ways from my dream world so we still need more people to stop someone and tell them they’re flippin’ awesome just for being them and showing up that day. This just so happens to fall right in line with my passion and I fall somewhere right in between cheerleader and tough love reality check. “You’re awesome! I want you to be your best, so you just need to exhale the bull*ish to get to the good *ish.”
     I’m so grateful that I’m able to share my message and passion with all of you and beyond humbled every single time I get a like or a comment. I LOVE knowing someone gets me. Thank you for bringing me to your computers, mobile devices, and hearts. I hope that something here resonates with you and brings you a little bit closer to falling madly in love with yourself. Going to keep on keeping on until my dream is the reality.
Love You Dearly,

The Tao of *Ish Happens

As the self-proclaimed Queen of Silver Linings this is far from my favorite saying,

Shit happens.

English: Hypocrite "Love" message. A...

English: Hypocrite “Love” message. Allegory of hypocrisy. Français : Message d’amour hypocrite. Allégorie de l’hypocrisie. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

It’s usually accompanied with a knowing sigh and half-hearted shoulder shrug. I used to fight it like hell. What are we to do if shit… just happens? Certainly all of the “everything happens for a reason” that I spout makes me a hypocrite of epic proportion if I switch gears and tell you now that sometimes Shit. Just. Happens.

Everything does happen for a reason, but it’s not always as simple as cause and effect. Untwist your mind, let it stretch and seep out of its nice neat little box and grab onto this: sometimes the reason for something happening is simply what you take from it. Does something happen to teach you a lesson OR does something happen and you take away a lesson? It’s all in the way you squint your eyes at life.

Color me a hypocrite if that tickles your pickle- you could chuck me into the self-help category if you like, but I’m more about acceptance and growth than the Supreme Happiness in 21 days/steps/lessons variety – but all of the self-help neuroses and twisting the For A Reason notion into “I have to figure out WHY this is happening to me? What did I do? Did I manifest this?” is going to, if it hasn’t already, cause a breakdown. Just take a breath and embrace the simplicity. Embrace the Tao of Shit Happens. Learn your lesson and then release.

A (Few) Word(s) About Perfection and the Journey to Awareness

If you think it’s about perfection you’ve missed the point. This whole roller-coaster is about awareness. We attract relationships as an indirect, and sometimes not so indirect, way to hold a mirror up to ourselves and show us who we truly are. That person that makes you so angry you look like a crazy person – well, he/she’s there to show you that which exists inside of you. It’s up to you to take notes, pay attention, and do something about it. A couple of different things can happen preceding your shift: that person may find themselves slipping out of your life (sometimes this is a painful thing) OR that person doesn’t bother you so much. Either way it all works out for you. This awareness extends beyond interpersonal relationships. It could be a relationship with money, vulnerability, work, or time – anything really. Despite what many 21 steps to happiest you’ve ever been and 1 week to a new you programs to you, this is a continuous journey. All of these little things are to teach you awareness. A Course in Miracles states that the course is not optional – but whether you learn through pain or joy is your choice to make.

Your Are Your Thoughts… But Then Again You’re Not

Anyone that has picked up on the tail end of an Oprah episode,
taken any self-improvement seminar,
or read the first few (or last) pages of a self help book
has been introduced to the concept of positive thinking.

Think abundance – get abundance.
Think love – get love.
Think happiness – be happy.
Think poop – get poop (metaphorically!… maybe)

You are your thoughts – but then again you’re not.

I tend to have a very cheeky, sarcastic, sometimes even slightly twisted sense of humor.
There are times when I have the maturity of a teenage boy.
Sometimes I cling to that Sacred Lie and create excuses:
-I can’t do this
-No one will listen to me
-I don’t have enough… yadda yadda yadda.

Even though this part of me exists,
I am still a bright and bubbly,
rose-tinted (but fairly realistic) glasses wearing,
thriving optimist.

I’ve seen positive thinking boasted (and roasted)
as being the new agey tenant and flavor of the moment.
I want to explain what I take away from the concept  – you take what works for you and leave the rest.

Positive thoughts are the light and negative thoughts are the dark.
Simple enough right?
You can introduce light into a dark room,
but you cannot introduce darkness into a lit room;
unless you extinguish the light in some capacity
– be it blotting out the candle or introducing an obstacle.
Even in a dark room you can see the tiniest sliver of light.
Even in the shadows that obstacles bring
all you need is that ONE candle to begin to eradicate it.
To me this represents that light is a more powerful force than darkness.

That being said,
it is imperative to accept the darkness
– for light would not exist without it;
we would not be able to respect light without it
and it adds balance and wisdom to our lives.

The whole point here in this push for a more rosy state of mind
is not to go on through life blindly optimistic
it’s more about the silver-lining,
more about learning the lessons that darkness provides.
It’s all about not living in the darkness.