Monday, January 30, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ The Disease to Please

Do you often defer to the wishes, desires, and wants of family and friends?  Does your need to please and your lack of self-worth make it difficult to state what you need and what you want?  Do you find it difficult to stand up for yourself, speak your truth and face potential or very real conflict? 

Taken to the extreme a person who lets people walk over them is sometimes referred to as a doormat.   Taken to the opposite extreme, a person who thinks only of their own needs and wants, might be called a narcissist or maybe selfish.  What I have found is that the most healthy place to reside is in the middle. Staying in that middle area involves empowering yourself to know what you want and need and to seek that out, yet also to be kind and considerate of the needs and wants of others. 

In the past I have stood my ground when someone was trying to treat me like a doormat or take advantage of my kind heart.  However, my desire to please those I cared about could lead me to negate my own opinion, my own desires in order to make them happy.  Sometimes making those we love happy is wonderful.  I want my husband to be happy.  I love to see him have his needs and wants fulfilled.  The same goes for my children, extended family and close friends. 

Problems can arise though when we do things to please out of fear.  We may be fearful that if we don't do what our partner, family member, friends want, that they will be angry at us, perhaps even abandon us.  Our self-esteem may be low enough that we think what others want is more important than what we want.  We value others, more than we value ourselves. 

Harriet B. Braker, PhD, author of The Disease to Please: Curing the People Pleasing Syndrome, shares this about the topic, "People pleasers are not just nice people who go overboard trying to make everyone happy. Those who suffer from the Disease to Please are people who say 'Yes' when they really want to say 'No' - but they can't. They feel the uncontrollable need for the elusive approval of others like an addictive pull. Their debilitating fears of anger and confrontation force them to use 'niceness' and 'people-pleasing' as self-defense camouflage.

"They may appear to the outside world as perennial 'nice' people, but they are only concealing their true anger and resentment behind public 'happy faces.' And they are hurting themselves and those they would otherwise seek to please.""For many, the difficulty may start innocently enough with genuine and generous attempts to make others happy. But this seemingly harmless passion to always be 'nice,' to put others first and to compulsively please them even at the expense of your own health and happiness rapidly spirals into a serious psychological syndrome with far-reaching physical and emotional consequences."

According to reviews "The Disease to Please explodes the dangerous myth that people-pleasing is just a simple problem of going overboard in seeking to please others. It reveals the underlying approval addition, toxic mindsets that rationalize and perpetuate the problem, and the fear and avoidance of anger, rejection and confrontation that fuel the emotional avoidance pattern."

The goal of the book is to teach people how to "deal constructively with normal - though difficult - emotions and relationships, instead of trying to 'please' your way out of them. As a recovered people-pleaser, you will finally see that a balanced way of living that takes others into consideration but puts the emphasis first on pleasing yourself and gaining your own approval is the clearest path to health and happiness."   Dr. Braiker points out, sometimes "it's okay not to be nice!"

Do you identify with being a "people pleaser" and a "goodist?"

If yes, are you beginning to recognize that there are fears that drive you to please others, even at the risk of denying your own wishes and needs?

Are you ready to change? 

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ Loving Yourself

Dr. Margaret Paul holds a Ph.D. in psychology and is a relationship expert, public speaker, seminar leader, consultant, facilitator, and artist. She has appeared on many radio and TV shows, including the Oprah show. She has successfully worked with thousands of individuals, couples and business relationships and taught classes and seminars for over 42 years.

Dr. Paul’s books have been distributed around the world and have been translated into many languages.

Dr. Margaret Paul and Dr. Erika Chopich

 After practicing traditional psychotherapy for 17 years, Margaret was discouraged by the results – both for her clients and herself. She had spent years trying to heal from her own dysfunctional and abusive background, but found herself still suffering with anxiety and relationship problems. She started to seek a process that works fast, deep, creates permanent change, loving relationships, inner peace, and joy. In 1984, she met and became friends with Dr. Erika Chopich, and together they created the Inner Bonding® process. They have been evolving this incredibly powerful healing process for the last 26 years.

 Margaret shares that the number one problem in relationships is self-abandonment.  She explains how common it is for people to enter into a relationship with the belief that this other person is going to love them and will make them feel good, and make them happy.  They also often have high hopes that this other person will make them feel worthy and lovable.  The result of such expectations is that both people end of feeling very disappointed.  What often follows is that each person then wants to make their past, their partner, God and other things responsible for their unhappiness.  According to Dr. Paul and Dr. Chopich the key is to learn how not to abandon yourself and how to deeply love yourself.  They are very clear that if you do not love yourself you will not be able to love another in a healthy manner. 

When you heal the core shame of believing that you are not good enough, and create the vital connections which bring joy to life, you also heal self-abandonment. When you heal self-abandonment, you also heal problems with spouses, partners, friends, kids, family, co-workers, aloneness, emptiness, anxiety, depression and addictions.

Have you tried everything to feel good about yourself but you still experience feelings of unworthiness and inadequacy?

Do you turn to various addictions because you don't know any other way of managing your painful feelings?

Self-abandonment, which comes from core shame, is the underlying cause of all these problems. Self-abandonment is the cause of disconnection from self, loved ones and Spirit. The practice of Inner Bonding develops the deep self-worth that creates inner peace, joy and loving relationships

Dr. Paul has written a series of books, has a series of DVD's and the on-line program called Inner Bonding®.  Her books are as follows:

•Do I Have To Give Up Me to Be Loved By You?
•Do I Have To Give Up Me to Be Loved By You?…The Workbook
•Healing Your Aloneness
•The Healing Your Aloneness Workbook
•Inner Bonding
•Do I Have To Give Up Me to Be Loved By My Kids?
•Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By God?

 Here is an article by Dr Margaret Paul called When You Love Yourself, You Let Others Off the Hook

Do you believe that loving yourself is selfish? Discover why this is not true!

Frequently, when I start to work with a new client, they believe that loving their self is selfish. Nothing could be further from the truth. A more accurate definition of selfish is expecting others to give themselves up and do for you what you can and need to be doing for yourself.

Letting Others Off The Hook

How are others let off the hook when you love yourself? Let us count the ways!

• Others don’t need to read your mind when you are meeting many of your own needs, and asking outright when there is something you need help with.

• Others don’t need to hold back, be careful, or walk on eggshells when you are taking care of your own feelings.

• Others can receive great joy in giving to you when they don’t feel obligated.

• Others can speak their truth when they know that you are open to learning and wanting to grow. They can be honest when they know that you will deal with your own feelings rather than blame them.

• Others are free to take loving care of themselves when they know you are doing the same, and that you support them in their highest good as part of being loving to yourself.

• Others can be spontaneous with you, knowing that if they ‘make a mistake’ you will take responsibility for your own feelings about it.

• Others feel free to be with you because they want to, not because they feel they have to.

• In a primary relationship, your partner will likely feel attracted to you when you are coming from your power rather than from your fear. If your partner feels obligated to have sex with you because you have made him or her responsible for your happiness and sense of worth, your partner is likely to feel resistant to sex with you.

• Laughter, fun and play flow spontaneously when neither person feels responsible for the other’s feelings, or feels obligated to spend time, give approval or have sex.

• Each person feels free to pursue their passion and purpose, knowing that their partner is taking care of themselves and not waiting for the other person to make them happy.

Loving partnerships are about learning, growing, and sharing love and companionship. They are not about taking responsibility for making the other person feel happy, safe, secure or validated. Paradoxically, when you fully take on the responsibility of making yourself feel happy, safe, secure and validated, a loving relationship supports and enhances these wonderful feelings. But when you expect your partner to do this for you, then your self-abandonment creates your misery, insecurity and lack of self-worth. As long as you are abandoning yourself and expecting your partner to do for you what only you can do for yourself, your partner’s love will never be enough to give you the happiness, safety, security and sense of worth that you seek.

Loving Yourself Means….

• Attending, moment-by-moment, to your own feelings, so that you know immediately when you are abandoning yourself with self-judgment, addictions, staying in your head, or making someone else responsible for you.

• Compassionately opening to learning about your own fears and beliefs that may be causing your self-abandonment, and open to learning about what it means to be present and loving to yourself in the face of life’s challenges.

• Exploring your limiting beliefs and resulting behavior that may be causing your painful feelings.

• Opening to your higher self for information about the truth regarding your beliefs, and the loving action toward yourself.

• Taking loving action in your own behalf, based on truth rather than on false, limiting beliefs.

• Evaluating how you feel as a result of taking loving care of yourself.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ Looking Past Limits

"Can any of you remember what you wanted to be when you were 17? Do you know what I wanted to be? I wanted to be a biker chick. (Laughter) I wanted to race cars, and I wanted to be a cowgirl, and I wanted to be Mowgli from 'The Jungle Book.' Because they were all about being free, the wind in your hair -- just to be free."  

So begins a TED talk by Caroline Casey.

 Caroline Casey was born in 1971 an shortly after her birth her parents learned she had a condition that rendered her legally blind.  The twist to the story is that they never told her.  They raised her as if she could see.  She didn't learn the truth about her eyesight until she was 17 years old.

The story of her journey is best told by her.  Come watch this video and learn about the power of belief and how dogged determination can lead one on amazing personal journeys.

The concept of limitations, and the power they have, depending on whether we believe in them or not is very interesting. 

Did you grow up believing in limitations for yourself? 

What if you tossed them all aside?  Who would you become?  What would you do?

Would you become a race car driver?  A photojournalist traveling around the world?  An international spy?  A rock star?

A little more about Caroline Casey ~ She has dedicated the past decade of her life to changing how global society views people with disabilities. In 2000, she rode 1,000 kilometers across India on an elephant to raise funds for Sight Savers. Then, as founding CEO of Kanchi in Dublin, she developed a set of best practices for businesses, to help them see "disabled" workers as an asset as opposed to a liability. Hundreds of companies have adopted the standards, changing their policies and attitudes.
In 2004, Casey started the O2 Ability Awards to recognize Irish businesses for their inclusion of people with disabilities, both as employees and customers. The initiative has received international praise and, in 2010, a parallel program was launched in Spain.
"She is one of those people who, instead of just talking about changing the world, gets up and actually does it however tough the doing of it turns out to be. " ~ The Irish Times
You can learn more about Caroline Casey and her work at her web site

For anyone who has difficulty watching videos on their computer here is the complete transcript from the video:

Can any of you remember what you wanted to be when you were 17? Do you know what I wanted to be? I wanted to be a biker chick. (Laughter) I wanted to race cars, and I wanted to be a cowgirl, and I wanted to be Mowgli from "The Jungle Book." Because they were all about being free, the wind in your hair -- just to be free. And on my seventeenth birthday, my parents, knowing how much I loved speed, gave me one driving lesson for my seventeenth birthday. Not that we could have afforded I drive, but to give me the dream of driving.

And on my seventeenth birthday, I accompanied my little sister in complete innocence, as I always had all my life -- my visually impaired sister -- to go to see an eye specialist. Because big sisters are always supposed to support their little sisters. And my little sister wanted to be a pilot -- God help her. So I used to get my eyes tested just for fun. And on my seventeenth birthday, after my fake eye exam, the eye specialist just noticed it happened to be my birthday. And he said, "So what are you going to do to celebrate?" And I took that driving lesson, and I said, "I'm going to learn how to drive." And then there was a silence -- one of those awful silences when you know something's wrong. And he turned to my mother, and he said, "You haven't told her yet?" On my seventeenth birthday, as Janis Ian would best say, I learned the truth at 17. I am, and have been since birth, legally blind.

And you know, how on earth did I get to 17 and not know that? Well, if anybody says country music isn't powerful, let me tell you this: I got there because my father's passion for Johnny Cash and a song, "A Boy Named Sue." I'm the eldest of three. I was born in 1971. And very shortly after my birth, my parents found out I had a condition called ocular albinism. And what the hell does that mean to you? So let me just tell you, the great part of all of this? I can't see this clock and I can't see the timing, so holy God, woohoo! (Laughter) I might buy some more time. But more importantly, let me tell you -- I'm going to come up really close here. Don't freak out, Pat. Hey. See this hand? Beyond this hand is a world of Vaseline. Every man in this room, even you, Steve, is George Clooney. (Laughter) And every woman, you are so beautiful. And when I want to look beautiful, I step three feet away from the mirror, and I don't have to see these lines etched in my face from all the squinting I've done all my life from all the dark lights.

The really strange part is that, at three and a half, just before I was going to school, my parents made a bizarre, unusual and incredibly brave decision. No special needs schools. No labels. No limitations. My ability and my potential. And they decided to tell me that I could see. So just like Johnny Cash's Sue, a boy given a girl's name, I would grow up and learn from experience how to be tough and how to survive, when they were no longer there to protect me, or just take it all away. But more significantly, they gave me the ability to believe, totally, to believe that I could. And so when I heard that eye specialist tell me all the things, a big fat "no," everybody imagines I was devastated. And don't get me wrong, because when I first heard it -- aside from the fact that I thought he was insane -- I got that thump in my chest, just that "huh?" But very quickly I recovered. It was like that. The first thing I thought about was my mom, who was crying over beside me. And I swear to God, I walked out of his office, "I will drive. I will drive. You're mad. I'll drive. I know I can drive."

And with the same dogged determination that my father had bred into me since I was such a child -- he taught me how to sail, knowing I could never see where I was going, I could never see the shore, and I couldn't see the sails, and I couldn't see the destination. But he told me to believe and feel the wind in my face. And that wind in my face made me believe that he was mad and I would drive. And for the next 11 years, I swore nobody would ever find out that I couldn't see, because I didn't want to be a failure, and I didn't want to be weak. And I believed I could do it. So I rammed through life as only a Casey can do. And I was an archeologist, and then I broke things. And then I managed a restaurant, and then I slipped on things. And then I was a masseuse. And then I was a landscape gardener. And then I went to business school. And you know, disabled people are hugely educated. And then I went in and I got a global consulting job with Accenture. And they didn't even know. And it's extraordinary how far belief can take you.

In 1999, two and a half years into that job, something happened. Wonderfully, my eyes decided, enough. And temporarily, very unexpectedly, they dropped. And I'm in one of the most competitive environments in the world, where you work hard, play hard, you gotta be the best, you gotta be the best. And two years in, I really could see very little. And I found myself in front of an HR manager in 1999, saying something I never imagined that I would say. I was 28 years old. I had built a persona all around what I could and couldn't do. And I simply said, "I'm sorry. I can't see, and I need help." Asking for help can be incredibly difficult. And you all know what it is. You don't need to have a disability to know that. We all know how hard it is to admit weakness and failure. And it's frightening, isn't it? But all that belief had fueled me so long.

And can I tell you, operating in the sighted world when you can't see, it's kind of difficult -- it really is. Can I tell you, airports are a disaster. Oh, for the love of God. And please, any designers out there? OK, designers, please put up your hands, even though I can't even see you. I always end up in the gents' toilets. And there's nothing wrong with my sense of smell. But can I just tell you, the little sign for a gents' toilet or a ladies' toilet is determined by a triangle. Have you ever tried to see that if you have Vaseline in front of your eyes? It's such a small thing, right? And you know how exhausting it can be to try to be perfect when you're not, or to be somebody that you aren't?

And so after admitting I couldn't see to HR, they sent me off to an eye specialist. And I had no idea that this man was going to change my life. But before I got to him, I was so lost. I had no idea who I was anymore. And that eye specialist, he didn't bother testing my eyes. God no, it was therapy. And he asked me several questions, of which many were, "Why? Why are you fighting so hard not to be yourself? And do you love what you do, Caroline?" And you know, when you go to a global consulting firm, they put a chip in your head, and you're like, "I love Accenture. I love Accenture. I love my job. I love Accenture. I love Accenture. I love Accenture. I love my job. I love Accenture." (Laughter) To leave would be failure. And he said, "Do you love it?" I couldn't even speak I was so choked up. I just was so -- how do I tell him? And then he said to me, "What did you want to be when you were little?" Now listen, I wasn't going to say to him, "Well, I wanted to race cars and motorbikes." Hardly appropriate at this moment in time. He thought I was mad enough anyway. And as I left his office, he called me back and he said, "I think it's time. I think it's time to stop fighting and do something different." And that door closed. And that silence just outside a doctor's office, that many of us know. And my chest ached. And I had no idea where I was going. I had no idea. But I did know the game was up.

And I went home, and, because the pain in my chest ached so much, I thought, "I'll go out for a run." Really not a very sensible thing to do. And I went on a run that I know so well. I know this run so well, by the back of my hand. I always run it perfectly fine. I count the steps and the lampposts and all those things that visually impaired people have a tendency to have a lot of meetings with. And there was a rock that I always missed. And I'd never fallen on it, never. And there I was crying away, and smash, bash on my rock. Broken, fallen over on this rock in the middle of March in 2000, typical Irish weather on a Wednesday -- gray, snot, tears everywhere, ridiculously self-pitying.

And I was floored, and I was broken, and I was angry. And I didn't know what to do. And I sat there for quite some time going, "How am I going to get off this rock and go home? Because who am I going to be? What am I going to be?" And I thought about my dad, and I thought, "Good God, I'm so not Sue now." And I kept thinking over and over in my mind, what had happened? Where did it go wrong? Why didn't I understand? And you know, the extraordinary part of it is I just simply had no answers. I had lost my belief. Look where my belief had brought me to. And now I had lost it. And now I really couldn't see. I was crumpled. And then I remember thinking about that eye specialist asking me, "What do you want to be? What do you want to be? What did you want to be when you were little? Do you love what you do? Do something different. What do you want to be? Do something different. What do you want to be?" And really slowly, slowly, slowly, it happened. And it did happen this way. And then the minute it came, it blew up in my head and bashed in my heart -- something different. "Well, how about Mowgli from 'The Jungle Book'? You don't get more different than that." And the moment, and I mean the moment, the moment that hit me, I swear to God, it was like woo hoo! You know -- something to believe in. And nobody can tell me no. Yes, you can say I can't be an archeologist. But you can't tell me, no, I can't be Mowgli, because guess what? Nobody's ever done it before, so I'm going to go do it. And it doesn't matter whether I'm a boy or a girl, I'm just going to scoot.

And so I got off that rock, and, oh my God, did I run home. And I sprinted home, and I didn't fall, and I didn't crash. And I ran up the stairs, and there was one of my favorite books of all time, "Travels on My Elephant" by Mark Shand -- I don't know if any of you know it. And I grabbed this book off, and I'm sitting on the couch going, "I know what I'm going to do. I know how to be Mowgli. I'm going to go across India on the back of an elephant. I'm going to be an elephant handler." And I had no idea how I was going to be an elephant handler. From global management consultant to elephant handler. I had no idea how. I had no idea how you hire an elephant, get an elephant. I didn't speak Hindi. I'd never been to India. Hadn't a clue. But I knew I would. Because, when you make a decision at the right time and the right place, God, that universe makes it happen for you.

Nine months later, after that day on snot rock, I had the only blind date in my life with a seven and a half foot elephant called Kanchi. And together we would trek a thousand kilometers across India. (Applause) The most powerful thing of all, it's not that I didn't achieve before then. Oh my God, I did. But you know, I was believing in the wrong thing. Because I wasn't believing in me, really me, all the bits of me -- all the bits of all of us. Do you know how much of us all pretend to be somebody we're not? And you know what, when you really believe in yourself and everything about you, it's extraordinary what happens.

And you know what, that trip, that thousand kilometers, it raised enough money for 6,000 cataract eye operations. Six thousand people got to see because of that. When I came home off that elephant, do you know what the most amazing part was? I chucked in my job at Accenture. I left, and I became a social entrepreneur, and I set up an organization with Mark Shand called Elephant Family, which deals with Asian elephant conservation. And I set up Kanchi, because my organization was always going to be named after my elephant, because disability is like the elephant in the room. And I wanted to make you see it in a positive way -- no charity, no pity. But I wanted to work only and truly with business and media leadership to totally reframe disability in a way that was exciting and possible. It was extraordinary. That's what I wanted to do. And I never thought about noes anymore, or not seeing, or any of that kind of nothing. It just seemed that it was possible.

And you know, the oddest part is, when I was on my way traveling here to TED, I'll be honest, I was petrified. And I speak, but this is an amazing audience, and what am I doing here? But as I was traveling here, you'll be very happy to know, I did use my white symbol stick cane, because it's really good to skip queues in the airport. And I got my way here being happily proud that I couldn't see. And the one thing is that a really good friend of mine, he texted me on the way over, knowing I was scared. Even though I present confident, I was scared. He said, "Be you." And so here I am. This is me, all of me.


And I have learned, you know what, cars and motorbikes and elephants, that's not freedom. Being absolutely true to yourself is freedom. And I never needed eyes to see -- never. I simply needed vision and belief. And if you truly believe -- and I mean believe from the bottom of your heart -- you can make change happen. And we need to make it happen, because every single one of us -- woman, man, gay, straight, disabled, perfect, normal, whatever -- everyone of us must be the very best of ourselves. I no longer want anybody to be invisible. We all have to be included. And stop with the labels, the limiting. Losing of labels, because we are not jam jars. We are extraordinary, different, wonderful people.

Thank you.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Life Vest Inside

A couple of weeks ago I saw this incredible video called the Kindness Boomerang. I was intrigued by who created it and the story behind it all. My search led me to the founder, Orly Wahba, who created the non-profit Life Vest Inside. We corresponded and our sharing led to me writing about her and this inspirational organization in the Cosmic Cowgirls Magazine. Come watch the video and read the article and prepare to be inspired!

(Note the video is also featured at the end of the article)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ Living Is the Original Art

Do you ever feel weighed down by the pressure you put on yourself to achieve, to live your purpose, to be successful, to be Legendary, to change the world for the better, to help stop global warming and to do your part towards creating world peace?  There are times when I get tired just thinking about it all, let alone trying to do it all.

I have held a life time dream of being a writer.  I was one of those students that actually enjoyed writing research papers.  I could get lost in the racks at the library for hours and hours.  In high school and college I had opportunities to share my writing.  Once I left college though all of my writing took place in private journals.  My dreams of pursuing a career in writing were set aside and I the reality is that I let fear hold my dreams at bay for too many years. 

I am now in a place where after gathering up my courage to pursue my writing dreams I have a blog, I write a column for the Cosmic Cowgirls Magazine and I write Mojo posts for the Cosmic Cowgirl member site.  My brave steps also led me to dust off a manuscript I began over a decade ago.  I now know that my life experiences in the past decade will make it possible for me to write an even better book.  I have had a couple of strategizing sessions with a successful writer and I joined a small writing group for six months that is also being facilitated by the same writer.    I am attempting to stick to a writing schedule three nights a week. 

It isn’t always easy though.  Last October was a busy month, and I often let my schedule slip through the cracks and fall to the bottom of my priorities.  Then in December as the holidays came upon us my writing again dwindled.  In the beginning of January my husband and I decided to tackle a home improvement project.  More of my time went to removing wallpaper and painting than to my writing.  Honestly I was thrilled to be working on this project.  I love decorating and freshening up our living space is making me one happy camper. 

What I have struggled with is reaching moments where I am not enjoying my life because I am feeling so pressured to get things done.  In the back of my mind the guilt is building because I haven’t done enough work on my book.  Yet there is also the reality that I am a mom to two young children and I work full time.  It is important to me that I connect with my children, connect with my husband, stay in touch with friends and family, work and keep up the house.   It is also important to me that I write.  I want to fulfill my dream of completing this book.  However, if I don’t get to the writing because I am tired from all the other demands it weighs on me, sometimes in an unhealthy way because I my inaction transforms into guilt and anxiety.  Occasionally I even wonder what it would be like if I just lived my life and didn’t put all this pressure on myself. 

Then I recently read a passage by Mark Nepo in The Book of Awakening: Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the Life You Have that touched upon this very conflict so perfectly.

It is called An Invitation and begins this way:

 “Yours is to live it, not to reveal it.” – Helen Luke

“Helen Luke was a very wise woman, deeply grounded in the life of the spirit.  I knew Helen during the last two years of her life.  During that time she was a mentor to me.  These words are from our last conversation.  They troubled me, for I have spent my life becoming a writer, thinking that my job has been just that – to reveal what is essential and hidden.

In the time since Helen died, I’ve come to understand her last instruction as an invitation to shed any grand purpose, no matter how devoted we may be to what we are doing.  She wasn’t telling me to stop writing, but to stop striving to be important.  She was inviting me to stop recording the poetry of life and to enter the poetry of life.

This lesson applies to us all.  If we devote ourselves to the life at hand, the rest will follow.  For life, it seems, reveals itself through those willing to live.  Anything else, no matter how beautiful, is just advertising.

This took me many years to learn and accept.  Having begun innocently enough, there arose separations, and now I know that health resides in restoring direct experience.  Thus, having struggled to do what has never been done, I discovered that living is the original art.”

  • Center yourself and think of your life as a story not yet written.
  • Breathe slowly, and relieve yourself of the responsibility to record your own story.
  • Breathe deeply, and imagine your path as the patch of sky a bird flies through.
  • Now just breathe and fly. Enter your day, and breathe and live.

Did this essay speak to you?  What did you get out of it?

I took from it a message to relax and live life first and allow my very life to be my original work of art.  I don’t want to just give up on my dream.  I am staying steadfast in the desire to finish my book, as that is a project dear to my heart. Yet I know that the writing process will be better if I relax and enjoy the process, instead of piling on the pressure and guilt when I don’t live up to the expectations I set for myself. 

Is there anything you would do differently if you took the approach that living is the original work of art?

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Mojo Monday ~ Be the Change

Greetings to 2012.  Hard to believe a new year has arrived yet again.  Each new year brings with it change, for change is inevitable.  What changes will you be a part of in the new year?

A thought provoking and inspiring video by Kat Edmondson called Be the Change ~

Everywhere you look, you can write a book on what's going on
Everyone you know has got to reap what they sow, be it right or wrong
Ghettos flood, there's a hole up in the sky
Oil and blood, tell me why oh why
Terror struck
Look at us
This isn't what we planned
You gotta take a stand

Don't forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there's freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see

Every now and then, you've gotta bend to the way it is
Far it be that as it may, it's not the way just 'cause they say it is
On TV, there's just no reality
All I hear is "Me me me"
What they sold, I'm not buying any more
No, no, no more

Don't forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there's freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see

Yesterday heard you say that there's nothing you can do
Wonder if you would feel the same if it was happening to you

Don't forget that pride always goes before the fall
And nobody is free till there's freedom for all
As you sow so shall you reap
Be the change you want to see
Be the change you want to see
Right now
Be the change you want to
See the changes start with you
Be the change you want to see

Be the change you want to see
The change you want to see