The battle of life is, in most cases, fought uphill; and to win it without a struggle were perhaps to win it without honor. If there were no difficulties there would be no success; if there were nothing to struggle for, there would be nothing to be achieved. ~Samuel Smiles
What are you making of your life?
As I was watching this video tonight, I got chills at the part that Les Brown says “I think the challenge is to begin to become in alignment with who we truly are and work diligently to manifest our greatness.”
I have been saying this for years and I didn’t even know he said it. When I was given a disease I neither wanted nor appreciated at the young age of 22 years old, all I could think was “Why me?” Everyone else was happy and having a great time and there I was with SPF 50 trying not to pull a Vampire Diaries moment and burn up as I hit the sun. We are not going to go into the rest of the diseases and nonsense that followed with my way of thinking, but I will tell you that I was destined for greatness just like this video says.
I was destined to find my way out of that black put of despair, to fight through pain and agony that lasted years, and to come out on top saying I told you so! I told you. I am in control of me. I am. So I want you to watch this, and ponder moments you have thought you were not worthy of greatness nor did you deserve it, because the bottom line is, yes you do.
So as I pondered this for my upcoming content in my Head|Heart|Health Club, I have to say to all of you watching this, it’s you. You got this. If this inspired you in any way to take more action in your life, let me know.
Have you ever tried something new, but you really didn’t want to? Think about that experience for a minute. Well, I love the quote from C.S. Lewis that says:
Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars. You have to let go at some point in order to move forward.
It’s time to cross the monkey bars my friends.
I will never forget when I left teaching. I thought I was slightly mad myself…but I knew in my gut that it was the only way to heal and move forward into what my life was supposed to look like. I didn’t necessarily know where I was going, but I did it anyway.
As I designed my life around the concept of moving forward, I saw flashes of signs telling me that I was, and still am, on the right path…to go forward without looking back.
I knew that creating a program to heal myself was going to take time…and armed with the knowledge that I didn’t necessarily have all the right answers at that particular moment, I moved forward.
I completed yoga teacher training and went from not being able to move, seriously, almost at all, to moving again. I finished a sports nutrition course with almost a perfect score on the 100 question exam. I made myself eat things like parsnip chips <<< that I actually made myself. All because I kept moving forward.
Throughout it all the 3 key thoughts were as follows.
Wake up with thoughts of gratitude on your mind…no matter how much pain you are in. This one took me a whole year to work on, and I constantly realigned myself to thoughts of “thank you” as I woke up. I had to change my thoughts away from the physical pain I was experiencing in order to get away from it. I know this sounds odd, but try it. It is necessary to surround yourself with the thoughts you want in your life. The things you want to wake up to. I wanted to wake up to thoughts of gratitude that one day, and mind you I had no idea how this would turn out, that one day, I would wake up without thinking about pain first.
Faith. I was really upset the day someone doubted my faith. I was allowed to be mad, have bad days, have days I wanted to scream and shout, and ask “why me?” I was not allowed to stop believing that I could do it. That I could actually accomplish what I wanted. We all make mistakes, but it was faith that kept whispering loud and clear, keep going. It will happen. I did have to remove the negative people from my life who didn’t support me on this belief…they simply couldn’t grasp that I was not watering their doubts. I had my own grass to look too.
Vision. I visualized what the future would look like and stayed away from dwelling on what ifs. I didn’t have time to look back. I kept moving by creating vision boards, don’t laugh they work, and vision word boards. I have one in front of me right this minute. I was a teacher, remember? So I took the top 5 words I wanted to embody daily, blew them up really BIG and put them on tag board behind my computer. Up top so as I am typing, I look up to those words. If I drift off course, I look back to those. Am I creating something that is keeping me aligned to my purpose? Yes. Okay then, I can keep working on it. Am I drifting again? Stop working on that or putting energy into that thought.
These are the keys to my life right now. I still use all 3 daily and practice keeping myself only looking to where I want to go. If you are tempted by comparing yourself to others, stop. That is their stuff, not yours.
I know the title might be shocking. We never want to willingly lose a friend. Not really. But sometimes these things can’t be helped and we need to see them for what they really are. A blessing in disguise.
As someone who wants to heal others, I naturally attract people who need healing. This can come in all forms, from past relationships, family members, strangers, yes, and then friends.
What I have come to realize now, is that it is completely normal and even healthy, to lose friends as I grow and wake up to what I am meant to do with my abilities. I know that I need healthy boundaries, and in the past, was not aware that I was constantly being drained by allowing these friends so much of my time. Whew. It was honestly a cycle I didn’t know how to get out of.
Empaths are tuned into feelings at an unnaturally high state. We have been living this way for our whole lives, so the truth is, we really aren’t aware others don’t notice the same things we do…for a while. The worst part of it for me personally, was hearing the lie almost before it was said.
Time and time again, I was told things that were simply not true. I knew it immediately, yet, I truly loved this friend, so I let it pass because I thought there must be a good reason for it. <<< note, there isn’t.
Narcissists have convinced themselves that the world is truly a bad place and they are the only ones who can be trusted. They desire to be desired, admired, and sought after. They rarely question their own logic because they have lied to themselves and others so much, that whatever story they project they actually start to believe.
If you have a problem, theirs is 10 times bigger and the worst so naturally, you end up spending the most time speaking of their issues. And forget it if you do something that deserves praise. They won’t be clicking like on that post.
As the narcissist comes in for the win, they find a highly sensitive person/empath who can help them with their problems time and time and time and time again. If this sounds familiar, it’s time to free yourself from this cycle.
How to open yourself up to good energy:
Start setting up clear boundaries. If it is your dinner time, and the person really has a need, they can wait. If they appear agitated, mad, or won’t speak to you for a while because you have to go, that might be a sign.
Take charge of what is your “stuff” and do not absorb theirs. I try not to type cuss words, but in your head, you know what I mean. It is very important that you stay level-headed and know that the energy you might feel after talking to them is not your own. I once described a situation I went through to another sensitive friend, and she said she was grumpy afterward…but recognized it wasn’t my stuff or hers. It was the residual feelings of what I went through. Do you ever feel drained, mad, upset at your spouse after talking to a friend? Yup. It might have been their stuff.
Find and cultivate a space for high energy and gratitude. I know that people are often not aware of this, but replacing old patterns of thoughts with higher ones, actually helps us. It really protects us from that draining feeling and improves our health! Gratitude opens us up to attract more abundance into our lives.
Forgive yourself and know when it is time to walk away from things that do not lift you up! I read every night before bed and I write in my journal. In a nutshell, last night I was thinking about uplifting others and how that feels compared to the energy of being dragged down and trampled. I don’t know why I never saw it before, but I am so happy I can recognize it now, and steer clear from it. My intuition always tells me way ahead of time, but sometimes I tamp it down because I truly want to believe the person can change…but the truth is, they have to want that change and many don’t. Recognize this pattern in your friendships now so you can start to create that space you need for good energy.
Thank you so much for reading, and if you are looking for more gratitude in your life, feel free to find my closed group.
I was drawn to this post my friend shared today by a famous yoga teacher who I really admire. She seemed to have a really cool life. She is young, admired, in shape and really self-confident. Or so I thought. She gets to go on exciting trips and travel all over the world…little did I know she was homesick and going through a divorce. She posted a photo of herself on her social media today and the first person to comment said some ugly things about her being “vulnerable” as an excuse for pity. Wow. Harsh.
Interestingly enough, I bet we have all been there though. Seeing someone’s posts and wondering if they just needed a pick-me-up or were they seeking attendees for their pity party? The truth is, we all have felt this way at some point in our lives. We are on the brink of being really vulnerable and wondering if others care. The flip side to this is we might stay closed off from the world because we are busy thinking we will be judged for how we feel. The fact is, emotions are like waves. We can no more control them than we can control the turbulent sea. We just have to ride it out.
I say this as I am still in the clutches of my own grief on losing a beloved pet. So I can’t control my waves of grief right now, but there are things I can do to make this time more bearable. I can turn my pity, of which I honestly feel like I am the only one at this party, into self-care.
3 Ways to Turn Pity into Self-care:
Observe your thoughts as they turn to “why me”? I recognize that I will have moments of thinking I am the only one who has ever experienced x,y, z. Since I know this is definitely not true, I use this as an excuse to journal my feelings and explore what is really going on here. Did someone post a photo of the exact opposite feeling? Quite possibly. And what is the exact opposite feeling I want to explore right now? Happiness. Love. Support. Okay, so now let me list the ways that I feel these emotions I am trying to get to. Who makes me feel this way or what? It doesn’t have to be a who…as I can definitely create my own happiness with things that make me feel successful. So then I go down that path instead.
Don’t open the invitations you get…to go to the other pity parties. This one might be hard. So do this one as tactfully as you can, but if you are struggling, the emotions you want to surround yourself with are not going to be more struggle and pity. Get my drift? You really want to think about the things that are going well in your life and get back to that higher vibration that allows you to feel good about yourself. If you can turn it into something productive, like a friend journaling session, or a walk of pity, then go for it, but set a timer. After 3 minutes, switch and listen to the other person. Then you must have 3 minutes of praise and success. Because ultimately, you know that this stage will not last forever.
Make a practice of talking about your joys. Again, this one is hard. We always want to talk about what is bothering us…or what we want to change, but feel like we can’t. What if we talked about all the things that made use feel joy, happiness, and fulfillment in life? Ask a trusted friend to tell you 3 good qualities about yourself if you are feeling down. Even better, text them and tell them 3 things you love about them out of the blue.
Opportunities for growth exist as we see our pity for what it really is. A moment of self-doubt where we don’t feel good enough. A moment of judgement where we think we should be doing more. A moment of envy perhaps, where we see the outside of someone’s life and look at the highlight reel. Go deeper into what is really bothering you and what the opposite of that feeling is. It is there that you will find your gold.
Guest post: by Gregg Prescott, M.S. Editor, In5D.com
50 inspirational quotes from John Lennon. John Lennon was one of those rare people who was more influenced by peace and harmony than living an affluent life. His words were not only deep but inspiring. While John did not lead a very long life, his words remain immortal.
50. “Love is the greatest refreshment in life.”
49. “Part of me suspects that I’m a loser, and the other part of me thinks I’m God Almighty.”
48. “My role in society, or any artist’s or poet’s role, is to try and express what we all feel. Not to tell people how to feel. Not as a preacher, not as a leader, but as a reflection of us all.”
47. “That’s what the great masters and mistresses have been saying ever since time began. They can point the way, leave signposts and little instructions in various books that are now called holy and worshipped for the cover of the book and not for what it says, but the instructions are all there for all to see, have always been and always will be.”
46. “Everybody loves you when you’re six foot in the ground.”
45. “There is an alternative to war. It’s staying in bed and growing your hair.”
44. “My defenses were so great. The cocky rock and roll hero who knows all the answers was actually a terrified guy who didn’t know how to cry. Simple.”
43. “Well, I don’t want to be king, I want to be real.”
42. “Life is very short, and there’s no time for fussing and fighting my friends”
41. “Trying to please everybody is impossible – if you did that, you’d end up in the middle with nobody liking you. You’ve just got to make the decision about what you think is your best, and do it.”
40. “I’m not going to change the way I look or the way I feel to conform to anything. I’ve always been a freak. So I’ve been a freak all my life and I have to live with that, you know. I’m one of those people.”
39. “Everything will be okay in the end. If it’s not okay, it’s not the end.”
38. “One thing I can tell you is you have to be free. Come together, right now, over me.”
37. “Life is what happens when you are busy making other plans.”
36. “Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.”
35. “Music is everybody’s possession. It’s only publishers who think that people own it.”
34. “Only by trying on other people’s clothes do we find what size we are.”
33. “Produce your own dream. If you want to save Peru, go save Peru. It’s quite possible to do anything, but not if you put it on the leaders and the parking meters. Don’t expect Carter or Reagan or John Lennon or Yoko Ono or Bob Dylan or Jesus Christ to come and do it for you. You have to do it yourself.”
32. “Declare it. Just the same way we declare war. That is how we will have peace… we just need to declare it.”
31. “Surrealism had a great effect on me because then I realized that the imagery in my mind wasn’t insanity. Surrealism to me is reality.”
30. “When you do something noble and beautiful and nobody noticed, do not be sad. For the sun every morning is a beautiful spectacle and yet most of the audience still sleeps.”
29. “Happiness is just how you feel when you don’t feel miserable.”
28. “If everyone could just be happy with themselves and the choices people around them make, the world would instantly be a better place!”
27. “You know the way people begin to look like their dogs? Well, we’re beginning to look like each other.”
26. “A mistake is only an error, it becomes a mistake when you fail to correct it.”
25. I believe in God, but not as one thing, not as an old man in the sky. I believe that what people call God is something in all of us. I believe that what Jesus and Mohammed and Buddha and all the rest said was right. It’s just that the translations have gone wrong.
24. “The thing the sixties did was to show us the possibilities and the responsibility that we all had. It wasn’t the answer. It just gave us a glimpse of the possibility.”
23. “…Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. I don’t know what will go first, rock ‘n’ roll or Christianity. We’re more popular than Jesus now. Jesus was all right, but his disciples were thick and ordinary. It’s them twisting it that ruins it for me.”
22. “We live in a world where we have to hide to make love, while violence is practiced in broad daylight.”
21. “When I cannot sing my heart, I can only speak my mind.”
20. “You’re all geniuses, and you’re all beautiful. You don’t need anyone to tell you who you are. You are what you are. Get out there and get peace, think peace, and live peace and breathe peace, and you’ll get it as soon as you like.”
19. I believe in everything until it’s disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it’s in your mind. Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now?
18. “Everything is clearer when you’re in love.”
17. “I’m not really a career person; I’m a gardener, basically.”
16. “Sometimes you wonder, I mean really wonder. I know we make our own reality, and we always have a choice, but how much is preordained? Is there always a fork in the road, and are there two preordained paths that are equally preordained? There could be hundreds of paths where one could go this way or that way — there’s a chance, and it’s very strange sometimes.”
15. “Peace is not something you wish for; It’s something you make, Something you do , Something you are, And something you give away”
14. “Why in the world are we here? Surely not to live in pain and fear. Why on earth are you there, when you’re everywhere-come and get your share.”
13. “Creativity is a gift. It doesn’t come through if the air is cluttered.”
12. “Our society is run by insane people for insane objectives. I think we’re being run by maniacs for maniacal ends and I think I’m liable to be put away as insane for expressing that. That’s what’s insane about it.”
11. “Love is like a precious plant. You can’t just accept it and leave it in the cupboard or just think it’s going to get on by itself. You’ve got to keep on watering it. You’ve got to really look after it and nurture it.”
10. “You don’t need anybody to tell you who you are or what you are. You are what you are!”
9. “There are no problems, only solutions.”
8. “There’s nothing new under the sun. All the roads lead to Rome. And people cannot provide it for you. I can’t wake you up. You can wake you up. I can’t cure you. You can cure you.”
7. “Imagine all the people living life in peace. You may say I’m a dreamer, but I’m not the only one. I hope someday you’ll join us, and the world will be as one.”
6. “There’s nothing you can do that can’t be done
Nothing you can sing that can’t be sung.
Nothing you can say but you can learn how to play the game.
Nothing you can make that can’t be made.
No one you can save that can’t be saved.
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you in time.
Nothing you can know that isn’t known.
Nothing you can see that isn’t shown.
Nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be.
5. “Being honest may not get you a lot of friends but it’ll always get you the right ones.”
4. “If you want peace, you won’t get it with violence.”
3. “All we are saying is give peace a chance.”
2. “It matters not who you love, where you love, why you love, when you love or how you love, it matters only that you love”
1. “Love, Love, Love. All you need is love. Love is all you need.”
About the Author: Gregg Prescott, M.S. is the founder and editor of In5D and BodyMindSoulSpirit. You can find his In5D Radio shows on the In5D Youtube channel. Gregg is also a transformational speaker and promotes spiritual, metaphysical and esoteric conferences in the United States through In5dEvents. His love and faith for humanity motivates him to work in humanity’s best interests 12-15+ hours a day, 365 days a year.
Gregg is a friend of theburnedhand.com and has given permission to share his article here. Thank you Gregg!
My throat was getting tight as I was trying to find a quote for you guys. This happens when I read some of my past blog articles on what has happened in the world. The quote that got me thinking is as follows:
When I despair, I remember that all through history the ways of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants, and murderers, and for a time they can seem invincible, but in the end they always fall. ~Gandhi
I realized that I need to hear more…and just let it sink in after every quote. Really feel the conviction in his words and the belief that everything will be okay for our society. I know that I am not alone in this.
10 Gandhi Quotes Everyone Needs:
Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. How true is this in your life right now? What areas of you life do you feel you need to work on?
You must not lose faith in humanity. Humanity is an ocean; if a few drops of the ocean are dirty, the ocean does not become dirty. This is a favorite of mine. I repeat it after horrible national tragedies for the reason that I need to hear it.
The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong. Do you struggle with this one? I admit, that I do. I repeat this quote when I know it is still a lesson to be learned.
Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent then the one derived from fear of punishment. Think of the times you didn’t want to let someone down because of your love for them. This quote speaks volumes.
The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others. I have a bookmark with this quote to remind me to do more good in the world. We all could benefit from this quote.
Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever. This one is a bit harder for me, but I know that I need to make every moment count. Can you think of something you are putting off until tomorrow that you really need to get done today?
Hate the sin, love the sinner. How easy is this one to do? Practice makes perfect. I have a hard time with this one as well…so I keep practicing it. That is the best any of us can do. We have to remember that we are all human and what we dislike in someone else is actually the wrong they are doing. Even if they feel they are entitled, it is after all their mistake. Their life.
One needs to be slow to form convictions, but once formed they must be defended against the heaviest odds. I love one so much. I have always been told that I have a really hard head, which is fine with me. Once I have decided to form a conviction, on what is right and wrong, or just in this world, I will defend it. Integrity should be defended as well as truth. If we let these things fall away, it would eat away at our very being. That’s why when I had a co-worker who knew right from wrong, and never said anything, just let bad things happen to avoid conflict, I had to remind them of their duty as an educator. Just because it makes us uncomfortable is not an excuse to let bad things happen.
Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. Again, for me personally, this quote hits home. So many times I could have given up on my quest to make a better life for myself. To find the answers I needed to fix my declining health. But I never gave up. I am persistent and of course, hard-headed.
An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind. This is my friend’s all-time favorite quote…so much so it was her license plate for a while. What do we learn from striking out at others as they have done to us? Does it really ever change things in our lives? Make us feel better? I would caution a guess as to the fact that it changes nothing and makes us feel worse. There are ways we can make our voices heard.
Once upon a time, I started a journal and acted AS IF what I wrote in the journal had already come true. I started adding in monthly goals, and then just writing throughout the month AS IF those goals came true. If I showed you my journal now, you would be amazed at the number of check marks beside each statement I wrote. Yes, they came true.
So before you guys think I am making this up, I kid you not, I started telling my girlfriends about it. We have a night we call “Sister circle” and it is a night we can bring crafts, stories, wine, or whatever, ha, to the table. I started telling them a while back about my journal. Then I started helping my friends journal…and even art journal, bullet journal or whatever, but they had to lay it all out there. Bare. No lies in the journal.
Since I started my journal therapy sessions, one girlfriend came back to yoga, started losing weight and unblocking her weight-loss well, block, another started healing internally from divorce, and countless other things have happened. I think the BEST thing that has happened, is that I thought they would be afraid to show me their journals, but they aren’t. That is huge. It means they are stepping into this truth that they write and owning it, which is part of the shift in thinking. We live from a place of now instead of fear. I was so proud of my girlfriend who wrote on weight loss that the first time she showed me her wall, I got teary. It was a huge shift. Oh, the wall she drew in her journal with all her blocks on losing weight.
5 Tips to Manifest Change in Your Life:
Practice gratitude each morning. I recently gave my talk in London about how at my darkest pain level, I started getting out of the bed and saying “thank you”. I talk to God, Jesus, Angels and the Universe, but you do whatever floats your boat. I don’t believe I have to make a choice in believing that God supports my decisions to get well only if I do x,y,z and therefore Law of Attraction type thoughts are wrong. Nope. He supports me.
I constantly realign my thoughts every single minute. I am no different from you. Each of us has the potential to think good or bad thoughts and dwell on them. Notice the thoughts and every time you think a negative thought, put a positive spin on it and float it down the river.
TAKE ownership of what is happening in your life. People most often blame others, their parents, God, the Universe, the Devil, your 5th grade teacher…or someone else. Umm. It’s you. Yup. It’s you. I know what you are thinking…I didn’t ask for this. Neither did I, read my about me to see what I didn’t ask for. Nevertheless, it was there. I couldn’t change my genes. I accepted the diseases and then finally, finally, began to move on. Yes, I spent countless hours researching and developing a plan to move forward and release myself, but still, I did something about it!
Write down a clear intention of how you want to feel. I started writing how I wanted to feel, and reading it nightly. I wrote what great things were coming to me. And I sat and felt those emotions. How I would feel in my new SUV and what it would be like to really have a new car. We desperately needed one, but here is a tip. You can’t manifest from desperation. I had to let all that go. Scarcity thinking. Nope. Abundant thinking. Yes. I have enough. I am enough. I wrote about the vehicle in December. In April, we bought a new SUV. My mini-van was literally falling to pieces by that time, but I let go of the thoughts of not making it down the road. I opened myself up to thoughts of a reliable vehicle and how that would feel.
Really and truly feel the gratitude AS IF it has already happened. Seriously, this one is so important that it started and ended my days. I said thank you every night. I blessed the goodness in my life nightly. I still do. I push allllll the other thoughts away and if for some reason I can’t, I go to yoga then I can think on what great things have happened. So have your routine. Go for a walk, pray, mediate, run, go to yoga, but think on the goodness of the universe because it is there. It is. Do good deeds and random acts of kindness as you go along, and you will really feel the boomerang effect of what you think you attract.
Lastly, because I believe in journal therapy so much, I added another bonus to my Head|Heart|Health Club, which really and truly gets you out of your head and into action!! The whole reason I designed it was for people who are stuck in their heads, hearts, and not able to move forward for their health. Much like I was in the beginning of this life-long journey to create the path I was meant to be on. I am there now and would love to have you join me!
Wow!! I did it. I can now add International Speaker to a resume that I keep inside of myself. Let me back up. For those of you who have been following me for a while, you know I left my teaching career and through a series of steps started my own brand and business. I never had a list of things to do before x age or anything like that. I always thought that I would retire one day after a really LONG time of teaching and probably look twice my age. Just true facts right there.
But my life desire was always to make a huge difference in the world we live in and especially in the field of empowering those who feel power-less.
I had not traveled to Europe in 20 years. I had NOT traveled by myself. The steps that I took were scary and felt exciting, but caused me a week of no sleep. The closer the date came, the more excited and scared I got. Would they like me? What if I mess up? What if I cry? <<< MOST likely scenario as I told my story.
I practiced and recorded my speech. I got THE right outfit to make a good first impression. I started to visualize the reaction at the end of my speech. I was on fire. I was going to nail it. And then I practiced it in front of my roommate in London one night, and I fell apart. What is happening? I can’t cry when I speak. I thought I was healed??? Breathe. You are healed, but this is powerful stuff. You can literally change someone’s life with this story. <<< inner big girl panties are on.
5 Lessons I learned from Speaking:
Everyone in the room wants you to succeed. I knew it. I could just look at them and tell they were all rooting for me. It was like they had flags up with my name on them. GO AIMEE!!! I saw it. It was like thoughts bubbles actually, but they were there.
Be ready to go with the flow. After a week of practicing, you guessed it, I changed it at the last-minute to reflect the feelings I was getting from the audience. They were not ready for the other way I had planned it, but the new way that downloaded into my head while sitting there was exactly what they needed.
Give value to your audience. I know that even though I told my story, I also told them a way to handle their emotions and reflected it back to what any one person sitting there could be going through.
Give them an a-ha moment. I gave them a moment to take away forever. I told them that even in my deepest pain, I woke up and decided to live each day with thankfulness. I actually put one foot in front of each other in the morning and said thank you as I made my way to my bathroom mirror. I saw all eyes on me…and maybe, just maybe a few tears. But not from me this time. Not from me. I knew they were with me and I felt the love.
Leave them with a take-away. I circled around to the theme of my speech, and gave them an activity they could do daily like writing positive affirmations on the mirror in dry-erase marker. I told them that as I was in pain, I made the plan to heal through my 4 Weeks to Wellness steps, and I developed that as a way for others to move forward from wherever they are in life. The plan was simple and included daily action steps as well as workbooks and lots and lots of internal work. So even if they weren’t in physical pain, I have never once met a person who did not benefit from doing some work inside.
This is the shot from my friend in the audience…I will have a video I hope.
As I concluded, you could have heard a pin drop, and I think, just maybe, I nailed it. The best part of this entire experience was that this was only my third speech ever since stepping into my new role. Thank you all for your support from the bottom of my heart.
For many years, I was stuck in the same place in my life. I didn’t realize how bad it was until I honestly got “unstuck”. I was not moving forward, not living in the present moment, merely existing. That was all. The amount of physical and mental pain I was in was enough to bring a grown man to his knees. The diseases were spiraling out of control and I knew there were only two options left for me at that point. As I sat on my couch and cried hot tears, I asked God to help me. This was the day I started moving forward. Some people call it rock bottom. I was there.
So my friends…let’s move forward. I bet you honestly are thinking “How in the hell does she expect me to do this?” or “If it were only that easy?” Let me assure you that after my skin was peeling off, pints of my blood continuously being taken for life, pain radiating from the base of my neck to my spine and all 18 triggers points for fibromyalgia had been activated, and my hip had started giving out so that I couldn’t walk without crying, NO this SHIT is not easy. There. I said it. But here is the kicker. You have it in you to do this.
I do not know what your pain or block looks like versus mine, but the truth is, it doesn’t matter. Pain is pain. Whether it is physical, mental or spiritual. Anxiety, depression and more can be dealt with. But my secret. Ohhh my secret to dealing with this, is to take tiny baby steps every single day. I am about to show you how.
Why You Are Not Moving Forward (and what to do about it):
Acknowledge where you are right now. Some part of me had resisted until that very day when I knew I couldn’t hold on one moment longer where I was. I was at the end of my rope so to speak, but I had tied a knot. I was hanging there. Just dangling. I am not sure what I was waiting for, but I realized I had nowhere to go but up.
Mobilize forces. Forces can be the forces within you. It can be spiritual, or even real people around you. Many feel alone at this point in their lives no matter who is still around when we take our first shaky breaths and look around to see what’s left. Don’t forget to look within. That’s where the real power is. If you are lucky enough to have family, reach out. If you need a support group, reach there. Think of 3 outside resources and jot them down. Call your therapist, doctor, friend, or partner to help.
Breathe deeply. Each day is a new beginning. Start new practices. I went to yoga, but very slowly at first. I also tried to sit in stillness and focus on the breath, not the physical pain. This is the beginning of meditation and it helps focus your thoughts for a few seconds away from the pain body. It is a huge step even though it looks like all you are doing is sitting. Focus on the spaces between the pain. Not the pain itself.
Eat differently. I had not been taking care of my physical body during this time. I barely ate as I had autoimmune and was having reactions with food. I made a plan. A good plan. A hard plan, but one with steps to follow. Each day, I did one task that helped me. I made sure the right foods were in front of me when I went to the fridge. My husband made sure there were leftovers in containers that I could eat. I knew that in order to stop the pain, I had to eliminate my food triggers. That process was slow, but I made it.
Begin with gratitude. This part was harder at first, but over time, has gotten easier. I wake up and say thank you as each foot hits the floor. Every night, before bed, I journal about the good in my life right now. I close my eyes, breathe deeply and think about all the things that are wonderful, good and pure in my life. There are many things to be thankful for.
Make a good plan and be consistent! I developed steps that were thought driven to build me up and others like me. I looked at the 4 areas of my life that needed baby steps, and each day I made myself do one thing to propel me up the rope, out of the hole. I got the hardest thing over with first. Moving again. Yup. Getting up off the couch and moving was the number one hardest thing, so I started there with my fitness. I moved on to my nutrition because I knew that was key to unlocking the flares I was having and eliminated sugar, which wrecks havoc on your neurotransmitters, from my life as best I could. Next, I took a look at creating balance in my life and moving away from feeling stressed all the time. Part of my anxiety was caused by, you guessed it, food. When I removed the gluten and sugar triggers, my life started to get back on track. This is a huge key to unlocking autoimmune diseases from trapping you in that cycle of pain. Lastly, I looked at self-care and how I was handling things. I had not been doing so well, it was time to devote some time to me.
All of this I made into manageable chunks and then from this, I climbed out. I completed my yoga teacher training after 200 hours. Something I would not have thought possible before. I completed my certification in sports nutrition and understood what I needed to do to help others. I put my program and steps into an online course. I call it 4 Weeks to Wellness, and it is the start of moving forward for those of you who need a plan. I believe in you. You can do this!
I won’t forget how I felt after waking up the day after I learned that Robin Williams had passed away. I was really sad. Why did I need to learn how to cope after his death? It wasn’t as if I knew him? And yet, I felt like I did. I grew up watching Mork & Mindy and felt so “big” being able to stay up later to watch it. As time went on, Robin became somewhat of a father figure. What a man. What an actor. He made me laugh so many times when I was sad…and oh The Birdcage. I will always love Armand Goldman.
And now I must face the death of not one, but two characters I loved so much. Any and everyone knows of my great love for David Bowie. Not just as a musician, but yes, oh yes, as the Goblin King. It was a special movie to me that I begged to see at the theater. Labyrinth came out in 1986. I knew every single line and so did my little brother. We would dance around the house saying “You remind me of the babe…” and then he had to finish a line, then I did and so on. Then his little best friend came over and we would sing Dance Magic Dance all over the place. But ermmmm it gets better! Or worse. If you don’t love this…I wanted to get married in a big poofy dress like Sarah Wore. Just check out my Pinterest if you don’t realize what a geek I am.
Then today, today, Alan Rickman has passed as well…at 69, of cancer just like Bowie. I know that other people probably don’t understand geeks, but we are a strange lot. We know him as many characters…but to me, he will always be Severus Snape. My husband loved him as Hans Gruber as well…so please watch this video if you can. I was the first teacher I knew of to buy the Harry Potter books and read them…for me. Not to my class, but for myself as I taught a lower grade. Every year, every single year, we get a piece of HP memorabilia at Christmas. This year it was the real film cells in book marks for my girls. One year it was the wands. Another year it’s necklaces from the movie. We all process this a little differently so I am going to try and help you just a bit my brothers and sisters.
How to cope when someone you admire dies:
Unlike the death of someone you know, this kind of death seems to have no support group as you feel like people don’t understand or get your grief. I want you to know that is not true. I completely understand. It is like a cosmic loss…a hole in the universe that can’t be filled. But after a while, the pain lessens and we learn to move on.
You relate to what the person has died from…whether it be illness or suicide. You feel like there was something you could have done because this relates close to home. Just know that there was nothing you could have done, nor was it your fault in any way as you relate these feelings back to a loved one you might have lost the same way.
You feel different at first almost like you are having an out of body experience because you are somewhat in shock. In a report about Marilyn Monroe’s death, fans thought she was dialing to get help the night before she was found. Fans always wonder what happened to this day, but it doesn’t make her come back. After the shock wears off…let it go with peace.
There is no “normal” amount of time this might last, but just know that feeling sad is normal. Talk about your feelings with someone who you know will listen and understand with empathy. I will always think of Robin, Alan, and David with fondness and be forever grateful for what they have left behind.
When all else fails, watch their movies, listen to their songs, and laugh at their jokes. They would want you to carry on and celebrate the magic that they created for their fans!