Clutter holds energy, let it loose!

Boxes-empty_165169310.jpg

Okay, this is not a how-to guide for decluttering your home or environment, although I could certainly write an article about that. I was born to organize and declutter. However for almost two decades, I lived with a man who was a hoarder. At the time, I had no word for it. It started slowly and grew exponentially as our my spouse and the relationship fell out of center. Every room had a path through it that was about two feet wide. Boxes, clothing, computer pieces, camera parts, papers of all kinds and other assorted flotsam filled rooms to bursting. Sometimes up to the ceiling! There was no rhyme or reason to it, and none of the items had any use or value.I could not staunch the flow, no matter what I tried. I could hardly live like this and combatted it daily. It crept under my skin during the day, and practically exploded out of me at night. It was like a thing that lived with us that was evil. But my spouse would have a week long fit, exploding in rage, if I were so rude as to mention ‘the mess.’ He didn’t see it that way and he felt I was nagging and unfair to him. Apparently I was the bad guy in this scenario.

Continue reading

Suffering is optional

When you hold your own mind hostage, It’s like being in prison. It’s a lot of self-imposed suffering. I am guilty of this bad habit. It’s a bit like jumping to conclusions but bigger. It takes a while to dump it and change behavior.

Positive Feelings-Goodwill_222499357.jpg

Case in point: A friend of a friend said their friend went to a family gathering thinking the worst; that no one liked them, that they would be shunned, ignored, that they were disliked. Yet the opposite happened and the opposite was true. They were welcomed with open arms. They were able to catch up with a lot of people they had been estranged from and had totally the wrong information for many many years. The person who was responsible for spreading the dark information about them in the past was now out of the picture. How many years did our hero waste in shame and fear, thinking they were unloved by their own family? Way too many! It simply was not true. They were holding themselves hostage and suffering for it.

Continue reading

Eating my problems

For a long time, I have had problems during or shortly after eating. This is definitely in the too much information category so I’ll spare you the details. Suffice it to say there was a lot of intestinal upset and extreme discomfort to deal with. I spent years trying to figure it out. First with my doctor, then on my own.

eating-healthy241881529.jpg

No, I am not allergic to anything, it was not any particular restaurant, food item, cooking oil, it was not dairy, nothing like that. I relentlessly checked and researched everything it could be. I wanted to get to the bottom of it. I knew there was something worth discovering besides the obvious physical relief.

Continue reading

On being stuck in traffic

A good playground for being totally present and going with the flow in a chaotic situation is in heavy traffic. This was one of my biggest ah-ha moments ever. I had gotten off work early one day. It’s a rare treat to get off work early, so I ran a few errands downtown. I rarely go south of where I work, so a trip to downtown usually is a headache. This was the perfect day for it! After my errands were all run, I wanted to get home quickly. That should be easy at 3pm, right? Wrong! For some reason it was a very early rush hour and this really soured my mood. It takes an hour to get home as it is. How could I be stuck in traffic? It’s a lovely day and I want to be home quickly, enjoying the sunshine and my animals!

Continue reading

Pay attention to dreams

For many years now I have been keeping track of my dreams. A private online blog is the best way for me to have a journal I won’t lose, and it’s easy to search. Spirit communicates to me mostly through visuals, although I have had experiences of taste, smell, hearing, feeling and knowing. Mostly I am a highly visual person with super detailed dreams.

After you track your dreams for a while, it will become obvious what to pay attention to, and what to dismiss. The disjointed, out of focus, blurry and gray dreams are what I call garbage can dreams. They are an amalgamation of recent events, worries and other flotsam and jetsam floating around in my psyche. The other type of dream for me to not pay much attention to are what I call spaghetti dreams. When I eat pasta, I eat a load of it. Then I have the same type of dream only going warp 10 and a bit more crazy activity. Those are a bit more fun, but just as disjointed.

Continue reading

Compassionate or doormat?

Being compassionate and being ‘the wounded healer’ and wanting to help others is a good thing to do. But be careful you don’t overdo it in terms of being a doormat. You should never come away from an experience in compassion feeling used, spent, foolish, tired, or drained. And certainly you should never feel you have been taken advantage of.

Several years back, a local I knew and liked came knocking on my door in a rainstorm. Let’s call him The Farrier. I knew, as did everyone in town, he was recently on the outs with his boss/landlord. He had been kicked out of the place he had been staying, and lost his job. He was at rock bottom. I could not turn him away in the rain. Looking back, he had it timed just right, how could a person turn someone away in a downpour? Once I realized he needed more than shelter from this storm, I made it clear, this was to be temporary. I offered him three months stay, as long as he helped himself to get ahead in the world, not just lay around sleeping. He needed to earn his keep in working toward his future. I stressed it was more important that he work toward his future, than do chores around my home.

Continue reading

Being in authenticity

What exactly does that mean? For me it means being a genuine person, being open, transparent as possible, organic, home-grown, you name it. I believe that it really means being true to yourself. It’s like being an open book to others with no hidden agendas. I think of it as standing in your personal power but doing no harm. To me it is being yourself, as much as you can be. The more you are true to yourself, the more people will see, feel, and sense your authenticity.

“This above all, to thine own self be true. And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.” —From Hamlet, by William Shakespeare

The above quote from Hamlet is something that often comes to mind when someone is looking for advice on what to do and they are inwardly conflicted or really torn about something and they have to make a decision. If you take the advice and are true to yourself, most everything else falls into place. Take care of yourself first, then others can be served.

This is also a really big hint to the fine line between being compassionate and being a doormat for the world. Continue reading

Where compassion is born

When I hear someone is having a hard time with life, miserable, or suffering through a painful experience, I also experience pain at the empathy level. I can almost feel it, viscerally, inside my body, emotionally, and mentally. How did this happen? How was I softened? I can tell you, when it was time to end a relationship that was over 18 years long, it was difficult. I held on to the bitter end. It was me being foolishly loyal to someone who did not have my best interest at heart. It felt like torture to be in this relationship every day. I seemed to do something wrong, not make my partner happy, and no matter how hard I tried, I was made to feel that everything was naturally my fault and I failed at every attempt to ‘fix’ things.

Continue reading

On Guides

Guides are beings that help us with our life’s journey. Much like the idea of a guardian angel. Some stick with us for life, other specialists can come and go, depending on what is happening in our lives. When I say guides, the word is also a hint at what their role is in our lives. They can’t and won’t make us do anything. That is not their purpose. They are our helpers on the other side, assisting us in what we want to accomplish. If we go off track, they cajole, they hint, they advise, they knock us over the head with a 2×4 in order to get our attention. They help us learn a lesson that keeps repeating in our life. They can come in with specialized information depending on what’s going on. Are you building a home? Getting a divorce? Preparing for your first child? Speaking in front of a large crowd for the first time? Starting your own business? Dealing with your in-laws? Guides with such experience or information will come and go throughout our lives as we need them.

Continue reading

Coping patterns

“Don’t take anything personally. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality. Their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.” —Don Miguel Ruiz

For many years after traumatic, chaotic, emotionally and mentally abusive events occur, your body goes through the motions of post-traumatic effects. Your body and you create what I call coping patterns. My brain tells me the daily abuse is over and I am healed, but my body doesn’t care where the attacks come from. All it know is it is time to ride out the storm for a few days if something happens that is not part of a normal day. Even one person, or a group of people in a meeting talking over me loudly ignoring what I have to say, will set off an episode of what I call hunkering down. These are big triggers for me. Your body has a way of remembering how you got through the abuse. It gets tired, slowing you down, making you sleep a lot. Maybe you eat your way to comfort, or drink yourself to sleep. You cocoon. You repair. You sleep.

Continue reading