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Posts Tagged ‘Creativity’

The Courage to Connect to What Matters

Monday, March 6th, 2017

spring_flowers17Where does our courage come from? How is it that even when we are scared, we do things afraid?

In thinking about courage, I dug deep into the birthing of my own courageous experiences. I noticed that I had many courageous moments, and at times, and just as equally, moments when I held back from being brave. What I discovered was:

Not only am I inherently courageous – I tap into my courageous self in order to connect to everything that really matters.

Courage is the doorway that opens up to other rooms in my life. I need all these rooms to step fully into my life. Others rooms that open up once I tap into courage are:

Curiosity, Connection, Compassion, and Creativity.

Courage is needed to cultivate all of these qualities. These qualities are the antidote to fear, anger, impatience, and apathy. I noticed that when I am courageous, I’m often afraid in the exact same moment.

Who are you when you are feeling courageous and who are you becoming?

Keep doing it afraid!

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At Home with My Emotions

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

I’m hyper-sensitive. I have come to discover that means I am an empath.

I feel other peoples’ pain as if it were my own, even if I don’t know them. My face loses all color and I turn “sheet-white” if I watch something devastating or really sad. I cry easily at Hallmark shows, Maxwell House Coffee commercials, or even melancholy song lyrics.

I have known this for many years and have been made fun of for it. People would say, “You’re too sensitive” or “Lighten up.” For a long time, I thought that it was a bad thing until I realized my sensitivity made me a better listener and a better visionary.

It’s been a huge asset as an entrepreneur, writer, leader and artist. I relate to people in ways other people are not able to do so. I often understand what they seek and aspire to. I relate to their emotions. It lets me work with clients on more of an emotional level. I see past the facades and can speak to, create, and offer inspiration for what really matters.

Being an empath has allowed me to take a deeper dive inside my own heart as well as have in-depth conversations with those around me. I am able to question more, probe deeper, and create space for expansion.

It’s also been hugely beneficial in allowing me to connect when I teach, present, and facilitate. My empathetic ways allow me to feel my way through conversations on an intuitive level. It allows me to really “see” people for who they truly are.

Of course, it is not always easy. When someone else is in pain, it can be hard to distance myself from it. I tend to take on too much of what and who is around me. I want to help other people — at times to the detriment of myself.  

So, how do I navigate in the world as an empath? I know I don’t want to go down the rabbit hole when I am feeling overwhelmed and I don’t want to push people away in order to not feel. I need to be able to engage and be present and let go in order to best serve.

For me, I do my best to balance the gifts of feeling deeply with the grace of letting go. I live with vulnerability and also have very clear boundaries.

I wouldn’t change being an empath for the world. I have come to accept that to feel is to be alive.

It’s the raw emotions that allow real meaning and connection to flow into creation and inspiration.

The challenge is to understand when to let it in and when to let go. And the challenge is also when to let in just enough to allow for deep connections, compassionate experiences and extraordinary creativity.

I’ve danced with this process of letting in and letting go for as long as I can remember. It has been a driving force for some intense journal writings, channeling messages, and connections with many mentors and spiritual teachers.

A few years ago when I started Toning the OM™, for an entirely different reason, I found something else that’s helps me process life as an empath — meditation and mindfulness.

It doesn’t mean I still don’t cry easily or close my eyes when something profound is happening. It means I can allow my emotions to flow rather than consume me. What it also does is allow me to understand when I’m being drawn in and then make a more conscious effort about whether I’m going to open to empathy or detach with love. And it reminds me to breathe and not get stuck in the shallowness within my own body.

Honestly, it is not easy and it takes work. There are days I am lousy at it. And I’m still learning just how important it is to stop and take slow, deep breaths. Having awareness of my breath and being mindful has made me more awake and alive in the world.

Being of service is an honor and privilege. Recognizing what emotions bring compassion and what emotions bring exhaustion have been part of my life-long journey. Identifying the waves of emotion as they rise, acknowledging them, and pausing to breathe has empowered me to lead and serve more humbly.

I’d love to know what your experiences have been with this.

What has your journey of the heart revealed about you?

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Book Review: The Power of Starting Something Stupid

Tuesday, April 23rd, 2013

“There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure.” Paulo Coelho, Author of the Alchemist

What if we realized that in order to accomplish our dreams, we will sometimes have to start something stupid?

After reading Richie Norton’s new book, The Power of Starting Something Stupid, I learned that the smartest people in the world don’t run away from stupid ideas; they lean into it. What if we let go of excuses and gave into our dreams?

If anyone has ever told you that your idea was crazy, then you would be in good company.  Richie Norton reminds us that many brilliant minds before us were labeled as crazy: Richard Branson, Steve Jobs, Sara Blakeley, Ben Horowitz, Walt Disney and William Shakespeare.

In The Power of Starting Something Stupid, Richie Norton redefines stupid as the new smart and explains that life-changing ideas are often mislabeled stupid. What if the key to success, creativity, and joy in your life lives in the potential of your stupid ideas?

As Norton says, “Projects allow us to experiment and determine what works and what doesn’t. They allow us room to fail and modify our ideas to achieve eventual success.” The important thing is to make room for the experiment – the stupid idea.

Isn’t it better to look back years from now and not have regret for what we didn’t do? There will always be an excuse of why we didn’t start something. Norton points out the three most common excuses: the lack of time, the lack of education or experience and the lack of money. Even if we had all of these, there is still no guarantee that our idea will work. How liberating to just go ahead and live out our stupid idea!

This book is rich and inspiring. Norton shares a very personal story about how he came to live his stupid ideas. After great losses in his life, he learned from grief what he calls Gavin’s Law: Live to Start. Start to Live.

No more excuses. Start something stupid — the smartest thing you can do.

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Would You Rather Fit In or Stand Out?

Tuesday, May 8th, 2012

It’s easy and safe to fit in, to conform, to do what everyone else is doing. And yet for many of us, that is no longer working. It is time to step outside the crowd, to stand out, to shine and bring our gifts to the world. Staying small isn’t serving anyone.

I work with lots of people and organizations who are ready to play bigger in the world. Just recently I sent an email to a client and asked them to dream ‘boulder’ – of course the spelling should have read bolder. And yet, boulder seemed more fitting. In order to stand out, to really stand out, we may need to move the internal boulders holding us back.

What boulder are you ready to move out of your way? What would it take for you to stand out?

{Permission to share photo taken by my friend Clarance Dickinson}

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