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Posts Tagged ‘Gratitude’

Find Joy in Yourself

Thursday, September 19th, 2013

Zen GardenFind the joy that you already are. Identify with your pure nature of joy. Open your eyes and take a moment to breathe and enjoy your pure nature. Think of something you enjoy or someone you love. Take a moment to identify joy ─ that is pure gold that resides in you at all times. Listen inside and you may hear the words, “Joy is who I am going to be because it is who I really am.”

Take time to sit and meditate and connect to your heart. Enjoy five minutes of being in joy. Enjoy yourself! Enjoy the joy of being your purest self. Stay there. Be there. Be here ─ joy.

Training in joy is your pure nature ─ your Buddha nature. Be content with each experience of joy ─ even the small moments of joy.

You have potential for limitless joy. Celebrate that.

Go ─ ENJOY YOURSELF!

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Where is Your Mind?

Wednesday, July 3rd, 2013

Where is the dwelling place of the mind?

Drop out of your head

Drop into your heart

Allow yourself to feel the expansion of your mind

Imagine no thought is a fixed thought

Be certain of uncertainty

Reside in the space in between

Notice the breath between the breaths

Live in an awakened state

Accept grace

Give love

Go to the empty space within

Perhaps your mind lives there, or not

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Share the Good Stuff Now

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

“Throw the flowers while they are alive” my friend would say. This quote has stuck with me for more than twenty years. It means we ought to say the loving thoughts, compliments, and kind words to people while they are living. I do my best to live this way as I compliment people daily, sometimes even strangers on the street. I can be found sharing kindness with the coffee vendor that serves me daily or even high-five a young boy who just graduated kindergarten.

I personally had people “throw flowers to me” after I shared with students my decision to step away as co-teacher of the Path of the White Mesa. I knew it was time to make space for a new path and expand my wild cosmic heart. After sharing about my heart-centered journey, I invited students to listen to their heart and where they are called to more deeply lead, serve, and love.

After sharing my gratitude with the students I had taught for more than six years, I received many responses filled with overwhelming appreciation and love. I hadn’t realized the impact I had with the participants and how much my presence meant to them. As students began sending their reflections and gratitude to me, I felt like it was hearing my eulogy while I was still alive.  

I am sharing some responses as a way to spread light, joy, and the impact of sharing kindness.

We all matter. Every one of us matters. Make sure the people in your life know just how blessed you feel.

I thank you always for sharing you and your gifts with us. May this new journey surround you in only love and light. You are a beautiful shining light.

The light has formed you, the light has carried you, through light you witness darkness, through light you know love. It is time to spread your wings and fly so that all of us who remain earth bound can see where you lead us.

I have so deeply loved our circles in Goshen of which you were such an important part. Another part of me is so glad for you in making this bold change and creating a new space for your own expansion. I am grateful to have had you in my circle for these past six years.

I’m going to miss you at the White Mesa gatherings. I love your smile, fantastic sense of humour, and the way you spoke and taught during the white Mesa gatherings.

You are the light that shuts out the dark. You are the essence of love and the hope we all hold on to. Continue being who you are. Your journey is perfect. Just as planned. Beauty, in every aspect of the word. 

Thank you for all the work, play, stories, laughter, and energy that you shared with me and the White Mesa circle over the years. You were the one that always made space and took everyone in!  And thanks especially for your big smile and bright eyes.  I hope to see that smile again soon!

I admire your courage to go off on your new path and honor your knowing that this is the time.  One of the statements I will remember you saying is, “Do it afraid!”

I will miss your hugs and your affectionate welcomes every time I came for the White Mesa weekend.  I send you many blessings and may your new journey be splendid in beauty, more growth and great prosperity. I love you and you will be always in my heart as a sister and teacher. Thank you for all you have given me these past years. I will miss your laughter.   

I will miss your soothing yet steady presence.  You have added the feminine heart to the white Mesa teachings and grounded our work with love, patience ….. In the most sacred container.

I know that you will forge a light path that is very sacred and powerful by creating a space where each person will have their own unique experience of the Divine. I am looking forward to being a part of it.

Thank you for always holding space. I would look up and know how grounded and present you were with each of us. I am grateful I had the chance to be in circle with you — and I know we will be in circle again.

I wish you only love and light on your continued heart journey. Thank you for your amazing hugs, contagious laughter, and your smiles. I will miss hearing your meditations and channeled messages. Yet, I carry your wisdom with me. 

You will be missed. I know you are following your path and where it leads you. You have always led with your heart as our teacher and I am filled with immense gratitude. 

Keep drumming, divine one. The world needs to keep hearing your rhythm.


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November Lessons: Heart and Health

Friday, November 30th, 2012

I like that in the month of November lots of folks (in the US) pay attention to gratitude. People acknowledge their thankfulness for so much goodness. This year there seemed to be a heightened sense of gratitude on the East Coast after a huge storm destroyed so many homes and lives. I watched as people pulled together and helped out in many communities.

I, too, have so much to be grateful for. November started out with a retreat in Hawaii for a week. The retreat focused on listening to our heart. The more I invited folks to delve deep into exploration, uncovering, playing and opening to our wild, untamed heart, the more I allowed myself to do the same. I received clarity about relationships and areas I want to focus on moving forward. My heart was open, receptive, vulnerable, playful, silly, reflective, and grateful.

After returning home from Hawaii, I had a scheduled medical test for mid-November. I wasn’t looking forward to it. Luckily my partner came with me and was with me afterwards when I had an adverse reaction to it. I ended up in the emergency room and had to take time off to rest. I became so aware of my health and all the support I have in my life.

I know many more lessons await me and I am grateful for all of them. For now, I know my heart is open and my health is good and for that I am beyond grateful.

What are the lessons in your life showing you?

(Photo courtesy of L. McMahon taken in Hawaii)

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Breathing Gratitude

Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

I am grateful for… 

my breath

my heartbeat 

my partner

the sun on my face

wonderful friends

amazing colleagues/co-workers

Toning the OM

being of service

traveling to Peru 

giving a retreat in Hawaii

meeting heart-centered people

making a difference

big hugs

lots of laughter

my health

celebrating LIFE.

And you?

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Empty the Bucket

Tuesday, June 5th, 2012

As I traveled to Peru, I knew I needed to let go of some pre-conceived thoughts so I could make room for all the information and beauty I would encounter. I wrote in my journal, “I am willing to let go and let in.” There is no room if the bucket (of my mind) is full. I went to Peru with an empty bucket and it was filled with so much insight, joy, and laughter.

On my second day in Lima, I passed this little boy helping his father gather all the grass clippings and place them in the bucket. As soon as I took this photo, the little boy looked up and dumped the bucket of grass and smiled. His father quietly walked over with his broom and together they refilled the bucket.

As I smiled at the boy and his father, I was simply reminded: empty the bucket.

Empty the bucket and make room for more.

Over the next few weeks I will be posting my insights about my journey to Peru – after I empty the bucket of my mind.

Enjoy! Mary Anne

{Photo taken by Mary Anne Flanagan, Lima, Peru}

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What’s Your Favorite Joni Mitchell Song?

Tuesday, October 5th, 2010

I spent this weekend listening to Joni Mitchell.  There is nothing like Joni Mitchell lyrics to wake you up to what’s happening inside. Listening to her songs reminded how much healing there is left and how much more love there is available:

If I Had a Heart
Holy War
Genocide
Suicide
Hate and cruelty…
How can this be holy?
If I had a heart, I’d cry
Holy Earth
How can we heal you?
We cover you like a blight…
Strange birds of appetite…
If I had a heart, I’d cry.
{If I Had a Heart}

and… another song…

Love never looks for love
Love’s not puffed up
Or envious
Or touchy
Because it rejoices in the truth
Not in iniquity
Love sees like a child sees
Where as a child I saw it face to face
Now I only know it in part
Fractions in me
Of faith and hope and love
And of these great three
Love’s the greatest beauty
Love
Love
Love
{Love)

Love more.
Mary Anne

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Believing in Your Potential

Monday, September 27th, 2010

I just came home from a Coaching in Medicine and Leadership Intensive with Harvard Medical School. In another blog, I will post some amazing quotes and ideas. I wanted to dedicate this one to sharing why it meant so much to me to go to this Harvard Intensive.

Back in grade school, I was never the best or brightest in class. Teachers often based my grades on my hard work, my creativity, and my enthusiasm. My report cards had remarks like, “Mary Anne is a joy to have in class.” While I may not have understood everything happening in the classroom, I had an insatiable curiosity and loved asking questions.

By the time I went to high school, I felt like I had to work so hard just to keep up. I started to feel very lost and struggled with many classes. By the end of my junior year, I prayed to get through one more year. Not knowing what I would do after high school, I met with my guidance counselor, who after looking at my transcript, told me not to apply to college. My counselor thought I ought to go to a trade school or find a job. She told me I wouldn’t make it through college.

As a Life Coach, I can look back now and see that this counselor didn’t see or believe in my potential. She never asked me what I wanted to do after high school or ask if I wanted to attend college. Fortunately, I had a religion teacher who told me I had a lot of gifts to share with the world. She encouraged me (along with my parents) to attend college and explore classes until I found something that brought me joy.

This teacher saw in me more than I could at 17 and encouraged me to explore and dream — she saw potential and possibility. I graduated college with honors and have gone on to do amazing work with non-profits as well as successfully start my own company.

Going to Harvard Medical school this weekend was symbolic for me. It reminded me that anything is possible and I have even more potential to celebrate.

Who believes in your potential? As Thich Nhat Hanh says, “We have more possibilities available in each moment than we realize.”

Mary Anne

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How Are You Spending Your Time Today?

Monday, September 20th, 2010

Every so often I pick up Robert Grudin’s book, Time and the Art of Living, and read a passage that becomes my focus for the week (or longer).  When I flipped open the book, here is the paragraph I opened to:

“When building a nest of time, be certain of its dimensions. Its duration should not depend on something unpredictable — a homecoming, a phone call, or your own whim — for then its outer fringes, beginning and/or end, will be weakened by uncertainty. It should be long enough for the activity it includes, not so short as to be rushed or so long as to be oppressive. If possible it should look out, like a room in a country house, toward some pleasant prospect of future time — a meal, a meeting, a rest. Protect these periods also from within. A telephone or television set or radio, for example, can ruin time as thoroughly as a hole in the roof or a missing door can ruin interior space. A confused schedule, conflicting obligations or habitual distraction all crack the walls of time, leaving us defenseless against an infringing environment.”

How will you spend today?

Mary Anne

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National Yoga Month!

Wednesday, September 15th, 2010

September is National Yoga Month! It’s a great way to celebrate mind, body, & spirit connections. I only started taking yoga classes this past January. It has been an amazing journey. Most of the poses still confuse me and it takes great effort to do a should stand, but I find that I can push myself just a little bit more each class. And what has really inspired me more than the poses is the ability to create a heart-centered practice that deepens my relationship with the Divine.

My yoga teachers start our class by asking us to dedicate our practice or our day to someone we love. ‘May each pose be an offering to a loved one or the Divine.’ What a beautiful way to start each day! When I look around the room at other folks doing yoga poses, I often think, “Will my body ever bend like that?” I am reminded to always come back to my breath. I breathe deeper and watch how my body is able to expand, and yet, I can clearly recognize the limits of how far my body will push itself — how much pain feels good and tolerable.

For me, yoga has been more than a trendy exercise. It’s been an experience of self-awareness and self-acceptance. I am perfect exactly as I am in this very moment.

I invite you to stretch yourself this month (in mind, body, spirit). Offer your practices or day to someone you love.

Namaste,
Mary Anne

To find out more information about National Yoga Month click the link: http://www.yogamonth.org/

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