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Posts Tagged ‘Invite’

What Brings You Happiness?

Thursday, June 3rd, 2010

For the past five months I have been tending to my Happiness Project. I have created a road map for opening up to more happiness by paying attention to three areas of my life: Self-Care, Connections, & Sabbaticals. I have created Life Mantras that provide intentional happiness within such as: Do It Afraid, Show Up, Be Still, Show Gratitude, Trust My Heart, Forgive More, Voice My Truth & Be Vulnerable.

What I have learned over the past five months is that where I put my energy, who I hang out with, and what practices I engage in have been where the lessons have shown up. My biggest learning has been less about being happier and more about being more aware and connected.

In the book The Fifth Agreement, Miguel Ruiz speaks about awareness. “Self-mastery is all about awareness. First to be aware of what is real, and then to be aware of what is virtual, which means what we believe about what is real.” What do you believe about happiness? First, ask yourself some questions and discover what is real for you. Here are a few ideas to get you started.

Awareness Questions:
What’s really, really important in your life?
Who is really, really important in your life?
What are some areas in your life that you want to grow?
What connects you deeper to your heart?
What would a happier, joy-filled heart look like?

Experiencing Happiness:
Spend time with people who bring you joy.
Make at least five people smile every day.
Give stuff away. Be generous.
Talk less about others (gossip).
Start early and “Eat the Frog”.
Go to your growing edge and ask for help.
Have a gratitude practice.

My journey the last five months has included paying attention to how I treat myself. I often tell my clients to treat themselves as the most important person in the world – because they are. That is easy to tell others. I have had to examine my practices of self care, connections & sabbaticals. Here is what I have discovered:

Self Care is all about self love.
Connections are about letting love in, trusting friends, asking for help & being with people who want to grow.
Sabbaticals are about taking time off “to be.”

To continue to honor all of the above, I am taking time off from giving workshops or classes this summer (July 1 – September 12). I will still continue to see shamanic and coaching clients.

I am also planning a 14 -16 day sabbatical to India with a few friends in November.

What are you aware of that brings you happiness? What do you want more of in your life and how do you want to invite that in?

If you would like to work with me as your coach in developing your own Happiness Project, please feel free to email me at toningtheom@yahoo.com or call 917-238-9726.

Keep sending me all your updates about your Happiness Projects and Happy Ideas!
Mary Anne

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“Turning to One Another”

Monday, April 26th, 2010

I just finished facilitating a weekend about energy healing, community building, and sacred ceremonies. Every six months, folks from all over the North East (and beyond) gather for a weekend to share in shamanic practices, mystical teachings, and fire ceremonies. As participants arrive on Friday, their anxiety is high and so too is their curiosity. By the end of the weekend, folks step into scared love and power in ways that are so full of liberation – singing songs and chants for all to share, playing drums, flutes, and rattles, sharing heart-centered struggles and insights, sitting on the grass and allowing the earth to teach them.

Throughout the weekend, the group turned to one another for support, for laughter, and for love. As I thought about how we turn to one another each day, I was reminded of the words of Margaret Wheatley.

Ask, “What’s Possible?” not “What’s wrong?” Keep asking.

Notice what you care about.
Assume that many others share your dreams.

Be intrigued by the differences you hear.
Expect to be surprised.
Treasure curiosity more than certainty.

Invite everyone who cares to work on what’s possible.
Acknowledge that everyone is expert on something.
Know that creative solutions come from new connections.

Remember, you don’t fear people whose story you know.
Real listening always brings us closer together.

Trust that meaningful conversations can change the world.

Rely on human goodness. Stay together.
(Turning to One Another, Margaret Wheatley)

Let’s keep turning to one another.
Mary Anne

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What Are You Doing?

Monday, March 15th, 2010

Twenty years ago I traveled to the Bahamas to volunteer for two weeks to help rebuild a library and assist with various clean-up projects.  I joked with friends that if God asks me to do service work in the Bahamas, who am I to deny the call? I traveled with two college staff and seven other students. We were asked to bring extra canned goods with us as we were going to work in a “poor” section of the Bahamas. I filled one duffel bag with peanut butter and jars of grape jelly. When I arrived at the volunteer center, I unpacked my turquoise duffel bag and found that a large glass jar of grape jelly had broken and my clothes were covered in broken glass and jelly. I started to clean the sticky bag and then I just lost it – I started crying. My bag was a mess and I thought the jelly would never come out so I threw the whole bag in the garbage – clothes and all. My friends told me they would help clean it out, but I told them to forget it and just tossed the duffel bag in the garbage. The next morning I woke up early to find my bag by my bed, all clean and saw that my t-shirts and socks had been rinsed out and were drying on a line outside. No one said anything about the jelly jar meltdown and we spent the next two weeks painting, cleaning, and playing with children.

I was reminded of this story last week after making dinner for myself (which is very rare). I began making food and then half of my dinner spilled on the floor. I exhaled exasperated and started to throw the rest of my dinner in the garbage. I stopped and asked myself, “What are you doing?” I slowly cleaned up the spilled food, fixed my plate, and sat quietly eating my dinner.

There are so many moments that I am unconscious of how I am reacting or responding. I realize when I am exhausted and have little reserve that I just give up. There have been hundreds of times throughout the last twenty years when I have had the “broken jelly jar moment” and wonder what other ways I have responded. Am I willing to allow difficult moments to occur and not let them overtake me? Can I pay more attention to what I am doing and how I am being?

What is your broken jelly jar story and how do you respond? I am grateful I spilled my dinner last week and that the MTA had signal problems because it allowed me to dig deeper into my internal resources and ask myself, “What are you doing?”

Mary Anne

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