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Archive for February, 2013

Small Moments of Great Joy

Thursday, February 28th, 2013

As I sat on my bus ride home, I noticed how the daylight had expanded. I was listening to some chanting music and I turned my head to see a big glow of light – the sun bursting through the frame of the bridge I was crossing. I took a quick photo with my phone and smiled as metal beams began to brighten with the light. Simple. Beautiful. Perfect. Small moments that bring great joy.

Notice the small moments that bring you great joy. Share them.

What small moments bring you great joy? Post them here.

Let’s celebrate the small moments. Let’s celebrate joy!

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Hand in Hand We Go

Wednesday, February 27th, 2013

In a letter to my wife while on a retreat, I wrote, “Hand in hand we go.” This expression came because I had been diagnosed with Mild Multiple Sclerosis. I was overcome with grief and overwhelmed with many medical tests. After more than five months of doctor appointments, blood-work, tests, and MRI’s, I was relieved to find out that I do not have Multiple Sclerosis. Although I do not have a clear diagnosis yet, I have learned that more medical follow-up is required. My next step is to see a doctor that will review possible autoimmune coagulopathy (blood clots). The whole process has been exhausting, and at times, very frustrating. I have had the full support of my wife every step of the way.

I am not sharing about my health condition because I want advice or pity. I am sharing because there are many people who live with illnesses in their own life and/or in their families and it helps to know we are not alone. I also wanted to share my experiences of vulnerability and how it has provided me with a deeper spiritual connection.  My health struggles have only strengthened my spiritual work, both personally and professionally.  When I write meditations, inspiring thoughts, and positive stories they are for my own well-being as well as to be of service to others. My writing and practices come from direct experiences and I am still on a journey of learning and listening.

You are not alone. I am not alone. I may need reminding of this. We are in this together. That’s how we journey – hand in hand.

Hand in hand we go.

This is dedicated to my wife whose love and support has made my life much more peaceful. I love you.

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Posted in Vulnerability | 1 Comment »

How Do You Respond to Uncertainty?

Tuesday, February 26th, 2013

Sitting in uncertainty

No longer rushing to certainty

Allowing myself to be in the discomfort

Learning from the unknown

Awakening to the gifts of the new questions rising

Releasing old roles and responsibilities

What do you do when you experience uncertainty? 

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What Is Mindfulness?

Monday, February 25th, 2013

Mindfulness = Remembering
Remembering your presence in the present.

Remembering your goodness

Remembering your peacefulness

Remembering your compassion

Remembering your loving-kindness

Remembering your joyful heart

Remembering your light

{Photo by Mary Anne Flanagan}

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The Power of Vulnerability

Sunday, February 24th, 2013

Brené Brown has taught me a lot about vulnerability – my ability to show up and know I am good enough just the way I am. Through her book, Daring Greatly, I have come to undertand vulnerability on a whole new level. I have come to accept that vulnerability and uncertainty are pathways to possibilities. And for that I am grateful.

If you haven’t yet seen or heard of Brené Brown, do yourself a favor and watch her TED Talk on Vulnerability.


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Look Around

Friday, February 22nd, 2013

You are surrounded by beauty.

Look within.

You are surrounded by beauty.

Enjoy your weekend! Enjoy your beautiful self.

(Photo by Mary Anne Flanagan)


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Hang Out with Joy

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

Meditation: A worried mind is a wasted mind. Why not waste time with play, with joy, with peace, with laughter, and with serenity? Spend time there and see how you feel. Hang out with joy. Invite others to hang out with joy. Have a joy(full) party.

Enjoy spending time with joy.

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Meditations to Warm Your Soul

Wednesday, February 20th, 2013

Have you wanted to start a meditation practice? Or do you want to deepen your meditation practice? Start by drawing your breath inward and allow yourself to take a deep dive into your heart.

In our busy lives, we rarely experience an extended period of quiet. For our meditation session(s), we will enter the quiet within ourselves as a way to deepen our connection to our soul’s journey. You are invited to enter the space of Being, rather than Doing.

Our 45-minute meditations will open you to thinking differently about meditation. Meditation is about zoning in, not zoning out. Our session(s) may include looking at where your mind wanders, focusing your gaze, guided visualizations, making movement an integral part of our lives, resonating with a (personal) mantra, and stepping more fully into your thoughts. All levels of students are welcome. You may book as many sessions as you want through March 29, 2013. Each session is 45-minutes and will take place on the phone.

What to Bring: A notebook and pen, water

Investment: $50 in (No refunds.)

Register: by texting your name and ‘Meditation Session’ to 917.238.9726.

For more information, click the link: Breathing Warmth – Meditations for the Soul.

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From Failed Book Reports to Book Reviewer

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

I remember the first day of English class in my sophomore year of high school. The teacher gave us a test on the summer reading books. Usually I was able to get by because the tests were in essay form. This test was multiple choice. I was in trouble. When the teacher gave me back my test with a 33% circled at the top in red ink, she said I was lucky she drops the lowest score. It was clear that I had not read any of the books and that I had just guessed the answers (not so well, apparently).

Actually, I had never read one summer book throughout high school. Back then I dreaded reading. I often received a failing grade on my book reports. Reading books was as dreadful as eating vegetables. It wasn’t until college that I began to read a lot and started to enjoy books. I had a college professor who made novels come alive and made learning about stories of the past into lessons of the present. I read so much that I became a tutor and declared myself an English major.

My love of books continues today. I am an avid reader who has now become a book reviewer. Starting in the New Year, I began to write to publishers about sending books in exchange for book reviews on my website. The books I review are ones I believe my readers would enjoy.  I am thrilled to share books that I think are inspirational and informative.

If back in high school, someone told me I would have been an English major or would be reviewing books, I would have told them they were crazy. There is always a chance we can grow and expand. Who we are now is not who we always have to be forever. We can take chances, try new things, listen to fresh ideas, and create more possibilities. I know change is possible – I live it (I eat lots of veggies as a vegetarian too!).

Sometimes all it takes to be open to change is an invitation. You are all invited to try on something new in your life. Let me know how it goes (no book report required).

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Sit. Just Sit.

Monday, February 11th, 2013

Meditation is a practice of unknowing. When you just sit, you let each breath teach you. When you allow thoughts to flow through you, you learn from each moment.

Breath by breath.
Moment by moment.

Sit. Just sit. 

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