Category Archives: Living Well

Solar Energy

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It was incredibly gorgeous today.  Sunshine, warm temps, nearly 50.  I sat in the sun, writing, feeling so fortunate, blessed, Grace brought me here.  At first, in the beginning, it was into not feeling so great all the time (fibro flares) …  to giving up my coulda-been-for-life job.  It’s been a tough journey, but look where I am… sitting in a sunny window doing something I love (with my faithful pup friend Frankie).  What more could I ask for?  Maybe another homemade mocha with lots of vanilla and whipped cream.

sun in hand

 

Friends, family, a compassionate physician who mixes East-West medicine to find the best approach, I’m one blessed chicklet.  “Pollyanna” at heart, you will find me ever optimistic finding the best in every situation, and the sunniest window to sit and soak up solar energy.  It really does help.  Promise.  Do it.

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Did you work this week?

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Did you work this week?  Or did you opt to take time off since it is the new year and all that jazz. Working freelance, I have the option to work up to forty hours.  This week, I was really torn.  Do I work or not work.

New Year’s Eve, I decided to do six hours.  New Year’s Day, none, zero, zilch.  Time to take down Christmas while I had time (wait, I work from home, don’t I always have time? short answer… no)  So I didn’t work-work.  I did house-work.  And yesterday? Argh… worked part of the day.  So it’s time to play catch up.

I felt incredibly guilty for taking time off!  I jumped out of the workforce rat-race for a reason, to take care of me.  To focus on having more fun, read more books, drink more cafe mochas.  But here I am feeling guilty, letting the old programming grab me.  Get to work!   I worked today.  Tonight I felt good about it.  Idk… the guilt is still bothering me about the time off.  The voice in my head, But you only did 20 hours this week, think of all the money you might have made… Stop. Just stop.

It’s not always about the money.  I sat in the sun.  I read two books.  I wrote.  I set up my little art studio in a corner of the family room.  I meditated and added songs to my playlist.  I talked with friends.  And tomorrow’s Friday.  I’ll work tomorrow… at least part of the day. 

I’m rambling… Did you work this week?

Here’s to a New Year!

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Hey all. Do you have big plans for 2019? Were there goals you set last year that didn’t manifest? My big goals for this year are to:

  1. Listen to my inner voice. Being preoccupied with to-do lists, writing more chapters for the second book in the Life Journey series, helping my adult children navigate “adulting” challenges distracts me. So. #1 – Sit, Listen, Manifest.
  2. Meditate more and get out of the same routine. I’ve been meditating for nearly 50 years, using the same techniques forever. It’s time for a change. So the nano is going to get a whole set of new songs, (yes I still use it), and the guided imagery scenery will change. Lately, I’ve been using Jason Stephenson’s YouTube channel. Good stuff!
  3. Cook some new dishes. Clean eating is a way of life for me, but the same recipes over and over has got to go! Time to look for some new clean-eating, autoimmune friendly meals. (Ideas? Anyone? Anyone?)
  4. Head over to the coffee shop to write, work, blog more. I love my sunny ceiling to floor windows here at home, but I think it would be cool to soak in the coffee smells.
  5. Romance – More to come on that one. It’s been on the back burner.
  6. Imagine more awesome things for 2019. Maybe monthly.

What are you up to? Any good recipes? Romance advice? Favorite meditations? Please share with me. Happy 2019 trails!

Trust Without Borders

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Wow what a ride!  This life journey sure is a blast.  Took a minute for me to get to this place of acceptance and yep, discovery.  It’s a whole new world for me (I sound like Jasmine from Disney’s Aladdin… wait let me get my flying carpet out).  

Didn’t think I had it in me to make such major life changes, especially being 63 and all.  But who says we can’t do, learn, become more than this in the senior years of our lives? (and what’s considered senior nowadays?)  No one.  It’s our own perspective and the limits we set on ourselves.  

Health challenges pushed me out of the comfort zone into the unknown.  Oh no!  Let me just say, this Pollyanna chicklet was freaking out.  (and maybe sometimes I still do a little, for a few seconds when I wake up in the middle of the night and think what the he**)! 

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When I relax into the web of knowing, into trust of Spirit and All That Is, I do OK.  So far, every need has been met.  Every.  Single.  Thing.  The right doctors, the right tests, a work-from-home job I can do in my p.j.’s.  And not just any job, it’s a job that not only uses my writing and blogging skills, but allows me creative freedom (this is very cool).  I work in the sunny south windows with my trusty sidekick Francis aka “Frankie” the long-haired chihuahua, sipping hot chocolate from Penzy’s (the best) and snacking on tasty Envy apple slices.  Oh yah. 

Let it Be (John Lennon), Be Here Now (Ram Dass), Que Sera Sera (Doris Day) and of course my favorite We Are More Than This…  Trust without borders. 

Crosses

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Months and years of family and health challenges left me exhausted with more questions than answers. What the heck Universe, what’s the story? “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger!”  Hmm… does it, because I was pretty darn wiped out and not feeling strong in any way.  Good thing I have an awesome sense of humor and strong belief that we are more than this…  While gabbing with a friend on FaceTime, the collection of  crosses on my wall showed up behind me on the screen. She noticed the crosses. “They’re pretty aren’t they?  Each one unique and different.”  I said.  She asked if I had named them,  (in other words, the physical “crosses” I bear).  Interesting perspective, a perspective I had not considered and made me laugh.

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For me, crosses represent the intersection of Spirit with matter in order to experience physical life as human.  However, I sure appreciated my friend’s fresh perspective.  The challenges presented over the many years and months could very well be named as my “crosses.” They are the intersection of Spirit experiencing life in all of its Fullness.  Living experience.  Energy of the Collective Whole, Spirit, God in all of Its glory, living out unique, creative, beautiful experiences.  Some tough and challenging, others easy and fun, still others wild, out-of-control crazy!  So hold on tight! We are witnesses and companions to the unfolding and manifesting Spirit.  There will be good times and not-so-good times on this journey. All part of our experience as more than physical, as more than this…

“Life will break you. Nobody can protect you from that, and living alone won’t either, for solitude will also break you with its yearning. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.”  ~ Louise Erdrich, The Painted Drum

Myriad of Things

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God

Disguised

As a myriad things and

Playing a game

Of tag

Has kissed you and said,

“You’re it—

I mean, you’re Really IT!”

Now

It does not matter

What you believe or feel

For something wonderful,

Major-league Wonderful

Is someday going

To

Happen.

~ Hafiz, “You’re It”

 

Tag. You’re IT!  Do you believe something wonderful, major-league is about to happen?  I always have.  I want to keep believing.  These days it’s meant believing with a whole bunch of challenges.  Health challenges, financial challenges, life-purpose challenges, all abounding around.  In the midst of it all I see and feel God, as a myriad of things, encircling me.  In the presence of the people I am with daily, in the winter sunshine pouring through my home office window, in the trees wearing the winter snow, in my pup’s wiggly butt as he brings me his favorite toy for playtime, these, each and all living God.  So maybe someday is not here yet, and the major-league wonderful is still coming.  In the meantime, the myriad of things gives me joy and keeps me going. Tag “You’re IT!” Living God.

 

You are the Hub of the Wheel

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hub of the wheel

Imagine yourself as the hub of this wheel that daily life revolves around, make the spokes of the wheel as connections to those you care for most. The wheel’s activities, its responsibilities surround you, spinning and spinning through each day, week, and year. You are central, the key to keeping it all balanced. Recognizing this, it’s important you care enough about yourself in order to preserve your mental, physical, and emotional health. And consider this… when you’re out of sorts, the wheel’s balance is too. If you haven’t taken the time to give yourself the nurturing you require, the wheel can lose balance and begin to wobble!

Some years ago while on vacation, I recognized my own wheel-wobble. I wondered why I couldn’t put more oomph into just having fun with my family. Doing my job, both jobs, 1) taking care of my family and 2) working a full-time job, took every ounce of energy I had. I had nothing left to give. Fun, what was that? Playing cards or a board game, going to the museums, taking walks, watching movies just didn’t seem as needed as keeping the house clean, doing the laundry, running the errands, getting my youngsters where they needed to go, you name it, I was doing it. The “work” side of the wheel was heavier than the fun side, and I was wobblin’ big time!

Who suffers when we don’t care for ourselves? Right us, and not just us, but everyone we come into contact with. We are home base for our family, the safety net everyone falls into. It’s important for us to be rested, happy, healthy and nurtured. Use the lists you created from the last blog, “Me Time,” to help you do this next exercise.

ACTIVITY: HUB OF THE WHEEL:

  1. Draw a circle or other shape in the center of a blank sheet of paper and write your name in the center.
  2. Choose another color to draw spokes outward. Label each spoke a responsibility or commitment you have to someone, i.e. husband, wife, significant other, children, pets, church, school committees, civic organizations, fun activities with friends, etc… Anyone or anything you have day-to-day or week to week contact with should be included. Whatever takes time in your life, write it in.
  3. Using another color, draw branches off of each spoke. These will represent duties and responsibilities you perform regularly for that individual, pet, or organization.
  4. Finally, choosing one last colored marker or pencil, encircle your responsibilities connect them one to the next, surrounding the spokes like a tire revolving and spinning on the hub.

Now take the time to look over your wheel and reflect. Who do you spend the most time with? Who or what is an energy drainer? Who or what do you wish you might spend more time with? What do you want to change? Use this visual tool to evaluate your life activities. Do it every week if necessary to get a visual for where your time goes. Turn the autopilot off and make the conscious decision to LOOK at what you do. We will use information from this exercise in later modules to help change your focus to areas you have passion for, or goals you wish to take steps toward.

JOURNAL ACTIVITY:

  1. Who or what do you spend the most time with?
  2. Who or what do you wish to spend more time with?
  3. What do you want to change?

Kudos for this activity:  A workshop participant emailed me several weeks after doing this particular exercise to tell me that he had taped the wheel to the refrigerator for the entire family to see. He wrote, “The kids were amazed at how much I do on a day-to-day basis, other than going to work. After studying my “wheel,” they decided to pitch in to help where they could. Thank you for bringing the awareness of how much I do not just to me, but to my family as well.”

Give it a try. Post your “Wheel” and see what reaction you get from family members, friends or colleagues.