Hello Beautiful Souls,
Back in the early 2000’s, I experienced a life-altering event. The proverbial rug had been pulled out from under me, the roots of my perceived foundation and everything I knew to be true were abruptly in question…EVERYTHING! I had no practices, tools or skills in place to deal with the pain I was struggling with allowing it to penetrate into the depths of my life. It spread into my veins, my bones, my spirit and every inch of my being. I became a crabby mom, a bitchy wife and a whiney friend. I was confused, overweight and unhealthy. I didn’t like the person I had become and frankly I couldn’t stand myself any longer. Like so many people, it often takes a traumatic event to shake us to the core, to finally beg and demand the life-changing answers to our important questions. I was ready to be honest and take the time to understand and learn everything I could to get to know my true authentic self. Through it, I’ve learned to have no regrets. I believe regrets keep us stuck. If you regret an event you believe should not have happened or you wish things could have or should have turned out differently, try a new perspective. Try this… Everything that happens, happens FOR us not TO us. Would you rather be an active participant in your life or a victim? If you have regrets, you haven’t learned from the experience, therefore making it more difficult to grow. One of the first things I realized I needed to change was my perspective. I had been living through other’s expectations of who I was “supposed” to be for a long time. I believe this has become a common place to operate from; we have so many outside influences bombarding us with interpretations and perceptions of a cookie-cutter life. We are continually being conditioned with pre-set guidelines of perfection.
I had easily and robotically pointed fingers of blame at everything and everyone outside of me. Through hard work and discipline which included adopting practices of self-awareness I discovered that the only answers inviting change are inside of me. I can only control my actions and my thoughts. One of the practices I adopted years ago that has proved to be a pivotal part of my growth and awareness is something I call “My Daily Check-in” Self-awareness is key to change and this is a first step towards transformation. This beginning practice can be done in a very short amount of time. I would offer that the gift of time is key. We are all busy and when I think back to being a young mom juggling work, raising my children, attending school events and family celebrations along with keeping the home running smoothly (or not-so smoothly) adding one more task to my daily routine would have been an exhausting thought. Can you afford 15 minutes for you? This is the perfect time to adopt a new practice for 2019. Are you ready to introduce something exciting and new that will benefit your health and well-being that isn’t the typical resolution of getting back to the gym or losing weight? Fifteen minutes is a doable goal! Do you commute to work? Can you find fifteen minutes in your day to check-in? This is a good start; a practice to develop a good relationship with you and what is going on in your life. Where are you struggling? What feels right and good? What parts are in balance or could use some attention? I have eight key parts that I use. I invite you to use the ones I offer or customize your own to meet your personal needs. I’ve made alterations to my original check in list over the years as I have continued to evolve and grow. I currently have a 25 minute commute to work so this time fits perfectly into my morning routine. Choose a time that will work for you when you are alone and uninterrupted.
First, I tap into my Thoughts (what is bumbling around in that noggin?) Something I will talk about later but is very important, start to become very aware of what you are thinking about. Be an active listener in what your self-talk is, what is the chatter? If it is negative or self-limiting, I implore you to make a change. Talk to yourself as you would a dear friend in need of support. Be your own cheerleader! Dream It. Second, I check in with my Body, I tune in to how my body is feeling. Is it sore, have I worked out and it’s a good sore? Am I experiencing pain? Take time for a whole body scan. I then give gratitude for this magnificent, incredibly engineered machine that responds to anything I ask it to do, warns me when I push to extremes, and I also recognize the rewards it offers me. My body works hard for me at an atomic, chemical, cellular and systematic level automatically that I don’t have to think about every second of every day-my heart pumps and my lungs breathe. Pretty amazing! Send gratitude to this amazing beautiful body. All of it! Yes all of it!! Next is my Heart, I determine what my heart is feeling. We can define essentially that we operate from two different systems, love or fear. Everything boils down to these two key emotions. Love-based thinking is joy, freedom, gratitude, respect, friendship and appreciation to name a few. Fear-based thinking involves hate, difference, pain, hostility, resentment and animosity to name a few. The goal is to connect the head and heart so that the head is taking cues from the heart. The more balance and alignment between these two centers is so very important. Next is my Spirit. I usually use the first descriptive word that pops in my head. This has proven to be quite surprising for me at times- just go with it. There have been times a word pops in that I recognize but don’t know the true definition so I look it up and it usually brings an “aha” moment and defines perfectly what is going on in my life. Trust the unknown. I believe that the spirit is the classroom for the soul. Our spirit guides us towards the foundations to grow our souls. Design It. Fifth is my Soul. What is my soul’s thought for the day? Again, use the first word, adjective etcetera that pops into your head and go with it. I often feel perfectly guided to a perfect description of how my soul feels or will feel for the rest of the day. Try to tap into this during the day especially if you are struggling. Believe It. Next, my inner child. Oh yeah, she is so very important in your growth and it will benefit you to be in touch with her. I will talk in depth later about this but for now tap in and see what comes up for you. You may want to start keeping a journal to record the thoughts and experiences that come up for you when you go through this entire practice. The seventh part of this practice is that I set or repeat a mantra, something that is important for me and my belief system. My current mantra is Dream It-Design It-Believe It-Receive It. If you have a difficult time coming up with a mantra, I can offer a couple that have worked well for me- Trust and Surrender or Just Breathe. Lastly, I set an intention for the day. I typically ask for guidance to be of service in the best way possible in my life. Receive It. Choose something that works for you and your personal goals for growth or something that needs particular attention on any given day. On certain days of struggle I offer “Just Breathe.” I’ve been here many times dear friends. Hold on, there is light on the other side of the struggle.
I adopted this practice several years ago and it is as routine as fastening my seat belt. It provides a foundation to start my day and I have checked off a personal goal of zeroing in and paying attention to where I am and where I need to be. This has become an intention to pay attention to the many parts of me. I don’t want to skip one day to recognize what my mind, body and soul may need or simply notice the growth I’ve experienced.
I started my work on transformation using this model. It is a good starting point that anyone can fit into their schedules. The only requirements are honesty, time and dedication. Try it and see if you notice a difference in your well-being. My hope is that you become addicted to being curious about you. To become aware and involved in your mind, body and soul.