Friday, August 20, 2010

Life, Manure and Dreams?

Illustration by Kishgraphics

Over the past couple of months I have been tossed a couple of large curve balls. The kind where it is clear there are choices to be made that will impact how I will live the rest of my life. The unexpected kind. Not the ones you plan for.

Several years ago I stepped forward to really work for something that I truly believed in, felt a passion for and excelled in. I felt fulfilled in a way I did not know before. Then things started getting weird. Parties involved were edgy, rumors started, accusations, and I sat blind-sided. When I asked about things heard, I was told how things were fine. Don't be concerned. My gut kept telling me otherwise. I have never been very good at trusting my own intuition and I have been too highly trained to notice when there is no integrity in the speaking around me. After these past two years in my courses I have learned about noticing and listening to everything in a situation. People's structural physical positioning, the representational language used and what is being said between the lines. I was not hearing all was well...and yet I still trusted others more than myself. What was that all about?

I hate conflict. I have this idealistic notion that people can work things out peacefully and lovingly. How the hell I learned this I will never know. My family was a good family but my sisters and I did not agree very often and it seemed as the oldest daughter that I was always on the outs with my parents or at least one or the other sister. I went to church, worked to make people happy, created acts of good will, helped people with even less than we had, and the did the whole do unto others routine. I never have fought with others very well. It was uncomfortable, there was no dignity in it for me and if I was to strive for being gracious and kind it was not the way to act. I simply do not confront people when they are lying or not being straight with me often. I do not like to fight. Trust me though, folks have no problem confronting me and projecting who they are over here. It seems like I am simply a mirror for others to spew about themselves all over.

Thankfully I have met a great percentage of kind and loving people also that keep hope alive for me about the human race. On the other hand in my adult years I have met some of the angriest, nasty, back biting and unkind people. Somehow while it rattles me, I still have this uncanny hope in general human kindness. So what is that all about? What has me still see that in the nastiest of settings?

All I can get to so far is I see people's hearts. It is what I see on the other side of the crap they spew, lies told, or ill intended actions are the the manure in the fields. Growing up on a farm that was the stuff that created the crops growing, fruits and veggies to grow in abundance, and the grass to grow greener. So what is to grow now in my life while surrounded by current circumstances? Hmmm? This is definitely not where I saw this entry going when I sat at the keyboard today.

I thought I would spew my own stuff. Wow! Am I really too nice? Or am I just clear I have a piece of golden nugget here to show me something about what needs to happen to have my own dreams and desires come into fruition? Hmmm??? I feel an Ah Ha moment coming on all of a sudden after all of this typing!

What if all of the success of the past few years was to show me what I am really able to do? Who I really am and who I am not to craft something bigger? I certainly accomplished a lot, made a difference, and grew personally. What if I took all of the skill I gave and translated it into something else or looked at the next set of dreams to manifest? I mean after all my promise for the world is that people are inspired and empowered by the magic of their own lives and dreams. Hmmm???

Interesting...manure grows that which feeds our bodies and souls. Dream catchers in Native traditions are created to catch the bad things so they do not get in the way of your dreams and desires. Mirrors reflect back either all that we dislike about ourselves or an illusion of perfection to fool the mind. Are these all pieces of who I am? Something to continue to inquire into. If my promise after all is for all people, than I have to include myself.

So I think tonight, I will create a dream board to display in my home. A visual projection of what I am creating for myself, my life, my family and for the world around me. If the magic of creating our lives is in our speaking then let's get it on paper too!

What is the delicious harvest you are creating? What golden nuggets do you see in your life? What manure are you going to till into the earth to create grow from? What will sprout for you?

Things to ponder.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Practicing the Dances of Life!

One of the things I have learned is that all of life is a dance and sometimes I am great a it and sometimes I am not. As a former gymnast, I learned some dance when I was young. I love dancing even today. It is a way to feel totally expressed, full in one's self and a way to be present with another human being. Dance as in life means working together with life's partners and those who cross your path on a daily basis.

For those who are professional dancers there is much practice. Whether one is an engineer, doctor, artist, parent or whatever, a large amount of time is devoted to practicing techniques and learn to do the job well. When I look at the dance of communications with other human beings there are few trainings teaching how to be present authentically as one's self in the moment to gracefully glide with the partner you are in the communication's dance with. Many courses teach techniques and tips that amount to mostly knowing how to get one up on the another or have great come backs. I find though that if you communicate from just that place it will fail pretty quickly. It is like learning the moves and not learning to implement authentically.

What if life period was a series of practices?!?! Nothing was ever perfect 1000%. How would you live your life? Practice allows one to fail, not do things right, learn to recraft you are doing to have the results happen. Practice allows for celebrating the small steps of mastery you gain. Practice allows for us to learn many ways to do things too!

I own a design and marketing company. I have to practice so many things on a daily basis to grow and develop myself. There are many new programs to learn, printing methods, marketing trends, web design tips and so on. One of my favorite things is to see what needs to happen, what is missing and on goingly practice and create what is possible. There are situations I am really great at handling and others that I am horrible at! It is the places I am horrible at that I am committed to growth and development in. What if like children, human beings could be hungry all of the time for the wonder and fun of learning?

One of the things I love to practice is how to just be present in a situation. To really be in the other person's world and listen to them. Gosh, we are all built like little machines! We can be counted on to react the same way every time we are in the same or close to the same situation when we are not listening...really listening.

For instance, even though I have trained for years in ontological conversations and dialogue, if someone really yells at me all of my reactions will come up. I will cry, feel ashamed and so on. Old patterns come flying out of the woodwork. It is an area of my life I am training myself in. Building some muscle in. I am gaining some ability to stay present in the moment and realize none of this has much to do with me. It is a place in life where I am still learning the communication's dance.

Where are you learning the communication's dance in life? Where have you gained mastery? What is the next level you are looking to develop? Where do you fail consistently? What training do you need? Are you creating the training or busily being a complaint about it all?

In the previous blog post I shared about integrity. Well having integrity is about creating an empowering context in any situation with our word. Where do you not feel empowered or inspired when you communicate? Where do you not feel heard?

Here is a simple practice and a place to start....
Make a list of all of the places in your life you do not feel heard. Sit with it for a couple of days. Then make a list of all of the general things about life you do not like to listen to or about. Let that sit for a day. Then make a list of what you hate listening to from your friends, colleagues and family.

Now....sit and compare the lists. With a highlighter mark what looks the same on each list? I find whatever I hate listening to may be something I myself am doing! I can either be a persistent complaint about it or do something to move it forward. What I get upset with others about just may be something I have no muscle in handling either. When I notice what those things are, I then have to look and see if I am committed to creating a shift in how I handle it. If I do then I get to work to train myself and learn to dance in settings like that! How awesome!!!!!!!!!!

Be kind to yourself while in training. There is no perfect. No one has mastery in this. We are not born with manuals that tell us how to be human. Being is learned. Whether we are fast learners or not...what is guaranteed is that we will learn, gain some mastery, slip up, make mistakes, want to quit, keep going, repeat the past or invent the breakthroughs we need to for transformation to occur! We get to choose!

In the meantime...all there is to do is have fun with it all...' is magic!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

When One's Cup Runs Over!

A good friend gave me this cup recently. The word that runs around the top says Integrity. Her reasoning for the gift was that this word comes up whenever she thinks of me and the personal training and development work that I do. It is a word I hold dear and I was very touched at the gesture.

Integrity is a funny word. I grew up with a different definition of it than I have today. That definition was filled with judgements of right and wrong, assessments and memories of not ever quite able to measure up. That definition allowed little love to flow and no one could ever have felt honored or heavens forbid, able to make a mistake!

Many if my clients in my marketing company speak of how the company has much integrity. Sometimes I wonder under which definition I hear the assessment and at other times I have to invent or create from make up how I am hearing what is being said to let it into my heart!

These past few months have had me embracing and wanting to run from the practices of what this word invokes. Everyone from others to myself have called my integrity into question from many moralistic perspectives! In those moments, I have to root myself to the earth and remember I may not be what is being spoken. I have to look at whether there are embellishments, projections and how others see me. I have definitely learned the fine art of granting grace and forgiveness for some of what I have heard! Funny...having integrity means you can grant those! Interesting! Forgiveness nor grace can be fully granted if one is coming from a moral perspective. Otherwise one is just full of crap.

I love the definition I have been swimming in for the past several months in my Power and Contribution Course with Landmark Education. It is simple though not easy. the definition is loving and gives room for one's human capacities, strengths and weaknesses. It grants forgiveness for mistakes and the ability to clear up communications when the opportunity presents itself. It allows one to determine what is within one's personal integrity and not how someone else thinks you should be. There are no woulda's, coulda's, shoulda's because if I am standing there, there is no accountability. A man who led one of my courses once said if there is blame, shame or upset, you are not being accountable for something. Okay! I understand that! If I am standing in the idea that I create my life, there is just owning self. And for me most importantly, I get to determine and own who I will be. That is all I really can own!

INTEGRITY....Hmmm??? The definition I work with now knowing there is no perfection to be had in it all. Integrity is a practice. Sometimes one practices and fails. So let's see what the definition I use is...."Nothing hidden, being truthful and honest. Doing complete work, working from an empowering context. Doing very well what you do. Doing it as it was meant to be done or better, and without cutting corners." Okay...well this part seems pretty straight forward most of the time. Boy oh boy though....the part that gets me a fair amount it holding it all in an empowering context! How can one mess up and be empowered by it! LOL! Now that is where I am training and developing myself!

In other terms....Integrity is Honoring One's Word! Not like a moral judgment however. Like "doing what you know to do. Doing what you said you would do and on time." Okay....I get this part!

Now here is another part I get stuck in...."doing what others could expect you would to do even if you haven't said you would do it." Now...I am not a mind reader! How the heck do I know what others expect??????? Hmmm???????? Pondering this one. I kind of get it and damn...I feel I fail everyone in this section! LOL!

"and saying when you are not doing this as soon as you realize you won't be doing it or won't be doing it on time." Got this part too. I can let you know when I can't get it cone and remake a promise!

So what do I do with the areas I am not good at....PRACTICE! FAIL! PRACTICE! FAIL! and you know what else....Hold it in an empowering context!

No one has 100% integrity. No one! But when one practices it, stands in it, holds it like a beautiful possibility to live life in, incredible things happen in life! Magic happens! Abundance happens! Love happens!

So why might all of this occur??? Because there is room for all of who we are as human beings to flow, live, dance and play! We can be alive in the possibility of life not being handled but being one incredible journey unfolding moment by moment!

So....PRACTICE! My next posts will be about ways to practice and some practices to put into place I have discovered!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Our pasts and gratitude...

I love this picture! It reminds me of what it feels like to be a chicken and at the same time goofy enough to stand up, out from the crowd and be yourself! I bought it from a photographer on

Sometimes when I look at my past, and I wonder how I got to where I am. Not necessarily about my career and family, but in looking at the people in the various circles in life in which I am connected. Each circle and person have taught and continue to teach me special gifts that support my own continuing growth. At times, in sweet kind, loving ways. then in other groups, the lessons are harsh, cruel, relentless and at times mean. Some feel fun, and some do not.

For all of these lessons I am grateful and work to create continued gratitude for the experiences. Some of the lessons have stuck and created a better world for myself and my family. Lately however, I am throwing many of the lessons out, shifting gears. The insights and lessons have taught me great things, made me stronger and now I question if those ways of being are mine to own any longer. A life and opportunity to create a world of gratitude are all around me right now. There is peace there and all I need to do is stand in being someone who is grateful and loving. Standing in anything less makes me feel small and not in my own skin. This is someone I know, the skin fits perfectly. There is wholeness.

These days as I step into new promises for my life, I look to what draws me to be that person. I am no longer interested in circles filled with drama llama types, angry people who project their thoughts on others or unkind people. No vampiric beings only interested in themselves begging me to come save them at ungodly hours of the day or night. No battle axes who are only interested in telling me who I am or what I am doing that is wrong or worse, threatening me if I do not do it their way. It feels nice though at times I wait for the shoe to drop and someone around me to morph into likenesses of these images.

While I can love and care about the people in these circles, I just am not fed by chasing fires, or jumping through hoops to prove myself or to be like some sort of creature who needs to take on the ways of others to be loved. I am perfectly lovable just the way I am and I am clear there are many dear ones who love me deeply. So why would I want anything different!

Sometimes I can blindside myself though. One reason I might suck into what I am not committed to is it is a way to show myself and others I cannot do it. A self sabotage mechanism. It will allow the old me to make myself wrong about being able to transform my life and give others the power of reminding me that people cannot change. Wow! How sad that is but we all do it to a degree or so. I also could stay entangled in the web of the familiar world of being a victim. Not owning myself. Not standing for my dreams and living in a world of shame and blame. Holy cow!!!! I am so not committed to that one! Ick!

Tonight a colleague said to me..."
Shifting your paradigm creates temporary chaos as those around you struggle to avoid changing their relationship with you. Hang in there - they will adapt. It's like a flock of birds on a wire - one moves and the others rise up in a fuss but they all settle down again in new relative positions."

LOL! Thank you my friend for that analogy! I giggled! It is so true.

So here I am, promising to be one who inspires and empowers others to love the magic of their lives and dreams! If you can't deal with that...too bad. Be careful of me....I might dangerously infect your sensibilities!

Next thing you will start to see the miracles of your life!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Stuff Happens....

Sometimes stuff happens that is totally out of alignment with who you are, what you stand for and how you think life should go. It can happen in an instant. Blind side you and maybe even turn a great day quickly. Yesterday, or what still feels like today I had one of these. My teachings and trainings inform me I can chose my reactions, how I deal with it and so on. They also say that if there is an upset around it there is something you have not said lurking about. Hmmm????

So...I also have an agreement to not knowingly create upsets. I wonder, does anyone ever REALLY head into meetings, dates, soirees, or whatever knowing they were going to create an upset? I don't know, it appears some people must or do. And well what if the something you have not said that is lurking about is something that you KNOW will create upset. Seems like you just might be between a rock and a hard place?

What do to with this little moral dilemma? Take it on, just say things, get it over with, create the upset and clean it up...if you can? Not say it, have the situations keep occurring and not create upset, since you have an agreement not to do this knowlingly? Good golly....this is feeling like one big merry go round ride and there is not even any fun in it.

Sometimes I just walk away from things like this. Other times I listen to what is really going on. That is generally where I find the most productive solutions and possibly even the way to say what I need to and have it all turn out well.
Tonight...I am choosing to listen deeply. Not just to all of the words said during the upsetting situation today, but to my heart also. Walking away gets easy sometimes and I declared it not an option for me any longer. (...and trust me...I second guess that choice right and left!)

After all I have a promise right? I giggle and twinge as I think of that. I find the picture I took of a friend's hand saying "I promise." I think of another friend's promise bank. Crap I hate promising sometimes...and I know one thing for sure, with out a promise, I would not be so committed to resolving all of this.

So what is my heart saying that maybe, just maybe, the other's heart is saying too? Are we trying to say the same thing like mirrors reflecting one another? My guess is whatever it is there is a great love and affinity sitting underneath it all. It is like cleaning the closet and finding a beautiful gem lost. Only in this case it is more like weeding through human reactions to find the beautiful beings within.

For now, it is time to rest and sleep. Maybe even dream for more sunshine tomorrow. So sleep well my peeps.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

All It Takes is a Promise!

Since September I have been participating in a course I have wanted to do for many years called Power & Contribution. Not because I wanted power...I thought actually I had none and well for me, contribution was really about takers, users and giving one's self and money away and not really knowing where it went. Wow! I had so much past thinking and events in my life collapsed on top of two words I would come to embrace and love knowing they reflected totally who I am in this world.

So what have I learned...I have a promise for the world. One I might never see achieved in my lifetime. One that I have set in a time frame and may need to change a millions times. A promise so closely rooted in the core of my soul that I can live fully as who I am and not flinch an inch. My promise is all about empowering, inspiring and celebrating the wonderful and magical life each one of us lead. My promise as a result is that by 2025, all human beings will be present to the sacred and divine essence of one another and working together in joy! Simple, to the point and the context in which I choose to live my life.

So I have chosen to use this blog as an expression and a place to share what I learn living inside of that promise. Funny...I have had this blog space for a very long time. I never used it. I signed on to read blogs of my friends and family. I did not figure I really had much to say so a blog was simply silly to me. As I have participated in this course and listened to those around me I have learned something very not listen to own tapes. They fool me, disempower me, and lead to by-ins that are no good. Instead of this, I have learned that if I simply trust and step fully into who those around me see me as I can do bigger things in life. I do not stay small. I can spread my wings and fly!

So this is for all of humanity looking to spread wings and fly! For those who think dreams are unattainable, silly, whimpy, irresponsible and something only little children play with. This is to inspire those who want to attain great things. For those who are looking to live life fully. For those who take every moment of life...good, bad, ugly, beautiful and use it to empower themselves and others to embrace every moment as a sacred and wildly great journey.

Why? 'Cuz...Life is Magic! Just open your arms and fly!