Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Do I need to tell you?



You need me to tell you
what to do,
when to do it and
how to do it.

Only to then tell me
that I tell you
what to do,
when to do it and
how to do it.

If you let go of the fear of making a mistake,
you will have the courage to initiate.

And no one will have to tell you
what to do,
when to do it and
how to do it.

You will think for yourself.


Saturday, December 15, 2012

Bright Energy


How bright is your energy?

An energy that resembles a bright light offers
            A bubbly personality, that seems to flow with joy, excitement and enthusiasm for living.

Lights up a room, with lightheartedness and optimism
            Shares openly and honestly, with others eagerly gathering around

Such a light is not turned on, as if by a mysterious switch,
But through living a life of integrity and doing what is right…

Honoring core values
            Expressing emotions

Practicing faithfulness
           When your light is bright, your life is filled with joy and ease.




Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Are you looking for change in your life?


Are you looking to change YOUR LIFE or to CHANGE your life?
To change your life is to make it different through restructuring one or more aspects of your life. You may choose to buy a new house, seek an education, change careers or leave a relationship. When you look to change your life by making it different, you are looking to make a difference through your living. You want your life to have a purpose. The problem with this approach to change, is that you continue to feel dissatisfied despite the outward changes. You keep making changes in hopes of eventually making “a difference.”

To change your life does not require restructuring your life on the outside. There is nothing wrong with the outside of your life, but the inside of your being. This change requires a change in your perceptions of yourself and your life. In other words, the change is emotional, not physical.  Things look the same, but feel very different. This change brings happiness and a feeling of life satisfaction. To change from within, is to truly change your life!

CHANGE your life!

Attend Light of the Soul: Journey to Fulfillment beginning January 18, 2013. It is a five month (one weekend per month) self development program that will CHANGE your life!
                                           Register today at www.ellenpeterson.com.

Like Frosty the Snowman, you can be a “happy, jolly soul!”
 

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Deception


Do you see what I see?
Do you feel what I feel?
I deceive you because I am afraid…
             Afraid that you will react.
                    Afraid that you will be mad.
                           Afraid  of hurting you.
                                Afraid of disappointing you.  
                                         Afraid to tell you the truth.

I deceive to hide the truth. I would rather lie and sneak than risk being punished. As a child I was severely punished. Deception allowed me to avoid punishment. Could deception hurt more than telling the truth? Could I tell the truth and not be punished?  Can I be real?
 

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Are you 'busy?"

Are you "busy" or are you productive?

Busy insures that you always have somethng to do.
It enables you to avoid boredom.
It conveys to others that you are important.
Busy costs you time and money.

Productivity focuses on what you have done.
It allows you to feel accomplished and successful.
It conveys to others that you are capable.
Productivity makes you time and money.


 


Learn to be Productive, Rather than Busy.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Changing Things Up!

The Universe is changing things Up! When we hear this phrase we often think of having our lives rattled unexpectedly.  2012 has been the year of change. Many people have had their lives unexpectedly turned upside down. What was once is no more. As we move toward the end of the year and Decamber 21, in particular, the Universe begins to right the wrongs. What was turned upside down will begin to turn up right in a new and improved way. For the Universe to change things UP is to bring positive changes.


 
Think of my trees stripped of their beauty, pruned and cut bare yet fruit a thousand times better for the pruning arise. You are in the hands of a Master-Gardener. He makes no mistakes about His pruning. Rejoice."    --Two Listeners

Friday, November 23, 2012

How do you view the good in your life?

Do you experience the good in your life as Luck or Blessings?

Do you see the good in your life as random, as if you played the lottery and won by chance?
Do you say, "I am lucky?"

Or do you attribute the good in your life as a gift from God/Universe for living a life of faith and honesty? Do you say, "I am blessed?"

Take the time to acknowledge the Blessings in your Life, especially your health, your family and your home.


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Healing Shame


Shame is a pervasive feeling that affects a person’s living. Without addressing shame, one continues to live his/her life in severe emotional pain that attracts suffering through unhappiness, job dissatisfaction or life dissatisfaction. Shame can be identified by the following beliefs, feelings or behaviors:

Beliefs

I am bad.                                                             There is something wrong with me
It is all my fault.                                                 I am not good enough.

I disappoint others.                                         I can’t do anything right.
I am a loser.

Feelings

Fear                                                        Shame                                          Humiliation          
Fear of what others think                   Embarrassment                          Exposure

Fear of disappointing others              Unworthiness

Fear of failure                                        Inadequacy

 
Behaviors

Keeps secrets                                     Quiet/shares little                                     Speaks in a low voice
Hides behind long hair/hats           Cannot admit to making a mistake       Avoids exposure       
              
Wears more clothing than is          Runs away to avoid confrontation (being exposed)    Hiding
 needed to hide the body  

 

The only way to successfully heal shame is through safe exposure, such as group therapy. Shame is healed by sharing one’s secrets and shameful thoughts and feelings. To heal shame is to free one’s soul from the ongoing feelings of persecution and unworthiness.
 
 
 
 
 
 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Live your life with ease

Did you know that things can be easy? You make things harder than they have to be. In fact, you avoid doing things because you believe that it will be too hard. Therefore, you do not declutter the closet, make the pie crust, knit the sweater or host the holiday gathering...all because you assume it will be too difficult. In truth, once you actually commit to doing that which you have been avoiding, you may be pleasantly surprised to find that the task was easier than you had imagined.

I live my life with ease.  
 
 
 
 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Heart vs. Ego

The Heart vs. The Ego. The two do battle, each one desiring dominance over your life. The Ego speaks to you of a longing for something more...more love, more passion, more joy. It comes from an emptiness within and a strong desire to be fulfilled. It leads you to believe that you are a failure, you do not know what you are doing, or you are to blame. It provides you with the illlusion of what can be, while sabotaging you in your life. The Ego is responsible for vioations of integrity including thievery, and extramarital affairs. The Ego tells you that what you are doing is right, even if when it is wrong.

The heart speaks to you of the desire to love and be loved. It is afraid of being hurt and of hurting those that you love. It does not want to be broken. It wants and fears genuine closeness, the ability for others to know you and still love you.  The heart does not always communicate in words. Sometimes it communicates in actions. The heart yearns not for fulfillment, but for a love that never ends.

The Heart vs. Ego, Love vs. Illusion 



Thursday, November 15, 2012

Today Only!


What about Today?

What about today? Today is just beginning.  Are you feeling present to this day, or do you give up today to plan for tomorrow?  Do you tend to miss out on the beauty of today to think about what is needed for tomorrow or next week?  Where is the living for today? Perhaps you lived today, yesterday?  
As the dark of the night, transforms into the light of the day, learn to eagerly embrace the day with wonder. Like a small child excited on the morning of his birthday, embrace today with excitement, trusting that something wonderful is about to happen. Give today the attention it deserves. In doing so, you will find joy! 

Today is all there is. What will today bring? I am so excited!!
 
 

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Are you afraid of making a mistake?

Mistakes happen right? Well if you are the kind of person that can shutter at the thought of making a mistake, then you are afraid of making a mistake. The fear of making a mistake is actually a bigger issue than fear. It is the pervasisve, yet concealed, feeling of shame. Shame produces such beliefs as "I am bad" or "There is something wrong with me."  In this way, a mistake is not just a mistake. It is a horrible and painful experience which needs to be avoided at all cost. In other words it is not, "Oops, I made a mistake," it is the internalized belief that "I am a mistake."

Where does the fear of making a mistake originate?

You may have had experiences in your life such as in your childhood, in which you were scolded or shamed for making a mistake. A parent, sibling or teacher may have said things like, "How could you do that? "You are so stupid," or "What were you thinking?" "Shame on you." Shame is also the result of being called names or from being blamed by others. "I didn't do it, she did." "It is all her fault." 

The fear of making a mistake can also be a birth issue. For example, if you were an unplanned pregnancy or born of young or unwed parents, you may have been born with shame. You may have internalized the belief that "I am a mistake." If your parents hoped for the opposite gender, you may have believed that "I am a disappointment." These two beliefs have long term detrimental effects. For example, the person who believes that they are a mistake can have difficulty admitting to making a mistake, or apologizing. In doing so, it feels as if they are admitting to being a mistake.  The person who believes that they are a disappointment to their parents, will continue to feel that they disappoint others. In other words, if you feel like a mistake, you are likely to make mistakes. If you feel like a disappointment , you are likely to disappoint others.

The fear of making a mistake can also be a karmic issue. For example if you experienced a past life in which you were blamed or persecuted for a crime you did or did not commit, you may carry forth into this lifetime the feeling of shame. "Shame on you for doing that." "It was your fault that people died."  

Regardless of how your fear of making a mistake originated, it is important to know that it can be healed. You deserve a life of peace and joy that comes from healing shame.  Most importantly do not run away from your fears of making a mistake, learn instead to say, "Oops, I made a mistake." In this way, you can begin to move forward with a love for yourself.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Busy Beaver


There was once a beaver that had nothing to do. He watched others around him working hard, and yet lacked the knowledge and self-assurance to take initiative. He sat day after day wondering what he should do. He felt that others expected him to contribute, but his self-doubt made him sit that much longer. Other beavers were busily working at constructing their homes and had to continually ask The Busy Beaver to move out of the way. The Busy Beaver began to feel like a burden to the other beavers, rather than a help. As a result, he decided to at least look busy. In this way others would think that he was doing something, even though he continued to lack the knowledge of what to do and how to do it. And so, the Busy Beaver indeed became the busy beaver. He rushed around for hours in a day doing anything and everything to appear busy. He picked up sticks and moved them from one pile to the next; when they were moved he would begin to move them back again to the original pile. Day after day, he engaged in this same busy behavior hoping to figure out what to do next. He resigned from the day feeling just as exhausted as the others. Yet, he felt unfulfilled. He learned to do without making a contribution. He learned how to fill up his time, without feeling accomplished, or knowledgeable. He learned how to be busy without being productive. Months turned into years, and little had changed to bring fulfillment. On occasion, The Busy Beaver would find something different to do, but eventually grew tired of that, too.

What could The Busy Beaver do differently that would truly make a difference?

The Busy Beaver would benefit from first letting go of the illusions that prevent him from actually feeling self-assured. In this story, the Busy Beaver could (not should as that is a perceived expectation of others) directly ask another Beaver to demonstrate what to do, so as to learn the skills necessary to do it himself. To learn a new skill,  and then to master the skill, builds knowledge and self-confidence. Self-doubt is transformed into self-confidence. Once a skill is learned, it is always known. Therefore, a person or beaver as the case may be, can instruct others how to do it.  In providing a service to others, thereby making a contribution to the greater whole, one feels accomplished and fulfilled. 

The Moral of the Story:  Stop wasting time looking busy and being busy to avoid developing the skills and knowledge to make a difference. Being busy is exhausting and unproductive. Making a difference feels good!
 
 

    

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Freedom from the Chains of Obligations

Do you ever feel chained to your obligations? Obligations could be either emotional, as in your need to attend your children's school events, or financial, as in paying your mortgage or car loan. When you feel obligated, you can become resentful, particularly if your obligations prevent you from enjoying life.  In other words, you cannot take a day off from work, as you would feel guilty (emotional) in letting your boss down or you will not get paid (financial). These feelings are associated with sacrifice. It is the perceived need to sacrifice one's time and interests to meet the needs or desires of others. Life balance is being able to meet your needs, while also being attentive to the needs of those that you love. You can give more to others only when you have given to yourself. When chained to obligations, one is at risk for forcefully breaking the chains in an abrupt attempt to free their soul. In truth, all that was needed was a gentle balance, as in asking for what you need and giving yourself permission to not only have needs, but the desire to meet them. 



Thursday, November 1, 2012

Defining a Midlife Crisis

Midlife Crisis:

The fear of growing old (time passing) without significant accomplishment. The illusion of living with abandonment (breaking chains of obligation and responsibility) in order to hurry up and fulfill dreams, purpose or destiny.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Weathering a storm


As the East Coast watches the destruction of Hurricane Sandy, I appreciate my warm, generously lit home that allows me to sit by the fire, and enjoy a cup of tea.  There are two thoughts that I ponder today. The first is the fear of the unknown.  Although we had notice of this storm coming, the weather is unpredictable. The stores sold out of batteries and water as people anxiously prepared to lose power for a period of time. Much of life confronts our fear of the unknown. We truly do not know what will happen throughout our lives. The important thing is to not take a good life for granted.  

The other thought that I ponder this stormy evening is the many storms that I have already weathered in my life. Of course, I am not referring to physical storms, but the emotional storms of one’s life. Life has its challenges. What have been the storms in your life? How did you weather such storms?  There are many unknowns in life that allow us to develop trust in self and in the Universe.  Although you may not know what will happen next, you know that you have navigated difficult waters in the past, including illness, financial issues, childbirth, child rearing, job loss, separation, loss of loved ones, and much more. There were indeed many storms.  May you continue to know the strengths within you to weather whatever storms that lie ahead.  
 
 

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Do you give up or give in?


Do you give up?

To give up is to Surrender. It is the feeling that you will not win regardless of what you try and so you choose not to try. You throw out the white flag and surrender to the loss. You could try, but trying would require effort toward what feels hopeless. When you give up, you are attempting to avoid the familiar feeling of failure.  People who give up already feel like a failure and therefore want to avoid adding additional demerits to their low self-worth. 

Do you give in?

To give in is to experience Defeat. When you give in, you surrender your power to someone else. You subconsciously allow another person to lead, and to decide for you. You defer to them. This is a pattern that tends to occur for the person that lacks self-worth. When you lack self -worth,  you are at risk for allowing others to lead you, as your worth is determined by someone else.  You only feel worth something if someone makes you feel that you are worth something.
A person may also give in for fear of conflict. In an attempt to avoid conflict (AKA angry reaction), you acquiesce to the desires of someone else. It is only after some time of doing so, that you then convince yourself that the other person is controlling or manipulating you, and react by pushing them away. In truth, you subconsciously asked to be led and then eventually resented it, as it is disabling to the self-esteem. It keeps you stuck in failure mode.

Whether your tendency is to give up or give in, you choose to fail. You fail to develop your sense of self, your confidence and your knowledge.  Learn to TRY, regardless of the outcome. You will learn how to do things for the next time. You will learn from your mistakes. In the end, you will feel like a success and not a failure, as you developed knowledge and skills that you take forward. Speak up and allow others to know your feelings and needs. Perseverance and Assertiveness brings SUCCESS!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Your level of emotional reaction is directly related to
your level of perceived responsibility.

The more responsible you feel for the welfare of others, the greater the tendency to emotionally react. When a loved one struggles, you feel responsible. It is as if you have unconsciously made yourself the CEO of everyone's life. And therefore, when they struggle you react strongly, as if it is life or death. When others are upset or cannot find something that they need, you mistakenly believe that it is your fault.  They are not likely saying that it is your fault, but you automatically assume it is. Consequently, you react from a place of shame and inadequacy that causes you to feel frustrated or defensive. They do not understand why you are reacting so strongly.

Take a breath.

Know that you are only responsible for what happens to you. Allow others to be responsible for what happens to them. In this way, you can observe rather than react, and be understanding as opposed to feeling blamed. You will teach self-responsiblity, and free yourself from emotional reaction. 

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Connections

Many people look for love, while settling for companionship.
Some people look for connection, while experiencing friendship.
If you long for another, you look for the freedom from loneliness
If you develop loving connection, you experience fulfillment.
If you struggle, you look for another to create ease.
If you love with an open heart, you gain peace.

A loving connection differs from any other relationship.
It is not seen merely through the eyes, but felt and experienced in the heart.
It is not an escape from life's responsibilities, but a togetherness in moving mountains.


Cultivating Healthy Relationships November 9-11. 2012 www.ellenpeterson.com

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Dependency or Self-Reliance?

As a human being, it is possible to become dependent on other people. Perhaps you feel afraid of being alone or believe that you are incapable? Thus, you create a dependency on another person to take care of you physically, emotionally or financially. You are physically dependent when you allow someone to do your laundry, cook your dinner, or make your dental appointment. You are emotionally dependent on another person to make you laugh, to reassure you, or to tell you that you are capable. You are financially dependent when you allow someone to provide for you by paying your bills, buying your dinner, or paying for your entertainment.  It may seem warm and wonderful to be taken care of by another, particularly if it is perceived as nurturance.

However, problems arise when  depending on another person:
1) You feel guilty or ashamed for not being able to take care of yourself
2) You come to believe that you are incapable
3) You feel like you are a burden to others
4) The other person may eventually resent taking care of you
5) You are likely to remain dependent.

The gift of self-reliance is that you share your time with loved ones, but do not need them to take care of you. You feel confident and secure in providing for yourself physically, emotionally and financially.  You assume responsibility for meeting your needs. You take care of your laundry and pay your bills. You make yourself happy. You have the power to create an enjoyable life for yourself.   

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Did you hear me?

There are two levels of communication. The first level is to be HEARD. People who yell often feel ignored. Consequently they feel the need to yell in order to be heard. To be heard is to feel as though you exist. I am seen and heard. I must exist.

The second level of communication is to be UNDERSTOOD. Although your words are heard, it does not guarantee that you are understood. To be understood is to be listened to. It is the belief that someone actually "gets you" and knows you in a deeper, more complex way. There are many people who go through life never feeling understood. They say, "You don't understand." It is sometimes related to their inability to communicate effectively. It may also be related to a lack of safety in being exposed (known) to others. "You never listen" translates into "You never understand who I am or what I am really trying to tell you."

Learn to communicate in a way that allow others to
not only hear you, but to understand you.  

To improve communication:
1) Ask if you heard the person correctly (Is this what you said?)
2) Ask if you understood the meaning of their words. ("Is this what you meant?")
3) Do not interrupt. It means you are not listening. Let others speak.
4) Avoid interpreting what is being said (I think you said..)
5) Avoid making assumptions. (I think you meant...)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

True Joyfulness


Are you searching for joy in your life? Have you looked for it in the outside world to no avail? You probably thought you would find it in your relationship, in having a child, in buying a new home or driving a nice vehicle. It was a good beginning, but still only temporary. True joyfulness goes beyond the excitement of something new.

It is a beautiful place within your spirit that longs to be discovered.

Stop searching and

Sit alone in the quiet

Travelling within

            To that beautiful space,

                                     That makes your heart smile,

                                                         Your voice sing,

                                                                              Your eyes glisten,

                                                                                                And your Spirit rejoice.  
 
You can now bring that true joyfulness to the outside world.  
 
 

Monday, October 8, 2012

The Communication Breakdown

Communication is one of the most common complaints of couples. Often the talker is married to the silent partner. The talker wants to engage in conversation to feel closer and more connected. But what about the partner that says little, if anything?  Problems in communication have less to do with the ability to communicate, and more to do with the fear of communicating. Individuals who refrain from saying anything are afraid of the other persons reaction. Typically this person grew up in an emotionally volatile environment with an angry or reactive parent. Consequently, they learned that it is not safe to say how they feel or what they think, for fear of the consequence of a strong emotional reaction. This response can be further complicated by feelings of shame that say, "I am bad" or "It is all my fault" that the person became angry. In other words, it feels terrible to express oneself. Many such people actually not only say nothng, but shut down emotionally. This causes feelings for their partner who then emotionally reacts from feeling dismissed or ignored. Is it any wonder that there is a breakdown? The silent partner is also at risk for being passive aggressive. Instead of using words to express themselves, they use behavior. They will not tell their partner that they feel angry, but will not talk to their partner for a few hours. They hope that their partner will know how they feel based on their behavior. Of course, it typically backfires in relationships.

Direct communication is saying what you think and what you feel to your partner, regardless of the other person's reaction.  It is taking responsibility to express oneself in order to be heard and understood. Learn to speak honestly and truthfully and to create an environment that allows your partner to do so as well. 



Thursday, October 4, 2012

Inner Conflict

The outside projects a smile.
The words spoken are, "I am good."
You convince yourself that all is well, while on the inside..
another matter exists. 
 
There is conflict raging within,
the ego and the heart at war with one another.
The battle between what you think and what you feel, 
What is right and what is wrong,
What is real and what is perception, 
What is love and what is hurt,  
The ego fights, while the heart struggles.

What will it take to end this war?



.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

A Falling Message

I see something small and orange falling
from above me,
A leaf perhaps, reminding me to
Let go,
      to be unattached,
      to be without expectation,
      to let go fully and completely.

But wait...

With a closer look and Divine timing,
I see that it is not a falling leaf at all
But a monarch butterfly
Gliding effortlessly in front of of me,
Reminding me
      to trust, 
      to allow,
      to be without fear
      And to stand in awe of transformation.




Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Options for Personal Transformation


There are 3 options for Personal Transformation:

1.)                        Breakup (relational)

2.)                        Breakdown (physical, emotional, financial)

3.)                        Breakthrough (Transformation)

 

Breakups can turn into breakdowns. It is as if you need to push away a loved one in order to breakdown physically, emotionally or financially. After all, you don’t want to hurt them. Perhaps, subconsciously, you don’t want to take them down with you.

Breakdowns occur when you struggle physically, emotionally or financially. You may get sick or injured, feel depressed or anxious, or face financial difficulties.  Breakdowns can become breakthroughs. You can get to the other side. You can learn something about yourself that you wouldn’t have known, had it not been for the breakdown. You can learn that you are strong, capable, fiscally responsible, happy, or confident.
A Breakthrough is when you push through your feelings of insecurity and inadequacy to emerge more self-aware, more self-reliant, or more capable. You transform much like the caterpillar that becomes the butterfly. As the caterpillar, you can only recognize the pain of feeling trapped, stuck, and uncomfortable.  You wonder if you will survive the pain that sometimes accompanies transformation.  And then something magical happens. What you no longer need falls away, and you are left with what you do need, although it may appear quite different than what you had previously known. Transformation has occurred, and suddenly you have so much more than you previously thought possible.   

Regardless of the route you take, may you appreciate the transformation that comes. 


   

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Take Time to Play


As adults we often become inundated with responsibilities. We look at life from the perspective of things that we have to do. There is the laundry to wash, the groceries to purchase, and the mortgage to pay. As children, these things never registered in our young, innocent minds. We were free of responsibilities with the exception of academics and the occasional, “please go brush your teeth.”  Therefore, adults, unlike children, begin to lose sight of the benefit of play. Our priorities are no longer about having fun, but of getting things done. Here lies the reality of growing older. But sadly, all work and little play can truly cause adults to feel burdened and resentful, not only of responsibilities, but by life.

It is not only fun to play, it is absolutely necessary. Playing and having fun keeps your heart open and your spirit alive! How did you play as a child? How did you entertain yourself as a teen? For example, perhaps you loved to draw or color as a child? Maybe you played volleyball or enjoyed going bowling or to the movies?

Chances are good that some of those same things that you did as a child or as a teen, can still open your heart and enliven your spirit.  Take time to play again. In this way you will balance the responsibilities of life with the Enjoyment  of life.
 


 

Saturday, September 29, 2012

 
 
Some people think that they can't,
when they can...
 
Others think they can, when they can't.
 
 
Which category do you fall into?
 
The truth lies in Trying!
If you try, you will know for sure if you can... or you can't.  
 
 

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Moon and Stars

You are the Moon
I am the Star
Together we illuminate the night sky 
Yet so different from the other
A beautiful complement indeed  
Lost without the presence of the other
 
 
 
 
 


Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Wanted: My Own Voice!

Stage 1: Childhood

In my work, I come across many people who through the years have lost their voice, also known as their personal power. If you grew up in a home where there was an addiction, conflict, abuse or neglect, chances are good that you lost your voice. It was not safe to speak up in such an environment. And so you learned to say nothing regardless of what you needed, what you thought or what you felt.  You were simply trying to survive.

Stage 2: Adulthood

It is here where your lost voice may find a voice, but it is not your own. This is a marriage made in heaven! The person without a voice often finds and marries the person with a voice. It is a natural attraction. You need someone who can know what you think, what you need, and what you feel in order to continue to not have a voice. Conflict arises, however, when your spouse gets tired of making decisions, anticipating your need and reading your supplemental behaviors and facial expressions. Spouse will complain that you don't communicate.

Stage 3: Midllife (aka Change is needed. What do I do now?)

After years of being silent, feeling lectured by others who do have a voice, and perhaps feeling talked at, you reach a place where it no longer feels good to not have a voice of your own. It leaves you in a dependent, vulnerable and lonely place where no one hears or understands you. You thought your spouse understood you when he/she could read you without your communication. Spouse now begs you to talk and relinquishes responsibility of talking for you. You feel lost. Therefore, you  must either 1) find another person willing to be your voice or 2) Finally find your own voice.

To find your own voice, you must first heal your fear of getting into trouble or the reaction of others.  These are residual feelings from childhood that is brought into the marriage. In other words, it was there before you ever met your spouse! The squelched voice whispers ( or HOLLERS in frustration for not being heard or understood),  "I cannot talk to you because you react." This translates into "I cannot talk because you will have feelings." And feelings (according to my history) are detrimental to my safety."  As long as you place the blame on the spouse, the fear of others reactions remains. You just transfer ownership to the next person.

Some suggestions for finding (and using) your voice:

1. Speak up. Increaseyour volume so others can hear you. Low voices are indicative of shame.You are afraid of being heard or being visible as it is vulnerable. People will know that you are there. Speak so that others can hear you and respond to you.

2. Look at people when you are taking to insure that you have their attention. Do not talk while looking away or while they walk out of the room.

3. Ask for clarification or validation that you have been heard. Did you hear what I said? (People without a voice blame others for not listening when in fact, they are not talking.)

4. Singing and chanting are ways of opening up the voice. If it feels too threatening, do it in the car. It is healing for your voice.

5. Ask others (who are your talkers) to not interrupt you when you are talking. Remind them that you are learning to communicate and would appreciate having no competition. You will let them know when you are finished and ready for their response. 

6. Thank those who give you space to talk. Let them know that you appreciate their time and patience as you learn a new skill. Learn to rotate "my turn, your turn."


 

Have you checked in the lost and found lately?
I trust that you will find it.
It just needs to be picked up!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Resentment or Love?

Resentment develops when you perceive your family responsibilities as a burden. You believe that you have to do the laundry, get the groceries and mow the lawn. You believe that others expect you to take care of what is needed. To prevent or heal feelings of resentment, one must simply choose a different perception.

The actual reason a person chooses to do the laundy, and other household chores, is because doing so allows him/her to take care of and provide for those they love.

A person chooses to take care of their family because they love their family

However, resentment builds over time when the resentful person has neglected his/her own needs and feels tired of making the sacrifice. The perception is that others needs are being met "all of the time" while their needs are not being met at all.

If you take care of your own needs, taking care of others will feel like a gift, rather than a burden.  
 
 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Respect

Parents often believe that if their children do not listen to them, their children do not respect them.
 Is that true?
Is respect defined as listening to a person of authority? 
 
Respect is more than being heard. It is being valued.
Surround yourself with only people who respect you. 
 

 

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Avoiding Conflict

Have you ever noticed that those who avoid conflict are usually people who do not talk and do not express their feelings?

The person who avoids conflict is uncomfortable being in the presence of people who are talking and expressing their feelings at the same time. Typically the person who avoids conflict grew up in a home where there was conflict. As a result, they learned that the expression of feelings will lead to conflict, and thus, feelings cannot be expressed. Conflict is associated with feeling bad (scolded) and leads to feeling like you have failed for disappointing another.

Conflict need not be avoided. Instead it is essential for talking and expressing your feelings to others. Even if there is disagreement, much is gained from moving through a conflict to gain agreement or at best, understanding. The ability to stay present and available while you or someone else is talking and expressing feelings is an important life skill. It leads to healthy communication and strong interpersonal relationships.

It is safe to talk and to feel.      
 
 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Why Does It Bother You?

You tell me that it upsets you that I do not laugh like I used to. 
 
Why does it bother you that I do not laugh of lately?  
Do you squirm in your own discomfort that you are not good enough if you fail to make me happy?
 
What if I am happy...and it has nothing to do with you?
 
What if you are sad...and it has nothing to do with me?


 

Monday, September 10, 2012

Running from Fear


You can run, but you cannot hide

                                       From the fear that dwells within you.

Temporary relief is not a permanent solution.

                               Name your fears. Look them boldly in the face.

Stay put, transform and heal.  




Thursday, August 23, 2012

Letting life become better

Life certainly has its ups and downs. When life is up, you feel no need to change or alter anything. When life is down, you feel an urgency to fix things and get things back as they once were. But what if you knew that life had to periodically turn upside down for you to face your own weaknesses?  After all, strength is only demonstrated in times of adversity. Therefore, life periodically offers opportunities to develop our essence. Why stay the same when you can be so much more? Why settle for life as it is, when it can be so much better? Let life become better. Do not be so quick to judge the experiences of life, including those which are the most painful. Be patient and see how things develop and unfold. You may be surprised to recognize that you handle life stress differently, that you love someone even more, or that you are more self-reliant. In other words, your life became better! 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

A Life in Balance

 Do you have trouble creating balance in your life? Life has a way of keeping many of us very busy. With kids, and work, and laundry and groceries, there is little time left over to do the fun things. Life becomes a chore rather than the joyful experience it is meant to be. It is time to balance work with play. It is time to balance your time with others and time for yourself.  It is time to balance giving and receiving. It is time to balance talking and listening.   There is time to work and time to rest. There is time for work and time for family. When you we live in balance, all is well. There is peace and joy in your living.     

Make Yours...A Balanced Life.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

What makes you happy?

Happiness is easier to achieve than you realize. You can feel happy in the simplest of experiences. Finding and matching long lost socks can make you happy. Yet when you struggle emotionally, you lose sight of what makes you happy.  And you begin to long for that happy feeling. You start to look for it in all the wrong places--relationships, a new car, a new pet. You reach for anything that might make you happy. Surprise! Those things do not actually make you happy. Sure, they initially give you the high of feeling happy or even blissful, but it eventually wears off as the newness wears off. Happiness comes from a place of contentment within you. It does not take much to make you happy when you feel content. Cultivate a feeling of contentment. Develop the ability to sit in quiet with your thoughts and feelings. Be peaceful. Be alone with yourself. Close your eyes and go within. Stop the chatter. Stop the running around and being too busy. Let go of distraction. Settle in quietly with yourself.  Contentment brings happiness.



Sunday, July 1, 2012

Medium Eggs

As humans, we are programmed to follow the course of what is known and familiar without much conscious thought. Since losing weight, my appetite has decreased. Yet I was continuing to go to the store, pickup the large eggs that I have always purchased, and feel stuffed whenever I cooked an egg for breakfast. In some strange way, I accepted that as the only option, when indeed there are always other options. And so, this week I went to the store and consciously looked at the size difference between a large and a medium egg. (Light bulb shines over head!) I pondered for a moment. Why buy a larger egg, just because you always have? As humans we change and our needs change. Yet, we are at risk for continuing to do that which is familiar, rather than to awaken to new ways to meet our needs.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Gratitude

Gratitude is the key to changing your attitude and seeing the good in your life. In times of uncertainty, through feelings of fear and loss, gratitude will lift your spirits and warm your heart. You may not be able to control what happens in your life, but you can control how your respond or react. Expressing gratitude is a powerful tool of transformation.

What are you grateful for in your life?   




Wednesday, June 20, 2012

New Beginnings

Today is the summer solstice, the longest day of the year, and the welcoming of the summer season. In this year of change, the beginning months brought a great deal of unexpected changes for many people. Some were perceived as good changes, while others were perceived as shocking and surreal. This particular summer solstice carries some additional magic, and it feels that the planets that have been "out of sorts" are coming back into alignnment. There is a strange, but far better, shift in the Universe as of today. Now is the time to be mindful of your thoughts and actions. Whether you are beginning something new, or beginning something again, harness the energy of the summer solstice. As my daughter, Kelci, prepares to graduate high school, I am aware of the bittersweet nature of new beginnings. Expect only good in your life.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Mid Life Crisis

What is a mid-life crisis?


A Mid-life crisis is when a person reaches what they perceive as the middle of their life and take an inventory of both their successes and failures. They become frightened when thinking about how quickly time passes and perhaps struggle with the uncertainty of the future. Stress or life changes (empty nest) can trigger the desire to have somethng more or something different in one's life. The person is vulnerable during this time. There is an urgency to make changes, and therefore, their behavior becomes impulsive without a reasonable explanation. They seek to find what they feel is missing. Major purchases, unexpected moves, extramarital affairs are commonly associated with a mid life crisis. When a mid life crisis occurs in an otherwise stable home, it can be devastating to the other family members. The family feels shocked and wonders what happened to the person that they knew and loved and who loved and adored them. It is hard to understand how anyone would want to purposely turn their life upside down to find what they think they are missing.

A mid life crisis can be avoided if you do the emotional work necessary for life fulfillment. A person whose life is fulfilling is not likely to have a mid life crisis. They are content with where they live, who they live with and how they spend a day. They feel gratitude for their health, their home and their family. All is well for the fulfilled person. They do not long for something more, nor do they need to hunt for fulfillment in something new. They are content and proud of all that they have accomplished thus far in their lives.  They see the future as a wondrous adventure filled with more time with loved ones, as well as time to accomplish their continued goals (bucket list).