Health, Spirituality

The Task Tornado

It’s a scary image in and of itself, but imagine this happening within you. I call it (as of this morning) the “task tornado”. We’ve all felt it. We have “a million things” that we have to do and the more we think about it, the bigger the list feels, the tighter our chest gets, and the more overwhelmed we get until…du du du…our list has gone from storm warning to full on tornado! Uhg. How did that happen?

I was given an image this morning as I was talking to a friend. I saw 4 or 5 little dots, aka tasks, spotted around her. Then I was shown how frustration, anger, impatience, feed into and grow these “dots” until they start spinning out of control and become this whirlwind that feels larger than life. It happens to all of us. I currently have a full-page list of “to-do’s” for my day ranging from calling doctors to set up appointments to a whole sublist under the “get ready for my daughter’s birthday party” task. Sadly write blog post was not even on my list! So how do we get out from under the rubble after the tornado has hit?

First, close your eyes and take a couple of deep breaths. Ahhh, better already. Then, begin to pull those tasks apart. Organize them by what must be done today to what can be done this week. I think that it’s very important to recognize the role that impatience plays in all of this. What is impatience really? For me, it’s when I have a timeline that I have placed on those around me. I get frustrated and angry when they don’t finish their task on my schedule. The unfortunate part is twofold: 1- either I have failed to tell them about my timeline OR have failed to tell them about the task (no, thinking it in your head doesn’t count); and 2-sometimes the tornado itself has created the timeline. In other words, sometimes the urgency that you feel in completing the task was actually created in the chaos and not necessarily as urgent as it may have felt. Does that make sense?

Awareness of your tornado is the first step to slowing it down to a manageable level. That being said, I am putting “close eyes and breathe” at the top and adding “write blog post” to my list so that I can cross off 2 tasks already for today 🙂 There’s nothing like seeing a check on my list to give me momentum!

Have a wonderful Monday everyone! Here’s to keeping the tornado warnings to a minimum this week.

Health, Spirituality

Healing with Flowers?

Healing with Flowers?

Disease is solely and purely corrective; it is neither vindictive nor cruel, but it is the means adopted by our own souls to point out to us our faults, to prevent our making greater errors, to hinder us from doing more harm, and to bring us back to the path of Truth and Light from which we should never have strayed.

-Edward Back in his Collected Writings

Recently I have begun to dive into the world of Bach Flower Remedies with a passion. If I could buy all 38 of them and try them out on my own at different times (or with volunteers), I would. Wait, I suppose I could do that but don’t currently have the extra money falling out of my pockets…some day.

Anyway, after reading Vinton McCabe’s The Healing Bouquet: Exploring Bach Flower Remedies, I identified a few remedies that I myself might benefit from taking. Here’s the thing about healing your life (whether from disease or old thought patterns, whatever), it can be really hard! I will be the first to admit that it’s ridiculously difficult to look at yourself and focus on your shortcomings or character “flaws”, but over the last several years I have also become very aware that if you want to move forward with health and joy, this is exactly what you need to do! Uhg to exploring and dissecting yourself. So much easier to do with others 😉

So there’s a part in this book–I will paraphrase as I have no idea where to find it off the top of my head–where it talks about how difficult it can be to see these negative characteristics in ourselves. He says that our answers often lie in our biggest pet peeves. Nooooooo!!!! Yes. So what drives me crazy? When people that I love don’t see themselves for the amazing, beautiful, capable beings that they are. When they lack self-confidence in everyday life and especially regarding things that I (and probably everyone else around them) can see that they are amazing at doing. It really bothers me. Hmmmm.

larch

Sooooo…that being said, I started taking Larch (pictured above–follow the link to see other beautiful photos of flowers and pottery creations). Dr. Bach says that this remedy is “for those who do not consider themselves as good or capable as those around them, who expect failure, who feel that they will never be a success, and so do not venture or make a strong enough attempt to succeed.”

Eek. Could that be me? Yes. Sadly, it could. I will spare you the uneventful, very simple reason that I have had self-confidence issues all my life and just admit it. This is true. This is me. This book helped me realize it and about the same time that I was reading this book, I was looking online one day and found some really great energy workers who were offering meditation classes, etc. As I looked at the bio page, I saw that they had been doing this for 3 years. 3 years! And already they started a website offering energy and meditation workshops, etc. And it hit me. I have been doing energy and meditating for nearly 13 years and have been off medicines for my RA and have had no problems with it since…never once did it occur to me that I was capable or qualified to teach. Crazy right?!

I started taking the Larch about 2 weeks ago. Since then, I have offered and hosted/taught my first beginning meditation class out of my house. It was only a handful of people that I feel comfortable with, but it went really well! Surprisingly well I would say. And the best part about it is that they asked for more. So we are continuing this class every other week and I look forward to watching as each of my friends begins to find more peace in their everyday lives. More quiet to reflect. And hopefully the calm to begin to hear that inner voice, that whisper, that we so often miss.

Healing with flowers Dr. Bach? I’m starting to think he might have been onto something…

Health, Spirituality

How I Really Look

howireallylook

Soooo, I saw this on facebook yesterday and just couldn’t help myself (for several reasons)! So funny! But really, does anyone else ever feel like this? What’s really funny is that just after re-sharing this on FB, I turned to wordpress to read and be inspired and what do I find? This little beauty http://goss-coaching.com/2012/12/06/love-your-body-to-get-the-body-you-love/
The truth is, I have never been fully satisfied with my body. What is it about this vicious cycle and women? When I was young, and let’s face it, should have been very happy with my body, I put a lot of energy into covering it up. I felt very self-conscious of how “developed” I was…so to speak. At some point in my adult life–actually, I know the exact point, it was when I had my last relapse in the fall of ’99 and was put on steroids (among many other meds)–I started gaining weight for the first time in my life and even after I recovered from all that and started putting myself back on track, I found it very difficult to take that weight off. What had changed in me? Whatever it was, it’s still haunting me. That is the one part of my life that I just haven’t reclaimed. I went from never having an issue with weight to being on this roller coaster of weight gain/loss. Sure, having 2 children can account for some of that roller coaster, but I believe the issue is deeper than that. I know the issue is deeper than that…
So, this morning I am going to put my ET feelings aside and reread (probably several times) the post by Goss Coaching and do a little soul-searching. Wish me luck!

Health, Spirituality

Living in the Moment

With the holiday season in full swing and everyone running around trying to wrap up loose ends (or just trying to find the ends), I thought that I would post a little friendly reminder to “live in the moment” and not get so caught up in the have to’s, the what if’s, the to-do lists that we often allow to take over our lives during this time of year (oh yes, I’m included in this “we”!).

You don’t have to like my taste in music to appreciate the words in this song 🙂 So take a moment, sit back and enjoy.

Health, Spirituality

To Our Health! (and maybe I was a little bit wrong)

Normally, when I write, I try to first connect so that I can “speak” from a place of higher understanding. The other day I did not. Not fully. I even admitted that in my post. I wrote, “I thought very hard about this and I believe the answer is a simple one: let it go.” Sometimes “thinking” is the problem when it comes to big issues. We trust our logical, very intelligent ;), heads rather than the whisper that comes from our hearts. Well, since I wrote that blog, I have had neck and upper back/shoulder pain that…well, really hurts. And I don’t like not being able to turn my head without that jab of pain, so I am thinking that I am meant to go back and truly listen.

I believe that what I was missing was a crucial step. One that I have spent a lifetime working on. Speaking up. Talking about the problem, trying to work it out, expressing how I’m feeling and trusting that that person will not love me any less for having these feelings or opinions. Maybe, in fact, “letting go” and forgiving has a crucial place, but in my zeal to avoid the part of the lesson that is most difficult for me, I skipped the part before letting go: communicating. And here’s the key…it actually works better if you communicate from a place of calm, from your heart. Issues don’t get resolved when you wait for everything to come to a head and then lay it all out on the table with extra helpings of anger and defensiveness on the side. Instead, everyone leaves the table with sadness in their hearts and truly nothing gets resolved. Just brace yourself for that next dinner party when the same exact menu is served.

So here’s a toast to communicating. To clearing the table and making room for some new menu items to discuss. Hopefully at our next dinner party we won’t be showing up with the same foods that we know nobody likes 🙂

Health, Spirituality

Sticks and Stones…

 My mom always says that this little rhyme is completely false. I tend to agree. After all, bones can heal. Our physical bodies can heal. But the words that people say to us, whether intentionally unkind or not, leave scars.

I thought that once I got the big picture, once I had a handle on these amazing universal truths, the words of others would no longer have the same effect. Unfortunately, I thought wrong. Yes, I might now understand why someone says the things that they do or why someone behaves the way that they do, but that doesn’t always make it better. The pain is still there; the hurt remains.

So how do I release these feelings rather than allow them to begin decomposing me from the inside out? I have thought very hard about this and I believe that the answer is a simple one: let it go. Afterall, what do you change by continuing to think about it? Does thinking about it or even approaching the person change the words that were said? Absolutely not. It could give you clarity, it could make it feel a little better, but I can guarantee that those words are still in the back of your mind (or in your heart) and you will use them as justification as to why you need a wall or a shield in the future when dealing with that person. But that’s not healthy either. Building walls to keep us “safe” only keeps us from truly experiencing the amazing things that come from having meaningful relationships with people. Let it go. Holding on, thinking about it only does one thing: it makes you feel bad. I’m not saying letting go is easy. I’m just saying that truly forgiving does not necessarily entail an apology from the other person. Truly forgiving takes only one person: you. So today that is what I’m working on. Truly forgiving and letting go. Wish me luck!

Spirituality

Contrast and a Huge Dose of Gratitude

All-consuming: Two girls are sat at the beach watching the roaring fire destroy the forests on the mountains as it move closed to the beach where evacuees from nearby villages have gatheredSo I’m not usually the kind of person that speaks up and voices my opinion in a public setting.  I may have a different opinion, a strong one, but I just never have felt comfortable speaking up. Today, however, something was sparked in me. I spoke up.

I have family and friends on the island of Chios in Greece. They are currently trying to fight a wildfire that has now caused the people in 10 villages to evacuate. From what I understand, they are trying all that they can to stop the fire, but “all that they can” isn’t quite enough. The wind is strong, the conditions are dry and their fire “departments” are volunteers with flatbed trucks carrying huge tanks of water with what look like garden hoses attached. Airplanes and helicopters are trying to dump sea water on the fire, but they don’t fly at night and the winds are strong enough to keep their efforts from being fully successful. Earlier today, a friend of mine (that lives in Chios) sent me a link to an article so that I could see what was going on. I had already watched a few videos prior to seeing the article and my heart was breaking as I listened to people from the villages talking about how they were losing their land (olive groves and mastic trees) and their animals and feared that they were going to lose their homes. So when I read the article and scrolled down to see the comments, I was blown away. There were many people who were commenting about the grammar or bad use of English in the article; others that were making political jabs and jokes about the recession in Greece. All I could think about was the hundreds of people there (and hundreds more, like myself, who have family and friends there) who were scared. I was pushed beyond my limit and couldn’t help but write a comment basically saying what I just said here.

All this being said, what I realized is this: I have been spoiled by this wonderful community that I have been surrounding myself with here in the blogging world. Lately, when I’m not writing (so let’s just say it’s a lot!) I have been reading. I was about to insert a list of all the amazingly inspiring blogs that I have been reading, but I have to say, the list would be rather large and honestly, I’m a little worried I would leave someone out. But the idea behind this is, I have found this community of like thinkers, “kindred students” as Gina from Professions for Peace said the other day. I didn’t realize that it was happening, but these blogs that I have been reading have given me hope. They have shown me that there is indeed a large population of people who care, who love, who try to live this life the best they can…and when their best isn’t great, they learn, share and keep living and trying to do better. It is inspiring to say the least. It is beautiful. And then I went out into the world and read this article and the comments attached to it. And contrast slapped me in the face. But this time I had the strength and the guts to speak up.

So thank you my dear blogging friends. You know who you are because I follow your blogs. I show up, I “like” and I comment when I am moved to do so. You give me hope and shine your lights so brightly that it’s contagious. Thank you.