Easy Way or Hard Way?

In honor of Father’s Day coming up, I wanted to pay tribute to the father of my children.  I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my life, but when it came to choosing a father for my children, I definitely hit the Jackpot.  Actually that is one of my on-going jokes.  I have no luck anymore because I used it all up finding my husband.  In all honesty, this man is everything I imagined the father of my children to be.

One of my favorite techniques that my husband uses when parenting our children is the technique he refers to as “The Easy Way or the Hard Way”.  As soon as he says these words, our children know exactly what he is referring to.

When they were younger, in their testing-their-boundaries stages, if we asked them to do something and they kicked up a fuss, my husband would say, “We can do this the easy way or the hard way, you choose.”  They knew exactly what this choice meant.  They could either go along with what was being asked of them and cooperate, or be forced to do it with my husband’s help.  And they never did enjoy this method.

They knew that it would be way more painful if their father brushed their teeth.  Or they knew it was not as pleasant to have him take their hands and pick up their dishes out of the living room, one dish at a time, and bring it out to the kitchen with his help.  They always halfheartedly laughed at his technique, but it was more because of his silliness in his helping method than anything.

I feel this is very much what our souls go through as they are here on Earth learning their own boundaries.  Our Creator is sitting back, watching our souls grow and giving us lots of love and guidance along the way.  Just like my husband with our children, the Divine is directing our every step, but sometimes he is saying to us, “We can do this the easy way, or the hard way.”

How many of us, many times, choose the hard way?  How many of us know that our lives would be much easier if we had of made different choices?  How many of us know that if we just had of done what we are being asked to do, life would be much easier but we still choose to do it the hard way.  Much suffering come to us over our choices.  We had a voice in the back of our minds chanting to us, “You shouldn’t do this.”  But, we do it anyway.  That is because we are feeding our ego and not our spirit.

Our Creator isn’t here to take us by the hand and lead us, like my husband would do to help our children do what they needed to do whether they wanted to or not.  But, if you would stop and get in tune with your soul, you would know the right way to do everything.  You would understand what the easy way is and the hard way wouldn’t be an option any more.  A good rule of thumb is if it is done with love, it is coming from the Divine.  If it is done with hatred, anger, jealousy, bitterness, or revenge, that is totally coming from your ego.  The ego does not want you happy.  It wants you to feel sorry for yourself.  It wants you to blame others.  It thrives when you are jealous or envious of others.

But when we make these ego lead choices that taint our souls, the Divine doesn’t stop us, or force us to do what he wanted us to do.  Instead, we will make our choice, and then experience the consequences after, however painful they may be.  Some may call it Karma, but it is definitely a parenting technique used by our Creator.  The Universe will shout a little louder at us the next time we make that same simple mistake.  This pattern will continue, with the Universe yelling a little louder and a little louder each time until finally we get it right.

Most of the time, each time that we make the bad choice over and over again, we get to feel the karma or pain of making the wrong choice.  You’ve all experienced I am sure.  As A Course in Miracles says, “It’s not up to you what you learn, but only whether you learn through joy or through pain.”  We are all here on Earth to learn the lessons our soul needs to develop and become enlightened.  What method we learn with is up to us.  If we do it the easy way, we will experience joy and happiness once we learn and change.  If we learn it the hard way, we will continue to experience pain until finally, we let go of our egos and let our consciousness take over.  Let love rule.

Now, that our children are 13 and 15 years of age, I rarely hear their father use this parenting technique.  They just know that they have these two choices, and they don’t even have to be reminded of what choice to make.  They were fast learners.  I’m now 44 and have been on my spiritual path for three and a half years now, and I’m finally starting to clue in like my children.  I can either learn my lessons the easy way or the hard way too.  Finally, I’m letting my ego go and learning my soul’s lessons the easy way.

What is your choice?  Are you going to continue to go through this life ruled by your ego, and learn things the hard way, or are you going to let the love of the Universe take over and learn things the easy way?  Your Father is proud of you either way!  He’s a very patient and loving Creator!

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Black Magic Gossip

I am not a television person.  Our home television would not come on if it wasn’t for my husband.  I watch informational videos on YouTube.  Swedenborg and Life, Wayne Dyer specials, The Dhammapada educational videos, Gary Habermas, Richard Moss, Marianne Williamson, Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday, just to name a few of my favorites.  Rarely would I watch TV.  Television now has many proven negatives, and I am glad that isn’t one of my vices.

What I honestly don’t understand is how regular people can fall in love with television and movie stars.  People magazine, The Star, US Weekly, National Inquirer, etc. make millions off of other people’s desire to know what is going on in celebrities’ worlds.  Who they are dating.  What they said about so-and-so.  What their parents are doing.  It is crazy how they torment these individuals trying to get the latest scoop, the recent sighting, or the craziest wardrobe flop.

I was never one of these people that felt the need to know about the lives of the rich and famous.  Now, the more and more I learn about spirituality, the more and more I am realizing how important it is to not worry about anyone’s world, but my own.  I am going to spend my valuable time learning to love myself, not celebrities.  My mission is to love my life, not wish that I had the things other people have.  My focus is to drown myself in my own self -love, so I will realize just how rich I really am, not worry about the rich and famous.

One of my spiritual running buddies, knowing that I am spiritual literature-aholic, recently tagged me in a great blog by Gabby Bernstein called, “6 Books That Will Inspire & Support You on Your Spiritual Path”.  I couldn’t wait to check out Gabby’s recommendations.  I hurried to Amazon to search the books and see if I could get any cheap second hand ones.  My next stop — YouTube to see what books are available as an audio version to listen to for free.

I was very excited to see many of them were available, so my first choice was, “The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom” by Don Miguel Ruiz.  I can’t express how thrilled I was.  It was only a 24 minute blurb on the first chapter of the book, but it was all on the “First Agreement: Being Impeccable to Your Word.”  It was exactly what I needed to hear.

As I sat and listened there were a vast of information flooding my ears, and I had to pause it to write down certain quotes.  One of the first magical ear candy was, “Sin begins with rejection of yourself.  Self-rejection is the biggest sin you commit.”  Exactly what I was trying to stop over these last three and a half years.  Self-rejection.  Right away, I texted it to my friend for her to contemplate over and also encourage that she listens to this book.

As I progressed further in the book, it just got better and better.  Finally it started talking about the “black magic of gossiping”.  That really caught my attention.  Since my epiphany of self-love began, I cherish the importance of my body.  I started removing negative elements from my body a little at a time.  I eliminated caffeine trying to get more in touch with myself.  Then it was the sweet white nectar more addictive than cocaine…sugar.  That was my second element I cleaned from my life on my path to self-love.  Then listening to this, I knew exactly what my next mission would be.  To rid my life of gossip.  I know!  I know!  Way easier said than done, but I am going to try!

If you listen to the way Don Miguel Ruiz explains it in his book, you would never want it anywhere near your life again.  It is such a dangerous chain reaction, deadlier than any sort of caffeine or sugar to the mind.

He uses the analogy of the human mind and gossip as a computer and a computer virus.  Once the computer code (gossip) gets introduced to your computer, your computer doesn’t work the same way it did, or it might not work at all, because the codes are so scrambled.  The same goes for gossip in your life.  You don’t know where people’s opinions come from.  Usually if people are talking poorly about someone it is out of jealousy, anger, resentment or bitterness of some sort.  Their ego’s prejudice that are talking and spreading lies about that person.  We all do it, but we all have to stop.  It is poisoning our minds, just like the computer viruses poison your computer.

It is time for all of us to evaluate our lives and start on our individual paths to self-love.  It’s time to cut ourselves off from the addiction of putting our nose in other people’s business.  Celebrities or non-celebrities.  Instead of scrolling your precious time away on Facebook to see the newest scoop, or watching TMZ, use that 30 minutes to listen to this 24 minute YouTube video on Miguel’s book.  If I can educate one person on the value of eliminating gossip from their life, it will make this blog worthwhile, and the world a better place!  It all starts with one person!  Be that person today!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dkZXvfB_g7s

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To Do or Not To Do!

With summer right around the corner, how many of you are a bit overwhelmed with everything that needs to get done in your life in such a few short weeks?  Lawns to be raked.  Winter debris to be picked up.  Flower beds that need cleaning.  Flower and vegetable gardens to be planted.  Pools to be started up.  Lawn furniture brought out.  Decks to be stained.  Windows to be washed.  House cleaning to finish.  For such an incredible season, it comes with a ton of work and many people get stressed over getting it all done.

It’s hard for me to get all these chores finished, since I have very active children.  I work full time, coach gymnastics six days a week, and now baseball season is started up full force, and every weekend I am either at the local field volunteering to help in the press box, or on the road for an away game.  Not to mention the normal weekend to weekend events that pop up; Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, niece’s preschool graduation, former gymnasts’ graduation parties, friends’ and family members’ birthday parties.  The list is never ending.

I have no time to do my day to day housework, so most days this “Summer To-Do” list has been the last thing on my mind.  Never the less, it keeps piling up and staring me in the face every time I look out the windows or back into my driveway at the end of my busy days.  We all have choices with what to do with our days.  I don’t have to coach gymnastics this much, but I choose to.  I don’t have to go to my son’s baseball games, but I choose to.  Why?  Because family is my first priority as it is with many people.  I only have my children for another four years and then they will all be away at university or on an adventure of their choice.

Do I feel frustrated that this “To-Do” list isn’t getting done?  When I was younger and more egocentric in my thinking, definitely.  Now as I age and learning to let go of this debilitating thing called my ego, I have a different way of thinking about things.  I realize that I make the choices in my life to make me happy.  Family makes me happy.  My friends make me happy.  Coaching makes me happy.  Baseball makes me happy.  That is what I focus my energy on.  Not that having a well landscaped yard and an outdoor living space doesn’t make me happy, but those things can wait.  They will get done when the universe gives me time to get these things done.  I don’t need to stress over it.

The same goes for anything in your life.  We all have choices and we have to let our egos stop brainwashing us into thinking and feeling we have to do certain things in our lives.  You have to make the choices that make you happy.  The ego doesn’t want you to be happy, it wants you to make everyone else happy.  It wants you to think if only you had certain things finished you’d be happy.  Or if you had that certain item you’d be happy.  It wants you to put on a front for everyone to think that you have it all together, and it doesn’t care what it does to your soul in the meantime.  It just wants you to look good in everyone else’s eyes.  But where does that leave you?  Where does that leave your true self?  The most precious part of you.  Your soul.  It’s time to free yourself of this demon called your ego and start pampering your soul with all the joys of summertime.

I love A Course in Miracles and it reminds us, “The world is only in the mind of its maker. Do not believe it is outside of yourself.”

As summer approaches, remember that your world is only in your own mind.  Make your world a happy one during next few, sweet months of sunshine.  If you are thinking of all the stuff you have to get done around the house make a new sort of “To-Do” list.  A “Summer To-Do for Me” list!  Take this summer and focus on all the stuff that makes you happy.  The people that make you happy.  The places that make you happy.  The activities that make you happy.  If you don’t make you happy, I promise, nobody else will.  Remember, “Seek not to change the world, but choose to change your mind about the world.” (A Course in Miracles)

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Your Soul’s Woodpecker

Isn’t it a wonderful feeling when the bright Spring sun starts to wake us up in the mornings?  In my opinion sunrays in the morning is more revitalizing than caffeine, but that is just me.  I adore nature and everything that comes with it.

I love Spring mornings and I especially enjoy meditating during these mornings.  There is nothing like meditating to the melody of all the different types of birds.  When they are put all together their chorus is so relaxing.  I almost find myself hypnotized by their sweet tweets, until I hear the sound of the woodpecker.  Oh!  My!  That sound pierces right through me.  It isn’t the sweet sound of the other birds.  It is more of an annoying racket than an actual sound.  It can be very disturbing and hard to take, especially when the other adorable birds aren’t around to drown them out.

Woodpeckers do not have vocal songs, and they communicate by drumming on different objects.  You may hear them pecking on hollow trees, chimneys, trash cans, or anything that will make a loud echo since this is their way of attracting their mates, and establishing their territories.

These loud, obnoxious birds are known to be the construction workers of the bird world.  They don’t make their nests from grass and sticks, instead, they hammer right into the thickest tree to hollow out the wood, and make their nests in these holes.  When you hear them hammering at a tree, that is probably them building their nests.

How many of us, have these kind of people in our lives.  People that just keep pecking away at us.  Picking apart every little thing about us, and make holes in our hearts for the way they treat us?  I’m sure I’m not the only one who has challenging people in my life!  I’m sure you all have your “Woodpeckers”.

We have to realize that these “woodpeckers” of our lives were put into our natural habitat for a reason, just like these real woodpeckers who are referred to as, “ecosystem engineers” due to their ability of creating and significantly modifying and maintaining an ecosystem.  These woodpeckers in our lives are here to help form and change our personal ecosystems so that we become better people.

Maybe instead of shutting these woodpeckers out of our lives, we should take what they are saying about us and use their critiques to become better people.  Realize that what they are saying might have some truth to it.  Don’t let them get to you, or tear you down.  Put your ego aside and just let their pecking sink into your ecosystem.  Is there something that you could change or modify in your ecosystem from their constant pecking at you?  Is there a way that you could use their bad mouthing to make you a better person?  People who really know you aren’t going to listen to the woodpeckers of the world, but we could listen to some of what they say just to reflect on and maybe grow from.

It is proven that the impact that these fine feathered friends have on their associated forests is undeniable.  They carve holes in the trees for many other animals to live and survive.  Their job is almost second to none in our forests.  Sure it might sound annoying listening to them, but when you finally realize their true importance for our ecosystem, then you can tolerate them much more.

I’m a big Marianne Williamson fan, and I love this quote, “It takes courage…to endure the sharp pains of self discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives.”  We have to learn to use wood pecking as a form of self discovery!  Let them be the construction workers of your soul!

It’s time to let your ego go, and build up a tolerance to this constant pecking, and meditation definitely helps to strengthen your mind to withstand this torture.  Put your ego aside and not be hurt personally by this wood pecking, and focus on how you can let it improve you as a person and others around you, then this sound of pecking really becomes a blessing.  Just like the woodpecker is to the forest.  There are blessings in everything you go through, you just have to take the time to figure out what it is.

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Snot Your Happiness

I love teaching Social Studies to my class of ten year olds, especially when it is all about Ancient Civilizations.  Ancient Egypt would have to be my favorite of all because of all the incredible stories about their Pharaohs and the great artifacts that were left behind.  From the hieroglyphics and wall art to their great mummies that were found that tell such mystical stories about this period of time.

I especially love teaching these young minds about the mummification process, because the children are just amazed about what they believed.  How they stored all of their valuables in their tomb with them to take with them to use in their Afterlife.  How they removed all their organs to preserve them in jars, again to use in their Afterlife.  The funniest was what they did with the peoples’ brains.  They actually stuck a rod like devise up their nostrils and into their brains where they would then stir it around until the brain was liquified and then turn the corps over to let the brain drain out of their nose.

During this time period they believed the brain was a useless organ and its only purpose was to produce snot. My students loved hearing this and they were totally entertained that they could think that the brain was useless and only produced the mucus of our nose.

These Egyptians, however, were very smart people.  Look at the architecture that they created!  They were using molded bread as medicine years before penicillin was even invented.  They have many amazing creations, but so ignorant to the most important organ of our human body.

How many of us are exactly like these Egyptians?  Very intelligent, just don’t understand life at all?  We form these beliefs that we let rule our worlds and just like the grave robbers of Ancient Egypt, we let these beliefs steal our joy!

So many of us look for happiness in the size of our home, the cars we drive, the amount of money we have in our bank accounts, having a prestigious job, the endless supply of clothes we think we need, even the lavish food we eat.

We think we will be happy once we get that promotion at work.  Or maybe we think happiness is finding ourselves a new mate.  Many of us look outside of ourselves to find happiness and think someone else will make us happy, but how ancient of an idea is this?

Nobody or nothing is going to make you happy.  Only you can make you happy.  All these things that you think will bring happiness are just earthly things that definitely might bring you joy for a short period of time until your ego needs something bigger and better.   If you are letting your ego be the Pharaoh over your kingdom then your brain really does only supply your nose with snot, because you aren’t using it to find true happiness.

True happiness comes from all the little things in our lives.  Not how successful we are.  Not how many people we rule over.  Not how huge our pyramids are.  True happiness comes from within.  When you appreciate life for life itself.

It’s time to take control of our brains, and start using them for more than what the Ancient Egyptians thought this organ’s function was.  We now know much more about the importance of the brain.  We can control our brain and train it like any other muscle.  Through meditation, slowing life down, appreciating the little things in life and learning to love ourselves, we can start putting our brains to great use.

I am a huge fan of Lao Tsu, and I do love this quote from his Tao Te Ching: “Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are.  When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you.”

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Loving the Mother Within

Mother’s Day Weekend Ladies!  This Mother’s Day, I get to spend it at the Eastern Gymnastics Championships, in Ontario with my amazing daughter!  Not just as mother, but as her coach as well.  I’m very excited to share this experience with her, as any mother would be.  At the same time, my heart is torn because on this special weekend I am away from my home.  I’m not with my son or my husband.  Her sport takes her and I in one direction and his sport takes him and his father in another direction.  And so it is.

This has been our lives for many years now, and at first I found it very hard.  Especially on my ego.  The ego hates change, and makes you complain about your situation, which I was very famous for.  I would complain that we were being separated as a family; that I had to miss my son’s sports; that I couldn’t be everywhere at once.  My ego was up and running at full speed.

As our lives were changing, and our children were growing up, my ego was in full swing.  It started fixating on certain areas of my life, trying to make sure it was in control of every little detail that I had control over.  While my ego was hard at work, relationships in my life started to feel the strain, and things in my life started to crumble around me before my very eyes.  My ego had me convince to think that my happiness was in my family.  In my accomplishments.  In monetary things of life.  That my contentment was being separated as our family was pulled in different directions.

Over time and educating myself, I became aware of my ego and the damage that it is capable of in my life.  I had to abandon my ego and make many changes within myself and my family.  I had to evolve as a human if you will.  I had to make many conscious adjustments, and our relationships became a work in progress.  Every human and relationship has to evolve.  As I think about myself as a mother, man—have I ever evolved.  When I look back at myself as a wife, again, I’ve grown immensely.  All relationships have to change as you grow as mortal beings, that is the life of a human, but the ego hates change and will fight you every step of the way.

In A Course in Miracles it says, “The ego will therefore distort love, and teach you that love really calls forth the responses the ego can teach.  Follow its teachings, then, and you will search for love, but you will not recognize it.”

It also continues on to says, “You will undertake a journey because you are not at home in this world.  And you will search for your home whether you realize where it is or not.  If you believe it is outside you the search will be futile, for you will be seeking it where it is not.  You do not remember how to look within you for you do not believe your home is there.  Yet the Holy Spirit remembers it for you, and He will guide you to your home because that is His mission.  As He fulfills His mission He will teach you yours, for your mission is the same as His.  By hiding your brother home you are but following Him.”

How many of us search and search and search to find love?  All we want is to be loved to our cores?  Find this unconditional love that has been explained to us in Fairy Tales?  This love that we think we deserve?  This love that will change our lives forever?  This love that is pure bliss and makes our lives complete?  Why are we searching?  It is right inside of us all along.

The Universe has already given us everything we need to have the unconditional love we deserve—right inside of us.  The Divine Source has already given us a love that will change our lives forever—right inside of us.  Our Creator gave us everything necessary to make our lives complete—right inside of us.

It’s time to realize that we have all been seeking for love outside of us, where it isn’t!  I’m guilty of it!  I thought my husband was supposed to bring me this love.  I thought my children would supply me this love.  I was sure all my dreams would come true if I just worked hard enough at things.  But, in reality, all the love I needed was right inside of me.

Mother’s Day isn’t about your children showering you with love and affection.  It isn’t about your husband showing your how much he appreciates all you do for his children.  Sure, it helps, but the only thing you have to remember is that unconditional love that was given to you by the Holy Spirit and let him guide you home to that love.  I might be in Ontario, but I know that inside my home, lies all the love that I will ever need.  The love I have for myself.

You will never fully be able to love someone else until you finally arrive home to this love inside of yourself.  On this Mother’s Day weekend, please, give yourself a gift.  Go deep within and find the unconditional love that awaits for you when you finally let the ego go, and visit the place that will make your heart sing and your soul dance.  Your true inner self.  Your home forever!  I promise, you will need nothing else!

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Spring Clean Our Souls

Spring has finally sprung, and I don’t know about you but since the snow finally has dissolved, I have been on the war path to purge everything useless in my house!  It’s not only snow that accumulates over the winter months! I find in my house as the snow builds up outside, so does much unnecessary clutter inside.  I guess during this season I don’t take the time to remove these things from my surroundings and eventually I feel the walls of my home closing in on me.

I’ve always been a minimalist.  I have no problem donating, giving, or throwing things that aren’t of use to me any longer or giving them away to someone that would use it.  I enjoy space, and as we get the extra space outside from the snow melting the more I seem to crave more space in my house.  I want my home to feel free and spacious just like the great outdoors.  This is how I am most comfortable.

As I frantically attack each and every room of my house, it gives me time to think about the importance of spring cleaning our emotional lives as well.  How many of us carry around clutter in our hearts?  How many let life experiences fill our souls with bitterness, anger, grief, shame, or guilt?  These low vibrating emotions should have no place in your home, and you have to clean them out ASAP.  They do very damaging effects on our health, mind and well-being.

We all have regrets from past experiences that we keep stored away in our subconscious that has no need to be there, but you have to start to live in the now and not in the past.  Start to spring clean your subconscious and realize that these mistakes were exactly what you needed in your life at the exact time they happened in your life.  It was all in the divine plan.  Don’t hold onto them and store them away.  Your house has no need for these items, and it is time to clean them out of your mental home.  I promise you will never use them again.

Now that it is May, what better time to spring clean our souls!  We have to know that all the things of our past is our way of evolving.  It is our method of growing as a human.  It is the path that we needed to take to get to where we are today.  We don’t need to collect anything from these events to keep as momentums or souvenirs.  There is no need to be sentimental at all.  We just learn from these events and move on.  It is not necessary to store away any negativity from these events in our soul’s home!

I love the teachings in A Course in Miracles and this teaching is perfect for stressing the importance of removing this negative clutter in our minds, “Into this empty space, from which the goal of sin has been removed, is Heaven free to be remembered. Here its peace can come, and perfect healing take the place of death.”   T567

Please, take time to start to spring clean your soul and remove this thought of sin!  We don’t need to have any clutter from our past hanging around any longer.  It’s time to start living in the now.  Clean out those negative emotions from your past, throw them away and never look back.  Realize your past does not define who you are, rather who you are now is all that matters!

Your ego wants to hold you captive in your past and let your shame, guilt and bitterness steal your joy.  You can’t let this win.  Spring cleaning this ego out of your life will be liberating!  You have to learn to forgive yourself for your past mistakes, but the first step in learning to forgive yourself is learning to forgive others.

You can’t let what other people do affect you in any way, even if it seems like it is against you.  You also can’t store away the bitterness and anger towards others if you don’t want to hold onto your own negative emotions.  It is also important to let go of the negative emotions that others brought out in you.  It might be a hard concept to grasp, but you have to realize that was the path the person was on at the time that they hurt you.  It was what they needed to do for themselves to grow and it really is nothing personal.  It was their worldly walk, but sadly they had to do it to someone, and you just happened to be the person.  Look at it in the positive sense.  You were the universe’s way of helping someone take a step closer to transforming themselves into all that they were created to become.

Once you spring clean your soul and free yourself from this ego, and the thoughts that your past mistakes are not forgiven, you will be able to remember the beautiful Heaven that is inside of each and every one of us.  That is when your true peace will be found.  It’s really the most liberating feeling when you clean out the things in your life that serve no purpose and are not needed any more.  Give it a try and see for yourself!

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