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What Came From The True Self Prompt on My Soul Selfie Challenge

This week I’m in the midst of hosting my fourth Soul Selfie Challenge meant to spur and spark people to dig a little deeper and do some self-inquiry on what they believe about themselves or their lives or life in general. It’s about inner snapshots, not outer ones. We are looking to engage with each other and show a little of our true self.

One of the hardest jobs hosting an Instagram challenge is to come up with prompt words that will inspire thoughtful responses. And where I have picked more specific words in the past that give clear images to the participants, I was a little more vague this second Fall challenge. But the results have been truly inspirational. What Came From The True Self Prompt on My Soul Selfie Challenge on Shalavee.com

The words we’ve covered so far are Balance, True Self , and Choice. And boy howdy, have we got loads of spark thoughts to load into our brains! I was most intrigued by what I thought on the prompt True Self. That perhaps defining this would be of help. This is what I said,

Hmm. Who do I think I am?

Perhaps my true self is the person I think I am. Or is it the person I strive to be? Or perhaps she’s the gal I am under the layers of crap I’m attempting to strip off? Layers of me that I have no use for.

Underneath, I sense the girl I was when I was little, the forgotten one. Maybe my true self is her with some hard-earned wisdom layered on top.

But in the end, I suspect my true self is exactly who I am at this very moment. A girl with a passion for community, an unfailing sense of fairness, an insatiable search for truth, and a compulsion to create. Ever-changing, in search of answers, … Hi . “

And the same day, as I am reading a book by Rhonda Britten (still) called Change Your Life in 30 Days (or however long it takes to read the book), in a chapter on how the words you choose have such power over how you feel about you and your life, I read this :

Your true self isn’t afraid. Your true self wouldn’t put you down. Your true self doesn’t think money is the answer. Your true self isn’t interested in how much time you do or do not have. Your true self makes choices. Your true self understands. Your true self includes others and wants to connect more than anything. Your true self empowers. Your true self relaxes, enjoys herself, and has fun. Be willing to be your true self.”

I am momentarily struck by the truth in this. I am transfixed by the power of words that ring true. I aspire to be more of that person. And I adore all the truth that is pouring out from an ever-growing community of truth seekers through this challenge. This is what I live for.

 

If you are on Instagram, search the hashtag #Soul_Selfie and read a few of these posts. People can in fact be real. It doesn’t have to be a world of fake-o happy flat lays. Pretty pictures are marvelous and I want some meaty brain food to chew on while I look at them. Thanks to all the participants and to the newer ones too! Wow and Gosh! Because self-development is what all the cool kids are doing!

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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How I Make Your Triumphs into My Losses

I feel bad about the way I’ve treated you. You are such a good friend but I have a guilty secret. Sometimes I put you up on a pedestal and then use your accomplishments to feel bad about myself. I want to celebrate with you and feel like your equal, but I just end up feeling inferior. And I feel that I’ve put a great big blockage into our relationship.

Remember when you announced that amazing break you had last year? I know you worked hard to get it and I was immediately conflicted between wanting to celebrate with you and wanting to be soooo jealous of you. I hope you didn’t notice I made it all about me. I’d be mortified if you noticed. So I just keep my jealousy to myself and live my own life of desperation and futility.Playing on the floor on Shalavee.com

I work so hard to come up with brave tasks to tackle. I challenge my fears at every corner doing the things I dread most in order to improve myself. But then another post comes up that tells me you had something else great happen to your career or your house or your family. And then I spiral. I compare your outsides to my insides and always come up with the crappier end of the equation.

I’m not the only one I know who does this. You might do it too. And that’s maybe why I bring this up. Because if you knew I was doing it and I knew we were doing it together then maybe we’d have a better time of feeling good about being right where we are. Accomplishments and failures alike, we are just all coexisting and hoping for happiness. the tunnel on shalavee.com

So I promise the next time I want to take your success and add it to my failure column, I’ll stop. And I’ll try to remember that there were probably many items and things in your life that didn’t go so well too. That you didn’t share those but if we talked, you might. So for now, I’m going to value my life on my own merits and not on the demerits I got from your good fortune.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit. If you Sign up for my newsletter in the sign up box over there to the right, you’ll receive a first look-see at my Creative Mothers’ Manifesto! Heartfelt impassioned words on the need for expressing creativity for your soul and being a better mother for it.

Summer ’16 Continues

We’ve been at this Summer thing for about a month and a week. And thankfully it has felt less laborious as previous Summers. I have better self-esteem than I used to so I’m not rushing to see all the bad things about to befall me. These things will or won’t befall me but at least we can have a plan and some fun in the meantime.Emma and Fiona eating dogs on shalavee.com

Emma and Eamon on Shalavee.com

I’ve enjoyed the lazier feeling of the mornings. Children have played together quite nicely which, with their age difference, seems miraculous. Fiona screams about everything all the time anyway so I’m trying to just ignore her and let Eamon handle it.Fiona and Emma on the alligator on shalavee.com

The kitty cats got themselves a Summer cold aka upper respiratory infections. They have created a soundtrack of wet sneezes for a week as the first one is getting over hers and the second two are following. Luckily we humans have yet to suffer any colds or flues this year that were “bad”, knock on wood. I keep telling the children they can’t catch the kitty’s colds.stormy sky over Greektown leaving Baltimore on Shalavee.com

Summer firepit on Shalavee.com

And so very exciting, last week in between kitty sneezes, this black snake showed up in my second floor hallway. After placing several calls to men I knew who might come to save me, I went ahead and saved myself. Used the bin to trap him/her and then he/she was escorted outside to freedom.

Hey mr black snake on Shalavee.com Mark’s tomatoes are doing so well that he just had to fortify the cages yesterday with posts lest the monstrous plants knock themselves over in their sprawl. Fruit should be forthcoming within the month. I can’t wait for real tomatoes ! But I’ll have to.

painting with Unky John on Shalavee.com

Peanut gallery for the fireworks on Shalavee.com

Unky John and Fiona in the dingy on Shalavee.com

Goofballs of all sizes in Summer on Shalavee.com

Our holidays with our friends and family have been so satisfying. Happy to see and be with our loved ones. The children know that they’ve got lots of people who love them and I can’t think of a greater gift of knowledge to give them.

After our vacation to Ocean City, I got the obligatory sunburn but we’ve more visiting to do, a few more camps to attend, and a few more beach visits to sneak in. I have yet to eat a steamed Maryland blue crab so that needs remedying. Perhaps a crab feast again on my birthday! That’ll be the grand finale to the season. My big 50. fireworks over the creek on Shalavee.com

Hope your holidays, or winter days, are treating you well. That you are doing your best and letting go of the rest. And when you’ve caught up, you relax. That’s where I want to be.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit. If you Sign up for my newsletter in the sign up box over there to the right, you’ll receive a first look-see at my Creative Mothers’ Manifesto! Heartfelt impassioned words on the need for expressing creativity for your soul and being a better mother for it.

The City Girl

I barreled over the Chesapeake Bay on up the highway to my hometown city of Baltimore.

The Western Shore on shalavee.com

On the way to meet up with some old friends and journey up to see another friend now living in Pennsylvania. 

Howard Street in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

I sped through the city. The quickest way through the city to my friend’s house was right through the neighborhood that I grew up in, Waverly.

the neighborhood where I grew up in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

the neighborhood where I grew up in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

the neighborhood where I grew up in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

the neighborhood where I grew up in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

And I was thrilled to see that there was a new library there. So much beautiful light now. I got tears in my eyes.

Another hour plus driving and we were in New Oxford Pennsylvania visiting our friend Rose and her lovely kitchen shop.

And then feasting on green chile and psole stew at her house and toasting ourselves.

My Hon alum date on shalavee.com

My Hon alum date on shalavee.com

And then all too soon, I made the journey back. Through the city of my youth which doesn’t look itself at all these days. I’m glad.

The city I grew up in Baltimore on Shalavee.com

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

I Read What I Write and Discover Myself

I write to discover, and then I forget myself again. It’s been a really interesting journey discovering who I am and what I know. Then, like so much dust churned up, the ideas dissipate back into the computer files. The complexity of me is lost to myself, to others.

I envy my blog’s readers as they know me better than I often know myself. I find it equally interesting that many of my friends never read my blog. They must figure they’ll catch up with me when they see me. Or maybe they don’t want to know too much about me for fear they may not like me as much as they do now. Fiona and Me on shalavee.com

The me here on the blog is more “me-er” than in real life. A kind gentleman reader fussed recently that he felt bad for me always being so down on myself when I come across as such a confident person in person. I explained that with three posts on the blog weekly with subjects tending towards the wobbly, the picture of me is skewed and concentrated. But in this way, I can show that my humanity is here and so the reader can allow for their humanity too.

I never ever imagined that writing would lead me to such a wealth of self-knowledge and acceptance. A deeper understanding of self and the kindness of people in general has given me renewed faith in both myself and others which is exquisite as liquid hope. Opening up to others’ thoughts and worlds has given my brain sustenance and gifted me all sorts of friendships with all sorts of people including myself. And a boundless bounty of perspectives. Fiona's hair on shalavee.com

I made a passing comment in the beginning of the year that I wanted to read my writing daily. In that way, I could remember what I do and why it is I think others should really read it too. Because sometimes when I read my stuff, I think I rock. Hope you are enjoying at least this one post. There are 700 more posts hidden and awaiting my to read and recycle them. Acknowledging that I am a writer has been one of the greatest gifts to myself. And it’s gonna keep on giving until I keel over.

If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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