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On Gratitude : Part Two

I was talking on the phone with my husband. He said, “Did you call the gas company?” at the exact same time the gas company truck was driving by my window at 40 miles per hour. I laughed, told him what had just happened, and wondered out loud how often the Universe is trying to let you know stuff that you just aren’t paying attention enough to understand.

Gratitude isn’t just for the now,

it’s for all the stuff that didn’t but could have happened.

I can tell you I’m profoundly grateful for the support I received from my community when the chips were down a couple of weeks ago and my blog blew up. For Danielle fixing my site when it got eaten by a Viagra ad. For my friends showing up to celebrate my birthday. For all the birthday wishes I received from all the people online and off! And for my children for being sweet and healthy and creative.

But I’m also grateful for just being here. For not having been taken out of this beautiful world by any of the people I made bad choices with or by the drugs I took. Grateful I am healing from my traumatic childhood and am lucky enough to have a therapist who gets me. For the food in my fridge all of which I didn’t grow or pay for. And for the ability to post words I want to say unedited out into the inter-webs.

Thank you life.

And 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.

Your Community

The beginning of the year found me dreading my duties ahead. I had somehow volunteered to spearhead our fellowship’s fundraiser and I was not excited. My ego was dreadfully afraid of failing and two wise men gave me some extraordinary advice. One said, “your community will show up for you” and the other said, “if it fails, it’s your community that will have failed not you”. Permission and perspective were gained immediately.

 

Two days ago, I sent out an email requesting help with the food for this Cuban themed event. I needed some traditional cooking as well as some “buy it” and “pour it” in a bowl types of supplies. And within 12 hours, my people showed up and were on board for all the items. All of them. I could have cried.Your Community on Shalavee.com

 

Asking for anything is tremendously hard. You risk rejection when you ask. But when you are asking on behalf of a community, it feels like double jeopardy. Your good name and your cause are at stake. But our egos somehow forget that the Community concept means we are collectively responsible. In fact, those who care about the community as well are so glad that they’re not the one doing all the work, they’ll be glad to grab those chips or make that cake to show their gratitude for the efforts being made.

 

Equally important, how else can you learn your humility life lessons but through being of service to your community? Be that community your church, your school, your county, or gender, showing up holds so much power and impacts everyone. The efforts show us our value and shows others their value to us. In this instance, being in this process showed me how generous and loving my fellowship is when my fear of failure wanted to be my message.

Your Community on Shalavee.com

I will be immensely grateful to have accomplished this Herculean task and proven that I could. But I will also try not to lose sight that I must trust in my community as they have shown me their honor and reliability. Those are good reasons to keep being devoted. And I wanted to make sure that this lesson was not left unspoken.

If you enjoyed what you read, please 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.

My Creativity Workshop in the Fall of 2017

Developing and leading the Creativity workshop on November 18th of this year, 2017, renewed my understanding of my purpose. All the self-trust and self-esteem work I’ve done has naturally led to me valuing my creativity. The more I read and the more I write about both self-development and creativity, the more I understand the entwined nature of our true and creative selves.

And I now understand the same fear that threatens to keep us from our truest and most authentic self is the same as that which keeps us from our most creative selves. I find this kind of knowledge is too juicy to keep to oneself. Because if you can separate yourself from your fear and feelings just long enough to make a better choice that makes you feel better, at least you know you have a choice.

Previously, I have conducted one other workshop several years ago on blogging. And as that was a success at showing me I could teach a workshop, this one was more about what I felt passionate about. These are the subjects that have changed my life drastically. The theories and understanding that I have developed were earned by me. And I can see that what I know and feel may be of help to someone else looking to free themselves from the anguish of anxiety and blocked creativity.

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

I started the workshop by asking people to describe creativity. To put a value on it in their minds is to make it worth pursuing. These dozen attendees were there because they already valued creativity and yet, in our separated worlds, we may not realize it means as much to others. Hearing others say how you feel is very validating. We then jumped into what held us back from creativity, claiming words that described our blocks and our fears. And again, we owned what we knew was keeping us from this goal we wanted and heard what other people had struggles with. A sudden sense of community felt formed.

I shared my humanity and told a story of how anxiety had gripped me while driving on my way to a creative event once. I spoke about the cruelty we treat our inner children with when we deny or criticize their natural need to play. I gave them words and concepts about fear of being outcast and faith in our authentic selves and the kindness of permission to play versus the cruelty of not allowing for it. And then we got to the hands-on fun part where we applied ourselves to this process.

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

First, we created permission slips based on a blocked creative task citing our creative desire and then writing through our blocks to achieve that. And then we created authority badges claiming ourselves and our talents as creatives regardless of talent.  It was wondrous to watch this roomful of adults grab markers and glitter and paper and create physical representations of their entitlement to be creative.

My takeaway? I am onto something. There is a simple equation here about our true inner children being allowed to be unequivocally ourselves. That we’ve been so programmed to be productive and ready for disaster that day after day we deny ourselves our true identities, a moment to indulge in “pointless’ fun activities. And day after day, hope leaks from our souls as we remain imprisoned in our shoulds and can’ts.

 

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

My Creativity Workshop Fall of 2017 on Shalavee.com

I have a strong sense that this kind of self-permission and soul tuning is necessary for our world to heal. That we can’t be an authentic nation of people if we are not acting as our truest selves and in our own interests. And that creative living and listening to our intuition will serve to make us stronger in every application.

I will be revamping my content and offering this workshop again next year sometime. The potential to awaken people’s insights and intuitions is tantalizing. And I am proud and love to know that I have contributed what I could to the healing of people’s creative souls.

 

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.

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.

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