Here is a link to my latest article featured in elephant journal:
Here is a link to my latest article featured in elephant journal:
To feel and be truly successful in all aspects of your life, make a commitment to connect and take care of the source that fuels it all.
Growing up, we are taught by our parents and teachers about the importance of education, going to college, getting a good job, and making money; we are taught about nutrition, what to eat and what not to eat; we are taught to exercise; we are taught about relationships and getting married; we are taught about having a bucket list and pursuing our dreams; and, we are even taught to be good to others through acts of kindness and charitable deeds. Education, career, health, relationships/family, giving back, hobbies/play – we make plans and goals for all these areas in life but at the center and heart of it all is something we are taught very little about, our core, our essence, our being – the energy that fuels it all. Our core is at the center and is a part of all elements in our life, and it is what brings each element life and meaning. As significant as this is, rarely is it talked about in our schools and homes, rarely are we taught or do we make the effort to care for our internal selves. Perhaps there is a misconception that this is something that should come naturally to us, and for some it does, however, for most of us it doesn’t and we often remain clouded by past experiences and negative emotions.
What is Our Core? It’s the energy and power (some people call it soul, spirit, center) within you, it is the energy that fuels everything in your life. When the core is taken care of, and allowed to shine through, its energy is insurmountable and provides positive fuel allowing an individual to soar in all aspects of life. When it is not taken care of and nourished, one may be “successful” in certain areas of life but that success may not feel satisfying or enough.
This feeling of not having enough and this urge for wanting more, is something we can all relate to, whether we have felt it in our own lives or seen it in others. From the outside, we may seem like we have it all, the beautiful home, successful career, great marriage, lovely family – but deep within there is a level of dissatisfaction, a feeling that something is missing. Often, we don’t recognize or acknowledge this feeling, because surely on paper when everything looks good we shouldn’t be feeling this way. We ignore the feeling and continue on in our lives, unintentionally seeking outside sources to fill this void. These sources come in all forms and could be climbing the career or social ladder, more money, bigger house, purchasing of materialistic things, acting out, or even unintentional acts of how we treat people by competing with or judging them. However, no matter how many temporary pleasures or outside sources your pursue, if you have not taken care of yourself, and your intentions, thoughts and actions are not coming from a centered place, the feeling will keep coming back and that void will not be filled. To have true satisfaction and success in your life, everything should come from the core – and that is from a core that is taken care of, nurtured and balanced. At the core is an immense energy of love, truth, peace, compassion, belief, and faith and when tuned into it, it overpowers the negative emotions that hold us back in life like fear, hatred, bitterness, worry, anxiety, and sadness. If you get connected to your core, nurture it and take care of it, you will start to see your true authentic self and all other aspects in your life will fall into place. Coming from a balanced and centered core will bring you the greatest results and level of satisfaction in all elements of your life – relationships, career, home, financial, health, hobbies/playtime.
Connecting to the core has enhanced every aspect of my life and is why I have made such a strong commitment to personal growth and advocate others to do so as well. There is a desire in each of us to evolve and grow spiritually and find purpose and meaning in our lives and this starts from within and by understanding and connecting to ourselves. Unfortunately for many of us, this is something we have to learn and train ourselves to do, and like any new skill it may take time. However, the time is worth the outcome and it is worth learning and teaching others, including our children. Imagine a world where we place just as much emphasis on personal growth and spirituality as we do other things in life, including making money. Imagine a world where people were taught early on how to deal with anger, fear, jealousy, anxiety, and worry and replace those emotions with peace, love, compassion, faith, belief, and forgiveness. Imagine a world where people’s actions came from a centered and balanced place that reflected their true authentic self – our world and the people in it would be kinder, happier, peaceful and more fulfilled.
How do you connect to yourself? Start by clearing the noise and clutter in your head through meditation, yoga, and/or being in nature; understand yourself and beware of your intentions, thoughts and actions, and make sure they reflect who you really are; and set yourself free from your past by healing old wounds, forgiving and letting go.
We always look outwardly for help, answers, affirmations and approval. We look to other people including our friends when making decisions, we go to counselling/therapy for solutions when things aren’t going our way, we look to our teachers and elders for guidance on what is considered right and wrong, and we even look to the entertainment world for role models on what is hip and new, and the latest way of doing things. While there is nothing wrong with looking to others for help and guidance, as their wisdom can be very useful in helping us in our journey, we need to remember that there is one person we often overlook and fail to consult when searching for answers, and that is US. We have an amazing power within us that is often not recognized by our own selves. This power can be used to heal, both physically and emotionally, to understand yourself, to guide you in the right direction, to make decisions, to improve relationships, and to help manifest your vision. While we can go to others for comfort, advice, and help in processing decisions, we are the only one that knows what is good for us, how we want to live our life, and what is the right decision to make. I am not saying we shouldn’t share with others or seek guidance, but we should always combine it with our own inner reflection, work, and knowledge.
The key is to recognize this power within and tap into it. This takes time, patience and an understanding of how this inner power works. Sometimes we choose not to tap into this power and do the “work” because it is easier for someone else to do the work for us.
I personally started to learn about the “power within” after going to therapy a handful of times. I remember the first time I went, I liked the thought of getting help, comfort, and answers. However, the experience was quite the opposite. For me, therapy was so textbook and there was one standard response for each situation. I felt therapists were listening and giving me a very clinical diagnosis without any connection or understanding of me or the situation I was in. I remember one therapist telling me “well this is just the way everybody does it,” and I thought “well just because everybody does it, does that make it right, and does that make it the only way?” I quickly realized traditional therapy was not for me, so I looked for other resources, and in doing so, made a connection to the inner self – I learnt and grew more from this than I did in any therapy session. From this connection, I knew I wanted a way to truly grow, advance, heal, and learn to live my life to its fullest. I realized this could only be accomplished from within and I had all the tools and resources to do so.
I tap into my power by using the “power tools” in my internal tool box. All tools require some level of skill to fully master, and I use different tools for different circumstances and to different degrees as appropriate.
“Our Power Tools”
Strength – We all have unbelievable strength within us to allow us to overcome anything. We tap into our Strength tool when we are overwhelmed and feel we can’t overcome a tough situation. Other times we may need it to a lesser degree, for example, to bite our tongues before expressing a negative emotion or telling someone what we really think about them. Whatever the situation, we all have it within us and need to call upon it.
Intuition – I love this tool when I am able to use it. However, for me it is one of the hardest to use, and requires a skill that I have not yet mastered. If you are of clear mind and are able to connect with yourself and are aware of the energy within and around you, your intuition can be a very powerful resource and guide.
Knowledge – We all have knowledge of who we are and what we want. If you take the time to sit with yourself, clear your mind and the noise, and understand yourself – you will know what is right for you and what steps you need to take next. Whether it is to heal, improve a relationship, improve your health or make a career or financial decision – all answers lie within you. If you are having a difficult time finding them, it is because you have created blocks within yourself that don’t allow you to see who you are.
Courage – The most important tool in your toolbox is courage – courage to make the right decision that is based on what truly reflects you and who you are. Often, we know what the right thing to do is, but we just don’t have the courage to make the decision. This could be for a variety of reasons including fear, worrying about what other people may think, or worrying about hurting or disappointing someone.
Love – I put this in the toolbox because whenever you are coming from a place of fear, anger, sadness, worry or any other negative emotion, the “power within you” is diminished and all the other tools become less effective. When you feel any negative emotion, turn to love, (love for yourself, love for others), feel and express gratitude, and practice compassion. When you do this, your attitude will change, you will feel different and you become more powerful.
Remember to create anything it takes more than one tool, and to use these tools to their fullest potential requires skill and practice!
– Live and Be at a Higher Level –
Life changes in a moment and anything can happen to anyone at any time. How we handle life changing moments and let them define us, is completely up to us.
We have all had and will continue to have “life changing moments”, whether it is losing a loved one, the end of a relationship, loss of a job or illness. These moments are unexpected and can throw us off the “path” that we were travelling on and the very destination we envisioned getting to. While we don’t often have control over all the events in our lives, we do have control over how we react to the them and how we let them define us. Yes – I believe all events in our lives define us to some extent, but how they define us whether it be positive or negative is up to us. I also believe that there are some events that you don’t ever forget or completely get over, like the loss of a loved one, and that is ok, we don’t need to always forget or get over something, but with awareness and proper care we can heal, learn, grow, and move forward.
I have had several of these defining moments in my life including the loss of my mom when I was young, which completely transformed my childhood. Dealing with loss as a child is difficult because we often lack the level of awareness of an event’s true impact on our lives and our character. Losing a parent made me a strong person who really appreciated life and the people around me, but it also made me a very scared and detached person who feared people leaving me. As a child, I did not have the level of awareness to understand the impacts such an event was having on me, nor did I have the ability to change it growing up. However, as an adult, dealing with a defining moment was different, or at least I was determined for it to be different and to handle it with more awareness. So, when my world came crashing down, when my husband of 20 years decided to leave our family for someone else, I made a decision to turn what was happening into an opportunity – an opportunity to learn and grow. Fortunately for me, I was in a place where I was aware enough to know that I wanted more for my life and I did not want what was happening to hold me back in any way. For me, healing, growing, and living to my fullest potential started by understanding and connecting to my core and once I started to do that all else fell into place.
Here is what I learnt along the way and the promises I kept to myself:
Show Up To Life Each Day – I made a promise to myself to show up to life everyday no matter what was going on or how hard it got. Life is a gift and each day is a blessing, and even in the darkest of days you can find light, whether it be in the laughter of a child, enjoying nature, a friendship, or a hobby – find something you can connect with and that brings you joy.
Change The Song Playing In Your Head – After going through a myriad of emotions, including shock, disbelief, worry, fear and even the desperation of wanting to save my family, I made a very conscious decision to change the song. I have always been a strong believer in the power of the mind and each person’s ability to write their own story, and it all starts with your thoughts – so stop the negative song and replace it with a new one.
Accept What Is Happening And Let Go – Accept what is happening to you, where you are and stop trying to change and fix things, and most importantly stop blaming other people for where you are. As soon as I accepted and let go, a huge burden was lifted, which allowed me to start to get clarity and answers in my life, and it allowed me to begin to see what was next.
Share – Rally your troops or your “angels” as my dear friend calls them. Its ok to share and let your closest friends know what is going on, none of us have perfect lives and all of us are hurting in some way. We should be able to share with our friends and rely on them for support and comfort, without feeling embarrassed or ashamed. True friends won’t judge or gossip about you, and for those friends that do, Jack Canfield said it best – “every time we judge someone else, it is just a projection of our own self judgment”.
Believe In A Greater Power –Gabby Bernstein puts it so well “the universe has your back” and will give you the necessary support to achieve anything you want. Whether you want to call it God, Grace, the Universe or something else, believe in a greater power and believe that greater power is for you. The moment I let go and embraced where I was at, and believed in a higher power, my “angels”, “teachers” and “messengers” all started to show up in my life. I was being supported and getting all that I needed. At just the right time, the right people and circumstances were coming into my life and helping me achieve all that I wanted.
Understand Everything Happens For A Reason – While you may not see the reason right away, everything happens for a reason, sometimes there is a lesson to be learnt, a new journey to begin, or a new direction to be pushed into. Believe that there is a reason and live life as if it is happening FOR you not TO you. As I recently heard Arianna Huffington say “Live life as if everything is rigged in your favor”. You may not see the reason right away but if you embrace change and growth, your setbacks and so called failures can be the foundation of your greatest successes.
As one year ends and a new one begins people often reflect about what they have accomplished over the past year, their highs and lows, most memorable moments and things they have achieved.
As 2016 came to an end, everyone around me started talking about their highlights of the past year – getting married, getting a new job, having a baby, traveling, starting their own business, celebrating a milestone birthday etc. – this got me thinking about my past year, what I had accomplished and where I was in life. In 2016, I got divorced and was now a single mom of two, working full time, and trying to keep up with it all. For the first time in 20 years, I was alone and on my own in raising my kids, making decisions, figuring out the finances, and learning to do a myriad of other things that I had depended on a husband to do for so many years.
For me this past year was not marked by any major milestone, there was no new relationship, extravagant trip, new job or promotion, or new house. There were no fabulous parties and crazy nights out or “memorable moments” in the traditional sense. However, as I started to think about my past year, I felt a great sense of joy and peace that I had never felt before, and I realized this was because I accomplished and achieved the greatest thing…ME. Through all the drama, heartbreak and hurt from the past year, I learned to heal, forgive those that have let me down, love myself, and let go of all that serves no purpose including the past. I learned to soar, to believe in a power greater than me, to discover who I truly am and what is at my core. Most importantly, I learned to live in the moment, and realized how to make all my dreams happen. Though this past year for me wasn’t marked by any major milestone by society’s traditional definition, I achieved one of the most significant accomplishments, one that brings me to a higher level, and a new life filled with “true” moments, peace and pure love.
When my life was suddenly turned upside down, I desperately sought help and answers on how to move on and achieve inner peace and happiness. Once I was on my way to achieve this, I became more aware and compassionate of others and I started to notice that all around I could see people in pain, pain they didn’t even know they were actually in, because often it was being masked with external and often temporary pleasures (partying, drinking, seeking attention/love/acceptance from others or indulging themselves in materialistic things – not that there is anything wrong with materialistic things but people often do it for the wrong reasons). All around I could see people making choices based on intentions they probably weren’t intending to have, choices based on hurt, desperation, lack of love for oneself, and lack of feeling complete. So, when 2017 began I made a resolution to share my journey and what I had learned, with the hope of bringing more awareness to others and in doing so helping others live a fulfilled and happy life.
With that resolution in mind, I am starting this blog and will cover topics related to taking care of your core, growing to a higher level and achieving all you want. My hope is to make people stop, think about themselves, what they are doing, what they really want in life, how they want to live it, and to start to make a change at the core, even if it is just being honest with oneself. My hope is that my experiences, my struggles, my lessons, and my wins will resonate with some, and help them realize their true potential, grow, and live a meaningful and balanced life.
Journey with me to a higher level!