Tuesday, December 28, 2010

7 Lessons I Plan To Keep With Me For 2011

These last few years have been filled with ups and (too many) downs, poor health and deep spiritual awakenings.   As 2010 draws to a close I am surrounded by peace and calmness that feels so good and dare I say, natural?  Yesterday, my friend commented on my Facebook post with "Shanti" (definition: peace and tranquility).   Later that day, my Angel card reading was the Shanti Angel.  Today, I find a Morning Dove in my garage (the dove being the most recognized symbol of peace).   I love the Law of Synchronicity and I do believe I am ready to be in this place of peace.

So far, my experiences have taught me several lessons (some new ones and some old ones that were re-confirmed).  I thought I would share what I plan to keep for 2011 (in no particular order).

  1. NO is a perfectly good answer.  Never fear asking questions or trying something new.  I have come to see it as God telling me, "No, Maria, good try but you must go in another direction."  NO holds great power.  Not only does it guide you to where you are supposed to go--it keeps your brain clear.  You will never be left with "what if I tried" or "I wonder if."  NO has a way of clearing all that right up freeing your mind to explore more of what God wants you to experience.  My Dad taught me that when I was 18 and it has stayed with me ever since.
  2. Trust my feelings.  No matter what I am doing or saying, if it feels good to me then I know I'm on the right track.  If it doesn't -- I WON'T.  It's that simple.
  3. Surround myself with whatever keeps me feeling good.  I keep my spirit up by surrounding myself with a variety of spiritual people and messages (via tweets, radio shows and books).  I keep it going through Feng Shui, Reiki, my work and my writing.  One new age self-help book won't do it--I must act to keep it going.
  4. Gratitude.  Before I step out of bed, I give thanks for another day and for all my blessings.  Before I fall asleep I give thanks, again.  Before I eat, I give thanks. This simple, internal and personal act has revealed miracle after miracle.  If I'm not deeply grateful for what I have at the moment, how can I possibly welcome new blessings? I think I would be wasting time if I focused on what I didn't have and then (even worse) feel bad about it.  Gratitude keeps me humble and happy and awakens the beauty of who I am and where I am at the moment.  Life is about the journey--I won't dare miss out on it.
  5. Meditation.    I have learned that I hold the answers.  The more I meditate the more I have confirmed this for myself. Meditation equals calm equals better attitude (a definite plus for someone with a strong personality like myself).  By the way, you CAN meditate for as little as two minutes and if that's all the time you have, I highly recommend doing so.
  6. See with my heart.  When I find myself hurt or bothered or annoyed by someone I stop and see them through my heart.  A new perspective will come about and it clarifies it all for me.  Simple and true.
  7. Remove NEED and HATE from my vocabulary.  This is a two for one deal. Simply stated, NEED indicates a "lack of."  My life is abundant and lacks nothing. Sure, I have desires and wants....but I don't NEED.  Do you see the difference?   As for HATE...well, if God put it on this earth who am I to HATE it?  For that matter, I must have loved it first if I am going to feel anything that resembles its opposite, right?  Figure out your feelings before you get to HATE mode--you have a chance to change the course of direction and learn something about yourself.  I'll give credit to my Dad for this lesson, too.  I was only a child when he shared this with me.   A side note for my friends:  if you catch me using these words, call me out on it!  After all, practice makes perfect.

Wishing you a 2011 filled with blessings, prosperity and a whole lot of love and laughter.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Finding Inspiration and Staying Positive Even When You Hate Your Job

I came across a question this week in my Facebook newsfeed asking, "Who has influenced you in your business?"  As I thought about the many people I have encountered throughout my working career the person I came up with was the one I least expected.

In the 90s, I was steadily climbing the non-profit organization ladder eventually becoming an Executive Director for a national non-profit group.  Most of my 10 years there were about absolutely LOVING what you do more than the paycheck.   Because I loved our mission and our purpose, my work reflected it and so it quickly transitioned to an executive position.

In that promotion, love shortly grew to a 9 to (way past) 5 drudge.  The mission turned into hiring, firing, accounting, documentation, managing, reports and pretty much a lot of stuff that had very little to do with the mission itself.   My only consolation was that if I didn't keep things running like a smooth-oiled machine, the organization and it's employees could not continue to work on the actual cause.

The executive position meant direct interaction with the board of directors and their office politics.  If you've ever seen Apprentice with Donald Trump, then you can understand a bit of my cut-throat experience in the board room.  In that interaction, more than ever before, I had to work closely with someone who...well...I'll just say it like it is...was a dirty, morally corrupt, sexually driven, mind-game expert who loved only himself and his ability to manipulate--a narcissist.  (I will call him Joe for the purpose of this blog).

Be that as it may, Joe had a passion to write and (of course) to see his name in print.  His passion was so much so that along with his own law firm, his active volunteer-ship as a board member, he also taught English Composition at one of the world's preeminent universities.   During my time at the organization, Joe asked me to write a news-release regarding a study produced by one of our advisors. What? Me?  "I don't write." I told Joe.  "Yes, you do" he said, "you express yourself beautifully, now just do it on paper."

I was shaking in my boots.  For sure, this was going to be the end of my career. Joe was going to see exactly how dumb I really was.  A flood of memories rushed over me from my school days when teachers, students and even my own family members poked fun at my writing.  I was criticized so much so that I believed writing was something I would never master.  It's like loving to sing with all your heart and soul in the shower but you would never do it in public.

Horrified, I turned in my news release with a warning that I was not one to write such things.  I recommended he choose someone else for the project so that it is done well and for "the greater good of the organization." Hey, it sounded good!  Joe took my draft and I left his office only to be called back in 10 minutes later.  He said to me, "I am going to work with you.  We will do this project together and I'll teach you exactly what I teach my students."  Huh?  I turned into his little pet project.  Even though I knew this was purely feeding his own ego--I was just happy I wasn't fired. Things were looking up.


"Energy flows where attention goes." -- James Arthur Ray.


What does energy have to do with hating your job?  Everything. Going to work and hating the environment, your co-workers, your job description, your boss (or some or all of these things) only keeps the negative energy flow in motion day after day and slows you from moving forward in your career.  Appreciate, appreciate, appreciate. I see now that people and experiences are brought to you divinely and with purpose. We may not be able to see it right away, but it's enough knowing that it is. It will reveal itself when it is divinely meant for you to see it.  Sure, I could have quit the moment my job turned into a drudge or because of one narcissist. Then what?  The action of quitting would have been because I was feeling unappreciative and negative about the moment and the person--and as energy likes to do--it would have continued it's same path elsewhere.

I eventually left that job, but it was never because I hated it.  I left for different reasons and with a deep sense of gratitude for all that I had learned there.  I sit here writing in awe as I think about life's twists and turns.   In the past, writing for a living was a pipe-dream.  I had no confidence in myself or my ability to even consider this venue for myself.  I am deeply appreciative of Joe.  He helped me to write and most important, Joe reignited my childhood dream of writing.  Today, I am constantly composing something in my head when I catch myself drifting in a daydream.

Blogging is essential to what I do and aside from all of Joe's issues in the office (and my constant effort to stay away from it), he turned out to be a valuable asset and the one I think about most as I consider who influenced me in my business.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Rough Waters Are A Good Sign: The Downside Of The Law Of Attraction Is Really Up

I've been tossing the idea for this post for some time now and wondered how I could thoughtfully write this piece.  It just so happens that in the last month or so, many people have come to me with similar experiences feeling confused, sad and miserable.  I now choose to write this piece for them and for me.

Yearning to live an improved quality of life by welcoming more joy, love and spirit -- how then -- can I suddenly and almost out of nowhere, be hit with a ton of bricks as one or more individuals toss a load of anger and (simply put) crap your way?  Anger, arguments, blame .... you're left with a, "What the hell was that?"  and  "Where did that come from?"

Feelings of disappointment and self blame overwhelm you.  I know it did for me.  In my journey, I was guided to make dramatic life changes.  Old habits were no longer serving me and new habits helped me realize a fuller life.

My desire for a deeper meaning in my life was soulful and divinely inspired.  I read books, studied, meditated, and removed ego as much as possible so that I could simply follow my gut instinct and intuition.   Doing so, I see now, was welcoming Spirit to guide me.  Doing so, I see now, also lead me to an energy shift.

I was reading and listening to a series of books by Esther and Jerry Hicks.  I was completely taken by the connection of emotion and thoughts and energy.   The idea is simple:  what you think and feel are exactly how you are living your life.  Difficult experiences in the present are a result of past negative thoughts and emotions.  If you don't like what you are experiencing change what you are thinking and feeling. So I did.

NEVER did I think that I would also invite some of the backlash I got from individuals.    You see, when my energy was lower, I naturally invited equal or lesser energy around me through individuals and/or experiences.  By focusing every detail in my life to simply act and think in a way that feels good and/or better, it all changed.  I experienced an energy shift.

How did that invite the backlash?  I was putting out a different kind of energy that in essence vibrated at a higher frequency (something every single one of us is capable of doing).  By doing so, others who were comfortable with you before the shift suddenly feel uncomfortable.  If they are not doing the same kind of energy work you are doing, they may not even realize what is stirring up in them.  I know this because I have been on that side of the fence, too.

Last winter, I was saddened by one such person whom I thought would be a friend. In my interaction with them, I chose to focus on loving thoughts and words keeping all that I had learned with me.  I knew old habits and my strong personality were not going to serve me.  I stayed true to myself and trusted my gut and let my ego go crazy in silence.  (Looking back, the battle within me was comical.  I spoke from my heart chakra, but my brain and mind and ego were just as bad ass as P.G. County Maryland trained me -- thankfully, the heart chakra won).

Desire to do well and be better takes up as much energy as staying angry and feeling miserable.  I made the decision to find the love and stay on my path.  It felt good and I wasn't hurting anyone in the process.  In fact, I invited new relationships that were more on par with where I was headed.  By choosing to find a way to feel love for those that "threw stones" at me, I was able to find compassion for them and I let it go.

I LOVE IT when I get a sign letting me know I'm on the right path.   As I came to this conclusion through my meditation, I received a sign the next day.  I had a dentist appointment and the dental hygienist (who also studies the law of attraction and we enjoy sharing our insights together) happen to share with me another author whom she found enlightening, Michael Bernard Beckwith.  I have never read his material, but at that moment I recalled him from the movie, "The Secret" and an interview he did shortly after the success of the movie.  A woman asked him why she was experiencing so much jealousy amongst her friends where she thought she would find support from the success she experienced as she incorporated ideas and actions in line with the Law of Attraction.  His response, "Mediocrity always attacks excellence."  BINGO.

I saw this quoted again this week and it made me think of my clients and friends who are having similar experiences.  Let me be clear in that I don't view anyone with ill feelings.  We are all traveling through life at different speeds.  That's all.  No one way is better than another.  In fact, I find confirmations all around me that choosing love is always the best route.  If people move away from you, let that natural filtering process happen.  Doing so for me allowed other relationships to deepen and grow. Let life's natural filter work for you.  It will open doors rather than have you bang your head up against one.

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If you are interested in purchasing the book collection I have by Esther and Jerry Hicks, you can do so by this link:  






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