Saturday, March 29, 2014

33

I can't believe it's March 29th again!

In honor of my 33rd birthday today, here are 33 of my truths.



1. Life is an adventure. It's all in how you look at things.

2. Happiness is an inside job. Never put the key to your happiness inside someone else's pocket. It might get ruined in the washing machine.

3. You will never be alone if you make friends with yourself.

4. Everything will be ok in the end, if it's not ok it's not the end. This got me through more dark nights than I can count.

5. Speak your truth. Even when your voice shakes, but especially when your voice shakes. It gets easier with practice. I offer the last 6 months of my life as living proof.

6. Doing stuff that scares you and isn't going to kill you is a good way to learn about yourself. You figure out where your edges are really quickly. Trust me on this one.

7. Own houseplants. They produce oxygen and bring harmony to the spaces where you live and work.

8. Life is too short to not eat cake. It's someone's birthday somewhere.

9. Take care of your body. It's the only vessel you get in this lifetime. That includes your teeth.

10. Be yourself. Do what makes you happy. It's the greatest form of self care there is.

11. Meditate regularly. It's said that if every 8 year old was taught how to meditate, we'd eradicate war within a generation. From my own experience, meditation has allowed me to stop being at war with myself and others, and move with the flow of life.

12. Examine your addictions. I stopped drinking because it had a major adverse affect on my life. I recently gave up coffee and my panic attacks disappeared and I feel better than I have in ages, and mentally sharper as well. Your results may vary, but what is holding you back in your life?

13. The journey is the reward. Don't wait for something to happen to finally be happy, be happy today as you live your life that way you can look back on your death bed and have no regrets.

14. Live with no regrets. Bad decisions make good stories, and never regret anything that made you smile.

15. Dress in whatever makes you happy, but always dress well. I know workout clothes are comfortable, but don't you feel better when you dress up a little? The beauty is that you get to define the well part of that equation.

16. Open your heart to love. Give your heart to others. It is the greatest gift we have to share. Great sex is a positive side-effect.

17. Work hard, but don't hustle. Only used car salesmen and basketball players need to hustle.

18. Your life's currency is time + energy. Spend wisely.

19. Never take anything personally. If you know the secret to doing this, please share.

20. Allow negativity to exit your life. Everyone has a bad day occasionally, but chronic low vibration bullshit? You can keep that. Take care.

21. Age is just a number. I am convinced I am a 10 year old trapped in this 33 year old's body. I laugh at fart jokes (ALWAYS), sit cross-legged on my floor while playing with Legos, and was amazed when I got my own conference call number at work because I think that officially makes me an adult. I certainly don't feel my age, I love defining what it means to me.

22. Move your body. A sedentary lifestyle is way less fun that even a mildly active one.

23. Make lists of fun things to do. Do said things. They'll be fun.

24. Never stop learning. Being a student of the Universe is a lifelong gig. Reading is often involved, make peace with reading for pleasure.

25. Conquer your fears. Everything you want is on the other side of that fear.

26. People come and go from your life for a reason. Not everyone is meant to stay, just like you don't stay in Kindergarten forever. You learn the lessons you need to learn, move on, and graduate - and sometimes that's from people and relationships. That being said...

27. Make time for the people who would walk through the gates of hell holding your hand. These people are your angels on Earth.

28. Dance and sing. Even if you have no rhythm and can't carry a tune, and even if you only do it alone in your living room. There is something viscerally entertaining and joyful about it.

29. What other people think of you is none of your business. Truly.

30. Gratitude will get you everywhere in life. Practice it. Make a list of 10 things you're grateful for everyday. Do this for a month and see how much it opens you to little moments of gratitude throughout each day. It changes your perspective on life.

31. Life is all about choices. Don't like where you live, work? Move. You are not a tree. Don't like your haircut? Get a new one. Don't like the way you dress? Change it. Don't like your friends? Find new ones. Your life is the result of the choices you make, and a truly kind person will remind you of this when you complain about your choices as if they're someone else's fault.

32. Laugh. At everything. The Universe has a sense of humor.

33. Nothing less. I don't settle. I don't accept anything other than my best at any moment. I don't accept anything less from the people in my life. I want nothing less than good feelings and will find a way to make that happen. It's my life motto. Nothing less.

Life is good.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

On Pleasure + Judgment

I have a confession: I am judgmental. But you know what I've realized over the past few years, accelerating over the past year or so? It says SO MUCH MORE ABOUT ME than it does about the person or group or thing I’m judging. I judge because I am uncomfortable with something within me – often a deeply-seated belief about something, a so-called “moral objection,” or because I really want to do what you’re doing but can’t give myself permission to follow suit (jealousy).

I have a friend who is a collector. I have made snarky and unnecessary comments about it because of how it makes me feel, nevermind it brings him joy and pleasure in his life. Who am I to say what is or isn't OK about someone else’s journey on this planet? The truth is it made me uncomfortable because I don’t have a good relationship with “stuff” and possessions, and a lot of guilt around owning things. Point is it has nothing to do with him or his collection, and everything to do with a self-limiting belief that I can’t own that much stuff.

A couple weeks back my friend Natalie at Chicken Blog posted a link to an article about “Guilty Pleasures,” and it resonated deeply with me. Go ahead and read it, I’ll be here waiting when you get back…

The article:
All of the Pleasure, None of the Guilt, by Adam Sternbergh

...

"I’d advocate for an even bigger imaginative leap: one that acknowledges the wide spectrum of pleasures that books (and TV, movies, music, theater, what have you) can offer us and then — and here’s the radical part — doesn't immediately insist that these pleasures must also be sorted into a moral hierarchy. (This pleasure: good; that pleasure: bad; this one: in the middle.)" -Adam Sternbergh

This idea that pleasures are simply that – pleasures, and you don’t need to feel guilty about them – WOW! It got me thinking about what brings me pleasure and how I've judged others about their pleasures. It opened my eyes in a way I hadn't expected, and I’m glad it did. Now I can watch cable reality TV and drink Coke without judging myself.

But all jokes aside, it made me realize that what other people do is none of my fucking business. Who am I to say what is and isn't OK? I have no idea what other people’s journeys are about, and my only responsibility is MY journey. 

“Search for yourself, by yourself. Do not allow others to make your path for you. It is your road, and yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you.”-Native American Code of Ethics

This morning I've seen half a dozen people online knock selfies (taking pictures of oneself) and judge people who take them.

After my medical crisis back in 2010, I took pictures of myself every day because I lived in a body I didn't recognize. I woke up one day and did not resemble my former self. Taking selfies was my way of getting to know and accept this stranger’s body I was living in. As an added bonus, I get to look back on those pictures today and see how far I've come – I’m no longer in the middle of my addiction, I've worked long and hard on my anger, and I am in a healthy place now. Those pictures remind me of that. Watching my progress over the years via selfies has been an interesting and informative experience.

















As for the anti-selfie backlash, we’re way too wrapped up in not being selfish – it’s been ingrained into our collective consciousness and we've been taught that selfish is bad since we were tiny tots. The older I get the more I’m convinced that calling someone selfish is just a manipulative way to get them to stop doing what you don’t want them to do, and not a reflection of them as a person. Is it selfish and self-centered to take self-portraits? Is that where your discomfort with selfies lies? Does it make it better if we call them self-portraits instead of selfies?

Taking selfies does not make you a narcissist, being a narcissist makes you a narcissist.

Honestly, who gives a fuck anyway? Do what you want, no apologies.

You have no idea what other people’s journeys are about, so far be it from you to judge them. Next time you feel judgmental about what someone is doing, ask yourself what is it about the situation that makes YOU so uncomfortable? Then you’ll be working on what’s actually your business – your journey. And I’ll do the same.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Full, Happy, Satisfying, Quiet

Last week I used the words, “full, happy, satisfying, and quiet” in an email to describe my life. When I went back and read over the email, those words struck me. This is a good place to be.

I had this Pinterest board where I posted jokes about being single. It was HUGE and had a few hundred pins. Over the past few months I got the feeling that it wasn't serving my highest self, and then one day, that idea was confirmed. I deleted the board, and felt better almost immediately. Honestly? I don’t even miss it. This is when I knew things were really starting to change for me…

This is about the same time I realized that the people in my life are “good people” people. There is a distinct lack of drama in my life these days. I have cultivated relationships that allow me to be my higher self and let go of those which rob me of my life energy. I’m much more protective of my life energy these days and don’t owe anyone an explanation for anything (like when I had an acquaintance ask me if I still liked her. My answer was, “Of course. But I only have a limited amount of time and energy to spend with people...”). I used to invite anyone who wanted to be friends with me into my life, open door policy - the more the merrier! That led to huge issues and drama in my life, so today I am much pickier about who gets to be part of this rad party. woot! woot!

I have been working hard towards my own happiness and raising my vibration in my life – my pleasure and what brings out my authentic self. An unintended side effect of raising my vibration is the inability to tolerate those whose vibrations are low. It is really obvious now, and I've had to reevaluate where I am holding some of my boundaries. In most cases, it means the new boundaries bounce someone right out of my life.

I think boundaries are difficult for so many people, as I've had conversations with at least half a dozen people about them recently. (All unrelated, most of them don’t know each other.) People want to know how to create/enforce boundaries. I am no expert on them, and I often feel like we advise on what it is we need to hear most. I am working every day on being more and more honest, because I feel like that is where boundaries begin. It means politely calling out someone on their bullshit at work instead of feigning a weak smile. It means speaking up in defense of my opinion when productive, or blocking/unfollowing people I've followed for years online when the time for productive conversation is over. It means not seeking out, inviting in, or putting up with drama or negative energy. You’re welcome to live in your low vibration, but not on my time or in my space.



What I want in my life are people, experiences, and things that bring out my best, most authentic self. I am working to align myself in this way, and I think using the self-aware terms “full, happy, satisfying, and quiet” means I’m getting somewhere…

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Shift

I usually only post when I’m inspired, and writing with passion means good posts only take me about 20 minutes to write (even if editing said posts takes a lot longer).

Although I may not post often or on a schedule, I am constantly writing in documents saved in my Google drive (the cloud), and today as I was sifting through some of them came across this gem that I wrote four days after my last breakup. It was my attempt to shed the negativity that was suffocating me and to put it out into the Universe that I wanted to become this woman. I hadn't planned to share it, just making a list of who I wanted to be and how I wanted to show up in my life.

Seven months later, I can honestly say I am this woman and become her more and more every day.



Wednesday, July 31, 2013
9:29 PM

I am beautiful.
Today I won't compare myself with anyone else.
Today I won't call myself crazy, or be demeaning to myself. If it hurts when others say it to me, why would I speak that way about myself? You attract what you put out. DON'T FORGET THAT.
Going forward, I refuse to be anything but kind and gentle with myself.
I no longer tolerate anyone who criticizes me for being me.
Today I know I am cool, no external validation required.
Today I will laugh.
Today I will pursue fun with wild abandon.
Today I will unfurl my wings and enjoy my freedom.
I will no longer worry about what other people think of me. It's none of my business anyway.
People are entitled to their opinions of me, just as I'm entitled to my boundaries.
I will dance. In my living room, in public, and at work. To music I love.
I will listen to music I love without fear of being ridiculed.
I will address where I obsess. Obsessing masks the real issue. It denies reality.
I will practice radical self-care. Today, and always.
-Spiritual
-Mental
-Physical
-Visual
I will be mindful of the energy I put out into the Universe.
I will project a strong, self-sufficient, confident, independent, authentic, and open vibe, but will be selective about who gets into my life. IT'S LIKE I'M THE BOUNCER OF THE CLUB THAT IS MY LIFE.
I command all negative, low-vibration energy return to its source and be removed from my life.
I refuse to allow negativity in my life and relationships.
Today I will let go.
I validate myself.
I no longer expect to be rescued, as I have learned to rescue myself.
I refuse to participate in codependency.
I will listen to my Intuition and let it guide my decisions, even if the answers it provides are not what I want to hear.
I will share my cosmic downloads with people I trust.
I am feminine, and won't let anyone but me be the judge of what that entails.
I regret nothing. At worst, things are learning experiences.
I go all-in.
I will not spend time or energy on "life calculus."  The universe unfolds as it should.
"Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself."
I deserve to be pursued.
I am worthy of love and belonging.