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December 2014

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The Gifts of Giving and Receiving (Day 24 & 25) #25DaysOfPresence

The Gifts of Giving and Receiving (Day 24 & 25) #25DaysOfPresence

My hope for #25DaysOfPresence was to attempt being more present and share the gifts of presence as I went. I saw what I needed to see and felt what needed to be feel. I’ve done and undone. I’ve course-corrected when I slowed down during the busiest time of the year in a completely different way. And I thank you for coming along for the ride. Today, I received a gift this morning via an email from a friend who shared a story of seeing the portrait child prodigy Akaine painted of Jesus (featured in the book and movie Heaven is For Real). I saw the movie and remembered it clearly. It reminded me of the original and true story of Christmas about people coming together to celebrate and give whatever they had – out of the spirit of giving. And their gifts were fully received and rejoiced. They were truly grateful. In thinking about the simplicity of this, something opened up in me and a rush of emotion had me sobbing amongst my wrapping paper and ribbons. Not tears of sadness or melancholy. Of love. The love that happens when we slow down and receive the gifts all around us – not just in the packages we open. Thus, I was inspired to write… First, on Gifts. This year I’ve received many gifts and now see how they can take many forms, so pay attention. The more present and aware you are, the more you find. First, there are the obvious gifts you open and appreciate. There are also gifts in written and spoken words that touch your heart or wake you up, get...

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Are You SPEEDING UP to SLOW DOWN? If So, It’s Time For a PEP TALK. (Day19) #25DaysOfPresence

Are You SPEEDING UP to SLOW DOWN? If So, It’s Time For a PEP TALK. (Day19) #25DaysOfPresence

With less than 7 days left before Christmas, I hit my my wall of panic today that wants to hurry up and get EVERYTHING done so I can just relax and take in all the love and good stuff during the holidays. Funny how my story involves speeding up and getting busier to slow down so I can schedule being fully present. I am making lists I can’t keep track of and learning that no amount of writing or awareness has prevented this panic moment from showing up — kinda like the Grinch Who Stole Christmas. To be clear, a lot of what I’m experiencing IS excitement around giving to those I love in my life – even the ones that trigger the hell out of me (and apparently, in light of my last post, I love them the most for the “gifts” they give me). However, there is fear in there too, that sounds like… Have I forgotten anyone? Have I missed something? Have I done enough? Have I got it all covered? In writing this, I realize that I am carrying on a family tradition. Every year my Mom has nightmares she forgets to buy or wrap our gifts, or the dinner isn’t bought or cooked and so on. The underlying belief of my story implies that it’s all up to me and that I am  responsible for it all. So much pressure. So little room for mistakes. Wow. What a crock of shit. And yet, if I hadn’t slowed down to listen and write this, I may have continued to believe it and carry out the madness! I’m taking this as my opportunity to get blow that shite up. So, what IF I forget a...

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The Four Agreements #4: Always Do Your Best, End of Story. Literally. (Day 16) #25DaysOfPresence

The Four Agreements #4: Always Do Your Best, End of Story. Literally. (Day 16) #25DaysOfPresence

  Doing our best is about taking action, doing what we love and feels good because it makes us happy. When we do things  because we want to, not because we have to.   It’s creating and enjoying the process, setting a goal and going for it without any attachment to attaining it. This is when you dare to act on or express that something inside you – a want, need, desire or impulse and allow it to emerge in whatever shape or form it chooses. It could be writing, baking, music, dancing, designing, arranging, building or dreaming and more. When you give yourself credit for doing your best it’s beyond empowering. The cynics out there might say this agreement sounds ‘convenient’ or an easy way out and yes, this is another perspective that is possible but it reeks of judgement, expectations and pressure from the storyteller in their head.  If we concede to this argument then the path taken feels locked down by living for the pleasing of others, or maintaining the status quo. We cannot be responsible for how other people interpret our behaviour. I believe we are responsible for being truthful with ourselves, first and foremost. For example, where the hell have I been for three days? Not here, that’s for sure. I’ve been doing my best. 🙂 (and NO I didn’t time the absence just for this post – call it Divine Timing..LOL) My original goal was to write a little something everyday and truth be told, I was THRILLED to hit 13 days in a row. It felt great to create and write everyday and it was also a lot to keep up with. By the time Saturday arrived, my best involved having the kids on my...

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The Four Agreements #3: How ONE Agreement Can Transform Your Life. (Day 12) #25DaysOfPresence

The Four Agreements #3: How ONE Agreement Can Transform Your Life. (Day 12) #25DaysOfPresence

It’s an oldie but a gooder… When we ASSUME, we make an “ASS out of U and ME” and that is why THIS is one of the biggest tickets to personal freedom…     When the storyteller in our head makes up a story, we believe it and then fail to ask questions that might shed light on the truth. Most of our disagreements and life friction stem from making up these assumptions. We assume they won’t want to help us, so we don’t ask. We assume the tone they are speaking in means they are angry at us so we shut down. We assume we aren’t good enough so we don’t try for different. It’s one big guessing game.   Whether it’s about the story we tell about ourself or the one we interpret from others – it all leads to mess in our life. Miscommunication, misunderstandings and nobody being heard or speaking up. All because we assume. We create so many problems for ourselves and others because we are unwilling to ask questions to clear up these assumptions and then them personally and believe them as truth. How many times have you seen this Shakespearian Gong Show play out in your life? The mind hates not to “know” so it takes the surface information it has to work with, keeps the mouth shut and fills in the gaps based on an stories and experience in our past which we then apply to the future of what “it” all means or we guess on how its going to go. This on some level helps us feel safe and that all...

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The Four Agreements #2: Don’t Take Anything Personally.  (Day 11) #25DaysOfPresence

The Four Agreements #2: Don’t Take Anything Personally. (Day 11) #25DaysOfPresence

In the pursuit for more presence in life (and over the holidays), yesterday I summarized one of  the first Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz, from his book that blows up self-limiting beliefs through a simple and effective “code of personal conduct”. Today, I get into one of the most FREEING agreements of them all. Don’t take anything personally. BOOM! When you begin to know the storyteller that resides inside yourself  (review agreement 1), you understand the way others act around and towards you is really fueled by THEIR storyteller. Basically, projecting the lies they’ve gathered throughout their life experience. This is where you can finally know (and possibly say) – “This about you, not me.” Knowing this, helps us disengage in the pattern of being ‘hooked’ by their words and believing the biggest lie which was that how they were acting or what they were saying was because there was something wrong with us. When we were kids we never had a choice about what to believe because everything we agreed to believe was imposed on us.  Sadly we create a lot of our stories as innocent children who interpret these interactions in very simple terms. “I must have done something wrong. I’m not okay. Who I am and what I do is bad. I am bad.” Now, we have the opportunity we didn’t have  when we were kids. We get to tell a new story. Our new story can be based on the truth that resided in us BEFORE we grew up and absorbed the lies (beliefs, expectations, roles, responsibilities) imposed on us. Look at babies. They are the fullest, truest expression of themselves. They don’t quiet themselves down for fear of...

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