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Day 7: Daring to Be With It ALL. #100DaySelfConnection Experiment

Day 7: Daring to Be With It ALL. #100DaySelfConnection Experiment

100 days of Self Connection. One hour of stillness a day. I’ve made it to day seven. Today I went on Periscope to share what I’ve experienced and here is the replay. Highlights include Sharing HOW I manage with two little people to take care of WHAT do I actually do “it” ; and, What I’ve experienced inside AND outside of myself as a result of this experience (with one very surprising item off my “to-do” list complete without procrastination which is a MIRACLE). And lots of good discussion about why I think this experiment has the power to change the world (ya, that’s all).   Enjoy and feel free to hop in on the conversation over on the Facebook page x...

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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 own, a visit from my Dad, a family Christmas party, a day trip to Vancouver Island, followed by a full day of clients and biz development with a night of meaningful connections at a Crave Event in Vancouver. It’s fair to say that with all this goodness going on, my best intentions vanished into thin air. And I was okay with it. Okay – not totally true. There was a moment where a pang of “I should” showed up and then I saw I was truly, doing my best and let it go. I don’t like to do internal battles anymore if I can help it. In practicing being impeccable with my word, not taking things personally, not making assumptions and doing my best – it becomes increasingly easier to pinpoint what the truth is vs. a bunch of old lies I no longer want to engage in. I was enjoying the reasons I didn’t have time to write so when the question became,“Do I really want to ruin this good feeling by staying up until 3AM every night and exhaust myself to make sure I have something posted?” I responded with ‘I make the rules and I say, no thanks.’ It was easy because I knew I was doing my best with the time and energy I had. Nuff said. End of story. When you know you’ve done all you could based on how you felt, what you had to work with and the varying life circumstances, the standard of ‘your best’ fluctuates if you allow it to have flexibility outside of a rigid measuring stick. If we are the designers of our own experience, why wouldn’t we make it feel better for ourselves? Over the last few weeks, I’ve also cancelled on a few holiday & birthday parties I committed to because going would have felt like a complete stretch to me mentally and physically. By the time...

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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 is predictable. And so the cycle of lies and miscommunication continues. The way out of this mess is through practicing awareness. To pay attention to the story and be willing to see life as it is and not the way you want it to be (to justify what you already believe). When you are willing to see that the voice in your head is always telling a story, you can begin to question the story and notice if it’s based on truth or assumptions. If you notice an assumption you can ask whoever you are interpreting the information from to see if it’s true or not.  In this place, you no longer try to put things into words as much or to explain anything to yourself and this keeps you from making assumptions. When you only use the word to communicate with others and ask questions for clarity (knowing that what you are saying is just a point of view based on what you believe), you take responsibility for your communication. For example, when I begin coaching a new client, we start by designing our relationship agreement where each person shares what they need to be successful. Within it, I have what I call my “Big Girl/Boy Pants Rule” meaning, I expect that we say what we mean and mean what we say. No drama. No apologies. No worries.We speak up when we need something or want to make a change in our agreement. We tell the truth and let each other know when or if we do or say something that offends or goes to far, and more. The clarity is such a relief for both parties. You mean we don’t have to figure what you REALLY mean in the background? Imagine if we all just spoke our truth, expressed our real feelings and just believed what we said and heard it for what it...

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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 upsetting anyone or hurting their feelings. They don’t play small or shrink. They are larger than life in terms of their spirit. They are open to give and receive love to the fullest. In not taking anything personally anymore, we liberate our self from the suffering of believing it was always about us, our value or our worth. It never had anything to do with us – and in this new place we can STOP continuing the cycle of spreading emotional poison. Allowing this agreement into my life, liberated me in ways I never imagined. It had be immediately become acutely aware of other people acting out their stories and paying attention to how I interpreted those actions. I became a skilled detective about what was mine and what was theirs.  With every old reaction and dicey interaction, I was empowered to examine my thoughts and look for the story I was telling myself about what was happening. Doing this allowed me to sift out what felt really true and what felt like someone else’s story. It didn’t mean I became immune to reacting or having my feelings hurt. With practice and the willingness to get curious about what is really going on in me, I continue to learn more my own evolution and grow more confident in my own skin reconciling all the misunderstandings I’ve collected over the years. As these layers continue to unravel and disappear (note there is no end destination) my level of authenticity increases and with it come a LOT MORE FUN. Not taking anything personally also allows more room and space for compassion to show up when people are on the attacking. Sometimes its possible to rise above it and love them regardless of what’s shaking out and other times we know to walk away from these experiences. Either way, we become more empowered in our own experience. All...

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The Four Agreements: For Clarity & Cleaning Up The Confusion (Day10) #25DaysOfPresence

The Four Agreements: For Clarity & Cleaning Up The Confusion (Day10) #25DaysOfPresence

  There are some books that have the power to transform and impact our life in a dramatic way. Today in me sharing my quest for more presence, I want to summarize one of the most influential (and easy to read) books, The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. In it, shamanic teacher and healer, Don Miguel Ruiz exposes self-limiting beliefs and presents a simple and effective “code of personal conduct” learned from his Toltec ancestors. It’s simplicity appealed to me because my life at the time felt complicated and confusing. It was messy. Reading his clear approach helped me identify and start practicing new ways of seeing the truth and not believing in the lies I had been telling myself for years. These lies field the behaviours, habits and stories that kept me stuck for so long. They are Four Agreements to make with ourself, and they are: Be impeccable with your word. Don’t take anything personally. Don’t make assumptions; and Always do your best. In the next few days I will present each agreement one-by-one  (today is Agreement #1) followed by a brief summary underneath. Enjoy! To Be Impeccable With Our Words   Our words are powerful. The ones we speak, the ones we DON’T speak. The words we use against ourselves, others and our life situations. Being impeccable with our word is considered the SUPREME agreement and the essential goal as it is supported by the following three as the practice that makes the master. Paying attention to the words I used inside my head and the ones I spewed out of my mouth helped me identify where I was outside of integrity with myself. I heard the storyteller inside my head, the one who felt powerful when she gossiped (if only for a brief moment). It was through her, that I took everything personally and made a lot of assumptions to fill in the gaps of what I didn’t really know. It was my story and words that held me back, made me fail to to my best because the story I told had me paralyzed in self doubt and fear. In practicing this agreement, I began to clean up the talk I spoke about myself, to myself and about others and life around me. It was my stories that created the drama, emotional reaction, had me make assumptions and put me in a cycle of feeling emotionally out of control. This was the core of all my issues. I learned that the words I use and think create my experience. They are powerful. Everytime we speak, our words become energy through sound that land on another and if the word we speak is gossipy shit, that mess gets potentially absorbed through those we interact with. Like spreading poison. How do you know when you are using your words impeccably? You feel happy, good about yourself, comfortable and you feel love. How do you know when you are using your words against yourself? You feel suffering on some level – discomfort, anger, jealousy, sadness – the result of believing in knowledge contaminated with lies. When we clean our word up, we can experience what it feels like to be more ourselves and in alignment to what feels right and true for us.   It’s our truth that will transform our story.   Tomorrow, I’ll review Agreement #2 (and one of my personal favourites) … DON’T TAKE ANYTHING PERSONALLY! Woo Hoo!!   Keri-Anne Livingstone is...

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Being Present + Vulnerability = Ownership and Turning Fear Into Excitement (Day5) #25DaysOfPresence

Today I put another notch in my Daring to Suck belt. I was asked to audition for a deodorant commercial. LOL. Yes, random and fun as I’m always thrilled to actually practice my own mantra in real life. And also.. why the HELL not. *Video to follow tomorrow describing presence in action.* I do however, have this quick #FunnyFriday video about the awkward call I made to a local radio station on my way home -enjoy! The audition application came by the way of a delightful email from a friend who saw the post, thought of me and passed it along. The casting agent was looking for Moms who run their own business or have “unexpected” professions. LOL. I guess thats me – so I threw my hat in the ring (a few pics and my bio) and they called me yesterday to see if I could auction TODAY… oh and make a 2 min video of my home, office and kids whilst juggling the mini-men through the dinner, bath & bedtime chaos. Sure, no problem (Read Day 4’s post about grace and recovery here.) Walking into the audition, I became acutely aware that I was consciously stepping into the lions den of image, appearance and critique. A real “high school” vibe of wanting to be picked was in the air. Yes, I did get a little hooked, however the recovery was enlightening. What I learned is that by being present, I was able to notice the vulnerability, feel the flush of exposure and turning fear (or what I use to perceive as fear) into excitement. I break it down more in the video to come! So in these flushed moments, what’s the BEST question(s) we can slow down and ask ourself as we go? “Why am I doing this? What do I want to get out of this or experience?” This allows us to connect to our why, get grounded, OWN our experience and be honest about how attached we are to the possible outcomes. (old post about this powerful concept here) When we check in and get clear about our why we can discover how the action or our participation is in fact, serving or supporting us. If it feels good and grounded – I say – great, keep going. If it feels like obligation, pleasing others or something else outside of your own hearts wish or desire – this doesn’t make it wrong. Just KNOW why you are doing it. Be clear and take responsibility for being there and doing it. Even just recognizing why means we get to be less surprised when we feel exhausted or a little shitty afterwards. LOL. When we take more responsibility for our choices and decisions we don’t have to feel screwed over or  victimized by others (when really its our own choice to not speak up and ask for a compromise or negotiation). This is about owning your stuff – your choices, your participation in every situation. You might make a different choice next time. And just so you know – I don’t think that by speaking up means you get what you want or your way. It just means you are willing to stand up for the part of you that has a voice, opinion or idea about how it wants things to go. It’s about knowing you tried and although it didn’t go your way, you did speak up and that’s always worth celebrating. We have the opportunity to learn regardless and option to apply the learning to try something different next time knowing just a little bit more....

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