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Listening

Leaves rustle on the light wind, a chickadee calls its name, the water gently laps the shoreline, I hear myself take a deep breath as I stand with my eyes closed.  I am pulled by some invisible force – reminded- to just BE.

Easy listening

Mansfield Dam, easy listening

Just listen. Listen for the sweetness in the moment when you are not thinking about when you return to work or the house that needs its floor vacuumed or the meeting you have to prepare for.  Listen for the love in the voices of the ones that are closest to you when you are not talking.  Just listen.

You do not have to remove yourself from the surrounding walls of your house or where you work.  You do not have to be out in nature – although for those of you that have not stopped to just BE in a really long time, bringing yourself somewhere new can support you to listen.  New surroundings.  New energy.  New input.  Not a bad idea.

Just listen to your surroundings and to what the moment wishes to convey.  Just stop, listen and BREATHE.  There are no other requirements.

Blue Jay’s Message

The way we use our personal power…a reminder to check in and see how I am using my personal power/energy/intention – that is blue jay’s message a lot of times for me – especially lately.  (looking at animal “visits” and symbolism from a Native American Indian perspective)

Starr eagerly walks close to my side as we head through the wooded part of our early walk this morning.

(Yes, really THIS morning – this post is current) 🙂

We are sheltered by the welcoming woods; out of the chilly morning wind and I take some deep breaths.

This is one of my very favorite things to do – walk outside and be as close as possible to Mother Nature.  To feel the fresh morning air, hear the creatures rustling around, calling, be-ing, to breathe deeply and feel the space around me.

I feel so grateful for the freedom, the quiet and alone time, for Starr (my starr-lite), for all of my relationships, for all of the love present in my life and for the ability to walk and walk fast.

(As some of you know I was challenged with some complications from lyme disease late last year and pain had me thinking I might not be able to walk up and down stairs…never mind go for hour-long-plus hikes)

I say a silent “thaaaank you”.

As we pass through the different groves and up and down rocky hills, I say to nature and all of its amazing creatures, “I am open to any messages you may have.”  Sure enough, around the next bend there is suddenly a bird calling loudly in a tree above me.  I stop.  Starr stops.  I look and find him/her high up and joyfully calling.

I realize it is a blue jay and I smile.  It is making a call that I do not recognize as a blue jay.  The phrase personal power – be kind to yourself – enters my awareness.  I say, “ok…thank you” to the beautiful blue and white bird and Starr and I continue on.

I then realize that as this bird was calling out I was thinking thoughts that were not kind and gentle about myself in relation to not having marketed myself/my business in a long time and that age old….you know…

“If only I had marketed myself DESPITE my pain and challenges from dis-ease I would have more money…I would have more clients….life would be simpler now…different now…life would be so much easier…IF ONLY…yadda…yadda…yadda.”

Beautiful blue jay was reminding me that I was being hard on myself – I was misusing my own personal power against MYSELF.  Starr and I continued to walk as I again thanked the beautiful bird for its message.  I was now back in the present moment, back feeling the life in my life!

AND…realizing that everything is perfect just the way it is.

Blessings to you all!  Thank you for reading and please feel free to share/comment/laugh/appreciate/agree/disagree below…whatever you may feel in the moment.

Clouds and Time

Starr and I emerged from the woods this morning.  We walked into the clearing where the trail leads us through a large pine grove and I looked up to see large, white and gray, puffy clouds racing across a light blue sky.

I took a deep breath and the air was fresh from the newly fallen rain that had ceased only a half hour before.

I stopped and stared – admiring the beauty and the power of the clouds.  I realized that the racing clouds were mirroring my insides – the feelings of urgency and anxiousness and the reality of time passing me by faster than ever before in my life.

The ever-present questions I ask myself these days…am I doing what I want to be doing with my time?  Am I putting my energy into ventures that I really want to put my energy into?  Am I connecting to the people/animals/things that are truly important to me?

I thought to myself, I have the power to create exactly what I want to create.  I have the awareness to discern what is important to me today and focus on that – peace, joy, love, connection, communication and relationship.

Time is flying by, new energy is coming in and shifting us and supporting us to create!

(This was also actually written a week ago…I am gently trying to work on learning time management so that I can write and post every day! Aaahhhh….the learning curve.)

This post was actually written a week ago…

As some of you know, Starr and I head out to the woods and water together almost every morning. This beautiful, windy, rainy morning was a morning of revelations…’Aaaahhh…Hahhh’…moments at their best!

First, I noticed the remarkable difference in Starr’s energy and focus in comparison to yesterday.

Yesterday’s walk reminded me of our many walks when Starr was young – 7 months old to almost 3 years old.  She wasn’t able to easily focus, her energy ran through her body at a high rate, she was easily distracted and almost hypersensitive.  And add high intelligence and a sheer stubbornness/survival instinct (she is a rescue AND a pit bull) to this list and the combo did not make for easy-going walks, as you can imagine.

Our walk, yesterday, brought me back to that period of time.  The period of time that I thought might never end.

When frustrated, my thought process back then was:  We might NEVER create a peaceful walk together if I can’t sufficiently learn how to lead her and support her to relax and be confident in being at peace. (Not ‘ah hah’…just ‘aaaahhhh!!!’…pull my hair out or maybe it would all fall out)

What I witnessed in Starr this morning was her comfort level. It seemed to have returned and she walked at our usual fast pace with ease, looking up at me periodically, as her leader.  Yesterday, she pulled, looked around at every little thing and sniffed and pulled some more, not paying me an ounce of attention seemingly from the moment we stepped out of my car!

Once we were headed out of the woods yesterday and toward the part of our walk that is down by the water, I suddenly had the awareness that she may be like this because she was trying to tell me something….yes…I remember….I am an intuitive communicator thank you and yes, this may seem like it should have been TOTALLY obvious to me but it just wasn’t.

At almost the same time that I had this thought, I also felt the urge to look around, I could feel the strong presence of an animal.  The presence felt very cat-like.  We walked and Starr kept looking in back of us – something she rarely ever does unless there is a person walking another dog.

I felt aware of this animal and I also felt gratefulness that Starr had let me know that there was a bigger animal out there in our vicinity.  I did not feel afraid – just very aware.

I also was fully aware that I still sometimes doubt Starr’s abilities as an adult dog.  She is now almost 5 years old and she does have a lot of “puppy” that creates many many laugh-out-loud moments but she really is an adult dog now.  She is capable of much greater discernment – should she pay attention to the barking dog or Maya wanting me to keep walking?  She usually chooses to pay attention to me now. (another gratefulness moment)

Anyway…she walked easily at my side this morning (I was so thankful) and we enjoyed our long walk together.

Undeniable Visit

Looking back on my week with Starr, my first jogged memory is of our quiet, long morning walks that we shared.

Setting the intention and feeling for the day, we walk at a fast pace – I anticipate miracles around every corner today.  The early morning air feels clean and new on my face. I intend to notice any sign from beloved Mother Nature and all of its amazing inhabitants – any communication, any connection. I ask for my animal guides to be obvious and get my attention so I would not miss anything they had to communicate.

We head out to the woods for the first half of our journey.  My being yearns for the quiet, the open space, the solitude (away from other two-leggeds just for a bit… that is).  The other aspect I yearn for is the communication with the wigged ones…the four-leggeds and maybe even the webbed and finned.

Tuesday, I was open and feeling grounded as Starr and I walked.  Starr’s stride was extra peppy as if she too seemingly anticipated a miracle around every tree, bush; under every log or rock (maybe in the form of a “chippy”, as my friend calls chipmunks or maybe in the form of new yummy smells).  My thoughts were of my website and the creative ideas I have been storing in my memory of what I would like to change and update.  My new logo was on my heart and mind and that I would very soon be shifting away from my old logo which incorporates one of my longtime guides – the owl.

I thought to myself, wow…I will miss you, owl – being such a significant part of my logo.  I communicated silently that I would find a way to keep owl as a part of the representation of my business.

I had NOT completed this intention/thought in my head when a screech owl called clearly and sharply from somewhere in the near distance.  I had never heard an owl call during any of the other times I had passed down this trail.  Tears instantly filled my eyes as the screech owl called out yet again.

In awe, a sweeping wave of gratefulness flooded me.  I smiled widely as tears rolled down my cheeks. Starr and I never stopped walking.  We were headed to the water.

Rising To The Belief

Starr and I are vacationing together for the first time in a long time…too long of a time.  We were on one of our walking adventures today and I had chosen to head to a beach I had never been to.  I was nervous and I couldn’t figure out why.  I normally enjoy finding new places to visit and walk…especially with Starr’s divine company.

I took a deep breath and intended to be open to whatever was making me nervous…whatever was trying to get my attention.  I realized that I was worried about Starr’s behavior…would she “be good” while we were on the beach?  Would there be a lot of other dogs?  Would I not be able to relax and enjoy sitting by the water?

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Starr and I at the beach

I continued to breathe…and I was reminded of a concept I teach in my workshops – Rising To The Belief.  If you intend to hold the vision of your companion at their very best then they will rise to that belief.  I realized quickly that I was doubting her abilities as an adult dog, her abilities and her own desire to please me and be at peace with me.  I immediately started to visualize her walking with me contentedly, looking to me for direction and enjoying meeting other dogs and people.

Our energy together instantly shifted.  I was walking more confidently and she was walking in a much more relaxed manner.  And…she was looking to me to see where we were headed.  We ended up having a wonderful time together!

I, like you, live a busy life with many different things to think/worry about and need gentle reminders of how powerful our intentions and thoughts ALWAYS are!  You can change your reality by concentrating on what you  intend in the moment…whether you apply this to your relationship with your animal companion or with your children or with your two-legged partner.  Change your reality…one moment at a time!

Rising To The Belief – I have written more about this concept in my manual, The Way of Leadership.  I will be offering a copy of this manual online – you will be able to download it for free!

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Starr...pondering life

It has been quite a while since I first wrote for my blog – WOW, how time is just passing by! Thank you for joining me here. Please feel free to share any of your thoughts or stories – just click on the *Share* tab, above or comment below this post. Would love to read and share and learn from your life experiences! I will be checking in often.

We only “see” our life situations, the people we love and care about, our relationships and this world through our own lens. We view our environment through our eyes and automatically analyze through our own personal lenses. This occurs almost simultaneously. No matter how open-minded we intend to be we are still limited by the lens that has been formed and shaped by our many life experiences. Some examples include: our perception of consequences to our actions and perceived failure, abandonment and/or mistakes compared to our “right” actions that somehow bring us a definition of success. Our perspective leads to judgment of our lives and experiences. Judgment that we may not even realize we are making. One person’s perception can vary widely from another person’s perception.

My intention in sharing my thoughts are only to inspire you to think about your own perspective, judgments and your own lenses in relation to your life. Ask yourself: When was the last time you were hard on yourself about something you did or said? Are you living the life that you want to lead? Are you experiencing the type of relationship(s) you deeply wish to experience?

Even those of us who have consciously worked on changing our thoughts to the positive and believe fully in being able to create whatever we wish in our lives, are still affected by lenses. One of the challenging aspects of this reality is that even when we change our thoughts to positive statements and/or mantras our body still remembers our life experiences. Your cells remember when you were abandoned, when you weren’t loved for who you truly are, when you were judged and a wealth more of various life happenings that shape who we are. This calls us to continually practice self-awareness if we are to become aware of how our judgments may be holding us back from living a full life. Full of happiness, satisfaction, peace, joy, connection and so much more.

These happenings, these judgments and experiences shape who we are but they are not WHO we REALLY are. Animals, both wild and domestic know this. They live with us and all around us to constantly remind us of what is really true – that we are ALL divine creations learning and growing and doing the best that we can. They remind us to love ourselves unconditionally. Our dog companions are with us to be the ever present example of unconditional love and acceptance. We just need to take a moment to notice this and then follow the example.

Our animal friends resonate non-judgment, forgiveness, unconditional acceptance and the vital importance of being in the moment. Stop and notice your animal companion or if you don’t live with any animals presently, step outside and notice the birds’ songs and communication. Right then, right away, you will be in the moment where everything is perfectly fine. You are not worrying about the future or choosing to regret something in the past. You are in the present and also in the presence of love.

When you are in the present moment you are not judging anything or anyone. I believe, from my experiences of being caught up in focusing on the “negative” or being caught up in a life I didn’t want to lead that what truly helped me was to bring myself into the present moment. At times, my thoughts or worries or concerns would feel overwhelming and I would have to repeatedly bring my thoughts to the present moment – one moment at a time – over and over again. It got easier as I practiced. I promise, as you practice – it will just get easier.

You need to remember, also that whatever you choose to concentrate on grows so if you are worrying about something what you most worry about happening will eventually come true. Believe me, I have lived this universal truth. Allowing your animal companion or nature and all of her extraordinary inhabitants to bring you back to the present moment is the key to freeing yourself of stress, worry, perceived mistakes and judgment. You will still have your own personal lenses that have formed during your lifetime but if you allow yourself to be in the present moment more and more you will suddenly realize that you will have a renewed perspective on an ongoing situation, relationship or happening. You will not have had to analyze and make up the new perspective with explanation – you will just HAVE a new perspective. Most likely it will be one of peace about the situation – free of judgment. Most likely you will be able to let go and allow whatever it is to come about to BE. We are human BEings after all. Most of us have to relearn how to just BE. How to just BE exactly what we were created to be about.