Friday, June 28, 2013

Don't Succumb to the Fear!

I've started a new career pursuit.  Copywriting.  I still am going to continue blogging, because I love it.  But what I've been learning about being a copywriter is very interesting to me.  So... "Follow the energy!"  (Wayne Dyer) 

So here's what happened last night, that's the motivation for this blog today...

I have been doing this accelerated online program for copywriting.  I love it.  I've been learning a lot.  I feel that excitement of "I can do this!"  Yesterday I spent hours reading the course material and doing the exercises. 

At the end of my "work day," when I felt like I'd done enough and was ready to stop for the day, I decided to head over to the forums for this copywriting program.  It's actually through American Writers and Artists Inc. (AWAI), and they offer a ton of different programs.

But anyway, what I read in the forums shook me.

It started off alright... with a woman posting a question about a client she'd been working with (she was working!) who was underpaying her.  And another one I read about a guy new to the program, like me, just wanting to connect with fellow copywriters. 

Then I got into some critical, negative posts.  People complaining about the program.  It totally brought me down. 

I wondered, is this how it really is?  Have I just been being too optimistic and naïve?

Of course the course material that I've been reading touts the amazing benefits of the program and working as a copywriter.  Like anything, it's trying to sell you on the program.  And it does an excellent job.  It sold me!

Now, I do realize that any kind of sales material usually contains truth, but the best version of the truth.  It will likely leave out less than favorable things if it can.  It'll tell the success stories...not the failures. 

I'm not that naïve to believe that everyone who goes through this program makes $500,000 a year as a copywriter.  Though I believe some people do.  And that was one of the selling points, saying how you can make between $60,000 - $500,000 or so, per year (I know, wide range). 

There are tons of testimonials from people who've gone through the program who are now doing very well. 

Anyway.... since starting the program about a week ago I've been all charged up about it.  Then the negative forum posts brought me down.  They triggered my inner fear. 

"Am I in over my head?" 
"Is this too good to be true?"
"Can I really do this?"
"Maybe some people can make an excellent living as a copywriter, but maybe I'm not one of those people." 
"Maybe I'm not good enough." 
"Maybe it'll be too hard." 
"What if I don't get any clients?"

You get the idea.


Like I said, this really shook me.  For the next couple of hours I felt the fear coursing through my body.  And, as I'm learning to do (just like my blog post yesterday), I observed the fear as the energy that it is. 

I reminded myself not to attach to it.  Not to place importance on it.  Not to think negative thoughts over and over about it. 

Just notice.  Remain calm.  And let the fear energy move through me. 

And you know what?  This wasn't as easy as my first experience with noticing my fear and letting it move through me... when my boyfriend was on the phone with what could have been his ex-wife (my blog yesterday).

And to be honest, this concerned me.  Why was I so afraid?  Did my heightened fear mean something?  Does it mean copywriting isn't for me after all?  That it won't work for me? 

It concerned me because I'm not usually afraid when it comes to jobs or work.  As I've mentioned lots on here, I'm no stranger to job hopping.  To walking away from one job and jumping into something entirely new and different.  That doesn't scare me.   

But then I remembered this:  I was this afraid when I was learning ASL (American Sign Language).  I remember going to my first Deaf camp (MDO) and being excited, but terrified at the same time.  Would I be good enough?  Would my signing be understood by Deaf people?  Would I understand them?  What if I looked utterly stupid? 

(Notice a theme?)

I was in a new field that I was totally excited about, but also completely new and foreign to me.  I had a lot to learn.  I didn't know if my signing skills were up to par.  I didn't know if I'd be able to understand other, new people signing.  I just didn't know

This is like that.  It's something entirely different from what I'm used to.  It takes skill.  It's a profession, not just a job.

The reason I don't feel afraid to walk into new jobs is because I know the skills involved and I know I can do it... and do it well.  I'm confident in my ability to do that job.  Because even though the job itself is different, the skill set is similar -- and well within my comfort and confidence zone. 

This scares me because it's bigger.  I'll actually be competing against successful copywriters.  I'll actually have to put myself out there and work at it. 

And that's fine.  I still believe I can do it.  I know I can do it.  This "knowing" just relies a lot more on faith than actual "knowing," however.  And that's where the fear creeps in. 

So how did I get out of my fear spiral last night?  I talked positively to myself.  I said affirmations.  I reminded myself that I can do it.  That it doesn't matter if other people had negative experiences or negatives things to say.  I'm not them.  I can do this!   

And if there's something in your life that you're afraid you can't do, remind yourself too, "I can do this!"  Because you can!  (And I'd LOVE to hear any of your own stories... either in the comments below, or on my Facebook page.) 

We wouldn't be given desires if we couldn't fulfill them.  If something piques our interest, that's a sign.  It's our heart and Spirit leading us down the path we need to follow.  Have the courage to go down that path! 

Trust the Universe.  Trust that you will be guided the whole way.  It's ok if you don't know how everything will work out from the very beginning.  Just know that it will work out.

I believe this.  Time to keep walking down my path! 



Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Stay Open and Observe the Energy Flow

I just had a cool experience.  It was the first time I was really able to practice what I've learned, and been telling you all about. 

My boyfriend is at my house right now working on a resume on the computer in the other room.  I am sitting in the living room, doing my own work on my laptop.  There's no TV on or music, so the house is calm and quiet. 

My boyfriend just got a phone call and all I could hear (obviously) was his side of it.  I couldn't tell for sure who he was talking to, though based on the topic discussed, I figured it was likely either one of his parents or his ex-wife (they were talking about something financial-related).  Immediately I felt my insides close up.  Is it her?  I wondered.

Then I realized it was the perfect opportunity to practice all these things I've been learning. 

So I sat in the living room (yes, I was listening to his conversation) and observed my feelings.  I reminded myself that they're just energy flowing.  I remembered how in the past I would instantly, or pretty quickly, jump down the black hole and get all paranoid and insecure.  My mind would be reeling.  My blood pressure would go up.  I'd feel nervous, tense, and afraid.  All for no good reason, except my own fear.   

This time, though, I just sat with the feeling.  I reminded myself that it's just energy, and kept reminding myself to stay open and let it flow through me. 

It was quite interesting! 

I literally kept repeating the single word, "Open," "Open," "Open."  This reminds me to keep my heart open and mind relaxed.  It also prevents my mind from forming other negative, fear-based thoughts and making the situation something it doesn't have to be. 


I felt the same energy I have felt in the past when I knew he was talking to her (or I suspected he was).  The same fear-based energy.  Only the difference is, in the past I went with it.  My mind went all sorts of crazy, insecure places.  I attached to those fear-based thoughts.  And that's where the downward spiral would start. 

This time, while feeling that same energy, I just observed.  I repeated the word, "Open," and remained calm. 

And here's the cool part.  It was like I could literally feel the energy moving through me. 

Not getting blocked up like before.  And not turning into fearful drama like before.  Not causing me more suffering like before. 

Just energy moving through me. 


This was a great experience!  For one, I'm proud of how I handled it.  And I'm excited that the techniques I've been learning and teaching worked! 

The two keys:
1.  Stay Open -- don't block or stifle
2.  Observe -- don't judge or assign thoughts to your observations 

I felt my fear dissipate.  It didn't happen instantly, and I suspect the next time I believe he's talking to her or texting her I'll feel the same initial fear.  But it did dissipate.  I could literally watch it float away.  I watched the insecurities, paranoia, jealousy, and fear float away as the energy moved through my body. 

Then it was all over and I was perfectly fine.  No drama created.  No continuing suffering.  No paranoia or insecurity that he might have had a conversation with his ex-wife (at the end of the conversation I actually believe it wasn't her, just based on how he was talking). 

This stuff works.  The teachings of Michael Singer, and others, is for real. 

Stay open. 
Relax and release. 
Remember that everything is just energy. 
Let it flow through you. 
Just observe. 
You don't have to attach to everything, every thought, every feeling, every idea, that pops in your head. 
It's just energy... let it flow. 

Flow on.  :)

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Let Others Do Thier Job...Stick to Yours

I've been reading a fiction series by Hugh Howey.  The first few books are the "Wool" books and then the stories continues with the "Shift" books.  I've also seen it called, as a group, the "Silo Saga."  I have read all the Wool books and am on the last Shift book.  Apparently there's at least one more after this one, due out in August.  Let me say this:  This is the best fiction series I have ever read in my life. 


I didn't get into the whole "Twilight" phenomena, nor the "Hunger Games," nor "Fifty Shades."  I actually don't read fiction all that often, except for a single book now and then that I find free for my kindle.  But when I heard about the Silo Series by Hugh Howey, I loved the concept.  So much so that I paid for the book (rare for me).  Though, Hugh's book prices are very low, especially for a growingly popular author (I also heard that the movie rights have already been purchased). 

Anyway.... Why am I telling you about this fiction series?  Because a lesson jumped out at me as I was reading the other day.

One of the characters in the second Shift book... aptly titled "Second Shift"... Mission (yes, interesting name for a person), had a realization.  The silos were intended to run by everyone doing a specific job.  Everyone depending on everyone else, for the entire society to function.  But Mission noticed the people in his silo were growing more and more independent.  They were taking on jobs that others were already doing.  They were becoming self-sufficient in as many ways as possible...instead of sticking to their job, and letting others do theirs. 

The more people separated, and not depended on one another, the more violence grew.  And Mission made the connection between the violence and everyone trying to be more independent... not needing one another anymore.

I thought this was a very interesting concept to ponder.  Especially in our western-world, independent, free-thinking society.  It does seem true, doesn't it? 

The cultures around the world in which people are more dependent on one another, like Native Americans (at least back when they freely lived in this country, in their tribes) and many Asian cultures.  Those cultures, at least as far as I know, had less violence -- among themselves anyway.  They were a tight-knit group.  They stuck together.  They were like One. 

But the cultures in which individuality is praised.  Where everyone's trying to be "the best" and out-do the next person.  Where there's competition within the culture.  This seems to beget more violence. 

The violence isn't always shooting or killing people.  It could be any form of trying to put someone else down.  Bring others down. Negativity.  Violence in words and thoughts.

I'm having an interesting time thinking about this.  I've always considered myself a very independent person.  Highly self-sufficient.  I figure, if someone else can do something, I can do it too... and I often do.  I do as much myself as I possibly can.  I try to "need" others as little as possible. 

 I often act this way because I don't trust that others can or will do as good a job as I would.  Or they won't do something at all.  So I just take care of it myself. 

On one hand I can see this as a way to push myself.  To learn new things.  To see what I can do, more out of curiosity than anything else.  Can I do "it" (whatever it is)?  Let's find out!  My motivation isn't generally a competition against other people, it's a competition against myself.  I'm not one to toot my own horn, or brag to others about "what I did."  I just like to see for myself if I can, in fact, do the task at hand.  And how well. 

So I don't think that motivation is all bad.  Or bad at all, really.  But I am seeing the benefit to not trying to do everything myself.  To accepting, and realizing, that others can do a given job better than me.  That they do know what they're doing.  And it's ok to trust that, trust them, and depend on them -- at least for that specific role.


This is how societies function.  And function well.  With people trusting that others can and will fulfill their role.  This builds a community.  Connections. 

It's all about letting go. 

Funny how connections are built by letting go.  But think about it.  When you let go of trying to do everything yourself, when you let go of your "control," you're more open.  You will then naturally reach out to others more.  You'll interact with and relate with others.  You'll build those connections.


But, on the other hand, if you try to control everything in your world, you do everything yourself, you don't depend on others, don't reach out, you're closing yourself off.  And this is where fear lives.  Where you see others as threats to your "perfectly controlled" little world. 

So what's the solution?  Be more open.  "Be the change you wish to see in the world."  Don't close yourself off.  Reach out.  Connect.  All any of us can do is what we can do.  Don't worry about others.  Just be you, and you will create ripples that touch others. 



Monday, June 24, 2013

Get Rid of Distractions to Stay Present

I'm back home from my family vacation in Tennessee.  It's nice to be home, and I'm hoping to continue some of the practices and habits I employed while on vacation, in my "regular," daily life. 

On vacation I watch very little TV.  It always seemed like a waste to me, to be on vacation, pretty much anywhere, and sit in your room watching TV shows instead of being outside, in the setting you're vacationing in, around the people you rarely, if ever, are around. 

In Tennessee last week I was pretty much outside from within minutes of waking up, to an hour or so of going to bed.  I would just sit in a chair out in the grass under the trees, or on the porch of my cabin.  Sometimes I blogged, I read a lot, I played games, I spent time with my family members. 

The days were long and short at the same time.  I didn't "work" at all.  Well, except for a few blog posts, if you consider that work.  I didn't really work-out either... except for the slow strolls with my little dog, Betty, who I took with me, around the grounds a couple times a days. 

I was just there.  I did what interested me at the moment.  Whether that was reading a book, working on a crossword puzzle, just sitting with my family talking... I was just doing that.  Whatever that was.  And strangely, despite the lack of "productivity," at the end of every day, I felt good about how I spent my time.

At the end of every day when I went back into my room, I felt good about watching an hour or two of TV... channels I don't get at home (my personal favorites are HGTV and TLC).  It was a relaxing end to a great day.


Then I came home.  And for whatever reason, I immediately felt the "need" to sit in front of the TV.

I caught myself though.  I noticed how I felt.  I was sitting inside yesterday and just felt down.  I didn't feel happy.  I didn't feel connected.  I realized this was because I love being outside. 

Being outside connects me.  My backyard is a decent size and there are some big trees at the back of it.  I sit out on my deck and can hear the birds in the trees.  It's very nice and relaxing. 

So yesterday I turned off the TV and went outside.  I decided to live like I had lived on vacation.  On vacation I didn't feel the need to sit in my room watching TV.  I instantly and easily spent my days outside.  And with technology nowadays, we can do anything outside that we can do inside. 

Once I decided to just live in the moment, and do what I wanted to do at that moment, I enjoyed the day much more!  And I was still productive!  I pulled some weeds, I walked my dogs, I gave Betty a haircut.  I even read some more outside yesterday.  The only times I went inside yesterday were when it got uncomfortably hot in the mid-afternoon (about 90 degrees), and when we had some storms move through. 

And I'm back outside this morning, writing this. 

Distractions are all around us.  They're there.  But we don't have to be there with them.  We don't have to let the distractions distract us from our real and full lives. 

Another thing I did differently was on my drive home on Saturday.  I didn't turn on the radio once.  No music.  Nothing but me in the car with Betty, driving through the country.  For seven hours. 

I sometimes do this at home... drive in silence, with my thoughts.  But rarely is that drive longer than 30 minutes. 

When I started my trek home, I simply wasn't in the mood to listen to music.  I enjoyed the quietness of how I'd spent my week, and didn't want it to end just yet.  So I didn't turn on the radio or any of my CDs that I had listened to repeatedly on the drive down.  I figured I'd listen to them later.  I didn't expect to drive in silence the whole way home. 

But that's exactly what I did.  It wasn't intentional, it was just what I enjoyed at the time.  And here's the thing... the drive home, in silence, felt like it took half as long as the drive there. 


My drive there seemed to drag on forever.  I listened to music the whole way, I kept watching my GPS count down the miles and hours and minutes.  I just wanted to get there.  I was focused on the end, and not the journey. 

But the drive home was the opposite.  I enjoyed the journey.  I took it as an extension of the vacation.  I was much more relaxed.  I enjoyed the scenery.  I rarely glanced at the GPS (except for directions). 

The last hour of the drive was the hardest part.  I could literally feel myself getting sucked back into my "normal" life.  I began thinking of all the things I "needed" to do once I got home and the things I "should" do.  So during that hour it was more of a conscious, repeated reminding of myself to stay present.  To enjoy that part of the drive as well.  That the future moments would take care of themselves.  All I had to do was enjoy the present moment. 

So that's what I'm practicing now at home.  Continuing to stay in and enjoy the present moment.  Follow the energy, as Wayne Dyer says. 

When we get rid of the distractions, or at least don't let them distract us, life is much more enjoyable.  I would have thought, prior to my trip, that listening to the radio would make the car ride go faster.  Or that watching TV would make the days go faster.  But it's the opposite. 

Distractions pull us away from the present moment.  They don't, typically, add to the moment. 

It's one thing to listen to the radio for pure enjoyment, or to watch a TV show, like I did at the end of my days in Tennessee, for pure enjoyment.  That can be relaxing and enjoyable.  The difference is when we turn on the radio or the TV to escape.  To fill the car or our house with noise.  To take up the minutes of our day.  To distract us from whatever it is we're doing, but don't really want to be doing.

That is what I'm going to make a conscious effort to pay attention to.  It's not that I want to give up TV or music.  But I want to give up feeling like I have to watch TV or have to turn on the radio.  I want to give up excuses and distractions... that pull me from the blissful present moment that is always here. 





Thursday, June 20, 2013

Leg Hair Will Grow If You Don't Shave It

So I'm on vacation this week, right?  I'm surrounded by family.  I'm at a lake in the Tennessee mountains, staying in a semi-rustic style cabin.  I figure it's the perfect time to give my leg hair a break. 

I finally shaved today, but I had let it go as long as I had since I started shaving in the first place.  (Sorry if this is grossing anyone out.)  As I was sitting on the boat yesterday, I just found it interesting (I don't know why) at how the hair on our bodies just grows.  Grows and grows until we cut it.  It's not like we can cut it off once and be done with it.  It'll just grow back. 

This reminded me of spiritual growth.  We can make all kinds of leaps in our spiritual selves, but just as quickly, we can forget.  We can learn to live in Love and let stuff go, and actually live that way for a while... until something happens and we find ourselves back in our fear place and holding on tight.

Life is a constant flow of growing.  And consequently, we have to constantly cut the little ties and chains and cords that drag us down.  Mastin Kipp talked about this on The Daily Love in his blog today.  I also connected it to Michael Singer's book, "The Untethered Soul."  That's perhaps why he titled his book the way he did. 

We can go our whole lives being tethered.  We have cords that tie us to family, friends, society, culture, our past, expectations for the future.  All kinds of cords running everywhere.  To achieve full freedom, we have to learn to cut those cords.  Untether ourselves. 


I'm not saying to cut ties with family, friends, etc.  But to cut the cords that hold us down.  Cut the ties that hold us back.  That keep us from growing and keep us stuck in the same place, the same rut, the same patterns.

And here's the thing.  We have to keep cutting those negative ties.  Because they will grow back.

When you finally free yourself, it's not a done deal.  It's not like you can sever your cords once and for all.  That you can let go of your issues and open your heart once, and forever be that way ever since, with no further effort. 

I'm seeing this with myself.  I had massive breakthroughs while reading "The Untethered Soul."  For the first time in my life, I felt free.  Truly free of all the ties holding me down and dragging me under.  And I've also noticed in the few short days since finishing the book, that my old ties are trying to come back.  They're trying to grab ahold of me again. 

The difference is, this time I know what it feels like to be free.  I recognize my old ties and can cut them immediately. 

The jealous/insecure tie connecting me to my boyfriend's ex-wife.  Cut it immediately.  Every single time it tries to grow back. 

The tie connecting me to my fear that if I get too close to my boyfriend, he'll leave me... cut it immediately too. 

This is where my mantras of "Just Love" and "Open in Love" come in handy.  They are the shears that cut those fear-strings. 

I will notice thoughts in my head in relation to my boyfriend's ex-wife.  Most are thoughts of the past, or thoughts of anticipated future happenings.  Nothing that's happening right now.  You know, those same old fear-based thoughts that like to drag us down into that black hole. 

So I notice these thoughts trying to creep back in and wrap their tentacles around me.  Trying to elicit my old fear responses.  And luckily this time I have the knowledge and vocabulary and skills to let those thoughts go. 

I relax, release any tightening I may feel inside, and remind myself to "Just Love."  Just Love.  That's truly all we have to do.


So when old fear-based tethers that you have cut try to grow back, first notice them.  See what's going on.  Then cut them again. 

Freedom isn't a one-time act.  We have to repeatedly free ourselves from our fears and issues.  If it was easy, more people would live in peace and not fear.  More people would go to therapy once, and be cured for the rest of their lives.  But haven't you noticed that people's issues (yours and mine included) tend to continue to appear? 

You may think you've worked something out, only to have it reappear "out of nowhere," wreaking havoc in your life, or sometimes just mere ripples, yet again.  That's just a reminder to you to cut that cord again.  It's grown back.  Just cut it.  Don't freak out.  Don't fret about it.  Just cut.  And be free again. 


Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Imagine Everybody Loves You

The other night I read an article in the July 2013 issue of O magazine by Martha Beck.  It was basically about how to feel good and brighten someone's day by doing very easy, simple things.  Nothing that costs money or is too taxing. 

The one that stood out to me the most is to pretend as though everyone adores you.  Everywhere you go.  At all times. 

I'm assuming Martha's inspiration for her article came from a quote from Byron Katie (that Martha quoted as well):  "When I walk into a room, I know that everyone in it loves me.  I just don't expect them to realize it yet." 

I just love that quote, especially the second sentence.  Everyone loves you, they just might not realize it yet. 

I also believe it's true, ultimately.  At our core, we are all pure love.  So when we scrape away all our egos and fears, we truly do all love one another.  It's just that most people walking the planet live in their egos and let their fears rule their world... so they actually don't realize that they love everyone (including themselves).

Martha suggested further, that "even when going into the store, imagine that everyone in it adores you.  Notice how it affects how you move, how you look at other people, and what you say."   

I can see how this would make me feel better about myself.  Instead of walking into a new environment, with strange people, thinking they might not like me, they might judge me, they might not want to talk to or help me... I walk in knowing I'm loved.  Knowing I'm adored.  Everyone there is crazy about me. 

This could be taken as an ego trip, but it's not.  And I'm sure my readers know what I, and Martha, mean.  It's about living in Love.  Living in Spirit.  And when we feel loved and cared for, we in turn tend to love and care for others more.  So that's how pretending that everyone loves you will brighten their day.  Because you will be happier and more at ease.  You won't be on-guard or acting in fear, which elicits a fear response from them.  Instead, you'll walk around feeling loved, and emanating love. 

"Everyone here loves me," will be what I now say to myself before I walk into anyplace with other people. 

Another tip Martha offered, that really goes along with the first one, is to maintain your happy mood and others will sync off of you. 

I'm sure we've all seen how one angry, negative person can bring down the mood of an entire room of people.  Well, it can also have the reverse affect.  A single happy, optimistic person can bring up the mood. 

So the next time you're talking to someone, or around someone, who's being negative... who's complaining, criticizing, and just plain not happy... focus on the love in your own heart.  Focus on staying happy.  Focus on your inner peace.  This will keep your vibration high, and will affect the other person... whether they realize it or not, and whether they want it to or not.  


Monday, June 17, 2013

Being ok with Disappointment

This is something that's still hard for me.  I don't like to be disappointed.  Either in events and activities that I wished had gone a different way, or in people. 

I'm still learning how to continue to love, and be Open in Love, even when I get disappointed.  Especially in my relationships.  When someone I'm close to does something that I don't understand and find disappointing, I don't know how to deal with that without getting judgmental. 


Here is where the lesson is coming from for me right now:  My mom smokes.  She's smoked since before I was born.  She smokes less now than she used to, and rarely around other people, but she still smokes.  I've hated this my entire life and have tried to get her to quit since I could talk. 

Yesterday I walked into their cabin here at the lake in Tennessee and immediately knew she was smoking.  It was in the air and I could barely stand to be in the room.  But here the thing... she tries to hide it.  She put her cigarette out as soon as I walked in (and told her I came to use the stove, so it wasn't like I was just in and out).  I think she thinks she can smoke a cigarette now and then, and if nobody sees her, no one will know. 

I don't know if she doesn't smell the smoke in the room, or thinks other people won't smell it, or what.  But when I walked into the room and smelled the smoke, my immediate reaction was disappointment.  Not so much disappointment in her for doing that to herself, but disappointment in her doing that to other people.


I view smoking as the ultimate act of inconsideration.  Nothing triggers my judgmental nature quicker than seeing someone light up.  Perhaps that's my lesson.  I need to work on my own judgmentalness.

I also had a revelation on this topic while reading The Daily Love yesterday.  I had started this blog, saving it for today.  Then I went to TDL.  And I was reminded that others are mirrors of ourselves.  Perhaps my intolerance of smoking, and how I can't stand how inconsiderate the act is, is a mirror of how I act out of inconsideration at times. 

I don't smoke and never have.  But I have been inconsiderate of others in other ways.  We all have.  Sometimes we may not be aware, or sometimes we may not even care.  But it happens.


I think this is just more work for my ego.  My ego wants things the way it wants things.  It wants people to do what it thinks is right and good.  So when people make different choices, the ego gets disappointed and judgmental. 

Yes, I think that's it.  Once again, I came to this realization as I typed out this blog.

When I feel disappointed in someone else's actions and choices, I can use that as yet another reminder to let go of my ego.  To pause.  Take a step back.  Step back into Spirit, and out of ego.  To let the energy of disappointment to just flow through me.  Don't block it.  Don't ignore it or push it down.  Recognize it.  Feel it.  And let it go.   

It's normal to feel disappointment.  Just like any other human feeling that we'd rather not feel -- jealousy, anger, sadness.  It's in the Fear family.  And what do we do with fear-based emotions?  Let them go.  Just relax and release.  Let the Love rise to the surface again. 



Sunday, June 16, 2013

Wanting to be Heard vs. Connecting in Spirit

Today is the first day of my vacation.  It's my family's annual trip to Tennessee for a week.  I've been coming since I was a kid.  An assortment of relatives congregate in the same fishing resort every summer.  Some of these people I see only this one time each year (barring a funeral or wedding). 

This place is the picture of relaxation.  There's not much to actually do, but relax.  It's right on a lake, so fishing is a big activity.  For people like me though, who don't fish anymore, the main activity is "sitting around." 

There's a swing set, basketball court, small beach with a swimming area.  All of which were great fun as I was growing up.  But now I like to just "sit around" with the other adults.  Sit on the porch of our cabin and look out over the shimmering lake and green, tree-covered mountains.

It usually takes me a day or so to fully relax.  I still feel like I should be "doing" something.  Granted, I did bring my laptop, and I plan on blogging every morning (or almost every morning, depending on how things go).  And I brought other "work-related" things -- like books to read.  But even working here has an air of relaxation.  The sense of "hurry" is nowhere to be found.    

I arrived last night, so today is my first full day.  It'll still take me probably another few hours for the "go-go-go" inside of me to subside.  But I'm getting there. 

Spending large quantities of time with other people, and often especially family, can bring out the ego.  The ego wants to impress.  The ego wants to tell everything it has done and how it is so great. 

This will be a great week for me to practice letting go of my ego.  To continue the work I started at home, on my own.  It's one thing to do ego work when you're alone.  But quite another to continue to practice it when you're surrounded by and interacting with others. 

Other people can say and do things, without being intentional, that hit our egos.  Just a casual conversation can get our ego all on its toes.  Just watching someone else, and the choices they make, can get our ego all puffed up and self-righteous. 

Here's something I'm trying to balance out:  Sharing/talking/conversing... vs.... The ego wanting to be seen and heard. 

I'll share a specific example.  This morning I was standing around (the alternative activity to sitting around), talking to my sister, mom, and cousin (one of the people who I rarely see, since she lives several hours away in another state).  My sister and cousin (who's in her 60s by the way, not that that matters, but just to paint the picture), each shared what their first job was.  And I had the thought as I stood there listening... I wondered where the line was between the ego "strutting its stuff" and simple sharing. 

Listening to my sister and cousin, my ego was all, "I want to share my first job." 
Was it my ego wanting to "be heard" or my Spirit wanting to connect?  That's what I observed and what I'm pondering now. 

I don't have it all figured out, but the base of what I do know is this:  Love is the root of the Spirit.  If you're talking, sharing, acting in Love, then you're good.  If you feel the "need" to say something in order to prove someone wrong, prove yourself right, to get attention... that's the ego.


And the very first step is being aware.  Aware of what's going on inside you.  Aware of why you want to say or do what you want to say or do.

So I look forward to the next six days.  Six days of spending more time with people than I normally do.  Six days of more interactions than I'm used to living alone in my house.  Six days to notice the difference between my ego wanting to be heard and my Spirit wanting to connect. 

I look forward to the week and to seeing what I notice and learn.   

An actual picture of the mountain resort I'm staying at.  I found this picture on google:



Friday, June 14, 2013

How Far Is Your Pendulum Swinging?

I finally finished "The Untethered Soul." Certainly one of, if not THE most life-changing, influential books I've ever read so far in my 35 years of life.  I'm excited to see how what I've learned in this book continues to help me live in Love and in Spirit.  If you are new to my blog, check out my blog posts from the past couple of weeks.  Most, though not all, are inspired by the chapter of the book I read the night before.  I'm still amazed by the transformation I went through from start to finish of this book.  So much has changed in my life and in the way I view life in a few short weeks.  I literally am a different person today than I was a few weeks ago before starting this book. 

So, on to today's blog....

Chapter 18 discusses the Tao.  The basic principle of the Tao is balance.  Everything operates on a spectrum.  Like a pendulum, we swing back and forth, trying to find the middle balancing point.  That middle balancing point is where the Tao is.

All parts of our life operate on this spectrum, this pendulum.  And as humans, we tend to swing back and forth.  We tend to swing towards one extreme for a while, then back to the other extreme. 

Think about yourself and your life.  I know I do this.  In relationships, I often go through periods of wanting to be with someone all the time, 24/7... to not wanting to be with anyone and just needing to be alone.  One side of the spectrum to the other.  In my leisure time, I will be all about reading, be really into a particular book, and spend hours engrossed in the story... then go weeks without reading any book.  In my working life, I'd dive into a new job, love it, work as many hours as I can get... then get burned out and not work at all, living off the savings, for weeks to months.  I'm seeing how much I live my life at the extremes of the pendulum.   

The latest is with my diet.  As I read this chapter the other night I totally saw myself.  The last two and a half to three years I've followed a pretty strict vegan diet.  I was at one end of the pendulum.  For a couple of months I even got quite into raw veganism... even further towards the extreme end of the pendulum. 

I chose this diet because I wanted to.  I saw it as the most healthy way to eat, as well as the best moral/ethical choice.  It was a no-brainer for me.  I was excited about eating that way.  I felt good eating that way.  I loved eating that way. 

Now I see I was at one end of a pendulum.  And the pendulum is swinging back. 

It's hard to explain, and it's not something I ever expected to happen. But in the past couple of months I've had a much stronger desire to eat non-vegan things.  When I first decided to eat vegan, it was easy.  I didn't miss animal products (except cheese, at the beginning).  It was a relatively easy transition and choice.  That's why it's so interesting to me how strong my desire for animal products is now. 

Compared to many Americans, I still eat far fewer animal products.  But compared to how I've eaten the past three years.... I've eaten things (like a hot dog last night) that I haven't eaten in years. 

Anyway, this blog isn't about my diet.  It's about the pendulum that runs through every aspect of our lives.  I just most notice my pendulum swinging in regards to my diet at this point in my life. 

According to Michael Singer, "When you spend your energy trying to maintain the extremes, nothing goes forward.  You get stuck in a rut....The Way is in the middle because that's the place where the energies are balanced.  [H]ow do you stop the pendulum from swinging?...[B]y leaving it alone....Don't participate in [the extremes], and the pendulum will naturally come toward the center.  As it comes to the center, you will get filled with energy," (p. 169).   

When we live out on the extremes, at the ends of the spectrum, we tend to devote so much of our energy to that extreme.  I know I did with my diet.  It consumed a lot of my thoughts.  I'm not saying being 100% vegan is bad, or being 100% raw vegan is bad... or any of my other extremes (working lots of hours, reading a lot, choosing to be alone).  We all get to choose how to live our lives and what we do in it.  I'm just fascinated right now by the swinging pendulum effect.  I've noticed it in my life, certainly, but reading about it in "The Untethered Soul" brought new meaning to it. 

So why would you not want to continually swing back and forth amid the extremes of the pendulum?  Michael Singer answers this question.  "The inefficiency of your actions is determined by how many degrees off-center you are.  You will be that much less able to use your energy for living life because you are using it to adjust to the pendulum swings," (p. 168). 

When we're constantly swinging from one end to the other, it takes more of our energy.  That's why the middle is "The Way," which is to say what the Tao encourages.  It's where we are the most powerful.  The most at peace.   

"For the being who is in the Tao, events take place and last just as long as they are taking place.  That's it.  If you're driving and somebody cuts you off, you feel your energy start to pull off-center.  You actually feel it in your heart.  As you let go, it comes back to center," (p. 170).

Have you noticed yourself experiencing that?  I like that Michael Singer uses an example of driving because I think many of us can relate to that.  I know I certainly can.  Things other drivers do is one of the quickest triggers for me.  I have noticed my energy pull off-center in an instant.  In the worst periods of my "road rage," I would remain off-center for a while after the actual incident.  It would continue to get to me.  My blood would be boiling and I'd have a hard time letting it go.  Thankfully, I've learned to let go better.  I don't consider myself as someone with "road rage" any longer.  But I certainly was!

"When you move in the Tao, you are always present....[I]f you have all kinds of reactions going on inside because you're involved in the extremes, life seems confusing.  That's because you're confused, not because life's confusing.  When you stop being confused, everything becomes simple.  If you have no preference, if the only thing you want to remain is centered, then life unfolds while you simply feel for the center.  There is an invisible thread that passes through everything.  All things move quietly through that center balance.  That is the Tao.  It is really there.  It is there in your relationships, your diet, and in your business activities.  It is there in everything.  It is the eye of the storm.  It is completely at peace," (p. 170). 

"In the Tao...,the balance point is not static....You move from balance point to balance point....You can't have any concepts or preferences; you have to let the forces move you....[N]othing is personal....Effortless action is what happens when you come into the Tao.  Life happens, you're there, but you don't make it happen.  There is no burden; there is no stress," (p. 171). 

"You're no longer held down to your earthly self, so you begin to feel more spaciousness inside....You don't feel as much anger, fear, or self-consciousness.  You don't feel resentment towards people.  You don't close or get tight as often.  Things still happen that you don't want to happen, but they don't seem to touch you as much.  They can't reach back to where you are because you've drifted behind the part of you that reacts to things....It's just what naturally happens when you let go of the lower vibrations of your being.  You drift in and up to the deeper vibrations. 

As you associate less with the physical and psychological parts of your being, you begin to identify more with the flow of pure energy.  What does it feel like to identify more with Spirit than with form?  You used to walk around feeling anxiety and tension; now you walk around feeling love," (p. 174). 

"The individual consciousness falls into the Universal Oneness.  And that's it....[T]hey had merged and there was no differentiation within the Universal Oneness of God.  The drop of consciousness, which is individual Spirit, is like a ray of light emanating from the sun.  The individual ray is really no different from the sun.  When consciousness stops identifying itself as the ray, it comes to know itself as the sun.  Beings have merged into that state....[You] start feeling tremendous love for all creatures...[Y]ou are no longer judging....[J]udging as simply stopped.  There is just appreciating and honoring," (p. 176-177). 

"Then nobody will upset or disappoint you.  Nothing will create a problem.  It will all appear as part of the beautiful dance of creating unfolding before you," (p. 180). 

I apologize for the long quotes from the book.  I just couldn't find a good way to break it up, as it all flowed together so well.  And I couldn't say it any better myself.  It's all so beautiful. 

Doesn't that sound just amazing?  That way of life?  No more judging.  Just love.  No more problems.  Peace. 

Total and utter freedom.  That's what I saw as I read those words.  And it's what I'm feeling as I'm putting those words into practice in my own life. 

I still feel my pendulum swinging.  I'm learning to find my center.  My balance. 



Side Note:

This doesn't have anything to do with my blog, but I was so moved, I wanted to share.  I just watched a Jeff Probst show I had on DVR.  It was about organ donation, and specifically a 13-year-old girl, Taylor.  She died in a ski accident and her parents agreed to have her organs donated.  She saved the lives of 5 different people. 

Taylor's parents started a foundation called Taylor's Gift.  Check out the webpage (  You can click on the link on the home page and register to be an organ donor in your state.  That way you know it's on file, should anything happen. 

I'm already signed up as an organ donor, as per my driver's license, but I went on the website and signed up again, just to be sure.  :)       

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

"Death is your Liberator"

Back to Michael Singer and "The Untethered Soul" today.  I'm almost finished with the book. 

"Death is your Liberator" -- the title of today's blog is from p. 162.  Chapter 17 is all about death, and as usual, Michael had some great insights and new ways of looking at it.  The more complete quote from which I got the title is this:

"[D]eath actually gives meaning to life.  Death is your friend.  Death is your liberator....If you live each moment completely, you will have a fuller life and you will not have to fear death.  You fear death because you crave life.  You fear death because you think there's something to get that you haven't experienced yet," (p. 162). 


I hadn't thought about it like that, but I find it very true... We fear death because we crave life.  We don't want to die because there's stuff here that we haven't done yet.  Or things we need or want to take care of first.  But if we live our lives to the fullest -- actually doing whatever it is we want and need to do, instead of putting it off -- then when death comes we'll know we're ready.  We'll have lived our lives.  We'll have done the stuff we wanted to do.  We won't be (as) afraid. 

Michael's suggestion is to "[l]earn to live as though you are facing death at all times, and you'll become bolder and more open....There is no reason to be afraid of life," (p 161). 

So basically, don't be afraid of life or death.  Fear.  It all comes back to fear.  When we live in fear... whether it's fear of dying, fear of living, fear of anything, we're limiting ourselves.  We're holding ourselves back.  We're not realizing our full potential and purpose for being here. 

"Imagine if you knew you were going to die within a week or a month....Think honestly about what you would do with your last week....Then ponder this question:  If that's really what you would do with your last week, what are you doing with the rest of your time?  Wasting it?  Throwing it away?  Treating it like it's not something precious?  What are you doing with your life?  That is what death asks you." 


This part of the chapter was funny to me (funny-interesting, funny-odd).  Because the first novel I wrote was about this very topic.  It's a fiction novel and the main character has this dream where he sees the date different people will die.  He doesn't know how, but he sees the date.  Then the book is about what he does with that information, and what other people do with it.  Certainly knowing when you'll die will affect how you live.  But how?  What would you change exactly?  How would you live your life differently?  This isn't a ploy to sell my book (though it is available on Amazon, called "The Time of Your Life").  When I read the line, "Imagine if you knew you were going to die within a week or a month," I just thought it was weird, the connection. 

So what would you change?  What I think is difficult about this is if I knew, for sure, that I had only a week to live I'd treat money differently.  For one, I'd stop saving.  I'd spend it all (or give it away and donate it).  I'd probably spend a little more time with the people closest to me (though I'm pretty happy with the amount of time I already spend with them). 

I suppose it's a good question to ponder... how you'd live if you had a week left... just so you know your priorities.  Then you can make those priorities more of a priority in your life right now.  But certain things obviously aren't wise to do -- like give away all your money.

Michael talks about this further:
"Let's say you're living life without the thought of death, and the Angel of Death comes to you and says, 'Come, it's time to go.'  You say, 'But no.  You're supposed to give me a warning so I can decide what I want to do with my last week.  I'm supposed to get one more week.'  Do you know what Death will say to you?  He'll say, 'My God!  I gave you fifty-two weeks this past year alone.  And look at all the other weeks I've given you.  Why would you need one more?  What did you do with all those?'" (p. 159). 

I love that little story.  Everyone always wants more.  More money.  More time.  More... whatever.  But look at what you do with what you have already. 

Gratitude.  Gratitude is key.  Being grateful for what you have, whatever you have, is an imperative first step to not only being happy and content, but to living in abundance.


Elsewhere in the chapter, Michael addresses fears in relationships, and how contemplating death can help solve those.  He talks about jealousy.  How in our lives some of us ( can be insecure and jealous.  We don't want our partners to have relationships with or even talk to certain other people.  But Singer suggests thinking about how your partner will live when you're no longer here.  Certainly you don't want them living in solitude, depressed and missing you with all their days.  Surely you want the person you love to be happy and live a full life, right?  So why don't you want that for them now? 

This further solidified my letting go of my insecurities in regards to my boyfriend's ex-wife... or anyone else.  If we truly, genuinely love someone, we want them to be happy and live full lives.  We are a part of their lives, an important part, but having a full life consists of many different aspects.  Different people.  Different experiences.  It's not all about us

Letting go.  Just let go and be happy.  Enjoy the experiences Life brings to us.  Love the people in our lives.  Follow our passions and follow our hearts.  Be patient, kind, and Open to Love at all times.

There's nothing to be afraid of.  Neither life nor death.  We are here to Live and experience it all.  It's all FOR us.         



Tuesday, June 11, 2013


I'm going to take a break today from blogging about my latest learnings from Michael Singer, to what I learned about Abundance.  I've been listening to some of the speakers in the Hay House World Summit.  I find myself drawn to the ones speaking about abundance.  And a couple have really been cool, interesting, helpful, and eye-opening.  Joe Vitale and Denise Linn.  So today I'd like to share what I found most helpful and hope it helps you on the path to abundance as well.  :)


Denise Linn's biggest suggestion for creating more abundance is clearing out our clutter.  The two questions she says to ask yourself is "Do I love it?  Do I use it?"  If you can't answer yes to at least one of those questions, you need to let go of whatever stuff you're holding on to. 

It's easy, at least for me, to hold on to stuff that I may not love, but someone got it for me, so I feel like I have to keep it.  Or stuff that I may not be using right now, but I might in the future.  These are my two clutter areas of weakness. 

Generally speaking, I don't consider myself a person who has a lot of clutter.  But I guess that's all in who I compare myself to.  I know I can reduce the stuff I have in my home, so I'm working on that.  After listening to Denise Linn's podcast, I was able to collect a trash bag full of stuff I no longer need.  And that was just from one closet and a couple dressers.  I still have plenty more space in my house to go through.  And I plan on doing that! 

Interestingly enough (thanks Universe!), I got a card in the mail a couple days ago saying a truck for a charity group will be coming through my neighborhood on June 18th and all I have to do is set out bags labeled with their name on my front porch, and they'll take them.  So that's my goal.  Make at least one pass through my entire house by next Tuesday and see how much stuff I can get rid of.  Give to someone else to use.  Create more space in my home and in my life for Abundance. 

After de-cluttering, Denise talked quite a bit about some feng shui practices to assist with abundance.  I'll share the notes I took on that:

Stand at your front door.  The furthest left hand corner of your home represents finances and abundance.  Make an abundance altar there.  Images of waterfalls and flowing water represent abundance, as do sailing ships with full sails. 
Set out a "wealth bowl."  This should be a beautiful bowl that you fill with whatever represents wealth to you.
Into the kitchen now... the furthest back left-hand burner on your stove represents abundance.  Use that burner at least sometimes.  Don't let it sit unused. 
Put lids on pots that you're not using (to "keep" your abundance with you). 
In your wallet or purse... Clear our clutter there too.  Keep only what you love and use on a regular basis.  Even put something in it (like a small picture of a waterfall or a written affirmation) that represents abundance. 
Plants... Write an abundance affirmation and plant it in the soil.  Use plants that have upward growth (not downward).  Also, do not use cacti unless you really, really love cacti. 
Make an abundance collage (or vision board).  Put this collage in your bedroom because you will absorb the energy as you sleep. 

Those are the notes I took.  I've implemented all of them as well.  I figure it's all about our intentions and what we believe.  If we believe something will help, or have an effect, it likely will.  And now I'm remembering to trust in the Universe's Divine Timing.  :)

On to Joe Vitale.  He gave 7 steps to greater Abundance in his podcast.  Here are those 7 steps:

1.  Alter how you think
2.  Give without expectation
3.  Prosperous Spending
4.  Ask for help
5.  Nevillize your goals
6.  Think like an entrepreneur
7.  Help your community and world

The steps are in that order for a reason.  It's difficult, if not impossible, to help the world if we don't first alter how we think. 

I'll explain what the steps mean, as some of them (like #5) aren't obvious. 

Altering how we think about money is key.  I've thought I had good thoughts and feelings about money...and I think I'm alright, but I see now that many of my thoughts were actually based on scarcity and lack.  Not good when you're trying to bring more abundance to you! 

I've always known I'll have enough money when I need it, but I've never been overly abundant (until receiving the unexpected inheritance).  As I've blogged about before, I know how to get by, but I also tend to deny myself things and delay gratification a lot.  More on that when I get to step 3. 

Joe pointed out how we all know the saying, "Money is the root of all evil."  And many people deeply believe that money is bad, or rich people or greedy, or any number of negative connotations when it comes to money.  It's no wonder why people don't have more money then!  We won't attract more of something to us if we inherently believe that thing is bad for us.  Consciously we may want more money, but if subconsciously we think money is bad, we'll continue to push it away without even realizing it. 

Joe offered a few thoughts to help alter our thinking about money.
"Money is a tool I can use for good and to pursue my passion." 
"The sole purpose of money is to express appreciation."
"We use money to complete our mission and fulfill our purpose."

The second one was interesting to me.  Joe explained how true it is.  Even when we use money to pay our bills, we're basically expressing our appreciation for having heat, or having TV, or having a phone.  We don't typically pay for stuff that we don't want and don't see a need for. 

Still working on our thoughts, Joe suggests we pay attention to them when money comes up.  If there's something we'd like to buy or do, and our first thought is, "I don't have enough money," notice that.  Then question your thoughts.  Is that true?  Do you really not have enough money?  Or are you just afraid to spend the money you have? 

This one really rang true for me.  I often say, I don't have enough money for that.  But the truth is, I do have the money, I just either don't want to spend it on that, or am afraid to spend it.  I'm afraid I'll run out.  Scarcity and lack.  By telling myself, "I don't have enough money," I'm making that true for myself.  I'm keeping more money from coming to me.  


Obviously our thoughts about money have a major impact on the level of abundance we experience.  But I'll move on to #2.  Giving.  

You may already know this, or have heard it, but Joe reaffirms that when we give, we're creating space to receive.  The more we give, the bigger a window we open up for ourselves through which to receive.  

Joe gave the example of someone who doesn't have much money, so he/she doesn't give.  The person thinks, "I barely have enough to cover my own bills, I can't afford to give money away.  I need it.  I'm going to hold on to everything I have."  This person will not experience abundance.  Do you know people like this?  Or are you like this yourself?  I bet we all have been this person at least some time in our lives.  

I know at points in my life when my savings was running quite low, and I was between jobs, I stopped giving.  I felt like I needed to hold on to what I had, for my own protection.  Joe isn't saying to give away all your money.  But even if you just have $25, and you can give away a dollar, that's something.  That opens up at least that much space for abundance to come to you.  


When I heard step 2, I thought about myself.  I have almost always given to charities (except in those times of greatest fear and lowest funds, but even that was usually just for a couple months).  As long as I've been living on my own, I've donated money to charities I believe in.  (I've never had to buy address labels... I get them sent to me for free all the time from those charities, lol.)  I give in proportion to how much money I have.  When I received the inheritance, I knew I wanted to give 5-10% away.  I've been keeping track of what I've donated from that sum, and I'm not at the 5% mark yet, so I'm still giving.  I don't just toss it at charities haphazardly.  I look for causes that come up that I deeply believe in and want to help, then I do.  And it feels great!  

But anyway, I've wondered if all my giving has at least helped me always be ok with money.  After listening to Joe, I'm sure it has.  

Step #3, Prosperous Spending, was most intriguing to me.  It goes along with the first step, changing your thoughts about money.  Joe explains that when we see something we'd like to have, or that we need, and we don't buy it, we're sending the message to ourselves that we don't deserve it.  We're not good enough.  This feeds into the lack and scarcity thoughts as well.  It's a downward, sad cycle.  

So instead, when we see something we'd like to have, AND we have the money to buy it, we should buy it.  The key is if we have the money to buy it.  No one is advocating using credit cards, going into debt, or throwing away money on frivolous purchases.  But if it's something you genuinely desire, you love it, and you'll use it, AND you do have money for it, the go ahead and get it for yourself.  This sends the message that you are worth it, and you do deserve it.  


This hit home with me.  As I said, I'm the queen of delayed gratification.  I'm constantly telling myself, "I don't really need it."  Constantly.  I've started loosening up and noticing how these thoughts are likely affecting my money and abundance in the recent weeks.  And hearing this podcast by Joe only affirms what I've started doing and motivates me to continue even more.  

Step #4 - asking for help.  This one is obvious so I won't spend much time on it.  I don't naturally like to ask for help.  I like to do things myself.  Take care of myself.  But even asking for help from the Universe is good.  Opening your heart and mind and saying to the Universe, "Please help me with this" will create more flow in your life.  

Step #5 - Nevillize your goals.  This is based on Neville Gedard, an author in the 1960s and 70s.  I hadn't heard of him before, maybe you have.  Neville suggested that people don't just visualize, but to imagine that it's already here.
“When you assume reality, it will harden into fact.”  
This goes hand-in-hand with what others have said on this topic.  I know Wayne Dyer, for one, has said that what we desire is already here.  We just have to tap into it.  See it.  Open ourselves up and experience it.  


The last two I won't discuss too much.  Think like an entrepreneur... Joe says that we should use complaints as indications of action.  Don't just complain about something, do something.  Make a business out of it.  Put the product out there that you wish you had.  
And then help your community and world.  The more we have, the more we should be reaching out and helping.  


In conclusion of Joe's talk, he encouraged everyone to follow their passions.  If you don't know what your "grand purpose in life" is, pay attention to what you do moment by moment.  That is our clue to our bigger purpose.  
Follow your inner urges, and don't give up.  Keep going.  


So, that's what I took away from those speakers on the Hay House World Summit.  I know it will affect how I live my life moving forward.  I won't deny myself so much anymore.  I'll use money to show my appreciation for things.  I'll continue to give.      

I hope some of this has helped you too, in your quest for abundance.  If you've already found things that work for you as well, I'd love to hear them!