3 Ways to Foster Faith This Holiday Season

3 Ways to Foster Faith This Holiday Season

This time of year seems to invite us in to contemplate the light within us, the light of faith. 

What exactly is faith?

According to the Catholic theologian, St. Augustine, “Faith is to believe what you do not see; the reward of this faith is to see what you believe.”

Mark Twain puts it this way, “Your faith is what you believe not what you know.”

For me, having faith means that I keep moving toward the goals and dreams I have, knowing that I am supported. Even if I cannot see the angels, guides or way-showers, I believe they are there, helping, healing and willing to be called upon for support.

Faith helps us to be buoyed and supported as we continue to choose love amidst all the fear and uncertainty that is perpetually stoked around us.

And as I look back at the turbulent 2018, and ahead to 2019, I feel called to invite all of us to strengthen our faith.

Holidays with Healthy Boundaries: 3 Tips

Holidays with Healthy Boundaries: 3 Tips

Thanksgiving’s passed and Chanukah, Yule (or the winter solstice), and Christmas are around the corner. This time of year typically means lots of social gatherings. Which, although fun, can also be tense.

And the best way to deal with family and friends, is to have clear and firm boundaries.

What’s that?

An emotional boundary is about knowing what is and is not acceptable behavior for you.

Many of us grew up in families where boundaries were unclear or non-existent. So, as adults, we’ve either never had them or have had to learn how to create healthy ones.

Once you’ve established what your boundaries are, it’s then a matter of stating them aloud to friends and family.

3 Practices for Everyday Gratitude

3 Practices for Everyday Gratitude

November is a great month to remind us of what we have, especially for those of us who live in the United States.

Thee first Tuesday is election day, when we get to give thanks that we live in a democracy and have the freedom to vote!

Then a week or so later, it’s the 11th, which marks the end of World War I across the world, and is celebrated here as Veteran’s Day. It’s a day to reflect on our painful past as well as to honor the men and women who have fought valiantly.

And then, of course, is Thanksgiving. 

3 Tools to Manage Your Life Like A Boss

3 Tools to Manage Your Life Like A Boss

Feeling stressed or crazed because there's too much to do and not enough time to get it all done?

Our 24/7 world is taking a toll.

But if you’re ready to work smarter rather than longer or harder, I have 3 simple ways you can begin to do that RIGHT NOW.

Sound good?

1. The One Thing

This particular one has been my mantra for the past few years. It’s based on Gary Keller’s bestselling book of the same name.

He asks you to answer this question (and I’m paraphrasing), “What’s the 1 thing that if you do it, it will change your business/life?”

It might sound crazy, but I dare you to try it. 

When I did, I got an answer and it’s been the SAME for 3 years now!

What I like about this is that it gives you a focus, an orientation so you're 100% clear about where you’re going.

Feeling Flawed? Think Again

Feeling Flawed? Think Again

“No amount of self-improvement can make up for a lack of self-acceptance.” – Dr. Robert Holden.

When I first heard Robert say this, I gasped.

And then I let it seep into my being. Because even though I was a life long self-improvement addict, I knew, not only was he right but that it was time for me to change.

How about you?

Been on the constant merry go round of self-improvement too?

Ready to get off and try another way?

Here are 3 easy to apply ways to move right into self-acceptance:

Time To Rage

Time To Rage

Everywhere I look, women are getting beaten up. I suppose it was the week, between the Kavanaugh hearings in Washington DC, reading about Tara Fares’ brutal murder in Baghdad, the fifth such killing of outspoken women in Iraq in recent months. And then my own daughter feeling bullied at school.

Something in me just snapped.

Yes, these injustices have been going on for millennia, but it’s clearly time for a tidal shift.

And that means that all of us, YOU and I and the millions of other women around the world need to stand up and express ourselves, especially our anger.

If you’re ready, here are 3 tips:

Ready For A Miracle?

Ready For A Miracle?

As you know, I’m a big fan of the book, A Course in Miracles (ACIM), which is often described as a self-study curriculum designed to help the reader experience personal transformation.

In Chapter 1, it literally defines miracles. (I know, isn’t that so cool!?) 

There are 50 points, or ways that miracles are described but today, I thought I’d share my top 5. 

Here’s my list:

1. Miracles occur naturally as expressions of love. The real miracle is the love that inspires them. In this sense everything that comes from love is a miracle. (3)

hat last sentence is balm to my heart, the gentle reminder that love heals all.

Life Lessons From the Boat

Life Lessons From the Boat

Ever been on a sports team? Softball? Basketball? Frisbee?

People make light of sports but being on the crew team in high school changed my life.

Even though I’d been active as a child both at summer camp and with dance lessons, I was intimidated by sports at boarding school. All the kids were EXPERTS having played squash, tennis, or field hockey forever.  There was no way I could compete with that level of mastery.

But sometime mid-winter of my junior year, my mother encouraged me to try out for crew.

So I signed up, sat at an ergometer machine – which I had NO idea how to use- and a month later, found myself at spring training at Rollins College in Florida.

After a week of blisters, jogs and sweaty workouts in the boats, I was the only one cut from the team.

3 Ways To Tackle Fear of the Future

3 Ways To Tackle Fear of the Future

Afraid of what's to come?

You aren't alone. The other day, I was talking with a 20 year-old who's moving to Nepal for 6-months. She’ll live with a family, learn the language, and be fairly isolated (as most host families don’t have internet.)

“Sounds like when I lived overseas!" I replied, laughing. "Those were the days of snail mail and expensive phone calls.”

But I also knew her fear – the fear of going someplace completely foreign, being thousands of miles away from friends and family- being alone.

She admitted that when she’d first learned about the trip something inside of her urged her on. The more she learned, the more she wanted to do it, until she was actually facing getting on the airplane.

Has that ever happened to you?

Open to the Divine Mother

Open to the Divine Mother

I got a message recently from a woman asking me about the Divine Mother. She worried that there might be a way to be rejected by her.

I define the Divine Mother as the feminine face of God.

I see her as a timeless earth goddess whose lap I can crawl into any time and she’ll hold me and nourish me like a baby.

This woman’s message reminded me that allowing ourselves to be loved can feel scary. Especially when we’ve been betrayed, hurt or feel scarred by the earthly mother’s or female mentors we’ve had.

If this is resonating with you but you want to open up to the love of the Universal Mother, here are a few ways to help.

What Mr. Rogers Taught Me

What Mr. Rogers Taught Me

A few days ago I saw a preview of the new documentary about Fred Rogers called, “Won’t You be my Neighbor?” Instantly, I remembered being a small child, excited to turn on our old black & white TV and see Mr. Rogers smiling face as he invited me into his living room. With fondness, I recollected watching him take off his “street clothes” and put on his sweater and tennis shoes.

Then when I was about 11 or 12, I was rummaging through my father’s stack of albums and pulled out Mr. Rogers Neighborhood. I started belittling him, saying his show was for babies. It was stupid. And then my father’s stern voice rang through the hallway. “Mr. Rogers is an exemplary human being. His show is intelligent, thoughtful and fun. And his message is one of universal love.”

That shut me up.

5 Ways to Embrace Change with Joy & Ease

5 Ways to Embrace Change with Joy & Ease

It's official! On Saturday my youngest daughter graduates from high school! As exciting as this is, it also means that come September, I’m officially an empty nester.

Even though we know that change is a part of life, it can still feel stressful and fraught with anxiety.

Isn't there a way to manage change with awareness and clarity instead?

If you're experiencing change in your life - a big move, new job, relationship or are about to send a kid to college- use these 5 steps, and embrace that transition.

     

  

  	
       
      
         
          
             
                  
             
          

          

         
      
       
    

  


     In today’s bully infested world, kindness is seen as weakness.  You and I both know that simply isn't true.  AND  Who wants to live in a world where we pull each other down and make each other wrong?   Instead, let's support one another, help us reach up and become our higher selves.  Which is why I'm making a stand for kindness.  Think about it.  How do you feel when you’re mean or cruel to someone?  Now think about how you feel when you’re kind.   Like fear, kindness is contagious.   It can shower the world like water quenching a wild fire.  And, it really is easy.  It starts with a smile.  A caring word to a stranger.  A “thank you.”  That feeling of gratitude in your heart.  Doing something because.  Handing a stranger a tissue.  Holding the door open.  Waving at a car.   Kindness is like a secret weapon. Not only does it impact the receiver, it impacts the giver too.   So today, I have 2 special kindness offerings.  The first is access to a meditation guiding you through the  Metta Bhavana , a Buddhist phrase and practice that means loving kindness.  This is a specific Buddhist prayer to help you foster loving kindness. The idea is to cultivate this feeling within your self and then express it to all sentient beings.   The guided meditation follows the steps as I learned them:    1.  Focus on yourself. Feel love, compassion and caring for YOU.   2.  Now imagine a loved one standing in front of you. Shower this person with that same love, light and healing.   3 . Thirdly, envision in front of you a person with whom you have no relationship – think about your postal worker, a shopkeeper or bus driver. Send this same love and healing light to this person.   4.  The next person to come before you is someone with whom you have a conflict or issue. Imagine that person standing directly in front of you. See him or her surrounded by love, healing, kindness and light.   5.  Lastly, send this beautiful energy out to blanket the entire world.   You can download the meditation here  OR listen to it on  Insight Timer .  Practicing the Metta Bhavana will help you create and stay in a place of kindness throughout your day. It's a powerful prayer and practice. Every time I do it, it profoundly alters my day.  And as a special bonus, I’ve added a poem for you called  Kindness  by Naomi Shihab Nye. I heard it over the weekend and learned that it has provided much solace to people over the years.  Here is a beautiful link to it,  enjoy.  Join me is fostering living kindness within your own being. Both yourself and the world will be grateful.            Be sure to continue receiving my weekly emails. Sign up FREE.

In today’s bully infested world, kindness is seen as weakness.

You and I both know that simply isn't true.

AND

Who wants to live in a world where we pull each other down and make each other wrong? 

Instead, let's support one another, help us reach up and become our higher selves.

Which is why I'm making a stand for kindness.

Think about it.

How do you feel when you’re mean or cruel to someone?

Now think about how you feel when you’re kind.

Like fear, kindness is contagious.

10 Ways to Kickstart A Daily Spiritual Practice

10 Ways to Kickstart A Daily Spiritual Practice

We all crave more peace, less anxiety, and definitely less stress.

One of the best ways to do this is to have some kind of daily contemplative practice. Think about this as a time to simply be with you. To touch base with the wise, all knowing self that resides deep within you.

A spiritual practice is something you give yourself so it should feel exciting and fun and definitely NOT like a chore. It’s not another “have-to.”

I often think about this time as refuge – a state I can enter where the craziness of the world is far away- where there is only peace and a sense of calm.

Craving more peace in your life? Here are 10 ideas to get you started:

10 Ways to Love Mother Earth More

10 Ways to Love Mother Earth More

Yes Earth Day JUST passed (on Sunday). But it’s never too late to take a stand and care about protecting our planet.

Part of my daily prayer is for our earth – that we may live in peace with all of our human, plant, animal and mineral brothers and sisters. In fact, I pray for us to become stewards of this sacred place that is our home.

Which is why the celebration of the earth is important – to acknowledge the amazing planet we live on.

I’m sure you’re already on board, but here’s a quick list of simple things you can do right now to make a difference.