It’s Never Too Late

It’s that time of year when we all wax poetic and look over the past 12 months, taking stock of what we did or rather didn’t do and draw up yet a brand-new list with a January 1 headline and the subject is Resolutions.

New Year’s resolutions are the grande dame of the To-Do List, and too often we hold ourselves dutifully accountable until either our enthusiasm runs out or things get in the way and the exuberance of the YES! I WILL becomes, TOMORROW! I WILL and on it goes in its decent toward NEXT Week I will,  Next month I will, next year I will.… and before we know it, it’s Happy Birthday, Happy Holidays, Happy New Year (again) and we start over.

Why not let each day be a New Year and go forward to start (or finish) whatever that something is? It’s never too late. Let what you want to do go beyond New Year’s resolutions and don’t let the calendar dictate the absolute end date for accomplishing what you set out to do. Yes, it’s good to have goals (which is what resolutions really are) set within a timeframe but it is so easy to become discouraged and give up if we don’t meet the goals we set for ourselves by the particular date we think we should have.

This doesn’t mean you should let things go until whenever, either, but if you find things are getting in the way of accomplishing what you want whether it’s life happenings or your own procrastination, break down that capital “G” Goal into smaller, lowercase “g” goals. This can help in making them more attainable and easier to meet. It will also give you a sense of accomplishment, which may make your original end Goal easier to see and reach.

Envision it. See it. You don’t have to know how you’ll get there only that you will.  Let your resolutions be the beginning to something you’ve always wanted to do; be; experience, but instead of treating it like a chore of something you feel you should do (losing weight, give up smoking, spend less time at the office, eat better, etc.)  put things on that list that you’ve always wanted to do and up until now didn’t. Even go so far as thinking back to when you were a kid—what did you want to be when you grew up? What did you like to do? Why not pick those things up again? You’re never too old and it’s never too late.

Setting New Year’s resolutions are a great place to start and reboot yourself to the place you may have always wanted to be mentally, physically, and emotionally and when June rolls around and you find yourself with that list still untouched, no one can say you can’t reboot and re-start your resolution then. You’re in control.  Too often we procrastinate by saying One Day, so why not let that “One Day” start this January 1 and if need be, then February 1, March 1 and so on. No matter what you want to do, don’t believe it’s too late—in the calendar or in your life. Your dreams and resolutions may have changed as you got older, I know mine have, but I don’t believe that dreams and goals have an expiration date just because they weren’t fulfilled by a certain age or time.

May each day of this new year inspire you instead of it being the tick-tock of things undone and goals unmet.

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Discovery and Wishes

I’ve been an avid reader all my life—all sorts of books from fiction to nonfiction and inspiration to The Far Side cartoon collection. No matter how many books I have, there will always be room for one more, except these past few weeks, when I’ve had to find room for many more.

It’s just one of those things where everywhere I turned there was something I wanted to read more about and so these past few weeks I’ve been gifting myself with an armload of books from local bookstores. As my pile got higher, I noticed that the subjects were all related in theme: without realizing it I had surrounded myself with biographies of individuals who fell from a place in their lives, met resistance, dealt with it, and overcame it or were working at overcoming it. These were stories of, in part, discovery, faith, challenges, courage, and strength in physical, emotional, and spiritual areas. Except, there were those Stephen King and Anne Rice novels thrown in there a few weeks ago that was pure blissful mind candy….

I can’t help but wonder if these books have been put in my path as an answer to questions I have been asking. Some questions I’m fully aware of and others I feel lurking just beneath my consciousness, stirring up the waters and tickling my dreams. Or perhaps they were brought to my attention to show me to have faith and acceptance no matter what course I’m redirected to. Either way, I am enjoying them tremendously and have already learned much with a lot more to digest.

That being said, one of the books I’ve been reading this week is from Pema Chödrön and I was reminded of the Four Limitless Qualities Chant. I’ve known about it but I was happy to be reminded of it again and I thought its showing up right now, is impeccable timing in that it perfectly expresses my wishes for everyone during this holiday season. Whatever religion you practice, whatever nationality you are, wherever you live in this world, I share and wish for you this:

May all beings enjoy happiness and the root of happiness.
May we be free from suffering and the root of suffering.
May we not be separated from the great happiness devoid of suffering.
May we dwell in the great equanimity free from passion, aggression, and prejudice.

Taking it deeper this Christmas and beyond.

Friday’s Focus—You’ve Got to Disconnect to Reconnect

Let’s start this focus off with a challenge:

The next time you find yourself waiting for something or someone, whether it be a visitor, lunch date, plane, train, or bus, don’t take out your smartphone as a distraction. That’s right. Don’t check email. Don’t surf the Web. Don’t tweet, post, or launch whatever social media has your attention and password.

Our addiction to social media and our insatiable need to be connected is actually keeping us separated from each other in the real world, making it seem more like antisocial media. We have become a people who use the Internet and all its fabulous sites and information and entrainment as a crutch from connecting with each other. What gets lost here, is remembering that it’s the human connection in the first place that generates all the great stories we read about and human-interest videos we watch on YouTube and Facebook.

So many people would rather watch life’s events via a device in 2D then a real interaction that asks us to step out beyond our comfort zones and engage with people and events.

Don’t allow your Internet connection to be your disconnection with the whole of your life.

The next time you find yourself with even 5 minutes of downtime waiting for someone or something, don’t be in such a hurry to reach for that phone. Instead, just be where you are and disconnect to reconnect with your thoughts and what is happening around you.

It’s important to remember that the real world is at our feet and all around us, and while social media has its fortunes and uses, it is only a  portion, a very small portion at that, of what life is really about.

Have a good weekend!

Keeping it light and singing LiLoLa [Live, Love, Laugh] all the way…

Friday’s Focus—Go Outside

Take some time out each day to go outside of your home or office even if for just a few minutes. Just step outside and even walk around the house or your parking lot.

Whether you live in a city or countryside, there is a rekindling and stimulation to our psyche when we step out from behind our computers and cars and televisions. It’s so easy to get caught up in getting to and from our day jobs and family responsibilities that’s too often we don’t just put on some boots or flip flips and go out even for a few minutes and revel in the energy of Mother Nature or your Cityscape.

Have a good weekend!

Keeping it light and singing LiLoLa [Live, Love, Laugh] all the way…

Nightshade: A Poem Born

I call out to you, do you hear me?
I reach out to you, do you feel me?
I look for you, do you see me?

In the darkest of hours, the full moon lights the path
and it would only take the slightest lift of my gaze to recognize the way, but I don’t.

I’m afraid.

If only….

Instead, I stay focused with eyelids down, staring at my one foot move in front of the other.
The power of my intention is all that is keeping my feet steady and sure and moving.

One step at a time.

I can feel the rush of bats wings as they fly past me, and then hear the owl hooting in its perch, sounding so close, I stop mid-step for but a moment.
The wolf joins the nighttime raucous with its howl and my flesh breaks out into goosebumps.

You are near.

I pull the hood of my cloak closer over my head and gather the folds at my neck.

Searching for you with my eyes is no longer enough. I start to shake and dance my wild woman awake so now I can better seek you out with my soul. The tethers of the wind bring your scent to me, confirming that you are no longer just near, but you are here.

Right here.
Right in front of me.
Right beside me.

I still my feet on the path, close my eyes, and will my body to stay standing. I break out in goosebumps again as I feel your energy kissing mine.

My eyes raise slowly, intending to rest on the site of Grandmother Moon, but instead I see you, and I begin to touch you with my hands.

We pull each other deeper into life’s embrace as I release the wild woman inside me in ecstasy.

Friday’s Focus—Change Your View, Change Your Vibration

Today, think about someone you don’t like. Someone you can’t stand. Someone who really irks you or even just mildly gets under your skin and notice the emotions that take over and the physical responses in your body. You know we all know at least one person that gets to us.

Now, think about two good things about the person. You can find them. Really make that effort to dig deep. Regardless of how small it may seem to you, it is still a positive thought. And positive thoughts turn into positive energy. Now, notice the difference in your emotions and physical responses in your body.

Negative thoughts are like negative energetic daggers that stick in someone’s energy field and can create imbalances and even illness.

One look at the news is telling how much out of balance we are with each other and so within ourselves. To change our thoughts may seem like a ridiculously small act but it builds into larger feelings, and if each one of us took the time, there will be the hundredth monkey and we will see change. Let it start with you, today.

Have a good weekend!

Keeping it light and singing LiLoLa [Live, Love, Laugh] all the way…

From Where I Sit

I’ve been feeling very restless the last few weeks. Most likely because the intensity of my day job has substantially increased recently and I have been tethered to the computer daily, mired in the learning curve of java, html, and creating Web pages in a deeper level than I ever knew, or care to, for that matter.

I sit in my home office, surrounded by monitors and keyboards, and after hours of intense focus of staring at the computer screen, sometimes I need to look at something more 3D, so I’ll look out of the one window that is in the room. From where I sit, I can just see the top of the garage roof and an audience of trees behind it. The view is especially lovely when it snows or rains.

My eyes follow the raindrops or the snowflakes as they cascade from the sky and turn the tree tops into white-laced forests or drooping branches, saturated with moisture. If it’s a clear day then I watch the clouds parade by. And if I tilt my head just right (or slink down in my chair, just so), the roof disappears and all I see are the trees and it’s then that I imagine myself  in a place far, far away.

When I feel particularly antsy, I get up and walk to my living room window where, now in the winter, I can see the lake across the way through the bare branches. Sometimes I can’t resist the lure of leaning on crossed arms against the sill, with my forehead pressed against the glass and just watch the play of the sun on the water, letting it mesmerize me and lull me into a quiet space of prayer and meditation.

As a yoga teacher, I learned that yoga lives just as much off the mat as it does on. Some say more so—doing asanas doesn’t make the world go around but following the wisdom of the teachings of Yoga does. As a Shamanic practitioner, I learned the importance, and yes, I’m going to say necessity, of reaching out and connecting to the energies of nature and the Universe; our ancestors, guides and teachers is essential if we are to grow individually and collectively as a human race and maintain and sustain a thread of creativity, abundance, and positivity. Some days, I’ll admit, it is an effort—yogically and shamanically but it’s an effort that is worth making.

I can’t let my days be completely ruled by fear and obligations of unknown and yet to be learned work skills. Yes, I need the work—I have bills to pay like everyone one else. But I see clearly now, more than ever, that when we allow one thing, one aspect of our lives to overrule and push out everything else that is a part of who we are, a disconnect happens and we get into trouble and the restlessness, feelings of unworthiness, insecurity, and general unhappiness kick in. I can’t keep going like that. I won’t. It’s time to get reacquainted with balance again.

I will still do what is asked of me and fulfill my obligations but on new terms.  I am actively rededicating myself to my practices and bringing them off the mat and into the world and I am birthing it with drumming, and rattling and dancing with the ancestors.

There is always so much to do, places to go, people to see—an abundance of distractions and with only so many hours and energy to do it all, I will let my window gazing—arms folded on the sill and forehead against the glass if need be, to lead me into the prayers and meditations and practices that will get me there. Back to balance, back to home.