Support Yourself In Times Of Adversity

Support Yourself In Times Of Adversity

Times of Adversity – You’ve Got This!

Start Where You Are

We all encounter dark times at some point in life, and undoubtedly when you experience hardship there are external factors at play.  However, while you are aware that those factors have played a part in your current reality, it can be hard to accept that you can’t change any of them now. What you can do is accept and acknowledge the part that you played and take responsibility for creating the solution.

First, understand that these things happen to everyone.  A divorce, job loss, relationship break-up, financial crisis or health challenge are instances when we have the choice to dwell in the problem, experiencing a deep, dark, lengthy period of suffering, or we can accept where we are and focus on shifting to where we want to be.

Stay Positive

When life throws a curve ball and forces change upon us we can respond by falling further or confronting our difficulties. Resisting and lamenting the reality of your present moment situation delays the process of recovery.  To get things moving in the upward direction try feeling appreciation for the blessings in your life right now. You can start by noticing the basic goodness of being alive – sunshine, water, nature, food, air and any other general supportive elements in life.  Engage in self-reflection and find ways to nurture yourself with exercise, journaling, and enjoyable music. Whatever your challenge you have the resources within you to take the first step by making a decision, being willing to feel better. Embrace your wish to be happy and define what that means for you.

Get Help

You may prefer to seek out and accept help.  Investigate quality blogs or forums online; explore charities or support agencies; invest in a mentor or personal coach.  Investing in the support of a coach is one of the quickest ways to get results and one of the best value propositions. Someone who has been through the same challenges as you is likely to understand the best means of shifting your situation quickly.  The price tag may well pay the biggest return on your investment in the long run and bottom line, you are worth it.

Pay Attention To Your Emotions

Finding emotional balance is a priority for feeling better and being able to plan for the future. Even at your most desolate, seeking solace and support is a sign that you are not ready to give up on yourself. I have faced dark challenges and refused to believe that a light exists to lead me out. When I stopped blaming others for my circumstances and faced my painful emotions I was able to see that my life was calling me forward to heal, grow and live more authentically.  Life is full of changes and trying to resist the ebbs and flows of life is futile.

Not every step you take to support yourself on the road to recovery will be a game-changer but it will bring you closer to knowing what you want as you explore different answers and solutions to your challenges.  You possess the power to choose to take positive steps forward and align your thinking, feelings and energy to support yourself and that is a beautiful thing! Follow your inner-most desire to be your best self, to live a fulfilled life.  When you are forced to make a change, rest assured that you have what it takes to deal with it. In the unending balance and rebalancing of life things change for the better.

Self-Soothing in Times of Adversity

To move-on, here are some ways you can support yourself:

  • Seek out the positive people in your life and spend time doing uplifting activities.  Laugh, go to a upbeat show, cook a good meal together.
  • Try something new.  Maybe there’s an adventure you’ve been thinking about – a rafting trip or hiking expedition.
  • Take some down time for you – to be alone and commit to self-reflection, meditation or yoga to feed your soul.  Get a massage.
  • Wake up and plan a random act of kindness for someone at work or a neighbor. Giving without the intention of a return lifts the spirits and releases a sense of appreciation that floods the brain with serotonin.
  • Join a support group and find some like-minded people to share your experience with, and receive encouragement.
  • Do not compare yourself to anyone else.  You just try to be the best you can be, and that’s enough!

My new course “Becoming Who You Are Meant To Be” is now open for enrollment! Visit this link to learn more or get started.

True Passion

True Passion

There is a bit of a debate going on about overuse of the word ‘passion’ to describe doing what you love.  It seems that it doesn’t matter if you are talking about a career, a relationship or an exercise routine, passion has become synonymous with feeling like you are “all in” to whatever excites you most. In my own life I have felt enthusiastic about many things but I am not sure I would classify doing them as my passion. So that made me wonder, what is true passion?

Perhaps the controversy over ‘passion’ has more to do with attempts to define it simply as ‘living your dream’ rather than delving into the emotional aspects of passion – that inner excitement that isn’t so easy to explain.  I am a big proponent of living your dreams, but if those dreams are not fueled by an inner personal connection to an undeniable source of delight (some may describe this as a calling), then roadblocks on the path to realizing them might put my dreams in jeopardy.  It doesn’t seem to me that something I am passionate about – something that feeds my very soul – should incur insurmountable obstacles or that I should have to struggle to experience it . However, I am not sure this distinction is understood in the current way passion is interpreted.

What is true passion?

I like the idea of passion feeling like a call from within; and knowing that I can become aware of the passion already inside of me. In the psycho-spiritual sense, passion is experienced as an all encompassing, joyful or happy feeling that flows from deep connection with your true essence, that higher consciousness of self, the feeling you have when you know you are on the right path, doing what you were meant to do.   My passion runs through my heart and soul waiting for me to align with it.

According to Dr. Wayne Dyer, “Passion is a feeling that tells you: This is the right thing to do. Nothing can stand in my way. It doesn’t matter what anyone else says. This feeling is so good that it cannot be ignored. I’m going to follow my bliss and act upon this glorious sensation of joy.”

Think of something that speaks only to you, something you feel intensely happy about doing. It can be something that feels meaningful or purposeful. Passion is that exciting, emotional fuel or energy from your inner spirit that drives expression of your unique purpose.  It lights the creative spark within as you open your heart and feel a tingling within you. It doesn’t go away. In fact, its force grows bigger the more you focus on the joy it offers. Passion is the wonderful feeling of your Divine spirit alive within you, awakened and powerfully flowing enthusiastic energy to an idea that feels like it has to unfold as you contemplate it.  Consider passion as a new way of experiencing your authentic self, one that moves beyond the trappings of accumulating things and the approval of others, to living with gusto.

Passion lives in us all

The fulfillment of true passion comes from enthusiastically sharing gifts of the authentic self as you engage in the activities of your life.  Everyone has the presence of passion within because each of us has unique gifts and abilities that we can align with, creatively express and experience as our greatest joy. Passion isn’t dependent upon money or family dynamics, and there are no excuses that can prevent true passion. Passion is the key ingredient in fulfilling who you truly are – aligned with the energy of Spirit joyfully expressing.

How do you find something to be passionate about?

Take a moment to contemplate something that frees your passion. What can you be? Is there something you have been feeling called to do?  Write a book? Build a ship? Start a business? Perhaps you have a vision you have been carrying around for years. What wisdom do you have that gets your juices flowing? That’s all you need to know.  Be willing to allow your passion to speak up and feel the presence of your inner essence wanting to be active in your life. Give yourself some time to reflect as you think about your passion. Use a journal or a sketch pad to bring your passion forward in your imagination. Shape it into a vision – what does it sound like, feel like, look like? Let your enthusiasm create it to life.  Do not worry about how it will be accomplished. Just keep saying ‘yes’ to the feelings, images and the burning desire coming from within. Those are the signals your passion offers you to follow as you bring your dreams forward. You will find that you are propelled in a direction that seems motivated by a force beyond your control. Then when you experience good feeling ideas, or observe doors opening on your path be willing to act and take the next step.  Following your passion is the surest way to living a life of meaning, fulfillment and joy.

3 Steps To Tap Into Your True Passion

There is no need to struggle to tap into your passion. Passions can shift and change in intensity but in essence they are always with you.  Think again about that thing that gets you going and fills you with purpose.

  1. All the things you love to do, that motivate you because you fill up with a deep appreciation and love for them when you think about them are things that may ignite your passion.  However, you want to truly go to the depths of your soul to narrow in on them. Make a list of things you love and hone in on the top 5 things. You may start with a list of 25 but get it down to 5 by thinking about those things that you can lose yourself in; that make time, and the distractions of the outside world irrelevant to your enjoyment.
  2. Make it a point to express appreciation for the smaller passionate moments when you notice a feeling of joy flooding through you.  This can happen on walk outside in nature, or in the moment of a child’s smile. The more ways you appreciate passion the more passion you bring into your life.
  3. Tune into who you really are.  Act on the small things that excite you each day, that you feel inspired to do, without judging or measuring them against any standard except your own joy.  These are the threads that shed light on your path, connect you with your purpose and resonate with your passion. 

     

     Seeing with the Heart Guided Inspiration Journal.
    Available For Purchase HERE.

     

The Self-Transformation Path

The Self-Transformation Path

Part 1: Connecting With Your Inner Self

Recently while writing my book, Seeing With The Heart, I learned how deeply transformational taking a new perspective – a more relaxed, inner heart-filled perspective –  can be. Many of us have successfully reinvented ourselves at some point in our lives in an effort to get ahead in our careers, fulfill a dream like having a family, or perhaps become more fit to improve our health.  Unlike trying to make changes in what you do in order to achieve a specific goal, I am going to talk about a different approach, a paradigm shift approach to creating a life you love that involves shifting your perspective, opening your inner connection to your divine self, and consciously expressing inner energy in your thoughts, words and actions.

A Steady Source of Guidance Within

First, the perspective shift is awareness and understanding that any outer manifestation is determined by your consciousness in any given moment, and that you can develop your inner guidance to become your own authority and expand your consciousness.  Are you feeling emotionally balanced and enjoying your circumstances? Is your mood positive and uplifted? While ups and downs are normal in our daily lives, a general overall and pervasive feeling of hopelessness is a state of consciousness that usually means you are letting your happiness be dictated by outside conditions. The way to shift that is to solidly establish your inner connection with the ever-present energetic flow of your divine self, which is the co-creative source energy that guides you, rather than by taking actions to correct or make things happen in the outer world.  This connection has been referred to as intuition, soul awakening and universal energy and it can be realized when you expand your sense of self through heart-centered or spiritual vision. It is not a surrendering of control. By any name it is simply opening to your soul’s voice, living your path with an empowered consciousness that brings the ideas, energy, vision, clarity and connections you need to move forward with your goals confidently and in sync with your authentic self. By receiving the power, love, wisdom, peace and inspiration that flows as you explore and perceive with the loving guidance of your inner self you can dissolve thoughts, beliefs and limitations that might emotionally impede you from experiencing all the good things you desire. Inner alignment to the core energy of your divine self-supports you in transforming your life experience from fear to freedom, feeling the love and guidance of the universe billowing your sails on your journey.

The Gift of Inner Connection

Your connection with your inner self is the biggest gift you can offer to yourself and those who surround you. It is the cornerstone of awakening human consciousness and engaging in the work of personal transformation in our lives as well as contributing to the shift of living more harmoniously in our communities.  Through heart-centered and awareness practices like journaling, meditation, nature walks, and other mindfulness activities you usher in and strengthen your connection to pure, positive energy. You choose those relationships and circumstances that radiate similar energy and grow through joy rather than through pain. Your resistance is lessened and you no longer need be affected by other people’s opinions, moods or energy. Every level of your life and consciousness changes, bringing new perspectives on your life, purpose and relationships.

Standing in the center of your inner energy, aligned with your true nature, seeing yourself and others through your heart, is the most powerful path of transformation.  This is how you bring through what you want to create in its most beautiful form, and in the process, give back to yourself the energy of love and joy. Seeing With The Heart is intended to assist you in opening up to the gentle and sweet consciousness of the truth of your being at whatever level of receptivity you are currently experiencing.

Exercise for Conscious Inner Connection

Here is an exercise for lifting up to the light within that allows you to more easily change your life.

  • Start by relaxing and getting comfortable.  Take several deep breaths slowly in and out.
  • Affirm that you are wise, loving, confident and powerful.
  • If you are ready to enter a new chapter of your life, you are already experiencing inner changes.  Your divine self is motivating you to make changes and showing you the way. Take a moment to acknowledge your inner, true self.
  • Think of the area of your life you wish to change.  Feel your divine self within you permeating your being, calling you forward on your path. Allow the divine self to shower that area with light, feeling it fill up and brighten up with warm, pink, gold light.
  • Ask that any blocks, thoughts, beliefs, emotions that might hold you back be released. Acknowledge and give permission for them to leave.
  • Ask for and open to receive from your divine self the qualities to move forward – inspiration, clear guidance, motivation and opportunities.
  • Picture your inner light growing brighter resonating with your desire and all those you encounter you can benefit from this light. Visualize your light connecting with all the cells in your body, and going forth from you with love to light your way, radiating to the earth, others and the universe.
  • Now let your vision go and retain the feeling that it has happened, you have received the change with joy.  Be open and expect things to change.

Seeing With The Heart- Guided Inspiration Journal

Springing Forth

Springing Forth

Spring Is A Time of New Beginnings

Spring is one of the most creative periods of life.  A time of new beginnings and rebirth in most world traditions, Spring metaphysically represents that period in the cycle of life when we re-emerge from darkness, ready for a fresh start. Awakened by the energy of increasing light stirring within, we leave winter behind and eagerly plant the aspirations conjured during the darkness. Spring inspires us to create anew and explore our lives in new directions.

In the northern USA, Earth’s magical rebirth is readily apparent in more daylight hours, a hint of warmer weather, fresh green shoots, pretty daffodils, and the return of chirping birds.   The changes on the landscape come slowly in March, and excitement for more green plants, more color in the fields, and more sunshine makes us a bit impatient for April and May.  However, if we observe the passage of Spring from a metaphysical perspective we will see things in a different way; especially the early stages of emerging of new life.

The will to live, the desire to grow, and joyfully, abundantly express the inner essence, or that potential for fulfillment that new life carries within, are the seeds of early Spring. The outer signs of new life appear once the inner energy is aligned set in motion.  The adventure of self-transformation happens in much the same way as we lovingly bring our dreams into focus in our hearts and then to fruition in the world.  We experience a time when not much may be showing up in the outer realms but can feel the energy of desire growing through attention and emotional excitement within.  As we might plan a garden, then water the seeds of its flowers and tend to them as seedlings, transformation occurs gradually as we shift into more and more clarity about our desires until we are ready to put them into the fertile soil to take root and grow. “Active-waiting” is what philosopher Gabriel Marcel called it. Guided by inner passion, creative spark and belief in the potential for more joy in our lives, we are rejuvenated and revitalized as signs of change emerge.  We are encouraged to persist in our dreams.  As new ideas or perspectives come into being our spirit lifts and we lean into the future with optimism.

Spring Is A Time Of Transition

Spring is also a time of transition, and transition can be stressful as we move from old to new. The key to transition is to remember to start where you are.  Make peace with the process of letting go of the past, giving in to the present and opening up to the new. Change is constant and Spring shows us that everything comes and goes, and is reborn into something new. Think of this time as a bridge to where you want to go.  Plant your seeds in the softening earth of compassion for yourself and trust in your inner calling to grow.

How much of this creative period do you miss each year? Don’t let Spring pass you by. Go out today, tune into the wisdom of your inner refreshed nature, and plant some dreams.

Here are few ways to enjoy Spring’s emergence and tap into the power of renewal:

  • Spring Cleaning
    • Clean out your closets
    • Rearrange your furniture
    • Ask yourself:  What am I ready to surrender, release and let go of?  This could be a habit, an old belief about yourself or a routine that isn’t working for you.
  • Start a Dream Journal
    • Keep it by your bed and record your dreams in the morning
    • Examine your dreams for opportunities to make some changes.  Is something new calling to you through your dreams?
  • Set Some New Intentions
    • Arrange a time and place for 15 minutes of meditation each morning.
    • After meditation when your mind is calm and clear choose a desire or a goal to focus on in quiet thought for 5 minutes.  Allow yourself to feel what it would be like to live your dream right now.  Brighten up the details by doing this each day for a week.
    • Create a vision board about your desire, journal about it or put a post-it note with your intention on the bathroom mirror.

Welcome Change Into Your Life With This Guided Meditation

Moving Beyond Low Self-Esteem

Moving Beyond Low Self-Esteem

We’ve all stumbled through periods of feeling “not good enough”. They can vary in appearance from emotional anxiety to self-sabotage to the experience of a “dark night of the soul.” Not feeling worthy or low self-esteem is actually a prevalent condition in our human existence. Not long ago I was a very different person. I did not feel worthy of any blessings or desires. While things appeared to working out okay on the outside, on the inside I doubted my capacity for experiencing the kind of life I wanted, free from struggle and living my heart’s desires. I recognized my low self-esteem in bouts of sadness and anxiety but it seemed that the more I became aware of it the more it haunted me. I got caught in a cycle of self-berating (Why couldn’t I just stop this?) which caused me to feel badly about myself, and then believing I was doomed to suffer through it; a very dark period. Low self-esteem became a major block disrupting the natural flow of positive energy into my life. It felt like I was in a deep hole with no exit. In the midst of the ups and downs I was experiencing I felt a tug from my inner self, “I’m kind of tired of this, I just want to be happy.” That was the pivotal idea that led me out of my pain onto a quest of inner transformation. More than anything; I mean anything else I wanted to be happy.

Responding to low self-esteem

There are lots of remedies out there for addressing self-worth issues. A healthy response might be one of self-compassion and self-soothing, telling ourselves internally that we’re human, that life ebbs and flows, or reassuring ourselves that some things are out of our control and this too shall pass. You can remind yourself all day long that you are a divine being but if you don’t feel the peace of your authentic connection with your inner self that makes you feel worthy of all the riches and goodness of the universe you are just spinning your wheels. The truth is that those who know they are worthy and deserving of all good things are tuned-in to the pure positive flow of their essence – the universal energy that offers peace, contentment and harmony. They have a perception about who they are that doesn’t include lack of self-worth. They accept themselves and love themselves without criticism or complaint, without ascribing a set of conditions that makes them feel worthy. They know they are worthy because they perceive life from a consciousness of heartfelt love and appreciation for themselves; and that’s the key to self-worth – it comes from the beliefs, about who we think we are, within each individual.

What are some of the features of the inner life of people
who feel worthy?

As I came to the realization that there was nothing I wanted more than to be happy I set about to do somethings differently – to focus on feeling happy on the inside, first. It was in reflection as I sat with a sincere desire to release everything that was holding me back from knowing the true natural flow of joy that I saw how pain represented my fear that I might just find out happiness doesn’t exist. My pain was not only a block but a protection against more hurt. Well, enough of the rabbit hole! There is nothing I wanted more than peace and if I was doing this to myself, I could take responsibility for shifting it.

Here are some of the perceptions of those who feel worthy and deserving of goodness, abundance, happiness and blessings:

  • I am innately worthy and my self-esteem comes from myself. I am a divine being having a human experience.
  • I am responsible for my creating my life and my experiences. There is no one to blame. Even if horrible things happened in the past, I have the ability and responsibility to know my value in the present moment.
  • I accept and appreciate myself without judgement or criticism. It doesn’t matter what I look like, what my achievements are or where I live. I do not live by the opinions of others but by the wisdom of my authentic self.
  • I allow the flow of love, peace and harmony to me and through me. I seek to balance my emotions, beliefs, and behavior, with the highest, most positive energy I am, and I intentionally radiate this energy into everything I desire.

When we align our desires with inner feelings and perceptions of worthiness, the richest blessings of the universe are ours without effort, struggle or uninspired action. Our awareness expands to transcend the limitations and reasons why we “couldn’t” have the joyful lives we want. We have surrendered the expectations of the past to embrace our inner light, our ability to experience all we desire in concert with our higher self. Appreciate that your periods of low self-esteem have offered you the gift of knowing true freedom and happiness.

 

Enjoy Meditation? Take a look at my Welcoming Change Guided Meditation

Stepping To Your Edge

Stepping To Your Edge

“It’s not because things are difficult that we dare not venture. It’s because we dare not venture that they are difficult.”

— SENECA

The idea of taking a step beyond our edge of comfort means we are willing to reside in a state of physical and emotional tension; to go to our edge and work directly with where we are stuck in order to move beyond it and realize far more than we thought was possible.  In order to step to our edge, we must leave the realm of thoughts and enter the experience through the heart.

Think of a difficult decision you may face at work – do you take the promotion that offers you reward but comes with more responsibility, greater creativity, longer hours and perhaps time away from family or do you stay with your current position where you feel safe and know what to expect?  What emotions arise in this situation?  Fear? Confusion? This is an indicator that you are at your edge. Getting touch with the emotional energy of the situation gives us the opportunity to get clear on what may be holding us back. Rather than weighing pros and cons mentally, use your emotional energy to understand if you are experiencing a habitual reaction to fear.  With this understanding, you can step toward your edge rather than avoiding it.

This takes courage, but courage isn’t about becoming fearless. Courage is the willingness to experience our fears, notice our edge and step to meet it with self-compassion.  Everyone feels fear in stepping beyond the illusion of comfort.  Stepping to our edge also takes practice and sometimes a series of small steps is all we need to let down our guard and make the shift beyond our fears.

Your Edge is Your Path of Transformation

Where we meet our edge is actually our path forward.  If we use our self-awareness to notice that we shut down or do not feel ready for the prospect of moving beyond current conditions, it’s possible to view our edge as an opportunity to work with the emotional reasons behind our limitations. We discover that our edge is the next step in personal growth on our path.  When you reach beyond your boundaries is when your inner qualities start to shine. You are growing through self-discovery, where transformation and change occurs, creating new experiences beyond the edges in your life.

With an attitude of curiosity and an openness to step beyond the familiar, conditioned patterns of reacting, we open the doors to living a genuine life.  Richard Branson famously said, “If your dreams don’t scare you, they are too small.”  Your edge lives in you and you must meet it yourself. Once you do, you’ll discover an enormous satisfaction from creating life as you desire it to be, not as a reaction to conditions. It’s about being present, not perfect.

How to Step To Your Edge

Don’t look to the future to step your edge.  Let go of the future and the past; choose to find your edge in the present moment. Your attention is on purposefully and intentionally stepping toward and over the line of comfort alert and completely present. This builds up the power of being in the moment – conscious awareness – when challenges arise.  Stepping to your edge is also about meeting challenges in a totally different way.  You don’t react out of conditioning in the mental realm which is reacting to the present from the past. Instead, you approach your edge with the inner wisdom and truth that arises in your consciousness in the present.

Here’s an exercise for stepping to your personal edge, walking the parameter of perceived safety and comfort, and crossing onto your path of living the braver, more authentic and bigger life you are meant to have.

  1. Take a deep breath. Identify a challenging situation in your life and something about it that feels like an obstacle on your path.  (Remember your edges show up in real life!) Take a piece of paper and draw a “T” line down the center of the page. Across the top of the “T” write down a sentence that describes the challenge, decision, choice, dilemma or situation you want to work with.  Leave a couple of inches at the bottom and draw a line across the page.
  2. In the left-hand column write down things you could do to address the situation but would be a little uncomfortable or fearful for you.  E.g. Having a conversation about it with someone; Taking on a 60-day health challenge; Getting up a half-hour earlier to meditate.
  3. Now, take a moment to go within and listen as you ask yourself what you would really, truly like to do from your heart-wide-open consciousness to overcome this obstacle, but perhaps they seem a bit impossible for the moment.  Intentionally ask yourself:  Is there another way? A more authentic way?
    Write those things down in the right-hand column.  E.g. Start my own business; Write a book; Take a trip; Change jobs.
  4. Across the line at the bottom of the page write ‘Steps”.  Here is where you outline your inspired “action-steps” toward moving beyond your edge. Intentionally recall your challenge or obstacle, and your goals. What can you do now that is a bit uncomfortable but that would get you closer to your “impossible” goals? E.g. Can you set up a time and date for that uncomfortable conversation? How about going to bed a half-hour earlier so you still get your 8 hours of sleep but stay on track for meditation time in the morning?
  5. Do it.  By doing it and the other steps you’ve outlined you’ll come closer to knowing you can do the “impossible.” Every time you reach for new heights, you’ll feel less fearful and more empowered.
  6. Don’t beat yourself up and if you backslide. Accept your fear. Embrace the edge as the opportunity it is to know yourself better and transform. Get in touch with your inner self and take that next step outside of your comfort zone.  You’re off!
  7. In real life, challenges happen.  Why not use them to break through to living more authentic, more present and more in alignment with the fantastic life you are here to enjoy?

Are you ready to step to your edge and discover your authentic self?

Marilyn Decalo Logo, Phoenix

Subscribe To Our Newsletter

Join our mailing list to receive the latest news, meditations, tips and more!

You have Successfully Subscribed!