Monday, December 31, 2012

A Blank Canvas Meditation

The new year presents an opportunity for you to look at the path ahead as a blank canvas. You may find life's events clear your path to create on other days throughout the year too. This meditation helps you tap into your inner knowing or creative voice removing the influence of ego.  Ego is often driven by fear, greed or negativity.  Honoring My Spirit and Recognizing My Ego shares how to differentiate the two.

Feel free to read the meditation shared below or listen on YouTube.

Find a comfortable position that you may relax in.  It may be seated or lying down.  In whatever position you choose, reduce the external stimuli by closing your eyes.  Begin to follow your breath as it moves in and out.  Release any thoughts, worries, concerns or to dos with your exhale.  Breathing in and out, soften your body.

Using your mind's eye, imagine looking out the window to see a beautiful, wintry scene.  The snow is falling,  slowly blanketing the Earth.  White snow resting softly on the brown tree branches.  The ground cleansed by the thick layer of snow.  Your eyes delight in the vast space covered in white.  A blank canvas lay before you.

As you continue to take the breath deep into your body and completely release it, become aware of the voice within.  It may be quiet, soft or loud.  It may not be heard but felt instead.  Your inner voice may need time to come out and or share.  As you rest your attention within, you may find it comforting to place a hand on your heart.  Your breath freely flows.

A blank canvas lay before you, what do you wish to create this day or in the coming days/year?  Listen.  Don't be concerned with answering but rather listen to what comes up.  What is your spirit's priority?  Listen.

Rest in this listening space for... you'll know when it's time to stop.  Your inner voice will tell you.  Be kind as you come back to your space.  Gently move your body.

I encourage you to jot down notes from your experience.  Don't worry if nothing came up.  Your willingness to listen may open the door for your voice to speak to you throughout this day.  You may even try this meditation again at later time.

May your creation be inspired by grace and guided by love.  Namaste

Thursday, December 27, 2012

SMART Goals

It seems the media has taken hold of the New Year's Resolutions and dashed them before anyone has begun.  There is article after article outlining the statistics of what type of resolutions are made and how long people stick with them.  Don't let this stop you; make a better choice and plan for success. Successful individuals find SMART goals help them reach their intended outcome.  SMART goals are:
  • Specific. Define the specific goal, along with the steps you are going to take to achieve it. Answers the question—Who? and What? 
  • Measurable. Choose a goal that is quantifiable. The success toward meeting the goal can be measured. Answers the question—How?
  • Action Plan. Devise a plan for reaching your goal. Anticipate bumps, know what obstacles may come. Identify ways to work with and around them. Recruit help.
  • Realistic. The goal set needs to be within your ability. That doesn't mean it should be easy; pursuing it may push you out of your comfort zone. But the goal itself needs to be potentially achievable given your current lifestyle, time and effort you are capable of investing. Remember that what is right for you may not be right for another and vice versa.
  • Timely. Set a timetable for your goal and for each step that will take you there.
A SMART goal clarifies exactly what is expected and the measures used to determine if the goal is achieved. Examples of SMART goals:
  • I will incorporate 2 sessions of 30 minute cardiovascular exercise into my week. On Sunday, I will set ’Cardio Appointments’ in my calendar for these sessions. If I cancel an appointment, I will be sure to commit to another with the change in my calendar. 
  • I will journal what I feel emotionally and physically before and after I eat. I will also document what I eat and when. I will carry a mini journal and pen with me. If I am eating without a journal present, I will type these details into the notes on my phone. I will add these notes to my journal by the day’s end. 
The IT department I work in is already buzzing with individuals deciding to "eat healthier."  Be sure you don't fall into this black hole.  Set yourself up for success by taking the time to plan... make your goals SMART.


Monday, December 24, 2012

Be Joyful

This time of year our attention is often pulled to material happiness and external validation but joy truly comes from within.

I read an article that suggested using the mantra, "Happiness is within."  As I rest on the table for an acupuncture treatment, I repeated that sentence over and over.  I was feeling horrible that day and it showed.  The acupuncturist came back and said I looked bright and at ease.  I shared my mantra.  He wasn't surprised.

Mind over matter.  Good words not only feel nice but have the power to heal.  And intention... well you know I believe.

I pray that as we enjoy the festivities, family and friends that we not be saddened, angered or distracted by our external needs but nurtured by the joy within.  May you share words from your heart and act with love.  May your joy warm and inspire all who cross your path this day and everyday.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Celebrate Today

The Mayan calendar ends today causing many to interpret that as the end of the world.  We're here... we made it.  Not without hardship, struggle and fear.  Perhaps those feelings weren't from the "looming" end but from life itself.  This adventure takes us up and down and sometimes knocks us on our butt.  We have a choice - stay there or get back up.

Is it possible to feel the elation of joy, happiness and love without the feelings of pain and sorrow?  Would we be truly living if we moved through life numb and distracted?  I don't think so... we'd be going through the motions void of gifts so graciously given to us.  So let's feel it all.  Let's take the bad and embrace the good.  Let's pick each other up with words, smiles and hugs.  Let's be open to receive and share.

Today... it's the end of running and hiding.  It's the end of thinking we're not good enough or worthy of joy.  Today we let go of the fears and move past the distractions.  Today we jump on and enjoy the ride.

Join me in celebrating today by shining your light for all to see.  A candle loses nothing by lighting another candle.  As today's winter solstice marks the coming of light, let us welcome this light into our hearts fueling the flame the burns within.  As Christina Sell said, "Shine brightly.  The world needs you."