As I approached the middle school I noticed that the crossing guard that is usually there was in fact not there today. Instead there was a man I had never seen before. I swear this man simply exuded happiness and joy. It was in his entire being, his simple presence almost shouted in a most cheerful way ‘Happy, Joy, Fun’. Interesting. He wasn’t doing anything all that different than what many crossing guards do; it was the look on his face I think that made the difference.
This gentleman was using both arms to wave to folks driving by. Not in a frenzied, lunatic way that you might imagine as I say he was waving with both arms. Nope, he was simply sending a smile and a greeting to everyone. This man was offering his love to each and every person who happened to be lucky enough to pass him by.
As a life coach, I encourage each person I work with to think thoughts that make them happy, to offer a smile even when they don’t quite feel like it. I ask my life coaching clients to make a deliberate effort to offer peace to the world through their body language, their words, and their energy. This man had all of this down pat and it made my day better to simply see him.
Such a simply wonderful gift. You and I can offer this gift to others as we go through our day as well. It makes a powerful difference to the way I feel if I muster a small smile when I’m feeling glum. I feel just a tad bit better. Hmmm, that’s worth taking a step further. It turns out that offering a smile and a kind word feels even better to me and when I receive a kind word and smile from someone else I remember it for hours and hours. These are such simple, small steps. Practically no effort at all! But it feels so very good.
When I offer a smile and a kind word, I feel better and so does the person I shared with. The life coach in me says that it’s very important to keep this lovely energy going, keep spreading it around. I like to encourage my life coaching clients and even many of my Reiki clients to do a bit of homework. I ask them to make it a point to catch themselves when they want to offer a word that is less than kind when they begin to think a negative thought or get irritated at something that is happening in their world. At that moment, I ask them to make a deliberate offering of peace and love to the situation or people involved. If they can’t quite muster love, I ask them to offer peace and calm. This homework is to continue for a full week.
When we chat about this deliberate offering of peace, I hear how the clients became more and more aware of their thoughts. As the week went on they more easily noticed their tone of voice, how they held their body and they became very aware of the words they were speaking. This awareness led them to make deliberate choices. They began to ask themselves if offering the words they were going to say would help or hinder the situation and then spoke accordingly. My coaching clients tell me that they find themselves less stressed, feeling better and being more patient with others. Nice, very nice.
All of this is what this wonderful crossing guard does for me each time I see him. He puts me in mind of the cheerful flowers that bloom in my yard. I now find myself deliberately taking that route so that I have the opportunity to share a cheerful smile and a wave in the morning. It feels pretty darned good. This wonderful man is acting as a life coach and I very much appreciate the continuing lesson. Thank you, sir.
I believe that we live the life that we ask for. We ask with our thoughts, so be careful what you think.
It seems to me that more and more people are becoming aware, or being reawakened to what I believe is an absolute fact, the universe operates on the law of attraction. What does this law say? Very simply, that our thoughts are magnetic attractors which draw to us the life that we are living. Our thoughts form our beliefs and our beliefs become our reality.
Huh? If that’s your response, bear with me here and we’ll explore this a bit more. Have you ever been worried about something in your life and given yourself a headache? Who do you think created that headache? Have you had the experience of driving to an appointment telling yourself the entire time that ‘I just know I’m going to be late!’ and then arrived late? Why do you think that you lived out your thoughts, fate? We’ve all heard about medical studies, group A is given a medication, group B is given a sugar pill or some sort of neutral ‘medication’, but still group B achieves some excellent response? Ah, yes, the placebo effect.
We’ve got excellent reasons for each of the results above, and we usually say things like ‘of course I’ve got a headache, I’m upset’ or ‘placebo effect means it’s not real, it’s all in your head’. Hmmm, it seems to me that if I believe that being upset results in a headache then doesn’t that mean that my mental or emotional state has brought about my current physical reality? Let’s go further with the placebo effect, there are many research papers written verifying that the placebo effect, means that results are achieved. Love that! Follow this link for a very powerful article on the placebo effect. http://bit.ly/NR69
This is the premise that we begin with when we gather for the MasterMind groups. Here’s the skinny on how it all works. We gather in a group of no more than five (5) people so that there is time for each participant to share effectively. We spend a short time sharing what is going on in our lives and then we quickly move to share the way we would prefer our lives to unfold. Here’s where the power comes in…are you ready? We have already affirmed our belief that we can create our lives with our beliefs, we believe that when we combine our intentions, agreeing to see specific results for one another and asking our Higher Power to bring this about that we are amplifying the intention and bringing it faster, stronger and more clearly than if any of us were working individually. All of the participants in the group agree to see or visualize the life that each of the other participants prefers. In other words, if Herb asks me to see him driving an orange VW convertible, I take the time each day to ‘see’ him driving that orange VW convertible, knowing that his preferences are coming to him now. We always acknowledge and appreciate with sincere gratitude the successes which have come about in each of our lives. We hold onto that knowledge and appreciation when holding our intentions for one another. It’s very powerful.
The upshot of all of this? We are now leading our lives much more intentionally. The awareness that we create our lives with our thoughts and beliefs is an eye-opening and very exciting experience. It encourages us to be mindful of our thoughts, the words we speak and the state of mind that we maintain. If I would like my life to be rosy in all aspects, I simply intend that everything I experience will be rosy. Awesome!
This week I encourage you to get clear about how you would like your life to unfold. As for me, I intend and expect that everything is coming up roses.
I was reminded by a wonderful gentleman the other day of the power we have over one another. Pull out your superhero cape; you’ve got the power too.
Did you ever go into a room and know that something very unpleasant was going on, even before anyone said a word? Perhaps the room felt tense or just generally unwelcoming as you entered. You were feeling the energy of at least one person in that room, possibly that of everyone in that room.
Alternately, do you know someone who just makes you feel silly happy to see them? Most of us know at least one person like that; we are truly blessed if we know many. These people share their loving energy as naturally as you and I breathe.
Sounds like superpowers to me. You have this power as well. Experiment a bit if you don’t believe me. Go into a room and smile; deliberately think of sharing loving ‘vibes’. Most likely you will quickly notice that others are smiling back. Probably approaching you, offering hugs or handshakes. You are sharing your loving energy and infecting others with it. Wahoo!!! You are using your superpowers whether you are wearing the cape or not.
You do this innately. But here’s the cool part. Now that you are conscious of this ability, you can be very deliberate about it as well. Naturally, I encourage you to use this power for good, not evil.
Take a moment before you enter a room, answer a phone call or start a conversation. Consciously align your thoughts to the vibes you want to give out. If you want to be cheery, recall a happy thought, notice that feeling, intend to share that energy with those you are about to speak with and put a big smile on your face. It will come through loud and clear. If it’s your intention to spread calm, take a few deep breaths; remember a place or occasion that made you feel calm and content. Hold on to this feeling and intend to share it with others. You’re on!
The gentleman that I spoke about earlier has come to realize this power in a very profound way. I applaud him for recognizing and wanting to share this with others. He now makes a very conscious point of starting conversations with a smile and asking for the other person to share something good that has happened to them today. I love that! He’s automatically releasing any thoughts or feelings of negativity, asking for and giving thoughts of happiness or joy. He’s not only feeding his own sense and feeling of well-being, but he is sharing that same gift with others at the same time. Well done my friend!
This awareness strikes me on all levels, particularly professionally. As a Reiki master, I always encourage my clients to deliberately release any negativity they no longer need and to allow themselves to accept positive energy as they are ready. As a Reiki teacher, I encourage my students to develop awareness of their own energy so that they offer only healthy, positive energy to others as much as possible. Of course, any of my holistic life coaching clients hear the same thing. These energy shifts may be subtle, but they influence our thoughts, feelings and behaviors. Powerful stuff.
I encourage you to consciously put on your cape every day. Take a few moments to think about what you would like to project to others as well as what you hope to receive from your interaction with others. See what happens. Make a few mental notes, and notice that the more deliberate you are about sharing love, compassion and joy the more you receive of the same. I’m willing to bet that you will very soon realize just how much you are able to positively influence the outcome of every situation. Intend to share, focus on those thoughts and feelings, notice the results, offer gratitude and begin the process all over again.
Try this for a day or two, I bet you’ll be hooked. I hope so. Then go on, share the secret with someone else. You’ll be giving them their very own superhero cape.
Our mother’s taught us that we should be nice to others because it’s the right thing to do; I tried to teach my kids the very same thing. I remember from time to time one of my boys would ask why they should help out their brother, what was in it for them? Well, I was the grown-up in the house, so in the most gentle, loving manner, I could muster I would calmly explain that what was in it for them was the opportunity to sleep inside the house that night and with any luck the next night as well! I tried hard to be a generous and helpful mom.
I wish I had known then what I know now. It turns out that every time we do something kind for someone else, from helping them find their shoes to untying them from the railroad track just before the speeding train arrives, raises our serotonin levels. In short, it makes us feel good. Here’s where it gets even better. You would probably expect the formerly tied up on the track person to feel pretty good about the new situation. But guess what, you will too! That’s right not only are you doing just what your mama told you to do (rest assured, Mom’s feeling pretty good at the moment now as well) but your serotonin levels go up just as a result of your doing the right thing. Hot dog, you’ve got to love that. But wait, it gets even better!
This is not just a win/win for both the good deed doer and the good deed recipient, but it turns out that anyone witnessing the event also experiences a rise in serotonin. How cool is that? That explains why I felt so good when I would watch one of my boys help the other to build a snow fort. They thought they were simply doing it to protect their corner of the yard from the opponents on the other side of the yard, and in truth, that’s what they were doing. But they undoubtedly felt good as a result of the kindness, their brothers felt good and I now realize that this act in full view of the neighbors probably made them smile and feel just a bit better as well.
Now the life coach in me realizes that even if I didn’t intellectually understand this all those years ago that I probably intuitive understood it and that others probably do as well. But how cool is it that we now actually know intellectually what we felt all along?
I’ve had conversations with other Reiki people about this from another angle. For instance, while I give myself Reiki frequently I most feel the wonderful effects of Reiki when I am offering it to another. That is definite motivation to be sharing Reiki with anyone and everyone who is open to the experience. It just feels good and makes me happy.
What to do with this information? Perhaps just knowing it is enough to make you smile and feel good. You might share the info with others and hopefully motivate them to do an extra¬¨‚Ä† kindness.
In truth, I don’t care just what the motivation was that made my little boys help one another out from time to time. They did and clearly, they got something from the experience as they are all now adults who don’t hesitate to assist others cheerfully. I feel better just having that knowledge.
I wish you a fabulous week, offering, receiving and observing kindness and good deeds.
Today I decided that I should do a bit of baking. It’s a lovely autumn day, the rain has finally stopped, the dog has been walked and John is outside chopping wood for the fireplace. It seems like the only thing left to do is bake, so I decided to make an apple slab cake. Yummy.
I meandered off to the kitchen, found a recipe and started working on the apples. John came into the kitchen and we chatted a bit, disturbing my rhythm a little, but I didn’t get too far off track. After all, this is one of the things I used to be able to make without a recipe, so I went back to work.
As I got a bit farther along, I realized I didn’t have one or 2 key ingredients. So, I looked at 2 or 3 other recipes. John came in offering suggestions and thoughts before I finally chased him away for good. In the end I wound up making something that I’m going to call apple mystery. I have no idea what this is going to taste like, in fact I’m not even sure what it will look like. But I’m a bit excited to find out.
As I was finishing cleaning up the mess I made while making my apple mystery it occurred to me that this is just what my life is like, and I suspect it’s a bit like yours. So the holistic life coach that lives inside of me decided I needed to share this epiphany with you.
We make plans for where we are going or how we are going to spend our life. But stuff happens, we find out that the plans need to be changed or that we may have to operate without a plan at all. Our lives are an apple mystery.
The fun part of this is that we never know just what today or tomorrow are going to look like. We may have a pretty good idea what we expect but if a few ingredients change, it can all change in a moment.
Is there a lesson here? Sure, but I doubt very much that it’s new to either of us. Go ahead, make plans, set goals and live your life. But when changes occur, when your plans are altered without warning, roll with it as much as possible. Enjoy the apple mystery.
One of my favorite movies is ‘Mary Poppins’, I’ve watched it countless times and I always tried to get my kids to watch it with me while they were growing up. Of that entire movie, my favorite scene, hands down is the scene where Uncle Albert is floating around near the ceiling laughing. You see his laughter has literally lifted him up! As the main characters watch him, they begin laughing, it’s so contagious that very soon they are all hanging out near the ceiling, telling awful jokes and having a jolly time. It makes me smile and begin laughing even to think about it. Of course, the song they sign is ‘I love to laugh’.
I’ve got to agree! I love to laugh, it makes me feel fabulous. Sometimes I swear that my mind is absolutely determined to make me smile no matter where I try to take it. For example, the other day I was participating in a group meditation. The atmosphere was quiet and peaceful. The woman who was leading the meditation had a calm, soothing voice. I was expecting an ” ohmmmmm’ experience. Didn’t happen. Instead, I had a really tough time repressing outright laughter. I kept seeing cartoon characters, speeding along, hopping and even poking out from the trees. It was absolutely delightful! I’ve never had so much fun during a meditation, I could hardly wait for the next time.
While it’s true that I smile, giggle, chuckle or even belly laugh when I’m happy, I also try to do one or more of those things when I’m not happy. Invariably it lifts me up, somewhat like Uncle Albert. It seems that I simply cannot stay depressed, angry or horribly sad if I smile just a little bit.
I’m not trying to say that a smile will take me from a wrenching sob to euphoria, but it will help me to feel incrementally better when I’m ready to make that first shift. If I need to express that sadness or grief than I stay away from old Abbott and Costello movies or Donald Duck cartoons. They change my mood very quickly.
So, what does this have to do with Reiki or holistic life coaching? Actually ,it goes directly to something I chat with each and every Reiki or coaching client about, and we do it during every single Reiki or coaching appointment. It goes right to self-care.
I am responsible for taking the best care of me. No one else can ensure that I eat right, exercise enough or de-stress so that the top of my head doesn’t come off. That’s my job. I’m the only person who knows when I need to have some quiet time, take a nap or visit friends. I expect my husband to respect what I tell him I need, but it’s my job to take care of me first.
Part of taking the best care of me is getting Reiki on a regular basis, speaking to other life coaches supports me as well. But everyday I need to laugh. It’s an absolute necessity for me. If I’m feeling low it lifts me up, if I already feel good, it helps me to feel terrific.
I raised my boys with the message that no matter how low they felt, a smile would make them feel better. In fact, I do recall that there is actual research that supports that theory. Love that!
So, for this week, I encourage you to give it a whirl. What have you got to lose but the blues? My favorite thought when I’m trying to muster a grin? I think of a sweet four year old child, trying to tell a knock-knock joke. Invariably they burst out laughing before they deliver the punch line. Just thinking of their gales of laughter always brings a smile to my face as well. Go ahead, give it a try. I bet you’re smiling already.
It’s interesting to me. Last week I blogged a little bit about giving back. I am so energized by the response that I have received. Many have contacted me directly to tell me how they have found increased blessings in their lives. Not one complained about the economic losses of the past year.
What does this tell me? It tells me that while I pray, offer Reiki, share life coaching, spend time in nature, with family and friends to connect with that ‘happy place’ inside of me, others are finding the joy in life in their very own way.
Almost every person who responded told me how the blessings in their life have compounded when they share these blessings with others. Some talked about offering money, others services, from Reiki to building homes, working in senior centers to helping out at school. It seems everyone has their favorite way to contribute to the community and all have found it rewarding.
What I found most exciting was the energy in these responses. Excitement and warmth. People talked about the renewed closeness with family or friends. The heart connections they have with certain organizations. On and on, I heard a message of love.
Many consider this their opportunity to give back in some way; others see it as a way to pay it forward. I see it all as a blessing that has me grinning from ear to ear.
So, this week when you have the television or radio on when you are reading the newspaper and read more news that could easily make you believe all in life is dire and terrible. I encourage you to put the paper aside, turn off the broadcast and go say ‘hi’ to a neighbor. Call a relative you haven’t chatted with in a while, or simply sit and be grateful for all of the blessings in your life. And please, remember that you are a blessing in the lives of many others as well.
I spent time with a friend of mine today, I’ll call her Cindy. Cindy’s mother is dying, Cindy knows it, her mother knows it and the doctors confirm it.
As I chatted with Cindy it was clear to me that she is at peace with the situation. Now don’t get me wrong, Cindy loves her mother and expressed her feeling that sixty-seven is simply too young to expect her mother to die. On the other hand, she told me that she feels her mother is done with life. Recently she has expressed as much, she misses her son who died very young, most of her dear friends have passed and with the exception of her beloved husband, most of her relatives near her age have passed away as well. She misses them dreadfully and feels as though she is simply done with what she was supposed to do here in this life. She’s not depressed; she’s just ready to move on. The disease that is ravaging her body is simply the vehicle that is taking her on this final journey.
Cindy is determined that her mother enjoy the time she has left. Cindy has learned so much from her mother. She was a loving, fun mom to grow up with and has become a trusted friend to the adult Cindy. She showed Cindy that it was possible to not only love her husband but that it was possible to like him and to enjoy being his friend. And now she is teaching Cindy that it is possible to die with grace, dignity, and joy.
Unfortunately, Cindy is getting a bit of flak from some people. Apparently, there are those who have hinted that Cindy is doing something wrong because she is not crying, wailing constantly and pushing her mother to accept painful treatments that will extend her life, but not improve or even preserve the quality of what is left of her life. So, Cindy asked me for my point of view.
Oh boy. It was time to not only think and feel as Cindy’s friend but to think this through as the holistic life coach and Reiki master that Cindy knows I am. So, we continued to talk. I asked her how she was dealing with all of this. She told me that she is definitely heartbroken to be saying goodbye to her mother, but that she is saving the tears and grieving for her time with her husband and a few trusted friends. She’s not stuffing her feelings or denying them, simply expressing them to those who know and love her best. Because her mother is determined to enjoy the time left, Cindy is determined to enjoy it with her. She’s told her and will continue to tell her how much she loves her, has enjoyed being her daughter and they talk about the fun they’ve had together. They laugh, tell stories and simply spend time together being happy. Cindy has made it clear to visitors that her mother has requested the time remaining be happy and so she has asked visitors to honor those wishes, in fact, she’s insisting on just that. She’s taking special care of her father, again honoring her mother’s wishes and doing what she simply feels is right.
The truth is that both Cindy and her mother are at peace. Her mother is getting ready to meet her God and Cindy is very appreciative of the opportunity to spend this time with her before she passes, she’s now learning how to say goodbye to loved ones and to die with grace, dignity, and joy.
Before I left, I gave Cindy a long hug, told her that I would pray for her, her mother and all of her family and friends and I thanked her. While Cindy is learning one more lesson from her mother, she is teaching many of the rest of us as well.
I hope that if I’m ever faced with a similar situation that I am able to move through it with the same peaceful heart, love, and gratitude that is demonstrated by Cindy and her mother.
This week, I wish you all the opportunity to express your love and gratitude for the special friends and relatives in your life. I am grateful to Cindy and I thank her for the lesson of love and gratitude.
If you are a loyal follower of my blog, and I know you are, you will undoubtedly realize that I’m a bit behind this week. Why? Because I, your humble holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner was trying my hand at something new. Tiling. Never fear, I’m not changing professions (though it was suggested during this process) but it did keep me busy the entire weekend.
In the 60’s my parents bought a modest starter house in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They moved in with 2 kids and thought about the home they would someday move into. Life didn’t work out the way they planned. They are still in that same house, but now it is the beloved home in which they raised 4 kids and where they have lived for over 40 years. Recently, my dad’s wheelchair requirements made a bathroom remodel necessary. My mom is a smart woman, she decided to take advantage of this situation and use it as an opportunity to make the bathroom into the bathroom she has always wanted.
That’s sort of where it got interesting. It became a family project. My brother Steve and two of my sons, Bill and Mike were very enthusiastic about the destruction process. And they were very good it! They beat the living daylights out of that old cast-iron tub, smashing it to bits and then pulled off the old tiling with the sort of enthusiasm that might make you think there was pepperoni pizza hidden behind the walls. For the record, there was no pizza or any other treasure behind the old tile. They did it with an awful lot of laughing but it turns out that it didn’t damage the quality of work at all. Thank goodness for my lovely daughter-in-law Felicia and my mom who were right behind them cleaning up the dust and bits of garbage. Steve and the boys then carefully installed the shower pan. They did an amazing job even though I’m not sure any of them had the slightest idea what they were doing until they began.
Along came Saturday. Mike and I went over, thought we’d take Grandma to the store, pick up the tile and have it all installed by dinner time. After all, we are completely equipped for this work. Mike is a machinist and as a holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner, who could possibly be more qualified to tile the walls of a shower? Turns out we were slightly off in our calculations. It took 3 hours to select the tile, a couple more hours to run around town and get everything. Did you know that some stores, who shall remain nameless actually think it makes sense to keep a maximum of twenty pieces of trim tile? Naturally, that’s the trim Grandma liked, so off we went 20 miles to get the remaining 2 pieces. Never fear, we thought ahead and purchased extra to cover any oops events that may happen. We actually began the work by 3 pm. You guessed it; it took Saturday and Sunday to get the tile up on the walls. It was actually an awful lot of fun! Mike was great to work with. He made all the cuts on the tiles, with very few errors. Laughed at me as the tiles would slip and used that eagle eye along with a level to be sure the lines stayed straight.
This evening I will grout and will seal it all up in a couple of days. I still have to repaint the room, but Grandma and Grandpa will be able to finally use their shower by this weekend.
Is there a lesson here somewhere? I think there might be. Once again my parents have reminded us that it’s important to look for a positive resolution to a problem. I applaud the efforts of my family, they didn’t hesitate to jump in and make it all come together. None of us came into this project with any of the skills to pull this off. Think of the professions involved, holistic life coach and Reiki practitioner, two machinists, and a security guard. Even in Milwaukee, Wisconsin this doesn’t add up to professional tile talent. But it worked out. Because of a can-do attitude, the necessary changes were made on a very limited budget, even better, it looks amazing.
Now, how do I break it to my husband that our kitchen and bathroom floors are going to be tiled as well as our shower walls and all he has to do it move the very heavy items?
This week I hope you have the opportunity to find out that you can do something you never imagined you were capable of doing. I know it will make you feel fabulous.