trust your heart

Norby_heart

So often during the holidays we get wrapped up (pun intended) in all the doing-ness that we forget the deeper reason why holidays exist at all. My family has experienced three deaths this month and each of them has provided a deeper offering for my heart to be trusted. I observe many folks closing their hearts after painful experiences, believing that they are protecting themselves from further harm. But the fact of the matter is that closing ourselves off to feeling pain ALSO closes our hearts to feeling joy, creativity, and love. We must allow our hearts to feel all of it, the shadow and the light as each end of the spectrum guides us to our highest destiny.

This holiday I’m grateful to simply be with my family. To celebrate their health and happiness and the wonderful presence of their light in my life. We’re not giving gifts this year (partly b/c we’ve been traveling all over the country for funerals the past two weeks) but also because collectively (and slightly unconsciously) we agreed that we needed to slow down the doing-ness and simply focus on being together.

I hope that where ever you are and however you celebrate this season, that it include a moment of pause. To recognize the light that shines within and the sacred contribution each of us make to every life we interact with.

Bright_light

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Dreams, Health & a happy dance

Keep alive the dream; for as long as a woman has a dream in her heart she cannot lose the significance of living.

– Howard Thurman

This week I’ve been on a major marketing push to support my sister’s storefront launch for her green smoothie shop. We woke up this morning to the news that she made her $8,000 goal via her kickstarter campaign. So first off let me say…

thank-you

We had over 100 people donate amounts ranging from literally $1 to $2,000. It was an amazing experience to see how folks from our family, our neighborhoods, our workplaces, our Facebook friends and even folks who didn’t know Andrea from David Neale, give to support her vision: to make healthy food fast and revolutionize an entire industry.

A month ago, when Andrea said she was going to raise $8k many of us in the family (well…actually all of us) were like “umm, seriously?” But I’m so glad she didn’t listen to our doubt. She focused on what her heart was telling her was possible. And its shocked all of us to re-evaluate the limitations we hold ourselves to everyday. Like the way our dad was hoping to fly out to San Fran to help her set up the shop before the opening on the 20th. Two weeks ago he didn’t have the money for airfare, now he’s discovered a way, commenting “I’m riding on the miraculous-ness of everything else GreenLid is becoming.”

Yes, it is sort of miraculous.

But at the same time it’s not.

I know my sister, and I know the deep internal and spiritual work she’s done over the past year that has enabled her to trust this dream. To trust it’s magnificent unfolding. To trust that whatever way it blooms is perfect for her development into more of who she really is. She doing the work, as¬†Iyanla Vanzant encourages. Her commitment to self-improvement and faith in the unseen is the reason this journey has felt so AWE-mazing. Considering she launched this business a year ago in Washington DC at a neighborhood festival and is now opening a storefront in San Fransisco utilizing this new gifting economic system (like this Ted Talk on designing business on generosity, you gotta watch!) … is only the beginning.

And so today we celebrate her. With happy dances, green smoothies, cheers and applause.

peace lives in the dream.

Masterful Manifesting

His eyes glistened. His words radiated through the theater quickening my heart with their tonality of strength and raw vulnerability. For a moment, the actor on stage was replaced with a beautiful young man, connected to the deep energetic essence of who he truly was. This was no longer a portrayal of imagination. He was sharing truth. And it lit up my heart.

I leaned over to my friend in the seat next to me and whispered, “I’m going to prom with that boy.”

With the dance only a few weeks away, she arched her eyebrows and responded with, “Ummm, do you even know him?”

I answered simply, “I will.”

I was sixteen when I first began to consciously attract what I wanted to experience. This is the essence of manifesting. That spring I was introduced to Conversations with God by Neale Donald Walsh, a trilogy that completely transformed my Christian upbringing and paradigm for viewing the world and my place in it. At the same time, the wisdom I recognized in CwG, was familiar, particularly the idea that God meant for life to feel good and for us to have what we desired. Heart-felt desire is the body’s alignment with the Soul’s intention. Desire can be utilized as a pendulum to gauge how to move forward. In the story I describe above, opening my heart to my future boyfriend and following that desire created a new trajectory of joy for my teen-age self. And yes, we had a fabulous time at Prom.

In the fifteen years since that day I’ve attracted many wonderful and thankfully fewer not so enjoyable experiences, people, financial situations and health status’. When I step back to review my life in this way I see the gift in each and every experience and I have to marvel at how genius Source/God/Spirit is to align everything so masterfully that I might grow and expand my understanding.

One area that I examine frequently is my love life.

Many of my beliefs started out defining love as romantic love because yea, I grew up on Disney movies and wanted a prince of my own. This limited definition of love has continued to hold a tight grip on my understanding and experience of love. My choice to believe that love was limited to its expression as romance or mothering was a reason many of my early love-relationships fizzled out. My choice to believe that love could withstand control and manipulation was one of the reasons my marriage dissolved. My choice to believe that love comes first from the outside and filters within was the reason it took me so long to finally get comfortable in my own skin.

Thankfully I’ve grown up and my ideas about love have grown up too. The progression of love I manifested into my life have mimicked my beliefs about love, including its limitations, its way of expression and its self-production. I’m finally at the point (on most days) where I feel a deep satisfaction for the quality of love in my life. Primarily, because I feel it from within. Yet every so often I yearn for the attachments I have to love appearing in a particular way:

princess delusions… boy-cinderella-girl-love-prince-princess-Favim.com-100965

overly dramatic… (but jeeze, wasn’t this film beautiful!?!?)notebook_hug

neediness…I-need-you-I-miss-you-I-love-you-3-love-10112773-1024-768

attachment to forever…US_NEWS_INTERRACIALCOUPLES_2_CC

So instead of giving these images so much attention, I’m learning to focus my manifestation energy on REAL LOVE.

  • Appreciation of continual growth and expansion.

rainbowtree

  • Recognition that I’m on the planet to be more than a wife and mother.
Women Who Look Ahead by Monica Stewart, monicastewart.com

Women Who Look Ahead by Monica Stewart, monicastewart.com

  • Acceptance that self-love is at its core about surrender. And surrender is about…

Trust

Trust in a universal mind that’s got my back. A consciousness that has already proven Itself a million times more effective in delivering me the good I most need at that exact moment. This is why love feels real when it’s about surrender rather than control. When it highlights vulnerability rather than manipulation. This is the type of love I’m manifesting into my life now. And it feels magnificent.

Yesterday, I came across (or was presented with) this video of Gabrielle Union sharing some of her journey to a similar awareness of self-love and manifesting a new way of being. I so rarely see actors be themselves, so was particularly amazed to see her vulnerability and the number of risks she takes to share her story. It influenced Oprah to have her on her show, which often correlates for me that it’s meaningful to listen to. I would love to hear your comments.

 

Lastly, I’m listing out some of my favorite books on the power of manifesting, in case it proves useful for your journey as well.

Life Visioning, Micheal Benard Beckwith

The Vortex, Ester & Jerry Hicks

Building Your Field of Dreams, Mary Morressy

Four Spiritual Laws of Prosperity, Edwine Gaines

open to life

I wrote about a shift in willingness in my chapter of The Thought That Changed My Life Forever, and every now and then I have to remind myself of that decision to be willing and let go of my narcissistic urge to control and plan.

willingness for life

And while that’s all well and good Joe, I still struggle with it.

I want to be able to plan. It’s fun. But I also recognize that planning has it’s limits and the ways that the Universe unfolds is ALWAYS more amazing than anything I could have imagined.

So I play a game with myself. I allow myself to plan things that are small and mostly insignificant in my attachment to the outcome. But for the major goals: life partner, financial well-being, parenting decisions, etc, those belong in the realm of Spirit, b/c they’re just too damn complex for me to figure out AND feel good.

So now I can go dance and celebrate life, because I trust there is a Source out there supporting my highest and best intentions for my life. And because I’ve seen the result over and over, I grow more and more confident that this is the way Life is meant to be.

swing