Nurturing YOU

Your month will likely be filled with preparing for and celebrating the holiday season with family and/or friends. With so much happening that calls your attention to be “out there” - gift exchanging, entertaining and being entertained, feasting, staying up later than usual - it’s natural to feel a little off balance.

How do you turn inward and stay connected to the center of you, your very being, in the midst of all the busyness of doing?

I invite you to read further to explore ways you can nurture your beingness and, thereby, gently move through the holiday season with all of its joys and challenges.

The photos were chosen to give you a sense of the experience of true nourishment: connection, receptivity, love, fulfillment, and rest in each moment.

Animals have the capacity to be present without being controlled by the critical mind. They teach us about unconditional love.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

animal-parents-5-300x200.jpg

During really busy times whether they’re wonderful - or not, there is a component of stress that can arise. Your routine shifts. You receive less sleep. Your diet is different. Time to exercise might go by the wayside. You may not have as much quiet, alone time as you like. In putting so much of your focus outward to those around you and what has to be done, you can easily get disconnected from yourself.

Photo credit: Jan Pelcman

Setting the intention to stay connected to yourself by being grounded and centered is an important first step. The world can be loud, and the practice of turning inward is all about connecting to what is subtle within you.

It is key to really get to your know your pattern in dealing with stress. The stress responses of fight, flight or freeze show up differently in each of us and are rooted in our past experiences. As soon as you notice the cues such as tightness, emotional reactivity, judgment of yourself and of others, a sense of heaviness and/or impatience, know that you are already connected to yourself.

animal-parents-16-212x300.jpg

As you honestly see yourself, you have the opportunity to choose to center and ground yourself, in other words, go deeper within. In this, you connect to the stillness, spaciousness, silence that is present within your beingness. Resting into the moment, in itself, will slow you down in a soft, natural way.

Photo credit: Laurie Rubin

animal-parents-33-300x187.jpg

As awareness, you feel close to yourself - regardless of what you are seeing or how uncomfortable you are. In kindness and gentleness without the intention to change yourself in any way, self-acceptance unfolds. Your heart opens and softens as you be with yourself as you are. You experience love.

Photo credit: www.imgur.com

animal-parents-20-282x300.jpg

From this higher and clearer view, your heart pulls you toward what is fresh and alive. You naturally and creatively respond to life and all of its possibilities without any urgency to rescue yourself by making yourself feel better.

Photo credit: Jim Ridley

animal-parents-13-300x199.jpg

You can trust life to create its magic when you are lovingly present to what is within you.

Photo credit: Daniel Munger

Get new blog posts delivered to your inbox

* indicates required

Facing Everything

In Canada, the rich season of autumn has arrived. It is during this time before the bitter cold of winter that us Canadians do what we need to do: in our gardens which we put to sleep, in our closets as we gather our warm clothes together, and within our homes to ensure that we will be warm. Like the animals, we start to prepare for what is to come.

In certain situations, preparing is a necessity.

What are the ways that you prepare for what is next in your life? Across the board, do you make a plan and do your best to stick to it? Do you take the initiative or do you follow? What is your modus operandi when you are focussed on your agenda? What works for you - and what doesn’t? What are the emotions that typically arise in this? How does resistance show up?

I invite you to read more as a starting point for inner reflection. Use this time as an opportunity to increase your awareness about how you create ~ moment by moment.

ThePathbig
ThePathbig

As you move throughout your life, there is much opportunity to discover your desires, your dreams, your wants - and go after them with gusto. Your mind will do its best to figure out how you can reach where you want to go whether it’s through trying, pushing, analyzing, strategizing, and using power.

You might visualize your success and/or repeat positive affirmations like, “I am worthy of receiving this” or “I naturally and effortlessly create what I want”. You might check with others - friends, family, experts - to ensure you ‘get it right’. In all ways, you are working hard to get what you think is missing or what you’re afraid to lose.

The question to ask yourself is: how much is this behaviour rooted in the belief that you will gain a quality that you long for when you truly get what you think you want and/or need? Is that quality freedom or peace or happiness or love...or something else?

If any of this sounds familiar, know that there is nothing wrong with what you discover about you. There is so much humanness in whatever is driven by the conditioned mind.

A direct way to move toward what you truly long for is to drop into the heart beyond the limitations of the mind. What does your heart most want? Be in that. Affirmations and crafted visualizations are meaningless if they only come from the mind while the body and heart are facing another direction.

On this path, everything must be faced AS IT IS. The pain of emotions that are often labelled as negative or bad, beliefs that keep you stuck or on a colourless path, attachments, hanging on to past stories and emotions, patterns of behaviour that include trying hard or pleasing for self-gain. Everything.

The more you honestly explore and face all that is present within you without trying to change it or make it wrong, the more a natural flow comes into existence. Step by gentle step.

The true heart, the one heart, the simple heart, embraces everything that is seen through Awareness itself. It is a process to attain this state of true acceptance. It is here where possibility lies for life to have its way - and to trust that Life’s way is perfection itself.

Get new blog posts delivered to your inbox

* indicates required

Gliding through the Stress of Change ~ with Confidence

 

change-9

There is so much change that we experience through life -  change itself can’t be avoided.  With each change, like a new job or loss of a job, a new relationship or the death of a relationship, a new baby arriving or a young adult moving out to create an independent life, there is stress.  Every change in your circumstances can challenge the inner you - whether that change is wanted or unwanted, considered good or bad.

When you turn awareness within in an honest way, you see habitual patterns that stop  you from moving toward what is most meaningful to you. These patterns can run you at an unconscious level but once you see them, you want to change them.

Take a moment to reflect upon what you’ve noticed when you try hard to force or make a change happen.  What is the impact when your intention in making a change is to fix yourself?

My own experience is that fixing or forcing or trying hard doesn’t work.  All of these behaviours are founded upon avoidance and resistance to what is.  You are disliking what you see or are wanting to run from where you actually are, usually because it’s uncomfortable.  Or, you are so comfortable with the habitual discomfort that the mind has created, it becomes scary to move beyond the story into what is virtually unknown.

The freedom comes from honestly seeing the pattern without beating yourself up for it.  You learn to embrace it, as it is, by being mindful of all that is happening within you.

In the It’s MY Life! program, much time and focus is spent on building acceptance using mindfulness and tapping into the wisdom of the body and the heart.  Step by gentle step, each person learns the power of being with themselves and their life, AS IS.   In this world of fixing, advising, saving, changing, this is no small task.

From here, gradually, new possibilities unfold.  Change naturally happens when the status quo doesn’t feel threatened.  A spark arises. There is a pull in the heart to move on to what is next.  Trust in the self and life itself grows.  You learn to like the small changes, to trust the change, and to trust yourself within the change.  The unknown gradually becomes known.  What is most meaningful to you draws you forward again and again and again.

Embracing the unknown which is really what change is about is a gentle process that is worth embarking on in every way.

 

 

A Share from www.TheFordInstitute.com

I've used the words, "claim your life as your own" many times in my writing on this blog.  This message continues to deepen, as this article so beautifully illustrates.      Thank you, Kelley, for the inspiration and the work that you do to carry on Debbie Ford's work in the world.  

Lovingly, Jeannie

 

 

Claim Your Life!

Two weekends ago, I had the extreme honor of leading The Shadow Process Workshop in Miami. No matter how many of these workshops I have attended, participated in, or led over the years, I am always in awe of the shifts that people experience in the short time span of 2 ½ days. I am also so grateful to Debbie Ford for creating a process that continues to live on and transform the lives of so many.

On a personal level, I am always amazed that even after having experienced this process numerous times, I always take away so many insights and a-has! From the Miami Shadow Process, the concept that I was really struck with is that it is up to each of us to "claim our life!"

We all have heard the adage "You teach people how to treat you." Yet what many people might not realize is that it is often your unconscious mind, which is far more powerful than your conscious mind, that tells and teaches people how to treat you and how to interact with you. It is also your unconscious mind that is filled with shadows and shadow beliefs -- all of that internal dialogue that plays in your head and repeats disempowering statements like "I am not good enough." "No one will ever love me." "It is not safe to stand out and shine or be seen." Ultimately, it is your negative internal dialogue that is your inner teacher, instructing the world how to treat you!

If you don't see yourself as worthy, loveable, or someone who has something to offer the world then neither will anyone else, since how you see yourself, consciously or unconsciously, is reflected in how others see you! Debbie always used to say that if someone told her that the world treats them badly, she knew that it was because they treated themselves badly! If a person was seen as a "worker" instead of an executive, it was because the person saw themselves as a "worker" and had not claimed and truly owned that they are an executive.

If you truly want to live a life that inspires you, if you want to keep evolving, if you want to step into the next greatest evolution of yourself, then you need to claim it! When you claim yourself as your highest self, the universe alters. When you claim and truly own that "I am that!" the Universe will align with your deep sense of knowing. Understanding this concept is really quite exciting because if you do your work to bring the shadows, thoughts, beliefs, and negative dialogue that live in your unconscious mind into the light of your conscious awareness, you will be able to shatter your limitations and step into creating magic and claiming the life that you long for. The really exciting news is that everything you yearn for is already inside of you. You just need to claim it!

Transformational Action Steps

1. Take on "Claiming Your Life!" Identify some goal or achievement that you are chasing in the outer world. Ask yourself, "What is the number one quality or characteristic that a person who could achieve that goal would display or have?" Is it confidence? Discipline? Charisma? Spontaneity? Or something else?

2. For the next 28 days, wake up every day and ask yourself, "What can I do today to really own or display that quality?" Commit to yourself to do whatever action or practice you hear.

With love, Kelley


 

Interviewing Teresa O'Neill - The Pleasure Coach

Firstly, I want to introduce Teresa, a dear friend and colleague, who truly walks her talk.

Natural. Real. Fresh. Creative. Fun.

teresa

Teresa O’Neill, CPCC, PCC, the founder of Become A Women Soaring, champions and supports hectic yet successful business women in claiming their own personal pleasure points.  When you work with Teresa you will learn that you must mix business with pleasure.  Her motto is “Play Powerfully, Work with Ease, and Feel the Flow”. Teresa is in her element when she sees  women celebrating and having fun.  She loves to create new opportunities and the visual reminders for them to enjoy even more space for their personal pleasure while running their businesses.

In this interview, Teresa shares her insights about pleasure and how it all ties into confidence.  She answers such questions as:  How are confidence and pleasure linked?  What does making space for pleasure give you?  How can you begin adding more pleasure to your life today?

Listen in….

[contentblock id=5 img=iframe.png]

 

 

 

The Heart in Decision-Making

image369It makes such a difference when we ensure that all of the avenues are explored in the decision-making process. For a decision to be solid, it needs to be both congruent and sustainable. Being congruent means that there is an alignment with the body, mind, and spirit. There is no disconnection between what you think and how you feel. In other words, the body, mind, and spirit are not in opposition to each other.

When there is congruence between what the mind thinks and how the body feels, decisions are made with a commitment to follow through. A sustainable decision is one in which you feel certain. You no longer second guess yourself - you simply know. You do not need to keep revisiting the decision, wondering if it is the right one. The decision becomes doable, concrete, and attainable. Your motivation stays intact.

 

 

I reflect of how I explored many possibilities around a decision that was to be made - using the body-centered techniques that I’ve learned from Marlena. Even such seemingly small decisions made from such an honest, real place meant a significant increase in lightness and clarity within myself.

You may notice that you often concentrate on what the mind thinks and the valuable information that is available from the body and the spirit are not considered.

Here is what may happen. When faced with a difficult or significant decision, you may let the mind be the dominant factor:

  • You make ‘pro’ and ‘con’ lists
  • You make rationalizations and label things good or bad, right or wrong.
  • There is often added pressure to make decisions based on what you think you should do rather than on what you want to do.
  • You may be operating from what used to be true for you but is no longer the case. You haven’t updated your ‘personal files’.
  • You discount or ignore your intuition, your body wisdom, your inner knowing.
  • You may be overly influenced by fear.

These decision-making processes are reactive rather than responsive. Being reactive is habitual, a knee-jerk reaction, an energy which is often felt in the body, though often discounted.

What to do?

For a decision to be conscious, you must take into account all the information that is available to you. Otherwise, something gets missed and often, that something includes the body’s wisdom.

You often have an intuition and get hunches that you are aware of or sometimes ignore. You can learn to listen to, trust, and make use of this guidance. In so doing, you supplement the mind’s logic and tap into your deeper wisdom in a way that is perfect for you.

You move from your head down into your heart for the hidden insights. Such attention to hidden insights support you in feeling grounded, fulfilled, centered, and present. You have a deeper and stronger resonance with what you know to be true and what you need to do or be to move forward.

Practice:

Find a quiet place to rest and reflect. In your journal, reflect on decisions that are waiting for you to make. Simply notice what is the impact on your energy when you sit with indecision? What are your body’s sensations, emotions, memories, thoughts - anything and everything? What are the insights arising within you about your pattern of deciding? How do you include all of you?

 

Nurturing Playfulness

 

images

“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.” George Bernard Shaw

 

Playfulness is about exploring and doing things that are all about pleasure - doing what you do for the sheer delight you receive in doing it. There is no ‘have to’ or ‘should’ in playfulness.

The benefits of listening to what makes your heart sing, connecting to the playfulness within, are many.

Relaxation, spontaneity, and a sense of 'letting go' in the playful moments of your life - all are fertile ground for inspiration and creativity along with your happy heart.

Parts of you that you may not know as yet awaken in a fresh way. Stress decreases, connection with those around you naturally deepens, and the room lights up along with your heart.

For myself, I am so grateful for what the Arts - film, music, song, dance, paintings, sculpture, documentaries, wonderful food, decorating, and so much more - bring into my life. All that is a creative, unique, and joyful expression of body, mind, and spirit sparks the joy that is within me.

When you have a playful attitude, you bring a sense of ease and fun to all that you do. Even what appears like hard work has a different feeling when it’s rooted in play.

Years ago I had a wonderful friend, Stella, who died young of cancer. What I most remember about her is that she laughed and played in every situation, particularly with her sister who was her closest friend. They would clean houses together to send their children to college and their fun while doing this was contagious. Emerging from a tough childhood, her sense of play created an adult life that was filled with love and joy.

With playfulness, life lightens up. A childhood innocence emerges. We are present. We get that life is a ride with its ups and downs, and we are able to put it all in perspective. Think of the Dalai Lama who has this playful, innocent quality that arises from his connection to limitlessness.

The mind can get so serious. "You have to be responsible". "You have to do it right". "You have to get things done". "You have to earn your way".  All these messages and more take us away from playfulness - a quality that is so rich and worthy of our attention and honoring.

“The moment you start seeing life as non-serious, a playfulness, all the burden on your heart disappears. All the fear of death, of life, of love - everything disappears.” Osho

When we really get this in our hearts, life gives us more and more opportunities to truly play and celebrate the joy of being alive.

Practice:

Dance. Alone or with someone else. Simply dance. Let your body move in any way it wants to without the mind controlling it. Without a care of what others might think.

In other words, let loose and be silly.

Then take a moment to stop and really check in with what is happening in the body, in the heart, in the breath. Deeply listen to your heart sing.

Welcome it all with open arms.

And dance some more...

Happy playing!

 

That Old 'Try Hard' Habit

549412_10150764514800844_716485843_11620253_289256734_nHave you ever ‘tried hard’ to think of the movie you watched the evening before or what you ate at that restaurant last weekend? The answer just doesn’t come, and you finally decide to let it go and move on. Then a few minutes later, the answer comes seemingly out of nowhere. Does this scenario sound familiar?

Where else do you ‘try hard’? How do you use your willfulness and/or self-assertion to try to make something happen for yourself and/or others? Do you have very high standards for yourself? Is your tendency to put so much effort goes into being where you’d like to be that you live in the land of doing, doing, doing? Is working at life your norm?

Kindly, gently, and honestly, point your attention to the ‘try hard’ habit in you. Consciously get to know this aspect of yourself: what it feels like in the body, the emotions and thoughts that are attached to it, and the impact of this state on your well-being and your life as a whole.

My own experience is that when I’m in ‘try hard’ mode, I am in automatic pilot. The tension that is rooted in fear shuts down my ability to think clearly, creatively, and freshly. For instance, I notice that my writing can stop flowing naturally and easily. I’m very much in my head and feel disconnected from my heart. My breath gets shallow. I tire easily. I hear judgmental thoughts of myself and others such as “This is hard” , “This is too much work”, “I’ve got to get this right” and “Why aren’t others doing what I expect”. The pressure is on and that leads me to feeling a lack of focus rather than being  present and in my creative zone.

Rooted in fear, ‘trying hard’ is fertile ground for resistance. Being aware of the body sensations, thoughts, and feelings will help you be in the driver’s seat instead of this habit driving you. You have the choice to take a moment, breathe, and simply notice the ‘try hard’ with an open heart.

Allow the discomfort that arises from ‘trying hard’ to be what it is without trying to fix or change it. Ask that aspect of yourself: What is your gift to me? Open your heart to appreciate its positive intention. For instance, the ‘try hard’ habit in myself has taught me about determination and self-discipline, qualities that have served me well many times in my life.

With loving and accepting awareness of this habit, your heart softens so that you can be with the unfolding of your life in such a natural and beautiful way. You become more in touch with the silence within and have a greater ability to wait for that deeper, truer impulse to arise in your heart which is not based on fear or reactivity. In other words, you become aware of that which is beyond ‘trying hard’.

You gradually trust yourself to dance with life step by step, moment by moment. Life happens naturally.

Practice:

Think back to the most recent time that you were in ‘try hard’ mode? I invite you to journal: What was happening in your body? What were your thoughts? How did you feel? Are there any visuals that arise? Be honest with yourself.

Take a deep breath and then physically stand up from where you are sitting. Move to a new place where you actually experience the freshness of being present. Explore your emotions, body sensations, and thoughts in this place. What is life like in the here and now?

Your body will remember this.

An Interview with Marlena Field, Founder of Body-Centered Coaching, Part Two

Marlena Field at www.bodymindspiritcoaching.com is with me again for the second part of our interview together on the body and confidence.   Filled with lots of information and inspiration for all of you as she discusses how the body plays a significant part in our sense of well-being.  Marlena has lots of ideas on what is confidence and how you tap into it through the wisdom of the body.

 

 

Enjoy Part Two!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SA4RCGZRiJc

If you haven't watched Part One as yet, I recommend that you do that, too.

Blessings, Jeannie

 

Marlena Field Interview: Body Wisdom and Confidence

Marlena Field is a Professional Certified Coach. As an expert in using the body as a resource for change, Marlena created a body-centered coaching method, wrote a book and created CDs of live coaching demonstrations. Her techniques combine mindfulness and the body’s wisdom for the purpose of integrating body, mind and spirit. These help coaches and other helping professionals assist clients to access body information that creates a greater depth of insight, self-awareness and self-acceptance. She can be found at www.bodymindspiritcoaching.com

I'm excited to share with you my interview with Marlena.  I've known and respected her for a many years as a colleague and friend and very much value what she has to offer you.  I'm also currently being trained by Marlena as a certified trainer for holistic professionals who want to know the principles of "body-centered coaching" - a method that is recognized by the International Coach Federation and created by Marlena.

Inspiring.  Clear.  Practical.  Honest.

Marlena gives you a practical insight about confidence in the first of two interviews.  I invite you to watch....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XudgHOXOBIY

Stay tuned for the second interview as we explore how inner confidence is a way to come home to yourself - and how the body will support you in every way on this journey.

To you. For you.  Enjoy.

Jeannie

 

The Dance with Stress

January provides you with a special opportunity to reflect on your precious life. What is calling you? To set an intention for this upcoming year wholeheartedly and clearly - with a witness to support you - makes all the difference. Consider a coaching session with me to begin your journey this year in a conscious way.

My invitation to you is to play - dancing with your inner and outer life - in ways that reflect self-responsibility, self-trust, and possibility. Let the new year begin....

The Dance with Stress

The pace of life is what it is. There are components we can manage at a pace that feels right to our own particular rhythm. There are aspects that are out of the realm of our control. Life happens. Challenges arise.

The daily practice of inner confidence is all about consciously buildingyour inner resources. In this, you discover the habits and limiting beliefs that get in your way of living life fully. You uncover the layers of emotions that are calling to be embraced. You get clear on what is important to you. You continue to move beyond - growing, deepening, evolving, unfolding into your life.

In stressful times, you notice that those patterns you experienced as complete and no longer in the driver’s seat are apparent again. You find yourself reactive and emotionally charged. Once again, you are in the throes of a wave that can take you to a very familiar place - it’s uncomfortable, you don’t like it, you want to avoid it - and it’s taking its toll on you mentally, emotionally, and physically.

It is in these moments that the fruit of your daily practice can come to the forefront. You notice any self-judgment and/or feelings of discouragement. You observe a tendency to analyze, to fix, to try hard to change what is happening. You make the choice to allow what is present within you to run its course through you - with the gift of time and space.

You trust your inner resources - that unshakeable connection to your core - by dancing with the stress that is happening within you.

This upcoming year of 2013 will likely bring all of us challenges in life. I invite you to give your heart to ALL of life, including those stressful moments. Experience the freedom to accept and simply be where you’re at in each moment.

Learning how to dance gracefully with it all, including what is stressful for you, takes you home to yourself.

Practice:

Reflect on a concrete, particularly stressful situation. At a body level, open your awareness to whatever is here for you to discover and embrace. See with honesty. Rest into whatever is happening without fixing or trying to change it. Give this energetic experience of stress lots of space and freedom to be what it is. Allow the energy to dance in your body in its own way.

Simply notice the impact of this practice.

In the spirit of being complete and not finished,

Jeannie

* The creator this month’s image is unknown. Please let me know if it was done by you.

 

www.innerconfidencecoaching.com/contact

This Time

Before you begin, take a moment to gently close your eyes. Say to yourself the phrase, ‘present to this moment, and feel the frequency of these words fall into your body from the top of your head downward into the depth of your heart and beyond. Notice its impact on the body. Continue reading with the intention to deepen what you have just experienced.

This Time

This time, this moment, counts. For myself, it has been so important to closely and honestly look at how I want to spend my time. This exploration includes examining my day-to-day habitual way of being with time as well as the bigger question of how I want to use this time of my life to its fullest.

Time, in itself, is the highest currency of true wealth. In these busy times, the sense of freedom and well-being that time well spent fosters surpasses any amount of money we might have in our bank accounts.

When you are centered and present, you are clear about what you truly stand for in each moment. Your inner knowing informs you how to gracefully move through time in a way that’s all about freedom, ease, flow, and lightness.

At this time, in this moment:

  • Listen to your heart. What is it saying?
  • Be in your body. Notice what is happening.
  • Ground yourself to this earth. Bring your energy DOWN into your feet.
  • Rest in that which is aware of all experiences.
  • Nurture and appreciate wonder, laughter, peace, heartfelt receiving, the joy of being yourself - when those vibrations arise. You are blessed.
  • Honor anger, frustration, sadness, disappointment, hurt when these vibrations arise. You are blessed as there is opportunity here for you to discover more about yourself on this path toward being present in the moment.

Practice:

Choose one of the following questions that really resonate with you.

  1. How do I value the moments in my day?
  2. What are my priorities at this time of my life?
  3. Does what I give to others show respect toward my time?
  4. Am I giving my time from a place of 'should' or from my heart?
  5. How do I give to myself?

Find a place to sit, be, reflect. Write in your journal if that helps you. Discover more about you and your relationship with time.

In the spirit of being complete and not finished,

With love,

Jeannie

 

http://www.innerconfidencecoaching.com/resources/your-guide-to-inner-confidence/

The Art of Resting

It can be challenging in a busy life to turn your attention to the need for and importance of REST. What is your need for ‘rest’ breaks?  How connected are you to this need? How can you make rest more of a daily priority?  What part does rest play in your connection to inner confidence?

The following is an invitation for you to set the intention to experience rest, value rest, and become a dear friend with rest as you move through your life.

The Art of Resting

There is something very powerful about the state of 'rest'. When you value rest and commit to making time to nourish it, rest can significantly influence the quality of your life and support you in coming home to yourself.

Studies talk about the lack of 'rest' in our society, the kind of rest that pertains to sleep and relaxation. When you don't ensure that you're getting the quotient of 'rest' that your body and heart require:

  • Your body doesn't function with the same vitality and aliveness typical of when you're 'rested'. It may even have to scream out, “Take care of me!” by getting a cold or the flu.
  • You tend to crave - and reach for - food that isn’t good for you because you’re in need of an energy boost.
  • There is an impact on your ability to think clearly and wade through those stressful moments.
  • You feel less grounded and, therefore, more vulnerable to reacting rather than responding to life’s challenges. Old patterns of behaviour that you thought were handled show up.
  • The experience of love and acceptance, the heart of inner confidence, seems difficult to touch.

Permission to just be and even take a nap during the day! - is almost too good to be true for someone who is consistently pushing themselves to keep busy, work, and strive for that something more. Note - this is not about discouraging being in action; it’s about encouraging the balancing state of simply being which is the art of rest.

The Art of Rest also speaks to the bigger questions in life.

Do you take the time to 'rest' into your emotions, allowing them to just be what they are without trying to fix them?

When the mind gradually relaxes, the wise voice for the inner teacher is heard. Inspiration and creativity have the opportunity to float to the surface and express themselves. Are you able to rest into these inner gifts that are available to all of us?

You have the potential to rest into what life offers, experiencing and accepting what is, without having to fight and resist. When you are centered in resting into the present, you trust that life unfolds according to its own time and wisdom. Do you rest in humility?

In the following poem called “Walk Slowly”Danna Faulds writes:

It only takes a reminder to breathe, a moment to be still, and just like that, something in me settles, softens, makes space for imperfection.

The harsh voice of judgment drops to a whisper and I remember again that life isn’t a relay race; that we will all cross the finish line; that waking up to life is what we are born for.

As many times as I forget, catch myself charging forward without even knowing where I am going, that many times I can make the choice to stop, to breathe, and walk slowly into the mystery.

Rest in this moment. Rest in love and suffering. Rest in resistance and change. Rest in solitude and relationship. Rest in silence and expression. Rest in clarity and in the unknown.

The Art of Resting, like many art forms, keeps evolving. As we embody it, we experience it on ever-deepening levels.

Practice:

Take the time to find a quiet, comfortable place for your body to sink into wherever it is: physically, emotionally, and in the depths of the heart. Know that there is nothing to do but simply rest into your breath and receive what is present, moment by moment. Allow the state of rest to deeply nourish you.

Consider making time for yourself in this way a daily practice, opening your heart to the rich experience of REST in all its many facets.

Inner Confidence with Kate Courageous, Part Two

Welcome Back for Part 2 of My Interview with Kate!

Insightful. Clear. Inspiring.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Kate Swoboda, otherwise known as Kate Courageous. Kate supported me in working through the process of updating my website.  In this interview, I got to be with her in a new venue and ask for her 'take' on building confidence.

 

If you're seeing this interview for the first time, I recommend you visit the blog prior to this one so you find out about how Kate links integrity and passion to inner confidence.

In the next 9 minutes plus, you will hear more about passion, the in-depth conversation that began in Part One.  You will also hear Kate share the simple most important tool that you help you make a big change in your life.

Listen in and enjoy!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iaKGDzGo5j0

Kate's Bio

Kate Swoboda is a Life Coach, speaker and writer who helps clients to lead unconventional and revolutionary lives through practicing  courage. She’s the author of The Courageous Living Guide, and creator of the Courageous Play and Create Stillness retreats–as well as The Coaching Blueprint, a resource just for Life Coaches. When she’s not writing, coaching, or leading retreats in Italy and San Francisco, she can be found sipping chai in libraries, buffing up on her Italian, training for her next road race, or getting all bendy-stretchy on the yoga mat. Learn more at http://www.yourcourageouslife.com , sign up for her free newsletter, or follow her on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/katecourageous or Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/YourCourageousLife.

 

 

 

 

 

Inner Confidence with Kate Courageous, Part One

Insightful. Clear. Inspiring.

I have just had the pleasure of interviewing Kate Swoboda, otherwise known as Kate Courageous. Kate supported me in working through the process of updating my website.  In this interview, I got to be with her in a new venue and ask for her take on building confidence.

In the next 8 minutes plus, you will hear about how integrity plays a big part in building inner confidence.

Kate states...

I don't think that one can really feel confident when they're selling out on themselves.

You will also hear about how Kate taps into her passion to give you an insight as to how you can connect with your own passion.

Kate shares about this...

Knowing what works for you and what doesn't work for you is what paves the way for passion.

 

Enjoy!  Be inspired to look more deeply into your integrity and passion.

Stay tuned for tomorrow to hear Part 2!

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jI46L-0EHnE

 

Kate's Bio

Kate Swoboda is a Life Coach, speaker and writer who helps clients to lead unconventional and revolutionary lives through practicing courage. She’s the author of The Courageous Living Guide, and creator of the Courageous Play and Create Stillness retreats–as well as The Coaching Blueprint, a resource just for Life Coaches. When she’s not writing, coaching, or leading retreats in Italy and San Francisco, she can be found sipping chai in libraries, buffing up on her Italian, training for her next road race, or getting all bendy-stretchy on the yoga mat. Learn more at http://www.yourcourageouslife.com , sign up for her free newsletter, or follow her on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/katecourageous or Facebook:http://www.facebook.com/YourCourageousLife.

The Power of Practice

The foundation of living your life in your own unique way is an inner knowing about what is most important to you. Listen to your heart’s inner whispers.  Devote yourself to this, only this, in a conscious way. Your life will become simple.

Yes, all of us can look at our current lives and find some evidence of what we may be unconsciously devoted to:

  • a particular story that creates drama
  • a habit that is all about wanting, expecting or trying to force getting your own way.

The habitual way of life is driven by unexplored urges, reactions, thoughts, and feelings. These fade into the background when you are in your heart.

These are the rich places to explore. How do you stay connected to the devotion that lives in your heart?  How do you live on a day-to-day basis with a heart that is open and expressed?

As you explore the stories and the habits of the personality, your awareness increases. You notice when you are unconsciously falling into the old patterns. Your awareness gives you the ability to choose a different way.

It is important to find practices that truly support YOU. A practice is a particle, a part of the whole. It becomes a way of life.

Your challenge is to create practices that nourish you in every way.  Practices might include:

  • starting each day with sun salutations
  • sitting in silence.
  • being in nature every day, consciously becoming part of all that surrounds you.
  • reading inspirational books
  • doing breathing exercises that center you
  • dancing ALL of your feelings to music

The practices that are available to nourish you are limitless.

The core of each and every practice is gratitude.

Gratitude melts the heart and quiets any urge to fight the mind’s tendency toward fixing and controlling. It brings us to Presence, accepting the moment for its gift - whatever that might be.

Some days it may seem that all you can find to be grateful for is the pain that you’re feeling. Gratitude can open your heart to kindness and compassion.

Other days, you might be grateful for a beautiful tree or the ease of your breath in this moment.

Keep looking for gratitude each day. The practice of gratitude builds a foundation to support a heart that is nourished and free.

A heart that knows inner confidence.

Practice:

Take time to sit and reflect on what is most important to you. Make this a priority. From here, begin to craft practices which will support you to live your devotion from your heart.  At the core of every daily practice, bring your attention to the jewel of gratitude and simply observe the heart melt.

I invite you to book a coaching session with me if you need guidance in this.

I’d love to hear from you.

In the spirit of being complete and not finished,

With love and gratitude,

Jeannie

(A special thank you to the person who took this beautiful photo.  Please contact me so I can give you credit for this.)

The Heart's Gift

The sanskrit word ‘kishala’ means ‘germinated seed’. The word arose spontaneously in a dream, inspiring Linda Kolker to make this month’s photograph. The heart is the germinated seed within us. When we rest there, the heart can grow and flourish, nourishing us.

Many of us grew up with a negative spin on the word, ‘selfish’. Having someone call you selfish was not a compliment.

If you wanted to be thought of as ‘good’, you had to be unselfish. Unselfishness meant that you were giving, sharing, reaching out, caring for others. Focusing outward.

In this paradigm, love is a commodity that you give and receive. A balance sheet is kept. And there is a payoff - you win approval, you feel needed, you get to avoid uncomfortable feelings by focusing on others.

But there is a hidden cost: the life source that resides within you is not addressed directly.

What I know now that I didn’t know in those early days is this: any time there is a ‘should’, a rule, the conditioned mind - not the heart - is driving my life.

I have learned that when I rest in my own heart with a kind and gentle focus, the ‘shoulds’ fall away. The questions about whether I am selfish or unselfish, good or bad, fall silent. The judgments of others recede into the stillness.

In my heart, I realize that the people who are around me show me, time and time again, that whatever is happening ‘out there’ is really all about me. When their judgments hook me, my own thoughts and self-judgments are the real trap.

Others show me what is within me. It is their gift to me. When I become aware of this, everything changes.

Protective walls are no longer necessary. The doors of my heart are wide open. Within myself, I can address every hurt, every sensation, every element of blame, every judgment, every feeling of painful separation. When I am completely honest with myself, I discover more and more about my patterns. Simply and honestly seeing them allows more and more to enter my heart and be embraced.

It is here that insights pop. Stillness arises. Clarity unfolds.

Rather than focusing ‘out there’, focusing within your own heart is the doorway to pure love. Then giving your gifts becomes as natural as breathing.

Pamela Wilson from “Ordinary Women Extraordinary Wisdom” shares the truth of relationships:

“That’s all that life is: beingness using itself to liberate itself, to adore itself, to support itself, to nourish itself, to enjoy itself and to express its vast love. It just wants to touch and taste and smell and dance.” 

I marvel at the simplicity and beauty of moving with life in this way.
There is nothing to figure out.
There is nothing to fix or correct.
The heart is in the driver’s seat as it is the core of life.
And life itself is very, very wise.

The process is easier when you have someone with you. They can be your witness and hold the space for the truth. Guide you to see what you might not see. Support you with practices tailored for where you are.

It is so easy to go back into the stories that the mind creates, to doubt, to see ourselves as separate - in other words, to live in the illusion. Resting in the heart, where labels about what is selfish or not do not exist, can bring us to the truth.

Practice:

Take some time to simply sit in a comforting, quiet place of solitude. Pay attention to every inhale and exhale of your breath, with a special focus on your chest area. Begin to notice what is present in this moment. Notice any feeling, any sensation, any restriction with complete honesty. Embrace whatever you discover - so gently and kindly. Stay in the heart, present to what is, even if it’s uncomfortable.

Find your way toward laying your head in this one heart where pure love resides, always. From this place, simply be with your loved ones.

I’d love to hear from you about what your experience. What is it like for you when bring everything back to you in your own heart? Where does it lead you?

Now is the Time

I wanted to introduce to you my colleague and friend, Mark Susnow as my guest blogger for today. Enjoy his wisdom!

Quite often we let the major events and concerns in our life define how we are feeling moment to moment. We might have financial or personal disappointment. We might feel let down or betrayed or a loved one might be suffering. When we think about these events we feel a certain degree of pain and sadness.

But our thoughts about these events, (the time that it actually takes to think about them) only consumes a fraction of our day. What do we feel in the rest of our day? Do we allow ourselves to notice the beautiful skies and feel the gentle breeze? Do we notice the rains filling up the creeks?   Do we allow ourselves to receive the love from our pets. Do we slow down enough to notice?

There is potential magic in almost every moment if we are open to receiving. That means letting go of our judgments and our expectations. It's beyond explanation. We feel it at unexpected moments.

It is in these moments when we feel nurtured. But we have to let go of our concerns about the rest of our life and to appreciate the present moment. That's all we have and that's all there will ever be. The rest is just a memory or our imagination running wild about what might or might not happen. That future that we keep concerning ourselves with keeps changing by the minute. Enjoy what you have. Enjoy the gift of the present.

JOURNEY ON

MARK

Mark Susnow at http://www.inspirepossibility.com is an executive & life coach and speaker who inspires others to believe in themselves. He is passionate about life being an exciting journey of discovery. His enthusiastic and inspiring keynotes on change, leadership and connection thoroughly convey this message to his audiences. A former trial attorney for 30 years, he integrates what it takes to be successful in the world with the inner wisdom unfolded to him through years of yoga and meditation. He is the author of Dancing on the River…Navigating Life’s Changes. Give yourself the gift of coaching and make an investment in your future.