Rip off the mask, tear down the walls. Show the world your beautiful self!

Posts tagged ‘flow’

Take Time to Breathe Through Your Challenges

Just Breathe

https://www.flickr.com/photos/philipglevy/9462509263/in/photolist-fqaQkr-6B62hk-9jZwX5-4FH1En-54uCWa-a3Ns41-6BanmN-6DM4U9-5u49NP-6v9Puu-6DGTwD-4FMcCG-doJVpC-3ervgn-4FMcmC-pb1bmR-6v9McG-6DM5Wm-a71Zuu-5i6sb2-6B9Lkj-4FH1v4-gQpcex-jZKZ5o-6v9NNf-6B5zw6-89YYg5-6v9Xbb-6MPVRc-6v9Wow-6v5Gyk-aPQjfH-6v9QjU-6v5PF8-6v9VcG-cu2a4-DUvgxx-6v9YGJ-5oAaDQ-8ipJ7z-5VgzB9-6B9AVJ-5KTyGH-5Vce46-Uwsk9p-6vNzky-6v5FCV-6B5rgp-6v9UFb-6v9LjqLet’s face it. For life to be any kind of interesting, there are going to be periods when you feel like you’re riding the roller coaster from hell. While the wild ride might be fun and exciting for a while, there comes a point when you’re grateful to have reached the end. There comes a time when being in a semi-comatose state is not only a relief but necessary. We all need time to let our minds, bodies, and spirits recover from an overdose of the insanity life loves to throw into our paths. We need to allow ourselves time to just breathe.

This week has really run the gamut for me, and there are still a few more days left! From plumbing issues which just don’t want to be easily resolved to meeting with new clients, to throwing myself into new experiences, the week has definitely been an E ticket ride. The ups and downs I’m experiencing remind me, like a bucket of ice water to the face that life is truly about balance.

We are mired in frustration and soothed by ease. We hit all the red lights, then a path opens up just for us. We feel like money flows only one direction—away. Then suddenly, those interviews we had or proposals we submitted begin bearing fruit—often with the intensity of a California mud slide. When they do, we realize just how important those times we spent semi-comatose really were. We’re ready for the challenges and embrace them wholeheartedly.

Make the Most of the Down Time

Yet the biggest challenge for me is to use the down time wisely. Though I need to catch up on reading or finish a course I started, it’s easy to slip into sloth-like habits; spending too much time on social media, watching TV, playing computer games, or just napping endlessly. I recently discovered something most of you probably already know. Sloth attracts more sloth.

While I was farting around accomplishing nothing, opportunities eluded me. But when I changed my course, began participating actively in entrepreneurial groups, or supporting other entrepreneurs, focused my reading (and my meditations) on self-improvement, and limited the time sucking activities, abundance began to flow like the leaking hot water line under my house.

Messages in Bottles or Leaky Pipes

I also realized something rather profound. The leaking pipe and the destruction required to fix the problem were a direct reflection of the path my life was taking. The foundation I’d laid was weakening and even breaking. It needed to be torn up in places and rebuilt differently. My efforts were flowing uselessly (and expensively) into the ground, wasted and misguided. I needed to do some serious soul-searching to redirect my efforts and locate the places in my foundation which no longer served my best interests. Even the ground on which I stood was no longer the safe, stable place I’d come to take for granted.

Yet, I’m reminded by people like Linda Clay that, like the song says “there’s a time for every purpose”. The times I spend mimicking a sloth aren’t as unproductive as I think. Yet, knowing when to move away from those times is also key. Just like a dead-end job can become a rut, so can dead-end slothing. Recognizing things like plumbing leaks and excess water usage are essential in determining when we need to do what is taught in the Neurogym courses, and GOYA (get off your ass)! Ignoring the signs and symptoms will result in hemorrhaging our resources, be it money, energy, water, or even life-giving blood.

Turning Messages into Productive Actions

By now you might be asking how to recognize the signs. How can simple things like a plumbing leak or constant delays mean more than they seem at face value? For me, it comes down to a process I’ve developed in the usual manner, through trial and error. I’ve learned to apply it to any and all seeming problems which arise in my life, my home, and my overall environment. I apply those steps as follows:

  1. Step back from the problem.
  2. Depersonalize it while remaining open to possible solutions.
  3. Ask myself how it might apply to the situations currently active in my life, be they personal, business, or something else.
  4. Meditate on question 3, allowing answers to flow rather than be forced into existence.
  5. Take the necessary steps to resolve the obvious problem (especially with interpersonal issues, this isn’t always clear).
  6. Take action on signals I receive about seemingly unrelated parts of my life.
  7. Repeat steps 3 through 6 as often as necessary until I feel that my life is flowing freely and smoothly again.

I won’t say this is a fool-proof system as the control freak in me invariably decides things are moving too slowly and seeks to intervene, more often than not exacerbating the problem rather than helping. What I will say is that the more I practice the process, the more I fine-tune it. The more I fine-tune it, the easier it becomes to let go and avoid trying to control the solution.

Going with the Flow

Even now, as I sit here waiting for the leak detection company to re-do their work because the spot where they said the leak was located turned out to be a perfectly solid piece of pipe, I’m opening myself to other areas in my life where this situation is reflected. Where else did I think I’d found the problem only to discover I hadn’t. Where else am I experiencing delays? Where else am I allowing myself to be frustrated because I’m not controlling the situation?

It all comes down to one thing, really. I need to get out of my own way. Give myself permission to stop and smell the coffee. Maybe even find a way to get those two red chairs I saw at Lowe’s home so I have a cozy spot on what I jokingly call my veranda. Invite a friend over to share a bottle of wine and watch the world go by from my front porch looking out.

We spend a lot of time rushing from here to there, blowing through a to-do list that would freeze the heart of the most Type A CEO. Yet in most cases, we’re not really changing the world. We’re simply anesthetizing ourselves to the effects of everyone else rushing around like they have to accomplish so much every week. In reality, less is truly more. We really need less moments which leave us breathless and more that take our breath away.

Let Your Gratitude Go Wild

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful for setbacks and challenges that force me to slow down, look around, and reassess.
  2. I am grateful for opportunities to look at my life from different angles.
  3. I am grateful for my sloth-y times. I’m never really doing nothing, or acting without purpose. It only seems like it.
  4. I am grateful for new opportunities which arise when I finally figure out how to get out of my own way.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; love, friendship, inspiration, motivation, aha moments, joys both great and small, peace, harmony, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

You can find the associated Facebook Live Podcast here.

 

I invite you to visit my Facebook pages, Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author and HLWT Accounting. Please also drop by my website, www.shericonaway.com and check out my Hire Me Page. I’ve created these pages as a means of positive affirmation and would be very grateful if you’d “like” them or leave a comment! Thank you!

 

Photo courtesy of philipglevy via Flikr

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February 7, 2015 Upside diddly down kind of day

I love the rain

I love the way the air smells just before the rain appears. I love the feel as the water cleanses the air. I love the sound as the drops hit the roof, first small drops, pitter pattering on the vent above my stove, then great big drops beating on my windows as the wind buffets them around. I love hearing the water as it pours out of the rain gutters and the whoosh as cars drive by and stir up the puddles.

But today is different somehow. While I enjoyed listening to the rain during my meditation, hearing it wind and twist, intermingling with the sound of Scrappy’s purr, now that the rain has stopped and we’re left with no more than a heavy mist, I’m feeling unsettled, even jumpy and out of place.

These feelings confuse me as I don’t know where they’re coming from. Could I just be catching someone else’s feelings? Their irritation, perhaps at some minor inconvenience or small delay? Am I tapping into someone else’s energy which causes my big toes and thumbs to ache for no apparent reason (aside from the toe I broke years ago and never let heal)?

I don’t know the answers to the questions I’ve posed. The only thing I know for certain is that I do not like these feelings. They are preventing me from finding my usual child-like enjoyment in the phenomenon of water falling from the sky; the phenomenon we see seldom in this area; the phenomenon called rain.

I relight the tea light in my Mediterranean sea salt holder and straighten the circle of heart stones which ring the candle. I pause, I ponder, I take a deep breath. I listen to the quiet hum of my computer, the only sound in the house, despite the fact that my daughter and her dog are sleeping in the guest room, my cats are scattered around the house and are, for a moment in time, all silent.

Anticipation hangs heavy in the air

It’s that feeling some call ‘the calm before the storm’ or ‘waiting for the other shoe to drop’. It’s knowing something is going to happen, but having no idea what that might be. It’s a sense of change which is about to occur, but the direction of that change is uncertain. Those who thrive on thoughts of chaos and destruction might be licking their chops, hoping for the largest most spectacular blast.

But I am not one of those; one of the ones I call the ‘doom and gloomers’. I feel the changes as they ripple across my skin, but refuse to believe, in spite of even the most compelling evidence, that such changes are to be feared and prevented at all costs. Instead, I embrace those changes; welcome them; even invite them into my home. There has been a great deal of stagnation in my life time. People have moved from apathy to blame to entitlement, none of which improve their lives.

The way I see it, change is kind of like weight lifting. In order to make changes, you have to surprise your muscles; do something different or unexpected. Use the muscles in a variety of ways so they don’t see what’s coming next and have to react to whatever you decide to do. Change is the same way. If those opposing it see you coming, they’ll throw up their defenses and you’ll never get through. You might as well beat your head against a wall. But if you,Strength instead, show love and compassion, they’re not likely to guess that you’re instigating change via gentle persuasion. You’re showing them a different way so quietly and unassumingly that by the time things have changed, they’ve done so with complete buy in from all concerned.

Such is the nature of the Strength card in Tarot. I find it interesting, now that the thought comes into my head that I took one of those Facebook quizzes today and it told me that my number was 8. 8 is the number of Strength in Tarot. And though I’ve reached this point in my typically convoluted manner, I believe it was because I was meant to find the connection. I needed to understand that this unsettled, atypical reaction to a lovely, rainy day is somehow telling me that quiet strength will be a factor in the weeks to come. It may be mine or it may be that I’m simply influenced by it and embracing the changes which are made possible by those who watch and wait, and love and give. The ones who know that lasting change is not brought about by wars and violence but by spinning a web of love and compassion and watching as it perpetuates itself. Watching how worlds change because people care about someone or something besides themselves. That caring doesn’t stop at the point where you can no longer see the results. It keeps moving outward in ever increasing circles, just as the ripples in a lake move outward when you toss a rock into the water.

Compassion is the water.

Compassion moves and flows through all situations. It is fluid and unfettered by rules and conventions. It simply is. It molds itself to whatever it encounters, then dissipates, moving on to something else, flowing, ever flowing, like the water in a lake. Certainly, it can take on the violent nature of waves crashing on the shore, but those waves only become violent through the addition of other elements. Compassion flows through and around those elements without changing its nature. The water which comes crashing to the shore, once the pressure is released, flows smoothly across the recently abused sand, soothing and smoothing.

So too has my restlessness abated to some degree, knowing that a quiet strength is behind the unsettledness and that being unsettled under these circumstances just means that I’m already ready to be part of the change, and the anticipation is making me a little crazy. I can’t alter the pace of things to come, so no matter how much I want them to just be here already, I know that everything must happen in the proper time. The foundation has been laid, and the walls are being erected, stone by stone, heart by heart, each in its place to ensure the stability and endurability of the structure being built. And I feel very blessed to be a part of it.

My gratitudes tonight are:
1. I am grateful for my writing which allows me to work through any feelings or any concerns I might have.
2. I am grateful for change. It moves, it inspires and it brings people together to bring a better life to everyone.
3. I am grateful to those who choose to leave rather than change. They, too are doing their part to facilitate the changes needed.
4. I am grateful for a lovely, though short night of dancing.
5. I am grateful for nights when I just don’t feel that writing is what I need, yet I can somehow find something to write which does fill my needs.
6. I am grateful for abundance; love, compassion, friendship, joy, hearts, peace, harmony, health and prosperity.

Blessed be.

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