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

Posts tagged ‘synergy’

Self-love is the Fuel That Powers Your Motivation

Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places the last couple of months I’ve gotten off track. I lost sight of what matters and started mistreating myself. It wasn’t anything overt like putting myself in danger. Instead it was more subtle. Missed gym workouts. Unhealthy food. Not enough movement. It all added up to one thing: forgetting to remind myself how much I love both the person I am now and the person I’ve yet to become.

Self-love is one of the most powerful motivators I know. Without it, we’re content to plod along being mediocre instead of celebrating our amazingness. But it needs to be nurtured or like an unwatered flower, it shrivels and dies.

I know I’m not nurturing mine when I consistently put unhealthy food in my mouth, eat when I’m not really hungry, play too many computer games and watch too much TV. It doesn’t matter that I still look myself in the mirror most days and tell myself how much I love me, and how beautiful I am. When the actions don’t support the words, that inner child who wants so much to be loved for herself starts to shrivel and crawl back into her shell.

I saw it happening. The numbers on the scale creeping up. The writing getting neglected. The housework being ignored. Old aches returning from too much sitting. The ill effects of lack of love show themselves quickly, and add up to one big, ugly mess of frustration, anxiety, and gloom. The trouble is, once you start back-sliding, turning things around may not be such an easy thing, though it is certainly worth the effort.

Reading the Signs and Turning it Around

I started by filling my refrigerator with healthy fruits and vegetables, and making another pot of my turkey/kale chili for the freezer. (I’ll post the recipe at the end in case you’re interested). I made a point of getting to the gym at least once each week (better than none, and it is a start) with a plan to get back to my usual 3 times. Most of all, I started asking myself if I was really hungry before opening the refrigerator, and even once I had the door open.

I won’t say I’ve done perfectly this week. I did succumb to a burger and onion rings on errand day, and regretted it soon after. The burger was more bun than meat and the onion rings were overdone; the Universe’s way of telling me I was eating crap and should know better. I didn’t get to the gym on Monday as planned.

On the other hand, I’ve spent a lot more time working on either my writing or client work all week. I danced much later than usual last night after thinking earlier in the evening that I’d cut out early. I even danced through my right knee starting to complain, and by the time I got home, I was pain-free.

Seeing Immediate Results

My accomplishments this week are a true testament to the return of my self-love. After some false starts and a bit of irritation, I realized my friend and favorite butt-kicker, Candy was actually assuming the role of coach, something I needed desperately, but have not been able to justify going further into debt to hire (though Michelle Evans is making inroads into that resolve. She is the perfect combination of spirituality, energy work, and inspiration I think I need right now). She pushed and prodded until I came up with a pretty decent sounding Vision statement. Once she drags the Mission statement out of me as well, they will be added to my website. I just need to figure out where best to showcase them. (though a recent foray into the world of Divi and the realization that it’s not as scary as it seemed may give me a better idea of how, if not where).

Benefits of Learning to Receive

Self-love leads to some interesting revelations. One of the biggest ones is that learning to receive moves you farther along the self-love continuum. Refusing help from others not only denies them the pleasure of giving, but tells the Universe loud and clear I don’t love myself enough to be successful.

Does this sound counter-intuitive? It was for me for a long time. I thought success meant slogging through all of life’s perils and pitfalls by myself so when I reached the top of the mountain, I could say I did it all myself! So there! Boy, is that a load of crap! In the first place, victory and success are hollow if you’re standing all alone at the top of the mountain. In the second, having people who are there to lend a hand or their expertise when the going gets rough or you reach a place where your lack of tools will make the job infinitely more difficult are tremendous assets. You simply get further and faster with a team than alone.

When Helen Reddy sang “I am strong, I am invincible, I am Woman!” she said nothing about doing it alone. In fact, the first two lines speak volumes: “I am woman, hear me roar in numbers too big to ignore…” Sure, one person alone can make a difference. Look at Mother Teresa. But when we allow others to help, we can make an impact of incalculable magnitude because our success causes a ripple effect. The act of allowing others to help us achieve our goals lifts them up and helps them achieve some of theirs. Tell me you don’t feel better about yourself and able to push through some of your own challenges when you’ve helped another person get past one of their difficulties? Helping someone else is an amazingly uplifting experience.

Pretty soon, that focus on receiving as well as giving creates a synergy bringing joy and success to everyone it touches. In a roundabout but very real way, learning to love ourselves enough to receive help from other people strengthens humanity as a whole. It took me a long time, more than half a lifetime to figure out such a simple concept. In my defense, I come from a family of fiercely independent people. Going it alone and achieving success is highly valued. Asking for help is not only frowned upon but discouraged as being burdensome. I had to overcome an overwhelming amount of conditioning in order to get out of that destructive loop. Thankfully, I have some amazing friends, including my daughter who were willing to knock me around a bit until I saw the light.

I’m still learning to ask for help. I try to go it alone more often than not, but each time I reach out and get a positive response, it gets a little easier. And like the Grinch, my heart grows 3 sizes when I do.

Loving Myself Enough to be Grateful

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful to my friends who’ve taught me the value of receiving.
  2. I am grateful for a highly productive week.
  3. I am grateful for the people I’ve met just be stepping out of my comfort zone.
  4. I am grateful for being able to step back and regroup when someone says or does something that makes me feel bad about myself and the choices I’ve made. I know I’m not perfect, and I know I don’t live up to someone else’s standards, but that’s not what I’m here to do.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; helpful friends, guidance when I open my heart and mind and listen, self-love, improving health habits, healthy kitties, excessive dancing, productivity, clarity, resolve, new clients, joy, peace, harmony, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, Virtual Assistant and advocate for cats. She believes in the Laws of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. She is available for article writing and ghost writing to help your website and the business it supports grow and thrive. She specializes in finding and expressing your authentic self. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author


Sheri's Turkey-Kale Chili

  • Servings: 16 2-cup servings
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

A healthy take on a comfort food classic which freezes well


  • 3 Tablespoons garlic olive oil for cooking
  • 2 large brown onions finely chopped
  • 6 pounds ground turkey
  • 4 Tablespoons chopped garlic or 1 large bulb
  • 6-8 cups finely chopped kale
  • 5-6 medium jalapenos (use less or omit for a milder chili)
  • 2 15-ounce cans fire roasted tomatoes with chilis
  • 5 15-ounce cans tomato sauce
  • 6 Tablespoons Ancho chili powder
  • 3 Tablespoons Chipotle chili powder
  • 3 Tablespoons Cumin
  • 2 1/2 to 3 Tablespoons Oregano
  • 2 teaspoons Cayenne
  • 2 Tablespoons Paprika
  • 3 teaspoons Habanero sauce (less for a milder chili)
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2-3 cups black beans (or whatever kind of beans you like. Can also be omitted)


  1. Heat oil in large pot
  2. Add chopped onion, garlic, kale and jalapenos. Cook until the onions start to turn clear.
  3. Add turkey. Cook until brown and crumbly.
  4. Add tomato sauce, tomatoes, spices, beans, and habanero sauce. Stir well.
  5. Simmer on low heat for at least an hour stirring frequently.
  6. Chili is done when the spices have been absorbed (if it tastes a little gritty, cook longer)
  7. I freeze what I don’t eat the first night in 2-cup servings, but choose the serving size that works for you.


January 5, 2015 It’s humbling to realize that our pets do far more for us than we see.

Today I noticed that my meditation began with a “cat scan”…and it wasn’t the first time!

As I settled in for my (almost) daily meditation today, one of my latest additions to the family, Scrappy Doo, took up his usual place on top of me, but he didn’t just jump up and plop down. First he stood on my lap and it appeared that he was trying to sense something. Suddenly, I realized what he was doing was scanning me to determine where he needed to lay down and purr. Now, there’s no question of the healing properties of a cat’s purr, but this got me to thinking.

A couple of days ago, he waited until I had completely settled before jumping up. This time, he went straight for my right shoulder which had been giving me trouble, settled himself down on it and began a very unusual, two-toned purr I’d never heard before. It alternated between a high frequency and a low one. When I finished my meditation, I realized that my shoulder felt a lot better!

Today, Scrappy settled himself on my lower abdomen which, initially seemed odd as I hadn’t noticed any discomfort. But shortly after he settled down, my stomach started gurgling and churning, though there was no pain or discomfort, just noise. When I came out of my meditation, Scrappy was stretched out full length between my legs with his head nearly resting on my feet, and my stomach was no longer gurgling.

It’s long been known that our pets have therapeutic properties.

Many pet parents have experienced the calming qualities of their pets or their tendency to get closer when we’re sad, tired, lonely or ill. Articles have been written about the healing properties of a cat’s purr for everything from healing of bones to lowering of blood sugar and blood pressure. But this is the first time I’ve actually been aware of a cat scanning me to see where he was needed!

I believe this phenomenon went unnoticed because the majority of the time, he just climbs up on my lap and curls up somewhere, purrs for awhile and goes to sleep. He clearly knows when I need to be scanned and when everything is fine. The only thing which makes sense to me is that before he jumps into my lap, he takes a reading on my energy field to determine whether his services will be needed. The rest of the time, it’s likely he restocks his own energy with that which I’m exuding during my meditations.

What we have here is a symbiotic synergy.

Today’s epiphany has given me cause to reevaluate the relationships I have with each of my cats. Just as each has their own personality, each has a completely different relationship with me. Dylan is definitely my heart. He watches over me and is the most likely to be on my desk while I’m working. Munchkin, the Princess is kind of a night owl like me and will often be sitting on my shoulder purring while I’m working into the wee hours of the morning. Toby, my Moose loves to drape his enormous body across my lap, successfully halting anything else I might be trying to do until such time as his attention meter is full again.

The launching of my website has been delayed, primarily for want of a topic. I think the search is over.

I had been bouncing a lot of ideas around, but none had really felt right to me. I had everything from cats to healthy living, to leaps of faith and the list goes on. I think I was just trying to find something a little less ordinary which would be of interest to other people, and I think I’ve found my topic. I’m going to do some thinking and a lot of research, but watch for the launch of in the near future!

My gratitudes today are:
1. I am grateful for epiphanies.
2. I am grateful for my healing cats and my regular, radiation-free cat-scans.
3. I am grateful for a productive day of problem solving, paperwork finishing, idea generating, writing and studying.
4. I am grateful for my ability to focus once I get started on a project, which even saw me getting a lot done today without closing social media or email or putting my phone on “do not disturb” (except during my meditation!)
5. I am grateful for abundance: healing, ideas, concentration, accomplishments, love, friendship, health, peace, harmony and prosperity. (I’m seeing checks with many zeroes in my meditations these days!)

Blessed Be

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