Transform to a New YOU for the New Year

As the New Year is upon us, for many it is a time for a new start.  A clean slate.  Out with the old and in with the new.  Time for a fresh start with new intentions, goals and resolutions. (Personally, I like using the word “intention” instead of resolution.  It has more energy and power!)

It is easy to get caught up in the same old, “I will start my exercise program”….”I will lose weight”…..I will take my vitamins”.  It seems that most of us set New Year’s Intentions that are focused on our physical or mental body.

How about a New Year’s intention that supports your Emotional and Spiritual Self?

These are significant areas in your life that are easy to skip over and forget. However, supporting your emotional and spiritual self can transform your way of being.  Yes, your way of being.  Who you are inside.  Your heart and soul, not just the funny body you happen to live in.

Here are some suggestions of New Year’s Intentions that will support your inner growth:

1.   I will consciously do at least 5 random acts of kindness a week.

2.   I will spend 5 minutes a day in quiet and stillness.

3.   I will spend time in nature at least 3 times a week.

4.   I will pay attention to my thoughts and when they are negative, I will shift them to positive thoughts with affirmations.

5.   I will take of my upsets and process them inside, instead of projecting them on someone else.

6.   I will end each day with gratitude in my heart for all my experiences that day.

7.   I will consciously do one joy filled activity a day to honor my love and respect for me.

Some of these intentions can be very simple if you are consciously aware of your actions and behaviors.  Setting intentions to change your way of being  can be very powerful for you and how you show up in your world.

Add just a few of these suggestions to your list of New Year’s Intentions and you will see changes in how you feel about yourself.  And most amazingly, the people around you will see and feel a difference in you.

Do you have any New Year’s Intentions that support your inner growth? 

Have you ever made these changes in your way of being and experiences a new you?  I’d love to hear from you!  Share in the comment section below.

Wishing you a Blessed, prosperous and life changing 2013!

Much love and light,

A Success Story: The Personal Evolution of a Friend

When the student is ready, the teacher appears.  I had the honor of watching her evolve, month by month.  Embracing each new lesson she had the courage to take an honest look inside herself.  And she chose to change.

I would not have guessed that this charming woman 20 years my senior would be such a good friend when I met her 19 years ago. She was closer to my Mom’s age and I even introduced them thinking they would have more in common.  But much to my surprise, my friend felt more connected to me and my young energy than my Mom.  That was when I confirmed that my friend Carolyn was truly a young spirit deep inside.

We had connected throughout the years and she even began attending the earliest version of my self improvement workshops in 2005.  Carolyn was open to learning and growing, but I could also see that she was still feeling the pain of some emotional trauma a few years before.  And she was there to learn and heal.

However, I could see the woundedness deep within her.  Her trauma was deep and lasting. Yet as time had passed her anger and upset were not as present, but I could see there were still some lingering emotions.

As she began attending my Heartfelt Learning Workshops in January 2011, she was right there to support a new area of my consulting practice.  But this was different.  These workshops presented Carolyn with material that made her think about herself.  She spent quality time looking inside herself and began to truly connect with the group who attended each month.

But what was different for Carolyn is that she was embracing the learning material each and every month.  She took the information to heart.  She spent the time between sessions observing herself and her behavior.  SHE TOOK THE MATERIAL SERIOUSLY!! 

She would be the first one to share her experiences from the prior month and had more questions.  She was discovering more about her triggers and upsets, and more importantly, how to process them and release them.  She embraced the lessons on forgiveness for herself and others.  She reframed old messages and beliefs into beautiful affirmations that supported her inner growth.

Each month she was releasing old emotional baggage that no longer served her.  She was making room for powerful positive energy to come into her life.  Every time I saw her, she was lighter and brighter.  She was using all the life skills tools she was learning and now they were a part of her everyday life.  She was evolving right before my eyes.  For someone who already had so much fun, lively spirit, others around her could see more sparkle and glow emanating from her.

From my observations of my dear friend, here are the steps she took to create her success in her personal evolution:

1.  She made a commitment to the learning.

2.  She took the quiet time to reflect on her thoughts, actions and behaviors.

3.  She lived the lessons and made them part of her everyday life.  She practiced the tools and used the resources

4.  She moved to a place of vulnerability with the group and felt safe enough to share, knowing that she would be loved and not judged.

4.  She shared (and continues to share) her new healthy way of being with her friends, family and clients as well.

5.  She loved (and continues to love) herself enough to invest the time in learning, healing and growing.

My friend Carolyn is truly an evolved woman and I have had the honor and privilege to witness her transformation.  She now shares herself differently with the world.  She sees the beauty and light inside herself and gives others permission to shine their light as well!

Love ya Mojo!!

 

How Do You SEE the World – Through Positive or Negative Glasses?

“The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.”  ~ Marcus Antonius AD 86-161

Do you ever find yourself thinking negative thought patterns and become overwhelmed with the negative “what if”?  Are you the type of person who always sees what is wrong with a situation….instead of what is right?

I have recently experienced a few individuals who see the world with such a perspective.  What I believe is that they are very unconscious of their behavior and it has just become part of how they live their lives.  And then they wonder why they have sickness and illness.  And then they wonder why their friends and family avoid spending time with them.  They wonder why this world is so bad and awful. You may not experience these feeling yourself, but you might know someone just like that.

Our thoughts are very powerful and can take us spiraling down….or up.  You have the choice in any moment of how you think, which translates to how your feel, then how you act.  You can shift your thoughts in any moment.  You can look for the good in any circumstance. You have the power to live your life from a positive perspective.  Here are just a few suggestions to help you, or someone in your life, make the shift:

1.  Live in the present moment.  When you dwell on the negativity of the past or future, you miss out on the beauty of your life right in front of you.

2.  Consciously look for what is good in any situation.  I promise you, if you look for the good, you will find it.  Even if it a lesson to be learned.

3.  Have gratitude for the good and say it out loud.  When you look for the good and show gratitude for it, and then acknowledge it out loud, you move to a positive place within your consciousness.

4.  Eliminate negativity from your life.  If the news upsets you, take a break from it.  If you have a negative person in your life, limit your time with them.  Look to see what brings negativity in your life and eliminate it.

5.  Bring more positive energy into your life.  What ever brings you joy and happiness, consciously do more of it.  Fill your life with the things that fuel your energy and you will find an automatic shift in your way of thinking.

6.  If you catch yourself moving into negativity, shift to the positive quickly.  The more you experience positivity in your life, you will know when something shifts back negatively.  As soon as you notice, move into utilizing these steps to bring you back to a positive place.

This life we live is meant to be joy filled, not joy-less.  By consciously shifting your thoughts, actions and behaviors to be more positive, you will find that joy that you so deserve.  We all deserve it!

Dealing with Change… When it’s time to Surrender & Trust

Funny how life brings us change.  Sometimes we are prepared for it and sometimes we are not. When we are not prepared for it, we can feel the pain in the change.  However we can flow with the change and feel different as we move through it.

I have watched a few friends of mine recently deal with losing their homes or businesses due to the challenging economy.  They saw the change early on and tried many different avenues to keep what they have worked hard to build up for so many years.  They grieved the change during the process.  So when it was time to let go…..to surrender….to trust….they moved through the process with much more grace.  No kicking, screaming and blaming.  Sad feelings…yes…grief for the change…yes…but with the trust that they would be ok.

In your life, when do you know its time to surrender and not fight the change?  How can you trust that all will be well when it does not feel like it?  Here are a few tips to help you through times of change and uncertainty:

1. Be open to the change.  Stop trying to control the outcome.  Let go and allow the change.  The change may be needed and it is difficult for you to see that while you are in the midst of it.

2. Allow yourself to feel your feelings, grieve the change.  Feel the sadness, cry if it comes up.  When you let feelings out, you don’t need to repress them and hold them in your physical body.  Go through all stages of grief…its important for your future well being.

3. Accept the situation and yourself exactly where you are. Be in the present moment with your life.  Accept what is and move forward.  Don’t beat yourself up!

4. Surrender to your higher power. Challenging as this may seem, it is a key aspect in dealing with change to trust your higher power, however you define that.  God, Source, the Universe…what ever fits for you.

5. Visualize yourself after you have moved through the change. Picture yourself in your mind how you want to be after the change.  It will give you a goal to achieve of how you want your life to be.

6. Trust that all will be well. This is an activity of the heart and soul.  As you surrender to your higher power, know that there are sources taking care of you in your spiritual realm.

7. Consciously create positive thoughts, beliefs and actions about the change. Shift your cognitive processes to the positive and you will feel the difference.  When you feel the negativity creeping in, quickly change it and keep the positivity up!

8. Move with the ebb and flow of change with grace and ease. When you utilize these skills with any type of change, you move with the change like a wave.  You eliminate any struggle and find yourself in a more proactive, less reactive place in your life.

Learning to deal with change is a key tool in your own personal growth and evolvement. Understanding change and how to move through it can only improve the quality of your life.  We live in ever changing times now and these skills can assist you in your personal and professional life.  Remember them, practice them, and you can feel more peace and happiness as you embrace change!

When Holiday Family Traditions Change

Here is a picture of my kids with their cousins at Christmas. Despite changes in our family, they still embrace new traditions and connections with each other.

Here is a picture of my kids with their cousins at Christmas. Despite changes in our family, they still embrace new traditions and connections with each other.

The Holidays are upon us and we are supposed to be joyful, right?  What happens when your family changes and your traditions change?  It can be upsetting indeed to not do the same things you have done for years.  Or does it have to be upsetting?  We have a choice about being upset or sad….or to find the joy in creating new traditions.

Families change with marriages, divorce and death of our loved ones.   I know how difficult it was for me when I went through a divorce years ago and my kids were not with me for every celebration.  But I respected the fact that a change was happening and I created new traditions.

Now I have the addition of my loving husband and his kids to add to my new family traditions.  We embrace change and just enjoy whomever we are with and have loving memories of our past traditions.

Here are a few steps to help during the holidays if you are faced with changing your family traditions:

1. Treasure your memories of your past.   Keep them close in your heart for they were a part of your happiness at a different time in your life.

2. Select a new day of celebration.  It does not have to be on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day.  Select a few days before or a few days after the actual holiday and make it your own.

3. Embrace change.  Know that our lives are ever evolving and change is imminent.

4. Be in the moment and find the joy in it.  When you shift your way of thinking and look for the glimmers of joy, you will surely find them.

5. Be grateful for where you are in your life right now.   You might be in the middle of a divorce or grieving the death of a loved one, but know your are human and there are lessons to be learned in every challenging experience.

We are meant to connect to others and it seems especially fitting during the holidays.  As we celebrate together, our heart connections become deeper.  Allow yourself to flow with what ever change you might be experiencing.  Reach out to others for support.  Create your new traditions as you and your life evolve.

Much love,

chris-signature

 

 

Remember to Care for Yourself First

Have you ever been on a plane before and heard the flight attendant give you directions about oxygen masks? Remember that the instructions are for you to put your mask on first before you assist others?  This is the perfect metaphor about how to live your life.  But how often do we forget this and end up at the bottom of our list, or simply forgotten about?

You can’t take care of anyone else, unless you can take care of yourself first.  Don’t get me wrong, there are times when others need us and we need to be there for them.  But the key to caring for others is to make sure that you mindfully nurture yourself first.  Here are some steps to make sure you keep yourself at the top of the list:

1. Plan for your SELF time. 

This might be something as simple as plugging your nurturing activities into your calendar.  If it is in your schedule, you have made time for the activity…..and you.

2. Nurture all dimensions of your life.

You have mental, physical, emotional and spiritual dimensions of your SELF.  It is most beneficial if you acknowledge these parts to create wholeness within you.  Spending 5 minutes a day in quiet reflection can do so much to support your spiritual and emotional self.  Your activities don’t need to be big to be effective.

3. Acknowledge yourself when you take the time for you.

We often forget to find the good in ourselves. This is usually blocked the with cognitive part of our mental self that  is looking for what is bad or not right.  Be kind, loving and gentle with yourself.

4. Pay attention to where you spend your energy.

You might be unconscious of where you spend your energy.  It’s a good idea to evaluate your life and let go of what takes away your positive energy.  Consciously focus on renewing your energy to fill YOUR cup.

5. Remember to bring Joy into your life.

Joy is the feeling of happiness and warmth inside of your heart.  Joy filled activities can activate endorphins, the feel good hormones.  Remember what brings you joy in your heart and try to do a simple joy filled activity each day.  It can be a simple as closing your eyes and reliving an wonderful memory.

Caring for your SELF and managing your energy can be the key to optimal health and well being. Spend some time quiet time reflecting on your life.  What can you let go of in your life?  What can you do to enhance your life?   Remember that your are the only one who can change how you are.   Care for yourself first and see what a difference it makes in your life.  Love and honor yourself with this gift….you are worth it!

Honor and Integrity Begin from Within

“To thine own self be true, and it must follow, as the night the day, thou canst not then be false to any man.”  ~William Shakespeare,

Have you ever been in a situation where you knew deep in your heart you should have said “no” to something, but you said “yes” anyway?

Recently I have been tested about being true to myself and the work I do.  A few years ago when I began my consulting practice, I had someone ask me to propose on a multitude of training programs.  As I was creating the material for the proposal, I had this feeling in my heart that was not comfortable.  Some topics I was an expert in and some I clearly was not. However, I was motivated to grow my business, I proposed it anyway.  In the end, I was not awarded the contract.  That was a huge lesson in listening to my heart.  A huge lesson in compromising myself for the almighty dollar.

As time went on and my practice grew, I became clearer and clearer about what my specialties are.  These are the areas where I am in my golden space and where I shine.  I know it in my heart and I feel it every time I meet with someone for a coaching session or stand in front of a large group to facilitate training.

I’ve had to ask myself…do I honor myself by listening to my inner voice and trust my gut?  Do I keep my honor code with myself?   Do I love and honor myself enough to turn away work if I won’t be authentic in it?  It’s taken me time (remember, I’m still human!) but the answers are yes to all these question.  I get to the yes a whole lot faster when I remember my honor code with myself.  As I’ve evolved in the wisdom of my life, I know that before I can have honor or integrity with others, I must have it for myself.

Have you spent reflective time to ask yourself……do I listen to my inner voice?  Do I trust my gut to tell me when something doesn’t “feel” right?  Do I make choices in my life that honor my Self?  Do I keep my word with myself?  Pay close attention next time you are given an opportunity to make an honoring choice for yourself.  You will truly feel the difference when you come from that deep place inside that is authentically you.

Are You Allowing Your Light to Shine?

We all have a beautiful light within us.  We are meant to shine our light in the brilliance of who we really are.  We begin our lives as sweet innocent babies that just emanate our light.  However, as we age our glow becomes dimmed by the “nos” and “shoulds” in our lives from our parents and society.  We bring this dimness to our adulthood and wonder why we feel empty and what our lives’ purpose is.

We are the only ones who have control of that light and how it shines.  I kept my light dim for a long time because it was safe to keep it dim.  By keeping my light dim, I did not stand out and I could easily “hide” and not be seen.  I did not have to compete with the large egos around me.  Staying small and keeping my light dim was safe.   Until the light within me knew better.  I knew I had it, but I had to have to courage to step out into my light.

As I took those baby steps (I’m a toe dipper, not a diver!) towards my light, I saw that I had nothing to be afraid of.  The more I stood in my authenticity and my light, I knew that this is where I wanted to live my life.  There was no going back.  I’m here to stay in the brilliance of my own light!  Marianne Williamson says it best from her book A Return To Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles:

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us.…And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”

Take the time to look deep inside and listen to yourself.  Is your light waiting for you to let it free and shine with the brilliance of who you truly are?