Thursday, March 16, 2017

Stepping Aside and Being the Observer

A very difficult thing for us to do in life is for us to see our actions and reactions and patterns we repeat without feeling bad about them or judging them. Usually, we go into our habitual reactions to ourselves and we, with feeling and judgment, say things to us like, darn I did it again, or how could I do this, or I am so angry with myself, etc. What if instead we could just notice and without judgment say and feel, oops I did it again?  Being able to see what we are doing and even to be able to joke with us about it is truly a gift to us. When we judge or feel blame or shame we certainly aren't able to change anything. In fact, we make things worse for us and others. Noticing with a distance is a good step towards changing what doesn't work for us any longer.  I was working with a patient recently who was describing how she was getting ready to go out to a meeting which she had mixed feelings about. She wanted to go and knew she needed to get out and connect with others, and she also didn't want to go out that evening, that driving at night is difficult for her, and she had other things she needed to get done that day. Yet she couldn’t allow herself to just not go that evening without doing something which sabotaged her. She found herself getting some food which she knew would make her feel depressed so that then she wouldn't go to her meeting. She saw herself doing this. She knew that is what she was doing.  I asked her who or what this reminded her of in her life growing up. I asked if this was a pattern she saw in her and how long has she noticed this pattern. It reminded her of a bind she always felt with her mother. As a child, she wanted and needed her mother, but in taking her mother it was always at a great cost to her. So she needed her mother and at the same time didn't want her mother. It was a terrible place for her to be in as a child. She yearned for her mom, but at such a great cost. So she became depressed…..what do you do?  Growing up then she often found herself becoming depressed, especially when she wanted to do something and yet found that she couldn't do it. She began to identify with that feeling of depression. It became her, in a way. So here she is as an adult and now she is able to see what she is doing at the time she is doing it. She knows now that when she feels in a bind, instead of learning how to take it apart and see what is best for her, she notices that she does something intentionally to allow her not to go and to be in her familiar place of feeling too depressed to go.  This noticing, the place of the observer, allows her to take a vital next step. It allows her to then make a conscious decision to step out of that old familiar depressed place and instead of making herself feel depressed, to step forward to giving herself the power of just not doing something for her, or doing something for her. She can step aside and leave the old pattern and claim herself in the process. Oh joy, what a great place for her to be in, and any of us to be in. Then we can live the life we are here to live.  Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life  Take yourself on a little trip. Go back in time to see what kind of pattern you find yourself repeating. What pattern do you see yourself doing today that you find that you have done for many years, maybe from the time of a young child?  Close your eyes, and look at yourself from the distance of you being the you that you are right now. As you watch yourself blindly following an old pattern maybe of doing what someone else wants you to do or sabotaging yourself, or whatever, just watch yourself. Now take yourself to the present day. When can you last remember doing the very same thing, or same type of thing? Now, with the same type of distance, see you doing that, and now imagine yourself making a different choice and doing a different response to a person or situation. Take yourself to the feeling level. How does that feel? Take a moment or two and really feel it and breathe it into you. This gives you the power to make a different action to your old triggers and ways of being.


A very difficult thing for us to do in life is for us to see our actions and reactions and patterns we repeat without feeling bad about them or judging them. Usually, we go into our habitual reactions to ourselves and we, with feeling and judgment, say things to us like, darn I did it again, or how could I do this, or I am so angry with myself, etc. What if instead we could just notice and without judgment say and feel, oops I did it again?

Being able to see what we are doing and even to be able to joke with us about it is truly a gift to us. When we judge or feel blame or shame we certainly aren't able to change anything. In fact, we make things worse for us and others. Noticing with a distance is a good step towards changing what doesn't work for us any longer.

I was working with a patient recently who was describing how she was getting ready to go out to a meeting which she had mixed feelings about. She wanted to go and knew she needed to get out and connect with others, and she also didn't want to go out that evening, that driving at night is difficult for her, and she had other things she needed to get done that day. Yet she couldn’t allow herself to just not go that evening without doing something which sabotaged her. She found herself getting some food which she knew would make her feel depressed so that then she wouldn't go to her meeting. She saw herself doing this. She knew that is what she was doing.

I asked her who or what this reminded her of in her life growing up. I asked if this was a pattern she saw in her and how long has she noticed this pattern. It reminded her of a bind she always felt with her mother. As a child, she wanted and needed her mother, but in taking her mother it was always at a great cost to her. So she needed her mother and at the same time didn't want her mother. It was a terrible place for her to be in as a child. She yearned for her mom, but at such a great cost. So she became depressed…..what do you do?

Growing up then she often found herself becoming depressed, especially when she wanted to do something and yet found that she couldn't do it. She began to identify with that feeling of depression. It became her, in a way. So here she is as an adult and now she is able to see what she is doing at the time she is doing it. She knows now that when she feels in a bind, instead of learning how to take it apart and see what is best for her, she notices that she does something intentionally to allow her not to go and to be in her familiar place of feeling too depressed to go.

This noticing, the place of the observer, allows her to take a vital next step. It allows her to then make a conscious decision to step out of that old familiar depressed place and instead of making herself feel depressed, to step forward to giving herself the power of just not doing something for her, or doing something for her. She can step aside and leave the old pattern and claim herself in the process. Oh joy, what a great place for her to be in, and any of us to be in. Then we can live the life we are here to live.

Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life

Take yourself on a little trip. Go back in time to see what kind of pattern you find yourself repeating. What pattern do you see yourself doing today that you find that you have done for many years, maybe from the time of a young child?

Close your eyes, and look at yourself from the distance of you being the you that you are right now. As you watch yourself blindly following an old pattern maybe of doing what someone else wants you to do or sabotaging yourself, or whatever, just watch yourself. Now take yourself to the present day. When can you last remember doing the very same thing, or same type of thing? Now, with the same type of distance, see you doing that, and now imagine yourself making a different choice and doing a different response to a person or situation. Take yourself to the feeling level. How does that feel? Take a moment or two and really feel it and breathe it into you. This gives you the power to make a different action to your old triggers and ways of being. 

My Soothing Words for the Week



Sunday, February 26, 2017

Mind Go

Our minds are amazing instruments. We can learn so much from paying attention to how we think, what we think about, and the games our minds can play on us. Some of us have a lot of repetitive thoughts that circle around us and hold us captive in our own pens. Some of us have minds that never stop and just keep circling around and talking to us. Some of us have more quiet minds and we struggle to find words for our feelings or our images. Some of us have minds that charge us up and can not rest. Do you find yourself in any of these categories?  Most of us are a combination of these and of course, there are many variations of how our minds work. Our minds and how they talk to us are connected to our genetic inheritance, the  placement of the planets in the sky at the moment of our birth, the effect of our early wounds on us, and how we have worked with ourselves over the years to understand us and how we work and what makes us tick.  I am talking about how our minds talk to us. They do talk to us constantly and it is our job to understand it and us and to use it to strengthen us and help us to grow. My mind loves to figure things out and get to the root of what is going on inside of me. My mind also tends to be more negative at first in its reaction to people and events and situations which trigger me. I then notice my internal reactions and work with them so that the negative talk changes to my glass as half full. An example of this occurred recently. We had an incident happen at home in which an attorney contacted us for a resolution which had no need to escalate to this degree.  The situation could easily have been handled person to person. Yet it didn't. My mind at first went to the worst that could happen. Within 1 or 2 days, I was able to work with my thoughts to become more realistic and positive. I looked at what in me was triggered and came to peace with what happened in my early life and saw the connection from early events to the present. Then also, my mind was able to rest.  The power of our minds to heal and to change is immense. Many of us instead, rest on staying the same. I was giving an astrology reading to a gentleman recently and he asked for help in understanding what we call in astrology lingo, his Saturn. What this means is he was asking about the influence of a planet which is about discipline and hard work to help us achieve our soul goals, not just our ego-driven goals. He wondered about this in his life and wanted to know why it was so hard. I told him that those voices in us which are our task masters are our task masters for change. This thorn in his side is actually a tickle to help us to do what we need to do in order to get out of our stuck places, stop resting and resisting, and actually move forward. This Saturn is actually our friend and our task is to make friends with it. This was a new concept to him, yet it is this mind frame which helps us to work with our minds in such a way as to accept that our tendency is to think in such a way, and show us a way which we can re-frame our self-talk.   So, what is your self-talk like, and how can you work with and re-frame your thought patterns to ones which serve your growth so you can live whole and vital and healthy a life as possible?   Change your Story/Change Your Life:  So take a minute and a journal. Breathe deeply into this. What mental pattern seems to repeat in your mind; what thoughts are your repetitive thoughts? It could be I am not good enough, or I am not enough, or the worst is going to happen, or I might as well give up now, or… Now what thoughts like to penetrate your being? Write them down, whatever pattern or patterns you discern. Next, recognizing this pattern, how can you re-frame these words and patterns inside your mind? It might seem and sound foreign to you right now, but take some time and repeat these new thoughts in your mind a few times, and then write them down. Now, if you so choose, go to the deepest place you can and find out where and when something occurred in your life which made you feel this way that your mind tells you over and over. What was going on at this time? Remind yourself that this was then, and now is much later and you are not dependent on others for your well being and care. You can love and accept and care for yourself now. Breathe into this and again, repeat to yourself the re-frame you came up with a few minutes ago.  Write down your insights. Lastly, breathe into those wonderful insights.


Our minds are amazing instruments. We can learn so much from paying attention to how we think, what we think about, and the games our minds can play on us. Some of us have a lot of repetitive thoughts that circle around us and hold us captive in our own pens. Some of us have minds that never stop and just keep circling around and talking to us. Some of us have more quiet minds and we struggle to find words for our feelings or our images. Some of us have minds that charge us up and can not rest. Do you find yourself in any of these categories?

Most of us are a combination of these and of course, there are many variations of how our minds work. Our minds and how they talk to us are connected to our genetic inheritance, the  placement of the planets in the sky at the moment of our birth, the effect of our early wounds on us, and how we have worked with ourselves over the years to understand us and how we work and what makes us tick.

I am talking about how our minds talk to us. They do talk to us constantly and it is our job to understand it and us and to use it to strengthen us and help us to grow. My mind loves to figure things out and get to the root of what is going on inside of me. My mind also tends to be more negative at first in its reaction to people and events and situations which trigger me. I then notice my internal reactions and work with them so that the negative talk changes to my glass as half full. An example of this occurred recently. We had an incident happen at home in which an attorney contacted us for a resolution which had no need to escalate to this degree.  The situation could easily have been handled person to person. Yet it didn't. My mind at first went to the worst that could happen. Within 1 or 2 days, I was able to work with my thoughts to become more realistic and positive. I looked at what in me was triggered and came to peace with what happened in my early life and saw the connection from early events to the present. Then also, my mind was able to rest.

The power of our minds to heal and to change is immense. Many of us instead, rest on staying the same. I was giving an astrology reading to a gentleman recently and he asked for help in understanding what we call in astrology lingo, his Saturn. What this means is he was asking about the influence of a planet which is about discipline and hard work to help us achieve our soul goals, not just our ego-driven goals. He wondered about this in his life and wanted to know why it was so hard. I told him that those voices in us which are our task masters are our task masters for change. This thorn in his side is actually a tickle to help us to do what we need to do in order to get out of our stuck places, stop resting and resisting, and actually move forward. This Saturn is actually our friend and our task is to make friends with it. This was a new concept to him, yet it is this mind frame which helps us to work with our minds in such a way as to accept that our tendency is to think in such a way, and show us a way which we can re-frame our self-talk. 

So, what is your self-talk like, and how can you work with and re-frame your thought patterns to ones which serve your growth so you can live whole and vital and healthy a life as possible?


Change your Story/Change Your Life:

So take a minute and a journal. Breathe deeply into this. What mental pattern seems to repeat in your mind; what thoughts are your repetitive thoughts? It could be I am not good enough, or I am not enough, or the worst is going to happen, or I might as well give up now, or… Now what thoughts like to penetrate your being? Write them down, whatever pattern or patterns you discern. Next, recognizing this pattern, how can you re-frame these words and patterns inside your mind? It might seem and sound foreign to you right now, but take some time and repeat these new thoughts in your mind a few times, and then write them down. Now, if you so choose, go to the deepest place you can and find out where and when something occurred in your life which made you feel this way that your mind tells you over and over. What was going on at this time? Remind yourself that this was then, and now is much later and you are not dependent on others for your well being and care. You can love and accept and care for yourself now. Breathe into this and again, repeat to yourself the re-frame you came up with a few minutes ago.

Write down your insights. Lastly, breathe into those wonderful insights.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

When To Comfort Or To Coddle

Being a parent is one of the hardest things to do. We never get it right, our buttons are always being pushed, and every one of our weaknesses comes out in blinding color. Every child goes through a period of time blaming their parents, and actually have every right to do so. With all of that, it is still one of the most rewarding things we can do in life; if we so choose to do so, to parent. In parenting, there is an issue that comes up a lot; when to comfort the child as opposed to coddling them. Another way to say this is that as parents, teachers, therapists, mentors etc., when are we comforting the child, and when are we really coddling them? When does comforting change to coddling?   As someone who works with children in some capacity we know that at times what the child needs is to be comforted, and other times they need to be lovingly pushed or stretched. We can easily get confused as to what is best for the child at the time and we can give too much comfort when what the child really needs is for us to support them yet push them to move forward. Without the loving push, it is easy for the child to over bask in coddling and keep them too close to us which doesn't allow them to take the steps they need in order to become their own strong individual selves.  I was working with a young woman who was sharing painful memories from her early life. This was expressed as her crying easily and not being able to get out of her tears. She could and in fact did cry for hours. In our session, as we would go back to her early life and bring compassion to her young wounded self, she would go into these tears with her eyes closed and resist moving from that wounded place. After working in this way for awhile it became clear to me that what she needed here from me wasn't more comforting compassion in helping to teach her to be compassionate to herself, she needed a loving push or hard love. Hard love is also teaching compassion, just differently. I changed how I spoke with her and told her that I saw her staying stuck in her young stories and refusing to budge. I asked her what her young self-needed and was asking for that kept her in that stuck old place. She was used to getting her needs met through her expressed sadness and trauma and unconsciously was afraid that if she wasn't upset and crying that her needs wouldn't be met. She hadn't learned to ask for what she needed, and that she might get what she needed if she could ask without the drama. In her young life, her mother was depressed and unavailable and her father lived somewhere else and also wasn't available. The only way she learned to get her needs met was to be upset and cry. Then she was noticed; in an extreme state. I asked her how that was working out for her now, and if she liked it? She certainly didn't like it. I helped draw her out of her state of being through pushing her, in a way, to ask for what she needed without the drama. She smiled for the first time and told me that she had been kind of waiting for someone to push her instead of giving into her and, my word, coddling her.  She knew on some level that even though a part of her wanted the comfort and she couldn't get out of that state because it was unconscious, that she also needed some firm guidance. All of us know that on some level. Children push us and stretch us and make us get stronger and better, or they push us and we give in. Usually, we do some of both. The question becomes, are we comforting our children, or are we coddling them and keeping them young? Another way of asking us this question is are we doing this for them, or for us? Is it easier for us to give into their demands at the time than to work with them? Do we unconsciously and consciously want to keep them too close for our own needs so we don't encourage growth when we can? These are all questions to ask ourselves. The more we ask the questions and look for honest answers inside of us, the better we become as people, as teachers, as parents, and so on. It is all about us and our growth.   Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life  Growing up is hard no matter what our age. Let's begin with us. Close your eyes and breathe deeply. Ground your feet on the ground beneath you. This is a time for self-honesty. What did we need when we were little that maybe we just didn’t get? Who was unavailable, either physically or emotionally in our lives? This could be a teacher, a parent or a caretaker, etc. What was that like for us? What example comes to your mind here? Let the example take the time to expand in your mind's eye. What was it like and what occurred? How were you affected? What would you have liked if you could have received it? How did you respond at the time? What were your outer, defended, and inner, vulnerable reactions? Now take yourself into the present tense. Can you think of a time, or a place or an example of how that dynamic plays out in your life now with you or with others? How do you respond when you aren't heard or your needs are not met? What do you need and how did you learn to get your needs met? Just be with what comes to you without blame or shame, we are just seeing. What could you do differently in getting your needs met now that maybe you couldn't do then?   Just be with what comes to you and breathe into it a couple of times. Now breathe deeply and open your eyes. Take a few minutes to write down, free write, what you gained from this experience. Share if you feel moved to do so.


Being a parent is one of the hardest things to do. We never get it right, our buttons are always being pushed, and every one of our weaknesses comes out in blinding color. Every child goes through a period of time blaming their parents, and actually have every right to do so. With all of that, it is still one of the most rewarding things we can do in life; if we so choose to do so, to parent. In parenting, there is an issue that comes up a lot; when to comfort the child as opposed to coddling them. Another way to say this is that as parents, teachers, therapists, mentors etc., when are we comforting the child, and when are we really coddling them? When does comforting change to coddling? 

As someone who works with children in some capacity we know that at times what the child needs is to be comforted, and other times they need to be lovingly pushed or stretched. We can easily get confused as to what is best for the child at the time and we can give too much comfort when what the child really needs is for us to support them yet push them to move forward. Without the loving push, it is easy for the child to over bask in coddling and keep them too close to us which doesn't allow them to take the steps they need in order to become their own strong individual selves.

I was working with a young woman who was sharing painful memories from her early life. This was expressed as her crying easily and not being able to get out of her tears. She could and in fact did cry for hours. In our session, as we would go back to her early life and bring compassion to her young wounded self, she would go into these tears with her eyes closed and resist moving from that wounded place. After working in this way for awhile it became clear to me that what she needed here from me wasn't more comforting compassion in helping to teach her to be compassionate to herself, she needed a loving push or hard love. Hard love is also teaching compassion, just differently. I changed how I spoke with her and told her that I saw her staying stuck in her young stories and refusing to budge. I asked her what her young self-needed and was asking for that kept her in that stuck old place. She was used to getting her needs met through her expressed sadness and trauma and unconsciously was afraid that if she wasn't upset and crying that her needs wouldn't be met. She hadn't learned to ask for what she needed, and that she might get what she needed if she could ask without the drama. In her young life, her mother was depressed and unavailable and her father lived somewhere else and also wasn't available. The only way she learned to get her needs met was to be upset and cry. Then she was noticed; in an extreme state. I asked her how that was working out for her now, and if she liked it? She certainly didn't like it. I helped draw her out of her state of being through pushing her, in a way, to ask for what she needed without the drama. She smiled for the first time and told me that she had been kind of waiting for someone to push her instead of giving into her and, my word, coddling her.

She knew on some level that even though a part of her wanted the comfort and she couldn't get out of that state because it was unconscious, that she also needed some firm guidance. All of us know that on some level. Children push us and stretch us and make us get stronger and better, or they push us and we give in. Usually, we do some of both.
The question becomes, are we comforting our children, or are we coddling them and keeping them young? Another way of asking us this question is are we doing this for them, or for us? Is it easier for us to give into their demands at the time than to work with them? Do we unconsciously and consciously want to keep them too close for our own needs so we don't encourage growth when we can? These are all questions to ask ourselves. The more we ask the questions and look for honest answers inside of us, the better we become as people, as teachers, as parents, and so on. It is all about us and our growth.

 Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life

Growing up is hard no matter what our age. Let's begin with us. Close your eyes and breathe deeply. Ground your feet on the ground beneath you. This is a time for self-honesty. What did we need when we were little that maybe we just didn’t get? Who was unavailable, either physically or emotionally in our lives? This could be a teacher, a parent or a caretaker, etc. What was that like for us? What example comes to your mind here? Let the example take the time to expand in your mind's eye. What was it like and what occurred? How were you affected? What would you have liked if you could have received it? How did you respond at the time? What were your outer, defended, and inner, vulnerable reactions? Now take yourself into the present tense. Can you think of a time, or a place or an example of how that dynamic plays out in your life now with you or with others? How do you respond when you aren't heard or your needs are not met? What do you need and how did you learn to get your needs met? Just be with what comes to you without blame or shame, we are just seeing. What could you do differently in getting your needs met now that maybe you couldn't do then? 

Just be with what comes to you and breathe into it a couple of times. Now breathe deeply and open your eyes. Take a few minutes to write down, free write, what you gained from this experience. Share if you feel moved to do so.

Friday, February 3, 2017

The Art of Listening


Listening is tough stuff. Being able to put aside our own thoughts and ideas and perceptions as well as being able to listen through disagreeing with the speaker is truly an art. When someone speaks to you, how often do you stop what you are doing and thinking and feeling and truly be present with the other?


So often we are busy cooking or cleaning or getting ready for work or to go out, and also in our own thoughts when someone speaks to us. If you are like me and my husband, we find ourselves speaking to each other even in different rooms. The art of listening is truly an art and it also shows the other person that we care.


Another dynamic at play is that we hear the other person through our own filters. An example of this happened with my husband and me just recently. I had explained to my husband the other night how I felt about a television show we watched together. I thought I was very clear. I told him that to me the show was ok, I didn’t love it but I could see why it engrossed him and that I enjoyed watching it with him. He later the same evening said something about my not liking it and sorry he asked me to watch it with him. That is what he heard. Does this type of scenario sound familiar? We hear through the filters of the self-beliefs we carry.


Our beliefs about us and others cloud our eyes and our ears to what others are saying. If we feel bad about ourselves, when someone looks at us a certain way, no matter what they say, we may actually hear the words as derogatory. Our beliefs can also cloud us from seeing, hearing, and accept who the other is. When we want someone to be a certain way it is very easy for us to blindly hear their words the way we want to.  And it is also easy for us to not hear what they are saying and take in who they are and how they feel about something or someone because they aren't who we want them to be. How often do you miss hear your partner or your child or sibling, etc., because they aren't saying what you would like to hear about them? I imagine that happens very frequently. Yet, when we really hear and respond to the other so they are really heard, they feel so good. We all want to be heard and seen and understood. Can we let go of as many filters as we can so that we can really connect with others?


When we are with someone for a long time, or with our families for a long time and we suddenly see them and hear them for who and what they are, it can be very disconcerting to us. What it really means is that we are finally able to see and accept them for who they are. For us to do that, it means we are also more clearly accepting us for who we are. What is true is that we attract and partner with those who unconsciously remind us of the old traumas and unresolved issues we have with those in our family; most especially our parents. In order for us to really listen to others, can we see the other through a clear lens, and not see them through the lens of our parents? Can we set aside our thoughts and feelings at the time and really be present to our partners, our siblings, our friends, our children, our colleagues? Even just realizing that our minds are not clear is a great start to really listening. In a few minutes, I will take you through an exercise to practice this art of listening. As we do, we become more present to us, and we become present to others.


Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life


Exercise: Do this exercise every day for two weeks and see how it works for you. Find a time where you make a pact with yourself to really listen to someone in your life for 5 minutes that day. Put aside your thoughts, your pre-conceived notions, your day's activities, and sit and just consciously listen to the other. Really listen to what they are saying. If it feels right, then say back to them what you heard them say. Do this for just 5 minutes every day and see how it works for you. Notice, just notice, if and when your mind strays. It could be when something the other says triggers you, or if something that is said reminds you of something you wanted to remember, etc. When you notice your mind straying, just continue to listen as if it didn't stray. Afterward, write down how this exercise was for you.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Into The Stillness Poem


Into the stillness of the night

The silence is as penetrating as the cold night`s air

Grey skies encircle above

Snaring the birds in its misty claws

Spitting small snowflakes in its wake

Feeling the vibration of the dormant trees

As they rest in drowsy alertness

Closing my pores to the arctic chill

Trying to emulate the tall dormant warriors

Silently making my way to the warmth and light of my house

Anticipating the heat of a hot cup of tea lightly cradled between my hands

Sinking into the silence of the night

Of a winter's evening.


Getting into the stillness and energy of the season. There is truly a time for all seasons. As I settle into the winter's season, I learn from the trees and gently move into a quiet stillness. 


Happy winter to us all.


Check out my new offering: Psychological Astrology Reading. Contact me and ask me about it and I am happy to easily and drowsily and alertly share. Find your way to your highest calling and to move through your life's lesson.

Friday, December 30, 2016

Removing Blinders

Do you ever feel like a horse with its blinders on, to keep it from panicking? I think we all have at some time or another. I love the horse analogy because I think that analogy is one most of us can relate to and also because we can see what the blinders do for the horse. They actively keep the horse's attention straight in front of him/her so that he won't get distracted or panicked by something going on around him. That is what we do to ourselves. We put blinders on so that we won't see something that we are unconsciously afraid of. The blind fear here is that if I see this it will upset me or panic me or embarrass me or disappoint me. It is better not to see.  If we were aware we were doing this, then the blinders would be taken off. This is another example of how we protect ourselves from hurt or perceived hurt. I love how these protective mechanisms work for us. And I also love how when we become aware of what we are doing, often we are able, even with the fear, to take the blinders off.  I see as a patient someone who was experiencing this very phenomenon. She was describing how her sister was doing something which was against their father's wishes. The way she described her sister was as having a co-dependent victim mentality. Their father who was ill didn't want any visitors and asked that his children give him space. Her sister decided that she knew better than he did, and so made plans to go anyway and to help her stepmother, her father's wife, who didn't ask for help. In fact, she actively didn't want help. The stepmother had asked my patient to please intercede and talk her sister into not coming.  As my patient was describing what was occurring, it was clear she saw her sister as an enabler and controlling, yes, but also as a helper and wanting to do this for her parents. She really wanted to see her sister in this light. As I was listening to her, all I could think of was that her sister was doing this for herself, and it had nothing to do with co-dependency, but was all about her. I saw this as a very selfish act, and not in the best sense of the word.  I then proceeded to suggest that her sister was, in fact, doing this only for herself and that it was a very narcissistic act and also suggested that she look at her sister with different eyes, with eyes clear and without blinders. This sister is the oldest child and felt very disappointed by her parents. Her mother was a teenage mother who had her own growing up to do, and her parents divorced when she was a teenager and her father at first kept some distance from his children. She felt victimized and felt that she didn't get what she needed. And she didn't get what she needed. So now she hijacks situations so that she can have her needs met when it has nothing to do with the others but has all to do with herself. Thankfully my patient was able to hear this and was able to see that she was the enabler, the one who wanted harmony above all costs and that her sister was, in fact, acting in a very controlling and selfish manner without their father in mind or their stepmother in mind at all. These blinders helped her to keep the harmony she so desired and desired her whole life. Disharmony and confrontation are very difficult for her. It is important that she please others and that everybody gets along. This is an experience she didn't have with her parents and so she craved it. The blinders helped her to create the illusion in her that her sister has the best interests of others, in this case, her father and stepmother.  We all do this. Yet, by taking off the blinders, we can see something that was always there but beyond our consciousness. When we can allow us to see certain situations and people and dynamics clearly, we can then open us to seeing a greater truth and our own souls growth to blossom.   Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life:  Let's take a moment and think about a time or situation where we had blinders on and couldn't see something that was right in front of us. This could be a partner, a child, a friend, and sibling, a parent, a colleague, and so on. Maybe because of our blinders we got hurt or felt betrayed or got caught in old family dynamics or felt stuck and stagnant. What comes to mind when this happened; you felt betrayed or frightened by something or got hurt, etc?  What red light did you not see that would be a warning sign as to keep your eyes open? This happens a lot with falling in love. The warning signs are there but we close our eyes and our feelings to them at the time. Breathe, and go back in time to that place and person or situation. What did you not want to see that became apparent later? Now, having located that time, slow down your thinking and pay attention to what you didn't want to see. Now look at it with compassionate eyes. What was it about this person or situation or place where you didn't want to see something? What did it remind you of, from maybe when you were small? What would you have seen which would have upset you or challenged a dream or illusion? Now, imagine you seeing it with open eyes and taking this moment into the present. With this clear-eyed vision, does this in any way remind you of something or someone in your life in the present, or of someone you know? Just notice and breathe it in.   Everything we are doing here is without judgment, but just stepping away and noticing. Now you brought it close to your vision and you can apply this awareness today in something in your life. Take a moment or two or three and write down what you noticed and became aware of so you can make it yours.


Do you ever feel like a horse with its blinders on, to keep it from panicking? I think we all have at some time or another. I love the horse analogy because I think that analogy is one most of us can relate to and also because we can see what the blinders do for the horse. They actively keep the horse's attention straight in front of him/her so that he won't get distracted or panicked by something going on around him. That is what we do to ourselves. We put blinders on so that we won't see something that we are unconsciously afraid of. The blind fear here is that if I see this it will upset me or panic me or embarrass me or disappoint me. It is better not to see.

If we were aware we were doing this, then the blinders would be taken off. This is another example of how we protect ourselves from hurt or perceived hurt. I love how these protective mechanisms work for us. And I also love how when we become aware of what we are doing, often we are able, even with the fear, to take the blinders off.

I see as a patient someone who was experiencing this very phenomenon. She was describing how her sister was doing something which was against their father's wishes. The way she described her sister was as having a co-dependent victim mentality. Their father who was ill didn't want any visitors and asked that his children give him space. Her sister decided that she knew better than he did, and so made plans to go anyway and to help her stepmother, her father's wife, who didn't ask for help. In fact, she actively didn't want help. The stepmother had asked my patient to please intercede and talk her sister into not coming.

As my patient was describing what was occurring, it was clear she saw her sister as an enabler and controlling, yes, but also as a helper and wanting to do this for her parents. She really wanted to see her sister in this light. As I was listening to her, all I could think of was that her sister was doing this for herself, and it had nothing to do with co-dependency, but was all about her. I saw this as a very selfish act, and not in the best sense of the word.

I then proceeded to suggest that her sister was, in fact, doing this only for herself and that it was a very narcissistic act and also suggested that she look at her sister with different eyes, with eyes clear and without blinders. This sister is the oldest child and felt very disappointed by her parents. Her mother was a teenage mother who had her own growing up to do, and her parents divorced when she was a teenager and her father at first kept some distance from his children. She felt victimized and felt that she didn't get what she needed. And she didn't get what she needed. So now she hijacks situations so that she can have her needs met when it has nothing to do with the others but has all to do with herself. Thankfully my patient was able to hear this and was able to see that she was the enabler, the one who wanted harmony above all costs and that her sister was, in fact, acting in a very controlling and selfish manner without their father in mind or their stepmother in mind at all. These blinders helped her to keep the harmony she so desired and desired her whole life. Disharmony and confrontation are very difficult for her. It is important that she please others and that everybody gets along. This is an experience she didn't have with her parents and so she craved it. The blinders helped her to create the illusion in her that her sister has the best interests of others, in this case, her father and stepmother.

We all do this. Yet, by taking off the blinders, we can see something that was always there but beyond our consciousness. When we can allow us to see certain situations and people and dynamics clearly, we can then open us to seeing a greater truth and our own souls growth to blossom. 

Shift Your Story/Shift Your Life:

Let's take a moment and think about a time or situation where we had blinders on and couldn't see something that was right in front of us. This could be a partner, a child, a friend, and sibling, a parent, a colleague, and so on. Maybe because of our blinders we got hurt or felt betrayed or got caught in old family dynamics or felt stuck and stagnant. What comes to mind when this happened; you felt betrayed or frightened by something or got hurt, etc?

What red light did you not see that would be a warning sign as to keep your eyes open? This happens a lot with falling in love. The warning signs are there but we close our eyes and our feelings to them at the time. Breathe, and go back in time to that place and person or situation. What did you not want to see that became apparent later? Now, having located that time, slow down your thinking and pay attention to what you didn't want to see. Now look at it with compassionate eyes. What was it about this person or situation or place where you didn't want to see something? What did it remind you of, from maybe when you were small? What would you have seen which would have upset you or challenged a dream or illusion? Now, imagine you seeing it with open eyes and taking this moment into the present. With this clear-eyed vision, does this in any way remind you of something or someone in your life in the present, or of someone you know? Just notice and breathe it in. 

Everything we are doing here is without judgment, but just stepping away and noticing. Now you brought it close to your vision and you can apply this awareness today in something in your life. Take a moment or two or three and write down what you noticed and became aware of so you can make it yours.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Waiting Poem


Waiting.
Waiting.
Staying centered and knowing I am being lied to.
Feeling my anticipation in my breath and the quickening.
Concentrating on breathing slowly and deeply.
Listening to the music around me.
Feeling the breath of the air on my skin and in my hair. 
Watching the trees move and breath with the touch of mother nature's energy.
Enjoying the trees expression of life
Quieting my mind consciously
Opening me to the unknown and feeling my own movements and breath
And taking a cue from nature around me, enjoying my expression of life


I hope on this holiday you can find the time and place and space to enjoy your own expression of life. Life is a vital force and one that becomes the gift that keeps on giving.

Love to you all and I hope this next year finds you in good health, with a joyful expression of who you are that you can bring to you and to the world.