Authentic: Being who you truly are. Knowing your gifts and also your weaknesses. Living a life that supports who you truly are. Being true to you. Being you. Doing the things that are in alignment with your heart and soul. Being who you are, not who your parents, spouse, community or society want you to be. Being willing to fully show up with all your unique gifts and talents, even if they aren’t what is considered “cool.” Above the temple in Delphi were two inscriptions: 1) Know Thyself, and 2) To Thine Own Self Be True.
When we are living our authentic life, being our authentic self, we are living a life that has heart and meaning. We are also in our power. Power is not about having power over, which this crumbling, old paradigm has taught us. True power comes from being you. There is no one else exactly like you with your unique gifts and talents. You simple need to beam who you are out into the world. The word beam to me is BE-AM… being your deepest I am self without all the roles and masks society has taught you.
Being Nice: Being nice is the opposite of being authentic. Being nice is being numb to how you feel; believing that you are responsible for other people’s feelings; doing and saying things to make sure you don’t hurt another’s feelings. Being “nice” is constantly play-acting. It is not being real; not wanting to rock the boat or cause waves. Being nice is caring what other people think. It is also being so numb that you no longer even know what you think and feel! Being nice is about trying to please others at the expense of yourself and your personal truth.
Being Nice often comes about because as children love was often conditional. We learned to make those most important to us happy with us by pleasing them. We wanted to be liked, valued, loved. But in truth, if someone likes something false in you, they are not liking or loving YOU. And you have abandoned yourself. The good news is it’s never too late to rediscover the essence of who you really are.
Getting Centered: What gets you centered or grounded? Yoga? A bike ride? A walking meditation? Experiment with a variety of activities to find the ones that work best for you. After yoga, everything flows in my life. As an example, I can walk into a store and there is no one in line as I check out. Just moments later, I notice there are now 10 people in line. When I am in my center, life flows with such ease and grace.
Getting Unstuck: I have found a few simple yet powerful tools to help me get unstuck: one is to really exaggerate what is going on. By totally slowing down and exaggerating everything being felt and experienced, we gain the ability to move beyond it.
Once I found myself in paralyzing resistance to packing for an overseas trip I was leading. I just couldn’t get anything into my suitcase. It was taking forever to do the simplest thing. So, I totally exaggerated that. I moved even slower; as slow as molasses. Each thing I had to lift, I made feel so heavy and I moved as slowly as possible toward my suitcase. I did that for about 10 minutes and then something snapped! By fully allowing myself the experience, the resistance completely dissipated and my regular energy and focus returned. I was then able to pack effortlessly with ease and grace.
Another thing I find helpful is: JUST DO IT, like the Nike ad. My resistance to something can be so profoundly painful. Then, when I finally do the thing I have resisted, I am enthralled and completely enjoying myself. I end up wondering why I spent so many hours or days in resistance. The need for perfection often shows up for me and gets in my way. With writing, just showing up and allowing myself to write something–even if it’s terrible–is a start. Getting past the place of my inner judge/critic with action works every time.
Heart and Meaning: Choosing heart and meaning in everything you do. You listen deeply to the call and the longings of your heart. What lights up your heart and makes it sing? What brings you deep inner happiness? Where does time disappear because you so deeply love what you are doing? What holds meaning for you? Doing something because it comes from your heart; that integral part of who you are. It does not matter what parents, friends, family, society or your culture think. It is YOUR heart and it is what YOU love and what has heart and meaning to you.
Intention: One definition for intention is: “to have in mind a purpose or plan, to direct the mind, to aim.” Intentions can be conscious or unconscious.
An example of an unconscious intention is to do something without thought; with a mindless, habitual response or approach.
In contrast, intention can be consciously set at the beginning of any endeavor to ignite the energy that becomes aligned with it. A clear, conscious intention effectively rallies the forces of the Universe to align and help fulfill the desire. True power comes from clear intention. Essentially, it directs the arrow towards the target and creates the path to arrive there.
An intention lives in the present moment and it becomes the foundation for all else. A goal is something that is in the future. An intention can help you arrive at your goal, which is the desired destination. An intention is the transportation, the energy, that gets one there and all other energy will be attracted to. Intention is the why; it holds the motivation and holds the energy that leads to how you move toward goal attainment.
Intuition: Intuition is an inner knowing that bypasses the rational mind. It is a knowing, a certainty, from a deeper part of your Self. Intuition is an instant knowing without facts or logic to support it. For more information, please go to Valuing Intuition and you will find much more there on intuition.
Journey: The journey is “walking the path.” The journey is all your experiences, the people you meet along the way, the things you choose to do, and the places you visit. It is the who, what, when and where. It is the process. It is a string of moments; one sacred moment at a time. Being fully awake and present to each current activity. Being present to all these moments creates the journey that you are on. Or you can do it unconsciously. It is your choice.
Our journey can be the journey we chose before coming to Earth, so it seems like we don’t have a choice. Yet, we made that choice before coming in for the lessons we needed to learn or what we wanted to bring forward. In the Dagara tribe in Africa, women go into a trance while they’re pregnant to see their child’s life purpose. The baby is given a name that holds his/her life purpose so all the community knows that child’s life purpose and can help him/her stay on track!
Path: “A route, course, or track along which something moves.” The route you have chosen to walk in this lifetime is your path. Look at what that path is. How would you define it? Is it a path for outward success, glory and accomplishment or is it a path of inner realization, truth, authenticity and discovery? Is it a path of love and service? Is it a path of ego gratification? What path are you choosing to walk? If you decide, you have the power to shift your path in any moment if you’d rather experience something other than what your current path offers.
Trust: I do not believe in blind trust. When your body tells you one thing (that something just doesn’t feel right, as an example), but your mind tells you something else (that someone is deeply respected in the world, as an example), should you listen to your body or your mind? Definitely, listen to your body! As you learn to listen, you begin to trust the messages it’s giving you.
I had to learn all of this the hard way: totally used and manipulated by a prominent person doing big things in the world and highly admired by many. Even though my body would tighten and something didn’t feel good with this person, I overrode my guiding wisdom with my mind. It was a huge lesson that taught me so much. It was also a huge gift as it put me in touch with not only listening to my body but also with my inner voice and my innate power.
Trust is most needed within us. When we listen to–and follow–our hearts and make changes in our lives to follow that deep inner listening, we are taking a risk, but the reward is worth it. When we are aligned to our true heart and our alignment is also with the Divine and the higher, greater good, the next phase is stepping into trust. When we have done our part, we can then allow ourselves to be in the place of mystery and be divinely guided. We trust because we have done all that we possible could from a place of truth and integrity. We ask for the highest and best to unfold.
Wisdom of your body: Our minds can trick us; lie to us. But our bodies hold the truth. Even things that seem negative in our body are our body’s way of talking to us. A headache or backache is showing where the energy is not in the flow of life.
When I was a “corporate wife” living in London, I had horrible backaches and headaches, felt tired, had cold hands and feet and felt depressed. I deeply disliked many of the conversations when we entertained. We never talked about anything that I felt was deeply authentic or real. I didn’t realize how much this life was killing me. I wasn’t living the life of who I was. One day I told my husband I could no longer do it. I was done. The last corporate entertaining was taking clients to Wimbledon. On the way home, I found myself singing “Born Free” and doing a victory dance in the air!
When I moved to Nevada City, to the forest and to nature, my aches and pains magically disappeared. I began to thrive and grow as I allowed myself to be the most authentic version of me. I have never felt such a deep inner happiness. The juices of my heart just flowed. My body was screaming at me that I had been in the wrong place. When I finally listened, my body showed me I was in the right place by how good I feel all the time. Your body is always talking to you: the knot in your stomach, the tenseness when you see a certain person, the fear or apprehension. The places that make you skip and play and sing are showing you those places that make your heart soar.