Wednesday, March 19, 2014

What We Keep and What We Cherish

Looking around my room I see photos, art, books, and things that remind me of amazing experiences. Right now I am looking a pillow that is Aboriginal art, a memento of one of my trips to Australia. I see my copy of Yogi Berra's book, "When You Come to a Fork in the Road, Take It!", which he signed after I saw him speak at the 92nd Y in New York. (Great advice, by the way).

I try to keep and showcase things that truly matter to me. My style is eclectic and some might call it busy, but it works for me. What doesn't work is when I realize that I'm hanging on to things that don't matter and that no longer serve me and my life as it is today.

It's spring, and I've already cleaned out two closets. I have more to do, and as I divest I realize that I don't miss what moves on, and I'm happy it has the opportunity to find a new home. I have started getting rid of something when I bring something new. 

Some things like books are more difficult for me to let go. Books are my way of traveling from an armchair. The challenge is that I don't have unlimited bookshelves. So I keep my favorites, read others and pass them on to receive new books.

What do you keep and cherish? And if stuff is overwhelming you what are you holding on to that you can't release? Each of us has stuff that matters to us, but the rest is probably weighting us down. Pick a drawer, a closet, or a bookshelf and keep what speaks to you and let go of the rest. My goal to tackle the books in boxes downstairs and decide what I will keep, and what I will let go. 

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

"The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." --Eleanor Roosevelt

This quote is written on my journal, which I turn to in despair and happiness. I realize that keeping a journal might not be in vogue in today's tell-all world, but sometimes I want to share, and other times I just want to clear my head and write using a pen. It is a powerful way to get out what's bothering you or to capture wonderful moments you don't want to forget.

The thing is that those moments bad and good fade, and a journal or a blog give you a place to remember. You notice your frame of mind and you realize that things do change and what was awful or wonderful changes. This gives you a blueprint to understand that this too shall pass.

When everything is going swimmingly you don't always want it to pass, but it does. When things are falling apart you want it to pass, and it does. How you respond is what truly matters. This quote by Viktor Frankl sums it up: "Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom."

So right now things aren't great, but I remember that it will pass. I will keep going realizing that just around the corner is another moment of wonder. I will continue to write in my journal, and I will start writing here in my blog, as a practice and a way to share my thoughts aloud, so to speak. I do believe in the beauty of my dreams. There I said it out loud in the public. Do you?

Monday, October 29, 2012

Seeking Balance

As the snow balances on the branches of a tree with grace and ease, I wonder why it is so daunting to find that simple balance in our own lives. What I have discovered is if you don't make a conscious effort to find balance you will become much like a dryer completely out of balance.

Sometimes the disaster of being out of balance is the wake-up call you need to address the lopsided life that you're living. It can mean that you're letting the stress of work take over your life, or it can mean that you've stopped taking care of yourself.

Either way, your life is no longer your own, and the only person that can take it back is you. What this means is that you have to get clear about the blocks, distractions, and way you're living that is no longer serving you. If that statement sounds overwhelming to you, it should.

This process is not for you if you expect it to happen in an hour, day, or even six weeks. Just as you can't lose weight by taking a pill, you won't be able to complete this process get an "A" and then go right back to what you were doing. This will be an ongoing journey with twists, unexpected turns and road blocks. But you will be able to garner small wins by making small changes. 

These small changes add up over time to more significant change. For me though the most significant factor is that now I feel different. I can accept when things get out of balance, and I can more easily tip things back into a better balance. The reason is that I no longer expect it to happen quickly, and I don't expect to get it perfect. I can accept when life happens, and I am aware of what helps me get back in balance.

Instead I realize that like the snow balancing on the branch, balance in your life will be temporary and fleeting. However, it will come back around if you nurture yourself and your mind, body, and spirit. All you need to do to start is take a couple minutes to breathe and recognize the beauty of the snow falling.

"You begin to do your part in the Life Pattern by doing all the good things you feel motivated toward, even though they are just little good things at first. You give these priority in your life over all the superficial things that customarily clutter human lives." --Peace Pilgrim

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Follow Your Heart

Well the universe has been speaking to me. It seems that I often don't listen or I ignore what it is trying to tell me. Recently, I wasn't the only one to experience the message being sent to me. My friend Ruth came up a few weekends ago to visit me in the mountains to hang out, get outside, and regroup. Both of us needed time away. Although I wasn't "away", I had permission to be on vacation with a friend in town.

I have been having strange and vivid dreams, and during this weekend I woke up feeling unsettled. I have been wrestling with what I want in my life. It's not just about my career or what I do. It's about my life and embracing who I am and what I offer to the world, which is enough. Anyway, I switched on my lamp, and I grabbed some cards I had picked up in Sedona. The first one I felt compelled to draw was "Follow Your Heart".

Keep in mind the first card that was drawn when I was actually in Sedona was "Open Your Heart". Yes, I had a physic reading by a third generation physic of Native American and Japanese descent....I am open to the fact that God sometimes speaks to people in different ways. And when in Sedona, new age capital of the U.S., why not?

I feel good about the movement as I have progressed from opening my heart to following my heart. I feel that I have opened my heart to the possibilities, and now that it is open I need to stop and listen. I believe in the integration of the head and heart to become your best self. I just didn't realize that often my head was overruling my heart. At different times in life you need to lead more with your head and at other times more with your heart. Right now, for me my heart is emerging as the appropriate leader at this point in my life.

It's interesting the universe wanted me to have a witness. Ruth and I went hiking on the American Trail near Ashcroft in Aspen. We had eaten a later breakfast and skipped lunch so we were famished after our hike. We went into Aspen. We stopped for sushi. It was closed (off-season). Then we went to an Italian place (not open for 40 minutes), so we decided sushi at Zheng's in Basalt.

We had a wonderful and more affordable meal, and then we got our fortune cookies following our meal. Yes, sushi and fortune cookies, only in America. I felt gravitation to the fortune cookie nearest me, and I cracked it open to read: "Follow your heart's desires".

I was telling another friend about this experience, and she asked me an interesting question. "Do you know what your heart wants?" That gave me pause. She said that is where she gets caught. I am following my heart again though I don't know how it will look as I travel this path.

What I know at this point is that I want my life to include writing and creative expression. I am embracing love and compassion for myself when previously I only reserved those sentiments for others. I want to form and nurture meaningful connections. I want to get outside in nature as much as possible, and I want to do less to do more.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Happy 2012!

A new year a new you, right? Well there is something amazing as the calendar flips over. It does give you that sense of a new start. For me I want to focus on health, happiness, saving money, writing, and enjoying life. I think I can do those things with love and compassion. May this year bring you joy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Have yourself a Merry Christmas!

This year I haven't let the holidays overrun my life. I've been shopping since the Saturday after Thanksgiving, which is early for me. I shopped on Small Business Saturday, but I avoided Black Friday. Seriously, that scene isn't worth it. I've also been wrapping presents already, which is a first for me. Usually, I'm in a frenzy trying to wrap everything up the night before. I've also sent out some Christmas cards. I just have a few left to send that will arrive after the holiday. Even so, I feel like I've kept the stress level low.

And good thing, too, because when it rains it pours. It isn't snowing here after all. Anyway, my back windshield wiper hasn't been working, so the car was taken in. That needs a new motor, and my car needed new brakes. More expenses I wasn't expecting. Also, today, I had a slight fender bender in Aspen, so the expenses continue to mount. Thank goodness I've been spacing out my holiday stuff or this stress may have thrown me over the edge.

But this year it didn't, but I realize that things happen whether you like it or not. And yes, expenses happen in threes like everything else. The key is to take it one day at a time. The best part is that as I gathered addresses I heard from lots of people via text, email, and phone. It means so much. Last Saturday was the Gair Family Christmas of 40 people.
This weekend is a much smaller celebration with family. And lots of celebrating with friends, too. Overall, a really good month, despite the mishaps. I hope you and yours have a wonderful holiday season and a joyous new year. Welcome 2012.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

National Novel Writing Month

November is not just a time to be thankful and eat until you burst. It's also National Novel Writing Month.The whole idea is to write 50,000 words in the month of November. So my friend Ruth and I are working on writing our own respective novels. I admit that my goal doesn't go as high as 50,000 words, because I do have to work as well, but the act of making writing a regular part of my schedule is what I want to accomplish. According to my Google search making something a habit takes 21 to 30 days. So if I can make writing an automatic activity then I might be able to form a habit, which will then prospectively lead to me actually writing 50,000 words over time. Wish me luck!