Slowing down

This time of year brings long, dark nights and short days upon us. Nature calls for slowing down and resting, yet our culture promotes the exact opposite. When I ask people how they are, the answer I often receive is, “busy”. We are no longer giving attention to what nature holds true in her seasons. Instead, we are tired and struggling; emotionally, physically and often financially.

 

Slowing Down

 

What if you took nature’s advice and slowed down as the days become darker? You began amending activities to coincide with the shorter days and choosing to rest in the evenings and be with your families and friends? How would the joy, love, and peace of the season feel?

 

Here are some tips to help you in these shortened days.
Be mindful of your:
Needs – Rest when you are tired.  Slow down by taking time to relax and acknowledge what ever else shows up for you, honour you.
Intentions – Notice your intention in each choice. Ask, “does this support my highest good or am I giving away my precious energy for a purpose that does not match what I need?”.
Actions – On those busy days, be present to your self; emotionally, physically and mentally. Be okay with honouring your needs and make your decisions based on them.

 

Slow down, reflect with gratitude, and receive the benefits of all of your efforts this past year. Tweet this.

 

This is how I am working with these darkened days. I take a moment each morning to notice what I need and what excites me for the upcoming day. I am active, but allow myself to take it easier now, not to wear my self out.  I am setting time to share with friends and family. I give thanks each evening for what I hold dear in my life and welcome what tomorrow may bring. I am ensuring I get enough sleep at night. Honouring my needs, intentions, and action are allowing me space to slow down and receive the beauty of the season.

 

Share your joy with those around you as you count your blessings. Take time to dream about what you want to create in the coming year. Plant those seeds in these darkened nights and as the sun grows stronger again after the winter solstice, they will begin to re-energize and grow within you.

 

How are you spending your time in these shorter days? Do you notice yourself needing a shift?

 

Please share your comments and experiences. Thank you for taking your time to read my article. My intention is to offer you valuable tips to help you in your life. If you would like to receive future articles, please subscribe at the side. Please contact me to see if what I offer will add value for you.

 

Follow the rhythms of nature.
Blessings this season,
xo, Brenda

An Invitation To All Your Parts

Living presently does not require you to forget or forgive your past, instead you can learn how to bring it with you. Accept and embrace all the parts that make you, You.

Throughout life we journey through many highs and lows; celebration and challenges; certainty and uncertainty. Each experience offers a variety of life learnings and new possibilities.

Every time you overcome an obstacle or realize the benefits of your efforts, a new part emerges within your existing self. You may feel a deeper sense of self connection after making a challenging decision or you may feel accomplishment as you take a step you never new possible. When you acknowledge the parts that endured the journey with you, you can draw on them when you need them in the future.

All Your PartsIn my early 20’s, I went through some challenging years. As I came through them I noticed a stronger sense of self. I felt confident and connected to more of my possibilities. Although the challenges were difficult, I learned how to bring these parts of myself into my present instead of allowing them to fade into my past.

As I moved away from the challenging experiences I realized I did not need to forget or forgive myself for what happened. I chose acceptance instead and I felt closer to the part of me emerging from the experiences. I was opening up to who I was becoming. As I learned to embrace all parts of me, I felt more connected to my needs, my strengths, and my truths.

Your past transforms parts of you which prepare you for your future, draw on those parts in your present. Tweet this!

We have many parts of our self which make up who we are today. The past experiences we had do not define us, but the parts of self that emerge help to create us. Some parts will hold a more impactful place in our lives than others, but each part needs acknowledgment for the efforts endured and growth received.

Allow all past parts of you into your present, you will come to know your true self more deeply.

How do you reflect on your past? Do you see the value your past experiences offer you today?

Please comment and share your experiences!

Thank you for spending your time with me today. I hope you received great value to take with you in your life. If you are interested in receiving future articles, please subscribe on the sidebar and contact me to see how I can help you live with all of your parts.

From all of my parts to all of yours…
Love,
Brenda

Open to Silence?

A few years ago, a friend of mine who is also coach, was doing a Body Bliss workshop over a few weeks. It was an introspective and goal setting journey.

As part of the journey, she requested we try an attention activity and offered ideas about bringing mindful awareness into our day. The next day, I took my earphones out of my ears as I walked to and from work, and turned off the TV while I ate. At first, it seemed somewhat empty, but as I continued I began to open to a deeper experience of my self.

Open to SilenceI heard the birds, traffic, wind, and people around me, instead of the music I used to distract me from the outside world. I felt more connected to the world around me.

The taste of food enhanced and meals transformed. In addition to turning off the tv, I focused on chewing my food 20 times before swallowing. I created a ritual around my meals by lighting a candle in the evening and enjoying my company.

The world around me became more vibrant and alive. Over just a few weeks, my senses continued to heighten. In turn, I felt more vibrant and alive.

As I opened to these experiences by removing distractions, I could hear more clearly what I was saying to myself. Thoughts previously drowned out by music and tv became my focal point. I noticed how my thoughts were impacting my experiences.

Detaching from distraction, opens your awareness to a presence experience. Tweet this!

Looking back on these experiences, I can see the long-term influence. I notice when my thoughts try holding me back out of fear of failure. Becoming mindful of my needs, I choose which challenges to pursue. As well, I am more in touch with my emotions, as I no longer hide my feelings with distractions. This self-realization transformed me in many ways. The mindful activities were the beginning of new self-awareness. I could observe myself and notice my thoughts, which together propelled me into a welcomed journey of creating a life of presence and meaning.

Are you open to receiving through silence? Believe me, there is much more than just silence. There is presence and self-awareness.

Try it and come share your experiences!

Thank you for sharing your time with me today. If you enjoyed this article and would like to receive future articles, please subscribe on the side. .

Receive the sounds of silence in your heart.

much love,
Brenda

Come Back To Your Truth

Life is overwhelming when you feel trapped in a situation and it leaves you feeling depleted. When we allow this feeling to take over, we get stuck, but when we take mindful actions, we come back to our truth with a feeling of fulfillment.

Recently, I experienced a couple of friends going through this and it reminded me of times I also felt this way. I recall thoughts of uncertainty about my future, confusion of why I was in the situation, and fear of how to get out of it.

How can you move through these uncomfortable experiences?

Awareness and action will lead you back to your truth.
Here are some ways to help:

Be aware of your thoughts – Observe what you are telling your self about the situation. Notice what thoughts are showing up and what feeling they leave you with.
Ask someone to listen without judgement or a need to ‘fix’ you – Speaking your thoughts and needs while being heard by empathetic ears, without judgement, is powerful to feeling acknowledged.
Notice where you put your attention and energy – If you focus on the issue, the issue will focus on you. Acceptance of the situation and choosing to take action in accordance with your true intentions can break the cycle.
Get in touch with your self-love – You are worthy of getting through the ordeal and trust you will.

Light in dark spotsWhen we are challenged to overcome something in life, we are often thrown off our centre, away from our truth. When we realize this, tap into our personal truth, and take action, we regain our inner strength, accept our circumstances, and trust our self to persevere.

Life is a wave of ups and downs, but with attention and action, we can find our way back to our true self. Tweet this!

What challenge have you been faced with recently? Have you found your truth in the matter or do you need to check in?

Please share your thoughts or experiences.

Thank you for spending your time with me today. If you liked today’s article, please like it, share it with your friends and sign up to receive future articles by email.

Trust your self, Love your self.

xo, Brenda

Truth without Shame

Who you are on the inside? Do you show that person to the world?

This week, I listened to a recent speech by Monica Lewinsky. She spoke courageously about the effects of public humiliation, damage to reputation, and the consequences of shame.

Monica is speaking out about her personal experience in 1998 when she fell in love with the US President at the age of 22. She spoke of how the media’s representation of her lacked integrity. Through the media’s representation, the public judged her without knowing her. This deeply affected her sense of self and took years to overcome.

The effects of public humiliation are found in many facets today, not limited to celebrities being effected daily and children being bullied in schools and online.

The consequences she spoke of are dire, where children and youth are taking their lives as they are literally humiliated to death.

Attitudes and actions towards one another are in need of compassion and reflection, as a whole society, all ages, races, ethnicities, gender, etc.

Our society lacks empathy for one another in this social media age. The Internet gives immediate access to the world with no boundaries or limits. We are often encouraged to hold the perspective of media or the expectation of society, without question.

I believe in Monica’s message about shame and humiliation, and the changes needed in our society. I also heard another important message from her:

“Being publicly separated from your truth is one of the classic triggers of anxieties, depression, and self loathing. The greater the distance between the ‘you’ people want you to be and the ‘you’ you actually are, the greater will be your anxiety, depression, sense of failure, and shame.”
Courage to BeOften, the perception of who we are to others can differ from our own perception of who we are, even without media or bullies. The effects are not limited to depression, stress, and shame.  I also see the effects as: lacking meaning in life; unclear decision-making; and resentment towards others. The negative impacts grow with the separation we are building between: who society thinks we are; who we think society wants us to be; and who we really are.

Regularly I ask, “What would life be like if everyone could truly be the person they are on the inside, without worrying about the perceptions or judgements of others? Would we be satisfied in life, become healthier beings, and be accepting of others?”

Trusting our sense of self is valuable, it’s the most precious currency we own. Tweet This!

When we give into the perceptions of others and allow them to impact our choices, we give away our precious currency, our sense of self.

Will you do this? The next time you notice yourself making a decision based on someone else’s perspective of who you are, take a stand for yourself. There is no shame in being YOU.

Thank you for taking your time to read this article today. If you would like to listen to the speech made by Monica Lewinsky, you can see it here.

If you would like to receive notice of future articles, please subscribe on the side column and contact me to learn more about how I can help you.

Be True to Yourself.

love,
Brenda

Find Your Motivation

Tools and apps are readily available help us get things done, so why do we still find it hard to get motivated?

We all possess an inner drive, ready to help us fulfill our potential every day. When we use it, we take leaps and bounds in our intentions and actions. When we do not, we stay where we are or backtrack.

We often allow the voice preferring to stay in the safety of status-quo to overpower the voice longing for us to live to our highest potential.

It is easier to wait and do it later; someday, perhaps “when I’m ready”.

We feel perfection is needed in order to take action. Yet, we will not realize how ready we are unless we take action. We will only know we can swim by jumping into the water. The fear of perfection prevents us from understanding our potential.

In my life, I cycle through motivated states to unmotivated states. I know you can relate. There are a few concepts I use to help me remember the benefits of being motivated.  Here are some of my motivational reminders:

rosietheriveter_youcandoitSelf-confidence – When you choose an action you know may be difficult, you overcome the obstacles that hold you back. This gives you a sense of confidence in your life for pursuing even more.

Energetic flow – When you choose not to act when you easily could, you stop the flow of energy around it. If you come back to it at another time it may be more onerous or time-consuming to complete. When you chose to act on your intentions, you create an energetic balance with your actions.

Personal growth – When you motivate yourself to act, you will grow in your abilities and knowledge. You can choose to have the awareness to see the lessons arising from your efforts and grow with them.

The human experience is not limited to finding and maintaining status-quo. It is about realizing new experiences, facing challenges, and pushing limits.

Our greatest potential lives in our deepest sense of truth, use it. Tweet this!

So, what are you waiting for? What motivates you?

Please share your comments and experiences about motivation.

Thank you for spending some of your time with me today. If you would like to receive notice of future articles, please subscribe on the side column and contact me to learn more about how I can help you.

You can do it!
(ps, that picture is one of my all time favourites!)

xo,
Brenda

Thirst for Learning

Learning has become vast with many areas of focus, how can we ever learn it all? Why do we think we need to?

Lately, I have noticed a few things in my desire to learn. I am constantly drawn to new books. Articles on Facebook are continually grabbing my attention. I have a real thirst for learning.

Do you notice yourself pulled into articles on Facebook or other media sources? Is there something  you want to learn or are you afraid you may miss something you should know?

love of readingIn my desire to learn, I am reading so many articles and books that I find myself wondering what meaning they actually offer. I often notice two things: How much of my time did I use? Was it time well spent?

Today, I am creating a plan of action to help me use my time well and determine where to put my attention. I am choosing:

1. Awareness of my actions. When I pick up my phone or computer and notice I go straight into Facebook out of habit, choosing instead to stop and proceed with my intended action. This will help use my time wisely.

2. Continuous focus. I now use the Do Not Disturb function on my phone and computer when I want to stay focused and not be distracted. This will honour my time and intention.

3. Clear intentions. I will honour my intention to learn something specific for my own personal growth or give myself time to explore what other knowledge attracts me. This is about growing with my purpose.

4. Attention in my experiences. When I choose to do something, I want to notice what feels good and what does not. This will help me determine my best areas of focus.

If we are present in our learning, we will grow toward our purpose. Tweet this!

Does your experience feel similar to mine? What do you notice when you are present to what you are learning? Please share your experiences in the comments.

Thank you for spending your time with me today. If you would like to stay connected please subscribe at the side and contact me to learn more about how I can help you.

Find passion in your learning.

with love,
Brenda