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An Authentic Self Connects With Her Future Self

Hello everyone. This is a Guest Post written by a personal friend of mine.

I’d like to introduce you to Deanna. She works in community health care with older adults as a Case Manager.

Like so many of us, she has been on a quest to connect with her life purpose and to apply it in her everyday life.

As an avid reader and promoter of self-development, she has struck out on her journey with determination.

She employed life coaching services with Crimson Compass and was guided on a Future Self meditation.

This is an inner journey where a person is invited to imagine the possibilities beyond the limits they’ve imposed; beyond what they believe is realistic. The Future Self is the core self that a person is becoming on the path to fulfillment.

This journey taps into the intuitive, internal knowing and enables a person to bring this clarity into the light of their current lives.

It’s a challenge to solve problems and achieve goals while feeling influenced by troubling or confusing life circumstances. Having a Future Self identity will give a person a persona to step into to reflect on their life from a different perspective.

Deanna has been exploring this idea on her quest to come up with a Life Purpose Statement and while reflecting on this, she was inspired to write this story. I have ask for her permission to share it.

If you have comments for Deanna, she would be excited to be a blogger for a day and respond to them. And so here, unedited, is Deanna’s story.

The Story of the Wooden Chest

There’s a chest, a big, clunky wooden chest, upstairs in the attic. I’ve just discovered it. Or perhaps, more truthfully, I’ve only noticed that it’s always been there. I can’t decide if I should be surprised, but somehow I don’t think I am.

The attic isn’t familiar to me. It’s not a room in the house where I currently live and I don’t recognize this space. And yet, this attic, this place where the chest resides, is welcoming me and it seems perfectly natural that I should be here.

The chest is old. But then again, I’m not very adept at determining the age of anything, so it’s easy for me to say ‘it’s old’. But it is; it just looks old. Like it’s been sitting in this spot forever, waiting to be found.

The top is steeply curved, which gives it an overall appearance of something rather large and imposing. But the colour is a deep, rich brown, and it is rather inviting. There are wide metal straps embedded on the top and sides, seeming to hold it together, although I’m not sure these are terribly necessary. It gives me no clue that it’s about to fall apart.

The wood itself is nothing exotic, like mahogany or some other rare or extinct species of wood. It’s just brown, ordinary wood, but nevertheless very appealing in a basic and solid kind of way. Like you’d expect an old friend to be, a little weathered and worn, but familiar and waiting to tell you a grand story about where he’s just been.

I have a lantern in my hand. It’s kind of old fashioned in itself, and not a typical thing I’d carry with me into an attic. Usually I’d have a flashlight, but somehow a flashlight seems poorly suited to the job. The lantern seems just the right thing for me to carry, and it surprises me I knew that. I didn’t have to think about it.

However, I notice that I really don’t need much of a light at all, because the chest is sitting near a small, rectangular shaped window, letting in the right amount of diffuse, soft early afternoon light. The warm glow of the lantern was more than enough to get me here, so I extinguish it.

It seems odd to me that there isn’t a lot of clutter or piles of old junk around this chest. Not much by way of cobwebs, dust or litter either. It’s rather quiet, neat, and tidy up here. There’s just the chest and me alone together, in this space.

I pause for a little while. Shall I open the lid? Of course I know I will. It seems to me this is what I’m supposed to do. Why the hesitation? Out of respect perhaps, it occurs to me. What’s the hurry, after all?

I examine the front of the chest, looking for a lock, and although there is a latch, it opens easily, without a key. I lift the latch and push back on the lid, so the top is fully open. I remain on my knees, in front of the chest. I don’t feel the urge to stand. This works well. I’m comfortable.

I’m not sure if it’s the light from the window or something else in my eyes, but now there seems to be something bright and rather all encompassing in front of me. It takes me a few minutes to realize it’s coming from inside the chest.

When I look more closely, it occurs to me it’s mostly a simple, pure light that I see. But it’s not blinding. It’s soft and yet is sufficient to illuminate the entire inside of the chest. At first glance, I can’t see anything beyond the light. When I focus, I begin to make out a blue striped fabric lining, and the outline of a few objects.

The first object is a collection of five to six glass marbles. They seem fairly average in appearance to me. But I pick them up and roll them around in the palm of my hand. They feel cool and smooth to the touch and seem to be telling me to ensure I have some fun. The kind of fun you have when you’re little, and not too worried about much of anything.

Then I notice, and how could I not, the rather large hand quilted blanket in the right hand side of the chest, occupying a good bit of space. I take it out, and see that someone has put a great deal of effort into piecing this together. Is this especially for me? What a comforting thought! I dare not wrap it around my shoulders, just yet. Maybe I’m supposed to wait for something, to use it at its best.

My eyes stray to an elongated cardboard box, not quite standard paper size, and only a couple of inches high. When I open it, there are several sheets of blank paper, finely textured, pearl white, demanding thoughtful recording. It occurs to me that I’m simply required to ‘be reflective’.

Then I see another small, square box in the far left hand corner of the chest. When I open this one, there are several ‘nuggets’ that for some reason I immediately recognize as fuel for my lamp. I also know that this is enough fuel to last indefinitely, to light my way and for others who follow. Isn’t that amazing?

Ah ha, so now I understand what’s going on. This is a chest of gifts dedicated to self-care. My wise future self sent this to me, knowing that in order to be a guide to others on my journey I must first take good care of myself.

* * * * * * * *

Imagine that you have come across a wooden chest in your attic. When you lift the lid, what items are waiting there to support you?

Or, if you were going to put items into it that symbolize your strengths what would they be?

* * * * * * * *

Meet Your Future Self – FREE

Receive a 20-minute meditation  (long distance fees not included). Includes a 15-minute debrief and a transcript of your notes.

To schedule an appointment send an email to crimsoncompass@gmail.com with Future Self in the subject line. Promotion ends January 31, 2009.

Setting a New Year’s Resolution for 2009?

This special deal would be perfect to support your efforts!

Within two weeks after receiving your Future Self meditation choose one 30-minute follow-up coaching session at a 50% discount. Session includes:

1. Goal-setting for 2009.
2. Tips on how to connect with your Future Self to support your goal.
3. A written summary with accountability steps included.
4. Within two weeks, a follow-up email or 15-minute phone call to review steps you have taken towards achieving your goal. We’ll look at what is or isn’t working.

The cost for all this is just $35. Offer ends January 31, 2009.

If this is your first time visiting Loving Pulse and you enjoyed the reading, don’t forget to subscribe to the feed so you don’t miss upcoming posts. Click on Subscribe to Feed on the home page and follow the prompts.

2445294078_d52c27474c_m911 changed the way we looked at the world didn’t it? It changed our perspectives on a lot of things.

And now we’re closing out 2008 while facing a season of extreme uncertainty in our financial world.

A new season is upon us and it is a challenging time, fearful for many. As human beings it is our nature to avoid pain, but without anything to push against, we build no muscle. In this regard, fear can be a valuable ally.

By conquering crisis, we can find that hero within. If you think back to those times when you conquered challenges and what you learned from them, you will recognize that you had an opportunity to sculpt your soul. You experienced a cycle of growth.

This new season feels like winter doesn’t it? The days are dark and it seems this time in our lives will last forever, frozen in time. But don’t forget that life has cycles, just like the seasons. After winter comes spring, a time of growth and renewal.

Crisis isn’t new. We’ve come through other troubled times such as The Great Depression and two World Wars. Other seasons. Other times.

We can’t necessarily control these events, but we can control what they mean to us. We can decide what we will do with it, what perspective we will take. We can participate in our own rescue.

There are 5 steps you can take to deal with a crisis.

Make a decision The word decision means to cut off from. When you can find meaning in the experience you make the decision to not let the external world hold you hostage. When you get to that point where you say “Enough!”, that is the point where you take back your power.

Loss in the external world can’t take away your internal world. You can rebuild that by focusing on what you can do to find a sense of purpose. What can you do to contribute to a sense of connection in your world? How do you do that?

Be resourceful Fear is always there, so face it. When it brings us to a point of anger and overwhelm it is a call to action. Something is telling us that THIS is not good enough for us and it is time for a change. There are two ways to be resourceful.

1. Get physical. Fear is physical. So is faith, courage and empowerment. We use our body in a specific way in each of these states. When you are in a state of fear your brain is being held hostage. You can’t deal with fear in your mind. Emotion is created by motion.

Do a workout. Take a power walk. Do something to take yourself out of the state of hiding. Exercise changes physiology and again, emotion is created by motion. When you change your physiology you can change your mind in a heartbeat. Don’t do it once! Make it a ritual during this crisis. Attack the crisis. Will you think about fear? Or faith? What are you feeding your mind?

2. Feed your mind with what will strengthen you. We are what we consume mentally. Whatever we focus on continuously we feel. Eventually we hit a tipping point, the emotional storm. Your brain becomes frozen.

Focus on what you want, not on what you don’t want. Focus on moments you remember that brought you excitement, joy, comfort and a sense of accomplishment. What we do is shaped by what we feel. It can change in a moment. Don’t let fear dominate you; it will cause you to freeze. Too much pain is the power of crisis; it causes you to do something. What can you do?

Create a vision Get clear about what is important to you. What is it you value? If you don’t know, think about what you desire the least. Get revved up about that and use that energy to turn it around to focus on what you do want.

Expand on your vision by finding an example of someone you admire who has been successful. Know that when someone succeeds consistently they’re not lucky, they’ve simply found a pattern that works.

Find a proven plan Success leaves clues. Model somebody who has made it through a crisis. How did they handle it? What steps did they take. What resources did they use? Because crisis has been done before, there is a pathway to power. Other people have found their way through it.

Take action Success is a matter of good judgment, which comes from experience. And guess what? Experience comes from bad judgment. A first plan usually fails, but the quicker you get to that stage the quicker you get your feedback and can move on to the next stage. If you don’t get off the fence you won’t get anywhere.

You don’t have to do this alone. Find a partner, someone who has knowledge or skills that complement yours. Keep each other accountable for the steps you are taking. Two heads are better than one.

Decisions control our life. This crisis will make us look for tools and we will become more resourceful. What we do is shaped by what we feel, and emotion is created by motion.

* * * * * * * *

Do you recall a time in your life when you went through a crisis? How did you support yourself?

Looking back, were you able to see how it changed the course of your life in a positive way?

What do you choose to see for yourself in the new year; the new season in your life?

Note: Credit for this post goes to one of my favourite life coaches, Anthony Robbins. I have transcribed this information from a recent 50-minute audio clip that is part of a series he has created called Learn How To Turn Crisis Into Opportunity. When you click this link on his website you will be prompted to leave your email address and you will be sent his FREE audio programs that include an interview with billionaire Sir John Templeton.

I highly recommend listening to Tony’s audio programs. His enthusiasm is contagious. Let’s spread it around!

Visit his website for more information. And as Tony says, “Live your life with passion!”

If this is your first time visiting Loving Pulse and you enjoyed the reading, don’t forget to subscribe to the feed so you don’t miss upcoming posts. Click on Subscribe to Feed on the home page and follow the prompts.

Photo Credit: Londa Elle

While I waited for my senses to surrender to sleep, I listened to the wind whispering through the trees outside my window.

I felt connected. Complete. I drifted off to sleep while other senses were awakened.

The wind was the last thing I remembered before waking from a dream. In this dream I was dressed in army fatigues and being held prisoner. I was not alone and eventually helped the other person to escape.

I awoke from the dream slowly, still looking through the eyes of that person who had remained behind. Interestingly that person no longer felt like a prisoner.

I had this dream while preparing to write this article and feeling the frustration of writer’s block. How could I write about living a balanced life when I was struggling with it myself? Nothing I wrote felt right. I had become so attached to the outcome of the article I wasn’t letting the creativity flow. I was disconnected. What was interesting about this dream was my interpretation. The person who had been set free was my creative muse.

My thoughts returned to the connection I had felt while listening to the wind. I knew there was an answer there. Memories of other times I felt connected swam through my mind and I relaxed into knowing what living a balanced life meant to me.

Seeing a shooting star. Catching a snowflake. Watching the sunrise on a misty morning. Admiring a rainbow. Smelling the new cherry blossoms in springtime.

These are things that fill me up. They are without expectation. And because I am not attached to the outcome I can be more fully in the moment. Nature does that for me. It wakes me up. It inspires that feeling of being connected. When I feel connected I also feel balanced.

We have become separated from the natural flow of life in an effort to control it. Calendars and schedules attempt to balance our daily activities, yet we still run in circles seemingly getting nowhere. We have created this world and yet it controls us. We are out of rhythm and less flexible because we depend on these schedules to tell us where to be and when.

Life has a schedule of its own and it unfolds as we are trying to fold it up, throw it into a briefcase and run for the next subway train. We don’t even see where we’re running because subconsciously we’ve already reached our destination.

Because we have become so disconnected with our natural rhythm we feel unfulfilled. This brings an unconscious desire to fill a void. And fill it we do – with things. But it’s never enough is it?

Trouble is, the more things we collect the more complicated our lives become and the more out of control we feel. It is a never-ending cycle.

You can stop the cycle. Here are five suggestions.

1. Feel your connection: Balance is achieved through connection. What are you doing when you feel connected? See it in your mind and remember how it feels. When you feel out of control, revisiting this feeling can stop you from living ahead of yourself. It brings you back into the moment. When you are in the moment you are less likely to be distracted.

2. Honour your values: When you know what your ultimate goal is (the big picture), hold it in your intent but don’t become attached to it. Working with values gives a person the ability to make more powerful and appropriate choices about how to reach their goal.

Finding rhythm in attaining a goal comes through knowing that each step is connected to the other; like a dance. They’re not separate actions to be scheduled in a specific order. They naturally support and feed each other with little effort. One clue that you are not honouring your values is through your internal dialogue. See #3.

3. Choose your dialogue: Be aware of how you talk and think. What words are you choosing? When you say, “I should” or “I have to” you are putting pressure on yourself. Or, perhaps what you are trying to accomplish is not of value to you and you shouldn’t waste your time on it. If it is important, choose more empowering words such as “I want to” or “I will”. They’re less likely to cause resistance to action.

4. Practice meditation: Simply put, meditation encourages clarity. We aren’t scattered because there are too many distractions. It’s because we are not focused that we notice the distractions. When a person is not focused they are more vulnerable to outside influences. Responding to people and circumstances takes a back seat, while reacting takes the front.

5. Focus on fulfillment: Fulfillment surrenders to balance. As I mentioned earlier, when we are not feeling fulfilled we unconsciously try to fill a void with things we believe will fill us up. When a life is built on false beliefs any perceived balance is fragile and short-lived. I’ve had days where my life seems as organized as it can be, but find myself feeling restless. Something is missing. Things appear to be balanced, but I’m not fulfilled.

One thing to remember. If you’ve ever tried to stand on one leg you’ve noticed that balance fluctuates. That means if you aren’t flexible you’ll end up a prisoner of your own controlled efforts.

Wake up to your senses and they will lead you to the fulfillment that designs a balanced life.

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This article is my submission to the Life Balance Group Writing Project over at Create A Balance blog.

Please share your comments below and if you enjoyed this article don’t forget to subscribe to the feed so you don’t miss any upcoming posts.

Photo Credit: Alison Lyons Photography

Luny Landing won first place in the Master Team Sculptor’s category in the World Championship sand sculpture event. This event was hosted in Harrison Hot Springs in British Columbia, Canada.

Artists from around the world went to great lengths to build these sculptures to withstand the elements and remain show worthy for the public and of course, the judges.

From the most artistic design to the smallest, most intricate detail, this show of more than 70 sculptures was a pleasure to see. It was quite clear that these artists had realized and embraced their passion for creativity.

Please continue reading on page 2.

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I thought this was a nice t-shirt when I bought it.

I believe in living as a free spirit so this was the perfect T.

A free spirit has been defined as a person who lives by their wishes and beliefs and who is unconstrained by society’s rules.

My definition of a free spirit is someone who is powerful, happy and free. Someone who embodies the spiritual, who is full of love and all that colourful loveliness of being alive. Oh, la-di-da!

Pollyanna step aside.

I’ve been kidding myself. I have only dreamed about being a free spirit.

I aspire to live unconstrained by society’s conventions because I want to hide in my safe little box. I’m afraid (no, I BELIEVE) I’m not good enough to belong anywhere!

This is a pattern I’ve lived with for most of my life, and I’ve kept my spirit contained because of it. Sad!

In grade seven I was ostracized by a group of girls. We would stand in a circle at recess and talk. Well, most of us talked. I just listened. I was very shy, afraid to talk and afraid to be seen.

One day, one of the girls approached me and told me they didn’t want me hanging around with them anymore. I was devastated and spent the next five years in school looking for some sign that anyone might like me, that I belonged and that someone wanted to be my friend. I wanted an invitation.

I suffered in silence. The only person I spoke to about this was my mother, and that was only because she saw me running from the school bus one afternoon in tears. I ran straight to my room and she followed.

“Nobody likes me,” I sobbed in answer to her concerned inquiry. I can’t remember what her response was. I just remember sobbing uncontrollably and she eventually left without a word.

I went to therapy to heal this wound but the pain never went away. Why? I kept making those girls responsible for my pain. A part of me still wanted to believe they were insensitive cruel bitches (that felt good!), but I know now as an adult that kids will be kids.

The reality was that I was already in pain before being ostracized. I believed then that I didn’t belong and I didn’t have anything to offer. That was why I stood in silence in that circle during recess. In a sense I was using them to keep up an appearance. Why shouldn’t they kick me out? I was their weakest link.

What happened was only a reflection of my belief system. Thinking back, I didn’t dispute this with those girls. I accepted that there was something wrong with me and continued to live my life in a box, afraid to be seen.

So how can I free my spirit?

Somehow I don’t think that ripping this t-shirt off while walking along a busy downtown sidewalk is the answer.

I’m still learning that living as a free spirit doesn’t require an invitation from anyone but myself. It needs to be exercised and that will not happen while living in a box. And, there is no la-di-da here either.

These are 10 actions I believe will exercise the spirit into remembering the freedom that is its birthright.

  • Take the self and everyone else less seriously.
  • Make rules and then break them.
  • Make lots of mistakes; laugh at and learn from them.
  • Stop trying to have everyone else conform to my rules.
  • Give other people permission to be themselves and make their own mistakes.
  • Respond, don’t react.
  • Let creativity speak and listen to it; practice what inspires you because that strengthens the spirit.
  • Get out of the head and follow the heart more; practice to learn the difference.
  • Envision myself as already living as a free spirit.
  • Take my place in the circle; recognize that I have gifts to share and just share them!

I will leave you with this quote that a friend shared with me just today. “Be kinder than necessary because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle.”

As for that box I mentioned, are you in or out? How has this affected your life?

Please share your comments below and if you enjoyed this article don’t forget to subscribe to my feed. My next post is entitled “Creative Luny Landing in the Sand”.

Photo Credit: Davina Haisell

I dreamt that I died. I felt no pain. There had been no accident.

There were no tears or sadness. No darkness.
No loss.

I couldn’t remember the details of this dream. I just knew that I had died. This feeling haunted me all day.

I couldn’t shake it. It clung to me like a suit of armour.

My thoughts became heavy and dark. I wondered what this all meant. Was I going to die?

In desperation, I took a quiet moment to reflect on the dream. This is the vision that came to me.

My body lay lifeless on the ground. Suddenly it wrinkled like a piece of plastic being exposed to extreme heat. It shrivelled up into itself, folding into my heart.

My heart had not changed. It was stronger than ever, beating with vitality. Fully alive. I could feel the warmth. I could even sense the richness of the brilliant red blood that still fed me.

In slow motion, my heart opened like a beautiful flower opening to the rays of sunshine. I imagined the heavenly scent of fresh spring blossoms. Then, gently, one petal at a time, we expanded into the space around us, rose from the ground and vanished.

I was in awe of this beautiful vision. It was not what I had expected. Could death be so beautiful?

This dream and vision visited me on January 9, 2000. I reflected on them this morning as I was reading through my dream journal. I don’t remember if I ever decided what this dream meant to me back then. What does it mean to me today?

After reading Harmony’s latest post entitled “The Eclipse” at Golden Zen, I see what this dream means to me now.

If we fear our darkest thoughts they will continue to run our lives. But, if we take a moment to stop running and sit with them, we could uncover something special.

Perhaps they are seeds that need a ray of sunshine to grow. And, perhaps they are waiting there in the shadows to empower us beyond our wildest dreams.

What impact do you think you have on others? On your life? On yourself?

Who do you want to be with others, in your life, or with yourself?

Asking yourself these questions is the first step to recognizing your truth.

I have developed eight core value statements through a simple exercise.

This was very rewarding because it helped connect me with what is important to me and what I value about life.

Because values are so close to us, we often take them for granted.

Recognizing your values helps to make decision-making easier. We make decisions based on our values which are like lampposts that light our path along the way. 

Following, are my core value statements and a brief explanation of how to do the exercise. I hope that you become as curious as I was to undercover your answers and find your own core value statements.

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They say nothing is written in stone, but I beg to differ. Last week I dug out some journals dating back 15 years. I was searching for inspiration, and to remember how magic happened to me.

Back then, after reading Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way, I had taken up the habit of writing what she calls Morning Pages. In a period of four years, my life went through two major transitions and I wrote my way through both of them. 

The Morning Pages asks a person to commit to writing three pages every morning. If you don’t know what to write about, write about that. I found one page in my journal where I had filled half a page by writing “I don’t know what to write”, over and over. After reviewing these Morning Pages, I realized how my goals eventually became a reality.

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