If you haven’t met Cas, you’re in for a real treat. She is creative, funny, modest, real and on top of that, she offers useful and practical tips. She is very generous with her knowledge and posts often.
Here are My Answers To The Valentine’s Day Love and Treasure Tag Questions
You can see my answers below written in red.
1. Are you a romantic person?
Yes, I am. I used to be more romantic, but now I’m a bit more practical.
2. What do you prefer receiving on Valentine’s Day?
chocolate or other candies
dinner (I’m a foodie… so a nice restaurant dinner is my idea of love. 😉 I like local Italian restaurants (not the big-chain kind). But the thing that I love the most about a romantic dinner is that it shows me that somebody wants to invest in spend quality time exclusively with me doing something that we both love. It doesn’t get too much more romantic than that.
3. What do you usuallyget on Valentine’s Day?
chocolate or other candies
4. Do you prefer a handmade card or a store-bought card?
I know I may sound picky, but I prefer a pretty purchased card, unless the handmade one is very pretty, made with lots of love and from somebody special.
It’s silly for me to focus on the beauty of the card, but since I keep the cards I receive, I want it to bring a smile when I see it for the first time as when I see it later on.
Cards are like beautiful art for the heart.
If the cards are durable (meaning strong and not flimsy), I like them even better.
Random fact: My favorite brands are Papyrus, Hallmark and American Greeting, in that order. I don’t have to receive these brands to be happy, of course.
5. What is the BEST thing anybody has ever said, done or given you on Valentine’s Day?
My child’s first card was the best. 🙂
6. How do you feel when you see what other people got on Valentine’s Day?
happy for them
I’ve felt both. But usually, I feel happy for them.
What I don’t like is for people to “show off” their “love” in public, when there is no love in private. And usually, you can tell which couple falls into which category. Know what I mean?
In my opinion, gifts can be as special or even more special in private, than they are in public.
And most importantly, something free can be as meaningful, if not more meaningful than something that’s super expensive. It’s the intention behind what’s given to you that counts.
7. When it comes to desserts, what flavor do you prefer?
strawberry (Fun Fact: I like the cartoon Strawberry Shortcake)
8. When you were in school, how did you feel when you gave the kid you liked a Valentine card?
I felt nervous about choosing the “perfect” Valentine for him, placing the Valentine in his classroom Valentine box and trying to read his reaction if and when he opened it. I didn’t say much in the Valentine… but I wondered if he could tell that he got the “coolest” Valentine I had. Of course he couldn’t, right? But the suspense was interesting.
9. Have you ever had a love letter, card or gift rejected? Tell us about it.
Yes. It wasn’t on Valentine’s Day (thank gosh), but in 2nd grade (elementary school, can you believe it :O ? ) I gave the little boy I liked a love note (what was I thinking!!??) while we were in line to go back into class.
You know what he did?
He got out of line even after the teacher was already there, to throw the note into the trash can.
I was scarred for life. Hahahaha. 🙂 (Just kidding… although of course, it did hurt my feelings).
Worse thing is, he really, really, really wasn’t that cute.
Especially when he grew up, and I really thought to myself, what was I thinking!?
But that’s okay, writing is one of the ways that I show my love the best.
So in the end, things have a perfect way of working out.
10. What was your favorite thing to do when you didn’t have a boyfriend on Valentine’s Day?
Remember how I said that I was a romantic?
Well, there were several Valentine’s Days when I didn’t have a boyfriend when I would lay down in bed on my tummy, put my head on a pillow, and listen to romantic love songs. I would sing along to them or I would simply analyze the lyrics to death.
I loved this ritual because the songs that they played on my favorite radio station were part of a special Valentine’s Day radio broadcast. They were fa-bu-lous!
It was almost great not having a boyfriend so I could listen to these songs! Guess what? I did this even if we went to my aunt’s house for Valentine’s Day. I just asked her if I could borrow her radio.
I was definitely a hopeless romantic.
11. What do you think is the best movie to watch on Valentine’s Day?
There are so many great ones, but, I would watch my favorite romantic comedy, Notting Hill.
I love romantic comedies. 🙂
But if you want my advice… watch your own romantic movie or romantic comedy movie, even if you’ve seen it. That way, at least you’ll know that the movie is great and won’t be disappointed by that. 😉
12. What song do you immediately think of when you hear the phrase “a romantic song”?
“Take my breath away”….la-la-la-la-la
I don’t even know the whole song, and nope, I’m not that old, but it comes to mind.
The song that is kinda old, but is nevertheless romantic, is “Unchained Melody.” You know the one—- from “Ghost” remember?
It’s not my favorite though, don’t worry.
I actually have too many to list.
13. Which Disney couple (yes, like Mickey and Minnie) has the type of relationship that you’d like to have? Feel free to share why.
Yes, this is a tough question. But my answer is: Cinderella. I like how relentless, romantic and persevering Prince Charming is. Plus, he’s a great provider. I mean, who wouldn’t like to live in a castle? 🙂
14. Which Disney couple’s relationship is the most similar to yours? Feel free to share why.
Also a tough one, probably, The Little Mermaid because there were distances and transformation that were part of the equation.
15. What Valentine’s Day decoration do you like the most?
heart cutouts (shouldn’t surprise you based on my logo, option, right 😉 ?)
And yes, cherries and whip cream are food decorations. 🙂
16. Who do you think deserves to be loved the most on Valentine’s Day? Why?
I think that everybody deserves love any day and especially on Valentine’s Day. However, if I had to pick one group of people it would be friends.
In some countries Valentine’s Day is called “Love and Friendship Day.”
And although we do often give friends a little something on Valentine’s Day, I think that most of us hold back somewhat in sharing the deep love and appreciation that we have for our friends because we don’t want to come off as too loving toward them.
17. What tradition would you like to remove from Valentine’s Day?
The one tradition I would remove from Valentine’s Day is self-consciousness. We are way too self-conscious about showing people our love.
18. What tradition would you like to add to Valentine’s Day?
I would like for us to know what offering the top 20 people in our life prefers, according to Gary D. Chapman’s Love Languages. They could like physical gifts, spending time together, words of affirmation or actions.
Knowing this, I would aim to give the top 20 (or 10 or 8, the number doesn’t really matter) in my life what they prefer during a moment of quality. And since each person deserves their own slot, so to speak, I would want to schedule a mutually agreeable time to offer them my token of love within the 7 days after Valentine’s Day.
We could schedule time together months down the line, but at least we have something to look forward to. And the best thing is, we don’t have to hold our breath waiting for the “we should get together soon” phrase to come true.
And when we have something to look forward to, we lead happier lives knowing that instead of having a calendar full of “to-do’s,” we have at least 20 get-togethers of “want-to-do’s” already scheduled.
19. Who would you like to have answer these questions?
You, who is reading of course!
Please leave all the answers to these questions or your favorites below in the comments. If you have a blog or a YouTube channel leave your site below so that we can visit your responses. Or you can also tag me on social media so that I can see your responses there.
I’m writing to invite you to talk about love as often as you can, with as many people as you can.
How: Talk about love when you communicate verbally, nonverbally, to yourself and to others, whether they look like you, talk like you, feel like you, love like you, believe in what you believe or not. Of course, you’ll have to stand up for yourself from time to time, but even when you do, do so from a place of love
Time: You’re free to talk about love as often as you can, you’re free to live in the vibration of love, and therefore act in loving ways with those around you even more often than you do right now
Place: Talk about love or communicate with love everywhere, without dwelling on the fact that it might be the unpopular thing to do.
What we’re Celebrating: The reason I’m encouraging you to talk about love is to inspire you to make a shift in all the areas of your life and of our world at large by focusing on and acting from a place of love.
When you love, you feel good. When you act from love, you do good. Both benefit the world.
When you deliberately seek to feel good, without harming the people around you or harming yourself, you attract to you an infinite amount of blessings which you in turn can give to others.
You feeling good brings wellbeing, grace, illumination, hope and faith to those around you.
When people are inspired to explore their highest potential, imagine all the positive change that can come from it.
Why we’re Celebrating: Love is the answer that many of us seek, but cannot see. It’s what we ask for, and do not answer the door when it knocks. With love at our core, we can literally change our life, change the dynamic of our interlinked lives and change the world. It is worth repeating that love makes us feel good. And when we feel good, we don’t seek to be fulfilled by things that leave us feeling more empty and strip the world of its inherent joy. When we feel feel good, we’re more willing to serve, to create, to uplift to inspire.
If you accept this invitation to talk about love, perhaps I don’t physically see you putting love into practice, but some way, some how, I’ll feel the energy that YOU helped make more loving. Incrementally, the world will start to talk about love thanks to you. The world, or at least your world, will realize the importance of love, how we’ve taken it for granted, and what a powerful force it is to shift our ability to create a better life for ourselves by simply following our bliss, as Joseph Campbell so eloquently inspired us to do. When we watch the news or anything that perpetuates negativity we consciously or unconsciously fixate on the negative, and therefore increase our creation of more negativity. Totally not what we’re after is it? 🙂 Besides, all the tragedies in the world will not help us shape our loving world, as I stated in a prior post, it’s easier to learn lessons the easy way, such as through love, than the hard way, often expressed as tragedy.
So join me in spreading the importance of love in the best way that reflects your talent. Acting loving in as many circumstances as possible may seem like the weak thing to do when there seems to be so much danger, adversity and negativity in the world… but remember that the world is as you see it. If you believe in love, and spread love, love is what will abound in your life. Throughout history, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Mother Teresa have believed in love without limits… and notice how their efforts live on. Nowadays, you have sublime people like Dr. Wayne Dyer, Deepak Chopra, Oprah, and Louise Hay that believe in love like I believe in love and I’m sure you do too. Together, famous or not, when we talk about love, we can really make the difference… and making the difference through love, is what this blog is about.
So please join me, in spreading love in the way that feels the most joyous to you. You don’t have to R.S.V.P. and you’re free, or rather encouraged, to bring a friend with you along on this journey. 🙂 All I ask is that you leave a comment below stating why you are interested in joining me.
When something negative happens to someone as a result of what we consider a decision based on poor judgement, we often say “Hopefully, he/she learned his/her lesson,” sometimes sincerely, sometimes judgmentally. We also say, “I’ve learned my lesson,” often as a last resort when all is said and done and when we can’t change what’s happened. Our solace and consolation after a challenging life event, oftentimes is that we do learn. Sooner or later, we understand what life is trying to tell us. However, have you ever wondered if in fact we need to suffer greater tragedies or go through something truly difficult before we learn?
Is Life a Fair Test or Does it Just Want to Fail Us?
I don’t know about you, but I would much prefer to learn via a positive experience, somebody else’s negative experience, intuition, common sense or life’s little hints that something is off. And we do get those, it’s like someone throwing a cotton ball at us to grab our attention, then a pebble, then a stone, then a brick, until finally, if we have not paid attention or done anything about this situation, the whole brick wall comes tumbling down on us.
What Lesson Do You Want to Learn, the Easy Way?
The number 1 thing I would like to learn how to do very well, without any tragedies attempting to teach me any so-called lessons, is to appreciate life and love even more than I do. It is through this appreciation that I can show my love to others, be truly present for them and be truly present in our life to enjoy this gift called life.
What do you want to learn, the kind way? If you stop to really think about it, what type of lessons has life taught you recently? How to value family more, friends more, money, job, health, freedom or something else? What kind of “grades” have you gotten in each of these areas? Do you need life to test you rigorously in your worst-performing areas in order for you to “prove” that you’ve learned what you need to learn? So, knowing what you want to learn, and the fact that you most likely don’t want to learn things the hard way, why is it that many of us wait until someone dies, we get divorced, we file for bankruptcy, we lose a family member, we lose our friend, we lose our child’s respect, or we lose our health, we lose the ability to enjoy the simple blessing that we have at our disposal each day, or we’re about to lose our life before we show that we truly care about that which we lost or about to lose? What on earth are we waiting for? That may depend on your circumstances and your mentality, but you want to know the ultimate lesson that life is probably wanting to teach all of us? That we shouldn’t take things for granted. Nothing is a given. We “deserve” nothing. We’re entitled to nothing. That promotion, that vacation, that salary, the car, the cruise… isn’t yours forever. Nothing, belongs to us. As trite at it may seem, we really do need to value the presents in our present while they last. Now, the point here isn’t to become paranoid… the point here is to become truly joyful and loving… NOW, when it TRULY matters. Of course, some of these life events where we experience loss are inevitable and sometimes, as hard as they may be initially, they’re even the best thing for the people involved, but if we’re feeling guilty or remorseful about whom or what we lost, it probably means that at some point, we weren’t appreciating or treasuring to the degree that we wanted to or that we know the other person needed.
Those degrees of separation between being at peace with something and not being at peace, is what hurts— it’s what damages us, and it’s what traumatizes us. We feel we were so close, and yet we were so far.
While there are times when we can say with quite a bit of conviction that we’re the victim of our circumstances, most of the time we’re not the victim– we are the conscious or subconscious perpetrator of our life circumstance. Most situations that result in us hurting, came about because we took the important things in life for granted. This brings us to the question, if we know that it’s absolutely unnecessary to suffer greater tragedies before appreciating life and love, why do we not act like we know this? Is it because it takes more courage to love, be present, be active, be involved, than it does to experience the pain that we get if we distance ourselves from whom and what we love? That’s a question truly worth exploring. In other words, why do you subconsciously or consciously allow the tragedy to happen before you act? After all, if we care enough about ourselves and we take a moment to listen to ourselves, our feelings, and sense our intuition, you can almost immediately pinpoint what’s wrong with your life. Maybe “wrong” is to harsh of a word. You can pinpoint where you’re not interacting with life and with others to the degree that you would like and where you can appreciate life and love more. You may choose to ignore this awareness, but that’s your decision and it doesn’t mean that your feeling is not there, or that it’ll go away just because you don’t want to deal with it.
Waiting for a tragedy to strike so that you can “confirm” what you already know is an utter waste of time and of your potential.”
If you know that a job is going nowhere or a relationship is going nowhere, then, whatare you waiting for?!
In life, we meet, court, go after, and eventually “marry” situations that we think we want. However, we can often feel it inside ourselves if what we’re going after is worth it, or if it isn’t. Yet for some absurd reason, we think we have to complete the cycle with everyone and everything. Let’s face it, not everyone and everything is deserving of this great commitment of ours. But yet, we choose to not do something about the dissatisfaction that we’re experiencing. That’s why there are unhappy strangers celebrating their 40 year anniversary; there are people who died today who never fulfilled their dreams because they were too busy being responsible; most of us live with junk that we bought which we’ll never use; and there are unhappy, unfulfilled and overwhelmed parents raising unhappy, unfulfilled and overwhelmed children. Worse yet, we often don’t realize that in our pursuit of following everything that doesn’t matter or that doesn’t provide us with true happiness, we plague our world with joylessness. How sad! Can you see how this emotional, physical, mental, and spiritual baggage that we’re carrying around is insane, something that affects us all and will continue to affect the generations to come unless we wake up and practice true love and true appreciation with one another and with our collective world? Of course you can see this!
You are an A+ student in this school of life, so for the love of anything or anyone you think is worth loving, don’t wait to fail another of life’s “grueling tests” so that you can become “enlightened” after-the-fact, to do what you know you should do today.“
Be the great friend
Be the loving parent
Be the caring spouse
Be the bold entrepreneur
Be the one who gives time lovingly and generously
Be the one who gives a damn about the hunger and poverty in the world
Be the one who questions the garbage we’re teaching our youth and falling for ourselves
Be the one who takes care of your wellbeing– YOU are your best doctor
Be the one who believes in your dreams- no matter how unrealistic they are or seem
Be the one who makes your dreams happen so that we can all continue dreaming
You have such a full and rich life already regardless of what’s going on, that despite what the world may think and what you may have foolishly accepted, you don’t need a guest called “Tragedy” in your life. Trust me, been there, done that… you really don’t. If by chance, Tragedy does come, make sure that you are living today in such a way, that due to the enormous amount of love you give, that loving people can help, console, support and ease your pain during an inevitable tragedy. If nothing else, make sure that your mentality attracts as much positivity into your life as it can and is able to deal effectively and efficiently with Tragedy. If it must, let it come in, accept it’s offering, which is usually a lesson that you already knew, and quickly show it the door so that it can exit. Dwell on love and appreciation because ultimately, your circumstances are filled with trivial details trying to teach you what the important lessons of life are.
Share Your Wisdom Treasures
So after analyzing whether you personally do or don’t need tragedies in your life to learn about what matters in life, what proactive measures, if any, are you willing to take to demonstrate that you know the lesson?
It only takes a glimpse of your to-do list, your social media presence, your calendar, your conflicting appointments and the world at large to know that your life is overflowing. It’s full of commitments, full of errands, and the term “scatter-brain” should be your affectionate nickname.
In the grand scheme of things, however, IS your life full? Do all of the things that fill up your to-do list, your social media profiles, your calendar, your time, your life, your heart, your mind and your soul fill you up? Really fill you up? If they don’t, you’re absolutely not alone. There are billions of people who feel this exact same way. We’re focusing on the ingredients of life… the minutia, instead of focusing on the celebration of life cake. We can even throw the cake out of this scenario and know that it’s absolutely enough to just be in the present. But when are we present? Where are we right now? As you know, we are everywhere but here. We are literally, mentally, psychologically and spiritually scattered. Therefore, we are hardly ever present to enjoy our life. You know what also is sad? That we expect to enjoy our life and have joy based on our external circumstances, instead of our internal ones. We’re not valuable because of how many things we checked off our to-do list, how many friends we have on social media, how many people like what we say on social media or how many social invitations we get each weekend. There’s so much more to you than that.
If you really observe your life, you’ll discover that:
“It’s not that you can’t keep up with your to-do list. It’s that your to-do list can’t keep up with you because your mind is constantly creating, thinking, analyzing, envisioning and realizing the hundreds of things you “have” to do.”
And the question is not where your to do list is when you’re getting an avalanche of thoughts of this kind, but where love and doing the things that matter end up. Do they even get a prime spot on your to-do list? Or your life?
What Should Your Life Be Full Of?
You are probably reading this with the hope that I have some magical answer for how to be more present and for how to feel more joy? (After all, if you’ve read this far, it’s almost like a miracle… I know you have so many things “to do” 😉 ). And as simplistic as it may seem I do have an answer that can be magical if you apply it well in all areas of your life. That answer is love.
Why Should You Start Talking About What Your Life Should Be Filled With?
Of course, how you can apply love to your life is too broad of a topic for this one post. For now, though, I want to leave you with 5 do-or-die reasons why having a conversation about love is important:
1. First of all, you need to come to terms with a perhaps rude awakening and that is that you literally have sooooo many things on your to-do list, that even if you did nothing else in life, you would probably still have plenty of things to occupy you the rest of your life. So, the concept of love, as basic or grandiose as you think it is, NEEDS to be part of your life. This means, you have to make time for it. It’s not like you can wait until the rest of your to-do list is finished, before you feel you can focus on love. You need to call the people you love, see them, spend time with them, cherish them, give them you. Give them love. And if they say that they don’t have time for some of your loving. Insist on loving. Making loving them your priority. And analyze this: Why do you think they’re so “addicted” to being busy? Have you ever considered that if they didn’t feel busy, they would probably feel empty? Have you ever considered that that’s the reason why your social calendar is that full? It’s sad and surprising to even come to terms with either one of these rationalizations. The key here is, that instead of being someone who is waiting for LOVE to knock on your door, and rescue you from your to-do list is super naive. It’s not gonna happen. There is no “Love in Shining Armor.” YOU have to create time for what matters.
2. And please, don’t give me the “But really, I don’t have time” excuse. If you find the time to gossip, to talk about the latest reality show, to obsess about cleaning, to argue, to watch sports, to watch movies, to talk about what you’re going to bring to the pot-luck, to engage in politics, to talk about or participate in office politics, the watch or talk about news, to comment on what the latest celebrity said on a social media site, then you certainly have time to make love your priority. Haven’t you heard yourself lately? Haven’t you caught yourself and heard a little voice saying, “I can’t believe I’m talking about this stupid subject” when you’re spending time with your loved ones? That’s your intuition that knows that you’re wasting time.
3. As hard as it is to admit it, you know what your intuition is reminding you of? That we’re not eternal. So either you do and say what you’re meant to say right now or at the next opportunity that the moment is “good enough” instead of waiting for the nonexistent “perfect moment” or you run the risk of never, ever, having the opportunity to say it at all. You can die today. Your loved one could die today! What are you waiting for!?
4. On a larger scale, negative energy is taking this world nowhere productive. Of course, you can say it’s taking us down, but that’s why I specified that it’s taking us nowhere productive. You have two options with every choice you make. Either you take the fear/hate route as you do something or you take the love route.
Which one do you think will take you further in life (not that we’re focusing on your needs right now)?
Which one do you think will make the best difference?
Which will allow you to leave a meaningful imprint or legacy for those that have had the privilege of knowing you and having you in their life?
I know and you know that anybody can act negatively and perpetuate fear and that they’ll instantly feel powerful doing so. That’s what cowards and wimps do. That’s the easy route. Anybody can hate easily, but not everybody can love easily. Yes, they can love, but it takes courage to love. Courage comes from the French word, “coeur” which means “heart.” If your heart keep you alive, why shouldn’t you want to keep the world of our dreams alive? And no matter how impossible it seems to be to attain it, help create it one choice at a time?
5. I hope that all of this is helping you realize that love is the topic that should be trending on your favorite social media sites. You know where else love should be trending? On your everyday day-to-day “mundane” actions, meaning in your life. You maybe think that you’re so insignificant that you choosing to live more love-consciously will not matter. But you know what? You’re wrong. Haven’t you stopped to think about the power of love? Don’t you know that if today you chose to love someone instead of being indifferent, hating or feeling any other not-so-giving feeling, that you would make a difference? You can either make a difference to that one person or (if you can think this highly of yourself) you can make a difference to the whole world. Put another way, when you make a difference to one person, you make a difference to the world. We are all energy. That’s no joke. So either you uplift our collective human consciousness or you bring it down. It’s all based on how you treat one person.
Why Should We Take the Time to Talk About and Apply Love?
We need to address what’s important in our world by talking about love. Love is the common thread and the common denominator in all of our lives. All the political issues that are driving people nuts around the world, boil down to love. Love impacts how a farmer farms and how he treats his animals. That in turn affects the energy that we receive from our nourishment and how healthy we are. Love affects whether or not a doctor does everything in his/her power to keep you or a loved one alive. Love affects our oceans, our pollution, and the people who have just died out of hunger in this short time that you read this post. Love matters to your child who needs your embrace, to your spouse that needs a caress. Love matters to the underdog, but it also matters to the CEO. Love should matter to everyone and matter a whole lot, because it is essentially our best gift, our remedy, our answer and our saving grace. Either we use love to keep our personal and collective well-being afloat, or we don’t use it and sink in misery, despair and indifference. We’ve all experienced both sides of that equation on a microscopic level in our own life and we know that we’re much kinder and much smarter than to let the latter happen, so start seeing love as a unending treasure, because it really is. Without further delay, give it away.
Now It’s Your Turn to Share Your Wisdom Gems
This blog is not my soap box. It’s a platform to honor love and converse about it. So, I’d be thrilled to hear what you have to say about it. Please share this article with your friends so that more people can join in on the conversation.
Do you think that you are ready to learn more about love? Why or why not?
Do you think the world is ready to learn more about love? Why or why not?
I first became acquainted with Iyanla Vanzant when she first came out on Oprah. Something that struck me about her then and that continues to strike me now, is the loving manner in which she tells it like it is. She invites you to reflect about your life as a sister would… with love and compassion, but truly encouraging you to live a life that allows you to be better and freer. In other words, she has very little tolerance for B.S. and she inspires you to have very little tolerance for your own B.S..
What Is Our Biggest Issue with Forgiveness?
While living a better and a freer life can sound like a cliche or a generality, Iyanla’s book, Forgiveness: 21 Days to Forgive Everyone and Everything, is a flashing, bright, neon, symbolic sign (which many of us can’t see or simply ignore) of what many of us need— to forgive— in order to live unchained to our past and little by little, untether ourself from our issues. Think about it, what usually holds you back? Fear that you’ll get hurt if so and so does such and such to you. Put another way, you’re afraid that you’ll taste humiliation again, and you’re afraid because you dislike the taste of humiliation (who likes it?) within your own body. And who controls what goes on in our own body? We do. The act(s) you lived through that you think is/are so horrendous happened in the past, but you continue to relive it/them in the present. It’s like watching the scariest movie scene that “traumatized” you over and over again, instead of focusing your attention elsewhere. Who does that? As incomprehensible as it might be, we do. Why? Because at some subconscious or conscious level, revisiting these undesirable episodes in our life and rehashing them to the people in our life and the new people that we meet works for us.
You willingly let fear paralyze you because you would rather be be paralyzed than be hurt.
Paralysis, isn’t as painful as hurt. As you’ve probably experienced, many times, after we’ve been hurt, we build a wall around us SOOOO high that we prevent others from entering our lives and sadly, those people who WANT to be in our lives hardly ever are “out to get us.” Sadder still, those people who love us dearly, hardly ever get a chance to truly enjoy us… because we’re so adamant about keeping these walls up and we have a super annoying laser-focus on how we’ve been hurt in the past (rather than an appreciative focus on the present) that we can’t fully experience the love that surrounds us. But hey, I understand, shifts happen, and even the people who love us, hurt us from time to time. Being close to someone poses that “danger.” Think about it this way, just because there are traffic signs that warn us and help us maneuver our way on a physical road, doesn’t mean that there won’t be mistakes and/or accidents along the way. Likewise, knowing that the people who love us don’t typically want to hurt us, doesn’t mean that they won’t. They could misread our signals (especially the yield, stop and go signs), get the signs mixed up, be stuck in traffic in their own life and have their own issues to deal with. Their reaction to you is not always just about you... they have a life, too, you know? 😉 Plus, nobody’s perfect. Even you’re not perfect with yourself. And honestly, sometimes you don’t show (not demand from) the world how you would like to be treated. Think about it, we say we love ourselves, but sometimes, we hurt our own selves. Two of the many ways that we do that is by not forgiving ourselves and forgiving others. Believe it or not, there are things that we have to forgive that we’ve done to ourselves. Do you consider yourself your worst critic? You see? That’s what I mean!? When it comes to forgiving others, please, don’t use the phrase, “I’ve been working on forgiving so and so for (x number) of years” and think that the higher the number the more heroic your efforts. If you haven’t forgiven someone it’s because you don’t want to. Forgiveness doesn’t require years of constant effort, because it’s a decision. And a decision can be made in a small amount of time… often in an instant. As the book Forgivenessshows, though, there are many areas of our life that need healing, and we may have some blockages along the way, but 21 days should be, and is, more than enough time to forgive… especially when you consider that the person who most benefits from the act of forgiveness, is you.
Thankfully, this book, Forgiveness, teaches us how to use self-reflection, journaling, honesty in answering Iyanla’s questions, EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), Iyanla’s guided meditations, forgiveness scripts and our willingness to focus on something other than our past and our wounds to move forward. In other words, we can learn to acknowledge our pain, and our hurt, but we need to move forward. Otherwise, we’re just scratching the wound and it’ll never heal. And really, isn’t that sad! and literally painful?
As if the gift of forgiveness wasn’t enough, this book is a gift that keeps on giving. If you know Iyanla, you will have noticed that she is generous and so is her publisher, Hay House. For that reason. It shouldn’t surprise you to know that you can get bonuses with the purchase of this book. They can be found by visiting the following link: http://promos.hayhouse.com/vanzant/120313email/ This book stands on it’s own, but the resources make the book even more vivid and applicable.
Does EFT Work?
Now, in order to address what is perhaps your biggest question: does EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) work? It does work if YOU do the work. You have to commit to doing it and do it as often as needed. And there are other things that work as well of course. If you are experiencing blocks in love, work, relationships, health, mental wellbeing and in your finances, you need to take proactive action, but you also have to forgive. Many times, forgiveness, is the first step to moving ahead in life, but we’re often so conditioned to take action, think positively and/or accept our reality as “status quo” that it doesn’t occur to us to forgive. After all, we’re also encouraged to compartmentalize the way that we live and to separate the good, or in this case the so-so, from the bad. You think… “I haven’t forgiven _____, but that can’t possibly have anything to do with why my income is less than it once was.” But as this book teaches us, things that don’t seem to have a connection do. And forgiveness and lack of thereof, has a huge connection to our blocks, sabotages and in life.
What Does it Take to Forgive?
Forgiveness requires a high degree of self-love because it necessitates that you have enough compassion to not necessarily let someone else off the hook for what they did, but to let YOURSELF off the hook for letting that incident happen to you, for not removing yourself from the situation sooner, for making a decision that you could’t exactly know would yield an undesired result, stop thinking that you have to avenge or keep score of any misdoings and continuing to believe that you have to be affected by the negative incident(s). You have to especially let yourself off the hook by not punishing yourself and stop believing that due to what’s happened to you, that you can’t or shouldn’t be happy.
Happiness should be what redeems you from your hurt and your pains.
Asking you to be happy may seem like an impossibility, but look at it this way, since you can’t change the past (although I KNOW you wish you could), what would make all your suffering “worth it”? Being happy, right? Meaning if you had to go through that tough time, the least you can expect/wish for is going through a really good time now. Of course, you can (and should) learn from and be wiser thanks to your past hurts (because yep, as hard as it is to accept, or as cliche as it may seem, everything DOES in fact happen for a GOOD reason). As Oprah and Maya Angelou have said, “when someone teaches you who they are, believe them.” So be wiser with whom you allow to be a guest in your life. Don’t justify their misdoings for them and don’t stop listening to your intuition just because you feel sorry for them. Apply this to yourself as well… if you don’t want to be the victim of a situation, make sure that your mentality is not that of a victim. Don’t fall into the trap that “it’s better to be the victim than the perpetrator” just because it’s more socially acceptable to be the former instead of the latter. Don’t retell your sad stories to the world over and over again just because you want other people’s empathy. You know what society loves even more than victims? Heroes of their own story that inspire others to live THEIR life fully. In sum, it comes down to one question: Are you going to continue being a victim and publicly lick your own wounds forever or are you going to use your voice to speak your truth, to state your dreams and to take your stance?
I received this book for free from Hay House for review purposes.
Now It’s Your Turn
If you’re really up for it, I’d love for you to take the opportunity to answer this question:
Are you going to continue being a victim and publicly lick your own wounds forever or are you going to use your voice to speak your truth, to state your dreams and to take your stance?
If the above question is a little TMI (too much information) for you to answer right now, please answer these questions:
What is your best advice for forgiving? What has the process of either forgiving or being forgiven taught you?
Please share your responses with us. This is the type of topic that matters and can really inspire us to move forward in life and simultaneously, move life forward.
No matter how much we prepare for motherhood, there isn’t any book that prepares us for the nitty-gritty details that can surprise us in a good way or in a bad way when the baby arrives. We are told that parenthood will be the ride of our life, but we don’t know the exactly what the ups, downs, twists, turns, bumps, surprises, backups, or altitudes will be until we start the journey. We wonder, “Are we equipped with everything we’ll need or will we need to make stops along the way to ask for directions?” The great news is that the baby will be your life tour guide in more ways than one.
What Motherhood Taught Me Out in the Field
Motherhood taught me:
That I would get 1 or 2 hours per day of sleep for the first few of months.
That the other waking hours of my day during approximately the first year would primarily consist of breastfeeding.
That maternity leave would require more effort than a 40 hour work week vs. a 22-24 hour day (but that even then, motherhood would be much more gratifying).
That people would want to visit our family (or rather our baby) more than they had in their entire life.
That taking a shower would be a luxury.
That going to the bathroom would be a luxury which wouldn’t be as private as it used to be.
That eating a meal uninterrupted, would be an impossibility for years to come (unless you ate when the baby was asleep, yet even then the baby would most likely awake when you were about to take your first bite. (You know, that bite that traditionally, people seem to enjoy the most 😉 ).
That going to my favorite restaurant would become a rare occurrence.
That staying at home would be much easier than going out.
That it’s easier to carry your baby by wearing him or her, than by carrying the baby stroller all over the place.
That it would be months before I went out alone again. And that when I finally did, I would feel guilty about it.
That I would miss my son even those times that I should have been thankful to have to myself because he has already become such a huge part of me.
That it’s much more rewarding to be attached to your child than to look for a baby sitter.
That my tolerance for embarrassment would increase.
That I could and wanted to drink this much water.
That checking one thing off of my to do list a day, would be such a huge accomplishment.
That I would be so inspired and energized to accomplish many of the goals that I had put in the back burner, because if you can be a great mother, you can do anything.
That all your other accomplishments would become pale in comparison to being a mother.
That my baby’s smile would be the best smile I had ever seen.
That I would grow more patient that I already am.
That I could love this much.
That I would be so blessed by the baby showers I received during pregnancy.
That co-creating and nurturing a life would be so rewarding.
That I would be so blessed no matter what else was going on.
Even though nobody told me about these things, in retrospect, I see them as little and sometimes huge “aha moments” and daily surprises all rolled into one that I didn’t mind discovering on my own. After all, there’s no better job training for how to be a mother, than motherhood itself. And there’s also no other jobs which such satisfying perks. Motherhood may not be unicorns and rainbows, but unquestionably, motherhood is the closest thing to it and thr most beautiful.
Share Your Wisdom Treasures With Us
So it’s now your turn to share your unique and purposeful experience:
What have you learned about motherhood that nobody told you about?
Do you think it’s better to be fully informed about motherhood, or to have some surprises along the way.
If you’d like, you may want to share this email with expecting mothers. Or, we can prefer to let them enjoy the ride of motherhood in their own self-paced journey. After all, they will soon have a little guide that will share with them the meaningful ins and outs of life.
No matter how well we think we prepare for childbirth, at the end of the day, it’s not what we plan for that bothers us, it’s what we don’t plan as clearly. This blog, is sort of a to-do list for ways grandmas can help put those last final touches of perfection on the delivery day. Pass it on to a soon-to be-grandma as is or tweak it to fit your needs.
Grandma To Do List & Explanation For Why This List is Essential
Yes, Grandma. We know you’re excited. And so is your daughter who just gave birth. You want to know what the biggest difference between you and her is?
She is using ALL of her energy in trying to keep her balance, composure and grace in this important time of her life. You, on the other hand, can just focus your energy on being happy.
Every birth your daughter gives is an adjustment phase for her that you should be considerate of. Sadly, things are more peachy for you than they are for her, at least for these few hours. Your daughter is probably too out of it, too tired, too focused on the baby or too considerate to tell you, but if she could ask you anything, this is probably what she would ask you for:
1. Mom, let me make the decision as to whether or not you’ll be in the delivery room and never resent me for it.
2. No matter who is anxiously waiting in the waiting room to know how the birth turned out, wait until the nurses call you to come in. Don’t peek in the door/curtain…EVER!
3. As absurd and obvious as it may sound, the first night after delivery, I need as much sleep as I can get. One hour or two isn’t enough because most likely, I haven’t been able to sleep as much or as comfortably as usual in the last few days, weeks or months. So once the baby is born, and as long as I have someone staying with me, leave as early as possible for me to try to get some sleep (especially if you know that I like to go to bed early). And if the baby is born at night or in the wee hours of the morning, rejoice for a little bit with us and leave as soon as possible.
3. The day after the baby is born, when you come to visit, don’t mention that you got more hours of sleep than I did, I’m jealous already.
4. The first day at the hospital, ask at what time the hospital serves me breakfast, lunch and dinner and plan to eat around that time so that I don’t feel guilty that I have food and you don’t.
5. When my food comes… the only thing that should be preventing me from eating should be the baby. And even then, help out with the baby as much as possible especially while I’m eating. How else am I supposed to recover and gain energy to be on standby for the baby 24/7?
6. Before assuming that my answer will be yes, ask me if I will want company at home the day that I bring my baby home.
7. Respect the fact that my husband, my baby and I want to bond as a family… and need time to get our footing away from family and incessant nurse and doctor interruptions at the hospital.
8. Thank you for everything and for respecting these requests, regardless of how you feel about them.
Share Your Wisdom Treasures With Us
So ladies (and gentlemen who support your ladies), have you had to make these types of requests to your mother (i.e. baby’s grandma) in order to enjoy your big day as much as possible?
What have you requested?
How did Grandma react?
Was setting these clear expectations worth it?
If you didn’t make these expectations, did you wish you had, or are you planning on doing so?
You may feel stuck because you have been focused on what you’re lacking, but when you play on the game board, you focus on your gifts and how to unleash their beauty and power.
He believes that we’re never stuck and that we’re actually always on one of the 9 squares in this game called life. I received the book Play Your Bigger Game: 9 Minutes to Learn, a Lifetime to Live free from Hay House for review purposes. I had eyed this book several months ago and I was really looking forward to reading it. While the premise of the book is good to at least console you a bit and make you aware that you’re never as lost, stuck or alone in life as you think you are, I recognize that this book has some areas for improvement.
The author Rick Tamlyn, who co-created this game with Laura Whitworth, states that:
The Bigger Game offers a philosophy and methodology for finding and releasing the full expression of your purpose and talents so that all of your years may be golden-and fun, too.
So this philosophy isn’t necessarily embraced by everybody, but it is a solid philosophy nevertheless. For many, it’s a relief to know that the term ” ‘Bigger’ [in the title] refers not to the size of the game but to the impact it has on you and your personal world around you…You will feel more capable and more resilient, because playing your bigger game ignites your creativity and excites your mind.”
What Does the Bigger Game Consist Of?
The 9 squares (which are presented until a quarter of the way into the book, a little too far into the book if you ask me) are:
comfort zones (which aren’t positive or negative in this context, it just means that you’re comfortable where you are),
hunger (when you desire something more. It can take three forms, either we don’t want something, we want more of something or we sense that something is missing),
compelling purpose (you’re looking for or have found a driving purpose) “Your compelling purpose is something so powerful that once you identify it, you can’t not do it, any more than a great singer can quiet her voice or a great writer can lock his stories inside. This irrepressible desire or force within comes from a place of deep knowing. It’s very much a part of who you are or, perhaps more likely, who you want to become… Your hunger pushes you. Your compelling purpose pulls you.”
Your compelling purpose evolves as you grow. It is comprised of these audiences:
Yourself when you’re young
Others when you’re moving from childhood into adolescence
The Field when you’re older (it stands for the world around you)
Once you find your compelling purpose, “There’s no other option but to do what would normally be extraordinary, but now is required.”
assess (this is where you want to double check how you are doing, where you are and where you need to go)
bold action (this is where you make the leap to make it happen).
gulp (you feel both excitement and fear at this stage. You’re nervous, but ready for action),
sustainability (a checkpoint where you identify what you need to do to sustain yourself and have a lasting impact)
allies (“this is where you stand when you’re recruiting, building, and nurturing the support network for you and your bigger game.”)
investment (you’re considering the time, money, effort, plan and process you’ll need “to create, run, and sustain your bigger game.”)
The Pros about the Book and the Game:
I like the premise– we’re always playing in this game called life and are on one of the 9 tic-tac-toe-like squares. Note that it’s interesting author chose “squares” not “boxes” because boxes feels confined and constricted
Identifying where we are on this 3 x 3 matrix can provide some clarity as to where we’re going in life, since it serves as a GPS location
It is possible that we are on multiple squares at the same time
It’s a game that never ends. While that can seem daunting, in a way it’s inspiring, because your potential to inspire and continue attempting to make your life, the life of those around you, and the lives of people around the world better, never ends either.
You have no opponent or competition (other than yourself and your limiting beliefs)
You “never have to stop playing your own version.” This is awesome because you can start feeling comfortable that you playing your own game, for a greater good is good enough. I love that! What’s inspiring to know is that:
Your unique bigger game lies at the intersection of what your heart desires and what the world needs.”
“All that’s required to begin play[ing] is an earnest desire to have a more meaningful and successful life and conscious awareness of where you are right now, where you want to be, and where you need to go to get there.”
It’s exciting since, “you must decide to set something in motion even without knowing what it is. It’s like stepping into a mystery… It’s like starting a pregnancy: you know something is coming that will change your life; you just don’t know exactly what form it will take.” Not knowing everything will allow you to be in the “now” and to give yourself permission to be creative as you go.
I love how the author took the advice of what to do with his life, which was “Rick, your job is to breathe life into people and their plans” especially since Rick Tamlyn’s father got to the end of his life without feeling a great sense of satisfaction on how he had spent his time on Earth. This has gained more momentum after the events that have happened since 2001 and has inspired Mr. Tamlyn to help more and more people.
Mr. Tamlyn has great advice jewels embedded throughout the book, one of them being:
Keep in mind that goals are overrated. It’s fine to have them. I recommend them. But we have become so goal oriented in our work and personal lives that we aren’t open to the magic and spontaneous opportunities that pop up. Go with your goals- love them and embrace them- but put more focus on the game you are playing, and watch yourself reach your goals magically.”
When it comes to engaging in the game, a positive result is that we think and develop as leaders.
Better yet, when we are playing our bigger game we’ll find that our focus “grows wider, encompassing not just yourself and others, but a much bigger, longer, and wider picture.” “Bigger Games often serve a greater good, because the player experiences an expansion of perspective and a compelling desire to have a lasting impact.” If we all were playing a bigger game, we could literally change the dynamics of the world and the legacy of generations to come.
Aside from our cause growing bigger, we grow bigger given that an “important feature of your bigger games is that they require you to grow. In fact, if you already know how to do it, it’s not a Bigger Game.” And the best part is that that author says that, “You’ll be so compelled that you will find a way- and amazingly, you’ll have no sense of struggling or frustration, only that liberating feeling that comes with expressing the full power of all of your gifts.” Even if we do experience struggles and frustrations, the beauty of it will be that they’ll be OUR struggles that we chose to take on and not struggles that were imposed by someone else looking out for their own benefit or their own bigger game.
And as Bigger Gamers, we don’t have to play and reach our desires alone, since “In that state of being [mentioned above], you’ll experience another phenomenon. You’ll attract allies and supporters into your life like never before. Their complementary skills, talents and knowledge will meld with yours. A team will form, sometimes without conscious effort, and you’ll accomplish more than you ever could have done alone. “
The Cons About the Book and the Game:
Perhaps it’s the portion of the title, “9 Minutes to Learn, a Lifetime to Live” that affects me, but I think that the book could be much shorter than it is, if it really does only take 9 minutes to learn. Of course, using examples typically makes making a point clearer, but in the case of this book, some examples go on and on for several pages and are not powerful (others really are inspiring). What’s worse, is that many of these examples are repeated in different chapters. And as you know it’s not pleasant to hear something that you really don’t find interesting numerous times.
I always like to highlight the books that I read, but I found that I didn’t highlight anything in this book for at least the first 10th of the book, and what I was highlighting was just an interesting fact about an example-nothing life changing for me. This was a red flag. In my opinion, the author should captivate the audience right away. It was a good thing that I was interested in reading the book and finding what exactly this 3 x 3 game matrix looked like, otherwise, I would have put it down way at the beginning.
I think that this book needs additional editing given that there are facts and examples that are repeated in various chapters and instead of making the point at hand clearer, it just makes the content drag a bit.
Personally, I wish that the order in which the squares were presented and the order where they fall on the game board was the same. The fact that the order of the squares is random and the order in which the squares are presented is random, makes it seem like the order of what is one each square was an after-thought. And if that’s not the case, and the author just prefers to present the squares in a specific order because they make more sense to him, it would be ideal if the squares were changed to the order/location in which he presents him so that everybody can instantaneously gain as much sense as he does.
The game would be more useful if there was actually some hint, no matter how small, regarding where to move forward to if you were standing in a specific square already embedded in the game. This would serve as a layout, for people who felt very very stuck. Something like when you’re ___ and ____ is happening do this. Of course, there would be many possible outcomes, but at least people could start turning their wheels better.
Although the definitions of the Bigger Game are good, I wish there weren’t as many definitions.
These are some of the definitions:
“The Bigger Game sets you free to live in state of full engagement and creative play.”
“Your bigger game can spring from anything you are involved in, whether it’s working on a college degree, building a corporate career, starting a business, nurturing a family, or fighting for a cause. Some bigger games you may choose; some may choose you.”
“Our bigger games arise from who we are, and they determine who we become and what legacy we will leave. We create your bigger game by investing in it with the full force of who we are. In the process, we become thoroughly engaged and driven, not by goals or expectations but by our own compelling purpose.”
and there are dozens more… which makes me wonder, what is THE definition of the Bigger Game… because over-explaining what the game is, dilutes its impact, in my opinion.
While it’s great that this book has helped thousands of people, with today’s desire for crisper, more actionable advice, it would have helped a great deal if the author focused on the actual content of the game, instead of the many repeated examples, given that I feel that people who choose to read and are drawn to this book don’t need that much convincing. They’re typically the people who would say, “GAME ON!”
The experience that this book reminds me of is being on the verge of playing a real board game with family. You want to enjoy yourself in the little time that you have. And yes, you want to learn what the game is about, but you want to learn how to play as quickly as possible so that you can get onto the business of actually playing it. Feeling this way comes from a place of being excited. However, if you focus on the extraneous information too much, getting through this book can feel more of a chore than a joy…. and that’s a shame because we should feel “pumped up’ to live a meaningful life for the benefit of helping others, and I found having to pump myself up several times to at least be as excited as I was before starting this book. After a while… with so many examples, it starts to feel more of a maze than a matrix. Thankfully, there were many powerful quotations in the book that kept me going.
In Sum, Do You Need this Book to Play a Bigger Game?
In sum, “the Bigger Game is simply a tool for tapping into your inherent abilities by opening your eyes, focusing your mind, and unleashing your talents- and the board is where you go to free yourself from whatever limitations may have been imposed on you, either by yourself or by others.”
So playing it is really up to you. If you need to let go of limitations, if you need reassurance that you’re not stuck, if you need inspiration for how playing it can be have an impact on the causes that you care about then by all means: Play it. My only advice, leave the content that doesn’t benefit you on the table and grab and make a difference with what does.
One of the beautiful dangers of playing this game is that “There’s one thing you can be sure of when you allow yourself to turn up the hunger dial: the status quo will no longer work for you.” And that is good, because as we know the status quo is often not good enough.
One of the best quotation that makes playing this game and reading this book worth it in and of itself, is
“If you settle into a life or career without weighing the benefits and the detriments, then you run the risk of going on cruise control- or out of control altogether.”
So just the potential to stop and check your GPS location to identify a really valuable destination makes this book worth it.
The ultimate beauty is that there is no score to keep when playing this game, and by playing a bigger game one can acquire greater purpose for fully living life engaged.
What Bigger Game Do You Want to Play?
What Bigger Game do you have in mind?
How do you want to help others and the world?
Did you like the book?
Leave your comments below. I’d love to be a witness in your game! 🙂
We’ve all heard it before, and deep down we agree:
If only we knew WHAT we really, really wanted, we would go after it.
Yes, in fact we DO need to be clear on what our wishes are, not only at the beginning of each year, but all throughout the year so that we remain committed to our wishes.
How Can You Stay Committed to Your Wishes?
One way that I’ve been able to achieve many of my wishes and get excitedly close to achieving several others is by creating this wish box that was introduced to me by Hay House author Denise Linn.
On New Year’s, she and her daughter Meadow Linn, who is also an author and who co-wrote The Mystic Cookbook along with Denise, a blogger, a wonderful cook and a lovely person overall, get together to set their intentions for the new year by making several projects. One of these projects entails creating this wish box, which they refer to as a magic box.
My Experience With a Wish Box and How it Can Benefit You
I first created this wish box a couple of years ago. Thankfully, some of the BEST and most important wishes that one can dream of in a lifetime have come true and are coming true for me. I realize that this is in part a combination of various factors, being clear on what i want, working toward my goals, believing in my goals and believing in myself and simply right timing.
Making a wish box is a great family tradition, a family craft activity and a wishing session all in one that I highly recommend. But there is absolutely no shame in doing this box alone. As a matter of fact, don’t beg anyone to do one with you… they’ll most likely ruin the mood. Let me show you how to have fun making one.
How to Make Your Very Own Wish Box
1. Buy a craft boxOR better yet, find a pretty box that you already own that you can use exclusively for this purpose.
2. Find things that you would like to decorate your box with such as stickers, cardstock, photos, magazine clippings, Google printouts, foam shapes, felt shapes, ribbon, glitter or whatever else you want to use.
3. Grab some tape and glue that is capable of pinning down your chosen decorations to the box.
4. Grab pencils, markers, colored pencils and pens
5. Before you start deciding on what decoration goes where, keep in mind that you will need to write “thank you” on all four sides of the box. You can use stickers that say “thank you” or you can print out this phrase with your printer. The idea behind writing “thank you” is that you should already be grateful for the fulfillment of your wishes. You have to have that level of faith.
6. On the inside of the box, incorporate the phrase, “Everything in this box is so” to further promote the faith and confidence that you have that these wishes will be fulfilled.
7. Have FUN decorating the box! Knock yourself out!
8. Once you’re happy with how your box looks, because as you know, feelings do matter, decide on which prices of paper you will write your wishes. They can be in any shape. Just consider if you write small, big, short phrases or long phrases to determine the size of your papers. Cut the papers where you’ll write your wishes by hand, by craft punches if you have any, or by electronic cutting machines. You can even use squiggly scissors to be more whimsical, if you like.
9. Now it’s time to really tune within yourself and think about what you really, REALLY wish for. It can be that you desire things for yourself, for your family, for your friends, for your community or for the world. As you write each wish down, write it as though you already have what you’re wishing for.
For example, if you wish for a Twix chocolate bar, say, “I am very happy that I am enjoying this Twix bar as a snack in the park after my workout.” In other words, use words of gratitude or of deep feeling.
Another example would be, “I am so excited that today I am going to my favorite singer, ______ ‘s concert (write the name of the singer).”
Or, “I am so happy to see my best friend’s renewed sense of living now that her illness is gone.”
10. Write each wish in a single piece of paper and put it in the box.
11. Write as many wishes as you like. Dream BIG! Most importantly, B-E-L-I-E-V-E in your heart that what you wish for can come true.
12. It is best to make yourself as comfortable as possible. You can play some comfortable music and make a determination to keep distractions to a minimum. A good resource for relaxing music that allows you to focus is www.focusatwill.com.
12. Once you are done, place this box either in a visible special place or tuck it away somewhere. Decide whether you will revisit the box in 6 months or a year. Write that date on your calendar to remind yourself or set a special day each year to revisit this activity…. like New Years day or your birthday. Most importantly, commit to not opening the box between now and then.
13. When the day to revisit the box arrives, take the box out of where you stored it.
14. Play some nice music in a comfortable setting.
15. Read through your wishes.
16. Divide them in four stacks:
the wishes that didn’t come true yet
the wishes that did come true
the wishes that partially came true
the wishes that came true but that are ongoing.
17. The wishes that haven’t come true yet go directly back into the box with the hope that in 6 months to a year, those wishes will come true. And if they don’t, perhaps it us because more time us needed… so don’t despair.
18. You can share the wishes that came true with whomever you’re doing this activity with… Or if you’re doing it alone, you can journal about which wishes came true. I don’t need to tell you, but be thankful for the wishes that came true. It’s up to you if you want to share the wishes that partially came true or are ongoing.
19. Place the wishes that are ongoing and partially came true back in the box.
20. Have another envelope or ziplock bag where you place the wishes that came true. It’s fun collecting them. Or if you’re a minimalist, and you must, it doesn’t hurt to throw them away.
21. You want to know what the best thing about having a wish box is? That you get to add more wishes on your established date! You get to dream big all over again! 🙂 You get to tap into what you desire. Isn’t this the beauty of life? To grow and to evolve? Yes, there will always be something else to pursue… but it’s the pursuit of that which we think will bring us happiness that will make us the happiest.
It’s Your Turn to Share Your Wisdom Treasures With Us
Try this magic box. Dream. Create, work toward your dreams and release… And in 6-8 months come back and share what your experience was (Include that in your calendar). Better yet, tell me if you liked the experience of at least creating a box.
Do you create wish boxes previously? What has your experience been? Do you have any recommendations that you’d like to give those who are new to wish boxes?
Who or What are You Secretly Thankful For This Year?
There are times in life when we are blessed with circumstances that at first glance seem catastrophes, obstacles, disasters and major flops. We think that we’ve just been dealt the most sour hand, that we have just been confronted with the most disappointing betrayal and any sense of pride that we had up until that point has been shattered. And we’re right, in some way. Life as we know it, is forever changed. But just as we wipe away the tears that ironically usually last less than 30 seconds at a time regardless of the immense pain we may feel, our eyes inevitably open up to a whole new world. And THAT is a good thing! Unless of course you want to continue being stuck in circumstances that don’t truly support who you are, don’t honor your essence and that don’t have your best interest in mind for what could be a truly fantastic and purposeful life.
What Changes are Going On in Your World?
How do you prefer to feel heartache? Slowly or over time? For example, pretend that you have a wonderful and exquisite 16-piece china set that you totally love and treasure. Would you rather have 16 different kitchen accidents for 16 pieces to be destroyed in their own way and make you suffer a loss 16 times? Or would you rather just drop the entire darn set once, cry for 30 seconds and get over it? I would say that the majority of us would just prefer the set to be shattered once. However, when we face what to us may seem catastrophic losses, we chicken out. Sadly, some of you don’t realize that the earthquake, tornado, tsunami and hail that you experience simultaneously is something that even your MOST sabotaging thoughts and patterns couldn’t have created… and that you’ve been “spared” multiple prolonged painful experiences that drag over the span of several years and/or decades in order to just experience the china set shattering once, pick up the pieces once and then move on peacefully without breaking a single glass in yeeeears. We think that we can’t handle life’s letdowns. But you know what? You CAN. As the saying goes, what doesn’t kill us, makes us stronger.
So, regardless of whether you’ve experienced little losses lately or HUGE losses, little pains or HUGE pains, little disappointments or HUGE disappointments, isolated negativity or in one unified and glorious shebang, be thankful. Maybe you’re one of the “lucky” people that only get little negativity and have a generously glorious life. Or maybe you’re the type of person who can manifest the sympathy of a higher power to face one difficult, but single downpour of crap that forces you to soften the grip of what is negatively affecting you and you’re so foolishly holding on to and acts as a laxative that allows you to release all your crap and the pain, waiting, suffering, shame and guilt that goes along with it.
You must let the autumn leaves of your life fall as they need to in order for your life to showcase its magnificence and its beauty.
Regardless of which reality you’ve been a part of, KNOW that what you experienced was so that you can learn a lesson from this earth school that life represents. Some of you may resist the idea that life is in fact a school, but note that if you aren’t learning from the lessons that the Universe is HELPING you to notice, the lessons will keep on repeating themselves in different circumstances, until you learn the them. Instead of seeing this as unfair or tedious, focus your attention on trying to be an A+ student, and accept the Universe’s help in being one. And why not? Borrow its notes once in a while, you might find purposeful treasures that you hadn’t contemplated before, and wouldn’t discover otherwise.
Whether you believe anything that I’m saying or not is irrelevant. After all, you create your own reality. The important thing is that you’re here. Alive. Powerful. Standing. You may have a scar on your knee, but you have a smile on your face. And you know what? The saying that there is always light at the end of the tunnel is also true. Even the most prolonged crisis has an end. One day. For every one. Somehow. Hopefully the end is a happy one. And even when you think that there’s no way out, that nobody cares, that nobody knows, that other people have greater problems that deserve more attention, and you question why these types of things “always” happen to you, you’re not alone. So smile, and feel my hug. Better yet, feel the hug of the Universe that is reassuring YOU that no matter what, if you listen to your intuition and try to seek the healthiest way out of the situation that you’re in, things will be alright. Really! Don’t take my word for it, though. Try it.
Blessings to be Thankful For This Thanksgiving
We can dwell on your issues, try to convince you about their potential blessings in disguise that they represent and even brainstorm solutions to your issues. However, if you want to see some things start to shift NOW for the better (in your mind and in what you attract into your life, mainly), start with giving thanks RIGHT NOW for what you have. Give thanks for the good things and give life for the challenges because the sooner you learn from the lessons that the challenges are trying to teach you, the sooner you can move on to a hopefully much easier and less painful lesson. Repeat this gratitude exercise daily or as often as you realistically can (I know, I know, life gets in the way). Let this become you’re catharsis, which the dictionary states is “the process of releasing, and thereby providing relief from strong or repressed emotions.” By cleansing your mind of the negative, and projecting thanks towards that which is there to make you happy or make you stronger, you will obtain a greater sense of relief. It’s as though you and the Universe will help you chip away the excess marble… sometimes softly, sometimes not so softly, so that the end, both you and your life are as much of a masterpiece as they can be.
So think about it… what are you thankful for? If you’re drawing a blank, analyze if these examples below may be some things you’re thankful for. Then think of some of your own.
Your family, those people that you can REALLY call family, who may seem distant, but who are always there, a phone call, a text or a social media post away. The blessings of a family include the newest and youngest members of the family who make you forget about your woes, the most senior members of the family (whom, if they’re admirable people, have a lot of wisdom of the universe that you can learn from if you’d only stop to really listen to them) and everybody in-between
Your friends, those near and far, former and actual, who valued you or had the misfortune of failing to value you despite you knowing how special you are 😉 yet taught you, without knowing, who your friends truly are. Those ‘friends’ who are just a number on your social media profiles or those you really want to spend time with you face to face to share what they’re doing lately, their inspirations, their physical photos and their interests, and what’s going on in their circles
Your life and all the positivity it has given you– much more than you can even wrap your brain, heart and soul around
Your dreams, both accomplished and soon to be accomplished, if you trust and put the hustle and backbone in them and in you that’s needed
Your essence— for being you, period
Your possibilities and the expansiveness and elation that that realization evokes in your soul and imagination deep down
Your strides so far (they’ve been great by the way =) )… hopefully you’re still on the right track, and if you’ve gotten off course, get back on, PLEASE, for the love of whomever you most value and wish the world for
Your health that is unfailing and if it has failed it’s simply as a request for you to pay better attention to yourself so that you can have the perfect health you’re meant to have
Being able to enjoy your favorite meal this Thanksgiving or any day, for that matter
Having people who want you sitting with them at a Thanksgiving table
For all of the lessons that you’ve learned, the hard or the easy way
For being part of this human race, part of your “species family”, that is some inexplicable way is connected to you and you to it, if you simply stopped to notice and feel in your heart
For being able to be loved and for having the capacity to love
For seeing the wonder, growth and evolution of the people or pets you cherish the most.
For all the good causes in the world attempting to straighten this place up
For all the lifelines that God, the Universe or whomever you believe in gave you unconditionally. These lifelines have given you a greater sense of peace that allows you to be more present in your life today.
Now It’s Your Turn to Share What You’re Thankful For
There are many ways to ponder upon what you’re thankful for. Some of you may prefer to pray, others to meditate, others to do yoga or tai chi, or simply take a walk to think. Regardless of your preferred method, instead of just thinking about the things you’re grateful for, jot them down in your own physical journal/diary or in the storm-proof electronic Penzu Journals that you can get at 20% off and that you can keep under “lock and key” in an encrypted online environment and be able to access from anywhere using the internet or a web-enabled mobile device. The power of the written word is enormous. And, writing down the things that you’re grateful for will allow you to consolidate them as things that you’re truly thankful for and the Universe will reward you with even more things to write on your journal. Why? Because what we focus on, expands.
If you’re willing, share what you’re thankful for below. Can’t wait to read and be inspired by the many things that all of us are so blessed to have, that are right there in front of us, but that we so often fail to see! Happy Thanksgiving Day today and always!