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Friday, July 24, 2015

Break Free! Getting Out of Your Own Way



'Don't allow your own beliefs to hold you back--step past them by taking action.' Lightarted Sue 

Its Simple: Get Out of Your Own Way by Taking Action


What's the secret to dealing with what ails you? You've got to get up, get out, and keep going doing things that will both calm and energize you!


Breaking Free of Belief Barriers
We all hold beliefs that serve as barriers to our taking action on things we want to do.

Because we fail to question our limiting beliefs we fail to take steps to seek work, establish new relationships, go on adventures, or follow through on healthy choices.


Every now and then I stop to observe my own self-talk to discover why I fail to take action on something that will make my life better--then I run simple experiments that free me to change my thoughts and my 'natural' actions.  


Last year I wanted to get myself to exercise daily. But when I attempted to follow through on my good intentions I discovered an age-old work-related belief barrier preventing me from getting out at the end of the day: If I failed to exercise in the morning before work I didn't exercise that day. 

My belief barriers:
  • I'm too tired to walk the dog at the end of the day. So if I fail to go out before work--that's it--the dog doesn't get a walk.
  •  I'm too tired to workout at the gym after work. If I fail to go at the beginning of the day, I won't do it.
As I observed my actions over a period of time I discovered that each day I failed to walk the dog, or get to the gym before work, I headed home to sit down for the rest of the evening—and I proved my self-imposed belief barriers right every time! 

A year later I've broken free of those belief barriers and I regularly go out after work--despite being tired--to walk the trail with the dog and to workout at the gym. How did I do it? I stopped focusing on being tired, and  I took action that increased the probability I would just do it.

The first step is always the hardest--overcoming inertia--so the first step has to be so easy its difficult to say no to it.

For me, at the end of the day, I chose to load the dog up in the car and drive to the trail head. If I don't want to walk the trail after getting there I can go home. But who wants to disappoint a dog? Not me! So evening walks became a new option for me that soon proved to refresh me from the work day. 

Likewise, getting in the car and driving to the gym in the evening became the first step to opening up the possibility I will workout in the evening. If after checking in I don't want to workout, I can go home. 

I have to admit there are evenings I check in and don't do much of a workout. But by maintaining the practice of driving to the gym and checking in before deciding if I want to workout I have greatly increased the amount of exercise I do.

"If we are to break free and move forward in some aspect of our lives we must step past our belief barriers and take steps to invalidate the beliefs holding us back."


Break Free: Act without Thinking

To step past belief barriers preventing you from moving forward simply take action without thinking one step and one day at a time.


Start by making a short list of beliefs preventing you from taking actions that would improve your life. Then choose one belief barrier to step past by taking one small action.


Belief Barriers

  • The job market has changed. I'd just embarrass myself by walking into an organization to drop off a resume or to talk to someone directly about a job.
  • I'm too tired to go out after work. 
  • I'm too busy to meet anyone.
  • I should have started saving for retirement earlier. Now it's too late.

Possible 1st Step Actions to Move Past Your Belief Barriers
  • Get a job by walking in and asking for one.
  • Drop off 3 resumes to places you'd like to work.
  • Ask 1 person for a job referral. 
  • Ask one person to go out for a friendly night on the town.
  • Spend one hour setting up a LinkedIn account.
  • Drive to the gym after work instead of driving home.
  • Take the dog for a walk when you get home from work.
  • Make a contribution to an IRA.

Prove you can do things differently. The more you prove your belief barriers wrong through taking daily actions, the sooner you'll set yourself free to pursue the life you want. Go on--get out of your own way and enjoy engaging in life.

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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.


If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, join the Lightarted Living mailing list. Sign up for free e-mail updates from this blog in the top right-hand corner of the page.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Transitioning From Grief to Relief: Letting Go


  • What are you grieving or angry about?
  • Who or what has hurt you or let you down?
  • What have you lost you're having a hard time letting go?
  • What ugliness or pain do you keep re-living?
  • Where do you need closure so you can get on with living and building new relationships?

Honor Your Experiences and Relationships Lost

Life is messy and at times painful. We hit many junctures that stop us in our tracks and make us want to jump off the fast moving train of life--not knowing if we ever want to step on that train again. 

To get past our grief and pain we need closure before we can let it go. 

If you look for ways to honor your past experiences--and honor the people or relationships you've lost--you'll ease the transition from grief to relief, and soothe your mind more rapidly.



Sit in Your Pain and Grieve until you're ready to let it go

Honor your past--including the relationships lost--by allowing yourself to sit in your pain until you're ready for closure and healing. Don't try to avoid the pain--let it wash over you until you're done.


When you are ready--know you have the strength to understand and the eyes to see all your past experiences and relationships--whether good or bad--have strengthened, not hardened you--and you will find a way to honor your experience so you emerge from your pain healthier and more connected to life and and more compassionate towards others.




Hold a Space for Good and True Thoughts to Appear

When we're struck by grief we fear:
  • We'll be forever broken by our grief or pain--leaving us permanently damaged and unable to recover.
  • We'll be hardened or weakened by what has happened.
  • Our heart will be broken forever.


When you're ready to heal, let go of your guilt and shame, and recognize you are NOT your fears.  


We all deal with grief, pain and suffering and while your heart may be broken now, know you hold a space within you for good and true thoughts to appear to help you come out of this stronger, healthier and richer through your life experience. Honor the strong person you are.



Embrace Forgiveness and Let Feelings of Failure Go 

In the initial stages of grieving a loss not only can you feel betrayed by life, you often feel somehow you failed. 

In the aftermath, you second-guess yourself, your actions, and your choices. Was I stupid for getting involved with him? Did I do enough? Why didn't I die instead of him?

Accept you did your best in the situation. Honor your experience, relationships and decisions. 

Know:

  • Sometimes you can love somebody who isn't good for you. 
  • Sometimes you can love and care for someone and they still die. 
  • Sometimes you can pour your heart into a job and still you are underpaid, under-appreciated or  laid off. 
  • Sometimes you do everything you can to be healthy and still your body breaks down. 

Forgive yourself and let go of all guilt or shame about the past. Create closure through affirming you've  done your best and look for ways you've grown in wisdom through your experience.




Create Closure: Write a Letter You'll Never Send

  • Write a farewell letter to the person you lost.
  • Write a 'no holds barred' letter to the person, organization, or God that angered you or let you down.




Seeking Closure Opens You to Living


Don't be afraid to start seeking closure even while you're grieving. You don't need to let go of your pain and grief until you are truly ready. 


By seeking closure through honoring your past experiences, actions and relationships you will begin to access your strength and and open yourself to living your life joyfully once again. 

Living your life joyfully is the best way to honor the past and yourself.

'Let me not pray to be sheltered from dangers, but to be fearless in facing them; let me not beg for the stilling of my pain, but for the heart to conquer it.' Rabindranath Tagore


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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.


If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, join the Lightarted Living mailing list. Sign up for free e-mail updates from this blog in the top right-hand corner of the page.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Happy Thoughts and Happy Memories



Happy Thought
"The world is so full of a number of things,
I'm sure we'll all be happy as kings."
Robert Louis Stevenson
 Sweet Longings

What happy memories do you have that put you in a place of sweet longing to reconnect with a time, place or person? When was your time when 'your world was so full of a number of things you were happy as a king'?

It is so important to periodically stop and savor good memories to let them color your experience of life the further you travel down the road. Life can weigh you down as you move into the age of responsibility--leaving you a little worse for wear. But your care-free, happy memories can buoy you back up and ease the way forward.





Happy Thoughts Create More Happy Thoughts

The mind is a wondrous thing--if you focus on unhappy or negative thoughts you'll create more negative thoughts; if you focus on happy thoughts you'll create more happy thoughts. Choose to train your brain to rediscover your happy place where the world is so full of wondrous things you can't help but stay engaged in exciting endeavors.



Fond Memories

One of my fond memories I pull up to savor is of my mother reading Robert Louis Stevenson's 'A Child's Garden of Verses' to me and my siblings in the evening before bedtime. I can still feel the softness of that experience in which I spent time with my mother enveloped in unnamed feelings of warmth, love and safety. All is well with the world in that memory.

'The Swing' is one of Stevenson's poems that left a visual memory for me that regularly comes forth when I am out for a walk or spending time in the garden.  I offer it to you here in hopes you can share a moment of light, care-free feeling of a time of innocence and remember the world is YOUR oyster!


The Swing
How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!
Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide,
Rivers and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside—

 
Till I look down on the garden green,
Down on the roof so brown—
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!
 

Robert Louis Stevenson



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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, join the Lightarted Living mailing list. Sign up for free e-mail updates from this blog in the top right-hand corner of the page.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Getting through Grief: Weathering the Storm





Frozen Hearts: Grieving the Loss of a Loved One

If you've been grieving the loss of a dear one, sometimes it can be difficult to get out of bed and put one foot in front of the other. 

In the aftermath of the loss your heart can feel heavy and frozen in time, and it can feel like you'll never be happy again. During the initial stages of grieving its hard to get the motivation to care for yourself, but to get on with living it is essential.

Even while you are sitting in your sadness, find a way to care for yourself. You are important to others and you deserve to be softly cared for--by yourself and others--as you're dealing with your grief.



Getting through Grief--Weathering the Storm

Anthropologist, Margaret Mead, traveled on her life adventure, with change and uncertainty her constant companions. Her grandmother--a major influence in Margaret's life--sent her on her journey with the sage advice to 'Always build a nest in the eye of the storm'.

This grandmotherly wisdom, applied to the emotional storm brought on by the loss of a loved one can help us begin the journey of getting through our grief and sadness.

The toughest thing to do when you're in the middle of grieving a loss is to take care of yourself. You lose the desire to eat, push your body to the limits with lack of sleep and isolate yourself in your grief—leaving you in a constant state of emotional overload.

You can't rush the grieving process, but if you allow yourself to 'build a nest in the eye of the storm', you can begin to create a cushion to rest and a space where healing can begin.

Sit in your grief as long as you need to--and when you're ready--begin to build a nest where you can gain moments of comfort despite the grief.

Start with the basics to nourish your body and rest your nerves. Your body likes a regular rhythm that includes regular heart beats, breaths, sleep patterns, eating times, moving times, and rest time.

When You're Ready--Begin to Rebalance Your Life

  • Start by getting your natural rhythms back in place.
  • Eat regular, well-balanced meals that nourish you.
  • Pace yourself--put a time limit on dealing with your grief.
  • Choose to have daily contact with uplifting, supportive people who can listen and encourage you in your strength and support you through your grief.
  • If you're caring for others, take care of yourself first, so you have the strength and endurance to continue to help others who depend on you.


Within your Heart keep one still secret spot where dreams may go....


Create a Place of Safety and Security

We all do our best healing when we do it from a place of safety and security. The key is to find a way to create your nest---despite the grief. It may not be easy, but it is essential.

 'The holiest of all holidays are those
Kept by ourselves in silence and apart;
The secret anniversaries of the heart,
When the full river of feeling overflows;—
The happy days unclouded to their close;
The sudden joys that out of darkness start
As flames from ashes; swift desires that dart
Like swallows singing down each wind that blows!
White as the gleam of a receding sail,
White as a cloud that floats and fades in air,
White as the whitest lily on a stream,
These tender memories are; —a fairy tale
Of some enchanted land we know not where,
But lovely as a landscape in a dream.'

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


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For more than 30 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.


If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, join the Lightarted Living mailing list. Sign up for free e-mail updates from this blog in the top right-hand corner of the page.



Monday, July 6, 2015

10 Things I Learned By Taking the Advice I Give to Others



'A wise man once said nothing'... Spirit Science

Put on Your Hard Hat--Emotions Boiling Over!

I don't often get spitting mad, but when I do I find its nearly impossible to make healthy decisions for myself the moment I'm catapulted into that deep emotional fog of anger, frustration and disappointment. 


In an explosive wave of emotional turmoil brought on by people or life letting me down I want to lash out, walk out, and spit out a few !*@#* expletives. (If I had a towel I'd throw that out too!)

In a flash of anger, my reptilian brain puts on it's hard hat and goes into combat mode-- playing out emphatic scenes of fight or flight reactions--while my conscious brain goes on high alert to reluctantly enforce impulse control over the reptilian brain's alluring reactive desires. 

Somewhere deep in the recesses of my brain I understand I must give myself time for the inner battle to subside so I can remove the hard hat causing me to dig in my heels and develop hardening of the attitudes.


I now let go all bitterness and disappointment with the world

It Takes 3 Days to Release the Bitterness and Get Back to FLOW

You'd think after we've been through this roller coaster of emotions  a few times we could figure out how to calm ourselves quickly, but the nature of the emotional fog is it clouds our judgement every time. 

I've learned it takes at least three days to release the cloud of anger, frustration and disappointment to the point where the battling factions of our mind can walk away from the fight and we can begin to see and think clearly. 

I've also learned my own best course of action to get back to a fully satisfying state of mind and a life that flows is to take the advice I so willingly give to others.
Our saving grace against acting as our own worst enemy in times of anger is we really do want to have good outcomes for our lives. 

I now let go all rage and resentment towards others

The Wisdom of Taking Our Own Advice 

While we may be amazingly profound advising others in emotional pain, we're amazingly clueless dealing with our own. If we can tap into that wisdom we spread to others we can put ourselves back on a healthy course of action and good decision making.

We hold the keys to unlocking the wisdom within us but sometimes we need help finding the key when it is temporarily misplaced in the fog. 

Below are 10 things I've learned to do better in my own life by taking the advice I give to others. 

All things seemingly good or bad work in my favor


What Would I Advise Others to Do?

The ultimate question to ask yourself is 'what would I tell others to do?' 


1. Do Nothing for 3 Days


'The two worst strategic mistakes to make are acting prematurely and letting an opportunity slip; to avoid this, the warrior treats each situation as if it was unique and never resorts to formulae, recipes or other people's opinions.'  Paulo Coelho

2. Acknowledge and Sit in Your Feelings

By giving yourself time to wind up and fully acknowledge your anger, frustration and disappointment you can more quickly calm down and get to a place you can consider the advice you'd give to others you love and care about. 

Check in with someone you trust to help you look from outside. It's always easier to know what someone else should do than to see what we should do ourselves.

Write a letter you won't send. Write as many of these soul-bearing, 'no holds bar' letters until the anger, frustration and disappointment has run it's course. When you're ready--let it all go and get ready to move on. 

3.  Do 1st Things 1st 

Get all your ducks in a row. Do your research. Get another job or figure out retirement before you quit. Consider the consequences of your actions. Most of all, sit in your anger until you're ready to put it down so you can think clearly.

4. Choose to be Strengthened, not Hardened by Your Life Experiences 


'Life is not the way it's supposed to be. It's the way it is. The way you cope with it is what makes the difference.'  Virginia Satir

5. Act Calmly, Not Out of Anger


'To carry a grudge is like being stung to death by one bee.' William H Walton

Don't be in a hurry to respond publicly. Wait a day before you hit the send button or post that Facebook rant. Share selectively instead with people you trust who understand and support you.
   
6. Quit the Job, Activity, or Relationship when the Time is Right for You

Don't leave money, love or opportunity on the table--but don't linger in a situation that is soul-killing or one that thrusts you into not caring so you die on the job or in the relationship. At the point you can't be effective or you hate coming to work, consider what other direction you want to go.


'I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.' E.B. White

7. Act in Ways that Provide the Best Outcomes for You Long-term

'You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision and a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world. You impoverish yourself if you forget this errand.' Woodrow Wilson

Take time to consider your actions, options and choices. 

Consider the pro's and con's of staying the course or going in a different direction. Ask others what they would do in your situation; ask yourself what you would advise someone else to do.


8. If Push, then Pull; If Pull, then Push

Move in the direction you are being pushed or pulled--i.e. if the person you're in a relationship says he needs more space 'give him enough rope to hang himself'.

9. Use the negative energy to energize you to take positive action


'When you are enthusiastic about what you do, you feel this positive energy. It's very simple.' Paulo Coelho

10. Remember all things seemingly good or bad always work in your favor 

Always look for the next great opportunity a seemingly bad experience opens up for you. 

'We must develop a complete receptiveness to all experience - rejecting nothing, judging nothing, and resisting nothing.' From Resist Nothing by Eckhart Tolle and Kim Eng


Life continues to unfold in miraculous ways....believe it!



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For more than 35 years, Susan Meyerott has been helping people lighten up and step over invisible barriers to change one step at a time. She speaks to your heart, puts you at ease, and makes changing easier than ever before.

If you're interested in learning more about closing the gap between where you are now and where you want to be, join the Lightarted Living mailing list. Sign up for free e-mail updates.