Request a meeting with your higher self, and listen fully.

I hope that 2018 is the year that we begin to pay more attention to that part of us, which is bold enough to keep whispering those “supposedly impossible” desires into our hearts. What does it know that we haven’t yet accepted about ourselves? I ignored that nagging, optimistic whisper for most of my life, choosing instead to follow the noise of what “I should do”. Until one day, I showed up as a disgruntled CEO of my life, looking at the meager returns of joy that my expectations were bringing in. Not one doubtful thought or excuse had anything uplifting to show for itself and I couldn’t help but feel ashamed about permitting  that mindset to be in charge of my life for so long. It was time to pay closer attention to that persistent quiet voice of inner confidence that kept whispering of a better way of being. I think that we all have that part of us that keeps our desires alive against the will of our doubts. Have you considered that this part of us may already have an elaborate plan to fulfill those ideals if we allowed it? We are so conditioned to give more attention to the inner dialogue of doubt that is quick to question the likelihood of successfully achieving the growth that our soul yearns to experience. Yet, our doubt(s) cannot see the end of time, so it can never truly present meaningful proof as to why you shouldn’t follow your heart. So why shouldn’t we hear out this dreamer buried deep inside of all of us.  This is your higher self that is receiving that inspiration for you to try one more time to get healthy, to leave that unfulfilling relationship, share your gifts with the world, etc. Yes, you know that part of you that is brazen enough to create torn in your heart by keeping that one wish alive in your soul. Clearly, it believes in us and I beg of you to finally give it a chance to make it’s case as to why it’s so unwilling to abandon your heart’s desire. See if it’s possible that it is more persuasive and qualified to run your life that the underperforming critic you may have been rubbing shoulders with.

So just for once, call upon your higher self to boast freely as to why it continues to urge you to seek more fulfillment in life. Does it know that you are really good at researching and could learn all that you need to get started and this knowledge would spark something unstoppable inside of you. Maybe, it knows that you’re really good at problem solving and you would be relentless in finding solutions to whatever hurdles come up if you kept your higher self in charge. Maybe it knows that you are great at focusing on one thing at a time and would eventually become an expert in your craft. Perhaps, it knows that the freedom that you would feel from shifting into a new vision would enhance your confidence and empower you to add greater purpose and impact to your life. I encourage you to keep all your questions until the end and do not interrupt your higher self as it paints you a picture of your true unrealized potential. Rather, stand back and slowly get excited for its conviction and as you get carried away in these new details, allow that smirk on your face to grow. It will be hard not to feel impressed by this wild dreamer that is daring to bring remarkable fulfillment, abundance and peace into your life. Keep in mind that it will never be silent if you don’t give it the shot it’s been waiting for. Follow the signs in your body, if you feel lighter and more alive by the end of this imagining then don’t throw that hope away but make a deal to  be guided by your higher self going forward. Trust it’s desperate plea that you won’t regret promoting her or him to be in charge as it assures that it will not let your down. You see even in your skepticism, you cannot help but feel fired up by its enthusiasm and passion.

Many of us aren’t living the lives that we desire because we haven’t fully seen the vision that our potential has in store. We have given doubt free reign and allowed it to run the show in our lives with little to no returns. Isn’t it time to hear what our higher self has to say and give it an honest chance to implement some changes. What if it absolutely could breathe new life into our unfulfilling circumstances as it promises. I am not saying the you have to change your life in one swoop but you have a fully confident and competent part of you that keeps urging you to experience something better. Begin by just going within and calling a meeting with your higher self and then get behind its vision. Allow yourself to imagine that perhaps you do already have everything you need to get started and remain guided by your higher self to keep moving forward in living the life you were born to create.

 

When in doubt, have grace.

Funny enough, I think that we unknowingly begin the journey towards authenticity inflated with a naive assumption that a moment of instant courage permanently overthrows one’s limitating beliefs once and for all. I didn’t know that self doubt is a stubborn opponent, always lingering closely behind every missed step as we endeavor to express greater purpose and fulfillment. Indeed, we will REPEATEDLY pass through unexpected landscapes of uncertainty to accumulate enough distance between our old mental captivity. Like a fleeing hostage who is powered with fierce intention but periodically looks back in fear to gauge safety; bravery does not preclude occasionally questioning ourselves. As you pursue the truest and most valuable vision of your life, your enthusiasm may be tested as the reality of abandoning familiar patterns and choices takes hold. It’s akin to the sense of transient loneliness that gradually hits a person settling into a foreign city after the initial thrill of sight seeing passes. Take heed not to assault your wounded pride during these occasions of emotional limbo because you are only traveling through insecurity. Expect periodic melancholy as you are returning home to your true self as the sun expects to surrender the sky at dusk with confidence that it will always rise and shine again. Anticipating this forecast of rainy days as we share our light gives us the grace to trust our capacity to evolve through such circumstances.

We are peeling off layers of limitations that took years to weave and its during the ebb of our expansion that we get to pour more love into the remaining holes in our heart. When I find myself pondering whether I am big enough to fill the size of my of unfolding purpose, I remind myself that the destination is simply to be the fullest expression of myself, therefore I have nothing to lose in being as I am during any low moment in time. We must listen to the imaginings of our self doubt as a loving parent would console a whimpering child and reassure our qualms with a promise to love and accept ourselves under each grim prospect. Remaining emotionally  supportive of ourselves during doubts allows us to recognize that we are not our fears. This has a surprising effect of easing the tension in our minds. Perhaps, self doubt is simply our creative potential seeking reassurance that we are no longer playing favorites with our dignity and a graceful  resolve empowers us to put everything on the line.  Through self love, we emerge from doubt with greater commitment to our potential, an awareness that grounds us as we ride subsequent waves of insecurity.

When we finally discover that there’s no rush to this journey of being ourselves, then we recover from doubtful moments loaded with the type of anticipation that rushes over a person standing in their brand new empty home. We now get to choose which thoughts are allowed to linger in our minds as we would carefully decide how to transform a bare house into a cozy home. So when in doubt, I weigh each decision and objective by how it accommodates my sense of internal freedom for I did not heal old expectations only to be bound by more refined ones. Rather, let’s be patient in shaping the vision of the future once we rise from momentary uncertainty to ensure that the victory we crave truly liberates our soul and growth. If you are currently caught in a moment of such insecurity, wondering how the same old fears keep finding a way back to you, do not overlook the worries in your heart. As you wouldn’t ignore a dear friend whom you knew was hurting, sit besides your shaky pride and reassure yourself that you okay and have been here before. Dissolve every version of perceived judgement with a gentle reminder that soul is only longing to feel loved by you. Be a hero to that old version of yourself that you are rescuing from grips of fear and then do your future self a favor of being brave enough today to pull yourself up to keep moving forward in a way that feels truthful to who you are. For someday you will see the beauty in this moment, why not look for it today.

You deserve a shot at the life of your dreams.

The day that I discovered what it truly meant to believe in myself, I was pleading with my doubts for a chance to at least be called up to bat in my field of dreams. I didn’t care about the taunting stories in my mind reminding me that I could never hit a first base let alone a home run because I was finally ready to just be in the game. The moment we begin to believe in ourselves comes out of sheer desperation to no longer feel left out of the life that we want to live. We start believing a different truth about ourselves when we desire the next level of happiness (in whatever form it takes) more than we cherish the comfort of our boredom . We will clamor onto the slightest bit of audacity like a child dragging on a parent’s ankle, insisting not to be left behind. We will be unprepared and feel unqualified to navigate the great unknown that lies ahead but the smallness of our reality will seem too heavy a burden to carry for another step. Believe is the next turn right after what felt like the end, where we finally accept that we deserve to try. The moment that we believe in ourselves is the moment we remember that we always could all along if we were just willing to keep trying and learning.

I do not know when this moment will come for some of you reading this but when it does, it will be too familiar to feel brand new. And remembering the other time(s) when you have summoned the same courage will excite you to keep standing your ground. You will remember the same energy of readiness you felt as child rejoining the fun after wailing in isolation to protest unfair punishment. It will be like dejavu, recalling that other time(s) you were so bold to trust in what you were capable of instead of handing over your pride to defeat. Believe is born when we are suddenly content to just show up and take the next step, no matter how small it is. It is when we become like we were as babes battling our weight to roll but we persisted in the struggle intuitively knowing that every inch gained would get us closer to someday walking.

So it’s okay if today, you didn’t send that email to ask for more of what you deserve. It’s okay if you did not think it was worth trying to carve out a little time to care for yourself. It’s okay if you’re not sharing that gift in your soul because you think it’s nothing special. But what is it going to take for you to believe that you at least deserve to try? Not simply to impress the crowd but just to get off the bench because you have a right play, to join the fun? It’s okay if you think that you don’t know enough to start now but when will you deserve to give yourself a chance to learn? When will you deserve to take even the smallest step, like getting out a pen and writing out a vision of how things could be. See, I know that when that moment comes you’ll be surprised and maybe relieved that you could feel so much power without yet changing a single thing. Because it’s then that you too will realize that one can indeed climb an entire staircase never seeing the top because they are happy to take one step at time. For today, just tell yourself the truth about why you don’t think you deserve to feel more joy in your heart. Then, thank your doubts for letting you know what it feels like to miss out on the life you were born to live. And muscle every ounce of your humanity to remember what you are truly capable of and just be willing to keep showing up to take a step towards the next level of joy in your life.

Lessons from vulnerability and rock bottom.

If you’ve been lucky enough to experience life thus far without undergoing the preverbal rock bottom occasion then you’re also probably living fairly honest with yourself. That’s because I believe that rock bottom is often the inevitable fallout of unsustainable inauthenticity. Having experienced a few these occasions (sometimes eras) , I recall that these were the occasions where I didn’t recognize my life as mine. It always felt as though I had been teleported into the bleak circumstances that were my new reality. After a prolonged series of self betraying choices, one final outcome suddenly ushers one into a new threshold of despair like a twist of the knife. Rock bottom events highlight the ideals that undermined loving ourselves by making the sudden absence of those factors incredibly painful. We become cornered into making one of two choices, surrender to our desperate desire to feel worthy despite our circumstances or painfully keep up appearances by picking up our broken expectations where we left us and try to revive them back to reality.

The first time I felt emotionally displaced in my life was settling into the lonely weight of becoming a single mother at age twenty one. I had suddenly gone from “full of potential” practically being my middle name to feeling relegated to the hypothetical rejects table watching the ‘important’ people mingle at the party. With every unsolicited opinion about the tremendous adversity awaiting me, I sensed potential was leaking out of me like air in a punctured tire. There was a looming fear and uncertainty about fulfilling the great hopes that I had for my future. And there was the loniless of socially braving the path of single parenting without others who understood your reality. Unfortunately, I didn’t choose to acquiesce my vulnerability and accept myself as good enough regardless of the presiding social perceptions. I didn’t forgive whatever mistakes I internalized but held myself to a new and higher standard of perfection to prove my worth. Being extremely hard on myself amidst my underlying perceived judgement from others created a perfect storm of disconnection and isolation. Finally becoming comfortable with vulnerability through self compassion has enabled me to heal my attachment to self limiting expectations and embrace greater authenticity and inspiration.

Our desire to be happy is the strongest when we feel vulnerable, therefore these are the true opportunities to love ourselves. Vulnerability symbolizes our strong human desire to be our true loving selves when we fear that it may not be safe to do so. While joy is the medium of inspiration, we must confront vulnerability to learn the lessons necessary to overcome subconscious limitations that undermine expressing our optimal creative potential. Therefore, having a greater affinity to appeasing our unmet expectations sabotages our longing to feel worthy amidst imperfection and reinforces the self limiting perceptions that perpetuate being inauthentic . We cannot genuinely transcend and grow beyond the undesirable circumstances that elicit vulnerability without meeting our emotional needs during these occasions. Thus, feeling stuck in life typically results from avoiding vulnerability and subsequently not knowing how make different choices that generate a more favorable outcomes. We only feel lost in life when we are running from confronting the vulnerability of what we need from ourselves to feel worthy. As I ran to unhealthy relationships or shopping addiction to avoid releasing the perfectionist expectations that I clung to with my life, I lost a true vision of who I was. Self compassion honors our innate desire to feel good enough even when circumstances would lead us to believe otherwise. Practicing self compassion now enables me to detach my worth from external circumstances so I can feel safe within my own opinion. Not having this skill fourteen years ago led to trying to white knuckle life and subsequently being reluctant to expand my comfort zone. Living in a constant survival mode emotionally robs us of the ability to foster the passion and inspiration necessary to express greater creative potential that is always within us.

I have been blessed to discover the value of self compassion not only for my own healing but to share with all those seeking freedom from the lonely grips of inauthenticity. The vulnerability within rock bottom occasions can make it hard to believe in our own good loving nature unless we finally release the expectations that rendered us inauthentic. After years of internally fighting myself, the rock bottom moment that finally inspired me to reclaim my authentic nature was my escalating anger towards others. In a seemingly innocent moment of frustration, my justified retaliation made it impossible to continue endorsing my innate belief of being a compassionate person. It took self compassion not to hide my true desire for inner peace with an angry response. Don’t wait until a rock bottom moment to acknowledge how far your life may have steered from who you feel you are on the inside. If you are in the Edmonton, Canada area and want to explore how self compassion can strengthen your self confidence then join me for my first Self Compassion workshop on Sunday November 26, 2017 with a special launch price of $10. Click the link https://www.facebook.com/events/870819843099363/?ti=icl to RSVP as space is limited.

What it really takes to believe in ourselves.

Have you ever wondered what it would truly take to believe in yourself? After all, our authentic opinion of ourselves frames our ability to manifest the beautiful life that we all desire. My own personal journey confirms that while it may be possible to succeed by other people’s definitions amidst internal discontent, pursuing the passion that fulfills our soul’s happiness takes tremendous positive believe in ourselves. We often speak of the effects of self belief such passion, determination and resiliency but how does a person nurture a positive opinion of themselves in the first place?. Sustaining the motivation to take favorable and intentional action in the absence of a favorable outcome is an important aspect of resiliency. So, while our objectives can shape the vision of our pursuits, attaching our happiness to our desired outcomes reduces our clarity necessary to make empowered choices during undesirable outcomes. Therefore, to believe in ourselves, we must choose to love ourselves without a reason. Embracing inner peace when our expectations aren’t met impacts our willingness to continue expending energy in a manner that benefits us.

Stop expecting love in return.

Our instant gratification culture  impacts a person’s sustained  ability to maintain a positive view of themselves. Wanting validation, praise and approval in return for our efforts ironically leads to playing small and not believing in our higher potential due a subsequent fear of not meeting those criteria. We may intuitively presume that having greater expectations for our efforts yields greater motivation. However, our expectations only define our dependency on external factors (beyond our control) in order to remain motivated. Therefore, one’s expectations represent all the reasons that will discourage a person from continuing to believe in themselves when those ideals are not met. Remaining attached to our unmet expectations unknowingly leads to simply lowering the threshold of what it takes feel validated, approved etc. In contrast, retaining inner peace amidst unfavorable outcomes enables us to learn and grow through circumstances without fear or concern about the perceived judgements or actions of others (family, friends, etc). The more that we expect others to contribute to our happiness, the harder it becomes to differentiate the between the hypothetical voices of their opinions and our own intuition. We must routinely react to discontent in a manner that prioritizes kindness and inner peace  towards ourselves when it’s not given in return. Doing so, fosters the mindset that can identify and execute our best interest during larger set backs. Thus, reacting from the mindset and expectations of the ego increases the likelihood that we’ll stop believing ourselves when we cannot prove ourselves to others.

Be worthy of your good effort.

We often make the mistake of devoting a tremendous amount of energy to activities that appease or impress others but seldom expend a fraction of the same efforts in lifestyle choices that foster internal happiness. Perhaps, it’s because we assume that we are not getting anything in return from ourselves. When we are only motivated by expectations then we may perceive that our own personal joy/fulfillment is not as worthy of our persistent and committed effort. Such self neglect prevents us from cultivating passion and greater purpose. Valuing our own joy and fulfillment enables us to make empowered choices in the absence of validation from others. Pursuing greater  purpose often entails investing tremendous effort in reclaiming neglected aspects of ourselves.  We must value the internal rewards of our growth to feel worthy of our own sacrifice in the absense of external approval. For example, you may be an accountant but if you are unhappy with your life, then perhaps your soul seeks greater creative expression. Discovering this hidden passion entails expending persistent energy solely for your own fulfillment. I believe that many people do not believe in their highest human potential simply because we are conditioned to only ‘work hard’ for a specific result rather than striving to expand and enrich ourselves. This is akin to a car without fuel since we cannot manifest our desired outcomes without knowing how to act in alignment with our true happiness.

Life is a series of “each moment”, therefore the unmet expectations that justify not choosing inner peace in each occasion become the reasons that prevent us from believing in ourselves when our expectations aren’t met. Our goal is to give ourselves internally all the expectations that promote our inner peace so that we can confidently act with clarity when these ideals are lacking in our circumstances. This requires the courage to feel deserving of joy unconditionally such that we can  remain resilient when our efforts don’t yield our desired outcomes. We must awaken to awareness that it is our own embodiment of unconditional love that frees us from the dependency on others and circumstances to feel worthy. If we always need a reason to choose kindness, then we’ll always need a reason to be happy and whatever constraints our happiness undermines believing in ourselves when those expectations are not met.

Taking life personally is a subconscious limitation.

One the easiest ways to shift our negative energy and raise our vibration is to look for the humor within an unhappy moment. For example, I am currently developing my first self compassion workshop and constantly quip at my growing  reality of committing more blunders than usual as an opportunity to hone my craft of practicing self kindness. The lens of humor detaches our identify from unfavorable circumstances and subsequently reveals the hidden potential about ourselves and the possibilities within a situation. Although I’ve always wanted to enjoy life and strived to maintain a positive outlook, I use to take things very personally and easily attached negative interpretations to people’s undesirable reactions. Finally overcoming this tendency earlier this year offers a new realization that taking life personally is one of the primary ways that we reinforce and internalize our own self limiting beliefs.

Stop believing a limitation.

I could not previously take something personally without also subconsciously accepting the negative implications as true. Hence, I was regularly accepting the perception that “people don’t like me”. Unfortunately, reacting from my ego in such situations prevented me from personally adopting the qualities (compassion, patience, kindness) that supported my own self acceptance and ability to shed my desire to be liked. Rather, I persisted to project my own negative beliefs as my interpretation of situations, justifying my resolve to continue to taking subsequent incidents personally. And naturally each projection sustained the cycle of internalizing greater self limiting beliefs and choosing more non-self loving reactions and so forth. Gradually, fostering the awareness not to attach negative implications to other people’s actions or my set back separates my own identity from the behaviors of others and unforeseen circumstances. Thus, I remain conscious of my intrinsic innate worth and sustain the emotional clarity to choose responses that continue to nurture the very qualities I was seeking from others. Having a more positive relationship myself has empowered me not be concerned about the opinions of others nor care if they like me. Overlooking the perceptions of others has played a pivotal role in embracing  my authentic nature and discovering greater passion and inspiration in life.

We need to stop fixating on others and taking life so personally to reclaim our authenticity and unlock the wisdom and gifts for expanding our fulfillment and abundance. Our power does not stem from what we think others owe us, but from our own capacity to become those ideals for ourselves. As one of my favorite poets Nayyirah Waheed writes “if someone does not want me, it is not the end of the world. But if I do not want me the world is nothing but endings.” Giving ourselves permission to step into the power of our true greatness is a process that requires tremendous believe in ourselves. Therefore a person must really commit to getting out of their own way by abandoning self limiting behaviors such as creating and internalizing  negative implications to undesired occurrences.

Humor offers us tremendous self awareness and insight about how to grow and release conditioned self sabotaging choices. One of the funniest insights that I’ve adopted about my journey of self re-discovery is that: “self rediscovery is sort of like buying back the presumed crappy items that I donated to Value Village for triple the cost”. The aspects of ourselves that we must reclaim to become more empowered and authentic were once  relegated as socially undesirable traits. It costs our ego a tremendous amount of humility and self awareness to resume embodying  those qualities unconditionally after being addicted to the opinions of others. I believe that this is a price that some people remain unwilling to pay and miss out on having the beautiful life that our souls desires and is able to create through authenticity. Don’t be your own biggest limitation by taking others and situations personally because doing so undermines our capacity to love ourselves. We are here to enjoy life, connect with others through service and live abundantly. All of which require immense self awareness and acceptance.

 

 

Self love is the key to manifestation.

I previously approached the law of attraction as merely thinking positively about the job, relationship or any favorable outcome, which I deemed would make me happier. I overlooked the fact that the theory of attraction relates to that person that I had to be to feel deserving of my desired outcome. Thus, how we perceive our self worth is the true law of attraction. Subsequentlythe limitations on how a person experiences inner peace subconsciously signals the magnitude of what they believe that they deserve in life. When I did not love myself unconditionally and derived inner peace during the unpredictable occasions when life unfolded perfectly, I only attracted what I perceived that I could handle. In contrast, self love detaches our joy from external factors and our resulting ability to embrace life unconditionally opens up greater possibilities of manifestation. Loving ourselves offers clarity about our intentions and choices, while flowing with the tides of life fosters a creative wisdom that enables us to trust the process of our evolution and self mastery.

Self love is your clarity.
Without self love, we unknowingly limit our potential  due to a subconscious motivation to recoup from others and circumstances the love that we aren’t giving to ourselves. For me, this began innocently as a desire to make others (family) proud. However, this need for approval eventually evolves into a fear of loosing the validation of others and one resigns to a life of simply avoiding unfavorable outcomes. Our vision loses focus if we base our choices on what we do not want instead of consciously identifying and fulfilling the passions that makes us happy. The avoidance approach diminishes the selection of desirable choices/endeavors and this is the point in life where many erroneously doubt their capacity to manifest more from life. Rather, separating one’s inner peace and joy from their expectations to be praised and validated by others would offer a person clarity about what they truly want and how to make supportive choices that enhance  fulfilling greater purpose. We must love ourselves in the same manner that we expect to be validated by others in order to feel no love lost when we detach our efforts from the opinions of others. Self love becomes the gateway for choosing growth and expansion over approval.

Self love fuels creativity.
One only needs to observe young children to remember that creativity is not only our innate nature but a necessary aspect of our evolution. I believe that creativity is reflected in our capacity to resolve or transform an emotional, physical or mental experience in a favorable manner. Therefore, creativity also requires detaching our inner peace and joy from the expectations we have of others, circumstances and outcomes. The qualities (patience, kindness, compassion, trust) that one needs to love themselves are the same traits that is required to nurture our creative personality. Unfortunately, the ego often reacts to discontent with force and resistance instead of with ease and understanding when we expect others to love us in a greater manner than we love ourselves. Hence, I did not tap into my true creative potential earlier in life when I selectively embodied love in my routine interactions. When I could not peacefully resolve and understand my son’s tantrum, a careless driver merging in traffic or a rude customer service person, I also lacked the creativity to resolve the bigger issues of my life. The more that our inner peace is attached to the action of others, then the less inspired we become, which diminishes the value to bring to and attain from our life. By detaching our identity from circumstance, self love allows us to gain the creative wisdom from each experience of discontent.

There are jewels within every human soul that one cannot discover until they learn to engage lovingly with themselves. We must venture through vulnerability and self honesty to discover the power within us. Embracing vulnerability offers us courage to willingly go first in choosing love in our interactions so that we do not become limited by seeking it from others. When we share love freely we gain the advantage of having nothing left to lose. The fearlessness that grows from self love aligns our actions with our true source of happiness,  allowing us to manifest greater abundance.

What maybe keeping you from discovering your higher purpose.

If you are currently searching to discover your soul’s highest expression of purpose and abundance then it may be more useful to identify the broader lifestyle choices that are hindering your capacity to gain your desired clarity. If your laser focus on tapping into your gifts continually comes up empty handed then you may actually be missing the bigger details that primes our mindset for  fulfilling our highest potential. Reflecting upon the times when I wasn’t connected to a deeper sense of life purpose, I can now discern the specific outlook that prevented me from being in alignment with my current passion for self development. Here are a couple universal components of fulfilling purpose that a person should first consider about their current lifestyle to determine if they possess the mindset that compliments  manifesting their highest purpose and abundance.

Are you willing to connect deeply with others?

Service is the crux of living purposefully and it represents our innate human desire to connect with others while sharing our gifts. Service grows from the notion of mutuality  and entails a desire to foster belonging by sharing the best aspect of our being with others unconditionally. Therefore, the best way to assess one’s readiness for a service mindset is to examine their willingness to create belonging and acceptance for others (strangers) in their routine interactions. And the best litmus for our propensity for connection is how one responds to other people’s egos since that is the part of our identity that intrinsically creates separation and estranges others. If a person’s default reaction is to be right, judge others or always insist on having their way then they haven’t yet adopted the desire to connect deeply with others, which is the underlying basis of sharing our gifts in a purposeful way. The desire to connect deeper with others is a key component of fulfilling greater purpose because it requires us to foremost love ourselves unconditionally. It’s through our own self acceptance that we no longer seek validation or worth through others and begin to see the humanity in others. Without having a service mindset, we still perceive that joy stems from what we expect to get from life, rather than what we can offer and share through our inspiration and creativity.

Are you ready to be yourself?

While the notion of “being yourself” is a popular message in our culture, it remains  an ambiguous concept that I did not fully understand until rediscovering my authentic nature this year. Being yourself means to be and embody the qualities that one would expect of others or act as they wish to be treated. What we demand or desire from others represents the subconscious criteria of our sense of similarity and belonging with others. Therefore, our expectations of others actually represent our repressed authentic nature that we seek to experience through others. I believe that pivotal life events left us feeling unloved or unapproved by others as we embraced certain aspects of ourselves and our vulnerability resolved not to showcase our authenticity unconditionally. Denying ourselves the joy that stems from our authentic self leads to seeking those traits in others. Thus, being yourself is not expecting anything from another person in order to feel happy, which is the essence of self love. The self acceptance that results from not needing the approval of others (family, friends, etc.) frees us to fearlessly express our own unique gifts.

The common thread between both of these criteria for fulfilling greater purpose is the willingness to go first in choosing love in our interactions. Purpose is our soul’s highest expression of love that we want to share unconditionally. Therefore without releasing the expectations/limitations on when we express love in our interactions, we will feel separate from others, which creates a subconscious fear of being ourselves or of true service to others.

 

Why letting go of expectations helps you grow.

It is my birthday today and it may have taken thirty six years but this Libran girl finally found her balance in life. Ironically, it came from letting go of all the expectations that I clung to for external stability. During the years when I frantically micro managed all aspects of my life, I would not have imagined my current ability to experience inner peace and joy amidst chaotic, unpredictable and the most challenging circumstances. Detaching my joy from external circumstances or labels enabled me to nurture the emotional qualities that make it easier to encounter  disappointment. This ability to feel worthy and at peace when outcomes do not unfold as expected constantly offers new  wisdom that subsequently enriches my creative potential. So today, my birthday wish for everyone to also discover the love, abundance and purpose that results from abandoning the expectations of who we must be, so that we can grow into our highest self and potential.

Expectations are self depleting.

I now understand that being attached to my prior expectations of validation, perfection and control undermined my conscious awareness of my intrinsic worth. Like many people, I subconsciously believed that I wasn’t as valuable if a desired outcome didn’t manifest, hence there was always an uncharted part of myself that I was fleeing from. For example, if didn’t get the grade I wanted, I first questioned my intelligence instead of simply resigning to apply more effort without criticizing myself. I took for granted that a self defeating dialogue that proceeded my disappointments actually hindered my capacity to sustain the momentum of my goals. In hindsight, the self critical version of myself was not courageous enough to rise to the occasion of thriving amidst challenges. Yet, there I was putting one foot in front the other, constantly reacting to appease every unmet expectation convinced that it was surely leading towards greater abundance and fulfillment. Unfortunately, the only destination that chasing external expectations lead to is internal unworthiness, distress and a repeated cycle of familiar woes.

Breaking the cycle of expectations.

We will never truly arrive at our desired fulfillment and abundance while chasing  validation, perfection control or certainty, etc,.  Pursuing those expectations externally prevents us from cultivating them internally and taking ownership of our happiness and life. Rather, I unknowingly lowered the bar of what it took to feel validated or perfect each time I emerged from my disappointments until I was gradually barricaded within my comfort zone with diminished fulfillment. This is that phase of limbo where many of us feel stuck or stifled in life because our subconscious attachment to our expectations blinds us to greater possibilities for expansion, while our authentic self is eagerly tugging at our soul to be freed. Our truest self is the ability to feel worthy under all circumstances, which requires detaching our happiness from all external expectations that are not within our control. Doing so, subsequently enables us to nurture the emotional qualities (kindness, compassion, patience, trust, etc) that allow us to still love ourselves when life isn’t validating, perfect, certain etc. The ability to feel worthy during undesirable outcomes makes us unafraid of unpredictable outcomes,  thus we remain motivated and inspired during set backs. Letting go of perfection has resulted in being more compassionate with myself, which in turn makes me less fearful of imperfect outcomes. Rather, the commitment to accept ourselves as unconditionally worthy eliminates the notion of failure all together and we simply get to be whatever it takes to grow into the size of our dreams. 

The journey to our authentic self begins by responding to every episode of emotional discontent in a manner that detaches our inner peace and joy from the particular unmet expectation. This is how we gain the wisdom of who we truly are and what we are capable of beyond external influences. 

“Our purpose is to transform our pain”–I. Anana

*Money, Jobs, Relationship, etc= Service
Service=Value
Value= Energy.

Therefore how we use our energy in each moment ultimately determines the value that we bring to our circumstances, which predicts the  overall magnitude of abundance and fulfillment that we are creating.
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Recently listening to an episode of Lewis Howe’s “School of Greatness” podcast reaffirmed my conviction in the above abundance equation that I brainstormed last week. Lewis promoted his new book “The Mask of Masculinity”, which offers men tools on overcoming repressed emotional pain and trauma and the social consequences that follow. His guest Nick Ortner, creator of the Tapping Solution, teaches how to heal emotional stress and trauma with EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique), enabling individuals to make empowered decisions beyond the fight or flight mode of repressed emotional stress. Their projects reinforced the insight that our suffering is simply a repression of our purpose since both men previously suffered the very issues, which they now show others how to alleviate. Howes was sexually abused as a child and initially chose of path of athletics to prove his masculinity. Ortner, an immigrant from Argentina witnessed his parents endure tremendous financial stress and upon experiencing the same in his own life sought out a stress relief solution. Their personal ability to transform their specific pain to joy became the magnitude of value that they offer to others in those conditions. Thus, the inspiration that stems from our own personal transformation is the most valuable mode of creating meaningful change and service.

What determines value?

I believe that the value of any service or item relates to it’s capacity to produce it’s desired outcome, that is how well it serves it’s purpose. The ultimate purpose of everything in life is to create the experience joy or added benefit through the process of work. It takes energy to do work, hence our purpose in life is to ‘positively’ transform our energy/effort (mental, emotional, etc) in each moment in order to experience the desired outcome of joy. There is generally an equal exchange of value and service, whereby one wouldn’t expect to obtain $100 worth of service or product if they only have $5 currency to exchange. Similarly, the magnitude of our willingness to be ‘positively’ transformed in each moment is the value we bring to our interactions. This subsequently predicts the extent of joy and abundance that we derive from life. Consequently, suffering entails receiving minimal fulfillment from our circumstances due to our reduced ability to live out our purpose of being ‘positively‘ transformed in each moment. Suffering is effort (energy) with diminished positive transformation/value, thus it is showing up to life with insufficient transformational currency to afford our desired level of joy.  It’s not simply “what” we are doing that is important but “who” we are as we are doing it that adds inspiration, creativity and value to our efforts. To create more abundance in any aspect of life, we must ‘positively‘ transform our choices to resolve areas of discontent in our lives. The inspiration, creativity and wisdom that we gain from doing so augments the value and service that we can offer to others just as Howes and Ortner and so many others have done through out history.

Your Healing Adds True Value.

I recently considered the difference in my current approach to my long time passion for empowering women to rise above subjugation. Seven years ago, I wrote down a goal of someday opening a resource center for marginalized women and children to overcome access barriers to social and economic opportunities. This was motivated by my own  sense of social disempowerment as a single black mother. Yet, simply focusing on “what” resources to could provide, reflected the limited value and service that I could personally add to my desired outcome at that time. My ongoing spiritual transformation has now broadened my knowledge and inspiration to overcoming the internal sense of unworthiness that perpetuates the cycle of disempowerment. I had to heal my own limiting beliefs and sense of inadequacy in order to understand that it’s a lack of self compassion and acceptance that drives our conditioned outlook of self denial and sabotage. I couldn’t impact this aspect of change when I was still living in personal disempowerment within myself, denying my internal truth to appease the appearances of what society deemed as worthy. I now realize that it wouldn’t be enough to assist a woman on what to do to enhance her living conditions without addressing the internal unworthiness to could still render a person a victim or disempowered in their relationships and personal choices.

True empowerment comes from authentically accepting ourselves as always worthy and good enough regardless of external labels or expectations. My message on this issue now carries a level of authenticity, vulnerability and humanity that I simply could not access prior to transforming my own internal experience of disempowerment. Without undergoing our own healing we simply project our pain as ‘what’ must be done by others to address the issue. Through our own transformation, we gain the value of understanding how to bring about change at a deeper and human level. Our healing allows others to see themselves in our stories and offers the recipe for how they too can transform our shared pain. The only place to transform ourselves is in the present now because that’s the only setting where life unfolds. Stop waiting for the big or special moments because transformation begins during any moment where we are willing to respond to our discontent to create the desired outcome of joy. We must intentionally live each moment with purpose, because the value we bring to our interactions, determines our capacity to reap our desired joy and abundance in our relationships, careers or goals.

The world needs the inspiration and value that your brand of healing will bring. This is currently your highest purpose in life, your capacity to experience greater joy, abundance and connection depends on this transformation. Our internal pain mirrors the suffering that we seek to change in the world. Our transformation becomes the inspiration that enables us to be of valuable service to such causes.