There’s so much more than what we see

1-22-17

My client paid me a very nice compliment the other day, just as I laid my hands on her to begin her massage. “I’ve been getting massages for years, all over the world and you are without a doubt, the best I’ve ever had… your hands are magic”. I thanked her, but also reminded her that i can only do what I do when others let down their walls enough to receive what it is I have to give. For those clients who remember to take care of themselves more often, to stretch, to relax, to get regular bodywork and to silence their minds on occasion, so they can feel how they feel…. they make it so much easier for me to make a difference. For those who take time in little ways to heal themselves instead of whining “help me”, when they don’t do much to help themselves…. that’s where the real magic can happen. My clients have taught me so much over the years. They’ve reminded me to slow down and pace myself, that it’s not only up to me to “fix” or “help”. They have taught me that it’s ok for me to limit the amount of work i do for others…and to remember to take care of me. They have taught me the importance of getting regular massages for myself, because it’s more than just a physical “feel good ” kinda thing…it’s about survival. And on those days, when it feels like i’m not capable of “showing up” to help…I am shown that with intention to help, nothing can stand in the way. Somehow, on the days when I’ve struggled with something like a horrible migraine, mind-numbing cramps, grieving the loss of a loved one, heart-ache, depression, anxiety, back or neck issues, hands that throb and ache after doing this work for this many years, or tears that won’t stop falling…when i take the time to breathe and be present with someone who is ready to let go of their own pains, I am able to let go of some of mine, too. I’ve often said that massage has been my saving grace, more times than I can count. It’s the thing that’s always stuck with me, no matter where I’ve moved or where I’ve chosen to work…this craft continues to show me that there’s so more to me than what I can see. I’m so thankful for this path

Forget Everything And Rise

1-1-2018  Sandra D.

Fear is said by some to be “false evidence appearing real”; which doesn’t do much to console the anxious feeler in times when that fear gets triggered. The law of attraction says that what we give our focus to now becomes our reality later. Pushing fear down or attempting to avoid it is basically denial, and so the trigger remains and the tension builds, polluting our mind and emotions as we do our best to reroute our thoughts. I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic over the last few years, and working as a massage therapist often allows my mind the silence to reveal clarity in whatever ways it presents itself. I can only speak for myself, as I’ve only walked my path and woken up behind these eyes each day. Maybe what I offer rings true for you, as well…
The ego says “i feel too small to accomplish this big day before me”. Spirit reminds me “If you show up with the intention to serve, the energy will flow through you where its needed…. it’s not coming from you anyway, just passing through.”
Ego worries “if im brave enough to be completely authentic, will my family and friends still accept me?”
Spirit reminds me “we are all here to grow through experience, so the only times we would judge another is if we have stopped being present with ourselves”.
Ego hesitates to use all of this voice to speak, write, sing, drum, play; Because what if it makes things worse? Or what if someone finds fault in my expression?
Spirit reminds me “take a breath find gratitude, and let it flow through you; it’s not coming from you anyway. Nobody will ever express a moment exactly like you, so be proud of whatever reveals authentically.”
Ego holds back and wonders, is it safe to trust this person or that one, to be who they seem to be…and what if they wish to do me harm?”
Spirit reminds me “Energy cannot be created or destroyed so that means we are all part of the same energy…which means a part of me has been around forever, and i would never choose to do harm to myself, so I am safe always”.
Ego says “if everything is calm then I will be at peace”.
Spirit reminds me ” If your peace is always dependent on your attachment to situations or people being a certain way, then you will never find it for very long before it can be taken away. There will always be hurricanes and storms, but you must find your centered calm within yourself”.
Last night, the anxiety was triggered as it sometimes can be. I closed my eyes while i played my drum and prayed. Alone in my peace i was reminded that i was untouchable here. Within the hurricane of emotions I could have felt, this time I saw it differently. This energy which has often brought up feelings of nervousness, anxiety, and irritation, instead showed me an opportunity to serve…and so I prayed to heal this source of frustration…because it must keep presenting itself for a reason, or it wouldn’t be an issue. And then, spirit reminded me to pray for my own healing. And so I prayed with everything I had that I am able to heal that part of me which feels upset by the presence of another, for any reason. I prayed to heal that part of myself which gave away my peace… And then, drumming next to the man who loves me; our drums collided with a mighty voice which told me my prayers were received….and then I smiled.

11:22

Wednesday 11-22-17
One day, I was pretty much drowning in my life. Finances were super tight, responsibilities were high, and i felt very low. I sat down and wrote an intention that my higher self purpose could be realized, because i felt like i was tired, always, and only felt valuable when i was massaging or giving in some way…which my body and spirit were wearing out from. And then this happened, and more, but how can i remember every detail? And would I even want to?! It was all a moment in the scheme of things…But once it felt so big, so here’s some of my story:
11: Positive Characteristics: A Master number, the 11 is the most intuitive of all numbers. It is instinctual, charismatic, dynamic and capable when its sights are set on a concrete goal. The 11 is the number associated with faith and psychics.
Negative Characteristics: The 11 can be anxious, shy, stressed, conflicted and scattered. When focus is not applied toward a goal, the 11 can be extremely self-sabotaging. As a Master number, the positive characteristics will turn into obstacles when not understood or used properly.
22: Positive Characteristics: The 22 is the most powerful of all numbers, able to turn lofty dreams into realities. It is confident, pragmatic, ambitious and disciplined.
Negative Characteristics: Impracticality and self-imposed pressure can get the better of the 22. When unaware of its own potential, the 22 will miss out on or shy away from necessary opportunities.
(numerology.com)
I journaled for hours that night. Have you ever experienced automatic writing? I wrote about the dream i remembered from before i came here to this body, to this place. The dream i remembered before I moved to Florida. To do good things and send out good energies and vibrations so that maybe, when I’m gone, the world could be a little better off for having me visit. Sadness can make you find something deep inside of yourself that longs to sing out and be heard. I called on that vision to create something to uplift a big collective of people all in one environment, mainly because I needed uplifting. Going to drum circles and festivals and feeling that vibe, attending the “I can do it” conferences and feeling the buzz which can be created around people coming together, finding my voice through song…those were all building blocks for what i felt called to create…the dissatisfaction of hurtful individuals who would make me look at myself in them and grow beyond the best version of myself I had yet known…that was too. Learning to see beyond the limits which others place upon us… I looked around my blossoming life, which i felt too tired to enjoy, and saw so many amazing souls who would shine so brightly in a moment that it would call on that part of me which remembers her own beauty, her own majesty, and feel good. Dancers and hoopers and drummers and spinners and artists and writers and yogis and heart-lifters and musicians and INSPIRATION! In my life, i felt alive, but burnt out. I called on this wish to have a place to gather these people who inspire me and show the rest of the community, who these people are and who you CAN be when you remember to be yourself all the way. I asked that this could happen even though i couldn’t see out of my financial hole. Here’s how the Universe responded:
The next day, a former client of mine shared during her massage that a wedding was called off and the mansion she reserved could not be refunded. She wished it could be used for something, or her deposit money would be wasted.. I shared with her my intention from the night before. (I think that when we call on the Universe to help us, it’s important to take action when we are inspired to… Keep the flow going. By sharing my vision with her, I was calling it into being and having a witness to my goal, so i would keep going till i got there.) Out of curiosity, I asked the date of the event:11-22. Chills. And at the same moment, a feeling of dread. I knew i would do this event and I knew it would be a lot of work ahead of me. I told her I’d think about it and see what I felt. I went home that night and mapped out an “if i did this event, what would it look like”. The opinions I asked of those i trusted all said the same: it’s too much work, i don’t think you can…and then a few who said “this sounds fun, i’m in”. I prayed my little heart out for some guidance. Should I do this? Will the community accept this offering and even understand what I’m envisioning? Then I remembered how overwhelmed with gratitude and possibility i felt after going to the “I can do it”. If i could offer a space for even a fraction of that feeling for others to feel….it could create a ripple effect to put a positive spin on things. i created my soul’s playground, a place i’d like to invite others to visit so they could get to know themselves better. Yoga, drumming, dancing, singing, meditations, prayer, art, hooping, fire, people who inspire me…That night I felt anxiety, by taking on this event, I would have less than 2 months to pull it off, no $, and so much to do, plus the feeling in the back of my mind of not wanting to disappoint anyone who took the time to believe in it. And what if nobody attends? I had never done something like this before, but after looking deeper into the meaning of 11/22, it felt like the Universe was answering my call, at least a little, and asking me to show up and see what could be…A trial run, an opportunity to do something way out of my comfort zone and help shine a light on others who made me feel lighter by knowing them. The time went by quickly! I learned more than i ever wanted to know about event planning. I also learned about standing up for myself. The woman who offered the space was doing me a favor, hosting a positive event at a mansion she reserved, with no $ except what came in through the door…which i was asking to make a “suggested donation” since I was getting calls from people saying they believed in what i was doing, but couldn’t afford the $10, and could they still come?! This arrangement came at a price though. I tried to back out three different times. I was not comfortable working with someone else’s investment, asking others to do something i didn’t even know if they’d fully understand what i was asking of them. It felt like a tremendous amount of pressure. I told her “I don’t think i can get your $5,000 back…i can’t even seem to do that for myself.” “Just make it part of your process, Sandra, I think this would be good for you”…oh did i mention she is a psychotherapist…? So I went against my better judgement and said yes…when i meant no. I took on unreasonable deadlines, too many commitments, being talked out of my original vision, and long hours of planning and prepping and calls and emails. And i did the best that i could, and worked a full massage schedule, tired, and broke and pushing on for a cause.… Every single day i woke up with a weight on my mind, but i felt called to keep going…There was a lot sacrificed for this event, including my sanity! But i knew at the end of it, i would be more equipped to handle the life i was asking for…and i knew that my intention was pure. It wasn’t about making money, it was about something else. So, I asked for help from the friends in my community, from my family, asked people to witness my vision, or at least support me by attending. People helped! And more than that, people enjoyed themselves. I had so many people reach out to me and tell me how much that day meant to them. i was overwhelmed with gratitude for the amount of help i received from all angles. The day was a blur for me But it was really well received by the community. Lots of hugs and fun, drumming, dancing, hooping, vending, donations, socializing, networking, and positive intention. As the sun started to set, my client took me aside and insisted we count the money which was gathered at the door…There were hundreds of people who attended, and i wish i had a head count…but in our donation box was just over $200…”Great, I guess i’m out my 5 grand”…she blasted me…i handed her the money and said “i’m sorry i couldn’t get your money back, but thank you for the space”…we were left to clean everything up and somehow….with the help of so many people, we were cleaned, and off property by our deadline…”it was a good day” my sister reminded me…while the tears streamed down my face.
On 11-23, I woke up early, and realized it was the first day in almost 2 months that i didn’t have to immediately hit the ground running. i sat down to meditate while the house was quiet. I crumpled in tears, exhausted from the fight… and the message that came as clear as a bell was: It doesn’t have to hurt you, in order to help others”. When a friend asked me to do this event again, i declined 3 times…but i did it anyway, and learned more….and it mattered…and we received an email from a counselor who brought her patient to our Day of Consciousness at Oscar Scherer state Park…a recovering addict who she told us, overdosed in the days after this event. But she was so thankful we hosted 11-22 because he got to have one really great day, and it mattered…
Not sure why 11-22 is so impactful for me…but since I realized it is….it has continued to be. And then I saw my birth certificate, something i’ve seen many times before and realized that my time of birth was at 11:22. This year, I chose to celebrate 11-22 by not doing much, just whatever I wanted…reflecting on all of the beautiful lessons and setting some intentions for what comes next. I stayed up last night into the morning, working on art projects. I took the day off today. Later we’ll drum down the sun and dance under the night sky. I’ve had the chance today to read, chat with my family, enjoy a slow cup of some of my love’s coffee, write, visit with a friend, play the harp, play the organ, and have a moment of connection with my dad’s energy. This morning, i was reading, and just like always, out of the blue, my mind shifted to my dad and how he never liked to hear me say “that sucks”….”why couldn’t i just be like the other kids?”, i thought….”cuz you’re not”, he reminded me…and he continues to remind me that he’s around. He’s the reason I said yes to creating the Day of Consciousness: Playground for the Soul. He’s usually the reason i do most things which scare me…he’s always there, reminding me that life is short…keep going…dream big, show up, use your voice…and live a little louder, play a little longer…and remember to take good care of his little girl…
“Remaining calm no matter what is going on around you is an incredible challenge, but it will liberate your psychic sense… You have the option of moving from being an emotion-laden reactor to a curious, aware observer.” -Sonia Choquette

ONE

11-17-17

 I woke up early today with an uneasy mind…throbbing head. I did my best to ice & stretch as my muscles scream out. Tension…Outside in stillness, I sit inside of myself and find my peace. The world is experiencing pain. People are hurling hate at one another. Killing, Cruelty, gossip, drama. It seems some feel their ability to push buttons and trigger others, and so they do. When i was younger, and i was being picked on by those who felt mighty in making me feel small… I remember my eldest sister telling me “Just ignore them, Sandra…act like it doesn’t bother you”. But it did. How is it ok? “Bullying is the use of force, threat, or coercion to abuse, intimidate, or aggressively dominate others. The behavior is often repeated and habitual.” Bullying in school is not tolerated, and yet in our adult lives, it’s all around. Pain often triggers us, reveals what we’ve been hiding…brings it to the surface to wash us clean and help us to purge what we are NOT. It’s easy to love others when they deserve it, but how do we react when others are provoking us and fueling the fire?? Is it even possible to ignore it and hope that “this too shall pass”? Is it safe to knock the weapons from the hands of others and hug it out? People speak of the light they carry and then when nobody is watching they act out and manipulate others, send out little stabs here and there, giving someone the Facebook finger. They do things IN SPITE of others to get a rise or a reaction. If we are ONE, then why are we hurting our only self?! Why, when the world is hurting and the earth is crying out, do we find it necessary to cause more harm and hurt?  May we all fall to our knees in humble acceptance of the connection we share to each and every thing in existence. Instead of finding fault in others, may we instead use this time to honor ourselves with our actions, words, and prayers. Help us to witness our pain so that we may heal it and help us to let go of it all, so we can finally accept the love we so desperately need <3 
11-17-15

It’s interesting when these memories pop up and remind me of the cycles which are ever present in our experience. I woke up today with a headache similar to this post a few years ago. Recent drama in the community and world yuckyness sometimes makes it feel like wouldn’t be easier to just give up? I give thanks to those button pushers who seem to make it their goal to poison the lives of others or at least rock their boats. That familiar quote about “they know not what they do” comes to mind . And yet often times these individuals DO know what they do and they do it on purpose. In this moment, I give thanks for these challenging individuals who make me realize each time I rise above and choose to look over here instead of over there, that while we are all pieces of the same one, we are meant to evolve beyond certain behaviors. It is a beautiful gift to realize and stand firm in the truth That we are allowed to be discerning in who we keep in our inner circle. As for me, I’m thankful for those people who show up consistently as friends and help me to remember that I don’t have to lower my vibration for anyone .

Doin’ the work

9-20-17

https://www.elephantjournal.com/…/the-missing-step-to-bein…/
This article really resonated with me. This part in particular: “What I’ve been noticing is how a lot of self-titled spiritual healers are using ascension as an excuse to not do any heavy lifting in life. These Lightworkers may talk about crystalline grids and reprogramming their energy fields—but at the first sign of heavy energy or darkness they run. Back to their world of sparkles, pretty crystals, and ETs doing all the work from the other side. Meanwhile, ignoring earthly trauma, pain, and depression right in front of them”….
we are here, now at least, as humans. It seems sometimes that the more “conscious” we’ve become, “we are all one…”the less compassionate we are to those who are feeling their very real Emotions… and then told to “get over it” or worse, dismissed and made to feel less than, because “evolved beings” supposedly don’t feel rage, grief, disillusionment, fear, disappointment, jealousy…hurt. I’ve actually been told by some of those self proclaimed “evolved or chosen” humans that they’ve never felt certain emotions, like jealousy, or insecurity, for instance. Maybe that means they are “new souls”, cuz we don’t get to pick and choose which emotions come up when we are poked and prodded by the world around us. And if we were truly “chosen” to be more evolved or special in some way, would we need to claim that we were? The thing is, emotions are part of the wonder and often painful reasons to catapult ourselves into growth, change, evolving. Without owning and feeling it all, we are not Being fully present in this now. And WE gotta do the inner work, can’t just regurgitate the teachings or beliefs of others and expect to bypass or brush past the yucky stuff. Real growth takes real dedication. We are here to feel ALL of it, and hopefully make it ok for others to as well.

Service

Sandra D.
9-20-17

Some days, it feels like maybe i’m not quite enough to accomplish the day that lies before me. Some days, my hands, fingers, wrists, thumbs, shoulders, neck, back, hips, and heart ache. Days like these, when my clients feel too big, with too much tension, when my body feels tired and my soul aches for a time-out…i feel very human. It can be challenging to honor how you feel, when there’s always work to be done. When you’ve been trained to be an uplifter, rather than a debbie downer. But then, in times like these, when is it okay to just feel as we do? Words have power, and so we are taught to keep our pain to ourselves, to “check our tired at the door” so as not to burden anyone else with it. Are you just bitching and complaining?. But how much can you swallow before you start to choke on it? Today, as i massaged, I kept going back to the thought: “What does it really mean to be of service?”. I guess like with everything, it all depends on your perspective. In my opinion, based on my life so far, it feels like being of service means to give, even when you feel empty. It means to put your own feelings and crises on hold, showing up, ready and willing to help someone feel better somehow. At times though, being of service means NOT helping, because we cannot force our help on anyone who isn’t ready to accept it. I know this from the times I’ve offered my service to those who didn’t value it…I ended up feeling more than drained, emptier because my efforts didn’t do much to uplift their sour moods. It means letting people experience what they are determined to, instead of thinking that you know best. I read something the other day talking about the shadow side of Virgo: doing so much for others that you completely deplete yourself, forgetting to secure your own oxygen mask first. This is something I’ve been reminded of again and again. When you care, it’s sometimes hard to differentiate between you and me…when you feel so much, it’s hard to know what YOU even feel anymore, because there are so many feelings floating around. There’s so much heartache and sadness and heaviness and depression. And yes….so much beauty and grace and love and joy…yet at times it can feel like one little act of kindness is really just a drop in the massive bucket of need which exists in the world. The potential and real devastation caused by these recent hurricanes have brought up a lot of emotions for people, myself included. It has squeezed me dry, it seems and today, I’m just honoring the fact that sometimes, the ones who help others to feel so much better, can use a helping hand, too.

Just Keep Swimming…

 9-10-17
Just keep swimming…. Tired but wired. Constant “get shit done” mode. Left home today (Hurricane Irma) and left part of my family to find their idea of safety. letting go of the illusion of control, and of any sense of time. Was that really this morning?! It feels like days ago. Rushing around, prepping things I didn’t know if I’d ever see again. Helping to close up the house. Abandon it and pray for the best.Taking certain things, picking and choosing, Leaving behind Memories of my father, my grandmothers, friends, cousins, who i will never get to see again. Because there wasnt room. Letting go of the attachments and reminding myself things like “dad is not this mug, Sandra. It’s ok to let go,” for those friends who stayed. You will never be the same. For those of us who left, neither will you. Everything is a direct hit, a cosmic lesson with a cosmic purpose. May we all remember to decide what we deserve and demand it, announce it with dignity and passion. All of my love goes out to those folks who’ve become part of my family through my adventures in Florida. To all of my family, i love you 💚 Whatever will be will be…may our home be safe and protected and may we all be reborn anew into our most fearless selves 💚

Walking the path

462924

“Write”, the feeling says… and so i finish my responsible things, so i can free my mind and let these words express themselves. Sometimes, just before i feel my fingers stroke the keys with confidence in knowing which letters are next in line…i feel a trepidation. Unsureness, if that’s even a word. Then, i feel my shallow breathing, and am reminded to slow down the inhalation…letting go of expectation. My breath deepens and the words begin to flow. Lately, and often, while i’m massaging my clients, i’ve been feeling so astounded by how walking the path of a massage therapist has continued to transform my entire being. So many of my survival tactics are behaviors and beliefs that my career has taught me. When we choose to open a door, we often don’t quite yet understand what it is we’re walking into. Stepping onto this path was saying, loud and proud, “yes, i want to be of service to this world”. I had no idea that in doing so, i’d learn to be of service to myself. I feel like the decision to become a bodyworker all those years ago, has and does elevate me into a more authentic version of myself than I would otherwise be. I kind of “grew up” in the corporate spa environment, learning my craft through experience, because that’s really the only way. Six or seven clients a day was a regular occurrence, and generally in a totally disorganized, chaotic, and stressful environment. I lovingly refer to this time of my life as “massage therapy boot camp”. I learned to be much bigger than i was, and learned to leverage my weight and my skills so that i could accomplish whatever was placed before me. Thankfully, these days, i have far more space in my schedule and more self-respect. As a result, i believe, i have a thriving massage business, because i’m not giving from an empty vessel. i’m totally present with every client, giving from a space of grace, gratitude, and fullness. I know what it felt like to push my body to the limit. I remember walking in through the door of my home after an endless massage day, falling to my knees and sobbing, somebody else’s tears, because back then, i didn’t have a definitive method for clearing the energy of my day. I have learned through almost burning out that it’s imperative for me to take really good care of myself, in all avenues. My massages lately have been morphing more and more into the parts and pieces of myself that i’d often kept private in those corporate- be just like everybody else- environments. I smudge every client with sage now, because massage has shown me that when i do, intending that my clients are able to let go of whatever no longer serves them, I am able to do the same, and it makes the massage go so much easier. I play my tibetan singing bowl on every client now, because when I do, with the intention that their energy is elevated into a higher frequency, a higher vibration…they almost immediately let go, breathe a sigh of relief and get out of their own way so we can do some good work together. Massage has taught me how to “hold the space” with soothing sounds and music, candles flickering, and silent BEingness…remembering the vulnerability of another human being, and so doing my best to avoid disturbing the safety we can create when we witness another let go of their burdens. Massage has shown me that I NEED to receive in order to give. It’s a responsibility to not only myself, but every client i invite onto my table. I have learned through receiving from people who didn’t have those intentions, that i am a sensitive being…and so i am more discerning now about who i will allow to work on me. I have learned that it’s imperative for me to clear my energy, and ground myself often…to learn to detach from the suffering of others, while still being present to witness their pain. Massage brought me to dancing, painting, drumming…finding other ways of clearing the accumulation of whatever energies i might have picked up on my way. I think this career is saving me every day, a little more…

Illuminated

8-7-17

Went to dive into the healing waters of the gulf today after my massage day. I love doing this as a way to clear the energy of others i might be influenced by on a daily basis. Floating in bliss, I felt the support and love of all which surrounds us in loving protection and care…picturing my cup overflowing, i imagined i could hold the whole of existence in my awareness, sending all of that love and good stuff out to all that is. peace…. Then, as i lay out on my dry tapestry, soaking up the sun, I overheard a conversation between two kids. The elder one, perhaps the big sister, kept calling out to the little one, saying “Come on, Francis” in a mocking tone. The little one kept begging, “stop calling me Francis!” The bigger one could tell that it bothered her little friend, and so she needled her further “Well, that’s your name, isn’t it?! Do you want me to call you something that you aren’t? Come on, Francis….Francis”, she teased. Eventually they found their way somewhere else, but i was left with this little interaction to ponder.
We all know that moment when we feel that our presence, words, or actions are causing someone else to feel discomfort. Generally, this would be the moment when we’d back off our energy and check ourselves. What’s with the tendency in some to revel in the discomfort they cause others, feeding their Ego while they watch another squirm and suffer?! I’ve met quite a few people over the years who seem to make it their personal mission to bring others down. For those who walk a path of self-discovery, some might say that we should see these needlers as gifts, for bringing to the surface, something which needed releasing…some emotion which was being triggered which was holding us back in some way from being our authentic selves. Or perhaps the gift of having to interact with those who make it challenging to be in their presence is showing us when we should stand up against those who try to bully or belittle us. But I wonder, is it truly our responsibility to call others on their sh!t? I believe that we all know when we are being difficult, stubborn, or just plain cruel. Is it really that we are illuminated by these individuals who push and poke and prod and rock our boats enough to make us grow and release those limiting beliefs? Or perhaps, as the ones who are needled, we are there to illuminate their ugly, their cruel, their vindictive natures so that they can own it and start to work on letting go of all of that toxic energy. I’m finding that sometimes, the best way to stand up to someone who is determined to annoy us rather than peacefully co-exist…is to avoid them completely. I think sometimes people become addicted to a response because it tells them that they are successful in raining on another’s parade. Maybe then, with no audience, it stops being fun to bother someone else, and these people who try so hard to influence others negatively are left to deal with their own stuff…and hopefully transform it into something which helps uplift the world around them.

Perceptions

8-5-17

In accepting or rejecting other people’s opinions of you, it’s important to remember…our perceptions are shaped by our past realities…We’re always living in the residual. The fear of having to explain or defend ourselves is what seems to keep most of us from doing what we’d naturally want to do…if only we didn’t care so much about having an audience/witness. We all might think that we’re way above that kind of behavior, but the fact of the matter is, if you interact with anyone at all, then you interact with their emotions, and so they help shape you into who you are with the rest of the world, based on the behaviors you practice with them. We affect each other. We also infect one another…with ideas, with beliefs, with cruelty, with malice, with hatred, with jealousy, with greed, with criticism, with not-enough-ness, with judgements, and with every limiting belief we ever placed on ourselves that we then assign to others. Why do we do this? Is it to make others look more like us? Is it to feel above someone or further along than someone else, even for a moment? Is it to pretend and make-believe that we know any better than anyone else? Or is it that we truly believe in those moments we offer guidance, that we might have something of value…that maybe our journey could have shown us something that might reach this person’s soul if we are given a moment to fully exhale. But they have to be willing to pick up what you are puttin’ down. How they are determined to see you is through the lenses of who they have been shaped and molded into being because of their experiences. How can we ever see anyone or anything in the same exact manner that anyone else will? We are, all of us, looking through our very own, unique set of lenses. Nobody’s view is any more “right” than another, just as we all might see a red rose in a slightly different shade than our neighbor. What we prescribe to, what we read, what we watch and listen to, what and who we surround ourselves with will help us determine who we’ll grow into being, and also how we’ll refuse to grow in those not-so-comfortable areas. If we find value in a teacher, a theory, or a way of being, and it causes us to feel even further disconnected from our environment, we won’t really cherish and respect our environment; home…nature…humans… If we are made to feel less and less that the rest of the world understands our unique way of thinking, feeling, being, we’ll isolate our teachings to just those theories which don’t rock our boats…because we just want to float on and not be disturbed. In other words, in order to maintain the fallacy of our unstable structure, we’ll prescribe to the truths which help us maintain exactly who we are and don’t necessarily make us question our beliefs. Trouble is, if there’s a faulty thought process in those teachings, which you then are surrounding yourself with day and night, it most likely will infect your thought processes into feeling like you alone feel what you feel and everyone else is less than somehow… The great teachers whose stories remain didn’t say “follow me” but rather “I’ll go first…”. Not posting this to have a debate, just been on my mind through the experiences, challenges, and the individuals I’ve had to work with on my unique journey. It’s great to believe in others and to see value in what they appear to bring to the table…but don’t get lost in how great everyone outside of you is…focus that energy within…keep whittling and polishing yourSELF each and every day…and grow yourself into the kind of human you’ll be happy to wake up with every new day. Let’s face it…we wouldn’t spend so much time noticing what everyone else was doing if we were truly focused on our own evolution. Please remember to think for yourself…it’s through finding out who we are NOT that we are more clearly able to define who we choose to be  I can speak from experience…mistakes and hard lessons help launch us forward on our quest to know “who AM I?”. I’m very thankful for the opportunities to grow…and I’m always ready for an easier ride…cleaning up my energy field and learning to let others be whomever they choose to be…while keeping myself on a high-flying disc.  sending out love in all directions…