Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Let it be

Today I am going to practice just letting things be.

Manifesting is still a bit of an unknown for me. I am able to do it, more and more often. I think of something that I would like to do, or try, or bring in. I think of health or singing or experiences, and opportunities appear.

But sometimes I feel myself skittering around like a little puppy, and doubting myself as the time approaches. Was this the right choice? Is it really going to happen? What if everyone hates me, or I hate them, or I get a flat tire, or the world blows up?

And the trickiest question of all, as I look back on my life and on the things which have snagged my attention. Did I manifest them by thinking about them and desiring them? Or did I think about them because they were on the way?

Thoughts to ponder. Regardless, manifestation is, in a way, like submissions of writings or resumes or portfolios... you do your best on it, you have it represent everything you need, want, or desire from the situation, and then you send it off.  And then it's time to stop thinking about it and let it be what it is.

It's time for me to stop thinking about it, and let it be what it is. If this time, submission, request, vision, visualization isn't right this time, that means there is a next time. So start focusing on the next time.

I know, i know. it sounds self-defeating and self-doubting and that is also why I'm still working on it. But when it comes to writing submissions, I have learned it is excellent practice to put the submissions out there, daily, to more than one person. Send one, set up another. This is not believing I'll never find the right person, this is knowing that there are many options out there, and I WILL find the right agent/connection/publicist etc. And the continual submission is my notice to myself and the universe that this is something I want. Seriously.

But I have to move forward. Send the submission out. Visualize an acceptance by the person who is a good for me. And let it be. Let it be what it is. The decision for this submission has already been made. The answer is on it's way. Opportunity will either knock on my door today or it won't.

So, instead of sitting and staring at the door, I am going to go connect with another possibility. And another. And another.

And after I send them out, I will let them be.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Focus on Today

Today I am going to focus on today.

I am going to do what's in front of me, and I am going to practice what is right for me at this moment.

I have a tendency to try and create routines or establish habits that will be good not only for today, but for tomorrow and next week and next year.

But how can i really know what will work next year, until I know what will work?

And if I know anything, it's that things change. My needs. My time. My "important" list of the moment.  Things change.

But I have goals in mind. I have desires. I have dreams. I have truths! Surely I should be practicing on more than the truth of this  moment. Surely I should be trying to create patterns - because it is practice that helps me become good at things.

Yes. It is a dilemna. I feel it. But. And I know there is a but. Because I can feel the but too.

Ah. But doesn't today's Lila deserve the same happiness and care and attention as that far off Lila?
And doesn't today, all the heady, scary, boring, comforting, sweating, yawning moments of today, deserve the same focus as those triumphant moments of next year?
And how do I think I'm going to get to those moments, if I don't make it through today?
How am I going to live in my truth, and practice my happiness, and be the best me tomorrow, if I haven't paid attention, lived today's truth, and attuned myself to today?

I don't see how.

I have tried the American Dream - the work hard and save it up for some future rainy day when it will be time to rest. I have believed it in as hard as I could.

And here I am, today, still striving for that perfect state of being. So that way doesn't work.

I am going to focus on Today. Today will work. Today is awesome. Today is here in front of me, and I know what I want for today.

Tomorrow is soon enough to practice for tomorrow.

I am going to be part of today.

I hope you have a great day!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Pay Attention

Paying attention is the next step after stepping back and breathing.

Pay attention. What is the underlying issue? The problem? The need? The important aspect of the moment?

I have been running on assumptions and old patterns for a long time. Well, technically, every yesterday automatically creates patterns which, today, are old. But there is a difference between a pattern, a habit, and an occasional action or event.

Sneezing once in a while means a slight irritant. Sneezing a lot, or having a pattern of sneezing after a specific event means something to pay attention to.

Today's attention (of which sneezing is actually an indicator) seems to be the temperature. And what, specifically, it does to my body. The cold tickle on the nose, the runny nose and the subsequent sniffles, are a symptom of my body being cold. But long before that, my muscles start to tighten.

And the muscles are things I am not used to paying attention to! For so long they have simply been part of the body. And it turns out I have been misinterpreting many things my body has been trying to say to me.

Now, I am not going to spend hours in recriminations. It is what it is, and, further, I fully understand the miscommunication. I never expected the body, my body, to be SUBTLE.

But it is. A gentle nudge. A little hint. A soft sound. A poke.

Until it realizes how oblivous I am. Then it gets louder.
And louder.
And then it has no choice but to break down.

But what else can it do? How else will I start paying attention?

And communicating with the body is like communicating with anything or anyone else. First you have to agree on a vocabulary. This means yes, this means no. THIS is pain, THAT is hunger.

I have always thought I knew the answers to what was happening to my body. Turns out, I need to pay a lot more attention.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Keeping it simple

Today I will practice keeping it simple.

Today I try to stick to the basics. I realize I have a tendency to make everything complex and flowery. I love the intricicies of complex things. And I love being able to navigate complexities.

Like logic puzzles. Or seeing three meanings in a sentence.

But many people aren't like that, so it becomes difficult to communicate. Or to sell my services.
And things aren't really like that. Things, events, people, sentences, even logic problems, are spring from very simple things.

Like when we break down any physical items, in the end it comes down to the atoms with which it was built.

And the beauty of something, or the complexity, is in how each of those atoms comes together. Or doesn't. Simple. Basic.

I can always "complex it up", if it is the right moment, the right character, the right post.
And chances are, my simple can still be a maze of words of ideas for others to wonder through, if they choose.

But we do all speak a different language. And if I want people to want to read what I write - which I do, because that's how I communicate best! - then I want to find the simple. The easy. The basic. So we're all "talking" about the same thing.

Today I will practice keeping it simple.

I hope you have a great day!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015



Every moment. Every choice. Every person. Every bite. Every breath. Every tear. Every pain. Every mess. Every star. Every snowflake.


Today I am going to celebrate.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Breathe before you speak

Today I am going to practice not making any decisions without stepping back and taking a breath.

It's been a whirlwind of a dark time, and I am so grateful for the sun. But if I've learned anything about myself these last few months, it's that I don't always know what I need to know.

At least not off the top of my head.

For example, I decide I want to become more healthy. I speak it in my daily meditation. I declare it to myself and to the universe.

And so, I learn that I need chiropractic work. And that I may be dehydrated. And sleep apnea rears it's snoring head. And. And. And.

which I am glad for. How can I feel better physically until I know what is in pain? What is in need? What needs attention?

The question then is how to balance HOW I respond, and focus, and work best with what is needed.

I could do the drama dance and bemoan my physical fate and join the club of people who, when asked how they are, have a book of health issues to define them.

Or I could take a step back, and realize these are not new issues, simply things I have been dealing with unconsiously. As I breathe I realize I am still alive. That hasn't changed. And I don't need to run around and be preoccupied with doctors and pills. I need to be aware. I could change everything, take every option, take all the pills, or I could try one thing at a time, see what changes. And then try something new.

Because everything is tied into everything else, also. Changing one thing may change a myriad of other things.

So today, when faced with the possibilities regarding my future productivity, I am not going to go with the whim of the moment (because frankly I change my mind based on the way the wind is blowing), nor am I going to allow the frantic Frannies in my head to start their own reality show on my future.

I am going to step back. Breathe. Be grateful for my options. Realize I am still alive. And decide what I want to do, and see what that changes.

I hope you're having a great day!

Saturday, December 19, 2015

Just Keep Stepping

Just keep moving forward, one step at a time. It may feel like moving through sludge, but it's still forward movement.

Of course, one obviously starts thinking "Just keep swimming," from the Disney movie Nemo. But, water isn't my element. And for me, swimming equals floating, relaxing, letting the waves carry me.

A wonderful thought, but probably not the most productive for this time in my life. As I haven't mastered the art of transferring my thoughts directly to the computer screen.

I'm not sure if I'd want to.

But that's a contemplation for another time.

Today I may not be following all my schedules and steps  and rituals in precise order. Today the important thing is to just keep moving forward. To keep stepping.

And I like the word stepping better than swimming, because stepping can be dancing. And that is more than slogging. That is moving lightly forward, not attached to one choice or another, not mired down in decisions and consequences, not contemplating for 15 minutes the value of red socks over blue socks.

Stepping. Moving lightly from stone to stone. Forward, back, in circles, still we are stepping. Steppin'. And we're moving. And we're feeling light. Every minute is new. Every item is simply as important as it is, no more, no less.

Just keep steppin'.

I hope you have a great day!

Thursday, December 17, 2015

I'll do it my way

There is only one way I, personally, can do things. And that is the way I do things.

I may learn and practice and try new ways of doing things, but in the end, the only way I can do things is the way I DO things.

There are a myriad of suggestions, and how-tos, and self helps, and "I have the answers." And yes, each and every person does have the answer. For themselves. For that time.

But the best answers, the truest answers, are how we each, individually, take the advise and suggestions and how-to's that strike our fancy, and make them work for us.

The example today is a post I read on (The Blog is "Writer's Dig", by Brian Klems; this piece is a guest column.)
Let's see if I can link to it...Yes, drill sergeant!
In it, Matt Meyer dictates a start up schedule focused totally on writing. Which sounds lovely! Oh, yes, sign me up!


I don't hit the ground typing. I mean, I like to clear my head with a bit of journaling, yes. So I do start my day writing. (yay!) For me, that clears the system of the nightly cobwebs. Then there's the rest of the body wake up ritual. It takes about two hours, and it includes stretching, and spiritual practice, and breakfast.

THEN I move into my work day (though I do consider body and mind care work also. It's all work. Because it requires effort.) And that, I have to do my way also.

But I'm not going to immediately throw his suggestions out the window. Because a)some of them really clicked. The focus. The determination. The part about NOT being on social media while eating. And the part where he talks about what it means to be an experienced writer. And b)oh, yeah. That total dedication and immediate action is how I really want to behave. I want to write first! and do all the admin stuff later.

So it's something to put into my brain, and see how it rolls around and works itself out to fit into MY way.

(and I'm thinking my way needs some brushing up on proper typing of names and articles and....)

Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Visualize - nice and easy

Okay - just visualize. The door, the chair, the feeling of contentment or productivity. Be it.

It's interesting. I've preached visualization. I believe in it. I've grown up using this buzz word. But it feels like, just lately, I really figured out how to DO it.

And for me, it has more to do with the feeling of the action, moment, event, than it does with the visuals.

A few years ago, I had a huge panic attack about a trip we were going take, because the weather was frustrating. So I sat myself down and drove myself along the road. I couldn't visualize every turn, but I could feel the spots that might be scary, or that I might feel out of control. So I drove it, over and over, creating a mantra in head, feeling the slow and steady pace of the vehicle, the calm deep breathing of the Lila, the safe and triumphant arrival.

Easy, peasy.

And when, in reality, I came to scary moments, I had the mantra already on my tongue - and my breathing slow and easy.

The other day, I realized I'm having a lot of panic attacks. Maybe little ones, but still, panic is panic. The future feels so unsteady and uncertain. But, if I visualize myself moving through it - calm and steady, feeling the keyboard, the hearth and home, the confidence on a job well done and the happiness of doing what feeds me - I feel better.

Yesterday, because I had felt  myself moving steadily through the day, one step at a time, doing my best at the job in front of me, I actually did more than I might have without the visualization. Yesterday, I could easily have gone back to bed. But I had already desired myself to work through the day.

So I did.

Yay me!

And because it worked so well yesterday, today, we're doing the same. I have already visualized my day of productivity and accomplishment and, most of all, calm and steady movement. Not step by step (first I pay this bill, then I write that word), but simply the feeling of working, and the feeling at the end of the trip, of accomplishment.

It's going to be an amazing day!


Friday, December 11, 2015

Practice. Tweak. Repeat

Everything is practice. It's just practice. It is all practice. I will keep trying different methods of doing and practicing. Eventually, the flow will fall into place, and I will feel confident I am doing the best I can for every aspect of my life I wish to do something with... (with which I wish to do something.)

So today, I am going to expand the 15 minute thought. I have 3 areas of work I wish to always accomplish something in, every day. They are House Work (chore & admin); Voice; and Writing (structure and creativity.)

But every day I also desire to get all my stretching in, hopefully exercise, meditation, eating, getting dressed! and other sundry events which are necessary for the continuation of the body and the mind.

So. In the time I have left, I will split it into 3 parts - be it 15 minutes, or 1 hour each - and put some energy and focus into the 3 important parts of my life. And if it doesn't work out well, well, there is always tomorrow to try a new approach.

Practice. Tweak. Repeat.

I hope you have a great day!

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Get to Work

Quit putting it off and just get to work.

Yes. I have my little rituals. And so many things I want to do. But today, I'm going to focus on what I really want to get done.

It's 11 am already and I haven't started the work I wanted to start at 10. Because I had to get dressed. And exercise my voice. And exercise my body. And take the time I needed for anti-anxiety moments. All well and good.

But today I WANT to get moving on this copywriting practice. I want to start WRITING and submitting so I find the jobs and bring in the money and have the time to do more little rituals.

So today, I am, right now, getting to work.

I hope you have a great day!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Breathing. Step. Breathing. Step.

I can only do what I can do. And something all that is is take one step, before I need to pause and breath and go through my affirmations and... I think it should feel easier.

First of all, I have been trying for a year to follow the organizational patterns of David Allen's Getting Things Done! I love his idea. It is simple. It makes sense. It feels so doable!

But it feels the more I practice, the less I feel I have actually accomplished!

So, what am I to do? I can only do what I can do. I mean, that's a physical law. I can only do one thing at a time -- and yeah, I'm not even sure I can breathe properly and watch television simultaneously. Freaking out about stuff does not improve my productivity. But it feels like I'm trying to teach myself new stuff every day. Because I haven't gotten the pattern down. I haven't reached that point where I feel I am doing everything I want to do in all aspects of my life AND being happy about it!

Okay. I think we're back to muscling through. Part of the organizational steps is to be true to your calendar. And I have been trying to put things on certain days, give myself a chance (or a demand) to do them!

But then I run out of time. Or I sit, paralyzed, because I know this needs to be done, but I really want to do that. And how am I supposed to bring in money (which will enable me to have all my needs met) if I can't even sit down to work? 

So I hit the fear spiral again.

One thing I have learned is when I start freaking out, or heading into manic land, I need to stop. Breathe. Concentrate on what's in front of me. Because if I don't, nothing gets done.

Practice, practice, practice. And adapt. Some of the organizational concepts just haven't worked out for me. I'm not yet translating them into something that works for me. Something I can do. Cuz I do things differently. (shrug. It's a fact.)

So I shall continue to practice. Practice. Try it this way. Try it that. Take a step. Breathe. Take a step. Breathe.

And perhaps, as I stop and look at what I'm doing and where I am, I can divorce myself from "importance" or "necessary" and certainly from "judgment". It is what it is. I work as fast as I work. My brain operates differently than I remember it operating before. I am on different drugs, I live in a different space, I am a different person.

And every choice I make, every breath I do take, every step -- forward, or backward, or sideways -- is growth, change. Every second I am a different person. 

One step. Breathe. Look. One step. Breathe. Look. I CAN do what I can do. 

I hope you're having a great day!

Saturday, December 5, 2015

15 mins without muscling (corrected 12/8/15)

Today's practice is to continue working at all the things I need/want to do... 15 minutes at a time... without trying to force it, or myself, to be or mean or connect or anything.

A friend of mine, my partner on my current path of trying to figure out our futures, is a great one for finding motivational beings - teachers, speakers, writers, self Improvement gurus of various forms and walks of life. She shares tidbits with me, condenses her exercises and experiences, and we adopt phrases and concepts as we create our own toolset for Happiness. (Yeah, we are Do It Your Self Improvement Advanced Practitioners. And I hope I eventually expand on that concept for anyone who wishes me to.) And one of those tidbits is "Don't muscle through."

I hope to attribute that concept to the person we learned it from, but I don't want to credit the wrong person, so I finally asked my friend who touted this wonderful tool. She said, she did. Sheri Salay created her own tool! She trains in Martial Arts.

So. Muscling through means, to me, forcing yourself to push through something because you - I think it's what I'm supposed to be doing to achieve some lofty goal.

And frankly, that's just painful. There is no reason to muscle through. At least not when it comes to life stuff and trying to figure things out. If I know why I am sweating and straining to do that last push up, or to get through the pile of snow, or to finish writing the post, then that is one thing. A thing of exertion, of striving. But when I am just blinding doing stuff because it's what I think I want and I don't have a clear impetus behind it, that's - well, that's dangerous. That's when I pull heart muscles, and create ulcers and decide I want to stay in bed for a week after. Because I just put my head down and muscled through.

This thing of trying to figure out what to do with my life, what will give me enough joy and happiness and money (or the equivalent lifestyle), that I will no longer wake up wondering if my actions will have purpose today... this thing is not something to muscle through. It is not something to try while my inner coach is standing on the sidelines yelling at me to Woman Up! 

Because if I am causing myself pain in any fashion, why would I want to keep doing?

So today, while I work through my fifteen minutes, and allow myself to feel the depth of concern for my future and my happiness, I am not going to "just do it" to be doing it. I am going to be doing each thing and seeing how I feel.

Elizabeth Gilbert has been a big name in the last two days... the curious life, and creativity... (15 mins) Her words have struck deeper than expected. There is much thinking to be done. As I do my 15 minutes.

I hope you have a great day!

Friday, December 4, 2015

15 minutes

Let us not begin again, but let us continue forward. And try to do all the things we love, every day. Even if it is just 15 minutes.

Hello! And welcome to a new set of thoughts. This is going to be stream of consciousness (at least today.)

I have been having great frustration because there are SO many things I want to do. I am one of those people who has a project list, where Project means "an activity requiring many hours, lots of organization, multiple tools, and at least 3 dance breaks." And the activities that qualify as projects aren't even on my daily to do list!

I started a new form of organization - reading a book called Getting Things Done. And the author, David Allen, said (and I paraphrase) - write everything down; every impulse; gather it all in one place, and then decide what the next step is."

So, for the last year I have been practicing the writing down and sorting process. Oh, I'm feeling so accomplished.

But I still aren't getting nothing done.

Of course there's the writing thing. To feel professional, one must give the writing the focus and attention one would give any job.

I did that solid for one month. I felt so accomplished! But, I realized the administrative part of my life wasn't getting done. And when I tried to meld the two, my brain (my productivity) went caplooie!

Or at least it felt like it.

I have been running round in circles trying to feel productive, and feel like I'm bringing in as much money as the energy I expend (okay, or even any at all.)

And I do NOT want to give up my chosen activities for the "JOB". Blech. 

So how do I balance it all?

Well, I don't know yet. But today's practice involves doing things in 15 minute bites.

This is not a new idea. I had it myself, a long time ago, when I was trying to emulate my mother in being a housewife AND an artist. "Just 15 minutes," I would say to myself. "I only have to clean, fold, straighten, organize, iron, scrub, whatever for 15 minutes." 

And recently, I started "following" Sam Bennet (I think that's her name - no I have not edited this yet, I only have 15 minutes!). Sam Bennet has a book about getting things done (creatively) in 15 minutes a day.

So today I have been/am breaking down all the activities I want to do today into 15 minute blocks. from exercise to paying bills, from submitting stories to writing this. `15 minutes.

No, it does not feel like one can get anything done in 15 minutes. It really doesn't. Especially if you (i) do it fairly, and include the set up in that 15 minutes.

Happily, it turns out, the thing that took longest to set up was the Wii station for exercise...

AND THAT's my 15 minutes! It shall be interesting to see what, if anything, this blog turns into.

I hope you have a great day!