It's easy to forget that we are all perfect in our own design. Sometimes we muck it up with habits and choices that do not serve us. 

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DR. MARGARET PAUL is a bestselling author, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. She has appeared on numerous radio and television shows (including Oprah). Her book titles include Do I Have to Give Up Me to Be Loved By You, Heal...
DR. MARGARET PAUL is a bestselling author, relationship expert, and co-creator of the powerful Inner Bonding® self-healing process, recommended by actress Lindsay Wagner and singer Alanis Morissette. She has appeared on numerous radio and television shows (including Oprah). Her book titles include Do I Have to Give Up Me to Be Loved By You, Healing Your Aloneness, Inner Bonding" and the recently released Diet For Divine Connection and The Inner Bonding Workbook. Margaret has successfully worked with thousands around the world and taught classes and seminars for over 50 years.
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Are You Missing the Point of Life?

path-through-blooming-heather-at-sunrise-posbank-the-netherlands-picture-id478306800 Are You Missing the Point of Life?
“There never has been security. No man has ever known what he would meet around the next corner; if life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.” –Eleanor Roosevelt


“I know that leaving my job was the right thing to do, as it was literally making me sick, but I want so much to know how all this turns out. I’m so scared about the future.”

“I know that separating from my husband was the right thing for me to do at this time, as we were really hurting each other, but I wish I could see into the future. I want to know how all this turns out.”

“What’s going to happen on our planet with all this illness? How is all this going to turn out?”

We go to psychics and astrologers and read our horoscope to try to predict the future, hoping to hear something that will calm our fears. But we are missing the point.

As Eleanor Roosevelt so brilliantly pointed out, “…if life were predictable it would cease to be life, and be without flavor.”

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Are You An Energy Vampire Or With An Energy Vampire?

young-couple-enjoying-their-summer-vacation-on-beach-picture-id526715532 Are You An Energy Vampire Or With An Energy Vampire?
Another phrase for ‘squid’ is ‘energy vampire.’ 
“Squid is my word for people who seem to be missing their backbones but possess myriad sucking tentacles of emotional need.” 
 —Martha Beck

When your intent is to get love, rather than to be loving to yourself and share your love with others, you are a ‘squid.’ When you are not in the moment-by-moment process of learning what is loving to yourself, and taking loving action for yourself, you are abandoning yourself and creating an empty hole within. This empty hole needs love, and you will try to get it from others in any way you can.

The Neediness Creates An Energy Pull

Others might not be fully conscious of the energy pull from you, but they will generally back off nevertheless – as your pull unconsciously feels yucky to them. Of course, you might find someone who is such a caretaker that they stay and let themselves be drained by you, but you need to know that people who allow themselves to be drained and used by you have strings attached to what they give. They have a huge expectation – expecting you to love them and fill their emptiness as well. Both of you will inevitably be very disappointed.

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The Challenge of Not Being Reactive

too-much-pride-to-apologise-picture-id1135116309 The Challenge of Not Being Reactive

How do you generally react when another is being unloving? How do you wish you could respond?

“When Eddie blames me, I react so fast, before I have a chance to get my loving adult onboard. I’m explaining and defending before I can even take a breath,” Lori told me in one of our sessions. I knew exactly what she was talking about, as I had struggled with this same challenge for years.

Most of us learned early in our lives to react to any kind of rejection – blame, anger, withdrawal, judgment, criticism, or being ignored – with some form of reactive behavior. I had learned as a child and adolescent to react to any form of rejection by explaining, defending, crying, blaming back, getting angry, complaining or giving myself up. Even today, if I’m overly tired, I might go right back to these protective, controlling behaviors.

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You Don’t Really Know Someone Until You Have Conflict

our-love-is-as-beautiful-as-this-sunset-picture-id1133832456 You Don’t Really Know Someone Until You Have Conflict
Do you sometimes wonder if you really know the person you are dating?

People often ask me how they can know whether or not someone they are dating is really an open and caring person.

“He seems open and caring, but how can I know? My last guy seemed really open until we started living together and then he was always angry. I don’t want that to happen again,” said Kiera in a phone session.

“Have you and your boyfriend had significant conflict yet?”

“No, we’ve only been dating for two months.”

“Two months is generally not long enough to know whether or not someone is open and caring. And you can’t really know until you have a conflict and you see how he responds. You need to know if he uses anger, withdrawal, resistance, arguing, explaining, defending, compliance and so on. And, if he does these protective things, how long does it last? Some people get immediately closed, but then in half an hour or so they open and are ready to learn and resolve. Others can stay closed for days, weeks or even longer. Of course, it’s ideal when someone is immediately able to stay open to learning in conflict, but most people haven’t done the inner work to be able to do this. However, if they open sooner rather than later, then things can be worked out. But if they want to sweep things under the rug and act like nothing happened, or stay distant until you apologize, this isn’t good news.”

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Do You Feel Seen and Valued?

cozy-woman-warming-up-using-radiator-picture-id658574596 Do You Feel Seen and Valued?

Earlier in my life I didn’t feel seen by others. Since I never felt seen by my parents, I figured this was just the way it was in life. While sometimes I felt sad or angry at not being seen, I mostly just accepted it.

However, once I started to practice Inner Bonding and connect with my spiritual guidance, I gradually learned to see and value myself—my true essence. Over the years of practicing Inner Bonding, I grew less and less tolerant of not being seen by others.

 

I questioned this with my guidance…

“Why, since I now see myself so clearly, it is it still important to me to be seen by others? I thought that if I saw myself, I wouldn’t need to be seen by others.”

Here is her answer to me:

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Discover the Secrets of Manifestation

child-holding-a-flower-picture-id157582199 Discover the Secrets of Manifestation
We are co-creators with God, so we have the ability to manifest what we want. However, as we all know, this is often easier said than done. We manifest only what we surrender.     ~Martha Beck, 

Certainly it is essential to visualize what we want, along with our excitement about it. Certainly it is essential to take consistent loving action toward manifesting our vision. But then what?

What does Martha Beck’s statement, “We manifest only what we surrender” mean?

To me, it means that, while I need to have goals, if I attach my joy or worth to achieving the goal, I am limiting my ability to manifest. The reason is that when I attach my worth or joy to getting what I want, I am in my wounded self, and the frequency of my wounded self is too low to manifest. I manifest when I let go of attachment and surrender the outcome to spirit, which is NOT something my wounded self wants to do!

My wounded self, by definition, is the part of me that wants control. Since surrender is the opposite of control, the last thing my wounded self wants is to surrender. If I go unconscious and allow my wounded self to be in charge of my intent, I’m actually creating the very powerlessness that my wounded self wants to avoid, and which is certainly not in our highest good during these challenging times.

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How We Heal, Change and Grow

release How We Heal, Change and Grow
Discover what creates true healing and lasting change for you.

I have worked with many people who sought me out after years and years of talk therapy without finding the healing they sought. I’ve also worked with people who have spent years in various forms of emotional release therapy, such as Primal Therapy, without finding the healing they seek. I myself had years of both forms of therapy without finding the inner peace and joy I was looking for – until Inner Bonding.

Peter A. Levine, in his excellent book, “In An Unspoken Voice,” states that

“…feelings accessed through body awareness, rather than emotional release, bring us the kind of lasting change that we so desire.” p. 345 

In my experience, it is not an either/or situation – either we access our feelings by being present in our body, or cry or pound in emotional release, or talk about it.

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Enslaved By Your Mind Or Embracing Your Inner Knowing?

spinning-girl-picture-id465353391 Enslaved By Your Mind Or Embracing Your Inner Knowing?
Are you stuck being a slave of your wounded self, or do you trust your intuition?

“Intuition is a sacred gift, the rational mind its faithful servant. Sadly we have thrown away the gift and have become enslaved to the servant.”  ~Albert Einstein

In Inner Bonding, we often talk about who is in charge—your wounded self or your guidance? Most people are enslaved by the thoughts and beliefs of their wounded self—their programmed mind. But the mind is meant to be the servant of our inner and higher guidance, not the master. Why do we too often throw away the gift of intuition – of our inner knowing?

Imagine living in a society where people trusted their intuition—trusted their feelings and their higher guidance. Could people in this society be easily controlled by government, religions, or the media? Obviously not, because when you trust your own inner knowing, you are not vulnerable to others’ manipulations and lies.

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What It Means To Be Emotionally Strong

mature-woman-with-cell-phone-sits-by-trail-at-sunrise-picture-id1187808874 What It Means To Be Emotionally Strong
There is a vast difference between the pseudo-strength of controlling behavior and the actual strength of loving behavior.

“My father was a very strong man. It was his way or the highway.”
“My mother is a very strong person. She is the matriarch of the family and controls everyone. I never see her cry.”

These descriptions of strength do not fall under my definition of ‘strong.’

Strength and Weakness

Strength is reaching a place in your growth where you have the courage to feel and lovingly manage your painful core feelings of sorrow, loneliness, heartache, heartbreak, grief and helplessness over others—rather than avoiding them with various addictions and controlling behavior.

Weakness is when you are too afraid to feel and learn from your feelings, so you avoid them with substance and process addictions, and with controlling behavior toward others to get them to take responsibility for your feelings. Given these definitions, the above statements made by my clients about their parents are describing weakness, not strength.

Strong people are able to cry—to be moved by things and to cry as a way to release the energy of that strong emotion. Unfortunately, many people were programmed as children to not cry, since their parents didn’t know how to handle painful feelings – their own and their children’s. Many people were even teased, at home or at school, for crying, further programming them to avoid tears.

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Are You Making Someone Your Higher Power?

Are You Making Someone Your Higher Power? Are You Making Someone Your Higher Power?
Do you believe that in a good relationship, it is your partner’s job to make you feel loved and worthy?

Jerrod, in his late 30s, consulted with me because he was feeling frantic about his relationship. He and Leslie had fallen deeply in love just over a year ago, but now the relationship was falling apart.

Jerrod

“Leslie and I are very attracted to each other and really enjoy each other’s company. But something happens after we’ve been together over a weekend. We have a great time and then during the week I’m miserable for a few days. After a few days, I feel okay again, and then we get together and it starts all over. I don’t want our relationship to end, but I can’t stand what happens after we are together. Maybe we are not supposed to be together.”

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Discovering Your True Life Purpose

highway-at-sunrise-going-into-death-valley-national-park-picture-id1087673356 Discovering Your True Life Purpose

Discover what you need to notice that can lead you to your life purpose.

“If you follow your bliss, you put yourself on a kind of track that has been there all the while, waiting for you, and the life that you ought to be living.” ~Joseph Campbell, 1904-1987, Writer and Lecturer


What does it really mean to “follow your bliss?”

One of the main tenets of Inner Bonding is that all our feelings are informational—letting us know when we are loving ourselves and when we are abandoning ourselves, and letting us know when something external to us is loving or safe, or unloving or dangerous. Our true bliss can be highly informational for us.

Bliss can be defined as complete happiness, delight, spiritual joy, ecstasy—a bit of heaven. The opposite of bliss is misery.

Sometimes this can get confusing, as when people say they are “blissed out” from a drug or from sex. Getting blissed out on drugs or sex is not going to lead you toward a healthy life of passion, meaning and purpose for you. In fact, this kind of bliss will likely prevent you from finding your true life purpose.

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“I Don’t Know Anything!”

woman-enjoying-the-scenic-view-of-the-million-stars-above-the-big-at-picture-id1214291502 “I Don’t Know Anything!”
What if you knew that, not only do you know nothing, but that you don’t need to know anything?

“One thing only I know, and that is that I know nothing.” Socrates

One of my all-time favorite movie lines is in the Alastair Sims version of A Christmas Carol. Scrooge has just returned from his night with the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future. He is thrilled that it is Christmas Day and that he has an opportunity to act on his new understandings of life and love. With his new awareness of what life is really about, he delightedly states, “I don’t know anything! I never did know anything but now I KNOW I don’t know anything!”

This is actually a very profound statement. What it means to me is that our ego mind always thinks it knows stuff, but the truth is that it doesn’t know anything. A turning point in my life came when I KNEW I didn’t know anything—when I knew that truth doesn’t come FROM my ego wounded mind, but rather THROUGH my mind.

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The Touch That Heals Trauma

hugging The Touch That Heals Trauma
We all have more power than we know to help each other heal.

Loving mothers know instinctively that when their children are hurting physically or emotionally, what they need is to be gently held with loving arms and soothed with loving words. Those of us who have raised young children know the magic of “kissing it and making it better.”

Discovering the Healing Power of Loving Holding

Years ago, Erika and I discovered the healing power of mothering, and we wrote about it in “Healing Your Aloneness.” What we discovered has now been verified over and over. In his excellent book, “In An Unspoken Voice,” author Peter Levine tells a heartwarming story. When National Guard soldiers were ordered to remove Elian Gonzales – the young boy who became a pawn in a political battle in Florida – from the hands of his Cuban exile cousins living in Miami, they trained a female federal agent to caringly take the boy from the cousins and angry onlookers. Knowing he would be extremely frightened, and not wanting to further traumatize him…

“The agent held him firmly enough to not be ripped away by the angry mob, yet gently enough for her embrace to match the words she calmly recited in Spanish,”Elian, this may seem scary right now, but it soon will be better. We’re taking you to your papa…You will not be taken back to Cuba [which was true for the time being]…You will not be put on a boat again [he had been brought to Miami on a treacherous boat ride]…You are with people who care for you and are going to take care of you.’” p.265

As she rocked him gently and spoke soothingly to him, he relaxed.

Levine goes on to describe another dramatic mothering scene that occurred during the East Timor conflict. As dazed and disoriented refugees wandered into a refugee camp, a group of Portuguese nuns greeted and gently held and rocked the children and the most shocked adults, whispering soothing words to them, thawing them out of shock with their love.

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How To Love Myself? Six Steps to Loving Yourself

How To Love Myself? Six Steps to Loving Yourself How To Love Myself? Six Steps to Loving Yourself

Practicing these Six Steps are essential for learning how to love yourself and share your love with others.

Imagine that you have a baby and you want to be a loving parent. One of the things loving parents do is keep a baby monitor on when their baby is sleeping or in another room, so they can immediately attend to their child as soon as he or she cries.

Step One – Your Inner Baby Monitor

Step One is having your inner baby monitor on, which means that you practice being present in your body, which is where your feelings are, rather just focused in your mind – so that you know immediately as soon as you have a feeling that needs attention. This is especially important right now with all the challenges we are facing on our planet.

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Managing This Challenging Time As A Loving Adult

young-mother-and-son-playing-together-in-public-park-picture-id1084289756 Managing This Challenging Time As A Loving Adult

Emotionally and Spiritually

Please be very kind and gentle with yourself. It’s very important to not allow your wounded self to scare you, because our main line of defense against the Coronavirus is our immune system, and stress erodes the immune system.

Start by acknowledging to yourself that this is a very challenging time. Imagine that your intention is to soothe a scared child, rather than further scaring the child. This is the time to stay open to your higher guidance and bring comfort and compassion to your inner child, especially if you feel anxious. It’s also a time to reach out to friends with whom you can connect – on the phone, or via Skype or Zoom. While it’s important to stay home and not be around people, it’s also important to stay connected with the people whom you can support and who can support you, especially if you are alone.

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Do You Take Accountability For Your Mistakes?

accountable Do You Take Accountability For Your Mistakes?
Are you afraid to be accountable for your choices? Discover why and what to do about it.

What’s the first thing you think when you make a mistake? If you’re like most people, you will either blame someone else or blame yourself.

Blaming, even blaming yourself, is not at all the same thing as being accountable.

Why is it so hard to be accountable for ourselves – to take responsibility for ourselves? One of the problems may lie in the connotations we have applied to these words.

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Discovering The Pearl From the Wounds

singe-pearl-sitting-in-an-oyster-shell-on-a-light-background-picture-id121124449 Discovering The Pearl From the Wounds
Rather than feeling like a victim of your wounds, you might want to embrace them as the injury necessary to produce the being that you are capable of becoming.


“A pearl is a beautiful thing that is produced by an injured life. It is the tear [that results] from the injury of the oyster. The treasure of our being in this world is also produced by an injured life. If we had not been wounded, if we had not been injured, then we will not produce the pearl.” ~ Stephan Hoeller

I used to envy people who seemed to lead easy, uneventful lives. From day one, my life was not easy or uneventful. There seemed to be challenges at every step. Why was I so unlucky?

I no longer look at it that way. Now I’m grateful for every challenge that honed me into learning how to be a loving adult. Had I not had the injuries – the woundedness – I might never have embraced the learning path.

I meet people time and again who were never truly challenged until they lost a loved one, or got cancer or lost all their money. They are so unprepared to manage these huge life challenges, because they haven’t yet discovered the pearl – who they are in their essence – and they haven’t yet connected with their Guidance and developed their loving adult.

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How To Heal The Fear Of Getting Hurt Again

heartbreak How To Heal The Fear Of Getting Hurt Again

Are you putting off opening to another relationship for fear of getting hurt again?

You’ve been hurt over and over in your relationships, and now you are hesitant to seek a relationship for fear of getting hurt again. You might be asking, as many of my clients do, “How do I overcome my fear of being hurt again in a relationship?”

It’s important to understand that there are two kinds of hurt.

  • The heartbreak that comes from someone being unloving – lying, betraying you, being angry or judgmental, suddenly ending a relationship, and so on.
  • The hurt feelings that come from what you are telling yourself and how you might be judging yourself. Are you telling yourself things like, “What did I do wrong?” “How could I have been so stupid as to believe him (or her)?”

Healing involves learning from and lovingly managing both kinds of hurt.

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Are You Hiding a Secret?

contemplate-the-moment-picture-id1175915291 Are You Hiding a Secret?

In my work with my clients, I’ve often wondered why some people jump right into Inner Bonding and take off with it, while others seem to keep getting stuck. Perhaps harboring a shameful secret is one of the reasons.

In order to move forward with Inner Bonding and in our lives, we need to be accepting of ourselves, but it might be very hard to accept yourself if you have done something, or if you feel things, that are generally judged to be wrong or bad, or that you believe are wrong or bad. One of the things I’ve seen occur in my Intensives is that the environment is so safe and accepting that a participant might feel safe enough to finally reveal the secret. Once the secret is out, there is much more space for self-acceptance.

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Scapegoating: A Dysfunctional Family System

dysfunctional Scapegoating: A Dysfunctional Family System
When I work with clients, I can feel the beauty of their soul and I can feel their light shining through. I’m fortunate that the vast majority of clients that want to work with me individually or come to an Intensive are very ready to learn and heal and own their beautiful light.

One issue that frequently emerges is when a person has been scapegoated in his or her family of origin, and might still, as an adult, be being scapegoated. Scapegoating is when someone is blaming you for their feelings, wrongdoings, mistakes, and projecting their woundedness on to you, with no empathy or compassion for how this feels to you.
 

In families, one member is often the target of judgments, criticism, accusations, blame and ostracism. Scapegoating often begins is childhood and may continue into adulthood with your family of origin or with your in-laws. If you have been or currently are the target of scapegoating, it’s important to realize that you are being abused.

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