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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How To Create A 2021 You Will Love

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In 1980 John Lennon released a song on the Double Fantasy album that included these lyrics: “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.”

Sigh. So true.

Tuesday was the first day of the last month of 2020…easily the craziest year any of us have ever experienced. And all the big plans we may have had for 2020 were blown up by Covid-19, a failing economy, and you know the rest….

So, how does one plan for 2021, when the only thing we know for sure is that no one seems to know anything for sure?

For me, I am going back to the basics of true Manifestation.

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December 2020 Energetic Forecast and Predictions

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To explore the energetic forecast of a person’s life, or of an event; I close my eyes with the intention of receiving a message.  I will be shown an image or a story in my mind’s eye.  After I see the vision, I translate the meaning.  Early this morning was no different.  I sat in candle light and prayer.   I was shown the potential for renewal in December.   Using cards, meditation, and deeper exploration of my vision, I made predictions.

Imagine extended hands gently offering a garnet-colored lotus blossom.  This radiant creation is resting lightly on open palms.  Intuitively you recognize this ethereal inspiration is not received or even recognized by everyone.

You understand there is nothing to control.  Deep down, you know this lotus is not in a tangible form.  The vision is possibly a dream created by the perfect alchemy of your mind and the Universe.

December’s energy shifts offers many moments of the unexpected, even mystifying experiences, visions, and interactions.

One of the most important ideas to understand; we each have the ability to see a door swing wide open.  This allows you to witness your dreams unfolding.  December will require trust and patience.

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Spiritual Self-Care Tips For A Stress-free Holiday

meditation-picture-id452584597 SIX SPIRITUAL SELF-CARE TIPS

The beautiful contradiction of the holiday season is this: We have an internal longing for peace, reflection, and harmony… yet our calendar (and our families!) often can send us in the opposite direction! As a result, holiday anxiety is a real thing this time of year. 

The gap between our expectations (“We need this to be the best December ever!”) and our reality (“What? We can’t have the annual Ugly Holiday Sweater party, my mother is still haranguing me about my partner, and our company is looking at layoffs?!?! Happy f’ing Hanu-Kwan-Mas!”) can create even MORE drama and stress. 

It’s easy to feel like we’re failing, or we’re not enough, or that life (and our jobs, and our families, and our friends, and our cooking, and well, everything) just sucks.

As I got older, as genuine loss and tragedy accompanied many of my family’s holiday events, we sat down with a good helping of sorrow, loss, fighting, and booze passed around the table like a bowl full of mashed potatoes (accompanied with a nice ladle of guilt and shame!). We wanted to create something different, but we just didn’t know-how. Outer conditions told us what our life meant. We didn’t know about the tools we needed to create an inner shift that would allow us to show up differently for each other. 

The more stressed we are emotionally and physically, the more likely we’re going to fall into old patterns of behavior and thinking. That’s why it’s critical that you take time, push the pause button, and find nurturing ways for managing holiday stress.

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You Never Know

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"If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is Thank You, it will be enough." —Meister Eckhart


I've Been Thinking...

How are you doing?

Let’s pause together this morning. Let's put our hands over our hearts, close our eyes, and breathe. Was the holiday a lot? Was it not enough? Did people come? Are they leaving now? Did you travel? Was it stressful? Did you Zoom? Was it weird? Was it surprisingly okay? Was it all of the above and more?

Whatever it was, it’s behind you. You are here. We are here together. Let’s hold space for one another. The so-called holiday season is upon us and we are going to need each other. We are going to need each other to be kind. We are going to need each other to be understanding because things are going to be different.

I know you might be saying to yourself, “Here we go with different again. I don’t want any more different. I miss things the way they were.” I get it. I feel you. I understand. But as I wrote last week, we have to focus on the way things are now and the way they will be. You have to take care of yourself and prepare yourself.

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Why You Should Chase More than a Paycheck

Julie-Murphy-Find-Your-Passion-blog Find Your Passion

We all need a paycheck to provide for ourselves and our families, but who says that paycheck can’t come from something you’re passionate about and love doing? Take your passion and make it happen. Why? Because that’s what brings you money! I cannot tell you how many times I’ve witnessed this: real people chasing real dreams and finding real wealth. It’s not only possible, it’s really doable!

You don’t need to stay stuck in a career you don’t love to make money. In fact, staying in a place you feel unfulfilled is limiting you from reaching your full potential.

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Being Grateful for Yourself, Your Unusual Life, and Your Courage—A Thanksgiving Power Practice

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(This has become my annual Thanksgiving message, so you may have read this before, but please read it now, because I want you to celebrate yourself!)

Some of you may be celebrating this Thanksgiving with hugs, easy conversation, turkey, and pumpkin pie. Yet some of you may feel stranded, like the marble that rolled away from the group, stuck with the dust bunnies in outer space or abandoned under the buffet. And some of you may feel stranded in broad daylight, surrounded by people, feeling invisible, or worse yet, as visible and mangled as a car wreck.

 

For many, the holidays can bring up discomfort.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: The Mending Quality of Life

nepo-migration The Mending Quality of Life

The slightest nudge in the fabric of existence alters everything. The shift of an atom when no one is looking can turn a molecule into a disease that covers the Earth, as in the pandemic we are suffering. Similarly, one small act of care can birth a food source that can feed the world. As happened 10,000—14,000 years ago, when an anonymous Chinese farmer first domesticated seed from wild grass to cultivate the first known rice field near the middle stretch of the Yangtze River.

In just this way, the opening of a soul’s eye under all trouble can turn darkness into light. This, too, can cover the Earth. Still, life in its totality has always been overwhelming, though the world has always turned on the smallest gesture. To stay devoted to how life will always join other life while never knowing if your effort makes a difference is at the heart of an enduring, nameless faith. We can describe this nameless joining as the irrepressible life-force emanating through us to keep remaking the world, no matter how many times things fall apart.

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Dare to Ask for What You Want

gratefulforlife Dare to Ask for What You Want

My first mentor, W. Clement Stone, the author of “The Success System That Never Fails,” taught me many things, but one of the most important being able to ask for what you want.

He would repeatedly remind me, “If there is something to gain by asking and nothing to lose by asking, by all means ask.” This one principle has reaped great rewards in my life, and it can do the same for you.

That’s why today, I want to discuss the importance of asking for what you want in order to reach your full potential.

How to Ask For What You Want

Unfortunately, many of us are not great at asking for what we want. For any number of reasons stemming from childhood conditioning to traumatic rejections later in life, we have become afraid of the word “no.”

To be successful, you have to be willing to ask and keep asking for what you want until you get a “yes.”

Rejection is just part of the journey to finally getting to a “yes.” And it only takes one “yes” to radically change your life forever.

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How To Practice Gratitude By Journaling!

notebook-with-i-am-grateful-for-in-handwritten-text-picture-id1203067809 Make gratitude journaling a regular part of your self-care practice

I know, I know… you’ve heard everyone from Oprah to Gwyneth sing the praises of practicing gratitude and the importance of creating a gratitude journal. 

But do these kinds of trendy approaches really work? You bet your sweet mystical pirate booty they do!

You know I love my “woo,” but I also want to ground everything in the practical. If it ain’t working, I ain’t wasting my time on it… which is why I can say with complete confidence that gratitude journaling is one of the most beneficial habits you can develop if you want more blessings, more magic, and more miracles in your life. 

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Still Standing

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"The thankful heart opens our eyes to a multitude of blessings that continually surround us." —James E. Faust


I've Been Thinking...

I awoke at dawn on Friday. The early morning, like my home, was dark and quiet.

I looked out my kitchen window as I brewed my coffee. I always look at the same tree in my backyard whenever I’m feeling off balance or out of sorts. It has been an inspiration for me as long as I’ve lived in my home.

When there were wildfires in California earlier this fall, I looked out at my tree in what felt like slow motion. Several of its beautiful branches came crashing to the ground. I was told it was just too hot outside and that the branches buckled under the weight of the heat. I held my breath as I watched them fall. I thought the entire tree might fall before my very eyes. I was already mentally preparing for what I would do without it.

I tell this story because, in some way, I think many of us are holding our breath right now waiting for something to fall. We are preparing for things to keep changing, or to live without something we love.

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I Am a Lighthouse

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As we are less than a week away from celebrating Thanksgiving Day in the US …. I am reminded to find  the moments of appreciation all around us, big and little. Join me in reaching for the feeling of gratitude my friend. We can do this!

We’re shining our lights. We’re being lighthouses for the highest, greatest, good. That’s been my prayer the entire time we have walked this journey we are all in collectively. It is still my prayer today … nothing has changed: the highest, greatest, good for all.

Can we get there together? That is the goal. That’s what so many people want, regardless of where you stand in the midst of all the current changes. We don’t go back. We move forward … and you have to choose and decide where you’re going to put your attention and your energy.

And if you are truly going to be a peacemaker, if you are truly focused on peace in this world, then you have to have it inside of you.

You cannot have regret. You cannot have anger. You cannot have judgment. You cannot have condemnation. You cannot have ignorance towards others. You cannot have comparison.

That doesn’t live with peace.

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Release Yourself by Realizing a New Order Within Yourself

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Awakening to Real Life occurs in direct proportion to waking up from our own sleeping nature -- a fact which brings us face to face with some of life's oldest and greatest spiritual mysteries. 

The myth of the phoenix, the riddle of the sphinx, even the story of Christ's birth in a dimly lit stable of barnyard animals… all point to the existence of one nature dwelling in the midst of another; of two separate orders of being merged in one relationship -- one lower, one higher -- one asleep to itself, the other awake, above, and in charge of its lesser parts. This invisible state of self must be realized before its relationship can be reversed and the sleeper awakens to his or her indwelling Spirit. To this end, we must learn to use each moment possible to awaken to ourselves instead of surrendering ourselves to our usual circle of dreams in which we alternate in appearance as either hero or villain. 

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Lean Into Good On First Waking

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What do you think about when you first wake up?

The Practice:
Lean into good on first waking.

Why?

Waking up is like the sun rising. At first it’s mostly dark, as glimmers of consciousness begin to light the shadows. Emerging into full wakefulness, the fogs and veils dissolve and the whole plain of your mind comes into view. It’s quiet: a restedness in the body, sleepy still, not yet much internal verbal chatter. There’s an intimacy with yourself, abiding as the core of your be-ing.

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How To Be A Powerful Communicator

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Ultimately being a powerful communicator is simple but not always easy.

Say what you really mean.

Ask for what you honestly want.

Take responsibility for how you feel.

Speak with love and kindness.

Your ability to communicate powerfully will determine the quality of your life.

Communication is the foundation for a fulfilling life.

Yet, it can be so hard to understand another and to be understood. So much pain, heartbreak, conflict is caused by miscommunication.

So why is it so difficult?

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How to Recognize the Gifts in Your Life

girl-with-flower-picture-id1014834536 The soul speaks to the body and the body speaks to the mind
Recognize your gifts to [00:44] turn challenges into benefits. When I teach, [01:15] 100’s of people I often ask, “How many of you feel like you don’t fit in?” Or “You’re the only one who feels like something is broken or wrong with you?” Almost 100% of the hands go up. You are not alone. The mind thinks it’s alone when it is not connected to the true, essential Self.

Here we are, splatted on earth and [02:05] the true Self is hanging out wondering, “Will it ever be safe to fully show up and live freely?” [03:00] We become identified as the mind and at some point in your life’s journey, you learn to peel off of the mind with its beliefs and illusions that we are not enough or that things shouldn’t be happening this way. And consciously reconnect as our authentic Self.

[04:05] You are made of energy—pure consciousness compressed into a body. Discover how to unattached from your mind so that you know who you truly are—the Soulful Self—who has a mind and a body. A mind and a body that are here to serve your full life experience here on earth.

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Mark Nepos' Weekly Reflection: Not Great But True

*Photo Credit: KS Kyung

I began as all young artists do—working toward some imagined greatness that might reveal itself in time, if I could stay devoted enough to my craft. But along the way, I was humbled to be more uplifted by what was true rather than what was great, by what was heartfelt rather than what was intricate. It kept me close to my own experience, which when entered honestly began to reveal the common ground of all experience and all time.

From there, I risked more by entering the poems than by writing them, not sure where they might go, and found myself touched and changed by showing up in my life so completely. Well, that’s not very different than being changed by loving another, is it? Now in the second half of life, I am devoted to being in that holy space where the conversation of aliveness exists. It’s not about the words but the poetry of life that is revealed and enlivened by our honest engagement.

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Knowing When To Shut Up

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Lately I’ve been craving silence.

Silence in my surroundings and silence in my own internal world.

The craziness of the world between politics and Covid and everything else, has generated so much noise, especially the noise of my opinions and everyone else’s.

The other day I saw these words on Instagram (@buddha.says) that blew me away:

“Open Your Mouth Only If What You Are Going To
Say Is More Beautiful Than Silence.”

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Let It Go

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I've Been Thinking...

A few months ago, I was talking to a friend of mine about life when he said to me: “Maria, if you want something new, you are going to have to first get rid of the old. It’s the only way to make room.”

Damn, I thought. Ain’t that the truth?

One of my big New Year’s resolutions for 2020 was to clear out the old in every area of my life. I had made a promise to myself that this would be the year I would take a hard look at how I was living my life: my beliefs, my attachments, and all my stuff. I started sorting through things from my office, things from my time as First Lady of California, things from my parents, things from my kids (do yourself a favor and do not save all of your kids’ school things like I did), and so many other things that had found their way into storage when life got the best of me. In fact, I was already in the thick of shredding, digitizing, donating, selling, and clearing out old stuff when my friend’s comment triggered me.

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New Moon Intention Journaling!

woman-writing-journal-at-window-seat-in-coffee-shop-picture-id518033322 NEW MOON INTENTION SETTING

New moon alert!

STOP what you’re doing…

DROP your pen onto the page…

And ROLL out those soul-deep intentions!

With the moon moving into Scorpio on Nov. 15, there’s no better time to set big, gorgeous New Moon intentions. And there’s no better way to dive deep and create certainty around those New Moon intentions than by journaling! 

Today, I’m going to talk a bit about the power of the New Moon for intention-setting and manifestation, what the New Moon in Scorpio means for us collectively, and how we can take advantage of this unique window of opportunity. 

NEW MOON INTENTION SETTING

The first 48 hours of a New Moon is a window when our creative energy is at its pinnacle.

New Moons have two powerful days, the day of and the day after, where setting intentions are most powerful. That means we’re able to effortlessly embrace our role as co-manifestor with the Universe. 

The Dark Moon (the night before the New Moon) provides us a perfect time to contemplate, meditate, and decide upon the intentions we want to see take root and flourish. 

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The Healing Power of the Feminine

healingwomen
"When your mind and heart are truly open abundance will flow to you effortlessly and easily."


I have an emotional response to the following words that I don’t think is unique: loving, peaceful, forgiving, warm, tolerant, harmonious, heartfelt. To me, these words all have feminine overtones.  The same is true of the “A words” that are in circulation: appreciation, affection, acceptance, and allowing. If you are distressed by the deep divisions in society, these words seem to describe what has been lost.  They also outline a path to healing.

Does the feminine have a chance right now? Within every person resides two polarities, the masculine and the feminine. When both are free to express themselves, the foundation is laid for living in harmony, balance, and fulfilment. This need for wholeness is known to modern psychology as well as ancient spiritual wisdom. When we experience one polarity overshadowing the other, disharmony, imbalance, and inequality prevails.

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