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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What Does “You Are Enough” Mean?

happy-woman-with-straw-hut-on-beach-picture-id538332160 What Does “You Are Enough” Mean?

“You are enough.”

That short phrase is one of the most powerful I can think of. So powerful that I used it as the title of my new book. Yet, I wonder if you’ve ever really thought about what it means to simply…be enough. 

Society places a great deal of importance on outward success – success in the form of possessions, a big bank balance, perfect relationships, glowing, radiant health, and a secure, high-paying job. Yet, even those that have outwardly achieved immense levels of success still feel as if there is something missing from their lives. They feel as if they ARE their possessions. Their profession is their identity. They depend on their bank balance for validation. 

These feelings of emptiness, dissatisfaction, and sadness occur because those external things can never take the place of your authentic self. In fact, all of the external trappings of success are actually examples of what “you are enough” does NOT mean.

You are far more than your external accomplishments, my dear friends. But from the moment you were born, you have been conditioned to be a unit of production. You’ve been separated from your emotions, been told that you’re too sensitive, that you shouldn’t become angry, that you have no reason to be sad. Your humanity has been denied and you learned that your worth is based on what you can provide. “Work hard!” they said and all will be well. In following that advice, your emotions were disregarded, and you were, essentially, mechanized.

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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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Don’t Beat Yourself Up

Don’t Beat Yourself Up Don’t Beat Yourself Up

Are you hard on yourself?

The Practice:
Don’t beat yourself up.

Why?

A previous JOT – admit fault and move on – was about our relationship with other people. This JOT applies the same practice to ourselves.

Most people know their less than wonderful qualities, such as too much ambition (or too little), a weakness for wine or cookies, something of a temper, or an annoying tendency to rattle on about pet interests. We usually know when we make mistakes, get the facts wrong, could be more skillful, or deserve to feel remorseful.

Some people err on the side of denying or defending these faults (a word I use broadly here). But most people go to the other extreme, repeatedly criticizing themselves in the foreground of awareness, or having a background sense of guilt, unworthiness, and low confidence.

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5 Self-Love Tips to Improve Self-Esteem

free-and-happy-woman-raises-arms-against-the-sunset-sky-harmony-and-picture-id1131849259 5 Self-Love Tips to Improve Self-Esteem

The longest, deepest, most important love affair you’ll ever experience is the one you have with yourself and that’s why improving your self-esteem is so important.

However for most of us, the idea of “loving ourselves” seems kind of selfish or egotistical.

We think it’s better for us to direct our love outward rather than inward.

But when we are kind to ourselves through simple practices like positive self-talk, we can gradually make improvements to our self-image that add up to a monumental change.

So, today I want to share five simple, yet effective strategies you can implement to improve your self-esteem.

1. Practice Gratitude

I can’t overstate how powerful this is.

When you make the effort to recognize everything you have to be grateful for, you will find more and more things to be grateful for – including your own abilities and accomplishments.

And when you take stock of everything that is actually going RIGHT in your life, that negative voice in your head won’t be as loud. That’s why I encourage everyone to keep a gratitude journal.

At the end of the day, take the time to write down each thing, no matter how small it seems, that you were thankful for during your day. This makes good days even better and is also a beautiful way to remind yourself how good your life really is.

Also, be sure to pay your gratitude forward. When you feel grateful for the people in your life and the things they have done for you, let them know about it.

Tell them that you see and appreciate what they do for you and for others. This allows you to pass that positive energy on to them and boost their self-esteem as well.

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Follow Your Heart

followyourheart Follow Your Heart

"The universe is not outside of you. Look inside yourself; everything that you want, you already are." -Rumi

I've Been Thinking...

The other morning, I was sitting on my porch drinking a cup of coffee when all of a sudden, a feeling swept over me. It was one that took me by surprise. I closed my eyes so I could sit with it for a while and really feel it. Then I decided to describe the feeling out loud so I would always remember it.

“I’m doing great,” I said to myself looking around to no one in particular. “I’m actually happy. I’m content. Life is peaceful, life is good.”
 

“Holy moly!” I thought as I sat there smiling. “I’m happy, I’m good.” I could feel myself smile.



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Do You Suck at Loving Yourself? I Did Too, but This Simple Practice Helped Tremendously

manwalking Do You Suck at Loving Yourself?
The practice of loving-kindness began to teach me to balance the love in my life out a bit. Any time I was uncomfortable making the loving aspiration towards myself, I knew that I'd be shifting focus shortly onto others, and that helped me through it.

We all mentally beat ourselves up from time to time. You know how it goes: "I can't believe I was that stupid," or "I'm too fat or thin," or "I'll never be good enough for him or her" and so forth.

Some of us, however, have deeper levels of self-denigration that have taken us to even darker places in our lives, which may stem from any number of reasons. Maybe we were abused growing up, picked on in school, abused drugs or alcohol or were sexually assaulted. Whatever the reason, it is that much more difficult for us to find a semblance of love and acceptance for ourselves than that of the average person, to which I was reminded of a few days ago while talking with a friend.

As we sat on my floor brainstorming ideas for a project, she asked me out of left field to name five things I like about myself. Well, after beginning to squirm a bit and struggling to come up with anything I said, "I'm compassionate" and "I'll help others whenever I can."

She was not impressed with my response and replied, "Yeah, those are nice, but they're more about helping others than about what you like about you," and damn, she was totally right. I have always been of the giving personality type rather than receiving, and like any good giver, it's often very difficult to receive on any level, whether material, emotional or physical.

Now, what I would have done here in the past is mentally beat myself up for not being able to name five things because, well, that's what a lot of us with low self-esteem and who are givers do. This time however, I didn't.

While I may have not done a stellar job at accomplishing her requested task, it did help me to realize I have come a long way in my process. I was able to tell her, "Yeah, I'm struggling with this, and I'm really fucking uncomfortable with it, but I know the qualities are in here somewhere," and today, I can honestly say I do know that, which is a realization I attribute much of to the practice of loving-kindness.

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Who Needs Your Love NOW?

hugs Who Needs Your Love NOW?

One of my favorite lines in A Course In Miracles is this:

The only thing lacking in any situation is that which you are not giving.

If you are out of sorts, stressed out, anxious, in need of a hug and some love, please know that you are not alone.

Most of us are pretty upside down these days about one thing or another.

And, an instant solution is to share some of your love with someone else.

Whether it’s a friend, elderly relative, stranger on the street, co-worker, neighbor, or the next person you come across, give them a big smile and a kind word, delivered with a blast of love and you can make someone’s day.

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3 Surprising Truths About Self-Love

lovebody 3 Surprising Truths About Self-Love

Do you love yourself? Do you really, really love yourself?

Self-love has become a popular topic nowadays. Many people know that they “should” love themselves. However, a great deal of confusion prevails. What does self-love really mean? And how do you actually do it?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, self-love is “an appreciation of one's own worth or virtue” or “proper regard for one’s own happiness and well-being.” These definitions sound quite positive.

However, other definitions make self-love out to sound negative. Dictionary.com defines self-love as: “conceit, vanity, narcissism,” or “the instinct by which one's actions are directed to the promotion of one's own welfare or well-being, especially an excessive regard for one's own advantage.”

Ouch. It’s no wonder we have such confusion! Worthiness and happiness are important aspects of our spiritual journey. Yet on the other hand, most caring people do not want to be conceited or narcissistic, nor to love themselves at the expense of others.

On the quest for self-love, I’ve searched high and low for a deeper understanding of what self-love really means. Here are 3 surprising truths I’ve discovered.



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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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10 Ways to Escape the Painful World of Self-Judgment

selfdoubt 10 Ways to Escape the Painful World of Self-Judgment

It would seem – given the speed and ease with which most of us judge others (including ourselves) ­– that there’s something natural, even good about it. After all, just about every time our eyes alight on someone or something, we judge it as good or bad, all based on how it stacks up against some inner ideal we have of how things should be.

Why is she wearing that? He’s so clueless. OMG: I look terrible today. The inner comments never stop, and often come out in complaints we express to others. But we don’t see them as complaints. To us they are nothing less than our intelligent observations of life around us.

We also don’t see how this endless stream of judgments hurts us. When we impose a negative view on things and people based on the past conditioning we bring to the moment, we can’t experience life directly, or see the good it may be offering. We can’t see the beauty in what we’ve summarily cast away.

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How To Deal With A Breakup and Heal Your Heart

breakingup How To Deal With A Breakup and Heal Your Heart

Breakups are never easy.

Often difficult, painful, and sometimes messy.

Know this: Your heart can never be truly broken, even though it might seem that way in the moment. Your heart is beyond physical, it’s capacity to love is infinite.

In any breakup your heart gets broken open beyond its current capacity to love. Prior to the breakup you were able to love to a certain degree. The breakup shatters the edges of your heart’s limits. Yes, it can be painful in the moment, but like a deep yoga pose it stretches you beyond who and what you were. Breathe into it, and allow your heart to open wider.

Every breakup is a potential breakthrough. Every breakup is a graduation to your next level, so long as you learn the lessons of the relationship.

The end of a relationship with someone you love can be extremely painful, but it is not a failure. The real success of a relationship is not in how long you stay together, but in how much you became the most authentic version of yourself and how much you loved.

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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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Beat the Valentine’s Day Blues with Mindfulness

lifestyle-woman-with-a-french-bulldog-relaxing-in-living-room-picture-id1061363412 Beat the Valentine’s Day Blues with Mindfulness

Have you been dreading Valentine’s Day this year? If so, you’re not alone. This holiday that celebrates romantic love can feel like a thorn in the side of those who have loved and lost, or those who feel sad and stressed about being single.

Scientific researchers have documented the reality of emotional struggle around the holidays, with the Mayo Clinic noting that holidays often exacerbate stress and depression. Many people simply struggle to receive the meaningful social interaction they crave, and the resulting loneliness can be especially intense around holidays.

You don’t have to suffer in silence, though. There are many tools available to help you shift out of sadness or loneliness this Valentine’s Day, and mindfulness is a particularly valuable and effective one. Here are seven mindfulness tips anyone who feels sad or lonely this Valentine’s Day can try:

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Find Your Voice

motherdaugher Find Your Voice

This week I noticed a theme that I picked up on during conversations with various people I thought I’d bring to you. I noticed there was a recurring discussion about speaking the truth, using your voice in a powerful way, and dealing with the consequences of what happens when you don’t speak out of fear.

Authenticity requires you to use your voice with a certain veracity– telling the truth, the absolute truth. Finding your voice takes courage, especially if you were raised to be seen and not heard, or you had to fight to be heard, or you were punished for telling the truth. Maybe all these things were implied while you were learning how to fit in, before finding out who you wanted to be.

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Loving Yourself – Chore or Freedom?

roses Loving Yourself – Chore or Freedom?
Are you resistant to doing your inner work and taking the loving actions on your own behalf?

“Some people regard discipline as a chore. For me, it is a kind of order that sets me free to fly.”
– Julie Andrews

How often have you said to yourself, “I have to take the time to do some Inner Bonding,” or “I’d better do my Inner Bonding work.”

If this is what you hear yourself say, it is your wounded self, trying to have control over getting you to do something that you think you ‘should’ do. Your wounded self likely sees Inner Bonding as a chore, something you ‘have to’ do to be okay. When this is your mindset about doing your inner work, then you might find yourself in resistance, because another aspect of your wounded self hates being told what you ‘should’ or ‘have to’ do.

The wounded self misses the point. Just as a diligent practice of playing the piano eventually gives you the freedom to play spontaneously, or the diligent practice of running gives you the freedom to run in a marathon, the diligent practice of Inner Bonding gives you the freedom to take loving care of yourself and bring yourself joy.

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Choosing to be a Loving Adult

Choosing to be a Loving Adult Choosing to be a Loving Adult

Some years back, I had the moving experience of working with Kevin (not his real name), a thirty-seven year old very talented branding artist we had hired to work on our website. From the moment I met Kevin, I knew he was a person I wanted to hire and work with. His demeanor was open, honest, caring and attentive. I had seen some of his work before speaking with him, and I was blown away by his creativity.

One evening, as we were having dinner, after working together for four solid days, I asked him how he had met his girlfriend. I had spent some time with Lila and Kevin and I was impressed with how loving they were with each other. They had been together for three and a half years.

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How Do You Feel About Yourself?

How Do You Feel About Yourself? How Do You Feel About Yourself?

Do you feel worthy, valuable, adequate, lovable, and secure?

Or, do you feel unworthy, worthless, inadequate, unlovable, and insecure?

Do you believe that your inner child is worthy enough for you to take loving care of yourself, or do you believe that your inner child doesn’t have enough value to make him or her worthy of being loved by you or by God?

Very often, when I ask my clients why they don’t take loving care of themselves, their answer is “I’m not worthy of love. I have no value.”

I always feel so sad to hear this.

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Acts of Faith – Manifest Faster

Acts of Faith – Manifest Faster Acts of Faith – Manifest Faster

Happy New Year and if you are like me, chances are you have a list of goals, desires or intentions (hopefully written down on paper and shared with an accountability partner).

One of the lesser known manifestation tools is called “Acts of Faith.”

This is something you do when you are so trusting that your desire will be fulfilled, that you acquire something that you would want or need if the desire arrived right now.

For instance, if your desire is to meet and marry your soulmate a gigantic Act of Faith would be to buy your wedding dress now.

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How To Make It Your Best Year Ever!!!!

woman-enjoying-on-the-hill-while-celebrating-new-year-2020-picture-id1181288632 How To Make It Your Best Year Ever!!!!

Each year brings new lessons and opportunities for growth.

Each year you are given is a precious gift from the universe.

Each year is a new canvas that you get to create, a work of art that is your life.

It’s not the change of year that makes the difference but who you are being and what you bring to it.

So what will you bring to 2020 that was different than the year before.

And who will you be differently this year?

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