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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Everyone Has Narcissistic Moments: Understanding Our Behavior

It is very common for people to latch onto specific labels and diagnosis and attempt to determine what is “wrong” with someone in their life. Narcissism is one such label and diagnosis that is used by people to describe people who may show signs of being selfish, uncaring, or lacking in empathy, compassion, and understanding of others.

Around the world, the number of individuals with true narcissism, or more correctly those with narcissistic personality disorder, is less than one percent of the population. The chances of most people interacting with a true narcissist are very low, and everyone’s ex-spouse is certainly not a narcissist.

However, many mental health experts propose that there is a spectrum or a range of behaviors or traits individuals may use throughout their life that are associated with narcissism. How frequently these traits crop up, when they occur, and if the individual continues to use the behavior is critical in making a diagnosis.

The Narcissist in Us All 

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See What a Soulful Tribe Can Do for You

It’s hard to believe we’re now in our sixth month of quarantine life. Just the notion of this is getting us more antsy and anxious. The new school year has begun and our worries are compounding, whether it’s centered around the safety of our teachers and students heading back into the classrooms or how much longer we have to wait before some normalcy comes back into our lives.

But while your outside world is full of uncertainty, there is one resource you can always rely on, one constant force that will throw you a lifeline and keep you afloat during these chaotic times—your Soul!

Your soul is always connected to a Higher Source. (When I talk about “Source” I mean God, the Universe, or a Higher Consciousness – call it what you will.) This is the power that will move you beyond feeling trapped, constrained, unfulfilled or alone.

I know that many of you are concerned about what’s going on right now in the world and in your own life. Whatever it may be: fear, uncertainty, injustice, intolerance, financial worry, relationship troubles, or health concerns. Maybe you’re feeling like you don’t belong anywhere or you’re losing hope. Maybe you want some answers to the many questions filling your head: What can I do? Why am I here? How do I get out of this mess? It’s important at times like these to remain connected to your soul. When you are connected to your soul – you are linked to a higher power.

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Using The Law Of Attraction To Develop Healthy Boundaries

Boundaries are similar to the rules that govern how a person interacts with the world around them. People with no boundaries do not follow typical relationship rules when interacting with people in their personal and professional lives. They may overshare personal information or not share anything, or they may constantly take advantage of others or feel very isolated and separated from others.

Relationships also have boundaries or limits. In a healthy relationship, the couple establishes their boundaries with a sense of mutual concern for each other’s emotional, mental, and physical health. When boundaries are lacking in a relationship, often due to issues such as addictions, mental health issues, abuse, or other factors, there is no balance. One person dominates the relationship while the other person feels pressured to give in.

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Learning to Trust in Relationships

The pandemic has created new rules for dating, with more people relying on technology to start relationships. When it comes to finding love and maintaining strong bonds, however, one thing has not changed: the need to establish trust.

Whether it’s romantic, friendly, professional, or familial, trust is essential in any relationship. Yet it can be difficult to establish and maintain trust. Many people carry emotional baggage from painful experiences in the past that prevent them from trusting others. Signs of lack of trust may include:

  • You aren’t sure you matter to the other person.
  • You have nagging doubts that your spouse or partner really loves you.
  • When they seem distant, you imagine it must be because of you (even though it may have nothing to do with you).
  • You fear you’ll be dumped at any time.
  • You find yourself fixating on these feelings.


If you have a persistent fear of being left or dumped, this may undermine the foundations of any type of relationship. If you feel lack of trust is a big problem for you that requires counseling, please seek it out. But if you’re simply looking to strengthen a relationship and increase your ability to love and trust, here are some things you can try:

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3 Blocks To Love and How to Let Them Go

Love is the foundation of human existence. Songs, novels, movies, poetry have been written about the subject of Love. As human beings, we are on an eternal quest of seeking love. Whether we are conscious of it or not, life becomes a process of this quest and seeking. So what blocks us from achieving this quest for love? What are the secrets to finding love in life? In this episode, I will share the three blocks to love and how to let them go, for good.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: The Life of Care

As a fire needs wood, the soul needs care to burn strong and bright. And just as it doesn’t matter what kind of wood is given to the fire, the soul doesn’t value one form of care over another. Any act of care will make the soul come alive through us. And since all things are worthy of care and in need of care, any ground of experience we devote ourselves to will brighten our aliveness—in us and between us. Simply and profoundly, as a fire needs wood, the soul needs care to thrive.

A Question to Walk With: Describe a form of care that feeds your soul. What role does this have in your life?

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What Do You Do When Someone Hurts You?

When I was a very young child, I quickly learned to jump out of myself whenever my mother was angry at me – which was often. Her anger was very scary to me and I wanted to get her to stop. Sometimes I felt so crushed and shattered by her anger that I felt like I was going to die. So I would jump out of myself to try to please her, hoping that this would get her to like me instead of hate me.

Of course, I continued doing this in my marriage, as my husband’s anger scared me just as much as my mother’s. I didn’t realize that any time I went out of myself instead of going inside and tending to my own feelings (which I couldn’t do as a child and didn’t know how to do as a young adult) I was abandoning myself.

Today I’m so grateful that I know how to go in instead of go out. 

I want to share with you exactly what I do now.

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Relationship Role Modeling from the Obamas

Sixteen years ago Barack and Michelle Obama’s marriage was about to crumble.

Michelle told her mother she wasn’t sure their marriage would survive.

Barack told his grandmother that Michelle’s constant nagging was driving him crazy.

They were drowning in debt from the Ivy League law school loans.

Michelle was the major breadwinner with her high profile, corporate job and two young girls to care for and she felt fat, unseen and unheard.

With Barack’s busy travel schedule, they barely had any family time. And she was tired of picking up after him.

One morning Michelle woke up at 5am. Barack was gently snoring next to her. All she could think about was getting out of bed and going to the gym….it had been months! Part of her resisted going….the girls would soon be up and would need to fed….but the other part of her thought, Barack’s a smart guy, he’ll figure out how to feed them.

Once she arrived at the gym she got on the stairmaster and quickly had a Wabi Sabi epiphany.

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Dealing with Fear of Commitment in Love

To love fully in relationships is a vulnerable thing. To commit in relationship is equally vulnerable too.

You can’t control what happens in love or with the other person. It requires that you open your heart and risk.

To commit in love can be scary sometimes.

Many of us fear the commitment that comes with loving someone. Realize, that your only commitment is to yourself. When you honor your truth, honor yourself every moment, you are "committing" to them.

You can know that you always have yourself whether that person stays or goes.

You must commit to the process of loving in and of itself. All forms change. So whether the person stays or leaves your life, you stay in love.

You continue loving yourself.

You never stop loving yourself.

Shine On Behalf Of The Divine

I’m still coming down off the gratitude cloud from last weekend’s OraclePalooza Virtual, and equally swimming in the searing truth of my best friend Doug’s crossing over the rainbow bridge a few short weeks ago. The entire weekend I was in two places as I stepped into one of many “firsts” without him. Being my wingman and emcee at OraclePalooza was the thing he loved best. It was strange to be without him although it was an important new beginning and I felt his spirit the entire time. 

I miss the brave, real, loving human though. In the flesh with me backstage eating gluten-free snacks and giggling about how lucky we were to do what we did, and him crying reminding me that not everyone’s stuff was for me to take on. God, I love that man. What a pair we were. 

Doug was with me for 16 deep meaningful and fun years of friendship, but what made it special is that we shared a mission. Those kinds of friends are gifts from the Divine.

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Realize Timeless Love

We have all been hurt, left with a heart wounded by others who seem to go on just fine without us. In moments of such loss, our emptiness doesn’t stay empty for long; we are soon filled with anger, guilt, regret, or grief. These dark thoughts and feelings usually accomplish two things at once. At their onset, they bind us to a negative certainty that we will never again love or trust, but that’s not the worst of it. They also blind us so that the real purpose behind our pain goes unseen; as such, we miss the following lesson. Hidden within it is the power to transform our tears into a new kind of triumph over sorrow:

It isn’t love that has hurt us. 

Once our inner eyes are open and we can read the story between the lines secreted away in our suffering, we’re able to see one spiritual wonder after another. For instance, we realize that real love can’t hurt us any more than the light from a lamp can turn a room dark. We understand without taking thought that the nature of light is to reveal, not conceal. It’s clear: love heals; its celestial purpose is to integrate all that it embraces and all who choose to embrace it. 

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Realize the Real Purpose of Relationship

How many men or women do you know that when a fight has begun – or even in the middle of one – they suddenly see and agree that to blame the other person for the state that they are in is a lie? How long would a fight go on between any two human beings if one of those individuals awakened sufficiently enough to see that the pattern of fighting with another person to prove that I’m right is in fact the proof that I’m in the wrong?  

Our experience has shown us that the fighting continues because we are not learning from the relationship. Instead we are burning over what someone or other has implied that we are or that we are not doing and therefore we are at fault. We are never at fault in our relationships until at last the fighting becomes so egregious that we can’t hide the truth from ourselves anymore. And by the time we reach that point with other human beings, we have most often ruined whatever little love had brought us together in the first place.  

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Can You Keep On Loving?

If you believe that love is humanity’s greatest hope and clearest path to a more compassionate inclusive planet, how are you feeling right now? When people seem to be hating one another with greater intensity. When rage and violent outbursts are becoming more common. Those who wear masks vs. those who refuse to; those who believe Black Lives Matter vs. those who deny it. Science vs. religion, Democrats vs. Republicans, health and safety vs. economic “recovery.” Individuals of different races, ages, nationalities, and belief systems fighting over statues and guns and face coverings. Where does unconditional love and kindness come into play in the midst of all this? Can we love our neighbor if our neighbor hates us?

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Covid-19 Virus – Note of Encouragement

It has been scary, upsetting, inconvenient, and disruptive all at once for so many of us. Thank goodness we humans have one another for support and friendship through it all. That is such a gift. We are in this together and together we will get through this as well.

Let us first send extra prayers to all people around the world who may be struggling with a coronavirus infection itself. We are so sorry that you must face this challenge. We ask the Holy Mother Father God and Loving Light of the Universe to surround you, above, below, front, back, side-to-side, and rain healing vibrations upon you without ceasing until you are fully restored to excellent health.

Let us also pray for all our scientists, health care workers, and support people who are working tirelessly to save others. We send our deepest gratitude and support for your devotion, courage, persistence, and generous love for humanity. We, your fellow humans, pray daily for your inspiration, safety, and health, as well as that of your family, and people whom you live with. Thank you for being our heroes. We owe a debt of gratitude to you that simply cannot be fully expressed.

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And The Answer Is . . .

"Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always."  -Unknown

I've Been Thinking...


One of my favorite quotes speaks to the importance of being kind to everyone, since everyone is fighting some kind of battle whether we know it or not.


I thought a lot about that this week because it felt like every conversation I had with others was about some personal struggle. One of my oldest and closest friends quietly told me that she finally called her doctor and asked for medication to help manage her depression, anxiety, and insomnia, which have gotten the best of her during this lockdown. Another friend told me that he was relieved to finally attend a small in-person AA meeting. In that gathering, he said several people spoke about the increased rate of suicide during lockdown and how challenging it’s been for all of them to stay sober during this isolating time.


Another friend spoke to me this week about the exact same thing and asked me why the media isn’t covering the devastating mental health toll of Covid-19. The impact of unemployment. The loss of health care. The rise in suicide, depression, anxiety, and loneliness. The loss of human connection.


“Maria these are Covid collateral stories,” my friend said to me. “You must shine a light on all of this.”

“Agreed,” I said.


So, here are some stats I want to shine a light on: A new study from Everytown for Gun Safety finds that the economic downturn caused by Covid-19 could cause about 20 more lives lost per day by suicide, this year alone. According to Census Bureau data, a third of Americans are feeling severe anxiety right now and a quarter of Americans are showing signs of depression. And a recent poll by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that the pandemic has negatively affected the mental health of 56% of adults. Think about those sobering statistics.

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See Good Intentions

What do others want?

The Practice:
See good intentions.

Why?

Hustling through an airport, I stopped to buy some water. At the shop’s refrigerator, a man was bent over, loading bottles into it. I reached past him and pulled out one he’d put in. He looked up, stopped working, got a bottle from another shelf, and held it out to me, saying “This one is cold.” I said thanks and took the one he offered.

He didn’t know me and would never see me again. His job was stocking, not customer service. He was busy and looked tired. But he took the time to register that I’d gotten a warm bottle, and he cared enough to shift gears and get me a cold one. He wished me well.

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Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: Labor Day

I was drowning in a dream

when the storm cleared and I was

lifted to the surface. I woke to find

your hand on my heart. You’ve

always had the power to calm

what you touch. Like the baby

bluebird you held last summer.
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The Secret Key To End Suffering In All Relationships

Relationships are one of the most common sources of suffering. It can cause such joy but also confusion and pain. We often approach relationships as if our partner is someone that we own. "You're mine." We go into a relationship thinking they will solve all our problems and fill the void.

Don't place your worth on another person. Don't depend on them to have self-value. You should feel completely secure with or without them. Your partner doesn't belong to you. You serve each other and help each other fulfill their purpose but your happiness shouldn't depend on them. Love cannot exist when manipulation is present. Trying to control another person is not love.

When you can truly love the other person and yourself without conditions, you will end suffering in relationships.

John Lennon Got It All Wrong

Don’t get me wrong, I love John Lennon and I love the Beatles, but their song “All You Need is Love,” a lovely sentiment to be sure, is also far from the truth.

The wild and wonderful state of “being in love” is natures greatest trick to get us to keep the species going, but it’s no predictor of a long term, happy, satisfying relationship.

We need more than just love to make love work.

I like to call being in love “the socially acceptable form of insanity.”

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Feeling LONELY and feeling ALONE

Feeling LONELY and feeling ALONE.

Any of you felt either of those?

The conversation that I wanted to have today is around the difference between being alone and being lonely.

Being alone means that you are solitary. You are by yourself. You are isolated, you are in a solitary space. There are no people around you. 

Being lonely is a feeling of sadness or abandonment or disconnectedness.

Sometimes people use a word that does not really fit what they are trying to describe.

Alone is being by yourself.

Lonely is a feeling that you have.

You can be lonely and be at a big party. You can feel lonely when you are with somebody that you love. My point is that loneliness is the feeling and being alone is the physical-ness of being solitary.

However, you are never actually alone.

We all have angels and we all have guides that are always with us. So, we are never actually alone.

So, if you are struggling with loneliness, that is something that is a feeling versus when you are feeling alone.

And I just want to make sure you understand that distinction.

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30 Simple Ways to Create Balance and Connection

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