One Go-to Mantra That Truly Works Wonders

Like many, I take my yoga practice off the mat. I study life in search of greater wisdom and truth. Some people show me what I need to work on and others set an example of where I would like to be in my personal development.


The store I currently work part-time for recently got a new manager. This lady started managing after a long line of her predecessors quit, due to the incredible amount of pressure the job put on them. Every time I work with her she seems to be in great spirits, always smiling and joking.


While I have a great number of skills that will help me to find inner peace, she seemed to have a much greater grasp on it. I often times wondered how she so easily maintained a positive mindset knowing how much work she was responsible for.


It was easy to understand why the others seemed constantly frazzled and stressed. The way this particular business is structured keeps everyone in the fear of losing their jobs and with that their livelihood.
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10 Books that Will Spark Your Desire for Sacred Travel

Pilgrimage has long been a topic explored by writers from around the world, from historians to novelists and from poets to travel writers. These writers all explored the figure of the pilgrim, providing insight into the art of pilgrimage and what it means to travel.


We’ve put together a list of 10 books are a great example of this. Despite being from radically different genres, they all discuss pilgrimage in one way or another and will spark your desire to embark on your own sacred journey.



10. On the Road

Jack Kerouac’s classic coming-of-age novel is truly an ode to the young pilgrim. The novel, which was first published in 1957, follows the adventures of Dean Moriarty and Sal Paradise, two young men who crash with artists and poets as they make their way through America on a shoe-string budget.

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7 Ways to Painlessly Discuss Finances – Part One

Right from the start of our relationship, any discussion around money created antagonistic gridlock all the way to disproportionate chaos and conflict for my husband and me. At that time, I was turning 50 and had amassed very strong and wildly illogical beliefs around finances. Just hearing the word “money” or “bills” would cause me to emotionally and physically shut down. I would pick fights with him about his work ethic and earning capacity. I would battle over whose money it was and who could spend it. I would point fingers at what I believed to be ridiculous spending habits. And then on those ominous days when bills had to be paid, I would morph into a screaming, crazy woman.

In retrospect, I can tell you these arguments were completely irrational. We were both working hard and making ends meet. Whenever I checked the online banking statements, the money was there. But I never felt abundant. I truly believed that I would die alone and penniless. (The alone outcome scared me far less than being penniless.) It was a story to which I was so attached that through the force of my energy I was bending our reality to almost insure that our finances were a house of cards ready to collapse at any moment. And my staunch unwillingness to meet my husband in a place of mutual respect where we could talk about these deep values was eating away at our intimacy.

You see, when couples fight about money, their respective positions deeply reflect their core values. And as time goes on, this polarization becomes caustic and like a strong acid, it eats away at the very foundation of the relationship. The unwillingness to appreciate and sympathetically discuss your conflicting attitudes and beliefs eventually creates all kinds of misunderstandings and hurt feelings. If the arguing persists, one day you will find yourself believing that you’re better off alone than constantly fighting over money.

It took time and introspection, but when I could finally articulate what money represented (safety, security, self-esteem, protection, and ultimately freedom and independence) which translated into me being a SAVER (or as he saw it, a miser); and he could identify all that it represented to him (feelings of competence, power, control, happiness and a celebration of hard work) which translated into him being a SPENDER (or as I saw it a spendthrift). we began to gain a greater appreciation for why we were so conflicted. That compassion and deeper understanding created the foundation for learning how to have the tough discussions in a mutually respectful manner and eventually building a strong financial future together.

Why Couples Have Problems Communicating About Finances

Our opinions and values regarding wealth, abundance, and worthiness almost always stem from our upbringing. That’s why so many couples have issues talking about money. Some of us had lots of direction growing up when it came to money management. And some of us watched our parents struggle with not having enough money to buy sufficient food or clothing. Then there are those who witnessed non-stop conflict between their parents over money, a constant source of strife, screaming and suffering. We bring these emotional artifacts of those experiences into our present attitudes about money.

As adults, we can choose to recognize those artifacts, and we can recognize what’s healthy and productive, and what’s not. We can courageously learn to replace those old artifacts with an increasingly positive mindset where wealth – and worthiness – are concerned. Opening ourselves up to our partner to reveal and release the negative while nurturing the positive is a wonderful experience.

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Why People Are Afraid to Truly Experience Inner Peace

Most people really like the concept of achieving inner peace. They enjoy imagining a life without as much stress and inner turmoil. When it comes right down to achieving this experience there are a few issues that get in the way.


True inner peace is not something you can conceptualize with your mind. Is not actually a mind process at all. To access and experience true inner peace you need to be able to drop out of thinking about anything. This is usually the part of the process where people get stuck.


Very simply put, people don't feel they can trust anything that they can't wrap their minds around. Unfortunately this includes inner peace. If there is a topic or an issue that someone feels they don't understand, they no longer feel in control of the situation. When they don't feel in control of the situation they don't feel safe.


When this happens there are usually two major issues involved. The first is that there's some sort of buildup of trauma that perpetually causes them not to feel safe outside of controlling the situation. This is probably the most common. In this case, it is possible to release the traumatic energetic blockages lying in a persons system using the technique of meditation. That is another article for another time.


The other possibility is that they are  caught up and narcissistic programming that will fundamentally stop them from doing anything they don't feel they're in control of. These cases are a little more rare.
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Claim Your Life!

This coming weekend, I have the extreme honor of leading The Shadow Process Workshop in Los Angeles. No matter how many of these workshops I have attended, participated in, or led over the years, I am always in awe of the shifts that people experience in the short time span of 2 ½ days. I am also so grateful to Debbie Ford for creating a process that continues to live on and transform the lives of so many.


On a personal level, I am always amazed that even after having experienced this process numerous times, I always take away so many insights and a-has! One of the most powerful concepts that emerged from one of our amazing workshops is that it is up to each of us to "claim our life!"


We all have heard the adage "You teach people how to treat you." Yet what many people might not realize is that it is often your unconscious mind, which is far more powerful than your conscious mind, which tells and teaches people how to treat you and how to interact with you. It is also your unconscious mind that is filled with shadows and shadow beliefs -- all of that internal dialogue that plays in your head and repeats disempowering statements like "I am not good enough." "No one will ever love me." "It is not safe to stand out and shine or be seen." Ultimately, it is your negative internal dialogue that is your inner teacher, instructing the world how to treat you!

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The Power of Daydreaming!

Lately, I’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about advanced manifesting techniques and in the process remembered that some of the EASIEST manifesting comes from daydreaming….


When you are daydreaming, you are letting your imagination run wild, fantasizing about something that feels good, but without any strong attachment or need to “make it happen.” There is no “want” involved, just the sweetness of playing with your imagination.


Let me give you an example: For many years I have often had the thought, “Someday, I’d really like to visit Thailand.” I have never actively sought to make this happen, but when the thought arises, I close my eyes and imagine that I am visiting Thailand and having a fabulous time there. A few days ago my speaking agent called to tell me that I will soon be offered a speaking engagement in Thailand and I am now waiting to finalize the details.


How crazy is that? By indulging in daydreaming, I manifested something wonderful.

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Tips on Stress Relief for Highly Sensitive People

Some of us are overly sensitive. Mostly people will talk about themselves by saying, ‘I’m a very sensitive person’. But it is always in context to their own feelings.  They like to ignore the fact that they could be inflicting pain on every other person around, yet they carry this ‘injured’ air around them.

 

Special traits

Highly sensitive people emote on a very different level.  They have some special traits which are very different from the average person. It could also be considered as a positive thing but it has its drawbacks.

 

Highly sensitive

This is actually a trait which brings both strengths and challenges. Sometimes one is just easily offended by people who mean no harm or they could even be trying to be nice to you. Sometimes the reaction to everyday stressors is also extreme. You may be more affected by negative stressors than most people are.

 

Wild imagination

You like to believe that you are being bullied by people who mean no harm and then tend to become over emotionally aggressive. You are more deeply affected by others.  Try to manage your reactions, make it your strength rather than a challenge. 

 

Too intense

There are many things which can get overwhelming and need to be avoided such as:

 

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5 Journaling Tips for the Spiritual Traveller

Documenting a trip makes for a great keepsake, but it can also be a powerful tool for self reflection, turning any journey into a spiritual one. In this article we share 5 Journaling Tips for the Spiritual Traveller.

As best-selling author, filmmaker, and tour leader Phil Cousineau reminds us in his book to the Art of Pilgrimage, The Art of Travel: Journal, “by honoring our travel experiences through writing stories, poems, songs or creating sketches or other artwork, we can transform virtually all our travels, whether around the world or around our backyard, and make them more meaningful.”

In this blog we share 5 tips to make a meaning travel journal.

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Turn Back the Clock with Positive Thinking

Age is only a number, but if you are empowering it with energy fueled by a negative belief system you are painting a dangerous reality that could deliver exactly what you are most afraid of.

When you think about the word “old,” what images come to mind? Infirmity? Senility? Incontinence? Wrinkles? Chronic illness? Hip replacement? Impotence?

Just a few months ago, when I crossed the threshold of 60, something suspect started happening. For the first time in my life, I started obsessing about myself in terms of my age. And I’m still not entirely clear as to whether I was using it as a badge of courage or an excuse for incompetence.

“I’m 60; I need to get to bed earlier.”

“I’m 60; my clothes don’t fit like they used to.”

“I’m 60, I can’t remember my kids’ names.”

“I’m 60, there’s no way I can drive in a big city.”

“I’m 60, I’m too stiff and sore to have sex.”

None of these issues arrived beautifully wrapped in gift boxes on July 22nd. But this negative self-talk sure did.

Negatively thinking about aging can…you guessed it…actually make you feel older. It can impact your mental perception, your health, your happiness and the way you look.

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Integrity in Crisis

Integrity is a word often invoked yet seldom defined.


If you look up its definitions you’ll find predominantly, “having strong moral principles”; the Cambridge Dictionary adds, “that you refuse to change”, worth noting.


It comes from the same Latin word as integrate – specifically, “make one.” This is making all the pieces fit together like cogs in a watch. (You have a digital watch? What way is “clockwise” for you?)


With integrity, you have nothing to fear, since you have nothing to hide. With integrity, you will do the right thing, so you will have no guilt.” ---Zig Ziglar


The whole question goes directly to the heart of Character. The more you’re in integrity, the stronger your character. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., spoke of “the content of [your] character…” Indeed it does have content.

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Are We Meant to Push Past Being Stuck?

It is hard to feel stuck and unmotivated. Especially in matters of career and business. Not only are things not progressing but we may also feel like we are letting ourselves down by not taking action.


There is such a thing as being in the flow. This is when we are flooded with inspiration. It flows freely accompanied by the drive to take action. I have found in the past that these experiences come along with bursts of energy. Taking action feels more like a rush or a buzz.


As with many things there is no black-and-white answer to this question. I can only share my experience and hope that it helps someone. I have found that the lull of activity is there for reason. Maybe it's time to take a break or focus on other areas of life.


Pushing against the stagnancy often times leads to poor results. Whatever you come up with during that time is probably not going to be your best work. This, in combination with the lack of productivity can feel very depressing.


I feel that during these times productivity can be found in other areas. Maybe we need to focus on her health or well-being. There's usually some other area of life calling our attention. There could be more information we need before we can move forward in a  successful way.
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What Are You Running Away From?

In my last blog post, I wrote about a situation which has been causing me a lot of heartache and how, despite all of the tools and wisdom that I have as a life coach and teacher of transformation, it has been hard for me to find a sustained sense of peace. I shared how after going to healers, therapists, and doing lots of deep work around my core wounds and projections, I was so grateful to read Debbie Ford’s new book Your Holiness: Discover the Light Within because it reminded me that when I feel cut off at the knees, I need to get down on my knees and ask to be shown. Bottom line, I needed some divine guidance to support me in finding resolution, relief, and a deeper understanding of self.

 

Days after working my way through the book and using prayer as a vehicle to connect and receive, I was running outside and heard the words, “Just be with the hurt.”

 

Stunned and amused, I stopped dead in my tracks. I realized that I had been literally running away from my hurt. In my fixation to figure out and fix my pain, I had avoided really feeling the deep hurt that was being triggered inside of me. I was trying to get to the destination without going on the journey. I’d been trying to bypass the feelings in my heart and resolve my pain in my mind, which, of course, was a strategy I developed long ago and even wrote about in The Integrity Advantage.

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How to Dream a New Story for Your Life

What negative story do you tell other people about yourself over and over? Most of the time when we repeat our “shadow narrative” we aren’t aware of it, we can’t see that the telling of it anchors the memory deeper into the universe, making it a part of your current condition.

Take a minute to really think about this.  Do you see yourself in your story as always being disappointed by people you elevate? Do you tell a story of the world as a place you need to rebel against? Perhaps you tell a story about being a victim of other people’s issues, or maybe you tell one of you overcoming obstacles, always having to do everything yourself. Help never comes. (Sigh) Or maybe you tell a story of being pushed out, isolated by others, so you can continue to live in an illusion of being a victim, and so you can enjoy vicious gossip to vent your unprocessed anger.

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And the Doctor Said, ‘Go Live Your Life…’

A few weeks ago, I went to visit my friend Nancy.


She didn’t ask me to come, I just went. I went because she told me the doctor (actually, multiple doctors) had told her there was nothing left to be done for her. Her cancer — the disease she had long kept at bay — had finally gotten the best of her.


She looked me in the eye and said, “What do you suggest I do?”


I looked at her. Her beautiful eyes locked with mine and I felt as if my heart were on a magnetic wave with hers. “Good question,” I replied.


What does one do when something like cancer gets the best of you? What does one do when there is nothing left to do, but enjoy what’s left? What does one look forward to when there is almost no forward to look towards?


I asked her, “What do you enjoy? What brings you joy?”


“Being with friends,” she said. “Being by the ocean. Letting the sun hit my face.”


“And so,” I said, “Let’s do that…”

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It's Time for Science to Accept Consciousness

Although it takes place outside the headlines, even those that deal with science, a heated debate is occurring about mind and matter. On onside is a camp of so-called physicalists, formerly known as materialists, who hold fast to the assumption that any and all phenomena in nature can be reduced to physical processes and the interaction of objects (atoms, subatomic particles, etc.) --these for the building blocks of the universe. On the other side is no single camp but a mixed assortment of skeptics who hold that at least one natural phenomenon--the human mind--cannot be explained physically.


When one explanation (the physicalist) is supported by the weight of highly successful theories in physics, biology, biochemistry, and neuroscience, and the other side has no accepted theory on its side, the debate seems totally unequal. But in David versus Goliath battles, be careful of rooting for Goliath. The possibility of a science of consciousness, which would involve a thorough explanation of mind and how it relates to matter, can't begin until the obstacles in its path are removed and old accepted assumptions are overturned.


That has already begun, on all fronts. In physics, the essential problem of how something came out of nothing (i.e., the big bang coming out of the quantum vacuum state) stymies cosmologists, while at the microscopic level the same mystery, this time involving subatomic particles emerge from the virtual state, is equally baffling. In biology the prevailing Darwinism cannot explain the quantum leap made, with astonishing rapidity, by Homo sapiens in terms of reasoning, creativity, language, our use of concepts as opposed to instincts, tool-making, and racial characteristics.


We are the offspring of the newest part of the brain, the cerebral cortex, and yet there is no causal connection between its evolution and the primal Darwinian need to survive. This is evident by the survival of a hundred primate species lacking a higher brain, reasoning, tool-making, concepts, etc. Finally, in neuroscience and biochemistry, there is zero connection between nerve cells, and their chemical components, and mind. Unless someone can locate the point in time when molecules learned to think, the current assumption that the brain is doing the thinking has no solid footing.

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What Really is the “Mind” and How Can We Harness the Power of Our Minds?

The priest (swamiji) at our temple used to tell us the story of a magical “Genie” given to human beings by God. This genie is able to do whatever we ask of it, as long it is kept busy all the time. The caution was, if this genie did not have something to do, it would wander off and cause us problems. So it was given a pole to climb up and down like a monkey until the next need for this genie arises. According to swamiji, this genie is our “mind” and the pole is the inhalation and exhalation of breath. To avoid unnecessary problems and troubles, we were advised to focus our mind on the breath when we were not using our minds.


We hear so many words related to the mind such as conscious mind, sub conscious or unconscious mind, narrow mindedness, mindfulness, mastermind, mind blowing, mindless, remind, never mind, absent minded, mind set and peace of mind. What really is the “mind” and how can we use it to our advantage?


According to Vedic scriptures of Hinduism, sat (truth) or the absolute is that which remains true in all periods of time – the past, the present and the future. From standpoint of the absolute, there is no mind. But the mind is not “asat” (false) or totally non-existent either. Therefore, the mind comes under the category of mithya or an illusory entity. According to these scriptures, human beings have five bodies or koshas which goes from gross to subtler forms or from separateness to oneness at different levels.

  1. Physical body which is made of matter and is visible.
  2. Etheric body which is our energy body and can be felt.
  3. Mind body which is made of thoughts and vibrations. This body is very important because it holds your experiences from this and past lives or psychic impressions which creates our belief systems (samskaras). Whatever happens to us constitutes only 3 to 5 % of our experience but the reaction to the event constitutes over 95% of our present experience depending on our past psychic impressions. As we become more conscious and aware we have more control over our projections and are able to respond instead of react.
  4. Causal body which is made of wisdom or consciousness.
  5. Bliss body which is associated with feeling of ultimate peace, joy, love or Samadhi.
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How To Deal With The Death of a Loved One (video)

Losing a loved one is never easy.


On September 27, 2017, my dear mother made her transition from her body.


My mother was the purest soul I’ve met in this lifetime. She was unconditional love beyond human understanding. Her only desire was to serve and do God’s work in all ways.


I was so close to her my entire life, but strangely in her passing even more so. I feel her everywhere now. It’s once she left her body that I understood who she really was now that her loving was no longer limited to a human form.


In the year she knew she was dying, I once asked her if she was afraid. She simply looked at me with unwavering conviction and kindness and said, “Not at all. I am not this body. The soul lives forever. I am ready for whatever God wants for my life.”


In her last months, I realized my mother’s true greatness was in her depth of surrender to the Divine.


My favorite memory (I have so many) was simply holding her in my arms one day, my heart bursting with love, looking her in the eyes, and sharing what a profound privilege it was to incarnate in this lifetime as her son, to have had the opportunity to be loved by her and know a soul as beautiful as her.

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The Eternal Feminine Brings Wholeness

A genuine social upheaval has begun, its theme is the empowerment of women. Old attitudes that have resulted in many kinds of unfairness are being challenged. The long-suppressed outrage of sexual harassment has been exposed to the light of day. No one with a heart and a conscience can do anything but respond with encouragement. It’s about time.

Rising from a position of weakness to become stronger, turning old wounds into a source of healing—these are important changes in anyone’s life. The eternal feminine has been a running thread in human culture for thousands of years, but each generation has to reinterpret it, and at the moment, embedded in a secular society where daily demands and distractions are the rule, envisioning the eternal feminine requires going deeper into our self-awareness.

 


Everyone’s source is pure awareness, which has no gender. When pure awareness manifests into creation, gender isn’t in evidence, either. When you wake up from deep sleep and become aware of your existence, the experience has no labels. The issues of masculine and feminine enter in a social context, defined by your beliefs, attitudes, and mental conditioning. To be a woman is to be a creation of many factors, going far beyond the physiological.

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How Do We Liberate Ourselves from the Power of Others?

Recently I was at a conference, and one of the men at the conference was very powerful, and very preoccupied with power, much like a teenager might be occupied with power, except that he was considerably older.

I experienced this as he was introduced to me and he said, “How ya doing Ram?” I spent time with him and saw that he had decided in his mind that I was irrelevant. Everything I stood for was irrelevant, and I felt my irrelevance in his presence, and I watched that pour through me. I watched myself get caught in it at first, so that I started to crunch up into irrelevance and get slightly deviant. Those are the ways I responded to irrelevancy in his mind about me.

Then I saw my predicament, saved by my meditation bell, and I saw what I was doing. I saw my mind buy his model of myself, and just the noticing of that started to loosen its hold over me. He had brought me into the dimension of power, and found me wanting. He found that I was not powerful enough to be important in his eyes, and I just sat with it, and I felt what it felt like to be irrelevant and somewhat litigious. I just noticed all this, and slowly as I noticed it, and just allowed it. I didn’t push it away, I didn’t make believe that it didn’t exist, I just noticed and allowed it.

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Untangling Ourselves from Parental Approval

This month’s blog post is very personal, and I’ve been quiet about this area of my life because the truth is that I don’t have answers. And, those who know me well, know I love answers. I’ve tried to find them, but I only find more questions. Uncertainty and confusion walk alongside me nearly every day, making me feel very uncomfortable and exposed. But I feel drawn to share some insights I’ve had over the past few months about pleasing people and finding our true selves.

 

My father suffers from dementia, maybe Alzheimer’s. I don’t always get straight answers. I only know what I know based on the quality of the information I’ve been given, but no one can say for sure until after death. All I know for sure is that the man I see today is different than the man I knew yesterday. Tomorrow will be a different day too. Nothing’s certain with dementia. Then again, nothing’s ever been certain with my dad.

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30 Simple Ways to Create Balance and Connection

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