Subtle Self Sabotage Every Empath Needs To Be Aware Of

By Stacy Lee

As young as infancy, humans recoil in confusion about artificial intelligence in the form of something that looks human, i.e., a robot. Even babies with no cognitive ability to discern, feel dissonance in the face of something that looks real, being fake. This, until death do us part, is the life of an empath.

As an empath grows from a more visceral heart-centered awareness into a cognitive one, our psyche’s job is to braid the faces we actually see, with the energy going on behind the face. This is a confusing task for an empathic child because most of us were born into families where there was a face that we understood through unspoken rules, was to be preserved as our image, but our whole lives operated under feeling terrible just to keep the face “looking” like it doesn’t actually feel terrible.

That job will eventually take a toll, not only on our psyche and emotional well-being but also our physical health.

On empathy

If you feel more deeply than most, you have a desire for peace stronger than you have a desire to uphold the facade you watch others put up just to ‘save face,’ you can viscerally feel the mental, emotional, cognitive, or physical sensations of others more often than your own inner sensations, and people have always been drawn to you because it’s easy to be around you as you’re someone whose always been able to meet people where they are “vibrationally speaking” rather than meet them where their image is, you’re likely an empath.

Most empaths grow up using empathy as a survival tool which affords them the safety of knowing exactly how everyone else feels in a room. They’ll know their mother’s mood before she walks in the door, their sister’s heartbreak though she’s never said it, the imprints of terrible things passerby’s on the street hold in their energy field, and the physical pain of their grandmother’s broken leg before the call comes to say grandma broke her leg.

We grow to know what everyone else feels so we can acquiesce ourselves for their comfort to ensure we’ll be loved, but we never learn how we feel. The most subtle self-destructive energy forms an untrained empath can embark on are two-fold: not taking her empathy seriously, and not knowing who’s is what. Here’s why.

Empathy is real

Empathy is a real thing. Feelings are energetic impulses that are transferable. An empath who picks up on those impulses who doesn’t believe her empathy is real, or know she’s an empath, will receive those feelings and believe that they’re hers to work out. Let’s say for instance, you wake up with severe neck pain and immediately feel resistance to showing up to work, to facing the day, and your first instinct is to either call the doctor or pop a pill because damn it, you’ve got a pain in the neck and it’s about to ruin your day.

Two hours later, at work, your 10:00 client comes in, neck to the side, saying it hurts. Now you know that emotions that aren’t worked through will wreak havoc on the body, but what you didn’t know was that the way to solve your own neck pain, was to wait two more hours to meet this client in your office where together you’ll do work to transmute this neck pain. Your client leaves, and an hour later, the pain in you has sifted through itself, nowhere to be found. Had you started your day calling off of work, calling a doctor and popping a pill, you’d never have correlated that you were empathizing with a client.

Thoughts are things

What you didn’t know is that thoughts are things, transferrable like feelings, and that if a client with a neck pain is thinking about coming to see you that day, the highly sensitive empath will feel the braid of those thoughts with those feelings and feel their imprint on her own energy field before the two physically meet. The ultimate problem with this is that the empath who is used to being the dumping ground for other people’s thoughts and feelings will not only feel bipolar in this dynamic, she’ll think that the neck pain, or the heartbreak, or the jealousy, or whatever it is, is hers. Then, the tragedy. Here’s when the untrained empath creates from other people’s inner places believing they are hers and can subtly self-destruct her own life.

Say you feel jealousy in relation to your partner though your partner and you are super solid. If the untrained empath is picking up on this energetic pattern of someone she’s close to, she’ll take her perfectly solid relationship, start questioning it while assuming what’s making her jealous must be something her partner is doing behind her back that she just can’t put her finger on. So down the rabbit hole she’ll go, snooping, questioning, taking perfectly good moments and smashing them to put her finger on something she can feel but can’t see.

You see how destructive this could be to her relationship merely because she hasn’t sorted out that those feelings and thoughts she’s picking up on, aren’t hers to work out but the friend who called last night to complain about her relationship? They’re experiences moving through her, that got stuck because she looked at them long enough to own them. From there, she created destructively from them.

Understand thoughts, feelings, energy is transferable and if you’re an empath you’re the clearest energy field most people have got to bring the unbearable ones to, in order to be transmuted. Take your empathy seriously and under all circumstances that you can feel yourself down the rabbit hole of anxiety, insecurity, fear etc, be open to the possibility that those feelings don’t belong to you, they’ve just come in, to pass through. Whatever you do, never create a thing under those vibrations.

After all, other people creating from those places is what kept the face, the fake image, and the feelings underneath the image, real, and really terrible your whole life while you watched something real, pretend to be something artificial.

Keep it real my love, really open. Your empathy won’t kill you, but it might drive you crazy until you learn to discern it. Stay open to real, even if it hurts. What we close our hearts around, trying to avoid, will only keep in, that which we wish to avoid. God forbid, you carry around every energy pattern of everyone else on the planet who’s in avoidance and keep it as your own. Under those conditions, you’ll never be the healer you’re capable of being. Stay open, let it pass, and notice who’s creating and who’s experiencing within you. More often than not for a true empath, most of what is in you, didn’t come from being with you, but came from without you. You don’t have to believe everything in you, is yours

5 Essential Tips To Care For Your Soul

By Sarah Wilkinson

Soul Care

Many of us go about our daily lives focusing on the earthly routines of work, earning money, “providing” for our family, a nice home, gadgets, clothes, etc. These are all lower chakra orientated and don’t nourish us on a higher spiritual level.

One important thing to remember is that we don’t have souls, we have bodies. We ARE souls.

If that realization is allowed to sink in then a whole new way of being can take shape. No longer are we simply a body with a brain, mind and an “inner-self,” we are instead an infinite consciousness, part of a vast and eternal universe that we are not in our earthly vessels designed to master the meaning of.

To live well here we must simply abide by and work with the laws of nature and the universe that are provided for us and stop with our controlling and reasoning attitudes.

Trust in a Higher Power

We each have a role to play that is part of a much bigger concept than simply life on earth.

Every breath, thought, action and word uttered from our mouths affects the entire cosmos in ways we will never know, or need to know.

What we are left with, therefore, is trust, a trust like no other in the greater more omnipotent power that created us. We walk this earth as children to serve God and we come here to face duality. It’s a test, a game if you like.

We must live with our shadow sides every waking hour of every day, for we were created to face challenges and to grow and remember our true divinity and power before returning “home.”

Like a fire our lives can combust at any given moment, but with the practice of soul care we can handle even major changes with wisdom and grace.

We can remain centered and at ease, knowing that we would not be gifted these opportunities for growth and conscious remembrance if we were not ready for them.

Shifting Consciousness

Earth is shifting, evolving in consciousness and so must we.

It is therefore a very special time to be here, a better time than ever before and a chance to really create heaven on earth and to step out of purgatory, no longer flitting between the extremes of the light and the dark on a rollercoaster of adrenalin.

Balance must be struck now internally, just as represented in the yin and yang symbol.

The soul is perfect in its essence, by listening to it, respecting and caring for it, optimal health, wellbeing and vitality can be yours.

5 Tips for Soul Care:

  1. Stop, just stop for long enough to reflect on your life and assess where you are. Start to consider the bigger questions like, “does my lifestyle fulfil me?” or “am I truly at peace with myself and others? Am I carrying any unnecessary old wounds? Who and what needs forgiving?”
  2. Get into nature for at least 30 minutes 5 days a week. Ideally you should do this every day and observe the tiniest of details out there.
  3. Turn off all phones, tablets, laptops, TVs and gadgets for 1 day every week, or have them on only for 3-5 hours per day in total.
  4. List 3 activities or occasions where you have felt completely “yourself,” happy, balanced, in your element. Are you doing enough to recreate these in everyday life, or are they just a once in a blue moon experience for you?
  5. Start a gratitude journal.  At the end of each day list as many things as possible that have either brought you joy or an opportunity for learning and growth.

How Long Does Sex Last for Most Couples? We Asked a Sex Therapist

Plus, what it means if your sessions don’t usually last as long as the average.By Samantha Lauriello

Let’s talk about sex, specifically how long it lasts. Sometimes it’s way too short, and you’re thinking, Did he seriously just finish? In 30 seconds? Other times it’s way too long, and you feel like your vagina might break at any moment. And then there are those sessions that hit the sweet spot. Not too short, not too long, but just right.

So how long does a typical sex session last for most people? On average, 28 minutes, according to a recent survey of 2,000 adults by SKYN Condoms.

Okay, that’s a lot of nonstop bumping and grinding. Holly Richmond, PhD, a certified sex therapist, tells Health that number seems very high (*lets out sigh of relief*). She says nine to 12 minutes is probably more accurate for how long intercourse lasts, on average.

That being said, Richmond also points out that surveys like this one can be tricky because everyone has their own definition of sex. Some people who replied could have included foreplay in their response, while others might have thought the question meant strictly penetration. (A rep for SKYN Condoms tells Health the question was focused on penetration.)

A previous survey by sex toy company Lovehoney came up with a time span much closer to Richmond’s. The company surveyed 4,400 customers and found that for most heterosexual couples, sex lasts 19 minutes on average, and it consisted of 10 minutes of foreplay and nine minutes of actual intercourse.

But before you start worrying about whether your sex life lives up to the average, Richmond says to consider a few things. “In sex, there’s not really a normal,” she says. “Sexuality is so diverse, and every individual is different. I urge people to think about how unique their own sexuality is. It doesn’t make sense to put ourselves in a box with a survey.”

Also, don’t let porn fool you. Richmond calls porn stars the “Olympic athletes of sex.” They might look like they can go on forever, but it’s just not realistic.

The important thing is that you’re satisfied with your sex life. If you and your partner end each session feeling relaxed and connected, then it doesn’t matter how long it lasted at all.

But if you already think your time in the sack is too short and you’re not satisfied, change your routine a little. “I’m such a huge fan of quickies, especially for parents of young children or couples who are just overworked and exhausted,” says Richmond.

There’s also a time and place for drawing out the action. “When you do get a day or a few hours to yourselves, just try to be really sensual in how you think about sex,” she says. “Bring sexuality and eroticism into it, not just penetration.”

Bottom line: Sex is different for everyone. Your enjoyment is what matters, not trying to compete with some so-called average. But hey, a little experimentation never hurt anybody. Who knows, maybe you’ll find you and your partner love to slow things down…or speed them up.

6 Signs Your Parent Might Be Gaslighting You (and What to Do About it)

By Sarah Stiefvater

Has your mom ever called you a drama queen for speaking up about relationship stress? Does your dad regularly play the victim when you call him out for any little thing? In an ideal world, we’d all have strong, fabulous relationships with our parents. In reality, though, parents are real people, too, and sometimes real people treat each other poorly. If you suspect your parent is gaslighting you, read on for some telltale signs, plus tips for what to do.

What Is Gaslighting?

Before we jump into the signs, let’s define gaslighting. Though it can take many different forms, at its core, gaslighting is a communication technique in which someone causes you to question your own version of past events. Most times, it’s meant to make you feel like you’re losing your grip on reality. In its milder forms, gaslighting creates an unequal power dynamic in a relationship. But at its worst, gaslighting can actually be considered a form of mind-control and psychological abuse.ADVERTISING

6 Signs Your Parents Are Gaslighting You

1. They Make You Question Your Recollection of Past Events

It’s normal for you and your parent to remember events, specifically from your childhood, a little differently. Maybe you could’ve sworn it was your fifth birthday party that was Power Ranger-themed instead of your sixth, or that your favorite backpack was the Barbie one, not the Barney one. It veers into gaslighting territory, though, when your parent tries to act like something that had a profound effect on you didn’t happen. Let’s say you remember a time when you were bullied in middle school. You might try to bring it up, only to be told that you’re being dramatic, and that that actually never really happened. This, in turn, invalidates your experiences and makes you question your own memory. Both major red flags.  

2. They Tell You What You Like (and What You Don’t)

When we’re children, it’s not uncommon for parents to do this. They probably have a better recollection of the first time you tried pickles and cried for 25 minutes than you do. However, you’re an adult now, and only you get to decide what you like and what you don’t like. If your parent consistently tries to convince you that you’ve definitely said that you’d never want to move to New York, they’re actively trying to get you to second guess your own opinions, giving them more control.

3. They Deny Things You Call Them Out For

This one applies to any type of relationship where you suspecting someone is gaslighting you. You know in your rational mind that something is going on, but when you bring it up, you’re met with total denial and potentially even a, “You’re crazy. What are you talking about?!” Again, this is a way for them to make you question your own sanity and deflect blame from themselves.

4. They Tell You You’re Overreacting

Another telltale sign someone is gaslighting you. One of the main goals of a gaslighter is to get you to question your own thoughts and emotions. Let’s say you’ve taken to your bed over a breakup. Your parent doesn’t understand why you’re making such a big deal of it and can’t believe you’re cancelling your dinner plans over that person. Fine—he doesn’t have to. But saying “you’re making too big a deal out of this” is grade-A toxicity; while “I don’t know what you are going through, but I’m so sorry this happened” is way more compassionate.

5. They Don’t Get Excited for You

You got a huge promotion at work that you’ve been gunning for the better part of the last year. When you call your mom to tell her about it, her reaction is lackluster at best. Parents should be some of your biggest cheerleaders, and making you feel badly or down could be a sign that it’s a toxic relationship. Immediately after spending time with them, ask yourself, “Do I feel better or worse than when I left the house this morning?” If you consistently feel worse, they’re toxic. “[These] people are draining; encounters leave you emotionally wiped out,” says Abigail Brenner, M.D. “Time with them is about taking care of their business, which will leave you feeling frustrated and unfulfilled, if not angry. Don’t allow yourself to become depleted as a result of giving and giving and getting nothing in return.”

6. They Always Play the Victim

In 5 Types of People Who Can Ruin Your Life by Bill Eddy, the author identifies HCP (high-conflict personalities) who have the potential to wreak havoc in the lives of their friends and family members. A common thread among these people are a lack of ability to change or to see their part in life problems. “They mistakenly believe that all their problems just happen to them—as if they dropped from the sky—and that there’s nothing they can do about it,” he explains. “They chronically feel like a victim in life.” Anyone with a perceived lack of agency in their own life is apt to spiral into bitterness without a willingness to break old patterns.

How to Deal with Parental Gaslighting

1. Try to Recognize What’s Happening

Gaslighting works best when a victim isn’t aware of what’s going on. Once you understanding what’s happening, you’ll be better equipped to prepare to fight back, or at least call the gaslighter out on their behavior, which might throw them off their game, or make them reconsider you as a prime target. If you suspected someone is gaslighting you, educate yourself about what gaslighting is, the tactics a gaslighter uses and ways to handle it. Psychology Today is an excellent resource for articles written by mental health professionals. 

2. Confront Them About Their Behavior

Once you’ve studied up on the motivations behind and tactics used in gaslighting, it’s time to take action. As mentioned, gaslighting works best when the victim is in the dark about what’s going on. If you feel comfortable doing so, let the person who’s gaslighting you know that you see what they’re doing, and you’re not going to stand for it. If you show that you’re onto them, they might decide the payoff isn’t worth the struggle. But be aware that how you call someone out is crucial. Instead of getting heated and going into attack mode, try to call your gaslighter out calmly. This will show them that, in addition to understanding what they’re up to, you’re also not riled up about the situation.

3. Compile Proof

Because the main goal of gaslighting is to make you feel like you’ve lost touch with reality, it’s important to keep a record of things as they happen, to return to as proof when you start to doubt your own memory. When it comes to proof, the National Domestic Violence Hotline recommends keeping a journal with dates, times and as many details as possible, in addition to confiding in a trusted family member or friend.

4. Decide Whether the Relationship Is Worth It

Clearly every relationship is different, but if you think gaslighting is in play, it’s always worth a check-in. If the person gaslighting you is a family member or someone you’re in a romantic relationship with, it can be trickier to make a clean break. First steps might include the services of a therapist.

5. Lean on Friends and Family

Though it’s often the goal of a gaslighter to isolate you from the people who care about you, having other people to confide in is crucial. In addition to acting as a sounding board, a friend or family member is an unbiased third party who can reality check the situation and remind you that what you’re feeling isn’t “crazy” or “exaggerated.”

6. Prioritize Self-Care

Worrying about gaslighting can creep into pretty much every area of your life, making it tough to enjoy even your favorite people, places or things. Because it takes such a huge toll on your mental health, self-care is paramount. By focusing on yourself, you’ll feel more capable of standing up for yourself and dealing with all the challenges life is throwing at you. From writing gratitude lists to watching motivational TED Talks, here are dozens of super-simple ways to practice self-care.

7. Seek Professional Help

Some gaslighting situations are easier to leave than others, and family relationships are one of the tougher ones. If you suspect there’s gaslighting going on in your relationship with your parent (or parents), seek out the help of a licensed therapist—specifically someone who specializes in family therapy—who can help you define what you’re going through and help you get past it

5 Ways To Learn To Trust Your Intuition

By Anna Simpson

1) A hunch. What is that?

It was beautiful and warm September evening and I was contemplating my objectives of that trip. I was thinking, I did improve my English and I did make some money, working summer jobs? And even though I didn’t want to go back, I was at peace with going back. My visa was expiring in a couple of days, so I had to leave the country. But there was something within me that resisted the common sense. I couldn’t put my finger on it, but that internal force was getting stronger. “I am not going back!” I was surprised to say those words out loud to myself. As soon as I said it, it really felt like the right decision, even though it was completely illogical and quite risky.

I had what is commonly referred to as an intuitive hunch. That was my inner wisdom that was about to transform my life completely.

“Intuition is the whisper of the soul” ~ Jiddu Krishnamurti

2) What are the ways to listen to your intuition?

We often dismiss our inner wisdom but it is far more powerful than what our intellectual faculties can grasp. Our intuition always speaks to us in the way of those intuitive hunches. Sometimes, they are loud and clear, just like it happened with me that evening. Other times, they are more subtle, like a picture in a magazine that brings some association that is understandable just to you. It could be a feeling or an emotion. The point is, our intuition always speaks to us if we bother to listen to it.

Prior to my decision to stay in an unknown country on my own, I was dreading the thought of going back to Ukraine. Back to poverty, lack and struggle. (I come from a poor family and the prospect of me having a better life was slim in my native country) I kept asking myself, “What should I do?” But there was not much choice. My visa to the USA was expiring soon. The only option for me was to go back.

I learned you develop your intuition and your ability to listen to your higher consciousness by asking a question. It is that simple. You just genuinely ask. And don’t be impatient with the response. Ask and let it go. The answer will arrive when you least expect it.

3) Align with your dream

Although my decision to stay made me question my sanity, I knew it was the right thing to do because it was aligned with my dream. Since childhood, I was dreaming about creating an abundant life in the land of opportunities. Being exposed to poverty, hardship and continuous struggle in Ukraine, my spirit was seeking a higher expression.

Your intuition speaks from your heart and it always represents your best interests. Your intuitive voice is quite strong when you are passionate about your dream. What is it that you want? Have you asked yourself, “Am I walking in alignment with my dreams and heart aspirations?” Your heart knows the way to your dreams but it cannot explain or justify the path in logical terms. Instead, it speaks in hunches, feelings and inner insights.

4) Act on it

When you hear your intuition speak to you, you need to act on it. The universe loves speed. Create that momentum while you are still in the flow. What did it look like for me? I did stay in America. It was very challenging and stretching for my process but I am so grateful for every moment of it. Those experiences have made me who I am today. It is very important for you to act on your intuition. Even if it scares you. Unless it is telling you to jump off a cliff, you will be fine.

Most likely, you will have to exit your comfort zone and enter the cave you are afraid of. But on the other side of the fear is your salvation. Your intuition knows what’s best for you; learn to trust it by acting on it. Your intuition is always capable of seeing a bigger picture.

5) Trust it will work out for you!

Since I am an American citizen now, I know for a fact that my intuition did work out exceptionally well. And it will for you as well. That doesn’t mean everything went smoothly. But I trusted the universe was working on my behalf. Even when nothing was working. Even when I had no idea what I was doing, even when I was stuck. There were tough times when I wanted to throw in the towel and go back to Ukraine, back to safety. But each time my intuition was persuading me against it.

I couldn’t leave the country for the first 2 years after I stayed while my documents were in revision for a green card. It meant I couldn’t see my family all that time. There was no certainty and guarantee that I would get a green card though. There is never certainty and guarantee in life either. You just have to learn to trust the process. Whenever I had Skype calls with my parents, I had that lump in my throat wondering if I ever could see them in the real-life again. But I had to stay strong for my parents and for myself.

What I learned is if you keep going forward, putting one foot in front of the other, you will achieve your goals and success. You have a higher power within you that speaks to you all the time. You need to learn to listen to it, act on it and trust it will work out. I truly and passionately believe if we learn to listen and trust our inner wisdom, our life would flow more naturally. Maybe there would be even less suffering and struggle. Maybe we would always see learning in any setbacks or challenges. Maybe there would even be fewer challenges.

Don’t just rely on your intellect or common sense while you are about to make an important decision. Your intellectual self is always limited. While your inner wisdom which speaks to you through intuition is unlimited.

So, sit back, relax, drink your favorite tea or coffee and allow the space for your inner wisdom to take charge. It knows all the answers. It always sees the bigger picture. Trust i

Lord Shiva’s 7 Secrets Of Success

By Mukund Parmar

People go through many hardships in life. Problems related to work, weight issues, getting poor grades in exams, etc. are among the many common trials. It is, however, in our own hands as to how we pick ourselves back up and push forward. The one motivation which I have personally found remarkably helpful in achieving success are these 7 secrets.

Whether people consider Shiva a god or a divine teacher, it is undeniable that his teachings are truly sacred and filled with eternal wisdom.

Often Shiva and his consort, Parvati, engage in intimate and deep conversations. The goddess once asked him, ‘O Lord, what are the secrets to achieving success?’

He then laid out the following seven secrets.

1) Have a firm determination towards your goals

Once you have set your goals, repeat to yourself, ‘I will be successful in my mission,’ and be determined towards it.

2) Staying unaffected by society and what they think about you

Society will say either good or bad things about you. The good things they say might fill you up with too much ego. The bad things they say might put you down. Either way, both will only lead to your downfall. It is important not to be stirred by what others think about you. Even if portions of society compliment you, stay humble and do not get over-confident about it so that you can remain focused till the end.

3) Have respect for your teachers and gurus

This includes parents, peers and the divine source you believe in. Even if the relationship with your teachers are not good, we must always have respect for them and be thankful for what they have taught us. It is because of their help and guidance that we are who we are.

4) Keep a balanced and stable mind

A great yogi and philosopher, Shrii Shrii Anandamurtiji, speaks further on this saying, ‘You must not suffer from any sorts of inferiority, superiority or defeatist complex or complex of hopelessness and despair.’ Our minds should always be stable and balanced.

5) Develop self-control

People may tend to procrastinate or do things which may steer them away from reaching great heights. Satisfying your mind’s unnecessary cravings for example by watching ‘one more television program’ or eating unhealthy foods will not help. Every concrete achievement requires a certain level of self-restraint.

6) Embrace a balanced diet

It will not only keep your body and mind in an energetic and determined condition, but it will make your spirit feel energized and replenished to take on whatever challenge comes during the day.

7) There is no seventh secret

As unusual as it sounds, Shiva says that there is no seventh secret. It is totally up to you on how you want to interpret this secret. One meaning is that the above six secrets are all you need to know in order to be successful. There is no seventh or eighth one.

It is highly recommended that you paste these secrets on your bedroom wall or write it down in a book so that you can read it regularly and make it part of your daily lifestyle towards reaching success.

– Aum Namah Shivaya

Open letter to my Non-ADHD partner

1. Please don’t criticize or judge me. I know it can be hard to know how to love someone with ADHD, but I’m doing the best I can — I try really hard to make you happy, and to make things run smoothly.

2. Please know that when I’m acting strong and mighty, I’m probably full of doubt and or fear.

3. Please know that lectures don’t work, it is the opposite. I will only avoid you and shut down.

4. Please stay grounded when I act impulsively. I can’t always control myself, much less my ruminating thoughts.

5. I need space to thrive. Please give me room to grow, like a patch of flowers in the garden. I will bloom but it might take a while.

6. Please don’t label me or roll your eyes. Just give me a hug and tell me I can do it.

7. Don’t forget to remember all the things you love about me — especially when they aren’t obvious.

8. Know that my procrastination is a survival strategy. I can’t prepare, plan, or make lists in advance without feeling stressed and overwhelmed. Last-minute preparation brings clarity and focus.

9. My compassion for you comes from my ADHD brain wiring. My heart feels your every breath, heartbeat, need, and desire. And I have ADHD to thank, in part, for that.

10. I can read minds, so be careful what you think. Your silent thoughts come through loud and clear.

11. I cannot return from distraction the way you do. Phone call. Go back to work. Email. Go back to work. Coffee break. Resume again. I wish I could, but my response time is slower than yours. Just like a physical reflex, this is my brain’s reflex.

12. I will always fill your life with surprises and excitement (the good kind).

13. If I seem uninterested, distracted, or rude, it’s probably because my mind is hyper focused on something else. If I’m deeply involved in a project, I cannot think or speak of anything else. I’m in so deep that I can’t even think about saying, I’m busy now, can I call you later? Please know that I don’t intend to be apathetic or standoffish.

14. For all my volume and commentary, I need you to allow me to finish my sentences, even when there are times, I can’t communicate exactly how I feel. There’s so much action going on, it takes me awhile to sift and organize through my thoughts.

15. I am tough and resilient, but that doesn’t mean I don’t need your love and your support. I’m strong when stretched to my limits. But even rubber bands break when the pressure is too great and too frequent.

16. I have heightened senses. I feel an exaggerated version of every scratchy fabric, sensitive to touch, sound and smells. Sometimes a hug feels great; other times it feels like I’m suffocating.

17. I am sometimes too sarcastic. That is my way of lightening up the darkness in my mind. Please forgive me, I think it is funny and want to share. I never mean it to be cruel or critical.

18. I’m trying really hard. What is easy for you is a major effort for me. The simplest tasks that you breeze through cause my mind to swirl like a tornado. This is also why I am exhausted at times but can’t sleep or rest.

19. Sometimes when you think I’m talking to you; I am verbally processing what’s going on in my mind so that I can work through a problem. You don’t have to feel that you need to solve all my problems, just listen.

20. My “I want” drive is too strong. It steers my choices and messes with my priorities. When I’m struck by a thought, vision, idea, or word, I must get it out and let it flow and grow.

21. I know you love me. And I love me, too. I like the way I am. I don’t know any different.

22. I try to get the most out of every minute. That’s why I’m always trying to fit in just one more thing.

23. Wake up, Bolt out the door for a run. Shower. Make breakfast. Walk the dog. Get to work on time. Achieving that sequence without forgetting a thing? It’s not going to happen for me.

24. When I look calm, chances are my insides are racing. There is almost always a fast-moving energy flowing through my veins; a burning fire that I can’t put out.

25. Please don’t pressure me by dictating a list of important chores or priorities around the house. Machine-gun lists don’t enter my brain. Even when you speak to me kindly, I only hear the first two items on the list. If it’s before 9 am, I don’t even hear that.

11 Signs You Are Stepping Into Your Inner Goddess

By Olivia Weil

In an earlier article, we chatted about Mindful Goddesses, a vision I created for women and use in my private healing practice every day to help them to harness their radiant inner beauty and step into their infinite power on their Journeys to self-empowerment, freedom, and personal fulfillment.

Mindful Goddesses are heart-centered Beings, who radiate love and stand in their truth. With activated souls, enlightened minds, and increasingly healthy biologies. Any Mindful Goddess’s Body is her Temple, and so she lives by the nutritional mantra, ‘We Are What We Eat’. Similarly, any Mindful Goddess’s Mind is her Sanctuary, and so she lives by the personal or spiritual mantra, ‘We Are What We Think’.

Here are 11 Signs you are awakening your inner Goddess and stepping into your infinite power.

SEE ALSO: Embracing Clarity To Manifest Your Reality

1) Your inner Journey is becoming most important to you.

We spend most of our young adult life concerned what other people think of us (or at least I did). Judgments, comparisons, materialism, outward appearances, and setting a bar that is measured up to someone else’s version of success—namely, society’s, our parents, or the like. We have these standards, these goals, these measurements of who we are as compared to who we “should be”.

What we should be doing, how much we should be making, what we should be wearing, should this and should that. This is reflective of an outward Journey, where the focus is on outward accomplishments, comparisons, and measurements.

Pretty soon, our focus begins to turn inward more and more. We realize that to harness inner peace, happiness, joy, grounded bliss, and true success—all things that are our birthright—that the real path of discovery begins within. There is an inward Journey that every Warrioress, and every Goddess, takes. It’s what Joseph Campbell calls the Hero’s Journey, and it’s the basis for essentially every movie or story ever written. The Hero’s Journey has certain parts and pieces, a tried and true formula. And becoming familiar with the Hero’s Journey as it relates to your own can be helpful. Where are you on the map? The Hero’s Journey aside, the main idea here is that you know you are stepping into your Goddess self and awakening your true eternal nature when you become more and more concerned about you inner Journey than your outward one.

2) You can feel your vibration rising. 

The second sign you are awakening the Goddess within is that you begin to vibrate higher daily. Everything is energy, and as Nikola Tesla says, if we want to find the secrets to the Universe, we can think in terms of energy, frequency, and vibration. From the food we eat to the clothes we wear, to the people we surround ourselves with. From the shows we watch, the number of electronics we are around, to the environments we are in, to the words we speak, to the thoughts we entertain, and the like. All vibrations can either raise our personal frequencies or lower it.

And so you know you are stepping into your inner Goddess self when you begin thinking in these terms—about all the things around you. Asking yourself will this raise my vibes or lower them? You know it’s happening because your intention is set on vibrating higher daily, and you put you at the center of you. It’s not selfishness, it’s self-love.

3) Self-care and self-love are important to you.

In a similar vein, the third sign is that self-care and self-love become more important to you. Rather than searching outside yourself for completion or validation from others, the thing that matters most comes from within. Self-care of your body/mind/soul complex becomes a priority and your self-love is palpable.

4) You are more and more comfortable in your own skin.

We all have insecurities, it’s human nature. By design, we are here in this third-dimensional reality to experience polarities or differences. Hot and cold, up and down, big and small, successes and failures, etc. It’s polarity that drives the third-dimensional plane of existence. And so it makes sense that we have issues come up surrounding comparisons, judgments, and feeling like we are “too this” or “too that”.

Loving your body more and more, feeling comfortable in your skin more and more, is a true sign you are stepping into your Goddess self. I remember when I was in my early 20s. I was so uncomfortable in my own skin, it felt like I was practically jumping out of it on a daily basis. I just couldn’t get comfy. I didn’t know who I was, what this earthly experience was all about, nor did I really even care at the time. I didn’t even know what I didn’t know. And so the fourth sign is that you’re becoming more comfortable in your own skin and with yourself. Relaxing and breathing into yourself, reminding yourself that the inner space of expansiveness within you is a safe and sacred space where all the growth happens. Only you can meet you there, and becoming your own best friend is an essential part of that.

5) You are becoming your own best friend.

Do you like the company that you keep? The path I’m on now is a path of solitude, many times I am traveling (mostly alone), sometimes I am in the jungle in faraway lands connecting with Indigenous peoples or mentors, and sitting in sacred ceremonies. Other times I am in the States and I too am alone, practicing energy work or coaching, working with clients every day, remotely or sometimes in person. I’m not lonely, I’m simply alone a lot. And I love it.

I miss my tribe of course and do take time always to connect with dear friends, and family, but my main focus is on private session work and writing. This isn’t to say divine love and play aren’t important to me. It’s just to say all of my life force energy day in and day out goes into my passion and purpose in life—furthering myself on my own Journey and being of Service to others.

And so being alone is like a high-Level initiation: do you like the company you keep? Having to be with every one of your thoughts, every electromagnetic force that comes into your mind or out of your lips. One way you know you are awakening to your inner Goddess self is that you like the company you keep, and you are your own best friend. How you treat yourself is one of the greatest measures. Have you loved you today.

6) You are more accepting of the people around you.

The sixth sign is that you are more accepting of the people around you. You “hold space” for people, all walks of life, and nothing really rattles you. There is an unshakable conviction stirring inside you, and moment to moment, day to day, you are becoming more aligned with that. Your vibration, inner peace, and your Self are so held and loved by you that fewer and fewer people can upset that or change that for you but you.

“Holding space” means that we are willing to walk alongside another person in whatever Journey they’re on without judging them, making them feel inadequate, trying to fix them, or trying to impact the outcome. When we hold space for other people, we open our hearts, offer unconditional support, and let go of judgment and control.

The hardest thing about learning to “hold space” for people when they start practicing this concept, is that they feel like they’re “doing nothing”, and that they need to be doing “something” instead—fixing something, changing something, agreeing with the other person, rescuing them, imposing their ideas or opinions on them. There’s not really room for any of that in holding space. In doing so for others or ourselves, it just is what it is. And we Just Be.

7) You are doing less and Being more.

The seventh sign you are awakening the Goddess within is that you’re doing less, and Being more. I love just Being. And this can be uncomfortable at first, yet with more practice, this way of life starts to feel more comfortable for you. Meditation and the breath are probably the easiest vehicles through which you can get comfier doing less and Just Being, more.  Staying present and in the moment, in the Here and Now.  There are infinite possibilities and permission slips or tools you can accept, and finding some that work for you can be helpful.

8) You stand in your authenticity. 

In Shamanism, the medicine of the West, the Winds of the West, are represented by Jaguar. Jaguar medicine teaches us fearlessness, the ways of the luminous warrior who stands impeccably in her truth. When we stand in our authenticity, we give others permission to do the same. When we peel back all the masks, layers, Roles we play, and everything we are not—so that we can reveal (mainly to ourselves)—who we really are, that’s authenticity. When we stand in our truth, we vibrate at our home frequency, or true unique energy signatures, that are unique to us and only us. And when we do so, we invite others to have the courage to do the same.

9) You speak your truth, live your truth.

The ninth sign is that you speak your truth and live your truth on the regular. This goes hand-in-hand with standing in your authenticity. As we chatted about, Jaguar medicine teaches us fearlessness and gives us the courage to say what needs to be said when it needs to be said. Many people, for example, disagree with my path or don’t understand why I choose it, and that’s okay. Respecting and honoring each other’s Journey, and living your truth—whatever picture that may look like—allows us to align with our true self and eternal nature. And when we tap in to that home vibrational resonance, so too do we align with the natural frequency of the Universe, and connect into the Infinite flow of all that is.

And when we begin to ride the waves of that Infinite flow, of both the microcosm and the macrocosm, anything becomes possible for us.

10) You practice and emanate unconditional love.

When we embody unconditional love, this is another way we know we are unveiling our Goddess self. That divine feminine nature emanates a certainty—a strength—and a poise about us. She is connected to all that is and lives from a place of compassion, gratitude, and unconditional love. Unconditional love meaning a love or vibration rooted in honoring and respecting herself and others around her. Not one meaning others can do no wrong. She still, nevertheless, has healthy boundaries. And isn’t afraid to set them if and when she needs to.

11) You are beginning to embody Fierce Grace.

Fierce Grace is a symbology that comes from Ram Dass, and one I like to qualify by saying, “strong and fierce yet soft and poised.”  Our inner Goddess-self has mastered both the visible and invisible world, and we know we are closer to integrating her when we, too, have more or less mastered the visible world and begun to explore the invisible one. Our innate Goddess within us is true to the divine masculine within her by being strong and fierce. And at the same time, it honors the divine feminine within her by being soft and poised. Together, she begins to embody a sacred, effortless dance between both her inner mature masculine and inner mature feminine. This sacred union begins to shine through.

She’s not perfect, no one is. Nevertheless, she is imperfectly perfect, or perfectly imperfect. And she is constantly working on herself and committed to her Journey, exploring herself, and honoring herself at all times, to the best of her ability. So, too, is she equally as committed to embracing the energies around her, and to the invisible, interconnected web of life of all that is.

And whether she knows it yet or not—whether she is still figuring out quite what that picture looks like or not—she, nevertheless, carries a deep knowing within her Soul that she is a Conscious Co-Creatress, dreaming her world into Being in every moment

3 Steps To Fire Your Inner Self-Critic

By Deanna Thomas

If we are all honest with ourselves, there are many voices in our head that “speak” to us throughout our day. It was a true revelation for me when I realized that not only do all of these voices NOT speak the truth (what? Everything I think isn’t true?!), I could choose which voice to listen to and that that choice ultimately created my reality. It really is very simple. Where your thoughts go, energy flows so all you have to do is choose to follow the inner voices that support you in evolving to your best self. Oh, that’s all you say? Well, simple doesn’t always mean easy. In order to choose the inner voices you wish to follow to manifest your reality, you first must become aware of the different voices you are hearing, and when they are arising.

Let’s start with your inner self-critic. When I was in massage school, someone called this voice my “itty-bitty-shitty-committee!” This made me laugh and has stuck with me ever since as a way to refer to my inner self-critic. This is the voice that pipes up to tell you that you’re not really good at yoga because you don’t do it every day and you can’t fold yourself into unimaginable pretzel-like poses. This is the voice that shames you when you eat that extra cookie (or those 8 extra cookies) and tells you that you are bad at taking care of your body and asks you why you can’t just figure this out already? This is the voice that questions whether you look as good as that girl you saw on Instagram in the new dress you just got. Blah, blah, blah. For so many of us, our itty-bitty-shitty-committee has been employed as a full-time voice in our head leading us to doubt ourselves at best and to loath ourselves at worst. So, it’s time to tell that little committee that “you’re fired!”

Step 1: Learning to recognize your itty-bitty-shitty-committee

The first step in firing your itty-bitty-shitty-committee is to recognize when this is the voice that you are hearing in your head. This committee never has anything nice to say to you and when you choose to listen to what it is telling you, you never feel good. This voice is critical of anything and everything you do, say or think in a negative way. Don’t get the itty-bitty-shitty-committee confused with the voice that questions and reflects in a way that is constructive for you. For example, the self-reflective voice in your head may ask you kindly to consider the habits you have developed around food. You may hear something like “How do I feel physically when I eat those extra 8 cookies?” This voice is helping you to evolve to your best self in a kind and thoughtful way. Your itty-bitty-shitty-committee will never sound like that; it will always make you feel, well, shitty.

You might find it helpful to write down what you hear when your little shitty committee speaks to you. Try this for a few days and when you see what you are hearing in writing, ask yourself “would I say this to my best friend? My child? To anyone?” If the answer to that question is a resounding NO, then this can be a tool for you to use moving forward to check in when you hear the little shitty committee start talking to you. If the answer to that question is not no, then you need to dig deeper and do some work around how you are treating other people as well as how you are treating yourself.

Step 2: Making a conscious choice to not listen

Once you begin to recognize when your shitty committee is speaking to you, the next step in firing them is to make a conscious choice to not follow the energy of that voice. Let’s say that you have decided to try cooking a new dish without using a recipe. As you begin, you hear this voice saying “what are you doing trying to cook with no recipe? You’re not a chef. This is silly. Go get your cookbook out and let’s do this the right way.” Here is your shitty committee calling itself to order so it can cast doubt on you. Don’t. Let. It. When you hear that voice, acknowledge it “ok, I hear you, my itty-bitty-shitty-committee.” I like using that name when I acknowledge the voice because it always gives me a chuckle and helps me to shift my energy to a voice that is more conducive to supporting my highest good. After you acknowledge your committee, you can then choose another voice. This is a good time to ask yourself, “what would I say to my best friend if she was trying to cook a new dish with no recipe?” Taking the time to pause and ask this question brings the light of awareness to your itty-bitty-shitty-committee and right away helps to reduce its power. Remember this: always talk to yourself the way you would talk to someone that you love and care for deeply.

Step 3: Practice

After you learn to recognize what your shitty committee sounds like and you make the conscious choice to not listen, that’s it! The only thing left to do to officially fire them is to practice. Congratulate yourself every time you recognize your inner self-critic voice and choose to not listen. Every time you become more aware is a victory to be celebrated! It’s important that as you practice, you are kind and compassionate with yourself. If your itty-bitty-shitty-committee has a strong voice and you are used to listening to it, it is going to take some time to unravel that way of being and to develop a new way of being. Celebrate the successes along the way and remember that making a lasting change is a journey. Assure yourself that you have all the tools you need within you already to create the reality you choose.

20 Little-Known Facts About Buddha You Haven’t Heard

By Matt Caron

You’d have to be living under a rock to never hear anything about the Buddha!

His teachings have defined the eastern world and gave shape to China, Japan, Tibet, and India. He has influenced countless billions. The details of the Buddha’s life are not known for certain, but most scholars agree that he was an actual historical figure who lived in northern India around the 5th century BCE. Many of these facts will take you by surprise, and show you just how much depth this powerful historical figure has.

SEE ALSO: 10 Ways To Get Your Kids On A Yoga Mat

1) The Prophecy of His Birth

Before Gautama Buddha was born, an astrologer predicted that he would either be a great and known holy man or he will become a great king. In fear of this prediction, his father (a well-known king) prevented him from reading any holy texts or learning about the nature of suffering and the world. He even built three palaces for him with all the luxuries of life so that he did not have any desire to see the outside world.

2) A Prince and a Family

Though Buddha is known to live a very simple life and austere life, many people do not know that he was born as a prince in Nepal. His father, Suddhodhana, was the chief of the Shakya Clan in India, while his mother, Queen Maha Maya, was was the princess of Koli. He was married to Yasodhara and even had a son named Rahula. Buddha’s original name is Siddhartha.

3) The Four Sights

Destined to be a great holy man, Gautama soon became tired of his materialistic life and desired to leave the palace to see the outside world. At the age of 29, while on his ride to see the countryside, he saw four different things during his four different trips outside the palace which he was not aware of. These four things changed Siddhartha’s life completely. In his four trips outside the palace, he saw an old man, a corpse, a sick man, and a wandering ascetic. He was so disturbed at these sites and he wondered how he can enjoy his life so much when there was so much suffering in the world. He realized that he had to leave the palace life and find the answer to suffering, for all mankind.

4) When Siddhartha Looked for Answers

After leaving the palace, Siddhartha struggled to find a teacher who could help him overcome suffering. Finally, he decided to solve it by himself. For around six years he led a life of self-discipline and abstinence by surviving on mere roots, fruits, and raw food. In a very short period of time, Siddhartha mastered the art of Yogic meditation, but nothing seemed to satisfy him.

 5) Buddha wasn’t Fat

Buddha was not chubby like many depictions of him would make it appear- he is mainly portrayed this way because it’s symbolic of happiness in the east. He practiced moderation in all things, fasted regularly, and spent most of his time walking hundreds of miles spreading the philosophy of enlightenment.

6) He Invented the ‘Middle Way’ to Enlightenment

At the time of Buddha’s quest for enlightenment, there were many religious practices that called for strict deprivation such as weeks of fasting. Realizing that it wasn’t truly beneficial, he devised what would later be known as “The Middle Way” to enlightenment…a balanced approach that emphasized inward rather than outward renunciation.

7) Enlightenment

After attaining enlightenment, Siddhartha became known as the ‘Buddha’. Simply put, it’s a title used to denote ‘the enlightened one’. Many people have attained this state- both before and after Siddhartha’s life.

8) A Reluctant Teacher

It’s not easy to think that a great teacher like him, who taught the whole world about Buddhism, could be hesitant to teach. Finding enlightenment is not easy to convey in words. But later his compassion swayed him, and he dedicated his life to teaching others.

9) One of a Kind

Unlike most religions or spiritual beliefs, Buddha’s teachings were spread by nonviolent methods such as word of mouth or carvings on prominent stone buildings. Buddha never condoned violence or forced others to follow his path.

10) Buddha was not a God

Practicing Buddhists view Buddha as a teacher and not a god or avatar. What he attained, we can attain.

11) Last Words of Wisdom

With his dying breath, he encouraged his followers to work for their deliverance and told them that happiness is in learning that nothing in the world is permanent. His final request of his followers was: “All component things in the world are changeable. They are not lasting. Work hard to gain your own salvation.”

12) Re-uniting with His Family

During his journey throughout the world to spread his teachings, Buddha visited his son, father, his devoted wife and his foster mother. Eventually, his family joined the Buddhist monastic community. His cousin Ananda even became a monk. His son, Rahula, was the youngest monk in the community and became a monk when he was just seven years old.

13) The Two Types of Buddhism

There are two different types of Buddhism: Mahayana and Theravada. Theravada is the original teachings of the original Buddha. Buddha gave long speeches to a group of people called the Arhats. The Arhats are the original disciples of Buddha, they had all reached enlightenment and were basically perfect beings. Theravada Buddhists commonly live in Southeast Asia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos etc. They believe that people reach enlightenment over many lifetimes, and it takes eons to reach nirvana.

14) What is Zen?

Zen is a limb of Mahayana Buddhism. It’s a mixture of Buddhism and Taoism that developed in eastern China and spread to Japan.

15) Buddha’s Past Lives

There is a large amount of literature on the original Buddha’s previous lives. In the books, he appears as a deer, elephant, and monkey. Supposedly the Buddha told his disciples about his past lives, and they wrote them down. They resemble cute little folktales with talking animals and mythical feats, super fun to read.

16) Fourth Largest Religion Worldwide

Buddhism is the 4th largest religion in the world. Today there are over 360 million followers of Buddhism, after Christianity, Islam and Hinduism. The countries with the largest Buddhist populations are China, Thailand, Vietnam and Myanmar.

17) There’s not One Official Buddhism

Although demographic tables lump all followers of the Buddha’s teachings into one heading, the truth is that there is no singular or “official” version of Buddhism. And it’s more than just minor variations in practice. Some Buddhist practices invoke dieties. Some eschew the entire concept of dieties. Some emphasize monastic life, while others see Buddhism as a practice for an engaged life.

18) The Five Precepts

One of the foundational elements of Buddhism is known as the Five Precepts. Like the Judeo/Christian 10 Commandments, these simple rules form the core of acceptable, ethical behavior. The Five Precepts are:

  • Do not kill.
  • Do not steal.
  • Do not engage in sexual misconduct.
  • Do not lie.
  • Do not use intoxicants.

19) The Four Noble Truths

What the Buddha discerned in his moment of enlightenment is summarized within the Four Noble Truths:

  • Suffering exists
  • Suffering arises from attachment to desires
  • Suffering ceases when attachment to desire ceases
  • Freedom from suffering is possible by practicing the Eightfold Path.

20) The Noble Eightfold Path

If suffering is to be reduced, a path is needed. In Buddhism, that path is The Noble Eightfold Path, which consists of:

  • Right View – Seeing the world and life as it is
  • Right Thought – Similar to emotional intelligence
  • Right Speech – Clear, truthful, compassionate
  • Right Conduct – Not exploiting one’s self or others
  • Right Livelihood – Ethical occupation that does not harm others
  • Right Effort – Directing one’s energies towards good ends
  • Right Mindfulness – To be in the present moment
  • Right Meditational Attainment –Unity of action and intention