within

dragonfly

i’ve got a little secret. or, it’s not so much that i have this secret that no one else has. it’s more like i have discovered something – but not for the first time. i am rediscovering it. or rediscovering it on a deeper level. that’s more what it is.

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you see, i just completed a 21 day meditation series. and by completed, i mean, i did every single day. no joke. i did not skip one day. i just committed and followed through. 21 days in a row.

and it was amazing.

the series was about happiness, our search for it and how we find it. i thought that it might be a bit cheesy, or i wondered how it would be possible to meditate on happiness for 3 weeks. but, i was so wrong. you see, the focus was not at all on happiness in the sense of some surface, emotional feeling. it was much deeper than that – think bliss. yes, bliss. and if you know me, or have read my blog over a long period of time, you know that bliss is one of my favorite words.

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so, it was a three week journey within that led me even deeper into bliss, peace, contentment, wisdom, and so much more. but, the main thing that i came away with was this deep sense of being – of connecting with my true self. of letting whatever vision, dream, thought, inspiration come to me during these mediations times as i simply listened to my soul. and i kept coming back to the knowledge – and i’m not talking cognitive knowledge – that everything lies within.

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what i mean, is that all we need, all we are, the ways that we are all connected, the spirit/light/love that flows through us, the entire universe, even, is within us. right now. exactly as we are. wherever we are. no matter what situations or circumstances we are facing. everything is there. in you and in me.

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what that means to our daily lives is monumental i believe. it means that we carry a rich treasure of love, peace, wisdom within us at every moment of every day. it means that our happiness most definitely does not lie anywhere but within us.all we need to do is just be. just relax into our being. breathe deeply. slow down. and listen.

for me, making that time a special time every single morning for the past 23 days (i have still done it even though the series is over) has been transformative.

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you see, i’m tired. and there are a lot of changes happening in my life and my family’s life right now – vague, i know. but i will explain in another post later on. anyway, i haven’t recovered from my amazing travels and visitors and everything incredible that took place this summer. lina and i have not found that regular life groove yet. and it’s wearing me down, along with the changes and such. i have had some moments when i just want to buy a plane ticket and get the hell out of dodge – like heading to some island to sit on my ass and drink fruity drinks for a week. but, that’s not realistic.

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at the same time, i have been meditating and sticking with it. and, though i have had those dreams of escape every now and then, i remember how grounded i feel at the same time. how connected i am to my self and my soul. meditation has really, really paid off. i stay balanced and focused and optimistic.

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how? because when i stop and listen to my soul, i know that my peace lies within. that all of the secrets of the universe, and the secret to happiness, is within me. calm and peace are mine for the taking. and, when i remind myself of that, when i let myself take that time to connect with the universe and all of the love in it and within me, then i just know that…

“All shall be well, and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.”
― Julian of Norwich

peace and love. xx

the photos are from my last day of the meditation series. i went to the biltmore estate and just let nature wrap her arms around me. it was amazing. and a dragonfly danced all around me the whole time (“Dragonflies symbolize the wisdom of transformation and adaptability in life. As spirit animal, the dragonfly is connected to the symbolism of change and light. When the dragonfly shows up in your life, it may remind you to bring a bit more lightness and joy into your life. Those who have this animal as totem may be inclined to delve deep into their emotions and shine their true colors.”) after i got home, i saw dragonflies three more times that day – a little animal i almost never see

what are you waiting for?

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i’ve got quite a few exciting things on the horizon for the next month or so. i’m so excited, i’m about to burst – and i find myself wishing the hours and days away. and then i realize that time is moving way faster than i even could have imagined, and i actually just want it to slow down. of course, i can’t control time. but, what i can control is how i live and use and experience every minute in my life.

you know, we all seem to think that if we just make it to friday, or to our vacation, or when we get married or find the perfect partner, or move to the perfect house in the perfect neighborhood, or make enough money, or have the perfect job, etc… then we will finally be happy. we focus so much on the future that we forget the present and all of the gifts that it has to offer. and, life, my friends, is not what happens in the future. instead, life is made up of tiny, little nows. so, if we are always waiting and wishing for what comes next, then we are always waiting or wishing – instead of living. and i don’t want to wake up one day knowing that i have squandered all of my “nows”, waiting for “then”.

so, today, i choose not to ignore my excitement for all of the things to come – for my road trip to the beach tomorrow, and my month long trip to sweden in a week. because those are really good, amazing things. but, i choose to not only think of those things and miss out on the joy of the moment that i am in. right here. right now. i choose to realize that what is to come is not the only thing that is good. today, this moment, is just as precious and beautiful and exciting.

besides, we never really know if this is the last moment we will ever live. so we might as well live it up and suck every single bit of life out of this second. right now. what are we waiting for?

love and adventure and peace to you. xx

wednesday wisdom. 7 ways to be grateful.

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i came across an article in the huffington post about 7 things that thankful people do, of the 7 habits of grateful people. i thought it was really interesting and it really rang true to me, so i decided to share the tips/ideas with you on this thanksgiving eve.

there is something to be said for living a life with an attitude of gratitude. i believe that the biggest benefit of it is how being grateful not only puts things into perspective in our lives = makes us less whiney; but it also helps us live in the present moment. i believe that the attitude of gratitude and being thankful is the same as learning how to give positive energy off into the world. we’re all responsible to what we send “out there”, and what we do send out, will be most definitely what we receive back.

i’ve known people who are always negative, always in that “poor me” mode and always complaining about one thing or another, or everything. these attitudes suck me dry. and while i may care about the people, i need and want and choose to surround myself with positivity because i want that positive energy to rub off onto me so that i can then rub some of my positivity off on others.

it’s like a light, you know. tomorrow is also the beginning of hannukah, the jewish season celebrating light (which also happens within the christian church during this season = the “light” came into the world). actually, if you are aware of it, pagans also celebrate light this season, as light returns to the world through the cycle of nature once the winter solstice (the shortest & darkest day of the year) has passed in the northern hemisphere. so, light literally returns as the days get longer after december 21st.

but, it’s that light that i want to spread. whether you think of it as a divine and sacred spark inside all of us, or our connection with nature, that light, that energy, that positiveness is what i want to share with the world. not grumpiness, or gloominess, or darkness or negativity.

so, thanksgiving and hannukah are exactly what we need right now. we need a gratitude check – a chance to give thanks for all that is in our lives. and i am so not talking about the material stuff, though we can give thanks for that too, if we want. begin thankful is being aware. it is being alive in this moment, embracing it and all that goes along with it.

so, let’s see how we can bring more gratefulness back into our lives, and let’s see what kind of impact we can make when all we do is spread light and love and joy. and here are 7 ways we can begin to live in gratitude and spread a little light.

  1. journal: writing it all down reinforces all of our positive thoughts and helps us set goal and dream big dreams, thus leading to inner peace and contentedness.
  2. don’t avoid the negative: the key to leading a thankful life is embracing setbacks as part of our entire life journey.
  3. spend time with loved ones: community – family & friends are key in our lives. we are not alone, and we should not let others be alone.
  4. mindfully use social media: spread joy, not hate
  5. know the value of the little things: stop & smell the roses, take time, slow down.
  6. volunteer: there is nothing like helping others
  7. get moving: getting our blood pumping will give us way more energy, help us feel less stressed, and teach us to love life a little more (it’s those endorphins).

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“I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite – only a sense of existence… O how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

oh, how grateful i am for you. peace and love.