November 17

This is How I Inherited a Unicorn.

wtf

First of all, this is going to be a long one. I’ve got some magical stories but without any back story, I’m sure I probably just sound like a nut job. I also haven’t found any way to shorten my thoughts yet. Mission impossible. I’m sure I sound like a nut anyway. Whatever. Read if you wish…

Every now and then I get a little bit disgruntled with where I am at in life, and then I need to force myself to stop and remember that EVERYTHING is impermanent. This really helps when you get into a quarrel with your family or are in a shitty situation. Just remember – nothing lasts forever.

wtfSure, it’s about the journey, not the destination – which I fully understand, though it would be a bit easier if I was actually born with a thing called ‘patience’. I am trying to learn the art of patience, which given the path I’ve chosen to follow in this life time, is undoubtedly one of my ‘life lessons’ to master – if I could hurry up and learn already, that’d be f***ing stellar.

However, beyond the whole discombobulation, I find myself drawing people into my life that often spark a memory of the magical things that happen in my life – which forces me to reflect – and ultimately helps me to have gratitude and wash away any unsettling feelings. Not only that, reflecting on some of my stories – and writing them out, helps me to remember that there is a lot of behind-the-scenes magic at work, even when I can’t always see it. Things become clearer. Someone said something to me a couple weeks ago that made me recall this story, so here it is. (Thanks by the way!)

Years and years ago, I began noticing patterns in my life revolving around the number 11. I’d see 11:11 just about everywhere, and although I could have brushed it off as nothing more than the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon, it was more complex than that. I’m not going to explain the whole 11:11 thing, because those that understand – do – and the rest – well there’s a thing called ‘Google’. I’ve even mapped out the search terms. Or, you can be all scholarly-like and visit your local book store. But quite honestly, it’s really something you need to figure out for yourself.

1111All I can say, is that over time I started noticing that 11s would appear more frequently in my life when I was going through a massive change, or questioning the path before me. When I couldn’t  understand how something was going to work out – it was as if it was a ‘wake up’ call telling me to sit back, be patient, keep my thoughts positive and let it manifest itself. It was a gateway to a higher level of consciousness. It was telling me that everything was happening at precisely the right time.

The number became a sign to me, and always reminded me of my spiritual essence. I can recall many, many experiences that have come to fruition that are pretty mind blowing – but if I wrote them all out here, I’d have nothing left to write in a book that I am trying to work on – again – writing and a lack of patience are not the best combo.

Before I get into this, I’ll say that I believe some people cross our paths for good reason… there are divine beings out there that are often placed right in front of us to offer a message… half the time though, we are too self absorbed to understand the magic behind it.

Where was I going with this anyway? Oh right… unicorns…

Part One to Acquiring a Unicorn…

When I was going through a kind of turmoil a few years ago, I was really questioning what to do with my life and what my place was (really no different than these days!). I had being seeing 11s everywhere and honestly it was starting to piss me off. I knew I was on the right path but things were so f***ed up, for the life of me I could not understand how they were going to work out. I had become very depressed – and it seemed like everywhere I turned I was met with a brick wall. I tried to do what I normally would – which is build something to climb over it – but I was running out of materials.

I remember waking up almost every hour – 3:11, 4:11, 5:11 and so on – for months. In the mornings, my sadness got the best of me and I could barely get out of bed. I felt lost and did not want to face the day at all.

It was one particular rock-bottom feeling day that I realized I hadn’t even gone grocery shopping and I would need to stop at the supermarket on my way out. It was 8:11am on my clock when I got into my car. I was running late for work, but I didn’t care.

I grabbed a few things to eat for the day and went to go pay. The bill was… $20.11. Meanwhile, in the corner of my eye, I could see a man get behind me at the cashier. I kept my head down, I didn’t want to talk to ANYONE that day.

The man behind me said to the cashier, “Excuse me miss, but please don’t charge this young lady, I am going to buy her lunch today”.

I remember that he was wearing a kilt. He looked like a bag piper and his silver hair was pulled back into a pony tail.

I was shocked. Tears filled my eyes. The cashier smiled and said that was very nice. I waited for the man to pay and walked out with him. I thanked him and told him that was the nicest thing that had happened to me in a long while.

He gave me a hug, wiped a tear away, and said, “Don’t worry miss, everything is going to be alright – just be patient.”

WHAT?!?!?!?!? 

I had never seen him before and I don’t know how he knew, but boy – he knew. It was as if he could see straight into my soul at the adversities I was facing.

I proceeded to my car and started to cry. He got into a van close by, and his license plate began with 111.

I started my car, shaking, crying… the CD playing in my car was on Track 11 and it was skipping on a line in the song… the line of the song sang, “don’t worry everything is going to be alright”. 

Woahhhh… that’s exactly what he said!

That’s the day I knew everything would be alright. Somehow. Some way.

Part Two to Acquiring a Unicorn…

I called him the ‘Mystery Man’. I hadn’t see him for quite some time, but that day I met him was still vivid in my memory bank. It was now about six months later and I was still in the same position. Frustrated. Not only that – I had been discovering my self in a more spiritual way – and I was confused with a lot of things. If there was anything out there guiding me, god dammit I wanted to know – because I sure didn’t feel like I believed in anything.

One weekend afternoon, I was at the Supermarket again. It was a zoo, and I happened to take the last parking space. I was sitting in my car and I remember I had glanced at the clock and it was 1:11.

Out of nowhere the Mystery Man knocked on my car window.

Holy shit.

He said “I’ve been thinking of you and just wanted to know how you were doing?”

I was a bit shocked and stuttered, “I think I am doing okay! I think things are working out.”  That was the only thing I could muster out.

unicornHe said that he had been shopping for a gift for his niece and at that moment he handed me a stuffed unicorn.

He said to me, “I bought this for my niece, but I think you need it. Believe in the things you can not see.”

Before I could say anything he walked way. Again, tears filled my eyes.

That was the moment that I knew I was being guided – even though I couldn’t see it.

I opened my car door, set my foot on my pavement – and right next to my foot was a dime and a penny – 11 cents.

I still don’t know the man’s name or who he is exactly. I’ve crossed paths with him a few times over the last couple years, sometimes I say hello and sometimes I don’t. I’ve never asked his name, because I don’t think that I am supposed to know. But, more often than not – in each passing he always delivers a message to me at a precise point in time that is aligned with exactly what is going on in my soul. He never says anything more, or anything less than what I need to hear. It’s amazing, really.

I haven’t seen him for about seven months now… the last time I ran into was when I was on my way to my usual gym – when for some reason I decided to turn around and go to another one that I had a free pass for. I just had this weird intuition that I needed to go there.

I was in the middle of my work out when he approached me. I was no longer shocked at these moments, as over the last couple years I’ve come to know a lot of magical experiences – and rather than thinking they are ‘crazy’ – they now fill me with wonder.

He said to me, “I don’t know why but you’ve been on my mind a lot lately. You should know that the universe has a very special plan for you, keep holding on because your brightest days are ahead.”

Once again.. it was exactly what I had needed to hear. The time that had been paused on my treadmill when I stopped to talk to him? 11:11.

Excuse me while I go and feed my unicorn.

 

November 4

Why You Should Hug a Writer and Then Run Like Hell

to-hell

I’ve been doing a lot of soul searching and pondering life lately, and my moods have been… well let’s just say a little bit over the top extreme. Only the people really, really close to me would know this – it’s not something I would ever publicly broadcast, or anything silly like that…

Usually, I am able to associate my over driven emotional tendencies to being a being a female – which should be explanation enough.

MoodsLately, however, it’s been a bit hard to handle.  I’ve always been a chick – as far as I know – some of the early 20’s years are a bit blurry. Either way, I should be used to it by now. (But trust me, men, you really never do get used to having a dagger driven through your guts every few weeks and the hormonal aftermath it leaves in its wake – and don’t tell me that you have to deal with it, too – because you have NO IDEA).

Regardless, because I am a woman – I need to know everything. EVERY FREAKIN’ THING.  My ups and downs lately have been a little bit more than hormones … they’ve also been in part to my spiritual wandering to find out why the hell I am here. These ‘character glitches’ I am noticing have been rearing their ugly head a bit more clearly as I find myself on another personal quest that caught me off guard and hit me harder than that chick in high school with a jealousy problem.

For that reason, I am trying to come to terms – and embrace – some of my… ummm, let’s just call them ‘eccentricities’. .

In the midst of my self exploration, I  forgot to look at my self as being a ‘creative type’… which comes with a laundry list of interesting ‘traits’. Although this may not be reason enough – at least it can be partially attributed.

Yeah… totally… that’s totally it. Riiiight.

I think.

Combine that with being a lost soul trying to break free of the shackles of society, ovaries, a rather dry love life, and full moons – and what you have is complete and utter inner chaos.

It was right around the time I started tapping into my spiritual essence that I began writing more frequently. You see, writing is one of those ‘things’ that has been with me since early childhood – when my Mother taught me to read and write before I started kindergarten. I didn’t like to speak a whole lot and I often found solace using words – in written form.

What a treat it was to skip out on learning the alphabet and read Nancy Drew novels instead. How about them Hardy Boys?! I wonder if they are single. Also, I did not mind hanging out in the teachers’ lounge washing dishes during spelling class. What kid didn’t want to chum with the grownups in a cigarette smoke infested staff room? Way. Too. Cool.

This immediately separated me from the other kids. Who the hell is this 5 year old reading novels and trying to impress us with her short stories at show and tell? She gets to skip class, again?! Wtf.

What a nerd.

Therefore, I suppressed my ability to write for most of my life. It was apparently a talent I had – according to other people – never myself. Most writers never actually think they are any good at their own skill. So, I would deny it. Over and over again. In fact, I still do.

It doesn’t help that I just read Ernest Hemingway’s Top 5 tips for great writers and I fail at all of them. Every goddamn one.

I can’t really call myself a legit ‘polished’ writer –  I don’t exactly make a living off of it, I don’t follow the ‘rules’ and I am not formally trained. I only know that my word hobby has been around since I was an awkward child.

I wanted to be ANYTHING but a writer. Next to musicians, writing is one of the least lucrative career choices there is. Race car driver, trapeze artist, lion tamer, lawyer, sewer inspector, private investigator, that chick that’s the bait to catch cheating husbands, exterminator  – please god give me any other talent BUT writing.

Clearly none of these things worked out.

“Well, why don’t you write more?” some people would ask.

“How about you just f*** off and stop asking me that. I don’t want to write.”

And so brings me to this juncture – personal journey #437 and facing some tough questions about who I am.

(For the record I still don’t know.)

trainwreckBut, I can’t be a writer. In this day and age, everyone is a writer just like everyone is a musician and everyone is a photographer. The Internet can make you a pro star anything. Secondly, why on Earth would I even want to take part in this carpal tunnel syndrome inducing activity that makes me want to pull Greek on my dishes and then saw off my sore arm/fingers with a dull butter knife? Seems crazy.

BUT…

I started to explain some of my mild excessive neurotic behavior to fellow writers and even strangers – and they would tell me, “You must be writer”.

Well that’s just f’ing great. Now other people were pointing it out, too.

Then I started to consider that I should maybe acknowledge the fact that perhaps I was a writer – or at the very least a decent wannabe writer – even though it wasn’t bringing home the bacon.

Maybe I just need to accept it. Honor it, in whatever way possible – even if it means I’ll never be an actual ‘writer writer’ per say. EVEN if it means writing a story about how much I despise writing. Regardless, it was a gift that was given to me and I’ve done my best to suppress it.

As I began to meet other writer types, I started to notice certain ‘quirks’ – some not the most flattering – but it did seem to give me a morsel of clarity into the kind of person I am.

Things are really as clear as mud now.

These ‘traits’ could really just be my own made up things to help me feel better about my own erratic behavior on this weird journey. But whatever. In case you know a few in your own life – they are also things that you should know to make your life – and theirs – a little bit easier.

You see, there’s a kind of personal hell most writers go through on a daily basis. By “most” I really “some – and by “some” I actually mean “female” and by “female” I really mean… well, me.

I am sure I am not the only one, but I’d hate to make an error in judgment and speak on behalf of any writers that are actually SANE. I don’t want to pigeon hole anyone. Although, I don’t believe that ‘sane’ and ‘writer’ belong in the same sentence – but hey, I’ve been wrong before.

(I’m using the word ‘we’ because I would like to think that I’m not the only excessive person out there. If you’re a writer and don’t carry these traits, I’m sorry. And also – please tell me your secret).

The thing about some writers is that we loathe writing. We will generally do anything – ANYTHING – to avoid writing.

Write?! Write now?? Right now?!?

to-hellNoooo….. I can’t write right now. There’s a Coronation Street marathon on TV and after that I need to go outside and shovel dog shit, cut the grass with scissors one blade at a time, organize my sock drawer, clean the furnace ducts, knit my best friend’s brother’s cousin’s dog a sweater, rearrange my closet, rearrange my ENTIRE god damn life and call (insert annoying family member here) that I never talk to.

Once that is done, then… THEN I will get to writing, FOR SURE.

Only after I have a bottle of wine.

Furthermore,

  • We always have words and ideas rolling through our head. We tell ourselves stories and sometimes we actually start believing them. Which leads me to my next point…
  • 99.999% of the time we have a story or an idea in our head and when we sit down to write it, nothing comes out. When that happens, our life is over and we become purposeless human beings… and so begins the suicide mission. When we fail at writing, we fail at every other part of life – which may not be the case in reality – but it is a story we will tell ourselves (at least this is true for me)… and quite frankly, NOTHING is going to change the fact that I feel as pointless as a broken pencil.
  • If we are able to get our ideas out – LIFE IS GREAT and the sex is better!!!… Again, this is something I don’t know (seven years single, remember) but I can only imagine.
  • The above is always remedied by wine (or whatever else your poison may be). However, it’s made worse if you fall asleep before writing your ideas down. There’s a limited time on this and if you don’t capitalize on it – you wake up feeling remorseful and so begins the cycle, again. And then you have a new problem. It’s called alcoholism.
  • Don’t correct a writer on their spelling mistakes immediately. That’s what an editor is for. Most of us wannabes are too broke and not legit enough to have an actual editor. If you do feel the need to get all nit picky, do it gently. I didn’t come here to win a Spelling Bee – I’m here to get ideas out of my head before someone cries bloody murder. I don’t care if they are in any logical order – I just want them gone asap –  because I’m not sure they monsterwritereven allow you to have a pen in the asylum. Whether or not I used the proper form of their or there – or misspelled something – is the least of my worries. I don’t even care how many tenses I’m using in the same paragraph. I’ll deal with that after.
  • Knowing you ‘should’ write but avoid it is a lot like being possessed. You know Danny Torrence in The Shining? Yeah, well, rather than ‘Red Rum’… my finger is twitching and that little demon voice is saying “Write me. Wrriiiiiitte Mee. WRITE ME.”

That all being said, writers are really a bunch colourful, caring, attentive souls with a high awareness. You should know one. Also, give them a hug. They probably need one, even though they’ll deny it. They will keep your lives interesting and full of drama all derived from their head. How creative and enticing!!!

And if you do know a writer trying to find their way in the world – keep in mind Danny’s Father, Jack Torrence in The Shining, and prepare accordingly.

Also, this might be the worst thing I’ve ever written… but who cares, my raging emotions are now justified. Sort of.

Where’s the wine?

October 30

Excuse Me While I Pull Out My Hair Extentions

the funk

AAAAAAGGGGHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Some days I despise being a writer. I despise it because the times that I think I have an idea that might have even a morsel of value, of sense, are the most inconvenient of times. Like the times I’m on a super hot date and about to be wrapped up in the throws of love making (yeah, right… I’m not that lucky). But the times I sit down and actually make a concerted effort to dismantle a few thoughts and spit out a few words – I come up empty handed. Until I totally force myself.

Just like right now. I am staring at this paragraph and loathing it. Loathing!  A few hours ago I could have sworn I had some wordly wisdom waiting to escape my fingertips and now… now… nowwwwww…

F%&$ it. I can’t finish that paragraph.

the funkI haven’t been writing much for a number of reasons. One part is the lack of time, a dash of procrastination, and the biggest ingredient is that – well, I have been in a funk.

For a long, long time.

It’s pretty hard to write about anything with real conviction when you are in a funk.

I used to chronicle my (mis)adventures in the dating world – satirical, sarcastic, humour that was based on five (now seven) years of being single. And then one day I stopped. I stopped because I was getting attention for all the wrong reasons and I didn’t like it. Being a far less famous and not nearly as stylish version of Carrie Bradshaw in my modest sized city was kind of fun – for a while – but in reality, people were paying attention to me for all the wrong reasons. Nobody was actually interested in what I had to say – only what recent dating disaster I had been on. I like to think that I have far more substance that that.  And then it really started pissing me off the kind of garbage we humans actually pay attention to.

To be honest, I probably could have made a career out of being single. Maybe I should have. The years I’ve been single have now outlasted the amount of years I’ve been at any job. If only I had a helmet cam for the last ten years, I might even have my own reality show.  But it might’ve looked awkward wearing a GoPro on my head, so I would have tried to be all James Bond stealthy-like with a hidden camera in my necklace or some kind of fancy undercover jazz.

And then this weird thing happened that I can’t explain. Well, I can explain it but it would take me eons to sit here and try and find the words without pulling my hair extensions out. I was graced with shitty hair genes, so I pay good money for those. Brazilians really do have great hair. Anyway, to simplify my life and yours, let’s just call it a ‘spiritual phenomenon’ of sorts. Maybe it’s more like a breakthrough. Whatever. It’s a thing, that’s all I can say.  Some might call it a mid-life crisis, but I definitely do not have the shiny new car to accompany that – and well, I’m not that old yet. Knowing how I feel these days, menopause should be a real joy.

I’ve been planning to use some of it as book material – although considering how painful writing this has been, that may not happen until my next life… or the next. And if I have to come back for another one after that, god help me.

I hit a point in my life where I saw things differently. I looked at the world and saw it’s complete and utter chaos – along with its Oneness and interconnectedness. I thought for sure I was on the brink of understanding my purpose here. As I became entwined in all the spiritual, new agey, pop culture fluff floating around the internet, I was certain I was surrounding myself with copious amounts of love and light and bliss and everything else good.

OH NOOO. No, it’s not that easy.

You see, there’s this thing that happens when you learn about your self as a spiritual being – it’s great at first – but then it opens the flood gates of past emotional bull shit that you thought was a non-issue – and it comes to a boil that seeps out of every orifice of your consciousness. It’s part of the whole ‘healing’ process, but man does it suck.

And it seems to last FOREVER.

Here I am, manifesting all this crazy cool stuff – skipping along, humming, la dee da dee da – life is AWESOME. I’m having tons of signs and synchronicities pop into my life and I think I have it all figured out.

And then suddenly, the lights go off and your stubbing your spiritual toes fumbling around in the dark. Wait a second here. I just spent the last five plus years on this epic, personal odyssey figuring out my role here and all of a sudden I have even less of a clue than when I started?

What in the EFFF.

walking in darkThen you find yourself in this messed up, twisted rabbit hole – not quite the colourful Alice in Wonderland kind, either. More like a dark, black pit – a vortex of disparity that you can’t quite climb out of. Now, you’re on a new kind of journey and it’s really not all that blissful. A dark night of the soul so to speak – you have no idea when the day is going to break and all you really know is that hunky Batman character is nowhere to be found. Sooo typical.

But prior to that, in the beginning of your new found spirituality you start stumbling upon every single step-by-step guide, every manual for living an abundant life, every sure fire plan that’ll magically make you realize your life’s highest purpose. Let me buy more of it! I need more books and positive quotes to paste on my Facebook page!!!

It’s all good and great and you’re trying your damnedest to enlighten and encourage others – then bam! You are in the darkness. Let me tell you, there is no plan. There is no defined set of answers. There are guides for sure, but take your book of answers and throw it out the window. Better yet, have a nice little bon fire, toss it in, invite your friends over, strip down until your butt naked, do a little dance and chant a little chant. I swear to whatever higher power, if I read anymore spiritual pop culture rose coloured crap that only tells you about how joyous everything is, I am going to freak out. There is no one size fits all answer book when it comes to ‘finding yourself’.

Because to truly ‘find yourself’ you have to actually work through every single emotional trauma you’ve ever been through. Apparently that’s a good chunk of the whole journey that I failed to get the memo on.

Did you know that while you think you let stuff go, there’s shit stored in your emotional center that you don’t even know about? For example.. not long ago I had some energy work done… I would be in a meditative, relaxed state and the therapist would ask if I had ever had anything happen to my throat because it would turn bright red and get real hot. Well, yeah I did – I always had tonsillitis as a kid and I would freak out every time I had to open my mouth at the doctor’s office. When I finally got them taken out in my early adulthood, I screamed and cried as they put the mask on me. Ten years later I would have never, ever thought that bothered me until my energy worker did some work on my throat area and I had a flash back to being on the hospital bed. I started to shake and cry like a little kid, and I felt the same pain I had all those years ago. And then suddenly, it was gone. Little tiny things like that, your body stores and you’re not even aware of it. Call it your inner child.

clownAnyway, that’s not the point. I can deal with that. My real point is that I’ve been in this purposeless feeling funk that seems never ending. Anyone on the outside looking in would never know that. I’m always having a great time, laughing, and doing things I enjoy. On the inside though, there’s this weird, underlying nagging feeling of hopelessness, or something. A numbness. I think a lot of people are like that, we just never really see anything beyond the surface.

It’s not that I’m not grateful for what I have. It’s not that I’m not a happy person. I practice gratitude and mindfulness in every thing that I do. But there are times I look around and I ask, “What is the point”?

Yes, I know I’m thinking too hard here. But it’s a good thing there’s a brain under these luscious locks.

You mean to say that out of the infinite places in the cosmic realms, we ended up here? What for? I suppose I would probably ask that same question if I was anywhere else, too. To learn lessons and grow and learn unconditional love for our selves and others, etc etc… I get that. I am not a dummy.

But. Why? WHY?

It’s not about the destination, it’s about the journey. I get that, too. But I have this thing about patience – being that I don’t have any. This world is so messed up, I don’t know who in their right mind would come here. Somewhere out there, there’s another life form looking at us like we’re on glue. “Yeah, keep killing each other and raping the Earth, humans! Let’s see how far you get.”

I look around and see people mindlessly driving to their jobs. Struggling to pay the rent. Religion, war, politics, power struggles and pettiness… blah blah blah. This can’t be what LIFE is. It can’t be. I don’t know how this is motivating. And if you think that’s the way it is supposed to be – well you need to reevaluate the magical miracle of life. Take a moment to look up at the cosmos and bask in awe and wonder.

I know my magic. I can feel it. I’m capable of awesome things. But here I am feeling trapped and unfulfilled despite that. Lost and confused. Swimming around in this sea of emptiness. Am I swimming? Am I drowning? I don’t know. God dammit I would like to find a nice beach. Koh Phi Phi come to me.

Don’t get me wrong… there is never a time I don’t truly appreciate the things I am blessed with. I appreciate the beauty in life wherever I am. There is the same amount of magic in a sunset whether you are in Prince Albert, Saskatchewan or a beach in the Bahamas. I have a roof over my head, I have a job that helps me build my creativity, doesn’t mind my outspokenness, and let’s me be myself. I have good health, great friends and family – and I get to be around solid folks every day. In theory, I’m doing better than 75% of the world’s population. I’ve been pretty darn lucky in a lot of respects.

It’s not that I haven’t tried new things. I’ve been open to all opportunities that have come to me, and I’ve had some really great ones.

I just haven’t found that thing that makes my soul sing.

systemfailureI like to live in the moment – whatever that moment is. I never know when I’m going to run out of moments – so they may as well be enjoyed. But, the way we live is starting to URK me. Life is so much more magical than a routine, material possessions and a pile of debt. Yeah, it’s about having fun – which I do. But, my soul wants to frolic through fields of dreams – exploring, connecting, LIVING. I want to dance, prance, a little romance would be great, too. And then I’d like to run through the rain forest with a Peruvian Shaman and ride away on my unicorn (that’s pushing it, I know). Being stuck in the Matrix is giving me a serious case of the blahs.

There’s gotta be a purpose to the madness.

I guess in order to be found, you first have to get lost. Really, really lost.

And I’m directionally challenged.

osho

 

June 10

Just Super!

mr

It never fails me, when I step into that zone of good energy – the flow – and truly focus on it – more and more miracles and synchronicities find their way into my life.

I like to call it magic. It’s out there, it happens – and the more you put out, the more you get back. Sometimes it even comes with a good chuckle.

I just got back from some travel in Europe so I’ve been on a tight budget lately, trying to get caught up on some bills. I’ve been planning to attend charity fundraiser in another city in a couple of weeks – a rather exclusive one that I wouldn’t miss for the world – and this year’s charitable focus hits close to home, so I’ve budgeting extra carefully as some folks tend to dig quite deep in their pockets at this particular event.

Details aside, I’ve been paying great attention to shifting my thoughts and focusing on gratitude, rather than ever coming from a place of lack (not just now… always.. but lately it’s been a bit more pronounced). I’ve also silently asking the universe for small miracles to help make the next few weeks less stressful.

And BAM! Just like that, they come.

It was Sunday and I had to get my usual grocery shopping done… so I head to the supermarket.  After a drive through the parking lot and seeing how busy it was, I changed my mind and decided to go somewhere else.

I finally settle on a supermarket and I couldn’t help but notice there was a guy shopping with a girl… no big deal, except for the fact that  he’s dressed like Super Mario, minus the mustache.

SUPER MARIO!

mariowingWTF.. and also, suhweet!

His jumpsuit was a bit on the tight side and I was kind of giggling a bit because I thought it was entertaining. I minded my own business and carried on… grabbing about $100 worth of stuff and (trying) to count it out in my head so that I wouldn’t go over budget (which never works and I failed math class at least twice.. lost count after the first two tries). 

I end up behind him at the till and he says to the cashier, “I’ll get this girls stuff too”. I thought that’s what I had heard but I wasn’t sure. Then he just stood there, blocking the debit machine.

I’m like, WHAT is going on?! Stunned. I don’t know who was more confused, myself or the cashier is who was also like, “Ummm what?!”

He wouldn’t move out of my way. I just stared at him with a dazed and confused, dumbfounded look in my eyes. All I could squeak out was, “Umm… that’s my stuff…”

“Yeah? And? What’s your point? I got this one covered!”

WHAT?!” No really, you don’t need to do that…”

The girl says, “No use arguing with him, I’ve tried.. doesn’t work.. and he’s Super Mario!…”

So he pays for my stuff and says, “Don’t sweat it, random act of kindness…”

So I start bagging my groceries and they walk out. I walked outside and scanned the parking lot and see them sitting in a truck, smiling and waving.

I made my way to their truck and ask him what’s with the outfit? He laughs and says, “Sunday Funday, I’m trying to get laid!”

I laughed, said thank you, and wished him well on his ‘mission’… I’m shocked still…

He says, “Pay it forward.. Keep calm and chive on!”

BEST. THING. EVER.

Sometimes I get annoyed with the whole ‘keep calm’ pop culture thing… but running into a Chiver feels pretty darn great!

calm

April 30

The Magic Within

skRiver

I mentioned not long ago that I’ve begun to work on my first book. Well, technically – I wrote and illustrated my first short story at the age of four, but for some reason there weren’t too many publishers that were interested.  I can say with 111% certainty that it’s one of the harder things I’ve attempted – however, I have no doubt it will come together one word at a time.

What is my book about? Great question! I have no idea. I’m letting it flow together on its own. I’m pretty excited to see what transpires – who knows, maybe it will end up in the recycle bin. Maybe it will end up on a bookshelf. The opportunities are endless, really.

I wanted to share a small section of the words that have been piecing themselves together. This is just one small, magical story in the many I’ve written about so far… hope you enjoy!

 

******

“The Early Days and the Magic Within”

“Even though I had let go of the constraints of Religion and opened myself up to more – if someone would have told me ten years ago that I would one day be communicating with Angels and Spirit Guides, receiving signs and messages from an infinite higher power I would have LOL’d. Maybe even laughed my ass right off.

As if.

I had associated anything that came from bigger realms to Religion and I did not believe in Religion, so why would I believe in anything bigger than me?

However, I always did have a high awareness my entire life and had a pretty good understanding of synchronicity and karma – but, the idea that I could communicate with anything beyond what I could see with my own eyes seemed pretty ridiculous, never mind whimsical light-filled beings from the heavens.

Give me an effing break.

However,

We all have them. Magical abilities that have been tapped into and forgotten about – often hidden away under layers of ego, illusion – and buried under a lifetimes’ of built up fears. Clairsentience (clear feeling), claircognizance (clear knowing), clairvoyance (clear seeing) and clairaudience (clear hearing) -more intelligently known as metaphysical senses… but let’s face it, life is more interesting when you can say you’re capable of magic.

That is really what it is. Whether or not you pay attention to your own magic is up to you.

clairaudioIt has been my claircognizance and clairaudience that have been my strongest senses and despite having my ego around neither have never really left me, but rather been dormant at times. Underneath it all, however, I’ve always had a sense of clear hearing and knowing that has been far beyond what my egoic mind communicates to me. It’s only been in the past couple years that I have learned to tap into these abilities more frequently.

When I am in a meditative or lucid state, I am often able to pick up others conversations rather easily. I haven’t yet mastered this completely, but it works much like an AM/FM radio. I don’t necessarily know the location or who I am tuning in to, but nonetheless I often hear some pretty interesting things. And I hear them distinctly. Communicating directly with Universal Intelligence is an entirely different story which I will get into later in this book.

My first realizations that was something ‘different’ where when I was a child. I often felt like I didn’t fit in. I didn’t have many friends in school and I was often made fun of for being ‘too quiet’. At certain times I was ridiculed by my members of my family for not talking enough.  I was always the last one chosen for any team (thanks a lot, by the way) and I usually stood on the sidelines as others assembled their play groups during recess break. I simply preferred to observe. I found that I was usually quite aware of my surroundings and I seemed to notice more and knew things that most others around me did not.

I never really did talk about anything because it often appeared that I was the only one in my environment that saw things ‘differently’. I suppressed many of these things for the majority of my life. As a child, feeling out of place can result in fearing the way you feel into your adult life.

Into my early adult life, I also had an incredibly strong intuition and the ability to visualize things that I just simply KNEW as truths (claircognizance). There were times when information would come to me and I didn’t know how, but it did… sometimes I would hear it in a distinctive voice  that was not my own (clairaudience) and other times I would see it more vividly than the things I saw with my eyes.  As I grew older and nestled into a life led by my ego my intuition remained strong but my ‘magic’ was easily ignored and became much more sporadic over the years.

I can recall very clearly several experiences where I have been able to utilize my metaphysical senses, probably without even being conscious that I was doing so. The difference between now and then, is that I’ve become acutely aware of it.

Here’s one of my favorite recollections:

Diamond in the Rough

My Mother was notorious for misplacing her car keys and wallet – so when it happened (at least a mildly exaggerating once a month), we would roll our eyes and just assume that it was like any other time and it would show up eventually.

This time was different; someone had stolen her entire purse. She was more frantic than usual and there have been few times in my life I have seen her quite so distraught. Like the vast majority of the female population, she carried her life in her purse. Any female that is reading this, can probably relate. I remember losing my wallet once and it was damn near the end of my world.

What was different about this time is that aside from the usual mementos and photos she carried with her, she also had a small diamond pendant in her wallet that was meant to be worn on a chain. For as long as I remember she always had this with her as it was from a dear friend whom she cherished greatly. The chain had broken and she had been meaning to get it repaired.

She was upset for days and I heard her say that the only thing she wished was that if nothing else could be replaced, she only wished to have the diamond pendant back. Everything else was replaceable.

About a week had passed and while she had begun the process of replacing things, she was still feeling a lost without her keepsake. Then one day, the police had called and said that they had found her purse in the alleyway behind a Church downtown. She retrieved the purse but the wallet was still missing. About another week later, out of the blue, a man had called and told my Mother that he had found her wallet.

My Mother set out to meet the man and retrieve her wallet. She gave him a cash reward for finding her wallet, which remarkably had all of its contents still intact. She asked the man where he had found it, and the intoxicated man muttered that he had found it along the riverbank, and that was it.

I remember my Mother returning home feeling rather relieved that she had her wallet back. There was something that was missing, however – the diamond pendant.

“Well where did he find it, Mom? Maybe we can go look for it?” I asked.

“Along the riverbank, Tanis.. it could be anywhere.”

My emphatic nature could sense how disappointed she was. Of all things to be missing – a small diamond pendant that probably had no big monetary value – the value was in the sentiment it meant to my Mother. And it was true – with a riverbank that runs through the entire city, the charm that was half the width of my pinky nail could really be anywhere. It was best to just forget about it and accept it as a personal loss and move on.

A couple weeks later, my Mother and I had an argument. I don’t remember what the argument was about, but I will place my bets on it being nothing of real merit and mostly me being a 16 year old teenager full of angst. I was a teenager with a lot of attitude, which I am sure my Mother would love for me to discuss, but I would need another book just for that (sorry, Mom).

As our argument became more heated, all I could think about was running away and finding a way for my Mother to not be so angry with me. I thought to myself, maybe if I can do something amazing like find my Mother’s diamond, she won’t be upset anymore. I laughed at the utter ridiculousness at the thought and slammed the door of my parents’ house and hopped into my pseudo sports car (’89 Ford Probe, in case you’re wondering).

It was pouring rain out and I was in my pyjamas. I don’t even think I was wearing shoes. I just wanted to get away. As I sat there with the keys in the ignition a vivid voice and startling image nestled into my mind.

“Go find her treasure,” it said.

“Huh?!”

“Go find your Mother’s diamond.”

“What in the f…”

skRiverI saw it clear as day. There, along the riverbank was a small shed and around the corner of it was a bike lying on the ground with one tire missing. And there the diamond pendant was sitting.

This is stupid, I thought. That could be anywhere. But I had nowhere else to go, other than back inside and continue being a snarky teenager and fight with my parents some more. So, what the hell… Why not go check out the legitimacy of this ‘vision’.

So I started driving and stopped by a girlfriend’s house down the block. I banged on the door and as soon as she answered I told her to get in my car because I was going to go find my Mother’s diamond.

“What?! Tanis, that’s crazy… it’s pouring rain outside and how the hell do you expect to find something like that along the riverbank… do you have any idea how silly that sounds?!”

“Just get in the car,” I said. “I’ll show you”.

So we drove down to the river. I parked my car and my girlfriend followed behind me. I’m sure she thought that rather than needing a raincoat, I likely needed a straight jacket instead. Regardless, I kept walking. I didn’t say very much and I felt as though I wasn’t even doing the walking – something else was guiding me.

I crossed the bridge and went down some stairs. There, in a clearing, I saw it. A small shed. Woah. As I walked closer I saw a penny on the ground and picked it up. As I felt it in my hands, I had a strong feeling come over me. A feeling that is beyond what words alone can describe.

“This penny was in my Mother’s wallet,” I said to my friend.

“Okay… Tanis… Whatever you say…”

I turned the corner to go around the other side of the shed. There, lying on the ground was the same bike I saw in my vision – with a tire missing. Without even much scanning I looked to the ground and right there, lodged in the mud – was a tiny purple sparkle.

Well, holy shit.

“I found it! I really found it!” I picked up the diamond pendant and put it in a cassette tape case I had in my purse (Bon Jovi, Crossroads… in case you were wondering).

“How?! Tanis how??” my friend asked.

“I don’t know… but my Mother is going to go crazy when she sees this!!”

I felt like I hit the jackpot and I jetted home. There is no frigging way I am going to be grounded after finding this gem! Literally.

I walked into the house with the biggest grin on my face.

“Mom I have something for you!” I exclaimed to my stern-faced, eye-brow raised, arm-crossed Mother.

I pulled out the cassette case and gave it to her. Dropping into her hand was the diamond pendant and she looked at me with a kind of bewildered amazement.

“Oh my God… How? How did you find this?”

“I don’t know Mom, I really don’t know. I just had a feeling.”

“What do you mean feeling? How did you know?!”

“I just knew Mom. I just knew.”

Needless to say, our little argument had ended. ”

*******

So there you have it – one of many short excerpts of my book. Questions? Comments? Your own stories of magic? Let me know! Maybe it will motivate me to write faster.

Don’t forget… you have the magic within you. You’ve always had it.

***

(Image Source: Image 1,  Image 2)

April 8

Criticizing… criticism.

criticism1

I’m going to be hypocritical-ish and rant about one of the things I am most critical about – criticism. One of my biggest pet peeves in life is criticism. Not the useful, constructive kind – but the unnecessary, bully-like, pathetic jargon that offers no intrinsic value.

I usually put my see-no-evil-hear-no-evil blinders on in most cases – but sometimes some of the stuff I see and hear drives me bat-shit crazy. Whyyyyyyy do we not see how useless this is? I could easily seclude myself, and I do to a large degree, but as someone that enjoys being social and connecting with many, I often come across things that make me shake my head at humanity. Shame, shame.

criticism1If I had written this two plus years ago, I would have been the pot calling the kettle black.  One of my most successful past-times was offering up a critical analysis of people I didn’t even know. The more people that enjoyed it and found it entertaining, the more it pushed me to continue. In the end, it only elevated my ego and did not have any real service to my evolution as a human. They say you keep repeating the same mistake until you learn the lesson. Luckily, I did around the 104,957th time (give or take a few thousand).

The other day I logged into one of my social networking sites and the first thing I saw was photo prompting viewers to share their one word opinion of an over-weight woman wearing something that perhaps wasn’t the most flattering. Was it attractive by ‘societal standards’? No, probably not.

But, who cares?

Apparently many.

Thousands of people whose lives have been grossly affected by such a travesty.

OMG. Those courageous souls! Still offering up their own derogatory commentaries – even after they’ve had their eyeballs violated and are still graciously giving another few moments of time to weigh in – ON TOP of the ten seconds they just claimed they will never get back .

How generous!

It’s not limited to a random photo on a Twitter feed or a Facebook page – which I get is an (un)necessary evil, really. Media and celebrity gossip columns are great, too. This is where we get to ignore our own lives, utilize our degree in psychology and  provide endless opinions on someone else’s life – without even knowing the true person on the inside.

Part of life? Maybe. We certainly were not born with it though, so I can’t fully agree. Life is pretty short and I find it saddening how much time we – as humans – spend focusing on everyone else but ourselves.

Think about how awesome it would feel to know yourself just as well as you know the person you’re focusing on!

And for those that get the pleasures of unleashing the critiquing – please, tell me the secrets of having a mistake-free life? Humans are dying to know! (No pun intended).

The point is – it’s very easy to get involved in all the banter, especially if the subject is not something that fits your own views. The one thing I try to do is look for commonalities rather than differences. We aren’t that different. Beyond form, we’re all comprised of the same essence. Everyone is on the same journey from different starting points.

Knowing that, what’s to criticize?

Be mindful of the words you say. Next time you choose to chime in, ask yourself if your intentions come from a positive or negative motivation. Humans are the greatest mirrors for our own selves. What you criticize in one usually lies within your own self – and why would you want to bring yourself down?

Now that I’ve written an hypocritical, criticizing, opinionated piece on criticism… rant = over.

 

March 24

Deep Thoughts About Some Thoughts

right

I haven’t been blogging as much because I am working on my first book and I don’t want to give away toooo many of my stories here. Speaking of book writing, it is proving to be the most frustrating thing EVER.

I am quickly discovering the many stages of writing a book, which go a little like:

Write, edit, delete, writer’s block, ****ing curse, curse louder, tiny creative moment, omg write it down now!, delete, throw shit, wine, write like a mad man, more wine, headache, whine, edit, repeat.

Anyway… that’s not what this is about – but that’s more or less what I’ve been working on. I would love to share what guided me to that decision, because it is really quite miraculous – but I’m also saving that for my book.

What was I going to say again?

Don’t mind my A.D.D… holy shit there’s actually sunshine happening outside! Oh, right… anyway… I’ve noticed that I generally write when things are on the up and up. Positivity! Great! But, I’m human and I don’t always have sunshine blowing out my rear end. Sometimes, there are times when I feel like, how can I possibly share an inspirational story when that is the last thing I feel?

I find that I am pretty good at helping others get past some of their own negative self talk – and it is really quite astounding how many souls have come into my journey lately and have been opening their eyes to things about themselves that they hadn’t seen before. It’s quite rewarding, actually. But when my turn comes and I’m in the midst of one of my own pity parties (which are many), good luck getting me to leave. My own stubborness to flip my frown upside down despite how many things I have to be grateful for is sometimes my own worst enemy.

thoughts1It’s one of those things about myself that I continually work on. I don’t think the key is to boycott any feeling of sadness, but rather to honour every emotion (energy in motion) and to be mindful of where our thoughts take us, as they have a vital role in creating our environment.

The last couple years I’ve been incredibly unhappy with where I am at in my professional life. All  I have been able to think of is how stuck I feel, how I am not doing what I should be doing and how I am not living up to my true potential. There are some days I feel as though I am a waste (sounds morbid, but I have no other way of putting it) and I’m pretty sure I’ve shed tears daily for the last couple years consecutively. There is something about it that causes me a great deal of sadness. I’ve had a number of hopeful opportunities fall through the cracks, and I consistently think that sometimes I shouldn’t even bother because no one is going to give me a chance, anyway. Then again, I am the only one in charge of creating my own opportunities – and I am also in charge of sabotaging them with my thoughts – which I do, before they even happen.

I know for a fact, what I am doing is not something that is aligned with my soul or gives me any type of fulfillment.  Sure, I suppose this is likely true of 98% of the working population, but in my mind very few of us are able to move beyond these feelings because we are limited by our own negative thought patterns.

Some people might say, “suck it up, that’s life.” But I beg to differ. That is not life. That is what we are accustomed to thinking. Out of an infinite universe containing billions upon billions of other universes, I certainly did not come to this tiny rock of all places for no reason at all. I have shit to do and my soul knows when I am not doing what I am here to do. In the same breath, that is not entirely correct because I know I am always exactly where I need to be in any given moment… but ‘exactly where I need to be’  isn’t always a place I particularly like. And in another breath, there is always a lesson to be learnt in the place we are.

Long story short, I’ve been spending a good chunk of the last while solely focusing on how I feel stuck and nothing else.

What I get in return? MORE AND MORE of the same. And more! I am creating my very own reality.

The same thing goes with finances. I’ve gotten by for the majority of my life, but the perpetual thought in my mind is always one of:

“I can’t afford it. I can’t do this, I can’t do that. Every time I get a little bit ahead, something happens. I can’t. I don’t have enough. I can’t, I can’t I can’t. Somebody call the wahhhhmublance because I can’t stop crying about everything I can’t do!”

… and the list goes on. My thoughts consistently operate from a place of lack, rather than gratitude for what I do have.

As a result? Even more of the same. In fact, just the other week, I was thinking about how there is something coming up for me that I can’t afford – and guess what? My car broke down.

Energy goes where attention flows.
Energy goes where attention flows.
ENERGY GOES WHERE ATTENTION FLOWS.

This is not some generic statement that we hear over and over again – it is truth.
rightThe things is, I KNOW that this is happening… I am acutely aware of it, but yet I continually get in the way of my own self. I can very easily look at some of my other thoughts and intentions of things I have wanted to manifest into my life that and how they have unfolded almost perfectly. Effortlessly. Some of them are absolutely mind blowing and still leave me and those in my life rather speechless. Things that the vast majority of people would tell me, “Get real, that chances of that happening are impossible.”  I would love to share them, but I am also saving that for my book.

I also have a friend that I have known for a few years. For as long as I’ve known her, she has always talked about how she is secretly a millionaire. Quite honestly, all she does is talk about how much money she has. She is forever speaking about how she can do just about anything because she has the finances to do it. She doesn’t do anything differently than me, but every time I see her – she seems to have even more. On the other hand, she consistently talks about how alone she is and how the potential romantic partners she meets are always of the same breed – abusive and controlling. She talks about how she will never meet anyone that compliments her and how she is destined to be alone and miserable forever.

For the past couple years I have known her, I have heard her thoughts – which are always the same. It is quite astounding to watch as what she thinks about, is created.

Changing  your thought pattern isn’t the easiest thing to do. I struggle with my own every minute of every day. Almost every time I run into a challenge or something that hasn’t worked out (which is often because there is something better coming that we can’t yet see), I immediately fall into the trappings of my negative thought patterns. Almost always, I throw a tantrum and right away I say, “that’s it! I’m done! I’m done hoping for things to work out because they never do! Why bother if it always leads to disappointment?! WHYYYY!!”

When I think that way, I begin to believe it. When I believe it, I put energy into it and ultimately I continue to create more of the same. And that, right there – is one of my biggest personal challenges.

Having said that, I’m thinking I’m about to change all of that.

I originally had other intentions for this post – there was something entirely different I was going to rant about. Perhaps, I will save that for my book as well.

Where do your thoughts take you? What are YOU creating for yourself?

February 22

Why I’m Never Going to the ‘Gym’ Again

grouplife

This might turn out to be a long winded post – so grab your coffee (or if you’re like me, a glass bottle of wine).

For as long as I can remember, I’ve always had a problem with my fluctuating weight. I’ve always been pretty active with a regular gym routine, so I’ve never been grossly out of shape – but I’ve been at points where I have felt a little more than uncomfortable.

In 2011, I reached my highest point (ironically my lowest point) – tipping the scale at 200lbs, which, for my 5’7 stature was enough to make my favourite pair of pants split wide open in public. Yeah, that happened.

I didn’t know where it came from, but what I did know is that I strongly disliked feeling uncomfortable. It was time to change it.

grouplifeSo I did. I shed about 30lbs. Great!

I actually wrote about that journey right here.

And then I fell off the wagon again.

There was no real rhyme or reason other than I got bored.  Arms day. Legs day. Spin class. Weights. Over and over again.

*Yawn*

I felt like my body was changing, but as a person – I was not.  My mind wasn’t being challenged. I’d go to the gym and plug in my head phones and watch some uninspiring TV show, gawk at the other gym goers and fumble around the gym for a good two hours, sometimes breaking a sweat.

Everything felt so… monotonous.

I never gained the weight back, but over time I saw myself start to lose the definition that I had worked so hard for – and it seemed to happen instantly. I use the word ‘definition’ both figuratively and literally.

During that time, I had a number of friends that kept urging me to come try CrossFit. I couldn’t stand listening to them (sorry), I found them to be so annoying with all their “WOD talk”.

Seriously! Shut up already!

CrossFit?! That sport that proclaims to be for ‘The Fittest on Earth”?

How about the most annoying on earth!

I go to the gym, I work out, how could it possibly be that much different than what I do? How about you take a great big ‘wod’ and shove it up your ***!

What the hell is a WOD anyway?
Is this some kind of cult?
What’s a burpee? Does it involve beer?

(WOD = Work out of the day, BTW)

Not to mention that, there was a laundry list of other reasons why I didn’t feel like I needed to give it a try:

BUT, I already have a gym membership.
BUT, I LIKE to work out by myself at my own pace.
BUT, I don’t really do group classes.
BUT, I’m not in good enough shape to do CrossFit. (Which is equivalent to the annoyance of people telling me they’re not flexible enough to try yoga.. that IS why you GO to yoga, btw).
BUT, I can’t do anything overly challenging because of my problems with my right arm.

Etc, etc.

So, there it was – enough reasons why it seemed pretty pointless to bother. Save for some lacking motivation which will surely pass, I’m getting by just fine with my regular gym… so why change what’s not broken?

And here I am, entering my fourth month of CrossFit at Synergy Strength.

synergyLast fall, I decided to see what all the fuss was about. So I checked it out. I was almost immediately intimidated. OH. MY. GOD. I have just walked into the non-violent version of Fight Club. I’m breaking a sweat just by shaking in my boots.

It wasn’t that everyone there was ‘ripped’…there were all different shapes and sizes, but these people were STRONG. Stronger than anyone I had seen at a gym.

I didn’t want to go back. Not ever. Not only that; it was a pretty big eye opener for me – it showed me exactly where my weaknesses were. It was kind of depressing, actually. For all the hours I had spent in the gym doing bicep curls, leg extensions and working on building muscle, I still couldn’t do a single push up.  Climb up a rope? Not a chance.

With hesitation, I signed up to take the training (OnRamp) classes.

WTF am I getting myself into? Box jumps? I can’t do box jumps. After too many fractures, I’m terrified of jumping, period. This is NOT happening.

Maybe I should just stick with the regular gym. If I quit now, I can still get out alive.

BUT…

During that time, something else happened to change my mind. Without warning, someone I love lost the use of their legs. There I was, watching someone that’s cared for and provided for me my entire life lay in frustration day after day… as I was watching someone realize the real importance of physical strength… and watching someone who would gladly give just about anything to have another chance my mindset began to change pretty quickly.  And there I was, spending more time in a hospital than I cared to – for months – watching someone I love learn how to walk again from the ground up.

And I thought CrossFit was too much of a challenge?

<insert self bitch slap here>

I will never judge anyone based on what they do or do not do, but from that point on – my opinion on physical fitness is a little bit more pronounced. Quite honestly, perfectly capable people that don’t use their bodies to the best of their abilities drive me nuts.

You never know when that may be taken away from you. I don’t know about you, but I don’t plan on taking what I have for granted. I plan on seeing just how much I CAN do.

If that wasn’t enough, one week after I signed up, I was in a car accident which put me out for a couple of weeks. It hit me (literally) at a  point during great financial/emotional distress and also cost me just about every dime of prize money I had won competing in a business competition for six months. I thought 200lbs was one of my lowest points – but during this time I felt even lower. I felt weak – physically and mentally. Honestly, I had no motivation to even go to CrossFit once I was able – but all that changed pretty quickly.

burpeesCrossFit has been without a doubt one of the best choices I’ve made in a long while. Except for learning what burpees are (unrelated to liquor), I’ll never like burpees. However, it’s been a few months and I’m starting to find that ‘definition’ again – and not just physically. With every ‘WOD’ I find a piece of me on the inside that becomes just a little bit more defined. I can’t explain it, but it has that kind of effect.

CrossFit strengthens the body, but more than that – it strengthens the soul.

Going to the gym and and finding your own sense of motivation is just as, if not more challenging. I’ve done it and I’ve succeeded at it. Sometimes, true strength lies in knowing when you need to reach out to others, too.  For me personally, something was missing from my humdrum work outs… something I found in CrossFit. The fact that I’m in and out in an hour tops is a bonus, but there is something about being in the ‘box’ that is just… different. In a good way. The community itself is unparalleled to anything I’ve ever been a part of – and that’s coming from someone who ‘doesn’t do group classes’ and ‘prefers to do my own thing’.

They define CrossFit as being the “Fittest on Earth”, but to me, it is so much more than the physical fitness. I’ve learned that there’s a pretty big big BIG difference between big muscle and big strength that is functional. It’s about your best form, function and pushing yourself beyond your perceived limits.  It’s about taking these and applying it to all areas of your life. It’s about being the best self you can be.

But isn’t it dangerous? Can’t you hurt yourself? Yeah, and you know what?? Getting in your car is dangerous, too. Spending precious moments of life riding the waves on the couch is dangerous. Never knowing your own strength – is dangerous.

(And by the way, a good CrossFit box is equipped with top notch coaches that make sure you don’t do anything stupid… something I never had at the gym)

Point of the story? Just because something challenges you, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. That doesn’t mean you have to step into a CrossFit box – but step out of your comfort zone. Expand your perceptions. What’s right in front of you might just be the very thing you’ve been looking for.

If CrossFit is about being your very best, I think I just might be an annoying CrossFitter until the day I die.

If you can’t beat ‘em, you may as well join ‘em.

October 30

Shut Up and Listen

I’ve been neglecting my personal joys of writing for the last while to fuel a few of my other passions – entrepreneurship and studying forms of meditation. Odd combo? Not really. The two go hand in hand, really.

Actually, I just finished competing in a business planning competition as one of the Top Ten finalists among some 50-60 applicants, which has taken up a large chunk of my time. Don’t ask me what I am doing though – because until I find my way into securing a large sum of cashola – I haven’t really been saying too much about my latest ‘project’, other than that much of my writing has been in the form of <sarcasm> FUN </sarcasm> financial statements and ever evolving marketing strategies – for the last 16 months, give or take.  I’m also in the process of brainstorming a different website address, because quite frankly I don’t want to single myself out as that ‘chick that’s been single forever’, because really, my life is much more fulfilling than that and I don’t feel ‘single’, but rather quite connected. Most days, anyway.

As for the meditation aspect? Well I love yoga.. which works wonders for quieting the mind, strengthening the body and cleansing the soul. I usually get to a studio at least once per week to save me from going batty (really to save others)… but I also recently started taking Qigong (pronounced Chi-Kung) classes which are form of Tai Chi and the class infuses some interesting meditation practices with Chinese Yoga.

Most typical meditations are done with the eyes closed and visualizations – which is all fine and dandy sometimes, but too much of this lead you right into La-La Land where everything is blissful – when you close your eyes off to your surroundings… which isn’t always conducive to actually getting through the actual ‘life’ part of things.

My current class is done with eyes half open to allow for entering a state of quietness, but also to do so while being awake and present with the surroundings. I’ve always been ‘aware’ of my surroundings before, but the class teaches a highly acute level of awareness and focus. My teacher will often say, “You want  to be able to hear a pin drop in the middle of an eight lane highway of rush hour.” Believe it or not, he can.

I have found this to tie in quite well with my entrepreneurial aspirations- which as you might imagine, require a lot of focus. Especially considering my level of  A.D.D. these days… I have an urge to go snowboarding right now. Shit, I don’t own a snowboard and I definitely need some lessons. Is that a squirrel I see?

Anyway, what was I saying? Oh, right. Meditation and what not. It has played a huge role in finding answers I was seeking in parts of my life as well as defining myself (never-ending journey). I think about my life a few years ago – even one year ago – which was primarily dominated by weaseling my way on to a guest list of some kind, collecting attention at the expense of others and everything else that served my ego best. My life and the way I view things are vastly different these days and I credit a lot of it to taking the time to look at myself from the inside out.

My reasoning for writing this too.. is that lately I’ve been meeting MANY, MANY, MANY people who long to find stillness and answers in their lives amidst all the chaos that, quite honestly, we create ourselves – and for some reason people ask me what it is that I do. Personally, I sometimes find it midway through a bottle of Pinot.. but I try to reserve that for Fridays only.

What the bulk of people don’t realize – is that in order to hear an answer, you have to become quiet enough to hear it. 

To be perfectly blunt, SHUT UP AND LISTEN.

 

September 6

11 Simple(ish) Things.

One of the constants in my life has been a dear friend of mine by the name of Rod Black. Actually, I’ve written about his significance in my life before. I call him a soul mate and quite often I think he is an angel in human form, as he always appears in my life at the precise moment that I feel even remotely troubled. There are a number of people I have very deep and meaningful connections to (they know who they are)… but in this case, it was Rod that inspired this piece of writing.

The past few months have been some of my most personally rewarding, eye opening and challenging. I’ve been discovering a lot about my spiritual side as well getting to know myself on a deeper level. With that, comes a lot of questions. I mean A LOT. There are days where I often question my place in life and what I’m supposed to do to reach my highest potential. And there are plenty of times I feel overcome with fear to do so.

There are times when I feel like I don’t really belong anywhere, and days when I feel completely unmotivated and detached from life. Some days, I feel like I’d like to float away.

It’s those exact days, when my phone rings and it is Rod, as if he is telepathically hearing my own fears and self doubts. I almost think he is. Whether I am in need of a gentle reminder or a swift kick in the ass, he is there.

I’m sure everyone can relate to those days where you feel incredibly stuck. You feel like any goal you have set for yourself is millions of miles away and completely out of reach. Those are also the days where every single roadblock imaginable seems to appear, and those are the days you really want to give up and float away. Those are the days your ego pays you a nice visit and makes you question everything you’ve ever done and makes you feel like it’s not worth trying anymore. Fear, personal loathing and self doubt cloud any kind of positivity or self worth.

I’ve had a number of these days in the past while. Thankfully, I’ve been able to recognize them, understand them, and accept them… or at least I try.  It’s part of being human and the only way to get through those times is to allow them. I’ve recognized that these days are not the essence of me, but my own ego.

Though it is easier said than done, the days I feel stuck and like none of my dreams are manifesting I try to picture my ideas much like a garden. You plant the seed, and though you can not see the activity taking place beneath the soil – with enough care and attention, you see that seed grow and take form.

It was during one of my recent moments of doubt and disparity that Rod called me.

He told me to make a list of some of the things I am proud of, thankful for, that make me happy, and that I admire in my own self. He told me I should always have this ‘list’ close by so that when I feel like I am in a funk I can refer to it.

“It works, Tanis”, he said.

I chuckled and said, “Hmmm yeah…sure…okay”, and  shrugged it off. I was in such a foul mood that day that I didn’t think I had anything to be thankful for, which is pretty ridiculous. Either way, I didn’t really think about it. I would have rather had a glass of wine and sat in a dark room sulking to myself rather than think about anything ‘positive’.

Then he asked me again. And again. And yet again.

“Did you do what I asked you Tanis?”

“Ummm…”

“You didn’t, did you. TAAANIS!!!”

“Okay, fine. I will. Like, what… do you want me to send you the list  or something!?” I joked.

“Yes, as a matter of fact I do. I’ll fill in the things that you are missing.”

So here goes…

11 Simple things that things I am proud of, thankful for, that make me happy and that I admire in my own self.

 (Note: I decided to start with 10 things… but at the end I had to add one more. There are many more than 10 which I will add in my own journal, but these ones came to me first in no particular order… and really, I’m cramming way more than 10 in here)

1.  Let’s start with the glaringly obvious. I am thankful for my family, perfect or not. Blood is blood, and I would not be here if not for my family.

2. Also on the obvious side – roof over my head, food to eat, water to drink. Air to breathe. Sunsets, stars, and simple things.

3. I am happy that my Mom taught me to read and write before the age of 5. I remember reading Nancy Drew novels in Kindergarten and writing and reading my own short stories to the kids as they were still learning the alphabet. I also got to skip spelling class from Grade 3 onward. During that time, I got to hang out in the teachers’ lounge and learn the fine art of washing dishes. I’m not sure if that is something I am happy about – but surely it will make my future partner pretty happy and I’m certain my parents thoroughly enjoyed it as well.  Regardless, reading and writing is something I’ve taken for granted, because it has always been a part of my life and I often forget there are some that never do get to learn. I’m sure my spelling and grammar skills were better back then than they are now, but either way – I was privileged to learn early on.

4. I am thankful for my ability to manifest things. This is one some of my friends have often told me I can do. Many times I’ve heard, “If you say it’s going to happen, it’s going to happen”. For whatever reason, this has not worked with manifesting a lottery win just yet – but other than that, I have come up with some crazy ideas that most would say “that’s not possible”… and I have sat back, followed signs from the universe, and literally watched my intentions manifest into form. What are they exactly? I’m saving them for my book (one day).

5. I’m thankful for my interest in music. I started with playing the organ (my parents’ choice) and played the flute in my school band. I played the drums in my teens and got booted out of the first band I was in – which prompted me to buy a guitar. Scratch that – my Dad bought me my first one. When I got good enough, I bought my second guitar which was a HUGE deal to me, because it was the very first big purchase that I ever did myself. I also remember the man at the music store that told me I couldn’t touch one of the expensive guitars basically because I was a girl… So I pulled out a wad of cash, said “Okay… no problem, see ya later!” and went to the competitors and bought and even nicer one.

6. I’ve been wanting to start my own business for a while and I’ve been working diligently on writing a business plan for more than a year as well as working full time, dabbling in some writing, taking evening classes and also trying to maintain some kind of social life. I’ve learned that I’m great at writing business plans and I’m pretty happy about that. On that note, earlier today I had an extensive Q&A session at a local firm and got questioned on nearly every aspect of my business. It was pretty intense, and at this very moment I am happy that I held my composure with confidence, even though there were some questions that totally stumped me.

7. I’m pretty happy that after three days of having no luggage in New York City, it was returned and I was able to wear clean clothes to Central Park. I’m also happy that I was *only* stranded in the Washington airport for 14 hours and not 24. Furthermore, I was even happier to leave New York because it was cold and hang out in balmy Texas for a few days where I got to take in the SXSW festival (another thing that was ‘impossible’, yet I intended it to happen and it did). Among other random things, I’m happy that I can fit through the ‘Leprechaun door’ at O’sheas and also, I’m not going to lie, I’m pretty thrilled I got to wear ‘Keith’s glasses’ a week ago. –>

8. I’m quite happy with my intuitive abilities. These are some skills that I’ve been developing over the past while but have improved greatly in the last few years. Everyone has them, not everyone knows it or knows how to awaken them. Often, I am able to read and feel other’s energy and sometimes I have the ability to see one’s aura/energy field. It’s a GREAT bull shit detector. There are times though, it’s more of a curse than a blessing as sometimes I am filled with information on others that I would rather not know or feel.

9. I am proud of my ability to network. I have actually never really thought about it because it’s one of those things that just seems to ‘happen’. Now that I actually think about it, it’s likely one of the things I do best and I’m pretty stoked on it. It doesn’t matter what industry I am in, I have an innate ability to attract precisely the people that I need or want to know. Because of it, I’ve had the opportunity to get to know many of my ‘idols’. Some of them, ten years ago I would have said “as if I would ever meet that person.” And because of both my networking and ‘intending’ skills, it’s afforded me some really cool experiences. I also know that people don’t come into your life for no reason. Everything is connected. Whether it’s an acquaintance or someone I  now call a friend, I’m pretty happy about each and everyone of them. I wouldn’t be where I am otherwise.

10.My yoga studio makes me pretty happy. It’s one of those things I never thought I would do, or could do. In fact, if you read this post – I was petrified of it. I also just signed up for a Qi Gong class – a form of Tai Chi/Kung Fu. I had my first class today and I’m already starting to learn even more about myself. I’m fairly stoked on this class and to try something new.

11. Last but certainly not least, I am thankful for my friend Rod. It was my interest in music that allowed me to meet him. I am proud to know him and proud of him. Rod had an experience years ago and was declared dead at the age of 19. Shortly after, he had a near death experience… much of which he writes about in his music. I’m pretty darn happy that he is here today. When I think of his challenges and watching him keep going, it challenges me to do the same with myself. He is the pure embodiment of passion and perseverance. I encourage you to check out some of his music here or on youtube.

So now I am sitting here reflecting on a lot of these experiences and memories and realizing more and more how much I have to be proud of.

The next time your having a bad day and your ego is kicking your ass… maybe it’s today… maybe it will be tomorrow… I encourage you to do the same.

We spend so much time focusing on and gravitating towards the negatives. Society is geared towards the negatives whether it’s via social media, TV, or our daily conversations. So much in fact, that we often forget to really truly focus on the positives.

What are some of the things about yourself that you are thankful for? What aspects of yourself are you proud of?