Hope is Always Available

Day 2 – Hope Is Always Available

“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.” – Desmond Tutu

In today’s meditation, we learn that hope is an intrinsic part of who you are, like the love and compassion in your heart. But to make this hope a real and powerful force in life, we need to activate it with self-awareness. Once genuine hope is ignited, it transforms your reality and eradicates fear and uncertainty.

OPRAH:

Welcome to Day 2, “Hope is Always Available.”  Anything can be a miracle, a blessing, an opportunity, if you choose to see it that way.  When you see life through a lens of hope, everything can change.  This can be a challenging concept of practice when you’re in the center of a storm.  I know this is true.  I’ve had a few storms myself.  But what looks like a dark patch or a setback can actually be a beautiful turning point.  Hard to see it when you’re in it.  Maya always used to say, “There’s always a rainbow in the clouds”.

As Michael Bernard Beckwith said on Super Soul Sunday, “I can choose to feel love even when there’s conflict.  What happens I activate my choice muscle, expand my awareness, my life changes.”  Choice muscle…that’s a good concept.

 

When we’re faced with a difficult situation we always have the choice of two reactions…hope or despair.  When you choose hope you open your mind and heart and very naturally you begin to imagine other possibilities.  Are you facing significant life change like getting out of a bad relationship or starting a new job or trying to lose the burden of weight?  Well often we feel chaos or resistance in those moments.  What I do know for sure is that resistance will try to take you down.  So we often put off life-decisions because we don’t take the leap.  Deepak says, “Go for it now.  Hope lives in this moment and every moment.  Don’t waste another second.”

DEEPAK:

We’ve started the journey to make hope real and lasting in our lives.  The first thing to know is that hope is a quality that exists in consciousness, like love or joy.  When a situation looks hopeless we are not seeing clearly.  On its own consciousness is always life-supporting.  Every cell in the body nourishes and supports itself through the wisdom that evolved in our DNA.  Your awareness is just as life-supporting.  But if we make choices that are self-defeating or that deny reality, the mind can lose hope.  The way to heal any situation is to activate hope.  This happens here and now because hope is always a part of our present awareness.  Otherwise hope is mere wishing, which is a dream of the past or future.  Stop and think about the things you hope for at work, in relationships or from yourself.  You will find there is a spectrum of hope that runs from a casual “I hope so” to “My hope is my rock.”  A conviction born of trust and belief in yourself.

Where does such a solid foundation come from?  Your core self.  When you connect with your true-self as we do in meditation, hope develops more strength.  Then “I hope” begins to change your personal reality.  It eradicates fear of uncertainty.  As an example, consider your approach to love.  You may be waiting for the one to magically appear.  An ideal beloved who will make everything right.  You may be in a relationship where love is taken for granted or where the most loving part was at the beginning.  You may feel not enough love.

These are mild forms of hopelessness.  On the other hand a hopeful relationship to love is active and self-directed.  Instead of waiting for the one to magically appear, YOU become the one.  Instead of seeking love, you live and give the love you want by what you say and do.  In both the hopeless and hopeful relationships to love a person hopes to be loved.  Yet only in the second case is this hope active, strong and life-supporting.  At its strongest hope creates the outcome you want in any situation.  It carries the full power of intention.

CENTERING THOUGHT

The power of hope is here every day.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Samprati Hum

My true self is wide awake.

DEE:

Today hope is a strong part of who I am.  And that comes from faith in having a power greater than myself in my life, a god of my own understanding.  And that hope comes from self-awareness.  I didn’t have hope, faith, a god, nor self-awareness until I reached my bottom in my disease of alcoholism.  I just existed on the planet with no purpose, no direction and a huge void in my life.

I don’t believe it was a coincidence when I finally had the desperation to ask for help.  I couldn’t go a day, no matter how much, how long and how hard I tried, to get through a day without drinking.  And that is when my life changed and I became a sponge soaking up this new way of living.

For me a 28-day treatment program and Alcoholics Anonymous has shown me the way to Dee, to understand Dee, to accept and embrace Dee, to love Dee.  And the new Dee has hope because my god is here with and for me to guide and protect me on my journey through life.  And my purpose is to share that with you in your periods of self-doubt and self-loathing, or just in a state of confusion.  We all go there.  We all get over-whelmed.

I just want to share with you that everything is perfect at this very moment.  Stay here.  In the moment.  Love yourself for YOUR gifts.  You have many!  Don’t compare yourself to anyone.  They don’t have YOUR gifts.  And remember that you are perfect just the way you are, right here, right now, on your journey through life.  Keep going.  Enjoy the ride.  Love yourself.  And never forget that you are not on this ride alone.  There are many of us who want to share your journey, to give you hope and compassion.  Don’t deprive us of that.  Please.

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in inspirational and motivational gifts with a message, please visit my website at http://www.DeesignsByHarris.com.

From Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey’s 21-Day Meditation on HOPE.

Faith Connects Us Heart-to-Heart

FAITH CONNECTS US HEART-TO-HEART

(from Oprah and Deepak – Become What You Believe)

OPRAH:

I believe our greatest power is our ability to love.  That’s where all power is…to show love, to receive it, to BE love.  There are a lot of ways to describe love.  It’s grace and kindness; it’s understanding; it’s forgiveness; it’s respect; it’s cooperation; it’s harmony and reverence for light.  You have the entire power of all that is at your disposal.

Love is trusting and having faith in something larger than yourself.  Every opportunity you get move in the direction of love.  That’s where your greatest power lies.  It’s the power to connect us all in peace…heart-to-heart.

As my friend, Marianne Williamson said, “Love is what we’re born with, in our hearts.  Fear is what we learn.”  The spiritual journey is the unlearning of fear and prejudices and the acceptance of love back in our hearts.  Love is the essential reality and our purpose being here on earth.  To be consciously aware of it, to experience love in ourselves and others, is the meaning of life.

Marianne goes on to articulate so beautifully the power of love when she says, “When our minds move in harmony with love, through forgiveness or prayer or the simplest tint of thought, then mountains move and the Universe shifts.”  When we believe in the power of love to move mountains to shift the Universe, miracles will no doubt occur.

DEEPAK:

The strongest imagined bond in the world is the bond of love.  A total transformation occurs when enemies are turned into loved ones.  In the World’s Wisdom Traditions love is deeply connected with spirit.  As the great Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore wrote, “Love is the only reality and it is not a mere sentiment.  It is the ultimate truth that lies at the heart of creation.”

To find the heart of creation, you must explore your own heart.  Inside it are stores many experiences of love and non-love.  These two side are in conflict which is why many people find it difficult to place their faith in love.  They have had too many experiences of non-love.  Whether they were experiences of betrayal, rejection, fear or abandonment, trusting in love is hard when painful memories still linger.  That is why we restrict our search for love, in order to not be too exposed or vulnerable or put ourselves in harms way.  Matters of faith must be proven in real life.  This is certainly true of love when we go beyond the personal, expanding love to include more and more people.

The first step is to aspire and live as a loving person.  The second step is to look for situations where love can help.  The third step is to reach out and perform an act of love.

The ego is afraid to be exposed and vulnerable.  But this is a misperception.  An act of love doesn’t mean putting yourself on the line or saying “I love you” out loud.  It means performing an action that helps another person the way you would like to be helped.

Help can come even through a loving thought.  It can come through an act of generosity, an understanding word, or by simply asking, “Are you okay?”.  Your heart already knows what to do.  In fact when we extend ourselves, it is almost always from the fullness of the heart.  When you act out of love you expect nothing in return from the other person.  Love makes no one a victim or a martyr.  Love connects people from heart-to-heart with mutual benefit for both.

A mother finds it easy and natural to turn her love into action.  There is a connection of the heart that bonds mother and child.  Feeling vulnerable or exposed doesn’t come into the picture.  The bond of feeling is unbroken.  This is the idea to keep in mind in extending your love beyond your family and close friends.  Find a sympathy of the heart that feels right.  In this way you avoid stress and strain in the name of love.  A world based on the sympathy of one heart to another would be a perfect world.

CENTERING THOUGHT:  My faith calls me to love.

DEE:

When Oprah says, “Love is trusting and having faith in something larger than yourself”, my heart gets so grateful and full that today I have faith in something larger than myself.  This has changed my whole life, my outlook on life and, more importantly, this has changed ME.

I wasn’t given this life-changing gift until I reached my bottom in the disease of alcoholism, miraculously asked for help, and slowly scraped my way out of the depths of hell.  Prior to this surrender I knew my life was void of something but I couldn’t figure it out.  I had everything that every middle class American woman would want…a family, a home, two cars, a dog and a cat, a job, a loving family and friends.  What was missing?

A Power Greater Than Myself, a God of My Own Understanding, was awarded me by Alcoholics Anonymous.  Not only have I learned to turn my life over, I have learned to stop thinking and to live from my heart.  I have learned to let my god do the driving while I ride along in the passenger seat of our pink convertible Cadillac and enjoy the ride of life (the pink cloud).

When Marianne Williamson says, “Fear is what we learn”,  I thank my AA sponsor for walking me through the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous to teach me how fear-based I have been my entire life and how to let that go.  Being able to finally get comfortable in my own skin and to love myself for who and what I am is so empowering.  And to learn that my purpose is to share my experience, strength and hope with those who enter my bubble gives me a reason to excitedly arise every morning!

When Deepak says, “Matters of faith must be proven in real life.  This is certainly true of love when we go beyond the personal, expanding love to include more and more people,” I am honored to practice AA’s 12th Step, “Having had a spiritual awakening as a result of these steps, we tried to carry this message to others, and practice these principles in all our affairs,” in my everyday “real” life.  When I continue to stay active in my recovery, then Step 12 is a no-brainer for me and I can actively accomplish Deepak’s three steps above.

I know for a fact that as I got and stayed sober “One Day at a Time”, I got “unsober’ that way as well.  When I ceased attending meetings, working with my sponsor, picking up the phone, connecting with the fellowship, that void came back into my life.  And, oh yeah, I picked up a drink after over 13 years of sobriety.  The disease immediately reared its ugly head and once again took over my life.  All I could think about once again was the next drink.  Cunning.  Baffling.  Powerful.  The disease of alcoholism.

So don’t go there.  Take it from me.  Learn from my experience, strength and hope.  Stay mindful.  Stay connected.

With much aloha, Dee

For those interested in inspirational gifts, art with a message, please visit my website at http://www.DeesignsByHarris.com.

THE INNER CHILD REBORN

The Inner Child Reborn

“Hope is the thing with feathers, / That perches in the soul, / And sings the tune without the words / And never stops at all…” – Emily Dickinson

Even as adults, we all still retain that part of our personality we had when we were children. The positive, healthy aspect of our inner child expresses our innocence, joy, exuberance, and hope. This accepting and fresh view of life comes from the true self. This egoless state is always there within us.

In today’s meditation, we learn how to reawaken the inner children in ourselves, as well as encourage it in others by seeing their inner child with the innocent and accepting eyes of our own.

OPRAH:

Welcome to week 3 of our 21-day meditation experience.  In week one we moved into the space where we experienced how hope is real and can be a powerful force to overcome fear and anxiety in certain times.  In week two we explored the expanse of where hope can take us and we practiced how, through meditation, we can use hope to create inner strength even during our darkest hours.  Everything is better when you share it so in week 3 we will navigate how we can offer hope and inspire it in others.  Let’s begin Day 15 – The Inner Child Reborn.

Many years ago family counselor and author, John Bradshaw, revealed to our Oprah Show audience his concept of the wounded inner child.  I often refer to an exercise he took our audience through.  It remains for me one of the most transforming moments of my life, really.  John said we first see the world through the eyes of a little child and that inner child remains with us throughout our lives.  No matter how outwardly grown up and effective we appear to become.  If our vulnerable child was hurt, abandoned, shamed or neglected, that child’s grief and anger lives on within us.  That is so powerful to know.

You see so many adults now acting out the hurt, abandonment, the shame and neglect that they suffered as children.  As the son of an alcoholic, for instance, John’s wounds were so profound that he became an alcoholic by the time he was only thirteen.  His inner child exercise was an Oprah Show moment that changed the way I felt about myself and the way I looked at the world.  Each time I talk about I learn something new, really.

He had us imagine peering through the window of our childhood home.  You can do this for yourself.  Go to the window of the house that you grew up in, look through and find yourself in that house.  And what do you see?  When you take a good look at your life as a child, what do you see and, more importantly, what do you feel what’s going on with you and your relationships with everyone in the house?  What gift did you possess that others may have overlooked or missed?  What burdens were you made to carry?

What brought you hope?  What made you sad?

I believe that healing the wounds of the past is one of the most hopeful endeavors that we have in our lives.  When you rekindle the innocence and hope that precedes pain, you free yourself to truly live more fully in the present.

DEEPAK: 

At this stage in our journey you can, if you like, reach out and bring hope to others.  The world needs beacons of hope everywhere.  This applies to the most successful and fulfilled among us and even more so the people who are losing hope.  Everyone needs hope to move forward and open new possibilities.  How can you help?  Innocence is the quality of hope that removes judgment and criticism.

Children are naturally innocent which allows them to experience hope, joy and optimism every day.  That innocence gets diminished or even erased by traumas, emotional wounds and failures.  These create a feeling of hopelessness that we then struggle against.  As adults most people do not want to be innocent again seeing it as too vulnerable and impractical.  Yet as adults our personalities still contains an innocent child, a universal archetype with both constructive and destructive aspects.

On the constructive side your inner child expresses joy, hope and innocence.  On the destructive side it expresses dependency, helplessness and uncontrolled impulses.  When hope is fading in someone’s life so is the positive side of their inner child.  To restore hope in someone first realize their inner child is still within them.  When you see the innocent self judgment is not possible.  The person we judge against is a later development created by the needs and demands of the ego.  Childhood innocence is an egoless state.  Therefore, it is closer to the true self.

In our meditations we reawaken the inner child.  To enhance this awakening in yourself and others, make time every day for play in any form you choose.  Be lighthearted as your general attitude.  When you’re carefree you trust in life and don’t worry or try to control situations.  Set judgment and skepticism aside.  Accept people in the best light.  Be gentle and allowing in your interactions with others.  Don’t be a critic or rule-enforcer.  As you cultivate this more innocent side of yourself people will notice that you’re more warm and welcoming.

Remember how, as a child, you were totally involved in playing?  How you looked with fresh eyes at everything?  That freshness and lightheartedness is the basis of hope and still exists inside you right now ready to be revived.

CENTERING THOUGHT

I see the hopeful inner child in everyone.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

So Hum

I am.

DEE:

Looking through that window into my childhood I see my dad carrying me into the house from the car.  I’m in my pajamas with the feet.  I feel little.  I feel safe.  I feel like that again today but, as a child, that is the only time I felt safe with my dad.

My dad was an alcoholic.  He was a stranger to me.  He was unable to love and nurture me the way my mom did.  When he and Mom divorced when I was thirteen, I don’t even remember his leaving us.  I remember mainly the bad times.  A lot of bad times and a lot of nightmares.

Dad and I did get together a few times since he and Mom divorced.  It was good, but still uncomfortable.  He was who he was and I love him for that today.  You see, I, too, am an alcoholic.  And once I hit my bottom and went to a 21-day treatment facility for alcohol abuse, I started to understand the disease.  And then I got to understand my dad.

When Dad died we flew one of his “friends” to California from Rhode Island for Dad’s service.  The family was told that my dad died in the gutters of Rhode Island.  This pains me immensely…his battle with alcoholism.  But everything started falling into place and the pieces of the puzzle showed me that because of alcoholism, my dad was unable to show love, nurturing, attention, or even carry on a conversation.  Perhaps it was his upbringing as well.  Who knows.  Doesn’t matter.  But I know that when I was in the depths of my disease, I either needed a drink, was drunk, or hungover.  Not a very nice person to be around.  That was my dad.  I understand.

Today my dad is with me constantly.  He’s got my back.  We love each other, have fun together and, more importantly, understand each other.  Right before going to rehab I pleaded with my dad in heaven to help me stop drinking, “I think you know what I’m going through.  Please help me!”  Soon thereafter I was gifted with a whole new life with purpose and meaning and lightness and joy.  Self-acceptance and worthiness came.  Life was good.  I had a Higher Power who guided me and taught me to appreciate, be humble and grateful.

I’d say for the first half of my 13-1/2 years of sobriety I stayed close to AA and did what was suggested.  My life was full.  Full of good stuff.  Then I allowed the gifts of sobriety to make me too busy for my gift of sobriety.  I “one day at a time” stopped going to meetings, practicing the Twelve Steps of AA, being sponsored or sponsoring, and, most of all, I failed to give away what was so freely given to me when I needed it most.  I forgot what it was like to be a newcomer.

So when offered a shot of tequila I unthinkingly and bogusly said, “No, thank you.  I haven’t had a drink for 13-1/2 years.”  “Well, I’ll leave it for you in case you change your mind.”  That drink yelled out me so loudly.  I had no insurance from going to meetings and being of service and remembering what it’s like to be a newcomer.  Damn.  I drank it.  Immediately the disease shouted, “More!!!”  And so the lying, cheating, sneaking, and all the negativity that comes with being in the disease came back like a ball of fire.  I continued to sneak drinks.  And when sneaking at my son’s wedding the next week in Puerto Vallarta, a relative of my daughter-in-law came to me at the reception to say, “I have to tell you this.  Your dad’s presence is SO STRONG here!”

For real?  My dad died in the gutters of Rhode Island the year before my son was born.  Why would he be here?  Ah hah!  To save my ass once again.  You see.  He really did love me but just didn’t know how to show me when I was little in my yellow PJs with the feet.  And to this day I have such comfort knowing that my dad is here with me.  Always.  Forever.  That’s what I see through the window.  “I love you, Dad.”

My life is once again awesome today.  But I shall not take this gift lightly.  I shall stay close to the fellowship and pay my insurance premiums.  I shall give what was so freely given to me.  I shall not forget what it’s like to be a newcomer.  I shall not forget that I am an alcoholic, a grateful alcoholic in recovery, sharing the message of Experience, Strength and Hope.

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in Gifts with a Message of Hope and Inspiration, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have a great weekend!

From Deepak and Oprah’s 21-Day Meditation Experience on HOPE.

LIVING BY THE LIGHT OF HOPE

Living by the Light of Hope 

“I find hope in the darkest of days and focus in the brightness. I do not judge the universe.” – Dalai Lama

Hope is a light that shows our way along the path. This light of awareness is also a light of insight and understanding, giving us the strength of our convictions as well as lightness of heart. Our meditation today shows us that the light of hope is, above all, a light of love uniting our lives and liberating our spirits.

OPRAH:

We’re coming to the close of week 2, a week of hope should be opening you up to clarity, calm and power, no matter what’s going on in your life.  Welcome to Day 14 – Living by the Light of Hope.  It’s a bright and reliable light if we let it guide us and it shines in every area of life from friendship to partnership to family and beyond.

One of my favorite super-soul conversations was with trail-blazing author and psychologist, Dr. Shavali-Sabari, about her book The Awakened Family.  Dr. Shavali says that when we try to control our children or put our own expectations on them or even try to live their lives for them, it creates confusion, disruption, and separation; in essence, we’re dimming the light of hope for them.

Well, I’ve been guilty of this myself a couple years ago I encouraged one of my daughters from South Africa to attend a college in America.  It was a school that she knew in her heart wasn’t right for her but it was a school I’d always dreamed of going to.  At the time I pushed her to go to that school, unconscious of my reasons why.  And after our conversation Dr. Shavali opened my eyes to what I was doing.  I was dimming hope for her.  I’ll always be grateful for that lesson.

Dr. Shavali believes that the root of all the world’s problems of violence and conflict is our loss of connection especially between the parent and the child.  We can all see that playing out in our world today.  She said there was some big forgetting that occurred in our history that made us believe we are separate from this oneness that surrounds us.  The awakening, the soul lighting up, happens when we realize that we are one with God, one with the Universe, and one with each other.  One of the greatest gifts you can give to your children, to yourself and the world is to grow in the awareness of this connection.  It is the light of hope.

DEEPAK:

We have learned that hope is a powerful guide from our true self that leads us out of a mindset of struggle.  But more than that when the light of awareness guides you away, you are no longer dependent upon external beliefs, ideologies or politics to give your life direction and meaning.  Buddha’s last message to his followers was simply, “Be a light unto yourself.”  When you discover your presence of awareness you can no longer be mislead or disappointed in the messages and actions of leaders and authorities.  The light of awareness resides in us already, waiting to be recognized and activated.  As this happens the light expands and every action, thought and feeling springs from that light.  This is the light of hope.

It might seem that living by the light of hope is too far removed from the cares and demands of everyday modern life.  But the light of awareness is not remote or unworldly.  It is the most intimate and real thing about you.  If you didn’t live in the light already, you wouldn’t exist.  It takes awareness to experience anything.

There is spirituality in seeing a tree outside your window, or clouds, mountains, or the sea, because everything springs from consciousness and can only be known by consciousness.  So if you are individually guided by a light of hope, how does that work?

In a world of conflicting beliefs and ideologies can we really be our own light, guidance and authority and still be effective and engaged in life?  Yes.  Enlightenment is spiritual freedom but it is also practical and effective and harmonizing.  The light of awareness is the shared level of all life where there is no conflict, no divisive beliefs, or need to defend oneself.

When you are a light unto yourself you may still practice the same religion you grew up with and hold the same political and cultural values you’ve always had, but now you’re not threatened by any values or beliefs that are different from yours.  You recognize the good that is there and celebrate the differences.  There are as many evolutionary paths as there are people in the world which means there are 7 billion ways to live in the light.  When you make the shift you live completely in the light and the journey of hope has found it’s destination.

CENTERING THOUGHT

My future unfolds with hope and joy.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Aroot Perum Jothi

I invoke divine grace light.

DEE:

Sometimes I wonder were my personal individual gifts as a child emphasized, talked about or even mentioned, how my life would have been different.  My mom gave me heaps of praise about my talents, yet I still ended up living fear-based.  I still ended up an alcoholic.

I guess where I’m going with this is once I got into a program of recovery for alcoholism I started to work on myself through the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous.  In Step Four where I took my own personal inventory I discovered that my whole life, my “me”, lived in fear of your opinions and expectations of me.  Where did that come from?  I was given numerous strokes and praise for excellent grades, talents, services, etc.  Yet I still lived in fear of what you would think of me.  And I lived with this internal fear for decades  while you loved me for who and what I am until I could love myself the same way.

No, the substances I abused were just symptoms of my fear-based living.  I believe I would have still misused and abused drugs and alcohol even if everyone in the world told me daily how unique and gifted I am.  To love myself just the way I am.  I’m an alcoholic.  Period.  No amount of praise and applause would change that.

But the fear-based thing is what I wonder about.  How much praise and accolades does a child need to not end up living fear-based?

I believe my fear comes from growing up without a purpose.  And I lacked a purpose because I lacked a power greater than myself.  That’s what we didn’t talk about.  That’s what I didn’t understand.  That’s why I had this void in my gut.

From working the Twelve Steps I was blessed with a Higher Power of my own understanding.  That’s when everything started to make sense and fall into place.  I all of a sudden had hope.  I had relief from the power of self and thinking I had to do it all, alone.  That’s where the fear comes in.

Now that my life has made a complete turnaround with this revelation and I can turn my will and my life over to the care of God as I understand God, I shall still try to stress to our children and to you how important your unique personal gifts are.  I shall plead with you not to compare yourself with others.  I shall help you learn to love yourself and be grateful for who you are with your special gifts.  This is what living by the light of hope means to me.  I am so blessed.

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in motivational and inspirational gifts, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have an awesome day!

From Oprah and Deepak’s 21-Day Meditation Experience about HOPE.

FINDING THE KEY TO RENEWAL

Day 13Finding the Key to Renewal

“Hope is a state of mind, not of the world. Hope in this deep and powerful sense, is… an ability to work for something because it is good.” – Vaclav Havel

The message of hope is that renewal is always possible because life itself is always driven and supported by the forces of renewal. We don’t have to figure out how to transform and renew our life – that knowledge and power is already there in Nature. We see this when our cut finger heals, or the tulips pop up in the spring. In today’s meditation, we learn that the key to transformation is contacting the source of renewal deep within our being and aligning our awareness to that creative energy of life.

OPRAH:

I’ve learned over time that to expand my life and experience the greatest fulfillment, I need to give my undivided attention to the activity that’s in front of me at any given moment.  We all have a natural born impulse to evolve, to deepen and to grow.  It’s in the now that we find the energy of hope and where we fuel revitalization.  So welcome to Day 13 – Finding the Key to Renewal.

When I lose focus as I think everybody does, that’s when things start to fall apart.  Falling through the cracks can become unmanageable.  I imagine that this shows up in similar ways in your own life.  In today’s world, living a present life, moment to moment not worrying about what’s going on, what’s gonna happen at 3 o’clock and what’s gonna happen at 7 o’clock, it takes discipline, especially with that smart phone attached to your hands.

Have you set your vision for your life?  Are you clear about what it is you want?  What fills you up?  What matters most?  Well for me I’m happiest when I’m either learning or teaching.  But I can do neither without giving my full attention to whatever or whomever needs my complete focus.  And that means listening with my “whole” self.  All senses attuned to this moment.

Your highest self always aims to stretch, reinvent and renew.  Being aware, moment by moment, will help you modify your vision and continue to grow and rise up.  We all know that the only way to get better at something is to practice it.  So practice living in this moment.

DEEPAK:

We’ve been talking about change that comes from within by releasing the burden and imprint of the past.  The open awareness of meditation provides that healing of the past and allows for renewal in the present.  In fact renewal is the very nature of life, with every spring, every breath, every sunrise, every thought and every heart beat we see nature’s power of renewal.  Therefore, the growth of renewal and fulfillment we seek outside is already inherent at the core of our life.

Instead of trying to overcome opposing interests and forces in the world to find success and happiness, we only need to be the presence of awareness where life continuously renews itself.  Hope is an ally here because it affirms renewal is always possible.

The core of your being is the impulse to grow and move forward.  We see this in the development of the body from childhood to adulthood.  The same evolutionary impulse exists in the mental and emotional plane with one difference…we must consciously align our awareness with it.  This is how hope fuels your personal evolution and expands your life into greater and greater freedom.  But the choices that make this happen only work in the present.  Renewal can only occur in the now.  Promising to make better choices next time doesn’t work and only pushes us into an imaginary future.

Your cells already know how to live in the present.  They store only enough extra food and oxygen to last a few seconds, relying on the flow of life to bring every necessity.  To translate this wisdom into your personal life is a challenge.  We’ve adjusted to living in a world where accumulating enough money, security, relationships and possessions has become all-consuming.  At an unconscious level we make choices out of habit and old conditioning.  When you bring awareness into the now, you are automatically renewed.  You don’t have to do anything.  Renewal just is.  Once you become aware of it.

It’s ironic that people fear what might happen next because all our lives no one has been able to predict their next thought, much less control it.  In meditation there is no attitude or expectation.  We experience an inner state that is relaxed, open, alert and quietly content.  Nothing strange or exotic is happening.  That’s how the now always feels.  All we have to do is accept.

CENTERING THOUGHT

My choices uphold and support my life.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Om Sarvatva Namah

The wholeness of the universe is my true nature.

DEE:

When I get in the car to drive, for some crazy reason I must talk to my Higher Power straight away, before turning on the tunes.  I ask that I be mindful, respectful, compassionate.  You see, I have lots on my mind and on my plate.  If I’m thinking about those things, I’m not a very safe driver and your life is important to me.  Asking to be mindful, focused and in the moment sets me (and you) up for a way safer driving experience.

Asking to be respectful and compassionate gets me set up for the experiences I am about to encounter with whatever human being enters my “Dee Bubble”.  I shall make eye contact with you, offer you a genuine smile, and give you the full respect you deserve.  If you give me shit I shall be compassionate and realize I have no idea what’s going on in your life.  I shall not take your shit personally.

This practice, this communication with the Higher Power of my own understanding, gets me centered and ready for the real world which is where I’m going once entering my vehicle.  It only takes a moment and makes the hugest difference on the way my day is going to go…and, perhaps, yours.

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in motivational and inspirational gifts, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have an awesome day!

From Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey’s 21-Day Meditation Experience on HOPE.

FINDING THE COURAGE TO CHANGE

Day 12 – Finding the Courage to Change

“We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

To make hope effective in bringing change in our life, we need to take action. But taking action can feel threatening and scary because it stirs up all our fears and anxieties of what that change might bring. In today’s meditation, we learn that the key to releasing these fears and anxieties is bringing self-awareness to them and then consciously recognizing that they no longer help or serve your present reality. As you reclaim the present moment, you are free to act in accord with your deepest motivations, and that is where your courage is.

OPRAH:

Welcome to Day 12 – Finding the Courage to Change.  It’s human nature to fear change.  What I’ve learned from many thought-leaders is that connecting to hope and finding the courage to make change comes down to overcoming the fear of letting go.  For me the true meaning of courage is to be afraid and then, with your knees knocking and your heart racing sometimes, step out anyway.  Of course that’s not easy, I know that, but taking a leap is often the most powerful way to truly advance toward the grandest vision that the Universe, the Creator, your existence, has for you.

I’ve made two major leaps in my life.  The first was in 1983 when I left Baltimore to come to Chicago.  I remember the general manager of the TV station I was leaving said to me at the time, “You are going to fall into a landmine you won’t be able to get yourself out.”  Then he said, “Right now you’re a big fish in a little pond and my advice for you is, ‘You stay here’.”  I said to him, “Well, sir, I’m gonna leave.  And if I’m walking into a landmine when I go to Chicago, God will catch me.”

The next big leap for me was creating the O Network.  There were challenges that tested my very core.  I’d wake up in the middle of the night sometimes and my heart would be pounding.  Often I was faced with circumstances that seemed overwhelming.  So I went back to the source that has sustained me.  My heart told me to get still and to listen.

The message that came back to me was when I learned so many years ago on the Oprah Show was that everyone wants to be seen and validated.  So I made a shift in the storytelling on OWN.  We focused on reflecting OWN’s viewers back to them with stories that let them see themselves with depth and with pride.  I directed my energies to a place of hope and in turn the network began to move forward in the flow that we are in now.

I took some of my own advice.  So when I look back I’m grateful I had the hope and the courage to take those leaps in spite of the challenges and the fear.  So get still and ask yourself what changes do you need to make to move forward.  What’s really keeping you from the life you want and deserve?  Deepak is going to guide us toward the courage to change.

DEEPAK:

For many people change is threatening.  They may want a more fulfilling job, relationship or lifestyle, but moving into the unknown is scary.  That’s when merely hoping for change is ineffective because it postpones taking the actual steps forward that hope can support.  One way or another we are all caught between wanting change and fearing what the unknown might bring.  But as we know the only constant in life is change.  Clinging to the old and familiar doesn’t stop change; it just keeps you stuck.  If change is inevitable, defending against it is futile.

The real question is how to guide change, to create the best outcome without anxiety.  Holding onto the past is what prevents us from accepting change.  The wounds and traumas of the past cling in memory.  The most self-defeating ones are unconscious habits, conditioning, beliefs and traumas that sank in so deep they became part of our everyday self.

To release the grip of the past we must first be aware because you cannot change what you aren’t aware of.  Self-awareness means that you consciously witness something from your past that has become ingrained.  Without judgment you say, “I no longer need this.  I’m a different person now.”  The noticing comes first.  If you find yourself reacting negatively to any person or situation, stop and look inside.  Is this reaction of anxiety, anger, worry, distaste or distress, something you’ve seen before?  Are you saying and doing things that keep repeating themselves in a regular pattern?

This is the past coming up to claim the present.  When you say inside, “I no longer need this,” you’re reclaiming the present moment.  You don’t need to force a new response.  Instead let this moment of self-awareness sink in.  Be quiet and easy with yourself.  By noticing and being aware without judgment you give your mind permission to do what it wants to do which is to settle down into a baseline open, quiet, non-judgmental awareness.

By preferring to remain in the core of your being you release the past and its imprints.  Then change happens as part of the flow of life, without threat or anxiety.

CENTERING THOUGHT

Hope tells me anything can be transformed.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Om Hoom Namah

My awareness is aligned with the transformative power of the universe.

DEE:

Where does all this fear come from?  As a wee tot experiencing pain brought upon fear.  Touching that hot iron created a feeling that was so not pleasant.  Physical pain.  Being ridiculed on the playground hurt in a different and emotional way.  Was I stupid?  Was I different?  Was I less than?  That kind of pain cuts to the core and is carried internally until we learn how to let it go.  Some of us, unfortunately, carry it around forever.

Now that my kids are grown up and have experienced pain of their own, I wish I would have spent the quality time with them reinforcing how special they really are.  As a mother I, of course, tried to prevent them from experiencing physical pain.  But I did not strengthen them for the emotional pain that they would certainly experience in “the real world.”

Now that I am older (and, hopefully, wiser) and have had the opportunity to take time to contemplate fear and its effects, I realize that a bit of positive reinforcement given not just to our kids but anyone who enters our bubble can change any “real life” situation.  By reassuring my kids how special they really are and how they each hold very special gifts of their own could have helped them when confronted by that bully.  Having explained that the bully has issues of his own and may be coming from sadness, confusion, or abuse could have put a whole new light on that situation.  Teaching them The Four Agreements, by Don Miguel Ruiz, would have helped tremendously (but I hadn’t read it yet) but even, more importantly, taking the quality time to communicate our feelings would have been the key factor.

For me realizing that I lived a fear-based life didn’t come to fruition until I started working the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous with my sponsor.  Working those Twelve Steps with a sponsor didn’t come until I got into Alcoholics Anonymous.  Getting into Alcoholics Anonymous didn’t come until I was so sick and tired of having to drink every single day.  Having to.  No choice.  My mind made me drink every single day.  The allergy my body suffered made my drink every single day.  No ifs, ands, or buts.  Not drinking was not an option.  Thus hiding, lying, extreme usage of energy to keep my behavior under wraps, wore me down.  I had no more energy.  I experienced incomprehensible demoralization.  I was a loser.  I had no self-control.  I was a waste of space on this planet with no purpose.

By the grace of God (to me, a Higher Power of my own understanding) I finally surrendered.  I was taught that alcoholism is a disease and that there is a solution.  By taking my own inventory in Step Four of A.A. and sharing it with my sponsor, the fog lifted!!!  I discovered what makes Dee tick!  Fear.  What a weight off my shoulders!  Now the work begins to unlearn everything and every experience I ever encountered in the last four decades of my life that made me fear-based.

Believing that there is a Power greater than myself out there somewhere is the key to my new life, my new outlook on life, my new me.  Turning my will and my life over to the care of God as I understand Him has lifted the heavy burden of everything off my shoulders.  Being ready and asking my God to remove my fears is the journey I am on today…the journey to living a hope-filled and faith-filled life.

I no longer have to be seen and validated to impress you and reassure myself that I am worthy.  Today I know that if I do and am the best I can, that is enough.  I AM enough.  And I want you to know that, feel that, love that about yourself too.  YOU matter.  YOU are worthy.  YOU have gifts that no one else on this earth has.  Run with those gifts!  Share those gifts!  Love your gifts!  Don’t live in fear of change.  Live in faith that all is perfect right now at this very moment…especially you and your life!

If you are not an alcoholic like me, know that they are many awesome support groups in your neighborhood understandingly ready to help you out of the fog.  It’s so worth it.  You’re so worth it!

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in motivational and inspirational gifts, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have an awesome day!

From Oprah Winfrey & Deepak Chopra 21-Day Meditation Challenge “Hope in Uncertain Times”.

COMPASSION CHANGES EVERYTHING

Day 11 – Compassion Changes Everything

 The gift we can offer others is so simple a thing as hope.” – Daniel Berrigan

Compassion is based on the truth that as humans we all have an intrinsic worth and share similar aspirations, fears, and struggles. When we feel compassion for one another, we honor and respect that truth. In today’s meditation, we discover that the openness and expansion of awareness in a compassionate heart helps to nourish the power of hope in our life.

OPRAH:

Today is Day 11 and we’re learning that compassion changes everything.  We all have moments of doubt and uncertainty, moments when patience with others wears thin.  Trying to manage issues of family or work, moments when people you rely on let you down.  Try to remember this the next time you feel that energy coming on.  If you take time to look at people in the light of compassion everything can change.

Powerful forces come into play when you stop and ask, “What do I really know about this person?  I may see them every day but do I know what makes them cry?  Do I know their home circumstances?  Do I know their suffering?”  If you begin to know that each person is a divine being worthy of hope and compassion, your perception of any situation will shift.

Best-selling author Karen Armstrong, a former nun who writes about the role of religion in the modern world says that all the world’s religions have one thing in common…compassion.  She says compassion can be summed up in the Golden Rule, “Never treat others the way you would not like to be treated yourself.”  It comes down to the simple act of listening and respecting others, with kindness.  Karen says, “We don’t have certainty in this life if you let it go and act in this compassionate way all day and every day, you begin to lose your fear.  When fear is removed, compassion flows.  And from that flow, we unleash the power of hope.  That is where our work begins today.  Open your heart.  You will find hope.

DEEPAK:

Compassion is another quality of our consciousness that gives hope its power.  Compassion creates an intimate bond from heart to heart by being open and accepting.  In everyday life when we meet someone who could become a close ally, friend or lover, the first steps usually feel uncertain and nervous.  It can feel vulnerable and when we really feel a strong attraction, that’s when we are most afraid.

Compassion, however, is not constrictive or selective. It radiates like light shining on everyone.  The ego, the part of ourselves always looking to protect itself, can only pretend to be compassionate.  Deep down it wants something in return such as admiration or submission.  We pick and choose who to be emotionally open with because we’re afraid we’ll be hurt if we choose wrong.  Yet the choice is being made from insecurity and distrust to begin with.  Therefore, it’s not reliable.

The alternative is simply to be open and caring without worrying that your love might end up in the wrong hands.  Openness is either with everyone or no one because openness is a quality of the true self.  If you have found this quality through meditation and expanded awareness, being open is simply who you are with everyone.  Openness leads to loss of defensiveness which leads to acceptance of others.  From this acceptance comes compassion because when you look inside anyone else’s heart, you feel your heart.

We tend to exalt unconditional compassion as a spiritual quality possessed only by saints.  But compassion is a shared inheritance that comes from inside.  You begin to grow in compassion by feeling empathy.  Empathy is like emotional merging, whether you cry at a romantic movie with a sad ending or feel joy at the marriage of a friend.  An ego barrier melts if only for a few moments and your empathy flows outward of its own accord.  When you are empathetic you feel what another feels; you are one in that moment, connected to your shared consciousness.

You can bring empathy into any situation overriding your ego and simply saying or doing something kind.  If you can accept that people are doing the best they can from their level of consciousness, you no longer need to judge.  You feel sympathy and compassion rises on its own from a flowing heart.

CENTERING THOUGHT

I meet any situation with loving kindness.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Karuna Hum

I am compassion.

DEE:

Before getting clean and sober I felt like a waste of space on this planet.  I had no purpose.  I had no worth.  Having been graced with recovery I feel I have found my purpose and that is to share my “experience, strength and hope”.

Sharing with others is not an easy feat.  It took a long time for me to build self-esteem and self-worth with the love and fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous.  But over time, one day at a time, I can finally say I am comfortable in my skin and I value and love myself for who and what I am.  When fear is removed, compassion flows.  And from that flow, we unleash the power of hope.

I have found practicing rigorous honesty with those who enter my “Dee bubble” is the easiest and most freeing way to sharing my experience, strength and hope.  I am no longer ashamed of being an alcoholic, nor am I hesitant to share that information.  For I am an alcoholic in recovery forever grateful and humbled for being chosen to carry this message.  My life is good today.  I have happiness and peace and freedom.  How can I not share this gift?

And when one enters my bubble I strive to not judge.  I strive to be compassionate and mindful and respectful.  Putting myself in others’ shoes is so much easier than copping resentments or being judgmental about them.  My growth is huge from this practice.  And the bonds I have made with complete strangers is priceless!

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in Inspirational Art with a Message, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have a peaceful day!

From Oprah Winfrey & Deepak Chopra 21-Day Meditation Challenge “Hope in Uncertain Times”.

The Reality of Inner Strength

Day 10 – The Reality of Inner Strength 

“Hope is the sun. It is light. It is passion. It is the fundamental force for life’s blossoming.” – Daisaku Ikeda

Despite what modern cultural beliefs tell us, true personal strength is not about power, influence, or domination. Real strength comes from a sense of inner security, peace, and contentment. Our meditation today shows us that this real strength is available in the peaceful, contented consciousness of our true self.

OPRAH:

How do you define success?  For me success is getting to the point where you are absolutely comfortable with yourself.  It takes some work to get there.  Welcome to Day 10 – The Reality of Inner Strength.

For a long time at the beginning of each year I used to ask God through my resolutions to help me master a new virtue.  The year I requested strength I was confronted with one exhausting sole-sucking experience after another.  After that year I quit asking for what I thought I wanted.  Now I just take what comes.

Here’s what I’ve learned.  I can rely on the strength I inherited from those who came before me.  Each one of us has ancestors who were tested with unimaginable hardships; and they survived.  When I try something new or I’m faced with a challenge I bring all of my history with me, all of the people who paved the way for me.  Everything I’ve ever done in my life is a part of who I am.  I take my strength from their strength.

I’ve also come to realize where there is no struggle, there is no strength.  Inner strength comes from having been challenged, having adversity and often pain in the problems that make you want to throw your hands up and shout, “I give in”, and can also build your tenacity. courage and determination.

We all have the ability to stand up, face resistance and walk through it.  If you feel you’re walking into fear, know that you already have the enduring power that you’re asking for.  Then say thank you because you know at your truest core your greatest struggle will produce your deepest strength.

The mantra for today’s meditation rings true for me.  I know it’s ultimately true…being at peace is my greatest strength.  Let’s embrace that peace.

DEEPAK:

Generally speaking many people lead lives that seem stable and purposeful, but deep down they feel insecure and anxious.  We’ve been talking about trust and hope, and nothing destroys hope more than feeling insecure.

The opposite of insecurity is strength.  What does it mean to be strong?  Looking around we can see the strength of an authority figure like a boss who dominates others.  With or without consent they take charge and make it clear that only their will, their desires, and their emotions are important.  This is a sad distortion of true strength.

Society rewards this distorted strength by giving some people power and millions of others seem more than happy to give away their power to those who appear strong.  All of this comes about because we haven’t learned how to be strong inside ourselves.  Out of insecurity we build defenses to keep threats away and defenses like castle walls enclose a small protected area while shutting out the great wide world.

When you feel safe and secure inside yourself the world expands infinitely because consciousness is infinite.  When you feel strong inside you don’t feel afraid, anxious and isolated; you are open to life instead.  And in openness there is strength.

In meditation you experience the unchanging level of awareness that cannot be shaken.  This is permanent strength.  In practical terms becoming strong feels like a puppy who is safe only beside its mother until its curiosity lures it into the outside world.  At first the puppy rushes back to its mother’s side when it feels unsafe.  But over time standing on its own feels natural and right.  It has no more desire to be protected by another.

The self behaves the same way.  It starts out needing protection or the illusion of protection by clinging to externals like money, status, ego-strokes, the bonds of relationships, developing a fit body, etc.  These are good things on their own.  But they aren’t good if they reinforce the attitude of “me against the world” or “us versus them”…in other words, a defensive posture.

The secret is to experiment with standing up for yourself, speaking your truth, holding fast when you must, and always taking responsibility.  When your inner strength and hope gets activated you realized there was never a “you against the world” or “us versus them”.  There was only the power of hope in your consciousness and the reality it constructs.

CENTERING THOUGHT

Being at peace is my greatest strength.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Om Gum Namah

Expansive consciousness dissolves obstacles.

DEE:

As a younger human being I developed the notion that power and strength was external.  Probably too many cartoons.  But today I cherish the power and strength that is within me, not the forceful kind, but the calm and peaceful kind.

It has taken me many decades to finally be comfortable in my own skin and to actually love who I am.  And I owe that to finding and clinging to a Power Greater Than Myself.  I was awarded this Higher Power when I realized I’m a sick puppy, I cannot stop drinking.  I’m a loser.  I have no self-control.  What the hell is the matter with me?  An alcohol treatment program and Alcoholics Anonymous showed me that I can have a higher power of my own understanding and that I can turn my will and my life over to the care of God as I understand Him.

So I faked it ’til I maked it.  I made up my own higher power, turned myself over to its care, and my life has never been the same.  I was able to quiet my mind.  I was able to open my heart.  I was able to become rigorously honest.  I was able to shed the guilt and shame.  I was given a new lease on life that I never “thought” possible!

Today I allow my Higher Power to be in the driver’s seat of our pink convertible cadillac, drive me through life, and teach me the lessons I need to learn.  I can just go with the flow doing the best I know how.  And life today is good.  Life today is easy.  No expectations; no disappointments.

Yes, I’ve had my struggles.  I’ve battled my demons.  I surrendered.  I got sober.  My inner strength and hope got activated.  And from that journey I have been lead to a peaceful and contented life.  What is hope for me?  Hope is my Higher Power.  I know, I “feel” that everything is perfect at this very moment.

Aloha, Dee

For those interested in Inspirational Art with a Message, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and have a peaceful day!

From Oprah Winfrey & Deepak Chopra 21-Day Meditation Challenge “Hope in Uncertain Times”.

How to Truly Trust in Yourself

Day 9 – How to Truly Trust in Yourself

“Assurance of hope is more than life, it is health, strength… and beauty.” – John Charles Ryle

Today’s meditation is about finding a deeper understanding of the word “trust.” Typically, trust is something we have in other people or situations. But such a trust is as fragile as the next unexpected event that could change everything. But there is an unchanging, stable presence of awareness within, which is your true self. When you learn to center yourself in that awareness, you trust in your true self. From there you can never lose that inner trust regardless of what others may say or do.

OPRAH:

Welcome to Day 9 of our 21-day meditation experience.  Today is a big day.  You’re opening the door to trusting yourself, your deepest, most essential you.

At some point most of us have been betrayed, hurt or rejected making it difficult to trust other people.  And many times the real problem isn’t that we can’t trust other people it’s that we really can’t trust ourselves.

Best-selling author and spiritual teacher Iyanla Vanzant says, “There’s no greater battle than the battle between the parts of you that want to be healed and the parts of you that are comfortable and content remaining broken.”

Are you in a fight with the world or are you in a fight with part of you that says, “You’re not good enough” or “You can’t do that.”  Well those battles are struggles of the ego.  When you trust your true self you listen and believe the part of you that knows, “You can.  You can do this.  You can do better.”

Iyanla says the key to trust is going within, following your intuition and facing the unknown.  Even though you can’t control the unknown you can control what you believe.  Your beliefs determine what you manifest in your life.  And when you allow yourself to be vulnerable, you can trust that, no matter what happens, greater and grander possibilities will rise up in your life.

This meditation is about trusting yourself.  Let’s listen to Deepak and let the trust deepen.

DEEPAK:

When the realization dawns that inner awareness can take care of life, there is an end to struggle, self-doubt, pessimism, anxiety and lack of trust.  As real hope grows within

a sense of trust and self-assurance rises with it.  This kind of trust based on an unchanging core of consciousness is quite different than our conventional understanding of trust.

For almost everyone the feeling of trust depends on whether other people do and say what you expect of them.  But if you’ve had experiences where your trust was betrayed you know how fragile trust can be.  If our trust requires that other people in outside situations won’t change, then our trust will always be weak.

Because people’s life situations are always changing and unpredictable, basing trust on the expectation of permanence, is unrealistic and below the surface of that kind of trust.

There is doubt and fear.  Real trust must be based on something unchanging, permanent and, therefore, reliable.  That foundation is inside yourself and you have been experiencing it in mediation.

Trusting in the true self is the same as trusting in pure consciousness, the core of your being.  Trusting in yourself is the opposite of having a big ego.  It’s recognizing your true strength, value and ability for what is.  If you don’t look for this inner trust and strength in ourselves, we can mistakenly believe an outside authority can provide it to us.

There are authoritarian figures who may project supreme self-confidence and strength.  But this projection holds up only if others give their power to them.  Trusting in someone else who says they can protect or save you because they have the strength or intelligence you don’t have will only diminish your connection of your own strength, hope, and self-trust.  This is what it means to give your power away to someone.  But your hope, trust, love and creativity is your essence;  it’s your power, and your life.

When hope and trust are grounded in the true self you don’t need to look to others for direct or strength.  You’re confident in your ability to create your personal reality because your trust in yourself is unshakable.

CENTERING THOUGHT

I trust in life because I trust myself.

SANSKRIT MANTRA

Om Eem Hreem

My reality is pure intelligence and wholeness.

DEE:

In order to trust in my true self I must first know who and what my true self is, right?  I have to say I was blessed in finding out who and what I am by being an alcoholic.  It wasn’t until I was in Alcoholics Anonymous that I was given a toolbox for living which included a lesson-plan in Step 4 of The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous which lead me to discovering who I am and what makes me tick.  Exciting, yeah, that that foundation is inside yourself?

Now that I’ve finally discovered my true self, I can be comfortable in my own skin.  I can finally love the person that I am, defects and all.  I can realize that I am not just a barrel-full of defects, but that I also have my God-given gifts.  And one of these gifts is sobriety.  And in order for me to keep that gift (which I wouldn’t exchange for anything in the world!) I must give it away.  So now I have a purpose as well…to share my experience, strength and hope with all who enter my “Dee Bubble”.  I had none of this before surrendering to a Power Greater Than Myself (another huge gift of Alcoholics Anonymous) and being sick and tired of being sick and tired in my disease.

I can trust my thoughts and actions today because I have turned my will and life over to my Higher Power.  I’m just along for the ride of my life which is so much easier and lighter and fulfilling and pleasant since I have changed my thinking and myself!  Yes, I trust in life because I trust myself…and my Higher Power!

I am not a spokesperson nor representative of Alcoholics Anonymous, but I am a true believer of the Steps and Traditions.  If you find yourself needing to discover who you really are, there are a wealth of support groups to fit your needs.  I highly recommend taking some time to delve deep within yourself, to shed the shit that weighs you down, to focus on your gifts and to share those gifts!  Get out of your comfort zone (or shall I say “uncomfort zone”) and discover the gifts the Universe has waiting for you!

With much aloha, Dee

For those interested in Inspirational Art with a Message, please visit my website at www.DeesignsByHarris.com.  Mahalo and enjoy the day!