10 Lessons to Learn from Your Kids

10 Lessons to Learn from Your Kids

written by Melissa Carver

Parenting is a non-stop job. Anyone who has children will tell you it is the most difficult, yet most rewarding aspect of their life. Even the most well-behaved children can drive you to your wit’s end.

Why do children who are thankful, respectful, and well-mannered still push you to your point of needing a break from them? In addition to having all family members who live together eventually needing moments of alone time, there are deeper aspects when it comes to your children. Heavy responsibility as an adult may dampen your sense of excitement and vitality for life that so often (and easily) shines through for children. Kids have it all figured out—you may on the other hand have programmed yourself into being a more responsible version of them.

While you do have responsibilities, are they as serious as you make them? Are there tricks you can learn from your children to enjoy life and the chores all at the same time?

The answer is yes, and here are some of the lessons you can learn from your children.


A main focus of mine is to stay in the moment.  That way I don’t allow myself to beat myself up over yesterday nor dread tomorrow.  In other words, I don’t have to shit on today, on this very perfect moment in front of my nose.  Tomorrow is past.  Tomorrow may never come.  This moment is magical.

That does not mean I do not get my daily responsibilities done nor the big projects on my “to do” list.  But if I take some time during these tasks for me, for getting back in the moment, everything seems to flow more easily and successfully.

I have learned in Alcoholics Anonymous, a program and fellowship that has saved my life, given me a life and a purpose, many things.  One key thing I practice is to stay out of HALT (hungry, angry, lonely, tired).  When I find myself starting to react, and usually in a non-productive and negative manner, I address what part of HALT I am in and remedy that as soon as possible.  Again, getting back into the moment.

Get Excited

A child can get extremely excited over the smallest things. It may be playing with a dollar toy, having company come over, seeing the mail man pull up, or better yet, nothing at all. The thought of something exciting can send a child on a 10-minute, high-on-life excursion.

Often adults will tell them to calm down—that it’s not that big of a deal. In reality, you need to get that excited too! Everything can be a gift when you change your perspective and appreciate more. This level of energy not only has the potential to make you much happier, but also helps you to manifest more of what excites you. If the Universe speaks in frequency, nothing is more powerful than excitement!


I remember walking in the neighborhood and noticing the hugest snail crawling on a rock wall.  I was mesmerized by this little thing with the hugest shell on its back sliming its way along the wall.  And then this lady stopped her car and asked where I lived and what I was doing.  I did not react and tell her to mind her own f*ckng business, but I told her I was checking out this snail.  She saw it.  Didn’t care.  Then told me there had been some recent burglaries.  I was even excited I didn’t react, but sad she didn’t enjoy the snail.

Use Your Imagination

What can you imagine? When a child tells you a story or a goal, can you see it? It may be the most outlandish explanation you have ever heard, but what is your first reaction? Do you dismiss it as “just a kid” talking, or do you engage and go on an adventure in your mind? Are you an adult that says, “Go for it!” or “That’s impossible”?

Whatever you can imagine, you can create. Play and downtime sparks the imagination. Do you take that time? If not, make a list of how the imagination could help with goals you have now, and begin a journey once a week to gain that childhood trait back into your life.


As a kid, didn’t you ever lie on the cool grass gazing at the clouds and imagining what their shapes were?  No worries in the world!  I still try to do that.  Get unbusy.  Get back in the moment.  Notice what is around me, the sights, the sounds, the smells, right now, right here.  How many birds singing have I missed.  I many small wildflowers have I stepped on?  How much laughter from the children have I missed because my brain was full with busy-ness?

Express Unconditional Love

Your children are the humans on this planet who actually make you understand what this truly means. They get it!

Have you ever got upset with your child then later realize how much you blew the situation out of proportion? You feel horrible, prepare yourself to beg for their forgiveness, and by the time you get to them, they have already forgotten all about it? They love you—no, like really, soulfully love you—to your core. The good, bad, and ugly—they have seen it all, yet are more than happy to hug it out and spend the rest of the day with you.

This is not to say it’s impossible to push a child to the point of not wanting to speak to you or be around you, but even then, they will still have deep love for you. Loving someone doesn’t always mean you have to like them or their actions—that is unconditional love. In hopes of spreading this throughout your world, it starts at home.


This one hits home with me.  As an alcoholic in recovery I spent most of my life fear-based, especially as a child.  I was a people-pleaser.  I wanted your approval.  I was not comfortable enough in my own skin to feel the self-love, self-esteem, and self-worth I deserved.

Alcoholics Anonymous has helped me to stop living in fear, to stop taking the weight of the world on my shoulders alone.  It is so freeing to finally love myself for who and what I am and not worrying about what you or anyone else thinks of me.  I am what I am.  And if one person gets a glimmer of hope from reading this, I have achieved my goal.  Icing on the cake if that person is a child!

Have Patience

Okay, so they may not be the most patient creatures on earth, but they sure will make you turn yours up a notch, or five. From the baby stages of waiting for them on the potty, to the countless check-ups, doctor appointments, activities, and the famous school car line—your patience is tested in every way possible.

Instead of complaining or thinking about what else needs to be done, think about what you would tell them when they are waiting on you. For example, every parent pulls their child to some event or long car trip that they don’t necessarily want to be at. I would guess you say the following line in these situations: “Take something to do/entertain yourself.”

Take your own advice: get out of the car and walk or soak up some sun instead of sitting in the car line, catch up on a good book or some articles, or play games on your phone (that’s what they would do). Did you know playing phone games can be a form of meditation?


I LOVE phone games, but I always thought they were a waste of time.  Great to know they can be a form of meditation.  But more importantly, when I find myself waiting…in traffic, in line to check-out or for an appointment, wherever, I feel that God is asking me, “What’s the rush, Dee?  Just breathe.”

Cultivate Confidence

Kids show up with an “I can do anything” attitude. The dreams that children have are backed by a heap load of confidence. This only lessens in them when they hear, “You can’t do that” or “That’s impossible” multiple times by people they love or respect. Even then, many rebel toward such negative attitudes. They are intuitive enough to see that particular adult has been jaded and failed at their own desires.

Inspire them to keep the confidence, speaking on a failed attempt as an opportunity to improve. Allow their determination to spark your confidence as well.


Such an important message.  We’ve got to let our kids know how awesome they are.  Everything about them is a gift.  We’ve got to help them love themselves for who they are and feel comfortable in their own skin.  And when approached by a bully, they can know that they don’t have to lower themselves to the bully’s level.  That the bully has unresolved issues and is lacking the love and self-worth that our kids have.  And when the world throws hardballs, let your child know he does not have to go it alone!


No, not a night out on the town or an adult vacation. Play seems to mean a new categorical list from childhood to adult. Here I am speaking on good ole fashioned childlike play. Get outside, jump on the trampoline, hula hoop, swim, skate, climb up the monkey bars, and go down the slide. You’re not too old! What are you afraid of exactly? Will your clothes get dirty? Maybe, but the fun you will have by the end will take all cares of that stain away!


“I don’t want to grow up.  I’m a Toys ‘R Us kid,” resonates in me when I allow myself to let go, have fun, be me, be free.  I instill that message into my kids, too.  Life is too short to be so “adult” all the time.  Have fun.  Be a kid.  That kid is and will always be in us!  And don’t worry who will see you.  No one cares.  Get over yourself!

Play increases your health (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4771152/) by raising your heart rate, decreasing blood pressure, lowering cholesterol, and most importantly, boosting your happiness.


Adulting is time-consuming. It often takes more effort to relax than not because your brain is still focused on what you need to be doing.

Let’s change the perspective and programming on this a bit. Just for a week, give this a try. Instead of yelling at the kids to get off their butt and clean up their shoes, sit down with them. For 15 minutes just relax and breathe for a bit—can you hear your breath? It’s probably the first time you’ve heard it all day. After 15 minutes is up, go back to your chores. Now ask the kids to help you. Pay close attention to how differently you are asking now verses how you may have spoken to them 15 minutes ago. Kids work hard and play hard but they know the importance of some good chillax time.


Again, getting back in the moment.  Closing off your brain and getting back into your heart.  I don’t want to react so I take time out to make sure I’m not getting into HALT, and give myself some “me” time.  Even 5 minutes works wonders!

Release Worry

Ever notice how much you get on your kids’ nerves when you explain what could, maybe, possibly, or might happen? You know the dangers of this world; it’s everywhere you turn when it comes to any social media or news, not to mention what you may have lived through or witnessed in person.

Here’s the trick though: Kids really do see, feel, and know the bad in life, but they live as though they are always safe. They trust their intuition to guide them away from harm should it come close to them. They have an understanding of it’s only a part of reality, not totality.

“Worry is like praying for something you don’t want.” – unknown



I don’t want to be stupid about my safety, but I don’t want to live in fear either.  Alcoholics Anonymous has allowed me a Higher Power of My Own Understanding that I entrust with my safety and protection.  I ask for guidance.  I turn it over.  I know that everything will be just fine.

Release Judgment

Children see people for their soul. They just want to be around loving, fun humans and critters. It doesn’t matter where you live, shade of skin, what hobbies you do or do not enjoy, sexual preference, or what you did “bad” in your past. They genuinely do not care! How are you treating them in the now? That is where their attention flows. If you hear a child being prejudice, racist, or judgmental in any fashion outside of the frequency they feel coming from someone, it has been programmed toward them to repeat it. We could all use a lesson from this category in some way or another.

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Go with your gut feelings; it doesn’t lie.  Today I am able to live from my heart and get rid of all that rationalizing, destructive brain bullshit.  This certainly did not come easily nor quickly.  I had to unlearn decades of living intellectually and to delve deep into my heart and allow it to open up.  Only when I found positive results from this practice did I start to have faith that this really works.  My gut doesn’t lie.

Nurture All Aspects of Your Personality

You may see a child in a superhero costume and 15 minutes later they are playing with a doll. This same routine goes on all day long, skipping from one character to another. They love many aspects of life, including personalities and archetypes. Rarely do they tunnel vision in on one category. A kid wants to explore all the thoughts and interests that can pop into their mind at any given moment, as should you. Those thoughts spark imagination and lead to roads of deep passion and authenticity. While some are short-lived, a gift will always be a part of the journey. One new factoid or epiphany of self-knowledge is worth the effort.

Adults want to ask children what they want to be when they grow up. It is my personal opinion that you should dump this question. I mean do you even know what you want to be yet? You change every day; your ideas, perspectives, and passions change with each new experience. Your career may be long-term, or maybe just a stepping stone to the next adventure. What you do now for your bill money may be your dharma, but even in the midst of a dream job, the universe may have another surprise to keep you on your toes. Your life is not about working to collect money and spending it on responsibilities—it’s about engulfing in your happiness so much that you no longer see work as a restraint.

Learn a natural, effortless style of meditation that helps make every day fun and fulfilling with Basics of Meditation, a self-paced online course guided by Deepak Chopra. Learn More. (https://www.chopra.com/online-courses/basics-of-meditation/on-demand)


Because today I am sober, I am in recovery, I have the fellowship, Steps, and toolbox that Alcoholics Anonymous has so freely given me, that I can now “go with the flow” and know that great things await me.  I am not in control.  I have a Higher Power that is in control, that guides me to be the best me I can be, that protects me, that teaches me.  Nope.  I don’t know what I want to be when I grow up and I’m 62 years old!  I just know that I wake up excited every morning to see what the day has in store for me.  Such an awesome and joyous way to live!

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Section: Personal Growth (/articles/139/all)
Topics: Personal Growth (/articles/all/27) Family-Friendly (/articles/all/48)

About the Author

Melissa Carver specializes in Metaphysics, guiding her clients through the art of manifestation with one-on-one webinars and in-person sessions. Melissa is also a graduate of the Chopra Center University, completing her certification in the Perfect Health: Ayurvedic Lifestyle (/teach/perfect-health-certification-program) program. She and her husband, Leo Carver (/bios/leo-carver), are the core of Holistic Life Sciences (http://www.choprateachers.com/HolisticLifeSciences), providing the Chopra Certified Ayurvedic Health Course throughout the state of Kentucky. Melissa also received her PH.D. in Philosophy… Read more (/bios/melissa-carver)


5 Things We Wish We Were Taught Growing Up


1. Independence:

This is one of the biggest issues that I’ve noticed as a college student among my peers. A lot of people become followers because they have no sense of direction. They’ve been sheltered and told what to do, their whole lives that they are more vulnerable to become followers. I had my first job at the age of 12 so I’ve always knew how to hold my own, but I realized that a lot of young adults struggle to stand alone. Teens must be taught how to own their individuality and have a strong sense of who they are. Nothing bothers me more to see a young adult with a high school mentality.


I found myself bouncing back and forth when young going from leader to follower to leader and so on.  I struggled with self-confidence.  Why was it so important that I gained your approval?  Why was it so important that I fit in?  Why when I was very young did I love ballet class and then one day I became so frightened and timid to that I threw a tantrum and clung to my mom until she took me home?  One day I’m the student body president and the next day the wall flower. 

Having found myself in a treatment program for alcoholism decades later I was fortunate enough to work through the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous where I found many of these questions arising in my head.  Thoroughly working Step Four I learned so much about myself.  Many of the questions I asked myself are still puzzling, but I realized that most of my life I lived in fear.  Fear of not fitting in.  Fear of making an ass out of myself.

All I know today is that we all need to know have unique gifts.  We ARE unique and have so much to give to the world!  If we stop focussing on what we aren’t and start to focus on what WE ARE, everything is seen in a different perspective.  I AM worthy.  I AM a good person.  I DO love myself for who I am.  Let’s share this with our children and our fellows so that perhaps one day they can cease comparing themselves with others and stop trying to fit in and gain the approval of others who don’t give a shit.

2. Financial Stability:

When I first went away to college, I struggled budgeting my money. I found myself spending my money on things that I did not need. When I got a job while I was in college the issue became worst. I thought that it would be easier to budget if I had more money, but I had less money because I convinced myself that I needed things that I didn’t. Then when it came time for me to file my taxes I was lost. I was use to my mother doing all my paperwork that I didn’t even know where to start.


I’m still not good at the money thing.  It’s not my passion but I know I have to be responsible enough to pay my bills in order to live a fairly comfortable existence.  I have always been strapped for cash and lived pretty frugally.  But today, again from working the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, I have a Higher Power of My Own Understanding that helps guide me and teach me how to make right choices.  But the main lesson I’ve learned is to stop living in fear and to always stay in faith.  When the fear rears its ugly head my faith is shrinking.  When the faith is shrinking Dee is taking over and trying to control the show.  This doesn’t work for me; I’ve done it most of my life and I was exhausted and purposeless.  Weird how when I live more positively and hopefully, great things appear in my life.  We attract more of how we think and how we ARE!

And, by the way, it is important we teach our children how to budget, balance a check book, about credit card debt, etc.  And doing laundry, sewing on a button, and ironing a work shirt is pretty helpful, too.

3. Mental Awareness:

When I left for college I struggled with anxiety and stress because it was difficult for me to deal with the new environment. I was never homesick, but the stress of managing classes, fighting insecurities and dealing with friendships was enough for me to mentally shut down. Growing up we don’t realize how easy we have it until we leave the nest. Instead of trying to keep us in the nest I wish parents taught us how to survive outside of the nest mentally. I wish someone told me that every challenge is not the end of the world, but an obstacle that comes along to make you stronger.


Today running my own business I excitedly realize that the more “no’s” I get, the closer I am to achieving that awesome “yes”.  Whether the “no” is a rejection of my product or service, I get to learn and be open to the why.  I grow.  I get better.  I don’t react nor take it personally.  I survive and move forward to bigger and better things.  And I know that this is how my Higher Power works for and through me.  That everything is perfect at this very moment and I’m right where I need to be.  With that outlook, everything is positive and hopeful.  Way better than the other option of wallowing on the pity pot.

Another great gift I have today because of Alcoholics Anonymous is that I no longer have to do or think things through on my own.  I’m finally comfortable enough in my own skin to ask for help.  And I’m finally selfless enough (most of the time) to urge those in need of my help to please not deprive me of the gift of giving and service.  It’s a win-win.  Really.

Yep, because my Higher Power is always with me and has my back, I never again have to feel I am on my own.  I just have to remember to stay in the moment, stay out of my head, and all is well.

4. Confidence:

Confidence is something I had to build along the years, but not enough parents teach their children to love themselves. Neglecting this issue is like throwing your child out to the wolves and leaving them to fend for themselves. With media being a major influence on the development of children we have to plant a seed in their minds to give them a sense of direction. The media tell children that they must be a size two or have curves to die for, but what are you telling your child? We should be taught who we are when we are young, so we don’t have to find ourselves when we get older. I love when I see viral videos of parents making their child stand in the mirror and telling themselves how beautiful and valuable they are. Self-love starts when we are young because kids are like sponges.

The sponge thing didn’t happen to me until I was in treatment for my alcoholism.  For those 21+ days I got to concentrate only on me.  I was definitely a sponge.  It was a very exciting time for me and it changed my life.

I got to learn about the disease of alcoholism.  I got to let go of all the negative thoughts about myself, “You’re a loser, Dee.  You have no self-control.  You’re a waste of space on this planet”.

I got to work the Twelve Steps and get rid of that fear-based mentality.  I got to ask for help and be rigorously honest.  I got a toolbox that helps me live a life in recovery.  And I got a Power Greater Than Myself that walks me through life, that shows me how to love myself and you, and how to give back.

Yes, I wish I would have got this when I was a child.  But that wasn’t my calling.  I’m grateful it happened when and the way it did.  That I did not have to die.  And with this gift and what I’ve learned along the way, I diligently try to plant the seed in each and every one who enters my Dee Bubble how special they are, what unique gifts they hold, what an asset they are to the world and to mankind.  And this is all extra special when I can share this with our keiki, our children, our future!

5. Be Original:

Growing up I wanted the latest brands and products to make myself feel important. We all begged our parents for the coolest trends just to go to school and look like everyone else. I wish I was taught that those things does not define me. I wish I would have focused more on building my character than I did focusing on getting things that I can’t afford to impress people who I may never even see again. I wish I was taught to love myself without those labels and stand firm and be confident in my own skin.


If only I had felt comfortable in my own skin when I was young…  Again, not my journey, not my calling, not my purpose.  But today I will impress upon you to please love the person you are today, right now, right here.  You ARE awesome!  You have a gift!  Share that gift and inspire.

Build self-confidence in yourself and with those around you, especially the children.  And let them know that there will always be Big Bad Wolves out there that will try to make you feel less than.  That is THEIR problem and not yours.  We all have our sicknesses so let them keep theirs and love the person you are.  You ARE worthy!  BeYOUtiful!

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

Aloha, Dee

From https://rayvensatterfield.wordpress.com/2017/02/08/5-things-we-wish-we-were-taught-growing-up/

6 Ways to Combat Doubt and Uncertainty

6 Ways to Combat Doubt and Uncertainty 

You know it all too well: that sinking feeling that you’re not good enough, that you don’t have what it takes to succeed, or that you won’t be able to navigate this next chapter. Even for the most confident people in the world, there are inevitable times when doubt and uncertainty creep in and seem to take over your mind, body, and spirit.

This negative way of thinking can result from both external and internal forces. Perhaps you got passed up for a promotion or your group of “friends” didn’t invite you to a weekend getaway they shared on social media. Maybe you’re watching the state of the world change in ways that bring up fear for what’s next. It might be deeper than that, too. Perhaps you’ve held a life-long belief about yourself that you are stupid, ugly, or a bad person—undeserving of love or respect.

Regardless of how it shows up, doubt and uncertainty can be debilitating if not addressed head-on and swiftly. It can lead to additional feelings of:





Don’t let negativity win. Here are five ways to combat doubt and uncertainty so that you can claim a life of strength and resiliency.

Ground Yourself in Reality

Thoughts that lead to self-doubt and uncertainty are most likely not rooted in the reality of where you actually are. Thoughts like that come from places of insecurity, stories, and lies, not honoring who you are and how far you’ve come. In the moment though, it can be difficult to remember what is the truth.

Prepare for those moments by creating a Self I.D. Card that can remind you of your true identity and core competencies. Take a 3×5 index card and complete the follow sentences:

My name is…
I grew up in…
I am gifted at…
I am loved by…
I am uniquely me and have nothing to fear.

You can refer to your I.D. card anytime you feel doubt and uncertainty creep in.

Recognize That You’re Not Alone 

Trust in the fact that you are not the first person to experience doubt and uncertainty, and that you will certainly not be the last. Everyone experiences feelings of uncertainty and fear of “not being good enough” at times—even the most successful people in the world. The simple fact of knowing that you are not alone can help those feelings dissipate.


Take a moment to step back and breathe. Calm your nerves by recognizing that this is a temporary state of being. The anxiety you feel cannot harm you, and you are not destined to feel confused, bewildered, and insecure for the rest of your life.

Practicing pranayama (http://www.chopra.com/articles/breathing-for-life-the-mind-body-healing- benefits-of-pranayama#sm.0001ccqvs16rfdrqrcr1gymoarf7p)—deep, mindful breathing—can help center your being and has been proven to reduce anxiety and depression and decrease feelings of stress and overwhelm. You can find instructions for simple breathing techniques here (http://www.chopra.com/articles/breathing-for-life-the-mind-body-healing-benefits-of- pranayama#sm.0001ccqvs16rfdrqrcr1gymoarf7p).

Write Down Your Doubts 

Instead of letting thoughts of uncertainty swirl around in your head and hijack your mind, take time to write down each one of your doubts on a small slip of paper. Then, read each one aloud and ask yourself if that doubt serves you. If the answer is no, crumple up the piece of paper and throw it into the recycle bin or burn it (safely, of course). In the off chance that the answer is yes, spend time journaling about why you think that doubt serves you.

This practice can also be done in the presence of a trusted loved one if you need extra support. They can give you the honest truth and help you ground your self-judgments in reality.

Access Your Confidence 

The truth is, you have inner confidence, whether it seems obvious right now or not. Somewhere deep inside is the knowledge that you are worth it and that you have immense value just by being you. In times of doubt, learn how to channel the confidence that’s already inside you. This is a powerful practice that may not come naturally, especially if you’re prone to negative self-talk.

One way to do this is by practicing power poses, which have been proven to boost your levels of confidence. This approach was made famous by social psychologist Amy Cuddy in her TED Talk (https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_your_body_language_shapes_who_you_are) from 2012. While it might sound strange—and feel even stranger doing it—standing in a position that exudes confidence can affect the testosterone and cortisol levels in your brain, which may impact your chances for success. Try this:

Stand up tall, with your feet slightly wider than hips-distance apart
Put your hands on your hips (or your arms open wide) and stand with your chest open and lifted Lift your chin and both corners of your lips (yes, that means smile wide)

Next time you’re feeling a little lost, find a quiet space and strike this wonder woman pose for about 90 seconds. Take note of how you feel before and after practicing the pose.

Be Vulnerable 

While finding the inner strength to battle doubt and uncertainty is necessary to build a personal sense of resiliency, no one is meant to journey through hard times alone. There is power in surrounding yourself with people who will love and support you, even when you don’t have a strong sense of who you are or what’s happening around you.

Being vulnerable with others during times like these can build trust, deepen connection, and make way for acceptance. Opening up about the confusion, doubt, and second guessing helps release the power of those negative beliefs. By speaking them out loud, they cannot fester in the shadows.

And the beauty is, by sharing in your weakness, you invite others to look at themselves in a new way also. They may open up in the ways they didn’t realize they needed to.

We all have moments of self-doubt, but it’s important to remember there’s always hope. Join Oprah and Deepak for our newest, no-cost 21-Day Meditation Experience, Hope in Uncertain Times. Learn More (https://chopracentermeditation.com/experience).


My self-doubt and uncertainty really started to escalate and rear its ugly head in the 80’s and 90’s.  No.  Let me take that back.  My self-doubt and uncertainty came from a lifetime of experiences where I constantly compared myself to everyone.  Why couldn’t I be smarter, prettier, richer, white?  My unique gifts and talents were affirmed by my mom, but it just never reached my heart.  I was a thinker, a rationalizer, an intellect.  I was a people-pleaser, a follower, and I lived in self-doubt.

Ok.  Back to the 80’s and 90’s.  It must have been those decades when my alcoholism and drug use became commonplace.  I used them to feel like I fit in.  I used them to perform.  Then I used them because I had to.  I let the drugs go as they were more expensive and difficult to acquire.  But I crossed the line somewhere in that time period where all I could think about was the next drink.  Life got in the way of my drinking.  So during that time in my life I definitely allowed fear, anger, sadness and loneliness to take over my life.  And all that negativity stayed fed and strengthened by more alcohol.  My addiction to alcohol grew stronger by the day until one day I didn’t come to like I did everyday when the kids came home from school.  That’s when I usually pulled myself together to get ready for working the swing shift.

That miraculous day saved my life.  My physical life.  And gave me a spiritual life beyond my wildest dreams!  I got to learn about me.  I was in a recovery center for 21+ days where my only focus was ME (not that the previous 48 years of my life were about YOU)!  And not in that selfish, self-absorbed, destructive way.  It was awesome!  I was like a sponge wanting more, more, more.  Teach me more.  Show me more.  Feed me more.

Today I “get to” honor who I really am.  I am a woman.  I am of Chinese descent.  I am an alcoholic.  I am gratefully in recovery.  I “get to” feel comfortable in my own skin.  I even “get to” love myself.  Don’t think that would have ever happened in my lifetime had it not been for AA.  And I don’t have to think anymore.  I can live from my heart.  I can turn everything over to a Power Greater Than Myself.  I am free!!!

Alcoholics Anonymous has given me so many gifts.  Not just sobriety, but the comfort of fellowship.  Being able to comfortably ask for help.  Been grateful to offer help.  Giving away what was so freely given to me.

And during this time in my recovery I have learned about self-care.  Staying in the moment for me is key.  Yes, breathe.  Witness, feel, hear, see everything that is happening around me right here and now.  Don’t miss a beat…of my heart…which keeps me alive with a purpose with or without my brain focus.

So love yourself for who and what you are.  We all have our unique gifts.  Share them with the world.  Stay in the moment.  Live a positive and hopeful life.

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 day!

Written by Melissa Eisler, The Chopra Center, March 2017

Hope Holds the Future of the World

Day 22 – Hope Holds the Future of the World

“Hope is not dead, it is just larger than our imaginations: its purpose extending far beyond our comprehension.” – Kathy Hobaugh

Even though the world will always be unpredictable and filled with uncertainty, we can choose how we react to that. Uncertainty doesn’t mean we need to be fearful and anxious. Today’s meditation shows us that the final use of profound hope is to remain rooted in your vision of change as a welcome source of creativity and renewal. As we learn to live in ever-present awareness, our true nature, we are at one with the source of infinite creativity of life itself.


Today we offer you one final meditation.  The intention over the last 21 days has been for these meditations to start you on the path to expanding hope and using it as a force in these uncertain times.  This meditation experience was designed to inspire you to experience hope within your soul, in the present with courage and simplicity.  Today Deepak is going to show us how hope holds the future of the world.

I know for many of us the news headlines can become so overwhelming that you become numb to it.  What can we do?  Well, we can embody the energy we wish to experience, our own soul’s work is a work in progress.  In everything that’s showing up in the world is here to show us who we are or who we choose to be in this moment.

Every morning we get another chance to wake up to choose curiosity over cynicism.  We get to put aside despair and find something positive in the day to hope for.  When we set our intention and activate hope as a verb, we change the possibilities and we also change the vibration and the actual shape of our lives, minute by minute, every day.

My prayer is that hope in the now remains a steady and guiding force for all of us, that hope connects each of us to the Source, with a capital “S”, of all creation and that your hope will be a light for others to follow.  Deepak brings us together in the energy that hope holds the future for the world.


The world will always be uncertain and unpredictable; this can be a source of pessimism or a source of hope.  The world embodies the constant change of evolution with billions of interconnected paths unfolding together.  By its very nature, this is uncertain.  Yet at a deeper level, this is how the dance of cosmic intelligence works.

If each person’s path is evolutionary, hope is the practical link that keeps us connected to the flow of life.  A certain hope in the now makes the anxiety of an uncertain future insignificant.  Once you envision that the light is guiding all evolutionary paths you can live your vision by offering hope to everyone else as our paths twist and turn.  By living in ever-present awareness you’re being the change you want to see in the world.

We all live in a state of separation or duality.  Light plays off the darkness and gives a contrast.  Good contrasts with bad, pleasure with pain.  Fighting against the state of duality only deepens it.  The Worlds Wisdom Traditions exist to show the way out.  Be in a state of pure consciousness.  Know that you are there and then enjoy life as you discover how best you can help others.

The final use of hope is to remain steady as this vision unfolds, step by step, in your own life.  Your individual core-consciousness is one in the same as the universal consciousness that takes on myriad forms to create everything within itself.

Wisdom Traditions can tell you this truth.  They can point to the Kingdom of God within or the Eternal Peace of Nirvana.  But in the end you feel and know it at the core of your being.  Let this realization unfold inside you.  Let it fascinate you and draw you forward.  The allure of the light is more fascinating than anything else.  In it lies your future.  And as each person walks the path the future of the world becomes one of hope.


I live in the world of my vision.


Aham Brahmasmi

I am the wholeness of universal existence.


Uncertainty no longer weighs me down with fear and anxiety since I have been introduced to a Power Greater Than Myself.  This introduction occurred in a 21-day treatment program where I found myself when I could no longer deal with my alcoholism.  Whether or not you have an addiction, having that Power to rely upon, a God of Your Understanding, that Source with a capital “S”, to have faith in takes the weight off your shoulders.

I no longer have to react.  I know longer have to think I am in control.  I can just go with the flow and know that I am being cared for, protected, and that I can enjoy the journey to grow and learn as I trudge the road of happy destiny.  Today I choose to live my life optimistically and hopefully.  I find the glass half full and this way of living attracts more fullness in my life.  And I share this optimism with those who enter my “Dee Bubble” hoping they, too, can see the light at the end of the tunnel and to embrace positively all events that occur in their lives.

My evolutionary path of living in the darkness of an alcoholic hell has led me to the light of recovery and gratitude and humility.  It has taught me, through the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, what makes me tick, that I no longer have to live a fear-based life, that I no longer have to think I am in control, that I no longer have to live my life alone.

Today I get to have a purpose in my life which I never had before recovery.  And that purpose is to share my Experience, Strength and Hope with others, whether they are struggling with addiction, abuse, mental disorders, or just life itself.  We do not need to struggle alone.  Please do not deprive me of helping you on your journey.  It is my true purpose.

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 and Oprah’s 21-Day Meditational Experience on HOPE.

The Secret of Enlightenment

Day 21 – The Secret of Enlightenment 

“Knowing others is wisdom, knowing yourself is enlightenment.” – Lao Tzu

The idea of enlightenment is generally understood as a remote, hard to attain state of knowledge and peace. And it is true that the fully matured state of spiritual awakening is far removed from the typical everyday existence of most people. However, the secret of enlightenment is that the seed of enlightenment is always with us and has always been a part of every moment of our life. Enlightenment is self-realization, and whenever we notice the presence of our awareness – that thing inside that is having an experience right now – we are touching our enlightenment. That self-recognition is the starting place of enlightenment, of freedom.


Well, friends, we’re reaching the end of our meditation experience.  Today on Day 21 we follow a path of hope to explore the secret to enlightenment.

I have a busy life like so many of you.  There are entire years I can barely remember because I was rushing from one thing to the next.  For 25 years every morning I drove from a basement car garage to another car garage and then had my time dictated and measured in hours and minutes and, even, down to the seconds.  I know that many of you feel the same way about your life right now.  “It’s too busy.”  “There’s not enough time.”  “It’s too chaotic.”  “Too much.  Too much.”

Whelp, I’ve learned that the secret to slowing down time is bringing your full attention to it is your breath.  Just breathe.  Take a deep breath.  Right now.  Do it.  And see how that brings you right back to this moment.  And throughout the day I find moments just to do just that.  Inhale.  Exhale again.  Taking the time to notice your breath.  It snaps you into the present moment.  It also, for me, gives me a little charge, a surge of energy, that reminds me, “I’m alive.  I’m here.  Right now.”  And I get to be fueled by hope, if I choose to in this moment.

Buddhist monk, teacher and writer, Thich Nhat Hanh, says this, “When you breathe in and are aware that you are alive, you can touch the miracle of being alive.”  “That is a kind of enlightenment,” he says.  The secret to enlightenment is to live happily in the here and now.

Being present turns up the volume in your life; you’re tuned into awareness instead of the jumble of thoughts in your head and you begin to understand that you are not your thoughts; you are much bigger and deeper and wider than the thoughts.  I’ve learned that the constant chatter in your head only holds the power you choose to give it.

Let’s follow Deepak’s guidance toward enlightenment.


Every moment of hope brings the light into your life or another person’s.  You know this is happening by experiencing more joy, beauty, and love.  This opens the way for the possibility of living in the light all the time, which we call enlightenment.

Hope is the engine of consciousness that leads us to enlightenment.  Hope is what impels awareness to realize its true potential.  Society fosters the belief that enlightenment is rare and even difficult.  The Worlds Wisdom Traditions take the opposite view.  They compare the process of becoming enlightened to recognizing yourself in a mirror.  A dusty mirror reflects the light of you dimly.  A clean mirror reflects the light without dullness, blemishes or distortion.  But recognition of your true self is not difficult or time-consuming.  It is simply recognizing yourself as the presence of awareness that is always there.

The realization of the self is the essence of enlightenment.  What takes time and practice is the process of clearing away the dust from the mirror.  Every time you experience your true self in mediation, every time you feel compassion for the suffering of another, every time you accept someone just as they are, you remove more and more dust from the mirror and facilitate that self-realization into higher states of consciousness.

Hope is the promise of our spiritual awakening, the way a seed is the promise of a blossom.  Enlightenment is possible for you because pure awareness is already present in every experience you have.  Your current experience without the mind’s commentary and analysis is the simple reality of the true self.  Nothing is simpler or closer than recognizing yourself.  As the experience of the true-self matures awareness realizes it remains unchanged even though the party in mind change.

Self-knowledge is only the beginning of enlightenment.  Awareness continues to expand and see itself in others.  Seeing oneself in another is the experience of love.  Seeing oneself in an object or perception is the experience of beauty.  This irrepressible impulse of life to expand into greater expressions of love, joy and beauty is the spiritual force of evolution that drives our enlightenment.  This is true hope.  The knowing light in our heart that shows us that regardless of uncertainty around us our life is always unfolding into greater knowledge, love, joy and beauty.


In every moment of hope, I free myself.


Sat Chit Ananda

Life is absolute bliss consciousness.


Really, what is enlightenment?

enlightenment (noun)

sharing her musical enlightenment with her children: insight, understanding, awareness, wisdom, education, learning, knowledge; illumination, awakening, instruction, teaching; sophistication, advancement, development, open-mindedness, broad-mindedness; culture, refinement, cultivation, civilization.

The journey I’ve been on these past decades of my life from the “in the depths of hell” alcoholic I was to the “enlightened” recovering alcoholic that I am today has given me all of the meanings of enlightenment above that I am crazy grateful to be an alcoholic in recovery.  I never had enlightenment when all I was obsessed with was my next drink, how to sneak it, where to get it, how to hide it.  Today that space of the active disease that fully engulfed my entire body and mind has been freed up…my awakening.

Now that I know who and what I am from working the Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and practicing all of the suggestions offered to me by my fellows living in the “solution” on a daily basis, I can live in the now, and I can have hope.  I can turn off the jumble of thoughts in my head by embracing them and then asking them to leave.  I can live from my heart!

So today, rather than wallowing in my confusion and self-pity, I have freed up the space within me to be in the moment, to be mindful, respectful, and compassionate.  Not only with those around me, but with myself.  I can be loving, nurturing and accepting instead of judging.  I can be me…the true me that was meant to be!

Today I wake up with gratitude and hope for what the day will bring.  I am excited what I will learn today, how I will grow.  And as Deepak says above, “The knowing light in our heart that shows us that regardless of uncertainty around us our life is always unfolding into greater knowledge, love, joy and beauty.”

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