Thursday, May 29, 2014

Whose Potential Are You Trying to Realize?

Where in your life are you beating your head against the wall? Did you notice I assumed you are “beating your head against the wall?” I can nearly guarantee, with very few exceptions, that you are doing something currently that feels exactly that way. You may feel stuck in a relationship, dissatisfied with your living space, or wondering why you haven’t found a job in the same field as that expensive degree you obtained. But, if you can’t find something in your life that fits this description, just stop reading, don’t waste your time and I’ll see you back here next week! Oh….And kudos to you! You rock!
Still reading, aren’t you? Here’s the kicker – I’m still here, too, and writing this blog. In my own past history someone else was usually involved in me bloodying my head. Mind you, I always had his/her best intentions in mind. The problem was that it was what I wanted for them, not what they wanted. But I, in my infinite wisdom, had decided someone else needed to be more expressive or successful or something. My heart, and yours, too, is in the right place. We mean well, but because we don’t have agreement with the other person in this endeavor it doesn’t work out to our liking.
Haven’t you said, or heard someone say, “S/He has SO much potential! If only s/he would (fill in the blank).” It seems we human beings have some innate ability to readily recognize exactly what everyone else should be doing. And here’s the second kicker:  While we’re busy trying to figure out or help everyone else be amazing, we probably aren’t doing such a bang up job on ourselves.
Here is some “Terry Talk” for you to chew on:  You cannot have a relationship with someone’s potential (though God knows I’ve tried at times!). I first figured this out decades ago and it’s still true. Ignoring that statement is why we find ourselves so frustrated at times. We can so easily be intoxicated in the potential that we fail to see the individual.
When we unilaterally decide someone needs our input and/or guidance they become a “project.” If we are not mindful, we get so involved in helping the other person to be wonderful that it becomes our purpose in life. Meanwhile, the authentic self within us is screaming, “What about me?!?” “Why aren’t my needs being met?” That’s why that even if we convince our loved one to do what we feel is right for them we still don’t feel quite complete with the process. And there’s the biggest clue on this path – if it doesn’t feel right, then why are we doing it?
Unfortunately, instead of stepping back, taking a deep breath and examining our own potential we can very easily get sucked into finding another “project,” aka “victim.” The question is, When will it be your turn to be amazing? When will you give yourself the time to nurture the greatest potential within you? When will you take the step to stop pining about your potential and take the steps necessary to fulfill your purpose on earth? We have to recognize our gifts – otherwise we are robbing the world of something no one else can give – and then act in such a way as to make them available to the world.
A big part of our work on this planet is that of service to others. We must, however, begin with ourselves. Another universal truth is “As above, so below. As within, so without.” It is only by giving fully of ourselves that we can truly be the most effective in helping others, and that means recognizing our unique inner light.
To get more deeply in touch with your inner guidance I would like to suggest that over the next few days you stop yourself – even for a moment – when you next find you are lamenting over a friend or loved one not living up to their potential. Take that opportunity to bless them on their current path, close your eyes and ask yourself, How can I best fulfill my own potential? What within me is calling me to come forward, to color outside the lines, to show the world who I am? And, as always, have fun with this!
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Still Small Voice – Are You Listening to It?

Do you feel lost at times, almost in a state of paralysis when confronted with making some decision? In my last blog I wrote about our freedom of choice, of choosing the path we desire to walk. But all of us, myself included, can allow ourselves to be so beaten down by the opinions of others or the range of possibilities that we find ourselves confused and overwhelmed. We may feel unable to decide the best course to take. There is help, but all-to-often we don’t listen to it.
It is at times like this that I remember a phrase used by one of the great spiritual thinkers of the recent past, Emma Curtis Hopkins. She believed in listening to “the still small voice” within each of us to guide and direct our path. Mrs. Hopkins had a complete and unwavering faith in the energy around us that she called God or Spirit, as well as some other terms. If the word “God” does not work for your spirituality, find one that does. And if no word works for you that’s fine, too! The concept of what “the still small voice” is has value for everyone.
So exact what is this “still small voice?” In my family if I’d reported hearing voices, either still, small or otherwise, I’d have been assumed to have been possessed by Satan. Hearing voices was the work of the Devil. The religion of my childhood held no concept of God communicating directly with each of us. We could pray to God, but expecting a direct answer was not in the cards. The best explanation of what Mrs. Hopkins meant is from her own writings:
“On rare and wonderful occasions sincere thinkers have heard the voice. It never tells anything but good. It never tells of weakness. It always tells of strength. It never tells of approaching death, It tells how to live. It never speaks of misfortune ahead of us. It always tells of what move to make or what business to begin or pursue to be prosperous.”
So are we to expect that an all-powerful entity or energy speaks quietly? If it’s all that powerful shouldn’t there be a grand entrance like we’ve seen in epic Hollywood movies, with volume to shake the roof? True power doesn’t have to run us over. As my friend, Jaye Taylor, once told me, “God can’t speak to us when we’re noisy.” The concept of power being loud, harsh, physical and invasive is a product of our male-dominated, testosterone-driving western culture, e.g., big pickup trucks with huge tires and a loud muffler equate to “Boy, am I something!”
God doesn’t have overcompensation issues. The power of which Mrs. Hopkins speaks does not have any need to prove itself to anyone. The confidence and power of Spirit is not dependent upon the outside approval or accreditation of others, and neither does our power need to be. If we are taking time to admit to ourselves our heart’s desire; if we are being honest to ourselves our true abilities; then, and only then, will we be made aware of the still small voice, our intuition or just a gut feeling about a decision or our next step.
We have within us the power to change our life and the wisdom to know that the change can come about. How it will come about is revealed when we open ourselves up to that inner wisdom. Perhaps this week you might want to become more consciously aware of how you feel about situations, people and events. I’m not suggesting that you act on your first impulse, but I am proffering the possibility of giving more attention to passing thoughts as evidence of inner guidance, your own still small voice. Maybe you’ll hear something that “clicks” in a song on the radio. You might suddenly think to turn left when you normally turn right on your way to work. The still small voice within each of us is speaking all the time – are you speaking the same language as it is? Could you be available to hear what your intuition has to say? Would you be willing, just for fun, to see what that’s like?
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,

Feel free to forward this to someone you love!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Not Choosing Is Choosing

Have you ever had a decision to make in your life and just can’t figure out what to do? It might be as simple as what movie to see with a friend or it could be making a major career move. I know in my own life there have been times I over-analyzed a situation to the point that I thought my brain was going to explode, but still didn’t have a solution that I felt good about.
When Ernest Holmes said, “Change your thinking, change your life,” he was talking about making choices. We can’t change anything in our lives without making a conscious or unconscious choice to do so. I would proffer to you that making active, informed choices is preferable over reacting like we were a piece of machinery. Gary Zukav wrote that if we make conscious choices we evolve consciously. The opposite is also true.
In his book, “The Art of Uncertainty,” Dennis Merritt Jones wrote, “You can run but you cannot hide because making choices is not an option.” The question arises, Isn’t not choosing an option for us?” Jones says “no” and I agree. During my early training in the teachings of New Thought, one of my teachers said simply, “Not choosing is choosing.” I didn’t understand that at all at the time. I figured that if I didn’t decide then someone else would decide for me, eliminating the need to make a decision, e.g. let my partner or friend choose the movie. That act, though it seems passive – dare we say “victim” in some choices? – is quite active and IS choosing. We are choosing not to choose.
In this case what we are doing is choosing to allow someone else to have power in our lives, to allow the will and whim of another person to have control over our present life and quite possibly our future outcomes. That’s a lot of power to give away. It also sets us up for disappointment if our plan was to play the victim game. We can’t be a victim because we volunteered for the outcome by not making the choice ourselves. In other words, allowing the other person to choose the movie doesn’t give me the right to complain about how it was the wrong choice!
This week endeavor to make conscious, informed choices. If the time to choose doesn’t feel right to you, then perhaps the decision can be put off. If not, the wisdom of my mother as I was growing up applies:  “When in doubt, don’t.”
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,


Thursday, May 01, 2014

The Power of Saying "Yes"

Have you ever wanted something – REALLY wanted something! – but, when it was placed before you there was a moment of hesitation before you accepted it? It’s happened to me. It seems that many of us have a problem saying “yes.” We can be so focused on needing something in our lives that when it (whatever “it” is) appears we find ourselves questioning the arrival. The packaging (or the form in which our good comes to us) may not look like what we expected. It may come quicker than we thought possible. We might even avoid accepting our good because we feel unworthy. So let’s look at some of the reasons that stops us from saying “yes” to life and how to be more receptive to our good.
  • ·       Packaging – Wow…that’s a big one in my history. The example I use is the man who asks for help and it comes from the most unexpected source – the mother-in-law he can’t stand! My personal favorite was perfect, Divine Right guidance that came from an ex-lover who owed me money. Accept THAT one! It wasn’t easy, since he had no intention of repaying me, but by gritting my teeth I got the answer I needed to return to “yes,” meaning peace of mind.
  • ·       Immediate demonstration – I love this one and, again, I must tell a story on myself about it. I had been dating the man who is now my partner for a little over a year. We had “that talk” and decided we wanted to make a go of it (guess it worked as that was nearly 10 years ago). That meant I had to move, so I put in a transfer with my company at the time, expecting it to take about a year. Instead, I got my transfer in less than a month. We panicked. I panicked! Should I say “no” to the transfer? A wise friend said, “Let me get this straight. You asked God to provide for you. God did, and now you are going to thumb your nose at the Universe because it happened quicker than your little mind thought possible. Is that about it?” I took the transfer.
  • ·       Unworthiness – Here’s where self-doubt comes into play. We may, for whatever reason – the perfect daily guide, a friend’s encouragement, etc – decide, “Darn it! I’m going to DO this!” whatever “this” is. We pray, we meditate, we make plans and create a goal list and VOILÁ! The object of our desire is before us. The logical thing to do is open our arms wide, embrace the gift and give thanks. But we don’t always do that, do we? Sometimes it’s packaging or timing, but often it can be that now that the object of our desire is before us we start to feel shame, unworthiness or guilt.

Let’s not forget the role that wisdom plays in the power of “yes.” There are some people who tell us to say “Yes!” to everything. I’m not opposed to accepting my good, in fact I welcome it. But let’s understand that if someone suggests you walk out in front of a bus with him, or accept a poisonous snake as a gift, we acknowledge that what we really mean to say “Yes!” to everything that is for our highest good. It’s the process of implied wisdom, using our past experiences in life for a beneficial present and future.
Here’s another way of looking at this. We have enough Easter candy in the house right now to start our own dollar store. If I say “Yes!” to my ever-present chocolate cravings every time I pass by the kitchen counter I’ll soon not fit between the counter and the frig. As my chiropractor (a bodybuilder) pointed out to me recently, I can’t be tempted if it’s not there. Well, there is THAT! But, for now, the candy IS there. I get to decide (on a most frequent schedule) to say “yes” or “no” to yet another piece of chocolate. Based on the way my suit felt yesterday when I wore it I’m choosing to say “no” more often. What “candy of instant gratification” is calling to you right now?
Here’s a suggestion for you to play with over the next week based on the three points outlined above. First, be sure that you really want something before you ask for it and be willing to accept it without deciding exactly how it’s supposed to show up. Second, open the space to accept your good a whole lot quicker than you might be able to imagine. And, third, receive your good with grace and appreciation, knowing that if it’s presented to you that it’s yours to claim! Care to give that a try?
In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,