Who We Were Created to Be

Self-awareness is having a clear and realistic perception of who you are. By Madeline Johnson

I have started a self-awareness journal. This is not an ordinary journal, it is a journal dedicated to understanding myself. There are no favorite quotes, stream of consciousness thoughts or long bucket lists. No, it is simply a daily awareness of what it means to be me. What it means to feel the way I feel, think the way I think and live the way I live.

I record nothing else but self-knowledge in this book. This includes answers to questions like – Who am I? Why am I here? What do I think my calling is? What excites me? What do I believe would be really interesting and intriguing to do next? 

The essence of knowledge is self-knowledge. 

-Plato

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One of my favorite questions to ask myself – What would really excite me? What experience could I have that would really get me going, really blow my mind?

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I think one of the experiences I would like to have is to venture off around the world on a discovery to find the most interesting spiritual leaders and shamans that are alive today. I would love to sit with them, interview them, spend a day doing their daily practice with them.  It would be magnificent to find out how they acquired their practice and the paths they took to get there.

Pathways by Henri David Thoreau

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Self-awareness is having a clear and realistic perception of who you are. Self-awareness is not about uncovering a deep dark secret about yourself, but understanding who you are, why you do what you do, how you do it, and the impact this has on others.

Featured Artist

Anthony Rondinone is an artist who was born and raised in the Bronx.

Navigating Life From The Heart

When I remove my fears, frustrations, anger, worry and remorse from the moment, all I have left is this perfect moment.  By Madeline Johnson

Here is what my heart told me today.

The day must start and end with peace.

All the middle minutes, calm.

All is at peace. Do not disturb. Do not disturb this peace with doubts.

This peace is natural. Everything is already ideal. There is nothing to fix.

Everything is good.

It is I who disturbs this peace with my anxiousness.

My heart told me so.

Do not bring the anxious and questioning to every moment of existence.

My heart told me to back off. Let it be. Do not step into the moment with any judgement.

No judgement about about him, her or here.

Respect all around me. Appreciate everyone and everything. Yes even the difficult.

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Just as it is.

Reality is not for me to judge or disagree with.

My heart told me to speak less. Just observe. Observe and respect. Appreciate.

This frees up so much of the energy to be me. To be love. To imprint upon the moment, the essence of acceptance.

Do not fill the silence with words. No need.

Look at this perfect moment without my fear and my worries and angst.

It is perfect.

When I remove my fears and frustrations from the moment,

all I have left is perfect peace.

 

Look at every path closely and deliberately. Try it as many times as you think necessary. Then ask yourself, and yourself alone, one question. . . 

Does this path have a heart?

If it does, the path is good; if it doesn’t, it is of no use.

– Carlos Castaneda

And may I add dear Carlos – can we imprint more heart on the path?

 

 

 

Featured Art

Veks Van Hillik on Instagram (cover)

Jerico Santander on Instagram (2nd)

Self-Renewal

Your higher voice needs to be listened to. It is the one with the best advice.  By Madeline Johnson

This new chapter of my life is called smiling again.

The truth is, everything will be okay, as soon as you are okay with everything. 

– Michael Singer, author of The Untethered Soul

Reinventing yourself begins by slowing down. Being at peace. Staying calm.

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But how does one learn to chill out?  A 3-minute listen to the wisdom of Jordan Bach here.

Your higher voice needs to be listened to. It is the one with the best advice.  In the past two weeks my inner, deeper, more knowing voice told me loud and clear – do not complain and do not doubt.

Consult not your fears, but your hopes and dreams.

Think not about your frustrations, but about your unfulfilled potential.

Concern yourself not with what you tried and failed in, but with what it is still possible for you to do.

Pope John XXIII

 

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Featured Artwork on Instagram

 

 

Not Knowing, Always Growing

Continue to build trust in your intuition, but let your life unfold from truth, not from fear. By Madeline Johnson

I’m letting go of my tendency to make assumptions about my life because they lead to nightmares, fairytales and made up scenarios that form my future. I don’t have a crystal ball and I am not psychic.  I continue to build trust in my intuition, but I want my life to unfold from truth, not from fear.

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I believe the practice of remaining curious and open minded will serve me well.

Learn, grow, evolve.

It’s okay not to know.

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Today is the first day of a deep dive into knowing myself better.

  1. What am I good at?
  2. What am I so-so at?
  3. What am I bad at?
  4. What makes me tired?
  5. What is the most important thing in my life?
  6. Who are the most important people in my life?
  7. How much sleep do I need?
  8. What stresses me out?
  9. What relaxes me?
  10. What’s my definition of success?
  11. What type of worker am I?
  12. How do I want others to see me?
  13. What makes me sad?
  14. What makes me happy?
  15. What makes me angry?
  16. What type of person do I want to be?
  17. What type of friend do I want to be?
  18. What do I think about myself?
  19. What things do I value in life?
  20. What makes me afraid?

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What am I happy about in my life now? …

What am I excited about in my life now? …

What am I proud about in my life now? …

What am I grateful about in my life now? …

What am I enjoying in my life right now?

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Read 

Darius Foroux process for self awareness

Featured Artist  

Mariano Peccinetti

A Change of Scene

We should challenge ourselves to create a vision of our future that is grander and greater than our current environment and circumstances.  By Madeline Johnson

The best way to predict your future is to create it from the unknown.

– Dr. Joe Dispenza

Parts of me are very tired of my life. Some parts are bored, other parts are fed up and perhaps some parts very disappointed. That’s not to say I am a sad and disheartened person. Absolutely not.  I am proud of some of my accomplishments and grateful for what I have.  It’s just that I am not completely satisfied with where I am right now.

How about you? Are you where you want to be?

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As Dr. Joe Dispenza explains, true change begins when we start to challenge old thinking and rewire our brains by learning something new.

My personal goals . . .

  • To overcome my subconscious thoughts
  • To modify my automatic habits and behaviors
  • To examine the emotions that drive my day
  • To script a new vision of my life

Read: Becoming Supernatural

I am tired of thinking the same thoughts, making the same choices, behaving in the same manner and reproducing the same experiences day in and day out.

I am challenging myself to create a vision of my future that is grander and greater than my current environment and circumstances.

Featured Artwork

@magic.spleen

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Clarity About Your Contribution

I believe if we can share what we have learned along the way, we might be able shed light on the dark edges of the path for others. By Madeline Johnson

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.  

-Anne Frank

I keep telling myself, “you can’t do everything, but you can do something.”  My issue, is scattered energy. I struggle with staying focused and seeing things through. I start, I stop and I keep bouncing around from one great idea to another. Everything and nothing excites me all at once.

It’s probably why I am reading Michael Singer’s The Untethered Soul for the third time. The only thing I can do is laugh at myself. Such a beautiful mess.

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Seeking More Clarity About My Contribution

So, of course I was inspired by Jordan Bach today. Yet another one of you on the world wide web sharing wisdom and inspiration. I am in awe.

Jordan encourages his community to petition God, the Universe, their Higher Power for more clarity about their contribution to the world.  What is it that you want me to do with these gifts I am not sure I actually have?

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Jordan guides us to believe that only loving thoughts are true.  The rest of your fear-based spin outs, that “negative thinking” thing we all do – the “doubting thing” that is  simply false and harmful?

We must remember no amount of negativity will serve us well at all.

To Be Such A Beautiful Mess

We are all human, and to be human is a very complex way to be. Most of our lives are messy.  Some of us have created a more beautiful mess than others, but a mess just the same.

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The question is, as you become more centered and grounded, as you get closer to what your unique contribution looks and feels like – are you going to share your mess or are you going to share your message?

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Are you sharing the grace and illumination you have received from the pain you have suffered?  This, I believe is a hint, a God wink, to where your contribution might reside.

I believe if we can share what we have learned along the way, we might be able shed light on the dark edges of the path for others.

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Inspiration

Wisdom of the Oracle cards

Jordan Bach

 

Featured Artist

Irina Silviu

 

Chasing What You Already Are

What happens around you is out of your control. What happens within you is yours to own. By Madeline Johnson

Words from the masters of mystical experiences. From those that have sought after and achieved a true shift in consciousness. Thoughts from Eckhart Tolle, Sadhguru, Adyashanti, Mooji. . . .

What you are chasing is what you are.”

If you wish to find truth you must vanish.”

The one who is searching is in his own way.

I often wonder, what keeps us from moments of true awakening? Are we not all capable of daily moments of grace?

The idea of achieving a heart-felt revelation becomes even more distant, seems even more impossible, when one feels angry, threatened, let down, provoked.  When one holds a heart of embittered, annoyed and withdrawn emotion.

How then can we get closer to peace? Perhaps by loosening the tightness and remembering. . . .

What happens around you is out of your control.

What happens within you is yours to own.

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So often, when we become angry, frustrated and disappointed with the things that happen in our lives, we begin to interpret those events and identify with the destructive self-talk inside of our heads.
We listen to the automatic, compulsive narration that acts as a running commentary over everything happening in our lives.  The script that we create to give these events more meaning. The stories we tell ourselves to help manipulate our way through them.
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Many of our ideas and beliefs about ourselves and the world are so deeply ingrained that we are unaware that they are beliefs and take them, without question, for the absolute truth. 

-Rupert Spira
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Featured Artwork
Aykut Aydogdu was born in 1986, Ankara – Turkey. He started studying Fine Arts at high school and graduated from Faculty of Fine Arts – Graphic Design. He has various works on commercial illustrations, magazine covers, movie posters. His surreal figurative works are mainly concentrated on the dilemmas of the daily life.

What We Learn Along the Way

Life happens. Life teaches. 
Some of the most important things I have learned along the way. By Madeline Johnson

Life happens. Life teaches. We live and we learn.

Some of the most important things I have learned along the way.

Life can be unpredictable. The weather can get dark and stormy.  Clouds roll in. No matter what happens, be prepared and stay centered. Don’t let every little thing that happens throw you off balance.  You get to decide what rocks your boat, what drives you crazy.

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Pay attention to the details. Sloppy and fast requires do overs. You don’t want to have to redo what you didn’t want to tackle in the first place.

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Sometimes that thing we don’t want to do – what must be done. Do your best and move on. 

We don’t listen deeply enough to each other. Communicate clearly and elegantly. Get your point across. When it’s your turn to listen, listen with all of your senses. 

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Most of us want bad situations to be over as soon as possible. We will do anything to escape confrontation. We just want to move on. Sometimes they take time to work out. Patience really is a virtue.

When bad things happen, it’s even more important to take extra good care of yourself. Provision yourself well –  to ride out the storm. 

Think long and hard before you say yes to commitments. Especially long term commitments.

Don’t rush into relationships or situations. Weigh your decisions carefully. Uncover the truth, then take smart, calculated risks.

Always remain grateful, even when all you have is just a little.

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You don’t know what you or someone else is capable of doing until they’re really desperate.

Pay attention to your life. Don’t be lazy. Do what needs to be done now.

We are never really blind-sided. Heed the warning signs. Examine the red flags. Listen to the small pains that can become big headaches. Don’t wait. Act now.

Focus on the good that is happening in your life, even when times are dark and bleak.

We all lie. We lie to ourselves. Big lies, small lies, white lies, dark lies. We deceive each other. We do this because we don’t want to hurt ourselves or others. Face the truth. The truth will set you free. Seek what is fact, not fiction in life.

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Most of us see situations the way we want them to be, instead of how they truly are – stay in reality.  Reality may be harsh, but it is your friend

Know that when someone is lashing out in anger, they are usually very sad and frightened. 

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Featured Art

Anna Tsvell Anna’s surreal portraits are full of bohemian melancholy mood. She paints women of almost alien appearance which makes her portraits extremely recognizable and attractive for the art collectors all over the world.
Long curved necks ,chaotically combined parts of the face and body (since summer 2018) are the main distinctive features of Anna’s remarkable style .

 

 

Too Busy To Feel

Why don’t we honor what it means to be a feeling, thinking being? By Madeline Johnson

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The consequences of emotional avoidance are usually worse than the experience of what we try to avoid.

What avoiding your emotions does –

  • Reinforces the idea that discomfort/distress/anxiety is “bad” or “dangerous.” It reduces your ability to face and tolerate necessary pain.
  • Limits your ability to fully experience the present moment.
  • Keeps you from moving toward the important, valued aspects of life.
  • Often leads to suffering: addiction, helplessness, hopelessness, depression, damaged relationships, and lost opportunities.

Read More How Avoiding Emotions Keeps Them High Intensity

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The ways in which we hold ourselves back by running from our feelings.

  • Situational: avoiding people, places, or things
  • Cognitive: avoiding thoughts, images, or memories
  • Somatic: avoiding unpleasant physical sensations
  • Protective: avoiding uncertainty through frequent checking, procrastinating, or assurance seeking
  • Substitution: avoiding by numbing, suppressing, addictive behaviors, or replacement emotions (i.e., replacing shame with anger)

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Those moments when you are just too busy to feel, but your emotions leak through anyway.

  • Will you love me if I’m boring?
  • I just feel helpless not being able to help you.
  • Why do I feel guilty letting you know what I need to be happy?

Why don’t we honor what it means to be a feeling, thinking being?

What if we were to embrace all of these feelings instead?

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These feelings are signals for growth. Eventually, you will have to walk through that door. These emotions you are running from are your keys to freedom. Let them guide you to do everything you don’t want to do.

Read Richard J. Davidson’s The Emotional Life of Your Brain

Featured Artwork

Liquid PinkContemporary and surreal digital collage art and photo manipulation by Gaia Barnatan. Based in Byron Bay, Australia.

The Messy Process of Loving Yourself

Learning to love and respect yourself isn’t something that you decide to do one day. It’s a daily practice. By Madeline Johnson

Learning to love and respect yourself isn’t something that you decide to do one day. It’s a daily practice. Self-acceptance requires patience and practice and maybe even managing those great expectations you have for yourself while holding onto your standards.

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Expectations can sometimes get in the way of lessons and joy found in unexpected experiences.

-George Leonard, Poet/Philosopher and the granddaddy of the consciousness movement.

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To be unaware of our irrationality and

derangement of our own thoughts

is what keeps us stuck.

Read More: The Three Levels of Self-Awareness by Mark Manson

An argument for loving and accepting yourself . . .

When we refuse to accept ourselves as we are, then we return to the constant need for numbing and distraction. And we will similarly be unable to accept others the way they are, so we will look for ways to manipulate them, change them, or convince them to be a person they are not. Our relationships will become transactional, conditional, and ultimately toxic and fail.

Go deeper into learning about how to better handle adversity in your life. Read his book The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck.

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Featured Art

Leif is an artist and Creative Director. His work explores themes of connectedness, the relevance of nature and the psychedelic experience. By utilizing these subjects he attempts to inspire the viewer into a realignment with themselves and their surroundings.