Authentically Humble

The world would benefit if we were all a bit more authentically humble, for this living is a joint affair. It’s an agreement to exist together and to work together and dare I say thrive together.  I won’t just tolerate you. I see you. I feel you and through knowing  you, I’m beginning to know more of me.

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If I listen deeper with more of an open heart, I may be able to hear the things you are too vulnerable to to say. I want to understand what you are going through too.

For what you are struggling with –  is also mine. Not to carry, but to respect.

By honoring you, I humble me. I strengthen me.  It makes this living thing, a lot easier to do.

Being humble does not mean you are meek, small or invisible. It doesn’t mean you are  silent or that you should stand by the sidelines of life.

A vulnerable and humble being has the strength of character to realize that they don’t know all the answers. They are strong, fluid and connected to others.

The act of humility allows for openness of communication and knows that good ideas can come from anyone. A humble human doesn’t brag about accomplishments. They act with decisiveness and integrity, and inspire through actions and not publicity.

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Read more: Jocko Willink’s Extreme Ownership

Featured Artist

Yoko Kimiko on Instagram @robot_minds

Silent, Still & Open

I am removing what I thought was protecting my heart from being broken one more time. So the love can flow through.  Madeline Johnson

Psychological resistance is like an invisible wall that stands between who we are and who we want to become.

I want to be open to receiving more love.

We resist because we fear. We construct our own invisible walls of impossibility. We do this in all aspects of our lives, but the wall that can be the biggest barrier to our growth is the one we put between us and our relationships.

We need each other to survive.

Whatever you call the wall,  the emotional armor, the fence and property line that separate our thoughts and feelings from those of other people. Sometimes these boundaries keep us locked in, stunted and unable to grow.

I’m taking down my wall, brick by brick.  It starts with me.

No more interrupting what others have to say or predicting what might happen. No looking for fault lines in their character, or scanning for clues for what might hurt me in the future.

No scanning for threats and no rushing to move things along.

Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience.

– Ralph Waldo Emerson

I let go of unmet expectations and realize that a bit of stress is another way of showing I care.

I am not going to even try to control the conversation and I will remember it’s not only my time, it’s your time. It’s this moment.

Opening to love.

I am removing what I thought was protecting my heart from being broken one more time. So the love can flow through.

I won’t interrupt. I will stop ending moments before they have had a chance to begin.

I remain curious, looking for signs of love. Clues along the way.

Expecting more love from all.

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Featured Artist

Maki Itanami 

 

How To Face Your Day

Gently mold and shape your conditions to fit your current needs while using the tools that God has given us. The tools of free will, reasoning and intuition.

There are a multitude of ways that you can show up for your life each day.

You can resign to your life and continue to adapt to your current conditions, no matter how unsuitable they may be. You can move through your day with resignation. You have a choice you know,  you can show up as the victim, if that is what you want to be.

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Or you can be fierce and fiery and self-righteous as you attempt to muscle your way through your day. As you make big attempts to control every aspect of your life; white knuckling your way through the day with worry and fear.

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Or you can gently mold and shape your conditions to fit your current needs while using the tools that God has given us. The tools of free will, reasoning and intuition.  You can do this by remaining calm and empty of your ego and co-creating with the spirit of God in your heart.

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Featured Art

@eugeseveso

 

Trust Not The Theater of The Mind

Learning how to relax and be calm is one of the best ways to find peace in your life. By Madeline Johnson

It happens to all of us. We get caught up in our own drama. Most of the time we are doing one thing, but thinking about another. We are driving the car but thinking about how we have to work over the weekend. We are making dinner but fighting with our ex about how it was their fault. We are meeting with a friend over cocktails but were wondering if were going to meet “the one” tonight.

We are every where but here and the last thing we are is relaxed in our own skin.

We aren’t calm, centered and balanced. Every time we get caught up in the frenzy and fantasy, the theater of our mind, we abort ourselves from reality.

And like any good theater production, the dialogue around drama in our mind is powerful.

There aren’t many peaceful, calm moments in our mind, but we all yearn for them.

Evidently, the search engine query “How to be calm all the time” is a very popular one.  Now why would that be?

It turns out one of the biggest stressors is lack of money. Yes, money is the biggest source of stress for Americans, research shows. Indeed, a survey by Northwestern Mutual found that money was the dominant source of stress for 44% of Americans, followed by the 25% who said personal relationships, and just 18% blaming work. And data from the American Psychological Association also shows that money is the No. 1 stressor for Americans: “Regardless of the economic climate, money and finances have remained the top stressor since our survey began in 2007,” the results revealed.

We all know what stress can do to us. Read more about how chronic stress can debilitate your life, and is the main cause of chronic health conditions and addictions here.

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It seems that so many people are seeking that sense of peace throughout their day, including myself.

We want that feeling that everything is okay, I can take care of it all and I can stay confident, balanced, and chill while I am doing it.  We are all looking for ways to be calm in all sorts of situations. Search engine queries around staying calm and centered also include. . .

How to be calm during an interview.

How to be calm at work.

How to be calm and collected.

How to be calm during a presentation.

How to be calm before a test.

How to be calm and assertive.

How to be calm before surgery.

We are all looking for just a beautiful sense of centered peace and being. Leo Babauta of Zen Habits has some very good advice about how to stay calm. Read here.

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Featured Artist

Alia Josephine Fawaz on Instagram @goastray_stayaskew

 

Our Extraordinary Potential

How do we awaken our extraordinary potential in everyday life? We must believe before we begin. By Madeline Johnson

How do we awaken our extraordinary potential in everyday life? We must believe before we begin. We strengthen our core and explore the limitless possibilities of who we can become. In the words of Jim Morrison, “We break on through to the other side.” 

You and only you are the composer of your inner harmony.

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Ordinary riches can be stolen but real riches cannot.

In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be take from you.

– Oscar Wilde

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It’s all about your approach and attitude.

I don’t play accurately – any one can play accurately – but I play with wonderful expression.   

Read  The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde

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The big question is whether you are going to be able to say a hearty yes to your adventure. 

– Joseph Campbell

 

Featured Artist on Instagram @slimesunday

Dr. Joe Dispenza is a synthesizer of information with a vision that extends beyond the confines of a single, scientific discipline. Drawing from diverse fields of epigenetics , molecular biology, neurocardiology, and quantum physics.

 

What Changes Everything

Before you try to mold or change anyone in your life again, take a look at yourself and work on your own. By Madeline Johnson

When you are no longer able to change a situation, you are challenged to change yourself. And that changes everything.  – Marc & Angel

It is better to pay attention to the harmony and disharmony within yourself and eliminate the impossible task of trying to control and shape others.

Before you try to mold, shape or change another person in your life again, take a look at yourself and work on that which needs adjustment in your own life.

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Stop trying to control that which you cannot. Focus on the things within yourself that you can change.

Controlling your own behavior . . .

  • Your present and future behavior,
  • How you respond to the behavior of others,
  • How you spend your time,
  • Who you spend time with, the friends you keep, your participation and behavior in relationships,
  • How you apply your talents and strengths.
  • The strengths you choose to acquire, develop, and apply.
  • Initiative, drive, commitment, tenacity, focus,
  • Who waits for whom,
  • The promises you keep, and the people you betray,
  • Your level of nutrition and fitness,
  • Habits, both good and bad
  • The choices you make,
  • Preparations and plans you make,
  • Impulse control,
  • Integrity, authenticity, congruence, reciprocity
  • The path you take,
  • Your behaviors that annoy others,
  • Where you live, where you work, where you play, your career,
  • The responsibility you take for yourself, and who you choose to blame,
  • When you appease, when you acquiesce, when obey, when you submit, when you rebel, when you protest, and when you blow the whistle.
  • Where you shop, how you spend, and how you save,
  • When and how you use your power.
  • Reappraise, apologize, forgive, let go, and take responsibility for yourself.
  • Deciding to do your best, or less than your best.

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What you communicate to others . . .

    • What you say, how you say it, who you say it to, and when you say it,
    • The authenticity of your expression,
  • Who you greet, and how you greet them,
  • Facial expressions, body language, gestures, posture,
  • Grooming, dress, and personal hygiene,
  • The attitude you project,
  • What you write, say, and share,
  • Who you include and who you exclude,
  • Your public image,
  • The topics you avoid, and those you engage, when you are patient, when you show impatience.
  • Authentic information or deceptive, manipulative, incomplete, or disingenuous disinformation.
  • The promises you make, when you say “Yes”, and when you say “No”.
  • Who you like, who you trust, who you dislike, who you distrust,
  • The symmetry of the power relationships, including: deference, respect, fawning, condescension, leadership, or disrespect.
  • Who you show respect to and who you are disrespectful of,
  • What you are willing to tolerate, and what you take a stand on,
  • Who you interrupt and who you allow to interrupt you.
  • The trust you extend and the trust you earn.

What you know . . .

  • Facts you have gathered,
  • Understanding,
  • The evidence you consider,
  • The theory of knowledge you use to choose your beliefs.
  • Expertise, skills, and how you apply your talents,
  • Literacy, logic, quantitative skills, domain knowledge,
  • What you study, read, listen to, and learn,
  • What you question and what you accept,
  • Your self-image, including your understanding of your authentic self.

How you think . . .

  • Your values and goals.
  • What you believe,
    • stereotypes,
    • religious beliefs,
    • loyalty
  • The assumptions you make, the questions you ask,
  • Who you trust,
  • The points of view you adopt,
  • What you value, how you evaluate information, the priorities you set, what you want.
  • The focus of your attention, what you regard as important and what you regard as unimportant, your priorities.
  • Your mood, attitude, and point of view,
  • Your explanatory style; optimistic or pessimistic,
  • The alternatives you generate and consider,
  • How you balance inquiry and advocacy,
  • Your level of innovation,
  • Your compassion, empathy, and understanding of others.
  • Your level of skepticism, and openness to new ideas
  • Interest, investigation, imagination, and curiosity,
  • How you choose friends and who you regard as friends,
  • Who you choose as enemies, and who you fear,
  • Your willingness or refusal to hate others,
  • Who you love and who you decide to hate.
  • How you learn,
  • Your level of emotional competency.
  • The integrated and introjected regulations you maintain and respond to.

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What you hope, dream, and aspire to:

  • Your goals,
  • Your hopes and aspirations,
  • Your role models.

This post was wildly inspired by Leland Beaumont

Inspired Reading  Self Reliance by Ralph Waldo Emerson

Getting Back to Happy by Marc & Angel

You can’t control everything that happens to you in this crazy world, but you can control your response to it. Marc and Angel provide a grace-filled guide to navigate life and find happiness regardless of your circumstance.”
—Joshua Becker, founder of Becoming Minimalist and author of The More of Less

Featured Artwork

Denis Sheckler

Waiting For What We Want

Nobody likes to wait for what they want. Sometimes waiting can drive us crazy. Most often we must honor the holy rhythm of God’s timing. By Madeline Johnson

Nobody likes to wait for what they want. Sometimes waiting can drive us absolutely crazy.  Be patient, they will tell you. Screw you, is what you’re thinking.

Patience isn’t for those who simply place their hands in the air and let fate have its way. No, patience is a choice, a proactive way to approach the waiting game.  Patience becomes palatable when we combine it with gratitude and then continue to seek that which makes us happy, (yes even during the less than optimal circumstances of waiting).

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Most importantly we must remember to honor the holy rhythm of God’s timing. We must surrender to this waiting.

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It’s a cycle really. 

Expecting things to happen quickly makes us impatient, when things take longer we get angry and getting angry makes things seem like they take forever.

Read:  Our Brains Hate Waiting @SmithsonianMag

An interesting fact about waiting. The French word for waiting is “to attend”.

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While most of us cannot stand the notion of having to wait for what we want, perhaps the waiting, what we deem as the “wasted” time between what we don’t have and what we want, can be used for attending to what must be done. 

Perhaps, this annoying waiting is a gift. A give of time to attend to all that you should be taking care of before, you receive that which what you have been waiting for.

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Waiting gives you time to plan. Time to prepare for the worst and anticipate the best.

Waiting can be your weapon. As you wait, more and more possibilities open up to you. Options appear out of no where (if you let them).

You can go this way, or that way.  You can have this or you can have that. Time seems to expand opportunities.

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Surrendering to Serenity

The mere act of surrendering to the notion of waiting . . .actually leads to serenity. So the next time someone says to you as you worry while you wait, “let it go” . . . really let. it. go.

This letting go, the releasing of your tight grip. . . all that “worrying to try to control”  . . .  is actually quite liberating.

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Sometimes we try to think away the wait.  Our mind cleverly tries to coach us to be patient and we pray, pray, pray. That is all well and good, but we don’t always have to rely on our thoughts to comfort us. We can sit patiently and celebrate the silence in-between the thoughts, so we may attend to our soul.

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Featured Artwork

Eyes Like The Sky on Instagram

Evolving to Resolve Ourselves

There is nothing more thoughtless than a life unexamined. Make some time in your day to confront your existence. By Madeline Johnson

Three simple ways to have a more interesting and enriching life.

Tell the truth.

Say what you mean.

Don’t do things you hate.

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Thoughts about turning your

resentment into resilience.

A recipe for becoming a self-reliant, immovable force.

We all want to feel strong, empowered, confident and ready to take the world head on, but more often than not, we are a mixed bag of worry and concern about our day-to-day existence.  It’s time to make some time.

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There is nothing more thoughtless than a life unexamined. Make some time in your day to confront your existence. Think about the people and problems in your life that you believe are holding you back, weighing you down and making you miserable.

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Step 1

Separate fact from fiction. Think objectively about why you are feeling burdened. If you are bitter, angry or believe that life should be treating you better, examine that.  If your heart is hardening and you are disenfranchised with the world, proceed with intelligent caution.  Strive to understand that part of the problem might be you. Maybe you just need to grow up, mature a little.  Perhaps you are whining about your resentment towards someone, instead of truly owning and accepting your part. How can you be better, stronger, smarter about this problem? Stand up for your better self.

Step 2

Humbly face your enemies and your problems in a brave new way. Once you have sorted out the part you are playing in the anger game and you are ready to own that bit of it, you must know what you want and need and have the courage to ask for it.   You cannot move forward without first forgiving yourself and making a pact with your soul never to betray yourself again.  Next. Do the thing that most of us never want to do. Pick the right place and the right time and humbly open up and confront those who aren’t respecting you. So often we play out conversations in our heads, but we don’t actually have them. We aren’t brave enough to actually speak the words. It’s time to learn how to do just that. Let others know what you need and specifically what would make the situation better.

Step 3

Then put it down. Shed those past grievances. Release your clenching grip of control. Practice and proceed with intelligent caution. Start fresh and move forward with realistic optimism about your future.

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Featured Artwork

Welderwings

 

 

Reinventing Your Life

The two things you need to know about reaching your goals. Where you are going and that you are going to get there. By Madeline Johnson

Some days you may feel like a ship lost at sea without a rudder. Directionless and powerless. Like a fish out of water, floundering.

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And some days it is perfectly fine to be lost, to wander, to float . . . . until you stumble upon that thing. . . . you have a breakthrough, and an idea,  and you discover that dream you really want to do.

quotes about mothers lds Luxury This I remember feeling totally lost and sad when a certain someone

Then you just know.

You know where you are going and that you are going to get there.

 

Read that again: You know the WHERE you want to be and without a doubt that you WILL GET THERE. Just like when you drive to the store at night to get ice cream. You know the flavor you want and you know how delicious it will taste. You even have a plan for your second favorite . . .just in case.

You don’t need to worry about the how. There is no need to know how you are going to get there. That is nonsense. That doesn’t matter as much, because you know there are many roads you can take to where you are going. Some more bumpy and uncomfortable than others. There may even be mountains you need to climb along the way. Some days there will be detours, other days short cuts.

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The secret to success . . .

You know where you are going and that you are going to get there.

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Featured Artist

David Zinn is a street artist specializing in small-scale, improvised and (mostly) light-hearted chalk art.

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.