Friday, December 31, 2010

Traditions and pages, continued

Photo courtesy of
Bing images
I've been revisiting some of my archived posts here at Healing Morning and this is another thought that I didn't think I could improve upon that much.  I'd like to repost it and add something I wrote on my Facebook wall last night.  This may become a new tradition of sorts, we shall see.  This is what I wrote on New Year's Eve, 2010:

As we bid farewell to 2010, despite admittedly challenging moments, what stands out the most for me is that I laughed a LOT during 2010. I am so well blessed with loving friendships & a beautiful family, good health, & a creative, agile mind. I wish for all of us to greet 2011 with an open heart & the excitement & willingness to grab onto Life with both hands, take chances & dare to be happy. Namaste'.    ~ Dawn, 12/31/2010

I've already made my feelings known about making, keeping and/or breaking New Year's Resolutions.  I firmly boycott the idea (see blogpost "Just say 'No!'") of resolutions.  Instead, tonight and as I do every New Year's Eve, I embrace an old Irish tradition.  It is for us to take a moment in the hour prior to midnight and reflect on the people who matter the most to us.  This moment of reflection, according to tradition, ensures that these same people will be present in your New Year.  I have always loved this concept and never fail to dedicate those important moments of reflection.  I have another, more personal tradition of journaling that I will address in a moment, so bear with me!

Of course, the tradition above is more a lyrical, lovely sentiment than any sure promise we will have written in stone.  I am, however, a romantic at heart, so I do not apologize for choosing to believe in the true, mystical power of this type of tradition!  Rather than pesky resolutions I never keep, what better way to greet the New Year than with intentional thought and energy towards having those I love the most in my life in the next calendar year?  I find that a much more logical application of my time and energy!

I always feel so much hope and optimism as we bid farewell to the ending year and prepare to greet the new one.  We are lucky, I think, to stand at the brink of twelve new months full of possibilities, experiences, memories yet to be made, laughter yet to be shared, beautiful sights yet to be witnessed.  Therefore, New Year's Eve, for me at least, is a hopeful, cheerful time. 

If I continue to explore the world around me with an open heart, if I continue to pursue my dreams in 2010 as I have in 2009, I see no way that the New Year can be anything but positive.  Will difficult times visit each of us?  Quite possibly, they will.  We do not exist in limbo, after all, and there is balance in all things.  For now, we have a New Year to celebrate.  The page is blank for all of us, waiting for each hand to scroll out the moments.  I find that exciting, challenging, thought provoking and above all, something to be thankful for.

What will your personal page look like?  Is it plain, ruled white paper?  Maybe handsome, thick vellum that expresses your distinct flair?  Will you write the moments out with traditional black ink pen, or perhaps choose to thumb your nose at tradition and dash out thoughts in bold, unique colors like purple or green?  Are your pages bound in a spiral notebook, practical and sturdy?  Or are they bound in an elegant leather volume that appeals to your sense of quiet, private reverie?  None of these matter - perhaps your pages exist completely in your imagination.  My pages actually exist in corporeal form, in journal format of basic black bound books with unlined pages where I write my moments in clean, black ink.  I have a new book for 2011, waiting to have those new experiences recorded. 

Being the writer I am, I find it appropriate that my New Year's greeting encompasses what some will call a flight of fancy with the tradition expressed above, and also the practice and discipline of writing in longhand, in journal format to begin the journey of a new cycle.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Just say "No!".....

Photo: www.clker.com/clipart-no-sign.html
Update: December 2010
Sometimes I find that I wrote a past blog that I can't improve upon, but that addresses an ongoing yearly issue.  This post is such a one, and rather than try to reinvent my own wheel, I'm just going to re-post this one. :)  Best wishes to everyone for the approaching New Year of 2011!

We're at that inevitable moment approaching the New Year where practically everyone you speak with throws the "What's your New Year's resolution?" question at you.  Don't get me wrong - this practice works for a lot of people to get motivated, start the New Year fresh, get organized and make lists of all the things they plan to accomplish.  I've never embraced the resolution concept because I don't enjoy having something hanging over my head, making me feel obligated to do, be or feel differently on a specific timeline.  To be facetious for a wee moment, I'm more a fan of the "Just say 'No!' to New Year's Resolutions!" mindset.

I am of the opinion that striving to live daily in a conscious manner works better.  This may sound like a cop-out, but the reverse is actually true.  By living consciously, I mean paying attention to my thoughts, my actions, my words, my tone of voice, even my physical movements and the things I eat and drink on a daily basis.  It requires being physically, mentally and emotionally present on a moment by moment basis, again, each and every day.

I can tell you that choosing to embrace this concept is challenging.  There are plenty of days that I fail spectacularly on all of the above.  Those are the days that can be frustrating, yes.  However, the concept of living consciously is not meant to be an onerous task, or an invisible tool with which to torment ourselves.  For me, it is a personal choice to strive each day to be the best version of myself it is possible to accomplish.  On the days that I fall short of my own personal expectations, I am then realistic and kind to myself.  There are going to be those days where things, people, traffic, work, kids, etc., all conspire to make any sane person's head want to spin around on their shoulders.  Bad days happen. 

What I have found, over the years that I began to actively incorporate this practice of living consciously into my daily existence, is that the more you do it, the easier it becomes.  I am fortunate to have a calm, peaceful core nature which serves me well in business situations where various personalities can clash, tempers can fray and power struggles are constant.  At a very young age, something within me recognized that operating in what I call a reactive (i.e., unconscious) manner produced people who walked around in a constant state of dissatisfaction.  I observed, studied, did a lot of thinking and reading and resolved to not be that same reactive type of personality.  Being mindful of my actions is how I chose to live my life, and from that point forward, it has worked for me. 

Does all of this mean I think I shouldn't embrace the New Year's Resolution craze?  Am I saying I'm perfect and not in need of resolving to change certain things?  Of course not - I am far from perfect and certainly it is true that I have my own rough edges in need of smoothing and refining.  I just prefer to address those issues and behaviors on a regular, daily basis, rather than letting it all build up to tackle at the beginning of the New Year.  That way, when the New Year does roll in to greet me, I am able to step forward with enjoyment and not dread some looming list of Have To's that will hang over my head and dog my every waking moment.

This is what works for me, so in a sense, if pushed to write out a resolution for the New Year of 2010, or any future New Year (as I re-post this for the approaching 2011 New Year) it would be to stay true to my convictions and continue to live in the purposeful manner that works well for me.  This works so well for me, in fact, that it is the basis of a manuscript I am writing and have intentions of submitting for publication in the near future, so please stay tuned for news of this!  As this year winds to conclusion, I wish you all the best, brightest approach to the New Year that each of you can imagine for yourselves.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Paper Gift

Photo / Icon courtesy of
Authentic Blogger
 The traditional gift for a first year anniversary is....paper!  How beautifully appropriate this is.  I reacted with a delighted smile when I looked this information up online.  Today is the one year anniversary of my Facebook blogging group, Authentic Blogger.  I co-founded this group with my buddy, Duane Scott, on December 21, 2009.  At the time, he and I were both fairly new at the whole blogging game.  New enough to still be fumbling around and learning a great deal, but by that point we had also both garnered enough experience to recognize some frustrations with the blogging groups we were finding on the internet.  We shared those frustrations via email and phone conversations, until one fateful day, we both asked the question, "Why don't WE create a group?  We could do it differently."

So, that's what we did.  I'll be honest and tell you that neither of us really knew the scope of possibility.  It was a very naive process that stunned us both with the immediate response it received....and continues to receive to this day.  It would not be an understatement to say that in the first week of Authentic Blogger existing, we were getting an enthusiastic response that was slightly overwhelming, but also exciting.  I can't count how often Duane and I emailed, texted and called with "Did you see that?" or "Oh my word, LOOK at how many members we have today!" or "Turn your laptop on and Google us - we exist on the internet and it's beyond cool!" comments.

There have been growing pains in this first year of existence. We've learned as we've gone along, and we've made mistakes here and there.  I am happy to say that we have only had to permanently block/ban two people in this first year, and those were people who were attempting to use our forum to spam members.  We have been very clear from Day One about our Mission Statement.  Authentic Blogger is an online forum created to offer a community for writers/bloggers of all walks of life, where you can meet fellow writers, grow your readership, learn helpful tips, and strenghthen your writing skills. 

We feel that it is important to be authentic in the blogging world, and that means that we do NOT embrace the "if you follow me, I'll follow you" mentality that is so prevalent in the blog-o-sphere.  If you fall into that category, Authentic Blogger group might not resonate for you.  We want people to READ our blogs.  If you're out there focused on merely collecting empty names and not doing any reading of the blogs you follow, how can you expect anyone to spend time reading YOUR content?  With that in mind, we encourage authentic interaction.  Join our group, post your blog links each time you write a new article, meet fellow members and visit their blogs.  If you find content that you enjoy, write thoughtful comments on that blog and follow them.  Reciprocating in this authentic manner, we feel, is the best way to grow your readership and market your blog. 

So, perhaps now you can all see why I smiled when I found that paper is the traditional gift for a one year anniversary.  What could be more apropo for a blogging/writing group anniversary?!  Granted, the process of blogging is an electronic format these days, rather than applying pen to paper in the old fashioned sense, but I still smile at the paper gift idea.  Whether we scratch away at antique vellum with quill pen, or we write with ball point on lined paper, or we tap away on an LED screen with desktop or laptop, or we use the increasingly popular Smart Phone (I'm still resisting that trend myself), writing is writing.  If you are a blogger, writing is part of your very essence.

You probably wake up each day with thoughts to write about.  You probably have inspiration hit in the most unlikely moments and locations, requiring a frantic search for a scrap of paper to jot the thought down before it can disappear at the whim of the Writing Muse.  You probably wrestle with words, juggling and adjusting, tweaking in infinetesimal degrees until the flow suits your preference.  Many of you may dream of being published one fine day.  Many of you are also completely satisfied with the process of just blogging.  Lots of our members have multiple blogs they manage.  Some of you might even make a business out of that type of social media consulting.

Bottom line, if you're a member of Authentic Blogger Facebook Group, you're a specific type of serious writer who cares about the way you craft your blogging image, and who also cares about the way you build your readership.  Our concept resonates with you and you are the reasons our group is still flourishing and growing today, one year later. 

Duane and I had big dreams for Authentic Blogger when we founded the group.  In the past year, some of those dreams have shifted, some have been discarded, and the way we do things has changed several times. There have been many moments of outright hilarity as we wrestled with myriad blogging tools and concepts, and the shared humor kept us going. More changes are inevitable, because Life is always evolving.  My personal wish for the group is that we continue to grow, slowly and surely, attracting similar bloggers who have an equal wish to meet authentic, creative souls.  I also envision Authentic Blogger growing to a larger presence that will provide even more opportunities for all of our members.  How these hopes and dreams will manifest is yet to be realized, and that's half the fun of it for me. 

For now, I am thrilled to say that one year later, Authentic Blogger still exists and is continuing to succeed.  My partnership and friendship with Duane continues to thrive.  My relationships with many of our AB members are equally strong.  Indeed, I have established friendships with many of our members that I am confident will be lifelong connections.  The blogging world has provided amazing, unexpected opportunities for me with my personal blog, and with Authentic Blogger.  Many of these experiences are ones I couldn't have imagined for myself, and believe me, I have a great imagination!  So, a final wish for the future of Authentic Blogger is merely to continue along the same path we've already established.  Growth, surprises, success, friendship...and writing.  I want all of those and I am positive they will occur.

To each and every one of our Authentic Blogger members, I say a sincere and appreciative Thank You for giving us a chance, for sharing your creative talents regularly on our wall, and for continuing to tell your blogging friends about us.  To my AB partner, Duane, thank you for sticking with it, even when it required you to take some deep breaths and add another ball to the pile you were already juggling, and thank you most of all for the shared laughter!  To Dave Roy and Anahid Boghosian, our two wonderful admin friends, thank you for being in the wings, ready to pinch hit for us and join in the ball juggling!

If you're a blogger, or if you enjoy reading blogs, and you stumble across this post in one of the numerous places I'll be routing it, take a moment to visit Authentic Blogger Facebook Group and join us.  I promise you'll be happy you gave it a try.

We are in the week approaching Christmas, and I find it lovely that Duane and I chose, out of the whole calendar year, this particular season to create Authentic Blogger. I think it is a time when the harmony and universal consciousness is at a higher vibration, and I'm sure the date we chose to create this group embued it with a bit of extra sparkle and energy.  Season's Greetings to everyone, from the bottom of my heart.  I look forward to many more years of blogging and friendship with all of you.

Monday, December 13, 2010

The Blogging Class of 2009

Photo courtesy of
Bing images
I began Healing Morning blog in September of 2009.  At the time, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing or where blogging might lead me.  I actually had to get a girlfriend who was familiar with blogging to show me how to set my blog page up.  We met at a local Panera Bread with her laptop and that's how Healing Morning was born.

From there, I bumbled and fumbled my way along, exploring all the infinite details of marketing my blog, gaining readers and followers, adapting various formatting tools to my own needs and learning.  Always learning.  That learning process continues today, more than a year later, and I doubt it will ever end.  Blogging and the blog-o-sphere is a fluid world, ever changing to fit the new dynamics of the internet and new programming brain child creations of widgets, gadgets and flashy fun things.

Around the time of my one year anniversary, or blog-o-versary, I began to realize that many of the dear friends I've made in the blogging world had also created their own blogs around the same time I created Healing Morning.  I still find this to be rather apropo and fascinating.  Was it an accident that we all decided to venture into the world of blogging at the end of the summer of 2009?  I don't think it was an accident at all.  I think there was very sure, clear, beautiful purpose and Divine Order and logic to the whole thing.

We became what I am now calling The Blogging Class of 2009.  In a sense, we all started a new school, just as we did with first grade in elementary school.  These people, regardless of linear age, are my contemporaries in the school of blogging.  We've all struggled with various ephemeral classes such as Content, Marketing, Advertising, Gadgets and Widgets, Embedding Photographs and more.  Some of us turned out to shine more brightly and show more aptitude than others in certain "classes".  We have banded together to support and encourage one another, to cheer one another on with victorious moments, and to be the proverbial hand to hold in sad times.  A few of us have dropped off the face of active blogging, and that's a natural progression to a degree. 

It is said that there are literally millions of "orphan blogs" cluttering up the blog-o-sphere, where people just abandoned the poor things when they found the task of daily maintenance to be too burdensome.  Again, this is a natural occurrence.  As with all things, there is a season.  Some blogs just aren't meant to last forever. 

For the current moment, my Blogging Class of 2009 is still mostly intact.  There is a core group of us who are earnestly tapping away at our keyboards on a regular basis, giving birth and voice to a wide range of topics and mindset on our respective blog pages.  I find it fascinating, how we all migrated together within that one to two month time period of late summer of 2009. 


Photo courtesy of
Authentic Blogger
 Different blogging concepts have been born as a result of all this interaction, with Authentic Blogger Facebook Group being one of them, and one of my own personal proud achievements.  Awards, large and small, have been doled out to many of those in this core group.  I predict that there will be a few breakout stars among us in the future.  Indeed, there are a few who have already gone on to achieve some impressive feats with becoming published authors, or contributing columnists to various high profile online websites.  These achievements make me smile, just as I have experienced when witnessing proud moments of classmates that I grew up with.  In the blogging sense, I continue to grow along with these virtual classmates, and I truly do revel in the victories of my contemporaries.  Success of a blogging nature is contagious, I have found, and it encourages us all to continue writing, striving, dreaming and creating.

Where will this particular, intimate Blogging Class of 2009 grow?  Where will we all land in the creative process?  Personally, I hope there is no evident end in sight for any of us.  I would wish for all of us to endlessly flourish, to continually grow, to tirelessly excel and dream.  What I can say with certainty is that an unseen bond exists between all of us.  I believe we all subconsciously entered the world of blogging for a larger purpose, with one of them being for all of us to connect in this seemingly random manner.  Accidents, my friends, do not exist - I think most of us are aware of this.  The Blogging Class of 2009 happened for a reason.  Great things have come as a result already and more great things will be created in the future. 

As we reach the end of another calendar year, I will very soon celebrate another one year anniversary - that of Authentic Blogger on Facebook.  As the snow falls softly outside my office window tonight, I have been very reflective.  This happens to me every year in December, as I cast my mind back over what I have lived and experienced in the past twelve months.  Through whatever whim of Fate and the Unseen Guiding Hand of Light, I landed right slap in the midst of the Blogging Class of 2009.  I am forever connected to this cozy group of creative, talented, bright individuals and find myself in excellent company.  You all know who you are, and I hope you are smiling as you read this post.  I vote that we create some bumper stickers, maybe a class t-shirt, plan a Senior Trip in three more years, and talk up a class reunion at some point.  This was our Freshman Year, and I believe we have all done ourselves proud with our writing endeavors. 


Well met, Class of 2009....well met, my friends.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

No Mittens Allowed!

Photo courtesy of Bing images
and Stephanie Lynn
A great many blog articles that I write are inspired by random conversations with friends, and this one is no different.  It occurred through a series of emails and blog comments posted between my friend and fellow blogger, Dave Roy (Dave's Buttoned Up Mind blog) and I.  He writes about a lot of tech-ish stuff, video games and such, as well as a fun series on music's one hit wonders.  We're so opposite in writing style, yet we find a great deal to enjoy about one another's respective blogs.  Dave has mentioned a couple times that he appreciates my ability to write long, thoughtful, involved blog posts that flow to the point that he never feels restless or burdened while reading them.

That made me smile, I must say, because every writer dreads hearing that they're writing content so ponderous and lengthy that it is exhausting to their readers to plow through.  I am definitely verbose - I admit this right up front!  In the past, I have actually challenged myself to write tighter content, to produce blog articles that are briefer in format, and I have succeeded.  In fact, some of those examples represent some of my favorite work.  That being said, writing short blog articles isn't all that comfortable for me. There's definitely merit in constantly challenging oneself, as it sharpens the mind and writing skills.  I don't deny that concept, and I do practice restraint much more than anyone could imagine when writing. 

Short articles, however, are not natural to my writing style.  In that conversation with Dave, I likened it to wearing mittens.  For the record, I am not a mitten person.  Not even close!  In fact, I loathe the things.  During my childhood, mittens were the norm for children to wear and actual fingered gloves weren't all that commonly available in stores.  So, mittens prevailed.  My wee hands would be stuffed into those abominations, crammed together and sweating, muffled by the thickly woven material, unable to breathe or FEEL anything.  I would fumble and drop things because my mitten wrapped hands were made clumsy and incapable of securely grasping items, or turning doorknobs, or picking something up.  I absolutely despised it and begged my Mom for fingered gloves every winter, because as the original overly protective single parent, she was determined that we stay bundled up every second we were outside. 

As an adult, regardless of the cold weather, I rarely wear gloves of any type.  In fact, it is rare that I even wear a coat.  East Tennessee has fairly temperate winters these days.  But beyond that, my fingers would much rather feel frozen and be able to breathe than be cloaked in thick mittens, shrouded from the world, unable to experience or express emotions.  Yes, I talk with my hands.  It's intrinsic to my nature, much as is writing.

Ergo, in case you were wondering what my point is with this post, writing short blog articles is akin, to me, to being forced to wear mittens.  Yes, I can write a brilliantly succinct, tightly woven, punchy article that is beautiful in its brevity.  Off the top of my head, there are several of these that come to mind in the Healing Morning archives, and I am justly proud of them.  However, where I truly shine as a writer is in the longer, flowing articles that Dave described.  I like to mosey a bit as I broaden the body of the storyline.  While brevity can deliver a knife edged presentation, there is a lot to appreciate for a bit more of a leisurely stroll down the path towards culmination.  Nuances are there to explore and elaborate upon.  Colors and textures and shadings....tangible memories to paint with words, scensory wonders to revisit and prompt within the reader's mind...those are so much fun to weave together in written format to me!  And to do that in my own unique manner requires that my hands not be mitten muffled. 

So, for the most part, my writing is going to be that longer format.  I always do my best to ensure logical progression and flow to the thoughts expressed here, and I do appreciate the kind affirmation that Dave gave me with his comments on same.  It's always a happy thing to be appreciated and accepted, unconditionally, for who you are at your very core.  At my very core, I am a wordy writer!  Bare fingers tapping madly away at the keyboard, or scribbling with equal fervor with pen and paper....the end product will rarely be brief, unless I am consciously making the effort, out of begrudged self-restraint.  As I am much happier when not practising self-restraint in writing, you can expect the longer, flowy posts here.  I hope that you'll enjoy my efforts and find that the reading is enjoyable.

For this writer, the rule of the day, no matter the weather, is simply, "No Mittens Allowed!"  Freedom of fingers to produce a rhapsody of words suits me.

**Thanks to Stephanie Lynn for graciously helping me out with the above graphic image of the No Mittens Allowed icon.  Stephanie is a gifted graphic artist who makes beautiful banners for Facebook and blog application.  You can contact her on Facebook via http://www.facebook.com/#!/steph4c.**

Friday, November 19, 2010

Song of Friendship

Photo courtesy of
Bing images
As I drove around doing my errands today, I reflected on energy patterns and how they relate to friendship. This post will be published here on Healing Morning blog, but is also destined to be an article in the next quarterly issue of Aromatique Essentials E-zine in Australia. The general theme of this upcoming issue is friendship, and this is why it took me a while to decide exactly what to write. I didn't want to recycle old thoughts, or repackage a prior blog post.


Everything we do, say, think and feel is producing energetic patterns.  These patterns manifest into myriad corporeal forms, but friendship is one pattern that is slightly ephemeral.  It takes shape and form in those people we choose to call friends, be they blood relatives or family of our heart, but friendship itself is an unseen thing.

We all know a wide range of euphemisms that denote how we interact with others.  One would be that "water seeks its own level".  Another would be that "we are judged by the company we keep".  Yet another is my own thought, and it is that when walking on a beach, one grain of sand cannot shift without affecting the millions of other tiny grains around it.  We are like unto that grain of sand in relation to friendship and the people we allow into our Inner Circle. 

As with water seeking its own level, we as human beings resonate at a specific vibratory level, attracting other people vibrating at that same or similar vibration.  This is my own theory, of course, but I feel it rings true.  It would be highly unlikely for any of us to feel physically, emotionally or spiritually comfortable spending time around another person whose intrinsic energy is discordant and not in harmony with our own vibration.  I feel that in this manner, we attract others and we form relationships that complement on an energetic level. 

Because all of Life is of a cyclic nature, there come those moments when friendship...and harmonic energy...no longer match.  It is this moment that we usually find most painful, as it is the hallmark of that relationship coming to an end.  I used to struggle mightily with this experience, as it is my nature and preference to keep people I love in my life forever. For some, these cycles are more easily weathered, but I haven't always handled it with equanimity. It took many years of living through these cycles to understand and accept that not all relationships are meant to last forever.  Indeed, the realization and understanding for me, now, tell me that many friendships are meant to burn brightly, quickly, bring strong blessings, and cycle to a close rather quickly.  I still don't like this particular manifestation, but I have come to recognize the beauty of these experiences when they do occur.  I have found a way to be thankful and appreciative of the time and happiness of every friendship I am blessed with.  If they are of a short duration, I have also learned that sometimes, they cycle back around years later in my life. When this occurs, it is particularly lovely, as both I and that old friend have grown and changed in the interim, allowing a homecoming that is a fascinating celebration.

With age comes wisdom....another old homily.  The older I get, the more I recognize that Life is, indeed, an endless cycle of patterns, dances, puzzles, harmonies and paintings.  I mentioned in my last blog post that "friendships are the defining, delicate touches of color on our Souls, I think.  Each person we allow into our Inner Circle adds a new element to our personal canvas, and in so doing, they add contrast." (Contrasts, November 6, 2010)  Through the medium of the internet, I have connected with people I would never otherwise have been able to meet in this lifetime.  From Knoxville, Tennessee to Australia, I have connected in friendship with Julie Nelson (Aromatique Essentials proprietor) and as a result, my writing is reaching an even wider audience. 

From a good health perspective, friendship is essential to us.  Being able to confide in that close friend, being able to laugh, to play, to relax completely...all of these things nurture our Spirit and bestow a wide range of health benefits.  I could go off on a wild tangent on all the good health aspects of friendship, but that is a topic for another article.  Today, as I ran errands, I reflected on the esoteric application of friendship and how the interactions we have with our friends ultimately weaves a strong energetic presence, albeit invisible to our human eyes. 


Photo courtesy of
http://www.silverfernz.com/
 I imagine that the love between friends produces the most beautiful energy pattern, if we could see it with our eyes....produces the most ethereal musical rhapsody, if we could hear it with our ears....produces a woven tapestry of unspeakable beauty, if we could touch it with our hands.  We can do none of these things, but the gift we are given is to feel it with our hearts and minds.  Our Spirit, that essential, unique thumbprint of energy each of us is, feels the blessing and happy energy that friendship produces.  And we are all richer for this blessing. 

Here in the United States, we are approaching our Thanksgiving holiday, so I find this a very fitting tribute to be writing about my own perspective of friendship.  We are always, always exactly where we are meant to be in our lives, with the perfect people surrounding us, offering lessons and reflecting back to us what we are sending out to the world.  Take a moment to give this thought, as it is a powerful statement.  People come into our lives to teach us and also to reflect back to us.  I often remind myself of this very fact if I am feeling dissatisfaction or a lack of harmony surrounding me.  That niggling sensation of things not quite feeling right, as though puzzle pieces aren't aligning properly, is usually a red flag indicating some inner house cleaning is necessary.  Yet another blessing friendship can offer us, if we are willing to listen, be open and also be honest with ourselves.

I find it very appropriate, in the spirit of Thanksgiving, to be writing about the beautiful harmony and blessings of friendship.  As I have written this article, my thoughts have come together in a manner that pleases me, because I also learn from the process.  Little gems of wisdom that I have stumbled across over a lifetime will suddenly surface, fitting into the body of text in just the right fashion.  As a result, my own resolve and Spirit are strengthened and the vibrations that I radiate outward get a bit of a shine and polish.  It is my choice, my conscious intent, to always radiate positive energy so that in return, I may attract similar positive energy and people.  I want the friendships and love in my life to reflect the best version of Me that I am capable of rendering each day.  I call it a song of friendship, this harmony that we all come together to produce.

To those in the United States celebrating Thanksgiving in the coming week, I wish you a safe, happy, blessed holiday.  To my friends and readers elsewhere in this big, beautiful world, I wish you days of peace for the coming holiday season as well.

Namaste'.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Contrasts


Photo courtesy of
Bing images

Contrast: transitive verb
1:  to set off in contrast; to compare or appraise in respect to differences
I chose the word above as the focus of this blog because my life has been a constant stream...a literal parade, recently, of contrasts.

I don't know about anyone else who might be reading this post, but I have been struggling. That's been happening for the past three years as a result of the economy tanking, and for me, it has waxed and waned in intensity.  As a freelance writer, I have experienced some very lean times.  For the most part, I accept this as part of the whole concept of freelancing; work goes in cycles, so you learn to plan ahead and budget accordingly.

I have observed that a great deal of similar energy has been hitting friends and family members, to such an extreme degree that I was driven to research what planetary aspects might be casting some of this energy. I can't quote specifics here because I'm not that well versed in astrology sciences, but a close friend mentioned that we're in a current difficult cycle where erratic energies will affect emotions, relationships and finances through January 2011.  Great news, right?!  Emotions, relationships and finances pretty much cover the whole gamut of our daily lives!


Photo courtesy of
Bing images
 I have a girlfriend who is on my "Short List" of friends - those people who we allow to get truly close to our hearts and that we trust the most.  This past week, she experienced one of the most unexpected, most earth shattering personal experiences within a relationship it is possible to have.  This woman is one of the most beautiful people I know, beautiful inside and out, compassionate, caring, giving, kind, funny...she's just a special Light.  For this to happen to her is bewildering, astounding and baffling.  I realize it is happening for a reason, as all dramatic occurrences do.  She is meant to learn a specific something from the experience.  I know that.  It is just such a deeply dramatic situation, of such an enormity that one must pause to comprehend the magnitude of what is happening to her.

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Then along comes that word of contrasts. I have also witnessed some truly beautiful moments recently.  My very dear friend and partner in crime in the blogging world, Duane Scott, is getting married on November 7, 2011.  He is so happy right now that I have the mental image of him being one of those cartoon characters that is floating several inches off the ground, buoyed by love, little pulsating hearts replacing the pupils of his eyes.  He is so young, on the brink of starting his whole adult life, and he has been blessed to meet that special person at this early stage.  I can only be happy for him.  I am unable to attend the wedding, to my everlasting frustration, but I will be there in my heart tomorrow as the ceremony takes place.  Additionally, he and his new wife will be visiting me on their drive home from their honeymoon in about 10 days.  The opportunity to spend time face to face will be wonderful...an early Christmas gift of sorts.  They will both still be literally glowing with that Just Married inner light, and that energy will radiate outward. 

The friendship that I have with each separate person mentioned here has grown from these contrasting moments in each of their lives.  One friend is in the depths of despair right now, just fumbling and attempting to find enough balance to get through that next moment.  She is riding that rollercoaster of emotions and navigating her way through the stages of grief with Grace, and doing it pretty much alone.  I am not able to physically get to where she is, and can only be there via phone, texting and prayer.  One friend is tripping merrily along as he approaches one of the most important days of his young life, and he is doing it with humor and cheer.  He is posting absurd little thumbnail sketches of each progressive day of wedding build up, texting me with various "help me with this, please" requests and generally enjoying where his life is leading.

Contrasts.  These two friends and where they are in their respective lives have repeatedly brought that word to mind.  All around me, I am hearing of many people struggling with very dramatic Life Challenges.  I capitalize those two words to denote the enormity - a girlfriend's father was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer; another friend was in a very bad car wreck and she's been unemployed for over 18 months; more people than I can count are inches from being homeless because of unemployment.  Yet, in the midst of all of this, contrast comes in and I see reason to rejoice and celebrate.


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flickr.com
 I reached a personal milestone this past week that I never thought I would achieve.  I won't go into detail, but it is a milestone I am very proud of.  Yesterday, I was at the mailbox - the day was overcast and windy.  Suddenly the clouds broke open momentarily to clear blue skies and the sun beamed down onto a small patch of shrubbery and I saw a sticker or decal of a Smiley face snagged on the branches.  How could that happen, if not for the unseen hand of a Higher Power parting those clouds and directing that beam of light to find that tiny sticker?  I laughed out loud at the very clear, implicit message.  It was contrast in a very explicit manner - the gray, wet, windy day briefly gifted me with not only blue skies and sunshine, but also with a cheerful Smiley face in the most seemingly random fashion.  It was a Divine "made ya look, made ya grin, made ya laugh!" kind of message that was irresistable in the cheeky, brash humor of it all.  I admire a Higher Power that sends me this type of message!

For those who are struggling right now, I feel your pain, disillusionment and frustration.  I flit in and out of that same pool right now and I recognize the challenge it is for all of us to choose brighter, happier thoughts in the midst of so much worry and concern for the immediate future.  We all know that contrast is necessary.  Therefore, these darker moments are necessary in order for us to fully appreciate the happier times.  Without darkness, we cannot have daylight.  But the promise we have been given is a beautiful one, and that is that after darkness, there will come daylight.

I don't have easy answers for any of us who are struggling.  All I can say is that I have been captured by the fact that there is such a strong example of extreme contrast around me.  I think this is happening for a reason, although I couldn't even begin to understand the deepest logic behind it all.  I would obviously wish for the girlfriend in despair to be lifted up, reassured, comforted and given a quick resolution to her current situation.  I would also wish for my guy friend to never have to experience a single cloudy day in his brand new marriage.  We all know that neither wish can come true.  Indeed, each of these dear friends must navigate their own realities as best they can, and learn the lessons presented to each path.  As their friend, my role is to both celebrate the good times, and be supportive during the bad times.  More moments of contrast result from this. 

My girlfriend will be strengthened by this current trial and she will come out of it an even better, more beautiful version of herself.  My guy friend will go home after his honeymoon and become enmeshed in the daily challenges of cohabiting with a brand new wife, and he also will become a better version of himself. 

Photo courtesy of
http://www.artbylisa.com/

As a result of friendship with both these wonderful people, my life is blessed and the contrasts are endless.  Friendships are the defining, delicate touches of color on our Souls, I think.  Each person we allow into our Inner Circle adds a new element to our personal canvas, and in so doing, they add contrast.  I also become a stronger, more well rounded, more beautiful and better version of myself from these relationships. 

This week, each person represents that widest spectrum of contrast, and as a result, they prompted me to write this post.  I am unsure if it makes a great deal of logical sense, as I am swinging back and forth on a fulcrum....deeply sad for my girlfriend, and joyously happy for my guy friend.  The fulcrum itself is Me, and my love for both of them.  I imagine that my personal canvas has gained new depth, color and expression because of the events in both their lives this week.  Contrast continues....and we grow as a result.

Friday, October 22, 2010

In this moment


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Bing images
If you read my blog occasionally, you'll know that quite often I will gather inspiration from a quote.  This has happened today.  Being a fan of Jerry and Esther Hicks, authors of many books on Universal Law as delivered by Abraham, I receive weekly emails to my Inbox that contain a Quote of the Day.  Today's quote is as follows:

No one can deny you or grant you anything. It all comes to you by virtue of your vibration. - Abraham (Excerpted from the workshop in Lincroft, NJ on Tuesday, October 15th, 1996 #600)
This is such a simple, yet powerful thought and statement. Just before it hit my Inbox, I was sitting here reflecting on how I feel.  I do this on a regular basis, throughout each day, becoming a sort of bellwether for myself.  The way that I feel in that specific moment in time indicates how I react and move forward throughout the rest of my day.  If I'm not feeling so great in that specific moment, that is my immediate signal to shift my thoughts, per Jerry and Esther's books' suggestions, and create a different harmony, or vibration.

You know how sometimes, God/Universe will interact with us in a beautiful way and deliver just the most perfect thought that matches how we're feeling?  This is what occurred with the above quote, and it is the personification of Universal Law, to my way of thinking.

I have made no secret of the fact that Life isn't always a bright, sunshiney, flower-strewn meadow for me.  I step out of bed each day with my own personal challenges, responsibilities and dreams to better myself and my circumstances.  Some days I hit the best note possible, other days I don't.  Here very recently, I have been making more of those wee steps of progression, embracing the better thoughts, choosing to focus on uplifting mindset. 

And today, in the small, quiet hours of the morning, just moments prior to reading the Hicks-Abraham quote, I was smiling because I was very consciously aware of feeling....happy.  That warm, satisfied, just all around good feeling that we are occasionally blessed with was suffusing my mind and body.  Then I opened the email containing the quote above and I laughed out loud at the delightful Divine Order of it all.

I am in a space where my skills are being recognized and appreciated by colleagues - both those in the blogging world, and also those in the professional arenas where I make my living.  I am building up a client roster of people that I truly enjoy working with, and this makes me equally happy.  As Abraham has indicated, this generates happiness and that uplifting tone, harmony and energy begets more of the same.  It has happened over a vast stretch of time for me, yet now that it is clearly manifesting, it has almost caught me off guard with the gentle evidence. 

My last post, Choosing Positivity, was a requested guest post for Mansi Bhatia's wonderful blog, First Impressions.  Perhaps this post is an adjunct, or continuation of that general theme.  Normally, I do my best to not repeat themes in concurrent blog posts, but this is what hit me this morning and it felt appropriate to write about.

I have pondered esoteric laws and concepts from my very early years, as I have always been a rapt student of this type of knowledge.  For a great many years, I understood the concept of Universal Law on an intellectual basis, but it was the nuances that escaped me.  I spent many years focusing more on the "Don't wants" than focusing on what felt better in that particular moment.  When I finally came to clarity on that specific application of Universal Law, I remember rolling my eyes at myself with how I managed to overlook that part of the whole equation for so long.  As we all know, the Lightbulb Moments hit when we are ready to receive them.  I was close, so very close in my younger years to that clarity, but not quite ready to fully grasp the simplicity therein.

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Bing images
I'm very good at what I call "getting in my own way".  I have a strong tendency to do things the hard way first, every time.  Why, you might ask?  My brain just seems to be hardwired in that manner.  Until someone points out the exquisite beauty and obviousness of the more simple approach, it just doesn't occur to me to do it that way.  It can be comical to family and friends, because I confuse them at times with my elaborate approach to some very simple task, applying great amounts of energy and concentration and enthusiasm...until someone says, "Dawn, have you ever thought of doing it THIS way?"  This is the point where I always stop dead, absolutely captivated by their suggestion, my brain all a-goggle with the searingly simple method they have suggested.  It is as though the Heavens open and a bright ray of sunshine beams down upon my fair head, with an accompanying orchestra and choir in the background.

No, I'm really not kidding.  Sometimes I really do just do things the hard way first.  Okay, LOTS of times I do things the hard way first.  It's just my nature, apparently.  This is not to say, however, that I enjoy making things difficult for myself! Indeed, it is always a goal of mine to simplify and find more logical methods. 

At this point in my life, I feel I have come to a very solid, positive approach that serves me well.  I know this because when I check in with myself throughout the day, the majority of the time, I detect joy.  Happiness is the note of the morning for me and I have to admit, it feels pretty darned good!  What makes it even more enjoyable is that I am quite aware that I am responsible for this inner feeling of satisfaction and happiness.  I have chosen the steps to maintain that positive outlook, even during the days where I would much rather embrace gloom and irritability.  I've made that conscious effort to focus on the next best feeling thought and emotion.

Oftentimes, that next best feeling thought is tiny....minor to the point of being relevant only to my heart.  Yesterday, it was me standing at the mailbox and glancing up in the sky to see a cloud shaped like a bird's wing.  This morning, it was the simple realization that although my work is not where I would wish for it to be just yet, it IS getting there.  I have work coming in the door after a very long, stressful dry period, and it is work that I enjoy.  I am helping people and making a difference in the world with these new projects, and for me as a writer, this is sublimely satisfying.  That satisfaction is glowing inside of me this morning, blossoming into a larger sensation of happiness as I take time to identify it, focus upon it and feel appreciation for it.

So, today, my inner feeling is one of simple happiness.  Nothing complex, although admittedly the path to get here was riddled with obstacles and myriad frustrations at times.  I am happy, in this moment, and I am taking time to focus on this emotion that is welling up inside me.  I imagine it to be a warm glowing ball of Light, much as I have described in other blog posts, and I imagine that this same emotion, this same energy, vibration and tone is calling out.  Remember, my friends, that thoughts and words are energy and translate into electrical impulses that dart outward to the Universe!  According to Universal Law, this energy is attracted to similar energy...vibrating and spinning, flying outward to unite with more of the same, then returning to us, bringing again, more of the same.  More of the same, only amplified! 

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Bing images

I am reaping the benefits of structuring my thoughts, habits and actions, and these benefits are that I am happy, satisfied and feeling fulfilled on many different levels. My plan for navigating the day is to continue to dwell in this feeling of happiness.  In each moment that I focus on this quiet sensation of bliss, I am, in effect, dialing accurately into the vibration of God/Universe/Spirit and creating a high level of harmony that will continue to perpetuate itself.  In this moment, this awareness brings a smile.  In this moment, I greet myself as an incredible part of the bigger picture that creates my reality.  In this moment, I am basking in a lovely, happy place.  I hope your own day brings you equal joy, my friends.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Choosing positivity

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http://www.flickr.com/
I was recently invited to write a guest post for Mansi Bhatia's First Impressions blog page. It is always an honor to be asked to write for someone else's site, and it gives me the chance to meet new people and write content that I might not come up with on my own.  Mansi gave me free rein to write whatever I chose, simply pointing out that she enjoys my positive approach with my writing. 

So, I pondered the concept of positivity for a couple of days, allowing thoughts to flow and simmer in my mind.  First and foremost, I do strive to see and seek the positive moments in life.  Mansi's comments actually gave me a bright moment, an affirmation of sorts, letting me know that yes, I'm doing what I set out to do each day of my life. 

I'm sure we've all run across those people who shine a bit more brightly than others...they seem lit from within with a secret that makes us curious.  I have found upon getting to know these bright Souls that quite often, they have come from experience of great hardship, sadness and challenges that would cripple many, yet they have found a way to still see beauty in every moment. 

Conversely, we have all also met those people who are like the cartoon figure who walks around followed by his own personal storm cloud.  They are determined to see the gloom in every moment; they dive into a large pool of 'Poor Me' and spend countless hours floating about, plumbing the depths of negativity and sharing that energy with everyone they encounter.  These people are exhausting to be around, as they drain our own energies as we attempt to lighten their hearts without success.

Life is about conscious choices.  I've said countless times that we define ourselves by our reactions to any given set of circumstances.  For me on a personal and professional level, much like millions of other people since the economy tanked in 2008, life has definitely been challenging.  I have reinvented myself and my professional life more times than I can count, and yes, I have been truly scared on a deeply elemental level many times about how I would survive.  During those times, I revealed these concerns to very few people and perhaps that reticence was a mistake.  Everyone does need that soft place to fall and people in whom to confide, and I admit to not always being as forthcoming as I could be.  What I found made the strongest difference for me, apart from having that small inner circle of true, loyal friends, was keeping a positive outlook.  No, it hasn't always been easy to stay positive, but finding reasons to laugh and choosing to seek moments of beauty in every single day kept my heart uplifted and reminded me that my own issues were fleeting.

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http://www.pikeresearch.com/
When we look at an ancient tree flourishing in a field, we are reminded that time marches on and our small human dramas are but a wee blip on the timeline of this world.  When we greet a brisk fall morning and breathe in the fresh air scented with the smoky sting of wood fires, we are part of the cycle of nature.  When we share laughter with friends about some seemingly insignificant moment, we are releasing joyful energy and thought that will never die away, because we have created a positive memory.  Scientists continue to ponder the concept of electrical impulses being eternal, and I remind myself of this fact quite often....my thoughts are energy. 

My actions and words are energy...I am speaking, thinking and behaving in a manner that in some small way, is eternal.  My choices are obvious:  I can choose to sink into the depths of despair and retreat from life, or I can choose to LIVE and find reasons to be appreciative each day. 

My choice is to dwell in positivity.  Of course I don't always achieve this goal each day.  We all have those moments that we admit it might have been the better part of valor to just stay in bed that particular day.  Sometimes it is actually an intrinsic part of balance to have a slower day where things don't always line up perfectly.  Light cannot happen without dark, after all.  Contrasting moments give us the opportunity and clarity to appreciate things in a much more rich manner.  I think that anyone who goes through life without experiencing any challenges, loss or physical pain is very ill equipped for that definitive moment when a negative challege does occur...because it is inevitable that they WILL occur for us all. 


Photo courtesy of
http://www.masaru-emoto.net/
Should we seek out negatives?  Perhaps there is value to recognizing negatives in order to simply learn the true colors of a situation so it may be avoided in the future.  Beyond that, from a holistic health approach, dwelling on negative thoughts isn't the type of energy I want to concentrate in my own body.  There is a frequency to every thought we project, and it can be proven that positive, uplifting, loving and happy thoughts have beneficial effects.  Dr. Masaru Emoto has studied the effects of conscious, projected thoughts on water for years, and has been able to show physical changes in the crystalline structure of frozen water.  This is a dramatic indication of how truly powerful our thoughts are, and underscores even more how important it is for us to choose positive thoughts, actions and words.

I have quite often been labeled a PollyAnna personality, been told that I wear rose colored glasses and that I am a bit too optimistic in nature.  I do not deny any of these comments, as they are true.  I am comfortable with myself and with my approach to life.  I am by no stretch of the imagination a perfectly evolved Soul; if that were true, I wouldn't be here on this Earth School, learning along with everyone else.  I do, however, find a rightness and a sense of calm, peace and balance in choosing to focus on positivity on a daily basis.  There is such beauty in the world, everywhere we cast our eyes, if we CHOOSE to see it.  Yes, there is also ugliness, imbalance, unfairness and lack in abundance, but the focus here is the other side of this coin.  Positive thoughts can move mountains in a figurative sense, making those dark areas fade into insignificance if enough join together in that positive energy.

Mansi invited me to write this guest post on her wonderful blog page because she saw something uplifting in my writing style.  My writing style reflects my true nature and gives voice to those things, issues, emotions and thoughts that I find to be most important and dynamic.  The fact that another talented writer recognizes and appreciates my message in my writing gave me a particularly sweet moment.  It brightened a day that I admit was a trifle lackluster and renewed my own Spirit.  As I finish writing this post in preparation of sharing it with Mansi's readers, there are birds singing outside my office window.  The air is fresh and crisp with that essentially full bodied autumn flavor, and Nature is just beginning to paint fall color on the leaves of the tree that keeps me company each day as I work.  In that one single glance, I have witnessed visual beauty and have been uplifted by it.  My rose colored glasses have remained firmly on my nose, I admit this without a single qualm. 

I think that choosing to embrace positivity is a noble undertaking. It may sound quite simplistic at first glance, but I assure you, there are days that I find it quite challenging to accomplish! Regardless of the challenge, it is what I choose because I feel it is important to address each day with a conscious regard towards making a strong and positive mark.  I have learned over the years, and particularly since I began writing for Healing Morning blog, that this conscious choice does make a difference and that it has impacted those around me in a positive manner.  That spurs me on and encourages me to continue.  Occasionally, I am blessed in return by such a moment as this invitation from Mansi, letting me know that someone recognizes my Light as I do theirs. 

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http://www.flickr.com/
I call it the lambent glow of our Spirit, and as I close here, I am convinced that the satisfaction of sharing these thoughts has amped up my own personal Light considerably.  If you see it, shining in the distance, I am sure it is because your own Light glows brightly in return.
Brightness of the heart can never be truly extinguished, my friends.

Namaste'.
_________________________
Take a moment to visit Mansi Bhatia's wonderful blog, First Impressions. She is one of my favorite bloggers because of her ability to laser through all the layers of distraction and write clean, concise and inspired words on her chosen topics.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New discoveries


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Bing images
I have never been what I would describe as militant about anyone's food choices. I respect everyone's right to make those choices for themselves, whether that means you're a card carrying, true blue meat eater, or whether you're an all out vegan who wouldn't think of touching anything that got within light years of a living, breathing animal, or whether you're somewhere in the middle.  Live and let live has always been my preference.  I will admit that I have some vegan friends who are rather aggressive with their beliefs and approach.  I make it clear that I'm not open to being preached to or chastised over what I choose to eat.  I am a capable adult and make those choices for myself.

That being said, I do have interest in eating in as healthy a manner as I can manage, with my own food preferences and slightly odd food issues (allergies) taken into consideration.  Recently, I have been exposed via a client of mine to the whole scary world of Genetically Modified Foods (GMOs).  In the process of researching this topic, I was stunned to learn that the highly touted label of 'organic' doesn't necessarily mean the food you're eating is healthy for you, OR that it is truly organic. 

Take honey as an example.  In order for any United States company to make a true claim that their honey is organic, they have to be able to prove that their bees are deriving nutrition, pollen and water from proven organic sources within a 50 mile radius of their home location.  I don't know if these stipulations apply in other countries, but just that one fact stopped me in my tracks and made me reconsider some of the food purchases I've been making over the years.  With that as a simple guideline, given that a huge number of crops that provide cross pollination to bees in the U.S. are likely to be GMO crops, honey produced in the U.S. can't really be truly labeled as 'organic'.  See what I mean?  Scary!

Spelt Grain
Courtesy of Bing images
This client, fortunately, is a wonderful U.S. company, Berlin Natural Bakery in Berlin, Ohio that produces a wide range of spelt products that are Non-GMO Project Verified.  I am happy to report that I can source their products here in my local area and plan to make a big shift in my own household to their breads, pastas and more.  This is a simple thing that I can do and feel good knowing I am consuming healthy foods that have not been genetically tinkered with.  It's a small step, and some may argue that everything else I eat can't be proven to be equally healthy and 'safe', but for me, it's a good step in the right direction. 

Another fairly new avenue [to me] for health and holistic maintenance is essential oils. I have some clients and dear friends who are masters at this art and science, and I am learning fascinating new details and knowledge almost daily from my contact with them.  As a former licensed massage therapist, I always used essential oils in my practice, but didn't give a great deal of thought to the healing properties of those essential oils.  Looking back, I wonder why I didn't delve more deeply into it, but at the time I was more focused on establishing my business and being successful.  My clients enjoyed the aromatherapy aspects of the oils that I used and that was great.  Now, having connected with two amazing women who have successful aromatherapy and essential oil businesses, I am being exposed to a whole world of health benefits I never realized essentials give us.

We all know that scents give us visceral, emotional reactions.  The smell of baking bread or chocolate chip cookies in the oven will take us right back to happy childhood memories.  The smell of freshly cut grass kicks us into thoughts of hot, lazy summer afternoons walking behind the cranky push mower, sweating like a fiend and looking forward to a cold drink at the end of the chore.  Perfumes bring to mind specific people.  Every scent has some personal tie in our minds and memories.  The wonderful thing about essential oils is that they're not just delightful to smell - they're full of amazing healing properties.

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Bing images

I am a novice at this and can only refer to my friends Julie Nelson of Aromatique Essentials in Australia and Sheen Perkins McKeever of Agape Oils and Essential Oils by Nature in Wilmington, North Carolina as the true experts in the essential oils field.  One good example that I've learned is that the ages old resin, Frankincense, has the following powerful properties: it is antiseptic, antifungal, antidepressant, anti-inflammatory, analgesic, diuretic.  Wow, right?!  It is also a wonderful ingredient that can be incorporated into aromatherapy for its calming influence.  What I am learning that is so exciting is that essential oils can be efficacious for so many ailments, ranging from aches and pains such as arthritis and bruises to more serious complaints such as respiratory issues and such dread modern issues as MRSA infections.

I consider myself quite fortunate to be connected with these wonderful people running these progressively thinking companies.  Through working with each of them, I am learning and being exposed to ideas, products and information that are changing the way I live my life...changing it in a healthy way!  Because learning and growing always excites and makes me happy, when I stumble across topics of this nature, it is my first wish and impulse to share the information.  I hope many of you will take time to click on these various companies I've mentioned and do some research, and discovering of your own.  These are small steps to take, yes, in the broad scheme of all the toxins that we are bombarded with in our daily lives, but we all have to start somewhere.  Why not take those first steps in directions that taste and smell good? 

Happy eating and happy fragrant moments!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Live YOUR Life

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Bing images
A couple days ago, I experienced a very unpleasant situation online, on Facebook. It was in a peripheral manner but still disturbing. In a nutshell, I had clicked to Like/Follow a new page that is quite successful for a specific product that I use. The owner of the page appears to be quite successful, with thousands of followers. I thought, "Okay, why not? A lot of people I know follow him."

Less than an hour later, one of his posts hit my wall. It contained what can only be described as a poisonous diatribe...a vicious, supercilious, holier-than-thou attack on someone who had interacted with this man on some earlier thread on his Facebook wall. I am not going to disclose the Facebook page or names of anyone involved. The personal attack this person perpetrated was long, involved, ugly and full of a confusing, garbled message that after reading, left me wondering what had riled him up so badly. He took pains to post what had been a fairly innocuous conversation and proceeded to ridicule, lambast and accuse this other person of outright heinous behavior. What I saw from my end was a woman who had written a thoughtful, fair minded and relatively mild comment that didn't agree 100% with this man's perspective.

In response to his attack and his blatant act of putting her on Facebook blast to his readers, she took the High Road and apologized in a sincere manner. She addressed his points, stood her ground in a polite manner, but also took pains to express that if any insult was given, that wasn't her intention. His reaction was to write what I would describe as an Epic reply....we're talking paragraph after paragraph (more than 15 paragraphs, in fact - I stopped counting and reading at 15) of ranting, snide remarks and insulting, ugly comments about this woman's intelligence. It was simply disturbing. I went so far as to write a short comment in the thread that I found nothing incendiary about the statement that caused the whole ruckus, but then I bowed out.

What is my point? Well, if I can say anything about this whole mess, it is that I often wonder why so many people insist on living someone else's life for them. That is exactly what this guy was doing. By attempting to bludgeon someone else into bowing down to you just to keep the peace, by reacting in outrage and an attacking manner to force that other person to adopt your opinion, all you are doing is trying to step right into that person's life and take over. News Flash to those of us who behave in that manner....YOU DO NOT BELONG THERE!! Step back into your own body, your own life and your own arena.

My Grandmother Reagan was quite fond of telling all of us grandkids (there are 27 of us) when we were small and falling victim to the need to exhibit anywhere near that type of behavior, "Stay on your own back porch and tend your own backyard. That will keep you PLENTY busy!" Sage words, my friends.

What joy could it possibly bring another human being to behave in such a churlish, vindictive, antagonistic and public manner towards someone they've never met face to face??? It is beyond my ability to comprehend, but it was quite clear in that thread that this guy was LOVING what he was doing. Thankfully, one of my friends had recently posted on his wall the way to UnLike a page on Facebook, and I wasted no time zipping over to his wall to find that thread, copy the directions and delete that man's Fan Page from my wall. I do not ever want that level of toxic energy around me.

There was a bright side to the whole drama. I sent a private message to the lady that was the victim of this scenario, offering my own opinion and support. She wrote back and we struck up what appears to be the beginning of a very nice friendship. File this under the category of one of my older, archived posts, "It's 'Funny' How". Sometimes wonderful things result from the strangest, most unlikely, occasionally unpleasant circumstances. Happily, this was such a moment, and I look forward to getting to know this new friend better in the coming days.

Am I saying that we should never offer our own opinions about anything? That we should stand meekly and mutely by as a friend, or even a complete stranger walks directly into the path of an oncoming bus (literally or figuratively)? Absolutely not. I am not saying either of those things. There's a handy word to apply here and it is 'prudence'. If you read Healing Morning blog often, then you already know I'm a fan of the dictionary, so here's what Webster has to tell us about prudence:

Prudence

Noun
1. The ability to govern and discipline oneself by the use of reason (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/prudence)



I think we all can agree that there is no way on Earth that someone can exercise prudence when they're occupied with the egotistical tantrum this man was throwing out on his Facebook wall. I cannot speak for him or what wound him up to such an irrational level. Clearly, there were emotional triggers that were tripped for him and he just dove right into the thick of it, wallowing around, pulling it close like a favorite teddy bear, enjoying the whole drama of it all. To my way of thinking, this did nothing to serve him well. It shined a very harsh light on him and actually made him look and sound petty, vengeful and childish. My newfound friend, however, stepped firmly into loving, forgiving and conciliatory energy, forgave, apologized and then walked away.

It is human nature to want to slap back at someone when they attack us. This situation went beyond anything as simple as an attack and slipped over the edge into character assassination. Nothing good can result from that type of dark, ugly energy. I predict that this person [perpetrating the attack] more than likely lives in a constant state of turmoil, has endless disappointments and often wonders why nothing ever goes his way. If he could step outside of himself for a wee span of time and watch his behavior from this whole episode, he might truly be appalled at the negative energy he was spewing. He might, just maybe, recognize that he is creating his own reality...and a grandly negative one at that.

I don't know his history or what has made him such an unhappy person inside that he has to resort to publicly tearing another person down to derive some sense of self. It is saddening to me, to be honest, that this man walks such a negative path. Granted, this was a small, isolated window into his world, so perhaps I am painting him with an unfair and broad brush. I have found, however, that that type of aggressive, angry energy blasted in such a public manner tends to indicate ingrained, habitual behavior. I can only wish peace towards him and remove myself, which I have done.

It generally comes from a vast sense of dissatisfaction that someone is motivated to thrust themselves so forcefully into another person's life in this way. If you're happy with yourself, content with your beliefs and perspective, you will have little to no need to force anyone to believe, think or feel as you do. That's because you're tending your own yard, staying on your own back porch and living your own life. It sounds so simple, right? For some of us, it is. For many of us, it comes easy. For many, it is hard fought and hard won, this realization that living your own life is the quickest and surest way to happiness. It is when we stray from our own path and start meddling with others, telling them how to live, that we come to grief and cause some truly unnecessary, hurtful situations.

I know the road I choose to take. Yes, I stepped briefly into this whole scenario in an effort to soothe troubled waters. I'm a peacekeeper by nature, but not to such a degree that I will charge militantly into someone else's space and forcefully inflict my opinions. When it was clear that nothing could mitigate the situation at hand, I, too, walked away. But I wasn't alone....I had a new friend walking with me. So, again, it really is 'funny how' Life throws us these unexpected moments of startling beauty in the midst of a tangled mess!

Accountability is another good word to partner up with practising restraint, respect and prudence. I agree with my beloved Granny Reagan that staying in my own backyard and living my own life keeps me plenty busy on any given day. I find that I resonate and enjoy spending time with other wonderful people who embrace this concept, because in general, they are happy Souls. Certainly, we all have bad days where we slip up, but I find that I can detect that bright light shining from within that other person when they are tending their backyard, keeping their porch clean and neat and authentically living their own lives.


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http://www.coolfreeimages.net/
 The harmony of someone who is emotionally well balanced is obvious and joyous to be around. It's a daily choice...sometimes a moment by moment one...but as I said earlier, I know which road I want to be on. And I know the type of people with whom I prefer to interact. My own Light recognizes you all, you know.



Your Light is a beacon and you make a difference in this world when you step forward in Conscious Thought, Conscious Love and the decision to Live YOUR Life.
Namaste.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Celebrate with me!


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Bing images
Today, September 25, 2010 is the one year anniversary of Healing Morning blog.  I checked the dates about a month ago and have been giving thought to what I would write when the specific day rolled around.  This past year has opened up the world for me beyond anything I could ever have imagined or dreamed for myself, and blogging was an integral part of this process.

I am, first and foremost, a writer.  I have done many different types of work in my adult life to pay the bills, but at my core, I identify myself as a writer.  The process of blogging gave me a genre that celebrates writing in a very unique manner.  I work as a freelance technical and creative writer, and social media management consultant, so writing is incorporated into my daily work life.  Blogging straddles the two worlds of professional and personal writing for me.  I manage social media and write blogs for a wide range of clientele, and I also write here at Healing Morning for purely personal satisfaction. 

It is here at Healing Morning that I express my innermost thoughts, emotions, ponderings and dreams.  Most writers have aspirations to become published authors, and I am no different in that regard.  I am currently working on a manuscript that I have every intention of getting into published and promoted book form.  Blogging has given me a worldwide audience and valuable feedback that I firmly believe makes me a stronger writer with every single article posted.  Writers gain polish by doing more of the same...by simply writing, refining and writing some more. 

There is equal satisfaction in growing readership and meeting fellow writers/bloggers from all over the world.  I have developed incredibly strong, beautiful friendships with many bloggers here in the United States and across the world in myriad countries.  The friendships blossom in the most lovely way as we all exchange stories, read one anothers' writing, post comments and genuinely appreciate the interaction that blogging gives us.

I have learned even more to trust my own instincts, and as a result, fairly early on in my blogging experience, I co-founded Authentic Blogger on Facebook.  Authentic Blogger is one of my proudest accomplishments, as it provides a supportive community for fellow bloggers to post their work, grow their own readership and gain more exposure in the blog-o-sphere.  Our group grows a bit more slowly than some blogging groups, but we like it that way - being authentic is the whole purpose and Mission Statement of the Authentic Blogging concept.  Through this group, I have met more talented writers and have a rock solid relationship with my co-founder and business partner, Duane Scott.  Like many other blogging friendships, this is one in particular that I am confident will be a lifelong relationship. 

I hear that there are thousands of blogs started daily that become 'orphaned' in a short span of time, meaning that the people who created those blogs just abandon the effort and walk away.  At this point in time, I do not see this ever happening for me with Healing Morning blog.  It is an intrinsic part of who I am.  The very title describes me in infinite detail.  'Healing' encompasses my very heart and love of a holistic approach to life and extending myself to others in a peaceful, loving, optimistic fashion.  'Morning' is a play on my name, Dawn.

The day that a girlfriend and I sat at a local Panera Bread and she showed me how to set up a blog shell, I never dreamed that I would be where I am today.  The name, Healing Morning, came about in the most natural manner and I look back now and marvel a bit at how absolutely perfect the title remains.  I will never change it.  I am definitely a creature of habit, so I tend to hold on to certain things for recognition purposes on a public manner.  This is vital in the world of blogging, I think, so Healing Morning will always be a strong identifying factor for who I am as a writer. 

Where will this new year take me and Healing Morning?  In the past year, it has introduced me to new people and experiences on a global level.  I am proud to report that I am a contributing writer for Aromatique Essentials e-zine in Australia - this is the wonderful brainchild of my dear friend, Julie Nelson who is talented in all things aromatherapy related.  I am also a contributing writer to the blogging website called Live and Inspire Magazine, based in Malaysia. I am a contributing blogger on Writers Rising blog, where I have been introduced to even more talented bloggers.  Never could I have dreamed up such opportunties for my writing to span the world in this manner, and to be very well received.  Any writer will tell you such experiences are deeply personally satisfying as well as just plain delightful!  To know that people around the world are reading my writing and enjoying it enough to extend invitations to me to become a contributing writer for their projects is the highest compliment I can think of receiving. 

Yet another completely unexpected and somewhat overwhelming opportunity that came from Healing Morning blog was my first radio interview on Starclear Radio.  The focus of Starclear Radio is to shed light on all manner of spiritual experiences, and it gave me the chance to dip a toe into the larger media and publicity pool and realize this is something that I am capable of doing successfully.  The interview went so well, in fact, that I was invited to return for a full hour long show in January 2011.  The confidence of Starclear's co-founders, Jeffrey Seelman and Amy Lamb, in me was warming and encouraging.  This again shows the incredible power that blogging and social media put into our hands.  Without venturing forth into the world of blogging, I would never have crossed paths with Amy and Jeffrey.  It did happen, though, and is another reason to celebrate this first year of blogging.

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Bing images
There are endless reasons for me to sit here, smiling as I write.  My world has broadened and become enriched in so many ways that I imagine my Spirit has extra facets deposited all around.  I envision my own Light and writing talent to be a cross somewhere between the soft, lambent glow of a lustrous pearl and the bright, exhuberant blaze of a multi-faceted diamond.  I have a calm, quiet sureness with my writing that is married to a dash of on the ceiling energy and appreciation for the occasionally absurd moments in life.  I like to think that reflects in different ways in different blog articles. 

I look forward to another year with Healing Morning blog.  More friendships, new experiences and new triumphs await.  For now, I celebrate the past year and I thank each and every person who has taken time to visit my blog page, leave kind comments and clicked to follow my work.  I invite you all to celebrate with me!

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