Affirmative Prayers: Releasing Fear and Doubt

May I breathe into being fully present,
taking in this pure moment.

May I gently acknowledge my fears and doubts
and breathe through them.

May I acknowledge the many funny faces
of resistance
that try to keep me small
so that I don’t courageously face
and move through
my fears and doubts.

May I continue to breathe deeply
to the center of my Self,
allowing the resistances to go play elsewhere
and allowing the fear and doubt
to naturally dissipate.

May I allow my own true radiance
to shine on, through and as my breath.

May I increasingly recognize and receive
the ideas and inspirations
that nudge to burst forth from my radiance.

May I feel the flow of life
running through me.

May all beings breathe
through their fears and doubts
and laugh away their resistance
so they, too, may allow their own true radiance
to shine more brilliantly.

Excerpted from my forthcoming book, “Thriving Work: 90 days of daily practice to transforming you and your business.” 
Copyright 2011.

Spiritual Growth: Are You Using the Spiritual Bypass to Avoid Your Big Dream?

One of the most insidious ways we keep ourselves from becoming the best of ourselves involves what one of my mentors, Stephen McGhee, affectionately calls the “spiritual by-pass.”  I first ran into the spiritual bypass when I asked a coach from Boulder if she was committed to growing her business.  She replied, “I’ll see what Spirit has in store for me.”

At first, I felt confused.  Listening to guidance, following Spirit, discerning the voice of the divine, the voice of God are all wonderful ways to know our divinity.  So, why didn’t her response feel right in my body?

Ah, because it’s resistance, dressed up in her finest!  It’s an excuse, just like all other forms of resistance.

Spiritual growth, self improvement, creating your own reality by bypassing the spiritual bypass.
Consciously choose to evoke the best of you by bypassing the spiritual bypass.

I heard a different version of the spiritual bypass again most recently from a cancer survivor.  She shared with me that she had learned during her cancer journey and from volunteering with hospice that she is not in control.  She is now giving the next phase of her life some space to see what happens.

Again, I felt some conflict in my body as I heard that.  I am committed to creating sacred space in my own life on a daily basis.  So, what didn’t feel right to me?  While I totally hear her and honor her learning that we are not in control with so much of life, we still and always have the precious opportunity to choose how we respond and how we move forward.

While I am not a cancer survivor and cannot even begin to imagine how it would change me if I were, I would imagine I might value the gift of life even more than I had previously.  I would also imagine that it would make it that much more precious to consciously choose the things I can control – what dream I’d like to move toward and what qualities of being I’d like to bring to the journey!
And, I have noticed with myself and with many clients that committing to something – growing a coaching business, overcoming the fear of public speaking, moving to the mountains – and committing to becoming who we must become in order to grow the business, speak in public and/or move to the mountains gives us a clear, strong sense of purpose and meaning.

For me personally, I’ve noticed that it helps focus my excitement. One of my strong internal commitments right now is around telling the truth to the person in front of me – both about our glory and power as divine creators and also about our outdated human habits that keep us small.

The spiritual bypass is a highly effective way to resist our good because we tell ourselves that we’ll wait to see what the Universe has in store for us or that it’s God’s will for us to remain small.

We are the Universe.  We are made in the likeness and image of God.  We need not wait or wonder.  We are the One we have been waiting for . . .

Excerpted from my forthcoming book, “Thriving Work: 90 days of daily practice to transforming you and your business.” 
Copyright 2011.

Post your own spiritual growth insights in the comments section.

Spiritual Growth: Choosing from Your Divinity or Your Small Self?

Last week, we talked about experiencing our own divinity.

As we begin to play with these concepts, we will have new choices to make. As we are in the process of deciding what to choose, we can now ask ourselves questions like:

– Am I choosing from my infinite, Divine Self or my limited, small self?

– As I choose, which option moves me in the direction of Love, which feeds my fear?

– If I choose from my limited human self, what are the consequences of not choosing from my divinity? (Ask this with as much compassion and as little self-criticism as you can.)

– If I choose the option that comes from lack, limitation and scarcity, am I willing to accept the consequences (ideally without self-judgment)?

Spiritual growth, transformation, clear intention: choosing from your divinity or your small self?
When we create a spiritual growth practice of consciously choosing from our divinity rather than our small self, translucence and transformation are inevitable . . .

Look at big picture consequences as well as the consequences right in front of you. For example, I noticed one of the big picture consequences of me not keeping some of my business commitments because I got overwhelmed involved attracting potential new clients with the same limited, human “issue.”

They initially felt excited to work with me, but didn’t hire me because they realized they felt overwhelmed. One had a full-time job, an ongoing “project” with her grown daughter and a time-consuming volunteer position. Another had debt to repay. Another had two young children and a teenage stepson.

While each of these situations is legitimate, they are our human excuses. Each of these women came to me wanting to grow their businesses (a divine impulse) and then backed away because their overwhelm, a subset of human fear, kicked in. We all (me included) allowed our small selves to choose instead of being willing to step up to allowing/creating the divine solution that includes the human circumstances of our lives AND our divine dreams.

Consequence: for all of us, we turned away an opportunity to live and work more from our divinity. Consequence: for all of us, we gave away an opportunity to serve more clients in making more choices from our divinity.

Excerpted from my forthcoming book, “Thriving Work: 90 days of daily practice to transforming you and your business.” 
Copyright 2011.

Post your own spiritual growth insights in the comments section.

Spiritual Growth: Experiencing Our Own Divinity

As I’ve pondered being both human and divine, the question kept coming to me: how do we know we are both divine and human?  How do we experience it?

Do you remember the last time you said something to yourself like, “I don’t know what I am going to do with myself?”  Maybe you were frustrated about losing weight or getting further with the marketing plan for your business or once again snapping at your daughter.

Think about it for a moment until you remember asking yourself a question like that.  This inquiry doesn’t involve the specifics – the ideal weight, marketing plan or response to your daughter.  Instead, look closely at the question itself.  “What am I going to do with myself?”  

Who is asking the question?  Who are you in the question?  Are you one or two?

As you can begin to actually experience yourself as both – the one asking the question and the one involved with your weight, marketing plan or daughter – you have a true glimpse into your own divinity.

Set aside a few minutes each day to experience yourself as the questioner.  Who is this one?  Simply allow yourself to know this vastness of you, the part of you that is never touched by “problems” of weight, marketing plans or impatient responses.

The spiritual growth of allowing yourself to experience the vastness of you.
My perception of life opened wide the first time I noticed that as I simply allowed myself to lay on the ground and gaze into the sky that I was the vastness of the sky and the sky was me.

Be with this question of who is observing “you” until you begin to experience being the one who is observing.  You will absolutely know when it happens . . .

Excerpted from my forthcoming book, “Thriving Work: 90 days of daily practice to transforming you and your business.” 
Copyright 2011.

Post your own spiritual growth insights in the comments section.

Happiness: We Are Each the Decisive Element

I have come to the frightening conclusion that I am the decisive element. It is my personal approach that creates the climate. It is my daily mood that makes the weather. I possess tremendous power to make life miserable or joyous. I can be a tool of torture or an instrument of inspiration. I can humiliate or humor, hurt or heal. In all situations, it is my response that decides whether a crisis is escalated or de-escalated, and a person is humanized or de-humanized. If we treat people as they are, we make them worse. If we treat people as they ought to be, we help them become what they are capable of becoming.
– Goethe

Happiness and spiritual growth from Goethe.  Ann Strong and Tama Kieves celebrating.
Decisively adding joy and happiness to the 50th birthday celebration of my dear friend, Tama Kieves.

Post your own happiness insights in the comments section.