Raw truth and a motive for response!

I can always rely on the universe to fast track me a whirlwind of challenge at the point of true surrender. At times, it’s as if I have been moving in slow motion through a minefield of psychopathic energy, one relationship after the next. Meditating, breathing, internally debriefing and drawing my way through each event one after the next and (gentle , little twinkly pretty chimes sound) then thwack! It hits me,( the universe) with a king hit, promising me a chance for growth or suffering. In raw truth, I usually choose suffering to begin with and it depends on the situation as to whether I dwell in this pit for a very lengthy and engaging adventure, or strive forward into ball busting, no time-wasting, nothings going to shake me or take me down mode! I want to say something inspiring about the thwack, something that will illuminate people and connect so that they “get it”, that moment just before it hits when you feel like you are moving in harmony with life, synchronistic events supporting your every turn, you smile at yourself inhale and share your delight with anybody who is in earshot. THWACK!!!!!……..”did you say things felt at peace, swimming without resistance, try this one with no floaties.”  Yes,  every time I find myself in full stride with life, something comes at me to pay attention, to not be complacent with the value and fragility of this “Lisa” experience.

I often see it like a movie, a boxing blockbuster, I am in the ring and dancing the good fight when, thwack the referee takes me down bare fisted, both the opponent and referee are standing over me, I see the tweety birds playing ring-a- rosie around their heads and I blink as they jeer and chuckle, “how you doing now champ”? …”feeling good”? …”got it sorted”? … “be water champ, be water”!

At this point, for me in almost every case. Laughing is the only option. I’m not usually laughing at the life altering situation that’s taken me down, I’m laughing at the speed and velocity and absolute clockwork timing of the thwack! It’s impact is precise and unwavering. I’m sure everybody knows it. I am also sure that we need a committee or an organised support system that is universal and miscellaneous in reason. Most importantly we need a gauge! I’m no weather expert, but,  we get to gauge weather , natural disasters are gauged. I believe a thwack gauge is long over due!

Considering we don’t actually have the gauge and nothing is metered in recovery from challenge or appropriate  timeframe for relapse, we choose our own adventure with this one. The way I see it, we move forward based on emotion and our ability to be honest with ourselves. Raw truth is like a freedom ticket, it creates an open energy of flow in life. Being open to it, having the strength and courage to be honest with ourselves and others can be liberating and empowering. It has a healing effect that produces instant relief. The thwack usually shouts at us because the ping didn’t have our attention. We tend to spend our time experiencing our lives, ignoring the pings that the universe deals us. Little messages from the energy of life that we all connect to, to tell us  we need to pay attention. I confess that I hear the pings often, they remind me of being patient or diplomatic, they point out a direct detour from a current situation, they send me a little tap, a tiny little whisper at first, that grows until I do pay attention. Of course the thwack is an ignored ping, it’s the result of no response. Consider it a snowball that has travelled down Everest. When it hits, it will have our attention.

If we look at it from an honest perspective and be courageous enough to ask the tough questions to see through our own charade, we can usually meddle through the emotion and pinpoint the requirements for recovery. If we pay close attention to the pings we might experience cruise mode much more often.  I have seen thwacks in many guises. A mini bus, an emotional breakdown, a partners fist, a serious illness, a roaring flame. If we are not paying attention these things will remind us that we have a reason to respond. A motive if you like, to act and create change. If we work with truth on a daily basis and allow ourselves the freedom to act without fear of judgment or failure we begin to embrace the pings and stride forward in life. Creating a sense of purpose and meaning beyond the wall that ignoring them creates.

 

 

Perception, being gentle and somebody elses shoes!

What you focus on is what you live. I am a big believer in that. You live what you think. So be gentle with your thinking.

While your at it (all this being gentle with yourself), you might feel inspired to encourage others to think gentle too. To live gentle, be gentle and share gentle. To focus on the uplifting in life, the empowering and motivating aspects of existing. To focus on the strength in being real and believing in people. In choosing compassion over judgement and understanding over conflict.

I saw a little quote one day, I have seen numerous people being credited for it, I think it was His Holiness , the Dalai Lama that said it, but I could be wrong. I love it, it is this ; “If you think you are too small to make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito.”

We all have a desire at some level to help people, to contribute in a meaningful way. I honestly believe that is our true nature, its a deep calling that exists within all of us. If you disagree, then I challenge you to take a few hours of your day and help somebody. Seriously, just choose a day, even if you can only spare 1 hour, go somewhere very public where there are loads of people and serve them. Hold doors open, carry groceries, fill parking machines, share laughter. Be a witness to your shifting focus and know that this energy is always available to you. We experience moments everyday, where we can forgive, assist, share and gift another with kindness.

I have had the privilege of meeting some amazing people and I am blessed with great friends and family that are cherished by many. It’s interesting, that we connect with others and choose our own stories about who they are, based on how they talk, live, stand and communicate. We presume we know something about somebody, that we think we understand somebody or we feel similar for some reason. All of this based on our own perception of another persons momentary behaviour. I don’t really ever say it to myself but I often remind myself of “walking in somebody else’s shoes”! See, I think that we often wear hats to feel a certain way, to fit in or to stand out, to be accepted or valued. There is a continual  energy of “trying” if you spend your life in search of acceptance and public acknowledgement. However, the truth is, that whatever another thinks of us, is just a perception. It is theirs not ours, it is fluid and changeable, it does not have to impact on how we see ourselves. Contributing to a valuable life, means self acceptance and love. The relationship we create within ourselves is as important as the one we have with the world. Your connection to what you read and what you take from it belongs to you. Your desire to assist others can be fulfilled daily, simply and effectively.

I guess what I would really love to see. Is a world that is open to forgiveness and change by walking our talking. By living the values that are true to our nature and honouring our own calling.

If you look for the rough in someone you will find it, if you look for the pain in someone you will find it, if you look for the joy in someone you’ll ignite it! Are you tough on yourself? Do you berate yourself often, do you snigger at yourself, do you expect too much of yourself, are you being unkind to yourself? Do you dislike yourself?

I watch people being angry and I feel deep compassion for them. I don’t know if I can explain it well enough for it to be understood but I’ll try. I know that they are being abusive to another and being unkind and inconsiderate and cruel , but I know that if they have this ability to hurt another in this way, then imagine the life that they live in their own mind. It must be a prison. It must be a very cold and dark place. Maybe they are always looking for the rough in the world and in their relationships, maybe they have a focus that remains on what is not a part of their current experience instead of focussing on what is and then perhaps that focus is pain based not pleasure. I don’t know about that, I guess it would change depending on the person. There are so many things to be grateful for and I cant imagine occupying a mind that lives that way. This understanding fosters a very real compassion in me for the people that do.

I am a witness to emotional abuse, we all are. Everyday, we see someone who is berated or insulted. It can occur on all sorts of levels, by all sorts of means. We watch television, read papers, surf online. We visit stores, sports arenas, government institutions. It seems that there is no end to this behaviour. If we consider the impact of this energy within our own lives we might see a reason to turn the television off, not buy that paper, to be choosy about which stores we visit and what sites we surf. If we pay attention to what impacts our thoughts and the relationship that our thoughts have with our current surroundings we might see an interesting pattern. I believe that the energy of anger is sticky and powerful like superglue. I try to be gentle with my life. To be mindful of the information I hear and read that is mass media related. I am constantly watching as more and more people become bewildered by the global increase in violence, poverty, disease and our seeming lack of compassion for others. Why though should that be a focus? because that will continue with or without my focus and in fact, it will be ever so slightly energised by it.

Our perceptions of the world and our immediate surroundings belong to us. Others might try to influence it but we are the main menu of our destination. We will move toward the direction we are most focussed on. So where are you going?

Presents or presence?

I think we give gifts to people we love because we want to show them affection, we want to show them that they are important to us. We live in a material world (not judgment) it’s a truth that “things” bring fleeting joy and create all sorts of wonderful emotions, memories and opportunities for us, but I believe what we are usually most grateful for though, is not so much the gift , but the feeling that is created when somebody thinks enough about us, to give to us, so that we receive joy.

I watch in life as couples struggle to love each other in peace, they care so deeply for each other and therefore are just as able to hurt each other as deeply, then often share gifts to reconcile or to somehow “show” that affection they are struggling to communicate through words. When really all that both are truly starving for is understanding and acknowledgement on the deepest level of who they really are, at the heart of who they are. Being in a romantic relationship with somebody, leaves us open to vulnerability. We feel vulnerable when we love somebody because we open our hearts to them . We open our hearts and show how important another is to us, we feel a risk within this action because we decide that it could lead to pain, we panic and choose to focus on the fear of acceptance or the lack of it, we choose to focus on the fear of judgement or practice of it. We finger point in blame, play who did what, who said what. We dance around in a pattern of fear that keeps us from truly experiencing the other person, from appreciating them, understanding, valuing and believing in them.

What might come if we choose presence instead of presents? I believe that presence is the most important gift we can give to somebody that we love, it trumps everything!  I actually know very little about the “scholastics” of relationships. I have lived them and that is all I really know. However, I have suffered with preoccupation. I have suffered with insecurity, and bewilderment, blame and anger. I have suffered so many emotions at so many levels and that is why I know what I know. Through experience we foster valuable insight, we educate ourselves as we move forward into our lives. If we choose not too, then suffering sticks to us and we stagnate. Personally, I am not a fan of stagnation. I have a passion for life and people. I love to see people in love and laughing. Celebrating each other and sharing a life of wonder together. I think we can all have this kind of relationship if we choose presence. All it takes is courage, dedication and love!

When we are present we hear in a new way, we see in clear sight and we feel the energy between what is being communicated and how we are reacting to it. If we sit in a state of true listening, we can hear beyond the words that are spoken and feel what we need to in order to blend harmony and peace within our connection. A strength will grow both within us individually and also within the collective energy of the relationship. It will be waiting for you , each time you choose to be present.

I think its as close to real magic as I will ever get to it. When you are both totally present, nothing can touch you, you are solid and fluid all at once.

what you’ll see if you look

 Image

Being behind the lense of a camera helps to show the world to others as you see it through your own eyes.  Everyday I get to see more than most through eyes that engage with the fine details of my surroundings. I can’t decide if  over the years, I have trained my eyes through the camera lense or if my heart has engaged them in gratitude. I tend to get so caught up in the colours and shapes and lines that are everywhere that I float from one pretty picture to the next. I think my dad played a huge part in this appreciation, because for as long back as I can remember he would point out the light through the clouds, the colours in the trees or in the hills, the hue changes the shadow casting, he would see it and share it like it was something so valuable and treasured to him.

Imagine a world where you see the beauty in shapes and lines, in colour and texture, where the most simple and maybe even basic of everyday items become a piece of art through your own eyes. It might sound like I am exaggerating because your probably wondering how your morning breakfast cereal and milk carton becomes art. Easily if you look! If you really pay attention to the lines in the shape and the colours on an angle, see the texture behind the box, beside it, and around it. Imagine the change that would create in your life, if just for one hour in your day each day, you engaged your sight to work for you so that you felt awe and inspiration from one pretty picture to the next. Maybe for you it would be about strength of texture, maybe you would like to see pictures of power and courage or persistence and virtue. It’s amazing the things that you will see if you really look. If you take the time to engage your eyes and mind, to segment pieces of what you see you could experience your very own moments of perfect visual pleasure.

How many times have you seen an image that just took your breath away? an image that you loved so much that it inspired you to feel grateful for your sight? How many times have you experienced this through your own eyes? I am guessing those that travel the world would know exactly what I am talking about, it would probably be something experienced travellers live with daily, perhaps that is one of the reasons that people become so addicted to travelling once they start. How cool would it be though, if instead of being wowed by a photographic image, you got the same pleasure just with your own eyes because you decided to pay attention to how beautiful your surroundings really are.

I have this wish for everybody. I wish that everybody could experience a day of full visual engagement, where colour captivates them, texture excites them and everything that they take the time to look at brings them joy.

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…”if you invest in beauty, it will remain with you all the days of your life.”

Frank Lloyd Wright

 

 

on being you and mindful parkour!

I think we are all born with greatness. I think we all have something of value, something special we can share with the world. I think that everyday brings a new opportunity for us to share ourselves with others, to contribute in a meaningful way.

I honestly believe this. I think that we forget our great bits because we are told in so many ways not to pay attention to them. We are shamed by the threat of pride and ego, we are criticized by others, we are trapped by fear as we move forward in an attempt to be true to our own values. As we move forward in hope and excitement we find words and actions outside of our own that impact on us so much that we stagnate, that we buy into another persons values and beliefs even if they contradict our own. I read and hear a lot that we stumble on our path towards our own success because of the fear of it (success I mean). I agree with this, but I wonder what we would do if judgement and shame vanished. If somehow the universe deleted the existence of judgement and shame. If it were not at all possible for any of us to feel these two things, would we fear success? I don’t think so!

So I guess then, if we look at the meanings that we give judgement and shame individually. We can decide what is most important to us, trapping our life’s success and happiness because of a desire for acceptance? I guess it goes much deeper than that, but the point I am moving towards is about you and your life. Your greatness and your success. I can tell you that you are successful without even knowing you. You can read. You might not value reading as successful, that’s a choice you make. As we grow, we learn so many things along the way that are imperative to a functional life. As we learn valuable techniques and skills we make a choice about how meaningful and valuable that act is or that accomplishment was. Over time we have so many talents and skills and abilities that we have developed. I don’t know why we overlook how precious words are, how special music is or how valuable listening can be. We have ability in bulk! we are walking talking talent and many of us might never know it.

As a child when we find a gift that comes easily to us, a talent that excites us and drops jaws. Usually, we are applauded, we are paraded and hugged and valued and adored, we are a showpiece. As an adult if we stand with the same pride and share the same talent with the world we are not in the same energy of acceptance. It becomes scary and the value of another’s opinion often wages heavily on the continuation or the expansion of this greatness. I hope I am making sense here. What I am trying to say is that we all have something we love doing and the reason we love doing it is because of the way it makes us feel, in most cases we are good at it, we have an ability within us to produce something that inspires an emotion within that creates this overwhelming sense of value. That we have contributed to life because we have created something. At this point it is very common for us to want to share this emotion, this feeling this experience with the people that we care for most. We are drawn to share in hope that our own creation or idea can be of value to another. It is often then that the  influence of acceptance impacts on the growth of this talent or the path of your dream. It seems that we can rely so heavily on others opinion that we will allow it a power to build mountains. These mountains get in our way, they stand between us and a path that is already ours.

Are you brave enough to be you? are you being true to your values? are you supporting your dreams? or are you hiding from you? are you listening to shame or judgement?  are you telling yourself a story about who you are that is just not true?   There is no value in finger pointing in blame or excuse. There is Greatness and immeasurable value in being you!

 So at this point your wondering what Parkour has to do with anything in this post. I use something which I call mindful parkour! I love watching Parkour, just in case you have never seen it or are unsure of what I am talking about, parkour is a discipline  that developed out of military obstacle training. …it is also known as “free running”!  It’s origin comes from the Latin word percurrere , which means to run through!  Of course I am not suggesting that you rush through your life bounding through obstacles of your mind. I think that our obstacles are a reminder of humility and I value humility, I just think that it feels good to share something that works. I think if one person finds this post valuable then it is and I do already! so it is. Mindful parkour is my way of seeing the mountains and running through them, because they are only mountains of the mind they become transcendent as soon as you allow them to be! It’s a fast way through the fear, its efficient and its a great tool for a great you!

The Miriam-Webster dictionary defines Parkour as ; the sport of traversing environmental obstacles by running, climbing, or leaping rapidly and efficiently. 

I hope that this post has tapped a part of you to choose your own values consistently, to be true to you and to understand what does and doesn’t service you well as a belief or value, to be mindful of mountains and understand your ability to apply the parkour principle! To nurture and develop your greatness!

chasing passion

I always find myself lost in thought everyday, connecting to different things that I am passionate about. I day dream so much that I forget what’s real and what’s not some days!   We all have this connection to something that shakes us in a great way that makes us excited about living. Something we enjoy doing so much that it effects everything inside and outside of us. 

I think it starts from a very young age, we try something and just connect with it and before we know it we get so involved and inspired that we try one thing after the next until we have a pocket full of passions. I think we grow to love a few things more than others and move through life with more grace and balance because of these things that light us up. We experience something significant daily and our mind/body/soul feels nurtured.

So what happens when life is experienced without this balance?  I think that we starve ourselves at times of what can potentially be the most important emotion of life, the love and passion that we put into something can be lost if we don’t make time for it. We don’t ever lose it, we just forget how great it really feels.

If your reading this, I hope that you are dedicating time to your passions. Time to do the things that keep you smiling and nurture you fully. If you are not, then I hope you take 5 minutes to consider what it would take for you to make it happen. Then do it!

Buddha and bedtime tales!

I love reading parables. Often they are so simple and moving and powerful. They move the mind.

I read a Buddhist parable once, I think it was called the Turtle and the Fish. One day a Turtle walked by a stream and a fish started chatting to it. The fish asked the turtle where it had been and the turtle told the fish …”on dry land”. The fish had no knowledge or understanding of “dry land” and began to question the turtle, in search of his own “proof.” The turtle answered the questions and at the end of the conversation the fish didn’t believe it. He had asked questions about what dry land felt like based on his own experience with water, the temperature of it, the feeling of it and its behaviour. Before the turtle left he responded to the fish by stating that if he insisted on thinking that way then that is all he will know. That if he was determined to think that, then he would always think that dry land was nothing, but anyone who knows water and dry land would just think he was a silly fish, because he thinks that anything he has never known is nothing, simply because he has never known it!

I often think of this parable when something wow’s me. When I experience something I can’t explain or understand. It’s a very gentle energy of openness. I think I cultivated it in some search for the “magic” in life, from a very young age. Even though our peers and guardians might label it with wonky words like naïve and gullible. I see it from a learners perspective. It’s empowering being open to receiving new teachings. I can’t imagine where we would be as a civilization if we had continued to mock the people who pave the way with an open mind and heart, that pour their everything into developing something for the good of a whole nation. 

Of course this does not mean that I stand rigid to knowledge that is unexplainable. It’s a flexible decision to consider it. I do not blindly accept things that I can’t explain. I love to listen to others with experiences that are true and real to them and consider that this can be thought provoking and valuable, not only to them but to me also, even not having had the experience.

If we follow the history of language into the past, we can consider that at some point we…”made stuff up.” We had to in order to understand each other. So we chose sounds for each object as we discovered it. Another after another. Why is it now that we question so much of what is new and can’t be explained because we do not know of it, because we have not decided on the “proof” of it. It seems that so many choose to not “know” based on not having ever known, just as the fish did and yet the turtle walked away on dry land.