I share my personal experiences each week to inspire you and give you some tools that have worked for me. I know that we are all one. I believe there is always a gift in my experiences when I am willing to change and see the gift that God is giving me.
Several weeks ago I had the experience of being judged. What do you do when you feel judged? I am sure that we have all had the experience of being judged or wronged by someone. It may be imagined or real, but either way it may be difficult to process and deal with. It is most painful when it’s a family member or friend. Feelings of hurt, anger, disappointment, confusion, fear and being misunderstood may come to the surface. It is important that we allow ourselves to feel our feelings and not do a spiritual bypass. If we push our feelings down and deny them, we will get sick and often they will come out sideways on an innocent bystander. Can you relate?
What I’ve learned is that what other people think of me is none of my business. It is none of my business when other people judge me. Unfortunately, for many years, I made it my business and suffered needlessly. I took things personally and was often defensive. I didn’t have any self-esteem or self-love so it was very important to be liked and well thought of by others.
It is human nature to want to explain ourselves when we feel judged. I am learning when I need to “speak up or shut up.” When I was passive, I didn’t speak up about anything and when I was learning to be assertive, I spoke up about everything and drove some people crazy. Now, I discern when I need to say something and when I can let it go.
I can’t control what people think of me, how they treat me or how they judge me. That’s their stuff, not mine. That doesn’t mean that I am a victim and allow myself to be treated disrespectfully. Today, I have enough love and respect for myself that I have left relationships that weren’t healthy and honoring & nurturing to my spirit. I only have control over what I do, my behaviors, actions and reactions- that is my business.
What I do in my life is none of other people’s business, also. I had a difficult time making my own decisions at one time and went outside for my answers. Not anymore, because I know the answers are within and I am learning to be my own guru. I no longer need to please others and get permission to do what I want to do. What a freedom and relief that is.
What is important is that I keep my side of the street clean when I feel judged or wronged. Here are some tools that I practice (not perfectly) to help me process what I’m going through. You can practice one, two or all of them and they can be used in any stressful situation or relationship.
*I pray, meditate and ask God for wisdom and the truth.
*I allow myself to feel all of my feelings, journal about them and release them.
*I process my feelings with a trusted friend and ask for help.
*I pray for the person.
*I release judgment and send light and love to the person.
*I let go of resentments and hurt.
*I detach from others opinions and judgments.
*I don’t judge myself or beat up on myself (thinking the judgment was true.)
*I don’t get defensive and try to change the person’s mind and see it my way.
*I don’t need to prove myself or have to be right.
*I speak up or shut up when appropriate. And then let go of the outcome.
*I look for the gift and what I am to learn and grow.
*I expect good to come from the situation.
*I reframe it in my favor by saying, “This hasn’t come to hurt me, but to help me.”
*I’m open and willing to see if there is any truth in the judgment and change when appropriate.
*I don’t obsess over it and make it into a drama.
Nobody likes to be judged or wronged. My ego wants to be right and perhaps get back at the person that has hurt me. This only hurts me and I lose my peace. If I want peace in my life, I am willing to do whatever I need to do to keep my vibration high and be in alignment with Spirit. It is also my belief that it is all perfect and that whatever is happening is for my highest good.
When you receive this blog, I will be in the “sky” on my way to visit my family in Rhode Island. I am excited to see my children and friends and very excited to meet my new grandson, Jared, who will be 4 months old at the end of this month. Of course, pictures are wonderful, but I can’t wait to get him in my arms and love him up.
My heart and home are in Maui so it is bitter-sweet leaving here this Christmas. I waited many years to meet my soulmate and celebrate Christmas together. This is my first Christmas with Larry and we will be apart. Of course, it is my choice to leave Maui and his choice not to join me, but that doesn’t make it any easier.
I make choices every day and trust that they are for my highest good and for the good of all. Perhaps you have heard the quote and even experienced it for yourself, “Absence makes the heart grow fonder.” We shall see, because I can’t imagine our hearts & love growing any stronger for one another. I have never experienced the kind of love that we have for one another. He writes me poems, sings me songs, sends me cards and brings me flowers. Although this is awesome and I love it, most of all, he SEES who I am and loves me just the way I am. We laugh all the time and have learned to live in the moment. As Larry says, “We never know when our train is going to come into the station.”
For many years Larry said to himself, “I know I can have it all and I now have it all with you.” My heart skips a beat when he tells me that. God has brought us together (just as He promised) and my heart is so grateful. If I were to die tomorrow, I know I have been loved unconditionally and deeply.
Many of my girlfriends and perhaps some of you who are reading this today have the same heart’s desire, and that is to have a loving partner to spend the rest of your life with. For 12 years, the desire of my heart was to have a relationship that was authentic, spiritual, loving, honest and playful. Believe me, it wasn’t always easy waiting and I tried to control and make things happen. I got angry and pouted and felt jealous when I saw others find a boyfriend. I sometimes thought, “What’s wrong with me, why haven’t I met a man yet?” I remember driving home from dances with tears rolling down my cheeks because I felt so lonely.
I have a chapter in my book, “Simply a Woman of Faith” about my struggle while waiting for my soul mate to show up and what I received in an email shortly after I asked this question.
God what’s wrong with me? Why haven’t I met my soul mate yet?
“But God said: not until you are satisfied, fulfilled and content with being loved by me alone. I love you my child and until you discover that only in me is your satisfaction to be found, you will not be capable
of the perfect relationship that I have planned for you. You will never be united with another until you are united with me, exclusive of any other longings or desires. I want you to stop wishing, planning and allow me to give you the most thrilling plan existing, one that you cannot imagine. I want you to have the best. Please allow me to bring it to you. You just keep watching, learning and listening to the things I tell you. You must wait. Do not be anxious or worried. You must keep looking off and away, up to me, or you will miss what I want to show you. And then you will be ready. I will surprise you with a love that
is far more wonderful than you could every dream of.
While on a spiritual retreat a few months later, I received this in prayer and meditation. It is a love letter from God.
Be at peace; be at peace, trust, trust. Beyond your wildest dreams will your soul mate come into your life. He will come to you. You don’t have to do anything, but just BE. Learn to love yourself
Compassionately. You are beautiful, cherished and loved. All is well and on time. Practice being in the moment. Let Joy exude from you. It is your Joy that will draw your mate. I give you the gift of Joy this day.
As I read these words from my book, I am amazed and in awe how I am living my dream today. I waited, surrendered, believed, expected and trusted that this was God’s promise to me. I am grateful that I put God first in my life and had the courage to stop wishing, planning and allowed God to give me the most thrilling plan existing, one that I couldn’t imagine. I do have the best.
I became my own best friend and fell in love with myself. I stepped out in faith and followed my heart to live on Maui, leaving my family, friends and community. It was truly God’s grace and my willingness to trust that God was leading me and that I was worthy and deserving to live in paradise.
I humbly share my story with you to encourage you and give you HOPE. God is faithful and God wants only your highest good. He has given you the desires of your heart. Believe and have faith they will come to pass.
Mele Kalikimaka and Hau’oli Makahiki Hou
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. May it be the best one yet.
As Larry and I were having a conversation about the holidays coming up, I thought about my family and friends and what I wanted to buy them for gifts. One of my love languages is giving gifts (and receiving them) so I wanted to find something that they would like. As I thought about this, I decided that I wanted to love myself first and give myself a gift (as well as buying gifts for my loved ones). I didn’t want it to be a gift-gift, but something different and special. Before I share with you how I will love myself and the gift I’m giving myself, I will give you a glimpse of what my life was like.
There was a time in my life that I was the “Queen of Multitasking” and rushing. With four children under the age of 10, there never seemed to be enough time in the day and I learned to do many things at the same time. I could be classified as an overachiever. Can you relate?
For example, I was holding my son in my left arm nursing him, while counseling a friend on the phone and stirring something on the stove with my right arm. I felt proud of myself and loved writing lists and crossing things off because at the end of the day, I felt like I had accomplished something and my day wasn’t wasted. I didn’t know any better and thought it was a necessity to get everything done that I wanted to do. When we multitask, our attention is divided between other tasks which means that the quality of what we’re doing suffers. When we focus on one task at a time, the quality is definitely much higher.
I grew up in a home where I heard “hurry up” a lot. I didn’t know how to do things slowly and one thing at a time. Perhaps because I’m also a New Yorker, I did just about everything fast, from eating to driving to talking – and felt proud of it. Thank God, I have learned a better way and that is to relax and stop DOING so much. I have learned to BE, to enjoy and let fun and pleasure be the priority in my life.
That brings me to the gift I’m giving myself this Christmas, but not only at Christmas, but every day as a way of life. Have you ever heard of the word “lollygagging”? I had to look it up in the dictionary to make sure it really was a word. It says: “To spend time doing things that are not useful or serious or to fool around and waste time, to spend time idly, loaf.”
I wasn’t taught or encouraged to lollygag, but was taught the opposite; to be serious and get things done. I have memories of being reprimanded for lollygagging and heard, “Stop lollygagging and get your room cleaned now.” Perhaps I knew the importance of lollygagging at one time but thought it was wrong or bad. As an adult, I felt guilty if I wasn’t doing or accomplishing something. I thought I was lazy if I just wanted to do nothing and relax. I sometimes still have to fight the belief that I’m lazy and that it is bad or wrong to do nothing.
I have a completely new understanding of what it means to lollygag today. Lollygagging is being in the moment, having fun, being free, enjoying, relaxing, experiencing pleasure, being playful and kind of mindless. It is really about letting Spirit lead me and doing what feels right in the moment. It is not a time to produce, to please, to impress, or to accomplish anything and there is no agenda. Can you imagine what it would be like to feel good about wasting time on yourself and to just fool around? It’s glorious.
I am proud to say that I am now the “Queen of Lollygagging” and pleasure. I waste time on myself doing what I love and want to do. Larry and I lollygag when we go to Costco and just kind of float around looking at new things and tasting all the food samples they give out. We have so much fun and laugh and he calls it “Pollygagging” because we are now partners. I mean really, how can you have fun and play at Costco?
You may be thinking, “Sure Pat, you’re retired and have the time to lollygag, but, I have a job and family to take care of and that is the last thing I can do.” I know what it is like to have a family and a job and go to school at the same time. I know what it is like to go from one thing to another and still feel like there is so much more to do. At one time, I put everybody else’s needs ahead of my own so there wasn’t time or energy for my needs and I was stressed and exhausted all the time.
With all the stress and demands in our lives, it makes it even more important to give yourself the gift of lollygagging once in a while. Perhaps a few hours on the weekend or 1 hour a day, whatever feels good and works for you. When our tanks are full because we have spent time loving and honoring ourselves we will be able to give to others from our surplus. You will also teach your children the importance of taking care of yourself and not being a martyr or saint because of all you do for others.
What gives you pleasure? Whatever it is, give it to yourself and make yourself a priority. You are important and worth it. Start with doing one good thing for yourself every day and it will feel so good, that you will want to do it more and more.
This is the season of giving – to yourself FIRST and watch the miracles unfold. Then you will be able to receive with an open heart. You won’t look to others to fill and complete you because you have already given it to yourself.
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