• Connecting. Like for Real.

    When you hear the word connect, what do you think? I have been reflecting on the way we all connect. I’ve been evaluating how and why I connect with others. I want to be more authentic and intentional about the way and reason I connect. Before we can be intentional we must first be reflective and see what we are currently doing. While reflecting, I realized how fast things have changed. Depending on your age, you may remember days of playing outside with friends, writing a letter to a family member, calling each other on the phone without texting first, knocking on each other’s door to pick a person up, talking to others while in line at the grocery store or getting together to see vacation photos. Much of this is done with just a few clicks now. Technology has its plus and minuses, but that is not what this post is about.

    This is to ask you to stop and think about the way and reason you connect with others. As I have been reflecting I see how I interact with people while I’m out and about. I notice how I interact with strangers if I am by myself or with someone else such as my partner or a group of friends. I notice if I look up to make eye contact and what I say or don’t say. I notice when I am on my phone if I am just scrolling through posts or actually sending messages or commenting. I notice if I am being present when talking to someone.  I also noticed how good it feels when someone reaches out to me in a real way to connect.  

    There is no right or wrong. All different things play into how we communicate, such as; our culture, our personalities, our mood, access to others or devices to communicate. I just want to be intentional in connecting and who I am connecting with daily.

    I have been more aware of “why” I am choosing to communicate or connect with someone. Do you communicate out of need, desire, guilt or entertainment? Ask yourself why you are communicating with someone and how.

    Connecting is about relationships and I believe through relationships, regardless if it’s a brief interaction or life long partnership, we can grow, learn, be inspired, be changed, be encouraged, be validated, be questioned, or just be. I believe to live your life alive, we need to connect in a real way. Take time to connect.  We need your connection.

  • Shedding The Shadow

    Is there a shadow over you? You don’t always see it, but you know it is there. Although it doesn’t weigh anything, it feels like the weight of the world. It is the shadow that has been cast over you. It’s the shadow that regardless of where you go, how fast you run, what you grow into…it is there. You may know why it is there. You may even know who cast it there. It is still there. Was it the person who said those words that cast the shadow? Was it those expectations of others that cast a shadow over you? Are you living in someone else’s shadow? Was it the judgement from others? What is that shadow?

    How is the shadow serving you in anyway? Be honest. Is it keeping you out of the light so you will not be judged by others? Is it causing you to play small in your own life? Are you hiding from your authentic self? Is it hindering you from being the most amazing, radiant, magnificent YOU? Maybe you don’t even remember what the amazing bright light feels like. Is the shadow holding you back from living your life alive?

    What if you were able to recognize that you deserve to live a life out from underneath the shadow? What would be different about your life? Know that the light…and shedding the shadow…is only one step away. It is one decision. Shedding the shadow will serve you better than living under the shadow. You must first know how amazing you are…YOU! Deep down you know this to be true. You were created for greatness. You were created to shine. If you don’t believe it, could you at least think about the possibility of it being true? Imagine what shedding shadow would feel like.

  • Believing The Lie

    You had that one moment frozen in time. The moment came and went as quick as you could blink your eye. Such a small amount of time, but the impact was immeasurable. It was that moment in time where you believed the lie. It is the lie that someone told you about yourself or how you perceived someone else’s actions and internalized it.

    The thing that was said or done can feel paralyzing. How could this be? How did this happen? Their words or actions caused your heart to feel like it literally broke in half. That moment has passed, but what happened will always be.

    Well, there are three ways to look at it, to perceive it, to frame it or to tell the story.

    The above picture says a lot. There are three doors and we will explore three different common stories.

    You walk right past door #1. It may be too easy to walk through.

    Instead, you start with door #2. You walk in and see that situation and believe what you see. Door #2 says, “You are stupid and that is why it happened.” Yes YOU! You made the foolish choice and that is why it happened. You should’ve known better. Looking back the signs were there. You are smarter than that choice, but you made a decision and now look what happened! But who wants to look in the mirror and see stupid?

    So let’s see what is behind door #3. You walk in and you see that situation and see that you are not enough. If you were enough it would not have happened. If you could have only been better, different, or just acted like someone else, it wouldn’t have happened. You didn’t measure up to what was expected or needed. The games continue to play in your mind and you have a hard time seeing the situation. You feel unworthy and devalued. Why do you feel that way? Is that really the truth? You feel a nudge that tells you, “You ARE enough!” You have a hard time believing it, but you walk out and then notice door #1.

    Finally, you decide to walk through door #1. You knew it was there the whole time. As you walk through this door you see the situation, but you are simply observing like a fly on the wall. You can see it had little or nothing to do with you. Really? Are you sure? You seemed to play such an important role. You can see the other person/people’s actions going on even though you are not part it. It is still occurring without you there. You can see that it was happening before you got involved with that person or in that situation. You can also see that it is going on in the future. How can this be? You can now see that without you, there is still that personality, that addiction, that anger, that betrayal, that drama, that deception, that unforgivness, that abuse and what happed in that moment of time that broke your heart to begin with.

    You have learned a lot from visiting the rooms, but staying in any of these rooms too long will only hold you hostage to that moment in time where you believed the lie. I would like to invite you to take a walk with me down the street. Look at all the other doors. Look at all the opportunities. Behind each one is a new experience that will continue to help you on your journey. You are seeing clearly now. You can see the truth. Keep exploring behind the doors and have fun, but choose the doors carefully.

  • Your Vibe Attracts Your Tribe

    A tribe is defined as a social division in a traditional society consisting of families or communities linked by social, economic, religious, or blood ties, with a common culture and dialect, typically having a recognized leader.

    My tribe is different. My tribe comes from all different backgrounds. My tribe is diverse.

    My tribe is my tribe because they understand me, they get me, they see me, they accept me for being me. They are loyal. They know how to give and receive love. They stretch me. They don’t allow me to play small. They have a drive for learning more and growing. They show me grace where I fall short. They have shown me what unconditional love is through their actions. They understand that grace is the ingredient in true love, not judgment. My tribe loves people in the same way I feel love from God.

    Motivational speaker Jim Rohn famously said, “We are the average of the five people we spend the most time with.” I agree with this to a point. The energy and influence of others impact us daily. However, much of my tribe lives far away in another land and the impact these amazing people have on my life is powerful.

    Who we surround ourselves with can make or break us. Who is in your tribe? Are you authentically you? Are you the best you when you are around these people?

    Every year I chose one word to focus on. During 2016 I focused on the word CONNECTION. I have learned that connecting truly means giving and receiving on many different levels. Self-sufficiency, self-protection and self-efficiency, have been things hindering me from true connection. Is there something hindering you from connecting with others on a deeper level? What would things look like if you could connect deeper with others?

    During the first nine months of the year, I thought I was coming to a better understanding of connection. However, it wasn’t until the last three months of the year when I contracted an illness from a bug bite, did I truly learned that real connection comes from not only giving but receiving. It is one of the most amazing things about the human experience. We don’t always have to be the one that has it all together, with all the understanding and have all of the resources. We can be the one in need. It allows others to express their love and give the gifts they were meant to give. It gives us the opportunity to say, “Thank you!” So, to you, I say, “Thank you!”