A New Way to Use Your Imagination

When recovering from skeletons in the closet — any hurtful experience — it’s important to learn how to help yourself in a gentle, accepting way. Here’s a new way to learn to be kinder to yourself, using your imagination.

Start by getting comfortable, sitting or laying down. Make sure you are truly, perfectly settled. If you are sitting, perhaps place a pillow behind your back to maintain a lumbar curve. If you are laying down, consider putting a pillow or some blankets under your legs to help your lower back to relax. Breathe deeply several times, and imagine that there is soft, calming music playing. Think of the sort of music that massage therapists or spas use: slow, gentle, perhaps slightly rhythmic.

Sit for several breaths, slowly inhaling and exhaling and becoming aware of your body as you breathe. Continue imagining the relaxing music.

Now imagine that you are going to make your own meditation/affirmation CD. Wouldn’t you use a calm, reassuring tone? What would you say to encourage someone? You might start by speaking for the breaths — “breathe in slowly through your nose, breathe out slowly… relax your body from head to toe…”

Now where does your imagination take you? Does a calming scene come to mind? Do you feel like telling your imaginary audience about something to visualize? What would you tell someone to help them feel appreciated or important? What might you say to help them relax? Now say those things in your head, as if you were trying to make a great relaxation CD, knowing that you are actually saying them to yourself.

Talk to yourself in this manner for as long as it feels natural — don’t force it or get elaborate. It is best to let ideas simply float to mind, say them, hear them, and let them float away. You shouldn’t need to use your intellect — get out of your head. Don’t worry about remembering what you said either. Just let the ideas flow. Isn’t it interesting — by picturing making a professional meditation/relaxation product, you are actually learning how to love and accept yourself.

How does that feel? I hope it feels rejuvenating and inspiring. I hope it gives you more hope! But I know that if you’ve been in the habit of judging and not liking yourself, then it may feel very uncomfortable or strange, and as soon as it was over, you may have noticed yourself thinking some negative thoughts; you may have even talked to yourself in a harsh voice, because that is what you are used to. Don’t despair! You can gradually learn to like yourself more, to judge yourself less and to be a good friend to yourself.

Try this method two or three times a week, or even as a daily meditation, and see how your life changes when you begin to speak to yourself in a more loving voice. Using your imagination in this way is a bit like tapping into your own personal soundtrack, but in this case, you direct the music rather than simply listening. I hope you will find this meditation helpful as you learn to support and love yourself more.


MLogozar-coverA childhood friend of mine, Michael Logozar, is an amazing pianist, and he’s recorded three beautiful albums, all of which I find to be very lovely and relaxing. If you’d like to try them, I’m sure you’ll agree! (I’m not getting any sort of money for recommending his music — I just had to mention it!)

Two in One — Our Dual Nature

Good versus evil. Black and white. High and low. Manic and depressed.

The cartoon of an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other sums it up nicely — don’t you just feel torn in two sometimes? We are all plagued by a great schism — an unexplainable but nonetheless real feeling of duality. We feel like two beings bottled up into one. We feel like we are battling ourselves. We feel, sometimes, like we can’t trust ourselves — we might go and do something we didn’t mean to do.

Many a philosopher, scientist and physician has studied this dual nature. Why do we have two sides? Why are we bi-polar? What makes us doubt ourselves? Why do we have such powerful internal conflicts?

I have noticed that I’ve been feeling less “dual-natured” these days, but this is pretty new for me, so I started wondering why, now, I am feeling more unified.

I love how Abraham-Hicks explains it. We are two beings in one — a physical being and a non-physical being, which together make up the “total you.” We have an undeniable link to our higher selves, and so we feel a disconnect — a dis-ease, anxiety, fear or frustration — whenever the two sides of us are not in harmony.

Our higher self, or as Abe would say, our “broader inner you,” dwells in a place of complete appreciation — of our selves and people/things around us. When we are having fun, feeling good about ourselves and grateful for the things in our lives, our physical self is in alignment with our higher self.

Of course, life is like a multi-coloured messy ball of yarn, and our thoughts are rarely uniform — they are a mix of positive and negative, self-loathing and self-acceptance. However, when the balance of our thoughts is negative, such as it is when we consistently don’t like ourselves much, we are in disharmony with our higher self and that ever-present dual nature is strong. But when you can find a way to appreciate yourself, your “lower self” is in harmony with your higher self, and you feel more unified and less schizophrenic. I guess I’ve been liking myself fairly consistently, and having fun with friends lately, so that’s why I am feeling so peaceful/at one with myself.

Another way to think of it is ego. The ego is the voice of the disconnected self — the physical part that doesn’t like itself. If you can find ways to quiet the ego, then you’ll feel much more at-ease and healthy. Eckhart Tolle’s A New Earth is a fantastic book to read for help with that.

You know, I think that’s why being in love feels so great. When we are newly in love, we are full of appreciation for our lover, and they for us. Appreciation flows back and forth freely and we also, without realizing it, are appreciating ourselves. What you do to another, you do to yourself. Self-appreciation feels great and everything is looking up. However, if your self-esteem was low (before you fell in love), then you will eventually slip back into your pattern of not loving yourself, which causes you to stop loving your mate, and the feedback loop of appreciation is broken. The only way to fix it is to spend some time with yourself, liking yourself, and do whatever you can to accept and appreciate yourself more.

This is what I mean when I say it’s important to be self-centered. That’s not the same as being selfish; it is in fact, serving everyone in your life to be self-centered enough to love yourself and therefore be capable of loving others.

Self-appreciation is central to everything in our lives. If you can, catch yourself when you are critical and change your thoughts to more positive ones. Why not decide that you’re okay just as you are?! Celebrate your quirks and appreciate your body. The more you can appreciate yourself, the happier you’ll be!

The Mirror Lies

A few years ago, I went on a seven-day kayak trip on the Peace River and, I hesitate to admit, I barely did any personal hygiene. I had a bath in the river once, on a particularly hot day, and I think I washed my face once a day… It was a wilderness trip, so how I looked was not on my mind.

I had an amazing time on that trip, and when I finished, I had an new image of myself in my mind. I was a blonde-haired, fit, vibrant, healthy — lithe, even — kayaking goddess! Imagine my surprise when I looked in a mirror again and saw that I really hadn’t changed. I was sure that seven days on the water had changed me, but it did so in deep, personal ways, not physical ones. It took me a little time to get over that identity crisis. So where was the problem — with the mirror, or with me? I think it’s the mirror. Everyone knows that mirrors lie.

When you look at yourself in the mirror, you don’t see your real self. Most of the time, you can only see parts of your self. You focus on a blemish. You see wrinkles or discoloured skin. If you try to expand your view, you might be able to see your whole face, but it still isn’t the real you.

Don’t you find that when you look at yourself in a mirror, you are being analytical? As a result, you don’t have the spark of life in your eye, so you look dead… unhappy… and, well, analytical.

It’s universally true that the thoughts you are thinking show up on your face. In real life, when you are enjoying yourself, having fun with friends or doing something that makes you feel good, you look completely different than you do in the mirror. You look beautiful. You look amazing!

Now suppose you have a full-length mirror. If you stand very far away from it, and quickly glance at yourself, you might be able to get a clue about what you really look like. But if you just stand in front of it, looking yourself up and down, that’s not accurate either. We are always in motion and we don’t just stand face-on to a person and let them look us up and down very often!

We behave in front of mirrors like models in front of a camera. But we aren’t models! We are regular people, and we are fantastic! Thank goodness we aren’t models, being judged on every square inch of our bodies… although even models have to have a brain in their heads. I watched “America’s Next Top Model” a few times, and one thing I took away from the show was that there is more thinking involved in modelling than I thought, and being pretty wasn’t enough. The girls had to make up a facial expression that had some meaning to it — just like Zoolander! 🙂 Magnum.

So, it’s definitely true that mirrors lie. They don’t depict what you really look like to other people. They don’t show you in motion, and they don’t show you happy and relaxed, unless you make a special effort to be that way in front of a mirror. They don’t show you the spark of life, the spring in your step and the smile you have by way of welcoming others. So don’t believe what you see in the mirror!

There’s so much more I could say, but I’ll leave it at that for now. 🙂 Keep your chin up!

Related Post (from my other blog): See Your Beauty
Photo from this great post: Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

Create Your Own Universe

The Traveler

I love Star Trek, especially The Next Generation. As I rewatched one of my favourite episodes, ‘Remember Me’ (from the fourth season) I was struck again by the profound truths within that story.

The plot begins with Dr. Crusher being mystified by the sudden disappearances of people on the Enterprise. But they haven’t just gone missing — all proof they ever existed is gone. They were never even born. Soon, even the main crew members disappear, and it’s just her and Piccard left on the whole ship. When he disappears, her focus shifts — she is going to tackle this problem methodically and figure out what is going on. She guides the computer through a logical analysis and gradually, she begins to realize that she is stuck in a universe all her own. People are disappearing because that’s what she was thinking about when she became enveloped by the warp bubble universe (another of Wesley’s experiments gone awry). Luckily, Wesley and Beverley, in their separate universes, somehow call the Traveler from Tau Alpha C. He helps Wesley to open a portal to save his mom, which he can only do if he lets go of the past. The Traveler says:

“It is time. Let it go. Let go of the anticipation, the expectations, the demands upon yourself. Let it all go. Leave it behind. Yes… The ability is there inside of you. You do not need to look for it.” – The Traveler

We create our own reality with our thoughts. It takes shape according to what we think, but unlike the Star Trek episode, we can’t track it back to an exact moment when we had a certain thought, but we can change the direction it is taking at any time by simply thinking about something new. It is no experiment — it is life, and we are living it according to our own self-imposed boundaries, limits, definitions and rules, all of which we can change at any time.

Our universes overlap to the extent that we have things in common with others. For example, my universe doesn’t overlap with Donald Trump’s, that is, I don’t interact with him, because I don’t have much in common with him. However, if I think more abundantly, I will start to meet and interact with more abundant, thriving people (which I do already, just not so much with the ridiculously rich folks). The type of people in my life are an indication of where I’m at with my thoughts and vibration.

So if I am unhappy with someone in my life and I “kick them out,” someone new and similar will come along and take their place if I don’t change the way I think. The people closest to me are an indication of my inner workings. When I abuse myself, so do others. When I take care of myself, those around me treat me better too, and I find I have all sorts of great friends and lovely people around me, even in minor interactions with grocery store clerks. My thoughts and relationship with myself are quite clearly visible, once I realized this is how the world works. I think we all secretly know this, which is why we try to fool others and get so concerned about appearances — we feel like we don’t like ourselves and everybody knows it and it makes us uncomfortable. The solution, of course, is to learn to like ourselves more.

The overall direction in our lives is sort of a sum of our thoughts and feelings. Experiences that are more intense hold more weight, so if you want to be happier, try to recall a time when you were *really* extremely happy. By recalling/re-experiencing that feeling, your life will head in that direction. This is the Law of Attraction in a nutshell, so if you were unfamiliar with it, you’re not any more!

We each create our own universe. We are either moving toward more love or more hate, more compassion or more antagonism, more freedom or more fear. Choosing what way to go is as easy as changing lanes in a wide, multi-lane freeway — think about which way you want to go, wait for a space in the traffic and do it! In this analogy, the “waiting for the space” is just living in the present moment as much as possible and being aware of your thoughts. As you choose the direction and make the lane changes, some of the people in your life may change, and that’s a good thing. There are always more lanes on your left or right — the freeway is infinitely wide — because our growth is never finished. It is all about the journey!

Once more, take the advice of the Traveler:

“It is time. Let it go. Let go of the anticipation, the expectations, the demands upon yourself. Let it all go. Leave it behind. Yes… The ability is there inside of you. You do not need to look for it.” – The Traveler

It is time. Let it go.

Here is a link to the Star Trek episode, if you’re interested! Unfortunately, it doesn’t show the inspirational speech by the Traveler. 🙂

More Than Meets the Eye

There is always more going on than is on the surface.

Whatever physical symptoms you are experiencing, they are only the tip of the iceberg. If you get quiet for a moment and breathe, it will be come apparent to you whatever the real underlying “problem” is – whatever is really going on in the physio-spiritual realm. This might be a strictly spiritual problem or issue, or it may be an emotional thing you are dealing with, or you may have dis-ease in your thinking.

This third one is the most likely and luckily, the easiest one to change. If you are thinking thoughts of struggle, difficulty or unhealthiness, then your body will manifest a physical symptom to match. It might be a sore throat. It might be a chronic illness or long-term disease. It might be excess pounds. Whatever you are experiencing, there is a spiritual solution, and it mostly likely, when you really distill it down, is due to a lack of self-love. Take some time to connect to your higher self, your sleep angels or your inner spirit, and you will see yourself the way Spirit sees you. That is the one of the best ways to connect with self-love, and the solution to any “problem.”

We’re All Okay

We all get bogged down in our skeletons sometimes, or even just in the stressers of daily life. Do you ever just want to just feel good again? Or just want it to be over, whatever “it” is?
We all do! We all feel frustrated with our situation or with ourselves at times. Being mad at yourself, or disappointed in yourself, is the toughest place to be. Sometimes we are frustrated because we know we can or should handle things better, and sometimes it’s just because we feel like we aren’t living up to our expectations or goals. And this can really take your self-esteem and self-appreciation down a few notches. Plus, you can’t get away from yourself, although many have tried with the overuse of alcohol and drugs.
We all want to feel that we’re okay. We all doubt, at times, if we’re normal, or if we are a “bad person,” or if we are worthy of anything good in our lives. When things are really pressing on you hard, it’s okay to seek relief, just to want to feel okay. It’s absolutely 100% okay to just wish things were different for a while. It’s absolutely 100% okay to want to just do something for fun, to take your mind off your troubles and help you feel okay. It’s 100% okay to distract yourself sometimes, just to get your mind out of the hole it’s been in. Sometimes that’s the only way to get out of a “funk” — a bad mood that you woke up with or developed over the day that you just can’t seem to shake.
If there is something you enjoy doing strictly for fun, and it isn’t hurtful to you or anyone else, go and do it! If you have a hobby that makes you happy — golfing, knitting, painting, gardening, whatever — make some time today to go and do it for a little while. The world will not fall apart if you stop working for 20 minutes and have fun. You will feel entirely better for taking time out for fun, and it will help you “to feel okay.” You are whole, you just forget it sometimes when you get the blinders on, working with your nose to the grindstone, or spend too much time thinking critically about yourself. You are awesome, you just forget sometimes.