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Be a Person of Impeccable Character

Today someone wrote asking if I truly walk my talk. It is a valid question and one I appreciate being asked.

To me authentically walking our talk is the greatest accomplishment we can achieve. I cannot imagine a greater goal than being a person of impeccable character.  I have felt this way all of my life because I have been abused or know of people who have been taken advantage of and even sexually violated by people who are considered  teachers, mentors, guides, leaders, etc. Some of the guilty are famous. Sometimes they fall from grace and other times they continue to lead a double life.

Deceiving someone who has faith that you are a good person will never make sense to the higher wisdom of my heart. In fact, I find it self-centered and heart-breaking. To me someone in a position of influence who spreads messages of positivity and wisdom and then abuses others is not worthy of the position with which they have been entrusted. I decided long ago there is no price for which I will betray myself or others.

Regardless what success we achieve as measured by the outside world, remaining in solid alignment with the values of our heart is the loftiest goal. Being respected as people who do walk their talk is worth more than all the money and fame in the world. To me that is true success.

Refuse to Live in Fear

As we see headlines and newscasts about heightened alerts for terrorism worldwide join me in refusing to live in fear. Let’s refuse to be intimidated by the unconscious who want us to be afraid of them.  I am not afraid and I refuse to be bullied by anyone. I refused to be sucked into fear-based media hysteria. I refuse to side with those who continue to believe fighting fire with fire is the way to put out the flames.

Every messenger of peace tells us we must choose a higher way of being than that of the ignorant, disillusioned, and unconscious. With all my heart I believe millions of us throughout the world are beginning to wake up and appreciate that conflict and violence is not the answer.  We are beginning to appreciate that it is impossible for hate to survive heart-light. Let’s lead with our heart and shine brightly in the truth that we are the strong ones by refusing to live in fear. You and I choose to be the peace we want to see. By doing so we will change the world.

Healing is a Journey

Healing is not a “reach one goal” then quit process.  There are layers to taking our power back. 

On my journey of overcoming abuse, judgment and mistreatment I quit biting my finger nails. I quit smoking. I kicked the habit of gossiping, being sarcastic and tearing other people down. I overcame co-dependency. I stopped using foul language. I reclaimed my body. I became financially accountable. I became responsible for my every thought, word and action. I taught myself to stay patiently present in the now. I put ego aside to lead with my heart. I learned to love and respect myself. I learned to set healthy boundaries and forgive.  These are a few of the goals I reached and I am far from finished. 

Part of the fun of this journey, at least for me, is seeing how much more I can discover about myself that needs work.  I believe I am alive to continue to become better, not for anyone other than myself.  That means I do not ever think I’ve achieved enough. It means I continue to intentionally look for and peel away another layer of “not my best” so I get closer to the goal of being whole.

What You Give Out Comes Back to You

I enjoy helping others. I receive immense joy from being of service.  And while I do not think about what I am going to get in return, one of the most satisfying and powerful lessons I’ve learned is that the behavior I put out (positive and negative) does come back to me. Having had enough of the negative I now get up each day determined to put out as much good behavior as possible because every act of caring and kindness it is like putting a karmic “I owe you,” into a positive-energy piggy bank. 

It never fails that when we need a boost or helping hand the loving Divine essence removes one, or two, or three of the karmic “I owe you’s,” and a needed door opens, or a friend offers support, or an unexpected but much needed check arrives. While we get the most satisfaction from remaining focused on helping simply for the joy we receive, there is a great sense of peace, security, and awe when the universe affirms the law of attraction and shakes loose a karmic coin from our positive-energy piggy bank of love.

Life is Sacred in Every Form

When I was young I remember going to the zoo. I would visit the great ape house and sit for a long time in front of a beautiful silver back gorilla. He was all alone in a concrete cell with a tire on a rope, a large ball, and a tiny window way up high. Every time I visited he seemed to be sitting in the same position, never looking around, as if he had been stuffed. But I could see his chest moving up and down as he breathed. 

I wanted more than anything for him to look up so I could let him know he was not alone, that someone cared. He never did and to this day, so many years later, I still remember thinking what it must have felt like to be locked in a cell alone instead of being free to be the magnificent creature he was born to be. I felt his pain and wanted to take it away. Seeing myself in him and him in me is why I have a deep appreciation and respect for all that is alive. 

We are life as all other animals are life. It is spiritually responsible to protect, nurture, respect, and treat all life with compassion and kindness.

Dream Big Then Have Faith

Yesterday my partner and I went to Barnes and Nobel’s bookstore at the Grove here in Los Angeles.  We stood in front of the Self-help section for a long time looking at the different books. We watched people pick through the selves. For a brief moment my heart sank as I tried to wrap my mind around, ‘How people will find my little book among the 100s of others? Why in the world would Barnes and Nobel want to put my picture on a big banner announcing an upcoming book signing?’ A split second after I felt those twinges of fear and doubt I felt peaceful and calm. I remembered the truth that I am not in control. 

You see the only part of this process I was ever in control of was writing. For almost two years I sat down each day and put my heart on paper. But it was not me that got the big named endorsements.  Yes I wrote to them asking for their support but it was the power I call God that touched the heart of those ‘famous’ people. I did not know how to get a publisher. I just knew I wanted to go the traditional publishing route. So God led me to the right publisher. 

It is so easy to look back and see all the doors that are opening to help create the huge dream I have. I feel at peace when I remember that the only power I have is to keep putting one foot in front of the other. My job is to do the work and continue to have faith in that immense power who works on my behalf. There was never any reason for fear because no matter how many books are on the self my little book will be found by those who are meant to find it. 

You are not alone in the dreams you have for yourself.  Your job is to dream BIG, do the hard work, and don’t give up. Then the magnificent, creative and loving power will align with your heart and open every door that you need opened. It will also close those that need closing. Your job is to have faith in the process. You don’t have to know how your dream will come true. You just have to believe with all your heart that it will.

My Crow Friend

There is a crow on our street with a missing wing. It was hit by a car and its wing was torn off. It has been in the neighborhood for about four months unable to fly. Animal control cannot catch it. While it seems to be doing okay on its own I do offer a helping hand. 

Twice a day I look for it and we do the same dance. I go down with bits of crow-healthy food, deposit them on the ground. It runs away then returns to gobble up what I have left. 

I feel blessed to have established a relationship with my new crow friend. It is life as I am life. I respect and honor its right to live. I think it appreciates me too.

Question Your Thoughts

For many years I thought the odds were stacked against me.  Other people were happy but that was just not my life. I kept telling myself someone else is responsible for my happiness, I can’t do it, I’m not worthy, and that my unhappiness is part of my culture and just who I am. 

One day I realized each of these thoughts was a big fat lie. That day I began freeing myself from a life of shallow pursuits, irresponsibility and dissatisfaction.  I did so by accepting that the limiting thoughts I was allowing to stop me were in fact just the lies and justifications of fear. 

Courageously challenge your limiting, judgmental, fearful and negative thoughts.  Think about what you think and you will find that you, other people and our world are more positive, peaceful and powerful than your thoughts have led you to believe.

Remember, Your Actions Teach

My mother taught me to smoke cigarettes.  Of course it was not her intent to do so. But each time she lit up I learned by her example that smoking was okay, even though she told me over and over to “do as she said rather than as she did.” 

The problem with “do as I say not as I do,” is that 80-90% of all communication is non-verbal. That means our behavior is vastly more influential in teaching others than our words.   

One of the most important things for us to remember is that what to value and how to behave appropriately must be taught. You and I have the responsibility to be a positive example for others of how life works best, especially children, because they learn from watching us. So if we do not intentionally teach them how to behave and what to value they will learn on their own through television, video games, the internet, movies and their peers.  With something as important as values at stake, we do not want to leave their character to chance. One way to be a positive hands-on example is to remember it is our actions that teach.

Angels are Real

Yesterday my almost 90 year old father decided to remove some roots from his front yard. He went out with axe and began chopping. He worked hard all morning had a light lunch and a short rest. Then he went outside and began chopping again. After about an hour in almost 100 degree Texas heat, exhausted and dehydrated, he got very dizzy and almost fainted.  He staggered to a nearby tree and leaned against it. That is where Jonathon Keller found my dad.  He is a young man who just happened to be driving by. 

My dad went inside while Jonathon finished chopping all the roots. My father did not ask him too, he volunteered. And when he was finished Jonathon refused to take money my dad offered. He wanted to give my father, a complete stranger, the gift of finishing the job. 

This afternoon I called Jonathon to thank him for stopping to help my dad.  I was disappointed he was not home. When he returns he will have a message with my phone number and a request to call. I want to speak to the man who not only may have saved my father’s life but who selflessly gave his time to help a complete stranger.  I want Mr. Jonathon Keller of Marshall, Texas to know he is an angel, to me and my dad.