Category Archives: Belief Systems BS

What’s The Dream Your Soul Dreamed For You? New PODCAST❤

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FUN NEWS!

Megan McWilliams Bouchard (my BFF from eons ago – well, 1st grade, in this life anyway,) and I are collaborating on a new podcast, The GD Spirit Pub!

Our pilot pubcast is ready! Come listen to our tales of spiritual seeking (and sucking) and how our crazy choices at the Spirit Pub (while drunk on bliss) are turning out! It’s anyone’s guess – an ongoing mystery-thriller-tragedy-comedy with/for our earthy crunchy soulmates. Join us for a pint of joy and to enlighten up!

For more about the Spirit Pub and why we might choose a life on the rocks, read my new post below ~

I’m not, yet, “living the dream.” My fantasy life would be filled with total ease, unbridled joy, financial security, friends, family and daily organic smoothies at my ocean-front villa. Including a prosperous, spiritual, inspirational business that contributes to a brighter world. And I donate my energy and overflowing abundance to wondrous causes that make a dynamic difference on the planet. 

But that’s not my reality. 

Then it hit me like a forgotten love bomb – maybe I AM living the dream! Not the aforementioned money-filled Margaritaville, but the unstoppable dream my soul dreamed for me. The gritty one I chose from the Spirit Pub where I’d (willingly, joyfully) wake up on earth and promptly fall fast asleep to my true self. Where I’d be deaf, dumb, blind and stretched beyond all boundaries, through fear, loss, grief and dwarfism. Where my greatest self would dare me with the ultimate challenge . . . to forget my light. And yours. To walk in the deepest dark.

Then slowly, painstakingly, arduously . . . we’d get glimpses of the dream. The movie we wanted to create, here, and the bliss we’d temporarily leave behind. 

So scary! So exciting! What incarnation were we thinking? Maybe there’s nothing to lose and plenty to gain. We’ve got an eternity to play with. 

But. As I struggle to make peace with myself, my responsibilities, family, friends, health, purpose, work and unpaid bills, how can I be living the dream? The unbearable shadows? Messy relationships? Judgment? Rejection? Hatred? War? What kind of cray-cray cruel dream could THAT be!?

The edge-of-your-seat kind. The plot-twists-from-heaven kind. The leap out-of-your-skin-suspense kind. The super-hero-action-packed kind. The standing-ovation-at-the-thrilling-finale kind. The happy-ending after-all-the-mind-blowing-drama kind. The buttered-popcorn kind.

How long will it run? Who will stay by our side? Will we be safe? Where are we going, after all is said and done? Not knowing the ending feels nerve-wracking and inhumane. But as the excitement grows, so does the engagement, expansion, resolutions and redemption. They are the gifts – the inspirations. The life-changing journey reveals the light we never lost. 

Our fragile humanness cannot always grasp how the dark can bring strength, appreciation, wonder and grace, but our soul got the memo.  

We’d be creators without a clue. No idea how to drive our dinghy. Out of control. Walking across coals. Trial by freaking fire.  

Until we learned to let go. Surrendered to the bigger dream we dreamed. From our godlet visions. Our home away from Home. Then the creation would be in greater hands.

But amnesia would strike again.

We’d prowl like panthers, black as a nightmare, stalking the dream we once knew. Getting lost in a secret riddle. Obliterating our human hearts. Waiting for the dawn to break us open. 

Not just once. But every day. 

Each sunrise would give us another crack at being luminous. Being present to the fullness of the dream. Not just tropical drinks with an umbrella. But the yin, the yang and the yikes.

The contrast would elevate us, urging us to keep climbing the mountains we chose. We knew the view would be worth the bruises, Ray-Bans, and getting burned. 

We’d forget the sunscreen. 

Believing would be the balm.

When the old victim stories grow tiresome. When the anger becomes pitiful protection. We’re softened by the soul’s dream – forgiveness and joy creep back.

Before technically creating my Kokomo, I’m realizing that this IS the dream ~ the uncharted course my soul eagerly endorsed. Including the ups and downs. The stepping on pop-tops. I came for the whole shebang. 

I’ll look back and swoon over the the thrills and spills. I’ll think it was everything I dreamed. Sans the villa. I’ll be smitten with the love and won’t want to leave the pool party. I’ll be ready to dive in all over again.

I’m living that dream.
And so are you.

With love, and flip-flops,

p.s. for more about my Spirit Pub adventures, check out this past post :)

 

 

What Tick’s You Off?🕷Death and BS in the Circle of Life  

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Have you tried Native deodorant?? I’ve tried all the natural deodorants with super stinky results. But AT LONG LAST I’ve found an aluminum free and paraben free ANSWER! And the coconut & vanilla scent is divine. After a few months of using it (and it not letting me down, lol) I gave it the TRUE test run and used it at a speaking gig. Guess what? Plenty of nerves but no stank! CRAY CRAY! So I say with all my heart, and sweet smelling pits, GO NATIVE! It’s worth every cent. (FYI, I only endorse products I use and love. I’m an Amazon Associate, so I earn a small percentage of qualifying purchases.)


Hiya Radiant Renegades 

💙💚💙 I arrive at Green Diva Meg’s magical home, ready for a delightful stint of dog sitting. 10 days in the woods. 10 days of quiet. Daily walks around a beautiful lake with her devoted dog, Gracie. I get to hang with the heron and gab with the geese. A sapphire sky sprawls out before us. It’s heaven on earth. 🌳💦 🌊

Until. 

The cool camouflaged snake

A sign appears on my first walk. A snake!🐍 I feel so excited to have noticed her, wonderfully camouflaged along the trail. So much exciting life in these woods! 

Ten minutes later, my mood plummets. I see half of a mutilated snake, jaws gapping open in wide-eyed shock. Did it suffer? It’s just the circle of life, I say, trying to soothe my heart. I’ve always loved animals. But I’m pained by predators and not at home with the ways of the wild. 

The next morning, I notice one of the unique brown squirrels… and an adorable baby bouncing behind her! AW! 🐿 I watch them closely, totally enjoying their twitchy athletics. Later that day, I feel a sudden nudge to grab the binoculars and look out the front window (which I’ve never done – it’s partially blocked.) As I’m peering out across the lawn, a fox runs right into view! WHOA! 🦊 I follow the fox with my lens, feeling SO happy that I listened to the nudge. Then I notice a soft bundle in her mouth. Oh. No. As she’s running, she drops it! What the?   

Sunset on Meg’s lake

 The fox zips out of view and I swing my lens back to the motionless furball. What is it? Please not a baby bunny. Please. My heart is dipping into sadness & shock, once again. I wait awhile, but the fox does not return for the meal. I feel horribly compelled to go look. But I can’t look. But it’s right on the path where we walk. Crap. I have to look. No I don’t want to look. 

I’m gonna go look. 

I walk out across the expansive green lawn with Gracie, for comfort and courage. My eyes are glued to the spot where the sweet bundle lies. I’m braced for the bunny. 

But it’s a baby red squirrel. 

What. The. Hell! 

The circle of life… again!?!

I stare bleakly, as Gracie sniffs the adorable baby. Death makes me droop. Is the mama squirrel distraut? Why can’t I accept that death follows life?

The universe is being very loud. What’s the message? 

A few hours later, the lil body is still there. I’m hoping it won’t go to waste. 

Vulture perched above us

As Gracie and I head into the woods, there is a a loud flurry of flapping. A huge vulture lifts off the path and perches above our heads. 

All this LIFE in the woods, and Death will NOT shut up.

I text my hubby the eerie deets of the day. He sends a photo of a ginormous feather he found in our yard and writes, “it’s from a deep doo-doo bird.”

OMG vultures are circling.

Live snake. Dead snake. Live squirrel. Dead squirrel. Vulture. Vulture. Is someone gonna die??

Vulture feather (deep doo-doo bird)

I wake up the next day and find a deer tick embedded in my side 🕷 Nooooo! And there’s a bloody bull’s eye, already! ACKKKKKK! Invaded! After some pulling, pain and panic, I finally remove the beastie, but it’s black grappling hooks are left in my side. 

This is NOT fair! Nature is where I feel at home, in awe, connected, but now the glory of the Great outdoors is circling the drain! Why would the Earth attack me?

As I drive to the health food store, and talk to the naturopath, I resist the answer.

Mother Nature isn’t betraying me. My BS (belief system) is. My fears already had me circling the drain. I’m a wilderness wannabe, but I continually worry that my dwarfed body isn’t safe in this world. Vulnerable. Victim. Ah ha. I’ve become the prey I feared. My BS is confirmed! (BS would rather be right than happy.) 

Bonus BS – I have a deep distrust of the medical world, even though it’s come to my aid in the past. I DO NOT WANT antibiotics! But I know I can’t fool around with Lyme disease. I worship (and cling) to natural remedies. But I’m working to blend the two worlds, of medicine and metaphysics, without judgment.

I’m still terrified. And totally ticked. This tiny pain in my side brings old issues to the surface… and it feels like everything’s all WRONG… but maybe it’s to help me see that in the bigger picture, I’m always alright. 

Magical pond at Meg’s, early morning

At the doctor’s office, the nurse tells me she’s had Lyme’s for 28 years. As she’s leaving the room, she turns back, as if nudged from beyond, and says tenderly, “you know, ticks are a part of the circle of life.” 

My jaw drops open like the wide-eyed snake. 

“I canNOT believe you just said that,” I tell her. “That’s been going through my mind for two days!” 

“I couldn’t understand why God created ticks,” she said, “so I read up and found that ticks help clean up the environment. Like vultures. 

“No. Way.” I stared at her, gobsmacked. I feel a profound awe and relief. 

The lake where I stayed

We live in a dynamic, interactive ecosystem. It breathes through us and speaks to us, as us. Animals, water, sky, nurses and even ticks. Life and death are divine dance partners. We came here to take the crazy, complicated, courageous steps. To walk in each other’s moccasins. To dive into the dark and remember our own reflection of light. And to lovingly @#$% embrace our belligerent BS.

When we’re in deep doo-doo… it isn’t the circumstances that cause the lasting pain, it’s our beliefs about them. Fear tells us we’re alone, wounded, and the vultures are circling. The truth says we’re One with it all. We draw to our side (or embedded IN our side) whatever will bring up our BS so we can return to wholeness… and let go of the grappling hooks.

FYI I learned that ticks are a major food source for birds, reptiles etc. If we erased them (or mosquitoes, fleas, poison ivy etc…) we’d further mess with the balance of nature.☯

We already live off the Earth quiet mindlessly, and yet she’s a forgiving host. We complain about insects and inconvenience… and yet our collective footprint melts glaciers. Kills bees and trees. We’re the predators. In my tiny tick-attack, the tables were turned. Circle of dark and light.

What ticks you off?
What’s sucking the life out of you?
What fear needs to die, so something better can be reborn in you?

Meg’s dog, Gracie & the setting sun

Fighting our troubles is a form of violence against ourselves. We add to our suffering by insisting that life be other than “what it is.” When we reject what the foxy universe presents, we miss the hidden bundles that heal our inner wild. 

When the old BS is circling, our prayers are bringing unexpected answers. Take that leap of faith. Accept life with an open heart. Trust your soul’s nudges. And smile across the mysterious wilderness.
With a deep bow.

💞✨ Sending lotsa love and light,
☀💚 in the circle that moves us all,

P.S. The oldest known fossilized tick was discovered in a piece of amber in NJ (where I am, lol.) It’s 90 million years old! They must be doing something right. So let’s keep on ticking… just like they do.

 

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Photo from my favorite park and pond

Exercising Spiritual Muscles and Enjoying Mindful Days

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I used to reeeeally hate exercise. I was born with a type of dwarfism that led to osteoarthritis by the time I was 8, so physical activity was pretty painful. It also triggered every insecurity about my lovability and my future. I regularly buried those fears in the backyard of my brain, where an entire Belief System (BS) began taking root. 

(A gentle reminder before I continue ~ the early bird price for my new group coaching class ends tomorrow ~  “Building Soul Blissipline: Releasing the Belief Systems (BS) and Practicing Awe, Self-Care and Mindfulness.”)

Now back to my blog…

In 1993, when I was 30, I had both knees and hips replaced. It was a grueling recovery and rehab. When physical therapy was over, I knew I needed more work. I had to find . . . a gym!? So SCARY. Way out of my comfort zone. I thought I’d be the laughing stock of any locker room. They’ll KNOW I don’t belong! 

In the past, when friends had complained about workout pain, I didn’t understand how they were able to push through it, when I could not. 

It must be my fault. I’m just lazy. Too soft. Spoiled. Undisciplined. Can’t take the pressure. Loser.

But. Now that I had these new joints, they were giving me hope. So I gathered every speck of sweaty courage, and registered at the most unassuming gym I could find. Gulp.

After a week at the gym, I got the shock of my life. 

This new “pain” I was experiencing, after exercise, was totally… acceptable!? No sharp jabs, long nights and clenched teeth. 

Holy hamstring!

I never realized that the pain I’d known most of my life was nerve pain, not muscle pain. I wasn’t a loafer after all! I was actually LOVING exercise?! WHOA!

After about a year at the gym, however, no matter how hard I’d pushed and stretched, I could not get my knees and hips to flex farther than 90 degrees. That’s when the buried BS began to bite me right in the gluteus maximus.

Since I was a girl, I’d been dreaming of deep knee bends and dance moves. Fantasizing about holding my knees to my chest. Drooling over sitting Indian style, kneeling, or being able to pick up keys, coins or pens off the floor. 

I felt devastated. Imprisoned. Punished. 

Enter stage left. My husband! Life got very rosy! And busy. Kids came. Work kicked in.

I didn’t go back to the gym.  

Since 1994, there have been many, many attempts to resume a daily routine. The stationary bike. Then the treadmill. Then yoga. The stair climber. Chiropractic. Massage. Then the treadmill again. Exercise videos. Acupuncture. Then chair yoga (!) The coveted flexibility stayed way out of my reach. It confirmed the old BS that I was still, indeed, a flawed sack of fertilizer. 

Then five years ago, I was facilitating a mastermind. Each week, we would hold each other accountable to a small step toward a bigger goal. Someone shared that he needed to get back on his bike to ease his back pain. Hmm. His sensible self-care sprouted some of my own. 

I’d been doing plenty of spiritual working-out, but still avoiding the physical. But this time I wasn’t going to push myself. No demands or disgust. No harsh instruction or judgment. Fresh ground to walk on. I planned to be understanding and kind when the steaming hot BS hit the pavement. I just wouldn’t step in it. I’d honor and accept what I’d done in the past. I’d focus on health and enjoyment, today.

Just because I’d been hurt and unsuccessful before, didn’t mean I always would be! Maybe I would never be able to put my socks on the way others can. But I could still be happy. Maybe I would never move like a dancer. But I could still dance like me! 

My beat-up body deserved this love offering. An honoring of what my vehicle and I had been through. A gift of self-care to a super-soul container. 

At the next mastermind meeting, I was thrilled to report back to my group that I’d walked, three times! And much to my surprise, four other members had been happily exercising that week, too! We felt the powerful energy of accountability pull us forward and help us meet our separate needs, together. The blissipline was contagious! 

I continued walking, gently. Mindfully. With tenderness for the girl who thought she was pile of poo. 

Five years later, I’m still walking, daily. I’m floored! Given my history, it’s really quite epic. Exercise has actually become one of my auto-magic blissiplines. And when I miss a day or two, I don’t sh** all over myself. I step back on track without shame. 

Over the years I’ve found a bunch of simple yet soul satisfying practices – EFT tapping, affirmative prayers, calling in angel assistance, green smoothies, mealtime grace, mindful chores and quick visualization. Each one has unearthed its own resistance! Each needed to be ‘worked out.’ It takes practice, patience and pruning of the BS.  

If you’re ready to weave some every day mindfulness into your Spring and beyond, please join my group class! We’re going to grow our own unique spiritual blissiplines, for the the joy of it, the energy, the connection, the fabulous feeling when we follow through.

Feel free to email me here with any questions or comments!

With much love, light
and soul satisfation,

 

 

 

Wake Up, Brave & Broken Dreamers

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Hey Wild Ones,

I recently read Martha Beck’s novel, Diana, Herself: An Allegory of Awakening, and after reading the last line, I burst into tears. My mind was undone. The magic is out of my puny reach. I am too unblissiplined. Too scared. My heart, on the other hand, was dripping with joy 💞 YES the impossible IS possible. If we believe. Somehow. Somewhen. But what will it take? More meditation? Less civilization?

If you’re a nature-loving, animal hugging, fairy following, madness making, fearfully flawed spiritual seeker who wants to save the world (or one or two wolves,) this story might be your cup of sunshine.🌎

I’m a wilderness wannabe. I watch Survivor for the thrill of imagining myself stranded with “nothing” only to discover, that actually, I have everything. I am safe. I’m supported by Life. Gaia. God. Angels. Animals. Trees. Bees. A million dollar prize.

If only I weren’t a scaredy-cat.

My body and I have battled our share of shame and surgeries. Limitations and loss. Dwarfism. Arthritis. Saggy boobs. I adore being outdoors. But I retreat to tamed parks and woods. I’d like to sleep under the stars ⛺ but I’m afraid of getting eaten alive by bugs and bobcat. How can I sweetly commune with the magical Mother Nature, the Elementals, the moon and stars, while worrying about ticks in my nether regions? Bumping into bear? Stray stalkers? 

My body (my meat-self, as Martha calls it) can barely bend over, put on socks, crawl into a tent, kneel down to sip from a clear mountain stream, squat when Nature calls, or run for a tree… When I believe in my lone “I” who “can’t,” I know that my BS is in the row boat and she’s got the oars. If you trust your spirit’s call, your body might get mauled…

When I’m able to see beyond my earth suit, my backyard BS and the world’s weariness, I imagine that we’re just temporary flesh-sicles, fractured from the Oneness. Apparently “you” and “I” wanted to go nighty-night into the most convincing (and wincing) wilderness dream – alone and separated from each other. Friends from fam. God from Earth. Scooby from Shaggy. We split into the dark so we could re-member our Campfire Light. Our Unity. Our S’mores. According to the mystics, separation is just a starry illusion. A Cosmic Selfie. A Big Family Photo Bomb. It’s for Fun. It’s for Love.

What. The. Flock.

Of. Seagulls. 

It feels so freakin’ real. Heartbreakingly hard.

I was shaken the other day by my inadequacies – the weight of ancient fears and powerlessness. I AM ALL ALONE IN HERE!

Help!

And it felt like no one heard me crying. Except the chocolate chip cookies🍪

It started with tax paperwork – my boggy brain began inadvertently fishing in fear: It’s your fault we don’t have savings. You don’t work hard enough. Next thing I know, I’ve jumped in with the Great Whites: 🦈 There’s something VERY wrong with you. You’re letting your family down. You’ll never be good enough. You smell like a sea slug. Etc.

When caught in a riptide – turn over on your back and breathe. As waves slosh over you, keep calm, relax and let the tide take you. Beach your BS like a whale 🐳 Bask like a seal.☀

Wait, trust the tide?? To take me where? I should have stayed safe on the shore!

I tend to paddle myself very hard.

The path to awakening calls us to many jagged cliffs and cold quarries. Most of us distrust the necessary swan dives. Imperfect landings. Getting caught in our own net. We tend to fight the current of trials and teachers (ingrates, partners, presidents, kids and squids🦑) which can actually deliver us from our illusions, judgment and gefilte fish.

We swim with the challenging ego, again and again, even though it keeps smearing our vision board. It’s the way we learn about our creative power, though. We’ve been given the glorious ability to choose. Focus on the fins you fear, and things start to stink. 🐟  

Martha calls the inner party-poopers and groupers, “The Furies” and that’s just how it feels when our meat-self grabs hold of the Fishing Rod. And Motor Boat. Our Meta-self watches with amusement, not at all worried about our pathetic belly flops over the side. Or those jelly fish. Of course, when we feel that lonely sting, it’s hell in water. Abandonment. Overwhelm. Up a creek without a green smoothie. Disconnection from the soul.

But that’s an illusion, too. Our humanness can’t escape our spirit. It’s part of the package. Bogo.

So what’s an earthbound sack of seawater to do? 💦 

After reading Martha’s book, I wanna move to the country, befriend wolves, gather food with woodland friends 🐿 hibernate with mama bear 🐻 and live by the lake of freedom and joy. And never pay taxes. 

Oftentimes, we creative trail blazers find ourselves feeling like salmon – a mysterious pull toward some distant, dreamy Home. It inspires us to leap out of the conventional thinking and trappings. Woohoo!  

But BS Belief Systems like to backstroke by. They swim me right past the tropical island 🌴 and then make camp in my head’s polluted harbor. The Furies shout to NEVER push off from that goddamn shore again, you idiot.

Roe is me.

After these attacks, I tend to wade in my small selfie pond awhile. Then, when I’m not even “trying,” my soul starts to float me downstream again. Phew. Soon… I just gotta see what’s comin’ round the bend. I gotta try to direct and duct tape the tides. Suddenly. I’ve lost sight of shore! I’m doomed! My hair dryer is at home! And while I’m wailing about the Great Whites, I miss the life savers. 🍄

There are a lot of us out there “trying hard” to change the tides. We tend to cling to the last clammy rocks right before we’re spit out into the abundant ocean.

Carp-e diem, my lil sea horses.🦄

Happiness is ours, when we can enjoy the river we’re riding, today. Our mind yells, hell no, it’s not enough! Our heart says, oh heavens yes, LOVE IS RIGHT HERE. We don’t have to fight the current. Unless that’s your jam, then go for it.

Otherwise rest.

Stop paddling for awhile. Turn on your back and breathe, sweet otter. Call for kelp. Trust your soul’s flow. Ride it like a mofo. And release. It’s the crack in the crab shell where Spirit (or butter) gets in. The open air allows our soul to love bomb the Furies (BS, sea-monkey mind, ego, mental diarrhea etc.)

You are a rare and precious pioneer. A game changer. A lone ranger. A fish shtick. There will be times of doubt and despair. It’s ok. It’s part of the wild earth we came to surf and turf. Together. After our respite, let’s get back on our dolphins and manatees. We ride at dawn!🐬

From my lil aquarium to yours,☀
With love and warm sandy toes 🌊💦

Julie

P.S. If you’re searching for some inspiration and super-soul-support on how to surf through your stress, email me and we’ll set up a free coaching call. Tell me what’s got you crabby 🦀 and we’ll crack through that old shell so you can shine like the sun. Let’s hold hands, like otters do, while we ride out these wavy times. I’ll be a devoted accountability partner so you can get your sh**t done. Talk to you soon, blue lagoon!

Joint Venture Opportunity: 

If you’re a self-help/spiritual entrepreneur (healer, writer, coach, earthy-crunchy creative,) my wonderful colleagues Sherry Bowers and Anne Presuel are hosting a joint venture giveaway offering lots of gifts, all geared to the spiritual entrepreneur 🎉. If you want to build your email list (and you have a free downloadable gift)  get your private JV deets HERE.  🎶 Sherry and Anne will help you through the process!

Joint venture giveaways bring lotsa new subscribers🌟 So if your work is in alignment with a giveaway like this, please join us!

Until then, hang ten 🌊