I RELEASE REGRET: Week 11 Day 4 of the 2014 Meditation Challenge

As you heal, forgive yourself and anyone or anything else that may have caused you pain. Cecilia’s meditation here is a powerful reminder.

CENTERING IN THE ONENESS OF INCLUSION: A CONTEMPLATIVE PRACTICE

spring 20When I forgive you, I forgive myself.  When I forgive you, my burdens fall away.  When I forgive you, I open the gift of new life.  I forgive you, I overcome the temptation of regret.  When I forgive you, I pass over the poison of death.  When I forgive you, I rise in the glory of new life.  When I forgive you, I am born again.

Spirit moves as me, filling my body with its love, blessing every aspect of my being.  As I close my eyes, as I sit comfortably, as I go within, I see the extraordinary power of love filling all of my inner parts, making them realize that they are whole in all that love is, shining on them with the healing energy of the ages, fulfilling them with the prophecies of the ancients, igniting them with the glory of a new day.

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The Surprising Reason You’re Sick

Yuck. Sick again? Photo credit: Andriana Mereuta

Yuck. Sick again?
Photo credit: Andriana Mereuta

Recently, I’ve been sick. Being both an entrepreneur and a teacher, illness is no joke.

In my spiritual practice, it’s even more serious. Our bodies’ natural tendency is toward health and growth. You see that in nature. Grass, plants and trees have to be cut to maintain a certain look, and even then, they must be cut on a continual basis. If you’re sick, you’ve wandered away from a consciousness of God.

Your immunity is your body’s system of resilience. Immunity is “exemption from obligation, service, duty or liability; being insusceptible to disease or punishment.” It is your body’s way of maintaining integrity in the face of anything that is contrary to what you are supposed to be.

Now, you can take this one of two ways:

1) A compromised immunity can be a punishment from God: you’re sick because you forgot you were God’s child. If I feel I’m a smart person, then that could be embarrassing. People who believe this don’t show up for Sunday service when they’re sick, and they stay away from our Bible studies and prayer meetings.

or…

2) A compromised immunity is a warning from your heart: you’re sick because you’ve taken on obligations, duties and liabilities that weren’t yours to begin with. Your energy is being spent on the wrong things, and it’s time to make some choices. In that case, you reach out to your circle of friends, spiritual partners and spiritual teachers for support, and you look within for guidance. You practice extreme self-care and enter what I call a “no-guilt zone.”

I chose the latter.

My sickness reminded me so much of my natural state of being that I looked through everything in my life that I felt obligated to, uneasy about, punished by and liable for. Anything that wasn’t true to who I am called to be was up for debate. Anything that didn’t contribute to my bliss didn’t make the cut. Even while sick, I wrote my blogs, and I taught my classes. I mentored and planned events. I went to the beach and spent time with people I love.

We can’t fear sickness. Sickness is a tool for growth. A tree with damaged limbs must be pruned so it can bear fruit. (Like this quote? Click here to share it on Twitter.)

If you’re sick, don’t just recommit to your physical health. Use the time of self-care to look at the mental, emotional and relational obligations that compromise your integrity. Then, choose joy. Even if your physical healing isn’t immediate, your true healing will begin.

What about you? Do you muddle through sickness, or is it a time of self-reflection?

If You’re Here, You’re Nearly There

I teach a class called Your Hidden Potential.

How do you know you're on the way?

You’re on the right track.
Photo credit: Pinellas Transit Authority

In it, I train professionals in very diverse career fields to use the true power available to them no matter what position they have– and no matter where they are financially or socially.

I use lots of analogies but my favorites revolve around storytelling.

If you understand your life’s story on a larger scale, the possibilities that open to you are tremendous. But most of us are only seeing what’s immediately in front of us.

I used to be that way — especially when it came to morning traffic.

Every morning, at a certain point in my route, there is a major bottleneck and traffic slows to a crawl. I hate traffic of any kind. In my next life, I’m going to be a Nascar driver so I can have an excuse to speed on an open road. But I digress…

The bottleneck happens every morning. There’s nothing to be done about it. At first, I used to get anxious that I’d get to work late. EVERY DAY. But soon, I figured out how to schedule my morning… and I’d be on time. Right after the bottleneck subsides, it’s nine minutes before I get to work.

We want the bottleneck to disappear. But it’s a landmark on the road to work. If I get there, it mean’s I’m nearly there.

So it is with our own lives.

You’ll encounter obstacles on the way to your fantastic life. How you meet them determines where you go and how fast you get there. The obstacles build your strength. They test your character. Sometimes, they even tell you who to let go of on the way to your brilliance.

Every hero must test her mettle before moving towards the prize– and the great news is– if you’re being tested, your prize is around the corner.

If you’re here, you’re nearly there.

What do you think?

Ever confronted a challenge and later realized it was just what you needed to get you to the next level? Comment below or hit the Facebook page and check in.

The Steadman Principle (while you #banbossy)

(with apologies to the Winfrey camp)

Men love us! Credit: Banbossy.com Campaign

Men love us!
Credit: Banbossy.com Campaign

Those who remember Janet Jackson’s hard-core days, when she dressed in all black and was part of the Rhythm Nation, may recall her song, “The Pleasure Principle”.

She was on to something.

We serial entrepreneurs and world-changers find ourselves in a quandary. We may still want the hot, masculine man to take care of our most fun needs—but the world needs us too.  So we also need a sensitive man who understands carbon footprints, the entrepreneur’s lifestyle AND our want to mentor that young girl who acts all hard-core but still loves stickers.

Where is that perfect mix of The Rock and Jai Rodriguez from Queer Eye?

He’s out there, sistren. He’s just not going to show up the way we expect.

We leaders are the new species of woman.  So, there’s a new species of man.

The old paradigm had men as our charismatic breadwinners, setting the vision for the household. Now the vision comes from us.

Who is the helpmate to the visionary, socially conscious woman?

A wonderfully sensitive, supportive and grounded man.

He is the Steadman to your Oprah.

Follow me a bit here.

I know you, visionary powerhouse, are looking for another dynamo so that you can be evenly yoked. He’s out there. And he wants to build a life with your awesomeness.

What kind of man is going to be patient with his own needs while you’re out knocking down barriers of injustice?

A spiritual partner. The “even yoke” is not material.

Being spiritually matched doesn’t mean your practical, daily needs aren’t met. In fact, they’re met easier. The right partner will challenge you to remain balanced.

Did you know Meryl Streep is married with children? Most people forget that, and that’s exactly what she wants. A beautifully fulfilling, relatively normal private life—and the right partner made that happen. Sparks may fly with other powerhouses, but who is going to tend your flames?

And really, let’s be frank: would Oprah and Steve Jobs have been compatible in a long-term relationship?

Women who lead are complemented by men who support. When we #banbossy, we can embrace love too. Help the women and girls in your circle do both.

Hidden Success in the Corporate Workplace

“How do you do it?” she asked.

One of my coworkers had approached me.

Amen

Amen.
Photo credit: Andriana Mereuta

“What?” I asked.

“How do you stay so cheerful?”

We both work in a high-stress, high-stakes environment with constant changes in priority—and one urgent issue after another.

Wow, I thought.

“It’s an inside job, “ I said. “If I paid attention to outer stuff, I’d be insane.”

That’s what I said.

What I meant was: I’m a spiritual woman who prays and listens to inspirational things, surrounds herself with like-minded people and trusts God to guide me so I feel connected to something that gives all this stress greater meaning.

But if I said it was God that would have started a conversation that I didn’t want to have right at that moment.

Because leaving things up to an invisible force is counterintuitive in a world that lauds superachievement and serial entrepreneurship.

Prayer and spiritual study is not seen as real work.  Those of us who are spiritual know that is a lie.

You can live exactly as you have been living right now if you do nothing. In fact, that’s what happens with most people. We see what exists, believe that is all there is, and live life within that worldview.

Every inspired, progressive life– every corporate success story– started with the person believing in something that did not exist yet and working to make it possible.

What is that if it isn’t spiritual?

The legendary Steve Jobs envisioned touchscreen technology, and made it a reality. It didn’t exist until he made it so.

What is that if it isn’t spiritual?

If you listen to the media, people who follow “God” are Westboro Baptists, extreme Zionists and suicide bombers. And “spiritual” people use crystals and channeled messages. I feel obligated to separate myself from those categories– but then I know that isn’t the majority.

I think we need better marketing.

A well-run business follows certain principles, but it’s made innovative when the person running it works those principles to make something greater.

We suffer when we hide the parts of us that are the most vital. My spirituality is the reason I live the life I do – and why I can work where I do and be the blessing that I am. My spirituality, like that of many others, is inclusive and inspirational. It opens my heart and encourages me to serve others. I follow certain principles in order to be part of something greater.

I’m coming out. I’m spiritual, and I do business in the corporate marketplace. How about you?