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Sharing an “Aha!” Moment…

16 Feb

It was 10:35 am this morning and I had just finished a half-hour conference call I’m on every morning with other businesswomen from around the country.  It’s a combination coaching, accountability and prayer call. I love it!

But I’ve been feeling frustrated lately – even though I’ve been doing all the right things as far as “filling my pipeline” (making new sales contacts) and reviewing my goals each morning and night; following other “success tenants” – because I’m still not seeing results. There’s a “Slight Edge” Principle that says if you do just a few things consistently – every single day – that effort will compound over time and produce results.

But there’s a period of “doing the do” that you have to put in before you start to see the measured results come back to you. That’s where I’m at – in the middle of the new course of action. It usually takes 90 days to show results…and A LOT of people quit before they reach that point of return.

So when I got off the call, even though I love the energy and the camaraderie and the coaching, I was feeling restless. I’ve been feeling restless for a while now.

I began pacing rapidly back and forth between my kitchen and living room – which in a one-bedroom apartment is NOT a very large space!

I often pace. I pace to think. I pace to pace. I pace to calm down. I pace to ramp up. It  helps me expend energy. I pace.

I started talking aloud (as I often talk to myself).

“Restless,” I kept repeating aloud…”restless in mind…restless in body…restless in spirit… restless in soul…”

I stopped dead in my tracks and looked at the manual treadmill standing in the middle of my dining-living room.  “Well,” I thought, “if I going to do this furious pacing thing I might as well turn it into exercise and get on my treadmill!”

So I put on a lecture by Dr. Joe Dispenza, the author of Evolve Your Brain – The Science of Changing Your Mind and his newest release, Breaking The Habit of Being Yourself: How to Lose Your Mind and Create a New One.

At first I had it on my computer speakers, but I couldn’t really hear it over the noise of the manual treadmill belt. So I donned my mp3 player and earplugs and mounted my treadmill for a workout – physical and mental.

I started hearing little snippets of wisdom in-between my conscious readings from the display in front of me…watching and mentally logging numbers of “how far, how many calories, how fast,” etc.

I went for a quarter mile and it felt really good – especially considering I am still dealing with a tear of the medial meniscus from a work-related injury that’s all tied up in Workman’s Comp hearings! (Part of my sense of frustration). I look a lot like Frankenstein when I walk – still – but part of my restlessness comes from knowing that I’ve been stuck too long in “injury mode.”  I realized that I need to get on with healing my leg. I followed my “walk” with some modified lifting of weights (arms) and stationary punches (I’ve REALLY missed my Tae-bo Gold Routine!).

All the while I was listening to Dr Joe’s lecture – one that I have been listening to repeatedly lately. When I finished my physical exercise I felt really good. “Exercise” had been on my days’ list of accomplishments that I had written out the night before. It felt good to have that already done.

Then I sat down and started to write. He was talking about addictions and personality – about how 95% of who we are is acquired from the influences of others, which I know from previous studies with Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha. But I got really excited when Dr Joe started talking about habits – and the definition of a habit as “when the body is the mind.”

When we feel stuck – we have to look at “what have we memorized?” What feelings and experiences have we cemented in – even though we may say we want to change? If we’re not changing it’s because we’ve hard-wired past body-mind programs which then become habits.

If we memorize (hard-wire) an emotional reaction and stay there for a few days – it becomes a “mood.”  If we prolong it further it becomes our “temperament.”  Over a prolonged period of time that temperament – “living by the same emotional reaction” over and over again turns into a personality trait – which means we’re totally living in the PAST!

THAT was my “AHA!” MOMENT!

The 12-Step Recovery Programs refer to a person’s “defects of character.”  I’ve always maintained that I am NOT defective. I am a child of God and God doesn’t make junk!

BUT then I made the connection to what Dr. Joe is talking about…and realized that the “defect” is the faulty emotional reaction that has been hard-wired in our brain based on a past experience that we haven’t been able to free ourselves from. Why?

All emotions produce chemicals in our bodies and in the brain. We can become addicted to those chemicals in the same way we have been addicted to alcohol or other drugs, food, or gambling, or sex, or any destructive behavior. We try to change but we hit a wall because, as Dr. Joe describes it, “I can’t go beyond this emotion because the chemicals are so addictive.”

We can’t go beyond the emotion because someone or something knocks us so far out of balance as to prevent us from being able to make our way back.

That’s living in the past. What is it that the recovering person has to do in order to live sober, happy and free? CLEAR AWAY THE WRECKAGE OF THE PAST! That’s where the 12 Steps come into play.

One of the greatest pitfalls I have seen in working with some alcoholics over the last 32 years is the seeming inability to let go of the guilt and shame of their past. Recovering alcoholic/addicts are reminded to remember their last drunk/usage – so that they don’t return to using. But that doesn’t mean we have to LIVE there!

We don’t have to DWELL in the past to learn from it. In order to liberate ourselves, we MUST Let It GO.

This is true for ALL of us – because our habits are hard-wired memorized emotional reactions from past experiences that no longer serve us except that we’ve become addicted to the chemicals produced by them. (And then we wonder why we keep repeating the same behavior over and over again, even though we set goals and swear off, or swear on – determined to change, yet we don’t).

Dr. Joe asks, “What emotion have you memorized – that you’re living by day after day – that you think is you? That’s not who you are…that emotion is just a record of your past experience.”

So what are “defects of character?” Memorized emotions that we think are us. But they aren’t us – they aren’t who we are – they are what we are holding onto.

So we are not bad people trying to get better – we are good people who have gotten off course. What’s “defective” is our memory of past events – of what we are holding onto – and that can be changed. It’s a choice.

To be continued!
DISCLAIMER: All the opinions expressed in any articles, blog posts and Internet content written by me are my own and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of any individuals or organizations with whom I associate.

©2012 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: ALL quotes and/or materials from other authors or sources remain the sole property of the original authors/source.)

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60 is the New 30!

14 Apr

“I have found, for myself, that the best secret to aging is about your attitude,” Oprah says. “I think it’s how you feel about yourself at any given moment—if you’re in love with yourself, if you feel that you have [something] to offer to yourself, your family and the world.” –Oprah Winfrey

I saw a clip on a morning show the other day about a 60 year old woman who has been winning awards as a championship body-builder who was about to embark on training for the grueling Triathlon.

“Sixty is now the new Thirty” proclaimed the announcer.

I’m LOVIN’ IT!

I have been associated with an extraordinary group of people over the years who have remained active and productive; some of them well into their 70’s and beyond.

We build, we hike, we get involved in volunteer projects to benefit others. We joke about how we can fit an entire week into 24 hours. We laugh and sing and enjoy life.

Advertising agencies have long been on a campaign to convince the American public that they’re “toast” after 25. BULL!

We are who and what we think we are. Simply the mantra “Sixty is the New Thirty!” repeated over the course of the day is bound to put a spring in your step!

Jack Benny was famous for telling everyone he was perpetually “39” – but that was a form of denial. Everyone laughed. But everyone knew that was a lie.

“Sixty is the New Thirty!” is a revolution. It’s celebrating that fact that the mind has the ability to dictate to the body how it will function.

Think that’s a bunch of bunk? Take a look at Health and Fitness Icon Jack Lalane, who died at the age of 96. He chose to celebrate his 70th birthday “handcuffed, shackled, and fighting strong winds and currents”, towing70 rowboats, including one with several guests, from the Queen’s Way Bridge in the Long Beach Harbor to the Queen Mary, for a total distance of 1 mile!

Think he got up in the morning and thought about being old?

I remember when Jane Fonda turned 40. She as well as a host of other actresses of the same age was being celebrated as coming of age – a new age of arrival for women. Now, as the life expectancy increases for humans, and the crazy, rockin’ “Baby Boomers” move into their sixties – there’s a renaissance afoot that’s likely to throw all the old conventions about “aging” right out the window!

I, for one, celebrate this.

How old am I?

30! 🙂

 -Deborah Adler

“Treat your body as the Altar where you meet face to face and heart to heart with what you accept as supreme intelligence, in whatever sacred Name you call it. Live as you believe God to Be. And love as you desire to be loved. Appreciate and focus on what you want more of in life.” -Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha* from THE BODY AS AN ALTAR*

* © Copyright POL 2005 © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved.
DISCLAIMER: All the opinions expressed in any articles, blog posts and Internet content written by me are my own and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of any individuals or organizations with whom I associate.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: ALL quotes and/or materials from other authors or sources remain the sole property of the original authors/source.)

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Confessions of a Positive Thinker

2 Mar

I’ve had a couple of challenging days. And I have a confession to make. As much as I write about and expound the virtues and benefits of “positive thinking” – it’s not always my first instinctual response to adverse circumstances.

Sometimes I have to work my way around to that “silver lining,” that hidden gift, that blessing in disguise – well, you get the picture. Sometimes staying positive feels like hard work!

I’m pretty sure my spiritual mentor and Elder is laughing as she reads this. When I first met her and stated my desire to commit to the path of personal and spiritual development, she looked at me and said, “It’s going to take work.”

I remember feeling slightly offended and confused. “What does she mean?” I thought to myself. “I am a hard worker.” I laughed nervously and just shook my head up and down in agreement, but twenty-five years later, I have at least a glimpse of what she was trying to forewarn me.

“Taking the high road,” as I have come to call it (borrowed from an actress who has inspired me with her ability to make the best of the adversity in her life) doesn’t always necessarily come easy. But the rewards are obvious.

“The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change his future by merely changing his attitude.” –Oprah Winfrey

Every day we wake up we face choices:

How do we start our day? Giving Appreciation for the gift of a New Life? (As is the traditional practice my spiritual mentor and Elder, Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha).

Do we see everyone in our life as mere reflections or aspects of ourselves?

Do we embrace the opposition or resistance and transform that into the creative energy we need to break through to victory?

These are all choices. There are so many more – moment to moment –  that comprise our day.

“Want success? Just count the good things of each day and give grateful acknowledgment that you have allowed it to be part of your day!” Pa’Ris’Ha Taylor

Sometimes I need to rely on “tools” – like the slogans of the 12-Step Programs – to help me into “right thinking.”

“Let go and let God.”

”Live and let live.”

“One day at a time.”

“First things first”

“How important is it?”

Sometimes I have to talk to myself – like the Observer, and say, “So, Deb…is that really what you wanted to do?” When the answer is “no” I get to make a course correction, or “re-take” as Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha refers to it.

The point is that personal growth is about stretching. It’s work. At least for me. Being positive doesn’t always come naturally to me, but if I commit to the process of transforming my mental state to a positive one, the rewards extend to physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual.

The ultimate reward is that the ripple effect of one person choosing to be positive has an exponential effect upon humanity.

“Just one optimistic person, with a willingness to allow people to grow from mis-takes, can affect 90,000 others. That’s what one person can do.” Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha

That’s cool! – Deborah Adler

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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I am not my job.

23 Feb

“What keeps life fascinating is the constant creativity of the soul.” – Deepak Chopra

When you ask someone “Who are You?” they will often reply, “I’m a _______” and then fill in the blank with their job or position or career. Whereas that might be what they do, it is not who they are.

It is a common misnomer that we are what we do. No. Some are fortunate enough (or have created the reality of being able) to do what they love. Still, what we do and who we are is NOT synonymous.

Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha has shared often times that in our life’s journey here we are not humans learning to be spiritual, but Spirit learning the Human experience.

We come from Spirit and return to the Mystery.

We are Energy.

Whatever activities we engage in to generate the medium of exchange required to provide ourselves and our families with shelter, food, clothing and other “necessities” come under the category of exchanging time for money. It’s a means to and ends – not a definition.

The job I am currently working at in the fast-food industry is physically demanding. Sometimes it can be emotionally challenging, especially when customers are less than respectful, or out-and-out abusive. There’s a “tiredness” that can be easy to succumb to if I’m not on my guard and taking measures to counteract that energy with positive input, i.e.  affirmations, audio books. I find humming on the job helps – music helps keep me “in the flow” if you will, in a positive frame of mind, and helps me to keep centered when challenged from an outside source. (Al-Anon slogans are a great help, too!)

I think it can be easy to become so identified with what we do in our “jobs” as to become consumed. It becomes a major focus – so that once we’re “off the clock” the temptation is to “veg out” in front of a TV or sleep – to escape.

Having a planned schedule is another factor in helping us to avoid succumbing to the temptation to withdraw. Making plans with others help us to keep the appointment. Getting a workout partner for that trip to the gym, or for that morning or afternoon walk helps stay committed to showing up rather than crapping out.

When working in a business environment with Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha, we had a daily schedule that included time during the day for physical activity. If someone felt tired, we were encouraged to take a few laps around the building – and you know what – It worked! It was actually rejuvenating.

Many corporate site now include gyms, or “challenge courses” that can be run on a lunch break. I remember being in a hospital once where a long corridor connecting various parts of the complex was set up as a “track” that staff members walked on their lunch break, as part of an employee fitness program

So the more we can break out of the identification with our worth being tied to what we do to earn a living, the more we can break free of being consumed by it. We can free energy for working out, volunteering in the community, taking time with family, educating ourselves and even meditation and journaling.

Paradox for the day: If you’re tired and think you don’t have enough energy – run around the block (or your desk) – or do some quick calisthenics, and then get back in the game – the game of Life.

If you have a job that saps your energy find things that can help neutralize that for you, ways to energize yourself while in the workplace and then develop your “life” outside the workplace. Chances are you’ll feel a better sense of “who” you are, apart from “what you do.” –Deborah Adler

“BE, OBSERVE, DECIDE who and what your role is in this grand Drama. Life is an Adventure, live fully and make impact.” – Pa’Ris’Ha Taylor*

*Words of Wisdom © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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Seeking a Reflection

6 Feb

Yesterday, when I needed to work through the Ideal Scene of what outcome I wanted from a business meeting, I called one whom I have come to know as my Sister, one of my beloved associates from the Learning Center for Human Development and fellow staff at Friendship village retreat and Conference Center.

We have shared, among other experiences over the years, the gift of working with and learning from our Elder, Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha.

Grandmother has often spoken of the power of the Matthew Principle – taken from Matthew 18:20 in the New Testament, “For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.” English Standard Version (©2001)

The power of the Matthew Principle is that the proverbial sum result of coming together as two or more is greater than the parts comprising it. That “something extra” is God, Creator, The Source, Universal Intelligence – whatever you choose to call it, it’s that intangible but most noticeably present additional element.

What I appreciate about invoking the Matthew Principle is that is keeps me from running around crazy in the cavernous rooms of my mind, where I can easily get lost! With a reflection, I stand a better chance of staying in focus and on point.

I had five minutes to achieve that task, and we did it! It was a given that we would.

“Ask for nothing less than inspiration.” — Deepak Chopra

I am ever so grateful that I can reach out to my extended family and practice the basics that were given to us all to succeed in our endeavors and to grow. I am very blessed. -Deborah Adler/Great Doe

“So then we may ask, how do we know then when it is pure and safe and right? Ahhn…….that’s the clue, when do we ‘know!’ We can trust it if it is clear and not emotional. Clear in as much as it is well thought out and has no hooks on the end of it. We can trust it when no ones name is spoken as the fault, or no circumstances are given as justification. When no denial tactics are involved we are closer to right-relationship.” –Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha, from Wind Whispers

 

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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The Race Called Life

3 Feb

Jack LaLanne, referred to by some as the “Godfather of Fitness” died January 23rd at the age of 97. My mother and I used to exercise with Jack in front of our Black&White TV (yes, we’re talking back in the 50’s) every morning! LaLanne spawned countless other gurus, but continued to be a leading figure in fitness and nutrition until his death.

What I find notable is how he chose to celebrate his milestone birthdays. Here are some of the highlights (as noted on his website):

1954 (age 40): swam the entire length (8,981 ft/1.7 mi) of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, under water, with 140 pounds (64 kg; 10 st) of air tanks and other equipment strapped to his body; a world record.

1957 (age 43): swam the Golden Gate channel while towing a 2,500-pound (1,100 kg; 180 st) cabin cruiser. The swift ocean currents turned this one-mile (1.6 km) swim into a swimming distance of 6.5 miles (10.5 km)

1974 (age 60): For the second time, he swam from Alcatraz Island to Fisherman’s Wharf. Again, he was handcuffed, but this time he was also shackled and towed a 1,000-pound (450 kg; 71 st) boat.

1975 (age 61): Repeating his performance of 21 years earlier, he again swam the entire length of the Golden Gate Bridge, underwater and handcuffed, but this time he was shackled and towed a 1,000-pound (450 kg; 71 st) boat.

1976 (age 62): To commemorate the “Spirit of ’76”, United States Bicentennial, he swam one mile (1.6 km) in Long Beach Harbor. He was handcuffed and shackled, and he towed 13 boats (representing the 13 original colonies) containing 76 people.

1979 (age 65): towed 65 boats in Lake Ashinoko, near Tokyo, Japan. He was handcuffed and shackled, and the boats were filled with 6,500 pounds (2,900 kg; 460 st) of Louisiana Pacific wood pulp.

1980 (age 66): towed 10 boats in North Miami, Florida. The boats carried 77 people, and he towed them for over one mile (1.6 km) in less than one hour.

1984 (age 70): handcuffed, shackled, and fighting strong winds and currents, towed 70 rowboats, one with several guests, from the Queen’s Way Bridge in the Long Beach Harbor to the Queen Mary, 1 mile.

Clearly, this was a man who was not limited by society’s expectations of “old age.”

The relating to your Being in the sense of being energy begins to bring you to realization and evolution in what is real about this world and life. Energy does not die or cease to be, it just shifts and changes… -Pa’Ris’Ha  (from To Live Fully in Joy)

It occurs to me that moving through life is indeed like moving through a long distance race. Although most of us don’t know the exact time of our exit from this plane of existence, many begin to slow down at a perceived point – often years before it’s “our time.”

Some people, like LaLanne, run full tilt to the finish line. That’s what we all need to be doing.

“There are many aspects to success; material wealth is only one component. …But success also includes good health, energy and enthusiasm for life, fulfilling relationships, creative freedom, emotional and psychological stability, a sense of well-being, and peace of mind.” — Deepak Chopra

When you want to score a basket in basketball, you aim at the backboard. Either you hit the backboard and the ball bounces in or you might just arch the shot in without hitting the backboard. The point is, and what’s known from a practical coaching standpoint, that if you aim at the hoop, chances are you’ll miss. It’s aiming the shot at the backboard (beyond the actual target) that helps it “make the distance.”

Racers running to the finish line don’t slack off in the final lap. If anything, they speed up. Yet, in the race we call “Life” many slow up and become stiff and infirmed – because of an expectation? I am constantly surprising people with my age. I turned 60 last October, but most people guess my age to be in my 50’s.

There is not pre-determined aging process. We’re all dying – life, as Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha reminds us, is a constant journey towards death from the moment we take our first breath, however, we have choices as to the quality of that time and what we achieve with it.

Recently I found myself discouraged regarding some personal goals. I felt something creep into my thinking that I quickly had to isolate and eradicate. I had to get very definite. The timeline for my achieving what I want to achieve with my life is only over when I stop breathing.

So there’s no such thing as “too late” or “not enough time” – because we don’t know how much time we have. The only thing we know is we that have today. And the only question needs to be asked is “What am I doing with my time today?” -Deborah Adler

What really matters to you? Where do you see the need to change? What is the next move you need to make? Remember this is the next moment of the rest of your life. How many times have you heard or said that? Well in this Moment all can change or remain the same, what is your decision…Now? –Pa’Ris’Ha (from Words of Wisdom)

To Live Fully in Joy © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved. ©2008 Pa’Ris’Ha. All Rights Reserved

Words of Wisdom © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved.


©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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Looking For Love, Part 2

2 Feb

“If you don’t love yourself, you cannot love others. You will not be able to love others. If you have no compassion for yourself then you are not able of developing compassion for others.” –Dalai Lama

When I was a camp counselor at a Girl Scout Camp many years ago, we were taken through an exercise as part of our week of pre-camp training. We were told to sit or lie down and allow ourselves to get comfortable. We were taken through s few deep breaths, in and out, to further relax ourselves. Then we were taken on a journey.

We were told to imagine walking through a beautiful meadow, with the sun shining and lush green grass. We were encouraged to see different plants and animals, flowers, and insects as we walked. Then a tree appeared nearby as we were walking and we were told to walk over to the tree and sit down beneath it.

As we sat beneath the tree, we were told to see a small person off in the distance walking toward us. As that little person got closer to us, it became apparent that it was us, as a little girl. We were given 5 minutes to tell our little girl anything we wanted to tell her – without giving away that we knew who she was.

I remember very clearly to this day, I hugged her, and smile at her and just kept telling her “I love you” and “It’s going to be okay.” It seems like I couldn’t tell her enough that no matter what might happen, she would be okay and she was loved.

I still tear up just thinking about it now. Finally, we were told that it was time for our little girl to leave. I hugged her one more time and watched her walk away.

That exercise had a powerful impact on each one of us, as we took turns sharing profound moments from our very personal experiences.

Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha, has been a loving presence in my life for over 25 years. She has been that steady presence to remind me that I am loved.

Not loving ourselves is to live in denial of our Divine Existence. If I am focused on what I perceive to be my shortcoming or faults, then I’m giving power to those things. It’s all energy. What I choose to spend time thinking about is the experience that I will create for myself.

You will most assuredly transcend this body and return to Light, so ask yourself why you “spend” so much of your time seeking what you always are.  The ‘reality’ of what you are is always transcendence.  Life in the Earth Mother is a gift from the Giver That Gives All Things.  Your life is but a blink in the eye of time.  You have been chosen by Creator to come here and deliver your message/purpose.  To be chosen means you have been trusted and embraced with divine intention. –Pa’Ris’Ha *

-Deborah Adler

*FOLLOW THE QUESTION INWARD ©1994 Pa’Ris’Ha; © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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