Monday, December 21, 2009
I inadvertently took the month of December off from blogging, but am excited about getting behind the keyboard once again in the new year. I hope you will join me, and share your insights as well.
I'm looking forward to a new year of revelations, challenges, personal growth, and taking action to achieve my goals. How about you? What are some of the things that you are looking forward to this year? What are some things that you would like to manifest in your life? I'm not talking New Year's resolutions; I'm talking New Year's REVOLUTIONS! What transformational goals do you have, and what action steps do you have in place to achieve them?
Remember, the three keys to creating what it is that you want in your life are (1) intention, (2) gratitude, and (3) ACTION.
I wish you a very Merry Christmas, and a wildly successful New Year!
See you in 2010,
Saturday, November 28, 2009
Dr. Wayne Dyer was the main keynote speaker. Here’s some of what he had to say:
“Everything you believe to be true about yourself is your self-concept. How you interact with the world stems from your beliefs about who you are.”
“If you wake up and expect a bad day, you’ll rarely disappoint yourself.”
“Self-reliance is imperative. We need to be able to rely on ourselves regardless of the circumstances.”
“The only thing you have to help you create what you want is your imagination, and the only way you can change what you believe about yourself is through your imagination. If you can’t imagine what you desire then you are giving up the only tool you have to make a change.”
“The last five minutes of the day are the most important. Take that time to reflect on what went well.”
These next words were shared by Bruce Lipton:
“If you perceive yourself as a victim you have no power. The person who has the power in your life is the rescuer.”
“Our consciousness is creating the world. As we change our consciousness we change the world.”
“Evolution is driven by cooperation, community, love, and harmony—not by competition.”
Robert Ohotto said:
“In trying to connect with your purpose ask yourself, ‘What does the collective need from me?’ What are your skills? What is your grace? Grace is what you do to provide a healing energy to yourself and others.”
“Your destiny is not exclusive of serving others.”
“What do you do well, and how are you going to give it back to everyone else?”
And one of my favorite quotes was by Loretta LaRoche:
“Become the fun you are seeking.”
Have a great week!
Friday, November 13, 2009
Do you journal? If not, why? Some people think it’s a feminine thing to do. Some think it’s corny. Perfectionists might cringe at doing it because it becomes a task to make sure everything is written perfectly. Some people choose to not do it because they fear others will read their journal (fear…it’s so intrusive and inhibiting, isn’t it?). Some don’t want to take or make the time to do it. And others avoid doing it as a form of resistance because they fear (there’s that bad word again) what they will find or the emotions they will feel. No matter how you label it, though, journaling is simply writing, and you don’t have to be a female to do it, nor does fear of any kind have to accompany it. It’s just writing!
Why is writing so powerful? Well, for one, it helps you to stay focused on the topic at hand. It’s a wonderful and healthy outlet for pent up frustration or emotional tension. It helps you tackle issues on a much deeper level than merely thinking about things. When writing, your mind doesn’t get in the way and create multiple distractions. It brings the content of your mind into the physical world to be seen and challenged. More specifically, it enables you to extract important content from your mind which is often packed with all sorts of mental clutter.
Writing gives you an opportunity to explore what you really think. It often produces revelations (or what Oprah calls “aha” moments). It actually helps you to remember better, and assists with creativity. Writing as opposed to just thinking uncovers much more information, and it really does help to get you out of your head and plugged in to what is really going on in your life.
So, what do you say? Is writing something you’d be willing to give a try? It’s definitely a skill you have, so you might as well use it! You have nothing to lose, and if it's out of your comfort zone then that's even better! All growth occurs outside of our comfort zone. Your task this week is simple...journal about anything you wish once a day for five days, and have fun as you observe your thoughts coming to life before your eyes.
Have a great week,
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Self-awareness is the prerequisite to personal growth. Without it we become disconnected from ourselves. So, think about it, what are your patterns? How do you react in novel situations? What do you tend to do when faced with a challenging task or circumstance? When thinking about a potential outcome what common beliefs or expectations surface? Do you tend to think positively, or do you more often than not focus on what could or will likely go wrong? How do you react when you receive constructive criticism? What does your communication pattern look like? How do you react mentally, behaviorally, emotionally when you’re in social situations, or when you find yourself in a situation where others may be judging you?
Speaking of judging, do you tend to judge others? Do you have avoidance tendencies? Do you look for and clearly see the good in others, or do you focus on what you perceive as their flaws? What do you spend most of your mental energy on? Are your thoughts consumed with your job, family, friends, coworkers, neighbors, the government, the weather? What moves you? Do you laugh a lot? Do you let yourself cry when the urge strikes? What do you do well? What things do you need to work on? Are you working on them? What are your hang-ups? What triggers you, and more importantly, why? Are you happy? If not, what role are you playing in that?
Spend some time this week thinking about and being very aware of you. If you don’t practice this regularly it’ll probably feel like you’re meeting yourself for the first time. Relish in the things you notice about yourself that you like, and honor yourself for being brave enough to take a close look at those things that you don’t.
We can’t make changes unless we know changes need to be made. And the only way to know is to be aware.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Being in the field of psychology, the concept of balance is intriguing to me. It wasn’t until about four years ago that I started thinking about it on a much deeper level. I used to believe that balance was a state of steadiness where life felt good and all was well. I would exert a great deal of energy to get there, as if it were a destination, with hopes that once I did I’d be able to maintain that state from that point forward for the rest of my life! Need I tell you that didn’t work out so well? I learned that it was an idealistic but unrealistic goal, which set me up for failure and disappointment time and again.
Not too long ago I was taking a class in which the instructor blatantly stated, “Balance is an illusion.” I immediately had an aversive emotional reaction to his statement, and didn’t like one bit of what I was hearing. I stepped back and took inventory of my emotional defensiveness and realized that it was my resistance to the fact that his statement had some truth to it. The more I thought about it the more I could clearly see that balance wasn’t a destination but a continuous process that is comprised of the ebb and flow of life.
The very nature of balance is cyclical. You see this in nature, nations, society, cultures, families, and individuals. Life consists of ups and downs, rises and falls, successes and failures, peaks and degeneration, growth and deterioration, birth and death. There is constant movement in order to keep balance. Balance is not just the good stuff, and to me, that’s the illusion.
While teaching about the concept of balance in one of my classes I had everyone stand up and go into one of my favorite yoga asanas: tree pose. Tree is a balance pose, and when in it you become strikingly aware of the amount of movement that is involved with this apparently “steady” stance. At the symposium yesterday, one of my colleagues used the analogy of a waiter or waitress carrying a tray full of drinks. It’s not keeping your hand rigidly in one place under the tray that enables you to balance it, it is the constant movement of your fingers and replacement of your hand as the weight of the tray changes that allows for balance. The same applies in life. Balance, this illusion of steadiness, requires much fluidity and flexibility as we are presented with the positive and negative changes that accompany life.
So, just relax, go with the flow, and ride the wave of life. Finding...no, EXPERIENCING balance might be much easier than you originally thought!
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Last week for instance, I was feeling under the weather, but felt self-imposed pressure to get my blog written and posted. I had the choice of either accepting or stressing over the fact that it wasn’t going to get written that week. I decided that it was more important to tend to my health, and that the world could wait until the following week to read my blog.
Sometimes we just need to give ourselves permission to take a little break. Where might those six words come in handy in your life? Whatever the situation, it’s okay; the world will still be there when you decide to return.
Have a restful week,
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Being true to yourself…
…entails being honest with yourself about how you feel.
...entails being honest with others about how you feel.
…is when you speak your truth and stand up for yourself.
…often times requires courage.
…is when you view your needs as important.
…means nurturing yourself.
…means that you take action in getting your needs met so that you can give to others from a place of fulfillment.
…sometimes entails being comfortable with the disapproval of others.
…requires that you take care of you because what you put out into the world stems from your well-being.
…involves honoring all of your emotions.
…means giving to and caring for others without depleting or losing yourself.
…is when you see yourself as a priority in your own life.
What would you add to the list? What are you going to do this week to make sure that you are true to yourself, and how might you encourage others to do the same?
Saturday, October 3, 2009
The truth is, not everyone is going to like you, and being okay with that is another option. And believe it or not, it’s a healthy option. You can’t control others’ perceptions, and the minute you try to you will undoubtedly end up frustrated and disappointed. Their reasons are their own which involve not only how they perceive you, but how they perceive themselves, and how they perceive themselves in relation to you.
Liking or disliking is more complex than just having positive or negative feelings toward another. It’s never just about the other person. It always includes one’s view of him/herself in comparison to the person being “sized up.” This is probably the rare occasion where the words “never” and “always” actually apply. As the perceiver, we simply can’t be removed from the basis of our perception. The good news is someone else’s perception of you doesn’t have to be your truth. Someone can have a negative perception of you without it ever affecting who you really are. It might help to remember that they have a right to their perception just as you do yours.
So, if you get the opportunity this week, let it be your challenge to get comfortable with someone not liking you. Detachment is key in personal growth. I think you’ll find it to be liberating.
Have a great week,
Saturday, September 26, 2009
The first thing that becomes compromised when we are stressed or anxious is our breath. This is why it is important that you make every effort to be aware of and regulate it because it’s the very thing that can bring you back to yourself and calm you during stressful periods. The breath never lies. It is the informant of your current state of mind. Don't believe me? Pay attention to your breath when you are anxious, fearful, stressed, relaxed, calm, or at peace.
So, how about giving it a try? Breathe in through your nose slowly and deeply for a count of six seconds. Hold at the top, and slowly exhale through your nose for a count of eight seconds. As you inhale feel your body receive the free air that plays a vital role in your aliveness. As you exhale, connect with the feeling of your inner body as it releases your breath back into the Universe. Practice honoring your breath, and seeking its support when you need it most.
Saturday, September 19, 2009
What if you have more control over the quality of your life than you think? What if you get to decide how you would like to experience your life? What if it really is all about your thoughts and behaviors and not others’ thoughts and behaviors that makes your life rich? What if you cherish both the ups and downs of your journey? What if you make yourself a priority in your life? What if you really do have control over those things about you that you believe you don’t? What if you stepped out of your comfort zone, and recreated your life in a way that works for you? What if you have all of the power to create a new normal? What if the experience of your life is completely up to you? What would you do about it?
Love and well-being,
Saturday, September 12, 2009
When we feel we’ve done something wrong we are burdened with the emotion of guilt. And when we don’t find a healthy way of releasing our guilt, it remains bottled up inside. When such an intense emotion toward ourselves remains confined inside of us it tends to turn into debilitating emotions such as self-hatred, anger, disgust, and resentment, which ends up being expressed outwardly toward others. This is called projection—what we feel toward ourselves is redirected toward others. It’s a defense mechanism that keeps us protected from the pain, shame, guilt, fear, and anger we feel toward ourselves.
When we house contempt toward ourselves it’s very likely that we will begin to suffer physically (physical pain, migraines, digestive problems, ulcers, illnesses, disease, etc.). Your immune system becomes compromised when it has been overtaken by toxins, and this includes negative emotional pollution. Don’t underestimate the power of your psychology—your thoughts and behaviors—it is directly connected to the status your physical body. Another byproduct of holding yourself in emotional imprisonment is psychological disorders. Anger turned inward often times surfaces as depression, and/or substance abuse. Unresolved guilt can manifest as chronic anxiety.
Are all of these ailments worth protecting your ego from admitting a wrong doing? If we can begin to see that our self-worth is not connected to whether or not we are right or wrong, we will free ourselves and others from a lot of unnecessary suffering.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Spend time with friends
Watch your favorite program on TV
Go on an outing with your family
Take a walk by the ocean
Sit quietly in a serene surrounding
Do something enjoyable with your significant other
Throw a dinner party
Go to the beach
Play a sport
Go for a walk
Go to the movies
Hang out in nature
What do you do for you that makes you enjoy your life?
Happy Labor Day weekend.
Saturday, August 29, 2009
Let’s talk a little more about emotions. Do you see them as something to fear and avoid, or experience and enjoy? Do you view emotions as positive or negative? Do you allow yourself to fully experience all of your emotions, or do you pick and choose which ones are acceptable?
It’s natural to want to gravitate toward emotions that feel good such as joy or happiness, but does that mean that the “less than desirable” emotions such as anger or sadness don’t serve a purpose and should be avoided at all costs? No! Emotions are what make us alive and allow us to connect with the world and ourselves. Our full range of emotions serve a purpose and can teach us a great deal about ourselves. Before we can learn what is beneath our emotions, though, we have to sit with them long enough to find out what is at the core of their existence. And the only way we will likely sit with them is if we learn to not fear them. Emotions are designed to be felt not feared.
For many of us the thought of sitting with our emotions of sadness or anger is too scary, and so we seek means to distract ourselves (and not always in a healthy way). All too often we cut ourselves off from the emotions we perceive as less than desirable, which means we are cutting ourselves off from a crucial part of our life experience and knowledge about ourselves that could lead to a major shift in personal growth.
So, before you react the next time you feel sad or angry just give it a try—sit with your emotions—still your mind, and listen to what the truth is behind them. Look inward and reflect. What are your emotions covering up? Loneliness, hurt, fear, insecurity, pain, feelings of being unworthy, weakness, vulnerability? Connect this concept with what we talked about last week. The emotions you feel, although it may seem on the surface that they are about others, are often really about you.
I wish you a wonderful week of emotional exploration!
Saturday, August 22, 2009
Emotions are feelings that arise from our thoughts and beliefs, and can be felt physiologically and expressed behaviorally. All too often we give credit to or blame others for our emotions, but the fact of the matter is we are the creator and owner of our emotions. For example, we might believe that someone else is responsible for our happiness or anger. You can confirm whether or not you believe this by paying attention to the comments you make: “He makes me so happy, “or “She made me really mad.” The truth is it’s your thoughts and beliefs about his behaviors or her actions that creates the emotions you feel.
Emotions generate from within, which means they are yours. Many of us need to practice being the proud owner of our emotions. When we take pride in ownership we become empowered and sit comfortably in the driver’s seat of our own life. What are the actions steps involved in owning our emotions, you ask? First, a shift in consciousness (be aware of where you are placing responsibility for your emotions), and then begin speaking a different tune: “I felt so happy when I received the flowers you sent,” or “I felt hurt and angry when you didn’t introduce me to your boss.” What are some other ways you can practice owning your emotions?
Maybe we’ll talk more about this topic next week. Until then, have a fun week of getting in touch with and owning your emotions!
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Personal growth entails getting to know yourself on a deeper level. It’s imperative that you gain clarity on how you perceive yourself, and one way of doing that is to identify your pattern of speculating what others are thinking about you. Do you generally think that others perceive you in a positive or negative manner, or as superior or inferior? How you perceive yourself is the foundation from which all of your interactions unfold.
Spend some time this week investing in your personal growth. Search deeply for the truth about how you perceive yourself as it may be hidden far beneath the surface. If you find the truth is less than desirable then know this…you are carrying around beliefs that are not serving you or those around you. Take action by challenging those beliefs.
Lots of love,
Saturday, August 8, 2009
Have you ever felt overwhelmed by your “to do” list? If you haven’t I beg you to share your secret, if you have, read on. I’m in that boat right now...lots to do…way too much to do. Time is ticking away, and as you know from the Art of Procrastination blog (July 25, 2009), procrastination is no longer an option for me. As a matter of fact, it’s the very thing that got me in this predicament to begin with!
I spent hours on end working on just a couple of the many projects that needed to get done, and although I felt some relief that I was actively engaged in working toward my goals instead of on a new way to procrastinate, I still felt discontented. It seemed that every time I made some progress I remembered something else that needed to get done that wasn’t on my list. At the end of the day, I decided I’d feel better if I organized my thoughts by writing out yet another Mac Daddy to do list to include the old and new stuff to be done. The embarrassing truth is if I spent even half the time actually doing what’s on my lists as I do writing them I’d probably have a whole lot more checked off at the end of the day!
As I reached the bottom of the page of my “I’ll feel better once I write it all down AGAIN” list I could feel my anxiety heighten. That’s when it occurred to me...there has to be an up side to feeling overwhelmed! I mean, it has to serve some purpose, right? Truth be told, it definitely offers some sort of pay off otherwise feeling overwhelmed wouldn’t be such a common destination for so many of us. So, in an attempt to check off “write Saturday’s blog” from my list, I decided to ponder the up side of being overwhelmed. Here’s what I came up with:
--In a weird way it makes me feel alive
--It makes me feel like a busy and important person doing her part in the world
--It helps me to notice the things that I need to work on to minimize feeling overwhelmed
--I become focused, motivated, and productive
--I get the opportunity to practice my prioritization skills
--And most importantly, I get to practice my stress management skills
Who knew being overwhelmed could offer so many opportunities for growth?! What positive spin can you make of being overwhelmed?
Here’s to a week of embracing the up side of overwhelmed!
Saturday, August 1, 2009
I believe in God, but do not practice a particular religious denomination. My spirituality is something that I feel from the inside that emanates outward. It’s what makes me feel internally and eternally connected with something greater than myself. And even though I feel this Source is much larger than my human existence, I feel completely one with it...I'm not separate from it. The "it" that I speak of is God or what I more commonly refer to as the Universe. I’ve found that when I refer to God as the Universe I tend to get a more expansive perspective of what God is (notice I didn’t say “who”). The Universe is everywhere and encompasses everything and everyone, which to me is where God resides—everywhere, in everything, and everyone.
I used to view God as a figure (an entity or non-human person), but that belief actually made me feel much less connected to my spirituality because the figure was external to and removed from me (He resided in heaven and watched over the world from above). What I believe to be true at this point in my journey, and what resonates with my soul, is that spirituality is about my spirit, and my spirit is the energy within me that is connected to all that is...the Universe/God. This, to me, is the meaning of the phrase: We are all one.
How do YOU define spirituality? I’d love to hear what resonates with your soul. Please feel free to share your thoughts.
Monday, July 27, 2009
Anyway, while I’m feeling the flow of exhilaration and excitement about what has manifested in my life over the past week (heck, the past year!) I thought I’d share my energy with you. I am a strong believer in the power of manifestation, and not because I’ve read or heard about how powerful it is, but because I’ve experienced it again and again in my life. The more conscious I am of the power within me to create what it is that I want in this life experience the more in awe I am of this force.
It never ceases to amaze me that when I set an intention all of a sudden key people, opportunities, events, workshops, insights, “coincidences,” etc. begin to surface. In order to feel the synchronicity that is at work in our favor we need to first be aware of its existence and then be open and ready to receive. Doesn’t it make complete sense that if we are not open or ready to receive what it is that we are asking for that it likely will not manifest? The key is to dig deep and find our truth about what might be holding us back from manifesting the life we desire.
The only other ingredient in the power of manifestation is action. A wise man (my brother, Ron) once said, “If you sit around and wait for things to happen, nothing happens!” Action is necessary, and it just so happens to be where many of us stall out. Action often involves stepping out of our comfort zone, taking a risk, and being vulnerable. If we are seeking change—something different in our life—then we must step out of our comfort zone because that is where change lives. When we stay in the comfort zone we remain in a familiar unchanging place where we grumble that our dreams aren’t coming true.
As I stated in the Art of Procrastination blog, the three keys to manifestation are: (1) intention, (2) gratitude, and (3) action. Get ready, set, and go manifest!
Lots of love to you,
Saturday, July 25, 2009
So, why the resistance around doing something as simple and fun as writing a personal growth blog? Well, perfectionism for one. How can I post something if it isn’t perfectly articulated? I can’t write it right now because my mind isn’t quiet, well organized, clear and in “writing mode” to write a perfect piece. Geesh, when is it ever?! The only time my mind is that still is during meditation, and it seems to me that it would be counterproductive to be sitting on my meditation pillow with my laptop in hand! What is perfection anyway? We’ll save the response to that for a different blog on another day.
Fear is another hidden gem behind resistance, which is often disguised as procrastination. Fear of not being perfect. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of judgment. Fear of being criticized or ridiculed. Fear of speaking your truth and expressing your voice for the world to hear because you think your voice isn’t important or worthy of being heard. Fear of failure. Fear of being humiliated. Fear of vulnerability. Fear of risk. I could go on and on.
I think it's safe to say that none of these forms of fear are conducive to a life of joy and well-being. The definition of fear in the Merriam-Webster dictionary states: fear is an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by expectation or awareness of danger. I’m fairly certain that there is no apparent danger in posting my thoughts on personal growth topics in a blog, which means expectation is the culprit. Where does expectation generate? Within. And therein lies the answer to the first step of moving past the stagnancy of procrastination. Challenge your negative expectations, replace them with positive ones, and replace the art of procrastination with the art of detachment. Detach from anything that is not serving you or the world at large.
I’ve recently learned that the three keys to manifestation are: (1) setting a positive intention, (2) stating your current gratitude with regard to your intention, and (3) putting in to motion a plan of ACTION.
So, here goes:
Intention—I am productive on a daily basis and accomplish what needs to get accomplished!
Gratitude—I am grateful for my experience with procrastination because it has lead me to a new awareness of myself, and has prompted me to explore what I need to do to grow, move out of a rut, and be productive.
Action—(this is the big one!) (1) I plan to send my blog address (http://www.terriheck.blogspot.com/) to everyone in my address book because I know this will make me feel more accountable to post my blog on a continuous basis, and (2) I plan to post my blog every Saturday (and if I’m feeling giddy, I might surprise you with one on Tuesday, too!).
I have a feeling that I’m not alone on this procrastination thing. If you’re picking up what I’m putting down, by all means, feel free to speak on it! If you’re in the same boat as I, then get in the game and share your three steps to manifesting a procrastination-free lifestyle. If you’ve won the procrastination tug-of-war please share your success story!
Until next Saturday, here’s wishing you a procrastination-free productive week.
Monday, June 15, 2009
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
I'm taking a yoga teacher training course, and in class the other day a woman shared a great story that I think aligns beautifully with this message about the Universe. She and her young daughter were in the ocean, and she said to her daughter "be one with the fishies!" She and her little one started saying it together over and over, and all of a sudden they were surrounded with tiny little fish that were swimming in and out of their legs and tickling their feet! In that moment the both of them felt that oneness. As they waded farther out the fish began jumping out of the water all around them! Her story made me smile inside and out, and truly appreciate the gift of life and all of creation.
Do you have a story to share?
Let's talk about freedom. What does it mean to you? How would you define it?