Do you dread the holidays? The time of year filled with laughter, joy and lots of good food can be tortuous to those who have experienced loss, perhaps even more so in the midst of a pandemic. Memories well up, followed by sadness, depression, anger and emptiness. Being around lighthearted celebration can be excruciating, and with a raging pandemic, the holidays can be overwhelmingly lonely, especially if you are alone in quarantine.
I’ve lost loved ones, and I know how sad the holidays can be without them. Yet I have learned to view things from a grander perspective, and in that process I have grown and blossomed. I know things can shift for you, as well! Let this year be different (in a positive way!) Don’t be victimized by your thoughts and emotions. You are a powerful being who can make a different choice!
1. Recognize that you are bigger than any thoughts or feelings you are experiencing.
When you are feeling grief or sadness, don’t resist the feeling. Allow yourself to feel it. Where does it show up in your body? Does it make you feel contracted, small or diminished? Acknowledge it. Notice how it makes you feel, but don’t judge it in any way. In this way, you move away from emotionality into a state of neutrality. You begin to recognize that you are not the emotion. Now declare, “I am bigger than this!” Remember a time when you felt happy and joyful. Expand into the sense of love, joy and well being and feel the feeling.
2. Realize that everything you experience is an opportunity for personal growth.
The feeling of hopelessness comes from being trapped in the illusion that you can’t change your circumstances. What if you realized that everything occurring to you is part of your specific curriculum in the school of life? No one said school was easy! Rather than getting caught up in a cycle of counterproductive thoughts and emotions, look at the situation more objectively, and wonder out loud, “What can I learn from this?” or “How can I handle this differently?”
3. Remember that you have a choice, every instant, to see things differently.
Nothing is set in stone. As your thoughts and perceptions begin to change, your life will shift accordingly. When you realize that people show up in your life as your teachers and students, and that your time with them is a gift, the appropriate response is love, appreciation and gratitude for your time together! I believe that we are surrounded by unseen helpers in the form of Spirit, angels and guides. Ask them to help you see things from a different perspective, and notice how your perceptions expand and shift. In fact, the very realization that you have a choice in how you view your circumstances creates a space for thoughts and feelings to shift.
4. Give of yourself this holiday season
Give of yourself this holiday season and notice how giving makes you feel. Since giving and receiving are the same, when you give from a place of love and service, you will receive in kind. Just try it and notice what shows up in your life.
I would love to hear from you. Please let me know how these strategies work for you!
With love and blessings,
I have fond memories of family Thanksgivings with friends over the years, and while this year we’re encouraged to stay home and stay small, there is still reason to acknowledge and appreciate life’s blessings.
Gratitude is an easy way to shift into a positive mindset. It’s one of the very highest of emotions, akin to love. Good things happen automatically when you take the time to count your blessings and think about all the positives in your life.
It’s been scientifically proven in many studies that gratitude…
- Can improve your health
- Can improve your finances
- Can improve your relationships
- Can improve your career
- Can increase your happiness
- Can make you feel good
- Can decrease pain
- Can reduce bad health symptoms
- Can increase time spent exercising.
- Can increase sleep quality.
- Can lower blood pressure.
- Can increase your energy
Just writing in a gratitude journal 5 minutes a day can increase your long-term well being 10%. That is significant and something you can do at home, even during a pandemic! Gratitude triggers a positive feedback loop – it makes you feel better, so you feel more gratitude, which makes you feel even better!
Because the benefits of gratitude accrue over time, it’s best to make it a daily practice or ritual to reap even greater rewards.
There are always blessings, even in the midst of a pandemic, even when you are in quarantine, even when money seems scarce.
Celebrate Thanksgiving daily, and watch your blessings grow!
© 2020 MarBeth Dunn
Want more money? Love? The “Law of Attraction” offers that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It is something most of us have heard of, yet may have some uncertainty about how it works or how to use it. Here’s a quick synopsis…
1. Take Inspired Action: One of the misconceptions about the Law of Attraction is that sitting around and thinking about what you want will make it happen. It doesn’t work that way. You must be clear about what you want, and then develop a certain, positive energy around it. Let’s say that you want to go a Mediterranean cruise. You make your intention clear; this is what you want with certainty. Next, you create positive energy around this desire, which will open you to possibilities and opportunities that are in alignment with making this happen. Then, act on what seems natural and what feels right. That’s when you’ll notice magic starting to happen, and things start “conspiring” to help you realize your goal. As you stay open to saying “yes” and take action steps that are “inspired”, your ultimate desire begins to manifest itself. This inspired action is the Law of Attraction at work. On the other hand, lack of clarity and a belief that, “it will never happen”, puts out energy that will keep you energetically closed and out of an abundance mindset. When this happens, you may be motivated to work hard to make that cruise happen but it will be difficult because you aren’t attracting anything, you are just chasing it down. When you engage in inspired action, you trust that everything you need will come to you.
2. Get into vibrational alignment: Most everything we want in life is about the FEELING that comes from having that thing, rather than the thing itself. We don’t want the car, we want the feeling that we get when we own and drive it. When you start living “as if”, as if you already have or are doing what you want, you create a vibration that starts attracting what you want and you begin to look for proof that it already exists. This creates an openness and willingness to see things in a new light, and you begin to trust your inner guidance and do things you may not normally do, and notice things you normally wouldn’t. Everything really is energy so what you put out, you’ll get back. Vibrating at a “higher level” or feeling as if what you want already exists, will allow you to attract those very things. If you’ve read anything by Jerry and Esther Hicks, then you are familiar with Abraham. Here is how he puts it: “As you imagine and visualize and verbalize your new story, in time you will believe the new story, and when that happens, the evidence will flow swiftly into your experience. A belief is only a thought you continue to think; and when your beliefs match your desires, then your desires must become your reality.” When your beliefs and desires are in alignment, reality isn’t far behind.
3. Get happy and everything else will fall into place – One of the biggest mistakes people make is thinking they will be happy “when”. When they get the job, partner, car, vacation, house etc, then they will be happy. Studies have shown though, that people aren’t happy because they are successful, they are successful because they are happy! When you are happy, you’re vibrating at a higher level and when that happens, you start attracting more of what you want because you are more of what you want. You are feeling what you want to be feeling, regardless of your current circumstances. It’s this combination of feeling and vibrating that higher level energy that will give you alignment and when you have alignment, you start taking inspired action rather than motivated action. This enables you to start attracting what you want because you are in a constant state of joyfully receiving, which not coincidentally, attracts more of the same.
Staying happy, in alignment and taking inspired action all work together to bring or attract more of what you want in life. When you learn how to do all three simultaneously, things can’t help but change for the better. You can live the life you’ve always wanted to have!
© MarBeth Dunn 2020
It happens. Relationships end. There’s something so raw about feeling abandoned; left behind to endure the world while someone you love has moved on. No matter how it happens, when people leave us, it is usually a time of licking your wounds of sorrow, sadness and often anger. Endings can also stir up memories of past losses, that trigger older emotional issues.
So here’s my question….What if you could embrace your loss as part of a bigger picture? You might still need to grieve. Yet what if you could move through the grief process more quickly and even see it as a kind of gift in the grander scheme of things?
One of the most valuable gifts loss offers is the opportunity for growth. Have you noticed that in every kind of loss, there is often a lesson that you needed to learn, and perhaps even a silver lining? It may take a while before you can see it. You may need to explore your memories to shed some light on the hows and whys of your current situation. If you’ve ever experienced a break-up or fractured relationship, one of the most beneficial lessons is to examine the part you played. A relationship, by its very definition, includes more than one person (except, of course, the relationship you have with yourself). Looking at the loss of the relationship through a different lens gives you the chance to see how certain behaviors, thoughts or patterns were part of how the relationship evolved, was sustained and eventually ended. To be clear, sometimes people just do unkind things so this isn’t about blaming yourself. After all, you can’t control what anyone else does. But what you can do is look at how you contributed to create the dynamic of the relationship. Maybe you could have set better boundaries, or had more self-love, which would have given you more confidence. Maybe you realize that you want to appreciate and live in the moment more in your next relationship. There are real lessons in there and the more willing you are to view loss as a hidden gift, the better chance you will have of healing and of also creating a different path for yourself in the future.
Losing people always feels premature: no matter the circumstances, we all want just a little more time. And, what if all the relationships in your life had a predetermined contract to create exactly what occurred? Imagine that, in some other place and time, two souls came together and decided that they would experience each other in some kind of finite way, and that when all was said and done, they would live and love in the memory of what they had? From this perspective, all endings would be in perfect order because the length of the relationship had already been decided. Loss is still loss but doesn’t this perspective feel more like poetry in motion?
Ultimately, just like everything in life, loss can provide you with a deep sense of gratitude if you can tap into a higher perspective, and see the relationship for everything it gave you rather than focusing on what you feel it took from you. Live the loss through your heart and don’t be afraid to feel what you feel. There’s beauty, even in loss, and when you see the beauty and recognize the lessons, joy won’t be far behind.
© 2012 MarBeth Dunn all rights reserved
Have you heard me speak on the subject of self-love and self-acceptance? I am passionate about loving yourself, because I know it’s the number one rocket fuel for transformation. Yet I’ve noticed, it is often what people pay the LEAST attention to. Have you found yourself thinking, “If only 2020 were less chaotic and catastrophic, my life would be better!” Yes, I know you may wish to change your outer circumstances, yet you will have better insight, better wisdom, make better decisions and experience a better life now, if you practice complete self-love and acceptance! Let the love for yourself propel you to where you want to be.
I recently read a wonderful quote that rang very true. “Until you can embrace complete self-acceptance, something will always feel a little off in your world.” So rather than attempting to fix what’s outside of you without achieving happiness or peace of mind, why not turn your attention within and change your feelings about yourself? If, for example, someone hurts your feelings, your initial reaction may be try to change them. The hurtful transaction can quickly become an exercise in frustration and futility if you fall into the trap of trying to make them behave differently. Yet it’s not your job to change them!
When you react from your heart, you will not be wounded by their words. Their judgments will have no emotional charge for you because you will know they aren’t an accurate reflection of who you are. From your heart and a place of self-acceptance, you will completely accept yourself, and it won’t matter to you what the other person thinks. You will know the truth!.
Create a habit of loving yourself by practicing powerful “I am” statements. You can shift your perceptions about yourself by declaring, “I am lovable”, “I am beautiful”, “I am worthy”, “I am smart” and so on. Breathe deeply, all the way down to your belly, and really listen to what you’re saying. You are a marvelous creation and you need to believe that about yourself!
Another great way to practice self-love is to do “mirror work”. Sit or stand in front of a mirror, look into your eyes, and tell yourself how lovable, wonderful, amazing, and sexy you are. If it feels too uncomfortable or unbelievable, cushion your words with, “I’m willing to… love myself, know that I’m wonderful and amazing, etc. You’ve probably been telling yourself something totally different for years, but stick with it! If you’ve convinced yourself of all the things you’re not, you can certainly convince yourself of all the things you are!
When you come to the place where you can fully and completely love and accept yourself, you will find the world a much brighter place, and you don’t have to change anyone or anything out there. The only change that matters, is the change inside of you. Let love be the fuel that inspires you to burn brightly!
© MarBeth Dunn 2012