Shining the Light on the Dark

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Life is interesting isn’t it?  The yin and yang of this human experience.

Light and dark

Good and bad

Possible and impossible

We are conditioned to believe that it has to be one way or another.  But, what if what we are telling ourselves is not true?

It was Henry Ford who once said “whether you think you can or you think you can’t you’re right.”

What if we could see the good in the bad?

Shine the light on the dark?

Create the possible out of the impossible?

As rigorous as life becomes at times, we can always count on the fact that the sun always rises.

What if we were to clear our limiting beliefs simply by changing our thoughts about any circumstance that comes our way?

Think about the power in that.  And, realize that you have that power within you.


Try this:

  • Fold a piece of paper in half lengthwise
  • Write an “impossible” situation in your life across the top
  • Write a list of the possible negative outcomes on the left side
  • Write a counter list of possible positive outcomes on the right side
  • When your mind turns to the negative, replace the thought with all that could go right

Shine Brightly,

Tracy


Do you need help shining the light on the dark?  Studies show that daily affirmations can help reduce stress, boost well-being and increase confidence.  Click the START HERE button below and get Life By Design Daily Affirmations in your inbox.  Designed with care to remind you of who you are, what you are capable of and how much you rock.  (The first one is the most important.)  Enjoy!


Photo Credit:  Alex on Unsplash


A Soft Place to Land

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What does your soul desire?  What does your soul need?  What fills your soul to the brim?

There are as many ways to feed a soul as there are souls to feed.  We have each come into this human form with our own lessons to learn.  Our own mountains to climb. 

Our soul print is as individual as our thumbprint.  We are at the same time connected as one on the spiritual level and unique on the human level. 

We each have our own purpose in this lifetime and it begins with creating a soft place to land.  For ourselves first and then for others.  We must fill our own cups to the brim so that we are able to give from the overflow.  

Most of us come at this with the belief that we must put the needs of others first.  I find this especially true of mothers.  There is this misconception that we must give all we've got to our families before tending to our own needs. 

I learned the hard way, after a herniated disc, chronic fatigue and a clear reflection from my then 3 year old, a highly sensitive old soul, of how poorly I was treating myself. 

As much as I don't love to get up early, I found that the best way to create a soft place for myself to land was to get up and out of bed. 

Early Morning.  Before my family wakes.  Is now my favorite time of day.

In the quiet stillness.  The dawn of a new day of life.

It’s my time.  To fill my cup.  To feed my mind, my body and my soul.

Try this to create a soft place for yourself to land:

  • Get Clear - Imagine:  Who would I love to BE for myself? Who would I love to BE for my family? Who would I love to BE in the world? (ex. I AM at my ideal weight. I AM present with my family. I AM a spreader of joy.)   

  • Create Stillness - Pause. Breathe. Ask. Listen.  - Ask yourself this question into the stillness and then listen.  What can I do with what I have to BEcome the woman I imagined above? (Ex. Get up early and walk.  Put my phone down and give my child my full attention.  Get out of the house, smile and share my light with everyone I encounter.)

  • Take Action - Incorporate one new idea into your life at a time.  When you have fully created the habit, incorporate another new idea into your life. 

Fun. Flow. Freedom.

Shine Brightly,

Tracy


*Do you need help creating a soft place to land?  Start here with this complimentary series of Life By Design Daily Affirmations.  These affirmations are designed with care to remind you of who you are, all that you are capable of and how much you rock.  (The first affirmation is the most important.)  Enjoy!


Photo Credit:  @carlijeen

Shifting

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Just as a pilot makes small shifts throughout a flight to adjust for wind, weather and obstacles, you too can shift your thinking throughout the day to adjust for circumstances that arise.  All it takes is a slight shift.  Even a one degree shift has the potential to completely change the trajectory of your life.

When you choose to shift your thinking you set the tone for what you will experience and attract.

If you start your day thinking “this is one of those days”, you will find examples of “one of those days”. Your hair dryer goes on the fritz.  You spill coffee on your white blouse.  You get stuck in traffic.

When you start the day thinking “This is the day of my amazing good fortune”.  Thank you Florence Scovel Shinn!  You will find examples of the abundance that is all around you.  You become aware of opportunities that you may not have noticed before.  It really is that simple.  You attract what you think.

Try these slight shifts when your mind starts going down the dark road of circumstance:

  • What if this is what it looks like when it’s all working out?
  • I AM shifting into joy.  I AM shifting into health.  I AM shifting into knowing.
  • Up Until Now...
  • Every day and in every way I AM getting better and better.

Discover. Empower. Balance.

Shine Brightly,

Tracy

Need help shifting?  Schedule a Fun Flow & Freedom Clarity Call today!

Rise and Shine

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Morning.  Early Morning.  Before my family wakes.  Is my favorite time of day.

In the quiet stillness.  The dawn of a new day of life.

It’s my time.  To fill my cup.  To feed my mind, my body and my soul.

It isn’t always easy, this rising and shining.  Many mornings I just don’t feel like leaving a delightful dream, the comfort of my bed, the warmth of my husband next to me.  But I have made a commitment to myself.  To my own self-care.  For making more time in the day just for me.

I am always rewarded.  Always grateful.  That I thought enough of me to give myself this gift of a morning.

My morning ritual has changed here and there.  With the needs of my soul.  With the season of my life.  With whatever I may be dabbling in at the time.  But the elements are pretty much the same.  They feed me, sustain me, give me the strength I sometimes need to move through my day.

My Absolute YES!

  1. A Brisk Walk to connect with nature and my own physical form
  2. Yoga to reunite my mind, body and soul
  3. Meditation to harmonize with my own life essence
  4. Gratitude to align myself with the generosity of the Universe
  5. Dreaming to explore the endless possibilities that are available to me

A new day.

A fresh start.

How glorious!

I can choose, this day, to see the world differently.

Wishing you well,

Tracy

Need help creating a meaningful morning ritual?  CLICK HERE to schedule a Fun Flow & Freedom Clarity Call.

Photo Credit:  @carlijeen

The Inner Mean Girl

© Mamz heart depicted in sand Dreamstime I have an inner mean girl.

She’s critical.  She’s judgmental.  She’s ruthless.

She tries her best to talk me out of any good I seek.

“Just trying to keep you safe,” she says.

She keeps me on my toes, making sure I do it all just right.

Not a hair out of place, not a misspoken word.

“Don’t let them see your imperfections,” she’ll say.

She likes patterns.  Failure is her favorite.

“See”, she says.  “You don’t have what it takes.”

She finds endless examples to support her case.

If I let her she will beat me into submission.

 

I have an inner advocate.

She’s kind.  She’s caring.  She’s compassionate.

“I love you,” she’ll say.  “You are perfect just the way you are.”

She’s incredibly powerful.  A badass.

“You can move mountains,” she says.  “You ARE doing it.”

She’s supportive.  She urges me to take bold, brave steps in the direction of my dreams.

“It’s ok,” she says, “step out of your comfort zone.  I’ll be here by your side.”

She’s a bit quieter than my inner mean girl but she is always with me.

She’s as dependable as the rising sun.

And, the more I summon her, the richer my life becomes.

 

Wishing you well,

Tracy

Need help summoning your inner advocate?  CLICK HERE to schedule a mini clarity session.

Photo Credit:  © Mamz heart depicted in sand Dreamstime

100 Ways

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One of the best ways I’ve found to generate joy in my life is my gratitude practice.

I do it first thing in the morning as part of my morning ritual.

In my dedicated gratitude journal, every day.

I review the day before and create a simple list of 10 things I am grateful for.

Sometimes the items on the list are as basic as being grateful for my gratitude practice.

Other times they may involve something more complex, such as the day after my accident.

On that day, I was grateful for my life, that my children were snug in their beds at the time, and so much more.

Some days it is a challenge, depending on my thought management.

But it always helps me to see things differently.

To find the good, the joy, the beauty in life.

This has not always been easy for me.

In my former life, I saw the glass half empty.

But and what if were constants in my mind chatter and my word.

Now, I look forward to my gratitude practice, the opportunity to start the day with grateful eyes.

I kick started my gratitude practice by creating a list of 100 people I am grateful for.

At first this task felt daunting, so I wrote daily for a week, reflecting each day on my life.

I started with my present life and progressed backward in time…life with kids, life with my husband before kids, adult life before my husband, early adulthood, childhood…

I was amazed to find that when I was finished I had over 125 people on my list.

I am still adding to that list.

And you are on it:)

Wishing you well

Tracy

Need help starting a gratitude practice?  Schedule a Mini Clarity Session today!

The Gift of Forgiveness

gift_© Jinyoung Lee Dreamstime Stock Photos (640x461)
gift_© Jinyoung Lee Dreamstime Stock Photos (640x461)

Do you ever find yourself returning to the same incident in your mind over and over again?  Maybe it happened an hour ago, 2 years ago, 20 years ago, maybe even in childhood?  You find yourself returning to the scenario, often spinning tall tales about how it could have been different, how it could have been avoided, what you should have said, how wrong the other person was.  You find yourself feeling resentment towards another person or yourself.  No matter how hard you try, you find it difficult to let it go.

Forgiveness is a natural remedy for resentment, regardless of how unnatural it may feel.  The word forgiveness can conjure up some strong emotions.  There is a misunderstanding that forgiveness means that we should release someone for doing something that may have even been a horrific act.  That we make whatever they did OK.  Forgiveness is NOT for the other person.  It is absolutely NOT to make whatever they did OK.

Forgiveness is a gift we give ourselves.  It is the gift of freeing up the valuable space in our minds that could be used for something constructive like solving problems, being present with another human being, feeling joy or creating dreams for our future.  It also frees us up from returning to those emotional and physiological feelings that just don’t feel good in our bodies and that can often be harmful.

I didn’t always know this.  As a matter of fact, I thought I had been “practicing forgiveness” for many, many, MANY years.  I couldn’t figure out why the resentment never really went away.  I now understand that forgiveness is a daily practice.  As long as we are breathing, we have something to forgive.  It’s like peeling back the layers of an onion.  We peel back a layer only to see that there is another layer behind it.

In the process of breaking apart my own life some years ago I learned some invaluable tools for forgiveness.  I had the good fortune of practicing my new tools on a person in my life with whom I was experiencing quite a bit of resentment.  Whenever this person came into my awareness, and at the time it was a lot, my throat would become constricted, my shoulders would drift toward my ears and I would begin to feel a defensive shift in my body, it was quite uncomfortable.  I realized one day, after I had been practicing my new tools daily, that I didn’t have that uncomfortable feeling as much anymore.  It was a marked difference for me.  It felt as if a weight had been lifted from me and I was able to see this person in a whole new light.

Ho'oponopono is one these practices.  It is an ancient Hawaiian practice of reconciliation and forgiveness.  It is simple but powerful.  It involves saying the following 3 phrases quietly in the mind, repeatedly.  Sometimes it takes a few rounds to feel the shift and sometimes it requires many.  Done regularly, it can change your life!

“I AM Sorry…Please Forgive Me”

“Thank you…I Am Grateful”

“I Love You”

By saying I’m Sorry…Please Forgive Me, I am acknowledging judgement and asking forgiveness for this judgement.

By saying Thank You…I AM Grateful, I am expressing gratitude for the opportunity to clear resentful thoughts.

By saying I Love You, I am generating a sense of joy, happiness and abundance.

Shine Brightly,

Tracy

Need help starting a forgiveness practice?  Schedule a Mini Clarity Session today!

Photo Credit:  gift_© Jinyoung Lee Dreamstime

The Intention Box

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After my Grandma Grace passed away I inherited a lovely box. It was given to her from a Shiseido rep when she worked the cosmetic counter of a department store.  Instead of housing the powder puff it used to, although it still holds the scent of Grandma Grace, it now holds my intentions, my dreams.

There is a certain power in writing down your dreams. It is as if by bringing the words out of your head and onto paper, you are presenting it to the Universe.  Placing your order with the Cosmic Waiter.

Periodically, I open the box to place a new intention in it. I never cease to be amazed that more often than not, my intentions have come to pass.

Pam Grout, author of E2 Nine Do-It-Yourself Energy Experiments That Prove Your Thoughts Create Your Reality, shares that there is an order to placing an intention, a process for success.

  • Write down what you want as clearly as possible and then back off. It is your business to be as clear as possible about WHAT you want but leave the HOW to the Cosmic Waiter.
  • Write a start date as well as a “due date”. A beginning and an end.
  • Visualize your intention as often as you can.  As if it is already happening.  As if you have become the woman who is experiencing it.

Shine Brightly.

Tracy

Want support in creating powerful intentions? Click Here to schedule your Fun Flow & Freedom Clarity Call today.

Photo Credit:  © Ruletkka Dreamstime.com Magic Box Photo

The Ripple

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“Only in stillness does the imperceivable become discernible” ― Bryant McGill

How many times have you had a problem that you were trying to solve only to come up with the same 5 answers? Like Ground Hog Day…asking the same questions, getting the same answers that just don’t work.

I recently learned this cool concept about casting a thought into stillness. It’s not the concept that is new, but the way it was presented that made soooo much sense. It has completely changed my daily meditation practice.

Imagine the ripple a rock makes when thrown into a still pond. The ripple is clear and distinct and has far reaching effects. Now, imagine throwing a rock into the choppy surface of the same pond on a windy day. The ripple made by the rock gets absorbed by the chaos on the windy surface making it impossible to differentiate.

So, we can apply this concept to our minds as well. When we are faced with a problem and are searching for an answer, it is much more effective to throw a question into a still mind, as in meditation (or your "presence practice"), where the question permeates out into the “infi-net”. A question thrown into our daily consciousness is likely to get swept away with the 60,000 other thoughts that consume our minds, many of which are the same thoughts we had yesterday, making it impossible to differentiate one thought from the next.

Try this…

  • Find a quiet place, anyplace you can be alone for 10 minutes – in a corner, in your bed, outside, in a closet…be creative!
  • Set a timer for 10 minutes.
  • Ask a question such as “What is the most elegant solution to…?” (What questions work better than how questions.)
  • Quiet your mind, focus on your breath, count backwards, repeat a mantra, whatever method works best for you to bring your mind back to stillness.

The answers may not come immediately or in the usual ways, but be open to what comes into your awareness over the next few days in the form of thoughts, conversations, messages etc…

Shine Brightly,

Tracy

Want support in asking high quality questions?  Click Here to schedule your Fun Flow & Freedom Clarity Call today.

Photo Credit:  © Pdiaz water drop in pool Dreamstime Photos

Decide and Conquer

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“You just have to persevere. One day that door will open.  If you don’t persevere, you won’t be there when it does.”  Carole King

I spent much of my adult life feeling as if I was on “the edge of greatness”. As if I was waiting for a lightning bolt to strike down and then I would know exactly what to do and when.  I was so afraid that I was going to make the “wrong” decision.  That my very being depended on being perfect and making “good” choices.  So, I stayed in indecision, and nothing happened.

It took a long time to learn that the next step is only revealed after we take the first step, any step, as uncertain as it may feel. It takes forward momentum to make a change, to live more fully, to experience more joy in our lives.  It could be a very tiny step.  Maybe it’s a phone call, hitting the I’M IN button on a website, making a different choice at the grocery store.

Taking a step opens the door for new possibilities. It’s like giving the universe your RSVP.  It’s a YES!  I’ll be there.

The only “wrong” decision is not making one at all.

So, make a decision, take a step and walk through that door.

Wishing you well.

Tracy

Need help deciding what step to take?  Click Here to schedule your Mini Clarity Session today.

Photo Credit: © Brown concrete door Creative commons stock photos Dreamstime

A Grand Entrance

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It is a story of transformation, of metamorphosis.  I share this story in hopes that there is a Mama out there who needs to hear it, that this story can help her in some way.  This is a very condensed version of what transpired.  I have gone through an incredible transformation since then and although I wouldn't wish the pain of it on anyone, I would most certainly wish the growth that has occurred because of it on everyone.

My son made a "grand entrance" in August of 2007.  He was born prematurely via emergency C-section (my birth plan said that I was going to have a natural, Bradley Method birth so this was quite unexpected) as a uterine infection caused my water to break.  He spent most of the first month of his life in the hospital.  Half of this time was due to his prematurity and the other half was because he turned blue in my arms and stopped breathing while at home in between.  After much poking and prodding they found that the breathing episode was caused by an odd UTI but they were never able to assure us that he wouldn’t stop breathing again.  Thus, I spent most of his first year of life awake, afraid that it would happen again or having nightmares that it did.

After my husband and family returned to work I was on my own during the day, feeling completely exhausted, overwhelmed and alone. The next challenge involved nursing a premature baby and consisted of weighing, nursing, tube feeding, bottle-feeding, weighing again and then pumping every 2 hours for the next month.  It was brutal but he became a champion nurser around his due date and also a champion screamer.  He literally woke up when he was due and cried almost non-stop for the next 7 months.  He was unable sleep longer than 2 hours at a time and required constant movement.  To say that he was colicky was an understatement.

His baby sister was born when he was 17 months old and he was in the height of what we soon learned was sensory processing disorder. Anything and everything startled him.  He was sensitive to light, sound, touch and movement.  Everything was over-stimulating and sent him into fits of crying.  Nursing baby in tow, we started seeing an OT who prescribed a “sensory diet” for him that included 6 weeks of sensory brushing every 90 minutes during waking hours.  He has been in and out of OT ever since along with periodic check ins with various specialists for other preemie conditions.

When he was around 4 or 5 I noticed that my son, who was seriously born at least 40 years old and is a highly sensitive person like me, was mirroring my least favorite negative traits and I realized that I needed to make some important changes in my life, to create a new legacy. I needed to learn how to love myself, take care of myself, live my truth and model empowerment for my children.  I then began breaking apart my life, dissecting it piece by piece, healing what needed to be healed, changing what needed to be changed.  I learned that nothing brings up your unhealed "stuff" like parenting.

I realized that a story is just a story.  It can be changed, retold, given a new twist.  The story does not define me.  The circumstances of my life have not changed but my perspective has.  The chaos of parenthood is still there, my past is still my past, what happened still happened, but now I can honestly say that I love and value myself, that I am living my truth.   It has been this "brutiful" unfolding (as Glennon Doyle Melton of Momastery might call it).  I now embrace my perfect imperfection, warts and all.

One Foot Up was born out of my experiences, what I most needed in my darkest hour.  So many little miracles happened along the way and I am grateful to be able to share what I have learned with you.  It is my wish that I may help you in your darkest hour, that my words will give you the glimmer of hope you need to take the next step.

Fun. Flow. Freedom.

Shine Brightly,

Tracy

*Do you need help telling a new story?  START HERE with this complimentary series of Life By Design Daily Affirmations.  These affirmations are designed with care to remind you of who you are, all that you are capable of and how much you rock.  (The first affirmation is the most important.)  Enjoy!

Photo Credit:  butterfly perched on wildflower horizontal © Scott Pehrson Dreamstime

Yes!

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There has been a lot of buzz as of late about choosing a word of the year. Usually I have many but this year I chose Yes!  Actually, I have been dabbling in Yes! for several years, since I started breaking apart my life, but this year I’m all in!

At first it may feel a bit selfish to say Yes! A bit unnatural.  But once you get the hang of it you will wonder why you waited so long.  Yes! is exciting and terrifying all in one.  Yes! opens doors, renews relationships and frees you to be you.  Choosing Yes! gives your children permission to say Yes!  To be authentic.  To live their truth.

This year I say…

Yes! to my health.

Yes! to my family.

Yes! to my dreams.

Yes! to abundance.

And

Yes! to No!


If you haven’t yet, watch Oprah’s Super Soul Sunday interview with Shonda Rhimes, creator and producer of the award winning series Grey’s Anatomy and Scandal to name a few.  She recently wrote a book called Year of Yes: How to Dance It Out, Stand In the Sun and Be Your Own Person(now on my must read list). She made the bold move two years ago of saying Yes! to her life and it changed her in ways she could not have imagined.  Her year of Yes! lead her to some incredible experiences she would not have otherwise had, losing weight, letting go of what no longer served her and most importantly, showing up for her children as the empowered, present mama she is.

Thank you Shonda! For being brave, sharing your story with the world and being you!


Fun. Flow. Freedom.

Shine Brightly,

Tracy

*Do you need help saying YES to youSTART HERE with this complimentary series of Life By Design Daily Affirmations.  These affirmations are designed with care to remind you of who you are, all that you are capable of and how much you rock.  (The first affirmation is the most important.)  Enjoy!

Photo Credit:  making choice © Eduardkraft  Dreamstime