Thursday, October 22, 2009

Fierce and Absolute Self Love, Baby!

Until recently, whenever I made a mistake I would make myself feel really bad by asking a long chain of chastising, invalidating questions (i.e. “why do I always do this?”) until my brain found something more interesting to chew on. It wasn’t a very fun process.

Now it happens less than it used to because I’ve spent years trying to reduce these types of unsupportive thoughts, but it does still happen. About a week ago, after some mistake I don’t even remember, I got fed up with that whole downward-moving process and quite literally declared to the heavens, "From this moment forth, I intend to completely release all non-supportive thoughts about myself and replace them with thoughts of FIERCE self acceptance. I intend to love myself as my Soul loves me, and under no condition will I settle for anything less." (I’m not sure if the full effect of this moment is coming across, but if you remember when Scarlett O’Hara said, "As God is my witness, I’ll never go hungry again!" you get the idea. Yep, it was that big.) That being said, I had no clue how this was actually going to happen. I only knew that there was nothing I wanted more.

What followed was a phone call with a close friend. A few minutes into the conversation I made a comment that I interpreted as being too "geeky", and started to feel abnormally insecure about it. I continued talking to my friend as if everything was fine, but inside I was reprimanding myself for having revealed something about myself that I really wanted to keep hidden. Later, I realized that the hypersensitivity I was experiencing was due to the emotional side effects of PMS but at the time I was only aware of how vulnerable and exposed I felt. In this wide-open state I truly thought that our friendship could end because of his newfound exposure to my dorky side. I could totally imagine him saying "Chernise, the comment you made was unreasonably geeky. It is unacceptable and I will no longer be your friend because of it. Goodbye." The chances of that happening were clearly very slim, but it was such a dominant thought that I hurried off of the phone.

Then, I remembered my declaration: “FIERCE self-acceptance”! I decided to be compassionate towards myself instead of unkind. I told myself that it was OK that I got off of the phone, that I did the best I could in that moment, since I didn't know how to handle the emotions that had surfaced. Suddenly a voice, from deep inside me, began to rumble, growing louder until it roared like an angelic lion "Hell yeah, you said something geeky! You were true to yourself, and I love you for it! When you felt insecure, you handled it as best you could under the circumstances, and if that situation happened again, I hope you'd handle it exactly the same way! I love you!" I didn’t exactly hear this, but I felt it so deeply that I might as well have. This type of support coming from within my own being was something I never knew existed, yet was exactly what I wanted. This was the Universe’s response to my declaration and I was overwhelmed with gratitude.

Since then, I’ve noticed that walking the path of absolute self-acceptance is a team effort: First, I have to be aware enough to notice when the thoughts I think are doing me a disservice, and then replace them with more supportive ones. Second: once I do my part, the Universe kicks in with the rest. It hasn’t always been easy to forgive myself and then love myself for whatever I’ve done, but it’s worth the effort. I figure it’s like riding a bike. At first I didn’t know how, so I started to practice. Then I started to fall, but each time I fell I got back on again. Gradually I gained skill and confidence, and eventually I was riding with ease.


A few days later, I walked over to a co-worker’s computer and saw these lines on her screen:

I found God in myself
And I loved her
I loved her fiercely
– Ntozake Shange

Love and Light to us all!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Back on track!

This is probably more information than you wanted to know, but my bodily systems have been a bit backed up lately. Since I am a long-time enthusiast of the book “You Can Heal Your Life," I decided to put my spiritual sleuthing skills to work. I was pretty sure that my body’s temporary dis-ease contained a message about how I had blocked the flow of something, but I couldn’t come up with anything more specific. I began considering possible options when suddenly the following one stood out.

About two months ago my spiritual coach suggested that I express my creativity by creating an inspirational pamphlet. I was more than a little daunted by the idea but I felt an amazing flow of energy after I started working on it. I continued to feel the vibrancy of that energy as I designed the layout and jotted down messages that I received from my Soul. A few weeks later I showed the pamphlet to my coach who then suggested I start a blog. Although I was hesitant about taking such a public step, I kept the flow going and got the blog set up. Before I knew it, there it blog...on the Web...for all who wished to see. Previously I had hoped that my journey of spiritual growth could happen under the radar and now it was becoming clear that hiding was not part of my Soul’s plan for me. Slowly but resolutely, fears and insecurities crept in. I listened to them, stepped away from the blog and consequently blocked the flow.

In addition to that, I had an oddly insatiable drive to search the internet. I wasn't looking for anything in particular but I went from one article to another trying to find it. Funnily enough, it's quite hard to find "it" if you don't know what "it" is. After a few days of this experience I realized what was happening: I had been avoiding doing work on my blog by surfing the web. There was nothing intrinsically wrong with searching the web - the problem was that I was using it to substitute for true connection with my Soul. You can imagine how successful that was. This explains why regardless of how many seemingly interesting articles I read, I continued to feel dissatisfied.

Needless to say, once I figured all of this out I immediately started working on my blog. As soon as I did, I felt as if someone beamed a powerful, happy light on me. I felt absolutely amazing and (warning: TMI approaching) all systems are go! I'm back on track!

This is the message my Soul gave me during this process:

I know you better than you think you know yourself and I love you far more than you can imagine. I am part of you and will be with you every step of the way. Because of that, anything that I lay before you will bring you more joy than any other thing possibly could. Even if the process seems daunting, the growth that comes from stretching out of your comfort zone is worth it. The amazing possibility of assisting at least one other person on their journey is worth it. And the absolute joy you will feel while following My Guidance is worth it.

Thank you and may God bless us all!