Choices

“How would your life be different if…You stopped allowing other people to dilute or poison your day with their words or opinions? Let today be the day…You stand strong in the truth of your beauty and journey through your day without attachment to the validation of others”
― Steve Maraboli, Life, the Truth, and Bein

Journaling has helped me be more positive and grateful for the gifts I’ve been given while appreciating the work I’ve done.

I’ve had wonderful teachers. I listened attentively, absorbing their words and gleaning from their wisdom.

I’ve encountered challenging lessons. I studied each course, working hard to master each task assigned.

I’ve written daily, digging into my past, asking difficult questions about my family and the roles I’ve played over my lifetime.

I’ve been patient, praying for an open mind and a forgiving heart, all enabling me to learn and grow.

Slowly, after months of quiet soul-searching, I feel there’s been an internal shift. The weight of my past–all those over-stuffed bags I’ve carried around all these years–is reshaping itself. I’m beginning to feel more steady and stable; self-confidence is crowding out fear allowing me to feel I am in control of where I go from here. I’ve prepared. I am ready.

All those lessons and life experiences have been building the foundation for my future. I’ve been undergoing a slow metamorphosis. My guardian angel is urging me on–reminding me this is my 65th year. Stay aware, Barbara, she advises, time waits for no one.

I am ready–to thrive, grow, and enjoy every single day.

I am grateful.

I choose…
to live by choice, not by chance;
to make changes, not excuses;
to be motivated, not manipulated;
to be useful, not used;
to excel, not compete;
I choose self-esteem, not self-pity.
I choose to listen to my inner voice,
not the random opinion of others.

And so it is…

I am…

B…simply being…

God bless.

~Peace~

A Thoughtful Tuesday

It’s Tuesday, the week of Thanksgiving, a day filled with thoughts to share.

Two months ago I re-started my morning journaling. This simple act has become my daily hymn to self–a road I’m building, brick by brick, one morning at a time. This early morning time has given me the opportunity to experience sunrise unfolding outside my office windows. This commitment has formed the foundation for the bridge that connects my hand, my brain, and my memories.

There are mornings when I’m surprised with the emotion literally pressed onto the pages as the words fly across the pages. It feels a little like magic, this small, consistent, practice that has opened and freed my mind of many crazy thoughts that’d begun to control my day-to-day life. I’m very aware there are still outliers, those deep-seated thoughts and beliefs who’ve become scary strong from years of cunning evasion. Because I have had good teachers in my past, I know this work takes patience and persistence. I will continue to tell my stories. I believe being a brave storyteller has created open spaces in my memories. Each tale shared helps push another part of that old belief system out of its secret hiding place.

“Someone needs to tell those tales. When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsang souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There’s magic in that. It’s in the listener, and for each and every ear it will be different, and it will affect them in ways they can never predict. From the mundane to the profound. You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words. That is your role, your gift. Your sister may be able to see the future, but you yourself can shape it, boy. Do not forget that… there are many kinds of magic, after all.”
― Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circu

I am…

B…simply being…

Love and blessings to all.

Peace

 

 

 

A Rest Day

“There is virtue in work and there is virtue in rest. Use both and overlook neither.”
― Alan Cohen

I rested today.

The sun was warm-hot actually, the breeze strong, and there was a feeling of change in the air.

As I sat on my back patio, I saw the first honey bee I’d seen in a very long time. This little bee had so much pollen on his back legs he was moving very slowly. It was so fun to watch him and several other bees crawl and fly on and over this beautiful plant.

Since it was such a slow day, let me update you on my revived ritual of journaling.

This one very simple act has reconnected me to my world. As I walk to my desk each day and open my notebook, I am so thankful for the early morning time of self-awareness. So much has changed in my world these past few years. For the first time in a very long time, I now write what comes to mind and allow those words to come unfiltered. I’ve learned I’m still looking for my place here. That is a big discovery. It is powerful. The insights unfolding as I write are giving me direction. I am able to work on a plan that will allow me to continue moving forward and grow. I’m learning that having a plan buffers the fear and the worry. It gives me control–and–surprise–I really like that.

I journal Monday through Friday with downtime over the weekends so my batteries have the time they need for recharging. Those batteries took some serious abuse in the past–their reserve power is best not challenged–so I don’t. Early each morning, I grab my coffee, put on my Celtic music, sit down, sharpen my pencils, and write. As I gaze out my windows, I’ve been reminded of how magical the early morning hours are while I’m bedazzled by the beauty of the hill country sunrises.

I’ve learned how important it is to write first thing. For a few days, I sat on the front porch with the dogs and Michael, sharing coffee and awaiting the sunrise. It was a good experience but that time gave my brain time to engage the “ego.” With those few minutes of delay, I’d lost that window of pure, unfiltered honesty. Writing now comes first.

Tonight, we are expecting our first major cold front of the season. Tomorrow will be much cooler. Texas is still pretty crazy to me–I see the trees sway as the winds gust–I find myself wondering how much snow will fall overnight! Crazy–yes–but I am very thankful I will not have to add shoveling snow to my tomorrow to-do list.

I’m off to bed. Please, remember to pray for each other, my friends. These cold and icy days mean there will be many slips and falls. All that translates to broken hips, arms, and whatever else hits the ground first. Watch out for each other. Lend a steady hand where you see it’s needed. Get out and help your elderly neighbor shovel snow.

Be patient and kind.

I am…

B…simply being…

Love you.

Peace

 

 

 

My New Ritual

I began my day by writing in my new journal. It was my new, but very familiar, ritual. My notebook of choice is NOT fancy. I’d grabbed it a couple of weeks ago at the Dollar General store for $0.99. I added a bunch of old stickers to the cover so it wouldn’t look so much like some kid’s grade school project–my attempt at art may have made it look even more like that very thing. My writing instrument–a good old #2 pencil. It’s simple. It’s easy. It’s erasable. The added bonus–whenever my very sturdy and reliable pencil needs sharpening, I have a real reason for taking a thought break.

It was soothing giving my thoughts their freedom, allowing them to crawl out of my foggy morning head onto the paper. There was no scurrying about with each idea fighting with the one ahead of it. It took patience and some writing around the bush techniques. Slowly things came together. I found myself falling into my old routine of writing three pages–the number of pages suggested by Julia Cameron in, The Artist’s Way.  As I did many years ago, I ended my pages with thank you’s to God. My chosen number has always been five–and that is what I carried into my new ritual.

As I planned, I did all this first thing this morning. No news. No social media. Interesting, by my taking control, there was no internal struggle.

As I wrote this morning, I had a thought about the practice of Tashlich, the “casting off sins.” I am a gold medal champion when it comes to worrying. What if I used this beautiful tradition as a model for dealing with my own moments of uncertainty? Living on a hill, could I use the wind as my mode of transporting that type of negativity away from me and out of my future?

I like that.

I think I’m going to add that to my daily practice. I’ll save the walks to the river for special times.

I am…

B…simply being…

There continues to be a lot of pain in our world. Please pray for each other.

I love Y’all.

Peace