Monday, December 31, 2018

YouTube Play List from my Studio for a Successful 2019

Last night, while enjoying the best home made lemon pepper wings courtesy of my BF and a four hour chat-fest marathon with two of my dearest friends, I periodically said "I have to send you the link to this video!" as we discussed our lives and plans for 2019.  So I thought I'd put all the links in one place and share them with you all as well!

YouTube is my constant companion in the studio.  It wasn't always this way.  In college and grad school, it was the radio or CD's.  Eventually my iPod on a speaker, then of course Pandora.  Music transitioned to comedians for a long while, then almost two years ago I started to explore lectures - Ted talks mostly - dealing with some of the personal issues I was trying to comprehend.

As I learned more, understood more, about the psychology and pathology behind the personalities that threw my personal life into a tailspin, every talk, every explanation, every answer eventually led me back to an ultimate truth: I am in control.  My thoughts, my reactions, my life.

One of my favorite lectures, and he has another one I will share in a later post, is about Love.  Well, the familiar kind of love we seek.  And, more importantly, cultivating and nurturing a better kind of love.  I find this talk especially important as a mother, because I would like to live an example of powerful, nurturing, unconditional love to both of my children, so that they seek that type of love in their future relationships.

Why You Will Marry the Wrong Person - Alain de Botton

Alain de Botton talks about loving the entire person, good and bad, and letting go of expectations that Perfect Love means perfect Understanding - without words and communication!  Our partner should just KNOW.

Also, more profoundly when this is present in both individuals in any relationship IMO...

"the core of what Love is is the willingness to interpret another's behavior"

THAT is when a relationship can truly thrive.

As A Man Thinketh by Earl Nightingale

Law of Attraction...maybe you've heard of this?  Maybe you were just thinking about it and now you're reading this?  (Yes!)

James Allen wrote "As A Man Thinketh" in 1903.  Over these past two years, my goal has been to Understand.  As I delved into healing my heart and my head, the Law of Attraction was referenced by almost every spiritual leader, life coach, Oprah, Jim Carey, Wayne Dyer, etc etc etc that I listened to.  And this law is expalined in writings way way way before any Instagram Influencer acted like they were the first one to share it with you.   Wayne Dyer talks about the Tao, which also speaks of this law, and those texts are from almost 2000 years ago.

I love this video, and it was helpful to read the original text as well.  Ultimately, our minds are magnets...and we are always attracting what we think about, good or bad.  With that kind of power, why think of anything bad again?

"We're all self-made, but only the successful will admit it"


Watch this one...again, and again.

Change Your Life in 19 Minutes with Earl Nightingale

and if you like that you should watch Napoleon Hill, author of "Think and Grow Rich"

Napoleon Hill Laws of Success

OK I'm quickly realizing that I have about 50 videos saved and I can't share them all in one post but as you watch these, you will see more and more that speak to the same principles.  I find time becomes irrelevant in the studio as I listen to these positive speakers over and over.  Repetition is so important, as well as understanding where these beliefs come from and how many scientists, theologians, doctors, etc have confirmed almost all of these ideas on the quantum level.  Energy is what moves the universe.  Thoughts, feelings, have more power than we are ever led to believe.

I'll leave you with one section of a four part conversation between Wayne Dyer and Deepak Chopra "Beyond Miracles"

Wayne discusses the spiritual, Deepak the scientific...and really, to me, shows that once you see the miracle of who we are and what we are made of on the smallest scale, you can't NOT believe in an Infinite Wisdom, an Infinite Intelligence. 

I highly recommend all 4 parts of the conversation, but this was the section that really resonated with me, because here's what I think we all need more of, for ourselves and for others: the ability to believe in our ability to change.  And, our understanding that we are all made of the SAME things.

Deepak explains how quickly our cells re-generate, change, become new.  We are not the same body today that we were one day ago, one year ago, ten years ago.  Yet, our memories remain.  Where exactly, then, are these memories stored?  The cells that were in our brain as a young child are no longer here as an adult, yet our memories remain.

There's a magic in our minds.  There's mystery and beauty and SO MUCH to learn about ourselves. 

So many this list becomes a brief overview of what I would like to work on going into 2019

Love:  Learn to communicate, learn to understand where every person I love is coming from.  Why they feel the way they feel, why they react the way they react.  It's amazing how quickly fights and misunderstandings can be fixed with communication.  And, it's important to teach this empathy to my children, and also to teach them to expect it from those who love them.

Success: Have a desire (goal, plan, etc) and let this desire inspire my thoughts and actions every day.

Unlimited Potential: Our bodies and minds are always growing, always in the process of changing and becoming new.  Believe that I always have the capacity to grow and improve and change...and so does every other person I meet.

Wishing you all love, success, and unlimited potential in 2019!!

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Cutlets and Compression Garments

I'm cleaning out everything.  Do you get that way once or twice a year, too?  Maybe it's all the presents that came into the house at Christmas while at the same time we're heading into the blank canvas of a new year.  Plus, the kids are outgrowing stuff literally and figuratively day by day.

The purge is cathartic, exciting, therapeutic, etc.  Wayne Dyer encouraged his students to "give it all away...without the need for compensation" (I'm paraphrasing) 

As I was going through my dresser drawer by drawer, I came across a few things I had forgotten about.  And it reminded me that I am in a much better place, mentally and physically, than I was a few years ago.

When I started to test the dating waters after my divorce, I worried.  Worried about being Enough.  Enough to attract a new partner.  I mean...I was never enough to so many in my life already.  It didn't matter how many presents I sent or parties I threw or phone calls I made or how I kept my house or raised my kids or what I accomplished in my professional life...the elusiveness of Love plagued me every day.  And because I witnessed the people whose (unconditional) Love and Approval and Support I desired so much be so freely doled upon everyone else with great enthusiasm...I kept thinking that the reason I was not privy to the same treatment was because I STILL WASN'T ENOUGH.

Bra inserts to make my breasts look bigger.  Tight compression garments to make my butt look smaller.  If I could just fit myself into some mold of The Perfect Woman, I would find someone who loved me back.

One night, getting ready to go out, I put the cold cutlets into my bra and tightened up my thighs and (let me just add...I only weighed about 115 and I'm 5'4"!) as I was leaned over to grab a pair of shoes from the floor of my closet, those slippery boob inserts slipped right out of my bra and onto the floor.

I LAUGHED SO HARD.  I was ready to humiliate myself leaving a trail of fake jellyfish because I thought bigger BOOBS would make me more attractive?!?  I laughed that moment off...but it took a while for the lesson to sink in!

It was only after a seriously life changing event that I could finally SEE that ZERO amount of posturing or prostituting, padding or pinching, would endear my heart and soul to anyone who couldn't see my worth EXACTLY as I am.  

And that's when I stopped looking outwards - I had to start inside.  I had to see myself as beautiful and talented and WORTHY and nurturing and loving and funny and accomplished.  I had to see myself through the eyes of my students and my friends.  I had to remind myself of what pure love felt like...reverting back to my childhood and feeling the embrace of my Babu...the purest Love I could remember.  I have to daily remind myself that the Universe, Infinite Intelligence, Mother Nature, God (however you define it for yourself) does NOT see me as angry or depressed or stupid or selfish.  The Higher Power sees every good intention, every bit of joy, every ounce of Love that I am, and wants to nurture me as the perfect being that I am.

Love.  That is what will define me.  Not boob inserts or duct taped thighs.  That nurturing force of Love CRUSHES anything else.  Shame, manipulation, guilt...these emotions that I was so used to for so long are finally receding as the waves of love break down old habits and self doubt.

Slowly...I removed the voices from my life and my head that kept harping on my shortcomings, and started amplifying the voices that built up my strengths.  And what this does is allows me to do the same for those I adore and love and nurture in return.  I am a better teacher, a better mother, a better partner because I practice this attitude to as many people as I can every day:  build up their strengths, don't harp on their weaknesses.  Be a source of Unconditional Love that knows mistakes are part of the journey - we are ALL learning and growing and improving every day.

Love people for who they are...nurture the aspects of their greatness...always believe in their amazing potential.  It brings great Joy to my heart to BE that person for myself, and for whoever else needs it from me, every day.

And..if you feel better about yourself with a padded bra or a control top waist do YOU.  If it makes you FEEL good, go for it!  But I hope that you never ever feel that there is a magic garment or insert that makes you worthier of love...because, dear soul, you are already perfect, and worthy.  And I send you great love. 

Thursday, December 13, 2018

It's Just Dog Pee on a Backpack

A couple of months ago, my 11 year old daughter was feverishly working on her "list of things we will do" for a weekend with one of her good friends.  According to Ari's list, the weekend would not be complete without a Dollar Store scavenger hunt, shopping at the outlet mall, matching outfits for a family birthday party...and those are just the few points I can remember!

What I do remember was telling Ari that I would fund part of the adventures, but she was going to be responsible for the rest of her spending money.  I encouraged her to look for opportunities to earn money to present themselves, and then be willing to adjust her list if necessary, knowing the weekend was going to be awesome no matter what the budget ended up being.'s what you have to know about Arianna.  She just knows everything is going to be fine.  Every dog is going to be her best friend.  Every shopping trip will end with donuts.  Every school day has lunch period, so how bad can it be?  She has a wonderful attitude to have every day!

So...countdown to weekend of fun...long list of spending opportunities...small budget...but open to the universe presenting opportunities...and then...

One morning Ari was at the bus stop in her dad's neighborhood.  A woman with a puppy was walking by, and of course the dog WILL be Ari's new best friend, so Ari is enthusiastically petting the dog.  Well, as dogs sometimes do, he decided to lift his leg...and pee, right on her backpack.

Immediately the woman was frantically trying to pull the dog away, apologizing profusely, as Ari broke out in her usual goofy laughter and said "but it's a puppy!!! Look at his fluffy tail!"  She was sincerely nonplussed by the turn of events!  The woman was trying to find a working water hose, rubbing grass clipping on the pee to try to soak it off, etc.  She even said "I am going to buy you a new backpack!"  Ari assured her that this was NOT necessary.

However, the next morning, the same woman showed up at the bus stop, cash in hand.  And Ari really tried to refuse the money, but the woman insisted she take it.

So, when Ari returned to my house a couple days later, she relayed the story to me, and I was incredibly proud of her for how she handled the situation.  She knew the backpack was just a thing - she didn't get flustered at the woman, or her dog, or make matters worse but getting upset at the situation.  And, she did try to refuse the money.

So, I said to Ari, that there will be a lot of situations like a dog peeing on your backpack, situations where you could decide to shrug or laugh it off, or situations where you can get angry and make matters worse.

(Don't get me wrong - there are DEFINITELY situations where justifiable anger is the order of the day.  But, if no one is physically or mentally hurt or abused, if the opportunity is there to shrug it off and walk away...then do so.  The momentum could easily shift from "let's get angry and blow this out of proportion" to "let's have some perspective and keep calm".)

In my opinion, Ari's calm response and her knowing that everything would be ok, was what allowed the universe to present her with some of the money she needed for her weekend-of-fun to-do list.

There are times where anger seems like the correct response...but probably not. (TRUST ME...this is coming from a woman who was jailed based on a lie on the day of her daughter's dance recital.)  I can tell you for certain: out of everything that happened to me and my children over the last couple of years, I can distinctly feel the difference in my life, and in my heart, and in my soul from BEFORE i learned to "shrug it off" to after.

People lie...people manipulate...entrap...coerce...abandon...and sometimes, the worse thing they do is perpetuate an idea that you are not worth forgiveness, support, or love.  But I have never felt more powerful than I do today.  Because the power never lies in lies or manipulation or revenge - true power is the energy to focus your life, focus your thoughts, focus your mind in a direction that will propel you to greatness. 

After all...isn't it all dog pee on your backpack?  You always get to decide how to respond...and your attitude will help you see the solutions that the universe already has lined up for you. 

May Dog Pee With You.