step nineteen

(c)kiwoyke near newport/oregon coast, 2017.

it’s simple, yet we forget. 4-7-8 and alternate nostril breathing both are techniques i use regularly, and my clients embrace those the most. more in chapter 2 of my ebook “Seven Northern Lights”.

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step fifteen

this is one of the most simple life hacks: kick life into the next gear, and leave behind what no longer serves you.

  • things you have not used in two years
  • clothes you have not worn in three
  • people who do not appreciate you
  • memories that bring you down
  • energy drainers (again, people will take the biggest part here)

if you want to let go of something, or someone, i can help you design a three-step-release ceremony; comment or email me for details.

steer your life boat forward, drop the weight that’s wearing you down. you need your energy to explore and grow, not to carry what you can’t change, or who doesn’t want to change.

wishing you calm waters and bubbly shores!

step fourteen

a five year old poem

#freedom & #paradise

five years ago, when it all started, one day, i noticed

he had posted my photos as his own

when i saw

my pics tagged #freedom and #paradise…

…it moved me… to feelthink…this:

#freedom and #paradise are simpler than nature but easy here

#freedom is mine as i let go of controlling anything and anyone but me

even though someone else gives me

attention

excitement

information

makes me

think

laugh

giggle

even though i look forward to spending time with that one

even though no one else makes me feel this way

even though no one else continues to bring out my smile so surely

even though i don’t want to miss any moment of togetherness with him

i know i will live if he decides to take all of this away.

i know that the sun will make my eyes sparkle in winter

i know that the moon will stir my imagination any time

i know that a warm breeze will feel like a hug even in solitude

i know that the ocean will always excite me

i know that even without books and the internet

i can go ogle over my doorstep and find magnificence

i can dance through my own world’s wide web and be tense as a tightrope with hunger for more knowledge

i can talk to strangers and listen to their stories

i can stand on my head and look at the water faucet upside down

just for perspective

as long as my mind submits to my intention, i manifest

#freedom is mine.

.~.~.~.~.~.             .~.~.~.~.~.             .~.~.~.~.~.

 

#paradise is

opening my eyes

deciding that my cup is half and filling

hope never dies

dark days help with light appreciation

poverty is a state of mind

bitter winds are here to keep us inside and introspective

remembering #freedom

& that #loving does not depend on receiving #love

as long as i stay free

#paradise is mine.

and both are yours as well.

step twelve

as a child, i loved to read.

as an adult, i love to read sometimes, but when i do, i am a voracious, holistic reader.

when i took my dogs outside, i preferred letting them run in the backcountry, where it was just us, just them. i always felt that taking them for a walk around the neighborhood was like letting them read the same book, maybe different chapters, depending on who or what had visited at night.

but taking them to a wild, unknown place ~ that was like a whole library for these puppies.

the busier life gets, the less time i want to spend on reading books. autobiographical notes, human experience stories capture me, and then poetry. good, dense, multilayered poetry, simple words with complex meaning.

good poetry is what keeps my mind happy for days. it doesn’t come in the language of letters all the time. like my pups, i read fragrances and visuals. a field of lavender, a budding cottonwood tree, the smell of sweet grass, or even salmon running upstream, and letting go of life after they spawn… all those things are poetry to me.

and things like this, found today, in a most wonderful manual for a part-time position i am taking on – food for the soul, written by William Stafford:

The Little Ways that Encourage Good Fortune

Wisdom is having things right in your life
and knowing why.
If you do not have things right in your life,
you will simply be overwhelmed.
You may be heroic, but you will not be wise.
If you have things right in your life, and you
do not know why, you are just lucky,
And you will not move in the little ways that
encourage good fortune.
The saddest of all are those who are not right
in their own lives who are acting to make
things right for others.
They act only from the self, and that
self will never be right;
No luck, no help, no wisdom.

—William Stafford
(1914-1993)

 

step eleven

showup

teaching in alaska, as everything in my beloved, big-wild home state, comes with its own challenges. i learned quickly that nature, and the nature of things, will dictate attendance and appearance. i had students ski to class and lean the skinny tall skies against the wall as they scrambled to find a chair inside; others fat-biked across the same snowy trails, tired of waiting for people movers (our public busses) that wouldn’t arrive, or waiting for accidents on the glen highway to be cleared when the cheechakos (new to ak) try to navigate through the first snowfall or ice of the season. i had students with cerebral palsy show up in their high-tech chairs, ready to learn this complicated european language of poets and ponderers.

alaska does not do “walking distance”.  even if you live in town, walking to class is rarely an option. driving is expected, especially when you live in the greater anchorage area, including eagle river, or the matanuska-susitna valley, which is over an hour in the winter. a flat tire, or a blizzard, usually means late to class, or no-show at all.

we kept a strict no-tardy policy in my class, but just as each winter is different, each class is different. one winter, it seemed like an exceptional number of students struggled coming to class on time or at all. interestingly enough, some of the people with the biggest challenges were the most driven to succeed.

there was an interesting group whose only challenge seemed to be to show up at all, although they lived on campus, and remain present. the amount of excuses for not appearing, for not having homework, for not having materials, for not being able to do an activity was baffling.

so i adjusted, and that’s where the “show up” rule was born.

the single mom who worked a 35 hour job and had a full credit load showed up. if she can do it, the single guy living with mom and dad can do it too.

the senior about to graduate with a research project and an athletic dream that required daily hours of training showed up. if she can do it, what’s holding you back?

a new student from china who barely spoke english was the first to show up and the last to leave, although he was tired, and he truly struggled understanding, and speaking. but: he showed up.

so to those who had a different excuse each week, one day i said:

if people can ski to class, if they can find rides from an hour away, even in a blizzard, just to be here, you can do this too. i don’t care what you look like, if your clothes are messy or wet, if you are mad because you missed the bus or frustrated because your car broke down and triple A can’t be here right away – it doesn’t matter. if you want to pass this class, you have to show up. even if you are late. show up. it will cost you, but even if you are late to each class, you will still be able to pass.

just. show. up.

it’s simple. show up. show up for yourself every day. brush, floss, hydrate, take notes. show up.

show up in your relationship. show up for your kids. show up for your friends. show up for what you’d rather run away from. show up.

be there.

lead.

just like my students did.

step ten

ask meaningful questions.

take a close look at the intricate play of foam, waves, and swirls. spend some time there in your mind. have a minute? take two, even three.

imagine what the air tastes like. do you smell the salt water? can you feel the waves washing over your skin? how rough or smooth can the texture of those rocks be? where are the birds nesting?

when you feel yourself inside this image, ask yourself:

what does the ocean teach me about purpose?

what can i learn from this rock?

if i were able to read coffee grounds and tea leaves, i could make sense of the patterns on the water’s surface – what do they tell me about the waves of life?

and then, give thanks for what is, and for what you will create.

step one

it really isn’t that difficult.

start today.

one small step.

write it down.

“i choose to happify my first thoughts as i wake up.

i write down one good thing i want for myself.

i write one thing i am grateful for today.

i think about it before i go to sleep, i lay it next to my bed, i look at it in the morning.”

do it one day.

then two more.

shoot for a week.

tell me how it changed your day.