Watch for the Spark

Note: As always, if you’re not a parent please apply these concepts to your own childhood and also how you attend to your own inner self/child today.

Because of my passion for and writing on the topic of transitions, my readers often ask me for parenting advice. While I feel competent sharing ideas and guidance about the transition into parenting – i.e. bearing and birthing a baby in preparation for the first year of life as a new mother – I hesitate in the realm of advice centered on the actual job of parenting for several reasons.

For one thing, I firmly believe that parents are their own best resource and experts. Nobody knows you, your child, and your family configuration as well as you do, so the most supportive “advice” I can offer is often to trust your own deepest knowing about how to move forward in a particular situation. … Click here to continue reading…

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Anxiety: Ambassador of Wholeness

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Dreams come in the service of health and wholeness.” – Jeremy Taylor, author of “The Wisdom of Your Dreams”

A few weekends ago I attended one of the most inspiring, nourishing, revelatory workshops of my life. It was a workshop on dreamwork facilitated by the world-renowned Unitarian Universalist minister, author, and spectacular human being, Jeremy Taylor. Jeremy has spent nearly fifty years studying the world of dream, symbols, metaphors, archetypes, and the unconscious – and if you’re familiar with my work and mindset you can see from that list alone why the workshop would knock my socks off. I was sitting there the whole time thinking, you mean, I get to sit in a room with twelve other people who are as excited about dreams and metaphors as I am? People who understand that life – including dreams and symptoms like anxiety – cannot be taken at … Click here to continue reading…

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What is the "Right" Choice?

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One of the root causes of anxiety is falling prey to the ego’s tendency to divide life into polarities – good/evil, right/wrong, black/white – in an attempt to control the outcome of our choices and find a guarantee. In other words, your ego believes that if it could find a definitive answer to this one question, or make the “right” choice, you would find peace and happiness. The irony is that, in its attempt to stave off anxiety by finding the one right answer, it actually creates even more anxiety.

Why? Because life is not a black-and-white checkerboard where the answers are neatly hidden behind each square; it’s complicated, multi-dimensional, and mysterious. And when we exert massive amounts of energy trying to determine the “right” answer, we become absorbed in a rumination process that takes place in our heads. And the answers – if there are any – don’t live in our heads.

They live … Click here to continue reading…

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The Fear of Feeling Too Good

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My third round of Trust Yourself: A 30 day program to help you overcome your fear of failure, caring what others think, perfectionism, difficulty making decisions, and self-doubt is open for registration. The program will begin this Saturday, March 14th, 2015.

A synchronistic theme appeared across my work a few months ago: The fear of feeling too good. As several clients shared:

I’m terrified that if I embrace what’s good in my life – if I consciously acknowledge my blessings – something will come in and yank them all away.

And as a Trust Yourself forum member from the last round wrote (re-printed with member’s permission):

I have entire days without experiencing anxiety, and everything feels so real – it’s as if I had been wearing gloves all my life and could suddenly touch the texture, shape and temperature of my emotions, and of life in general. Every moment feels Click here to continue reading…

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Absorbing Other People's Lives

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One of the most common symptoms of relationship anxiety – and anxiety in general – is taking on others’ stories as your own. You’ll be moving along just fine in your relationship and then you’ll hear about your friend’s husband who cheated on her or another friend who developed a crush on her co-worker or someone else who developed a life-threatening illness and you’ll spin out in a tizzy of, “What if that happens to me?” The next thing you know you’re in a full-blown panic and then the protective projections start, where your defenses of, “I don’t really love him” or “I’m not attracted enough” or “What if I die?” jut up to fortify your heart and try to keep you safe.

There are many root causes to the tendency to absorb other people’s lives. Let’s examine a few:

1. You’re a highly sensitive person:

If you’re a highly … Click here to continue reading…

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