here is the premise: of course negative experiences impact us, but they don’t have to define us. we are not the sum total of our biology or our biography. we still have the power to respond to what happens to us in a multitude of ways- and it’s that power that gives us our humanity. rather than merely defining our limitations, challenges can also lift us into flight and set us up for infinite greatness. so every obstacle is an opportunity to soar…

people will suffer in life. the only way to get away from suffering is to be dead. so the trick in life is to concentrate less on avoiding suffering and more on how to go on in spite of how acute your suffering is in each and every moment. if you can succeed regardless of how uncomfortable you are, then you are truly alive in every moment… i feel very zen and un-me-like to say that, but i read something that made me think about that, and then i watched some TED talks on neuro-science and, shockingly they touched on the same theme. you know when you hear the same messages over and over again from very unlikely sources and sometimes you just realize that maybe- just perhaps- it isn’t a coincidence and the universe (or the Cosmic Voice, or the Ultimate Consciousness or God or whatever you want to call that Big Higher Power…) is trying to really make you get it???

in a book called Write For Your Life, lawrence block says that fear and courage are like lightning and thunder. they both start at the same time, but the fear- like lightning – travels faster and arrives sooner. but if you can just hang on for a little bit longer, the courage will arrive. isn’t that one of the coolest things you have ever heard? because if you know relief is coming, you can almost always hang on for another second or two, right? i LOVE that…

yogini victoria ramos talks about fear being about self-preservation. but- and this is why she is a yogini and not an ordinary lady with a blog complaining about how stressed out she is (hahahaha)- she says the trick is to find a way to preserve yourself in a way that is glorious and expansive and not limiting. isn’t that beautiful? because so much of self-preservation, at least in my world, is about being shut-down and closed-off and guarded. what a different life people could have if they could feel safe yet glorious at the same time. it’s such a unique way to think about something that i never even considered from another perspective. i always just kind of took it as a given that to be safe was to hunker down. and, truthfully, i probably still will because i don’t know that i am brave in this way… but maybe this will inspire one of you to go beyond your comfort zone and test some new waters; how game-changing that would be!

this bit of wisdom, though, is perhaps the most in line with me: from a book called whatever you do, don’t run, by peter allison- he says that in the wild, prey animals run. sometimes, an animal will fake charge another animal to see if it flinches or runs away. if it does, the predator knows it is food and will give chase. in the face of an animal like a lion, allison says the best strategy is to make yourself as big, steady, and strong as you can. often, this dynamic works with human bullies as well. sometimes when you are feeling the least courageous is the time when you need to summon up the most courage. this is the time when you need to wait for your thunder and grow your expansiveness. it’s the time to stay with your discomfort and be prepared to soar.

sometimes when we most need a voice of guidance we open a random book and watch something that has been in the netflix line-up for months and months and they virtually scream the same message.

and sometimes that message is to have heart and be strong. there could be a multitude of reasons why i need to hear this message right now, but i find that when i most need to hear it is often when other people need to hear it as well.

so, here it is, as clear as i can give it over. i hope it resonates with you- or at the very least i hope i don’t sound like a total raving lunatic 😉