While in LA this past month, I spent some time at the Agape Spiritual Center and listened to the teachings of its founder, Reverend Michael Beckwith. I was inspired by so much of what he said, and one thing really struck home: “If you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much space.”
So often we have a dream or a desire to accomplish something, to do something or to create something, but we get stopped in our tracks because we are paralyzed by the fear of failure or fear of discomfort. Instead of facing that fear or going through the discomfort, we give up on our dream.
It’s raining. The tears are streaming from my glass panes and I cannot see clearly. I knew there was a forecast for difficult conditions, but I wasn’t expecting this downpour.
It’s not the unpredictable that I don’t like. Give me sun, snow, rain or wind, and I can stand tall and adjust my layers accordingly. Any element that surprises me is just another opportunity to show strength, perseverance and flexibility.
If you want to increase the amount of joy in your life, it has to begin with the way you love, treat and honor yourself. If you are reaching outside of yourself for people, things, food, drugs, alcohol or jobs to be your source of joy, you will be at the mercy of circumstance. Real power comes when you realize you can feel joy for no reason at all.
Once a month, I meet with eight of my closest friends. We are more than just friends. We know everything about each other, and we coach each other on living big. Lauren is the one who directs the meetings, and the work we do is based on the method of life coaching she developed called “The Handel Method.” I have been coached by her for about six years now.
I am an addicted multitasker. Sometimes I feel really good about that — and sometimes not so much. Many of us can survive on very little sleep to pull off an important project at work, prepare a holiday dinner for 20 relatives, coordinate the entire family’s events while still doing laundry, paying the bills, helping with homework … Yet often we feel it isn’t good enough; we should have been able to do more … like fit in a workout. Ironically, guilt, failure and regret leave us feeling overwhelmed and paralyzed. So when you find yourself in “not good enough” mode, take a deep breath and take action.
Patricia Moreno on the set filming her Kickbox Core Crosstrain Workout DVD
Why is wanting to make a change not always enough? Sometimes it’s because even though you are taking action somewhere deep inside, you don’t believe you will succeed. You have doubts about your willpower or your ability to make the changes you need to make to fulfill your goal.
“I didn’t even know I was unhappy until people started commenting on my new bubbly lease on life,” says a client of mine who lost 80 pounds over the course of a year. Yet one of the most exasperating things about losing weight safely and healthfully is that a loss of two pounds a week isn’t always noticed right away by friends and family.
I don’t watch regular TV news because I am not desensitized to the hype and hysteria of the ‘if it bleeds it leads’ mentality. However, with a new administration taking office (yay!) there seems to be an air of optimism everywhere, even in the news. I flipped on my set to watch my favorite news show: Rachel Maddow, and while channel surfing during commercials, I saw great stories about kindness and good deeds.
Whatever you are working on, you will not do it perfectly. The trick is not to never goof up, but not to turn goof-ups into give-ups. In order to keep motivated and not give up when you blow it, it’s important that you use what you learn from your tracking — I said I would exercise 30 minutes every day and I haven’t done it once — as information, not as the chance for self-punishment. The more you criticize, blame, shame or guilt-trip yourself, the less well you’ll do.