Word Of The Year For 2018

I would have normally had my word for the year chosen long before now. This year though has been so full of ups and downs that it had completely slipped my mind until my best friend mentioned it a few weeks ago. Ever since then, I’ve been digging deep to think of what I’d like to choose as my word for next year (which is rapidly approaching).

2017 has been a rough one, and I’m pretty glad to see it going. To be fair, I’ve learned a lot about life and myself this year, but I have to say that it could have been a lot gentler.  I’ve had an ass kicking of epic proportions! Who am I to question though? The way that the past several months have gone has been so extreme that I’ll likely be picking up some of the pieces for a while to come. However, I’ve always been willing to roll my sleeves up and work on whatever needs to be done and this time is no different in that aspect. The good thing about times like these is that the comeback always sees me stronger, and better than before.

So, without further adieu, my word for 2018 is “Trust”. For a while, the word confidence was in the running, but for where I am at this moment, trust is the better choice. Not only that, but I have come to believe that confidence is a part of trust. For if there is no trust in ourselves, in the richness of life, in the goodness of people in general, in love, and in the knowledge that we can always grow and achieve, that there can be no confidence.

I’ve spent the past several weeks in a state of suspension, and have reminded myself on a daily basis to trust that everything would level out and that I’ll be up and creating again before I know it. For a little while, I tried to push myself to get back into the swing of things and found that I simply wasn’t ready. So, instead of making matters worse than they already were, I learned to be still…be with myself…even be depressed…all so that I could practice trust in the process of my own renewal.

There will be some changes coming in 2018, both here and in my life behind the scenes. My art will be making a comeback, only it will be more of a throwback as I’m finding myself inspired to revisit some art forms which have been dormant for a few years. As I cleaned out my art supply area about a week ago, I was flipping through old sketch books and art journals, to discover that there were a few areas in which I was gaining proficiency. Not to mention…I remembered how much flipping fun it was working on those pieces. There will be more poetry to come as well, not only haiku.

As for the other things I have in store…well, we’ll all just have to wait and see them as they unfurl, myself included. I’m in the middle of a major revamp, but due to recent events, things are moving in baby steps. I’m okay with that…it feels good to take my time and flesh things out…to study…to plan. I will say that it’s definitely exciting and unlike anything I’ve ever offered before. How is it all going to look? I can’t honestly say, but…

I have trust! ❤

Here’s to new beginnings

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Mabon ~ Balance Between Light and Dark

It has been a while since I’ve written anything spiritual or to honor the cycles of life, so here I am. Mabon aka the Autumn equinox is a day in which there is a balance between light and dark. It is a day to look within and reflect on what we’ve accomplished over the previous months, and to examine whether there is anything in our lives which no longer fits. Before we turn inward over the Winter, it is the perfect time to give that last push toward what we wish to manifest.

I’ve always enjoyed this time of year a great deal, and this year things really kicked into high gear in my own life in terms of letting go and looking ahead. Just a few days ago, I was finally able to let go of a very toxic situation in my life after months of confusion and not honoring myself. The amount of relief that I felt, and the almost immediate shift toward embracing what makes me feel happy and fulfilled has been nothing short of drop dead gorgeous!

Over the past year, I entered into a situation which was in direct opposition to my deepest desires, what I stand for, and what I believe in. As the months wore on, I found that I was turning into someone barely recognizable to myself. Yet, I soldiered on and continued to wander through what rapidly turned into an emotional, mental, and spiritual wasteland. I pushed myself beyond my limits of acceptability in order to give someone the benefit of the doubt…and it cost me greatly (not gonna happen again). There’s no need to go into further detail because I’ve left all of that behind me.

Looking forward, not only can I see what I do not want, but I have more clarity about what I don’t. There will definitely be more caution about what I allow into my life, and I’m gaining a broader picture of the types of activities and things which suit who I am at my core. It feels so good to have the stress gone, and to be able to rebuild my life. To reclaim my life and power has been a feeling like no other. I’ll be working through the anger for some time, but that’s okay. Sometimes you just need to be pissed, sometimes anger is appropriate and can be used to bolster us as we learn how to thrive.

Throughout the day, I’ve spent a great deal of time envisioning my life as I wish it to be and in clearing out traces of the heavy energy which had gathered around me. Am I exhausted? You betcha! Is it worth it? Undoubtedly. Thankfully I have a month to heal and rest before seeing my best friend since the 5th grade in person for the first time in…well, a very long time. I’m diving more deeply into my art and working through more rounds of submission for my novel. I’ll be putting a lot more energy into my other work too…my writing, my coaching practice, my work in constructively helping others to embrace themselves…so many things.

Even though I’ve only been out of the situation for a few days, I’ve been very proactive…making contacts and gathering information. I am being a little tight lipped about some of my plans, because I have a lot to do over the upcoming months. As things continue to take shape, I’ll reveal more. For now though, I’ll say that things are about to get a lot more creative and busy around here. One other thing I’d like to share here today is that in November, I’ll possibly be adding a feline friend to my household. This is something I’ve been thinking about for a while, but have held back on for various reasons. I may throw caution to the wind and allow myself the joy of having a cat again.

In closing, I’d like to encourage anyone reading this to reach for what you want in life. Don’t be afraid to truly live and actively seek your joy. In that process there may be some painful truths and releases which need to happen, but don’t we all owe it to ourselves to work toward the fullest realization of ourselves which we possibly can?

Happy Mabon everyone!

Love,

Tracy

 

 

 

Love Letter ~ Growth Opportunities

Dear beautiful souls,

Going through challenging or confusing things in our lives is a lot like being caught up in the vortex of a tornado while in the midst of the situation. One of the most important things to remember when we’re in the process of learning a lesson or experiencing a growing pain is to permit ourselves to feel what we feel. Squashing our feelings is so common for many of us, especially those who were taught early on that expression of feelings is a negative thing.

Eventually, most of us learn that feeling is better than squashing. It can just take us a while to trust that part of ourselves.  As a dear friend stated just today…feeling our feelings…even the negative ones, is a good thing. She also pointed out that we need  to remember to transform it at some point into a positive. Her point was timely and well absorbed. Hence, the lesson is received. Finding the balance between reaction and flowing into the growth can be difficult for most of us. Try not to be too hard on yourself while finding your way.

Not only is it important to take it easy on ourselves, we need to be mindful of the outside influences which we are permitting to impact our journey. When going through periods of transformation, it is natural for the order in our lives to become shaken up for a while. This is another element of the lesson or growth opportunity. Through our largest periods of growth and learning, there are bound to be some emotions lurking beneath the surface, waiting to rear their heads. Relationships may come and go, jobs or careers might change, sometimes even entire belief systems undergo an overhaul.

This is not work for the faint of heart my lovelies, but it is well worth it. Walking the path to wisdom is a lot like trying to tame a horse…there’s going to be a good bit of bucking along the way…both from within and without. Hold on tight and ride, until the stuff which isn’t serving your highest good is left in the dust. All of the madness will eventually lead to ever higher levels of love and understanding. Don’t give up now. Hold on to your heart and dive in. Just don’t forget to infuse a little levity along the way.

Much love,

Tracy

 

When Hearts And Minds Meet

Monday’s post was about coming together with people that we love and how wonderful that can be. I said that I would be back later this week to talk a little more about it, so here I am. My amazing cousin made the long drive to visit with my sister and myself for a long weekend and it was like a retreat for all of us. She stayed at my place, and my sister came to hang out for a few hours each day that she was here.

Of course we shared a lot of laughter and memories, which was healing in and of itself. As if just being together wasn’t gift enough, we experienced so many things which could only be described as magical that it would be difficult to list them all. There were readings, energy work, super healthy nutrition, teas, and late night chats about spiritual topics. It felt like I had a weekend retreat at my own house…yep, it was that good.

Though it wasn’t planned or even discussed before my cousin got here, the three of us spontaneously began work on a project which we first discussed around two years ago. It is still in such an early phase that I’m not ready to say anything more about it. What I do want to talk about is how amazing it is that we were able to take three people, bringing their individual perspectives and experiences together in such a smooth way that it is a joy. Collaborating like this has been a long held dream for me. This seems to be the year for long held wishes coming true around here.The way that things flowed so smoothly and the sheer amount of work that we got done felt so natural that all of us remarked that it was obviously meant to happen.

As we get further into the project I’ll give more details about what it is, because it’s definitely exciting. Right now though, my wish was to talk about the healing effects of spending time in communion with people with whom we can connect to on a heart, mind, and spiritual level. Experiencing a weekend like this has been so rejuvenating and life affirming that it is hard to describe adequately with words. How does a person fully describe how wonderful a full heart and renewed hope feel? It isn’t something which is easy to convey. One evening as we sat around the table, I had an emotional moment because what we were doing and how it felt was so deeply good that it fulfilled a long held vision of sitting around with a few people brainstorming, sharing, and enjoying.

Earlier this year, my aunt came for a visit and other than the collaboration on a project, the connections and overall sweetness of the visit was every bit as amazing. This year truly has been a gift in this respect, and it isn’t over yet. I have a few more people coming in later this year and I’m looking forward to those experiences as well. My heart is receiving so much healing and I’m full of gratitude. This is something which everyone needs sometimes. The experiences of deep connection and collaboration definitely have me ready for more.

I have a good bit of work to do, both on this new project, on my novel which is with my editor, and on a book of poetry that I’ve been putting together in spare moments. The beauty is that none of this seems like work. It feels good to have so many things flowing and coming together. My hope is that many of you are also seeing things coming together and are experiencing joy and following your hearts. Even though we’ve crossed over the halfway point of this year, this is definitely the year to get things rolling. I’ll talk more about the importance of momentum this year in a post next week.

 

Coming Together

There’s nothing in this world like coming together with loved ones- to share thoughts, ideas, laughter, and memories. Since Friday my daily life has been filled with long talks about spirituality, love, miracles, and mysteries. The walls have echoed with laughter. There have been grown-up tea parties during which we explored ideas about healing our bodies with nutrition and the help of our guides and the Angels.

This has been the kind of weekend that I’d like to have more often. Spent sharing everything from triumphs to tears with people who you know that you can trust and who are there for no reason other than that there is shared love. While the weekend is still going for me, I had to share a little about what’s going on here. Things will be winding down tomorrow, and I’ll share more about this magical time later this week.

My biggest hope is that I’ll remember all of the beautiful moments and the thoughts of late night brainstorming sessions. You can’t imagine how much ground we’ve covered in just a few days and how powerful this time has been. I find myself wishing that I’d been taking notes or something in order to get it all down. For now, I’m going to close and enjoy the rest of this experience.

Wishing you peace, love, and beautiful heart warming memories that you can store away to savor always.

 

Angel Wisdom Wednesday ~ July 13, 2016

The card for this week is from the Angel Therapy oracle deck by Doreen Virtue.

Visualize Success

This week, it will be important to keep a vision of a successful outcome to a situation you’ve been thinking about. We’ve pretty much all heard of the law of attraction by now, as well as manifestation. The importance of the energy that we fill and surround ourselves with cannot be stressed enough. We’ve all seen evidence in our own lives that what we “expect” is often what happens. A big key is in visualizing the basics of what it is that you wish for, and not stressing out about the small details. Make the mental image of your desired result as vivid as you can and give yourself permission to believe. For those of you naysayers out there, I have only one response…

If you choose to scoff at this idea, and take the route of cynicism and negative expectations what do you stand to gain?

Dream big my friends, and take one step at a time.

Smudging Materials

Smudging is a way to purify or cleanse a space or person spiritually using herbs or other materials. This method has traditionally been used by indigenous peoples from all over the world for thousands of years as part of their sacred traditions. In modern times, people in Western society have adopted smudging as part of their spiritual practices as well. The first thing which springs to mind with most people who are at least a little familiar with smudging is sage. Sometimes though, you may feel as though you would like to use something entirely different or add another substance to use in addition to sage, depending on your mood or intent/needs.

In Native American traditions, the three herbs which are used in smudging are sage, sweetgrass, and cedar. First things first, we can start with sage. It is often sold in bundles which you can light at the end and carry it around, or take apart and burn in some sort of heat resistant container. Once you get the sage lit, you will extinguish the flame by blowing on it or fanning it when the sage is glowing in order to wave the smoke around the area or person which you are smudging. If you let the sage burn for too long, the smoke can be a little overpowering. Experiment until you find the amount of smoke which you’re comfortable with.

Sweetgrass is typically sold in braids and can be used in a few different ways. You can either snip off the tips and light the end of the braid and carry it around to smudge, or you can snip some of the braid off and put it into a heat resistant container either alone or with other sacred herbs.

Cedar is sold in a few varieties and it is up to you how you would like to use it. It is sold in chips which can be placed in a heatproof container and either lit enough to smolder or placed in with other herbs which are already lit as a bed for the cedar to rest on. You can also purchase dried, green cedar tips which can be lit and allowed to smolder in a heatproof container either alone or with other herbs.

A few other herbs which come to mind for use in smudging are mugwort, juniper, and lavender which you can easily look up to learn the proper ways to use them and the specific uses for them. In addition to herbs, some people like to use the fragrant wood palo santo which is sold in small pieces and lit to smolder. It goes out relatively fast, but I have found that a little of this goes a long way for me. There are also a few resins which come to mind for smudging purposes. I’ll list the ones I’m most familiar with and leave it to you to look them up to see which ones seem like they’d be a good fit for you.

The main three resins which I’ve used in smudging are dragon’s blood, frankincense, and myrrh. Copal is another one which is pretty popular, but I haven’t used it. Resins are used differently than herbs or woods. A common way to use resin is to get some charcoal discs which are sold where you can buy incense. Place the charcoal disc on a heat safe plate, light it and let it burn until it starts to glow. Blow out the flame and fan the disc so that it glows well, then drop a few pieces of your resin into the center of the disc.

With all of the materials for smudging, you will want to be sure that you use something that you can safely carry around to allow the smoke to reach all of the areas which you wish to purify or cleanse and never leave burning materials unattended. Keep in mind that unlike incense which most of us in the Western world use for their scent, smudging materials aren’t always the most pleasing aromas. It is because they are being used for spiritual purposes rather than aesthetic reasons. Many of these substances smell very nice, but it is always good to know that it isn’t going to be the same as going to your local incense shop and picking up perfumy sticks which smell like flowers, musk, or fruit.

Happy smudging!