Saturday, February 27, 2016

The freedom to love: Reflections from Germany


Love and Acceptance, equanimity, any way you try to say it, this picture may look like a crazy man standing in the street with his arms stretched out. However, if you understand that he is in Berlin and the bricks on the road represent where the Berlin Wall used to be, it takes on a whole new meaning.

This is my husband Joachim and we visited Berlin the last two days and it deepened my heart of understanding to the importance of being in love and acceptance, and being equanimous. These are words that some of us speak quite often. We visited the Topographie des Terrors and it was a life-changing experience.


Growing up in America I feel blessed that I grew up in a culture where I felt open to explore. While it wasn’t the perfect life, I was able to experience a life where we were able to live together with people of different religions, races and lifestyles. I had heard about the holocaust, but it hadn’t really hit me until I visited the actual place where these tragedies occurred, escorted by a friend of my husband, Wolfgang, who was kind enough to take the time to take us through the museum and for a walk around what remains of the Berlin Wall and the center of Berlin. It’s like how visiting the 911 memorial at ground zero in New York, made me realize it really happened.

There are people today who try to say that the holocaust never happened, and to be honest, it would be comforting to be able to believe that. But seeing the wall, and then seeing the remnants of the building where the Nazis tortured people…to see the little cells where it happened, is a cruel reminder that many people suffered because they were being judged for being who they were. They had the wrong color eyes, or the wrong religion, or the wrong lifestyle.

My husband and I spent 2 hours just walking through the Topographies des Terrors exhibit. It began with an explanation of the process of how the Jewish people were gradually eliminated from the Germany society. It started by having them move from their homes to a different part of town. They took all of their belongings that they could carry either on their backs or in wagons and moved into

an area of town that was just for them. It became known as the ghetto. They went with the understanding that they this would be a temporary situation for them until they would be moved to a new place where they could have a better life. Their next move was to work camps where they would work themselves to death, or to extermination camps where they would be killed in gas chambers or through euthanasia techniques.

These were people who were very sincere about their religion, and despite the terrible conditions, the parents tried to give their children hope even in the midst of this dire situation. It was moving to see the pictures and the excerpts from the diaries that were on display.
The picture and comment above reminded me of my own up upbringing and how I was taught about the spiritual significance of a rainbow. This child was deeply contemplating how to process her reality given the values she was taught.

The next picture touched my heart because Wolfgang explained that the bun on top of this man’s head contained a rolled up piece of paper with a holy scripture written on it. He wore the scripture on the top of his head so as to have the vibration of these holy words over his crown chakra (the connection to God). The straps on his arms had some significance to him and these were the articles that were worn while he prayed.
Whether you have the same beliefs as these people or not shouldn’t matter. The fact is that they are practicing their spiritual tradition and it gives them power to function as a human being.

As sad as it was to see the pictures of how unjust the plight of the victims of this societal purge of those who didn’t fit into Hitler’s grand scheme of what it meant to be the perfect human being, I felt moved by the faith that was constantly communicated through the pictures and the writings in the diaries of those who were suffering.

I got a different feeling when we got to the section that documented the perpetrators of these injustices. I just got a feeling of the presence of evil. There was no love, only judgment, lies and evil. Eventually I had to leave the museum because the feeling became so heavy as we were seeing the extent of the corruption that had taken place.

I was grateful for the experience of this part of Berlin’s and Germany’s history. When I meditated this morning I saw the above picture of my husband standing over the line of bricks that serve as a remembrance of where the Berlin Wall used to be. I realized in my meditation how we all have this wall within us. It is a wall of judgment that always makes us see things from the perspective of right and wrong, good or evil, a wall of separation that we create between ourselves and others. I was reminded of the power of being in love and acceptance of every person in every situation; to be the silent observer and to experience the power of being equanimous.


So much is represented in this picture of Joachim, arms spread out standing equally on each side of that line that marked the wall that divided a nation and the world. Joachim is representing the freedom you feel when you can be in love and acceptance; to be free of judgments. What I want to bring back from this experience in Berlin is to remember that even though I am one person, if I can master the art of being in love and acceptance, I can bring that freedom to the earth. Just as one man’s misconception of truth could affect the world in such a negative way, so can one woman’s love affect the world in a positive way. Please be at peace and know that you are loved…

Blessings from Berlin, Germany
Kathy

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

A Devil in the Mirror: A Story of Self-Love

Growing up in a large family I was always encouraged to be who I was. That freedom allowed me to be completely free in love towards my siblings, friends, my passions, interests and most importantly myself. I was like any other four year old: confident, loving, energetic and innocent. I loved who I was and believed, as everyone should no matter where they are in life, that I was beautiful. I was quite the tomboy but I also always imagined myself as being a Disney Princess. 

The confidence and self-acceptance that children have is so inspiring to me, it's one of the things that I absolutely love about children. They haven’t yet been conditioned by society to believe they are unworthy, unlovable or less than perfect. They live with their hearts and souls rather than their mind and body. Each one of us are born knowing nothing but love, it's who we are. Somewhere along the way, during the process of growing up, we get hurt and fall down and lose that will to love, replacing it with self loathing and the belief we are not good enough for love. With children the innocence is still there, their capacity to love themselves completely is so beautiful. As adults we can learn a lot about self-love just by observing a child get to know themselves, play make believe and explore. in the eyes of children, loving oneself is not yet a foreign concept, it’s just a way of life...until it isn't.

One of my earliest memories as a child is one where my conditioning began. I remember, one day as I was playing with my hair and admiring myself in the mirror my dad came up to me and said, “You know, Krysta, if you stare at yourself too much the Devil will come out of the mirror and take you.”

I assume he had noticed me looking at myself in the mirror a few time prior and - as a well meaning father who was conditioned by his parents, taught that loving yourself is a bad thing - didn't want me to to get full of myself or big headed. So rather than telling me I was beautiful and sweeping me into his arms to get me away from the mirror, he told me the Devil himself would come after me.

He said this with his best intentions as my father is truly a great man, he just didn't know any better. He was simply passing down what he was taught. He was only trying to avoid the risk of his young daughter becoming a narcissist - I wasn't suppose to love myself too much. I mean, look at our culture today; self-love is a foreign concept let alone an acceptable one so we categorize it as being selfish, narcissistic and conceited. I completely understand why he said what he said to me. However, as a four year old, I believed my Dad knew everything and, needless to say, I was absolutely horrified. What!? The Devil will come and get me?! I was shocked and felt my whole world was crashing down on me. I'm sure he could see the fear in my eyes and he went further into explaining, telling me a story about a girl who was taken by the devil because she stared at herself too much in the mirror. I walked away from the mirror that day vowing never to look at myself again. 

What my father and I did not realize was, as I consciously made the effort to stop looking at myself in the mirror, I was subconsciously creating the idea and belief - a negative program- that I was ugly, unlovable and undesirable. From that moment on I associated seeing myself in the mirror, which a loved to do, with the Devil. Something so innocent can create such chaos, especially when you're four years old and so impressionable. Why would my father lie about something like that? As I look back I think it’s ridiculous that someone would tell an innocent child a story like that out of fear they will become vain. However it has allowed me to understand where self-hatred has come from. Everyone has a story like this; something was said to them, or they saw something as they were growing up that changed and created their current perception of who they are. Changing from a love mindset to a fear mindset through the process of human conditioning.

I want to make it clear that a young child loving who they are and admiring their beauty is hardly something that should be reprimanded or ashamed of. There is nothing wrong with self-love. Self-love is not selfish, it is not egotistical, nor is it narcissistic. Self-love is the understanding of who you are, what you're worth and honoring your mind, body and soul without needing the approval from anything or anyone around you.  We need to begin celebrating the strengths, beauty and confidence in ourselves so that we can then inspire those around us to love themselves as well. Once you lose the fear of rejection, judgements and not being loved you give yourself the permission to follow your own bliss, your passion and see where the love you carry takes you. By loving yourself and allowing yourself the freedom to be authentic you are, in effect, loving those around you because no longer will you want to change and control those around you to fit your mold of perfection, rather love them for exactly who they are. 

The fear of mirrors didn’t last long. Thankfully I was a smart and very intuitive little child. As time went on I slowly worked up the courage to test the Devil and see if it would come and get me. After a few tests I was both disappointed and relieved that the Devil did not show up to take me. This did however cause me to question my Dad’s credibility. Maybe, just maybe he was wrong, I thought. Or maybe, I thought, I wasn’t staring long or hard enough. That's when I had an idea. I ran into my bedroom and grabbed one of my Barbie dolls along with the small pink and white vanity my Grandma had made for my Barbie’s. I brought them into the living room and behind the rocking chair, in the corner of the room, I sat my Barbie doll in front of the vanity. I was testing my Dad's theory, and quite brilliantly if you ask me. My Barbie will stare at herself all through the night, I told myself, and if she was still there in the morning, then what my Dad told me about the Devil was not true; if she is was gone then the Devil came and took her and I would never look in the mirror again.

You can imagine my delight when I woke up the next morning to find Barbie still sitting on her vanity behind the rocking chair, admiring herself in the mirror. I was free from this perpetuating fear of being taken by the devil from something as simple as looking and admiring yourself in the mirror. And although my Dad’s theory was proven wrong there was always a sense of shame or fear when I looked into the mirror from that moment on.
I told you this story because as a tribe, a society, community, family, etc., we have no idea how far the necessity for self-love reaches and how essential it is to our own health and happiness. This memory has stuck with me my entire life, and I see it as a blessing. It has served as a metaphor during the process of change, growth and the discovery of my own self-love and worth. When I notice that I'm shying away from acknowledging or celebrating my greatness I remind myself of the Devil and the Mirror story and ask myself: "Am I going to let the lies that I've been told throughout my life (I'm worthless, I have to settle, I'm not good enough, I am unlovable) hinder me from accepting and celebrating who I am? Or am I going to test these theories and create my own reality based on my own experiences?" I always chose, and continue to choose, to create my reality based on my own experiences, my own truths. 

We have to let go of this paralyzing fear of vanity, narcissism, conceit and selfishness and move into a place of love where those around us are allowed to love themselves however they feel is appropriate, without judgment or ridicule. Self-love and admiration is not vain, narcissistic, conceited nor is it arrogant.  Self-love and self admiration is a truth that so little of us embrace. Self-love is generous, humble, compassionate, aware, innocent and so powerful; it is understanding the core of who we are and honoring that. If it's not then it is not generous, humble, compassionate or aware, then it is not self-love rather a defense from lack of love. Selfishness, vanity, conceit, narcissism and arrogance are a result of lack of love, or lack of self-love. Remember: We can't ever truly love someone else if we fail to know how to love ourselves.

Imagine what a wonderful, peaceful and loving world we would life in if we allowed our children, our parents, siblings, friends, everyone!, including ourselves, to believe they are beautiful and encouraged them to walk with their heads held high. What a beautiful feeling is would be if we all came together to help each other discover and embrace the love for who we are without condition. Loving others is so much easier when you love yourself and are confident in the belief that you are beautiful and worthy of love. 

When you love yourself, you will celebrate the success and admire the beauty of others without questioning your own for what you see in another person is also within you. Change your awareness. Put your effort into encouraging others and loving them for who they are. Try this: Find something beautiful about another person every day and sooner rather than later you will find yourself looking in the mirror and finding all the things that make you beautiful rather than those things you think are flawed.

The below videos are amazing TED Talks on self-love, self-esteem and what’s really important in life. In the first video, “Dying to be me,” Anita Moorjani spoke about the five biggest lessons she has learned in life after she died and came back to life. The first, most important, lesson was that of love and self-love. 

Anita Moorjani’s 5 Life Lessons to Focus Awareness on:

1. LOVE. Anita explains that one of the reasons she got cancer is because she didn’t love herself. When we value ourselves, we teach people how to treat us. When we love ourselves we find no need to control or bully other people. 
2. Live life fearlessly. Most of us are brought up on a diet of fear. Anita used to fear everything from eating the wrong food, cancer, saying the wrong thing, being misunderstood or unloved. Fear does not keep you safe. Love keeps your safe. When you love yourself and other people you are insured safety.
3. Humor and laughter and Joy. We are born knowing this stuff. The child's heart. We are born this way, however we are conditioned otherwise. 
4. Life is a gift. Most of us live life as if life is a chore. Only when we lose something we value do we realize it's true value. It's up to you to realize it before it’s too late. 

5. Most important thing is to ALWAYS be yourself. Be as you as you can be. Shine your light as brightly as you can. Embrace your uniqueness. Get to know yourself, LOVE YOURSELF. 







All my Love,

Recommended Reads:
(click on book to purchase)





Thursday, February 11, 2016

...and The Truth Shall Set You Free

Examining the truth about our emotions/feelings and
learning how to express your truth with love and compassion.
Something that is often confused in the realm and belief of religion and spirituality is that feelings and emotions are cruel and/or the work of evil (to tempt us from the path of God/enlightenment). There is a quite prominent belief that in order to become a Saint on the path to God, or to be a true Master on the path to enlightenment, you must not feel negative emotions!  I see it all too often. Even those who are not on a spiritual quest make it their life’s mission to hide their thoughts, feelings and emotions from others to avoid conflict, judgment, ridicule, rejection, pain, vulnerability, fear…you name it! We tell ourselves that negative emotions, undesirable feelings and painful thoughts are unnatural and ungodly and therefore we should reject them and not speak of them. Oh! And if you do you are working with the devil. Okay, I’m being bit dramatic, I know, but this is how we think! (By the way, if this is how you think and you see no problem with it, that's great! Keep loving it! It is not my place to tell you to stop or change. As I believe the truth - and what is right and wrong - is all relative to each person and their own unique reality. This post is based on my own truths and observations. I love and honor you.)

We are so afraid of our emotions and reject our true feelings because we are terrified of the vulnerability and pain they can cause us. We sweep it all under the rug and try to forget about it, hoping it will go away and praying to God (very ironic) that no one will notice. The problem with this is that by discounting your feelings and flouting this very real aspect of who you are, you are in affect ignoring your very own soul. The soul speaks to you through your feelings and the truth is, whether you are on a conscious spiritual journey or not, every one of us are spiritual beings having a human experience, not the other way around. We are three part beings made up of our mind, body, and spirit/superconcious, conscious, and subconscious/energy, matter, ether (which ever you prefer). 

When you disregard a feeling (your soul trying to tell you something) as an unimportant or threatening aliment to your perceived idea of what right and wrong is, you are no only not getting rid of the problem (consciously) but creating an even bigger problem (subconsciously).  It’s energy! Even back in 1905, Einstein understood that we are all made up of energy (E = mc 2)– Everything is energy! Our feelings and emotions are not excluded from this concept, and whether it’s negative or positive emotions/feelings, they all carry energy.
So imagine sweeping dust under the carpet a couple times - not a big deal, right? In fact, it does an excellent job at hiding the problem...for a little while. Now imagine doing this several times a day for a few years. Over time you begin to notice the dust has created a bump beneath the carpet. The problem is still hidden but it’s starting to pile up and in effect creating chaos all around you. Pretty soon the problem makes a grand entrance and people start asking questions.  It’s not long before your family and guests-yourself included-are tripping over the bump; you’ve even started to notice a cough that doesn’t go away (from all the dust). As the bump continues to grow from sweeping more and more shit under the rug the cough gets worse. The problem gets so bad that everyone avoids the carpet all together to avoid tripping over the bump. Now, replace the dust with your negative emotions and painful feelings (that you refuse to deal with) and the rug with your body.

As these feelings and emotions pile up they start to affect the body creating all types of chaos: from conditions as serious as chronic illnesses, deadly diseases, high blood pressure and addiction, to things as small as acne, weight gain, sore muscles, fatigue, etc. Because we are made up of energy we must take appropriate care of our energy bodies, just as we do our physical bodies. I know what you’re thinking: “How do I do that?”

To take proper care of our energy bodies we need to deal with our emotions, our feelings (positive AND negative). Trust them, follow them and honor them as truths.  Live your truth, express your truth and love your truth with compassion and understanding.
“Feelings are neither negative nor destructive. They are simply truths. How you express your truth is what matters. When you express your truth with love, negative and damaging results rarely occur, and when they do, it is usually because someone else has chosen to experience your truth in a negative or damaging way. In such a case, there is probably nothing you can do to avoid the outcome. Certain, failing to express your truth would hardly be appropriate. Yet people do this all the time. So afraid are they to cause or to face possible unpleasantness that they hide their truth altogether. Remember this: It is not nearly so important how well a message is received as how well it is sent. You cannot take responsibility for how well another accepts your truth; you can only ensure how well it is communicated. And by how well, I don’t mean merely how clearly; I mean how lovingly, how compassionately, how sensitively, how courageously, and how completely.This leaves no room for half-truths, the “brutal truth,” or even the “plain truth.” It does mean the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God. It’s the “so help you God” part that brings in the Godly qualities of love and compassion – for I [God] will help you communicate in this way always, if you ask Me [God].So, express what you call you most ‘negative’ feelings, but not destructively. Failure to express (i.e. push out, get rid of) negative feelings does not make them go away; it keep them in. Negativity “kept in” harms the body and burdens the soul.” 
       Neale Donald Walsch
Conversations with God, Book 2 (page 17)
There are three things in which you can start adopting into your everyday life of healthy energy clean up and living your truth (you want to be mindful and careful that you do not clutter up someone else’s home while cleaning up your own):

Honesty: Be honest with yourself about your emotions and how you’re feeling. Honor your truth.
Awareness: Be aware and sensitive to yourself and those around you, always. Stay in your integrity.
Responsibility: Take responsibility for your own emotions and feelings and be responsible for the way in which you deliver your truth. Do not be blunt or harsh, rather deliver it with love, kindness and compassion.

On the contrary - When someone else is sharing their truth with you, you can use the same three concepts:

 Honesty: Listen to and honor their truth. Accept it as their truth and be honest about how you feel.
Awareness: Be aware and sensitive to their needs and vulnerability (they are sharing their heart, be loving and compassionate). Stay in your integrity.
Responsibility: Take responsibility for your own emotions and feelings and be responsible for the way in which you respond. Do not be blunt or harsh, rather respond with love, kindness and compassion.
“All negativity need not be shared with the person about whom it is felt. It is only necessary to communicate these feelings to the other when failure to do so would compromise your integrity or cause another to believe an untruth.  Negativity is never a sign of ultimate truth, even if it seems like your truth at the moment. It may arise out of an unhealed part of you. In fact, always it does. That is why it is so important to get these negativities out, to release them. Only by letting go of them – putting them out there, placing them in front of you – can you see them clearly enough to know whether you really believe them. You have all said things – ugly things-only to discover that, once having been said, they no long feel ‘true’. You have all expressed feelings – from fear to anger to rage – only to discover that, once having been expressed, they no longer reveal how you really feel. In this way, feelings can be tricky. Feelings are the language of the soul, but you must make sure you are listening to your true feelings and not some counterfeit model constructed in your mind (aka - your ego!)”  
      Neale Donald Walsch
Conversations with God Book 2 (page 18)
Everyone’s truth is based upon his or her own unique story. Their story up until the present moment has created their perceptions about life, love, politics…everything. From their struggles and talents, failures and successes, to their parents and teachers, friends and enemies; everything they’ve ever been through, everyone they’ve ever met have shaped who they are and how they think. Give yourself permission, and give others permission, to be human and deal with one of the most human things we can experience: our emotions/feelings.

Listen to your feelings, honor your feelings - honor your truth. Do what you intuitively feel is right for yourself. It's important to use your best judgment, not the judgment of others, to heal your trapped emotions (so to speak). Sometimes it will serve you best to just let go of a situation and the anger you feel rather than holding onto it so you can figure it out. And sometimes it's better to let it out by hitting a tree, screaming into a pillow, crying all night long, journaling, seeing your therapist, whatever floats your boat. It's essential to understand, however, that speaking and honoring your truth does not give you permission to word vomit your truth all over the place without a care of whether you hurt someone’s feelings. It’s about taking care of your feelings and dealing with them in the most appropriate way for all parties involved with the most love, respect, compassion and kindness possible. Then letting it go. And remember: You are not responsible for the way in which others respond to your truth. You are only responsible for the way in which you deliver it. 
A little trick I use before speaking my truth (and I admit it isn’t always the easiest. I am human after all) is I ask myself:
-       What would love do in this situation?
-       Would love stay, or would love walk away?
-       How would love respond?
Because love will always bring you to your highest truth and the grand paradox of this all is, as many unique and varying truths as we have individually, we all have one shared, and only, truth: LOVE. And this truth shall set you free.

All my love,

Recommended Reads:
(click on book to purchase)


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Brene Brown on Empathy & Vulnerability


The videos above speak for themselves. The Universe guides us in incredible and miraculous ways in order to get us to where we need to be, hear what we need to hear, see what we need to see and get what we need. You are worthy of love and belonging. 
You are enough!
 I highly recommend the books below - Brene Brown is absolutely brilliant.

Enjoy! 
All my love,

Recommended Reads:
(click on book to purchase)
 

Monday, February 8, 2016

Giving Yourself Permission to say 'F**K It!'

Breaking News: We are all human.  And what’s amazing about being human is that we all, somewhere in the process of growing up, fell into this illusion that we need the approval and love of others in order to love and approve of ourselves.  Since the beginning of time our human traditions have revolved around the need to impress others: From ancient wedding traditions in Asia, the Royal Family in the UK to the Presidential debates in the United States, the entire world depicts beauty, perfection and popularity as a means to success and happiness. We are hard wired from an early age to respect and strive towards popularity. We want to fit in to avoid the pain of rejection. Just look at the stereotypical high school movie stories that were so trendy in the early 90’s: Mean Girls, Clueless, Bring It On, 10 Things I hate About You, She’s All that, the list goes on. As much as I love these movies (can't deny it, they're so good!) they only confirm what we are taught is suppose to matter in life: beauty, popularity and power. 

The stories typically go as such: The popular girl rules the school and everyone is 'jealous' and either loves or hates her - either way they all want to be exactly like her because her life is SO perfect. She is Queen Bee with her very own clique of girlfriends who cater to every want and need of her. She wants her shoes tied? All she has to do is stick her foot out. They are her pawns, granting her every wish with desperation. The pawns get lost in the chase to win her approval. The ultimate goal is to be popular because to be popular means you are like by everyone, and that’s the ultimate goal right? Once they become popular, through Queen Bee, they can live happily ever after - sound familiar? The kicker is, in almost every story, the pawns eventually get sick of being treated like dirt by Queen Bee – they will never be good enough – that they finally stick up for themselves. This is the point in which they say, 'Fuck it!' I will not be treated this way any longer!”  They walk away from the chase, usually in an auditorium in front of the entire school, and give up the only thing that was standing between them and popularity – or success in the world of high school students. What they don’t realize is that by throwing their hands up in the air and saying 'Fuck it!' they instantly earned the respect of the entire school. Wow! She finally stood up to Queen Bee, everyone says. Suddenly this useless pawn is her own Queen – Queen of the pawns - and everyone screams and shouts “Pawn Queen!” while holding her in the air above their heads as they take her outside to the bright warm sun. Victory is celebrated as Old Queen Bee is sitting in the corner pouting with some kind of mess spilled on her head (paint, food, water, etc) or her clothes are torn to rags.

The point is… our lives don’t have to be a high school drama movie. We are all unique spiritual beings with unlimited potential. We have the freedom to be who we are and to be happy. If saying yes makes you unbelievably happy then yes, keep saying it. If following the orders of Queen Bee makes you feel warm and fuzzy inside, like you found your purpose in life then by all means, keep following. I’m here to tell you that if saying yes doesn’t make you happy, rather create a whirlpool of anxiety you can’t escape, or overwhelms you to the point where you can’t breathe, then it’s okay to say no. If following the high demands of Queen Bee – who treats you like shit - is making you feel worthless and alone, then find a way to say 'Fuck it!' There is so power in sticking up for yourself, for your happiness, and saying that – So much power in throwing your hands in the air and letting go of everything you have placed importance on that really doesn’t matter. 
Let’s dissect: Think of something you have placed importance on in your life. Grab a pen and paper and make a list of all the things that you’ve gone your whole life doing, almost as a ritual, to protect the sanctity of how people perceive you. Your fa├žade, if you will. Things that hold you back from doing what you love and experiencing your bliss.  For example:
  • I will not leave the house without makeup on. What if someone sees me?
  • I must keep the house spotless. What if someone comes over unexpected?
  • I can’t relax, I have too much laundry, dishes, cooking, cleaning, work to do.
  • My friend/husband/wife/child needs me. I must drop everything in my life to be there for them, no matter how long it takes. That’s my duty!
  • I will not eat that piece of cake. What if I look like a pig? I don’t want to get fat.
  • I must not laugh at a funny joke because I need to look serious. You must be serious to be taken seriously.
  • I wish I could stick up for the poor kid in my class who always gets picked on, but what will my friends think? I'd rather stay quiet then have to deal with it.
  • I must hide my emotions. Men are supposed to be strong / Women are too emotional.
  • I can’t go up to that man and tell him I like him. Women shouldn’t ask men out. What if he says no?
I think we have all at one point in our lives been crippled with insecurity about leaving the house without makeup, or hair gel, in fear that we might see someone we know. One that I see most common is the fear of saying NO to someone we love. We say YES to everyone under the false pretense that in order to be loved one must sacrifice oneself for the other person. That’s what we believe love is, sacrificing our own happiness so that the person we love can be happy. But what if you love one hundred people? How does one manage sacrificing themselves for a hundred different people? The real question is: How does one manage to love others if one hasn’t yet begun to master even the idea of loving oneself?

If you truly loved yourself and respected who you were as a human being you wouldn’t have a problem with saying no to your second cousin, or friend you haven’t spoken to for years, asking you to drive them four hours out of the way to the nearest airport. If you loved yourself you would not allow a ‘Queen Bee’ to make you bend down on your knees to tie her shoe. If you really placed an importance on your own happiness and valued yourself - instead of tying ‘Queen Bee’s’ shoes or driving your distant friend four hours to the airport (and four hours back)- you would spend time doing what you loved: watching Friends, knitting, reading a book by the fire, walking by the lake, baking cookies to share with those you love, or sharing a meal with your beloved. You most certainly wouldn’t let an emotionally draining emergency word-vomit session with your child, friend, family member or colleague disrupt your time of personal bliss. Would you? Hell no. You would say 'Fuck it!' and you would politely tell them that this a problem that you trust they are capable of dealing with on their own and that they will have to wait until tomorrow, when they are settled down and are calm, to talk about it…you’re busy.
Now please understand that I am not at all suggesting that if your child, or friend, sister or colleague calls with a real problem, or with broken heart and needs someone to talk to that you tell him or her you’re too busy to help. No. One of the greatest joys in life is relationships and being there for those you love, to help them through tough times and be a shoulder to cry on when their hearts are broken. I’m telling you to use your love on moments that matter. I’m simply suggesting that you recognize and filter the moments that don’t serve your highest good and distance yourself from them; Spend your love on the moments that count. Recharge your love by doing what you love so that you have enough love to use on those moments that are important to you.

Does it really matter if you screen your boss's phone call at 7pm while you’re enjoying dinner with your family? Will it hurt you to say no to organizing another Saturday bake sale for your PTA group so you can take your children to the park? What’s the worst thing that can happen if you walk up to the boy/girl you admire and tell him/her that you like him/her? The worst that can happen is he says no and walks away feeling flattered that someone likes him. The worst that can happen is your boss will have to wait until the next morning to talk to you. The worst that can happen is another parent, who has said NO up until now, will have to organize a Saturday bake sale for your PTA group.

You see, saying 'Fuck it!' and finally letting go and giving up what we thought was holding our life together-but was really holding us back-not only gives us more time to focus on what we love to do and love ourselves, it gives us a profound sense of freedom! If we look back at ALL the times we did something we were not happy about, or sacrificed our own happiness for the approval of others, I’m sure there were perfectly appropriate ways in which we could have honored ourselves and respectfully declined. Maybe even come to a mutually agreeable compromise, but do we do it? No, because we are too afraid of what people think. We spend our lives dedicated to serving and enabling others that forget to love and honor ourselves. There has to be a balance between loving ourselves and loving others otherwise we will constantly find ourselves getting sick or fed up with life. That’s why saying Fuck It is so necessary and crucial to our health and well being.
Now, I want you to look at the list you made and next to each bullet point write an affirmation for yourself. Why does this not matter as much as you thought, and how you can you lovingly let go and/or compromise to make yourself feel loved!
  • I will not leave the house without makeup on. What if someone sees me? Fuck it! I don’t care, this is who I am!
  • I must keep the house spotless. What if someone comes over unexpected? Fuck it! This is reality. I don’t have time to clean the house everyday. I will ask my children/husband/wife/roommate(s) to help.
  • I can’t relax, I have too much laundry, dishes, cooking, cleaning, work to do. Fuck it! I’m going to relax and enjoy some R&R with myself. If someone if concerned about the laundry or dishes not being done then they can do it themselves. Or I can ask my family/roommate/partner to help me. I bend over backwards for them, it’s time they help me. J
  • My friend/husband/wife/child needs me. I must drop everything in my life to be there for them, no matter how long it takes. That’s my duty! Fuck it, I respect my friend/husband/wife/child and I trust that they are capable of dealing with life on their own. I can be there to listen and guide them through difficult times, but it is not my responsibility to fix their problems.
  • I will not eat that piece of cake. What if I look like a pig? I don’t want to get fat. Fuck it-Who the hell cares!!! My body does not define who I am. I love myself and I take great care of my body and I don't have to prove anything to anyone. I’m going to have a slice of cake! 
  • I must not smile, laugh or have fun at work. I need to look serious. You must be serious to be taken seriously. Fuck it!! I will have fun at work. Compassion is the key to respect. My colleagues are my friends and they respect me more when I'm myself and having fun.
  • I wish I could stick up for the poor kid in my class who always gets picked on, but what will my friends think? I'd rather stay quiet then have to deal with it. Fuck it!! I'm going to stand up for this kid, and for what I believe is right. No one deserves to be treated that way.
  • I must hide my emotions. Men are supposed to be strong / Women are too emotional. Fuck it!! Who the fuck cares. The stereotypes surrounding gender are absolutely ridiculous. I give myself permission to be human and accept my emotions.
  • I can’t go up to that man and tell him how much I like him. Women shouldn’t ask men out. What if he says no? Fuck it!! I’m going to walk right up to the man I like and tell him  what I feel. His opinion does not define my worth. He would be lucky to have me. 

See how easy and liberating that was! Don’t you feel more confident already? Freedom: it’s amazing. Self care and self love can honestly change the way you view the world. The world is not as scary as you've read in papers, people aren’t as judgmental as you think they are and fear is not an excuse to hold yourself back from being who you are and living a life of freedom. Free of fear, free of caring whether everyone likes you, free from the chains of society and the absurd duties that come with it. Saying Fuck it and finally putting your energy and time into what truly matters. The key is to do it lovingly, respectfully, compassionately and from the depths of your heart. Have fun with it and I hope, with all my heart, that you have the courage to bring a little more Fuck It into your life. And when you do, remember, it's okay. Everything is going to be okay. It's just a word.

All my love,
More to Explore:
  • Try taking this Fuck It Quiz and see where you are in the Fuck It life:  How Fuck It Are You?
  • Listen to the February 4th FREE Hay House Podcast with special guest John C. Parkin - Saying "F**k It" to What's Holding you Back 
  • Read John C. Parkin's books "F--K It: The Ultimate Spiritual Way", "The Way of F--k It: Small Book, Big Idea," and "F--K It Therapy: The Profane Way to Profound Happiness" (click on images below to purchase)
  • Visit thefuckitlife.com to explore the life of letting go of what's holding you back.