On being “All-In”

Y’all!! (Sorry, married to a Texan). This one is important!

For reasons I’ll spare you for the sake of brevity, I have been laser-focused on tuning in to what matters to me and trying to show up fully in my interactions. This looks like saying yes when you mean it, saying no when you mean it, and then being totally committed and “all-in” when a decision is made. No embarrassment, no self-judgment, total honesty, total vulnerability, and total attention to the present moment.

The only person’s opinion that matters is yours. Let the rest of it go.

Some may call this “being all in”, “being fully present”, “playing full out” “being fully committed”, “mindfulness”, “manifestation”, or what have you. To me, the nomenclature doesn’t matter, it’s the same intention with the same effect. And that effect is a total game changer! It will light you up! Sounds a little scary, right? I can assure you, that once you take this leap, “scary” will be reduced or vanish entirely. Like other concepts I’ve shared, I am not perfect at this. At all. But, when I’ve given it a true and honest effort, it is like my whole entire world has changed for the better. There is nothing but possibility.

First, let me be clear. I did not make this up. There are brilliant thought leaders and researchers who have shared this information with the world. Martha Beck, Wayne Dyer, and Byron Katie are just a few who’ve influenced my thinking on the subject in recent months, and there are many, many others. Here I’m combining their thoughts on “Integrity”, “Intention”, and “Loving What is”. In my view, their concepts are quite similar. I’ll share my view of the common themes and how to accomplish being “all-in”.

How? First and probably most importantly TUNE IN. Tune in to you. Get real about what you want and don’t want. Does it align with your values? What are your values? If you can’t answer that question, take some time to explore them. For me, if it feels right, really right, it aligns with my values. I ask myself, is this something that I want? Or something I am supposed to want? Or something I think others think I should want? If the answer is “nope, this is all me“, then it’s the right answer. Period. Pay attention to how you move through the day. Are you on autopilot? Or are you making conscious decisions by tuning in? You’ll be fascinated by what you find.

Second, listen to the information you receive. What is it telling you? How might it inform your choices? Pay deep attention to that information. Are you moving through the world because of “should’s” or other reasons? Are you having negative thoughts? If so, are those thoughts true? Or some version of the truth? Be honest. What if you changed your perspective? How does that impact the information you receive. Once you identify your soul’s desire, your purpose, and start letting it guide you, your world will truly change.

Third: Act. Trust that the information you’ve tuned into will take you in the right direction. Ask yourself, “what would I do if the possibilities were limitless”? Believe that they can become true. Thinking in this way is fun, not work, I promise! Then, act as if it’s already occurred, even if the goal or purpose isn’t totally clear. Continue to take small or large steps to make your dreams a reality. Even the tiniest step can have a huge impact. The third step is one that people often miss. They “wish” and “want” but never take the action. Instead, start believing and acting as if your dreams have already come true.

One important caveat: Do so fearlessly! Skip the “what if” and “what was”. They are unnecessary and often harmful. Just let it go. But how? One powerful technique I’ve used in my own life is to realize and believe that others genuinely want the best for me and don’t expect me to be perfect. Do you want the best for your friends? I bet you do. Do you expect perfection? Nope. Do you judge friends that follow their passions, even if it seems out of the norm? No way! You’re psyched for them! Thinking in that way allows me to be free, vulnerable, and, “all-in”. I’ve been able to sing loud and proud, take a deep dive during self-exploration work, be confident when making hard decisions, or be totally tuned in with friends or during a yoga class. The list could go on. Sounds like a good day in progress? Yes, it is!

Put all of that on repeat, even if in the smallest ways, and it has the power to totally transform your life.

Lastly, I’d like to share how my wise-beyond-her-years 13 -year old daughter has impacted me on this topic as well. In her version: “you just gotta go for it, and be all in, or you won’t enjoy it“. Smart girl.  

The Power of One Interaction: Hello Beautiful

I had a powerful experience with one incredible woman at a checkout counter. In one minute, it changed the course of my day and week.

Yesterday, I was out of town and shopping at a large chain store. My daughter and I were in the checkout line, and when it was our turn, got called up. “Next in line”… Like most people would, I anticipated a run-of-the-mill interaction where I would be asked if I found everything ok, might be asked if I wanted to open a credit card,would be rung up, and sent on my way in a minute or so.

Instead, I was greeted by a woman, around the same age as myself, with a thick Spanish accent, and she said “hello beautiful“. It caught me by surprise and my daughter and I instantly started smiling. She joked with us, and although I couldn’t understand everything she said (some with an accent and some in Spanish), we laughed and smiled the whole time. She was enjoying her work, and her small interactions, and was certainly making my day better. As I was completing the payment, my daughter walked away. The woman said to her something like, “wait a minute mija, you be nice to your mama”. We all laughed and smiled again. I said, “thank you for calling me beautiful, that made my day”! She said without pause, “All mamas are beautiful“.

I had an instant and deep knowing. Those four words meant: “I see you”, “I appreciate you”, “You, mama, give of yourself selflessly and you are appreciated”. She didn’t have to ask if this was my daughter. She didn’t start with a pleasantry like, “how are you today”? She didn’t even have to speak the same language. She just knew, appreciated , and acknowledged.

This one-minute interaction changed my whole day. In fact, I shared the story with a friend the next day, and I believe it changed her day too. She got it. She felt it. She loved it. She said, yep, “women empowering women”. I think that’s true, but believe it goes beyond. Its people empowering people through simple acts of kindness. There is such a huge ripple effect that comes from small and simple words of kindness. You never know how one simple gesture, or one kind word might impact another human.

So today: I challenge you, and I challenge me, to metaphorically say “hello beautiful”. Pick just one person, or two or three. Someone you know, or even better, someone you don’t. Make someone’s day. Be surprising, be authentic and be kind. I believe this is how we can change the world.

Independence Day 2022

Today is an interesting day, full of varying emotions about the state of our country. Personally, I have had a beautiful day, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. For others, they are “full of rage”, “refuse to celebrate” and so on. The current state of our country is, without a doubt, tumultuous. We are a divided people, right vs left, me vs. you, right vs. wrong. There are so many things going on right now that just don’t make sense: mass shootings (and one today), guns out of control, mental health is poor for so many, and a recent Roe v. Wade reversal that has so many outraged. Don’t get me wrong, I am not in any way happy about any of these things. It saddens me to know that I grew up in the “land of the free” and the “best country on earth” which is debatably neither at this point.

The American Flag: What does this even mean anymore? Somehow, some way, this is now a symbol of conservative, right wing, Trump voters, I am not sure how that happened? To me, I still want to see the flag as a symbol of the beautiful (yes, flawed) country I live in. I may not believe that anymore, but I am trying.

I’m going to be really honest about why I chose to write this. Damn social media! Our family took a beautiful hike today. Weather: perfect. Wildflowers: amazing! Kid’s attitudes: pretty darn good! A rare time that all four of us were together, and out enjoying our “backyard”. I came home, shared the pics, and titled it “I love where I live part 2. Happy 4th y’all”! Within a few minutes, I came upon other perspectives, those who are outraged and refuse to celebrate today. In the name of not being judged, or coming across as “right” (which I am not, by the way) or “insensitive to the state of injustice in our country”, I quickly changed “Happy 4th y’all” to “have a great day y’all”. And as I sit here, I worry that saying “I love where I live” will be perceived to mean, “I love our country, vote Trump!” or something like that. Isn’t that sad?? Why do I think that way?? What I really mean is: Colorado is a beautiful place to live and play and I feel lucky to enjoy it today. Yet on social media, perceptions are through the reader’s lens and are often skewed because of it. Me included!

Here’s my perspective on the state of the world today, and how I’m choosing to approach it. Yep, things are undeniably in turmoil. Other countries do not look to as the greatest anymore. Friends, I see you and your passion and I respect you for it. And for your courage to put yourself out there with your opinions. However, I do not think rage is the answer. I think it is possible to be an activist, passionate about rights, and not full of hate. Why? Because that serves to put more negativity into the world. Can we stay positive, raise the collective vibration and still make a change? I believe we can… Lastly, holding rage tends to hurt one person the most: the enraged person. I ask you this: Does holding rage make you feel better? Do you think you accomplish more because of it? Or is there another way? I recognize that this sounds sarcastic, but I assure you it is not. I am asking you to consider another perspective. How is the rage impacting you, personally? If the answer goes something like: I am mad, anxious, fearful, stressed, sleepless, lost, helpless, numbing… I urge you to reconsider. Do something good for the world and for you.

Today I ask: Can we appreciate and love one another? Can we seek out the positive in our daily lives? Can we actively observe when we are having negative thoughts and try to let them go? Can we infuse positive energy into our interactions? A tall order, maybe. Am I perfect or even good at this? Nope. But I’m trying. I’m a flawed human who is willing to learn and grow, and my friends that is all I want for you too! If we see the world as a terrible place, then that is what the world shows us. If we see the world as amazing, then beauty is shown to us at every turn. I am not naive enough to think there isn’t hate, atrocities, or horrific things occurring in the world. I am simply asking that we collectively seek the beauty in it too.

“Having resentment against someone is like drinking poison and thinking it will kill your enemy.”

― Nelson Mandela

Why “Trueish” Things?

Are you right? Maybe. Am I? Maybe.  Are we both wrong? Probably! My goal with this blog and website is simply to share ideas and provide food for thought. Hear it, take it or leave it, consider the resources that I provide, that’s it.  Will people disagree with me? Of course! Should they? Of course! I am not right!  I promise to research, share the opinions of others, and do my best to present interesting and accurate information, but of course, I will be wrong.  And I’ll probably contradict myself.  I’m always learning and growing, and I hope you are too. It’s all just “true-ish”.

Science: By definition is a body of knowledge on a particular subject. It is the pursuit of understanding the evidence available at any point in time. Any scientific study includes observations, questions, hypotheses, methods, and results.  Scientific studies discuss a hypothesis, and even if a hypothesis that is tested is perceived to be “accepted” vs rejected, a discussion of future studies to confirm is included, as well as weaknesses of the study. So, scientists themselves will tell you that there is always room for further questioning, study, and learning. Science is simply a quest for the truth, but at the end of the day, it’s a quest.

Theory, spirituality, religion, and thought-leaders:  I lump these together because they fall into the category (in my mind) of going on emotion, thought, experience, and feeling. They take the practical experience as well as learned information to apply it to life situations, generally (and hopefully) for the betterment of people and the world around them.  They can be an incredible source of inspiration, positivity, motivation, and connection for many people in the world, me included. A lot of what I “believe” in, comes from these amazing individuals, and I’ll share them as resources along the way.

The point is, that we are all just learning and growing. In order to reach our fullest potential, we must explore all possible explanations and possibilities. Only then can we become the best versions of ourselves.

“Our addiction to always being right is a great block to the trust. It keeps us from the kind of openness that comes from confidence in our natural wisdom.” Stephen Levine

Confidence comes not from always being right, but from not fearing to be wrong”. Peter Mcintyre