Course Correction To Joy

In the land of Here and Now, every second is another opportunity to re-solve anything and course correct yourself back to a state of joy. 

I truly believe that's the point of living. To find joy. To aim for peace. To redirect your energy back to bliss. I'd love to think that we can maintain a state of joy, but even in my most idealistic-unicorn-laced moments I think joy is nothing more than an option that you must choose time and time again. 

Why? Because you're human. 

It's impossible for all humans to be the same page Here and Now. At any given moment, there are as many people embracing joy as there are people dismissing it. Nature demands balance. Luckily, you can demand joy. You can demand to see the bright side of everything. You just can't demand it of anyone other than yourself. You also can't demand to be shown it by someone else, although someone else may unknowingly show it to you. You still need to be willing to see it. 

The bright side is only visible through your own lens. 

Your quest for joy, your ability to re-solve the mystery of every moment, is a personal choice. It's the choice not to abandon yourself in the tornado-like drama of others; it's the choice to anchor into your deeply-treasured knowledge and beliefs; it's the choice to align with the promise of joy when you can't really see the path that will lead you to it. 

It requires you to have an honest conversation with yourself that starts with one very simple question: am I happy right now? In my experience, if you need to ask that question then the answer is most likely: NO.

It's a hard question, but it's also a baseline for living a good life. 

You're not here to live a life that's not happy. You're here to remember that you have the power to will yourself toward bliss, step by step, moment by moment. 

I feel as though I spent the better part of 2017 re-membering the aspects of my own nature that move me to and within the state of joy I'm writing about. It's a quiet, peaceful, powerful place. Getting there, to this place, time and time again, is as easy or difficult as I allow it to be.

It seems funny to me that I could ever allow it to be difficult at all, but I can and I do. I, like everyone else on the planet, am affected by outside influences—beliefs and values of communities both real and virtual, small and large—that rarely reflect the whole of who I AM. The difficulty is when I allow said influences to embrace my ego and knead my brain into a knot. The difficulty is when I try to figure out where I belong instead of realizing that I belong in my happy place(s). 

You do, too.

You always belong in your happy place(s). The other place(s), not so much. My advice? Get out of them before you allow yourself to believe that they are as good as it will ever get. Aiming for anything less than extraordinary goodness is a disservice to your soul. 

If you're asking the question am I happy and answering, no, DON'T FREAK OUT. Embracing your answer is the very first step. It is always a very good thing to embrace the truth of you. From this place you can dig a little: 

  • What is making me unhappy right now? 
  • Is there a way that I can change my view, position, path? 
  • What would that entail? 
  • What would make me feel happy right now? 

Sometimes, the most important thing that you can do is lean into something that would make you feel happy. This doesn't necessarily mean it is THE solution, not at all, it is actually the reminder.

Often when you are in a situation that is making you unhappy for an extended period of time you actually forget what it feels like to be joyful. So this thing that might make you feel happy (i.e. dancing like a madwoman, watching a comedy, calling your favorite human, scheduling a massage, planning a vacation, singing out loud, whatever) that thing will remind you that all is not lost, happy is within reach. It is always within reach. 

Do you feel like reaching for it? Take a little #peacequest with me. This is a free e-journey designed to ease your mind, release some baggage and clarify your inner state of ahhhhh. All of which clears the way to a more joy, step by step. 

Can I hear a yes? 

The Now Of You


Approximately eight years ago, give or take a year, my mom dropped off a box of items that were tucked away in my childhood bedroom. Among the items, Benjamin Hoff's book, The Tao of Pooh. 

I remember lifting this book from the pop-up Scholastic bookstore at Plains Junior High School when I was in eighth grade. I remember reading it, too, and liking it quite a bit. I don't remember fully absorbing the words on the page. I also don't remember using the tiny little Hallmark Valentine card with Snoopy and Woodstock on a skateboard as a bookmark, nor do I remember who that Valentine was for, even though I do realize it was for my very, very, very future self. 

When I saw the book, buried in my time-capsule, underneath Dr. Robinson's pediatric health records (eating solids! ideal weight!), but on top of my elementary school memory book, I immediately rescued it and placed it on my currently reading bookshelf. The same place, mind you, where it still sits today, not because I haven't read it, but because I read it every year. 

In a nutshell: it's a simple and delightful book about leading a meaningful life. When my very, very, very present self rediscovered it every word seemed to fall into a place that made perfect sense. I suspect it was a grand realignment between the who I was then and the who I am now. A very easy read about a very complex topic, the Tao of You. 

The first time I re-read this book, I thoughtlessly moved the bookmark chapter by chapter. It wasn't until page 85 that I started really spinning it around in my left hand, examining all the energy I put into being with this card in eighth grade. I took the time to trace the artwork. I didn't dare unseal the tape. This card was not for a thirteen year old. 

HipstamaticPhoto-540303433.278796 2.JPG

On page 85, Hoff finds a way to discuss the Taoist concept of Wu Wei, living in harmony with All That Is. He writes, "Using Wu Wei, you go by circumstances and listen to your own intuition. 'This isn't the best time to do this. I'd better go that way.' Like that. When you do that sort of thing, people may say that you have a Sixth Sense or something. All it really is though is being Sensitive to Circumstances. That's just natural. It's only strange when you don't listen." 

It's only strange when you don't listen. 

On that sentence, I unsealed the envelope. I slowly brushed my right thumb over the signature. It was as if a tiny stream of love instantly injected my heart with permission to be Sensitive to Circumstances and let my woo lead the way. That was then: all I needed.  

This is now: all I need.

Another reminder that you can't be all things for all people but you must be all things for yourself.  Your life depends upon one thing: the Now of You. 

So, before you go handing out Valentine cards, before you deliver the flowers or buy the champagne, or cook the dinner or give the gift to someone else, give the gift to yourself.

Take a look in the mirror, make eye contact, say I love you, you're just my speed...and mean it. It's the very first step, or the millionth step, to honoring your very own nature and staying true to you. 

Love you. xo


365 days in the year of hearts

It was January 2nd. I was not in a particularly good mood. So I went for a walk. Somewhere on that walk, I looked down and saw this:


Instagram is my memory keeper. I only remember how this whole hearts-thing started because I posted that photo to Instagram and captioned it just so. 

I didn't think I had the chops to devote 365 days to heart-finding, but somewhere in the midst of documenting a heart a day, every day (well, almost every day) something clicked. 


And the more it clicked, the more I clicked. 


And the more I clicked, the more it clicked. By it I mean the Universe. 

You see, this is the conversation I chose to have with the Universe.

I didn't request hearts because I needed to see them, I requested hearts because I've been finding hearts for years in the most peculiar places, at the most peculiar times. So my request to see hearts every day was really more like me finally agreeing to have the conversation that the Universe has been trying to have with me for a very, very long time. 



Stop here for a second and consider: what funny little things do you always see at the most peculiar times? That's your conversation. That's your language with the Universe. Have that conversation. Allow that conversation. Give that conversation the time and space to happen. Devote yourself. 



I'm so happy that I placed my attention on this conversation. This year was a good year, but it was also a year of letting go and restoring energy. It was a year of opening and closing doors. It was year of big changes. I scaled back work to create space for family matters. My oldest son left for college. My youngest son compensated by signing up for three separate sport teams in the Fall. And my husband decided to have both knees replaced. In the midst of that chaos, there was this: 


The more hearts I found, the more supported I felt by the force of nature that flows through all things: LOVE. 

There were days that I saw nothing, nada, zip, zilch. And on those days? On those days, hearts usually arrived from friends texting me the hearts that they found with sweet notes about how they were thinking about me. So you see? Those signs became my signs, too, along with a reminder that connection matters. 


For the past few weeks I've been poking and prodding this practice, wondering if I should continue with hearts or expand the conversation into something else. Change is always good. 

So on Christmas morning, the thought to practice random acts of kindness popped into my head and about three minutes later, I opened my Christmas gift from my family. 

 Original Scott Jeffries Imperfect Heart

An original Scott Jeffries work of art. With a special inscription on the back that I'm holding tight inside my heart. This rendered me speechless and brought forth a river of tears. Aside from this being the most thoughtful, beautiful gift ever, it was an affirmation and an exclamation to move into 2018 with a focus on random acts of kindness.

That scares the bejeezus out of me. So, it must be right. 

I think I'm just going to sit with it the same way I sat with 365 hearts and just took one day at a time. Looking. Finding. Asking. Giving. Receiving. Loving. 

The only way to practice, is to practice.

Would you like to join me?

Imagine the good we could do together with #365_RAOK. 

Just imagine. 


Laying your cards down on the table


Every month I lay my cards down on the table, take a deep breath and reach inside these tiny little envelopes to receive a message. 

These are messages that I channel for myself, once a year, in one sitting. When I finish I tuck them in an envelope and place them on my desk, which doubles an an altar, of sorts. Every month I open one. 

The one you see in the foreground is the message that appeared for this month. I opened it yesterday. This morning when while I was shaping a few loafs of oatmeal-maple-raisin-walnut dough (because sweet JESUS I can't stop making bread these days) there was a voice, THAT voice saying, "Hurry up and get outside." I connected the dots of this month's message and THAT voice. I hurried up. I got outside.

And this is what was waiting...


So why am I sharing this? 

This is my first week with my days to myself in roughly a month, but really it's my first week with emerging clarity in well over five months. I had big plans for today that started with bread and meditation and then writing and photography—all of which technically is happening but not the way my tiny little brain planned. Here's the thing: if I didn't open that card yesterday I would have missed this morning completely. It was not the morning I imagined, but it was the morning I received. With gratitude for All That Is.

How willing are you to receive all that you can't possibly imagine? That might be the most important question you ever have to answer. OPEN, sweet heart.


Two things—If you want to try walking through the next 12 months with your own set of channeled messages, visit my shop.  If you're local, consider joining me November 18th for two hours In The Company Of Angels.

Whatever you do today: make the most of it. xo