Sunday, June 28, 2015

"In the Moment"

Have you ever been in a situation where someone that you knew was having a hard time and all you could do was to be there for them to hold their hand? What I have learned in those situations is that it is about really being present for someone when they are working through something in their life that is life changing. I bring this up because it is something that seems to be a theme in my own life these last few weeks as some of my family and friends are making some incredible transitions in their lives.

 For those of us who are standing on the sidelines sometimes the real challenge is not to take it upon ourselves to fix or even take on the situation but to allow the other person to move through their own experience. In some instances it may seem easier to take over someone else's pain or even do it for them but this only creates more problems later on down the road. I remember once years ago when I ran to one of my spiritual teachers upset after I had taken it upon myself to help someone solve a problem and fixed their life only to find that they had repeated the same situation that I had helped them solve. My teacher then explained to me that when we step into someone else's life to solve a problem for them we only delay what they needed to learn.

 On the outside it may look good but if the person doesn't learn how to maneuver through and around obstacles in their life then they continue to repeat the pattern until they do. It is nothing personal but for me at that time it was such a disappointment. The other side of the coin was that by trying to fix someone else's problems I wasn't paying attention to my own life causing me to repeat unhealthy patterns that I didn't have time to solve.

What I have learned out of all of this was that as we all evolve from our experiences interacting with each other we discover how important it is to be in the moment when someone needs you to witness what they are learning about as they move through their own experience. Also how crucial it is to have healthy boundaries so that we all can continue to grow.

Photographs by Steve Noyce - Rome, Italy

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Happy Father's Day!

1. "A father is someone who is proud to see you get your first car...but secretly wishes it had no keys."  by Linda Poindexter

2. "My father always used to say that when you die, if you've got five real friends, then you've had a great life."  by Lee Iacocca

3. "It doesn't matter who my father was; it matters who I remember he was."  by Anne Sexton

4. "By the time a man realizes that his father was right, he has a son who thinks he's wrong."  by Charles Wadsworth

5. "There's no shame in fear, my father told me, what matters is how we face it." by George R. R. Martin, A Clash of Kings 

6. "A father carries pictures where his money used to be." by Unknown

7. "Your father gives you many things in a lifetime... most of which you will not appreciate until way after he is gone." by Linda Poindexter

Photographs by Steve Noyce - Los Vegas, NV and Tuscany, Italy

Sunday, June 14, 2015

"Recognizing Fear"

When we mention the word fear it seems to carry so many stigmas attached to it. Yet, it is one of the most helpful emotions that we can have in recognizing and releasing old energy patterns within ourselves that no longer serve us. Often when fear comes up we may already be conditioned to believe that we are experiencing something else besides what is really going on. Fear is one of those emotions that tends to be masked by other emotions so that we can hide it from ourselves. If we really take the time to trace the emotions of anger, judgment, grief, shock, disappointment, rejection, failure, even pain, to name a few we find that they are only extensions of fear leading back to the original source.

 So many times when we are confronted or triggered by something we are afraid of we may find that we either shut down, react, or even become stuck in old baggage when it rears its head. Then there are those times we may find ourselves facing a fear that feels so overwhelming to explore and release, we began to live through others so that we can cover it up not dealing with what is happening inside us. In retrospect it looks good from the outside as it masquerades as helping others but the truth be known its only putting off what will show itself over and over until we take the time to heal it. Another side of fear is when we don't recognize and release these patterns and we project our fears on to others. If the person we are are helping is not able to stand in their own personal power they can be forced to wear our dirty laundry. This only perpetuates the cycle of fear and is a lot like the mythical monster whose head Hercules cut off only to be replaced by two others as it multiplied.

So what is the good news about fear you may ask? First is recognizing that the emotion of fear can be a powerful tool. The test is to decide that we are ready to make a change in the course of our lives in mastering a fear that no longer serves a purpose. The emotion of fear is an energy pattern that runs through us and radiates off us into the energy around us. Just observe any animal reacting to you when you are in a fear mode. Then it is understanding that some of our fears are instinct and those are the ones to pay attention to as they help us to avoid danger. It is the conditioned fears that hold us captive that are not healthy for us to continue to keep that need to be addressed when making this decision. The key is to remember that fear is made up of beliefs, thoughts, and ideas which are energy patterns not only circulating in our minds but also in our physical bodies.

The tool works when we are conscious that we are being emotionally triggered allowing us to have the opportunity to work on it. It is peeling back the layers and learning to look past the emotions that come up so we can pinpoint the source of the fear. Educating yourself and doing research about the fear by reading up on it, going to counseling, joining a group that is working on it, talking about it with others is a wonderful way to prepare yourself on how to recognize it when it pops up. This is retraining your mind as it begins to grasp the pattern so that you can see it in others or situations around you. That is when you have the choice to participate or to allow yourself to release the old energy as it also moves through you. By replacing an old experience with a new one you can also train your body to learn that the fear no longer serves a purpose.

I am not going to say this is easy because it doesn't always happen over night or instantaneously. It takes time, energy, and patience when we are moving through an experience and working on dissolving a old fear pattern. What is important is having the courage to be gentle with ourselves knowing we are in a safe place, finding our center, Identifying the fear, and taking a breath as we step into our own personal power. In the end we have the power to move through it and eventually let go.

Photographs by Steve Noyce - Terrell, TX

Sunday, June 7, 2015

"The Soul Mate"

I once had a friend that asked me what I thought about Soul Mates? I had thought about it and always believed that my husband whom I have a wonderful marriage of 18 years was my Soul Mate. This had been a hot topic in our marriage because he disagreed.

My idea of a Soul Mate was this childhood fancy of someone made in the universe that was made just for me. The perfect union of souls and love, come together with the blessings of the Creator Himself along with his band of angels.

"No," he would argue "I love you and I choose to be with you in this life." We finely agreed to just disagree with the whole mess. So when others brought up this topic we would smile at each other as the violins began to play for me and he would set his chin firmly and we would walk away.

It wasn't until a friend invited me to a Healing seminar when the teacher came in and started talking about Soul Mates. I was so excited because now I had someone of authority who could validate my feelings and I could triumphantly bring this to my husband's attention.

The whole talk went like this... Most people have it wrong when they think that a Soul Mate is someone out there in the world that was hand tailored for you and only you. A Soul Mate is not about a romantic love as we see in Fairy Tales but a person who will bring out your Shadow Side. This is a person who's task is to make us uncomfortable enough to change or move in the way that the Creator has designed for us. Another words "They can kick you in the teeth to get you to grow spiritually."

What most people get confused about is the Life Mate. The person in our lives who is there for us by being there as a person who will cherish, support, love and help us in life as we grow and as we will do the same for them.

Well, this hit home because I had realized that the number one person in my life was more than special but someone that I could always count on even when my shadow side slipped out. We had been there for each other in the good and the bad and never was there a question of not loving the other.

It was a long drive home but when I got home, there was my adoring husband anxiously awaiting my return...

Building Photograph by Steve Noyce
Cats Photograph by Cameron