Grateful Reflections

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Thanksgiving has been my favorite holiday for years. I love the idea of getting together with family and friends to give thanks. One of my favorite traditions is friendsgiving which is a way to share the holiday with friends to reflect on the wonderful things that have happened, the trials that were overcome and the beauty of finding a group of likeminded people to share life with.

Family is also very important to me and in the past couple years, I have extended my family with a recent engagement. When I got specific on what I wanted in a future partner, someone who was close to their family was near the top of the list. It brings me so much joy that both of our families have welcomed each other with open arms. It feels loving, exciting and just right.

As I reflect on thanksgiving, I see that even though there were times of scarcity and sadness but there are so many joyful moments to celebrate. I am firm believer in the fact that my needs are always provided for. Even when it feels tight, I have everything I need and that is comforting.

Here are a few things I am celebrating this thankgsgiving (and always)…

Getting Engaged: For years, I didn’t think this would happen. I had dated and had my heart broken several times. But then, I decided to manifest my dream man. I sat down and got specific on what I really wanted and refused to settle for anything less. Little did I know, he was doing the same and the day we met, I knew he was my person. He proposed to me in June while we were on a hike (one of my favorite things to do). I am grateful for him and the journey and I can’t wait to marry him next year.

Collaborations with creative and soulful entrepreneurs: There are so many beautiful and creative minds and I am fortunate to have collaborated with a few this year. It is my desire to collaborate in this healing and creative space of coaching and it truly was an honor to be a part of a few awesome projects.

Seeing two of my favorite authors speak: I have been reading and following Shauna Niequist and Brene Brown for years. I was so excited to see them on their book tours for their amazing books, Present Over Perfect and Braving the Wilderness Seeing them speak was so inspiring and encouraging.

Holding my book for the first time: After years of trying to get published, it felt surreal to see a book with my name on the cover and my words inside of it. I still can’t believe it when I picked it up. It was crazy to see it in Barnes and Noble as well. Having a book published was probably #1 on my bucket list since I was 9 years old! I am so thankful for all the kind emails and reviews I have received and for each reader who has made Moonlight Gratitude a part of their nightly routine.

Seeing my family all together for the first time in years: I come from a big family and it is rare that all of us are together at the same time. Earlier this year, we all got together for the first time in 5 years. It felt so nice to be with my entire family and laugh like I only laugh when I’m with my siblings.

Watching clients start their own businesses:  I am so grateful for each of my clients! One of the most rewarding things about my work is when I get to see my clients take a step in a completely new direction and create something they love. My mission is to empower women to harness their bravery and go after what they really want. Here are a couple business I wanted to share because these women emulate bravery…Check them out and follow their journeys!

Andora Photography

Healthy Transformations by Hilary

Gratitude is a magnet for joy and I hope that as you reflect on the things that made your year shine bright, joy fills your heart.

Gratitude Heals

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Scarcity creeps in and grabs a hold with force. What may have been something that we are completely grateful for can turn into our greatest frustration. How does this happen?

Expectations — they create disappointment and rob the joy out of something that has the possibility to create excitement.

When frustration takes over, we start to notice all the things that could and have gone wrong. In fact, the more we focus on what could go wrong, we change the energy around the entire situation and actually attract negativity to the situation.

This is where scarcity takes over. It sees the perfect opportunity to sweep in and make a nice home inside the negative thoughts and emotions causing them to be augmented. Thoughts of not being enough, doing enough, having enough seep in and before we know it, we regret the thing that we wanted so badly.

This has happened to me several times. I place such high expectations on the things I want the most that I end up sabotaging their success. I have done this in relationships, at work, with family and even with working out. My perfectionist tendencies flare up and I get attached to outcomes that I deem are necessary for success and then POOF! it falls apart.

It took me some time to come to this realization. In the meantime, I would be a basketcase wondering “Why?!” “How did this happen once again?” and placing blame everywhere I could until I realized that I had control over the way I perceived each situation and the expectations I set.

It is hard to let go of expectations. We want what we want when we want it. Best laid plans are just that, plans. Nothing is set in stone and so many things can happen that are out of our control. When we decide that things need to be a certain way and leave little room for variety, we set ourselves up for disappointment.

But there is a way to replace scarcity with abundance. It takes some work, but with practice we can change the way we react and replace with positive feelings and reactions.

Release the expectation, attachment and need for control. Be fluid and allow things to occur as they will.

Reframe the negative thought or feeling with something positive. Ask yourself: What is going right?

Recognize what is going right with gratitude. The best way to go from scarcity to abundance is gratitude. Always look for the positive and be grateful. This tiny step will change your mind.

Since we are in the season of gratitude, it is a great opportunity to notice where scarcity has created frustration in your life and take the time to heal this wound. Our bodies have a physical response to this emotion. In terms of our chakras, the first chakra, our root, is the place where we crave security and fulfillment. When we are off balance in this area, we feel fearful, scarce and controlling.

This energy center is located at the base of the spine and when we are out of balance, not only do we emotionally feel pain, but our bodies will respond as well. We can hold the negative feelings and scarce thoughts in our lower backs, legs and feet. But we can heal with gratitude. Transforming the energy frees up the tension that we hold physically and emotionally.

Here are a couple exercises to help transform the negative energy and invite positive and grateful energy in:

  1. Stand with your feet hip distance apart and feel yourself grounding into the Earth. Hold your arms by your side, palms facing outward. Close your eyes and release any tension through your feet into the Earth and through your hands. “I release what no longer serves me and offer gratitude for the blessings that are in my life and trust that all my needs are being met.”
  2. Sit down with your back straight and feet on the ground. Close your eyes and focus on your breath. Take big breaths from your diaphragm, extending your belly. Count to ten (1 -breath in, 2 – breath out…). Repeat until you feel the energy dissipate and find yourself in the present moment. Offer gratitude for your lungs, your breath, oxygen…
  3. Think about a time when you felt immense gratitude. Take a moment to feel that sensation throughout your body. Root yourself into this emotion and know that you always have access to this beautiful feeling and bring yourself back to it when scarcity takes over.

By creating the sensation of being grounded and present we can release the anxiety and fear that surrounds the situation. Trust that all your needs are always provided for. Find a way to reframe the negative thoughts and invite abundance. Bring yourself into the present moment and recognize that your fears are based on a projection into the future and distract you from right here, right now.

Gratitude can heal where scarcity once scarred.

Full Beaver Moon

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Tonight is the Full Beaver Moon, named after a creature that works hard to get their job done. With hard work, they can change the course of a river. By learning the flow of water and working with such a powerful force, beavers are able to use water to their advantage to finish their work. Even though a beaver works diligently it also spends quality time with its family..there is a lot that can be learned here.

It is easy to fall into the glorification of busy trap and I can’t remember how many times I have allowed my work to take over my life. I have lost balance on several occasions because I wanted to finish a task only to find myself a slave to my to-do list and ignoring those closest to me. There was once a time when I was home only 10 days out of the month and they were not consecutive.

I craved connection and balance, but didn’t know how it was possible with the demands of my job. There was a desire to settle down, find my person, have time to see friends and get back in shape. It felt impossible when I thought about how much time each of these desires required. It took me a couple years and learning to make necessary endings to find balance, but I am happy I did.

This is the time to make sure to spend time with the people who are important to you. Create the space to just be together instead of creating elaborate plans. Find the time to just be with yourself and others by putting down the phone and calendars and holding space for connection. The present moment is where connection thrives. There are enough parties and schedules to keep us distracted. The hard work is letting go of those distractions and learning to just be, which takes practice.

During this season, it is important to finish projects as the holidays approach. Make sure that you have created space to enjoy quality time where you are present and engaged. Work should never hinder the ability to focus on self care. It is important to ensure you are taking care of yourself in order to be available and present for the ones you love.

Tonight, think of ways to incorporate stillness, connection and self care into your busy life. Write down anything that does not serve you. Perhaps there are things that are just schedule fillers that can be released to create the space needed to be still. At first it may be uncomfortable, but stick with the practice. What will result is a deeper connection to yourself and the opportunity to truly be there for another.