Beauty and the Bland

I would like to share about a walk I went on recently in a city that lies on top of an engineered landfill. The homes all look the same, and there is generic shopping center after shopping center.

In other words, the general scenery is more bland than iceberg lettuce.

But the sweet job I landed in this city is worth the eye boredom.

I have to cross a bridge in order to get home. On this particular day traffic was still high after work, and there was no way I was going to sit idle on a bridge in earthquake friendly California. So I drove with intuition around the neighborhood I worked in, pulled over, and started walking.

I came across a trail by more bland homes, and ended up walking on a path parallel to a small body of water.

Then things shifted as I paid attention.

And here is a little bit of what I captured.

 

 

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It ended up being a really nice walk! I had some good music on the headphones, embraced the chilly weather, and searched for pretty plants.

As you can see, I was able to find them.

It reminded me of life-we are not always in the midst of blatant beauty.  It is not always right there in our face and for the most part, most of us don’t really pause to capture it in our day to day lives.

But it IS there, and it is only when we begin to set the intent to find it that things will start to step forward to us. Maybe a really bright gorgeous piece of fruit at the grocery store that also smells delicious. A passing moment when you walk by a stranger, and there is a brief exchange of smiles.

Think about it. What are the little things that you find beautiful? The things that give you the feels? I actually have some of those things written on a memo in my phone to bring me joy. I also jot down moments of unexpected enchantment to remind me that there is still the little girl in me whose soul likes to be fed.

More importantly, there is the adult that I am, who needs to be fed.

It is important to find some beauty amidst the bland.

This is another way to access your point of peace.

Maggie xo

Contact me today to receive support with accessing your personal point of peace!

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Las Lineas

Man…Women rock.

We love hard, we feel bravely, and are so good at creating structure out of chaos.

I was very much reminded of all of this today.

We are beautiful.

I would like to share a piece I wrote recently published by Kim Baker Gomez.

A beautiful friend with a beautiful heart.

I hope that it reminds you, that you are beautiful too.

Las Lineas-the Lines

They tell you I have laughed more often than the average person.

They show you I have cried perhaps just the same.

They reveal the lineage of my brown skin and the resulting adaptability that lineage provides; keeping me looking younger than I actually am.

They do not fully reveal all those unwashed nights on the pillow, the lack of water, and sometimes excessive partying.

With that said, they fully reveal grace.

Las lineas. The lines. They speak for me in ways I can no longer recall for myself.

How can something so special, and unique to each of us, not be embraced?

But I have never viewed them as my enemy, and just as the lines on the palms of my hands have a path to reveal and a story to tell, they do too.

In my mind when I look in the mirror I see las lineas as love specific to the way I express it. Openly, clumsily at times, but never afraid to get up from the fall.

I simply do not see them as outward connectors to the negatives we are bombarded with about aging. I view them as positively beautiful connectors into the windows of my soul.

I look in the mirror and see the lines reaching into the corner of my eyes….so thin, and not quite noticeable at first glance of my face. Yet at the same time, my lines are so very much earned, and so very much filled with the strength of my experiences over the 37 years I have been on this planet.

NMM

 Maggie xo

 

Adulting: Holding on to Your POP

 Who you are and where you are are two different things.

What we believe about ourselves, and the core of who we are does not change just because our surroundings and life might. How comforting is that?

For me, it is very comforting.

The times I choose to remember that.

You see, it can become a mental habit to equate ourselves to where we are externally in life. If we have a job we don’t love or make less than we desire it is easy to think we might not be worth finding something better. If you are in your 30s+ and single, there are people who will always be confused as shit by this, or if you are in a relationship but choose not to get married there are people who will always be uncomfortable as shit by this. Married? Where is the kid? Kid? You just want one?

No way.

Here comes that shit again.

Amigos,

Embrace everything YOUR soul desires. It is not anyone else’s to do so!

And just as you are-you are simply you, and you are just fine.

The major parts of your heart, character, and natural gifts cannot be shaken when life moves you. In any direction, good or not so good. Even finding that exciting job that makes you happy to get up in the morning, and the compensation to match, or finding that person who gives you all the butterflies will not change that.

It adds to the you you already are, but it does not change it.

Finding your POP, your point of peace, is all about grounding into this part of yourself that cannot be shaken when life moves you.

Because here is what happens when you do not learn ways to come back to yourself.

You will generally witness yourself in the midst of two moods:

In an extremely positive mood, or in an extremely negative one.

This is not a healthy way to live, but many of us do it because we have not learned to gently hold and care for our core. We give it to our circumstances, mostly being other people, and allow it to be shaped.

So how do we exercise this form of self-preservation?

Well,

IT TAKES WORK.

You need to continuously work on accessing your POP!

Here are a few ways to get started:worth

1) Know Thyself-if you are aware of your strengths and weaknesses you can share your strengths with others while working on your challenges.

2) Compete with yourself-stop comparing yourself to other people in your life and set goals that reflect where you are and where you want to be. You are your own worst critic right? So why not be your own best cheerleader too?

3) Accept your feelings-what? I always accept my feelings! You might, but guess what else you do? You run with them, parade them around and magnify them!  Stop taking one moment of frustration and turning it into a “bad day.” Accepting how you feel is actually a great first step to letting go of feelings and thoughts that are no longer serving you.

If you hold on to the core of who you are, and care for it, everything that stems from it will be authentic, organic, strong as hell, and true.

No matter where you are.

Maggie xo

The Point of Peace

Dear You,

Sensitive Soul

Anxious Mind

Frustrated See-er

Global Feeler

Lover

Fighter

Thinker 

Healer

I know lately you might be looking around at what is going in our world and feel a number of things…and I understand. I feel it too. I am not all of these things all of the time, but I am all of these at different points in time.

It is so important to try to hone in the weight of super heavy emotions, and do what needs to be done to lift them off. With everything that we are it can feel so tough, but we are not the ones experiencing the toughest. There are people suffering in real time, right now, and for those of us who feel it yes, it is a legitimate feeling. But if you are reading this, you are also mostly safe right now. The tears are being shed in the safety of our homes, apartment, office, and cars.
Go ahead and feel it, but please don’t forget this:
1) You have the power to take action with the things you feel are wrong with this world. You have a voice, you have social media, maybe a little extra income, or some extra time.
2) Your getting back to that calmer place inside of you, your point of peace, WILL make a difference in the world.

How?

As you step outside into daily life, going to the office, getting groceries, or taking your kids to the park…your peace could very well become the one refreshing, or comforting thing to someone you cross paths with. Think about how caring for yourself has a ripple effect on the every day interactions you have with other people who could very well be challenged just the way you have been.

This is how you make a difference.

Maggie xo

M.A.S.H.

I have a student at my work who is a little negative Nancy. She never seems entirely happy from moment to moment, nor easily satisfied. For example, one day we were coloring during free time, and she mentioned wanting to have her old teacher back. I asked what did she like about her that made her want be back in her class? She replied “Well she let me draw and color during free time.”

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Gotcha…

A few days ago it ended up being just us two girls and a handful of boys in program. For first period they all wanted to play basketball. Normally I play with them (grandma shots and all), but of course, my negative Nancy was unhappy that we all wanted to do something physically active…during physical activity time. She slumped onto a bench nearby and crossed her arms. I decided to see if I could help shift her mood.

“Have you ever played M.A.S.H.?”

I took out some paper from my work binder and gave her first turn. She chose potential jobs, number of children, pets, and “types” of future husbands. When it was time to count off she declared that picking a type of husband was the hardest part.

I might have to agree with her on that one.

When we finished the first round she was appalled at the job she landed. “Whyyyy did I get THAT job?!” Imitating her signature whiny tone I answered.

“Becaaaause, you CHOSE that job!”

Then, it was my turn.

Now this is where it got kind of cool. My girl initially picked some pretty mediocre shit. She had never played the game, and was understandably unfamiliar with how to fully engage it. So as my turns went on, and I had named a horse as one of my pets, “a wild warrior” as a potential husband, and one of my jobs getting paid to travel it started to sink in for her.
There were no limits.

What were her dreams like at this age?

Amazing!

We played back and forth for the entire period. By the time we got to her last turn she was clapping in delight, as she landed an “artistic guy,” a pet dragon, zero kids, and a job as an artist. When I asked if she thought these things could come true she shrugged, but then mentioned with a slight smile, “But it’s what I WANT.”

 Later that night I thought about our time together and how my turns went. The initial ones were more in the area of magical outcomes, more silly to reflect the lightness of the game to my Nancy, but also with a hint of truth to which I would not share with even the closest of friends. Sometimes children keep the best secrets. One turn midway I realized was what I thought I wanted, and the very last turn ended up being most of things I currently, really wanted.

Well, maybe I can’t have a pet wolf.

But perhaps one day I will have the opportunity to pet one.

Maggie xo

37

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I find peace in the wind and a smile in the sun. I make conversation with the trees and giggle with the animals. A day of fulfillment does not begin with how the world greets me, but how I greet it. It becomes beautifully mutual that way.

The richest moments in my daily life might entail feeling the light from a chat with a cashier, or a brief moment when I sense my presence on this planet fully understood from someone I admire. They often understand it, more than I do right now.

For it is in the little things that create the knowing there is something out there, bigger than myself.

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And that’s what makes me happy.

Maggie xo

Beauty and the Bleh

Getting out of bed at 1pm. Netflix marathons on the couch at my sister’s, ignored texts, and empty smiles. Late night potato chips and early morning roll overs thinking:

Bleh.

How am feeling like this when truly my life isn’t so bad? Or I guess I should say how am I NOT feeling much at all? New job. Bleh. New people in my life and places to explore. Bleh. A generous friend provides a space for me to live until I figure out my next move. Bleh. Thank you friend, but also, Bleh.

After about a month of the Bleh on my shoulders, and in my mind, I took a job dog sitting. This giant mastiff was unaware of his size and from the way he “talked” to me I’m not sure he even realized he was a dog. I would take him outside and watch him roam around the lush green property. The early morning check-in granted me the chance to see the sun come up. I felt a twinge of something familiar in my gut.

The feeling of content, and of being safe.

Then I started to feel excited about coming to this spot every day for the next week and convening with nature. The excitement turned into hope, and that hope turned into a smile. The Bleh was still there, but I could feel it struggling to stay on my shoulders with every effort I made to really sink into small but meaningful actions of self-care. Over the course of a few weeks the Bleh, still trying to cling but no longer able to hold on as tightly, started to slowly slide off of me, and float away.

I was able to connect with the beauty in my world again. Beauty in the new opportunities that had come up due to the lost ones, and beauty in the relationships that carried me through the Bleh. But also, the beauty of rolling out of bed, down the stairs, into my car, and on to simply being out. Thank god for the sunrise, sunsets, and giant dogs.

Maggie xo

The Art of Letting Stuff Go

I sto17349184_10155134360375816_572837452_ood staring at it. Someone on Craigslist had made an offer. It was still fairly new and oh so comfortable. I felt the tears make their way to my throat. I wanted to cry but sent it all back down. It bothered me that I was able to move out of an apartment in two hours, chuck a third of my things during the move, and yet here I stood getting choked up about selling a mattress.

Although I knew it was the right decision the emotional part of me that was oddly attached kept taking jabs. “Don’t get rid of it just yet…wait until next week, or next month, or just keep it…it’s YOUR mattress.” I had to ignore this part and focus on the logic. In order to help the friend who was helping me, the mattress needed to go so we could coexist for longer, and more comfortably.

Oy. Why am I so sad over this. The emotional part kept holding on in my thoughts like a young child clinging to their favorite toy “don’t take away my treasured thing!” The logical part had a firmer tone, presenting itself in a matter-of-fact type manner “in order for you to have a roof over your head you have to get rid of your treasured thing.” One I was ignoring, and the other was anchoring me from completely losing my shit as I navigated my way out of an intense series of unfortunate events.

Then I realized there was another voice that I had allowed to get lost in the fog. The voice of intuition. The voice that knew in my soul, not my mind the “why” of the “whys.” She was always soft spoken and often sent me signals that it was time to check in through a feeling in my gut or chest, and even my throat at times. What did she have to say about all this?

After taking a mindful moment it hit me that aside from my car, the mattress was the last of my own space. It was the last thing I owned that was mine to rest in, mine to think in, mine to toss and turn in on those sleepless nights, and sleep in during those dream-filled mornings. The emotional part needed to be sad about that. It needed validation. So I cried over the stupid mattress, and just as quickly as I cried the slight feeling of grief dissipated too.

I could feel it clearly in my mind now, and in my gut.

If you want to have what you need dear soul, you are going to need to let go of many things you want. 

This included my mattress.

Maggie xo

when She is Big

I would like to share something written by a woman I admire, and have had the pleasure to work with over the last few months.

She is Big because she is not afraid to dig deep, and uses what she finds to positively move forward! I am proud of this Calla gal.

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When I am Big
I am a mindful, centered, positive creator.
I am helpful and giving to others in a way that doesn’t drain me or steal my energy.
I am dynamic and energetic with a thirst for life and change.
I am kind and compassionate from a place of love and not fear or anger.
I am strong and truthful and authentic and able to express my position with words of wisdom.
I am free from the shackles of societal and familial pressures and forge my own path based on the whispers of my Heart.
I am slow moving through each present moment with a quiet mind and an open heart.
I am uplifted because the universe has my back and I put my wholehearted trust in that Divine Power.
That is who I am when I am Big.

Vanessa, a Callavida Gal

Unclearly 36

They say there is always some truth behind “just kidding,”emotion behind “I don’t care,” and knowledge behind “I don’t know.”

 I made two huge decisions. I  made them based on how I was being treated in both my own home and at a new job. Simply put, I was being treated unfairly. It has taken me a long time to really, like, REALLY stand up for myself. I do it now in a way that when any fear or self-doubt comes to the surface it immediately becomes transmuted, because I have done the inner work to let that shit easily go.

What’s not easy at times however, is what happens after I stand up for myself…

Roommate trying to get me to pay a large bill I had nothing to do with? Never cleaning up the kitchen and always late on rent? Now the utilities are turned off?! I can’t live here, it is not healthy for me. Time to move out, even if I don’t have another home of my own to immediately move into.

New job starts off with the agreement of typical full-time hours, and time to ease into things as it will end up being a demanding position that pulls me in various directions throughout the day….I worked almost 40 hours in 4 days, now you are calling my personal cell all weekend, on my days off, when you just gave me a work phone? I’m exhausted. My chest hurts. I can’t work like this, it is not healthy for me. So let me share with you how I feel. I am overwhelmed. This is too much and I work hard. You don’t care? Go find another job? Deuces.

Remaining in both those situations with no hope for change did not align with the person I represent myself to be and I for damn sure was not “Mastering Self-Care” during this time. As my mom told me, I needed to drink from the same cup I pour out of for my coaching clients. For the women who might not have all the answers but can feel it when things are not right. Who don’t play it safe and stand up for themselves. For herself. For She. For we. Even if the risk might be high, she knows the greater risk of not creating healthy changes for herself will end up costing her more. So I left the two things that  essentially define us as we get older, and am left with just myself.

Eh, not too shabby; I kind of like myself…

I will share though, that right now I am feeling a bit lost. What do I do beyond the basic mundane of finding work and a roof? I am unclear as to what exactly “settling down” looks like for me. I don’t know what I want. I don’t know.

And you know what?

That’s okay.

Just as I did when I was 35 I will keep it moving in forward confusion.

Because the last time I did this-the most amazing things happened, and not only did I create positive change in my own life, it ended up trickling into the lives of others.

Being unclear might be the best thing that is happening to me right now. I just need to keep trying. I am definitely a butterfly mind, and I know what comes next.

Something amazing.  Something better.

Maggie xo