On Thursday I wrote about taking a step backwards so I can take steps forward.

So I’ve been staying true to morning me time.

It takes time to change course. An ocean liner or semi truck doesn’t turn on a dime as the saying goes (but I’ve always wondered… do they turn on a penny, nickel or quarter? Or now maybe that we have Loonies and Toonies? Yes only in Canada… and yet again… I digress…..)

I’m still rumbling with my story. The cover of Rising Strong by Brené Brown includes these 3 sentences:

The Reckoning. The Rumble. The Revolution.

I’m sitting with the rumble. I’m looking forward to the revolution though I admit with a little trepidation. My heart is in my throat. And you know what? That’s ok. It’s a good feeling to know I’m “Daring Greatly” at the same time I am “Rising Strong”. “I Thought It Was Just Me” but thank the universe (and Brené Brown) I discovered it isn’t. And I am learning to embrace “The Gift Of Imperfection”.

Perfect start to the weekend. Onward.

Copyright 2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

All book titles are by Brené Brown

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It’s Thursday. And today I’m taking a step back. Because that’s how I’m taking my next step forward.

For the last 6 months plus I’ve been trying to save the world. Or parts of it. All good intentions. Trying to balance everything, juggle the balls, keep those plates spinning. And I got caught up in it. I believed if I just did this one more thing, or tried this a little differently everything would fall into place. The world would be saved. And… I’d feel better. I’d feel validated. My expectations would be met!!

It has slowly dawned on me that there is more involved than just my expectations.

I can’t help people that really don’t want to be helped. I can’t really fix anything let alone anyone. I can only be a catalyst and support the process.

Ouch

I felt a little raw, a little exhausted, a little sad and a little angry. Oh come on who am I kidding. Not a little, a lot.

So I sat down and over time I wrote. Scathing thoughts about why I was right and things and others were obviously wrong. I knew the perspective was skewed and I didn’t care.

The other day I picked up my copy of Brené Brown’s Rising Strong again and opened it to where I’d left off weeks ago. I highly recommend this book by the way.

And then I realized it. I’d written my SFD (shitty first draft). The light came on and those dark scary and angry shadows faded away. I realized I’m “Rumbling” with my situation right now. And that’s exactly what I should be doing. It’s all good. Because “curiosity is a shit-starter. But that’s ok. Sometimes we have to rumble with a story to find the truth.”

It’s not funny or coincidental how the right things or people or animals show up at the right time if you are open and willing to receive, its magically wonderful. (And actually they show up anyway. It’s up to us to recognize them). A few days ago it was the book and I, thankfully, was open and ready to receive.

So today I took a step back and that was to let the world save itself for a bit and go back to my morning routine of me first. Yes. Me first. No guilt. No shame. No apology.

Because sitting here on my stoop with my dog, my book, a cup of tea and the birds singing is what I need to fill my soul so I can do what I do best. And that is being me. When I’m the best me I can be that’s when I make a difference in the way that meets my expectations.

So… one step back to take more steps forward. Sometimes that’s how the road is, detours can be beautiful things. In the end, it’s all good. It’s all in how you look at it.

Today I’m rising like air.

Copyright 2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

I love my dad.

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Photo by Carl Attard on Pexels.com

He has done pretty much all the things a dad is supposed to. Like….

  • Took care of me, even when I was sick.

  • Gave me stomach dropping upside down rides.

  • Drove me crazy.

  • Always let me win when we wrestled.

  • Let me stay up past my bed time when mom was out.

  • Stood up for me when others didn’t.

  • Worried about me even when he didn’t need too.

  • Taught me things, like the importance of family and a love for music.

  • Embarrassed me in front of my friends.

  • Hugged me when my heart was broken.

  • Kept my feet on the ground but let my head venture into the clouds on occasion.

 

 

We’ve argued, disagreed, said things that hurt and we couldn’t take back. We’ve lived, learned, laughed and loved together. In short, we’ve been father and daughter… family – perfectly imperfect in our own unique way.

He is part of what has made me who I am today, and I am part of what makes him who he is today.  Thank you Dad.

After all these years together, my gift doesn’t come with wrapping paper. To day we’ll share time together – to love simply and to simply love. Maybe that is the greatest gift of all.

Happy Father’s Day Dad.

I love you.

©2018 Rise Like Air/J Fries

 

 

Ebb and flow

Come and go

To and fro

Above and below

Friend and foe

Reap and sow

Learn and grow

Dedicated to two wonderful individuals who also form an formidable duo Debbie Hyde and David Durant of It’s All Good. Two people who have a practise of making their transitions absolutely amazing.  Here’s to going with that ebb and flow we call Life.

Cheers! And remember. It really is all good. It’s just in how we choose to look at things.

©️2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.

Mindfulness – a term and practise I am quite familiar with, a diligent pursuit of full presence, observance and space.

But somewhere along my path I began trading mindfulness for mind-full-ness, falling for the false belief if I could just “push through”,  go a “little harder”, a “little longer” that it would would be over and life would “calm down”.

Mind-full-ness is  the human brain on overload, like a mass of writhing hissing grey snakes, impatient for the return to the serenity of mindfulness.

In a discussion yesterday I pointed out the human capability of being able to hold very conflicting beliefs and still being able to rationalize them when the same beliefs are pointed out to them. Last night I realized the conversation just might have held a message as or more important for me than him.

It’s not about doing it all

It’s about pausing

It’s not about being frantic

It’s about paying attention

It’s not about reacting

It’s about observing, anticipating

 

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Everyday countless distractions beg for our attention, our energy and our time, filling our minds making it virtually  impossible to be fully present, focussed, aware.  And while our minds feel full to the point of explosion, an emptiness remains and we begin to feel constantly one step behind life, constantly trying to catchup, catch on and catch a break.

So over the last week I’ve begun the practise to bring my mind that is full to bursting back to a place of mindfulness. I am ready for the journey – at work, at home, in the park, in the car, with people, with life.

Life may still be busy, crazy, chaotic, adventurous, filled with challenges and unexpected moments, but I will be present for them. And most importantly, I will remember to be present for me. I already know that when I am present for myself first, I am more present for others.

One thing at a time, one choice at a time remaining present, forgiving myself when I stray and lovingly bringing myself back, mindfully.

Smile

Breathe

Return

Repeat

After all, it really is all good, it’s just how you choose to look at things. Today, choose to do so mindfully and rise like air.

 

©2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

Jewel, I love this job! You know, writing you every day.

Do you know how I got it?

I just started doing it.

And that’s all anything takes.

Magic follows,

  The Universe

Pause…

Reflect…

Absorb…

The truth contained in the note from The Universe via Mike Dooley  that arrived in my inbox yesterday morning was as simple as it was brief.

I just started doing it.

Magic follows.

I recognized the truth because as I reflect on the years gone by that’s how so many of my adventures, big or small, fanciful or serious began.

Adventures like

  • going after a job
  • starting my Rise Like Air blog
  • volunteering with Life Vest Inside
  • trusting myself
  • being more independent
  • parallel parking
  • starting a novel
  • public speaking
  • forgiving myself
  • gardening
  • painting
  • forgiving others
  • dancing
  • smiling
  • paying it forward
  • keeping the boundaries I set

That doesn’t mean the adventure we call life doesn’t have puddles and pot holes. The adventure is all about learning  and adjusting, growing and experiencing, gaining perspective and insight and so much more. Magical.

What if…

We believed

What if….

We risked

What if…

We tried

What if…

We just start

What if…

We just start doing “it”…

The “it” that attracts us…

The “it” that distracts us…

The “it that makes us smile…

The “it” we want to talk on and on about…

The “it” we are passionate about…

The “it” that ignites us…

The “it” that helps others…

What if…

That really IS all anything takes…

What if…

You really just have to start…

And what if…

Magic follows…

I mean really, how can it not? But you’ll never know unless you take the risk, take the plunge and begin, and let the magic unfold. After all, it’s all good. It’s just in how we choose to look at things. How are you going to look at today? What if…

©2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

There are many ways to heal. Eventually, any externally imposed guidelines for how to become well must be consistent with your own inner guidance system. You must learn to support yourself through self-respect, not through restrictive regimens filled with should and oughts that feel punitive.  January 14th Women’s Wisdom Perpetual Flip Calendar Christiane Northrup,M.D.

Reading this on the 14th was really a bit of an aha moment for me. I was already planning my blog about Tuesdays With Morrie so health, healing, life and death were already on my mind. This message really made sense to me in an important way – because I think it’s a very simple idea that far too many of us forget, or don’t even recognize to begin with.

The importance of finding a balance between how we choose to heal.  As Morrie says in Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom, “The culture we have does not make people feel good about themselves. And you have to be strong enough to say if the culture doesn’t work, don’t buy it.”  Far too often when we are faced with health issues even from minor all the way up to crisis, we put our decisions in someone else’s hands. Whether out of doubt, fear or exhaustion or simple lack of understanding that what we believe and how we feel actually matters!

It’s important to find the balance and like most things in life, there isn’t just one path or answer on how to do that. But the first step certainly can be that simple little aha moment that I had.  That it matters. That beginning to pay attention and to care and to take some responsibility matters and is possible.

Taking an active part in our health, learning to support ourselves, and to support others through self respect, love and kindness provides a healing that medical science might not be able to measure in meticulous scientific terms – at least yet. But like most things in life, healing arrives in many different forms along many different paths.  We might not be able to cure everything, but that does not mean that very real healing can occur.

 

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ser·en·dip·i·ty
noun: the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way.
“a fortunate stroke of serendipity”
synonyms: (happy) chance, (happy) accident, fluke; luck, good luck, good fortune, fortuity, providence; happy coincidence
(Thank you Google)
Do you listen to your intuition, that “gut feeling”?
Do you notice the little things and listen to that little thought that just jumps into your head?
Or the little voice that seems to come from the vicinity of your shoulder?
Have you noticed when you allow yourself to be open to positive possibilities, things just “arrive at the right time”, just when you need them? Some might say serendipity…
Experience has taught me it’s usually a very good idea to notice, because once you start noticing, you’ll begin to notice more. It can  take a very long time for things to align and for me to connect the dots to see opportunity. Often I am completely unaware of the process unfolding before me until it’s completed.
For instance, my mum loves to read, so, I tend to scan the used book tables for treasures. It was on one of these excursions that Tuesday’s With Morrie by Mitch Albom caught my attention. I’d heard of the title and accolades about the book. It was twenty-five cents well spent.
When she gave it back to me it was with the gentle recommendation “you really should read this, it was excellent! It’s the kind of book you’d love.”  I smiled and said thank you.  I was very glad she’d enjoyed it. At home, I put it in the bathroom thinking I’d get around to reading it some day.
When guests have visited our washroom they’ve often commented,  “Oh, you’r reading Tuesday’s With Morrie! Isn’t it a great book!” To which I’ve responded honestly, I hadn’t read it yet.
Each time I cleaned I’d move the book as I dusted and then put it back with  the bathroom reading material. Sometimes I’d think “Maybe I should read it” but most times I simply ignored it. This was my routine for more months than I care to count.
Then a couple of weeks ago as I picked up the book as I was dusting. I had a distinct and very loud thought, “You need to read it now.” I really wasn’t in the mood. As a matter of fact I was in a bit of a funk, but I’ve had enough experience with myself and those loud thoughts.  I picked up the book and opened to the first page.  I smiled and said a little thank you to those thoughts. It was exactly what I needed. Serendipity.
I am so grateful I’ve learned to listen to myself, well, at least some of the time. The book is filled with tidbits that I was ready to hear now – not six months ago, not in a year, but right now. Although, no matter when I read the book, I would still learn from it,  NOW is when the words sunk in. Now is when I was ready to receive it.
“I’m going to say it again,” he said, “Once you learn how to die, you learn how to live.”  He smiled, and I realized what he was doing. He was making sure I absorbed this point, without embarrassing me by asking. It was part of what made him a great teacher.    Tuesdays With Morrie by Mitch Albom
I certainly recommend the book, but what I recommend even more is allowing yourself to be truly aware and open to the serendipity around you. It is always there if you are open to it. The problem is most of us aren’t. We ignore the messages that surround us, and virtually put our fingers in our ears and sing lalalalalalala I can’t hear you.
It can take a while to get tuned in to recognize  and trust the messages and signs around us. But once you make that first connection and recognize it, it becomes easier each time until they jump out at you like a friend waving a welcoming hello!
So when you get that nagging jolt of “maybe I should”, or “maybe I shouldn’t” …. maybe what you should do is take a moment and check it out. Just maybe, exactly what you need is actually right there in front of you patiently ready and waiting for you to simply take the time to pause, listen, and recognize it so you can own it.
Because in the end, it really is all good. It’s just how you choose to look at it.  Go on, be open and let yourself Rise Like Air.
© 2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

As each woman realizes her power she transforms the world – from 2015 WomanSpirit Sourcebook, Patrice Wynn

What do you want to do?

Right now, today, tomorrow, with your time, with your life? Do you want to leave a legacy, relax, learn, travel? Make a difference? But how can you? Just little you.  How can you make a difference? Well…

Have you realized your power yet? 

 

Have you embraced it

Moulded it

Learned how to use it…

 

Do you appreciate it

Fear it

Crave it…

 

Will you reach for it

Believe in it

Trust in it…

 

It is Yours to Choose

To Own

To Realize…

Give yourself permission.  It really is all you need…

 

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Whether you are man, woman, child, adult, it does not matter who or what you are. Realize your Power and you will transform the world.

Rise Like Air.

 

©2018 JFries/Rise Like Air

Honoured to have our reflection shared on this fantastic show, It’s All Good Radio Show wth the hosting duo of Debbie Hyde and David Durant featured each Thursday live on Riviera FM in Torbay UK which is located on the “glorious English Riviera”.  If you missed the show live you can always listen later on Mixcloud.  For this past Thursday’s show, listen here.

 

“The show shines the spotlight on individuals, companies and organisations who are changing the way we live and work for the better.”

 

On Mixcloud

On this week’s show we share with our latest adventures including taking part in the Torbay Cleaner Coasts Initiative Brixham Breakwater clean up and tree planting with Moor Trees at Upcott Farm. We also share the exciting news of The Big Bay Beach Clean scheduled for March 3rd and of the growing interest from people […]

via It’s All Good Radio Show January 11 2018 — It’s All Good Radio Show

 

You can read the blog shared on the show here.

It started out simply enough. A trip across the street to the mall for a few groceries.No big deal, except when you’re getting close to 90 years old, things take a little longer than they used to. They take a little more effort than they used to. But independent and undaunted as always my parents went on their shopping excursion[…] – Twenty Cents Worth

 

via Rise Like Air – Twenty Cents Worth

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