Radically Accepting Ourselves

Radically Accepting Ourselves

It’s been many years now that I’ve been striving toward really accepting myself as I am. This past fall as I went through the personal mastery level of Oracle School, it was the term ‘radical acceptance’ that was brought up often.

Accepting ourselves for who we are in any given moment. Stopping the harsh inner judgement. Loving ourselves with all our flaws and learning to not live within our story, but to take the lessons learned, leaving the story behind, and taking only the positive nuggets of wisdom gained.

January 3rd I’ll continue this journey by going through the INvision Process which is more about reprogramming the subconscious mind and living a unique and inspired life, not only for myself, but to also to guide others do the same.

So when I came across this article written by Anne Lamott it really spoke to me as we get ready to begin a New Year and going on a diet is the #1 thing most set as a goal.

I truly appreciate Anne’s perspective. I no longer weigh myself (can’t even remember the last time I did and I don’t own a scale). But this conditioning of how we eat and what it is all about is something I’m still a work in progress with, though I’m happy to say I feel like I’ve made positive leaps and bounds with it over the years…though yes, I still have my moments, too. But I’ve found that the more I work on my inner world, the more peace I find with who I am, and the more, by default, I want to put into my body, and do for my body, what is good for it.

So I share this from author Anne Lamott….

We need—I need— to have the same little talk we have every year at this time:

I know you are planning to start a diet on Monday, January 1st, I used to start diets, too. I hated to mention this to my then-therapist. She would say cheerfully, ” Oh, that’s great, honey. How much weight are you hoping to gain?”

I got rid of her sorry ass. No one talks to ME that way.

Well, okay, maybe it was ten years later, after she had helped lead me back home, to myself, to radical self-care, to friendship with my own heart, to a glade that had always existed deep inside me, to mostly healthy eating, but that I’d avoided all those years by achieving, dieting, binging, people-pleasing, and so on.

Now when I decide to go on a diet, I say it to myself: “Great, honey. How much weight are you hoping to gain?” Here is what’s true: diets make you fat. 95% of the time. We gain it back, plus 5 lbs.

I may have mentioned several hundred times that I have had the tiniest, tiniest struggle with food and body image for the last–well, life time. Hardly worth mentioning. It is a long story, having to do with childhood injuries to my sense of self, terrible anxiety, and the inability of my parents to nurture my soul: so starving and chastising myself cannot possibly heal this. I hate to say it, but only profound self-love will work, union with that scared breath-holding self, and not a diet that forbids apples, or avocado. Horribly, but as usual, only kindness and grace–spiritual WD-40–can save us.

Can you put the scale away for a week? Okay, then how about 4 days? I have been addicted to the scale, too, which is like needing Dick Cheney to weigh in every morning on my value as a human being. Can you put away your tight pants, that don’t actually hurt you? Wear forgiving pants! The world is too hard as it is, without letting your pants have an opinion on how you are doing. I struggle with enough esteem issues without letting my jeans get in on the act, with random thoughts about my butt.

By the same token, it feels great to be healthy. Some of you need to be under a doctor’s care. None of you need to join Jenny Craig. It won’t work. You will lose tons of weight quickly, and gain it all back, plus five. Some of you need to get outside and walk for half an hour a day. I do love walking, so that is not a problem for me, but I have a serious problem with sugar: if I start eating it, I sometimes can’t stop. I don’t have an off switch, any more than I do with alcohol. Given a choice, I will eat Raisinets until the cows come home–and then those cows will be tense, and bitter, because I will have gotten lipstick on the straps of their feed bags.

But you crave what you eat, so if I go for 3 or 4 days with very little sugar, the craving is gone. That is not dieting. If you are allergic to peanuts, don’t eat peanuts. Have an apple! Have some avocado.

It’s really okay, though, to have (or pray for) an awakening around your body. It’s okay to stop hitting the snooze button, and to pay attention to what makes you feel great about yourself, one meal at a time. Unfortunately, it’s yet another inside job. If you are not okay with yourself at 185, you will not be okay at 150, or even 135. The self-respect and peace of mind you long for is not out there. It’s within. I hate that. I resent that more than I can say. But it’s true.

Maybe some of us can try to eat a bit less, and walk a bit more, and make sure to wear pants that do not hurt our thighs or our feelings. Drinking more water is the solution to all problems. Doing a three minute meditation every day will change your life. Naps are nice.

I’ll leave you with this: I’ve helped some of the sturdier women at my church get healthy, by suggesting they prepare each meal as if they had asked our beloved pastor to lunch or dinner. They wouldn’t say, “Here Pastor–let’s eat standing up in the kitchen. This tube of barbecue Pringles is all for you. i have my own.” And then stand there gobbling from their own tubular container. No, they’d get out pretty dishes, and arrange wonderful foods on the plates, and set one plate before Veronica at the table, a plate filled with love, pride and connection. That’s what we have longed for, our whole lives, and get to create, now, or on the 1st. Wow!

Join me in not starting a diet January 1st. And God bless you all real good, as my pastor always says.

At the Heart of What Matters

It feels incredibly good to get back to a structured day. I do love the holiday season, but as Christmas Day drew to a close yesterday I found myself anticipating with excitement getting back to a routine – to rituals, to projects, and back to being among my tribe.

While I completed the personal mastery level of Oracle School in November, I kept up my daily practice of meditation, asking a daily question, and choosing an oracle card to journal with. And I’m super excited to go on to the next level, Shared Wisdom, which begins in February.

The days leading up to Christmas I didn’t have this ritual in place thinking I needed a break. Perhaps I did in some ways as coming back to it this morning has me even more appreciative of how much it means to me. And how much it helps me feel like me

While in the past, it would have taken me quite a few days to find my center again after the holidays, this year felt different. I was eager to get back to my daily practice. And ready to dive into new projects and intentions I have for the New Year.

It felt like I was getting together with a loved and trusted friend early this morning after doing a 10-minute meditation and then getting out my oracle cards and my journal, and asking Spirit what it is I need to think about as I move into the New Year.

I kid you not…as I was shuffling the deck, thinking about this question and mulling over the last few days I heard in my mind, my tribe. The card that presented itself? Yup! The Tribe.

And this is the at heart of things for me. Connecting with my tribe because it’s truly what feeds my soul and it’s a value that I have in making a difference in the lives that I can. Like all of you, and so many of you I heard from lately with my blog posts, and my newsletter and how you look forward to what I share.

My Tribe, is also my connection I have with how I define Spirit and how I am a part of Spirit. As I understand that more and more, the more deeply I am connected to my definition of Spirit, which is a part of me, the more I truly am living the life I’m meant to live, because this is how I see a meaningful life.

So I’m feeling my heart full with being back to what matters to me – here in my special space – my zen writing cottage – thinking about ways in which I’ll stay connected with you in the New Year and what this year will bring.

In early January I’ll be doing a free webinar, and you are invited! I’m still working out a title for it, but it will be all about opening to the gift of transitional periods in our lives, sharing ways in which you can tune into your intuition, and how you can begin to live a life that is meaningful to you. I hope you can join me. Stay tuned for date and time coming soon.

And lastly…I’ve been tweaking many pages of my website for quite a few weeks now and invite you to take a peek and my new home page, which I think is more simplified and inviting. I hope you think so, too!

Hoping this day after Christmas has you coming back home to the center of what matters most to you…

With love and gratitude,


When Dreams Come True in Unexpected Ways

When Dreams Come True in Unexpected Ways

It was 1977 and 1978 that I played the flute in my high school band. My flute was different than other’s had, as it was the most beautiful color that looked more like an antique silver.

It was the winter of 1978 when the love of my life would walk through the gymnasium doors during a basketball game where I was playing flute during half-time. Though I didn’t know it at the time.

He was four years older than me, having just graduated from the same high school six months earlier. My whole freshman year and he being a senior, I would often find a way to make sure I could pass him in the hallway. I was smitten with him all the way to my toes!

But alas, I didn’t think he really knew I existed. Or perhaps as I realize now, he too, was quite shy, like me.

After that basketball game I’d find myself walking home with my best friend and my flute case in hand. Just as we were crossing the bridge, one block from my home, that guy I’d been smitten with pulled up in his large brown Pontiac. With those bluer than blue eyes, and a smile that melted my heart he said, “Would you like a ride home?” 

My knees wobbled and I stammered, “But I’m almost home,”  pointing straight ahead. Thank goodness for my wise friend standing next to me, who held my secret of this crush I’d had for so long. She gently stuck her elbow in my side and said, “I can walk the rest of the way and wait at your house for my mom to pick me up.” 

That is the last time I remember my flute playing an important role in my life. In 1984 I married that apple of my eye and we’ve been married for 33 years now (and will be together 39 years as of this January).

Over the years I’ve pined over playing the flute again. But I’d sold it a few years after I got married and often times regretted the decision. And a few times I even did a bit of research to see if I could find a similar flute again.

That special silver flute wasn’t meant to come back into my life. My leaning more and more into ancient wisdom teachings and wanting to be more connected with nature, I’ve felt the pull toward a simpler life for quite a few years now.

And sometimes dreams come true in new and unexpected ways…and feel more in alignment with how far you’ve come and what is of importance at this stage of your life.

In high school, the thought of a Native American flute would have never crossed my mind. But this is the grace and beauty of expanding and evolving in who we are and what matters…

And the gift of this EarthTone Native American flute from High Spirits Flutes gifted to me by my mom this Christmas has touched a special place in my soul. It calls to me often beckoning me to sit for a few moments and play.

With the recent passing of my sweet Kylie the day after Thanksgiving, it was the last week or so that I wanted to learn the best I could how to play Silent Night  after my mom said I should play it for Kylie because she knew she would hear it.

In my newsletter this week I shared a special holiday message from me and Miss G, along with my debut of playing  a short version of Silent Night on my flute…and so I share with you too…

Merry Christmas to each of you and thank you for being here on my blog, reading my stories, listening to my oracle readings, and for all your love and support.

Much love and gratitude,

Barbara (and Miss G!)