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Inspiration & News

 


Sunday
Jul252010

Concentration & Mindfulness = Wisdom


But concentration practice, however strong and satisfying, is incomplete without mindfulness to complement and deepen it.  By itself, it resembles a state of withdrawal from the world.  Its characteristic energy is closed rather than open, absorbed rather than available, tracelike rather than fully awake.  What is missing is the energy of curisotiy, inquiry, investigation, openness, availability, engagement with full range of phenomena experienced by human beings.  This is the domain of mindfulness practice, in which onepointedness and the ability to bring calmness and stability of mind into and understanding the  interconnectedness of a wide range of life experiences.

Concentration can be of great value, but it can also be seriously limiting if you become seduced by the pleasant quality of this inner experience and come to see it as a refuge from life in an unpleasant and unsatisfactory world.  You might be tempted to avoid the messiness of daily living for the tranquility of stillness and peacefulness.  This of course would be an attachment to stillness, and like any strong attachment, it can lead to delusion.  It arrests the development and short-circuits the cultivation of wisdom.

Page 74, "Wherever you go there you are - mindfulness meditation in everyday living", by  Jon Kabat-Zinn

Monday
Jul192010

The Stampede is over..... and life just goes on

Stampede 2010 is over and all must go back to the way it once was......  Sleep and limited deep fried food!!

Stamped'in is fun don't get me wrong but it is just like all vacations you are so busy that when its over you need another vacation to rest and painfully attempting to avoid the reality of having to go back to work for whatever reason.

However, this time it was different for me.  I no longer really have a "Real" day job.  It is a refreshing feeling not dreading sunday nights or monday mornings and I absoultely love it!!!

Don't get me wrong I obviously have to do something.  I get up around 7:15am do a little work, some yoga, clean, get ready, maybe shop or go out to do a make-over.  It is different everyday; I'm busier now than I was when I was an employee and I feel more like I get to see and feel more fully what life just "is".

I think it is the feeling of freedom that makes me strive to succeed.  I think about going back as an employee and it doesn't feel right.  I have seen something else; something I like better and I will do what I need to make it work.

The stampede is over and life goes on there should not be good nor bad just "is". 

 

Sunday
Jul112010

Year of the Belt Buckle

As the summer is upone us the events start to happen weddings, parties, vacations you know what I am talking about.

In Calgary it is Stampede time. Trade marked as the "Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth".  It includes pancake breakfasts through out the city every day during the 10 day event.  Top music artist perform by the midway, and in Nashville North(party central). 

If you want to see some good old Stamped'in the Grandstand is for you.  Want to see the horses up close visit the Agricultural exhibit.  The Super Dogs are always there and brand new this year (probably the BEST FREE show I have ever seen) The 

ACROBATIC ICE SHOW: A ROCK ‘N ROLL FANTASY

 

 

Definetly worth the trip!!

Up until recently I never realized how much I can love this time of year.  So much to do, eat, socialize, drink and of course dress up!! I love dressing up as a cowgirl.  The hats, shirts, boots and oh yes the belts!

Each year I come away with a few more staples for Stamped'in, this year was no different this will br the year know as the "Belt Buckle"!!

What an accessory big, sparkly and shiny, how did I not realize how awesome they were before?

In reflection I think I rejected the Stamped for many years...  Too cool?  Having a great friend who is so excited over something, is hard to avoid getting on their wagon.

Thanks Flo for the awesome eye opening cowboy fun!!  2010 Stamped has just begun and will only get to be more FUN!!

Friday
Jul022010

The beauty of camping....

So for my Champagne birthday I decided to go camping with my best friends Mike and Flo.  The beauty of camping is Everything!!  The trees, campfire, birds and fresh air.  The fact that everyone was able to just be in that moment and not anywhere else.  Whethter reading a book or just sitting by the fire we could be in the moment. 

Except for my bitching.  Yes as anyone who knows me knows I complain and maybe a lot?  It's not that I want too, because I actually do annoy myself.  It is a habit, a habit trained over many years of working for the man.  I acknowledge I have a problem it is the first step.

The beauty in camping is being in the moment enough to see when you are leaving it and are able to acknowledge it.  If I can hold on to the beauty of camping, I just might make it to step #2....

Thursday
Jun242010

Step #2 Building Relationships

So the last week has been very eventful. My BFF Flo and I hit up a great little woman's event called "Balance Boundaries & Blahniks". We got some great tips on things like accessorizing, styling, staying positive and the always popular "Friend Vampire". Now if you don't know what a friend Vampire is it is someone that drains you and may cause a lot of negativity in your life. Summary it is okay to get rid of them in a respectful manner.

When I was in grade 6 I had a close friend tell me she didn't want to hang out with me anymore - I was dumped. I remember being so very confused and extremely mad about it. Looking back I can see how I was a friend Vampire and how she was very insightful to be able to put it all together and determine that I was not good for her even at the age of 12.

I know I am not the person I was at 12, 18, or even 24. As of Monday I will be 28 and I am so grateful I have been able to live these last 28 years, learn from them and grow. I have been privileged with the opportunity to make many mistakes, but also privileged to have the opportunity to reflect and observe these mistakes and determine how I can move on in a positive and growing way. I am excited about the future person I will be and all the positive and negative experiences and opportunities I will be lucky enough to see and grow from.

I also took a HUGE leap in my struggle to network this week. Mike brought me to a couple of networking events sponsored by his BNI (Business Networking International) and other BNI chapters in the city. When I was an employee in sales, I could sell the products but I didn't really have to look for the business. Deciding to become self-employed is both scary because of the unknown and extremely exciting on the could be. I focused on getting 4 leads (that was my goal), and I didn't just meet it I surpassed it with 13!!!

Now the trick is booking them in for a facial and make-over with the end outcome as a sale. I got these leads now I gotta work them!!

I also took a nice big step and completed one of my first make-over appointments ever. I booked it by having to ask a somewhat stranger (a waitress I know from a local restaurant), then they even showed up and not only with 1 but 2 friends. It was so much fun. I don't think I realized how much I enjoy doing facials and make-overs (It's not like I haven't had thousands of hours of practice on myself or anything;))

The ladies loved the products (which did not surprise me at all - great products sell themselves). It was so nice to get the practice. I had, had a few practice sessions prior but I still wasn't really confident in my make-over abilities but now I can move past that and work on the next thing perfecting the sale. If I can make money doing something that I am passionate about, I am pretty damn lucky.

Reflecting back over the last week:

My did wells:

I had the opportunity to reflect and truly look at my "old" self with understanding and see what I had been like and know confidentially that I am no longer that person. You can not run away from the past but you can come to terms with it, accept it and move on.

I went out of my insecure shell to my true self and talked. Talked to everyone at the networking events!! As my really close family and friends can tell you I am good at that. Before when I was an employee I didn't have to look for business, and have conversations with strangers. Which is actually kind of sad, since I probably missed out meeting some very interesting people.

The trick is asking the person about themselves and to truly be interested in what they have to say. That's it - after I ask a question - stop talking and listen.

I have some awesome make-overs skills. Everyone looked awesome (they were beautiful even before, but then they were "Hot")

My next times:

I will get everyone's phone number and email - even if no sales where made when I do their make-overs and I am going to bring a watch and stay on time improve efficiency - no matter how fun it was I spent way too much time.