You Raise Me Up – Know Who Loves You

Sometimes people can be cruel. They can be cruel even as adults, due to their own ignorance – ie. the lack of awareness and sensitivity or the misguided intent to harm…and also due to their own limited capacity for feeling the feelings of others. When one is the beneficiary of this unkindness, what is one to do? 

The oh-so-very human instinct is to lash out, to criticize, to confront, to tell off, to blame and rage. You are hurt, and you feel threatened. You may even feel disbelief.

But if you examine this option and find it to be what Buddhists call the ‘wrong action’, either because it diminishes you or the other/s, perhaps the only way through these senseless and heartless attacks is to turn the cheek, as the old saying goes. Hard to do. I believe what it really means is to turn your attention away from this harshness and towards those who have love for you.

Turn towards your lover or a close friend, or if you are a believer in a faith, then turn towards your spiritual source. Be lifted by those who love you.  And know this: you are in better shape than these people who walk through life in a state of disingenuity and loathing.

If you recognize such individuals are no longer good for you, then release them. Disconnect. Let them go. If they are in your world, know your boundaries. Draw them in an assertive but friendly manner. Kill them with kindness, if you must…genuinely. They will hate this, but you will not be actively engaged in the battle they want to evoke in you. You will have risen above this. Power to you.

In Buddhism, ‘evil’ is known as the extreme lack of conscience, the lack of the capacity to feel remorse when going against one’s values. For all kinds of reasons, people lack conscience. But recognize it, look after yourself, and move on. Think of such people with a form of pity or compassion.

Whether you realize it or not, your life is better than that of the other person or people who would seek to harm you. Let those who love you be the ones to lift you up and remind you of how truly spectacular you are. In turn, put your attention on those you love or those who need your love.

This is why we are alive.

PS. All of these versions of this song, ‘You Raise Me Up’ by Josh Groban, are beautiful. But I prefer most the sweet, sweet cover by Yianna Stavrou. This one is for you. Bathe in the beauty of that music. Let it lift your spirit.

You Raise Me Up – Josh Groban

When I am down and, oh, my soul, so weary;
When troubles come and my heart burdened be;
Then I am still and wait here in the silence,
Until you come and sit awhile with me.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up, so I can stand on mountains;
You raise me up to walk on stormy seas;
I am strong when I am on your shoulders;
You raise me up to more than I can be.

You raise me up to more than I can be.

Better When I’m Dancing – Let’s Kick Off Feeling Good, Right Now!

Winter can really take you down…flu, cold, complications, a cough that goes on for weeks. There’s January for you, especially if you’ve been out there commuting on public transport – trains, planes, and automobiles (busses). To hell with that! Now that the January blahs are over, it’s time to feel fabulous – FEBRUARY FABULOUS. 

Continue reading “Better When I’m Dancing – Let’s Kick Off Feeling Good, Right Now!”

There Will Be Time – Love Is Timeless

Grief upon grief upon grief upon grief. We grieve and survive, then grieve again. Every agonizing loss opens our hearts again and threatens to deepen the pain. That’s life. But perhaps it’s worth accepting that this is the way it is. Our memory is long. Perhaps it would be wise to stay in the moment, in the fresh truth and integrity of today’s loss, so that it may be fortify us with the reminder of our capacity for love.

Continue reading “There Will Be Time – Love Is Timeless”

Thank You for Hearing Me – Thanksgiving Isn’t Always A Cause For Celebration, But You Can Be Thankful The Hard Times Made You Who You Are

It’s American Thanksgiving today. Cause for celebration, right? Not necessarily. I’m ruminating on what Thanksgiving means as an expat living in Saudi Arabia, and as someone who has a spotty history with holidays ever since leaving my Canadian homeland in 1996 and taking to the international airways. Let’s face it: sometimes the seasonal holidays set off a sadness. Thanksgiving isn’t always a cause for celebration. But brave and bold Sinead O’Connor reminds us: we can always celebrate ourselves and our strong, strong selves…what we grew out of.

Continue reading “Thank You for Hearing Me – Thanksgiving Isn’t Always A Cause For Celebration, But You Can Be Thankful The Hard Times Made You Who You Are”

I Am Light – What Do You Believe (And Say) About Yourself?

What do you believe about yourself? Where did you acquire those beliefs? From whom? Where along the way did you come to believe in yourself or come to believe you are flawed and fundamentally ‘not good enough’? Here’s a healing song to remind you that you are fundamentally okay as a woman, even in your brokenness. You (we) do not need to apologize for being just who and where you (we) are. We simply are part of it all, and as such we are our own little miracles, our own little bundles of light – whether we see it or not. So, let’s see it and believe it.

In ‘Life’ in How Women Heal, we examine our beliefs about ourselves, and one thing is for sure: we women often tend to be hard on ourselves. I wonder why? Do you wonder why?

India Arie makes clear in the last live video below that this song is about the abuse that she suffered as a child, and a good many women have suffered from some form of abuse or another. What’s worse is the abuse we heap upon ourselves…in our heads.

We expect a lot of ourselves, and the world expects a lot of us. There are so many ways we can become worn down by this. This song is an anti-dote to the voices in our heads that fundamentally are adopted from the criticisms we’ve received along the way, over the course of a lifetime.

Listen to this song and listen again when you take yourself down the rabbit hole and begin to bash yourself. You are not your abuser. You are your liberator. You are the one who needs to exercise that mental muscle, and sometimes that’s just too hard, I know. Music serves beautifully. Singers and musicians do half the work for us; music is like a conduit. Close your eyes and meditate as you listen. Then do it again and again.

Keep a journal and share what comes for you, if you like. I wonder if, over time, your voices of self criticism will become weaker as you counter them with these messages of just how special you are. This is our goal. Self love. All. The. Way.

To you!

I Am Light – India Arie

I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light

I am not the things my family did
I am not the voices in my head
I am not the pieces of the brokenness inside, I am light
I am light

I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light

I’m not the mistakes that I have made
Or any of the things that caused me pain
I am not the pieces of the dream I left behind, I am light
I am light, I am light
I, I am light

I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light

I am not the color of my eyes
I am not the skin on the outside
I am not my age, I am not my race
My soul inside is all light
All light, all light yeah
All light

I am light, I am light
I am light, I am light yeah

I am divinity defined
I am the God on the inside
I am a star, a piece of it all
I am light

Cool Down Rewind – Forgive Yourself and Heal That Longterm Agony

Cool Down, Rewind – Kirsty Almeida – The song that helped me recover from one big clusterf*ck

I was introduced to Kirsty Almeida‘s music in 2011 after what I’ll call…a string of personal disasters in my life – what I’ll call one giant clusterf*ck – most of which was the result of actions I had taken in some senseless attempt to figure myself out after the stock markets crashed down on my life savings in 2008. I’d lost my fortune (almost $100k), made some bad decisions in love and was utterly bereft, regretful, self flagellating and brokenhearted, though good things were happening, too. Yet that just somehow was not enough to make up for what I’d been through.  Continue reading “Cool Down Rewind – Forgive Yourself and Heal That Longterm Agony”

Lost and Found – Grief and Survival

Lost and Found – Katie Herzig

‘Lost and Found.’ Such a torrential, self-evidential lyric. What’s the point? In our deepest losses is where we find our deepest and truest selves. As hard as it is to accept, it is true. Grief is the thing that crushes us and squeezes out more pain than we ever knew we had while pushing us closest to ourselves. What’s a girl to do?

Continue reading “Lost and Found – Grief and Survival”

On Top of the World – Kicking the Sugar Habit

On Top of the World – Imagine Dragons 

When’s the last time you felt on top of the world? What got you there? I know what’s getting me there. The decision to get there. It all starts with a decision. 

On self nurturing, binge eating, thyroid recovery and Type II Diabetes reversal through kicking the addiction to sugar…it’s all about learning how to love yourself differently. Consider this Part I of many…

So, I vowed to ‘give’ myself a summer retreat. I’m going nowhere for holiday. Okay, that’s a lie. I got creative and booked in to a friend’s beautiful flat in the town centre of this beautiful little German town called Bad Nauheim. I’m escaping the Saudi desert heat for almost four of my nine weeks off this summer. I made this decision also so that I could get some rest and get this bod in shape.  

It’s been a busy Year Two on the new job. And I am absolutely mercenary about saving for my first home. It’s time, baby. Keeping that goal close to the chest. Very close. But weight loss is up front and centre and this is about that. I’m getting away to vary the surroundings, but my goal is the same: shedding the heaviness of life.  Continue reading “On Top of the World – Kicking the Sugar Habit”

Tilted – Be Your Beautiful Self and Do What You Want

Tilted – Christine and the Queens

 

 

I discovered this song like all of the music I now find today in this tempestuous sea of digital music that swirls all around – via my favourite streaming service Spotify, in a playlist called UK Hits found on the Spotify UK site (which is what I subscribe to – the music is better – I never thought I would ever say that – but I have become European – the pop music is better – but music is universal, of course).

It suited my mood perfectly yesterday as I was feeling like a complete anomaly staying put in Saudi Arabia for the better part of my summer while expats hi-tail it out of here to be with family and friends in their home countries. I’ve chosen to stay here, save money to fulfill a mission: to buy my first home at 50. How crazy is that? Well, just call me ‘crazy lady’. Because I have lived my life…as I see fit.

What I love about this song is everything said in this Times article about it – it’s about living your life despite how others see it, being yourself no matter how weird it gets and no matter what others think of you. But this feel-good number also gets at all sorts of themes like surviving a relationship ending, which we all have, because you wouldn’t be alive if something didn’t die somewhere along the way. This song reminds me that when life is off kilter and out of whack “I’m actually good” and – guess what – I can’t help it if I have done and do things a little differently from the rest. Continue reading “Tilted – Be Your Beautiful Self and Do What You Want”