Sunday, August 24, 2014

No More Road Blocks

― Michelle Casto

“The only person who is spiritually smart is the one who has learned how to learn, unlearn, and change directions instantly, and start all over again, if your soul calls for it.”

During my time in Moab, I took a ton of pictures. This one is unedited, straight off the iphone and it represents what I've previously worked with.... a few boulders. While they only exist in my mind, they felt as big and real and as impossible to move as these huge formations found in Moab. Looks like I'm going to run the car straight into that rock. Funny, that's how I previously ran my life, moving from one boulder to the next, always waiting for the big one to squash me......

Clearly that wasn't the case, since I am here to write about boulders and things that block our happiness, truth and light. There is a vast difference in how something appears in our lives, how it feels and how it looks. We tend to believe what our eyes tell us and many of us tend to buy into our feelings and emotions as real, rather than use them as guides. Instead of being aware of something feeling as heavy as a rock or as light a feather, we tend to believe that feedback instead of using it as an internal compass. Feelings are designed to point us to to the due North of our Souls. When events, situations, aspects, relationships start to sag, drop, wobble and feel like lead, that's an indication that something's off. It's time to stop, look around assess one's surroundings, and take a break. "What's here? What is this?" The answers vary, so save yourself precious time....don't try to go after them. Just ask and be present. This isn't something to "figure out". The mind becomes like a  quicksand, easily sucking you into past hurts, ripe with pain and abundant victimhood scenes, old tapes, behaviors and patterns. Just notice what's here. Observe your inner and outer surroundings. Get your bearings. You can't go forward if you don't even know where you really are {in your life.....or in your car}. 

How do you get rid of a boulder in the road? You undo all the "earth" that is holding it there in the first place. You see the rock wouldn't exist if it didn't have a bit of soil to rest upon. The soil is like the concrete of our thoughts and beliefs. The more we lament about that block, the heavier the mass becomes. "Bitchin and maonin aint gonna move that boulder, baby." Unlearning, undoing and un-patterning ourselves from the trench we've dug, is what creates a new path. 

This is no easy task. If you aren't a fan of "road construction" you'll loathe this even more. However, the outcome often opens into a much more expanded, smooth road. There may still be some bumps, but if you really follow your thoughts and your knowing, these pebbles will remain small enough to maneuver around and in many cases, they won't even be noticeable. 

We make problems in our lives a lot bigger and more significant than they really need to be. This likely comes from the tendency to defend ourselves, stand up and fight for what we know is right. (Dammit, listen to me!!!!!) When in truth, in every situation and relationship we have the choice of creating a boulder (super stuck energy) or creating a path with other options. If we really pay attention, we can wake up in the middle of our "story" and course correct. 

I'm a previous master boulder builder. I would work myself into a frenzy of deadlines, should's, need to's, ought to's, have to's and.....what if's, "That's never going to happen. Why can't this change? What am I doing wrong? Things NEVER go my way (a previous favorite trench digger.)" I'd worry that I wouldn't get done with a project, meet a deadline or that what I was working on would totally implode (and it often did because I expected it to.) I'd stop myself before I really got started or I'd work to figure out an outcome, because I just "knew" that's how it would go. I look back on some of the things I thought I had to do, thought I knew and believed was set in stone and I must say, I'm shocked..and curious. I now wonder if the outcomes for some situations would have been different if I had been willing to unlearn what I thought I knew then. It's never to too late, I'm unlearning on a daily basis now. 

 I didn't give myself a break and I seldom stopped to consider what other options were around. If I had my eye one something, I was relentless in making it happen. It did happen too, and the results were NEVER what I expected them to be. Nothing is ever how we think it will be when we finally arrive.... that's because energies, circumstances, people, relationships and EVERYTHING is in a constant state of change. We are in motion all the time, no matter if we realize it or not. We appear to be "in one place" but a simple 3rd grade science lesson reminds us that the earth is always turning. It makes sense then that the challenges that become stuck are ones that have we've made that way. They appear to be non-moving because we haven't given them an opportunity to change. We add more weight every time we buy the illusion that the boulder is real.

Please know I am not downplaying my own challenges or those of others. We live in a reality of endless possibilities; terrible events happen all the time.......... so do miracles. Here's where we have to stop, long enough to cleanse the lens of our windshields. What are we looking for? The good or the bad? In our heart of hearts, what do we really believe is TRUE?  In bad situations, are we willing to find and and focus on the positives? In good situations are we willing to see past the illusion of perfection? Health issues, relationships, finances, career, family, are all challenges that all of us face at one time or another. When we get to those places that really challenges us, there is great propensity to erect boulders, especially if we aren't paying attention. 

 Other people's distorted views begin to wear us down and worry zaps our ability to see possible options. We fight against constructs, people, beliefs and ideals that we have zero control over. We add layers of painful words and memories, get mad and fight back, which only continue the cycle, making pebbles into rocks and rocks into boulders, with some formations that continue throughout our lives. What we can do though is get a really clear look at what is real. If we know that erosion can wear down and wear away, why couldn't we apply the same aspect to the energetic boulders in our lives?  Let's reverse the process. Instead of building up, why couldn't we "wear down" and erode the boulder by asking questions, by going where it feels good to go, (instead of spinning in the more of self-limiting thoughts? Ask what small change could yield a different reaction? Experiment, question...."I wonder what it would take to walk away from this toxic person/situation and feel good about myself?" "How would it feel to feel good, right here, right now?" 

When we apply a little water (seeing through a different perspective) and a bit of sunshine (choosing to be happy no matter what is blocking our way) erosion has a chance to do it's job. It takes time too...those arches near Moab didn't form overnight or even during a year. They are still forming, shifting and changing. If we are in constant motion, why couldn't we take charge and apply the forces of our own amazing thoughts, inviting the "erosion" to occur where it is most needed?!?!

When we are willing to unlearn all that we thought we knew, we give ourselves more options and a wider path. That kind of fresh start allows us to dismantle the boulder in our way pebble by precious pebble. In the midst of the unlearning, we will notice that giant block become less solid and more like a mirage. We may have a sense of it still being there, but it isn't nearly as tangible. It's lighter somehow. What may have taken years to make it solid, can be reversed very quickly. 

Are we willing to let go of everything we thought we knew and wanted to believe? Can we just "chunk" the map that we've used for most of our lives and select an upgrade? I believe each of us are already wired with the necessary tools dismantle those blockages. When are willing to reverse the direction we've been going in, try on a new approach, thought, perspective or belief, we erode the mind calcifications that held that sucker in place.  It will start to crumble, piece by piece until it disappears. The road widens out, we notice now that what we thought was in the middle of the road was only off to the side. In this way, we are free to continue on your journey, unobscured, just us, the open road and spaciousness

The really cool thing is that you'll know the next time you see a boulder in the distance, it's there as a reminder of just how powerful you really are. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014


It's been quite the week. I knew it was coming and yet, as much as I hope and wish and savor and push away the inevitable, a new season has begun: we attempt to get in bed earlier, get up earlier and power through our days. The goal is learning, achieving, growing. Once we are in the routine, it's a little easier but getting to that "groove" is not the most fun. 

In the midst of the stretching and tugging ("time for bed" or "time to wake up") I find that my happiness, joy and freedom goes a little undercover. It's still there, but I have to dig a bit harder to connect with it. It's not "bad" or "good", it's just what is..... 

I'm sitting here tonight, watching a beautiful sky and listening to the last drips of water running off the porch. It's truly lovely. I love hearing the chorus of locust, looking at gorgeous green grass and luscious trees, knowing that this too shall pass and one of these days, I'll be cursing the frigid temperature and snow. I loathe cold weather. I love being able to be outside, to breathe fresh air and smell rain. I love the sensory explosion of a storm and how it opens me up inside, reminding me that NOW is where I've been wanting to be. 

My babies are quiet; "Store devices issue" has been sounded. At, we enter "quiet time" there is no tv, no electronics, no "fun"......Just kidding, living with me is a blast! Even though they howl and complain, I believe they secretly love and savor this "down time." They need it. I need it. 

Sometimes "traveling light" means tuning in to where you are and just BE-ing. No obligations, no worries, no work. Smell the rain. Savor the moment. 

Pink Cup. Planners. 5:2 Weekly Review

Light Me Up: This week's inspiration is an adorable cup I snagged after we hiked Rocky Mountain National Park. The Aspen and Evergreen ...