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This title comes from an America song.

I’ve been feeling pretty good lately.  The weather had taken a turn for the better and I wondered if that was the reason. Disappointed that my mood could so easily be swayed by the shifting winds of weather, I decided to take a closer look at it.

Taking quiet time listen to yourself is a very important thing to do.  Really listening to what you’re telling yourself can offer great benefits.  Even if that can only be on a weekend morning, while commuting or during nap time.

What I discovered surprised me.  True enough, I had felt better with the warming temps.  But when winter raised its ugly head again, I still had a positive attitude.  There were a few other things that may have contributed to the lift – an old friend resurfacing, a new vision and interesting projects.

When I looked deeper (not content with all those outside reasons), I found that I’ve been paying more attention to the present moment.  Usually, my thoughts tend to stray.  Especially in winter. What will the weather be like tomorrow?  Will things come together as I want them to?  Did I handle that right?  When I just keep my focus in the moment, on today, amazing things happen.

I am enjoying what I’m doing a whole lot more.  I’m not so stressed about what I didn’t do because I’m not thinking about the results tomorrow.  I’m not concerned about what I did or didn’t do, because I know I was focused on the moment and did what I needed to do.  That’s the end of that.

In the moment, all is well.  It’s either snowing or it isn’t. Tomorrow will be what it is. Whatever calamity I might have imagined in the future evaporates like the illusion it is, in the face of Today.  What I did yesterday just doesn’t matter.  I can be totally involved with nothing more than the moment I’m in.


There are so many things calling.  Pulling in a zillion different ways.  There are those calls I have to make, the errands to run, emails to return, this to work on, these things to tend to. Whoops!  Don’t forget that. Oh, and what about the stacks of mending awaiting my time and attention?  Is it Christmas already?  I still have packages to wrap. And look, Aunt Mabel showed up!  Where will she sleep? What about all those newsletters and bits of information to read?  The emails continue to pile up.  And the laundry.

Internally there are voices, too.  A running commentary about yourself, your spouse, your kids, your parents, how you did, how you will do, the weather . . . Most of the time it’s easier to ignore most of it.

Sometimes I think this instant access to answers of all kinds, from millions of sources doesn’t help much. The telephone’s ringing and the television offers hundreds of options.  There is no lack of things to choose from, no dearth of distractions to keep us incredibly diffused.  Unless you’ve been spending your time atop a mountain, it’s unlikely you get more than a small portion of your day to focus quietly on anything.  Most of us are expert multi-taskers. It’s easy to see how a person could have to shut down in some places in order to keep up.

So, what are you going to listen to?  Where do you put your trust?  How do you know which of the million answers to your search you should take?  Which politician really speaks for you?  What spiritual author has all the answers?  How do I know which expert to follow?

I believe that each of has, inside our heads at all times, a voice that offers guidance.  It is buried under all that noise.  It is a quiet and unassuming voice.  It does not yell or demand.  You can tell it by its calmness. And that it never criticizes or judges.  It just quietly guides you. It’s loving and accepting. You’ll know it by how it makes you feel.

You develop it by listening to it.  Heeding its guidance.  You may, from time to time, find you’ve listened to the wrong voice.  When it feels Right, in your gut, you know you have it.  But practice will give you more skill at recognizing it.  When it makes you feel good and worthy, it’s likely to be that voice.  But you are free to test it out and see which voice feels the best.

Open your internal browser and seek answers and direction.  Use the inboard guidance system of feelings to lead you to it.  When you do, you will find a single source you can go to.  One that will support you well and help you make good choices.  Then you can pick which of the million results is right for you.

This process is especially good for teenagers.  Learning how to separate the urges that feel right, that spread warmly across your chest or settle broadly in your gut. Those that seem like they would be good for you and maybe others, too.  Leaving behind the fearful longings that someone won’t like you if you don’t do what they say.  Or that excited, risky feeling that doesn’t seem to have much in the way of positive results.

Imagine the good choices you could make if you had one source you could trust.

I always pay attention when I hear the same message from two or more sources.  This time it was about the importance of asking.  You just can’t get it if you don’t ask for it.

Though forming that question isn’t as easy as it seems.  But form it you must. Specifics are key.  The clearer you are about what you’re asking for, the easier it is to get an answer.

There is a second part to asking: Listening.  When you ask another person it’s only right to listen to what they have to say.  It’s not essential that you use everything they offer, but you do need to listen to it all. Carefully.

When you’re asking the Universe or your inner self, it is even more critical that you listen.  You never know where the answer may come from.  So it’s doubly important to listen carefully.  And keep that question in your mind!

Ask well, listen intently and the answer will come.

How is that I can be a few inches above the ground, floating on enthusiasm one day . . .  the enthusiasm of God filling me to brimming, feeling great and productive, shining that light? And the next day, the sun is gone, the printer’s acting up, the cat is trying, I’m getting nowhere? All my enthusiasm drained out of me.
It happens, I know.  So, what can be done about it?  Perhaps I could have a back up supply ready.  That could be a list of those things that make me feel enthusiastic: my dream, my projects, my loved ones.

It’s true that sometimes I just need a little downtime. When I can’t make things happen, maybe it’s better to not try so hard.  Take a break, breathe a little.  Getting a change of scenery can sometimes work wonders.  

Maria Nemeth, in her brilliant book “The Energy of Money,” talks about energy leaks.  If we can leak money through small, unconscious expenses, we can also lose physical energy with small, unconscious expenditures of fear and worry.

Keeping a watchful, attentive eye on where my energy leaks are can be helpful.  SARK talks a lot about controlling our energy.  But it begins with observation.  Noticing what drains my energy helps to know how to patch it. Taking good care is always a good place to start.  Listening to find out what my body needs

Another solution might be to stoke the momentum that’s already going, using it. If I’m hot into a project, leave a little bit to get me started tomorrow.  Keep my enthusiasm up around a long-term project by remembering why I’m doing it or finding new ways to go.  Acting while the iron’s still hot always works. I could find small ways to keep the fires burning in between sessions with a project.

Just being conscious of where my enthusiasm level is will likely reveal many ways.  

There are many ways to do this.  Sometimes it’s just a matter of listening.  Being really present and listening carefully to someone can be the best gift we can ever give them.

We can honor them by seeing them as whole just the way they are.  Sometimes that’s difficult, especially when they don’t see themselves that way. What an amazing gift it is to reflect something different!  It’s a matter of holding in mind a thought there is always a reason for why people do and say what they do. Give them the same leniency you might give yourself, knowing your reasons. Knowing that they are just where they need to be.

Honoring another means remaining centered in love.  Seeing them as another unfolding, awakening soul.  After all, we are made of the same stuff.  You might even say we are one.

Another way we can honor others is by acknowledging their gifts and offering praise for them.  I believe there was a generation who believed people (children, in particular) would get a big ego if they heard too much praise.  I don’t believe that.  People with big egos, who’s britches are too big for them, are usually not sure at all how wonderful they are.

I love that as you give others the gift of listening to what they have to say, you can also give yourself a gift. There is something to learn from every encounter with others.  You might pick up some good ideas, advise or suggestions.  You could also spot something in yourself that is similar to what you’re seeing in the other.  That might be cool with you and allow to give yourself some praise.  Or it could be something you don’t care for. Seeing that, you can do something to change it in yourself.

Every moment life is offering us messages. By paying attention to others, by being present with them, you continue to practice present moment awareness. And in so doing, hear the guidance that’s always there.

In a recent issue of Cheryl Richardson’s newsletter, she talked about listening to your body.

The body is a wonderful communicator if you but listen to it.  If you don’t, it will make itself known. Try ignoring the signs that you’re overwhelmed, overworked and under tended.  Watch your body poke you in the chest and force you to sit down and rest.

The body doesn’t lie.  It will let you know when you’re hungry, when you’re cold, and when you’re angry.  Your body doesn’t get caught up in maybe you should or maybe you shouldn’t.  It doesn’t care what others think.  Listening to your body and heeding its call can help you avoid a lot of problems and pitfalls.

When I want to know what I’m thinking, I get quiet and listen to how I feel.  How my body is feeling. The body is much easier to read.  Are my muscles tight, where are my shoulders, how am I sitting?  Is my throat dry, my eyes sharp, my energy high?  I have found this creates a direct line into my thoughts. All that’s needed is a little space.

During the day it always pays to take a moment to check on how your body is feeling.  (Even if you don’t have time to sit and analyze your thoughts.)  A quick scan will help you find center again, adjust your position and focus more intently on what you’re doing.

It is so important to pay attention to these physical indicators.  They will help you have a much happier and easier life.  As well as a more productive day.

I sit today in stillness.  If you have heavy snowfalls frequently you may not notice.  But around here, we don’t often get 2 feet of snow.  I live on a quiet street, but with all this snow, we don’t even get the odd car turning around in the cul-de-sac.  There are none of the usual small engine weekend sounds of suburbia.  The dampening effects of the snow keep it quite still.  The silence seems to be reflecting what’s going on inside me.

As I have been getting rid of, tightening up, moving aside, there’s less around me that isn’t serving.  So it’s grown quieter in my environment and in my head. Is it trite to talk of the forest for the trees?  But it’s an apt metaphor.  As I am clearing away branches, I can see more of the forest around me.

I can hear the still, small voice say so gently, “Wouldn’t it be nice to do that?”  Or “Maybe you don’t want to do that now.”  Perhaps it whispers, “Why not?”  Sometimes I wish it would just stand up and shout “Go for it!”  It has been known, but most of the time It doesn’t push, nor urge, just suggest. Its Guidance, though, may not be what’s most convenient or expedient at the moment.  It could require extra effort, thinking or facing something.  So, it’s easy to ignore.

Even though I can hear It well, I’m still not responding in the dutiful way I’d like to. What I can do is see what happens when I don’t heed Its call. As I watch myself get into trouble when I didn’t have to, I learn to trust more, and do what my inner Guidance suggests.  When I do that . . . the possibilities are limitless!

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