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I believe in God. Not necessarily on Faith. I see plenty of physical proof of God’s presence all around me. If I but look.

In the present moment there are many things that give evidence of God to me. I can look into the faces of the people I love who populate my life and see God. The way the sun lights up the curtains next to my desk. My water bottle, beside me always. Like Masaru Emoto prescribes, I have a label on it that says Joy. I look at it and think joyful thoughts, thereby infusing the bottle with that emotion. That’s pretty strong evidence, I think.

How about the truly magical Modern Conveniences we have at our fingertips each and every day? Who but a benevolent God gives us such wonders? The computer and what it can do and all the places it can take me! My blessed Pandora, that sends me musical messages of guidance, brings me to tears, gets me up and dancing, or allows me a few minutes of breath and awareness during my favorite songs. It’s hot outside, I’m kept cool. It’s raining, I have light to work by. Cooking and cleaning are a breeze. I am connected by Internet or phone to almost anyone I please. With a few key strokes I can discover the answers to just about any question. Can you call this any less than physical proof?

What else could paint such Art out my back door – a plethora of golden sunlight and delicate shades of green, strong browns and blacks. In exquisite detail, moving in the breezes, playing with the light. Just the perfect mix of colors and textures. God is quite an Artist and generous with His works.

We could cite this amazing brain we have. Some more developed than others, of course, but still it work marvels. Our minds can think up the most incredible things. And boy can they can take us places! Any place we can imagine. The things we can create. And who knows what this amazing computer of a brain we have is capable of? To me, the incredible intricacies of our bodies and how they work scream God.

What a system He’s created! When I get a glimpse of how life really works, I am dazzled by its splendor, its simplicity, well . . . So God-like in its perfection. The cause and effect of energy is such an elegant system. Could this all have fallen into place by itself? The Cosmology of the Universe is so stunning. A wonder for certain! Endless Forms most Beautiful. Such grace and mystery.

The more I learn about the Universe, the more I’m convinced of the existence of God. That we are all made of the same stuff says that science knows we are all connected. The brilliant Particle Physicist and part time rock star, Professor Brian Cox, who might never speak of a belief in God said this,”We are the cosmos made conscious and life is the means by which the universe understands itself.” Which is precisely how God described the creation of the Universe in Conversations with God Book 1. Scientific proof!

The beauty we all seek, the peace, the feeling of being home is right there in front of us all the time. To stay alive, all we have to do is breathe and breathe out. Receiving and Giving. Staying aware in the moment, seeing what is and doing what works. Could anyone but God have thought this all up?

In any given moment if I pay attention, I see ample evidence of the existence (and Love) of God. Some might call it an Intelligence behind it all. Surely there is something. And even though the Universe may be destructive, I know Professor Cox can see the perfection and beauty of it.

I like to say that I think the Marx Brothers proves the existence of God. I just don’t believe so much talent and joy could exist in world without a God.

It’s a shame we can’t treat ourselves more like we would a lover. We take good care of them, we are concerned for their well being. But ourselves, we usually ignore, or demand we live up to inhuman standards of excellence. To help us all feel a little better about ourselves, to practice treating ourselves more like a beloved, I offer six sexy ways ~

1) Admire yourself. Check the mirror once in a while and pause to note something you like about yourself. Your hair might look good today. Or maybe you notice a shine in your eyes. Perhaps you’ve been losing (or gaining) weight and like the results. Just take a moment to compliment something nice about yourself. Smile and nod. Done.  Some people find this hard to do. They feel self-conscious about it. Just try it . . . no one’s looking. A little praise never hurt anyone.

2) Dress up. Just because it’s casual, doesn’t mean you have to be. Use accessories to make you feel a little more formal. Find and wear clothes that feel good when you have them on. Clothes do make “the man.” The right clothes can uplift your mood, boost your confidence, and make you feel better about yourself. A simple trick might be to chose a color you don’t usually wear. Even a small change can send yourself a message that you care how you look.

3) Take yourself out on a date. Seriously. It’s a really wonderful thing to do. Walk by yourself or go to a museum. Julia Cameron, Creativity Expert, thinks it’s crucial to a creative life, to refill your well. The key, really, is in planning it. Taking the time is treating yourself like someone special. Julia encourages weekly dates by yourself. This is, after all,  a date with you. No one else.

4) Get yourself a present. Especially if you’re feeling blue. We all need a pick-me-up. If someone you loved was unhappy, you might bring them flowers or chocolates. Why can’t you do that for yourself? Inviting yourself out on a date is a wonderful gift! This doesn’t have to be expensive or cost much money at all. I have a little stuffed koala bear that I must have bought as a present for a child many years ago. For whatever reason I never gave it and he was too cute to throw out. I decided he represents the child in me. He now sits on my desk as my gift to myself, reminding me to take more gentle care of myself. A recycled gift. We all need to feel special – as often as possible, really. Like you might say thanks to a helpful spouse or partner. Just a token to say, I appreciate you.

5) Forgive yourself. You are more likely to excuse mistakes in someone you love. See if you can do the same for yourself! The next time you slip up and commit a small infraction, immediately forgive yourself for it. Tell yourself that maybe you needed to do it, to learn never to do it again. You could say it was just a silly mistake or that maybe it was the right move after all, or because of it . . . The point is to make yourself feel better about it, instantly. Especially for the little things that don’t really matter. Forgiveness is very sexy. It’s release, it’s the easing up of holding fast to things. Instead of thinking it should have been this, but it was that. When you can quiet that down, aren’t you more sensual, more easy and languid? Pretty sexy stuff, forgiveness.

6) Celebrate your victories in style! So often we neglect to appreciate our own accomplishments as we would someone we love. In whatever way you can, the bigger the better, be sure to acknowledge your successes. Have a party. Go out dancing or to a show! Cook yourself something special or go out to eat at your favorite restaurant. Raise a glass of whatever you’re drinking. Make note of your successes in whatever way you can or see fit. (Indulge yourself once in a while as you would a loved one.) That more you do that, the more you water the victories of the future, paving the way for more. Saying, “Yeah, I like this. Could I maybe see you again?”

Choose the things that delight you.

Why not?  You make your future in the present. The more delight you can infuse into the present, the more delightful your future will be.

Who knows what the future will bring?  Trying to make decisions based on what might happen is futile and frustrating. You can only decide in the present, using the information you have right now.

Don’t be afraid of making the Wrong Choice.  If you don’t like your decision, there’s not much that can’t be changed.  The closer you are to the real truth of what your needs are, today, the better the odds you’ll have of success in your decision. If you chose for your delight, you’ll be choosing well.

You don’t even have to consider your loved ones. What children (or anyone else for that matter) may need can be dealt with in the planning stages. Others will handle any changes you make. Life is change and everyone around you is subject to the shifting of life. After all, your delightful decision is likely to be better than deception and depression. The decision needs only to be based on your needs right now.  What delights you today. What’s truly best for you is best for everyone around you.

Confused about what is best for you? Follow your delightful feelings. It is just that simple: Go for what delights you.

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.

When you’ve seen that it’s a loving Universe, it’s easy to fall back on, “The Universe will provide.”

I believe this Universe is made up of energy.  If you’re not consciously directing that energy, it will simply decide you don’t want it moved and leave things, pretty much as they are.

A wise woman I once knew, perhaps quoting form the Unity Church of which she belonged, talked about putting sneakers on your prayers.

Our future is made in the present. If your present consists of sitting and waiting for the Universe, you are likely to continue sitting around and waiting.  The energy is there to be moved and guided.

When you say things like, “I don’t want to be poor,” the Universe hears that you “want to be poor.” But when you get off the pity pot and say, “I want money,” and start doing something about it, you’ve got a far better chance of changing your situation.  You begin to move the energy in the direction of getting money, instead of letting it slack around your poor self.

The Active Verb, Movement, even baby steps, powered by a positive intention is how things get done in this Universe.  Positive affirmations are good and they can keep you going.  But waiting for the Universe to provide food for your belly, isn’t going to fill it.

What do you do when you’re humming along, moving in the flow and then thwack!  You stub you toe?  You might stub it on an obstacle  left in your foot path,  a hiccup in your plans, an unexpected bill or illness.

If you’re like me, your reaction is to get mad at yourself for not paying attention, not seeing the hazard ahead.  It’s quite easy for me to skip off into other times I haven’t watched where I was going or how things like this ALWAYS happen to me!

It’s difficult when you’re smacked in the face by an unforseen obstacle, such as a car or computer breakdown, expectations unfulfilled and other such left field stray balls.

This wayward ball  can often throw you off course and leave you feeling defeated, angry, victimized or otherwise closed to the abundant flow.

I find it hard at that point, to bring myself back.  This week, I was flowing along, paying good attention and allowing all the little things to fall away.  I’m not going to get hung up on this and allow my thoughts to go negative, I say.  I’m staying present and happy with life.  No, that’s not going to get me either . . .  What happens?  I find myself in a massive traffic jam.  I get a little crazy when no one is moving at all. “Usual” traffic progresses, albeit slowly.  But when there’s an accident or lane blockage, there is, what feels like, no progress.  Minutes go by and the car only moves a few inches.  It’s at this point I begin to panic and wonder what I’m doing there!  I calculate the time wasted, stress over the wear and tear on the car and end up cussing at my life, along with the other drivers.

Very negative. Very closed.  Very unhappy.

It irks me to know I have such limits.  Why can’t I accept all that happens?  Why are there some things I can’t float through?  I know my fussing does nothing to move me any closer to my destination. There seem to be tributaries of my negative thinking.  Say I accept what’s happening now.  But, I ask myself, how many other times have I been in this situation? Why haven’t I been able to get myself out of this?  What flaw has kept me stuck in this predicament, susceptible to such frustrations?  If I sit long enough, I might even find someone else to blame for it.

It’s true that many walls that toes stub are much bigger and thicker than interminable traffic.  For instance, if I was in the car that caused this jam . . . Surely, sitting behind the wreckage, I have the time to control my thoughts, gain perspective, and put myself back on track.  Before I slam into that threatening wall.

I guess it’s hard when you’re facing the culprit, head on.  But, I feel, this is exactly the time to work on it.  The best tactic seems to be to talk with yourself.  Out loud, if you can.  Tell yourself it’s okay.  Heal the wounds first.  Make sure you show concern for yourself and the situation you are in.  You might slide into gratitude, if you’ve calmed yourself down enough: “I’m grateful it wasn’t my accident. I’m grateful for the cell phone so I won’t leave anyone hanging.  It’s a nice day and the music is humming.”

This is a the time to remind yourself there’s nothing you can do about it  at the moment.  If there are changes to be made, they don’t have to be enacted right no. Assure yourself that it will end and you will be able to clear your head and make a new choice.

This is really good practice. Not only will it make you better able to brush off smaller things, it will also prepare you for those bigger obstacles. Watch your progress and see how often and how quickly you can find that flow again.

I think I’m cranky because my back hurts.  I think my back hurts because of this, that or the other out there.  But it all comes down to my thought. 

I’ve decided to listen to my thoughts to see just how the thoughts are dictating how I’m feeling.  When I listen like that it makes perfect sense.  Sometimes I can hear a constant stream from “it’s cold,” to “the cat is being a pest, I’m tired, I would rather be doing that, what an ugly car.” Chomping away at all that’s not right. 

Okay.  I take a breath.  I’m grateful for all I have.  You know that was a kind thing he did.  I’m grateful he is in my life.  Oh, but look, I have a thread coming out of my sweater.  You know all my clothes are ratty and in need of repair.  Off I go again!

It seems logical to say that my back hurts because I need an adjustment.  And if I felt better, I’d have better thoughts.  But I believe it is the other way around.  That form follows thought.  I’ve been told as much by many wise folks.  But I say, no, my back hurts because I’m not getting enough rest.  Wait a moment, maybe it’s because I’m not getting enough exercise.  Always it’s my thoughts telling me I did something wrong, or I didn’t do it enough.  Do this game enough, without awareness, and watch it grow into something worse.

If I’m going to have my life move more in the direction I choose, all the affirmations and intentions won’t work until my thoughts are more in alignment with what I choose. 

I know of two good ways to control my thoughts.  One is, of course, meditation.  I’ve found it’s best when done regularly. No matter how small the time, as long as it’s regular (that means as many days in a row as you can, shooting for every day.)  The other way is intensive journaling to unload most of that chatter.

Awareness, as always is the key to it all.  Watching to see how your thoughts are creating your reality. Coloring how you feel, emotionally and physically.  It all comes from the thoughts.

I’m going to try making that connection: between how my body feels and what my thoughts are doing.  The discomfort might well be coming from thoughts I had hours ago, but there’s no time like the present to clean it up.

This past weekend, I was away. Spent a lot of delicious time in a swimming pool, floating and doing laps as I pleased.  It was wonderful!  But I kept thinking, all too soon it will disappear. I felt myself grasping tightly at each moment.

That was uncomfortable and not at all joyful.

So, I thought, what would make me feel better?  Perhaps if I felt eager to get back to work.  That way I could enjoy this moment as icing on the cake.

But, I’m not eager to get back to work, I retorted. What if I just tell myself I am, even if I’m not?  The minute I did, I felt better, I eased up on the moment. 

I searched my mind for a time when I was eager to get back to work. There have been days, sitting at the kitchen table in the morning, eating breakfast, feeling eager to get to the desk and back into a writing a project I was excited about.  I used that.

Did it make the experience last longer?  Not really, but it allow me to rest into the present.  I was no longer clinging to the experience like it would slip through my fingers.  I was able to relax and just be there instead of thinking about the inevitable return.

Now, I balk at all this telling lies business.  I’m a truthful person and I don’t lie.  But who is it hurting for me to tell myself this white lie that I’m eager to get back to work?  It’s only between me and my inner psyche.  I’m only using it to bring out a feeling.  If just telling myself I’m eager to get back to work makes me feel more flowing and at ease, why not? It’s only my thought that tells me I can’t.

I’m going to practice using this technique on other things.  I’m going to tell myself what I want to feel instead of waiting for my fears and doubts to decide.

I can say what is so!

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