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How to Deal with Sexual Shame + 3 Kinds of Divine Union

tantra statues

By Mateo Sol | Loner Wolf

What if instead of an obstacle, sex was a pathway toward a spiritual life?

Those of us who have been raised with religious backgrounds have often been taught that sexuality and spirituality are opposing forces, that you cannot be virtuous if you have sex because sex is a “sin” or is “unspiritual.”

Prior to dogmatic ideologies, sexuality was respected for thousands of years as a sacred expression of nature’s life force and the mystery of creation. Although I’ve written about the value of Sexual Transmutation or sexual abstinence in the past, I want to make it very clear in this article that sex can also work as a catalyst for cultivating spiritual well-being.

To lead a spiritual life you need to embrace and respect your sexuality just as much as any other part of your nature. Although sex has been linked to many dirty and “perverse” ideas, the act of lovemaking can truly be something sacred and profound.

Related Article: A Simple & Fun Guide on How to Have Sacred (Tantric) Sex

How to Deal With Sexual Guilt and Shame

Sexuality is a taboo topic in our society because it is one of those primal forces which we consciously or unconsciously feel powerless to control. Deep down, we sense that it is connected to that unknown universal source of energy from which we came from and continue to exist within.

The feeling of shame is one of the biggest obstacles most of us face in learning to embrace our sexuality. In a culture that has infected us with the notions of virtue and shame; where a murder scene on television is more “viewer-friendly” than a lovemaking one; where women were once thought of as incapable of experiencing an orgasm, it becomes apparent how difficult it is to openly accept and acknowledge this life force that exists within us.

Shame is an emotion that we’re taught by our families and communities. Since a very young age we’re taught what we “should and shouldn’t feel bad about,” and as a result of this, we develop the capacity to experience guilt. Through guilt we begin rejecting sacred aspects of ourselves and repressing them deep into our Shadow Selves; our sexual desires, quirks, attractions, and fantasies.

I’ve even seen some people deny their sexuality, dismissing it as a “lower physical instinct/vibration” or claiming to “rise above it” as if there is a division between “lower” physical cravings and “higher” spiritual functions when we are seeking wholeness. Sex forms the base notes of your Spirit’s musical melody.

Of course, you are more than solely a sexual being: your sexuality doesn’t define you, but it is a part of you. But it’s by denying it as a part of you that you create blockages of energy within your body that perpetuates the fragmentation of your soul, keeping you incomplete and restricted instead of expanded and whole.

Related Article: 5 Ways Tantra Can Heal Us All

Ironically, it is the sexual orgasm that gives us a taste of soulful expansion, of transcending our limited selves, and feeling boundless for the first time in our entire lives (if only a momentary glimpse).

Spiritual Sex: 3 Types of Divine Union

Many of us haven’t been taught that sex is actually a powerful tool for transcendental development. In fact, spiritual sex is the quickest and easiest way to have something resembling a mystical experience.

The powerful thing about sexual energy is that it’s one of the few instincts within us that can rarely be completely “civilized.” If you are tired at home from work and a friend offers you to go out to watch a movie you may pass on the offer. But if you were to meet an attractive person instead of who was to make him/herself available to you, it would arouse a deep energy within you that you weren’t aware existed.

Any type of ecstatic experience – like sex – is an ideal starting point to begin cultivating spiritual moments of “no-mind” and bringing them naturally into our daily lives. In my experience, there are three main types of sex that you can benefit from:

1. The Alert Union

Most first time sexual experiences with partners fall into this type of union. When we make ourselves vulnerable, intimate, exposed and “work” toward that mutually pleasurable moment of bliss, our conscious awareness becomes heightened by the novelty of exploring the other person’s body.

This union is not so much a mindful awareness but an alert awareness that instinctively takes over. Our feelings of vulnerability and excitement make our natural adrenaline mechanism stimulate alertness making the experience much more primal than spiritual. This type of sex is very addictive as the novelty of pursuing new sexual partners rewards us with that momentary “god-like” state of consciousness.

2. The Conscious Union

It’s typical however that as our sense of vulnerability and stimulation weakens so too does our desire for the first type of love-making (The Alert Union).

In The Conscious Union, we learn how to cultivate a more balanced form of spiritual sex, one that creates harmony between the passionate animal and the sensually playful sides of our sexuality. In The Conscious Union, we listen to our sexual desires, explore our bodies and those of our lovers, build deeper intimacy through eye-gazing, sensually caress, and follow our deepest forms of sexual expression. These often generate intense feelings of union and love that briefly take us beyond our sense of self.

It is through this practice of conscious union that we can reach the next stage of soulful union.

Related Article: Tantric Intimacy & Sex: Why It’s Important

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When Your Partner Isn’t Sure They Want a Future with You

Image Credit: Tiny Buddha

By Tonya Lester | Tiny Buddha

“The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much and forgetting that you are special too.” ~Ernest Hemingway

At Eagle Point Elementary, where I went for third grade, there was one very cute boy. Jason was the object of affection for seemingly every third-grade girl. He would make a list each day of the five girls he thought were the cutest. The list changed every day. Whoever took the top spot for the day was the girl Jason decided he was “going with.” (Was “going with” a thing in everyone’s elementary school or just in suburban Minnesota? What did that even mean?)

I still remember the elation when I edged out my friend Caroline for the top spot. It was short-lived. Caroline was tough to beat. My dad got wind of this top five system and sat me down to say, “Never wait to be in somebody’s top spot. If you have to convince someone of how great you are, they shouldn’t be in your top spot.” I opted out of the competition the next day.

Adults are subtler than Jason was, but my father’s “top spot” lesson was a valuable one.

In my twenties, I dated a guy who ran cold and hot with me, leaving me insecure and obsessing over the relationship. Heeding my dad’s warning, I ended things abruptly.

It was initially very painful, and I questioned if I had pulled the plug too quickly. But within a few months, I realized there was no happy future with this person—he either didn’t care enough about me or was incapable of a secure intimate relationship. Either way, I had dodged a bullet.

Here is a scenario I see play out often in my psychotherapy practice: You meet someone and fall in love. After about a year of dating, you’re eager to marry and have children. Your partner is happy in the relationship, but not ready to move forward.

Initially, you’re patient and sympathetic. But by the end of year two, you’re frustrated about putting your life on hold while your partner is “figuring things out.”

Frequently, when you seem to have reached the end of your rope and appear ready to walk away, your partner begs for more time.

By year four, you’re vacillating between rage and panic, but you feel like this has to work out because you can’t bear the thought of starting over with someone new.

During year five, your partner announces they might never want to get married or have kids. In fact, they’d like to start seeing other people.

If you’ve ever found yourself in love with a commitment-avoidant person, you know it can be hard to tell when to be patient and when to pull the plug. Do you walk away from someone you love just because you have different timelines? How much time do you give your partner to decide whether they are in or out? In other words, should you stay or should you go?

Does any of this sound familiar?

“He won’t commit because he’s still getting over his first marriage, but if I can hang in, he’s going to see how good I am for him.” 

“She had a traumatic childhood and doesn’t trust men, so it’s tough for her to be faithful. But she’s working on it.”

“We’ve been together for five years, but he’s still not sure. He says he’ll know when he knows.”

If so, let’s look at how you got here, why you stay, and what you can do next.

Your parents give you your first example of how to give and receive love. Unfortunately, sometimes they’re not the best role models, especially when it comes to relationships.

Did one parent prioritize work above everything and never make time for you? Or did you feel valued as long as you followed the rules and were easy-going, but shunned when you were struggling or needed extra attention?

This treatment teaches you that the people you love aren’t reliable, that you’re ‘too much’ for people to love consistently, or that you aren’t valued as much as their work, their hobbies, or the other people in their lives.

But what if you had terrific, consistent, loving parents? Maybe you even really admire their relationship and dream of having a similar one yourself. Then what?

Look at your early romantic relationships. These can provide a prototype, for better or worse, for your future connections.

Say, for example, that your high school boyfriend told you he loved you but blew you off to hang out with his friends at every opportunity. Or your first girlfriend cheated on you repeatedly. Our brains can lock into the idea that this is how love is supposed to feel.

A different but equally tricky scenario is that you had no early romantic life to speak of. You feel like you’ve never been chosen as the special one. In this case, you might feel like you’re lucky to get any attention at all, and that you’d better not be too demanding.

If this sounds like you, you may have an “anxious attachment” style. Someone healthily attached may strongly prefer to be in a relationship and may feel they are at their best when coupled up, but would rather be alone than stay in a relationship where their needs are not met.

If you are anxiously attached, any relationship, no matter how unsatisfying, is better than being alone.

In his 2012 book Attached, psychiatrist and neuroscientist Amir Levine writes, “Basically, secure people feel comfortable with intimacy and are usually warm and loving; anxious people crave intimacy, are often preoccupied with their relationships, and tend to worry about their partner’s ability to love them back; avoidant people equate intimacy with a loss of independence and constantly try to minimize closeness.”

I wish I could tell you that if you do everything right and handle yourself correctly, the scales will drop from your lover’s eyes, and you’ll be in the top spot. But that’s probably what you’re already doing, and it’s not working. There’s no magic formula for getting someone off the fence, but here are some ideas to keep in mind:

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3 Tips on Living a Congruent Life

To live a congruent life simply means to be living in space that you have consciously created for yourself. A space that serves a great purpose and acts as the foundation upon which you manifest excellence into your life. This is a space where you’ve taken delicate care to tend to, always making sure it’s neat and tidy and ever-expanding.

If you are sitting there asking yourself if you even have such a space, don’t worry you are not alone. In fact, most of us don’t consciously take the time to give ourselves one moment of relaxation at the end of a full day. Somewhere along the line, it’s as if new software was installed in the psyches that told us life always had to be hard; and that if it wasn’t, then we were doing something wrong.

Often times, along with such core beliefs that have taken root deep within us, other beliefs that don’t always serve us start to form and grow as well. We might believe that only when we struggle do we deserve happiness; that it must always come with a price. Or even worse, that we are unworthy of happiness (or love) at all.

And perhaps that is the key to it all…which reminds me of every old 50’s romance tune…love is all you need, right? But is that enough? Well, yes…and no. See, love in and of itself is not out for itself. It just IS. And perhaps that is it’s the greatest lesson to soak in from dancing on the edge of it’s madness to falling into it’s most frightening and dark depths of another human soul. But there must be consciousness behind the love for it to have meaning. Meaning, we as our awesome human selves, determine the level at which we can experience love, by the amount we are willing to give love, be vulnerable, and open to taking some indefinite leaps of faith. Image result for congruent living quote

Love leads us to some intense and scary places sometimes, and yet collectively we continue to innately know that to have love in our lives, is to have peace in our hearts. And that, I believe is the first step to true happiness, or what I like to call, “congruent living”.

From years of studying the connection between the heart and the mind, as well as the principles of Quantum Mechanics, I can comfortably say that anyone, no matter the race, gender, creed, nationality, etc. has the capability to manifest peace within their own hearts. Even in the direst of suffering, this noble act is not some mystic’s tale. In fact, it is often within suffering itself that we are lead to the conscious awareness of the true amount of control we have over the quality of our lives; merely for the fact, we have control over the quality of our thoughts…

Overall, there are 3 major pieces to living life congruently:

The first… would be that the consciousness must be present that the power to bring peace to one’s heart resides within oneself. This can manifest in many different ways for many different people, but usually accompanies a major event of some kind ranging from a near-death drowning or car accident, or losing someone close to you. Getting a reminder that nothing is trivial and all we truly have is this moment is the quickest and shortest route to gaining this conscious awareness. But it doesn’t have to be that serious all the time. And by that I mean, if you learn to listen to the subtle messages of the Universe, it will gently whisper in your ear instead of taking a proverbial 2×4 to your head when you choose to ignore it. 🙂

Once you can find peace within your own heart, you have just taken the “For Sale” sign off of that space I mentioned earlier on. You’ve allowed yourself to make perhaps one of the greatest investments in your overall health because now you have a “go-to”. Some people get to their space through breathing exercises, or simply taking a moment to close their eyes and imagine their favorite vacation beach or how they become a casino winner.

And yet other people will think of loved ones or anything that ignites a sense of inner joy, gratitude, connection to the Source of life. Basically we are by-passing the logical brain often lead by the ego that convinces of we aren’t worthy of stepping into these higher vibrational states of living.

Image result for congruent living quoteThe second way to master living a life of congruence would be to always be pushing yourself to step more and more into your greatness. Meaning, do more of what makes you feel alive, do what you’re good at and what you enjoy sharing with others. This is true giving of yourself and of your gifts and the more you do it, the greater you expand your space. Think of it as an interior upgrade or like putting an addition onto the house.

The third and final masterful activity would include welcoming not only the “good” stuff but not avoiding the “bad”. To always see the lesson in the pain is true sight. To be able to view yourself and your life without judgment, but always with conscious movement towards embodying our most true selves, is absolute congruent living.

When you look at your life and see the balance amongst even what some might call “chaos”, is to have expanded your vision into the realm of “anything goes” when it comes to manifestation. Allowing yourself to be open to the opportunity for growth and expansion as your inner roots climb deep down into the dark, is what gives the fruits above the life-source to bloom and blossom. And as my mentor always says, “The deeper the roots, the sweeter the fruits.”

Have a most fruitful, congruent week everyone! <3

tamaraTamara Rant is a Co-Editor/Writer for CLN as well as a Licensed Reiki Master, heart-centered Graphic Designer and a progressive voice in social media activism & awareness. She is an avid lover of all things Quantum Physics and Spirituality. Connect with Tamara by visiting Prana Paws/Healing Hearts Reiki or go to RantDesignMedia.com

Tamara posts new original articles to CLN every Saturday.

Follow Tamara on FacebookTwitter and Google+

This article was originally created and published by Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Tamara Rant and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.




3 Ways to Tap Into Your Personal Source of Creative Energy

As a writer, it’s not uncommon for me to sit blankly staring at my laptop. I’ll be quite honest, most of the time I can literally just sit down and type like a mad-woman as the words just flow out of me, but sometimes it is nearly impossible seemingly no matter what I do. And I know it’s not just writers who experience this discouraging sense of being disconnected from your own creative well.

So, what is going on exactly when this happens? Usually, it is just a matter of something else entirely having our attention, other than that which we are trying to get inspiration from. If we are trying to beat our best lap time in the pool, but can’t stop thinking about that awful fight we had with our boyfriend or girlfriend, then chances are we will not succeed.

Another factor that can play into how much or how little we are feeling creative and inspired is how we feel about ourselves personally. In other words, where are we at regarding our level of self-esteem and self-love? When we truly do love ourselves (just as it goes when you truly love another), it is near impossible to do something that would prevent you from attaining a goal, or make you feel bad about yourself, or not practice or dedicate the time that you need to excel at your current target (no matter if this is a promotion at work, losing that last 15 pounds, etc.)

And lastly, how we feel in general about others and about the world and life play a huge factor I believe in how strongly one’s creative juices will flow. Although this one is two-fold and I will explain. If we feel safe in the world and connected to people generally on a friendly level, then it would be safe to assume we live a generally peaceful and happy life as we wouldn’t see the world through threat-colored lenses. And this could inspire one to open the flood gates of creativity as the greater we feel connected to people, the easier it is to open up to them and show love. And I cannot think of any greater creative force than love.

However, if one sees the world as a threatening place or dark and dangerous for the most part and has a solid core belief that people are “bad” and cannot be trusted, well fear, angst, resentment, etc. are all wells of creative force and inspiration as well, just an entirely different type of energy. I can recall in my teenage years just how dreary and depressing my poetry was. And all of my short stories were like that of the beatnik writers’ style in their “eff the system-esque” prose, and anti-government undertones.

So, as we can see creativity energy isn’t all flower fields and rainbows. And I bet if you stopped for a moment and looked back at your own life, you would say that the time you took the biggest chance or turned your life around in a big way, etc. was after something really hard happened to you. Something where you felt tested and had to be strong and came out more experienced, wiser and yes, of course…stronger than ever! It’s the human condition to have to hit rock bottom sometimes in order to ever even be able to turn around, look up and remember there’s a beautiful blue sky up there, over a world just waiting for us to show it our awesomeness!

And how exactly does one find his or her own awesomeness? Look. Within.

You cannot NOT be awesome. It’s an impossibility. Just for you being who you are, where you are, when you are in the fabric of time/space makes you innately AWESOME! But sometimes we don’t always know how exactly to get all this awesome “out” of us, and this is exactly what imagination and creativity are for. This is why some of us rock at the drums or guitar, why others can do complex math in their head, and yet others are simply the best listeners and therefore some of the best friends you ever had. We are ALL ingrained with our own individual awesomeness and once we learn how to tap into the pipeline, well…that’s when things really get cool. 🙂

METHOD 1 (FOR DISTRACTIONS)

First, if we find we are lacking inspiration because we simply cannot stop thinking of something else, I’d highly recommend meditation in this case. Sometimes all we need at the moment is just to slow down and really listen to a few deep breaths. Hearing yourself breathe; there’s just something about it when you really are paying attention to it and take it into your heart-space. For me personally, I feel like a video game character that just had their mana restored. It literally feels like recharge and feels even better the more that you do it. So, if you are struggling with overpowering thoughts when you need to focus, practice, write, paint, etc. simply take a mental time out and just breathe!

METHOD 2 (FOR SELF-ESTEEM/LOVE)

When we lack self-esteem and/or self-love, we tend to put things on the backburner even if we know they are beneficial to our growth, well-being, health and overall happiness. We tend to self-sabotage when we don’t think so highly of ourselves, don’t we? And this can for sure put a damper on your creative juices! If we can’t get inspired because we simply aren’t feeling “good enough” then we will convince ourselves that even if we do follow through, we will fail, so we convince ourselves to not even bother. Or we will convince ourselves that no one will like or support the outcome (a book we are writing, painting, etc.)

We can tell ourselves a million stories, but a good reminder is to know that we always have the choice of which ones to believe. And my suggestion for when you are lacking creativity when you are perhaps just stuck in a rut with a case of the “blahs”, is to remember why you are even doing this in the first place. When you truly love something, it never feels like “work”, so if you are not enjoying it, it might be time to revisit what you are doing, or it might be time to just start being nicer to yourself as well. And all that support you might be seeking from the outside; give it to yourself first, and then see how the outside world shifts right along with you.

METHOD 3 (FOR FEELING DISCONNECTED)

For times we feel disconnected from our audience so to speak, what better way to reconnect than to dive into the crowd? If you are an artist, go to an art museum or gallery. Talk to other fans of art and spark conversations. Or host a show of your own showcasing past work and get people’s opinions. You NEVER know where creativity will spark and a simple conversation can lead you down a path you never imagined you go, painting things you really enjoy that you might otherwise have never discovered a love for within yourself.

Whatever the case, get out there (or online for us hermits lol) and get talking to your tribe!!! None of us are ever alone, no matter what we are into. There is always someone we can relate to if we are truly looking to do so and sometimes all it takes is having one single conversation or getting another’s perspective on something to perhaps change your perspective and open blocks you had preventing those creative juices from flowing.

My last piece of advice is to just keep an open mind at times. Like I said you truly never know where creativity might strike and it actually often does strike in some very strange places and with/from some of the last people on Earth than you might expect.

Whatever your passion, never give up and stay inspired…the world needs your awesomeness!

 

TamaraRant_150x200Tamara Rant is a Co-Editor/Writer for CLN as well as a Licensed Reiki Master, heart-centered Graphic Designer and a progressive voice in social media activism & awareness. She is an avid lover of all things Quantum Physics and Spirituality. Connect with Tamara by visiting Prana Paws/Healing Hearts Reiki or go to RantDesignMedia.com

Tamara posts new original articles to CLN every Saturday.

Follow Tamara on FacebookTwitter and Google+




15 Things Mature Women Don’t Do In Relationships

Couple on the beach

By Amy Johnson | Life Hack

Do you think you are mature in relationships? Relationships can come with their own unique struggles, but there are some things that are universally immature and worth avoiding for a happier relationship.

Check out 15 things mature women don’t do in relationships.

1. They Don’t Sacrifice Other Relationships

Many people drift apart from their friends during a relationship. While this is understandable during the initial ‘honeymoon’ period, it is important to remember that your friends and family have been in your life for far longer than your partner. Mature women make sure they have a happy balance between all of their loved ones.

2. They Don’t Forget To Thank Their Partner

After you have been in a relationship for a while, it can be easy to forget to appreciate all of the little things that they do for you. Mature women realize that sharing your life with someone is a gift – so don’t forget to say please and thank you!

3. They Don’t Give Up Financial Independence

No matter how well off your partner is, completely giving up your financial independence can actually mean giving up your independence. Mature women don’t have to ask their partner for everything – it makes them feel proud and happy to be able to buy things with their own money.

4. They Don’t Focus On Their Partner’s Bad Traits

Mature women try to focus on their partner’s best traits rather than the negative ones. They focus on the good things their partner does and says, and they try not to judge their partner for their flaws, instead of understanding that they too have flaws.

5. They Don’t Give Up Their Dreams

Mature women understand that a great relationship doesn’t drag you down – instead, it should bring out the best in you. A good relationship encourages you to pursue your dreams, and a mature woman would struggle to be happy in a relationship if she stopped following her dreams.

6. They Don’t Think Their Version Of Happiness Is The Only One

Mature women understand that everyone’s idea of happiness is different. If their partner enjoys space, they give it to them, and if they enjoy affection, they give them that instead. Most importantly, they do not make assumptions about how to make their partner happy.

7. They Don’t Give Up Their Self Respect

It is normal to change slightly during a relationship, but mature women don’t allow their relationships to take away their self-respect. They don’t allow their partners to speak to them negatively or condescendingly – they expect their partner to treat them just as well as everyone else in their life.

8. They Don’t Take “I Love You” Lightly

Mature women understand the importance of those three words, so they work hard to keep the words special, no matter how long they have been with their partner. They don’t say ‘I love you’ at the end of every conversation – instead, they say it at the right moments, to show their partner how much they appreciate them.

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GRATITUDE: A Vital Catalyst to Bring Positive Change into Your Life

Perhaps you’ve heard the phrase, “If you are not grateful with what you have, how do you expect to be grateful with more?”  There’s a lot of substance to this statement because it puts into perspective the fact that we don’t always appreciate the things we have in our lives; how big or how small until maybe something happens that causes us to stop in our tracks, shift our perception, change our viewpoint, or re-adjust our lens.

Whether it’s work, school, kids, hobbies, etc. most of us are also distracted a good amount of the time and caught up in our daily lives, and we don’t always take the time to really show appreciation for everything we have in our lives. But an amazing thing happens when you consciously choose to give thanks. When you take even a moment of your day, every single day to show appreciation for even a single breath; even by simply acknowledging it, you are tuning into a frequency that is magnetic to even more abundance.

What is it about gratitude that magnifies the frequency of abundance around you? Well, for starters when you feel gratitude and thanks, you are literally emanating an energy that is vibrating peace, safety, trust, connection, and love with the Universe. This, in itself calls for more of the same and thus opens cosmic doors to allow even more things for you to be grateful for to come into your life.

When you are grateful, you are coming from your Heart-Space which resonates with the frequency of love. Therefore, when you feel you are struggling to make ends meet or you feel you are lacking in your life, instead of allowing yourself to be consumed with fear and separation and a feeling of having no idea how things will ever work out and come together (lack of faith and trust in the Universe), as hard as it may be, in your darkest hour instead consciously shift your thoughts over to the belief that it WILL work out. Don’t worry about the HOW, just focus on the KNOWING and let the Universe do the rest.

When you can at least get yourself into this creative, loving space you are consciously raising your vibration and giving yourself the greatest chance to manifest positive change, because you are no longer coming from fear. When you feel thankful and are in gratitude, it is IMPOSSIBLE to feel fear at the same time.

I am a firm believer that your level of action on helping heal your soul wounds and how fast you are to take that action is equivalent to the amount of self-love you feel. For years, I’d allow myself to be drawn into abusive relationships that did nothing but reflect back to me insecurities I refused to look at for such a long time. But once I realized that in order for anyone else to ever be able to love me the way I needed to be loved, I needed to first learn how to love myself.

So, do a little experiment next time you are feeling disconnected from the world or perhaps like nothing ever goes your way or that your life is just horrible all around. See how quickly you can consciously shift your energy, your focus, and your vibration. And then remember these words…There is ALWAYS something to be grateful for. And that realization in itself is the catalyst for drawing positive change into your life. You just need to know in your heart that you are deserving of love, and the moment you believe it with your whole heart, your life will never be the same. There will remain an ember of gratitude that will forever burn in your soul. You will be forever changed and your heart will overflow with loving thanks.

The Universe will answer promptly with only more to be thankful for. What a fantastic system. 🙂

About the Author

Tamara Rant is a Co-Editor/Writer for CLN as well as a Licensed Reiki Master, heart-centered Graphic Designer and a progressive voice in social media activism & awareness. She is an avid lover of all things Quantum Physics and Spirituality. Connect with Tamara by visiting Prana Paws/Healing Hearts Reiki or go to RantDesignMedia.com

Tamara posts new original articles to CLN every Saturday.

Follow Tamara on FacebookTwitter and Google+

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Are You Having Problems With the Physical Side of the Relationship?

When you are in a long-term relationship, it can be comforting and make you feel safe and secure. However, there are also some problems you may experience when you have been together for some time, one of which is in relation to your physical relationship. When couples first get together, the physical side of the relationship is often passionate and exciting. However, this can start to go awry for various reasons.

If you find that your physical relationship is suffering but you still love and are attracted to your partner, there are various things you can try. The cause of the slump in your physical relationship will have an impact on the best solution for you. So, it is important to think about what might be causing the issue and how you can resolve it. In this article, we will look at some of the possibilities.

Possible Causes and Solutions

One major cause of a reduction in intimacy and excitement in the bedroom is the fact that things have just become stale. This is something that happens to huge numbers of couples, and it doesn’t mean that you are no longer attracted. It simply means it may be time to switch things up and try something different. For instance, you can look at intruding sex toys to your bedroom activities, which can help to add some sparkle and excitement.

Another possible issue is that you simply do not have enough time together, and what little time you do get you are too tired to do anything but rest and sleep. Lack of time to enjoy intimacy can have a big impact on your physical relationship, and with the fast pace of life most of us have to cope with these days, it affects huge numbers of couples. To try to get things back on track, you should consider booking the odd weekend or short break away, where you can escape from the stress of daily life and spend some quality time together. Also, try to arrange a weekly date night where just the two of you get to spend time together.

Communication and lack of honesty can also have an impact on your physical relationship. While this is not a physical problem as such, trust among couples can be lost very easily and not communicating can add to this problem. If you no longer speak to one another as couples should, you will find it very difficult to be intimate with one another. Your partner should not just be your lover but also your best friend, and we all speak to and confide in our best friends. If you find that you struggle to communicate with your partner or that they struggle to do the same with you, it may be worth seeing a counselor.

By taking some time to see a counselor, you can work your way through communication problems with far greater ease. Having someone unconnected with you means you are more likely to get to the root of the problem. Also, in this type of setting you will have no choice but to communicate while you are with the counselor. Once you can identify the barrier that is coming between you, you will find it much easier to make a difference and start communication with each other properly.

There is one other thing you need to consider, and that is medical or biological reasons. If one partner or the other has gone off intimacy or is unable to be intimate, there could be a more deep-rooted issue than the ones outlined above. So, it is well worth considering a trip to the doctor or even a referral to a counselor if you feel this may help. There are various different medical and biological issues that can affect your physical relationship but if you are keen to get things back on track, it is important to tackle these problems rather than burying your head in the sand.

Taking Action Sooner Rather than Later

As you can see, there are lots of possible reasons why the physical side of your relationship may be suffering. The above provides an insight into just a few of these possible causes. If there are problems with your physical relationship, it is important to take action sooner rather than later.

The earlier you act, the easier it will be to identify the issue and to take action. If you simply let things fester, you will most likely drift further and further apart, not just in terms of your physical relationship but also the close bond and emotional ties that come with a relationship. So, if you want to get things back on track when it comes to your intimacy and physical relationship, consider some of the solutions outlined above.




How to Break Unstable Relationship Patterns

Image Credit: Tiny Buddha

By Jess Chua | Tiny Buddha

“Being willing to accept responsibility for the situation you’re in is the first step to a more fulfilling love life.” ~Renée Suzanne

Remember the haunting ballad “Foolish Games” by Jewel?

Jewel wrote the song when she was sixteen. She kept a serious journal, and said in an interview that a verse in the song was “about a relationship that I was dramatically involved in on paper.”

That pretty much sums up my first relationship, which was a dramatic pseudo-relationship in many ways. I was sixteen going on seventeen, hopelessly romantic yet shrewdly skeptical of love at the same time. My emotions were wild and intense, and that was what I thought “real love” felt like.

This drama followed me throughout the few but memorable relationships I had in my twenties. When a partner was rude to me or put me down, I’d think that I somehow deserved it or that it was a challenge to do better with a quick-witted comeback. I’d tell myself that the other person needed “space” to “calm down,” without giving as much care or thought to what I really wanted or needed.

Mind games and second-guessing are part and parcel of an unstable relationship.

As Anita wrote in a forum comment: “Maybe you are testing him each time you withdraw—will he go after me?” In my mind, I’d rationalize it as the need to be “reaffirmed” that I was really what the person was looking for in an ideal partner.

All of the unstable relationships I was in ultimately failed.

In hindsight, it’s no wonder why!

I had constantly attracted and been attracted to partners who lacked commitment, reliability, and emotional stability. Things would blow hot and cold on a regular basis in either direction (“She’s So Cold,” by The Rolling Stones, was yet another song with lyrics I could relate to).

When I reached my early thirties, I started putting in more effort to break out of these negative relationship patterns. I realized that I had to accept responsibility for being in horrible relationship situations that I thought no wise and sane person would ever put up with.

I’d like to share what I learned in the hopes that my experience may help someone else who’s desperately trying to move forward from a troubled dating history.

5 Lessons About Breaking Unhealthy Relationship Patterns

1. Observe your thoughts and their actions.

When I observed myself, I noticed that my own thoughts about love and relationships were full of negative or anxious associations. I believed that it was close to impossible to be in a healthy relationship or that I would always be attracted to unstable types.

This anxiety carried over into my behavior on a daily basis. I was always skeptical to the point of being paranoid. Being too trusting is a fault, but I saw how the other extreme could be just as damaging as it didn’t give me much of a chance to see the good side of others. I couldn’t expect my relationships to improve if I had such low confidence in ever being in a fulfilling relationship.

I also had to recognize when someone’s words and actions didn’t line up. A glib speaker might be able to use words to perfectly express or explain something, but it’s a person’s behavior that really matters at the end of the day. A partner who proclaims they’re the greatest is an egomaniac if they fail to see how their hurtful words or behavior affects you.

2. Get clear on your boundaries.

Think about what makes you feel sad, uncomfortable, drained, or diminished as a human being.

My list of personal boundaries includes the following:

  • I need a partner who’s financially responsible.
  • I need a partner who won’t resort to belittling my mind and opinions should we have a clash of opinions.
  • I need plenty of alone time to rest, recharge, and dedicate to my creative projects.

You need to understand what your personal boundaries are so that you can maintain them. More importantly, it helps you keep a distance from people who don’t respect your limits.

Boundaries don’t exist because you’re selfish or because you want to make life difficult for others. Boundaries are a form of self-care for your mental and emotional health. If this makes things “difficult” for others, perhaps they’re not the people you should be spending most of your time and life with.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE……




Having Sex With Herpes: Everything You Need to Know

If you’ve recently learned that you’ve contracted genital herpes, you’ll have a lot of questions. It can be a stressful time full of unknowns, with one question being the future of your sex life. With some precautions and the correct information, though, it’s perfectly possible to continue having a happy and healthy sex life with an HSV-1 or HSV-2 diagnosis. If you’ve recently contracted herpes, the first phase of symptoms can be terrifying, and may make you worry about your future, but continuing your sex life and overall life outside of sex can be managed and may be easier than you expect.

Herpes: More Common Than You May Think

The term ‘herpes’ is used for a collection of similar but different viruses. The main two are known as Herpes Simplex Virus Type 1 (HSV-1) and Herpes Simplex Virus Type 2 (HSV-2). These two strains of the virus will give the same symptoms, but affect the body in different ways. To start with, HSV-1 is the more common of the two variations. You may be surprised to learn that it affects somewhere between 50% and 70% of the population under 50. This means that as you carry out your day-to-day life, over half of them may have the virus. HSV-1 causes sores around the lips called cold sores and can, in rare cases, cause sores around the genital area. While very common, the majority of those people infected with HSV-1 don’t get any symptoms from the virus. You can go your whole life with the virus and never get a cold sore.

The second form of herpes is HSV-2 and is more commonly associated with the term ‘herpes.’ This strain is less common than HSV-1 but still affects around 10% of people between the ages of 14 and 49. From this information, it’s essential to understand that having herpes doesn’t bear any relation to who you are, your cleanliness, or because of poor sexual behavior. It’s the most common sexually transmitted infection in the world and can infect anyone.

Treatment for Herpes

When you get your first outbreak of herpes, this is often when you first find out that you’ve contracted the infection. The first outbreak is known as primary herpes and is usually the most aggressive case of symptoms you’ll experience. It will start with itchiness around the area that sores will eventually appear, and after a few days, will turn into blisters. This can be irritating and itch and will eventually burst to leave open sores that will eventually heal. The healing process can take between two weeks and a month, and it’s best to remain sexually inactive at this stage as this is when you’re most contagious.

Additional symptoms may include feeling like you have flu, with a fever, and overall muscle soreness. In the first week, the virus is replicating and spreading throughout the body, and eventually makes it to the nerves. At this stage, your body hasn’t had a chance to learn how to deal with the virus, which is what makes it more severe than later outbreaks.

At this stage, the best thing to do is to visit your doctor to get advice and treatment. The only way to know for certain that you’ve contracted herpes is to get a test, which your doctor will be able to perform. There are also at-home testing kits available from websites like Self Collect. Because herpes is a virus, there’s no cure, but there are antiviral treatments and medications that can help your body heal more quickly. You may also want to get some additional medication to help with the pain and muscle soreness. While you still have the symptoms, make sure to avoid having sex until the symptoms are gone, and if you have HSV-1 and have cold sores, try to avoid kissing your partner.

Living with Herpes: Dealing With Recurring Outbreaks

Some people will never have an outbreak of herpes symptoms again after the initial phase. Other people will have to deal with additional outbreaks of sores, though, as the virus can’t be cured. Because of this, it’s essential to be prepared for outbreaks, which are often triggered when someone is stressed or run down. The first thing to do to try to prevent additional outbreaks then is to manage your stress and try to live in a way that allows you to get enough sleep, for example.

Unfortunately, this isn’t always possible, so speak to your doctor about the next steps to help if and when you have an outbreak. Again, there are medications like valacyclovir that can help manage the symptoms of herpes.

If you’re having an outbreak, it’s essential to stop having any sexual intercourse with your partner, including vaginal, oral, or anal. This is when you’re at your most contagious, and the sores that occur contain a lot of viral fluid. The best thing to do is to wait until the symptoms have subsided again before you start having sex.

This may be frustrating, but the longer you have the virus, the more capable your body will become at dealing with it. This means that outbreaks generally become less frequent over time. People with HSV-1 can get between one and two recurrences a year, and those with HSV-2 can get four or five each year. Once the body becomes more adept at dealing with either of the two strains, though, and once you get medication that speeds up the healing process, you shouldn’t have too much difficulty dealing with the virus.

How to Have Sex When You Have Herpes

If you have herpes and your partner doesn’t, there are ways to still have a full sex life. There will always be a risk that the virus will be passed on even if every precaution is taken, though, so keep this in mind. The best thing you can do is to never have sex during an outbreak and to always use a condom when having sex. This will provide as much protection as possible and prevents the virus from spreading to up to 95%.




10 Loving Ways to Add Happiness to Your Relationship

By Zeenat | Positive Provocations

“Let your love be like the misty rains, coming softly, but flooding the river.” ~Malagasy Proverb

After receiving countless lovely emails and messages regarding different kinds of relationships and the problems in them, this is the article I wrote, which attempts to answer almost all of those queries. 

One of my friends recently gave me an article about happiness that asked the question, “How happy can we be?” Pretty darn happy if I’m in love, you might say. But according to psychologists, about 50 percent of our happiness is determined by our genes, and amazingly only about 10 percent has to do with our actual circumstances. The other 40 percent has to do with what we do to counteract a seemingly natural tendency for us to stay at or around what we psychologists term our “set point” or “baseline.”

In other words, people tend to reach a goal, whether it be finding love, getting married, or making more money and feel a surge of happiness for a while, only to soon adapt back down to their “set point.”

The Belief of Fireworks and Excitement to Ho-Hum

Relationships seem to go the same way for a lot of people. The beginning is like all fireworks and excitement. But then, somewhere between changing diapers and paying the mortgage, couples lose their way. They forget it’s their responsibility to their relationship–and their happiness–to continue cultivating the magic, and things become ho-hum. They just don’t feel excited about each other anymore and thus feel less happy than they should.

Many people believe it is natural for the excitement level–and hence our happiness level–to go down after the new wears off the relationship. But since it is our beliefs that determine our reality, believing something more serving is a good idea if you want long-term happiness in your relationships.

Another belief is that your relationship can get better and better as time goes on. One of my patients said that he is more deeply happy now than at the beginning of his relationship. He feels that the beginning was exciting and fun, but now, he feels “deeply content and peaceful” which is a “more fulfilling feeling.” He says, “I love her more deeply now because I know her more deeply now.”

It’s true that the excitement, in the beginning, is new and so–well, it’s exciting–and later there is less of that brand of fun. But the beginning is also the part illusion; we are projecting our light onto our partners; we are seeing God in them. We haven’t yet seen their humanness, their insecurities, and flaws. Seeing each other’s weaknesses is perhaps not as exciting, but isn’t it deeply profound that we can love each other, not only in spite of but even because of our flaws? And as we feel safer and more secure with our partner, we can open to greater depths of intimacy. This intimacy though can only happen if we are paying attention to our relationship and nurturing it rather than allowing all the other demands of life to suck the life out of our relationship.

There are many things that we can do to counteract the tendency to fall into relationship rut and be less happy than we deserve to be. It’s really about taking responsibility for creating passion and desire rather than expecting it to just be there.

10 Loving Ways to Add Happiness to your Relationships:

1. Spend time regularly thinking about all the things you love about your partner, and share your thoughts with your partner. When we get stressed, it’s easy to focus on what we find irritating. But it’s important to make a conscious effort to shift your thinking to the positive and look for the best in your partner.

2. Take time each week to go on a date with your partner, to be romantic and loving. And take time to make love with words, with actions, with thoughts…. The more you do it, the more you want it. The less you do it, the less you want it.

3. Take time each month or so to experience something totally new with your partner, whether attending an interesting lecture, walking, or going to a new town. Experiencing new things adds a level of excitement to your relationship.

4. When discussing money issues–remember it’s cited as the number one cause for divorce–set a time, go to the kitchen table, discuss it, and then let it go. If you haven’t resolved it, set another time to discuss it in that way. Avoid letting it become a discussion in the bedroom or over dinner, and avoid any tendency to discuss it on and off throughout the day.

5. Promote intimacy by taking the time to share your feelings, needs, and desires, and be open to hearing about your partner’s.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE…




New Visions of Vulnerability & The Art of Venting Your Vexation

“What Makes You Vulnerable is Also What Makes You Beautiful.” – Brene Brown

Why is it that we don’t think twice before crossing oceans for our loved ones, but we will barely skip a puddle for our own peace of mind…until we have no choice?

Usually, the Universe will give you hints to things it’s trying to bring to the surface and get you to look at. If you’re reading this then you probably know this is how the Universe will always communicate with you, but only as long as you are listening, right? Well, that is at least what many of us believe.

The Universe will actually continue speaking to you at this disco I call life, whether you’re listening or not. But since you’re surrendering your rightful spot as the DJ, the same old song will keep playing over…and over…and over…and over again until you come back into the awareness of who you are, which requires remembering you even started playing a song in the first place. Regardless, consider the song playing to be your life and then perhaps many things may come into perspective for you as to why certain things never seem to change, get better, or just “keep happening” to you and why some things seem to be literally on repeat.

The Universe doesn’t care what you want, sorry. It only receives the energy signature you are broadcasting out, and therefore it can only respond accordingly in how it delivers back energy as the experiences in your life. Because this appears as things just happening to you, this makes it easy to place blame on others when things don’t go right, etc. But you really never lose your spot as DJ; you simply fall asleep on the job…you go from being conscious of your feelings, reactions, etc. to unconscious i.e. reactive. But regardless, it is YOU who’s energy, in every given moment, is setting the energy that pulls the next…You can go through this motion empowered, conscious, holding the reigns, director of the show…or you can tap out, switch off, lay down in the seat and put it on auto-pilot…

Many of us live in this mode for a good portion if not all of our lives because it feels safe; it is familiar and frankly ‘familiar’ is easy and comfortable and we like that same old story, don’t we? I don’t know about any of you, but I am fucking tired of telling THAT story.

For some of us, it often gets to the point where the Universe must finally take a proverbial 2×4 to our head in the form of “life shit” because let’s face it, we are too stubborn to change the negative patterns we’ve developed to cope with the confusion of not knowing how to properly deal with certain emotions. But as I’ve researched and committed to exploring these emotions and no longer running from then, I’m actually starting to learn how to build some beautiful shit with all those 2×4‘s!

What I’m coming to really love is proving to myself that the more steps I take on the invisible bridge of the unknown, the closer I get to know who I really am. And I think for all of us, this healing journey is something so very personal, that even if you don’t do it to connect with others at first, do it to connect with your own Soul because this in itself is a gift.

What we’re not often taught is the more we face what is uncomfortable, the more vulnerable we are willing to be, the less terrifying it actually becomes because that is how you take away the power of fear and discomfort. In fact, it is the ONLY way. I often think of the quote, “The only way out is through”…

And I feel like while it was scary losing the light of the entrance of where I came in on this journey, taking a chance on myself to brave the dark has been the most empowering thing I’ve ever done in my life. It is beginning to feel less like something I must do, and beginning to feel like something I look forward to doing.

It’s the type of shift that leaves a permanent mark on your heart. It’s similar to how the energy changes when you can make a crying friend with tears in their eyes laugh at a stupid joke. That “pop” or release that even if you know not a drop about energy, feelings, psychology, awareness…it doesn’t matter. A simple shift in energy is all it takes to help you once again know the truth of who you are, which is pure consciousness; pure love.

Knowing we are love is what allows us also to be vulnerable and connect vulnerably with another…which is really just another way of saying you are willing to let the walls down or be open with someone. We may not consciously know that this has happened when we feel that pull to chill out and go apologize or reconnect, etc. but that is literally what just occurred. You got out of your own way and the truth was able to reach your heart. And that insight is the first step to venting any vexation you have around vulnerability. You will quickly begin to see that you no longer feel naked or “in the spotlight” but rather a balance of being seen and heard.

We all guard most that which we want so dearly to give away…the love that resides so deeply in our hearts we have forgotten it is there. And that is what being vulnerable is all about. Helping ourselves and one another remember the truth. And we can all feel that, simply because we all ARE it. So keep braving that wave of emotions because any shift closer to your heart is a shift closer to your happiness.

 

Tamara Rant is a Co-Editor/Writer for CLN as well as a Licensed Reiki Master, heart-centered Graphic Designer and a progressive voice in social media activism & awareness. She is an avid lover of all things Quantum Physics and Spirituality. Connect with Tamara by visiting Prana Paws/Healing Hearts Reiki or go to RantDesignMedia.com

Tamara posts new original articles to CLN every Saturday.

Follow Tamara on FacebookTwitter and Google+

This article was originally created and published by Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Tamara Rant and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.




7 Simple Steps to Being a Love Activist (from the Master, Alice Walker)

Alice-Walker-compressed

Alice Walker

Source: The Shift Network Blog

From the deck of the “Freedom Flotilla” destined for the Gaza Strip to standing on the frontlines of healing America’s own violent history, author and activist Alice Walker has been a voice for peace for nearly 40 years…

And in an enlightening conversation with The Shift Network, she shares the keys to being a LOVE Activist passionately committed to healing our troubled world through peace and an open heart.

Related Article: This Sikh Man Dresses Up As Captain America “To Fight Intolerance”

1) Recommit Every Day

When you’re on a mission of peace, your commitment to nonviolence is tested daily. So every day, you’re called to recommit to who you are, to keep your heart open and to stand your ground as a peacemaker.

2) Protect What Matters Most

Know what you’re defending: What’s within you that’s worth protecting so you don’t become just like the people who are trying stop you? Guard it dearly and use it as your inspiration for nonviolence.

happy smile

3) Embrace Your Joy

Peace is not just the cessation of war. It’s also the act of embracing JOY. To have peace is to be fully awake and vibrantly alive! Find the small joys in daily acts of peace.

4) Stand for Truth

When you stand with, and for, the marginalized and abused, bring a kind heart, an open mind, and a good conscience. This can only be achieved by acknowledging what has truly happened. The suffering must be seen and the wounded must be embraced.

Related Article: 12 People Who Made a Difference (and YOU Can Too!)

5) Be Courageous

Women, in particular, have a  key role to play in bringing peace into our homes, communities, spiritual circles and world. So be courageous, even audacious, speak up and share your unique gifts. The world needs your leadership!

6) Spread Forgiveness

When you forgive, others feel it deeply. Alice loves the Tonglen practice of breathing in pain and disaster as far as you can, and breathing out peace, prosperity, and joy… spreading these good feelings out into the world.

7) Love the Earth

Nature is a vital life-giving source that we cannot take for granted. Be a conscious steward of the Earth. Treat Her with respect and nature will keep us happy and healthy in return.

Daily Practice: Bring Joy & Peace Wherever You Go

Look into the eyes of those you come into contact with. Smile when you’re on the street and be aware of feelings of defensiveness and fear. Breathe in resistance, exhale ease.

Once you begin to practice being fully present in this way, you can see how much sadness and pain there is in the world. You’ll become less concerned about your own stuff and available to the present moment, so you can bring more joy and peace to others.




5 Ways To Show Your Partner You’re Falling in Love

Source: Power of Positivity

I love you” is undoubtedly one of the most powerful phrases in the English language. But when you’re in a relatively new relationship, you might not want to throw the words out there too soon. So if you want to show your new partner how you feel without proclaiming your love too early on, what can you do?

And, you might also be resistant to saying those three sweet words for other reasons, as well. Perhaps you feel fear that your partner doesn’t reciprocate–yet. Or, maybe you feel that the term is overstating those newly blossoming feelings that are unfolding inside of you.

Regardless of your reasons for choosing not to speak the L-word out loud, you can use sweet, intimate gestures to express your genuine feelings and also build a stronger bond.

Here are 5 Ways You Can Show Your Partner You’re In Love Without Using the Words

1. Build a Strong Friendship.

Good relationships don’t just happen overnight. They require mutual love, trust, and respect. Creating a strong foundation as friends, who share everything, will enhance sexual pleasures at a later time in your union. The act of allowing and acceptance is a beautiful bond in human sexuality. Feeling safe is a cornerstone of a strong love relationship. That’s because only you can only feel genuine happiness when you know your partner has your back and your best intentions at heart.

This leads to the release of the love hormone called oxytocin. Oxytocin creates a sense of happiness and well-being. This hormone is associated with empathy and trust, therefore releasing even more feelings of love and security in a relationship. Friends don’t require sex. They require acknowledgment, understanding and mutual admiration. You cultivate love through the depth of a strong friendship.

2. Connect Through Food.

There is something especially touching when someone you love cooks for you. To have a meal prepared with love is a true act of love. Women love men who cook. And it is said that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Even if you cannot cook, just picking out a meal at a restaurant and enjoying the moment together is enough to feel good. Food connects us through cultures, heritage, and social events. We need it for health and fueling our bodies.

Try taking a cooking class together. Make dessert for one another. Turn off all phones, get a glass of wine, and enjoy the culinary arts. The simple act of feeding stimulates conversation and will increase your bond.

“Food is symbolic to love when words are inadequate.”  ~Dr. Alan D. Wolfelt

3. Find Hobbies and Activities To Do Together.

Share a bucket list of things you want to do with each other. Finding ways to interact outside of the bedroom is romantic. You can hike in the rain, chase a sunset, or take an art class in town. Make time to do the things that you like to do alone and share them with your partner. Teach each other new things. Workout together. Read to one another. Have playtime and a picnic in the park. Go to a baseball game. Go roller skating and return to places that you enjoyed in your youth.

Being silly and laughing with each other is precious. Sharing these parts of yourself enhances your emotional connection.

READ THE REST OF THIS ARTICLE…




3 Everyday Energy Elixirs For Empaths & Everyone Else

simple law of attraction strategy

I don’t know about you, but at the end of the day, I often find myself feeling pretty worn down and drained of energy. I’m sure most empaths can relate, although if you’re anything like me you are hastily working on a regimen to keep you from not only absorbing the energy of others but also to prevent your own reserves from slowly leaking out through the day.

It’s an ever-evolving process with rough edges I’m still working on, but what I’ve come up with thus far that seems to be working pretty well are 3 practices that you can “check-in” with throughout your day; every day, to keep you accountable to not only your physical health but also to your spiritual, mental and emotional well-being.

This little system is what I call “THREE-BEES” (3 B’s) and it has done magick in my own little world. I hope it does the same for you!

The “Inner” Bee: BREATH-WORK

Breathing is something we do automatically and usually without even thinking about it. Our bodies were so awesomely designed where we really don’t have to pay much attention to this process, do we? So why is it every time we experience stress or anxiety we innately know to pause and take a deep breath? I believe this is because it is hard-wired in us to know that the simple, yet significant act of consciously breathing is more than just another breath, it is the first brick laid in a bridge to higher consciousness. And this bridge…or connection is the ultimate and infinite source of healing energy. A deep breath can calm you down in a moment of rage. Repetitive focused breathing is one type of meditation that I actually prefer to do first thing in the morning when the morning Arizona air is still relatively cool. As an empath, this helps me to release what energy I’ve collected that isn’t mine and to call back from the world any of my energy that may have left.

The “Middle” Bee: BOUNDARIES

I consider strong personal boundaries to be a vital component to living a happy life where you feel balanced in your giving and offering as much as you do your taking and receiving. You have learned to trust your own judgment and intuition and the signs and symbols that the Universe speaks to you through and know when to say and also when to say no. You don’t make promises you don’t intend on keeping as you know this slowly chips away at your integrity. And you know you have set some healthy boundaries when you trust fully in your own judgment.

How to get there: Start to put yourself first and stop feeling guilty about it! I know it’s not easy and this will feel completely foreign to you at first, but trust me once you get a taste of Self-love, you wanna keep the faucet running! 🙂

The “Outer” Bee: BEAUTY

Being able to see opportunities in times of crisis is one the greatest gems life has to offer. It’s also one of the most difficult lessons to learn, especially if you are a stubborn mule like myself! However, now that I’ve somewhat mastered that art, life is laughable for almost any occasion, because I can now see everything as the puzzle piece it is, playing its part, reading its script and existing without labels and judgment until those I choose to apply. I’ve learned that not taking things personally almost instantly diffuses negative energy being directed at you and opens up a space for love and understanding to enter. All it takes is shifting presence from panic and fear back to peace and full awareness in who you are. It is when we forget our purpose that our presence in the moment brings the fear that pushes us back to the past or pulls us into the future. Most of us have been trained to fear the unknown and this fear-response is also embedded in our DNA, so while it’s a good survival tool, most of us have grown quite resentful of the consequences of the choices we make while in fear. And I’ve learned the key to making better choices is to first accept the bad ones you’ve made and love yourself anyway. Once you can see the beauty in the bullshit, you have arrived.

Tamara Rant is a Co-Editor/Writer for CLN as well as a Licensed Reiki Master, heart-centered Graphic Designer and a progressive voice in social media activism & awareness. She is an avid lover of all things Quantum Physics and Spirituality. Connect with Tamara by visiting Prana Paws/Healing Hearts Reiki or go to RantDesignMedia.com

Tamara posts new original articles to CLN every Saturday.

Follow Tamara on FacebookTwitter and Google+

This article was originally created and published by Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Tamara Rant and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.

 




2 Dire Growth Problems Our Youth Face

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The iPhone Generation or Zombie Apocalypse

I was listening to a radio program where a psychologist was talking about the problems this new generation face — one being a high rate of teen suicide due to lack of coping skills or the ability to communicate with others.

The expectations (and most are fake or supremely fudged over) that the young adults of today face are insurmountable — the ‘look like this’, ‘have a body like that’, ‘look how happy we are’ statuses and the constant flood of societal dictation of what beauty, brains and normal is.

God forbid if you think for yourself, dress how you want, love your body for what it is or stand up for others who are being ridiculed by their peers and not follow this preordained trend.

Related Article:  9 Truths to Stop You From Caring What People Think

To the trained eye and savvy social media peruser, it can even be a difficult task to filter out the fake from the true. Can you then imagine how difficult it must be for a developing adolescent to figure out what’s going on? The pressure and high intensity of our current techie age must be daunting to an impressionable mind!

Calling it What it is…

We need to help guide the youth to trust their instincts, follow their dreams, think for themselves, question everything and be comfortable in their own skin.

We also have a duty to warn them of these 2 inherent dangers that are about to stunt their personal growth, as I see it:

  1. Lack of Humility/Modesty — this new social media age is breeding a monster called ‘selfies’. If I see another duck face on my Facebook feed I think I might take a long walk off a short plank. I fear this syndrome has not only captivated the youth and teens — it has some adults in its firm and fierce-some grip too! To continually post photo’s of yourself (as taken by yourself and not to be confused with good ‘ol holiday snaps or ‘capturing the moment’ snaps as taken by others) on any social media platform is just darn-right vain. I have some acquaintances who do it several times a day and they’re adults! I can’t actually believe this kind of behavior and cringe when I see my whole feed taken up by fish faces. I don’t even think once a week is healthy (which reminds me of a status I saw: ‘I didn’t have time to take a selfie but you can rest assured that I still look fabulous!’…he he). Some people find ANY excuse to take a pic of themselves and don’t hesitate to hit the share button…again…and again. It shows either a massive ego at play or a very small one (lack of self-confidence hence wanting constant affirmation of one’s beauty/relevance). I saw a quote the other day that sums it up nicely: “Never before has a generation so diligently documented themselves accomplishing so little” (credit on photo: www.thefreethoughtproject.com). If we don’t nip this in the bud, we will be breeding a world full of egocentric individuals more focused on what other people think of them/their abilities instead of just getting on with the job quietly without pomp and ceremony (‘Dare, Do, Keep Silent’). Our children need to be made aware that to be humble in service to others and help our fellow human beings build immense strong character — to be of service only to self whilst blowing your own trumpet creates none. Selfies could indeed paint a more grim picture than we might have imagined. Our children need to be taught that relevance, appropriateness, and subtlety is key.
  2. Lack of One-on-One Communication — the other problem our youth face is not being able to effectively communicate with others. With faces firmly glued to screens for most of the day, it’s little wonder that this generation lacks proper social relations. This is more of a problem than it may appear on the surface. Of course, it’s annoying (and bloody rude) when people are constantly checking in on their phone apps whilst with you (read related article: Stop (Wi)Frying Yourself — Starting Today (Especially Family Units!) but the more inherent problem is when these youngsters really need help and to talk about their problems but have no skills to relay or open a dialogue to discuss their issues either with their parents, elders or peers. Communique with others predominantly via electronic devices leaves out the imperative one-on-one contact you get when corresponding in the flesh. You don’t get to develop your skills at body language, eye contact and a host of other things. This can lead to faulty judgment and/or a complete lack of confidence when corresponding in the outside world. Our youth will need this kind of report when seeking employment or any other grown-uppy kind of thing and how are they possibly going to manage when they have no clue when it comes to a physical interface?

We all like the comfort of having the world at our fingertips via our phones but we also need to be aware of the downside and curb excessive and unnecessary use — and that goes for all, young and old.

Limit your time on your phone and have a cut-off point where you pack it away and spend quality time with your friends or family — phone free. Do this and you will be an example to your children (and/or other people’s children).

Related article: How Balanced Are You?

CRDCherie Roe Dirksen is a self-empowerment author, multi-media artist, and musician from South Africa.

To date, she has published 3 self-help and motivational books and brings out weekly inspirational blogs at her site www.cherieroedirksen.com. Get stuck into finding your passion, purpose, and joy by downloading some of those books gratis when you click HERE.

Her ambition is to help you to connect with your innate gift of creativity and living the life you came here to experience by taking responsibility for your actions and becoming the co-creator of your reality. You can follow Cherie on Facebook (The Art of Empowerment — for article updates). She also has just recently launched her official art Facebook page (Cherie Roe Dirksen – for new art updates).

Cherie posts a new article on CLN every Thursday. To view her articles, click HERE.

This article (2 Dire Growth Problems Our Youth Facewas originally written for and published by Conscious Life News and is published here under a Creative Commons license with attribution to the author Cherie Roe Dirksen and ConsciousLifeNews.com. It may be re-posted freely with proper attribution, author bio, and this Copyright/Creative Commons statement.