giving credit where credit is due…but where is that?

P1230328

“Good Night” available on MY ARTWORK PAGE

For most of my life, I’ve (secretly) held the belief that if I wanted anything done well, I needed to do it myself. I took a lot of pride in getting things done, and for being on time with whatever I committed to…and I wanted to receive recognition for this. As a matter of fact, I wanted recognition and credit for most everything I did. Occasionally, I’d do something and say nothing, hoping it would be discovered and then I’d be sought out so I could “humbly” say, “Yes, it was me.”

I’ve known about my false humility in this area for a long time, but about a week ago, I woke up with the words, “Stop taking credit for anything. You’re not doing it” running through my mind. Since that moment, I thought about these words almost non-stop, and they’ve continued to unfold and become clearer.

The need for recognition, which went hand in hand with feeling that I really did things better than most, was a huge obstacle in seeing myself for who I really was/am. Thinking that I, Mary Muncil, was doing so much (and doing it so well) created an almost shield-like block to my faith in myself as a Divine being. Believing that things had to be done my way, in my timing, presupposed that these things didn’t have an animating life of their own, which was arrogant in the extreme…not to mention exhausting.

“What would it be like to stop taking credit for things going well and for things going not so well?” has been the concept that I’ve been playing with for the last few days, and it feels like freedom…it feels like light…it feels like fun.

“A cloud does not know why it moves in just such a direction and at such a speed. It feels an impulsion…this is the place to go now. But the sky knows the reason and the patterns behind the clouds, and you will know too….

from,  Illusions, The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah, by Richard Bach

Freedom is living fully in the NOW…leaving the past behind

Eleanor

                                     Eleanor 

I’ve never considered myself easy to get along with. I’m not sure if this was something I was told as a young child, and then just grew to believe or what, but I’ve always been strong-willed and opinionated, and it seemed to me that people like this were more challenging to be around.

Anyway, I was talking to a family member about this a while back and he said, “You are much better than you used to be.” Then he added, “I like the way I am. I’ve always been easy-going.” I bit my lip and said nothing, but I wanted to yell, “Are you kidding?!” Then he asked, “Don’t you think I’m easy going?” I answered, “Well, you’re a lot better than you used to be.” We both laughed, but neither laugh was genuine.

Later that evening, I thought about what I’d said to him and even though it was the truth, he was much easier to be around, I’d really wanted to say, “You may be easier now but in the past you have been incredibly difficult, opinionated, bossy, rigid…” But as I thought about this, another thought came to mind, “He really is different now. He is much easier to be around, so why do I want him to acknowledge that he wasn’t like this in the past? What difference does that make?”

I could see that I was dragging the past into the present. There was a part of me that didn’t want to see him through new eyes. I didn’t want to let him off the hook. I was oddly invested in keeping our entire past history active in my mind, even though a lot of it was difficult (for both of us) and even though I wanted him to see me as changed. It is no wonder that I’ve felt conflict in our relationship. It also became clear that I’d been keeping myself on that hook too, stubbornly holding onto many of the same hurtful memories about my own shortcomings.

If I want to feel harmony, peace, and happiness within but insist on holding onto past judgments, prejudices, resentments, and hurts, I am going to continue to have those two sides (of me) battling. Jane Roberts coined the phrase, “The point of power is in the Now”, over 30 years ago, but it is a spiritual truth that has been taught for thousands of years. Practically speaking, I believe  this means that we have the ability to see and to experience ourselves, and everyone else, as who and what we are in this moment.

A question that I ask myself, when I’m experiencing a conflict, is, “Are you so sure that you are seeing this person/situation accurately?” If I’m honest with myself, the answer is always, “No”, because the next question is, “Are you willing to see them/it differently?” When I answer, “No”, that is a sure sign that I am living in the past. But when I say, “Yes” (even when I cannot imagine a perspective different from the one I am currently holding onto) I begin to feel a new kind of peace and openness. I don’t even need to see what that new perspective is because I can sense it. Sometimes the conflict just falls away and I forget it. At other times, a more expanded vision takes the place of the old, but either way, I am free. I am living in the NOW.

 

“Living in the past is a failure method and a violation of spiritual law.” pp.31 The Game of Life and How to Play It, Florence Scovel Shinn

This entry was posted on June 14, 2015. 6 Comments

I say…..

Fred loves sitting in the grass

Fred

I know that we all have discouraging thoughts, and the one that seems to really grab me is, “You haven’t made any progress at all (in whatever area I’m currently fretting about) and at this point in your life, you probably never will.”

This was the thought that assailed me the other day, and honestly, I felt like crying, screaming, and giving up. It just seemed so obviously true. I was steeped in self-pity. I felt like a failure and the worse I felt, the more my mind came up with evidence that my feelings about myself were true. New negative thoughts seemed to jump into my mind, crowding in with the other negative thoughts until, energetically, I probably resembled a sinking ship.

I have tools for times like these but am reluctant to use them because in this state, I’m pretty sure that they won’t work either. Even though I have hundreds of examples of success when I try, in the moment of despair, I cannot imagine feeling better. I’m sure this is the reason why I wallow for hours instead of minutes. But eventually, I do try to work with my mind…when I can’t stand myself any longer.

This is what I did the other day. I went for a walk and began talking to myself. I asked myself the question, “What have you done in the last six months that has been helpful, to anyone?” and I made my mind look for the good…even the smallest thing, like asking Jack to put up netting around the base of a tree so the robins would be safe, came to mind. And the good, the lovely, the uplifting thoughts began to come, one after the other, until within 15 minutes I felt so good that I wanted to scream, “Thank you! I love my life!”

I was not only feeling grateful, but I couldn’t believe that I’d felt so bad a few minutes earlier. Nothing on the outside had changed to change my feelings. I spoke new words about myself and my life….that was it…and my life lit up.

Just the idea that we can illuminate our minds, bodies, emotions, and worlds, by speaking and thinking positive, uplifting, encouraging, words of Truth, seems so simple that this, our most powerful tool as human/spiritual beings, is often overlooked, dismissed, or forgotten. I once read, “Words are containers of light“.

So what do you say….how about taking today to think only the most beautiful thoughts about yourself? I’d be delighted to hold that intention for you too.

 

true power comes from within

examples of power poses

A bunch of people emailed to say that the link to this TED talk didn’t come through so I’m re-posting yesterday’s blog along with a photo of the poses. I’d originally heard Amy Cuddy on NPR and as she spoke about her personal journey of feeling like she didn’t belong, and what changed for her, I was deeply moved. At the end of the talk she basically said that making this small change in the way we “stand” can dramatically change our lives. She went on to say that she wanted to get this information out to help those who may have no resources other than their own minds to work with.

I just watched a great TED talk given by Amy Cuddy (a professor at Harvard Business School) and wanted to share it with you. It’s about 20 minutes long and toward the end, she talks about how changing our “postures” for only 2 minutes will change our minds and our lives.

a new little painting of mine called, The Invitation, that I'm offering for $44. If you are interested, you can find details on MY ARTWORK PAGE

a new little painting of mine called, The Invitation, that I’m offering for $44. If you are interested, you can find details on MY ARTWORK PAGE

This entry was posted on June 4, 2015. 4 Comments

true power comes from within

examples of power poses

          

A bunch of people emailed to say that the link to this TED talk didn’t come through so I’m re-posting yesterday’s blog along with a photo of the poses. I’d originally heard Amy Cuddy on NPR and as she spoke about her personal journey of feeling like she didn’t belong, and what changed for her, I was deeply moved. At the end of the talk she basically said that making this small change in the way we “stand” can dramatically change our lives. She went on to say that she wanted to get this information out to help those who may have no resources other than their own minds to work with.

I just watched a great TED talk given by Amy Cuddy (a professor at Harvard Business School) and wanted to share it with you. It’s about 20 minutes long and toward the end, she talks about how changing our “postures” for only 2 minutes will change our minds and our lives.

a new little painting of mine called, The Invitation, that I'm offering for $44. If you are interested, you can find details on MY ARTWORK PAGE

a new little painting of mine called, The Invitation, that I’m offering for $44. If you are interested, you can find details on MY ARTWORK PAGE

This entry was posted on June 3, 2015. 5 Comments

a million tiny kindnesses

Jack and I were driving through a small city several evenings ago and noticed that traffic had stopped about 50 feet in front of us. We couldn’t really make out what was happening but could see a man with long dreadlocks and a huge backpack, standing in the middle of the road, waving his arms. Within a minute or so, traffic began to move. As we got closer we saw that the man, who was now on the side of the road, was responding to someone in a passing car who had yelled something to him.

Slowly driving past, we noticed a family of geese (mother, father, and many tiny babies) confidently waddling past the man who was smiling and waving as cars passed and thanked him. We did the same.

We felt so good on the ride home…so privilaged to witness such a sweet act. This story didn’t make the evening news but it could have, along with a million other tiny kindnesses that are happening at every moment of every day….some witnessed, some not, but all of them a wonder.

detail from a new painting of mine,

detail from my new painting, “Create your world” for sale on MY ARTWORK

Seek and you will find….just make sure that what you are looking for is something you want

 

a new painting

“Innocent Mind” a new painting of mine. I saw all of the blue balls as ideas which as soon as they were “captured” by the open mind, lit up. This painting is for sale on MY ARTWORK PAGE

For a while now, I’ve been working with the concept that all emotions are just energy; not good or bad, positive or negative, simply energy. The easiest time for me to notice this energy is at night when I’m lying in bed and it’s dark and quiet, and usually it’s what I would’ve called “negative” energy that gets my attention. What I did in the past, and what almost always kept me up and led to a poor night’s sleep, was trying to figure out what was wrong.

The scenario when like this: I’d fall asleep, or be on the edge of sleep, and suddenly feel jarred awake with hot, spiky-feeling energy running through my body. I’d throw back the covers, usually in a sweat, and begin the mental investigation to find out what was wrong. My mind was on a “search and label” mission…and it always found the unhappy answer to what I’d done at sometime in the past, or what wasn’t going to work out well in the future.

And then everything changed.

One night, I woke up the same way but instead of letting my mind grab me by the wrist and take me down that fretting and well-worn path of searching for the bad, I said, “This is just energy. I wonder what this perfect energy is?” The more I repeated this, the more my body relaxed. I felt as though I was experiencing a miracle. The question, “What is this perfect energy?”, was like a magic pill to my body, mind, and emotions. I didn’t ask the question and then engage my conscious mind, it was more like the question was a stone dropped into a pool and the answers came back to me, on their own, like the ripples bouncing off a distant shore.

One day when I was speaking with a client who had been having the same night difficulties as I’d had, the words, “The mind is always wants to label and box-up everything, and usually those labels are negative. Give it something positive to search for, and it will”, came out of my mouth and I suddenly realized what I’d been doing at night myself; I’d given my mind a new search (one that it didn’t have an answer to) so it had to look for that…it had to look for what this “perfect energy” was.

Seek and we will find. What are we looking for? Tell the mind to look for what is wrong, and it will find endless things to satisfy that question. It will tell us what is wrong with us, our families, our friends, our work, our finances, our health, our sleeping patterns…. and all of the low, unhappy, crippling, emotions that go along with these answers will accompany this search and be ours too.

But tell the mind to look for what is perfect and watch what it comes up with….watch how the body and mind respond to this command. It brings peace, freedom from fear, and blessed rest, as it begins to search for what is right, good, and perfect within us, and our world.

 

time to fly...the fourth (and last) baby robin left the nest this morning.

time to fly…the fourth (and last) baby robin left the nest on Tuesday morning (my father’s 90th birthday)