Tag Archive | problems

Up, up and away….finding our wings

Don’t believe what your eyes are telling you. All they show is limitation. Look with your understanding, find out what you already know, and you’ll see the way to fly. Richard Bach

I read the quote above this morning and thought, “And especially don’t believe what your eyes are telling you (or your thoughts are telling you) when you are angry, pessimistic, afraid, worried or you are just plain tired, or in a bad mood.” It’s just such a bad habit (that I admit to as well) to try to solve problems when you don’t feel good. We think that if we could just take care of “it” then we would feel better, and yet because we don’t have access to high-level solutions (from that very low point of view) so often we just make more trouble for ourselves.

One thing that works for me (when I choose to discipline my mind enough to try it) is to say “Everything is perfect right now. The solution  to this______ is working itself out and will soon be revealed in a way that will delight me. There is no problem here.” Stating this over and over to myself, I feel my energy improve and suddenly, the thing that felt like an overwhelming problem, becomes lighter.

If there is something going on in your life that feels “stuck”, why not try the affirmation above over this weekend?

Fred in his “cat pen”…a good solution for a guy who can’t find his way home


Eleanor in the garden

The other day someone was talking about a 3-legged dog that he had recently adopted, and who seemed to be doing really well, but as this man spoke about his dog’s background and the bad situation that she came from, he kept saying, “The poor thing” over and over. I finally said, “Consider for a moment how you would feel if someone was thinking, every time they looked at you, ‘That poor thing. He really isn’t doing well!'” Or even imagine  looking in the mirror and having those thoughts about yourself. Most of us would (energetically) recoil from that kind of thought. It doesn’t feel good to us because it isn’t high-energy thinking. Do unto others as you would have them do unto you, really does apply here with the slight change of: “Think about others, as you would like them to think about you.”

Coincidentally (of course I don’t believe in coincidence!) a few days before I ran into this man, Jack and I had seen a woman in Middlebury, VT walking a 3-legged dog. At first I thought the dog was limping, and I am embarrassed to admit that my reflex thought was, “Doesn’t that owner know that her dog is hurt?” but as I watched them I saw that the dog was just trotting along (with a little jump in his/her step) with only 3 legs, and both dog and owner seemed like they were getting along just fine.

If we are looking at someone (animal, person, or situation) as heartbreaking or hopeless, then that is all we tend to see, and we have become (without meaning to) a part of the problem.  Also, we could be missing the Truth or a higher level solution which doesn’t present itself to us because our thinking is too low. Problems are only thoughts and they have an energetic charge just like solutions do. The higher and clearer our minds become, the faster and easier high-level ideas and solutions present themselves.

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them”. Albert Einstein


Over the past year, a number of people have asked me if I’d consider doing shorter phone sessions and so, starting September 1st, I am going to be offering, (in addition to the full one hour regular sessions) shorter, 30 minute appointment times. The fee will be $35 for the 1/2 hr. time (the regular session will stay at $60).

If this is something that interests you, you can go to the “My Work: Private Sessions with Me” tab,  read more about my background and what a session with me is like, and if you’d like to set up a time, email me and we’ll go from there!  The link to this page is: http://www.whitefeatherfarm.wordpress.com/about

a cheese plate

a perfect little....cheese plate?

I saw this antique, covered cheese plate the other day. The space underneath the dome isn’t big, but I figured I could put a small wheel of some sort of soft cheese in it, or cut other varieties to fit….it was cute and inexpensive so I bought it.  But it seems there is a better use for it…one that I could not have imagined. It is perfect for rescuing the mice and snakes that our cats bring inside. I found that I could easily cover the critter up and then slide the pink dust pan underneath it (without hurting it, because I could see if part of it was getting trapped) and then bring it outside to be released. Fred and Eleanor had a snake in the living room a couple of days ago, and within a minute I had it securely under the dome!

about to be returned to the wild outdoors!

I didn’t really need a covered cheese dish, but I really needed a way to capture critters….the universe always provides. Sometimes we just need to expand our minds to see the solution.

“Every problem has a gift for you in its hands.” Richard Bach

A new road

Luke, as a puppy

Last Thursday I brought my used (but certified) 2009 CRV into my local mechanic for an oil change instead of driving it back to the dealership (who changed the oil a few months ago). When I picked up my car, Chris (my Cambridge mechanic and all around good/honest guy) told me that the last person who changed the oil stripped the plug (or something like that) and instead of replacing the oil pan, he wrote a note (on the oil pan itself) for the next mechanic not to over-tighten it.

He said that someone made a mistake and they should have replaced the oil pan, but it was expensive so they left a note instead. If I had kept going back to the dealership, they wouldn’t have told me this. I felt angry when I first found out, felt like I had been taken advantage of. I called the manager of the dealership and he said that they did that sometimes, put notes on older cars about the oil pans (for people who took their cars to places like Jiffy Lube…intimating that the Jiffy Lube people didn’t know what they were doing). I told him that I just bought the car in March, and it either had the note on it, or his mechanics did it last time I was in. He said he’d get back to me.

That was Thursday morning. Since then, I have called every morning and afternoon, without a resolution.  I sat on my couch last evening wondering what to do. I kept thinking, “There must be a way to go through this without getting all worked up. I just don’t know what to do.” What starts out feeling off/wrong, generally carries that emotional charge. But what should I do now? I knew that if I didn’t get that inner sense that everything was fundamentally OK, then I would just continue mainifesting the same uncomfortable pattern; getting one difficult person after another, to match exactly how I was feeling! How do I start down a new, better feeling road, was my question now.

I asked for help, asked outloud, to my inner self, what to do, and I waited for an answer.

As I was doing the dishes, the thought came to me to call the headquarters of Honda in California. I did and within minutes was speaking with a wonderful customer service representative who, when I told her about the note on the oil pan said, “Well that is a new one on me! Something is wrong there. I’ll give them a call tomorrow and ask them to work this out with you. If they don’t, please call us back.”

Nothing on the outside has changed yet. My car still needs a new oil pan, but I feel better. I took action, from as centered a place as I could get to, and now I expect to experience things differently on the “outside” too.

You can’t solve a problem with the same mind that created it.”  Albert Einstein

An almost ruined morning

Our pear tree

I was going to write about our pear tree this morning, went out to take a photograph, and the camera’s battery was almost dead. This happens fairly frequently when Jack borrows my camera. He doesn’t notice the little signal that tells you the charge is getting low. When I try to take a picture, it’s not very clear, and then the camera goes dead. So, at 6:00 am, I was standing in my backyard, in pajamas and flip flops, with a beautiful sky, feeling annoyed. I was going to write a post about not worrying about “wasting” pears, that in past years I tried to get them all but now I am happier to leave them for the possums (which eat rotten fruit), on and on. I was going to write a very zen post about going with the flow of nature and there I was, standing in my beautiful back yard, feeling pissed off at Jack. “Why does he do this to me?!”  my head yelled. …not very zen.

I could have named this post, “How to ruin a good morning”…. The egoic mind can be so crazy sometimes. It shows me the one thing that isn’t going my way, and tells me that this is a big problem that must be dealt with NOW! We survived the hurricane just fine, it is a gorgeous morning, we have food in the house and our power is on. We have a back-up generator for when it goes out. My phone and computer both work. I had a good nights sleep, and I am going to choose to focus on a dead battery (that can be re-charged in 45 minutes). So, I think I’ll call this post, “How to catch yourself before you make your great life into a problem life by focusing on every little nit-picky thing that you don’t like and blowing it up until it gets huge” which isn’t very zen sounding either, but it is true.

A big life

part of my "big life"!

We had a case of fleas last fall. This is no small thing with 6 cats and a big long-haired dog. It took about 3 months of combing them all, many times a day, and treating them to finally get rid of the fleas. What was interesting about that “time of the infestation” is it gave me a good long period to work on my attitude and my mind. As I combed them, I would say, “Everything is fine and these fleas will be gone soon” or something similarly calming (calming to me that is…the cats did not seem to care one way or the other!).

One day, after about 2 months, I thought I finally had it licked….then I found one on Ben. I remember calling out to Jack, “Oh no, I thought that …….” I stopped mid-sentence. I was making it into a crisis. He said, “What did you say Mary?” …..”Oh, nothing” I said back…took a deep breath and kept combing.

Sometimes I would hit periods of discouragement and think, “Why do we have all of these animals? I am so overwhelmed.” Then I would remember that many years ago, I  wrote out a prayer for a “big life” which would include lots of cats, dogs, friends, fun experiences, meaningful work, love, laughter….and I remembered too, the wonderful words of Norman Vincent Peale about “problems”. He would say to people who came into his office complaining, “Do you want to be with some people who have no problems? And he would take them to a graveyard and say here you go. These people do not have any problems to handle”.

I am including his words below. The language is obviously outdated but I still love the “man-sized problems” statement! It really makes me smile. I think he must have been a very funny man as well as wise…I don’t think he really meant to invite problems..I think he was poking fun a bit at our fear of having them…that we think there is something wrong if we have a dilemma/problem to solve, because he would also say that the bigger the “problem” the bigger the opportunity.

“Problems constitute a sign of life. Indeed, I would go so far as to suggest that the more problems you have, the more alive you are. The person who has, let us say, ten good old tough, man-sized problems is, on this basis, twice as alive as the poor, miserable, apathetic character who has only five problems. And if you have no problems at all, I warn you: You are in great jeopardy. You are on the way out and don’t know it. Perhaps what you had better do is immediately go to your room and shut the door and get down on your knees and pray to the Lord, “Lord, please; look don’t you trust me anymore? Give me some problems!” Norman Vincent Peale from his book, You Can if You Think You Can.