Tuesday, March 26, 2013


I help many of my clients build confidence. Letting go of fear is a big part of releasing stress and moving towards a better life.

Anxiety is a type of fear. Many people believe that they need their anxiety to give them an edge. They think that if they were to relax they would not be able to generate enough energy to get the job done.

Prolonged anxiety taxes your energy. It can led to serious long-term health issues.

Think about a situation where you worry or are anxious. If you can, choose one that is particularly important. The stakes should be high. You need an extra push to make sure you stay on top.

How much sleep have you lost in those situations? Have you made careless mistakes because you were distracted? If you were dealing with a customer, or client, how many times was your communication less effective because you were worried about issues that might not even have been there. These are some of the  impacts that anxiety is having.

 Anxiety is never positive. Healthy productivity comes from  motivation, and excitement.

Think about a project which excited you. You felt completely motivated by it.  You were confident in your ability to succeed. The situation gave you energy. It felt great to get up in the morning to see what developed. You were at the top of your game. Your confidence was contagious, it inspired those around you.

Coming from a place of confidence isn’t just more effective. It is also a lot healthier. It will build you up. Strengthen you. Encourage you to take bigger risks and push out of your comfort zone.

Don’t wallow in your anxiety. Deal with it. Look at what you are trying to control. Control is an illusion. Face your fear, sit with it, get calm.

Look at all the rational reasons that you can succeed. Build your confidence by remembering past successes. Allow that anxiety to fade. Create space for confidence and achievement. Watch your outcomes, and your life, get better.

Do you believe that you need anxiety to succeed? I’d love to hear why, or why not.

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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Truths to Live By: Never Harm the Universe

Part of good character is never harming the Universe that you are part of. As we grow, so does our character. Our understanding and application of this truth will grow with us.

Human beings develop along a similar trajectory. As infants we are completely egocentric. There is no world beyond us, our needs, our pleasures, and discomforts. We are the whole of our universe.

As we mature we move into the ethnocentric stage. At this point our orientation shifts to the communities we are part of. We identify with our race, ethnicity, and nationality. Our sphere of care expands to the group. Good character demands that we consider the good of the group.

If we move forward, we expand to a world-centric perspective. We  broaden our sphere of care to include human beings,  the planet, and its ecosystems.  We understand that we are essential to the world’s functioning. Every piece plays a valuable role. Good character demands the we care for ourselves, all humans, and all other species.

The next level is rare. As we push forward we experience the essential unity of reality. We start to become Kosmocentric. We see ourselves as a part of all that exists.  We extend our sphere of care even further.

For some this will be an expression of absolute compassion. These people develop to the point that they rest in the ground of being. They radiate peace and stillness. They work tirelessly to alleviate suffering and spread peace.

Others will explode forward. They identify with the energy, and intelligence, that created the Universe. It is an ecstatic compulsion to grow and move forward. To discover, and create, radically new things in the world. Their sphere of care moves into the future.

In both cases, harming the Universe, in any way, is unthinkable.

 As we develop and grow, good character demands the we deepen our practice of this truth. We can then use the power we gain to affect the world in a positive way.

Has your sphere of care expanded as you’ve grown and developed? I’d love to hear why, or why not.

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Tuesday, March 12, 2013


I respect any relationship where both partners are equal and being fulfilled. I have chosen to be in a monogamous relationship. Recently I’ve been wondering what all this “open relationship” stuff is about? The open relationship model has never worked for me. I used to think I was too insecure, competitive, and  temperamental for it.

For a while I was certain that monogamy is a more mature choice. The reasons for an open relationship always seemed suspect. They revolved around meeting needs, and fulfilling fantasies.

You can never find everything you need in another person. That kind of thinking will doom any relationship.

Life is not about having all of our needs met, and fantasies fulfilled. That immature way of thinking will spell trouble for any adult relationship. It is up to us, with our partners, to ensure that basic needs are met. Beyond that our needs are like toys. There will always be more to need. Will an endless search for things your partner can’t provide be good for your relationship?

Fantasy is wonderful, but, reality is often disappointing. Obsessing about fantasy fulfillment can also undermine our relationships. It can take time away from our partner. If there are important things missing in your relationship talk to your partner. Find out how your needs and fantasies can be embraced while everyone remains respected.

I know people in successful , mature,  polyamorous relationships. I have deep respect for their ability to hold it together. Relating to each other in that way is very challenging.

People should be free to define their relationships as they see fit.

I no longer see open relationships as a modern ideal which I will never reach. For me, monogamy just seems right. It has always worked best. My husband agrees with me wholeheartedly. We are happy with the way we define, and embrace, our relationship.

Have open relationships worked for you? Have you every wanted to find out? I’d love to hear why, or why not.

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Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Truths to Live By: Never Initiate Harm to Another Human Being

In Ifa we understand that actions cannot be judged out of context. Harming another person must also be looked at in context. This week we’ll explore the implications of this position. I will contrast it to the more absolute rules enforced by other traditions.

With a world-view that expects us to make decisions for ourselves, guidelines make a lot of sense. In Ifa we are forbidden from initiating harm to another human being. We are permitted to defend ourselves, or prevent harm from coming to another. Lethal force is, obviously, a last resort.

The concern with guidelines is that they are subject to interpretation. The biblical sixth commandment “Thou shalt not kill”, has many interpretations and translations. People who say they live by it have been responsible for unbelievable violence.

 The Buddhist prohibition against harming sentient beings has many interpretations. Heated debates rage about what sentience is. The most common definition, is that anything that can move of its own accord, is sentient. Every day we unknowingly murder countless micro-organisms.

Clearly, killing can only be justified if it is required for survival.

Let’s look at war.  Is a soldier making a conscious choice when, and why, to kill?  Trying to turn a human being into a killing machine has serious issues. Following orders does not remove the burden people face for killing. The suffering created for our armed forces personnel has been immense.

Capital punishment is among the most misguided human behaviours. Killing someone to defend yourself is one thing. Killing someone to prevent something they might do in the future, is completely different.  Much like war, killing for the common good, is not good for anyone.

These are questions much too complex to be addressed in a simple post. It is my hope that this post can start a conversation. Please join me in deepening it in the coming months. Where do you stand on this very difficult moral quandary? I’d love to hear.

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