WOW Lesson from the Alchemist

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“Is that the one thing I still needed to know?” “No,” the alchemist answered.

“What you still need to know is this: before a dream is realized, the Soul of the World tests everything that was learned along the way. It does this not because it is evil, but so that we can, in addition to realizing our dreams, master the lessons we’ve learned as we’ve moved toward that dream. That’s the point at which most people give up. It’s the point at which, as we say in the language of the desert, one ‘dies of thirst just when the palm trees have appeared on the horizon.’ “Every search begins with beginner’s luck. And every search ends with the victor’s being severely tested.” The boy remembered an old proverb from his country. It said that the darkest hour of the night came just before the dawn”

The Alchemist – 10th Anniversary Edition by Coelho, Paulo
http://www.amazon.com/dp/B000FCKC4C

I first read this book back in 1999 and am reading it again along with my 13 year old son. I hope this lesson encourages someone else like it did me.

 

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Get Your Throwback Thursday Groove On! Get up and Dance

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Life is a Celebration – Go Ahead and Indulge

I love dancing and singing; I do the former much better than the latter. However, the joy, release, and pleasure I get from doing both with wild abandon is indescribable. I sing and dance while I am cooking, cleaning my house, and sometimes when I am at my desk. Music to me is a companion – a familiar friend who does not judge or restrain you. Instead she soothes my soul when I am troubled, gives me something to smile about when I am down, inspires and encourages me when I doubt, and keeps me company when I am alone.

I am not a big fan of today’s music but thankfully there is enough of the good ole stuff to keep my heart rate and stress levels down, and my feel-good hormones up. Whether it’s Gospel, R&B, Reggae, Soul, Rock, Blues, Jazz, Slow Jams, Soca, Calypso, or Hip Hop there is always something in my collection or on YouTube to get the job done.

Check out the list of benefits listed by the Better Health Channel of Victoria, Australia.

Health benefits of dancing –

Dancing can be a way to stay fit for people of all ages, shapes and sizes. It has a wide range of physical and mental benefits including:

  • improved condition of your heart and lungs
  • increased muscular strength, endurance and motor fitness
  • increased aerobic fitness
  • improved muscle tone and strength
  • weight management
  • stronger bones and reduced risk of osteoporosis
  • better coordination, agility and flexibility
  • improved balance and spatial awareness
  • increased physical confidence
  • improved mental functioning
  • improved general and psychological wellbeing
  • greater self-confidence and self-esteem
  • better social skills.

Read the entire article on their website, http://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/bhcv2/bhcarticles.nsf/pages/Dance_health_benefits?open

So on this #TBT, defy the gloominess outside, put this video (below) on and DANCE! And if it is not gloomy where you are, then you have absolutely no excuse, get up and DANCE!

The Invitation

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It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love for your dream for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow if you have been opened by life’s betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain mine or your own without moving to hide it or fade it or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy mine or your own if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us to be careful to be realistic to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself. If you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. If you can be faithless and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty even when it is not pretty every day. And if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure yours and mine and still stand at the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes.”

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.

By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming,
from the book The Invitation

http://www.oriahmountaindreamer.com/

Pull Off the Holiday Gathering Like a Pro and Enjoy It Too

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If you are the host, it’s your holiday too and wouldn’t it be nice if you can pull it off like a pro and have enough energy to thoroughly enjoy it? Indulge offers 3 simple steps to help you avoid the last minute meltdown, the frustration, and the burn-out feeling at the end of it all.

  1. Create a Schedule of Events: arrivals, shopping trips, food preparation, dinner, and family outings.
  2. Create a Menu: Either stick to what works for your family or be adventurous and try new sides. Invite members of the family to submit new recipes and to take responsibility for producing the masterpiece. Developing the menu will assist in producing a shopping list. Having a shopping list is a good form of discipline for controlling the budget.
  3. Develop a Timeline: A timeline is a very detailed version of the schedule. It should list every task necessary to accomplish an activity on the main schedule. These tasks must be listed by day and time and be assigned to members of the team. If your family plans to sit down to dinner at 5:00pm, the host should not be in the kitchen over the stove at 4:45pm. Plan well enough to give yourself at least 30 – 60 minutes of “Me Time.” Schedule slack time, family time, and fun time activities for the smaller children. Ensure there is inclusion of all family members so that no one feels left out. And finally, the timeline begins well in advance of the actual day and time; remember everything is being done in preparation for the big event, but the preparation could start at least two weeks in advance.

Examples of some action items/tasks for the timeline:

  • Pull decorations out of storage
  • Decorate
  • Prepare guests rooms
  • Kitchen inventory (pantry, equipment, utensils, etc.)
  • Main shopping trip – Food and Beverage related
  • Shopping – Décor and other special items
  • Last minute shopping trip
  • Food preparation
  • Tablescaping
  • Quality time with family members – collectively
  • Quality time with family members (visiting children or siblings)

Remember the above list is only an example. Your situation will have its unique events and rituals. The key is to develop the schedule as a family, communicate the plan to all members, and enjoy the wonderful gift of time together as a a unit.

Need some help in pulling it off? Visit our website http://www/indulge-events.com; give us a call, 202-295-9065; or send us an email, cheryl@indulge-events.com . We would love to help; As Little or As Much As You Need.

Life Is A Beautiful Gift – Unwrap It!

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Life is a beautiful and wonderful gift we get to unwrap every day. Embrace its moments with joy and laughter. Celebrate with loved ones. Dance and sing with wild abandon like your life depended on it. Show up like a willing participant and cherish this beautiful gift.

Find new ways to enjoy your marriage. Celebrate your spouse and your children. Show appreciation for the fact that you have a job and are contributing something to the universe. Discover new things about yourself and make time to be quiet and still – to regroup and to find your center – your source of peace.

Tell us how you celebrate with loved ones. Tell us the traditions you enjoy with your family, girlfriends, wolf pack, or colleagues at work. Share with us how and where you find peace.

How to Plan for a Wedding and Prepare for a Marriage

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Planning a wedding is tough, planning a marriage is tougher (Lovegevity Wedding Planning Institute, http://www.weddingplanninginstitute.com). So much time and energy are spent on the details for producing the perfect wedding. I watch the wedding planning shows on television and marvel at the lengths brides go to find the perfect dress, organize a themed event to a “T”, and spend way beyond what is financially comfortable.

Research shows that only 10% of engaged couples sign up for premarital classes, education, or counseling before their big day. Statistics also show that 80% of those who invested in such sessions stayed together.

The divorce rate for first time marriage is high and that of second marriages is even more astounding. First time couples have to deal with the pressures of performance and expectations. For second-time couples that pressure is even greater and 90% of the time, there will be the added issue of children from previous marriages.

I am a firm believer in the “getting to know you” process – remember the song from the movie The King and I – Getting to Know You, Getting to Know All About You? This process can be very revealing and very instructive. Habits, idiosyncrasies, and the personal pet-peeves that have nothing to do with the pet and everything to do with the other person will manifest given the right amount of time. Then with this exposure, one gets to decide if they could live with these “annoyances.”

Conversations on compromise and deal-breakers must take place. Discussions on the management of money, time, conflict, household affairs, vacations, having kids, raising kids, getting pets, and dealing with step-children, in-laws, exes, and friends are paramount.

Dr. Leslie Parrott of RealRelationships (http://www.relationships.com) says “the number one marriage myth is that a spouse should make us whole. This myth gives engaged couples unrealistic expectations. In other words, forget the Jerry Maguire “you complete me” thing. Both members of a relationship should work on personal wholeness first, not perfection, to achieve a self-awareness that brings individual satisfaction.”

At Indulge (http://www.indulge-events.com) we believe that we have a responsibility to equip our bridal clients with all the tools and resources necessary for both a beautiful wedding and a successful marriage.

For a list of marriage preparation classes or premarital counseling sessions in your area, click on the link below.

Catholic Engaged Encounter, Inc.: http://engagedencounter.org/

PAIRS: http://pairs.com/

The American Association of Christian Counselors: http://www.aacc.net/

International Christian Coaching Association: http://iccaonline.net/

Trinity Global Empowerment Ministries, Inc.: http://www.trinitygem.org/index.html

1st Step Assessment: http://1ststepassessment.com/