After writing my first blog, it brought me to the point of thinking 'what shifts have happened that have really been the game changers for me?' I really started thinking deeply about it all. Much of the time I will remember a statement that I heard or read that usually stamps my thoughts and I will use it forever. Or, of course, there will be an event or many events that happen that "shift" you, and you think 'what the hell just happened?'
In today's text, I would like to share with you some experiences in my life that created this shift--this very big shift that has continued to keep me wanting more.
Really thinking, right in this very moment, the shift in my path happened when I decided to leave the religion I was raised in. I remember feeling very alone most of the time, not because there were not people there, but more so because I paying closer attention to the things I wanted out of life versus the things that I was told I should want out of life. And, it wasn't the same. Years and years later I was so grateful for the time, relationships and experiences I had then because they gave me the ability to start to really love myself by leaving. Plus, as a teenager, I wanted nothing more than to be independent and have all the freedom I wanted. So, I guess you would say it was as if I was living a double life. Can anyone else relate to that? I am sure that I am not alone. I was able to take such a deep breath when someone once said "you can have GOD in your life and be a very spiritual person with our being a religion". Tears came to my eyes because I thought I wasn't deserving of forgiveness when I made a choice not to attend meetings anymore. I love the feeling of that there is nothing I can do to make GOD love me more, and nothing I can do to make him love me less! All in all, one of the most valuable lessons I learned through this experience wasn't knowing what I wanted to be, but I definitely knew what I DIDN'T want to be for the rest of my life. So, I want to say this in affirmation "Thank you for all your guidance. I am forever grateful for the lessons learned."
After all of that, there was another shift in my life--one that also taught me what I DIDN'T want to be for the rest of my life. Man, just saying it over and over feels so good. Knowing that many of these lessons or SHIFTS have been so good to me. This one was a 12-year long lesson. I was a production manager. At the time I started the position I was the youngest of all the managers. I feel I became very hard very quickly. What I mean by that is I got a kink in my neck and a pain in my ass for 12 years straight! Not kidding! But as I was walking this path with so many awesome mentors, management, staff, and co-workers, I started to feel alone, again. I was very good at what I did, and that is said in a complimentary way. But, while I was working there, I experienced another shift. This "shift" came from the words spoken to me by one of my all-time favorite co-workers, Brad. One day, as I was P and M'ing at work about who knows what; Brad said to me, "Nikki, there is not one person that works here who wakes up every morning and thinks 'what can I do today to make Nikki's life better.'" And just like that, it hit me. WOW! The words that I will never forget that created another shift within me.
Now, I don't know if while you are reading this you are thinking to yourself 'that's it?'. But at that time, I guess it was for me. All I need from people is to just hear something. Whether it is in their tone of voice or how they make eye contact with me, it just makes sense to me. And, I feel once you recognize the shift, really be mindful of what just happened. That is when the magic happens.
I will share with you another shift for me--massage therapy school, 2010. I had just lost my mother. I was gaining a relationship with all these new people taking this course with me. At the time I kept thinking to myself, 'I don't know if I can go through with this class. I know damn well that they are going to want to hug me and talk about my feelings. I just know it!!'. That is exactly what happened. Man, I just kept thinking to myself 'when am I going to get out of here?'. Then, one of the training days I remember most, all students each morning, were given the chance to hold the space or the floor to speak about whatever they wanted to, whatever was on their minds, whatever may be holding them back from their greatest potential. So, there I sat. It was my turn to talk. Now, please know in this kind of setting, at least in my training, you don't ever have to say a word. You can just listen because it is also about sharing and releasing what no longer serves you, but doing it when YOU are ready for it. By about the fourth day in a row of doing this, I figured I better say something. So, a grabbed the stick (there was a talking stick, your turn to talk when you hold the stick), and I said, "Well, many people know me as a singer, so I will sing everyone a song today." No way that I was going to share my feelings about anything!! By about the tenth day of training, I finally started to let my guard down. I was feeling so much love and so much support I thought 'I can do this.' So, there I was grabbing the stick, and I said, "I am so mad. I am so mad that my mom died. I am so mad that they say that there is no cure. I am so upset I just can't even express it in words." Of course, by this time I was just sobbing. "And to top it all off, my stepfather had started dating someone within weeks of my mother's death!" The teacher, Dr. Thomas Ahern, looked at me and said, "You must forgive him." What!! Forgive him? I thought that was impossible! My whole life had been based on being mad at people. Holding grudges. Judging people for things they can not even control, so this whole forgive him sh*t was not the answer I was looking for. Thomas then said, "Just because you forgive him, Nikki, does NOT mean what he did was okay. It means you are not going to honor him anymore." AMEN. Something so simple. Yet, that seems to be one of, if not the hardest, lessons for all of us to grasp. Forgiveness of those who have even done the unthinkable. That can be one of the hardest things to let go of. But once I did, I felt so free and weightless. Really it was amazing. Then and there again, a shift in my perspective.
As I am writing this I feel the urge to say...Now I am human, and there are things that pop up in this little head of mine every single day...things like "why would that person wear that?" or "jeepers lay off the perfume." Haha! Just examples really. My thoughts at times will be way more harsh. I guess I am just being honest people. But, I guess that is what I feel resonates with all of us the best...HONESTY and AUTHENTICITY!
There have been many, many more shifts that I have experienced, many that seem to be a bit more prophetic but are so easy to enjoy. What I mean by that is, just more recently, I feel a shift in myself when I simply sit, alone, in the quiet. Yeah, me quiet! Almost funny!! But seriously, when I am taking time to let my thoughts just go away, and I pray, meditate and practice being mindful, I am so amazed as to what messages come to me. They have always been there, but I didn't hear them before. These messages I am talking about are simply my intuitions shining through about what step to take next, whether it be what book to read next, what class to take next, what conversation to have next. All those things. And, I feel I am able to make clearing decisions based on making them while my heart is guiding me rather than my head.
Even though I have experienced many, many 'shifts' in my life, thoughts and actions still creep in, and I allow them to push me off the path of my true purpose. As time passes and I continue to experience all these different SHIFTS in my life, I have noticed that the small things, the things that really do not have anything to do with me, don't cloud my thoughts as long or many of times at all anymore.
The message today is to think back to your 'shifts' in life. Recognize how you have allowed them to take over your life's purpose and journey. Think of how you may have allowed them to lead you down a path of destruction and then how that turned or could turn into a beautiful story. That story may just one day relate to people in a way to bring some light into their lives and ultimately light to your own.
Blessings and #behappypeople
Zen Den Therapy