'Needy' much?

Have you ever been in a conversation with someone and you knew they wanted something from you? It’s as if you could see it in their eyes when they first walked up to you, or you could hear it in their voice from the moment they said “hello”? You just knew that they were desperate for your help with something. In fact, they came across as so ‘needy’ or ‘clingy’ that it made you shiver in your skin, and you wanted to bolt as far from them as possible. If you could have, you would have found the nearest window, slid it open, and launched yourself 3 stories down into a dumpster to escape the situation. Or has the shoe ever been on the other foot?

Have you ever been involved in a project, started a business, or launched a career and you knew there was a particular person that could really help you along? They could help by either telling others about what you were doing, by investing their own time, money and resources, or by hiring you themselves.

Or how about this one?

Have you ever wanted to be in a relationship with someone so bad because you knew that they were the one for you? That if they could simply see how well the two of you fit together that they would certainly be as happy as ever. That if they would give you a chance you could show them that you’d make them the happiest person in the world?

Have you ever approached someone about something that mattered to you, only to blow it? You know the feeling, a hyper self-consciousness that highlights every wrong word and action in your own mind.

Being ‘needy’ and ‘clingy’ sucks the life out of everyone, including the person who is birthing these feelings into the world. Very few healthy people want to be around that person for too long. I’m not talking about basic human needs. We all need community. We all need a safe group of people where we can truly be ourselves, let our guard down, share our wounds and insecurities and continue on the healing process. But that’s not what I’m talking about.

I’m talking about the person that wants YOU to save them… wants YOU to make their decisions for them… wants YOU to surrender to their desires… wants YOU to do THEIR work for THEM. You have seen it. You’ve even been on the other end asking. It’s ugly. There is nothing positive about the experience. No one is empowered. Not the person who is being approached and most certainly not the person who is doing the asking.

The reason people want to get as far away from that experience as possible is because there is no LIFE in it. There is no energy around the project, the potential, or the person. It looks, acts, and smells like something that’s about to die. No one is empowered during these exchanges. And sometimes, particularly in romantic relationships, the person who is asking for you to ‘save them’ continues to persist far longer than anyone should.

But what if you came across someone who didn’t need saving? What if you met someone at a party and even though they didn’t seem to have it all figured out (the project, the career, or even themselves), they had a trust and a confidence that it was going to be alright. This person had a certain energy about them that came from a deep trust in a higher Source. They were excited about what they were working on and it was totally evident that they had been putting a ton of energy into the project or themselves. You might start asking them questions about where they find their inspiration. You might want to know the details of how things were coming along. You might find yourself highly interested, not just in their current ‘thing’, but in the actual person. That person who knows their value and has a reservoir of trust in the process is full of LIFE.

Are you hanging on to the end of your rope? Are you working on something, but all your hopes are pinned on someone else coming to the rescue? Are you desperate for a particular person’s attention and affection and nothing else will suffice? Maybe it’s time to let go of the rope and trust that the Divine cares for you and has the resources you need. And after you're caught by grace and love, you might find it easier to be gracious and loving towards yourself. You might find new reserves of energy to pour into your project or even yourself. New insights that were seemingly out of reach before, will lie in a pile at your feet.

People want to be around that person. People want to invest in that person. People want that person to invest in them. You can go from needing to be rescued to having the right people wanting your participation by trusting in the Divine and applying the supplied energy to do the work. Start by letting go of the rope… trust me, you will be caught.

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"Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go." - Hermann Hesse

"I don't think it's necessarily healthy to go into relationships as a needy person. Better to go in with a full deck." - Anjelica Huston

"When a person goes into a relationship emotionally needy, they are not going to have discernment in choosing people." - Jennifer O'Neill

Freedom from the Approval of Others

Recently I had been feeling some anxiety and I couldn't pinpoint where it was originating.  When this happens it becomes sort of a heavy feeling in my chest and a relentless weight on my mind.  Whenever I experience this sensation I know that something is off center in my life. So with great persistence I process and analyze until I discover where the anxiety is coming from.  I’m careful to allow every feeling, even ones that are distressing, to flow through me so that I can become more aware their origins. And then it dawned on me. The anxiety was coming from a desire to be liked and to have the approval of others.  This is something I've battled my entire life and for the majority of my life it's a battle that I lost more than I won.  This is what drove me to alcohol abuse and constant cocaine use when I was younger.  This is what had led me to a pattern of destructive relationships.  This is what had me hating myself in the past.  However, many years ago I became aware of my destructive behavior and did something about it.  What's more, these last two years I’ve also become aware of the things I need to do so that I am on guard against this and I had found a distinctly profound sense of freedom from it.  And for the most part I had been doing really well.  However, the desire for approval is a crafty one.  We all want to be liked and we all want to be approved of by others.  Those who say they don't struggle with this are either lying to themselves or aren't aware of it.

But there it was, rearing its ugly head again.  I began to think through the different people that I wanted approval from and the list seemed pretty long.  Not as long as it had been in the past, but long nonetheless.  The incredible news is that just knowing where the anxiety came from was 80% of the battle.

I knew I had to get centered and connected to my true source and to myself.  I reminded myself that I am enough, just the way that I am and that this world is better off with me being my authentic and true self.  That guy that I am who tries to win the approval of others doesn't really bring life to anybody, especially himself.  But when I am my true self, life abounds. When I am connected to the divine and loving myself from that place, something incredible happens, Divine energy if you well, that flows through my life.

As I connect to the true source and to myself, the anxiety dissipates almost immediately. All the energy that I was spending worrying about how I'm perceived and if people will like me is no longer wasted on that useless endeavor.

We never add value to ourselves, the world, or those we love by trying to win the approval of others. It's only in affirming our authentic selves that we have the energy to care the way the world needs us to care.

The feeling of freedom that comes with casting off this anxiety and weight of desire for approval is almost blissful. I can be me, and that's enough. I'm grateful.

What about you? Who do you want to like you? Whose approval or you after? Go ahead and write out their names. Then once you're done ripped the paper up or burn it or whatever it is you do.

How do you connect with the source or with yourself? What is it that you do that that grounds and centers you and your true self? Do it. Do it today. Do it now. And then enjoy the freedom.


"A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval"  - Mark Twain

"People who want the most approval get the least and people who need approval the least get the most." - Wayne Dyer
"When anyone starts out to do something creative - especially if it seems a little unusual - they seek approval, often from those least inclined to give it. But a creative life cannot be sustained by approval, any more than it can be destroyed by criticism - you learn this as you go on." - Will Self
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One Day Self-Love Challenge

Yes, I do believe that one of the single most effective and powerful things we can do to participate in the Divine’s transformation of our own lives is to learn to love ourselves more.  Time and time again, as I work with people, when we get to the core of the problem, be it limiting belief, addiction, etc., it is a lack of self-love.  The thing that’s behind the thing that’s behind the thing is that they have placed a very low value on their life and don’t believe they deserve to be happy.    It is the most messed up thing of all and most people are barely aware of it. I genuinely think people want to be happy.  Yet deep down in places they haven’t explored often, they don’t believe they deserve to be happy or are worth it.  It’s the most devious trick in humanity.  Somewhere in our life we were told that we aren’t worth it.  We either were treated that way by those who were supposed to love and protect us when we were young and vulnerable, or because of decisions we made in the past, mistakes, we buy into the lie that we don’t have value and we aren’t worth being loved.  And yet we can spend our whole lives trying to prove that we are worth being loved and go to incredible lengths to try to show everyone that we are of value.

But you don’t have to prove anything.  Let me say it again.  You have nothing to prove.  The fact that God created you is enough.  That oxygen flows in and out of your lungs, bringing life to your blood cells, is enough.  What if instead of constantly trying to prove ourselves to ourselves and everyone around us, we just acknowledged that because we are alive and loved by the Divine, that we are enough.

Tomorrow is the one day self-love challenge.  Now if you just read that sentence and rolled your eyes a little, I understand.  I used to respond in the same manner.  And then I realized that being a control freak and a perfectionist, and being harder on myself than anyone else hadn’t really gotten me the things in life I want… peace, happiness, self-control, etc.  Has the way you’ve been living your life taken you to the heights of your dreams?  So why not take one day and commit to loving yourself?  Why not take one day to be completely and utterly gracious with yourself?  Why not take one day and instead of criticizing yourself for making a mistake, simply affirm that you love yourself anyways, just the way you are?  Here are a few places to start...

1.  Make the commitment to love yourself for 1 day:  Make the commitment and choose love for yourself.  Do it now.  If love is the greatest gift we have to give, what could be possibly wrong with loving yourself for one day in all your thoughts and actions?  Go ahead and literally write it out right now or type it in an email to yourself or send it as a text to yourself.  "Tomorrow I will commit my entire day to practicing self love."

2.  Affirm yourself verbally throughout the day:  Think of the most loving thing you could say to yourself, and repeat regularly throughout the day.  Get up and repeat it OUT LOUD to yourself first thing.  Write it on a post it note and stick it on your bathroom mirror before you go to bed tonight.  If you are having trouble coming up with something loving to say to yourself, try starting here.

3.  Forgive yourself immediately after any intentional or unintentional mistake:  So you just screwed up and maybe no one else knows it, but you do.  Immediately forgive yourself.  If it helps, you can allow yourself to feel your remorse and then say... "I totally and completely forgive myself for ____________________ and I release myself of all my anger and all my disappointment."  Try it.  Forgiveness is incredibly powerful and it is the one of the most freeing things to experience.  In fact, maybe you want to start your day by forgiving yourself for everything you've done that you have yet to forgive yourself for.

4.  Give yourself a gift:  Choose one thing to do for yourself that you know brings you life and you know cares for your soul and heart.  Maybe you love going for a run but haven't had time lately.  Maybe there is a good book you just haven't allowed yourself to read lately because you haven't had time.  Read it.  Maybe there is a friend that always brings you life that you haven't spent time with or talk to lately.  Ask them to hang out or simply call them and just talk.

Taking the one day self-love challenge is a gift that you can give to yourself with no strings attached.  It's only one day.  How bad could it possibly be?  A better question and motivation is, how incredible might it be?  What if you discover some things about yourself?  Wouldn't it be worth it?

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to email me via the website and I will be glad to get back to you before you wake up tomorrow.  What do you say?  ARE YOU WORTH IT?


“The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.”  - C.G. Jung

"Loving yourself…does not mean being self-absorbed or narcissistic, or disregarding others. Rather it means welcoming yourself as the most honored guest in your own heart, a guest worthy of respect, a lovable companion. "- Margo Anand

"Well-ordered self-love is right and natural." - Thomas Aquinas

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Don't react, Realign

Lately I’ve been going through some major life changes.  Some have been welcomed, and others, not so much.  Either way, the daily routine of my life has been altered and it has affected my time spent in spiritual practices.  I live by my spiritual practices.  They are my life line so to speak with the Divine.  It’s what centers me.  But lately I’ve found myself thrown from my routine. Are there ever times when you feel a little off?  Like something isn’t quite right?  Sometimes it feels like everything you do is a left a little empty.  At other times it feels as if you’re a little out of alignment and everything isn’t quite running the way it was meant to.

This happens to all of us from time to time.  A multitude of things can happen to throw us off our game or derail us a bit.  It’s not the end of the world by any means.  All we really need to do is be present with our situation.  Be mindful of the ‘what’ and the ‘why’.  And do whatever it takes to get re-centered and realigned.

However, what happens more often than not is instead of realigning, we react.  Instead of being present, mindful and connecting with the source, we react by turning to that thing that temporarily takes away the pain, or more likely, distracts us from the problem/feelings.  So we falsely validate ourselves with food, coffee, pills, booze, pornography, relationships, sleep, books, videos, video games, gambling, ________________.  I don’t think there is a distraction out there that I haven’t tried at one point or another in my life.

This can be a seemingly insignificant ritual or it can be extreme.  Anything from facebook to crack.  It’s all a false validation and distraction.  But no person is going to make you feel fulfilled.  That comes from actually living a fulfilled life.  No amount of sex is going to make you feel worthy.  No amount of time spent online will fill the actual void that you feel.  No amount of searching online will lead you to a solution for the ache you feel inside.  No amount of alcohol will align your heart and conscious with your purpose and passions.  No level of any video game will center you with the Source.

This is why we have spiritual practices like meditation, prayer, solitude, yoga, fasting, journaling, going on a retreat, chanting, sacred reading, etc.  They help us to be present.  They help us to be mindful.  They slowly pull us back to center by connecting us with The Source.  There are all kinds of arguments to be made the spiritual practices.  I won’t be making them here.  But I will say that they aren’t the end, but a means to an end.  Doorways to The Divine if you will.

So the next time things seem a little ‘off’.  Instead of reacting, realign.  Simply be aware that things are off kilter, avoid the reaction to ease the uncomfortable feeling of being ‘off’, and invest some time into spiritual practices.

When Work Overwhelms

I don’t know what your profession is.  You might be a sales person, engineer, talk show host, musician, plumber, clergy, artist, etc. (I didn’t want to miss anyone, hence the etc.).  I don’t know if you love your job, hate it, are ambivalent towards it or if it sucks the ever-loving life out of you.  I don’t know if your job is mostly about brains, muscle, or a mixture of both. I don’t know if you have a boss or own your own business.  Or if you do have a boss if you can’t stand working for that person or if you are way too comfortable with that person.

Regardless of your job, I am certain there are days where you just don’t have the resources, mentally or physically to accomplish what you need to accomplish.   This is where having an open heart can make all the difference in your world.  If your reaction to trouble at work is to close down, avoid confrontation, complain out the whazoo, or day dream about being somewhere else, then your heart is closed.  And I believe the problem with a closed heart is that nothing can enter it and nothing can leave it.  It’s like a double whammy.

I remember being stuck in a job that I couldn’t leave simply because of the need to provide for my family, yet it was a terrible fit.  I was in sales.  I am not a sales person.  On top of that, I wasn’t necessarily thrilled about the product I was selling.  I literally would walk into meetings with clients already depressed because I had to give them a sales ‘pitch’ for a product I didn’t like and didn’t really believe in.  I can’t tell you how bad I wanted to move on from that particular position and company.  It was depressing.  I rarely felt like I had the resources internally to accomplish what I needed to throughout the work day.

Back to the double whammy.  With a closed heart, not only are you trapping all of the frustration, anger, disappointment, and fear within you… but you are also making it impossible for the Source, the Divine (or whatever name you use), to flow into you and provide for you.  There was a time when I lived everyday of my life with a closed heart.  I was always dreaming of another job, angry with the position I was in, feeling less than adequate, and totally ungrateful.

So how do you have an open heart?  First, believe that whatever you subscribe to as far as a higher power actually cares for you and wants to provide for you.  That alone can make all the difference in your day if you face every obstacle knowing that you have access to the resources needed to overcome.  Secondly, relax and be grateful.  Be grateful that you are alive and have the faculties to be hired to actually work.  There are so many who don’t have a job in these difficult economic times.

Finally, proceed on with your day expecting to be resourced beyond your limits.  I realize I’m telling you something you already know.  But sometimes, we need reminders.