Love and Connection, relationships, Soul, Spirituality

Have You Encountered Someone from A Past Life?

Some connections never die.



“Important encounters are planned by the souls long before the bodies see each other.”

— Paulo Coelho

The idea of having lived before can be difficult to wrap your head around. As humans, we’re so ingrained in the here and now; caught up in our current life drama. That’s completely normal. It’s easy to believe that this present physical life is the only reality. It’s not as if we have tangible evidence to prove that we once walked the earth in a different skin in another lifetime, any more than we have concrete memories of knowing someone before actually meeting them. All we’ve got are peculiar feelings, Déjà vu-like memories and an uncanny sense of familiarity.

Reincarnation, also known as metempsychosis, transmigration, resurrection or life after death, is most characteristic of Eastern philosophy, New Age and religious beliefs that centers around the rebirthing of our non-physical essence (or soul) beginning a new life in a different physical body after death.

No doubt you’ve heard of this phenomenon as a past life, where your soul is born into another person after you expire from …. erm…. this life.

I know, the thought of being the same but not can be a bit mind-boggling and maybe even a little far-fetched. As if body-hopping is only reserved for evil serial killer entities in supernatural horror films. Except, there are many scientific experts out there with thousands of case studies behind them who believe that reincarnation is, in fact, genuine.

For instance, the late Dr Ian Stevenson dedicated much of his career to finding evidence of reincarnation. And while there can be never be irrefutable proof that reincarnation is a real thing, his work has supplied evidence suggesting in its reality.

Thinking about the soul and past lives always brings me back to Dr. Wayne Dyer and his book, Wishes Fulfilled, where he quoted an ancient spiritual avatar about the ‘real’.

“What is real?” Guru was asked.

“What is real is that which never changes,” he replied.

More from the book:

“When looking for what is real and unchanging about ourselves, we can apply this definition. There is an unchanging spark from the Creator in each of us, our highest self, a piece of God. And we are all connected.”

The way I see it is that your soul is the unchanging spark which remains the same after your present body has exhausted itself. This can definitely account for the fact that we are not just limited to one body and one life experience.

Perhaps, body-hopping isn’t just something that happens in movies after all.


Have you ever encountered someone for the first time, yet instantly felt as if you’ve known them before?

I have. It’s the strangest and most incredible feeling.

A few years back, I met someone who instantly struck a mystifying sense of familiarity in me. The feeling was so powerful that it overtook my entire being to the point that even though I tried to brush it aside, it was impossible to ignore.

Eventually, I began to accept that this was something different than I’d ever known with anyone else. I just intuitively knew that there was a soul history between us and became aware that it wasn’t in the scope of my intellectual understanding. I realized that I was deeply connected to this person, even though I had no explanation as to why I felt that way.

You’re curious. You may have met someone who feels oddly familiar without reason, and who ignites a powerful sensation that can uplift your heart as much as kill you on the inside.

Have you encountered someone from a past life? Here’s a few signs that might help you determine if it’s the real deal:

Obscure Memories

Meeting someone who activates deep soul recognition from a past life is an intense and unique experience that cannot be mistaken for anything other than an eternal bond.

You don’t consciously know it or think, “Hey, I know you from a past life”, but you do understand it at some level — the unchanging spark within you knows sacred secrets from bygone eras. You just know that your soul and theirs have shared time before.

You have no idea how or why, but you begin to remember unclear moments that manifest as random visions, flashbacks, dreams and feelings not experienced in this lifetime with this person.

You may even begin to question your sanity at times.

Internal Sensations

  • You feel an immediate “out of this world “connection with this person.
  • You experience a strange knowing that he or she was always in your life, even before they arrived.
  • The encounter and interactions conjure up an unexplainable well of deep emotions within you.
  • Confusion is your new friend as your mind struggles to catch up with your heart and soul knowledge.
  • You light up and synchronize with them right away.

The Sound of Their Voice Affects You

Hearing the voice of a past life mate is much like coming home. Their tone seems to vibrate at a frequency that was always meant to resonate with your energetic essence. As if it was some pre-determined signal organized between your souls before incarnation so that you may recognize each other.

Their sound is comforting; arousing nostalgic sensations and the deeply sentimental, and their laughter may hanker on your heart like a wistful yesteryear.

Internal Sensations

  • You feel lost and found all at the same time.
  • You sense a shift within, revealing parts of yourself you didn’t know existed.
  • All your existing plans become irrelevant as he or she totally redesigns your life.
  • You slowly understand that you will never look at life the same way.
  • You feel as if you could listen to them forever.
  • Their voice activates and unlocks your heart to create a higher meaning of love within.

They Feel Like Unfinished Business

“Connection doesn’t care about the laws of the land; your soul will be pulled to the place it belongs.”

— Unknown

Just as the sound of their voice brings you undone, so does the sense of unending “soul” business with this person. As if they have appeared in your life to challenge you in some way.

Famous psychic, Michelle Knight teaches us about past life encounters:

The souls with whom we have the deepest connection and with whom we have chosen to learn and grow with, are the ones who are there to teach us the most profound lessons. And sometimes these lessons are not easy. Just because you have known one another in a past life does not mean it will all be love and happy endings in this one.”

These challenges can manifest as either positive or negative, and the bigger the contradictions and/or obstacles, the more you will have to grow on a soul level in order to meet and understand the higher meaning.

This characteristic is one of the greatest signs that you’ve met a profound soul connection from a past life here, because this person will push you to seek new meaning and discover personal uncharted territory just by showing up in your life.

They will force you to do the inner-work.

Internal Sensations

  • The mere presence of this person demands truth and honesty at a deeply authentic level like you’ve never before experienced.
  • You experience a slight pulse that begins in your soul and grows intense when confronting deep truths and facing your demons.
  • They excite, repel and delight you as you are propelled into intense introspection, self-actualization and startling moments of clarity.
  • You feel your soul expanding and evolving as new revelations pour forth.
  • Your mind and heart blows wide open to the possibilities.
  • You begin to see everything differently.
  • You begin to distinguish between real and illusionary realities.
  • You can see right through them and them through you.
  • You discover in yourself a strength that you never knew existed.
  • They have a knack for making you feel unimportant and important simultaneously — they can break or lift you like no other.
  • You sense what they represent to you at an intricate level.
  • You know that the connection is much more than yourself and this lifetime, and realize that they are a part of you and it will always be so.

Feeling of belonging

You feel as if you’ve gazed into their eyes a thousand times before. What you see reflecting back at you is a great sense of belonging — your mirror in another person through to your soul.

As well, time and space mean nothing and your connection remains strong even when you’re apart.

The feeling of belonging is in their eyes that ignite an inner-journey toward your whole self, and the perfectly orchestrated path that led you to the exact moment of correspondence.

Belonging is in the dreams and constant confirming signs, and the way you know each other’s thoughts and emotions without having to speak it out loud. It’s in the ease in which the relationship evolves through your soul.

Internal Sensations

  • You feel like a different person around them.
  • You might feel as if your very survival depends on this person remaining in your life in a certain way.
  • You begin to merge with your subconscious-self, which does not differentiate between past, present and future.
  • Your sense of time surrounding this person becomes irrelevant.
  • You feel an intimate connection with them, even if you do not spend time together.
  • You feel an intense longing to be close to them.
  • You may feel that earth is not your true home.
  • You yearn to go home.
  • You have a great affinity for this person that continues to grow over time.
  • You now have a profound sense of wisdom and an unusual capacity to see the deeper meaning in life’s events.

If you’ve experienced these feelings and sensations before, then you have likely encountered someone from a past life who you have run into once again on your current journey.

Trust your intuition and be mindful of how you feel. And always remember that meeting someone of this soul-significance is a gift that should always be treated with the highest respect and honor.


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, mindset, People, relationships, Women

Handling the Friend Who Shamelessly Flirts with Your Man

There’s always a friend you can never quite trust.



She’s the friend who barely waits for your back to be turned before she transforms into a sex bomb, tossing her hair and swinging her hips as she saunters across the room with your man firmly in sight. You try to quell the annoyance splitting your brain as she smiles wide enough to swallow him whole. You take a breath, reminding yourself what it means to be the “better” person — the collected, Stoic kind of person. Besides, you know that he only has eyes for you. But that isn’t always enough to tame the jealousy trickling in your veins like poison ivy, is it?

Hell, no. You’re only human, honey.

“Every girl in here has got a girlfriend they don’t trust around their man.”

Chris Rock


Jealousy is one of those emotions that instantly implies childlike negativity. We’re frequently told that it’s not healthy or “evolved” to feel the pain of jealousy, or we are instructed to stop being so sensitive and be more stoic in our approach to life. Because to not be vulnerable or acknowledge why we are experiencing a certain emotion is better than actually feeling the raw emotion of life, right?

Ha.

Stoicism may teach us to accept the present moment and be less focused on desirable pleasures and the fear of pain, but none of us are totally immune to experiencing a “negative” pang-feel every now then. Or the tantalizing sensations of sexual desire for that matter.

And who in their right mind would want to deny such wonderful pleasures, anyway?

Certainly not I.

It’s called living, experiencing, connecting and learning, and frankly, I believe that feeling a little romantic jealousy has its purpose in love. Every emotion you feel is valid, regardless of what others have to say about it or if you feel as though you’re overeating. Further, your feelings actually reveal something about you, as well as that they may indicate the depth of your feelings for someone else.

You may be feeling jealous because you are head-over-heels in love.


Jenni Skyler, who is the director of The Intimacy Institute in Colorado tells us:

“Feeling jealous at some point is totally normal because it’s a Band-Aid emotion, so to speak. Everyone experiences two core emotional fears — a fear of not being good enough or a fear of being left out. We all have at least a little degree of one of those two issues — we’re basically wired that way.”

So, we learn that jealousy is a normal emotion to experience in our relationships from time to time. Though, when faced with a trusted friend who vies for your man’s attention each time that she’s in his presence, the blow can do a double-time on your psyche.

Here’s what she looks like and how to handle it.


A Woman’s Toolbox = Feminine Sexuality

Whether she admits it not, just about every woman eventually realizes her one powerful advantage over a man is her sexuality. We learn how to work our assets to attract male attention, and we just as fast acquire the skillsets to play on a man’s sexual desire, if we want to go there. Truthfully speaking, women have been groomed to behave this way to win male attention over her sisters from the get-go.

It’s just how it is.

And this innate sense of knowledge is true for a woman irrespective of whether or not she permits herself to use her sexually-alluring feminine virtues in a persuasive manner.

According to an article published by Science of the People, “men are more attracted to a woman who engages in flirtation behavior to show she is available versus the best-looking woman in the room.”

All good. Flirting is a natural part of the mating game. It’s just that some women are more comfortable exploiting and using their sexuality to manipulate men than others, and, unfortunately, some women possess no boundaries when it comes to who’s man they are flirting with — friendships be damned.

The Flirty Friend

You can be flirty. I can be flirty. Depending on who’s doing the flirting, it can be quite fun and definitely arousing. But I most definitely have never crossed the “flirty” line with a girlfriend’s man. That has never been my style.

Personally, when it comes to flirting, I much prefer to playfully tease a man on an intellectual level rather than bat my lashes and push my boobs in his face like a brainless ditz. There is just something about a man who can use his intellect to stimulate. It’s like the ultimate foreplay to foreplay, if you know what I mean.

Hmm… back to the flirty friend.

I used to know the woman in the opening paragraph around the same time that I met my now husband. She was a shocker around men. It didn’t matter who he “belonged” to — if he was male and within her proximity, he was an open game.

Shocking, huh?

My friend had no qualms about shamelessly flirting with my husband each time she was around us. I’m talking full-ball performance here — from showing up wearing revealing clothes to the coy smiles to the accidently-on-purpose pawing all over him to the relentless playful banter.

It was draining just watching her.

Naturally, he reacted accordingly. She was a gorgeous woman and, well, it’s hard to find a hotblooded heterosexual man in this world who doesn’t respond in some fashion to the attention of an attractive lady.

It’s an ego thing.

Makes him feel connected to his “sexual-conqueror self” and all that masculinity stuff, reminding him that he’s still got what it takes to capture the interest and hook attractive women.

Enough said about that.

I’m not sure if my friend behaved like a hussy due to some kind of buried childhood scarring. You know, like “daddy” issues or fear of abandonment and whatnot. Honestly, I didn’t care. I’m not the type to pin the blame of adult behavior on childhood trauma, and especially not when it comes to matters of the heart.

We all have a past that we must work on if we’re going to get the most out of this life. And most adults know the difference between good and bad behavior within our friendships, too.

Chris Rock is a funny guy. I remembering hearing the below quote and laughing because it was so true when he said:

When a guy introduces his boy to his new girlfriend, when they walk away, his boy goes, ‘Aww man, she’s nice, I gotta get me a girl like that.’ When a woman introduces her new man to her girlfriend, after they walk away, her girlfriend goes, ‘I gotta have THAT guy.’”

It just goes to show that a woman can be downright determined when she fancies a man. Even more so when she falls in love with him. Let’s not explore that scenario right now.

Handling the Flirty Friend

At first, I tried very hard to be the “better” person in the above-mentioned situation. I didn’t want to let my friend’s extreme flirtatiousness affect me. Even though she possessed some lovely qualities — she was fun, upbeat, kind and interesting — I knew deep down that what she was doing was pretty rotten.

It doesn’t matter much you focus on the positive qualities of some people, or how far you strive to be that “better” person, at the end of the day it comes down to what you are willing to accept as a part of your life experience.

The entire situation eventually snowballed when she showed up at my doorstep eager to impart saucy titbits craftily concocted by her fascination. That was when her devious mindset had worn down its final thread — The cunning tongue, rear door insinuations and sly attempted take-downs …. the way she seemed to have no regard for my feelings.

No thanks.

So, I handled it. I cut her from my life and never looked back.

Game over.

Sometimes, the anecdote to poison ivy is having the guts to suck out the venom and walk away. Because life is too fleeting and precious to waste on the weeds.


Also published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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Creativity, Love and Connection, music

Dirty-Love Dozen

A Grunge-Rock Love Journey.


Honestly, I’m not a Valentine’s Day kind of woman. I won’t lie, there was a time when it might have meant something to me. When I fell for the “flawless” romantic Valentine’s Day hype we see in the media. You know, the pipe-dream feeding us the scoop about how important it is to celebrate love on this one particular day of the year. As if those 24-hours could actually determine the authenticity of your relationship. The bigger the bouquet, the bigger the love, right?

Wait. Don’t answer that. It was a rhetorical question and I was really talking about bouquets… hmm…. where was I?

Big love-things and bigger bouquets aside, I could care less about Valentine’s Day now.

In truth, I like to think of Valentine’s Day in the essence of it’s dark, messy and mysterious history because real life love is like that. Love can be dark, messy and certainly as mysterious as the shady origins of Valentine’s Day.

A bit like a Grunge-Rock love journey, really.

Let me explain.

Romantic love is wonderful. It’s an experience most of us want to create in our lives. To connect deeply, soulfully and honestly with your lover is one of life’s greatest gifts because each time we love, we learn how to open our heart that little bit wider.

But as much as love can activate the best version of ourselves is as much as it has the ability to take us on a journey through the dark night of the soul.

An unforgettable odyssey that causes deep reflection and insight, and transforms us into new states of awareness — better people. We learn so much about ourselves through love and heart pain.

How you fold the experience within your inner-sanctuary makes all the difference between inviting bitterness or benevolence into your life.

We don’t need Valentine’s Day to remind us of that. We just need to understand what love means to us, and how far we’re willing to go for that unique, soulful connection.

My Grunge-Rock Love Journey playlist is for anyone who has known deep love and dark pain, and who, despite everything, has fully realized that love isn’t always like a mushy love song or a romantic movie. Love has a dark side that burns a trail toward the light inside of us if we embrace it.



#1 Love Hurts by Nazareth

“Love is like a flame. It burns you when it’s hot.”

Personally, I can resonate with the energy of love and its sweet darkness through this song.

Love Hurts was originally released by the Everly Brothers on their 1960 album, A Date with The Everly Brothers. But when Nazareth covered the track in 74’, the band’s lead singer Dan McCafferty hit new realms of despair with his emotionally raw vocal delivery. Reminding us about the pain of deep love and ardent passion.

Love Hurts introduces our Grunge-Rock Love Journey because the flame burns, magnetizes and leaves a scar on our soul like nothing else.

#2 Heart-Shaped Box by Nirvana

“I’ve been locked inside your heart-shaped box for weeks.”

Apparently, there was much confusion about how Cobain meant this song to be interpreted. Some speculated that it may have been about cancer. Others, thought it was about drugs.

Me? Right away, the meaning of Heart-Shaped Box echoed the power of the feminine. Courtney Love confirmed my inklings when she said:

“You do know the song is about my vagina, right? Throw down your umbilical noose so I can climb right back, umm. On top of which some of the lyrics about my vagina I contributed…”

Nirvana’s omnipresent Heart-Shaped Box reflects the intricate love dynamics between the masculine and feminine energies.

#3 Sex Type Thing by Stone Temple Pilots

“You wouldn’t want me to have to hurt you too, hurt you too?”

Despite thatthis song may have been composed by Scott Weiland with a very dark subject matter in mind, it’s coming in at track three because my interpretation borders along exquisite lust and sexual power.

“I know you want what’s on my mind.”

Need I say more?

#4 Desire by Meg Myers

“Boy, I’m gonna love you. I’m gonna tear into your soul.”

Sexy. Powerful. Incredibly haunting. Ms. Myers captures the bone-deep yearning of desire with a rebellious flare that resonates like the hunger of a new lover.

Track four, Desire brings a demanding contrast of murky-pure revolution to love. Move me from the inside or move on, buddy.

#5 Touch, Peel and Stand by Days of the New

“And now I stand, and I peel for more.”

Sex or drugs? It’s said that song-writer Travis Meeks wrote these lyrics about “the apple in the garden of Eden — you can touch, peel, and then stand with it, but you’re told not to eat it. In the end were gonna do what were told not to do. It just takes time for us to find that reason.”

Some types of love can be a little messed-up, complicated and extremely addictive.

This acoustic post-grunge number packs a sexy feel that for me, embodies that darkly primitive and at times, disturbing connection between lovers.

#6 Tainted Love by Marilyn Manson

“And the love we share seems to go nowhere.”

Tainted Love was composed by Ed Cobb and originally recorded by Gloria Jean in 1964 before Soft Cell blasted their cover into the UK record charts in 1981. Marilyn Manson, however, brings a unique gothic flavor to this track that captures toxic love perfectly.

When love seems to go nowhere beyond a tease, it’s time to run, baby.

#7 Mudshovel by Staind

“And you rip me apart with the brutal things you say.”

I’m not a musician, so I am unfamiliar with correct muso-lingo, but damn, I love it when the heavy riffs drop at the opening of this grungy rock metal number.

It gets me every time.

The brutal way singer Aaron Lewis delivers the lyrics over the pulsating rhythm of heavy guitar is powerfully intense. You can just feel and relate with his torment and pain.

This kickass track will get you moving one way or another through the process of love. Remember to use your middle finger while you’re jamming it at the one who hurt you.

Rage has its purpose.

#8 Like Suicide by Seether

“And it’s the same old trip, the same old trip as before.”

Flowing the toxic relationship theme into this hard rock/nu metal combo, track eight is serving up an audio slice of love-gone-wrong. Like suicide describes the cycle of old games and emotional blackmail which, frankly, none of us need.

For those who’ve known that twisted, player-of-hearts who delights in setting you up to fall and fail, Seether brings enough thrash here to help keep your resolve — we will not be used by love.

#9 Torn by Creed

“Yes, I’m the one who, the only one who would carry on this far.”

Speaking of love, Creed articulates the above-mentioned dark night of the soul perfectly in this spiritual, soul-searching hard rock track.

The thing about loving someone deeply is that it ignites personal change and causes you to question everything. Including all that you believed to be true.

This song is a journey in itself.

#10 Butterfly with Wings by Smashing Pumpkins

“And what do I get for my pain? Betrayed desires and a piece of the game.”

In 1997, Butterfly with Wings won a Grammy for Best Hard Rock Performance, and has got to be one the most popular and recognizable songs produced by Smashing Pumpkins.

The push-back track. This song sends a clear message about transformation and breaking out of “the cage” — societal conditioning, oppression, cultural expectations…. heart pain. The same elements apply in love because love was never meant to conform, be conditioned (by holidays like Valentine’s Day) or obey “human” rules.

We hurt and then we somehow find our wings to fly a new journey. We discover who we truly are.

#11 Voodoo by Godsmack

“I’m coming back again.”

The constant beat of the drums combined with the percussion instruments in Godsmack’s Voodoo lends a tribal feel that is both hypnotic and sexy, clinging to your hips like a new revelation. That’s what this song does to me.

Besides, they do say that love is like a drug….

Life just showed you a part of yourself that was previously unknown. Breathe in, breathe in — you’re coming back again, anew.

#12 The Chemicals Between Us by Bush

“I’d like to thank, all of my lovers, lovers, lovers.”

The final song of the Grunge-Rock Love Journey is a digitally-effective vintage take about the everlasting bond between lovers and the imprint we leave on each other. Like a tribute to love and connection.

Featured in the popular American drama series, Charmed, songwriter Gavin Rossdale, explains the lyrics as “the differences between lovers.”

Our great loves may not always last forever, but the love each relationship brings into our life experience is an intimate path designed to expand our hearts and teach us more about ourselves — who we are, what we want and don’t want, and the things we do or don’t do along the journey of love.


At the end of the day, I believe that the best kind of love isn’t always supposed to be about settling in your comfort zone. Great love is meant to challenge, transform and free you like a Grunge-Rock Love Journey.


Also published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, mindset, relationships, Romance

Relationship Power-Struggles? It May be Time to Surrender to Love

Let’s talk about love connection, baby.


“Surrender isn’t about being passive. It’s about being open.”

— Danielle LaPorte

Remember when you used to play that game of tug-of-war as a kid? You willingly chose to place yourself in a situation where two people or factions fought to keep or obtain the same thing. Love can often feel like a game of tug-of-war. It’s that push-pull dynamic between a couple that usually causes more harm than good. But tug-of-war only works if both sides pull on the rope and struggle fiercely — if one side let’s go of the rope, it’s game over — there is no longer a tug-of-war.

The same rule applies to the game of love.

The inevitable moment will come when every couple engages in some kind of power struggle. We go from completely giving ourselves over to a new lover at the beginning of a relationship, to the sometimes-messy task of establishing a sense of equilibrium and balance.

Kind of like an emotional game of tug-of-war.

I was super young when I fell for the guy who eventually became my first husband. At the time, it wasn’t long before I was head-over-heels in love with him, spending every free moment together between the long hours working as an apprentice in a hair salon.

He didn’t hide the fact that he was utterly captivated by me, showing his adoration through attentiveness, surprising me with gifts and often talking about the future. He came across as thoughtful, gentle and kind, and he declared his love for me quite early on in the relationship.

It was the famous “honeymoon” phase in the love-game that precedes the power-struggle stage of a union.

Actually, this “balancing” phase of a relationship is necessary and important. Not only is this period the part when you get to fully work out your lover’s true intentions and motivations for the future of the relationship, but the push-pull dynamic is where you will truly find love’s foundations — the stability and security within the relationship that allows you to establish trust with your heart enough to carry it forward. Then, you can get back to your normal life after surviving the sexy love-storm (well, somewhat).

Not to mention that you might even discover a surprise or two about your lover during this stage. Like those personality quirks you didn’t realize existed until now . . .

Hmm . . . Why the hell does he flush the toilet 2/3 of the way through peeing so that there is still a little bit of pee left in the loo after it’s done flushing?

Such is the mystery of love (and men), but let’s talk about . . .

Love Games

Author of The Love Gap, Jenna Birch knows that power-struggles in relationships can take on different forms: “Sometimes, they come from the place of believing you’re right and your partner’s wrong, and you both should get your way entirely — because it’s ‘the best way’”.

You knowthe best way isn’t always the right way. Besides that, someone wise once said that “two wrongs don’t make a right”, right?

We all know it even when we pretend that we don’t.

As with every situation, we find ourselves in life recognizing when you are in midst of the power-struggle phase is the first step toward gaining clarity and resolution over said dynamic — provided that you’re both reasonable adults, of course.

The blame-game sucks, yes?

Agreed.

So, if you aren’t prepared, this rocky little path can fast lead toward ridiculous accusations, dumbass denial and multi-rounds of that dreadful blame-game.

I love you, for sure.

He said.

The dynamic usually reveals itself as the intrinsic need to self-affirm and assert oneself on the many levels encompassing the relationship. It can even eventuate as a long-term love/hate power-trip game if we’re not careful.

I’m sure you know how it goes — a certain whiff of self-centeredness rears its ugly head and suddenly, you’re going loggerheads with your beloved.

If you aren’t ready for and aware of it, accusations bordering on ludicrous may fly like doves on speed in both directions.

How it plays out is determined by the maturity of the couple. That, and how much each person has opened themselves to the relationship at the height of the “love-bubble” period.

Red Flags

If both people have the proper emotional tools at hand, this emotional war for power doesn’t have to be too draining — but “emotional tools” equate to a certain level of emotional maturity.

That doesn’t mean you or your partner have all the answers, but it does mean that you both have the skill-set to keep your cool when things become stormy, and that’s important in love.

Personally, I think that this “power-struggle” period of a relationship is the perfect time to flush out and recognize any “red flags” about your partner’s behavior and personality that you may have missed during the initial love-drunk stage.

Toxic and controlling behavior like treating you like a child, unpredictable outbursts, lecturing, blame and trivializing your feelings.

For instance, looking back at this period of time with my first husband, I can clearly point out those above-mentioned traits as well as his need to monitor my every move, treat me to unbearably long lectures and show his ever-growing jealousy.

I just wish that I had the sense of personal power and wisdom to follow my intuition at the time. As it was, I went ahead and married him despite the red flags.

More from Birch:

“Usually, relationships work best when someone takes the lead and the other person is more flexible or fluid.”

In other words, to truly love is to participate in a generous slice of give and take backed up with the ability to compromise and demonstrate the patience, empathy and tolerance that is required to successfully navigate the power-play stage — these rich human characteristics are a part of what it means to love with compassion, and all without slapping conditions and blame on your lover.

Birch says that if you want to overcome the power-struggle, “it’s important to recognize when it’s best to push and pull back”.

That way, your turn to have your way and say will come.

The real secret to winning the love game is how far you’re willing to surrender to love, not your lover.

Surrender to Love

Surrendering to love doesn’t mean that you give up your power and become someone’s doormat, or even placing yourself at the mercy of your lover’s whims.

What I am suggesting is that you take the philosophy that empowers you and enhances your own inner-connectedness — to yourself and your lover — the high road on the journey of love.

No one ever really wins at a power-struggle. There are only losers of the heart.

Every harsh word. Each accusation. Every single act of rage, gaslighting, emotional blackmail or punishment — all of those interactions contribute to slowly corroding the quality of your relationship and stripping the connection of trust over time.

Love is more worthy. You are more worthy.

You’ve got to remember that you always have a choice about how you respond to your lover and how you perceive any given situation, no matter how intense and emotional things become between you — you have a choice.

My ex-husband possessed neither the emotional tools nor mindset to overcome his toxic, argumentative ways of being in the world, never searching inside of himself to become a better person, father and husband. This is a man who took no responsibility for the hurt and pain he caused others. Nor did he make an effort to control his emotional agitation or even try to understand me — who I was or the way I saw the world.

That’s the complete opposite of surrendering to love.

It was a choice that limited him, broke our relationship and damaged the actual process of love. Love cannot be manipulated like a puppeteer.

Love cannot be shackled to a kitchen sink and controlled with brute force or intimidation, either.

Surrendering to love means both people commit to the process of loving, regardless of the circumstances. It means honor between souls enough to cherish the quality of the connection while choosing to deepen the bonds through seeking out the most valuable gifts in each other.

It means allowing love to thrive in its natural state — being who you are and accepting and relishing those differences, believing in each other, and choosing to love to a higher beat than ever before.

Surrendering to love is one of the greatest secrets of the meaning of life because the way and the degree in which you choose to love is what will reflect back into and enrich your personal experiences — it is the selfless act of giving and opening yourself to the wonders of your heart-space — the place where amazing bits of you awaits your personal discovery within your lover’s heart and soul.

Beautify your life journey through deeper connection. Surrender to love.


This article was originally published by P.S I Love You on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, relationships

Is There Ever a Time to Deny Love?

Denial is not just a river in Egypt.


“What does love mean if we would deny it to others?”

― DaShanne Stokes

“I don’t know how you do it.”

I’d probably said those words to Jeff more times than Googolplex. He’d told me that his soul belonged to her and that was how much he loved her. Though I wasn’t necessarily hitting on the depth of his love for the woman who wasn’t his wife — I knew how much he was suffering. Rather, I couldn’t fathom how he could deny such a love-connection.

He palmed his hair and shrugged. “You gotta do what you gotta do.”

“What? Deny real love?”

The look on his face was enough to wrench my heart clean from my chest. Glycerine by Bush filled in the silence. He’d often ask why I loved deep music. I told him it was because it stirred my soul in ways I couldn’t always articulate.

“I’ll never forget where you’re at.”

His soul was stirring like a brewing storm and it had nothing to do with the music.

“It’s not right…” He looked away. “Besides, I pushed her away so far that she would never want me, anyway.”

“You don’t know that.”

We’d stolen a few moments away from the others, escaping to my front porch, rocking on a swinging garden chair. A balmy evening, sipping on beer and chilling with friends. The cicadas whistled a song of their own.

What do you say to someone whose heart bleeds for love denied?

I’m not sure. But I’m a woman who believes that the heart can’t lie. Doesn’t matter what kind of logic we try to feed ourselves about it or how much we live a lie in order to cover the deep truths buried in our hearts — your heart will always lead you toward real love and your soul will always seek to find deeper meaning through stronger connections.

Maybe it is meant to be that way. Maybe we are supposed to experience love in different forms and with different people, and that “till death do us part” isn’t always in tune with human evolvement, spiritual advancement and personal growth.

Then again, Jeff seems to think that denying himself the love of his life is the right thing to do. But for who exactly?

It’s a pretty sticky situation, but I doubt that his wife and kids will get the best of him now that his soul has found another who feels true to him.

I’ve seen what happens when real love is denied for the sake of … hmm … let’s see — Marriage. Children. Combined assets and familial expectations. Contrasting beliefs and safe comfort zones.

Name one or all of the above. Makes no difference.

What’s in the heart is in the heart and no matter the circumstances, once love has ignited, it isn’t as easy as “blowing out” a flame or sticking your head in the sand to make it all go away.

I wish it were for Jeff’s sake and the woman who lives on the opposite side of the planet who had stolen his heart. She was hurting, too. They were never “together” in the physical sense, but I’d never witnessed a connection so strong; so resilient and pure. It was as if whatever was between them had a soul of its own, entwining them together on the higher planes and creating invisible love-patterns.

Something like that, anyway.

Jeff was in all kinds of torment. None of which he could speak of openly, let alone release himself from the pain that had become a constant in his life. It had been two years since he’d spoken to her.

Two years of silent hell.

“I have no choice,” said Jeff. “I love her but can’t afford to go there…”

I’m calling out BS on that one. Sorry, Jeff. We always have a choice.

Always.

The thing is that when we encounter something like this in our lives, our minds become so clouded with the “what if’s” — we are plagued with so many questions and fears that we wind up feeling blind and confused.

It is common for many of us to develop anxiety and lose sleep over decisions with such high stakes.

Jeff’s choice to deny his feelings afforded him something alright, and it was far from the happiness that could have been his had he chosen to have faith and trust in real love — had he taken the rare gift offered by the universe and followed his heart.

Now, I see a man who has been “killed alive” living a mediocre life between bouts of happiness burrowed from time with his kids, creative passions and his work. He loves his wife, but deep down, he knows that that love can’t begin to scratch the surface of the love between him and his surprise-lady.

I can only imagine what she had endured.

Denying Love

Jeff isn’t the same person as he was before meeting her. He used to be more upbeat and at ease with himself and his lot in life. He used to be happy.

This is what can happen when you deny love:

  • Pain and depression
  • Repeated attempts to rationalize your feelings
  • Obsessing about said feelings
  • Constantly looking for hints, clues and generally overthinking simple acts (which drives you crazy)
  • Frustration towards yourself for having the unwanted feelings
  • Resentment directed at the universe for revealing the most amazing person who feels unreachable
  • Resentment directed at your beloved for simply showing up and thus, throwing an unexpected spanner in the works
  • Stressing over whether the feelings are reciprocated or not
  • Sleepless nights further overthinking the relationship
  • Dark nights of the soul where you wish for nothing but the end
  • Feelings of hopelessness about the situation and a future that now appears more ordinary than ever before

I was talking to another friend about love-denial, who is much wiser than myself. He knows stuff about sacred unions, energy and how people are generally wired to think in the world. He has had much life experience and is usually spot on with his observations.

“Can someone really do that?” I asked while pondering Jeff and his woman, who I knew shared real love yet remained unconnected. “Can someone really choose to spend the rest of their life denying real love?”

“Yes, people do it all the time.”

I don’t know about you, but the thought makes me sad.

It’s because I tend to feel as if a love-connection like the one I have witnessed Jeff experiencing shows up to create deeper love and connection in the world. For a reason; like a higher purpose beyond what we, as mere mortals, can truly understand or even appreciate.

Some types of love are too powerful not to be.

Moreover, I know from my own experiences that nothing worthwhile ever comes without taking a leap of faith, nor does it seldom present itself in life without obstacles to overcome.

That’s the test of real love — it requires more than just the average investment or one foot in and the other out. It demands honor, respect and a side of sacrifice between the two hearts in order to beat as one and create a deep connection.

As it is, it looks as if Jeff will spend the rest of his life fighting the feelings that he could never bring himself to fully realize, and I can’t think of anything more tragic when it comes to love.

“Don’t let the days go by.”

I imagine him at the end of his life and looking back at what he lost — the chance to experience the greater love that he allowed to slip through his hands.

I mourn for this vision and the life he could have known.

For anyone else experiencing a similar situation — That is, denying love, the best solution is to:

  • Identify the reason for the denial of feelings
  • Accept the feelings
  • Know that being true to yourself is key to living an authentic life
  • Take responsibility
  • Recognize that it’s okay to have feelings
  • Decide whether to reveal or let them go
  • Respect yourself, the person with whom you have said feelings for, and all others involved
  • Realize that real love is rare and life is not forever

“If I found a soul-connection as deep as the one you have discovered in her, I’d hold onto that and give it my all. It’s just too rare to pass up.”

I had to bite back the tears when Jeff’s face became stoic at hearing those words.

He is a much stronger person than me; he can go on and pretend that he never had a taste offered in the form of precious soul love. He can make out that love meant nothing. And considering his ability to deny real love, it probably never will.

Though, I can’t help but wonder which path demands more strength and backbone — denying real love or accepting your feelings and going for the extraordinary?

Taking a leap of faith in this fleeting life.

In the opening quote, DaShanne Stokes asks — “What does love mean if we would deny it to others?”

I think we just answered that question.


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium.



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life, Love and Connection, relationships, Uncategorized, Wealth

The Things I learned from Dating a Mexican Millionaire

Here’s 5 things I learned about money, racism and girlfriends


by Anna Foga


I have always been somebody who doesn’t care about money, living most of my life on a budget. I am a traveler and I usually try to stay away from the money-focused society, preferring to spend my days lazing away in a hammock with other backpackers. When I met my now-boyfriend on Tinder, I thought he would be just like any other random Tinder match. Even when we had our first date, I did not recognise the signs that he could be ultra-rich. Sure, he paid for everything and picked one of the most expensive restaurants in town, but for all I knew he was just trying to impress me.

As our dating life evolved, I started to realise he was not just the average Joe (or Juan). We always stayed in the fanciest hotels, had the nicest dinners and our weekend getaways were dripping in luxury. His gifts consisted of the newest Apple products to $3,000 plane tickets and even a car landed on my doorstep at one point.

Mexico is infamous for narcos and cocaine, and for a while I wondered if his money came from those sources. Was I starting to develop feelings for a drug-trafficker? During the course of our relationship I realised that was not the case and while I know now that not every Mexican rich guy is involved with Cartels, I did learn five other important lessons about dating a Mexican millionaire.

Here is some of what I have learned:

1. Most Rich Mexican Men Have Multiple Girlfriends

I don’t know if this has something to do with the Latino macho culture dominating this side of the world or if it is a common thing for rich people, but I have yet to find a wealthy Mexican who is faithful.

I know this might sound as if I am generalizing, but it just seems to be part of the high-class culture here. While my own boyfriend also has a wife and decided to open up his marriage, almost all of his (married) male friends have multiple secret girlfriends and/or fuckbuddies.

There is separate time reserved for the family and then there is time for their alter-lives and the additional girls. The men all know the wives of their friends but encourage each other to invite more girls and even share fuckbuddies between them. It is not uncommon either to celebrate birthdays with gifts in girls — your buddy organises a luxury party for you with many girls involved. Most men have a wife plus one or two girlfriends (mostly in other cities/countries) and numerous friends with benefits.

2. The Mexican Upper-layer is Miles from the Poorest

With the top 10% of the Mexican population earning more than 42% of the national income, it is no wonder that there is a massive wealth inequality. Only seven other countries in the world have a bigger gap between rich and poor than Mexico.

For me, navigating alongside the top rich layer meant I could clearly see how big the differences really are. It makes you think twice when you are sitting at your dinner table sipping away on a $500 bottle of wine and wearing a $1,000 dress, while a few meters away from you a poor mother is begging for five pesos to feed her child.

It seems that most of the rich stay miles away from the poor, only using them as their staff while paying them an average Mexican wage — which is as low as $10 a day, making the gap even bigger.

On top of that, the Mexican tax law is flexible towards those who earn profits from capital and dividends, making the rich even richer just by being wealthy. Combine that with a corrupt government that also profits from that same structure and you have a country that will make it to the top 10 richest nations with the biggest number of poor people.

3. Cash Needs to be Spent and This is How They do it

As a budget traveler, I have never spent much time among the rich and famous, and tried to stay away from the upper class. But when I fell in love with my boyfriend, I was bound to get a fair amount of time in this societal layer of Mexico.

I noticed that many of them have a lot of cash and avoid paying with credit cards, probably to avoid getting taxed on their income.



So how do they spend that cash?

They buy the best, most expensive things. Whether it’s cars, holidays or clothes, they don’t blink twice at the price tag and buy the first thing they see.

Some of them spend up big on properties, others on toys like private planes, yachts, jet skis, sports gear, etc. Or they spend it on boob jobs or other gifts for their girlfriends. They go to the best restaurants and buy the most expensive items on the menu, pay their high-class escort girls and always have a few private assistants around to help them with daily chores. Luckily, some of them also spend it on charity or (private) non-profit foundations.

I don’t think that I will ever get used to the amount of money that is flowing around them. Even after spending almost a year together with my boyfriend now, it still amazes me how easily the cash gets exchanged. Luckily, he is also generous with sharing his wealth with the less fortunate, mostly tipping almost twice the amount of the bill to the workers and never failing to give some notes to the beggars in the street.

4. Racism is More Real Than Ever

Generally speaking, in Mexico being white means being privileged. These people are most-likely born into Spanish heritage; their families gained status and wealth long before they first opened their eyes. White Mexicans have more access to education, healthcare and jobs, live in the wealthier parts of the country and generally have a better future ahead of them.

Three-quarters of the indigenous people live in extreme poverty and Mexico’s poorest regions inhabit the most dark-skinned people.

Most commercials only display white Mexicans; politicians and academics are mostly white; expensive houses are owned by light-skinned Mexicans while the housekeepers and gardeners are dark. Construction workers and restaurant staff are mostly dark-skinned, and they are serving mostly white people.



Spending time with a lot of wealthy Mexicans, I experienced first-hand that indeed the richest layer consists mainly of light-skinned people and their staff is dark. They all seem to accept this is part of their reality and both groups generally don’t hang out with each other. Many of the rich white Mexicans expect the dark Mexicans to work for them for a low wage and this creates another massive gap between the rich and the poor and the white and dark-skinned.

5. You Will Get Spoilt, But Only if You Listen to Their Rules

Being the girlfriend of a Mexican millionaire is not always easy. You need to commit to their time schedule because they are always busy, expect you to join their high-class parties and mingle with the other girlfriends, and they want you to always be available to them.

After all, the little time they do have left generally can’t be matched to your personal schedule. You need to hide the fact that they have wives, have to always protect their privacy and spend a lot of time waiting for them when they take you out because there is always something important coming up. You will have your dinners while they are on the phone most of the time. You are probably being cheated on and you are most likely not the only girl in their life. You have to listen to their rules, which was particularly hard for me as an independent, free traveler.

Need new clothes? They give you a whole new wardrobe.

Of course, there are also the perks. They will spoil you, treat you like a princess and nothing gets too crazy. Joining a last-minute business trip to Bali? No problem! Getting your rent paid? Of course. Want to buy that new MacBook? Sure, why not. Need new clothes? They give you a whole new wardrobe. Learn a new sport? You will get a private instructor.

It’s like having a sugar daddy, but with actual love.

But maybe the biggest lesson that I have learned from dating a Mexican millionaire is that love has no boundaries.

My life completely turned around after meeting him (and not just because of his money), and we are both learning the advantages of our different lifestyles. He realised that spending quality time together with the people you love is even more valuable than earning a 7-figure income, and I learned that earning money to spend that quality together is also invaluable. And even though we are opposites in how we live our lives, in our core values we are exactly the same.


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium


Anna Foga is trying to be a fearless writer on topics most people don’t want to talk about. Connect and read more from Anna on Medium.

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life, Love and Connection, relationships

Knowing When Someone is Worth Your Time

Some time ago, I met a guy while out with friends and celebrating someone’s birthday. The birthday gal in question was a stranger to me, as was the upbeat guy who chewed gum, laughed loudly and smiled like a toothpaste billboard on George. Yes, he was one of those super-extroverted types with loads of swag, a catchy personality and a generous side of confidence. From the moment he introduced himself, his sights were firmly set on yours truly.

God, help me — Quit munching spearmint gum in my face.

This guy had ‘player’ written all over him and I wasn’t down for the game. So, I told him the truth upfront, which happened to be that I was divorced with three kids. I figured that piece of intel would send him running because hey, it was a great ploy to drive away the fly-bys looking for nothing more than casual sex. And besides, you can tell a lot about a man who sticks around when he is aware of your situation.

My situation didn’t faze him one bit.

“I love kids!”

Cool. Want three for free?

Just kidding. I love my babies.

Anyway, sensing my hesitation and distrust, swag-guy eventually solicited backup from one of his friends.

“She knows me.” He gestured at a petite, Greek-flavored woman sitting nearby. “Christa, tell her who I am.”

“He’s cool,” Christa said. “What you see is what you get.”

Interesting. Unhelpful, but still interesting.

What you see isn’t always what you get.

I don’t know if you have ever thought about it, but I think that expression is kind of weird. Think about it now. People put it out there all the time as if it means something, but more often than not what lies beneath is a far cry from what they’ve got on show.

I’m not the type to believe in misguided fabrications.

At least, not these days.

I’m not being pessimistic; I have just lived long enough to know that very few people have what it takes to offer up the ‘what you see is what you get’ line and actually deliver on trustworthiness.

FYI: Authenticity doesn’t actually equate to ‘transparency’ just because someone says so.

Moving on and I’m looking at a man who I didn’t know from Jack, and I am to believe that what I see is what I get?

What? A toothy billboard on George?

Okay, so he was a charming billboard, but charm is as useful as influencing Lady Luck with a rabbit’s foot when it comes to figuring out whether or not someone is worth investing time into.

See where I’m going here?

Time

Your time is your most precious resource in all of the universe, but you already knew that, didn’t you? Too right you did. How often do you find yourself uttering about your time, or lack thereof?

All the time, I bet.

Yup, time is a currency worth much more than money or any object — it waits for no one, is your wisest teacher, and once lost, it can never be recovered.

Something that has so much value shouldn’t be thrown around frivolously.

“Time is precious because eternity hinges on how we spend it.”

— Jonathan Edwards

Each time you are introduced to someone as a potential new friend or significant other, you come to a point where you have to determine whether or not they are worth your time.

You have your work and your family. You have your personal life …. You have your love life (successful or not). The point is that you have enough going on in your life that when you make the decision to spend time with someone, they should at least be worthy of it.

Right? Err …. Duh.

The thing about it is that you might not always get it right and that’s okay. You’ve got to remember that you are here fumbling through life like the rest of us, which means you are going to screw up from time to time. None so much as when it comes to romantic connections.

They don’t say that love is blind for nothing. They say it because when you truly fall in love with someone, it is natural to ignore the red flags and focus only on the good because real love can only ever know that which is like it — Even when given to someone who isn’t capable of cherishing your heart.

If time is our wisest teacher, then the degree to which we love in this life is our greatest gift to ourselves and all of eternity. No shit. It’s because love is the groundwork for everything — all of creation, your lifeforce energy …. the moon and the stars…

Each sincere heart that loves purely is expanding and layering the world and the universe with the essence of source energy — love — this is true even when you seemingly love in vain.

Love is never wasted. Don’t forget that, my friend.

Time, however, is a different story in that you get to decide, be it personal or professional, whether or not someone is worth your time (and heart), and if you should keep up a relationship.

If you’re pondering this issue about someone in your life, perhaps it’s time to consider these 3 questions:

1) How Do They Make You Feel?

Some people have a knack for making you feel good when around them. Others seem to weigh you down.

It’s in their energy.

All living things are able to sense the vibrations of other living things, and each of us emits our own vibrational frequency. Energy transmits and transfers through our moods, mindsets and personalities, and just as animals can sense danger and fear in people, so too can we sense the energy-space of someone else through our intuition.

Business professor, Hillary Anger Elfenbein who coined the ‘affective presence’ concept says that “our own way of being has an emotional signature”.

More from Elfenbein:

“It’s been known for some time that emotions are contagious: If one person feels angry, she may well infect her neighbor with that anger. But affective presence is an effect one has regardless of one’s own feelings — those with positive affective presence make other people feel good, even if they personally are anxious or sad, and the opposite is true for those with negative affective presence.”

Pay attention to how you feel when around them.

Do you walk away from them with a happy and fulfilled sensation? Or do you feel broken and empty inside? Do you feel judged? Undervalued? Do you feel less than?

Is it feelings of jealousy on your part?

In which case, you need to change your attitude.

Or are they making you feel badly about yourself or your work?

Degrading you, being condescending, overwhelmingly critical, etc.

In which case, they’re the problem.

If you feel like the glass is half empty after interacting with this person, then it might be time to assess the situation. You may need to do some introspection to figure out why they make you feel this way.

2) Are You Learning from Them?

Unless this person is of the extreme toxic variety — a sociopathic narcissist, or an abusive, unsupportive and emotionally unhealthy individual (in which case, avoid where possible), I believe that can we learn some of our most valuable life lessons through the people we interact with and keep in our lives.

These lessons can arrive into your experience as silent teachings — meaning that you learn from their actions, ways-of-being and thinking, and their life experiences, which in turn, opens new thoughts and influences you in a deep and meaningful way.

Personal growth.

Or perhaps the teachings are more overt?

In which case, they teach you a specific skillset or strategy, foster your learning through repetitive demonstration, or become an important mentor in your career-journey.

The point is that you feel that there are lessons to be learned when conversing or interacting with this person, and vice-versa.

Sometimes the most powerful teachings come to us via the quietest, most unsuspecting ways, so it is important to show up at each social interaction with an open mind and wide heart, and lose the Judge Judy pants.

Honestly, it’s on you to find the teachable moment.

3) Do They Add Value to Your Life?

Obviously, I am not talking about material possessions here. So, if you’re willing to look beyond the Gucci handbags and Rolex watches and get to what really gives your life value, then read on….

There’s a reason why we don’t bring every stranger into our closer inner-circles, and it all comes down to whether or not this person delivers positive value and how you relate with each other.

Do they make you laugh?

People add value to your life when you can laugh together and at each other, get on the same wacky-wavelength and choose to not always take life so seriously.

Do you get inspired by being around them?

The best kinds of relationships add value when they ignite your creative flare, stoke your imagination and hold your dreams with esteem along with their own. It’s the shared muse for kindred souls; a harmonious balance of Zen-like energy overflowing with creativity, respect, appreciation and love.

Are they a good friend? Do they hold space for you and want to know who you are?

We add value by listening to and being present for each other, as well as demonstrating heart-kindness for the people we care about — empathizing and offering our honest opinions without being overly harsh. They forgive easily, understand how and when to give constructive feedback, and they deliver these with compassion.

Do you enjoy their company?

Someone adds value to your time when you can be at ease with them. When you can be yourself without second-guessing every comment or action… or in-action.

No mind games. No score-keeping. No bullshit.

The moments when you can just ‘be’ together in total acceptance, honor and love for each other, are what make for time-worthy experiences with the people in your life.

It’s the secret sauce in any type of relationship — be it romantic or otherwise. Just look into their eyes and you’ll find what you need to know.


If you read these questions and answered with a resounding ‘yes’, then I’m betting that the person in your life is a positive presence and you’ve got yourself a time-worthy keeper.

And as for the ‘what you see is what you get’ guy I mentioned earlier, to his credit, there was a lot more to him than first met the eye; it turned out that he had heart and soul, and knew how to love a woman and respect her time as if a sacred gift.

If only more of us could see time that way….


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, Soul

Do You Want to Know What Love Really Is?

Love is Magic


“Set your life on fire. Seek those who fan your flames.” ~ Rumi.

Love is Magic

I mean, why do you think generations of philosophers, poets and writers alike have favored the heart-pulsing topic since way back when? It is because love is the most powerful emotion that we experience in our humanity.

Love changes us. No other emotion comes close to possessing the ability to filter through our boundaries and alter our perspective like love. No other feeling can crash into our hearts and explode into our awareness with such fever, passion, feeling and sentiment.

Love is creation and connection in all its magical glory.

Like ecstasy for the soul; syrup for the heart. It uplifts spirits, elevates us into higher states of awareness and colors our world with beauty, humility and exquisite rapture.

It is more than a feeling; it is a way of being in the world — love is an experience.

Love Is What You Say

If our time and attention are our most valuable things in the world, then it is our experiences that make for the special sauce — the unforgettable moments that give meaning to our lives.

Essentially, we are a collection of our experiences. Right? And the way we choose or not choose to be with love is all we are going to take from our life when it’s over.

Not the money or prestige; our reputation or the high-end connections we seek to benefit from. Not the hate or spite that just inspired you to send a threatening email to someone you barely know. Not even your religion.

Truth is, your life experiences will reflect the degree of love you bring to the world — how you see it is what you’ll get back.

On November 11th of 2017, I missed my flight home to Sydney from LAX due to an emergency that occurred on the connecting flight from Louisiana.

It was late and I was stressed. Honestly, I kind of had an inner-mini-meltdown, and for the record, the people handling the entire situation were behaving like unhelpful … umm … morons.

Frazzled, tired and verging on tears, I finally got to the hotel where the airline put me up for the night. I was waiting my turn to check-in when a man approached, extending a bouquet of white roses.

He wasn’t hitting on me, nor was he being sleazy. He was the father-of-the-bride of the wedding reception that happened to be winding down for the evening.

You know that deepest part of yourself that connects you to the stars and beyond? Your inner-voice that guides you towards kinder feelings and brighter outlooks, or shows you signs that something higher is looking out for you?

That’s the love inside of you.

Sometimes, it shows up in the unexpected acts of love from a complete stranger.

At first, I refused the flowers, telling him that they were too beautiful and I couldn’t possibly accept them.

He insisted.

Connecting to the love inside is like fusing with the sacramental essence which is the universe within you. Honoring your love-space and opening your heart is coalescing with all of the life-force energy and thereby, creating greater spheres of love into your experiences.

I looked at him and something clicked; as if his eyes silently spoke to my soul without me realizing it at the time. I felt the tension slightly ease.

Love is energy-enmeshment that goes way beyond our physicality. It is a complex mix of emotions and behaviors combined with strong feelings of affection, protectiveness, warmth, and respect for someone else.

Love is also acceptance.

When I reached to take the flowers from him, my fingers shook and it took all I had not to break with the gratitude erupting. I thanked him and checked in, grabbed my luggage and glanced around the lobby for him before heading to my room. He was gone.

Love isn’t control. It’s not ownership, a marriage contract or entrapment. It’s not the smirk you just gave or the snidey laugh at someone else’s expense. It isn’t manipulation, vindictiveness or how another person judges you.

Love is never a crime.

I don’t recall the detailed appearance of the man who gave me roses in an L.A hotel lobby late one night, and he will never know how that one small gesture will remain with me long after I die — it was one of the greatest acts of love I have ever known.

Those white roses represented the truest meaning of love in that their presence in my room symbolized charity, spirit, humanity, empathy, faith and belief. And they arrived directly from a union of love at the exact moment in time that I needed it.

Love is faith and finding the courage in yourself to trust in the higher-good. It’s a selfless gesture; compassionate words and a meeting of souls. It’s forgiveness, tolerance and empathy; the eyes in every beast reflecting back the stars, the moon and the air filling your being.

Love is allowing people to affect and transform you. And it’s rejecting all that opposes it.

November 11, 2017 is a date that will always remind me of love-in-action. Love really is magic.


Originally published by P.S. I Love you on Medium



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life, Love and Connection, relationships, Soul, Whispers

The Spiritual Secrets of *Soul* Love

Express your true, soulful self


“The minute I heard my first love story I started looking for you, not knowing how blind that was. Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere. They’re in each other all along.”

— Rumi

It isn’t even that some of us have an uncanny niggling that time is neither our friend nor foe. Or that somewhere, in an untapped part of our soul lies obscure memories imprinted from another lifetime of ancient civilizations like the Amorite dynasties of Babylon, circa 1894 BC; or the Aegean Neolithic farmers of the Bronze Age. Purpose will always outweigh time and your soul will always possess an eternally mysterious past. Can you imagine what secrets your soul knows about love — soul love?

All of us have a soul history.

Dr Michael Newton, who developed his own hypnosis technique to reach his subjects’ hidden memories of the hereafter, famously mapped out our soul’s evolution. Newton’s body of work “reveals graphic details about how it feels to die, who meets us right after death, what the spirit world is really like, where we go and what we do as souls, and why we choose to come back in certain bodies”.

Basically, Newton’s research has found that our soul evolves through the experiences and lessons gathered over and in-between lifetimes. Some of our most vital and profound soul lessons come in the form of the relationships encountered along the way — how we treat others, the degree in which we love and the choices we make around love.

Extremely interesting subject to ponder, right? But enough about the ins and outs of spiritual evolution. You are here now. Today. In a time when learning how to unravel the mystery of love is probably more crucial than ever before. None so much as soul love.

What is Soul Love?

Simply put, soul love is the deep and pure love that arises from your unique essence. Love touches our lives in many forms and there all types of love. Soul love is primarily an energetic or spiritual based love.

Soul Solutions for life describes the concept of soul love best:

“Soul love is pure love. It is constant and unconditional. It is the natural state of your being. Soul love is a power to be remembered and embodied once again. It uplifts and elevates all that it touches. It transforms and heals. It is truly magic.”

Soul Love has Secrets like Serendipity

Vocabulary.com Dictionary defines Serendipity as: “Good luck in making unexpected and fortunate discoveries”. That’s one of the characteristics of soul love — discovering something priceless unintentionally.

Remember when Jonathan first encountered Sara at Bloomingdale’s when they went to buy the same pair of cashmere gloves in the 2001 film, Serendipity?

I do.

It was clear that neither Jonathon or Sara expected anything more than an ordinary Christmas shopping trip that evening. Just as apparent was the undeniable connection and strong attraction between them. It was immediate and powerful; like a deepening sensation so strong that even though both of them were involved with other people, they still chose to share dessert at a restaurant called Serendipity before parting ways.

Soul love is an intimate recognition beyond what our eyes perceive.

Whether or not Jonathon and Sara intellectually understood the historically spiritual nature of their bond, both of them sensed its great value. It was the unique dynamic offered by the ignition of deep soul love that neither of them could forget and eventually orchestrated their union years later.

Soul love in-action is:

Real Love

“For it was not into my ear you whispered, but into my heart. It was not my lips you kissed, but my soul.” — Judy Garland

Giving is the nature of this relationship.

Meeting someone and falling in love soul-to-soul is especially tender because more often than not, there is usually a long soul history between the two of you — your encounter could very well be a continuation of “starting energy” from a previous experience in another incarnation.

Maybe you scrawled on clay tablets together by the Aegean Sea in another lifetime. Perhaps you lived, loved and lost elsewhere. What matters now is unraveling the mystery of souls and allowing the knowledge to sink into your being and your life, and to affect you as the connection matures through the ages.

Soul love is the expression of true self.

It is making the choice to love to a different vibration, and to experience love in its purest form. Soul love is born from freedom and radiates things like tolerance, empathy, open communication and forgiveness.

In true soul love, you will feel appreciated, cherished and respected; and most of all, no judgment is applied to make you feel less than.

Spiritual love is not only a gift to you and your soul lover, but also to humanity because it helps to raise the love-vibration on the planet. As such, it should be honored and taken very seriously.

Humility & Equality

Humility and equality are strong characteristics of soul love, and soul love thrives on accepting and embracing your differences.

Honestly, many people find it challenging to fully understand the definition of equality in a relationship — this kind of love has no difficulty recognizing who is better at handling certain aspects of your lives together, or applying the trust without prejudice.

From PsychCentral:

“Some people confuse humility with weakness. But the opposite is true. It takes inner strength to acknowledge that we don’t have all the answers, to refrain from injecting our point of view into a conversation before really hearing what the other person has to say.”

Humility in soul love is…

  • Letting go of your ego to deepen communication within the relationship.
  • Acknowledging and accepting both your shortcomings and strengths.
  • Making space for the other person to express themselves freely.
  • Thoughtfulness.
  • Setting aside the urge to judge and accepting differing opinions.
  • The skills to admit your mistakes and expressing a sincere apology when required.

Reaching a space where you are able to acknowledge your mate’s talents and respect each other enough to allow you to both work your unique magic into your relationship is among the core principles of humility and equality in any connection:

Wisdom, love and generosity.

Spiritual Growth & Constant Truth

Soul love is dedicated to the spiritual in everything.

Total unconditional and complete love and acceptance. There is a special sacredness about your relationship that transcends anything you have ever experienced before. In essence, a part of you already knows — you will feel it with your whole being, right to the tips of your toes.

No other relationship will be as life changing or fuel your life with renewed purpose, creative energy and insight; and no other connection will ignite your personal and spiritual growth like soul love.The feelings you have for them cannot always be put into words, and yet, there is a deeply internal sense that the purpose of your relationship is to bring something extraordinary to the world for the betterment of the planet.

In terms of truths, you can always expect your soul love partner to tell you like it is (their viewpoint). Though, a constant need to be in truth together provides an authentic, rare and honest foundation to the connection.

Truthfully speaking, this soul love characteristic can be somewhat challenging and uncomfortable at times, and that’s completely normal — but at least you always know where you are together, and that’s completely vital.

Dedicated Lovers

In every way, soul love isn’t separated from the spiritual.

Older souls who have known previous lives together hold one another in understanding of the spiritual nature of their connection. The spiritual energy is the strongest of their bonds and very present in their combined sexual connection.

A pairing of soul love makes for a most exquisite dance in attentiveness and intense sexual attraction for each other. It is the underlying intent qualifying the smallest of gestures that intimately communicates their desire and passion to be together.

Soul love is a romantic relationship filled with endless metaphysical interaction.

The encounter and union awakens the kundalini energy in each other which will surely blaze as bright as a fiery sunset at dusk. That sacred place within bounding you by the heart and entwining your souls to a greater energy source. When this energy is consciously combined, it becomes an earth-shattering force to be reckoned with.

Acts of soul love are never just for the physical senses, as the longing between souls represents a desire that they can’t ever get close enough to one another.

This is as frustrating as it is beautiful.

Soul love might sound a bit abstract and esoteric to some. But I believe that we are not always meant to understand everything about ourselves and the world on an intellectual level. And that some of our most significant lessons must be experienced spiritually in order to truly make sense of life.

That’s soul love.

We can fall in love with our souls, and we can choose to honor and love from that sacred space within. You’ve just got to be willing to realize the truth of what has been and find the love that resides deep inside — amazing soul love.


Originally published on 11.10.2020 by P.S. I Love You on Medium

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life, Love and Connection, relationships, Romance

16 Facts About Love That Might Surprise You

Other than what John Lennon said….


There’s no doubt about it, love is A-M-A-Z-I-N-G.

But have you ever stopped to consider why you feel the way you do?

Alright, so your one-and-only is the most incredibly sexy and creatively talented person you have ever encountered. He’s got you feeling like Zepplin’s Whole Lotta Love most daysand the others?

He drives you up batty-alley.

What is it about love, anyhow? Why do we physically fall in love, and what are some of the determining factors?

An endlessly fascinating subject.

The following are some interesting love-facts that might (or might not) surprise you.

And they are:

1. Two Hearts Really Do Beat as One

Yup —when you are in love, it’s not a myth. Apparently, when you gaze into your lover’s eyes for 3 minutes or longer, your heartbeats’ will naturally synchronize.

And you know what that means, don’t you?

Bingo — we really do connect through the heart and experience deep love via the windows of our souls.

2. Love Triggers an Empathetic Response

When two people are deeply bonded together, their empathy and compassion for each other turns into fire-on-water. As in an intense, selfless and at times, logic-defying phenomena — when your lover hurts, you hurt. When they bleed…

Well, you get the drift.

Don’t freak out if you experience this type of thing with your beloved, just means that your chemical love-bonds are doing pretty great in the connection department.

3. Eye Contact During Sex and Foreplay Arouses a Woman More Than When Your Eyes Are Closed

Please, please never underestimate the power of a lover’s romantic glare.

You do realize how hot and, erm… excited great eye contact can make a woman feel, right?

Extremely. Arousing.

4. The Longer You Hide Your Feelings for Someone the Harder You Fall for Them

Hmm…noted.

I love you.

5. Unexpected Love Lasts Far Longer

Then out of nowhere, I met you.

The magic of unexpected love is a game-changer, usually showing up in our lives to generate a storm, shake things up and initiate deep inner-transformation.

Like a gift, yeah.

Yeah.

It’s almost always the purest and passionate of love that we will experience during our lifetimes.

Which brings me to….

6. The Deeper Your Feelings are For Someone, the Harder They Are to Express

One of the hardest things in life is having words in your heart that you can’t express.

Though, sometimes there are just not enough words to justify the depth of our feelings, and our deepest admiration stands strong in pure silence.

Psychology Fact: The deeper your feelings the harder they are to express.

7. Bedrooms Will Influence Your Love Life

You know how when you enter a room and the energy of that space makes you feel a certain way? It’s the combo of scents, sounds and visuals sparking your senses and prompting your brain to interpret and react to your surroundings.

Well, the same applies for how your bedroom impacts the intimacy levels in a relationship.

Sexologist and relationship expert, Jessica O’Reilly has this to say about it:

“The way you choose to decorate your bedroom isn’t just aesthetic — the objects, scents, textures and sounds in your bedroom all subtly influence intimacy, especially if you share the space with a significant other.”

Yes, you may want to think twice about that TV sitting on your dresser or where you position your phone charger at night — they could very well be inhibiting your sex life.

8. Testosterone Plays a Powerful Role in a Man’s Love Life

Wearing cologne that simulates the odour of testosterone can enhance a woman’s love and attraction for you.

Here’s a list of male fragrances that I just Googled to get you going:

Top 10 Best Colognes to Attract Females 2020

9. Taking Someone on a First Date That Gets Their Heart Pumping Increases Their Chances of Falling in Love

Think roller coasters, fast cars or even a thriller movie.

Why?

Because it spikes their adrenaline and tricks them into believing they enjoyed spending time with you more than with any other person.

Danger is intoxicatingly giddy-exciting.

Though, keep in mind that….

10. You’ve Got About 27 Seconds to Make a Good Impression on Someone…

Andthe average person knows within 15 minutes into a date whether or not they want to see you again.

Make it count. Take a leap. Live dangerously.

11. Not arguing at all in a relationship suggests a lack of interest

People who care about one another tend to argue now and again.

Keep it fair and don’t forget to laugh at yourself and with each other.

12. Heartbreak is Real

Separation from a loved one can cause real physical pain. It is called Broken Heart Syndrome and is caused by emotional distress.

13. Breakups Are Tougher on Men

Yes, men are more likely to be emotionally affected by breakups than women, and…

14. Women Initiate More Divorces Than Men

On average, a woman suffers less post-breakup.

15. And Then She Will Change Her Hair

It’s a self-concept/letting go/I’m-in-control of my life thing.

New hair is like a new beginning; it just makes us feel better.

Speaking of hair…

16. People with More Toe Hair Are Better Lovers

Do you believe me?

Check your toes…


Originally published by Living Out Loud on Medium.

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