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mindset - Kim Petersen

Change in a Pandemic World: Who’s Complaining?

Everything has changed.

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I went to the store today and the shelves were almost empty. Toilet paper, tissues and paper towel supplies were nil. They’ve placed quantity restrictions on the little items remaining, and all is carried out beneath the scrutinizing stares of security.

Did I complain?

No.

I can’t source hand sanitizer; although they’re selling an 8-pack of 100ml bottles for $60 AUD on Catch of the Day and toilet paper is going for somewhere in the hundreds.

Some catch.

Strangely enough, the thought of running out of toilet paper doesn’t faze my husband. In fact, he seems to find the idea amusing because while he grew up in Holland, his father is Indonesian.

If you are familiar with how Indonesian’s tackle the matter of anal hygiene, then you’ll know that they seldom have the need for toilet paper.

Here’s a quick overview of the process from Wikipedia:

“Anal hygiene, or anal cleansing, refers to hygienic practices that are performed on a person’s anus, usually shortly after defecation. The anus and buttocks may be washed or wiped (typically with toilet paper or wet wipes) in order to remove remnants of fecal matter.”

My husband was raised with a bottle next to the loo and practiced using a “pencuci botol gelandangan” or bottle bum washer until the age of 17. They used the tips of their fingers and a squirt of water to finish their business.

Each time he cracks another joke about how we might be forced to change our bathroom habits to more primitive (and gross) practices, my insides cringe rebelliously. It is this thought driving my quest to seek out toilet-paper on an almost daily basis.

Still not complaining.

I have a mother who likes to hunt more than me. She does me a solid and brings rolls each time she visits. She even haggles with the toilet paper street hustlers — who knew that would ever be a thing?

The good news is that I did manage to score an extremely overpriced pump bottle of hand soap today. It smells like orange and almond and the label states that it’s “Nourishing & Life-changing”.

Now, that’s ironic.

I wonder if the soap manufacturers knew something that eluded the rest of us. Albeit, I’m using the life-changing soap not to ignite change in my life, but because life has changed beyond my control.

I often speak about change and how the only control we really have is the way we choose to respond to it. Sometimes, we can stick our heads in the sand and pretend a thing never happened; we think if wait long enough the issue will just go away.

Then, there is a time when we are faced with a pandemic disease in the form of COVID-19 that no amount of sand-head-sticking can erase.

Nobody gets to escape the change taking place in the world right now, but we all have a choice on how we deal with it. It is crucial now more than ever to become aware of ourselves; our actions and reactions.

We can stop complaining about it.

It’s natural for us to become agitated from time to time and need to vent in some way. Even the calmest among us still blow a fuse every now and then. But given the drastic shift happening in our lives and communities, it’s important to keep tabs on our mindset and be aware how our energy affects others.

People are fighting over toilet paper, bribing grocery truck delivery drivers and pulling out knives in supermarkets.

Welcome to the new reality.

I grabbed a coffee at a local café a few days ago. I was inundated with people complaining about how the out-of-towners are showing up to scour “our” grocery store for necessities. Like toilet paper.

The conversation grated at me. I drove home questioning the mindset of people who are usually quite open and giving in their nature.

Why is it that when the world begins to show us our fragility that we resort to out-of-character behavior?

It’s unsettling and scary. I’m here and listening, and I’m thinking that we are being kept in the dark for the most part.

Do I complain?

No.

But my heart is hurting, my oldest son is remotely interstate, uncertainty rims and my home is far away.

Pandemics have a way of kickstarting our “survival mode”. People behave in ways that they usually wouldn’t. Don’t be one of those people. We get to choose how we react — choosing fear and panic will only breed more of those emotions.

Then what?

We’re going to encounter people who will be driven by fear, or maybe even the complete opposite — nonchalance.

Just the other day, hundreds of Sydney-siders flocked onto Bondi Beach to enjoy one of the last of the season’s warm days. It was a scorcher, and it was clear that no one was thinking about “social distancing” or taking the matter seriously.

Until the authorities showed up and sent everyone on their way.

Did they complain?

Probably.

The point is that neither fear or indifference is going to cut it right now.

If we’re going to overcome this, we need to be informed and prepared to do our part in helping to keep the virus contained as much as possible. Better times await us, but we have to wait it out to get there.

Now is a good time to practice the art of minding your own business. The noise from the outside can be deafening. Choose what you allow to infiltrate into your sacred sanctuary and focus on keeping the love alive.

These are the times when our love, patience and sense of empathy are being pushed to the edge. When what it is on the inside will reveal itself to you and to others. This pandemic is going to change you — but how it changes you is completely in your court.

And there’s no point complaining about it; unless we have to resort to practicing “pencuci botol gelandangan”.

Be safe everyone and much love,

Kim xx


The Most Important Relationship of Your Life

I bet you know what I’m going to tell you. Well, maybe.

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We never stop learning through our relationships with people. Or rather, people never stop teaching us. It has taken a long time for me to learn how to trust my intuition. It’s been a journey paved with dark nights of the soul, as well as amazing moments of clarity.

Throughout my earlier years, I had always doubted my inner-gut feelings or just plain ignored them. I never quite trusted myself — or who I was, for that matter.

One prime example was when my first husband proposed to me. It wasn’t that I didn’t love him. It was more that I was just twenty-one years old and reasonably fresh out of a five-year relationship. I had plans. I was working to save money for travel. New York beckoned me with a pull I couldn’t deny.

He took me to the beach, produced a diamond and spoke words that would claim me. I’ll never forget that day. Not because it was the happiest day of my life or anything — it is more the distinct memory of ignoring the inner-turmoil circling through my head as I accepted the ring and said “yes”.

The inner-screams were yelling “no”, by the way.

His blue eyes were so vulnerable as he looked at me expectantly. I didn’t have the heart to turn him down, despite that marriage wasn’t on my agenda at that time.

You can call it gutless. You can even call it stupid. Maybe a bit of both?

I used to be a soft touch. I think I still might be. Better that than a heartless human. Like some.

Fact: When you ignore your intuition, shit will probably hit the fan. The lessons will be harder.

It wasn’t even that marriage would deny me the freedom of travel. It was that that marriage became a living nightmare. As it turned out, his true qualities eventually surfaced to reveal a narcissistic and violent man.

I ignored my inner-warning bells and experienced great pain because of it.

One for the intuition.

People have screwed me over. I’m certain you’ve been screwed over, too. It happens to be a part of this thing called life.

Years later and following the inevitable divorce (that wasn’t gutless), a very handsome man asked me out for dinner. I was so nervous. It would be my first date with someone new in twelve years.

In the moments leading up to his arrival, I remember hitting rewind on Pearl Jam’s “Black” over and over. It was my favorite. Yeah. I was into Pearl Jam (not as much as my friend who named her vibrator “Eddie”). Somehow, listening to that song quelled my nerves. Somewhat.

It was probably a sign from the Intuition Gods.

Was it normal to feel this uneasy before a date?

He played league cricket and had mutual sporting connections with one of my closet friends who had been a professional hockey player for the Australian team. And he was hot.

Bonus.

Still, I couldn’t quite conquer the whirring sirens in the back of my mind. Something didn’t feel right. I’d met him once. I didn’t miss his dominant energy, but I did pretend not to notice.

He took me to dinner and followed up with a side of date-rape.

That didn’t go down so well. Another one for intuition.

The next day, my girlfriend looked at me and said, “I hope this doesn’t make you bitter — not all men are pricks.”

Just some. I seemed to be a magnet for them.

Truth is, I knew that if I allowed others to infect my outlook on life with their shit-ass, negative behavior, that would be letting them win. Unfortunately, some people do want to bring you down.

Fact: Even your intuition can get it wrong.

Wait — not really. Please don’t start distrusting those gut feelings you’ve worked so hard to strengthen — they are designed to lead you along the right path and help you learn.

I think I’ve worked it out — it is all about the lessons. Remember my opening paragraph? These little lesson-nuggets are about helping us nurture our relationship with our inner-guidance.

Even when we get it wrong. In fact, sometimes we are supposed to get it wrong. Other times, we’re not actually getting it wrong — it’s the other person in question that isn’t quite getting it.

Confused?

I don’t blame you.

Take a soul connection for instance.

What? You didn’t think I could get through a post about intuition without including a spiel about your soul?

It’s the only real part of us, you realize …

Let’s explore a little.

Have you ever met someone and instantly felt an indescribably strong connection toward them? It feels as if your soul recognizes them and your human part is tripping to catch up.

Soul connections are no mistake. They arrive in our lives to trigger inner-growth and fuel creativity, as well as to create new patterns of love in the world and foster our path toward enlightenment. They show up to open new thought concepts and kick-start your heart.

They show up to blow your mind.

When these special people arrive on the scene, you cannot ignore the deep sensations the meeting ignites.

Rare gems. Real world.

That’s right, I said “real world”.

Ermm … and what is “real”? I hear you ask.

Real is that which doesn’t change. Your soul won’t cark it. Your body will.

Don’t be so hasty to dismiss what your physical senses cannot detect. You cannot see love but you know it exists because you feel it, right? Well, I hope you do. Real love doesn’t change. You can’t see your intuition either, by the way.

Speaking of intuition, all of that instinctual drive you’ve been cultivating over the years seems to fall to the wayside when encountering a significant soul connection. All for a purpose — to test and explode the boundaries of love while propelling you into greater states of awareness.

To learn to love unconditionally.

Fact: Meeting someone you know in soul isn’t all peaches and cream.

Far from it, actually. It’s not supposed to be. The true soul connection is designed to make you feel uncomfortable because its created to evoke fire to change. It’s about pushing your inner-boundaries and shattering pre-existing beliefs and societal expectations on what is deemed as “acceptable”.

We’re good at doing that, you know — imposing systems of “right and wrongs”, judging one another and acting from a place of fear. Which isn’t real by the way.

Your soul wasn’t created to fear. The human condition did that.

In short, a soul meeting of this nature will stretch your perspective beyond your physicality and catapult you into “trigger zone” while developing your inner-strength and self-belief. A realm reserved for facing yourself — the good and the not so good.

Sounds like a picnic, huh?

Growth is never easy. You will need to courage-up to get through this thing called life and actually grasp greater perspectives. Free your mind. Start by contemplating the real stuff.

Some people have what it takes to explore deep love. Others do not.

When you’re there, you discover moments that will define you for the rest of your life — moments when you either choose take a leap of faith, or run back to your comfort zone screaming,“Hell, no!”

When confronted with matters of deep soul truths, it becomes more important than ever to lean on your inner-guidance system. It’s as if each experience, relationship and past lesson have been in preparation for the ultimate test of faith. When trusting your intuition becomes vital.

My Shamanic Medicine Drumming Teacher often speaks of giving thanks to our paths. She reminds us that it is unique to each of us; that it stretches before us perfectly raw and unpaved; and that we shouldn’t be afraid to be true to ourselves as we walk toward the unknown.

She instills the courage.

Sacred soul journeys are more about personal growth than the other person actually “getting it”. It is when we learn how to open our hearts and free our minds that we begin to connect with our souls to live authentically.

And that is what its all about.

Life.

At the end of it all, it is through our soul connections and relationships that will result in refining our most important relationship of all — the one you have with yourself.

Self-discovery is there for the taking if you but have courage enough to wade through mysterious territory and trust the path.

One for me.

P.S. I did make it to New York. Right after my divorce.


Originally published by P.S. I Love You at Medium on January 20th 2020.

Love or Fear — You Get to Choose Every Time

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When I was fifteen years old, one of my friends decided to hate me. I had known her since Kindergarten and we had been close. I’d spent so much time at her house that her family was an extension of my own. Including her pudgy Golden Retriever, Candy-girl, who shared a mutual adoration with me.

Kids can be fickle when it comes to friendship. I’d experienced my fair share of “friends with conditions”, but not within this relationship. She was special. I loved her and I had thought she loved me back. When her friendship turned into hostility, it shocked me to my foundations.

More than that, though, I was hurt beyond measure. My world suddenly blackened with an indescribable pain because not only had she turned against me; she was also in a position of power to influence all of my other friends in joining her on the “Hate Kim” bandwagon.

None of them knew why I was suddenly branded an outcast — there was no reason behind her animosity. Yet, they all fell into place like puppets on a string. One former friend was even commissioned by their “leader” to physically attack me. I was never one of those tough girls that went around looking for a fight.

Neither was my opponent.

She went ahead and did it anyway. She hit me and I hit her back. It wasn’t long before we were surrounded by a horde of hollering teenagers as we attempted to … god knows what because neither of us could actually fight.

When a teacher came along to break it up, I remember one of the “tough” girls sniggering the obvious as we were carted off to the Principal’s office.

“You guys can’t fight for shit.”

Yeah. No shit, Sherlock.

Cue Michael Jackson: I think I told you, I’m a lover not a fighter.

Kylie and I were stuffed into the same waiting room outside the Principal’s office and promptly left alone. We looked at each other. I took in her busted lip and noted the aches reverberating around my own body. I was shaken and upset, and knew that I ought to be feeling angry and outraged for the disgusting treatment handed to me by my peers.

Yet, I couldn’t. All I saw was the expression in her eyes as they teared up and she said sorry.

Sorry.

There is power in that word. When expressed sincerely, a simple apology is all it takes to begin the path toward healing. Yet, an apology is easily negated if left unreceived.

The act of forgiveness is where true power lies.

I nodded.

“Okay.”

It wasn’t even a choice. I had forgiven her the moment she had caused me pain because I knew she acted out of fear and not malicious intent. A weight had lifted. We hugged before proceeding into the Principal’s lair to receive our punishment.

Neville Goddard:

“The drama of life is a psychological one in which all the conditions, circumstances and events of your life are brought to pass by your assumptions.”

In other words, your life path is determined by the feelings you assume. Focus on negative feelings like jealousy, hate and resentment, then you will discover your reality tainted by situations that evoke more of those feelings.

Steer your thoughts and focus toward the positive aspects of life and these feelings and experiences will become the dominant theme in your world.

Skeptical?

Pay close attention to those folks that fill in endless hours switching between the latest news channels. I’m willing to bet that they are among the biggest complainers in your life.

Each time you choose to watch a show, a movie or listen to a broadcast, you are making the choice to allow the essence of that broadcast into your personal energy field — you’re effectively inviting the substance of that transmission into your life; which in turn evokes a deep reaction.

A feeling is assumed.

Keep watching or listening to something or someone who brings you down, that’s where you’ll find yourself. In a bottomless pit of self-repugnance and unrealized dreams.

The same holds true of people and the way we choose to treat one another.

I could have easily chosen to hold a grudge against Kylie for attacking me. In fact, most girls that age would have done just that. But gathering grudges and lashing out does nothing but wither your soul and hinder self-growth.

Deep down, you know this; each time you mistreat, disrespect or devalue another human being, there exists a tiny ping in the pit your gut that you might try to ignore — guilt. You cannot escape it. No matter how deep you bury it.

Don’t make amends, it’ll eventually catch up to you one way or another. It always does. Life is designed this way — what you dish out is what you get back. In this life or the next…

As my mother likes to say: It ain’t over till the fat lady sings.

It’s never really over by the way. Nor is that my mother’s quote, but I think you knew that.

People are always going to “broadcast” their message to influence your life or decisions in some way. Unfortunately, a lot of the time those people have their own interests and agendas at heart. Even when we think they are a friend.

Empathy is a resource that most of us are unwilling to invest for too many people. Sure, we’re good at shooting off at the mouth about it. Putting it into practice is another matter altogether. It takes time and effort to understand how and why others feel the way they do. Even when motivated, doing so isn’t always easy.

Without empathy, our relationships cease to exist. At least on any level worth experiencing. Yet, in those quiet moments when you’re alone and the truth is staring you in the face, no amount of empathy or understanding from others can fill the void in your heart left by the choices you make.

The fact is, we were not born into this life to acquiesce to others. We came here to create our most fulfilling life; to make authentic connections, learn how to express love and value those that imprint upon our lives and souls along the way.

We came here to find freedom, joy and light in a condition of human struggle. We came to sift through it all to arrive at the place where we realize who we really are.

So, who are you?

It all begins by mastering our assumptions, how we treat others and how we choose to move through our ever-changing world. The way you see the world is how you will experience the world.

Love or fear?

That’s the basic principle governing everything we encounter. It is love or fear that we choose to allow into our inner-worlds and will influence our life-energy, desires and outcomes.

Every time.

No one can choose for you. Nobody knows what or who is best for you except you.

Friends, acquaintances and family — they all have their own unique paths and they don’t own your soul. Neither do our responsibilities for that matter. We can honor these people and afflictions where necessary without becoming shackled to them.

Freedom is our birthright — it’s a state of mind.

Your thoughts and assumptions make the world as you know it to be true. Choose them wisely, or others will choose for you.

That is when you lose — when you sacrifice your happiness for others and end up without the dream.

As a fifteen-year-old, I had spent months attending school in a private hell. It doesn’t sound a like a big crisis, but it looked very different back then. School and friends are a teenager’s life. I was stripped of friendship, loyalty and bonding. I had cried myself to sleep each and every night.

The evening following the fight with Kylie my phone rang. It was her — the one who had turned my life black. I answered to hear her sobbing uncontrollably.

“What’s wrong?”

“I’m calling to say sorry — I’m so sorry, Kim.”

Long pause, then:

“It’s okay.”

It takes strength and character to say sorry. It takes a whole lot of heart and empathy to forgive. I may not be a fighter in the physical sense, but when the love is real and reciprocated authentically, I’ll fight for love every time.

To this day, that friend remains one of the only two school friends I have kept in touch with, and she was worth the pain.


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

What Does a Gentleman Look Like to You?

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A gentleman, while antiquated as a term, is a description of one with grace. Isn’t it odd that we call a civil man a gentleman and a woman who carries herself with self-respect, a lady?

– Xavier Eastenbrick.

My mother used to tell me that I was a beacon for jerks.

She was right. Somehow, I had a knack for attracting men who play games. Dangerous games that hurt me. Men who thought it was okay to treat me as some kind of possession.

Question: Does a gentleman devalue a woman?

Answer: A gentleman never lies to a woman — he should go out of his way to never make her cry unless they are tears of happiness. He always treats her like a lady.

– The Gentleman’s Journal.

Some men have an ingrained sense of entitlement. They think bedding a woman equates to ownership. I remember reading somewhere that this sense of “ownership” over a partner actually sticks with these men even after that particular relationship dissolves.

Take my ex-husband for example. Long after our divorce, he would still call me with all kinds of unreasonable demands and questions. More than once, I had to remind him that we were no longer married.

He didn’t back off until I married someone else.

It comes down to emotional maturity.

If you Google the phrase, “when do men emotionally mature”, you’ll find the magic number is forty-three.

It’s thirty-two for women. That’s a whole lot of years for a woman to wait for the penny to drop. Even then, it isn’t always a given.

I’m not convinced that all men in their forties are actually emotionally mature. Some women, too. I have encountered mature women who exercise emotionally manipulative tactics, and men who exhibit behavior like a five-year-old — as if they have chronic man-flu.

Constant complaining, gaming and knee-jerk reactions all round. Not so hot for developing strong bonds and trust with others.

Question: Should a gentleman do the Moonwalk?

Answer: No one wants to see a grown man Moonwalking and grabbing his testicles on the dance floor anymore. Let it go. Literally.

No one wants to see a grown man clad in a pair of skimpy Speedos at the beach, either. We refer to them as budgie-huggers here in Australia.

Sometimes, the “huggers” don’t quite hold all of the “budgies”, if you know what I mean. Sometimes, less is actually not more.

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A gentleman should be open-minded though.

An intelligent man knows the benefit of listening to other’s views and being prepared to learn and develop his own world view. He seeks to broaden his perspective.

He doesn’t judge, either.

Nor does he ever tell.

Uh-uh. A gentleman has no interest in Chinese whispers, vicious gossip or running others down. He doesn’t shoot off at the mouth before thinking, and he doesn’t always have to have the last say.

There is something to be said about thinking before responding — a small window of time exists where you get to choose how you respond to the situation confronting you.

Sometimes, it might be even longer. Make it count.

A gentleman learns to quell the knee-jerk reaction; he carries himself with dignity and respect at all times.

When my parents divorced, my mother ran into the arms of a much older man. Like, thirty years much older. At first, I tried to resent him. He wasn’t my dad. That resolve didn’t last, though.

Ron was a gentleman. Old school style.

Question: Do they even make them anymore?

Answer: In this day and age, grace is often sacrificed on the altar of selfishness, greed, and convenience.

– Xavier Eastenbrick.

Ron opened doors for my mother and showed her what it meant to be treated like a lady. A lady (check out featured image)I don’t know that that skill is common these days.

Not really.

Question: Should a man open a door for a lady in this day and age?

Answer: This time-honoured gentlemanly gesture has become problematic in the modern world. For a lady, a gentleman always offers his seat, opens the door and helps her with her luggage.

– The Gentleman’s Journal.

Hmm … interesting.

Which leads me to …

Question: Do men actually sacrifice their comfort for a woman?

Answer: Offering your coat to a lady is an act of attentiveness and selflessness. A gentleman should always offer his coat to a lady, walk her home and offer to pay.

– The Gentleman’s Journal.

I asked my fifteen-year-old daughter what a gentleman looked like to her.

Answer: Respectful. Considerate and not selfish.

Good answer.

“Do you think the boys at school behave like gentlemen?”

Laughs.

“No way!”

When does it kick in? When emotional maturity takes hold at … umm … forty-three?

She could be waiting until she’s a middle-aged woman before she experiences a true gentleman.

I hope not.

Question: What does it mean to be a gentleman today?

Answer: The most common perception for a gentleman is a man who ensures that he is chivalrous towards women. The term attaches itself to men who are courteous and treat women with respect. Gentlemen are attentive to what a woman wants and needs, yet in the same regard they understand their own value and purpose.

– Brian Cornwell.

Historically, a gentleman was a way to describe a man of character. The term gentleman has changed over the years, nowadays it’s used to describe the actions and behaviors of a man.

Perhaps they should introduce these behaviors within the education system to reinforce what I hope is being taught at home. Things such as teaching boys how to become men who are polite, calm, respectful and considerate — the cornerstone for defining what it means to be a gentleman.

Vital qualities are necessary for forming and nurturing healthy relationships.

Question: What does the modern-day gentleman look like to you?

Answer: Here’s what my views are about the quality that makes both a distinction above the base animal within:

It is the quality of grace.

We tend to have an image in our minds of a suit-clad man and a dress clad woman, but it isn’t by any true measure the defining quality. Any brute can put on a suit and be as disgraceful as one clad in filth.

One with grace is polite as their default position, slow to anger and respectful of others.

One with grace is not fearful to stand up for what is right and express themselves with the truth of their intention.

One with grace doesn’t manipulate to move ahead.

One with grace understands that they don’t know it all and strives to be more than who they are.

A gentleman is caring and kind, strong and confident in that which matters.

– Xavier Eastenbrick.

Spoken like a true gentleman.


Xavier on Twitter | Pinterest | Quora

Awakening the Heart Can Do Anything

But it takes a whole lot of courage to get there.

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A rustic wooden heart dangles on a solitary, wrought iron candelabra that my son crafted during a metal workshop lesson some years ago. It’s rough and wore-torn, and it leans slightly to one side but I love it. It stands atop a chest of file-drawers beneath the window in my office; a keepsake from his early teenage years.

I used to live in the Blue Mountains — a rugged stretch of dramatic ranges west of Sydney. It’s one of those places that seeps into your bones and forever ensnares a part of your soul. Much like the moments before dawn when the sun emerges from the sea to leave you standing in a place of awe.

Nature has a way of stripping you bare when you allow its essence to bleed into you. Connecting and grounding to our natural world is important in maintaining inner-balance and peace. They are some of the most precious moments existing throughout our lifetimes; created to nourish your soul and remind us of our humanity, as well as the eternal spirit within.

Have you ever gazed at the stars and completely surrendered yourself to their cryptic twinkles, or stood at a cliff top and succumbed to the glorious scene spreading before you?

It’s deeply humbling and empowering at the same time.

You can literally feel yourself merge with the earth’s spirit which sparks an undeniable connection to something far greater than yourself. It is through contemplating your bond with the universal spirit that will unlock the path to self-awareness and higher states of love.

God frolics among the forest treetops, snow-capped mountains and rugged coastlines. God waits for you to recognize yourself in each moment gifted to you, and every glance you didn’t really see.

I’m not religious. At all. I don’t adhere to any religious deity, and I do not use the word God in the context as such. To me, God is not a supernatural force who judges our earthly indiscretions, but a term to describe source energy — the higher intelligence governing creation and all that is. The source of unconditional love.

Let’s leave the judgement for the lower vibrational beings in our world. Those who are tethered to a set of rules and systems bred from fear and designed to control the masses. Unfortunately, it’s difficult to escape the reality concocted by fear.

Blinders.

We are born shrouded by invisible blinders that conceal the truth of the divine resources available to us. Limitation is everywhere and shown to us at the onset. It’s no wonder that we become so confused and frazzled as we move through life; that our mental health suffers beneath layers of pressure, stress and delusion.

Delusion for inauthenticity, and for the perceived limitations that we allow to determine the choices made from a closed mindset. Choices made from fear — the opposite of the unconditional love we should be aspiring toward.

Often, it is our most hearts desires that are left on the altar of authenticity. We learn to sacrifice deep love or passion because we believe that to follow our truths is too hard, selfish, or unattainable. We think we’re not good enough, smart enough or talented enough.

We believe in those blinders.

The best hippie store ever is in those mountains west of Sydney. The owner travels the world to scour exotic foreign markets in India, South East Asia and South America to gather the most exquisite, rare and usual pieces and trinkets for his store. Which actually resembles some place you might find in an obscure market alleyway in Turkey. At least, that’s what I envision.

His store was one of my most favorite places to visit when I lived in the mountains. That’s where I picked up that old timber heart piece over a decade ago. The bold message etched across its face spoke to me:

Love. The heart can do anything.

It may sound a bit mushy for those who dismiss romantic notions, but opening the heart isn’t just about romantic love. It is about choosing to live from your heart energy through practicing opening, clearing, cleansing, supporting and strengthening the heart space. 

Consider this quote from Rumi:

“A thousand half-loves must be forsaken to take one whole heart home.”

One whole heart home. Some of us are ready to forsake half-loves to take one whole heart home, but what does that mean?

It means courage.

Often, we forget to just sit with the feeling of love and allow its intense hues to fill us up until it overflows from our being. Life throws us so many challenges. We all tend to have a knack for switching off our hearts when it is convenient or when it seems too hard. The blinders close in all around us until we think there isn’t enough love inside of us to go around or turn the impossible, possible.

Closing your heart means stagnation.

It means rejecting your life-force energy, which will serve to wither your soul and narrow the scope of your world. It means settling for discontentment, getting used to feeling unfulfilled and being afraid because it is through our hearts that connects us with others and allows us to feel compassion, empathy, courage and love.

Moreover, it through our hearts that opens the channel toward realizing our connection to our sacredness — the key to transformation, joy and happiness.

Courage is vital to realizing out most fulfilling life. 

It is true that the greatest forms of love we may encounter will be our most difficult to perceive and express — the precious whole hearted love you want to take home and keep forever. 

These forms of rare love arrive to push us into greater states of awareness as they test our inner-strength and faith as our hearts reopen to love to a greater degree.

This is how the heart transforms us — through daring us to accept deeper spheres of love and contemplate new ways of thinking and being. A higher love that propels us into deep reflection, causing a significant a shift within.

It is the cycle of rebirthing your spirit.

The courageous heart is driven toward questioning the blinders to ponder higher-level concepts that will shatter preconceived notions and expectations surrounding love and limitation. 

It is through a brave heart that will move you toward fulfilling your passions, emerging into your truths and facing the challenges as you go deeper and quest longer in the name of love, ease and expansion.

Transformation is a choice.

It starts with you. Allow the energy and wisdom of your heart guide you toward transformation and living a self-focused life paved with moments of creating greater awareness.

It is through love that you will expand your mind to see past the blinders and create new realities in the world. It is through contemplating your connection to the earth and universal spirit that will act as a springboard toward awakening your heart and accepting great love in your life; and ultimately each heart transformation affects us all. 

It is time to trust in yourself that you may feel love, have compassion and find the courage to embrace all of life’s sweetest offerings. 

It is time to awaken your heart.


Love on Time

Let’s assume you live for 100 years.

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Kim: Let’s talk love. What does love mean to you, Mr X.?

Xavier: Dear Lord, I’m either a really good person to ask about love or really bad.

I guess I’m really good to ask because the synapses of my hopelessly romantic mind are always charged; sometimes overloaded with the electricity of love.

I’m not necessarily talking about the romantic comedy, neat little “Sleepless in Seattle” sweet tales of blissful moments where all the Instagram socialites hope to traverse the Empire State Building and find their soulmate.

I’ve been to the top of the Empire State Building and it was crowded and hot, and the lines rivaled Lightning Loops at Six Flags Great Adventure.

Kim: Hmm … I’ve been to the top of the Empire State building too. Yes, it was hot. It was August, 2007. Maybe you were there too. I’m sure that I spotted you among the billion other people crowding around.

Xavier: I was doing push ups as part of a push up challenge.

Kim: That’s right, I remember now. You were the guy with the thingy…

Xavier: That’s what she said…. lol

Kim: Heh. Good one.

Back to love …

Xavier: When my mind dives into the ocean of love, I see the happiness. But I also see the needed sacrifices along the way; the necessary crash course in understanding; the empathy, kindness and strength to not cut and run when the going gets tough.

Actually, it’s a small miracle that I have it within me to still love with the strength of a tsunami after two divorces.

You would think I’d see love as an enemy.

Yet, it is the energy within my veins – the force behind every squeeze of my heart; the inspiration and sheer will of my consciousness.

Some people tend to refer to their “love life” when they really mean sex life.

I flip it around and try to live a life of love.

You see, in life, we are allotted a certain amount of time.

Kim: Hold on tight, folks, he’s starting the number game! (he’s a numbers guy)  

Xavier: *clears throat and continues*

Let’s assume you live for 100 years.

It is simple math – 365 days plus one leap year for every 4 years and 24 hours in a day.

Let’s say in 100 years you have 36525 days or 876600 hours. That’s not even a million hours of total time to live.

Subtract 8 hours a day for sleep (3 if you are me) or 289200 hours.

578400 hours left.

What percentage of your day is school, work, commuting, eating, mindless necessities of life?

Let’s say 12 hours a day – 438300 hours of that (shit).

We are left with 140,100 hours.

Love doesn’t just look at what it can do in the 140,100 hours of the free time left. It looks to maximize the 876600 hours and divides it by minutes and seconds and fractions of seconds to create the infinite within the given expanse of our time and space.

Does that answer the question about love?

No. I’ll keep going, but this is why I’m a bad person to ask about love. I can keep going and going like the energizer bunny, but my batteries are charged with an energy more electric than lightning.

Kim: And there you have it: Love on time divided by minutes and seconds and fractions of seconds to create … erm … just go love, people.


Xavier on Twitter | Pinterest | Quora

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Is All Fair in Love And War?

Don’t let it steal your light.

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My mother was severely abused as a child. She is a twin. Her sister was born first. Then, it became apparent there was another baby — my mother.

It was during the late 1940’s, a time when determining a twin pregnancy wasn’t as easy as it is today. My grandmother already had two little ones to care for and was expecting to birth one more child and not two.

She instantly rejected my mother.

After her hospital stay, my grandmother returned home with the twins, and despite her husband’s protests, she gave her newborn baby away to their neighbors. She wanted nothing to do with the second-born twin.

My mother was fortunate that the neighbors were lovely people. The couple took her in and cared for her as if one of their own. With them, she found security and love. She was cuddled, touched and encouraged. Her needs were met in every way that a newborn baby requires in order to thrive and grow mentally and emotionally.

She remained with them for the first two years of her life. Then, at the insistence of my grandfather, she was eventually returned to live with her biological family. Her life would never again be the same.

She was the unwanted twin.

Love was replaced with hatred. Nurturing became neglect. Security was a fading memory in a two-year old’s world as her mother set about stripping her of worthiness and virtue.

She did this through unthinkable acts of brutality and torture. She did this through inhumane treatment and emotional abuse. Think David James Pelzer and his story, A Child Called It, and you’re on the right track.

I cannot imagine the state of internal crisis for a mother to treat her child with such cruelty. I can only assume that a soul must be so damaged and confused to have the ability to inflict such severe torment and suffering upon her own child.

My mum has often said how she wished her parents had left her with the neighbors. Those first two years of her life had somehow imprinted upon her soul and impressed in her memory. The fleeting time spent with that family proved to be vital in forming the fabric of her psyche and the breadth of her heart.

She never forgot what it felt like to be loved and nurtured.

I knew my grandmother before she died an early death, but my mother kept us away for the most part. She was a woman plagued with darkness. As you can imagine, she held little interest in me. Our relationship was nil to nothing and she had a way of scaring the bejesus out of me.

Every now and then, I look at old photos of the woman who abused my mother. Pictures of her with my grandfather when they were young. She had been a stunningly beautiful woman with soft, delicate features and lustrous dark hair.

The couple posed with grandeur — he in a classy black suit while her petite figure was wrapped in white fur. They appeared sound in the knowledge of the path ahead of them; a future filled with promising visions and love. She’s like a different woman in those pictures; a woman I never knew.

I realized that at one point in her life she had known happiness. She had known love.

So, what went wrong?

Life was vastly different back then. My grandfather enlisted to serve in World War II at the age of twenty. He was ranked Private and became a prisoner of war in one of the most notorious of Japanese war camps: Changi prison.

He spent years being tortured in that prison along with thousands of other Australian men, including war hero, Sir Ernest Edward “Weary” Dunlop, who was my grandfather’s friend.

James Saunderson was like a gentle giant. He was funny and charming — an ordinary Aussie kid ready to take on the world with his woman by his side, until years of war, torture, death and imprisonment stole his light.

He returned home but would never be the same. Those years haunted him. They were the same years that would snatch the light inside of my grandmother and prove the catalyst in my mother’s mistreatment.

When life squeezes us, what comes out is what’s on the inside.

It’s one of the great lessons of life.

Living through war might be a radical example to use when discussing relationships. My grandfather’s experience had devastating affects on his psyche that lasted throughout his lifetime. He spent years receiving psychiatric treatment — years suddenly erupting into violent bouts of rage.

The war took more than just my grandfather’s mental health. It claimed my grandmother’s quality of life, her dreams and her sense of humanity. The war collected both of their soul’s and darkened the lives of their children.

Did they have a choice?

We can never erase the past. We may never quite be able to take away the pain, but we can take measures to heal ourselves and work through the inner-demons to find the light again. In each moment, we have a choice.

When the pressure is on and out of you comes anything other than love, it is because that’s what you’ve allowed to be inside. To live a highly functioning life, you need to take away all those negative things you don’t want in your life and replace them with love.

My mother is proof of this.

She could have easily embraced the mindset offered by her violent upbringing. She could have chosen bitterness and hatred, and carried the abuse through the generations, but she didn’t.

Does the past still haunt her? It probably does sometimes. Yet, she has only ever spoken of her parents from the highest regard. Somehow, that little girl who was never shown the love she craved from her mother, grew up with the ability to accept the life she was handed and forgive her parents for every indiscretion.

She chooses to view them through the eyes of love and empathy — and this is a choice we all have regardless of how someone might upset or offend us, or whatever the situation confronting us.

All my mother had ever wanted was the love of her mother. Even on her death bed, my grandmother refused to convey the words she couldn’t give.

My mum has lived her entire life without hearing her own mother speak of her love for her, but every day I hope that I have enough inside of me to make up for the love denied her.

Although I’m not sure that that will ever be enough to fill the void left in a little girl by a mother who couldn’t find a way to snatch back her light and open her heart to love.


Also published by P.S. I Love You on Medium

Writers Are More Prone to Depression

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

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Last night, I attended a Shamanic Drumming circle. It had been a few months since I had joined circle. When my friend Catherine mentioned the upcoming session, I didn’t hesitate — something inside me recognized the need for the soul-cleansing and inner-healing these sacred drumming circles bring to my psyche.

It was the black dog.

I knew that spending two hours in a sacramental environment listening to our Shaman teachers speak of shedding, soul-growth and revitalization would provide the perfect outlet to get away from myself; away from thought, feelings and the depression shadowing me.

I have battled bouts of depression in the past as well as anxiety on occasion. As much as I have tried to deny how I’m feeling is as much as it produces feelings of failure — admitting to a decline in happiness seems to equate with being an epic screw-up.

The thing is, I know better. I know how to identify the triggers. I have studied philosophical teachings offered by the great ancient masters of Buddhism; Stoicism; Shamanism and the like. I have spent years learning, practicing and seeing the results produced by raising my awareness through meditation and deliberate pondering, as well as the benefits achieved by controlling my thoughts.

Yet, I am still not immune to depression. Have I failed in my quest for inner-peace and happiness? Did I do something wrong?

Honestly, it is my belief that not many of us manage to avoid experiencing some form of mental dysfunction during our lifetimes — no matter how aware we become or how informed we are. Especially in this day and age.

There is so much going on all the time. Lifestyle has become a fast blur. People have become disconnected; replaceable. We treat one another as if exchangeable goods, never really seeing or acknowledging the precious soul behind the flesh. Never really holding one another.

Internet-based relationships for business and social purposes means we are able to engage with others without actually becoming invested in their authenticity. It means we can pretend that the person on the other side of the screen isn’t real. Feelings become invalidated; people become a dime-a-dozen and avoiding the hook is as easy as deactivating your account or hitting the “block” icon.

Only the joke is on us.

We are losing sight of the importance of connection. Our sense of self becomes tainted by behaving like strangers, ditching good manners, ghosting and treating others less than they deserve.

Where is the organic connection? Where is the love?

Writers are among the most prone to depression, but I wasn’t always a writer and I’m not sure that I was always prone to depression. I’ve always had a solid grasp on my feelings for the most part.

The writing life does something to you. It changes you. We delve into the deepest parts of ourselves, get vulnerable and share our inner-most layers with the world. Writing becomes a channel of self-discovery; a passage of growth and exploration. Sometimes, we soar. Other times, we bleed.

Creating stories has the ability to make you fly.

It is when I am working on my fiction that I’m at my happiest. Yet, there are so many elements about the writing business that can leave us feeling utterly deflated.

Kay Redfield Jamison, who is a professor at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine in Baltimore and author of Touched with Fire: Manic-Depressive Illness and the Artistic Temperament has reported that writers experience depression more often than non-writers.

It is thought this is due to several reasons.

For one, some writers desire to be familiar with misery, suffering and pain to guide the writing process and give their work authenticity. They may have not experienced the deep sense of trials and tribulations as their characters, so they seek to gain insight by manifesting similar emotions.

Extended hours of isolation, lack of exercise and natural light is another factor to influence depression in writers.

There is also the emotional roller coaster associated with rejection, which is an element familiar to just about every writer — Rejection in the form of editor’s, publishers, agents, readers and peers.

Clinical psychiatrist Alan Manevitz says: “A large part of a writer’s success depends on how other people think of him or approve.”

How many times have you emailed another writer who is further along the path than yourself only to be ignored?

And all you said was thank you.

How often has one of your peers deliberately inserted a subliminal swipe at your work or future project ideas? How many times have you read some trivial heated debate among writers on social media, or heard authors in a position of influence publicly slam the works of others?

I am not sure how success has assimilated a superior attitude.

I don’t understand why some people behave in ways that breed contempt.

I cannot fathom why we feel the need to judge, ridicule or perceive a sense threat toward one another when we’re all in it together — there are readers aplenty. There are words abundance. Limitation is an illusion.

So is separateness.

They say that depression lies in the past; anxiety waits in the future. But I think those blue feelings can strike for other reasons as well. Sometimes, even the thickest skin becomes porous enough for negativity to seep through. Sometimes, people and situations hurt like hell.

If only members of the writing community could see past their own egos long enough to get real, we might be able to hold and support each other long enough to feel the authenticity on the other side of the screen — to acknowledge that the person beyond the screen is a real human with real feelings.

Last night, my Shaman teacher concluded the circle by suggesting we all hug each other. My first reaction was to baulk at the idea. I’m not a hugger of strangers, even when bonding over a sacred alter and making medicine together.

Yet, as the other circle members approached me with their arms wide open and I stepped into their embrace, I realized how symbolic the gesture was and found myself in a state of appreciation — acts of kindness and affection go a long way to healing the invisible threads connecting us.

We may not be able to physically embrace all of the time, but our energy is as tangible as anything in the physical world. Perhaps if writers practiced hugging one another on the energetic level instead of looking for ways to get outraged or feel threatened, our community will become less hostile and more loving; more supportive.

Even if it stretches our comfort zone. Especially if it stretches our comfort zone.


Also published by Curiosity Never Killed the Writer via Medium

Relationships and the Power of Standing Your Ground

Something like love and respect.

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According to my ex-boyfriend, 99% of women are ungrateful and I am one of them. Uh-oh. Looks like we might have a woman-hater on the loose. Someone call the United Nations Gender Equality hotline. I’ve flushed out a real-life, undercover misogynist. He’s all yours.

Yep, I have been analyzed, categorized and classified ungrateful by a man I haven’t seen in about twelve years. Although, considering I was up against such a warped conception stating that 99% of women are ungrateful, I never really had a chance at success.

So, what did I do to constitute such a radical characterization?

I no longer possess the desire to engage with him. That’s it in a nutshell.

Twelve years have passed and still, he seeks me out despite the fact that I have since married another man and have unduly expressed my disinterest in him.

Over the years I have had to block him on social media and email, but every now and then I click that unblock button because I have an internal battle about blocking people that have meant something in my life. The act of blocking can feel hostile and contentious toward the blocked. It is not unlike balancing an invisible sword over their heads which in turn affects our own karma. But some people leave us no choice.

Sometimes, people can’t let go of the past.

During a recent unblock phase, it didn’t take him long to figure out he was carrying an “Out of Jail” card. His name blinked with an incoming message on Messenger within a matter of days. How he manages to score this information so fast is beyond me. Some folks have way too much time on their hands.

Speaking of time, it is of the essence. We are all aware that there are only so many days to speak our truth to the people that matter in our lives.

He wasted no time in declaring his truths to me. He thought about me and my children all the time. He couldn’t forget me. Mistakes were made and he’d give anything to ease the discordant feelings still lingering deep inside. Twelve years and he is still trying for a past that will never come again. A filtered past that looks strikingly different through my eyes.

The past has a way of glamorizing the truth. The years roll by and it gets easier to peer through rose-tinted glasses existing to make everything seem beautiful by distorting the real facts. As a woman who has experienced domestic abuse for over a decade at the hands of her first husband, rose-tinted specs and the ability to romanticize the truth does not always work for me.

Truth: Some people show up in our lives to reinforce what we don’t want.

I am not suggesting these people are any less important than the ones that stick around. They are just as significant because it through these interactions and relationships that we are pushed to assert ourselves;to believe in ourselves enough to stand our ground.

Life presents us with options; forks in the road that lead to alternative destinations and different realities.

Thirteen years ago, and divorced, the option for me looked something this:

Would you like another serve of asshole? Or would you prefer to experience real love and respect now?

Naturally, I was opting for the latter. But, before I got to the love and respect part, I had to sit down to one more turbulent meal of asshole. In the form of Mr 99% guy. I found myself on repeat. Almost.

He waltzed into my home and wanted control from the get-go. The earliest sign was when I cooked for him for the first time, presenting a meal that was instantly met with a grimace and a rude remark. My heart dropped. His mother didn’t cook that way. Turned out, his mother did everything better than me. Do I look like your fucking mother?

I should hope not. Especially when wearing black lacy lingerie, strappy stilettos and clutching a bottle of edible body oil. Vanilla flavoured. There are benefits to divorce. You get every other weekend kid-free to swing from the proverbial chandeliers. We swung hard. His mother stayed out of it. Thank goodness.

My friends became his enemies.

Not really. But if I dared smiled when greeting one of my friends, I was accused of deception.

“You haven’t smiled that wide all day!”

“Umm … what the?”

Can you image how he coped with my male friends? He loathed every one of them and didn’t bother to conceal the fact.

My children became his enemies.

Not really. But exerting dominance over children has a way of making narcissists feel empowered. He actually kicked my three-year-old daughter because it bothered him that she wanted to cuddle up with me on the lounge.

Red flag blazing.

I became his enemy.

Not really. But I stood up for myself and my children with a fire I could not deny. A fire kindled from years of living on my nerves with an abusive husband and a promise I had made to myself — No longer would I accept ill-treatment from a man.

With each and every one of his attempts to coerce me into submission, I responded with a strength I never knew I had. Even when he physically hurt me in the most sadistic ways.

His pain was inflicted with malicious intent. Whereas, my ex-husband was an outright hothead. This guy did stuff to offend my delicate parts; like pinching my nipples till they bruised or tearing my anus so that I bled for a week. He would strike when I’d least expect it — during a hug or a play-rumble.

Yeah.

Truth: Some people show up in our lives to remind us of who we don’t want to be.

Playing the victim gets old. So does the stress that comes from continually being on guard. Sometimes, people put us in a position where we have no choice but to stand by our convictions regardless of the outcome. Even if it makes us feel horrible on the inside. These are the moments that shape our lives. The forks in the road where we face a choice to either change it up or continue choosing similar experiences.

We always have a choice. Always.

Life whispered:

Are you done with mistreatment, Kim? Would you like to raise the bar and attract better experiences into your life? Are you ready for love; real love?

Yes please.

He was the catalyst in choosing to break the cycle. The final straw at the end of a long and dark road littered with abuse, tears and heartbreak. Thankfully, the experience was fleeting in the grand scheme of things, lasting about six months. Although, the relationship was profound nonetheless — just in a different context to how he views it through those distorted rose-tinted glasses.

It was through that relationship, I learned how we choose for ourselves is largely based on self-perception — the manner in which we view our own worth; what we’re prepared to settle for and what we will fight for.

I fought for respect.

I chose to be alone rather than face another long-term bout of pain and dysfunction. I chose myself and I chose my children. If that makes me ungrateful, then so be it because I’d choose it again in a heartbeat.

Sometimes, it makes sense to remove the rose-tinted glasses and see the past for what it is. If we can’t do that, the lessons go unlearned and we might find ourselves on repeat while faintly hearing life whisper truths through our soul. Something like respect. Something like real love.


Also published on P.S. I Love You on Medium

Writing Through Disaster and Conflict

It is our emotions that are our greatest muse.

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Natural disasters. Terrorism. Racism. Human rights. Animal cruelty. Inequality.

The world won’t stop for you. Nature will always do its thing, and people … well, they will always be people. Personally, I am among the benevolent among humanity. There is not an inch of me that understands the unjust behaviors often displayed by mankind. I reject discrimination, hate and fear. I reject cruelty of all kinds — violence, malicious intent, inequality, intolerance, corruption and the mistreatment of animals. I renounce spite, resentment and narrow-mindedness.

Humanity is capable of deplorable acts and a merciless attitude. For those that feel deeply, live compassionately and with heart, these immoral behaviors can be extremely unsettling. I turn away from that which affects me negatively and focus on bringing positive and uplifting qualities into the world.

Sometimes, it can be difficult to ignore the ugly stuff. Sometimes, it hits close to home. So close, the option to ignore becomes impossible.

Other times, we are faced with issues and situations at the micro level; personal conditions involving love and relationships, responsibilities, an unseen event or financial concerns. Those are the ordeals we can’t pretend don’t exist. At least, not for very long. Those conditions are a part of life and are also the ones that grip our emotions and cause our bodies to react in some way as our nerves stretch to the very edge.

Stress. It affects us all at some point in varying degrees. Whether it is becoming disturbed about the horrible things affecting our world or our personal experiences, we have no choice but to learn how to cope with the twists and turns life throws at us. Professional writer or not, I believe writing has many benefits from the psychological standpoint. But as writers and creatives, it is through the written word that we find the perfect outlet to work through our emotions, as well as drive home our beliefs and visions for the world. Depending on where you want to take it.

We are complex creatures with many layers and depth. We view the world through the fluidity of our unique perspectives as we evolve, change and reach for new experiences. We are the flesh and blood; the tangible and malleable. Yet, we are also the esoteric and the mysterious; the light and the dark dwell within each of us. And it is our emotions that are our greatest muse.

Words are power

‘Everything begins with words — our stories, thoughts, messages. Each word has its own vibration too. It is these vibrations that create the reality that surrounds us. Words create more than just stories; they inform our universe, our lives and our reality — and they teach us. Through creating words, I have managed to reacquaint myself more fully with my soul and to live a more authentic, love-driven and passionate life.’

– From Creative Writing Energy

Exploring our feelings through writing — personal journals or storytelling — is extremely therapeutic. Some of these benefits include:

Finding clarity 

By expressing yourself and communicating complex ideas in a much more effective way, you can discover your true self and honor that part of you.

Eliminate stress 

Emptying your mind through writing helps to eliminate the stress hammering in your head. Capturing those moments, developing and working through your ideas produces a ripple effect; since not only do you declutter your mind, but it is also a process of rationalization.

Productivity

Writing activates neurons in your brain and gets you set to face the day. It is demonstrated that setting your goals or systems in writing significantly increases the possibilities of achieving them.

You will learn more 

About yourself, the world and others.

You will strengthen and cultivate your writing skills. You will find your voice.

You will gain awareness 

 If you write down what you have in mind regularly — your dreams, worries, fears, deepest desires — you will realize yourself.

So, now that we’ve explored some of the benefits of writing, let’s take a quick look at how we can use our emotions in our work to enrich our characters and stories.

Frustrated or angry

Use the rage to create story conflict. Inject the anger into your words and release the tension. You’ll find those pages to be edgy and fast, your characters a little narky or moody. Get gritty, dark, even profane. Burn your scenes with the crude and rude, twist the plot with vengeance in your heart and your readers will thank you.

Heartache 

Even better. Those words will capture depth and authenticity, pain and despair. Use the turbulent heart to stain your words with grief, bitterness and agony. Your characters are now real, complicated and imperfect. Your plot may be a little dangerous, shady or inspirational. Whatever feeling you’re attempting to convey, it will be sure to bring your readers to their knees as they resonate with your energy.

Happy-go-lucky 

Humor brings joy to the world and to your readers. Allow your happiness to bounce into your words and fill the pages with positivity and feelgood vibes. Surge ahead and spread the happy!

Love 

Alchemy and deep treasures abound through words of love. There is nothing more sacred in the world. By allowing your love to infect your story, you become an instrument of the highest order. The greatest mystery; the pinnacle of life — love. Deep love. It doesn’t get more real than this. The world cannot get enough of this stuff. Neither can your readers.

Despair and Gloom 

The heartbeat of your story; the why, how and where. The all-is-lost moment — vanished goals, mammoth obstacles, impossible situations — build the conflict for your characters and make your story matter. There is a time for everything; a time for tears and expressing the darkness; a time to mourn and wallow in pain. It is through pain that we learn our greatest lessons; through pain that we are reminded we’re still alive. Lend your characters the gift of pain and feel your own lighten in return.

Whether we’re reacting to widespread chaos, disasters or events in the greater world or the experiences we endure in our own worlds, writing is an exceptional tool to use to navigate those rocky waters and glorious peaks life offers us. So, the next time you are feeling a strong emotion, go ahead and get into your writing and see where it takes you.

Our stories can uplift the world one reader at a time. The world needs your emotionally driven words now more than ever. The world needs your love and emotion in all its forms.