Happy Girl's Guide to Life

"We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thought. With our thoughts we make the world"- The Dhammapada

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4/5/17

Slow Down




Slow Down and take time to appreciate where you are in this moment. Don't become so focused on your goals or the end result that you forget to enjoy the journey. For it's the journey that gives us the gift of appreciation when we finally attain what it is that we set out for. It's the journey that teaches us the life lessons, gives us the tools, and allows us to change our minds about what we want. When we become overly focused on the destination where we start living in the future and our inner dialogue becomes "I'll be happy when"  we forget to appreciate the present moment and all it's beauty and purpose. So if you find yourself too focused on the future, as I so often do, take a step back, slow down, and savor the present. you are exactly where you are meant to be in this moment. In this moment you are enough, you are complete, and you are worthy. Lean on the Universe and have faith that everything is exactly as it should be.
#midwifeofthespirit
#happygirlsguidetolife

2/6/17

Stand in Your Power

I apologize for the delay in posting but I took some time out in January to ground myself after the holidays and really create focused intentions for the new year. This year I am setting the intention of standing in my power. More recently I’ve began to take notice of my patterns in life and realized how much of my personal power I have been consistently giving away throughout the years. More often than I care to admit I’ve found myself in positions where I so easily give my personal power away. Whether its allowing someone to treat me in a way that I’m not entirely comfortable with or doesn’t make me feel good. Or its me being passive about my goals and desires because let’s face it sometimes its just easier to be passive and stay complacent in the victim role, settling for mediocrity, because it’s a safe comfortable space. Well, I choose to make a change in my life and take back my power. In my previous post I had discussed surrendering the need for control and in a way this is an extension of that. I realized this past year how little control we have over what happens around us. But what we have total control over is our reactions, perspectives, and how we choose to approach things. These choices in turn put out energy which can help attract things, people, and situations that are more in line with the energy we want to attract.
Really, the truth is that whenever I stand in my personal power, meaning I love and respect myself and that is reflected by the loving choices that I make for my mind, body, and soul, life flows beautifully. The universe always meets me half way and lights my path. So this year, I’m quitting the excuses and holding myself accountable. This year I actively choose to stand in my power, speak my truth, and go forth in my life fearlessly. Choosing to place unwavering faith in the infinite possibilities of the universe. I choose to hold myself accountable and meet the universe half-way. I hope you choose to do the same. After all, as Marianne Williamson once said:
“ Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light not our darkness that most frightens us.  We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as a children do. We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
#happygirlsguidetolife

12/18/16

Surrender

Surrender


Surrender can be a complicated thing and is often much easier said than done. I stumbled across a quote while flipping through one of my favorite books "A Return to Love"- by Marianne Williamson. The quote read:
Where we have an attachment to results, we tend to have a hard time giving up control. But how can we know what result to try to achieve in a situation when we don't know what's going to happen tomorrow? What do we ask for? Instead of  "Dear God, please let us fall in love or please give me this job." we say, "Dear God, my desire, my priority is inner peace. I want the experience of love. I don't know what would bring that to me. I leave the results of this situation in your hands. I trust your will. May your will be done. Amen.
This quote was very powerful for me. Surrender has been a major theme in my life lately. I've been going through sort of an "in between" period in my life, trying to find comfort in the uncomfortable. As I get older I realize more and more how little control we have over what happens around us. Our power lies in our reactions, our perceptions, our thoughts, and the energy we put out into the world as it is mirrored back to us. Life is filled with ebbs and flows like a boat sailing through the ocean. Sometimes we sail through muddy choppy waters and sometimes we sail on a calm peaceful sea. We choose whether we ride the wave or swim against the currant. You can say surrender is when you choose to flow with the currant. Often times we find it easy to surrender the things we have the least attachment to. 
I know for me, in my life,  there are certain areas where I have an easy time surrendering. I feel such a powerful knowingness in terms of my path that I have no doubt the universe will see me through. But then there are other areas in my life where I feel insecure. It's not that I don't trust the universe to have my back, but my fear gets the best of me sometimes. It's interesting because I'll go through phases where I am able to let go and things just flow and work. But then something will happen that will trigger a fear or insecurity inside of me, and my reaction is to take matters into my own hands and attempt to control the situation. This usually includes me trying to force an outcome before it's divine timing and that ALWAYS blows up in my face.
When I take a moment to check in with myself, I realize how ridiculous I'm being in my need for control. I start thinking back upon my life and the truth is the universe, has always had my back. Even when I encountered hurt and challenges that at the time were devastating, in hindsight, are now a point of gratitude for me because it closed the doors to paths that were not meant for me.
Universe, God, our Angels,, and Guides can see the pieces of the puzzles that we don't have access too. Which is why we don't always understand things in the moment.  But be assured that they are always lighting our path.
It is our resistance to what is that causes us pain.


The picture at the head of this blog post is of me and one of my many soulmates, my sweet rescue puppy Jiggy McGee who is one of the many reasons I smile each day.

#happygirlsguidetolife 

11/23/16

Gratitude



Gratitude has been a cornerstone in my spiritual transformation. It is a practice that took some time to integrate into my every day life, but now seems more like second nature to me. Growing up I never truly understood what it meant to practice “gratitude.” During the holiday season, I would hear adults saying that we should count our blessings and be grateful for what we had. Yet in the same breath I’d hear complaints and frustration about everything they lack and that is going wrong in their lives. If someone mentioned to be grateful, it was often met with an “of course I’m grateful” but there was a lack of feeling behind the words. This is how society has taught us to think. Society programs us to think from a place of lack, fear, and self-piety. We tend to spend a lot of time focusing on what we lack and how we will be happy when.

This holiday season I’ve had the pleasure of spending time with those I love, as well as getting to know new people. I’ve enjoyed incredible food and fun laughs in great company.  But I took note of something during these gatherings that made me a bit sad. During this time of year we tend to go around the table and discuss the different things we are thankful/grateful for. And what I noticed was that many people truly struggled to come up with things they were grateful for or there was a lack of feeling behind the words. Now this was something that bothered me because it hit so close to home.

I was that same way years ago. I struggled with anxiety and depression. And my thoughts constantly revolved around what I lacked, why me statements, and I’ll be happy when statements. Sound familiar? I’m sure many of us are guilty of using those story lines. What I’ve learned over the years is that life is very dependent on our perspective of things. When I decided to make a radical change in my life, my first step was adopting an “Attitude of Gratitude.”  Now changing our thought patterns can be significantly challenging and involve much time and effort. But before we get into that, I’d like to give everyone a little perspective on how blessed each one of us truly is.

“The world’s population is approximately 6.7 Billion.

3 billion people live on less than $2 per day.

1.3 billion of them on less than $1 per day.

Starvation claims one life every 3.6 seconds, usually a child under the age of 5.

If you have money in the bank, money in your wallet, and spare change somewhere around your house, you are amongst the richest 8% of the world’s population.

If you have a car, you are among the richest 7%

1% of the people in the world have a college education.

7% have computers

43% of the world lives without basic sanitation

Close to half of the people in developing countries are suffering at any given time from health problems caused by water and sanitation deficits

If you have food in your fridge, clothes on your back a roof over your head, and a place to sleep you are richer than 75% of the world.

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness you are more blessed than the million people who will not survive this week.

If you never experienced the danger of battle the agony of imprisonment or torture, or the horrible pangs of starvation you are luckier than 500 million people alive and suffering

If you can read this message you are more fortunate than 3 Billion people in the world who cannot read at all.”

Really let that sink in. Now look around in your life. See how many blessings you truly have? Practicing gratitude can literally create MIRACLES in your life. When I began integrating an attitude of gratitude in my life I started off small. Every morning as I would go through my morning routine I would state out loud all the things I was grateful for, no matter how “small” they may seem. And as I would state what I was grateful for I made it a point to truly feel it in my heart. With time, I began keeping a gratitude journal where I would write nightly what I was grateful for. I noticed that I always felt much better about my life after these exercises and over time I began shifting my perception on life. Suddenly it seemed as though I had much more to be grateful for then to be upset about.  Things that would have brought me down previously no longer carried great importance. Fast forward to present day and the transformational powers of gratitude continue to amaze me. I find myself living present in each moment and appreciating the little things in life. I find that the gratitude I set forth into the universe always comes back to me. And when I fall off the wagon and have moments of sadness or doubt, I get right back on the gratitude wagon and my mood quickly changes. Gratitude has been a cornerstone for me in my pursuit of happiness. I encourage you to take some time out to integrate Gratitude into your everyday practice and I promise you the results will amaze you. We all have so much to be grateful for.



#gratitudechangeseverything #happygirlsguidetolife

11/9/16

Here's to You...


Here’s to you…

I wanted to dedicate this blog post to my Grandfather. It’s been about 12 years since his passing yet his legacy still lives on. He is a man who has deeply impacted my life and inspired me on so many levels. Ironically, he has taught me more in spirit than he ever did in life. My grandfather Antonio Tavares or as I call him Avo Tavares passed away at the age of 83 a few months’ shy of my 17th birthday. My Grandfather was a man who came from very humble beginnings. He was born in a small town in Portugal, and immigrated to Angola. He spent some time studying to become a priest, but then he met my beautiful Grandmother and his course in life changed. My Grandfather was a man who was full of life, he loved to laugh, celebrate, dance, sing, and play his guitar. He always looked at the glass half full and had an unwavering faith in life. He was an honest man of great character and integrity. My Grandfather was a dedicated husband and loving father. Truly a family man. He was a compassionate man who lived a life truly rooted in gratitude and eternal optimism. Now my Grandfather’s life was far from easy. He faced many challenges throughout his lifetime, many that I can’t even fathom experiencing. He survived war, having to leave behind everything but the shirt on his back, immigrating to 3 different continents, and several serious illnesses including cancer just to name a few. Yet his passion for life remained strong. My Grandfather was very ahead of his times in terms of his thinking. He had a deeper understanding of life and what is important. These are things that can be very challenging for many of us. We are up against a lot in terms of negativity in society. Many of us were brought up to think and function from a place  of lack, to always allow ourselves to go the negative thoughts. Despite all the obstacles life presented him with he continued to trust that life would always provide him with what he needed. And guess what? It did! While I didn’t understand how deep his message was in the way that he lived his life at the time of his death, life’s circumstances and experiences have allowed me to reflect on these things and see a completely different perspective on what an incredible example he set in how he lived his life. I admire his optimism, in fact I find it incredibly refreshing especially considering the times he grew up in. My Grandfather understood that happiness is not something found outside of ourselves but rather something found within. He understood the importance of a life rooted in gratitude and how our thoughts and perceptions can affect our happiness. So today, I end this blog entry in deep gratitude to my Avo Tavares and to all of the people who inspired me and continue to inspire me to grow and learn. May we continue to share our journeys with one another and continue to inspire each other to reach our full potential.

#herestoyou #happygirlsguidetolife

1/15/14

Love is all you need....


 As I’ve continued on my beautiful journey through life questions often arose. I’ve spent much of my life questioning everything. Worrying about the future or staying stuck in my past.

11/11/13

A Look Back....




           
   As I welcome my 26th year of life and look forward to all of the wonderful adventures ahead I can’t help but reminisce about the journey that got me to this place. I get so overcome with emotion when I think about where I was on this very day a year ago. I began my year completely broken, lost, overweight unhealthy, and a short year a later I stand tall, strong, healthy, and happier than ever. I look in the mirror and no matter how hard I try I can’t seem to find that lost scared girl from a year ago. That girl has been replaced with a strong, confident, healthy, and loving Woman with a hunger for life. I started my 25th year with a simple mantra. 25 was MY YEAR. And looking back I can honestly say it really was my best year thus far.  I learned so many valuable lessons and experienced such an incredible amount of spiritual and personal growth that I thought I’d share 25 things that I learned during my 25th year. 

1. Many times situations that we go through that seem the worst end up being the greatest blessings. We are just too blind to see it in that moment.

“Sometimes it’s necessary for everything to fall apart so that your prayers for a new life can be answered”-Doreen Virtue


2. Embrace change. Change is a beautiful thing. 


3. Gratitude is EVERYTHING. What better way to attract more wonderful things into your life then to feel incredibly grateful for all that you already have. It’s literally a sure fire way to put yourself in a positive mindset. Start your morning every day listing all of the things your grateful for in your life. I guarantee it’ll put a smile on your face. 


4. Forgive everyone including yourself for everything.  For-to-give. Forgive is such a beautiful word, “give” is literally embedded in the word. It truly is one of the greatest gifts. Ultimately forgiveness doesn’t mean you condone the behavior, it means your allowing peace in your heart again. You see, what people don’t realize is that true forgiveness has nothing to do with the person that you feel has wronged you it has to do with restoring the peace and love within your heart.

“Forgiveness is to offer no resistance to life—to allow life to live through you”-Eckhart Tolle

“The most beautiful thing man can do is to forgive a wrong”-Rabbi Eleazor of Worms


5. Live from your higher self. Unfortunately most of us live from our ego. And our ego in spiritual terms is fear based. It’s that little voice inside that always says you can’t. Tune that guy out because guess what? YOU CAN!!!!


6. Be impeccable with your word. When we hurt others ultimately we are hurting ourselves.  Whether it’s by gossiping or any other form of ill intent. Have you ever noticed when you talk badly about someone or do something to hurt someone that you feel pretty crumby too?

“Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love”-Don Miguel Ruiz


7. Look at the world through the eyes of compassion. 


8. Live Life FEARLESSLY. Chase your dreams. Say what you feel. Take a chance. Better to have tried and failed then to have never tried at all.


9. Live your TRUTH.  Studies have found that the biggest regret of the dying is not having had the courage to live the life they were meant to live instead of living the life someone else wanted them to live.  I find that incredibly sad. I don’t think that’s a realization anyone wants to come to. So grab life by the horns. Believe in yourself. If there is something you want to do, or accomplish, or a place you want to visit GO OUT THERE AND DO IT!! 


10. We’re connected to everyone and everything.


11. We are all energy. We don’t realize how powerful we really are. I’m a true believer in the law of attraction. Every thought we put out there is energy. We are like magnets we attract what we think. 


12. Positivity is contagious. Just like negativity is a downward spiral. Positivity can be just the same. 


13. We can’t control every situation but we can control our reactions to them. Life can be as easy or as hard as you like. You decide. Ultimately it’s all about perspective.

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”-Dr. Wayne Dyer


14. Love yourself first. This is so important. In order for you to help others, love others, and put your best foot forward you MUST first LOVE yourself. You set the tone for how you want to be treated. So be good to yourself. Be gentle. Who you are in this very moment is enough. 


15. Live from a place of love.  Love is the only thing that is real.

“Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here.”-Marianne Williamson 


16. Be fully present in this moment.

“Welcome to the present moment. Here. Now. The only moment there ever is.”-Eckhart Tolle

“ If you are depressed you are living in the past.  If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present.”-Lao Tzo


17.  Do away with limiting thoughts. It is important that we choose our thoughts and our words very carefully. Focus on the things you want rather than what you don’t want. There is no dream to big. If you can think it you can achieve it.

“ You get in life what you have the courage to ask for”-Oprah


18. Release and surrender to life. Graciously let go of the things that are clearly not meant for you. Life doesn’t always go as planned and that’s ok. Learn to accept it and trust that the universe has greater plans.


19. No one is perfect. We are all flawed creatures. And that’s ok. It’s what makes us unique and beautiful in our own right. The goal here is not to be perfect but to be true to who you are. 


                20. There are no mistakes in life. Only lessons. 


                21.  Balance. Create balance in all aspects of your life. Especially in relationships. There must always be a balance of give and take.  


                22. “Begin to see yourself as a soul with a body rather than a body with a soul”-Dr. Wayne Dyer. I love this quote as it holds so much merit. I think it is important that we recognize that our physical is not what defines who we are. We are so much more than just flesh and bones. 


                23. Journal. I think journaling is so important. It gives us an outlet to express our feelings and really get to know ourselves. There are so many great journaling exercises that really give us the chance to look inside ourselves and get to know who we really are. Journaling is truly a form of therapy and can help us overcome so many emotional roadblocks. Everyone should keep a journal. 


                24. Learn to step outside of yourself. I think it’s so important to be able to step outside of yourself and see things from other people’s perspective. It allows us to grow and understand others and ourselves on a deeper level. 


                25. Believe in yourself. Just because someone thinks you can’t or doesn’t agree with your way of living your life doesn’t mean it’s wrong. We all have our own path to walk. Stay true to you.  You deserve to be happy. It is your divine right. So go out there and enjoy life!



 “Here's to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They're not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can't do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”
― Apple Inc.