Loving and Trusting Yourself

Summer McStravick

A few days ago, I “attended” a webinar entitled Self-Love, Self-Trust, and Self-Worth. The webinar was presented by a woman I have an amazing amount of respect for, Summer McStravick. Summer has an impressive bio, including development of Hay House Radio, where she was co-host on Wayne Dyer’s show for several years.
I came to know Summer as the founder of Flowdreaming. Now, there’s a good chance you haven’t heard of Flowdreaming or Summer, but to me she’s mentor, teacher, guide, and friend. Because of her and Flowdreaming, I have been able to finally get past major depression, and survive a major hurdle a couple of years ago. It was rough, but I managed. I wouldn’t have without Summer and Flowdreaming.
That isn’t the topic today, though. Today’s topic is Loving yourself. Do you love yourself? For many of us to answer yes would mean we’re arrogant and self-centered. That’s not true though. Let me just say, it’s taken me a long time to get to where I am, and I still struggle with self-worth issues. But how can you reach for good things in life if you don’t believe you deserve them?
It isn’t easy to learn to love yourself, believe in yourself, trust yourself. It’s important, though. You can’t truly love another person until you learn to love yourself. You can’t reach your goals, or help others each their own goal, without believing in and trusting yourself.
There are different paths that can teach you to love yourself. Flowdreaming is a powerful one. I know I need to work at self-love and self-esteem, so I followed up the webinar by taking advantage of Summer’s discount rate for her new 30 day program “Deep Love” which focuses on that very subject. Due to circumstances beyond my control, I was unable to start the program until today. She started off with an intense class that left me with pages of notes, a new outlook, and a huge challenge that I’m determined to meet head-on.
I love, and highly recommend Flowdreaming, but if you feel drawn to another path, that’s the way you should go. Whichever way you choose, the best of luck to you!

Believe in yourself. You’re special.

Cheryel

 

 

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Southern Discomfort

I’m a Southern Girl, born and raised in a tiny town in Tennessee. As proud as I am of where I grew up, there is still a lot that I wish wasn’t part of the picture.

To the north of my tiny hometown is Dayton, the home of the infamous Scopes “Monkey” Trial. A young substitute teacher was jailed and tried for teaching the theory* of evolution. The trial was a set up to “put Dayton on the map” (and it worked), but the law itself was a reflection of the thought process of people who look at different as scary and dangerous.

That same thought process led to the Charlottesville, VA white-supremacists rally and violence over the weekend. The idea of moving a Confederate statue to a more suitable, like a museum, is reprehensible to these hate groups. It all goes back to the American Civil War. And slavery.

I spent quite a bit of time doing research on secret organizations for my latest manuscript, and it wasn’t long before I discovered the time of the Civil War was prime for clandestine organizations. My mom was a major Civil War buff, plus I’m a curious person by nature, so it was very easy for me to slide into research mode. While deep in research, something finally became very clear to me. Slavery was much more important to the South than I’d ever realized.

I knew the war devastated the South, but books and classes listed many causes but tended to focus on the physical destruction of buildings, fields, and businesses. If other cause was listed, it was usually Northerners who moved to the South to make their fortunes. Yes, these were problems, but it was loss of slavery that truly devastated the area.

The economy of the pre-war South was built mostly on cotton. The stuff grew well in the warm climate, but cotton is a labor-intensive crop. Without slave labor, cotton plantations were mostly broken up into sections for sharecropping. Former slaves and poor whites worked the land and gave part of the crop to the owner for the privilege. This system, obviously, didn’t generate the income at anywhere near the level the plantations owners were used to. So the former owners lost their money, position, and power. Poor whites resented working beside former slaves.  Hatred for the North, and the slaves, grew and was passed down until today.

That same anger, the feeling the slaves came out of the war better than their owners, it’s still alive today. It’s denied, it’s hidden, it’s called other things. It’s there, though. And it’s not going away anytime soon unless we figure out a way to stop feeling somebody else got something we should have had.

There’s plenty for everybody. Stop being jealous and work on your own life. We’ll all be happier.

 

Charlottesville, VA after car used as weapon of terror

Heather Heyer
Killed at Charlottesville

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

*I have blogged about the word “theory” before. It doesn’t mean the same thing in science as it does to the rest of the world. In this case it would be more like the “fact of evolution.”

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Overload Syndrome

 

It’s no secret 21st Century folks are overloaded. The symptoms are everywhere. I read recently where approximately 10% of American families rent storage facilities to keep things they don’t need, don’t use, but can’t bring themselves to get rid of. Then yesterday morning I was part of a discussion involving ways to organize your life because it is dang near impossible to keep up with everything these days.

I currently have a big planner plus a small binder that I use exclusively to organize my overall life. Plus a small notebook that I keep with me to make notes or record things to remember. My email boxes (yes, I have more than one) are overflowing, I don’t have time to read the blogs I love. I have a stack of physical books I want to read, a virtual list in my Kindle, and a list of books I don’t own that I want to buy or check out of the library. Then there are the books I read for research, or because a friend wrote it, or somebody recommended it, or it was mentioned somewhere and I was intrigued. It never ends. I recently started a speed reading course to help with the load.

So what do we do? Here are some things that have slowly soaked into my thick head. If any of them sound good, feel free to try them. If they sound silly, just ignore them. If you have any ideas, please feel free to share.

 

Decide what is most important. Start there.

Divide and conquer. If a big project seems overwhelming, break it into parts and do one part at a time.

Let it go. There are only so many hours in a day, so you can’t do everything. What you can’t get to, let go. Put have-to items on the back burner, eliminate what you can. Go on with your life.

Before you sleep at night, write down what you must do the next day. Don’t put everything you can think of on this list, just the musts. Then let them go and sleep.

 

Okay, what are your ideas for keeping in our overwhelming world? Please share!

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Fear for Income

Photo by Lynn Kelley Author via WANA Common

There is a paranoia being grown today for the specific reason of making lots and lots of money. To most people, it even looks like the big companies are doing something good. Unless you understand the real story.

What is this growing fear? It is fear of germs. Yep, tiny bacteria and even smaller viruses. Haven’t you noticed? Just about everything now has chemicals in them to kill germs. There are several problems with this glut of micro-assassin ingredients.

    • They aren’t needed. All you really need to get most anything clean is soap and water. There’s a reason we’ve been told for years that the best way to stay healthy is washing our hands. Same goes for counters and sinks and pretty much anything else. There is also the rarely mentioned fact that if a surface dries completely almost all microorganisms will be killed. Bacteria and viruses need moist environments to survive. A dry counter will kill all but a rare few.
    • Our bodies need several types of bacteria. You’ve probably heard of probiotics. These are microorganisms that our bodies require to digest food.
    • Chemicals can be dangerous. Harsh chemicals used to disinfect surfaces can harm skin, eyes, and lungs. Chlorine mixed with other cleaners can release chlorine gas–which can be deadly.
    • Superbugs. You’ve probably heard that the overuse of antibiotics can breed “superbugs” which are bacteria that are not killed by the most common antibiotics. Some have even evolved that are not killed by ANY current antibiotic.

So the next time you clean, consider if you really need to use that strong cleaner. Maybe soap and water would be just as good or better.

Click here for more information about disinfectant over use and here for information about hand washing.

Did your parents teach you to wash your hands?

Are you paranoid about germs?

Have you noticed the increase in germ killing cleaners? The way the ads are designed to worry people?

 

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In the News…Or Not

Have you had all the political news you can stand? Is a steady stream of bad news givng you headaches? Well, these animals decided they’d had enough. Enjoy.

 

 

Have a great weekend!

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Together We Stand Strong

Bald Eagle, mighty symbol of our country

On this American Independence Day, I’d like to say I love my home and I believe with all my heart we are the greatest country in the world. Not that we don’t have issues and problems that we need to deal with, but we have the freedom to openly talk about those problems. That freedom of speech gives us the ability to change those things that don’t benefit us as a nation.

Changing things that are not good for the country as a whole is not the same thing as changing things we as individuals don’t particularly like. For example, I don’t like much rap or hip hop music. Should I be able to force this style of music to be banned? Of course not. Neither should another person be able to ban Jazz and Blues music—which I love. I think “Daisy Duke” shorts are horrible. Another person may think the sweatpants I wear at home are the worst thing ever (I don’t wear them in public…much) But neither of us can force the other to change. That’s called getting along, and it’s something we as a society needs to learn.

Which brings me back to the great country idea. Just because we don’t all agree with each other doesn’t make America any less a wonderful place to live. Remember, you can’t force the person beside you not to wear orange, but they can’t force you not to wear green either. So be good citizens and play nice!

 

And now a word from across the pond:

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Unidentified Flying Thing in the Sky

The first X-Files episode was based on a real UFO investigation.


There’s a UFO flap* going on right now. This one isn’t the kind where people are looking up at the night sky and seeing Venus. This flap is on TV. Perennial favorite, Ancient Aliens is back with new episodes and more on-air time by the hosts. Comcast on demand, for example, has Hanger 1, for example, and even within shows like Travel Channel’s Mysteries at the Museum. I’m guessing, but I’ll bet other providers, Netflix, Amazon, etc., have these or other UFO shows.

Before anyone points it out, I realize there are always UFO and alien related TV shows available. What I’m saying is that there are more at one time than I’ve ever seen, and the ones that are on seem more to lean to the reality of UFOs and the involvement of government(or multi-governments)with these crafts and beings. The whole thing has caught my interest, and I’m wondering if there are things going on that we as regular citizens are not aware of.
I’ve had a lifelong interest in aliens, UFOs, space travel, inter-dimensional transport, and the possibilities of what could be just beyond our reach. I have spent a lot of time and effort studying both the “junk science” areas and the “real science” areas of UFO and other topics. Maybe it’s time for me to share. Stay tuned to this blog for more coming soon.

Have you seen an unidentified flying object?
Have you seen an alien?
Do you think the whole thing is silly and made up by folks who don’t have anything better to do?

*A Flap is a sudden increase of UFO sightings by numerous people in a certain area or areas.

Take care!

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Have a Hopping Good Monday!

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Who Stole My Spoons?

spoons gonevia Flickr Creative Commons

I broke one of my personal rules the other day, I ran several errands, pushed hard at my writing, and did a bit around the house. Not a lot, but for me it was entirely too much.  It  felt great to accomplish so many things, and I thoroughly enjoyed the day, but there were consequences. For one, my spoons are gone! Spoons, you say. What the heck is the crazy woman talking about?

The Spoon Theory by Christine Miserandino is the clearest and most accurate explanation around of how energy, which she calls spoons, is the bane of existence for those of us with chronic illnesses.  To truly understand the idea, I suggest reading her explanation. The bottom line is that she uses spoons to represent units of energy. Sort of like a gallon of gas in your car. You can go just so far. Most people are energy efficient and need very little energy to do what they want on a daily basis. It’s only at times of long travel, or the need for lots of trips that the gallons becomes an issue. People use spoons. Most people have plenty for their daily needs. Some of us don’t have so many. Unlike gas, you can’t just go out and buy more. What ya got is what ya got. Deal with it.

spoonsvia Flickr Creative Commons

Most of us eventually learn to live within our spoon limit. We take life more slowly, do things in different ways, break big tasks into smaller ones, and learn to say no. These ways of dealing with insufficient spoons, tend to drive “normal” folks up the wall. Then there is the “do it anyway and pay the price later” strategy. It’s a commonly used strategy, because it allows us more freedom. The problems with it is that afterward we have almost no spoons for days or even weeks, we frequently are hit with other symptoms (pain, confusion, grogginess, weakness, etc.), and the fact that other people understand this coping strategy even less than the others. “But you went to Jan’s birthday party last week, why can’t you go to the mall with me?” We even get called lazy.

It’s a complicated way to live, and some of us cope better than others. If you’re dealing with a person with a chronic illness, maybe you could take a little time to think, to learn more, to figure out how to not push when the person is trying to live with their spoon limit, and most importantly: try to understand!

It would be a really nice thing to do!

Do you have a chronic illness? What do you wish people understood? Any suggestions for living with a spoon shortage?

Do you know someone with a chronic illness? How do you feel about the way they deal with it? What do you wish you understood about them or the illness?

Later!

Cheryel

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Science Fiction Authors

When I posted about the 50th anniversary of Star Trek, I mentioned the classic novels of science fiction. Today I’d like to mention the authors who pulled me into SF. Not everyone will consider these are the best or most influential, but in my teens and early twenties they wrote the books I escaped into. They came into my life either by being recommended to me by friends, being available through Scholastic (or both), or by being available in my local library. Still these authors are, if not the best,  at least among the best.

Except for the first name, the list is in no particular order. I stand behind my belief that Isaac Asimov was the best science fiction writer ever.

 

isaac-asimovIsaac Asimov. The author or editor of over 500 books, he also wrote numerous articles and essays. I have spent many hours reading and rereading Asimov’s work. My favorite of his novels is The God’s Themselves, although I’d be hard pressed to say why.  Oddly, while I’m not a huge short story fan (I prefer immersion in a story of a longer period of time), I love Asimov’s short stories more than any of his work. His short story, “What If…” contributed to my desire to write fiction. (I had to do something with all those stories I came up with when I began thinking in terms of “what if”.)

ray-bradburyRay Bradbury Possibly the most well known on this list, Bradbury’s work is deeply layered. I tended to feel I was missing something important, and yet I loved the stories. I can’t wait to read his work again now. I have a feeling I’ll be shocked at some of the amazing things I missed when I was too young to appreciate them.

arthur-c-clarkeArthur C. Clarke When they hear the name Arthur C. Clark, most people think 2001: A Space Odyssey. While I think 2001 is awesome, my favorite of his novels is Childhood’s End. The amazing story of human kind’s evolution into something else is a breathtaking tale of what might be next for our species.  I was excited to hear about the recent miniseries, but while it seemed promising in the beginning, it didn’t really have the depth and intricacy of the novel.

robert-heinleinRobert A. Heinlein I enjoy reading Heinlein, but his The Cat Who Walked Through Walls was the last SF novel I read (that I hadn’t previously read). I had never heard of Schrödinger’s Cat, and had no idea the novel was playing on that theme. I didn’t like the way it ended. I have a feeling I still wouldn’t like it, but wouldn’t feel as betrayed as I did back then (early 80’s).

jules-verneJules Verne  Jules Verne the Man Who Invented the Future, is a biography of Verne by F. Born, and there is much truth in the title. Among other things, Verne introduced a workable submarine, helicopter, and  moon landing. Great vision, exciting adventure stories. What more could you want?

h-g-wellsH. G. Wells Martian attacks, a trip to the moon, horrific biology experiments, an invisible man; and at the time he wrote them, these stories were new.  Wells had a gift of making the reader feel as if he/she was  in the thick of the events.

ZHenderson1953 Zenna Henderson  I loved Henderson’s  Pilgrimage: The Book of the People, but it was only a few years ago that I stumbled onto a volume of her short stories. Here I found even more depth and interesting takes on society.

 

Yes, with one exception these are all men. That’s what was available, so that’s what I read.  There  were women SF writers, but they were harder to find. Thankfully, things have gotten better since that time, though women in the genre are still struggling.

Later I discovered many more excellent SF authors, but the ones I included here were the beginning for me, the “gateway novels” I suppose. Writing this blog, makes me want to read more SF, both authors and stories I know and new authors and stories. There is never enough time to read.

I didn’t include pure fantasy authors (yes, I know the genres blur). Maybe I’ll write another post about them, especially since there are more women.

Do you have favorite authors from earlier in your life? Were they science fiction or other genres? Do you read different genre now than when you were younger?

Have a great week!

Cheryel

 

All photos from FamousAuthors.org except Zenna Henderson which is an author publicity photo.

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