The Wonder of Being Human


I am 30,000 feet above the earth, thinking about a movie that I just watched. It touched me in a way that hasn’t happened in a while.

I have always felt a strong affinity for the lonely ones, the outcasts, the overlooked. It’s probably because I was one myself.

So often, the need to belong is stronger than the will to be kind. But when a person looks inside and chooses kindness over belonging, everyone grows and evolves.

That’s why the movie called “Wonder” was so meaningful. A birth defect made Auggie look hideous. His features are misshapen, he is small for his age and a prime target for bullies. But the kids who learn to see behind the mask discover his goodness and light.

We all wear masks to protect our vulnerability. We learn from an early age that hiding our true self is the way to get along, be accepted and belong. We see what we believe and we act accordingly.

Until something breaks through our mask. Or someone sees us – really sees us. Then, the mask shatters and the light behind our eyes connect. Because we are all the same light. We just have different forms.

Imagine

Imagine if all humans could see themselves for the wonder that they are. Beings in human form, experiencing life in each moment. What might spring from that one simple shift in perspective?

o Judgment and criticism wouldn’t be necessary. How can you judge another for you are the same?

o Racism, discrimination and violence wouldn’t be necessary. For how can you harm another when you are the same?

o Competition would be replaced by collaboration; Jealousy and hatred would dissolve into love;

Imagine your own life if your closest loved ones knew who they are and saw you as you are. A unique expression of divine energy. Differences would be celebrated and passions elevated.

That is the wonder of being human. “Wonder” portrayed these concepts on the big screen.

My 30,000 foot view of the world has shifted. I am in love with myself, my life and every person on the planet. Because love is who we are.

It’s just another step in the Heart Dance!

Mindful Focus – For Students in School and Students of Life


Mindful FocusMeditation

It’s the time of year when the specter of final exams is close enough to create a cloud of visceral fear that trails behind students. Test anxiety can grip the most dedicated scholar and ruin the end result of their month-long efforts.

When I was studying for the bar exam, I hit a wall of fear. I graduated from law school with respectable grades, had a great job at the firm I wanted and was ready to start my career. I had climbed the mountain and was ready to begin my next adventure.

But one thing stood in my way.

The Bar Exam. Just typing those words still causes my heart to race a tiny bit. It is a cruel joke on aspiring lawyers. Endure 3 years of law school, and you’re still not done. Graduate and receive your J.D. degree.

And you’re still not a lawyer.

The Bar Exam is the final hurdle. The last summit to conquer before you can practice law. You have a bit over two months to study (at least in my state), and you don’t know if you passed until four months later. You have already started your legal career, and your future career depends on passing. The first time.

To say that law graduates studying for the bar are under a bit of pressure is such an understatement I won’t even try to come up with an appropriate analogy.

Taking exams and staying calm under stress is an art and a science. When I was studying for the bar exam, I didn’t know how to stay centered, mindful and focused. I somehow managed to pass (Thank God).

I wish I knew then what I know now.

How Mindfulness and Meditation Can Help You Focus

According to Jon Kabat-Zin, generally considered to be the “father” of mindfulness in the West,

Mindfulness is the moment-to-moment, non-judgmental awareness, cultivated by paying attention in a specific way, that is, in the present moment, and as nonreactively, as non-judgmentally and open heartedly as possible.

When you practice being in the moment, then the next, and the next, your experience of the moment is at its peak. The past no longer exists, and the future has not yet arrived. All that is important is the here and now, which you experience without judgment.

Doesn’t that sound like a great way to live? Research studies have proven the physical, psychological and emotional benefits of mindfulness. Peace, calm, and compassion as just a few of the many ways that practicing mindfulness can change your life.

As a student, being mindful while you study can help you understand and remember the information. Setting the intention of focus, awareness, and memory before you study is the key. And the best way to do that is to listen to a guided meditation.

Meditation is one way to achieve mindfulness. By slowing down and watching your breath, you focus your attention on what is happening at this moment. Stress and anxiety cannot exist in this space. Your mind is clear, and when the meditation is over, that clarity will help you focus on the information you are learning.

It’s using your mind to improve your mind.

The Mindful Focus Meditation

Find a comfortable place to sit with your feet flat on the floor and your hands in your lap. Your back should be straight but loose. This meditation is less than 25 minutes, so give yourself about 30 minutes for the entire process. No interruptions (cell phones on mute, computer on mute) and no distractions.

Listen to this meditation in the morning as soon as you wake up. It will help you stay focused in class or when you are studying. If you listen again during the day or at night, it will ease anxiety and increase confidence in your ability to understand, remember and retain the information.

It’s just another step in the Heart Dance!

What Makes You Come Alive?


Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do that. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.  – Howard Thurman

It’s the year-end, and you may not be happy with how 2017 treated you. You may have started setting your goals for 2018, determined to have a better year.

Instead of being regretful, frustrated and angry at the world, why not try a different approach?21 Day Challenge

It’s the 21-Day Heart Dancing Challenge. Designed to help you create a daily mindfulness practice, it also will change your perspective on yourself, your life, and your place in the world.

Don’t believe me? Nothing I say will convince your intellect that a daily mindfulness practice brings more peace, happiness, and joy in your life. The skeptic in you will always resist. The cynic that loves to snicker at these concepts is probably having a field day right now.

I can’t fight your skeptical or cynical voices. They’re in your head, not mine.

What I can do is throw down a challenge. Join the 21-Day Heart Dancing Challenge, establish your daily practice of meditation, journaling, and intentional creation. If you have faithfully completed each day’s work, and you still don’t believe in the power of daily practice, I will publicly acknowledge that you were right.

On the other hand, if you find at the end of the challenge that you have changed and feel more alive, then we both win.

Do we have a deal?

What Does An Actress Know About the LOA?


I have to share a quick story. I have been a student of positive psychology, mindfulness, and meditation for many years. Whenever someone would teach about the Law of Attraction, however, my mind immediately shut down, because it always seemed too good to be true.

I am supposed to see myself driving a brand new car and poof! It will be sitting in my garage? That seemed a bit of a stretch.

Someone forgot to place the order because my new Benz never showed up!

The visualization step would always trip me up. I was told to visualize my heart’s desire, feel as if it was already here, and step back into my world knowing that it was on its way.

But how do you energize your intentions with emotions that are authentic enough to communicate with the Universe?

Enter Jennifer Grace, stage right.

Jennifer discovered the missing ingredient, and she tells us about it during this 20-minute interview. Her background as a professional actress, her ability to clearly teach these concepts and her passion for sharing are almost tangible. Jennifer wrote Directing Your Destiny, and created a powerful 4 week course to show you how to become the writer, producer, and director of your dreams.

I became a student of Directing Your Destiny and had many “aha” moments. I felt so strongly about Directing Your Destiny that I became one of Jennifer’s first Certified Coaches in this material!

Jennifer was kind enough to appear on the Heart Dancing Radio Show and we had a great chat. She explains why she wrote Directing Your Destiny and the impact that teaching the course material has had on her students. Listen here to this great interview.

My next class starts on Sunday, January 14, 2018 and ends on February 4, 2018. We meet for one hour each week, and you are supported meditations, journal prompts and mindfulness tools. The process sounds deceptively simple, but if used consistently, will create changes in your life.

To learn more, please schedule a 15 minute interview with me to see if this class is a good fit.

Just go to: HeartDancingYourDestiny.AcuityScheduling.com

or check out the course description here: KathrynEriksen.com/heart-dancing-destiny.

It’s just another step in the Heart Dance.

I Tried to Eat Soup with a Fork


I was about to sit down and enjoy my soup for lunch, when I realized that I forgot to get a spoon. A fork was left on the table, and I had the mad idea to try to eat my chicken noodle soup with it.

You can guess what happened.

Soup everywhere but my mouth. The noodles made it, but it soon became obvious that it was going to take a long time to enjoy my lunch. Forks were not designed to be used with liquids.

Are you creating your wealth by the same method?

The origin of the word “wealth” is the old English word, “weal” which means “well-being.” Well-being can be expressed in many ways, but some of the most common are in the areas of money, health and relationships.

Unfortunately, the three areas of money, health and relationships can also be the source of great pain, frustration and anger. When you feel “poor” in any of these areas, it’s just like you are trying to eat chicken noodle soup with a fork!

The Empowered Way Webinar Series shows you how to transform your relationships in the areas of money, health and relationships. Instead of focusing on the shadows, Empowered Way teaches you how to shine a light into your darkness. The end result – yEmpowered Way Webinars Descriptionou learn the steps to the Heart Dance and begin living deliberately in your creative flow.

The first 2 hour webinar is Monday, December 14, 2015, from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. and the cost is less than a dinner out for two. Empower Your Money will show you how to recognize limiting beliefs, reframe them and release the negative energy that has been holding you back. Please join us as we dance across the Ethernet!

Heart Dancing – It’s the only way to live!

Heart Dancing and Television


On February 12, 2015, I had the distinct privilege to appear on The Broadcast (KTXD-TV) to talk about Heart Dancing.

The word is spreading about this book and movement – care to join me?

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P.S. To learn more about Heart Dancing, go to www.HeartDancingNow.com and sign up for my email list.

P.P.S. Or just go ahead and buy Heart Dancing from Amazon – you will learn how you create your life, thought by thought. Story Alchemy is also introduced and used by the characters to change their limiting stories from lead to gold. Learn the steps of the Heart Dance – and BE HAPPY!

#HeartDancing   #StoryAlchemy

Your Life is Like a Cruise Ship


Cruise shipWhen you go on a cruise, you enter a different world – focused on fun, sun, and relaxation. Your digital connections are left behind and it’s only you and your fellow travelers sharing the experience. You can be as active or sedentary as you want; you can eat all day or not; you can even play sports, work out, or dance until the wee hours of the morning.

Life is about what you choose to create.

While you are busy on the ship, you sometimes get so caught up in your creation that you forget you are on a large ship in the middle of the ocean. The behind the scenes view that supports your ability to create is not readily apparent, until you focus on it. Then you begin to notice…

  • the staff who makes the delicious meals, cleans your room every day and turns down your bed;
  • the crew who make sure that the boat is stable, even in rough seas; and
  • the navigator who ensures that the ship reaches it’s destination, even with 40 + mph cross winds.

Life is like a cruise ship. The surface of your life may have waves or rough days; winds may blow you off course, but if you know your destination you can make adjustments and continue to move forward.

And just like the ocean supports the ship, the Universe supports you. The ocean does not discriminate or treat some ships differently than others. The Universe is the same – it doesn’t matter whether you are wealthy or poor, young or old, male or female.  The behind-the-scenes support is always there, no matter who you are or what ship you happen to be sailing on.

If you knew you were 100% supported in everything you did, wouldn’t that make a difference in your choices?

When there is no fear, there is only freedom. To create a life you love.

Please join me this Thursday, February 12, 2015, as I explore these ideas and so much more on the Heart Dancing Radio Show. My special guest is Ashley Sibille, who has created CALYL (Create a Life You Love). (The details of how to listen live are shown below in the Dancing Girl graphic.)

We are going to dance on the waves of how to create your best life!

HD Ad#HeartDancing    #Story Alchemy

Spend 5 Minutes and You will Know


A friend just shared this video with me called “Unbroken.” It doesn’t have anything to do with the movie by the same name, but I promise, it is well worth your time.

Please share – let’s raise everyone’s eyes up and encourage each other to keep moving, striving, doing and being.

#HeartDancing      #Story Alchemy

Declare 2015 as Your Year of Empowering Stories


StoryAlchemyAs you are about to step into a new year, sparkling with possibilities and shining with opportunities, don’t you feel a compulsion to get rid of the old? Besides the physical (lose weight, eat better, etc.) have you thought about the stories you have created about your past that you still tell yourself today?

Stories are the way you relate to the outside world. Stories hold your interpretation of events and people who reflect back your own recognition of self-worth and value. Stories can be uplifting or damaging, expanding or limiting, accepting or judgmental.

The wondrous thing about stories is that you – only you – create them.

The disastrous thing about stories is that you – only you – create them.

As we move into 2015, why not begin by pulling out the stories about your past that keep you playing small? You know the ones I mean – when your brother/sister got something instead of you, when you made a mistake about money and decided that you would never be good with money, or when your pet destroyed something and you blamed yourself.

No one can see inside your head except for you. You are the only person on the planet who can change your story. Remember – you are not changing the facts involved – just your interpretation of it. And that makes all the difference.

I call it Story Alchemy. It is a simple, 4 step process that changes your stories from lead to gold. I have used it in my own life and it has created miracles in my relationships, my work and my faith. As I began alchemizing my limiting stories, I found myself reacting differently to that person or situation. As my reactions changed, my relationships changed. I am happier, freer to express myself authentically and peaceful with my place in the world.

Instead of playing the victim card, I began to play the empowerment card.

And that had made all the difference.

It all starts with you. You are at the center of your universe. You decide how you want to see yourself as you move from the center to the outside. Why not see yourself as a powerful creator, a positive influence, a hero?

Please take a moment and watch the short video at HeartDancingNow.com. If what I share makes sense or you want to learn more, then sign up for my emails. Remember, it all begins and ends with you.

Let’s make 2015 the Year of Empowering Stories – one person at a time!

#StoryAlchemy   #HeartDancing

Beyond Fear…Lies Freedom


BeyondFearWhen I first heard this phrase, it struck me as simplistic and naive. Fear protects us from hurt – why would I want to potentially endanger myself to see what lay on the other side?

That type of thinking was much earlier in my journey (so happy to admit). I now see this phrase from a completely different perspective.

Fear is not protection…it is limitation. Setting aside obvious safety concerns (wearing a seat belt, not using a blow dryer in the bathtub, etc.) fearful thinking is entirely generated by your mind.

The thoughts you think repeatedly will become your beliefs. Your beliefs guide your actions and that is how your life is created. Thinking fearful thoughts leads you down the path of lack, scarcity and protectionism.

Move beyond your fear and find your freedom. 

Allow me to give you a small example from my recent trip to Paris.  I have a small bit of claustrophobia. Nothing debilitating, but I know when it comes into my awareness, because my heart starts beating faster, my breath comes in shallow gasps, and all I can think about is that I have to escape the environment that triggered that reaction.

To capture this photograph of the gargoyle looking out at the Paris skyline (the Eiffel Tower in the background is the cherry on top), I had to climb the North Tower of Notre Dame. 300 stone steps that formed a circular staircase inside a stone chamber that was probably 5 feet wide. People in front of me; people behind me. No flat spot to catch my breath, only small, narrow windows cut out of the 2 foot thick walls (did I mention they are made of out stone?) The combination of the small space, physical exertion (when was the last time you climbed 300 steps without stopping) and the knowledge that I was surrounded by an immoveable material, triggered my claustrophobia.

I knew what this climb would entail, and I suspected that it might have that effect on me. To prepare, I gave myself three simple things to focus on while I was climbing:

1. Sing the words to Pharell Williams’ Happy song, which always makes me smile;

2. Focus on the other people making this climb with me; and

3. Keep my end goal in mind – I wanted to capture those gargoyles and the Paris skyline on my camera.

I discovered by keeping myself busy (at one point, one of the other tourists asked me what I was singing, which combined #1 & 2), I was not thinking fearful thoughts. My  mind was focused on others instead of myself, I was in a great mood (courtesy of Pharell’s catchy song). These techniques worked until about 2/3 of the way up.

Our progress came to a stop. While I was grateful for the rest, it took me out of my rhythm (step and hum; step and wonder where the family was from in front of me). Now that we had stopped, the fearful thoughts came crashing back in. The thought of escape flicked across my mind, but I knew there was no way to go but up. So I pulled out my most powerful technique – my vision of my goal.

I was so close to the top, I had to get those photographs of the gargoyles! That was enough to quench the fear and make my feet move again. It turns out that we were only 10 steps from the top. If I had quit at that point, I would have deeply regretted it.  And fear would have won.

Beyond Fear…Lies Freedom. 

What fear is holding you back from discovering your freedom? What can you look at differently in your life that will propel you forward to a more expanded and evolved you? Do one thing today that triggers a fearful thought, but do it anyway. And discover what you have been missing!

The future depends on what we do in the present. – Mahatma Gandhi

The future depends on what we do in the present. – Mahatma Gandhi