When you are in a relationship, it appears that you and the other person, object (or even a concept) is outside of you and separate. Continue reading
I was putting on my makeup the other morning when I noticed a matched set of wrinkles around my mouth. Having reached the age where the mirror is can seem like an enemy instead of a friend, I am hyper-vigilant about the stories I tell myself as I gaze at my reflection.
It makes all the difference in what I see.
Allow me to provide two examples to demonstrate my point. Assume both of these scenarios occurred on the same day, at the same time:
Story A: It’s the end of 2015 and I didn’t accomplish all of my goals. I feel time slipping through my fingers like grains of sand and I feel powerless to stop the flow. I don’t particularly like myself right now and the choir of judgment, criticism and frustration is singing at full volume. When I look in the mirror, all I see are wrinkles, gray hairs and a bit of sagging around my jawline. I frown at my image and wonder (rather despondently) why I look so much older.
Story B: It’s the end of 2015 and I made a list of all that I accomplished this year. I have taught courses, given speeches (on a cruise!), appeared on television, been interviewed on radio shows and even created a podcast. It’s been a productive year and I can’t wait for 2016! When I look in the mirror, I see myself as a vibrant woman eager to share her wisdom. The wrinkles, gray hairs and sagging jawline are just the physical evidence that I have lived more than 50 years on this planet. I smile at myself, knowing that I am enough.
What just happened? My physical appearance didn’t change. The mirror’s surface was the same – it reflected back what was before it. The only thing different was the story I told myself as I looked into the mirror. And that story (whether it was positive or negative) caused me to see myself differently.
Instead of reflecting light particles, my mirror actually reflected the stories I told myself! Instead of an inanimate object made of glass and silver, I now call it my “Story Mirror.”
My mirror has become my litmus test. When I see the wrinkles, gray hair and sagging skin, I know I am not telling myself an uplifting story. When I see sparkling eyes and I can smile at myself, my internal story is rocking.
Your Stories Filter What You See
Stories are the meaning you attach to neutral facts. In the examples above, the physical appearance of my face certainly did not change, but I saw different things because of my story filter.
Can you change your limiting stories? Absolutely. Are you willing to become aware of your limiting stories so you can change them? Silence…as crickets chirp in the background.
The inevitable truth is: Only you are in control of your stories. You created them and you can change them. No one is coming to fix it. Only you can decide what stories work for you and which ones need to be changed.
“But how do I change my stories? That’s exactly how I see myself!” I can hear the conversation in your head as you consider my message. I do not have enough space here to explain the how and why of the Story Alchemy™ process, but I can promise you that it works miracles.
When you change your stories, you change your life. Your view of your world also changes to reflect your new perspective.
Life is a Mirror of your Inner World
One of my favorite quotes is by Henry David Thoreau: It’s not what you look at that matters; it’s what you see. When you begin alchemizing your limiting stories, you begin to see your world differently.
Why? It all starts with your inner world. Change your inner world and the outer world will also change.
We live in a dualistic world of physical form, governed by the laws of time and space. Good and bad co-exist; love and hate can always be seen; joy and despair exist in the same set of circumstances.
It all comes down to which story you choose as your filter. Are you limiting your view because of the choir of judgmental voices singing in your head? Or have you chosen to ignore them and turn toward the light of empowerment?
It is your choice, in every moment. Your choice determines what you see in the mirror, and in the outside world.
Why not choose to stand in front of your mirror with an empowering story about yourself, your life and your value? Commit to seeing the greatest version of the grandest vision of yourself and your world will change…because you have changed it from the inside.
You always have the perfect litmus test to determine whether you are on track. Your mirror. And your life.
Interested in learning more? Please visit KathrynEriksen.com and join my email list. Your first gift is the Story Alchemy ebook, that explains the process of returning to your authenticity.
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 – you 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!
“How do I begin?” my friend, Anne, asked me over lunch one day.
“You begin with your stories – that collection from your past that you still tell yourself, and you alchemize them.”
The look on her face was funny and sad at the same time. But I have to hand it to her, she was game to continue. “Explain, please.”
“Alchemy is a funny word but it really just means transformation. When you ‘alchemize’ your stories, it means that you used the Story Alchemy™ process to reframe your story.” I paused to see if she understood. She nodded and I continued. “Part of the process is to release your old story, forgive yourself and others, and then replace it with an empowering story.”
We were enjoying lunch outside a small sandwich shop when the conversation veered in the direction of my passion – Story Alchemy. At first, Anne was politely curious, but she became more invested after I shared how much my life had changed after I began telling myself empowering stories.
“It sounds too good to be true,” skepticism ringing behind every syllable.
“Your stories act like filters on your awareness.” I paused as I looked around for an example that would bring the point home. “Do you see those two women at that other table? When you look at them, what are the thoughts that run through your mind?”
She glanced over and mused out loud. “They could be a mother and daughter having lunch.”
“What are some other possibilities?”
“A teacher and a student. Maybe the older woman is her aunt.”
I smiled…and did not say a word. Anne glanced back over to the other table and noticed that the younger woman was getting agitated and upset. She was moving uncomfortably in her chair and was intently focused on the older woman, her body tense with emotion.
“Definitely mother and daughter,” Anne declared with triumph.
“You don’t really know if any of those things are true, do you?” I asked gently. “You just observed an event and made up your own stories about it.”
Her confused look was comical, but I held her gaze while she puzzled it out. When the realization dawned in her eyes, I knew she had turned a corner.
“I get it! I decided they were mother and daughter because I remembered a similar scene with my own mother.”
“You recognized a similar pattern and immediately came to the conclusion that they are mother and daughter.”
“I guess so,” hesitation in her voice.
“Let me explain it this way. Your brain is designed to remember and recognize patterns – it helps you make instant decisions about whether something or someone is friendly or dangerous. That ability was helpful when survival depended on whether you knew if that large animal coming toward you was a saber tooth tiger, but it can really mess up relationships when you jump to a wrong conclusion, based on your own stories.” I took a sip of iced tea and waited a few moments for that information to sink in.
“When you saw those two women start to get into an argument, it reminded you of an argument you had with your mother, didn’t it? You felt the same emotions from the past when you observed that incident just now, didn’t you?”
Anne’s eyes widened in surprise. “How did you know that?”
“There is a deeper story of pain, isn’t there?”
She took a deep breath and nodded slowly. “When I was about that girl’s age, I had a terrible argument with my mother about where I was going to college. I finally gave in to her choice of schools, but I still resent her for forcing that on me.” Tears welled up in her eyes as she remembered that scene from many years ago. “It caused a rift in our relationship that is still there today,” she quietly admitted.
I reached across the table and gently squeezed her hand in support and friendship. We sat for a moment while she composed herself. She finally looked up and asked the question I had been waiting for.
“Can Story Alchemy help me reframe that story about my mother? I’m so tired of carrying it around.”
I stood up and hugged her, my heart singing with joy. I said a silent “thank you” and knew that I was exactly where I was supposed to be, helping my friend find peace with a slice of her past that still impacted her present moments.
To learn more about the Story Alchemy process, please visit KathrynEriksen.com and join the Story Alchemy email list. As you transform your stories from lead to gold, your heart will dance with life.
Stories are your version of neutral events that you tell yourself. They are the culmination of your past experiences, stories, beliefs and thoughts about a similar event. Stories are the filter that shifts millions of data bits and only allows those that match your story to enter your awareness.
Can you change your stories? Absolutely! Do you want to change your stories? Silence…
Story Alchemy™ to the rescue! Join my email list to receive the ebook on Story Alchemy that explains in greater detail how changing your stories can change your life.
As Henry David Thoreau so aptly observed, “It’s not what you look at that matters. It’s what you see.”
I believe that life is a dance and you are one of the partners. The other one…who you are dancing with…you can guess who that is. That all affirming energy that surrounds us, imbues us with love and supports our efforts to become more.
When you begin to make choices to dance, your life reflects those choices back to you.
Take a moment to listen to my interview with Julianna Ricci, the Energy Coach, as we visit about life, energy and dance.