If you’re like me, if you see an email with a subject line like “Need More Money?” It goes straight in the trash.
Of COURSE we all need more money.
Knowing that is the key to actually getting it.
For me, more money means I can pamper the people I care about. It means I know I’ll be able to offer a hand without making difficult choices. And it means when there’s something new and shiny I have the option of buying it.
For you, more money might mean feeling safe and secure no matter what the future holds.
Or it might mean that you have the freedom to travel, or experiment, or create.
It could also mean that you wouldn’t have to worry about money if you had enough that it could take care of itself.
Those all boil down to pretty much the same nugget - money is just a tool to bring your Big Self to the world. However that is for you.
I love thinking of money as the energy of gratitude. That makes it easier for me to accept full value for my work.
How about you? What is really behind needing more money for you?
If you follow me on Facebook, you know I’ve been widely sharing Strong Coffey Personal Training's posts. Kelly Coffey lost half her body weight and kept it off for over a decade. She's now a personal trainer in my area, and even has a global reach thanks to her now-viral message - Love Your Fat.
I totally agree that fat-shaming only keeps people (me) fat because it keeps the fat in control. Fearing fat won’t lead to good choices. I’m taking Kelly’s challenge to write 5 things I love about my fat, and my fat body.
Unlike Kelly, I was not an obese child. When I was 26, I gained 100 pounds in less than a year (thanks to a prescription I should not have been on because of an underlying medical condition, PCOS) and I’ve kept most of it on since then.
Twice I’ve hit my top weight of 240 - in 2005 on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Alaska eating everything in sight and moving very little because of a knee injury, and 2011, a year postpartum - carrying a girl baby was hell on my hormones and I just kept gaining weight after my daughter’s birth.
The photo above shows me at 125 pounds in 1996 (when I thought I was 20 lbs overweight), and my heaviest in 2011.
Here goes, 5 Things I Love about My Fat:
1. I do not care what I look like in a bathing suit
This takes serious pressure off in the summertime. That 22-year-old in the picture? She cared a hell of a lot if her swimsuit flattered her thighs. Now I just put on a suit that fits and is comfortable, knowing I am not going to look “good” anyway.
2. People confide in me
I’ve always had a sympathetic ear, and now my cushy shoulder is even better for crying on. Something about being fat makes me seem even more non-threatening, non-judgmental, and wise.
3. My voice has more resonance
I remember my clarinet teacher telling 105-lb, 17-year-old me I’d have fuller tone if I put on some weight, because my body would resonate more. I no longer play clarinet, but my singing voice is bigger than it was when I was thin.
4. My kids are always comfy snuggling with me
My soft body has lots of great resting places for reading a book, watching a movie, or catching some z’s. When the kids cuddle with my svelte husband, I often hear complaints about his boniness.
5. My improved leverage helps me feel more capable
I don’t need a “big, strong man” to help me crush things, or move heavy objects. I used to try to use my hand strength to fold cardboard for recycling, but now I can lean on a big pile of boxes with one foot and take care of them.
So those are the things fat gives me. If you’ve ever felt fat, will you take the challenge and write 5 things you love about your fat?
No, this isn’t “one weird trick” that will have you waking up feeling rested.
(Who clicks on those ads anyway? Especially when they have such gross photos.)
It was my 40th birthday last week, and with Easter Sunday right behind, I’ve been indulging in carbs at a level that could be described as “unsafe.”
And that’s left me feeling T-I-R-E-D.
In addition to drinking more water and seriously cutting back the sugar (yes, body, I am listening!), I’ve recruited some help from my dream self.
My dream self isn’t the thin 22-year-old me I am in my mind (man, there are so many things I would tell her).
It’s the part of me that goes dreaming. Maybe it’s a piece of consciousness, or soul, or maybe it’s imagination. Think of it however you like.
You can ask your dream self for help on pretty much anything, every single night.
If I’m struggling with a problem (like how to be in 3 places at once when I’ve overbooked myself, or why the code I wrote just doesn’t work, or how to be more patient with my children), I’ll ask to be shown a clue in my dreams.
If I’m feeling ill, I will ask for the healing my body requires to move forward with my life purpose.
And if I’m feeling completely exhausted and worn out, I’ll ask for a wonderful restful sleep with images I can use during the day to feel energized.
That’s what I did last night. I set the intention to wake up feeling completely rested, and to bring back energizing images.
(aside: to set an intention, you can say it out loud, write it down, or just think it. It all works. If you want to give your intention a boost, try one of my DreamBraids(tm))
My dream self made it super easy for me today. The image is the one I have tattooed on my left wrist - so I naturally saw it all day long, and felt great.
How about you? What help do you need from your dream self tonight?
So, I’ve started up a local chapter of the Holistic Chamber of Commerce here in Western Mass.
It’s a real labor of love, and we had our first meeting Tuesday night.
I lined up a fantastic speaker, booked the perfect venue, put up an exciting event page… and crickets.
Five days before the event, we had less than 10 people registered, including those of us working the event.
I put out a call for help, took out a Facebook ad, and that night I had this dream:
I’m at the Holistic Chamber meeting and I can’t really focus because more and more people keep coming into the room and I have to arrange for more seating.
When Val gets to the point in her talk where she opens up for Q&A, two men from a nearby chapter hijack the conversation very abruptly. They’re trying to force their differing point of view. Val and I both try to steer the conversation back on track. Even though we’re unsuccessful, everything seems okay anyway.
The best clue to what to do with the dream is your feelings on waking. When I woke from this dream, I felt reassured. I took it as a pat on the head from the Universe, letting me know everything would work out.
When I arrived at the venue on Tuesday, we had room for a handful of walkins, so I asked for more chairs to put in the corner in case we needed to put them out. I didn’t want a lot of empty seats because that really brings down the energy of a meeting.
People started arriving 20 minutes early, and by the posted registration time we already had more walk-ins than chairs and set up the additional chairs.
Ten minutes before the program was supposed to start, I counted the people in the room, and the number of empty chairs, and realized we needed more.
Just then I had an almost physical memory from my dream. it was more than just a reassurance; it was a sneak peek to help me be prepared.
I was on high alert for conversation hijacking, and while no one was as blunt as the men in my dream, there was a moment where I wondered if I’d have to step in and get things back on track.
So it’s true that even the most improbable dreams can literally play out in waking life.
One thing that’s always come easy for me is bringing my dreamwork into my “real life.” Even when I had a corporate career, I wasn’t shy about my energy healing.
Yet I talk to a lot of people that feel fantastic when they’re away on a retreat, only to have it disappear the instant their car pulls back into their driveway.
Does that sound familiar? The hectic pace of life, and all the other obligations waiting to be caught up on make it easy to slip out of the flow of sitting in circle (or on a mat, or walking in the woods, or what have you).
With dreams, they knock louder when we don’t hear the message the first time through. Right? Those “nightmares” might have started off as a funny little dream, or an exciting sleep escapade.
I had a realization last week during a session with my friend Denise Dee (Rebel Seer). She intuited that I was having a disconnect between my lower and upper chakras, and asked me if I was feeling stuck or like I couldn’t say what I need to say.
We ended up digging in to what I would defend to the death for someone else and that’s when I realized that there is a part of me I don’t allow into my “real world.”
It’s hard for me to even write this now, that’s how much I want to protect it.
I have never been able to reconcile my feminist ideology with living in the real world. I feel like I am always compromising my values, so I can can either be angry on a soapbox, or I can let it slide.
Some of you who know me might be thinking that it doesn’t seem like I protect my feminist self at all - well whatever you’ve seen in me, there’s a lot more safely tucked away.
What does this all mean? It means I get to practice dreaming into the “real world” a lot more, and I’ll probably have some new offerings as a result.
For a few months, I’ve been pondering a very feminist retreat idea, but held back because I didn’t want to scare or intimidate women away from joining up. If a retreat where we go out into nature to strip ourselves down to the true essence that we need to share with the “real world” sounds good to you, send me an email and we’ll talk.
In the meantime, I’ve got some good stuff going about making decisions in alignment with your Soul. There’s a free audio “The Open Secret to Making Better (and Faster!) Decisions,” and a free video training on tapping into some of your superpowers. It’s game-changing so if you need a boost right now, especially financially, check it out.
In my last post, I shared 3 steps to decode even the most mysterious dream, and I said the most important fourth step is taking ACTION.
So why is action so important?
Let’s say you’re taking a class, and you’ve gone to all the lectures, done all the homework, but you decide to skip the final project.
"That’s OK," you say, "I already got what I needed from this class. I have the knowledge."
Leaving aside not getting a passing grade, do you really have the full experience of the class without doing the project? Have you taken in all the knowledge it offers?
Of course not.
And you could wake up from a dream, say, “Wow, that was a great dream. I had fun.” And just like not doing the final project for a class, without taking action on the dream you will not have the full experience of the dream. You won’t have the complete message the dream shares with you.
So what does it mean to “take action” on a dream?
I’ll give an example from one of my recent dreams. I awoke after the first of three solo-parenting nights having had an “anxiety dream” where a project I had worked on was scrapped by the person in charge and I was called in to an all-day meeting, requiring me to cancel my plans and causing me great frustration at having to re-do so much work.
When I did a reality check on the dream, it seemed plausible that my work would have to be re-done. The action I took was a centering exercise I do when I’m feeling underappreciated.
Later in the day, while in the midst of a planned day of fun with my children, I received an email saying that my piece of the project wasn’t working as expected and could I please make some changes.
Because I had taken the initial action to center myself and prepare for the negative feelings that arose, I was able to respond kindly, give a timeframe that worked for me to complete the work, and go back to having fun with my kids.
I think anxiety dreams are something we all experience, so the next time you have one, run through the Lightning Dreamwork process on it, and you will be prepared for what comes next in waking life.
I’ve opened up a closed Facebook group for dream sharing so please join us!
It breaks my heart when people dismiss their dreams - “It’s only a dream” or even worse, say that to someone else.
I’ll hate seeing descriptions of fantastic sleep adventures from Facebook friends, that end with, “Weird” or “WTF.” I know that if the dream was significant enough for a Facebook post there’s some juicy energy to work with.
Usually I’ll post a quick “If it were my dream” statement and if that opens up, great! If not, I’ve at least planted the seed of valuing dream information.
I’m sure you’ve had a dream where you just had no idea why it happened or what it could mean. We all have those. Or maybe you wake up with a half-remembered glimpse or even just a feeling.
These are all messages for you from your soul (or higher self, or the Universe, or however you like to imagine it).
Active Dreamers play a quick and easy game that makes decoding dreams lots of fun, and most importantly, brings dreaming back to a communal activity. Most dreams happen alone but the information and images they bring help everyone you share them with.
So what is this game, you ask? It’s Lightning Dreamwork. It takes less than ten minutes and all you need is a dream (or something like a dream) and a partner or group to play with. (If you don’t have a partner, I’ll be yours. I always liked pairing with the teacher, so as the teacher I love returning the favor).
The very first rule is that the dreamer is the authority on his/her dream. We’re not analyzing each other or dictating symbology. This goes to the overall goal of creating a safe (and fun!) space for dream sharing.
I’ve used this process in just about every situation imaginable, with friends, family, coworkers, even strangers. The worst that can happen is you’ll have spent a few minutes exercising your imagination.
Here are the three simple steps to decode even the most mysterious dream with Lightning Dreamwork:
Step 1: The Dreamer tells the dream like a story
Give it a title like it were a book or movie, then tell the dream as best you can remember. This isn’t the place for backstory or how the dream relates to your waking life. Entertain us.
Step 2: The Partner gets more info about what to do with this dream
There are three essential questions that will point to decoding this dream.
Question 1: How did you feel upon waking?
This is how we know what direction to take. Your emotions on waking are the biggest clue to what the dream is here for. (and this is why I no longer have “nightmares” - I know how to recognize the importance of certain dreams)
Please resist the urge to analyze when reporting your feelings. If you could start your sentence with “I thought” then start over. What were the actual feelings you remember? Anxious? Surprised? Calm?
Question 2: Reality check
The reality check is how you know whether this dream is giving you a literal warning to heed. Do you recognize any of it from waking life? Is it possible it could play out (even metaphorically)?
Question 3: What do you want to know about the dream?
Before the rest of us start playing a different game, this tells us what the dreamer wants to focus on. Many people have surprised me with the answer to this question.
Step 3: The Partner(s) offer their associations
Always, always, always, always, always, always start sharing with “If it were my dream” or “In my dream of your dream.” And as much as possible keep things in the first person. This can be grammatically tricky but it does get easier with practice.
For example, if you’ve just shared a dream with me about a horse, I might say, “If it were my dream I’m reminded of the horses on my aunt’s farm and how gracefully they play with each other.”
Or I might share something I know about the dreamer, such as “If it were my dream, I see the connection to my graduate work in psychology that I quit early so I could take care of my mother.” It’s temping to say “I see the connection to your graduate work” but the dreamer needs to remain the authority on the dream so keeping our suggestions in the first person removes any projections of its meaning.
The different perspectives we offer each other on these dream symbols and landscapes is magical. I’ve had so many dreams that seemed like almost a throw-away with no hope of gleaning information or action, then a quick Lightning Dreamwork round and suddenly I’ve got a secret handshake from the Universe on an important matter.
Lightning Dreamwork has a very important fourth step, once the dreamer has heard the partners’ associations she decides how to honor it by taking action.
This is super important and stay tuned because I’m going to write about it more next week.