What’s Love Got To Do With It? | MKE Year 3 Week 18

My kids and I love watching good movies and listening to good music – so by natural extension, randomly dropping one-liners is kind of our thing. For instance, instead of simply announcing ‘Dinner’s ready…’, I’ll say ‘Oh, oh, oh, sweet child o’ mine…dinner’s ready’.

Oh sweet child of mine...

Mega Mind is one of our favourites, and the line ‘…and I love you, random citizen’ speaks to so much more than just a giggle from movie night…it epitomizes my mindset and is a major contributing factor to my ‘sunshine and rainbows’ world.

While my kids were growing up, my parenting style was based largely upon my understanding of unconditional love. And truthfully, having this core belief as the lodestone of my parental compass is a huge part of why they survived teenage hood 😉

Ancient-+How+does+a+Compass+work

I learned very early on that it was necessary to have a strong moral compass to keep me on the straight and narrow, in life, but also in parenting.

As a leader – which as parents we are – I strived to do my best to lead by example. Mostly because it’s the right thing to do, but also because everybody knows people won’t do what you say, they’ll do what you do.

Beginning with the end in mind I knew that unconditional love was the key. Having a long-term vision to foster independence and empathy in my kids helped me see past whatever the current struggle was. Keeping things in perspective allowed me to ‘pick my battles’ as they say…

By no means have I been awarded a medal as the Worlds’ Best Mom [though I am pretty sure it’s in the mail], however, I’ve learned a thing or two along the way that helped keep me focused.

Well rounded, magnetic humans was the end-goal, so it was equally important that they become self-directed thinkers. Deep down I knew it would click for them. Eventually.

Some of the lessons included:

Show them how to always give their best and highest effort by always giving my best and highest effort.

Redirect your best self into a positive experience-based teacher –  you’ll be setting a contagious example at the same time.

Rather than lecture about priorities and responsibilities, instil within them morals and values.

Find the good in everything.

We all live in the house, therefore, it’s everyone’s privilege to pitch in around the house.

You catch more flies with honey than vinegar.

Avoid drama by not expending negative energy into being all pissed off about this, that, or the other thing. *”Life is too shorts.” RIP Jaydon Summerfeldt*

Get done what needs to be done, calmly, and from a place of love. This will energize you, rather than drain you while having so many things on your to-do list.

Don’t cut them slack only to hold it over their heads or use it as leverage.

Don’t keep tabs or tally who owes who what because you did some thing on their behalf.

Stick to it – it’s 100% worth it!!

Acceptable: I would like, or may I please have. Not Acceptable: I want.

Above all else, Love unconditionally. Even when you don’t want to or think you can’t.

It is good to be me, and I am very blessed and highly favoured because I have decided to make the best of everything and because I choose to feel the best in everyone.

Well done is better than well said

During a recent performance review at work, my boss was explaining a 5-point self-assessment and made it very clear that he NEVER awards feedback in the Always column. As we approached the part about my attitude, he lifted his head said:

‘I know I literally just said I don’t hand out ‘Always’ ratings…however upon reviewing the attitude and presence you consistently bring to the office, anything less would have been an injustice to you. Well done.

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Sara said to me the other day that her understanding of unconditional love meant doing something for somebody even if she didn’t want to, and doing it before she would do something else for herself in its place.

I explained to her that the true meaning of unconditional love, in fact, is loving someone regardless of what they do; without an agenda or caveat, and for no other reason than because they are who they are and you are who you are.

I’ve often referenced The Eisenhower Matrix when discussing being a good friend, brother, sister, daughter, son etc. to illustrate the difference between Urgent and Important, and how it will often vary depending on who you’re talking to, based on their life experiences.

In this particular instance, Sara was faced with a challenge that was urgent to her friend and while it was important, it wasn’t urgent in her eyes, yet she allowed their-urgency to become her-urgency. As she described the situation in retrospect, the resentment was evident in her voice yet she dismissed her feelings with a shoulder shrug by saying “It’s a good thing I love him unconditionally”.

She wasn’t acting from a place of love, she was acting from a place of guilt. Unconditional love has nothing to do with making yourself available on a whim, or sacrificing your own priorities because someone else can’t get their own ducks in a row.

 

Urgent vs important - TheEisenhowerMatrix-1024x683

In my profession, we hear one saying all the time, so imagine my delight when Sara quoted it back to me at the end of our conversation…asking how it related to her challenge.

you'll never get what you want...PNG

This doesn’t only mean grandiose gestures such as donating a kidney or building homes on a Tsunami-devastated island…helping other people get what they want can even mean helping them achieve 5-extra-minutes-of-sleep or saving the day by bringing a roll of TP to the helpless, stranded person at the end of the hall.

The implementation of unconditional love comes in many forms…including, for instance…doing the dishes.

Have you ever assigned ‘dish duty’ to someone…

yet the sink magically remains full of dirty dishes?

Frustrating, right!?

Doesn’t have to be.

When you do the dishes for somebody else because they didn’t do it, you’re not doing it from a place of love, rather from a place of anger – begrudgingly sacrificing your time [and sanity] because some ass-hat didn’t do the dishes – again. There’s a difference between doing something for someone else in a selfless manner, and being a sucker.

This forces you into second place as far as your own priorities are concerned, and the inconvenience you feel is usually preceded with – or followed very quickly by – feelings of resentment, frustration and/or disappointment.

The toxicity resulting from negative emotions consumes your heart and your mind, torturing you as it resonates throughout your entire being, eventually becoming part of the energy around you, and therefore by extension, the energy or vibe of your home.

Speaking from personal experience, it’s highly unlikely that the dish-ditcher (*cough, cough, Michael*) will leap off the couch when they hear the commotion in the kitchen and race in to take over, apologies in tow. Unconditional love means loving the dish-ditchers even when they don’t do the dishes. They might not appreciate it, but the Universe does if you do it with love.

It’s not about doing the dishes for somebody because they didn’t; it’s about doing the dishes so you they can do something else.

Fundamentally, these two things are the same, at the end of the day, choosing to act with love rather than anger can sometimes mean that

– – you’re the one doing the dishes – –

…yet the feelings, thoughts and emotions you choose to associate with that particular action can’t help but manifest themselves into their physical equivalent in the form of energy, which will – without fail -reverberate throughout your life.

For better or worse.

Therefore, it’s really about doing the dishes so you can do something other than bitch about the dishes not being done.

When you act from a place of love, you set yourself free and everything becomes easier. Subconsciously, we inflict so much unnecessary pain and suffering onto ourselves and those around us. Day after day, these seemingly inconsequential decisions shape our world – stories we tell ourselves about how much we have to do, or why the kids are ungrateful, or how life has stacked the odds against us. By telling ourselves these stories – we concede to a tough life, allowing these tiny battles chip away at our souls – slowly but surely turning what is and should be a dream life, into a real-life horror story.

Simple changes to how you perceive situations…the stories you tell yourself regarding how you feel about your experiences, can and will have a dramatic impact on your life for the better.

It’s not about what did or didn’t happen.

It’s about the feeling you associated to what did or didn’t happen.

Your kids are watching. If you throw a fit about doing the dishes, what sane person would expect them not to throw a fit as well? You know that they say about Monkey’s…

Monkey See. Monkey Do.PNG

Acting from a place of servant leadership does not mean you are an actual servant in the Cinderella sense of the word, but rather, it means doing what you do, and doing it with love, regardless. Doing the dishes with love doesn’t mean you love doing the dishes.

When putting love first – even if it means doing the dishes yourself – you act from a place of love; you create the time and space in your schedule so that they can do other things, and your payback is 100-fold…this act of selfless love actually makes time and space in your heart, also!!

Giving without the expectation of reciprocity is very freeing. It’s rare that the Universe will return your efforts to you in the same form.

Instead, maybe the person ahead of you in the drive-thru will pay for your coffee.

Or smile from the next car as you wait at the light.

Or someone will hold the door open for you.

Or shovel your snow.

Or simply say Hi.

Now don’t get me wrong, you may be doing a lot of dishes in the 18+ years that they live at home, but I promise you it’s all worth it when you overhear them talking to someone about acting from a place of love, or when they act selflessly by helping someone else, or that glorious day when you come home and the dishes are actually done, and they even have a glass of wine ready for you because they recognize and appreciate that you had a long day!!

Helping other people with seemingly inconsequential tasks so they can do other things means you are opening your heart to love and by extension, it opens their heart to love as well.

Love is all that is real.

And with love all things are possible.

My wish for you my friends, is that you keep your sinks clear of dirty dishes and your hearts open to the possibility of love in all that you do. I promise you this – you’ll be glad you did!!

Love,

Jen

 

A [True] LOVE Story | MKE Year 3 Week 6

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Would it be alright with you if I share a personal story?

It takes place on an enchanted island and as with all great LOVE stories, there are dragons, and best friends who giggle until it hurts … but most of all, it’s about falling in LOVE! And everybody knows that LOVE lets us see ordinary things in an extraordinary way.

But first, a little back of the story…

Cute dragonLooking back on my life before MKE, it was as though I had spent my previous 11,111 days on this planet on auto-pilot. I hadn’t yet clued in that I had been trapped in survival-mode; a prison of my own making. The Dragons keeping close watch to ensure my subconscious shackles were secure [sadly, I am the Dragon].

You see, back then, me and my life-goals…we weren’t that tight. I’d done a pretty good job of repeatedly proving that the life I was living wasn’t getting me anywhere other than exactly where I already was. My current trajectory wasn’t going to help me reach my hopes and dreams, mostly because I didn’t even have a clear understanding of what those hopes and dreams were in the first place.

Where’s the disconnect?

As kids, we embrace valiant dreams and celebrate the grandeur of dreaming big…of becoming Astronauts, or Presidents, or Rocket Scientists – living our own truths with adventurous delight from inside Macaroni Spaceships that we’re certain will transport us to the Moon every day after school. Yet somewhere along the way, we abandon our innocence and lose sight of our innate greatness. We grow older, but we forget to actually live. We take on the weight of societal expectations; abandoning our backyard dreams for some version of ‘Keeping up with Joneses’…

Life was blah. Work was blah. Friendships were hard because life was blah. You get it. Sad. Perhaps even pathetic. Boring for sure.

Without warning or apology, the unremarkable days

morphed into unremarkable nights,

which morphed back into more unremarkable days.

And slowly…

…the days became weeks

…the weeks became months

… and the months became years

until the years themselves faded into a

c o m p l a c e n t   b l u r   o f   m  e  d  i  o  c  r  i  t  y.

What had I been doing with my life??

When did I become comfortable with stagnation?

Why did I stop believing I deserved more?

Did I have any confidence left…or was I drained out of my through the ever-losing battle that exists when raising teenagers?

Until this one time, in 2015 – it hit me: If I could believe in Santa for like 10-years, why couldn’t I believe in myself for 5-minutes? And so began my journey back towards myself…

Introspection led me to a friend who aimed me towards becoming a self-directed thinker, and in late Spring 2015, we embarked on a 13-day adventure-of-a-lifetime together to Kaua’i, Hawaii.

Arriving a few days before the start of the business conference, I kicked off my flip flops, grabbed my Maui Jim’s and a good book, and headed for the beach…my only agenda: to spend time taking in the wonderment and beauty of Hawaii [it had been an unusually cold and long winter in Calgary, Canada…by the way, when people in Calgary use the term ‘pearly whites’ we aren’t referring to our teeth – but rather our legs … nearly transparent and pale as a ghost from being hidden beneath layers of clothing -24/7 while trying to prevent hypothermia]…but forgive me, I digress…

Turns out, the Master Key Experience Live Event was wrapping up, and as luck would have it, some of the residual ‘awe’ – in my opinion: the essence of the event – rubbed off on me and that’s when everything changed. True story!!

As the conference began, I consciously set aside my past experiences, my bias, and what I thought I already knew, and committed to participating with an open heart and an open mind, and to simply let the event do its thing. Trusting and believing that some of the magic and energy I felt radiating from people who had attended the Master Key Master Mind Alliance Live Event, would also extend into the course I was taking, seeing as the same hosts were facilitating both events…and man, was I ever in for a treat!!

Attending conference by day, and exploring the island by night changed my life. For the first time in a very long time I remembered who I was. A clarity descended upon me as I observed – silently, and with complete childlike wonder, as the true Jen lurched herself to the foreground from deep down inside me where I had been, quite accidentally, keeping her captive. I discovered more about myself in 2-weeks than I had during my previous 34 trips around the sun.

I was able to understand more clearly, and to my astonishment, effortlessly. Up until that very moment, everything had been a struggle. This re-introduction to my true and purest self annihilated the introverted, reserved, hesitant versions of self that I cloaked myself in while trying to ‘fit in’ with society. The clarity simultaneously silenced my fears of the unknown, yet was successful at reassuring me that everything was going to be alright. Better than alright actually. I was finally free.

I fell in love with the person I’m meant to be…

Calm, yet bursting with excitement

Surrendered, yet in complete control

Responsible, yet free-spirited

Daring and brave, yet grounded and realistic

Humble, yet confident

Sweet, yet strong

And as I shed my many false cloaks and embraced the true me…I noticed that I became one with the wonder of Hawaii with this group of spectacular human beings; and for this I feel very blessed and highly favoured.

The sensation of being alive suddenly became completely intoxicating. It was as if I was experiencing everything for the very first time…

The kiss of the ocean breeze felt warmer as it sailed against my skin

The food tasted richer – I could sense the nourishment delivered throughout my body

Hugs from strangers reached right down into the forgotten depths of my being

Emotions resonated directly into my essence; into my soul

My brain was forging new neuro pathways – I could literally feel myself evolving

I could hear and feel the gears spinning as I turned my back to years of cement and revered in the delight of chipping away at it. It was as if a lifetime worth of passion, intense desires and enlightenment descended upon me in an instant, like a ray of sunshine bursting through the clouds on a rainy day. I grasped concepts as I never had before, as if the veil of confusion had been lifted and tossed aside.

Every cell in my body felt like it was on fire! As though I had been selected and blessed directly by the Gods, and was being escorted to my bliss on the wings of angels.

I felt so alive – wildly excited to learn and to grow and to evolve..I was not only willing to, but eager to let down my guards and allow my sun to shine brightly. Finally, I was able to just, be me.

LOVE lets us see ordinary things in an extraordinary way

The course that began the following September – the Master Key Experience – taught me that to find these answers I need do nothing more than SIT – to cut through the clutter, disperse the noise, and truly listen to the Beautiful Silence. It was better than having all the answers…I had connected with who I am and why I’m here, and I knew that I AM the answers…I didn’t need to ‘find’ them because they were already inside me.

And it was this life changing adventure that truly taught me about LOVE. Surrounded by like minded people, eager and willing to support me along my journey as they too progressed along their own. These were my people. Here, I felt was at home.

I discovered a few valuable life lessons that have literally changed my DNA; changing how I think, erasing old blueprints, opening my mind to the possibility of new possibilities:

  • That the LOVE for myself is the foundation for all other LOVE
  • That how I see the world changes when looking thru the lens of LOVE [empathy, compassion, understanding, tolerance, patience]
  • In order to be loved how I urned to be loved, I needed to first learn how to LOVE myself

Thank you so much for joining me on this adventure. I’d love to hear about your LOVE too!

Love,

Jen

Curious what moved me this time last year?

MKE6 | Because Science, that’s why!

Self-Confidence [a how-to guide] | MKE Year 3 Week 2

Self-confidence is not found in the perfect pair of jeans … it’s not having the sickest vehicle … or being amazing at school sports … It’s not about the perfect job … or spouse … or dog … or pencil crayon collection, etc. etc. etc.

Self-confidence is a mindset. Good news about that is: it doesn’t cost any money … doesn’t require any talent … and you don’t need any special equipment.

Keep in mind that developing yourself is a process – much like flat abs, it’s not going to show up without some serious effort on your part. Here are a couple things, in no particular order, that I’ve found useful along my own journey. None are more important than the others, so I’ve listed them all as #1.

I wrote them with an open heart – I hope you’ll receive them with an open mind.

#1: Smile

Screen Shot 2017-12-01 at 11.20.09 AMLearning to like the person in the mirror difficult because most people have spent but instead of trying to get diapers or avoiding the barrel together try something as simple as a smile. Bill Tabing to a complement hate you look nice cute dress good job on your make up can’t find anything nice to say to yourself perhaps you can complement good job we did growing up eye balls or how nice your hair is growing or something…anything positive will do.

Not so sure yet?

Eventually, liking the person in the mirror I promise will need to loving the person in the mirror. You’ve just spent a lot of time disliking the person staring back at you…so it’s only logical that you’re not going to fall back in love with yourself overnight.

It will come, I promise. Give it time.

#1: Be Gentle With Yourself

Go easy on yourself. Don’t beat yourself up, and stop trying to be perfect.

Will it really affect your future if you miss a deadline, or or if the kids had to get take-out for lunch because you didn’t remember to pack lunches?

Understand that you’re just one person, and people have limits. It’s okay to have limits. Actually, limits are healthy.

When you can control your internal dialogue, the rest seems to fall into place. It’s got something to do with vibration – which I’ll write about in a few weeks – basically, we all attract things into our lives based on what we think about and what we feel…and it is Universal law that our vibration can only attract similar vibrations. If we think of our vibration like the keys on a piano – pressing a D-minor key but expecting an A-sharp sound to be produced would be ridiculous, right?!

Quit comparing yourself to others – and just do you.

You are Natures Greatest Miracle.

You’ve got this. 

#1: Say Nice Things

The world is not out to get you. If something goes wrong in your day, don’t beat yourself up about it. For example if the dog food delivery doesn’t get there on time, or you wake up and it’s cloudy, or traffic is unusually heavy during your commute.

The default story you tell yourself might be something like:

“Go figure, bad stuff always happens to me”.

I call this a grumble grumble grumble mindset and one that will only bring you more of the same.

Words have power. Especially the ones you say to yourself.

I suggest making a list of the Top 10 things you like about yourself…ready it three times daily. If you’re not sure what to write – ask a child what they like best about you…they’re honest and haven’t yet learned how to lie so you’ll get a clear answer.

As a kid, my grandma always used to tell me

“If you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all.”

She also told me that eating mushrooms would make my boobs grow. Clearly, she knew what she was talking about.

Rather than remaining mired in negativity, try saying – or thinking – something positive. Immediately. Saying nice things will help re-train your brain by reprogramming the neuro pathways so that next time the same or similar experiences happen, your default memory will be positive. In my opinion and from experience, when the memory is positive, it allows you to absorb whatever lesson is being taught so you can move on and learn new lessons [and make new mistakes].

Evolution doesn’t happen over night, so don’t dismiss it after one or two tries. 

#1: Vulnerability is a Virtue

Be kind to everyone for you never know what that other people are facing. It’s a basic life principal: Give More Get More. The Universal Law of unending returns tells us that your good deeds will come back to you. What you give to people – that’s what you’re going to get back. What you give is up to you…if you seem to be grumbling a lot…refer to #1: Say Nice Things, above.

#1: That Song You’re Listening To Keeping You Broke

Now you might be asking, how on earth could this be relevant to self-confidence?? And it may sound like passing blame and/or not taking responsibility…but stick with me here.

I assure you, the impact of what you allow into your subconscious. has a profound and notable impact on your behaviour and your actions.

On the week 2 webinar we learned that there are 4 Billion subconscious connections firing in our brain – as compared to only 2000 conscious connections. True story!

Remember any jingles from your childhood? Perhaps you haven’t heard it for 15-25-35 years, yet when played, you recall it word for word, and can still put the correct emphasis on words as though you consciously recalled it yourself? Our brain retains information that we don’t even register as important. So I assure you, the gossip and mindless chatter sneaks in there too!

#1: Negativity is a Lousy Roommate.

The news was basically fear mongering and I didn’t ever have time for all the associated drama, so I stopped listening to the radio, and eliminated watching the news. When I did tune in, I never heard any money come out of it – the radio, nor the news have ever paid my mortgage, and has never put food on my table – so instead, while in the car I listen to audio self-improvement audio some ones that really helped get my mindset in the right place. It’s not what I learned, it’s who I became as a result of being surrounded by these great people that has had the biggest impact on my life. With so much negativity all around, it is important to disrupt your brain. Don’t let negativity live rent-free in your mind.

Mind your mind. Keep it positive. Find the good.

Napoleon Hill wrote THINK-and-grow-rich. Not DO-and-grow-rich.

So I listen to the signs a person with cheap meant by Napoleon Hill I listen to the strangest secret by Earl Nightingale I listen to return to love by Marianne Williamson I listen to think and grow Rich by Napoleon Hill and the countless hours that I’ve spent with them as my silent partners with them is my mastermind group have got me to where I am today and I am so thankful that I didn’t just listen to the radio!!

#1: Judge Not Lest Ye Be Judged

My daughter does not want to be judged EVER. In fact, the thought of being judged paralyzes her. Yet ironically, she’s probably the most judgemental person I’ve ever met. The psychology behind her logic is this: If she judges somebody before they can judge her – then their words have no power. She has it half right.

If you ever went to junior high then it’s likely that you understand what it feels like to be judged. And most likely, what it’s like to judge other people as well.

Ultimately it’s just easier to point the finger at somebody else make them feel bad so that we feel good.  Remember, when we point the finger, there’s 1 pointing at them, but 3 pointing back at ourself.

#1: Introspection – Get Used To It

Most often other people based on the here maybe give me something to somebody else forget to try and bring them down to your level if you can’t feel better about yourself. Where’s the logic – make somebody feel shitty about their flaws because you’re insecure about your own flaws? When did it become easier to attack others – even if it is  subconsciously. Is it really so hard to look yourself in the mirror and say nice things; to be gentle with yourself and focus on your strengths rather than your perceived deficiencies.

To be fair, I know at first this is hard – but keep tabs on how you feel, and how you respond to situations and when you feel that ‘pang’ in the seat of your soul – that’s when you need to pay attention and do whatever it is you’re running away from.

#1: Live In The Truth

Have you ever met someone who lies about everything? Little white lies… exaggerations… some people seem more comfortable lying than telling the truth. Sadly, they lie so much that they begin believing their own lies, and then the truth is impossible to discern, even for them.

You rob people of the joys in life when you lie. So don’t do it. It’s a shitty thing. It takes so much from you and your family from the people you love it ruins surprises  and drains excitement when you lie – just don’t do it.

#1: Embrace 100% Responsibility

You have to take 100% responsibility for everything that you do…and for everything you don’t do for that matter.

…for everything that you think

…for everything that you say

…for every action that you take

…and for every action that you don’t

It’s actually very freeing.

Don’t make excuses…

…not for being late

…not for missing a deadline

…not for not having enough time

…not for the car you drive

…not for the state of your relationships

…not for the state of your life.

Own your s**t.

The good and the bad.

Only then can you being see things objectively, and hopefully, welcome change.

#1: Be Courageous

The more often you choose courage, the more often you’ll succeed.

#1: Express Your Gratitude

You’ll never get what you want if you can’t be grateful for what you’ve already got.

My Gratitude Stack

#1: Love

Love let’s us see ordinary things in extraordinary ways. I LOVE YOU JHC

With love you can be courageous. You an take responsibility. You want to help others and you don’t feel the need to judge. It’s a very nice place to be.

All of this has become more clear during my 36-months with MKE – I’ve either learned it or had it become more clear.

I don’t simply comprehend these steps, I live them everyday. And it is all sunshine and rainbows in my life – even when it isn’t. I choose to find the silver lining – to see the glass as half full – to believe that I am very blessed and highly favoured.

Will you answer your call to greatness?

You’ve got this.

Jen

Curious what moved me this time last year: MKE2 | The Cliffs of Insanity