Tag Archive | change

Fickle emotions of New Year’s Eve


Emotions are fickle – have you ever noticed? I live my life as an upbeat, positive person looking at the silver linings and expecting the best from life and those who are in it. It somehow surprises me when the disappointments come … and yet on the other hand, maybe not. I’ve spent many hours and years working to improve myself and my relationship with this thing called life. I know more than I think, I understand a lot about myself and hope to know what I need about others – at least I’m always learning. And, I’m acutely aware that it’s all an illusion. And yet, I still find myself waking up on days like today feeling melancholy. The voids in my life seem to be deeper and wider – more pronounced for some reason.

There is fun to be had for sure – for goodness sake it’s New Year’s Eve! This past year, 2013, has been a gloriously blessed year for me. I celebrated my 50th birthday with the love of family and friends giving back to community. I have met new friends, added a daughter-in-law to my family, traveled to parts of the world I have only always dreamed of. It has been a fabulous time. There have been heartaches, mostly in the form of soul friends crossing to the next adventure before me. I know I’ll see them again so I celebrate the gift they have been in my life.

There’s just something kind of sad about this day of crossing over. It’s not fear, it’s not worry, it’s just a silly, fickle emotion. I will sit with it for a brief time to try to discern the lesson in it. I will not wallow – sadness just isn’t a very good friend.

And then I will shake off this melancholy visitor to get back to my celebratory self. I will don a goofy hat and tweet the kazoo of a New Year party favor as I ring in the new year with friends and family. For tomorrow I know the sun shines on the dawn of a new year. There is no magic in the change from one day to the next … simply a choice to start afresh. Set new goals. Begin new adventures. Love more. Be more. Create more.

No matter what emotion is visiting you today – I wish you blessings of the mind, heart, and spirit for 2014. Happy New Year!! See you on the other side!

 

 

What If???


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What if that one story you’ve believed about yourself for years, which limits your potential, was just something you misheard!? What is the new, positive story that you can re-tell yourself, and believe in about yourself, that will propel you toward your greatest, highest potential? Speak it loud and proud and watch your circumstances change.

Be blessed!

Hello again ….


Hello again!

It has been a while since I last posted. Changing jobs can create much upheaval  - packing, moving stuff, examining our things – making choices to keep or toss, learning new places and people and priorities. That transition certainly does change our focus. But alas, I am writing again before I move into a several week cycle of travel.

486538_557664290934612_1208784165_nI must admit the autumn air is bringing me to life. I have long known that my life cycle seems to begin in the fall of the year. The colors and smells bring me joy. The activities – football games that I can hear from the nearby high school, the smell of leaves and fireplaces delight my senses, and the crispness of the air brings me back to hearth and home. I love it. I am in my little bit of heaven this time of year. It’s the only time of year that I’m drawn to the color orange – it is the cloak of the autumn trees and it sprinkles itself in accessories throughout my home. A short-lived decor but one that brings me joy.

And I’ve been having much fun with my daughter as she makes her choices for her December 2014 wedding. Luckily I learned a bunch from going through the wedding process with my son and his new wife this past summer. The long lead-time for my daughter’s special date is making the process feel more relaxed and less hectic – for now! I feel blessed that both of my children have chosen wonderful life mates. They are all unique and yet all compatible in the right ways. I pray that their relationships continue to grow toward each other as the years move on.

What are the blessings in your life these days – I’d love to hear more from you.

Be blessed!

 

Change Challenge


ImageI find myself looking at the changes I want to make in my life – my habits, my routines, my thinking. And some of those changes are pretty big. Overwhelming at times. So I’ve decided to give myself a change challenge. I will change just 1 thing each day. I’ll choose a small thing that takes me in the direction I want to go. Baby steps will still get me there and will move me from a state of inaction because of being overwhelmed into a state of movement and progress.

I know – not rocket science. But given that I’ve been stagnant for a while, I’ll take the baby steps.

Will you join me in taking baby steps for your change?

Be blessed!

On the Brink of Change – original poem


ON THE BRINK OF CHANGE

Standing here, on the brink of change I dangle my toes over.

Spurred by the sticky sensation of old habits dripping down my back

The lure of a better way, a better day tickles my hesitant feet.

I glance back at the days of the past unsatisfied by what was.

That is enough.

That is what finally tempts me to take the first step.

And change begins just like that.

Not with a big bang, but with a single step.

I am in the midst.

I move forward aware of the long path ahead.

With each step, I notice “what was” is throwing stones to get attention.

The comfort zone of discontentment cannot lure me back.

It is becoming a diminishing speck.

I grasp the hand of new habits, new thoughts, and new action.

Change has become my new friend welcoming me into new sensations and realizations.

This is my creation, full of the sparkle of mystery and opportunity.

I am new knowing it doesn’t have to be the way it was,

Now that I’ve left the brink of change.

~ Barbara Bernard Miller

SkyDeck Chicago sky ledge foot

Humanity Revolution


Today I saw a picture that included a bit of statistic. It stopped me in my tracks. Here – I’ll share it with you.

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I knew we had the means in our modern world but it never sunk in … until I saw this. What the HELL is wrong with us? How is it we as a people have traveled so far from our Divine roots that we would think that this is okay. We have enough firepower in this world to kill everyone many, many times over … and yet we can all only die just once. Apparently that’s not enough because we build more, we threaten more, we bully and we fight more. Evil has settled into our society and we no longer see it as such.

And we also have the ability to feed every hungry child, mother, father, elderly and needy person over and over and over and yet we don’t do it even once. We share a little but only during disasters. Isn’t starvation every day a disaster?

My heart aches today. The way we destroy our world is one thing – a horrible thing. But the way we ignore, destroy, and debase other human souls is simply unacceptable. There is nothing but grace of God that has made me born where I was and having the opportunities that I have. I surely didn’t deserve them. I didn’t earn them. I simply have them. I have an embarrassment of riches and it is an awareness that keeps me giving whenever I can.

What does it take to create a Humanity Revolution? I see pockets of people in the world here and there doing what they can. We show our kindness in groundswells but I still feel very small in this. I feel like all that I do is but a drop in an immense ocean. How do we rise up in revolution to actually change the world, once and for all, without excuse, without boundaries and national, selfish pride? How do we let our divine humanity overtake the evil that wants to keep our eyes clouded or distracted?  I want to do more. I want to inspire more. I want to save the souls that don’t deserve any less than me. All I can do is inspire those that know me. I can only feed those that come in contact with me with the limited funds I have. I cannot solve this world’s problem alone but I vow, every day to save those that I can.

I don’t have the answers. I don’t know how to sway the hearts and hands of those that rule this nation or any other nation bent on war. But I pray that every heart that knows love will stand up and feed instead of fight. I will stand up and feed. Will you join me … and be blessed!

 

Drinking from the Fire Hose


drink-out-of-a-hoseWow – I’ve been in training for my new role at work and have decided that I am now officially drinking from the fire hose. Wow!

I have worked for my Company since 1981 and held many roles there. This is only the 2nd time that I’m moving to a job that I have no background or knowledge in – and it’s a little scary! I wanted the change and look forward to shaking things up a bit. But, not gonna lie, I forgot what it feels like to be 100% new.

Lucky for me I have a friend who works on my new floor so I have moral support. And I have 3 employees and a boss who has worked in this area for virtually their entire career so I have technical support. Now I just need to keep putting that one foot in front of the other, or said another way, one question after the other. I think my brain is swimming right now.

waterwingsOnly 2 more training days – tomorrow and one day next week. After that I get to swim in the deep end. Wonder if I can get a set of water wings to keep me afloat.

What’s your best advice for an old dog trying to learn some new tricks?

Be blessed!

I’m changing the world


One of the topics in my book MIGHTY INSPIRATION, Love Letters from God, is the concept of changing the world. Do you believe that you can change the world? I do. Every action and word we use creates a ripple effect. We don’t just put  ideas and energy out into the world – we move them along as well. We expand them when we focus on them or talk about them.

It is my firm desire to change this world. I believe that I have a purpose. It’s not to gather the most possessions or attain the highest of titles. It’s way, way more important than that. I believe my purpose is to help others see their own light and empower them to embrace it. No I’m not perfect at it but I do deliberately work on it. I have a spiritual practice that involves gratitude as well as intercession prayers. Science is even backing up the idea that prayer and faith can change things. This is not new news to the believer but it is important confirmation that is starting to build.

I also work to use my talent for words to inspire – not just on my blog or in my social networking platforms, but also in my work. Planting seeds of positivity seems to be producing many fruitful changes. I enjoy seeing the faces of people when my words seem to strike a cord in their hearts. I enjoy it more when they share the words or even suggest some more. I see a bit of encouragement growing in the work place and I hope that my small efforts are a part of the cause.

And next I want to move from words of inspiration to actions of change. I have long been a “sponsor” for children outside of my country. And yes, I can help them with my modest financial donations. That enables others to use my gift by putting it into action. Lately, that hasn’t seemed like enough.

Next year I’m turning 50. Yep, it’s just a number but in my head it’s a number that represents the middle of my life. I’ve graduated from the daily needs of my children – they are adults and creating their own lives now. And I’m not at the end of my life where I reflect on the journey complete. I’m in the middle. I’m in a position of flexibility that I want to put to use. So I’m exploring where to go and what to do to make my mark on lives I don’t ordinarily have the opportunity to affect. I can go into the world, not once, but over and over. I can combine my love of travel and appreciation for different cultures to spur me into action – I can see the world and change the world and we shall all be the better for it.

I’m wrestling with new questions – Where do I go? What gifts do I give? What talents do I share? Who do I take by my side? The answers to these questions may not stir the world, but they will change the lives of some human beings I don’t yet know. I want to dream big. I want to reach as far as my hands can go. I want to change the world and leave it better for my journey. I want to let strangers know the love of God because they met a woman – this woman.

I’m open to suggestions and inspirations – help me answer my questions … and be blessed!

I’m soooo ready …


I realized something today that I haven’t thought about in a while… I FEEL READY.

Ready for what you say? So very many things. Here’s just a few:

> I’m so ready to enjoy no more campaign ads on my TV, radio, or voice mail. SERIOUSLY ready for this one!

> I’m ready for the giving seasons of Thanksgiving and Christmas to reveal the kind and generous nature of my fellow man.

> I’m ready for my children to begin experiencing the success that comes from hard work.

> I’m ready for new friendships to blossom more and more each day.

> I’m ready to learn new things at work and feel like I’m growing my capability again.

> I’m ready for closure on some very big, and very old bills that are about to be paid off (yay!)

> I’m ready for Republicans, Democrats, Independents, patriots, and cynics to step across the divide and start working together as Americans and not any other label we have chosen to use.

> I’m ready to start reading another good book – make it a mystery please.

> I’m ready for our sons and daughters to come home and end the wars.

> I’m ready for people to embrace the diversity that comes from loving each other and not judging each other.

> I’m ready to shine my light a little brighter and further in the world.

> I’m ready for the distance between friends and love ones to shrink – whether it’s physical distance or emotional.

> I’m just feeling ready for change.

Are you ready? On your marks … get set … let’s go! And be blessed!

Taking Steps


Today seems to be an auspicious day around here. Retirement day has arrived for so many of my colleagues. Due to some company restructuring this is the final work day for a varied collection of friends, colleagues, and acquaintances.  Some have celebrated their accomplishments and milestone quietly with family and close friends and others are having wide sweeping parties. We had a dress-up Groovy 70′s party to celebrate one person today. It was so fun to see the happy atmosphere and what a great way to take advantage of the timing.  The journey for them has led to an introspective review of my own journey.

For the most part I have spent my career in this one company. I have worked part-time, full-time, and for a brief stretch as a stay-at-home mom. All have their advantages. But it’s the trip down memory lane that we took with my friend Carol that has touched me. I left this company once before when we relocated to another state. I left “kicking and screaming” as they say as it was not part of my personal plan. And yet the experience was great and ripe with personal growth and irreplaceable memories with my children. Then when we returned to Cincinnati, I reluctantly returned to work here knowing it was what my family needed financially. Since then I have approached work so much differently. I no longer cling to or run to a role based on the work or advancement opportunity alone. I approach the changes knowing that there is someone where I’m going that I am destined to meet. Some personal or spiritual connection that is lining itself up with my path. And it has come true in every case.

As I look at my friends who are retiring, I can feel the call of change beckoning me as well. Not to retire (just yet) anyway. But to come to another area of the business. There are people to meet, and connections to make that are critical for my life’s journey. I am open to the change – with one step on the path of excitement and one step on the path of longing for that which is familiar. It takes courage to take the foot off that last step and reach for the unknown. I feel my courage growing.

I encourage you to step out on your path … and be blessed!

Sensual and Sultry


Have you taken note of the sensual and sultry changes going on around you? There is a dance afoot with the season of the fiery metamorphosis.  The way the wind whips up the leafy skirts of the trees and sets the fallen, colorful carpet to dancing. Yesterday and today are the perfect examples.

We had sunny skies and 70 degree weather yesterday. As I walked outside I noticed both the crimson leaves and the hot pink of late-blooming roses in my yard. The mix of the aromas was intoxicating. Standing there I could feel the warm breeze of early fall. The leaves were dancing in the streets and swaying to the rhythm of the gentle breeze. The crunch of the leaves beneath my feet added accent to the senses. The leaves looked as if they were lazily skipping around to a distant song that I could not yet hear. Children could be heard laughing down the street. It was serene and lovely. Yesterday the autumn air was sensual.

And then the rains came. I could hear it tapping on my window through the night. When I awoke to leave the sky was still dark, just softly kissing the dawn of the day. I found the air cool and drippy with tiny droplets. Not fully raining but definitely chilly with spits to wet the cement. And the leaves were dancing again. But this time the rhythm was swirling and twirling and more vigorous. This was air that ushers in the late October moon. The song of the leaves was more vigorous and spirited. This morning’s autumn air was sultry.

It is the ebb and flow of the warm and crisp air and the changes to the sights and sounds in the trees as the wind whispers through the season that captures my soul. And I long to join the dance. That sensual, sultry dance that marks the descent of another year. A celebration and a final farewell.

Join me in the dance and be blessed!

Poised to Move – original poem


POISED TO MOVE

Standing in the midst of change I look, in wonder, for a clue.

Seeking a sense of what is to come and where the spark will lead.

There is electricity of excitement as closure soon approaches.

All threads coming to a final knot in my current circumstance.

And yet, there is no mourning, no bitter regret.

There are only memories – sweet and enlightening.

I have done what I could and that is enough.

I have worked, learned, inspired and changed.

I am better than before and complete in this space.

I turn my head toward a new possibility, unseen and yet so sweet.

I speak and options begin to appear.

I reach across the unknown to find familiar hands to guide me.

I am safe.

And so I move into tomorrow with confidence.

And this too, brings me peace.

I am poised to move.

~ Barbara Bernard Miller

And So You Begin – original poem


AND SO YOU BEGIN!

Weaving through the hours and days of shifting emotions,

I see you spinning from one expression to another.

One moment with excitement and anticipation.

Another with a sigh of remembrance and connection.

Change twirling about your feet, anxious to overtake you.

One more box packed and another farewell complete.

Trying desperately to focus on the work at hand,

You finish a task, and pass it on.

Someone else will see it through and champion your ideas.

They didn’t have the vision, but caught it from you.

It is not easy to move through the detangling process.

You gave your time, talent, passion, and heart.

You received recognition for your achievements.

And soon there will be but a handful who remember.

With that realization your mood shifts again.

You twirl to meet the new adventure with semi-open arms.

A quick glance back reveals those who will miss you.

Sending heartfelt love and appreciation in your direction.

But you are now crossing the bridge into another land.

An adventure known only in stories, fantasies, and dreams.

And yet, the first step has become clearer and

Awaits your committed but hesitant move.

You are now on the bridge toward retirement.

You, still being you, but in a new light.

This old work is unfinished and yet very complete.

Discovery is now the work of the day.

Your time as arrived, more swiftly than you thought.

And so … you begin!

~ Barbara Bernard Miller

Just Speak – original poem


JUST SPEAK!

From stem to stern and back again.

Top to bottom, without end.

Your cells know the energy of a positive flow.

Your words bellow forth with new life.

The sentiment of your heart changes the air.

Every part of you responding to the beat of your cares.

With heavy heart the day goes dark.

With lightness of hope the day glows.

It isn’t the outside that colors your world.

But the rainbow of thoughts and words.

With practice your mind can shift your view.

Allowing the breaking of dawn.

Brushing aside the darkest of thoughts.

You harness the power of control.

With it comes swift changes to your world.

It’s your words that speak your thoughts to life.

As your energy entwines with others.

A thought, a word, a positive shift.

Is all it takes to change your path.

From slowly slipping away with regret.

To a warm embrace of belonging.

It only takes one act from you.

You have the power within.

To shift the story of who you are.

Just speak your life to your dreams.

It changes everything.

~ Barbara Bernard Miller

Perceptions and Change


Many of my friends are going through significant life changes these days. Some are by choice, but many are being pushed, prodded, cajoled, or even forced into it.  Perhaps it has always been this way … but I think it’s happening more and more. Well, that’s my perception anyway. The beautiful thing about perceptions is they can be changed with  more facts and more experiences.

What I’ve been observing is that even though change is change, my friends’ perceptions of it makes all the difference in the world. My question is – does it have to be this way? The  “how” you came to be in the midst of change (voluntary, involuntary, dreams, or the end of dreams) … should that really change our interaction with the shift? No matter the “why”, the “what” is still the same.

The stages of change are still the same. The things you can and cannot control are essentially the same. The connections with friends, family, and networks is identical. The steps to take from “here” to “there” are virtually indistinguishable. What is different is the perception of the change. Because of that, I think we hold the key to smoother transitions.

I learned long ago to tease apart the facts of the matter from the story we tell ourselves about the fact. Facts are neutral. They are simply the details of what happened. But the stories are where our paranoias, fantasies, dreams, suspicions, and imaginations come to life. For example, when I was 3 I was ordered by the Courts to be a ward of the State and was placed in an orphanage. Everything in that sentence is a fact. However, I spent years telling myself the story that I must have been one really unlovable child because no-one loved me and I didn’t have a family. WOW! That is a 3 year old’s story based on what I could see and what I could understand and what I could possibly imagine. And, in reality it wasn’t true. Clearly I was loveable – I had lots of friends at the orphanage, I had brothers and sisters at the orphanage, the nuns used to tell me they loved me, and a wonderful family adopted me. And yet, for years (into my 30′s) I repeated, and believed, that I was unloveable. Once I learned this whole concept about how we create barriers in our lives by our storytelling (fact vs. story) it stopped me in my tracks. Because I had made up the story, I could revisit the facts and tell a different, more plausible story. I wasn’t in the orphanage because I was unloveable, or frankly because of anything I had done at all. It was because of the actions of my parents and the decisions of the judge. Changing my perception of the facts actually freed me from fears, self-doubt, and anger. And it happened in a moment. Not in a week, not over time, not through therapy and not in lingering bits. It was instantaneous. And that was the moment I stopped giving away my joy, my worth, my purpose and my self-esteem. That’s how powerful our perceptions are.

And over time, I continue to relook at my “truths” and stories to re-evaluate the facts. It has been the single most healing learned wisdom in my life. I’m grateful that I had the opportunity to learn it in my 30′s vs. in my later life.

So I ask you, are you in the midst of change? What are the facts (who, what, where, when, how)? What stories are you telling yourself (why)? Are you assigning intent and blame? Are you suspicious and fearful?  What if … in this very moment … you changed your story from something that was “done unto you” with maliciousness or for negative reasons, and retold it as a shift in opportunity, or a divine intervention, or simply as a season ending. What if you have learned and received all you need or can from that circumstance. What if the future is brighter than the now. What if the “why” did not drive your reactions or how you go through the change. What if …

I pray for those who’s change is upon them. May it be a smooth, gentle, positive adventure. And may you be blessed on the journey.