I’m gonna level with you here, loves…

Lately, I’ve been getting caught up in ego-behavior.

Like, A LOT.
  • Comparing myself to others
  • Getting hung up on things that aren’t working, rather than staying in the flow of what I know does work
  • Letting fears get the better of me and then directing them towards the ones I love (namely X – who is such a good man for seeing my truth even when I can’t)
I’ve felt the light within me slowly disappear into the distance.

Almost as though I have been moving away from it incrementally over the last few days, weeks, months… I honestly don’t know how long it’s been. I just know that I’ve felt disconnected. Unstable. Unsure.

What happened, you ask?

Anxiety crept in and fear took over. I wouldn’t say I was depressed. I’ve had plenty moments of joy. I laughed, I smiled, I felt love… just, not regularly. Not entirely. I felt lost and estranged and when I looked for reasons why this had happened, I (my ego) pointed a finger in every direction other than the one where it should have landed – squarely at myself.

This isn’t the first time this has happened, either. The trauma of my past has been resurfacing over + over again.

Sometimes, I’m ready + equipped to face the trauma.

Other times, it catches me off guard and I’m not prepared at all… like this last time.

When I don’t face it head on, I end up feeling the effects of the trauma – oh yeah, BIG TIME. And, I cling to that shit like crazy, because it’s what I’ve always known. It’s been a messed up version of “comfort” for me, like a toxic friend. Living in that fear, feeling the anxiety + the panic attacks… like a dingy, cold, wet blanket that I just can’t part with for some reason.

To let go of it… well, that just seemed scary. In my mind, I somehow thought that living through the pain would deliver me from my sorrows. And so, the fear, self-doubt, and negative self-talk just grew + grew, until it completely took over every aspect of my life: home, work, my relationship, everything.


The most deprecating part of this cycle is that whenever I get into a fear-based, anxiety-ridden mode, I feel like a fraud. Like, “Who am I to help others through their stuff when I can’t even handle my own?”

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But, even though I subscribe to and believe in all of the practices that I teach, it’s still so easy to get caught up in the feelings of “I’m not being supported” or “So + So has things that I don’t have.”

So, at times like these, I have to pause for a beat to reassess what I’m doing + actively work to return to my light. This means consciously realizing that I am living in ego, living in fear-based thoughts. Then I have to collect enough courage to make another choice – as spirit junkie + motivational speaker, Gabby Bernstein would say, “I Choose Again”,  – a choice that is based in spirit, one that is based in love.


Shameless Plug: I’ve been reading Gabby Bernstein’s latest book, The Universe Has Your Back, and it’s straight up uh-mazing!


But what is light?

We see + hear this word absolutely everywhere these days – the internet is just buzzing about light + lightworkers – but what are all of these people actually talking about?

The Easy Answer:

Our light is that spark inside that ignites us with passion and purpose!

It’s what guides us towards our dreams. It allows us to live in love + harmony with others. Our light is our deepest, truest Selves – our divinity, our spirit.

Our LIGHT is everything we are and nothing that we aren’t.

So, when we’re living authentically, we are living in our light. We are reflections of our highest Selves.

But, when we aren’t aligned with our authenticity – that is, when we’re getting caught up in the “have’s + have not’s” + the “doing instead of being” + the “constant comparing” – we are emotionally + physically removing ourselves from our light. We are denying who we truly are in favor of fitting in or chasing some outside “happiness”.


Sunlight

You have an Inner Light, a Special Glow that no one else has.
Let your light SHINE, because you were BORN to shine.

-Jennifer Gayle


We are all born with a beautiful, brilliant light. It’s clearly visible in young children who act out in the purest forms of their individual authenticity.

But, as time goes on + we get older, we’re conditioned to hide our light, to follow the guidelines of society + propriety.

“Be more like them,” a parent might say.

“Don’t do that, it’s childish/inappropriate/isn’t going to make you successful,” someone else tells us.

And we often react to these ideas like it’s the only way to survive, instead of staying true to our Selves.

So, we lose touch with our dreams + our creativity – our light fades further and further away from our consciousness.


Understand, though, that this light doesn’t ever dim or go out.


It does not. Nope.

It just isn’t possible, because that light is who we are at our deepest essence. Remember?

Our light is our highest Self which is infinite, pure, and divine!

Nothing can crush that or diminish it.

NOTHING.

But, when we settle for less than what we know we are meant for in our lives, our work, and our relationships we move away from our light.

When we allow stress, anxiety, and despair (AKA: fear) to settle in, we move further away from our light. We hide it away from the world and, in turn, away from ourselves – which is exactly what I was doing + it left me feeling overwhelmed + burnt out.

So, now that we’ve identified that we each HAVE an incredible, gorgeous light within us, how do we go about finding it and creating space for it again in our hearts + minds?


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1. You Betta’ Recognize


In the immortal words of the awesomely awesome Mr. T, “You betta’ recognize!”
(BTW, awesomely awesome isn’t redundant here because Mr. T is just THAT awesome… foo’)

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Mr. T knows exactly who he is.

No, but seriously, the first step to returning to our light is to recognize that we’ve moved away from the light within us in the first place – that we’ve been living in ego, that our thoughts have been fear-based + not aligned with love. We have to possess at least the slightest willingness to commit to changing our thoughts, our perceptions, and our daily actions before we can find our light.

If you’ve made it this far, something here must have resonated with you. Congratulations! This means that you’ve already completed the first step. Some part of you is willing to accept that things need to change and, even if it’s only a tiny crack, a door has been opened for you.

Awesomely awesome. <3


2. Get Quiet + Listen


To tune in to who we are, we have to LISTEN. CLOSELY.

This means turning off the gadgets, putting down the projects, letting go of the never-ending To-Do List and just straight up listening.

When we listen to our inner voice, that’s our light talking to us. It speaks softly and, depending on how far and how long you’ve been out of touch with your light, it might be shy… so, don’t give up if you don’t hear it right away.

There are a few different ways to listen; to become consciously aware + attuned to our inner voice, our light.

I’ll be honest friends, our best resource for this task is meditation.


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Meditation, specifically a meditation practice that you return to again + again, has so many far-reaching benefits including, relief from stress + anxiety, increased brain tissue (gray matter), improved memory + cognitive functions, it boosts the immune system + lowers blood pressure, and soooooooo much more.

On top of all of these awesome, scientifically measurable responses, meditation also allows us to create the internal space to seek out our inner wisdom, the knowledge from within – our inner voice, our light.


RELATED CONTENT: My Absolute Favorite Yoga + Meditation Apps


Some Meditation Inspiration:


So, for those of you who are already shaking your head, saying “Oh, no… I don’t meditate because (fill in the blank),” know that I hear you. I see you. I validate your feelings about meditation. If not for any other reason than the fact that meditation is a deeply personal practice and some of us just have trouble relating to it for whatever reason.

To you I say, there ARE alternative practices.

Look, I understand that everyone is different + some people can have seriously clear insight into their inner Selves through some of the following alternatives to Getting Quiet. But, I WILL say, that this has to be a regular practice.

A one + done deal isn’t going to get you there, so remember that consistency is key.


Alternatives to Meditation:

  • Mindfulness
  • Spending Time Alone in Nature
  • Journaling/Free-Writing

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Mindfulness

Mindfulness is a practice of becoming acutely aware of our surroundings, our physical sensations, our emotions, our thoughts, or any combination of these things and more.

We can practice mindfulness pretty much anywhere + any time by simply tuning in to the present moment.

EXAMPLE:

You could be getting ready for your day or on your way to work. Being mindful in these moments might mean being consciously aware of what it feels like to brush your teeth or how the temperature of the air feels on your skin.

It might be consciously paying attention to the way that your feet feel each time they touch the ground with every step or it could be trying to recognize every sound in your immediate environment. Maybe it’s recognizing the way the steering wheel vibrates in your hands as you drive down the road.

You don’t have to sit down and close your eyes to be mindful. Mindfulness can be practiced with your eyes open, while you’re doing things. We just do those things with as much attention as we can for a few minutes.

Just to be clear, mindfulness + meditation are not one in the same.

There are mindfulness meditation practices available out there, but you don’t have to meditate to be mindful.


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Spending Time Alone in Nature

There’s nothing like good ol’ fresh air and natural sights + sounds to connect to our own true nature.

This might seem obvious, but this practice requires your full attention, just like the others – so, leaving your cell phone behind is a must (or at the very least, turn it off to avoid the temptation).

Being alone in nature can create a strong connection to our roots and to the world around us.

But, the amount of time we spend here is pretty important. It could be as little as 20-30 minutes, though it’s better to get an hour regularly. Remember, commitment makes the difference.

Spending time alone in nature is a wonderful option, but sometimes requires more time and planning, so it may not always be the go-to for everyone (especially depending on location).  But, it could be a great supplemental alternative to the days when meditation or another practice just doesn’t feel right.


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Journaling/Free-Writing

There’s something magical about putting a pen to paper and letting our thoughts pour out. But, this particular form of journaling is more than just writing down the events of our day… it’s about sharing our dreams, our thoughts, and our emotions.

Don’t worry about spelling or grammar here, just write.

If you have difficulty writing, I suggest taking a few deep breaths, closing your eyes and letting your hand begin a movement. Any movement. Just GO.

This practice is called free-writing and has been used as a sort of writer’s block ice-breaker. It can be as simple as writing down random words or even scribbling small images.

The only thing that really matters is that you move that pen across the page and don’t stop for 10-15 minutes. The more you practice this, the easier and more fluidly the words will flow. Again, this is a commitment practice, one we return to over + over to find a deeper sense of our Selves.


Once we’ve chosen our “Get Quiet” strategies + begin applying them, we simply sit back in the silence and we listen. CLOSELY. Without straining or expectation. We just listen.

Again, it may take a few tries before you hear anything or even begin to actually recognize which voice is your own + which ones are from your experience of the external world. But, I promise that if you come back again + again with real intention, your voice – your light – will speak. So, listen.


3. Trust + Act


The third + final step to Returning to Your Light is to trust the voice you connect to within and to act according to what it asks you to do.

This can be the most challenging step of all because, often times, our inner voice will tell us things that we may not be ready to hear or it may ask us to act in ways that we’re not prepared to take on.

This is pretty natural because, remember, we’re already so far removed from this version of ourselves – our highest and truest Selves – that we’re caught up in the ego, in the expectations of others, or whatever else that we’ve been saying or doing that’s not aligned with our light.

To redirect towards our dreams and towards becoming more at peace with who we are, we are probably going to face an inner resistance to the changes required.

It’s OK.

The beauty of this process is that our light – our inner voice – is infinitely patient with us.

Our light will never pull or force us in any way that isn’t aligned for our highest good. It may direct us, and at times, STRONGLY direct us, but it will never be harsh or critical… not our TRUE voice.

It’s up to us to utilize these three steps to stay committed to connecting + listening, and trusting that our light knows the way back to us.

This practice is a journey, one that takes time and patience. But, it is a beautiful one and will always bring us closer to our true nature.

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Namaste, brilliantly gorgeous + infinite beauties <3

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