You Hurt My Feelings! The Victim Blame Game

hurt feelingsOnce when I was around 12 years old, my Aunt Iris said something to me that “hurt my feelings.” I can’t remember what it was, but Iris was a smart, opinionated, outspoken woman and I’m sure it was nothing other than the bald truth.

Aunt Iris loved me and I knew it. She wouldn’t do or say anything of a negative nature toward me. Yet, I told her about what she said and how she hurt me. Instead of an apology, which I expected, my accusation was met with a surprise. “NO, I did not!” she exclaimed, looking me right in the eye. “I couldn’t possibly hurt your feelings.”

“But you did!” I replied.

“Impossible!” she said. “I don’t have one iota of control over your emotions and feelings. YOU are the only one with that power.”

What in the world? Why, this was simply stunning! Aunt Iris wasn’t taking responsibility for my feelings? She wasn’t even letting me make her wrong? Instead, she stood her ground. My little adolescent heart was hurt again. How dare her!!

But, Iris had just given me one of the greatest lessons for being emotionally balanced. She was teaching me on the spot that blaming others for the way I feel keeps me weak, powerless, and victimized. Since then, I’ve realized there is nothing anyone can say that can hurt my feelings. Which doesn’t mean I don’t feel hurt over things that are said sometimes. It just means I can’t blame the other for saying them. If I’m hurt, it’s about me.

And—holy liberation—others are responsible for their own emotions, too! Their emotions are under their control, not mine. They only wish I’d take responsibility and blame, so they wouldn’t have to. Sound familiar?

Now, I’m not a TV watcher except for one twisted secret pleasure: Orange County Housewives. There. I admitted it. Maybe I find it a fascinating case study in human relations. Yes, that’s it! And those women are absolutely committed to keeping themselves victims in the YOU-HURT-MY-FEELINGS realm. They can’t see it because humans are well-adapted to blaming others for how they feel. The ladies of the OC play the victim, don’t take responsibility for themselves, and perpetuate weakness among women. (After all, how many men do you come across who accuse their friends of hurting their feelings? It appears to be a very female crutch.)

So what to do? Keep the following in mind.

Other people are allowed to comment, express themselves, and speak their minds, even when you believe it’s hurtful. Because in truth, there isn’t anything anyone else can say that can hurt you. You choose to feel hurt because you’re not accepting that what another person says is about them, and not you. Yes, they are trying to make it about you, and you might be at fault. They might be right. Even so, it’s absolutely fine for you to let others make comments and not let them affect you. Something nasty from another person comes from their pain and ignorance. Plain and simple.

So give it a try. Stay centered. Keep breathing. It’s not actually about YOU.

While we’re on the subject, stay tuned for more in the next Holistic Woman post where I’ll talk about 6 Ways to Be in Charge of Your Own Emotional Life.

Today is the Perfect Day to Expand Love

grand sextileI know it sounds cliche. The word “love” is carelessly tossed around and many of us have become anesthetized to it’s meaning. But whatever it means to you, today is the perfect day to meditate on expanding your own personal expression of it. It’s a day of opportunity. The cosmos are on your side.

At this moment, the stars are aligned to assist you through a mystical portal of love. We have a special planetary alignment today creating a Star of David in the sky ~ two triangles intersecting to form a Diamond Tetrahedron.

The planets involved in this alignment are creating potential for great advancement in our “heart brains.” It’s an opportunity to take responsibility for our heart energy and how it’s expressed. It’s a time of healing old wounds, hurts, betrayals, the times you didn’t get what you thought you needed, and all those negative energies clung to for the sake of strength and power ~ this is the time to address them, to admit they cause unlovingness and pain, and to call in the higher forces of love.

There are two things I’m doing and I hope you’ll do them too:

  1. Ponder your openness and availability to receive loving energy from others. Recognize the pain humans feel when the love they offer, in whatever way they offer it, is not received. Consider allowing yourself to absorb the love given you and let it lift you up.
  2. Tune into your willingness to let love flow freely from you, without conditions or expectations of return. Breathe healing green light into your heart center. Soften your shoulders, chest, facial muscles, and all that useless defensive armor. Make an agreement to be someone who love flows easily into, through, and out from.

Today is the day, which doesn’t mean tomorrow you can’t do it. But we’ve got a portal operating in our favor right now. If nothing else, take a moment to breathe into your heart center and ask, “Can I let more love flow, without fear and defense?” I believe the answer is yes.

Mastectomy to Prevent Breast Cancer?

WomanI’ve been asked more than a few times what I think about Angelina Jolie’s choice to have her breasts removed as a method of preventing breast cancer. Although I’ve written a book about the many ways one can prevent and heal from breast cancer, I wasn’t sure how to be diplomatic about the news that a highly influential beautiful woman, that many women look up to, had made this decision. But here it goes. Is it after the fact? Yes. But it’s still timely because many women will find themselves faced with this same choice in their future.

First, I’m not in her head, so I hesitated to judge. I’m not someone who’s lost female relatives to breast cancer, although my father, grandma, and just two months ago, an aunt, died from cancer. I’m also not someone who gives my power away to men (or women) in white coats who have medical degrees. I think for myself, despite what others might believe. This isn’t always popular and it’s not always right, but there you have it. As a woman who lived through breast cancer, as a healer, and as a writer, I have an opinion.

That said, I believe the method of removing breasts to prevent something that might never happen is misguided. It brings to mind words like self-mutilation, self-hatred, ignorance, and misogyny. Yes, it does. Glorifying the mutilation of the female body gets me riled, and I’m afraid we’ve stepped closely to glorification in the case of Angelina Jolie. “Brave decision?” The braver decision would have been to take the path of the feminine and keep the breasts.

Let’s think about it for a moment. There are dozens, maybe hundreds, possibly thousands of things a woman can do to be pro-active and prevent breast dis-ease. I’ve written about many of them. I’ve used many of them. If the body is going to produce cancerous cells that proliferate, is it logical to remove the part of the body that this activity might show up in? Shall I now remove my brain, liver, lungs, and bones because breast cancer can recur in those places? Absurd! Cancer has a root cause, and this cause is not due to the fact that a woman has breast tissue. The causes are many, from viruses to stress to pollutants and toxins. And did I just read that Angelina has spent years of her life smoking cigarettes? Not much prevention going on there.

Breasts are hugely, might I say wildly, symbolic. They represent nurturance, nourishment, sustainment, sensuality, sexuality, and woman power. Female wisdom and power has been cut down through the ages. Cut off, removed, mutilated. So when I heard that one of our influential Hollywood beauties sold out to a culture that doesn’t want feminine power to become too much, or get too big, I was disappointed. I was dismayed. And at the same time, I understand that her decision was a human one born out of fear.

Before making a major life choice, it’s relevant to focus on creating balance in your mind and emotions first, then make your decisions based on your own inner truth and on higher wisdom that stems from a balanced perspective. I know from personal experience this isn’t easy to do when you have authority figures giving you advice. It isn’t easy to do when you are consumed with fear. But we must do it to save ourselves and halt the madness that is the degradation of the feminine.

To Meat or Not to Meat? That is the Question.

real foodNone of us has escaped the controversy over whether to eat meat or not. I’m frequently asked what I think, and I wish I could tell people to never touch it. Protect the animals and save yourselves. But I can’t. Not yet anyway. Here’s why.

I believe quality protein is necessary to help the body heal. This includes grass-fed hormone-free beef and lamb, chicken, organic chicken liver, eggs, salmon or any clean fish you can find, including sardines. This doesn’t include any conventionally-raised meats or eggs, those that come from filthy factory farms, including farm-raised fish.

I don’t think tofu or other soy-based foods are quality protein. Though they’re quite popular, they simply don’t have the oomph necessary to make a body strong. I’ve not once met a long-term vegetarian who was robust, healthy, energetic, mentally and emotionally balanced, with great skin and hair. ‘Tis true… I’m sorry.

Nonetheless, some of you will be interested in a macrobiotic diet, while others will try vegetarianism or all raw food. John Robbins is an eloquent advocate of vegetarianism and author of Diet for a New America. He makes me want to be vegetarian. (Indeed, I’ve given it a try but became dizzy and anemic with roller coaster blood sugar levels.) Robbins tells us that meat, dairy, and egg consumption raise cancer rates. As I researched this, I felt that additional studies are needed with a focus on organic, grass-fed and pastured animals, free from hormones and antibiotics. There are many pollutants and additives in meats that don’t belong in your body, and I believe they can raise rates of cancer. Excess hormones, toxins, and chemicals in meat and dairy products can contribute to cancer, so I completely avoid conventionally raised meats, dairy products, and eggs. This supports health and also humane practices (which is so important in this day of mass cruelty to animals raised for food).

If you are a vegetarian or are thinking about becoming one, be sure to eat what is found in nature. Avoid pasta, processed “health” foods, sugary snacks, and soy products such as soy cheese, soy milk, soy ice cream, and tofurkey style “meat.” Soy is safe in fermented form such as miso and tempeh. It’s been marketed heavily as a health food but soy phytoestrogens can disrupt endocrine function, increase your need for Vitamin D and B12, and it’s likely GMO unless it’s organic.

The Healing Benefits of Medicinal Mushrooms

mushMaitake, Reishi, Shiitake, Cordyceps, and Coriolus (Turkey Tail) are a few healthy and powerful mushrooms. Substances in these mushrooms have been found to increase immune function. They also stimulate “natural killer” immune cells that destroy cancer cells.

This group of medicinal mushrooms have been known to stop the spread of cancer, prevent kidney damage in the case of chemotherapy use, and many of them have natural antiviral, antibiotic, and anti-inflammatory effects.

Both cooked and raw, they contain ergothioneine, an antioxidant that helps heal free radical damage. Medicinal mushrooms can be added to many dishes such as soups, cooked greens, rice, and scrambled eggs. They can also be sautéed and served as a side dish. When I use them, I put them in any dish you might put ordinary mushrooms in.

I also order medicinal mushrooms individually in powdered form then mix them together to make my own tea powder. Currently, I’ve been using a blend of maitake, reishi, and coriolus. I buy each of these separately, then mix them together in equal parts. I add a teaspoon of the powder mix to hot water and drink it, just like tea. It has a healing, earthy flavor. It will support your body to halt or considerably lessen colds, sinus infections, bronchitis, and coughs.

You certainly can grow your own mushrooms. I haven’t gotten around to that adventure yet. If you’d like to order them or get the powdered form I use, you can find them online. I like to use www.mushroomharvest.com. You can also try www.invincibleherbs.com.

Nourish Your Body with Real Food

nourishIf we think about how to truly nourish your body with real food, we can start by asking what does your body tell you? What does it need to be supported? Fresh water, of course. Fresh seasonal vegetables and fruits, those are crucial. Fresh meat, chicken, fish, and eggs? Ask your body. Yogurt, cheeses, nuts? See how you feel after eating them. What about grains? Do you feel good when you eat rice or other whole grains? How is your digestion afterward? Begin to notice what your body (and mood) tells you, then nourish yourself with those foods in their whole, natural state.

I’m a huge proponent of eating real food, which we’ve lost sight of in our convenience culture. Real food isn’t found in a package. Not in a box, can, jar, or plastic wrap. It’s found in it’s whole form shortly after collected from nature. No factories or billion-dollar corporations are involved.

What about eating everything raw? I think this depends on your own personal digestion and constitution. I do better with slightly cooked vegetables, not raw, despite many fervent claims that raw is best. Raw juices and even raw foods can be difficult to digest for some, not to mention the concentrated sugars in the juices, so see how your own body responds to them. I get a lot of raw greens in my morning smoothie, but I make sure to add some protein (lately, chia seeds and/or nut butter).

If you wonder which road to take, raw or cooked, talk about it with your natural health practitioner, but avoid the fanatics who’ve made food choices and eating into a new religion. One reason we’re addressing nourishing your body with food is for your optimum health, so getting the raw or cooked controversy settled in your own heart and mind will be helpful. Personally, warm food is more nourishing for me, but what does your body say?

As for dairy, meats, grains, and so forth, listen and pay attention to your own body’s response. What happens to your digestion, your mood, any physical aches and pains after you’ve eaten certain foods? Noticing in this way, you’ll be able to optimize your health and lifestyle for your best personal wellbeing.

Do You Have Metal in Your Teeth?

teethMetals enter the body through food, water, and air, and also through metal amalgams in your teeth. These “silver fillings” have been associated with Alzheimer’s, autism, Multiple Sclerosis, chronic fatigue, and cancer. The metal from your fillings leaches continually into your bloodstream. What is this doing to your long-term health and wellbeing?

Dental amalgams contain about 50% mercury which has been shown to be more toxic than lead, cadmium, and arsenic. Mercury kills cells and has the potential to disturb metabolic processes. It is known to deplete the immune system and has been found stored in the kidneys, liver, and brain. It causes single strand breaks in DNA and adheres to hemoglobin, reducing the capacity of red blood cells to carry oxygen.

Many dentists now use alternative materials. I think it is best to have a qualified dentist remove metal fillings and replace them with composites. It isn’t cheap, so even if you go very slowly, I think it’s a worthwhile endeavor. It’s best to go very slowly anyway, having the dentist remove metal from one quadrant per visit because, when it comes out, your body experiences a readjustment period. In addition, it’s possible to absorb some of the metals, even from the vapor, as they are taken out. Precautions are taken to avoid this from happening. Any quality dentist should be able to reassure you of his or her technique to protect you from metal exposure as it is removed from your teeth. Have your dentist explain the procedure and how safe it is, to your satisfaction.

If you decide to have metal fillings removed, there are steps you can take to help support your body through the process. It’s good to supplement your diet prior to and for a few weeks following your amalgam removal. If you don’t see a natural health practitioner to advise you, use a top quality chlorella supplement. Chlorella binds to metals in your body and helps carry them out. Seaweed and miso soup will help do the same, but be certain to get seaweed that is pure and tested for metals, as many ocean foods are becoming more contaminated themselves. After your procedure is finished, take extra Vitamin C and eat a very clean diet.

Uncovering Hidden Agendas That Keep You Stuck

TM4Everyone wants to be healthy, successful, and happy, right? Not necessarily. All we need to do is look around and we can see that sometimes people like the benefits of not being healthy, not being successful, and of being miserable.

Remaining stuck or being a victim around nothing going right in life can have payoffs, but from my perspective we must eliminate these hidden agendas for our own evolution and for the benefit of all living beings.

Here are a few of the payoffs illness, misery, and a lack of success can offer:

  • Get attention
  • Get revenge
  • Be lazy, take it easy
  • Don’t have to work much
  • Be taken care of by others
  • Notice how much others care about you (as they’re offering support and ideas for you to improve your circumstances)
  • See what a stir you can make in the lives of others
  • Feel important
  • Feel special
  • Feel like there is something that sets you apart from others
  • Have an excuse not to do things you don’t want to do
  • Punish others, use “power” over others
  • Be validated as a real person/get listened to
  • Sabotage yourself
  • Have something happen in an otherwise mundane life
  • Fulfill the family legacy, e.g., “lots of people in my family have heart disease/didn’t succeed/were depressed”
  • Addiction to being a victim/accentuate the victim role

It is difficult for us to see our own hidden agendas. That is why they are called “hidden.” It’s valid to be honest and look at these agendas. They are disempowering and work behind the scenes to undermine you.

The Holistic Approach to Breast Cancer is Here!

BookCoverImage

Oh my, can it be true? After years of toil and many moons going back and forth with a publishing team, my book The Holistic Approach to Breast Cancer: Every Woman’s Guide to Health, Vitality, & Wellbeing is available! It is a relief ~ a huge relief ~ to have it out of my hands and into the world.

I was compelled to write the book. Though many times I intended to abandon it, it’s a book and story that wanted to be written. I simply couldn’t slither away from it.

One reason I found myself sitting at this computer time and again to keep going on it is because I have a load of information about how to heal from breast dis-ease. I’d done research for a dozen years. I began to realize the selfishness in keeping this information to myself. “Hasn’t all this information been readily available?” you might ask. The answer is simply, “No.” Until now…

The business of cancer is extraordinarily profitable, therefore most of us will not hear about ways to truly prevent or heal from breast dis-ease and cancer unless we seek it out ourselves. The mainstream medical establishment will give you three options: surgery, radiation, and pharmaceutical drugs with harsh side effects. These are based on a patriarchal system that devalues the feminine. I’m not talking about devaluing women, nor am I male-bashing. I’m talking about underestimating the worth of or simply ignoring the simple yet powerfully healing and deeply nourishing ways of nature that bring the body, mind, emotions, and spirit back to balance and harmony.

The Holistic Approach to Breast Cancer covers a wide range of healing methods old and new that support and encourage you to heal from within. For me, every imbalance in the body, mind, or spirit is a messenger asking us to look within, to find what needs to awaken, to give attention to those parts of ourselves that have been neglected. This is the way to heal, even from a serious medical condition or diagnosis.

This is a book worth having and giving to your friends and loved ones. Not one of us has been or will be left untouched by breast cancer through someone we know or through our own precious self. Therefore, do yourself and those you know a favor and offer them this healing information. Order here.

The Holistic Approach to Breast Cancer: Every Woman’s Guide to Health, Vitality, & Wellbeing is available now through B&N, Amazon, and other retailers. It’s also Kindle-ready. Click here to order it now. Thank you in advance for helping create more balance and harmony for all!

The Search for Meaning

searchYears ago I went through an intense phase of grumbling about life. During this time, my friend Nubby gently suggested I read Man’s Search for Meaning, by Viktor Frankl. The book was written in 1946 after Frankl had survived being a prisoner in a Nazi concentration camp. Ultimately, Frankl presents how to face suffering while finding meaning in life so it can be lived not in bitterness, but with purpose. In Dr. Frankl’s country of Austria his book is translated to mean “Say yes to life just the same.”

I had meant to read it for years. The book was already on my shelf, so I didn’t have to go far to find it. The next day after Nubby made the suggestion, I didn’t get out of bed. I kept the blinds closed, commiserated with myself, moaned and groaned about my life — wallowed in it until I was pruney. Then I read Man’s Search for Meaning.

On that feeling-sorry-for-myself day when I refused to get out of bed, Dr. Frankl’s story spoke to me. Here is what it said:

  • We are capable of free thought.
  • We can make it through anything with a positive state of mind.
  • When we look death in the face, the cruelty of it can slice through our illusions so that things become very simple.
  • These are the energies that really count: love, hope, neutrality.
  • The ego is a rather frail construct.
  • We can step back and realize that no horror has any power over us.
  • We can transcend our own personal Auschwitz.
  • Nothing can break our spirit unless we allow it.

After finishing the last page of the book, I laid there in the dark room for a while questioning whether I would have had what it took to get through Auschwitz alive. Then I wondered, had I survived such a horror would I have been deeply bitter and resentful and hateful for the remainder of my life? I wondered if I would have chosen to see the joy and beauty in life again or would I have just grumbled through the rest of my days. I got out of bed, straightened the covers, took a shower, and decided to live.

Page 4 of 8« First...23456...Last »