Do you struggle with the term God? Think of an old man sitting behind the pearly gates? maybe it makes you think of religion and you had enough of that at school or maybe too much of the use of the word God?
I know how you feel....I've spoke to a lot of people lately who have those thoughts and more. As i was growing up i associated the word God with religion and conformity, i'd hear people say "God is watching you" and i associated it with a "fear" which is what a lot of people do without realising. I also couldn't get my head around "him" watching but i could never see "him"
At school and still, i enjoy religious studies, learning about different religions and how a faith can unite and reunite people, all diversities but seperate beliefs, only a slight difference in some cases but a difference all the same. All have spirituality running through them, but also a dogma which a lot of us hold onto and others push it away. Which is where usually, the reluctance to accept God or even understand God comes in.
In my thoughts, i feel it's because some of us aren't ready to love ourselves or be open to our emotional side, the positive love side of us.
A man in a flowing gown has never sat with me, because how could it be a man or a human form if "God " had never been in physical form? So it didn't make sense to me, what does sit with me is this, God is an energy, a creative force that flows and as energy is never ending so is the flow of God. As energy has no boundaries unless harnessed so is God, an abundance of limitless boundaries. Because God is seen as a faith, hope and a trust, a creative force which is a positive, God is ultimately love which is the purest form of emotion.
I went through periods of not liking myself for whatever reason, i let the negative thoughts in, saw my flaws or what percieved were my flaws based on what other people had to say went on on the self sabotage and had a pity party..."why me?" "things went wrong because of something i did" and i ended up doing the "falling out with God" if there was a God why would these things happen, if there was a God why would he give me more misery, if there was a gOd why would he take people out my life, I became a negative person and envious towards other's who i percieved to have what i'd had. I was thinking with my lower self which is the jealousy, bitterness, envy and all the negative traits that are in us all and and maybe even think religion doesn't fit right, which it might not but only when you don't realise that religion is simply a belief and it can all be changed.
Thinking of God as seperate to religion for those who religion doesn't sit right , God is love which is in us all. The creative driving force which propels us on a daily basis to strive for better, be good people, be nice to our loved ones, those closest to us, but also to smile at strangers we pass in the street, think good thoughts when we hear of good deeds. This is the higher self, the God spark that fills us with love, confidence, boosts our self esteem, happiness and all the positive traits.
God is hope.
Religion is the belief in a controlling power which God is or can be for many, a trust, a way of life, a thought process.
As a child at school i had a healthy attitude to religion, for me it was unlimiting, it was one religion covered all, i'd join clubs held by different religions and i loved the mix. I'm very much the same today, i'm a spiritualist as i believe and know we live on, death doesn't end us. But i freely accept each religions and love to learn more about many religions, the different gods in religions and culture in general. I'm all for a melting pot of people, backrounds and religions. What doesn't sit well with me is when a religion rules your life and changes you, so if God is love and basically an energy we all carry, religion is a man made organisation it can only be a human that puts the dogma there and it is a physical human being setting the rules and regulations that are thrust upon us. This for me, is where the confusion happens, its actually not God we go against, its the religious rules and regulations we go against. My thoughts have always varied on this but ultimately i always come back to God is love and kindness in ourselves and when we "fall out with God" or "God doesnt sit right with me" we're actually not liking parts of ourselves or our life isn't going how we think it should.
It used to make me cringe when i heard people say the word "God" back years ago when i'd "fell out" and went through a phase that God didn't exist, i'd still go to church but would keep my head up and eyes open, when someone said "let's bow our heads and pray" i'd have my phone inside a hymn book and play a game when it came to hymns or songs and i'd mouth blah, blah, blah or just move my mouth to make it look like i was singing. These were my acts of defiance against a God that i'd fell out with. When i look back at those times, i chuckle to myself and think i must have still believed in something to be in the church in the first place, and ive went to church all my life!
My Mom would have to take me as a child because i wanted to go, then a sunday school teacher would pick me up as i grew a little older until finally i was old enough to go along with different clubs i was in...The Girls Brigade, Brownies, Girl Guides. At church youth clubs i'd always be drawn to the people who were interested in the God side of things and we'd find we'd talk to those running the clubs about God etc. I'd attend a baptist church, pentecostal, united reformed, catholic, protestant, methodist, brethren (can't remember the denomination) and would take part in regular bible studies, scripture searches and once a week would go with a few friends, to the home of one who would play guitar and his wife would sing and we'd all join in then enjoy pop and biscuits or cakes then chat about God, they were great times! One of my Sunday school teachers from my childhood, a lovely purely spiritual lady called Theresa, i visited her weekly until a few days before she passed in 2013, i'd help her in her home, i'd talk "god" and took my 2 children to visit her and she'd tell them bible stories, which they enjoyed and still remember her very fondly now. She hadn't believed in life eternal the way i do, but a week before she took ill, she told me she'd seen her beloved husband who was the pastor of the church and a lovely lovely man, she asked me if she had been dreaming but i'd assured her he was there to be with her through her illness and when the time came he would "take her home" this gave her great peace, and i was pleased she was happy to be reunited with her beloved Jimmy.
I enjoyed the coming together, the community spirit, even though i was a child and teenager but thats always carried forward with me, so GOD has always been in me which i do understand to be LOVE.
I can also recognise i've always been a positive person but have had my times of negativity and when i look back on those, i recognise those are the times ive "fell out with God" basically fell out of love with myself, not liked myself. Instead of recognising that at the time i'd blame God, because i didn't want to take the blame myself! why would i! it wasn't my fault! In reality it was my thought process and understanding that God was an almighty being who watched and saw all, he would have seen the times i "did bad" or "sad bad things" or "wished bad to others" so of course he was going to fall out with me, BUT he couldn't if i fell out with him first!
I'm not a "bible basher" nor a "religious freak" nor do i live my life by a religious rules or regulations, but i live my life as me, by me but with God by my side and within me, that is love.
The universe is energy and a greater power, a cosmic power that has it's own universal laws which are natural laws, i prefer to live my life by natural laws and the universe.
So if it helps you to understand what God is and how you can build that relationship with God, think of love and letting love in, allow yourself to let love into your heart.
It genuinely gives you a lift and puts a smile on your heart.
So let God in and watch the changes for the better within and in your life. When you hear anyone say God bless, remember they are saying be blessed with love.
A quick tip to finding your hearts desire.
Our busy lives mean we lose sight on our life's purpose at times, this exercise helps to bring that back.
1 ~ Find a quiet space and sit as comfortable as possible, with your back straight, uncrossed legs and hands in your lap
2 ~ Set an intention to relax deeply, remembering everything that happens during the visualisation, to truly benefit from it
3 ~ Close your eyes and take a deep breath, in through your nose and out through your mouth. Take a total of seven breaths and with each exhale, imagine your going deeper and deeper into relaxation, becoming calmer as your thoughts slow
4 ~ Now imagine you're walking in a town centre, along a busy street. Imagine the shops and buildings as you pass by. Notice if it is daytime or night-time. Walk with a spring in your step and watch yourself as though you were watching another person. As you walk, people jostle you as they pass by. You come to a street corner, turn left and ahead of you is a huge advertising billboard
5 ~ Stop and read the billboard, it's promoting and acknowledging what is great about you. Does it show a picture of you with someone else? Have you won an award? Is it a book you have written? What does the text say? Set your intention to recall all your first thoughts about it
6 ~ Now take a deep breath and slowly bring yourself back into the present, breathing normally
7 ~ Take a few moments to write down what came to mind in your visualisation and reflect on any insights.
This is a great way to remind yourself about yourself!
A few years ago after my husband had passed, i wasn't feeling in the best of places, i realised i had turned into someone i didn't like.
I'd had a lot of negativity around me, people, gossip, rumours and influences, the activity leading upto and surrounding Peter's passing had finally pulled me down and turned me into a person who just didn't like or love themselves. Everything i seemed to do turned to mush, felt everything was karma coming back to me, though my intention was pure (or so i thought, not realising i was carrying the negative energies i had soaked up) I, like many, thought i needed love to make me feel "whole" or "better".
I was talking to a friend who is a white witch and asked her about spells or anything that could help bring love into my life. She told me a couple of ways, reciting daily affirmations (i didn't try it then, as i wanted FAST results!) and setting an altar, which i thought was a bit much or a bit too witchy but thought i'll try it...it worked in a way i definately didn't see coming!
It worked for me so i KNOW it CAN work for you!
Lately i've been thinking about crying, why do we cry? what is the difference in tears of laughter and tears of sadness? what does crying do for us? where do the tears come from? I've meditated on this and thought about this and came back to the same answer...crying is a release of emotions.
Grieving for a loved one causes us to hold emotions in, we try to be strong for others and ourselves. We still feel the need to emotionally collapse but usually we don't give in to it as much as we should.
Crying with grief is a release of the love we have inside for the person we lost. It can be a deep racking sobbing, coupled with a feeling of helplessness and a feeling of emptiness and its a natural process. To some it can release the feelings we have of, have we done enough, what if, if only...as we cry we're letting these feeling go, for some it takes time for others it can be a quick process. But it's a natural emotion. Sometimes it you can actually feel the release, as a lighter feeling grows in your chest or as a weight leaves you. This can happen if you've realised the loved one has had enough, it's best for them or you have accepted the ineviteable. It's the ones left behind who feel the loss most.
Crying over a relationship, is like a grief, its mourning a loss, an ending. It all depends on how much love was there at the time of the end or break up, some people know when it's over but sometimes stay in that relationship a little bit longer. When that happens you might find there's very few tears if any. Some feel a sense of relief even. Sometimes when a relationship is over, you might not be crying for that person, it could be the extended relationships which have built, the bonds and the ties that you feel you lose.
Crying in pain or when we hurt ourselves is really to soothe ourselves, feeling sorry for ourselves, and you'll find as the pain of hurting ourselves goes, so does the crying.
Emotional crying for seemingly no reason can happen when we feel out of balance, losing control, out of sync with life in general, and sometimes can have a domino effect, we look for the reasons why, we look to sometimes blame other things and sometimes it can be situations or others that can cause this crying, its the cause and effect reaction.
So crying in general when it's to do with any kind of pain, whether a loss, an ending or actual pain is for soothing ourselves emotionally. And emotions are all from within. Hopelessness, abondonment, loneliness can all be rolled together. It's our body's own natural painkiller
Crying with joy or happiness can happen out of the blue too, if we've really looked forward to an event, meeting someone we havn't seen for sometime, can cause feelings of excitement and it can be overwhelming and we cry. We cry at jokes when we laugh. If you think, when we go through bouts of crying with sadness, there's almost always something that will pick us up and make us smile or laugh and there'll be a tear or two that come with that. We can be sad or feeling tearful and someone will say "cheer up" or try in their way to make us laugh or at least smile. This is a form of "cleansing" a carthartic or purging of the emotions.
Crying is good for us as it cleanses the emotions. If you have had a bad day, emotionally and feel stressed, a good cry at the end of the day is one of the ways the body cleanses and purges itself to pick itself and emotions up again.
It can be the smallest word that's been said to you that's stuck with you, children who have been told they're stupid, worthless or worse can grow up believing it to be true, and because it's an adult that has usually told them they believe it's validated. As adults we can also believe words that's said by others, or we see someone who we deem to be better than us, due to looks or accomplishments and we judge ourselves.
Imagine being a child or adult and not having those words said to you? Imagine ignoring those words and how confident you would be feeling now?
Society has changed over the years, where we all know or have heard the benefits of being positive, giving positive affirmations and not validating the negative. I believe we are going through a phase of change in the world, which has been creeping up over quite a few years with a few more to go. I myself, made a conscious decision when i had my children that i would only give positive affirmations and not fall into the negative judgements. So when they would have, for example, spelling tests at school, and maybe the mark would be 8/10 or 9/10 and they would say "ah i only got this mark or that mark", i'd always tell them well it's left you room to improve your mark next time, or "it's better than less" but i'd always tell them they can only try their best and the important thing is the trying. If you don't try you will never know. If they ever say their stupid, i tell them "no you're not, you just havn't used your brain but you'll know better next time" I've carried out the positive affirmations throughout their life and they both have a "quiet confidence" about them that always surprises me.
Self confidence is a daily affirmation of "you can do this" "you are better than you think" " you got this" and more.
Daily affirmations of self love can be looking in the mirror once a day and, even in your mind telling yourself your a good person, you look lovely, you deserve success etc they really can change your outlook on yourself as the inner self in acknowledged and validated.
Here are a few ways you can show yourself love.
I truly hope some of these techniques work for you.
No...everyone is different and depending what you have going on in your life or if you havn't accepted or the reality of the loss hasn't sunk in, they can have an effect.
Everyone we meet has an impact on us good and bad. When we lose someone who has been a constant in our lives or been a massive influence on us. Sometimes it can be someone who has been in our lives a short time, who can make that lasting impression that it may hurt the most.
For example...a parent or a sibling, who we've been close to for many years, then maybe a disagreement even moving away and just the distance becoming greater, where both sides don't make an effort. A friend or lover who you've been so close to, spent all your time with maybe married or had plans for the future, then a drifting apart..maybe years in some cases. Some of us hear of them passing and really struggle to get over the loss, but is it their loss we struggle with or is it our own feelings of a guilt? Guilt we feel for losing touch, not making an effort as we expected those to? Resentment towards that person for not making an effort as you had hoped or expected? Also the memories come flooding back, of the good times and how much of an impression they were on you. All of these are factors in grief. If you lose someone that you spent a lot of time with, very close to and who were a constant in your life, that hurt will seem to hurt more as they were part of your life there and then! And that is a hurt like no other as that loss is actually happening to you, whereas someone you've drifted apart from, whether by a fall out or just by these things happen, in a sense that loss has already happened and the moving on has taken place naturally.
Losing someone close, is heart wrenching and can take a long time to grieve, memories always come back in many ways.
For me, and for many others im sure, it can hit me when i'm walking along a street and it suddenly hits me that i'm walking along a street that a loved one walked down. Eating a particular food or cooking a certain dish and it hits me how i know how to cook that dish...i've watched a loved one cook it, then it hits me all over again that their influence is still there and ongoing. It hits me how much of an influence they've had on me which i've then passed on to my children. So the generations do cross and i really marvel at that.
It's the same when i hear about someone that i've maybe not seen for a long time for whatever reason, like i said previously, i do feel regret but i also feel the love that was once there and again memories come back, sometimes memories that have long been forgotten.
Rekindle old friendships, family ties and let go of the wounds that have kept you apart. Make the time as that's what we all have in common, we all want more time with those we love.
Courage is a word i don't think about that often...lately i've had that word going round in my mind a lot, which led me to thinking..
How many times do we recognise our own courage? not a lot! but we've all got courage and it shows itself in many ways. Courage can be something that might seem trivial to many but is a massive thing to others. I'm going to share my thoughts on what ive thought lately about "courage"..
For a lot of people, waking up in the morning is just the "norm" but if you think about it, this can be a very courageous thing for someone that doesn't want to be here anymore, whether thats been caused by illness, mental health or just how they've seen their life at that time and thought life would be better off without them. They've decided to make that choice of waking up and facing another day.
There are lots of times we would all like to sit back and let life pass us by, not take care of "routine", housework, deadlines, caring for others, finance's, and some people do sit back and let things pile up, BUT then they gain the courage by whichever way, to decide to pick themselves up and they find the courage to battle through whatever is pulling or holding them back.
You hear of people who have took that "leap of faith" and changed their life completely by moving to a different country, changing their careers or even changing their life path because it felt the right thing to do, it felt right or sometimes because of a life threatening health reason people have chose to have a better life or be a better person...it all took courage to take that "leap of faith".
Each choice we make takes courage, in 2015 i took a leap of faith and chose to become a full time medium. At the time i was working in the care sector, regular income, regular set hours, fellow workers i could rely on in a job i loved, but due to health issues i couldn't do that work in a reliable manner and was put in a position to either move to a job i could do or not work. I thought things through over a few months and the only thing that felt right to me, was something that i'd been doing outside of my working life, something i loved and still love doing, what i feel is my calling....MEDIUMSHIP! I spoke to my kids, my daughter said "Mom if it's what you want to do, then go for it! My son said "How will you pay bills? You're making a mistake! It's not a job it's just something you do! He even said at one point.."You've lost the plot!" I still spent a little time thinking it through, trying to weigh up my options and decided i didn't want to spend the rest of my life creating more wear and tear on my body, being tied to other people's routine's etc and realised i lived to work, my working life was leading my personal life and what i could and couldn't do, due to work hours which led to, yes, a regular income but an income that would only change by a few pence to a couple of pounds a year. I realised if i became a full time medium it would be more hours (much more haha) for possibly less money but i had the choice of more variation, though i only have myself to rely on and it's all good. I can honestly say, having the courage to make that decision, was one of the best ive made.
I'm not suggesting that anyone should make a life changing decision, what i am saying, is, when you reflect back over the past week, month, year or your life at decisions you've made willingly and knowingly and sometimes decisions you've been in a position that you had to, acknowledge the courage you have inside yourself, acknowledge that something you may not see as having courage, even what may seem as minor things like making an effort with yourself, all take courage, the courage to make a decision.
So "courage was going round and round in my head, i thought it through and for me, courage comes with decisions that some of us take for granted and others find hard, courage is in all of us and how we show courage is sometimes not seen by others but recognised by ourselves. Courage isn't always dangerous pastimes like lion taming, mountain climbing
(though i might add, those that do lion taming etc are extremely courageous!)
Courage for a lot of people, can be simply having the courage to get through each day.
If you would like to add your thoughts, be brave and have the courage to make a comment
There's a fine line between being confident and being overly confident.
I suffered with a lack of confidence when i was younger, i thought other's knew better, who was interested in what i had to say, took more notice of other people's achievements and measured myself up against them. Even silly things like people might like me more if i had curlier hair, my smile was different, i wore different clothes, even thought if my parents decorated the house in a different colour or style, the list goes on and on. Those things were a big thing to me when i was younger in my early teens, and my self esteem was low, even though my parents owned their own home, i wanted for nothing within reason, I still felt i didn't match up to others and my expectations of myself were high and when i failed, my confidence and esteem would slide further down. I tried many things over the years and couldn't see my successes, i'd had a saturday job at 14, went straight into full time work, had a good circle of friends, parents that loved me and a nice home.
Every now and again i'd tell myself it only mattered to me how i was, i didn't realise i was the only one bothered by me "thoughts" and "how i should be"
It took me a long time to realise that, as i picked myself up trying to better myself, people around me seemed to change and pull away. I didn't realise like drew like, so when i was feeling negative about myself i'd be attracting people with the same thoughts and as i tried to better myself i was always pulling myself back over as it felt comfortable. I had family members say i'd changed and i wasn't their sort anymore, i was fine with that and still am, as i've found there's always a positive outcome for everyone involved when there's a break.
From a young age, i read magazine's, watched tv shows and read books on confidence and esteem, i've found through trial and error that not everything will work for everyone, but here's some tips that do work
I Hope these tips help you if you struggle with low self esteem or lack of confidence.
I welcome any comments or feedback and be grateful if you could share to help others.
A rainbow appears shortly after a storm, rainbow babies are healthy babies born shortly after a miscarriage, stillbirth or a loss of a baby. Something beautiful coming out of something not so good, symbolizing hope.
Rainbow babies are sometimes called miracle babies, because they bring a lot of healing to parents after a recent loss but also some guilt before the healing takes place.
All babies are blessings and losing a baby can cause a lot of upset, depending on a few factors like, length of pregnancy, if you know you're actually pregnant or not etc. How a woman deals with her emotions at that time can be hard. It's important to grieve and allow the loss to process in your mind as you might find it's harder to feel the excitement a new baby brings
Elaine has a working class backround, and understands the trials of life. Here she shares some of her thoughts on many different topics