Getting Lost Could be Good for Business

lostfinding309475_450At the moment I am feeling a little lost and I have the time to remember what I loved doing without the trappings of making a living or paying bills, being a little bored does have it’s upside I remember loving spending time with trees and the ocean and getting lost in reverie and the feeling of loving the magic of nature.

I remember loving my sketching – reminder buy myself a sketchbook and pencils – I remember loving reading about the magic of how the universe really works at the magical quantum level and applying it to how my ‘real’ life works, I remember feeling magical and fulfilled just watching clouds go by and I remember the feeling of total accomplishment when something I said or did helped another to heal on some level, or changed their perspective and sparked a new light in their eyes… these are the things that are who I really am… not the marketer, business builder or busy person.

I remember I once knew that remembering these innerself truths was how I was supposed to make a living and pay my bills.. ok now for some more remembering I am making a list of things I loved doing when I am true to myself and then I will see what I can use to create a business.

I urge you to do the same just to see what you have forgotten about yourself – we all need to find ourselves again on a regular basis so that our vision stays true and our purpose fulfilled.


After all when we are on purpose and feeling joy and fulfillment our business grows and work is play and we all want that. So going back to basics is how we keep on track to our true vision and the life we have dreamed of having.

Social Strategics – Followers into Customers Part 2

convert_customers400“What kinds of posts can I use on my business page to turn followers and Likers into customers?”

This is one question I get asked all the time and the key is to be interesting, authentic and build engagement through validation of your customers.

Build trust – via behind the scenes peeks into personality and personal life, values, look at your services or products in use, happy customer testimonials,

If you take the statement that ‘people do business with people they know, like and trust’, as true then you can see trust is very important. Trust is hard to build and easy to lose, so creating and keeping trust is absolutely essential.

Building trust can take time but there are ways to showcase who you really are in ways that help build trust more quickly using social media. There are times when I meet someone for the first time in real life, one of the greatest compliments I get regularly is that I am exactly who these Facebook or Twitter friends expected me to be. In other words my online persona is no different from my face to face personality.

Authenticity is key here when you are truly authentic there is a seamlessness in the conversations that move from online into face to face or presentations, you are who your audience expects you to be and instantly that authenticity creates trust.

Now for a list of ways you can do this online before you meet your customers face to face in ways that will help them see not only your authenticity but also how you and your products and services can benefit their lives.

‘Behind the Scenes’ – these posts can be written, images or video of you using your own products in interesting ways, – have you seen the ‘Will it Blend?” Campaign, or explaining why you are using them in your own home or business, or of you in session with a client of course the client will have to be someone who is prepared for their session to be seen on video in the public arena (don’t forget to ask them to sign a waiver), or show pics of you in your workplace, or on stage doing a presentation, did you get flowers in the office today? Why not ask your audience or clients to show how they use the product, or service? Ask them for their fav recipe if you are a nutritionist and post it on your business page. Or did something unusual happen today? See pic of Kris – fall. Take a pic and upload it share the love! What about when you are out having coffee with a client? Take a pic (with their permission) and upload it immediately. Allow your audience into your life in ways that help promote your brand and culture of your business.

Showoff your Values – every one of us have values and we all definitely have opinions about life and what’s important to us; odds are those same values and opinions are also important to your audience. Put yourself out there, get off the fence (within reason of course), even if your audience has a different view it starts some fabulous viral discussions and shows you where your listeners are sitting too (fab research into their mindset to help you create products, services and marketing message for future use).

Customer testimonials – I cannot overestimate the value of genuine customer testimonials, these days written testimonials are viewed with some distrust as they can be faked, video is great and screen capturing any posts from clients on your social media are good too, these are trusted sources in today’s world. Encourage your clients to share their testimonials by rewarding those who do in some way. Put them on your website, rotate them as posts on your pages and profiles, and create a photo folder of them on your Page. Encourage reviews on your social media if you can as well. One caveat though, be on the lookout for Trolls though who will often take the chance to leave poor reviews even though they have never been anywhere near you as a client.

Value added offers – This is not a “would you like fries with that” campaign, here we are talking about offering real, tangible, genuine, added value. What can you offer for free that will make your engaged community go “WOW!!”? It should offer them an “AHA” moment, give them an insight into the depth of your knowledge and commitment to offer them value in ALL your interactions with them. In your audiences mind you want them asking themselves, if he/she is willing to tell me this for free what more could I learn if I became a customer?

Conversation and Connection: use conversation starters like

  • questions that you know your audience really want to know the answers to and give answers that make them go WOW!
  • offer insights that you know your audience is craving without giving away the whole show
  • care about their lives, imagine social media is a permanent, ongoing networking party now go chat and have day to day person to person conversations
  • have an opinion, put it out there, voice it when you love something, voice it when you have an opinion about something, voice it when you see injustice, allow your audience to see you in your opinions, if you don’t have a voice no-one will listen
  • show off your favourite quotes, photo’s of you on the job, or with people in your industry, or at a networking function, your fav coffee place, walking on your favourite beach
  • show them you have values by standing up for others, by being filled with integrity, show what you will stand for and what you won’t, do not try to be everybody’s friend, if you have a troll give them only one chance to improve their language or their opinion and then block them, you are showing everyone what you will and will not stand for and this makes your true audience feel safer with you.
  • engage with others posts, if you see something you have an opinion on, if you see someone being brave, if you see something you just want to add to or comment on do it.

Now use all of these to lead into sales via ‘recommendation enders’… you want your audience to become not just customers but valued advocates. This is where the magic really begins.

What is a recommendation ender?

nowthatIhaveyourattention67889398253_2082741353_n“SEX! Now that I have your attention, we have pumpkins for sale” a sign that I saw out on a farm fence many years ago, made me laugh and look, it got my attention and the last part of that sentence is what I like to call a ‘recommendation ender.’

Of course there are so many more subtle  and more aligned ways to do this, but this example gets the idea across perfectly and it might be one you want to use yourself just because it is now well recognised and brings a smile to your audiences face.

However, if this is not you, it might be time to try one of these segue’s instead.

After you answer a question posed to you or ask a question of your audience yourself, try something like one of these:

  • If your business or you need to know more about this I am offering…
  • If it is time for you to solve this ‘problem’, ‘challenge’, I highly recommend this product.
  • When I am doing this for myself at home, or In my own business I have found this product to be perfect for my needs so I now stock them, grab one today from this link.
  • I use this product myself, get one for yourself/ your business today on this link, I know I can’t live without mine.
  • I had to learn the hard way, I am offering you the benefits of all my experience and learning at this workshop, seminar.
  • I loved what I learned about life/business/healing so much that I have condensed it all into a workshop, seminar for you…

You get the idea, don’t sell recommend just as you would any coffee shop, hairdresser etc.. you love, see previous Social Strategics post.

Social Strategics – Followers into Customers Part 1

You are getting loads of ‘Likes’ and Retweets, perhaps you are even lucky enough to get shares and comments on some of your posts, but that just isn’t converting into sales or more business, what do you do?

What do you do if you are a heart based business who has no interest at all in a sales pitch and corporate sales approach? What if doing that makes you so uncomfortable you could curl up in a ball and hide?

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In this series of posts I will show you ways to create the kind of posts using language and conversation you already use daily and turn your fans and followers into paying customers and brand advocates.

Tell Brand Stories – everyone tells stories all the time, in conversations with friends every conversation is littered with cool stories, they make you laugh, they make you cry, they make you go “Oh”.

A good narrative is not an ad or a sales pitch—it has an emotional factor that harnesses the communal element of storytelling, bringing people together and connecting them through shared experiences. A powerful and effective brand story communicates to customers how your service can impact their daily lives. Identify and study the patterns of the people your products serve, and use this understanding to develop a brand narrative.

One important fact you need to remember in all this story telling, brand story telling is not just one post , image or article; IT IS THE SUM TOTAL OF EVERYTHING YOU SAY AND EVERY STORY YOU TELL ABOUT YOUR BRAND – consistency is key, be consistent in your personality, your message, your vision.

What cool stories can you tell about your brand and your products or services?

  • Could you tell the one about the client who came to you with a problem to solve who went home not only with the initial problem solved but even more than they bargained for?
  • Could you tell the one about how your product can be used to create amazing results e.g. if you’re selling a hedge clipper a pic of an amazing topiary would create a story in your audiences mind that tells the story of how they could create something like that if they bought your hedge clipper.
  • Could you tell the one about how you came across the product or service when your need was dire and found your answer?
  • Could you tell how you use these products yourself in your own life because of the effect they have and the problems they solve for you?
  • Could you tell a story that’s quirky, fun or just plain weird that captures the imagination and compels more sharing – here I am going to inject another caveat BE SURE ANYTHING YOU POST THAT IS QUIRKY IS YOUR HUMOUR AND WITHIN YOUR GUIDELINES it is not meant to make you look silly but to allow your audience to connect authentically with your humanity and humour.

These are stories we tell daily, imagine if I asked you where’s the best coffee shop in town what would you say? Immediately you would tell me the name of a your fav coffee place and then tell me why it’s your fav, wouldn’t you? This is the art of conversational recommendation and we all know how to do it, we have just not yet applied it to our own products and services.

I don’t want you do hard sell anything or become pitchy or advertorial in your heart based marketing, I want you to recommend your products and services because you use them, and are passionate about them, and they are the whole reason you got into this business in the first place.

One small interjection here: If the last statement does not apply to your products and services then perhaps a rethink is in order right now!

So how do you pull stories out of your organization and tell them in a way that relates to your customer? Remember my catch cry “Meet them where THEY are”, you have to be relevant to your perfect customer for this to work and that takes some preparation. You have to give them what they want right now using the What’s In It For Me, formula and create an emotional bond between the product or service your business offers and your perfect customer who will come out of that audience who is already engaging with your content.

Let’s start with a few characteristics of a compelling story:

It’s true. Make truth and authenticity the cornerstone of everything you create. Your marketing content should feature real people, real situations, genuine emotions and facts. As much as possible, it should show, not tell. It should explain–in terms people can relate to–how your company adds value to the lives of your customers.

It’s human. Even if your company sells to other companies, focus on how your products or services touch the lives of real people. By the way, when writing about people, follow this rule: Be specific enough to be believable and universal enough to be relevant. (That’s a gem from my writing school days.) Apply the “they didn’t come to buy a shovel, they came because they needed a hole”, to everything you write about your brand.

It’s original. Your story should offer a fresh perspective: What’s interesting about your company? Why is that important?

It serves the customer. I’ve read many brand stories that were badly produced or just flat-out boring. According to writing teacher Don Murray: “The reader doesn’t turn the page because of a hunger to applaud.” In today’s marketing context, that applies to anything you produce: video, audio, slideshows. Armed with these fundamentals, ask yourself some questions:

  • What is unique about your business?
  • What is interesting about how it was founded? About the founder? What’s YOUR SUPERPOWER?
  • What problem is your company trying to solve in a YOUnique way?
  • What inspired the business?
  • What “aha” moments have you had?
  • How has your business evolved?
  • What’s a non-obvious way to tell your story? Can you look to analogy or metaphor instead of example?
  • What about your business that you consider normal and mundane would others think is cool?

A big brand version of storytelling done exceptionally well, it’s watchable, engaging and emotional

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tTbLBL2P6YA]

An example of quirky of storytelling done well:

policesocialmediafuna19-11e3-bb5e-bb14174cd6c1

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The Dis-ease Created by Trying to Be Normal

normal-funny-quotesI remember the feeling of being torn apart as a child, of knowing, yes knowing deep within that magic was real and my parents fear of my belief completely at odds with this knowing inside of me that their words, fear and anger could never shake.

I felt like an alien, born to the wrong family, a mistake had been made and as I grew older my wish and hope that I had been adopted, as these people who had so little in common with me couldn’t possibly be my real parents.

This feeling of disconnect, of not being loved unless I conformed followed me and no matter how fast I ran from it I am sad to say it eventually caught up with me and enveloped me in a fog of normalcy as the pressure to stay true to the magic I felt within corroded that intimate connection with my souls essence and blanketed my own magic. Always the ‘good girl’, the responsible oldest child and always expected to mother my brothers when my own mother wasn’t up to the task and eventually ‘mother’ her against my will, I became at least outwardly who my loved ones expected me to be.

The weight of their opinion was just too great to bear, and when I married I like most young people with unfinished business married a man who had just as many perhaps more fears than both my parents. The ‘real’ me popped her head above the fog occasionally and was immediately shut down again by the fear in my parents and spouses attitude, this went on for years.

The real me, could never be fully extinguished though, there was just too much of the imaginer in me, she could see and hear the trees as they ‘got happy’ before approaching rain, she could speak to dragons and she always knew the ‘why’ of people. Because I could always see other people’s why’s I knew when they were lying and still do, did you know most people lie to themselves way more than they lie to others?

This innate and natural ability to see others why’s I believe is what made it so easy for me to give in to conformity, as when you understand another’s why, you understand their fears and are able to forgive them. You understand they are not trying to hurt you, not really, they are just trying to make themselves feel safe, but this lead to me repressing my own magic to allow my loved ones to feel secure that they were right, and it was many years before I found the spark that lead to my release from the bonds of responsibility this ability of mine chained me with.

What was that spark? It was the realisation that by allowing them to feel safe in their cage, I was keeping them from fulfilling their true purpose, from finding their own magic and freeing themselves from the chains that bound them to ‘normalcy.’

I almost allowed myself to die before I understood this one fact that has helped shape my life from that point on. It is not my job to allow you to stay in your cage, I must at least unlock the door and open it by not agreeing with popular opinion and staying true to my own magic and not conforming.

420110_640x640wcBy being me openly even if by doing so I confront your idea of normal, to provide a different point of view and to share the real reality that there are infinite possibilities available to everyone in every moment and it is their choice whether they take advantage of them. There is no ‘normal’ there is only possibility and unique variations, and scientifically speaking the universe loves to create, to change and revels and supports the magnificence of individuality.

Once I understood this, there was no going back, and I decided I was not going to die just to keep the status quo, in fact I would rather die to disrupt it.

When I tell you I nearly died keeping the status quo I mean it, as a result of being trapped by the opinions of those I felt were stronger than me, by the time I was 30 I developed dis-ease, a dis-ease known as Multiple Sclerosis and ended up in a wheelchair and a death sentence of just 5/6 years at the age of 34. Everyone who feels stuck or trapped is actually dying, one way or another, you may feel so depressed you can’t get out of bed in the mornings, or so trapped you develop pain, or so repressed you develop cancer however you manifest the dis-ease you are feeling about your life, it all amounts to the same thing.

How do I know this? Because when I developed Multiple Sclerosis and ended up in that wheelchair, the ‘normal’ thing to do would have been to believe the doctors and to keep the status quo and die on cue. But I didn’t, in fact I recovered which is so not normal, and now even my doctors are having to re-evaluate their beliefs, now you have to love that?

Let me tell you normal is an illusion, there is no normal and if someone asked you to be normal, ask them to define it, you will find they cannot. Normal is a made up state and is different to everyone, every culture , family and individual has their own standard and they are all different. Which version of normal is the right one?

If there is no normal, then what are you afraid of? Other peoples opinion? That my lovely is none of your business.

Tell me about the ways you keep the status quo in your world.

Tell me about your yearning to break free.

What chains do you loop around yourself to appear ‘normal?’

Then tell me what small step you will make today to loose those chains and to pick the lock on that cage.

[su_box title=”Mastering Chaos” box_color=”#2aaba1″]#This post is an excerpt out of the notes I am making for my book Mastering Chaos. I started writing it years ago and got stalled both by life and by a lack of motivation to continue. Now I am picking up the threads again with loads of new experiences under my belt and will share some of my notes as I write with you.[/su_box]

G.O.O.S. ing it! Getting Out of Stuck

get out of stuckI once had a teacher write on my report card, “Anne is bright and quiet but has no fire. She will never amount to anything.” he he well I proved him wrong didn’t I?

Loads of life experience later and after a long year of extremely long hours and hard work….

Recently I had to G.O.O.S. it! myself, to move away from this project I had put so much heart and soul into, so much of myself and had huge plans for and had so much potential.. that even as I was leaving the potential of what could be was tugging at me.

After spending all of last year helping to make tangible the potential of Pathways Wellness Centre, I had to admit it was just a project pit-stop that helped me to realise that I DO have it within me to take an idea and use my skills, talents, experience and education to create something with massive potential for success. What a ride! One I will be eternally grateful for.

I had to let go because it just wasn’t going to work out on any level no matter what I did, and I had to admit it to myself. There were just too many obstacles and no flow for me there any more and if I really, really admit the truth to myself, I knew it right from the beginning. You know that saying about people telling you ‘who they really are’ within the first few moments of meeting them and how you ought to listen to this and believe it first time. The same thing can be said of projects and opportunities, you can MAKE them work, but it is all just such hard work.

When you find yourself fighting with your team for even the simplest changes that you know are just good business, it’s time to re-evaluate everything. No flow, no go!

I want to hear about all the places you feel stuck in your life… Are you afraid of missing out on something if you leave? Are you stuck because of worrying about what others will think if you leave or unstick yourself? Are you fearful of what might happen if you leave or unstick yourself? Afraid of the unknown or even what success on your own terms might mean?

fear of mediocrityThese are the main reasons we become and stay stuck where we are, I am here to ask you if there is a part of you that is more afraid of mediocrity, more afraid of spending your whole life with your song unsung? Could you be motivated to G.O.O.S. it!

What if I told you that the world is waiting for you to awaken to your YOUnique magic and unleash it as a force for good? Think about it and get back to me

This note is just to let the universe know that I understand the lessons and am now ready for it to awaken to the big picture of my life for the universe to reveal it to me in ways that make my dreams come true. I am putting it out there that I am now ready for the doorway to my true purpose to open and reveal the infinite possibilities awaiting me.

Now I am on the threshold of something new and I don’t even know what it is yet, the freedom I feel is worth all the uncertainty, a new adventure is about to open it’s doors and I cannot wait. Better the freedom to sing my song than staying stuck in something that was creating so much angst and unhappiness don’t you think?

Are You Casting Spells by Default

07178353.interactive.aJust lately it has been brought home to me once again that we weave spells for ourselves and others every day. Whether you believe in witches or spells or magic you are a spell weaver and I would say very good at it from an early age. This is really the power and magic of what we believe to be true for us, patterning and conditioning from childhood and the things we tell ourselves about our life.

Think about it, how often have you heard a parent say to their child, “Careful, you’re not strong enough to do that.” “Careful you’ll catch a cold.” “Don’t even try it, you’re going to get hurt.” “Your going to fall” you know the kind of things I mean.

As we grow into adulthood, we hear that parental voice saying the same kinds of things over and over again until we believe them.’You can’t do that, you might fail.”You’re not clever enough to be successful at that.””You can’t have that.””Why even try.””You’re going to get sick.”.. “Our family just doesn’t act like that…” “Your mother had cancer.. your father had heart attack.. you’ll probably get them too.”..or one of the best I have ever heard, “I can never be too well it will make me sick.”

What spells do you cast and weave into your life?

Whatever you tell yourself, you are right! Have you heard that before?

Think about the things you accept as truth, because sure as I am sitting here typing this note to you, they will come true. However, this is all spell casting and all you need to do when you hear a spell is use the counter spell to prevent it coming true and there is always a counter spell. Of course spell casting is all about the words imbued with the magic of belief and emotion which makes them a self fulfilling prophecy. One of the reasons I rarely use my gifts to ‘read’ for others is my firm belief that I can alter or influence people in powerful ways because of their trust in what I am saying to them, when I do read for either ‘mediscanning’ or ‘what you need to know now’ I am very careful how I word what I say to my clients.

How to reverse default spell patterns

Now I want you to understand this works both ways:
If you catch yourself in a negative belief or pattern of thought (negative spell casting) STOP immediately and say out loud (to activate your power through the Amygdala of your brain using the power of sound),

“I take that back, what I meant to say was…” and replace it with a positive belief or pattern of thought you would like to have.

All too often the reverse is what happens by default as we get excited about a new project or idea and try to have a more positive habit of mind and then take it back with our usual default negative pattern as doubt creeps in to trip us up.

Beliefs and patterns of thought that do not serve our potential are created during our lifetime, mostly in our childhood by well meaning (sometimes not) people who have also been affected by those spells and sometimes the same spell has been cast on each succeeding generation by the ones that came before.

Isn’t it time to break the hold that those beliefs and patterns have in your life?

Break free and release your whole family including the generations past with just a few simple steps:

  1. Catch yourself in a negative thought or belief about yourself or your life
  2. Immediately cast a more powerful and positive spell to negate it by saying, “I take that back!’ in a firm voice and      following it up with the words, “What I meant to say is….”
  3. Immediately let it go and get on with your day.
  4. If you find a spell is particularly persistent, use the counter spell and finish it at the end with a strike of the hand making a clapping sound and the word, HO said in a forceful voice. (This presents the unconscious mind with a sound it recognizes as agreement and finality. It also gives a small shock to the subconscious that will equal whatever emotional shock embedded the old belief in the first place – so there is a kind of science behind these silly rituals).and think about the spells you weave around your children, family and friends I know I would much rather create beliefs and patterns of thought that say things like:

    “I know I can do anything if I put my mind and heart into it, I have infinite possibility in my life” because science says that at the quantum level we do!

    Now I know I have used words like spell casting and weaving in this note, however all this advice is very scientific and works through your brain filter called the Amygdala, and will work when put into practice. Give it a try and see if you can change your life for the better today. I believe that we all need to learn how to talk to ourselves and others so we can heal on every level including physical healing, emotional healing and mindfulness. How about you?

Stand Up, Speak Out, Now is the Time

A Facebook Conversation about making a different, bringing awareness and being a catalyst:

Kama J Frankling begins the conversation: “In order to make a difference, in order to bring awareness to human behaviour, in order for anything to change, we need to be a catalyst for peoples triggers. If others are to learn more about themselves, to wake up or to see where they have been blind then we need to say things and do things with purpose. We don’t have to preach, we don’t have to yell, we just have to question. We have to ask what others don’t dare to ask, we have to be what others don’t dare to be. When we do this we activate within people an emotional space that they thought they had hidden so well. We set off a ripple effect that can come back to us in doses of high levels of self defense mechanisms. This is usually when we back down, when we step away, when we feel it is too much. Maybe this is the time when we should be stepping up and noticing that we are making an impact on the world? Think of the people who inspire you, they inspired you because they triggered you, because they woke you from a slumber. The trick is … how do we cope with the initial bombardment of defense against something that is not even an attack?”

Annie Infinite’s reply: I really believe that we have come to a time in history when the strong ones need to stand firm in our truth and calmly and kindly speak out without wavering and allow those who feel the fear to feel it without taking it on ourselves, remembering it is just a fear of the dark of the unknown and of disrupting the status quo, remembering that to get out of a deep rut we have to steer towards the edge and it be prepared for a bumpy ride to freedom LOL

It is not about spouting an endless stream of feel good messages it is about finding a way forward through the miasma of crap people have built around themselves – even the so-called spiritual ones – and creating a great perturbation with loving intent, confronting long held belief patterns with inestimable and incontrovertible logic that questions their boundaries, and catalyzes their inner questioner to ask more questions of themselves. We need to remember that their fear reaction and defense mechanisms are not about us at all, but their own inner questioner. This defensiveness means that we have tilted them and they feel off balance which is a Yippee moment for us even though the backlash might seem directed at us personally. Anything at all you feel you have to defend means you don’t really believe it yourself as the truth doesn’t need defending so don’t fall into that trap, just keep reiterating your truth kindly and compassionately.

It is important to remember that any catalyst will change things only after an initial perturbation.chemical-reaction-gif2

In chemistry an initiating factor  is called the catalyst, add the catalyst and for a while you will often see nothing but a roiling, bubbling mass, as the mixture changes from one state of being to another, later as the initial reaction settles down the chain reaction starts to show itself in a wave of smaller rolling perturbations that travel the new pattern forward in an infinite wave of beauty and awakening in a new pattern spreading outward in a chain reaction like a fractal pattern.

Speaking your truth is an essential aspect of living a life of passion, fulfillment and authenticity. However, for many of us it is much easier to talk about speaking our truth than it is to actually do it. Even though there is also an inbuilt fear of disrupting the status quo, a fear of the unknown just like the fear of the dark when we were children we cannot see far enough to feel comfortable and disrupters are those who dare to introduce a different topic or worse a radical idea – watch “The Croods” a very funny kids movie and right on this topic.

What if we had the courage to speak up like that in all areas of life—our work, our relationships, our family, with people in public? Imagine the freedom and power we would possess. This is not about getting in people’s faces and challenging them, in fact I like to keep to the maxim “say what you mean but don’t say it mean”.  An important distinction for us to remember is the difference between our opinions and our truth. We all have opinions—lots of them. Many of us think our opinions are actually facts, though they’re not! There’s nothing wrong with having and expressing opinions. However, many of them are filled with righteous judgment and an arrogant sense that we’re right and those who don’t agree with us are wrong.Our “truth” runs much deeper than any of our opinions. Truth is about how we feel and what is real for us. Truth is not about being right; it’s about expressing what we think and feel in an authentic, vulnerable and transparent way. This distinction is not just about semantics or words, it is total shift in perspective and context. When we let go of being “right” about our opinions and take responsibility for our experience, we can speak our truth from a much deeper and more authentic place. Speaking this deeper truth will not only liberate us, but has the potential to make a difference for others while bringing you joy, remembering that just because the other person doesn’t agree with you doesn’t mean they haven’t heard you.

How do we enhance and deepen our capacity to speak our truth with kindness, love and authenticity? There are lots of things we can do to accomplish this. Here are three to think about:

  • Stop managing other people’s feelings. I know this one well, as I can be the king of trying to manage other people’s feelings. It’s arrogant, manipulative and somewhat ridiculous to think we have the power to manage other people’s emotions. We also use it as a cop-out to not really speak our truth. We can be aware and mindful of other people and how they might feel (so we don’t end up being mean and hurtful on purpose), but when we let go of taking care of others in a condescending way, it frees us and them up to be grown-ups and have adult conversations, which sometimes can get a little sticky or tense when we’re speaking our truth. If you take offense or shut down as a way of handling the debate around your truth you have not learned the most important lesson about truth, it needs no defense.
  • Be real, not right. This is huge when it comes to speaking our truth. When we focus on winning or being right, we no longer can access the deepest places within our heart, which is where our real truth comes from. When we let go of our attachment to the outcome of a conversation, what the other person thinks and our erroneous obsession with always having to be right, we give ourselves the opportunity to get real. Being vulnerable and transparent are the key elements of speaking our truth, not dominating the conversation and the person (or people) we’re talking to, remember to validate that you have heard the others opinions even if you don’t agree with them. People have a need to be heard and acknowledged as long as they are sharing, not abusing.
  • Practice. Like anything and everything else in life, the best way for us to get better, deepen our capacity and grow is to practice. In this case, as we’re talking about speaking our truth, it’s not about role-playing per se (although if that helps give you the courage to have a difficult conversation, go for it). It is about speaking up and stepping into your life with your truth. Will you mess it up? Of course! Will you say the wrong things sometimes? Yes. Will people get upset, offended or defensive at times? Absolutely. This is not about being perfect, it is about being yourself and speaking authentically.

mind_2Have empathy and compassion with yourself as you practice—this is not easy for most of us. Even for those of us who have really worked to expand our capacity to speak our truth and have had many experiences of doing it in a powerful way, remember that each situation is always new and different. And, in certain areas of life (or with specific people), speaking up can be incredibly scary and challenging for us. Even if your legs shake, your voice quivers or your heart races (all of which usually happen when we get real and vulnerable), take a deep breath, dig down for the courage you have within you and be willing to speak your truth. When we do this, we can watch our relationships and lives literally transform.

Speaking our truth has become an essential part of the change we are all in the middle of, changing the current patterns is not easy, yet we all know we are unsatisfied with the world we have built around us full of greed, lust for power, unjust governments, famine, war…. For things to change we need to find a different approach, there is no way that fighting the status quo on it’s own terms will work, you cannot change something using the same tools that created it. Speaking our truth is not about fighting, but loving our world and it’s sentient beings enough to stand in the truth of who we are and speak from the heart with loving kindness and gratitude for all.

It is about standing up and speaking out and now is the time.

What is your truth? How can we help each other speak out? How can we empower others to do the same?

Like a great fractal of truth and awareness we can spread each others messages of empowerment and change creating an infinite pattern of such great beauty that future generations would look back on it in their history books as a time of enlightened change – who’s with me?

 

Mindfulness Magic and Now-ness

To see a world in a grain of sand
and heaven in a wild flower
to hold infinity in the palm of your handawe2Blake450
and eternity in an hour…

This stanza from William Blakes eternal poem “Auguries of Innocence” for me hold the essence of the practice of Mindfulness one of the most important practices you can use for true health and well-being of body, mind and soul.

Let me explain:

To see a world in a grain of sand – implies that you have stood in stillness long enough to truly see that in everything no matter how small and seemingly unimportant is important. You have taken the time to lose yourself in the seeing and suddenly new worlds have opened up for you, you are seeing everything as if for the first time and can easily see the truth of it all. That in one tiny grain of sand there is an entire world waiting to be discovered, in that person over there are depths and yearnings and a potential for true magnificence if they could only allow themselves to be vulnerable and fearless.

and heaven in a wild flower – one step further in our quest for mindfulness to not only see but to feel the wonder in the smallest of thing and feel it in every moment. Often in our fast paced life the one thing we do not make time for is innocence, awe and wonder and it is now time to remember that curiosity, wonder and awe is the state we were born in, from which all creativity is born and are an essential part of being in state of thankful, loving kindness which in turn is scientificall proven to enhance your life and health.

to hold infinity in the palm of your hand – for me this means to see the infinite possibilities in every moment of your life. Once you understand the foundations of our quantum universe you also understand that there are no absolutes, no hard lines, no edges to fall off the whole universe is a eternal flow of energy one way and then the other in waves of potential, possibility and probability. Decisions are never fixed in stone, choosing becomes a matter of allowing your fearless heart to lead you where there is the most flow for you. Life then suddenly becomes so magical again, so miraculous where all things are possible.

and eternity in an hour have you ever lost yourself in thought? It’s time to lose yourself in no thought, LOL. Gift yourself with moments of nothing where you sit, play and focus on just being here now, in this moment with no thoughts of the past or the future after all the past is… well past and your future isn’t written yet and therefore subject to change without notice. All you really have is this here and this now, bless it, inJOY it suck it dry of every tiny particle it offers to you. Each and every moment, each hour you live and breathe is here and now and filled with juicy goodness – delight in it, without judgement and see how your whole life changes and improves.

An exercise in mindfulness:magic and mindfulness

I could teach you so many meditations on mindfulness and these are so important as a daily practice but I am going to give you a lesson in mindfulness today rather than a meditation.

Grab a child under about 3 or 4 years of age even the tiny ones have so  much to teach us about mindfulness. Have you ever held a 6 month old up to a tree branch and watched as they stroked the leaves, touched the trunk and seen the wonder in their eyes as they did?

So grab a small child, kidnap one if necessary and get down to their level on the grass or sand at the beach and watch them, then be them in that moment, see the world through their eyes, touch the leaves, the grass and the rocks or sand and truly be in that moment, feel it, smell it, truly see it without thought.

Blow bubbles and see the bubble in a sense of wonder and awe at it’s perfection, watch the delight of the child in each bubble and mimic their play and joy.

Now take this learning into your life and see more of the world around you in every moment, seek out what is magical, miraculous and special about every scene you find yourself in. See the full moon rising, see the tiny bud about to open, see the tiny flowers sprinkled amongst the grass, truly see, feel and hear your world.

Mindfulness is about waking up, connecting with ourselves, and appreciating the fullness of each moment of life. Kabat-Zinn calls it, “The art of conscious living.”  It is a profound way to enhance psychological and emotional resilience, and increase life satisfaction.

Definitions of Mindfulness

The key to mindfulness is an appreciation for the present moment and the cultivation of an intimate relationship with it through a continual attending to it with care and discernment.  It is the direct opposite of taking life for granted.  The habit of ignoring our present moments in favour of others yet to come leads directly to a pervasive lack of awareness of the web of life in which we are embedded.  This includes a lack of awareness and understanding of our own mind and how it influences our perceptions and our actions.  By investigating inwardly our own nature as beings and, particularly, the nature of our own minds through careful and systematic self-observation, we may be able to live lives of greater satisfaction, harmony and wisdom (Kabat-Zinn, 1994).

“Bringing one’s complete attention to the present experience on a moment-to-moment basis.”  (Marlatt & Kristeller)

“Paying attention in a particular way: on purpose, in the present moment, and non-judgmentally” (Kabat-Zinn).

“Seeing the magic in every moment, feeling the miraculous is just around the next corner waiting for you to discover it, finding the joyousness all around you and being in your now-ness as the innocent, vulnerable child of the universe open to receiving the bounty our abundant universe has gifted us with is true mindfulness.” (Annie Infinite)

The Benefits of Mindfulness

Practicing mindfulness helps you:

  • to be fully present, here and nowhe-who-can-no-longer-pause-to-wonder-and-stand-rapt-in-awe
  • to experience unpleasant thoughts and feelings safely
  • to become aware of what you’re avoiding
  • to become more connected to yourself, to others and to the world around you
  • to increase self-awareness
  • to become less disturbed by and less reactive to unpleasant experiences
  • to learn the distinction between you and your thoughts
  • to have more direct contact with the world, rather than living through your thoughts
  • to learn that everything changes; that thoughts and feelings come and go like the weather
  • to have more balance, less emotional volatility
  • to experience more calm and peacefulness
  • to develop self-acceptance and self-compassion

Mindfulness and Therapy
Mindfulness training has emerged as a powerful, evidence-based tool for enhancing psychological health. It has been clinically proven in a wide range of clinical disorders, including chronic pain, anxiety disorders, depression, PTSD, OCD, substance abuse, and borderline personality disorder.

Mindfulness is now being taught in University’s around the world and I believe needs to be taught in primary schools too to help develop resilience in children.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVStm_EzN0M]

Monash University

Psychology Today – Mindfulness

The Healing Decision

I have learned from experience that you can choose at any given moment to heal – ANYTHING! healisgreater1

Whether you are healing your body of a physical disease, allergy or accident or healing an emotional or mental challenge healing is possible and I understand how this happens through my own experiences, through medical and neuro science and the magic of quantum physics.

In fact you could heal a physical, emotional or mental challenge and find that your whole life changes completely, you might even find that you change jobs, or start your own business like I have and find yourself growing into a sense of purpose and into your innate potential, your entire life becomes a living joy that you just have to share with the rest of the world.

I often speak on stage about how I healed the Multiple Sclerosis that my doctors said would kill me and I talk about how it was a decision I made to heal myself and how I realised that I would have to heal my whole life to give my body the space, loving kindness and energy it needed to heal. I am no longer in wheelchair and most if not all of the scarring on the Myelin Sheath has all but disappeared so this is real healing not just remission.

This meant changing a lot about my life over about 10 years as I grew a little wiser and dug a little deeper into who I was, what I wanted from life and began to choose my beliefs and perceptions to ease the tension I held around the old ones conditioned into me by well meaning role models. I also had to find my joy, all those things that brought peace to my heart, a smile or laugh to my face, gratitude to my soul and love in my heart.

It was a soul journey this journey I made to heal myself.

Now when I find myself reacting to something whether that is a toxin, a person, place or experience I always ask myself why there is a reaction. At times the answer is as simple as remove yourself from this immediate area, or this is not a person or experience you need to prolong your connection with or it could mean there is something I need to heal.

Now to illustrate take my serious anaphylactic allergy to cats, so serious that if I was scratched by one in the past, I would have had about 10 minutes to get to a doctor with a large needle. To this day I do not know what the precipitating factor to this reaction to cute little felines, however I am a long way down the road to healing that reaction. Now I barely get itchy eyes when around any cat and I got there by making a healing decision about it:

Step 1. Have a conversation with myself about my reaction and decide it is time for it to go. In this conversation I cannot have any negative wording, I must not use words like not, no etc.. So I use empowering positive words like “I love cats and they love me” “I can feel the cat healing me” etc..

Step 2. When in the presence of the cats (or other allergic toxin) I have a healing conversation with it “Hi there we can be in the same space in loving harmony if you will help me to accept your healing presence.” It doesn’t matter whether the toxin is from something alive like a cat or airborn etc… you can have a conversation with it as the whole point of this is to heal yourself, it is your mind that will ‘hear’ and make sense of it and your energy that will manifest how well you have communicated. If it is a person you can have this conversation in your heart and mind.

For me most of the time in the early days the cats would very nicely leave the room or go into the back of the room and sit quietly while I was there, often much to the surprise of the owner. As my reactions dimmed and I became less reactive the cats would sit under my chair and eventually sit on my lap to prove to me they meant well, even cats that never, ever sat in laps, LOL.

To this day no cat has ever put their claws out around me.

Step 3 Always put myself in to a Theta meditative state around any toxin or allergen this way my body understands it is already in a healing state and so doesn’t react as much, as violently if at all. Now for most this takes a little training, but the easy answer for you is that this is a very calm, connected state of awareness and mindfulness similar to deep meditation.

Now these steps work and work amazingly well as long as you are prepared to do the work involved. All healing is about healing the ‘stuff’ around the dis-ease. Stuff is a very technical word, meaning the emotional charge or block that your innerself is trying to have a conversation with you about. More than likely your soul has been trying to have this conversation with you for a while and you haven’t been listening which is why your innerself had to find a way to get your attention.

This is why you have manifested an illness or reaction, think of it as a conversation starter. So your healing decision is always a decision to start communication the real reasons behind the dis-ease you are feeling.

What many people don’t realise is that instant miraculous healing is absolutely available to you, as long as you can instantly recognise and heal the emotional charge and the old ‘stuff’ around your illness in that instant. If you are anything like me, it can take a little while to get to the point of the conversation as there are often layers of ‘stuff’ to deal with and heal before you get to the root cause. A little like peeling that proverbial onion.

I want to be very clear about this, you MUST heal the stuff and the emotional charge and as you do your body will follow suit, it works every time as long as you are prepared to do the work, to follow the prompts, to shed things and people that need to be shed, to open new doors and close old ones, and to upset a few people along the way. There two questions I ask myself about stuff these days and that are:

“Does this person or experience grow me or slow me? Do I feel relaxed and happy or do I feel any tension around this?”

Now I know some of you are going to ask how can I heal my allergy to cats if I don’t know the original reason or precipitating factor that lead to it. This is the magic if the healing decision, there is no need to relive old stuff, go through old memories if you are listening to the conversation your body is trying to have with you about it. It will tell you all you need to know about it through the tension you feel around certain topics, what conversations you have more than once with real people you know over the next few days, in the words, colours, shapes and experience you have while you are healing, in the dreams and day dreams, and in the feelings you have about certain people or events. Stay in touch with your innerself and you will know what you need to delete and to have more of in your life, you will feel which path to take and which doors to close.

You must be brave as you will more than likely upset one or two people along with way, always, always leave them with love in your heart sending them on their way with gratitude for the lessons they taught you.

The healing decision is not always an easy path to take but like giving birth and adventurous journeys they are well worth it for the amazing experiences you have along the way and the unbelievable joy at the end.

Do You Want to be Right or Happy?

right or happyThe other day on social media as happens so often, one person had a desperate need to be heard, he didn’t want a real conversation, he wanted to prove he was right and no-one would argue with him, he persisted and we all ignored his inflammatory comments and eventually the whole thread was deleted as the original reason for the post was lost.

My comment to him was as you see above, “Do you want to be right or do you want to be happy? I choose happy!” I further explained that I knew the reasons for my beliefs via my own knowledge and experiences and I didn’t need to convert him to prove I was right and he would have no luck changing what I knew to be true and then I ended my comment with, “after all you can only be ‘right’ for one person, yourself.”

Do you understand this too? You may have wonderful ‘reasons’ for being heard, you may tell yourself that you want everyone to hear the truth so they won’t be scammed – as did this guy. The real reasons are often more to do with your ego’s need to be right, and have others agree that you are.

You may even love the idea of a grand debate where you can shut down all others arguments and prove yourself right, how does this serve you? and more to the point how does it serve those you believe you want to help?

Let me tell you a little secret, there is no way to covert others to your way of thinking, the best way to share your knowledge or experience is to just put it out there in a loving way, with no dissonance or aggressiveness and allow the seeds of your ideas to be planted and grow over time, if they do. Sharing with loving intent changes the whole way you communicate your opinions, values, ideals and dreams for the future, when it is said with a smile and when you remove the ego’s need to feel validated right away by others agreeing with you more will listen and more to the point hear what you are saying.

Remember to choose happiness for yourself at every chance, and remember that debating might be fun as long as you can let it go when it stops being fun. I choose not to argue with others most of time, I know I am right, for me. I often know via life experience or knowledge that I know a thing, but remember too that everything in this universe is subject to change without notice. This means that something I am sure I know today may not be ‘right’ tomorrow, LOL. This is what keeps me from arguing, along with the firm belief that if you are ready to hear my version of right, you will hear it without me having to ‘talk you into it.’

I wonder how you can use this information in your close relationships?

Do you argue about being right with your partner? Why? Do they have to agree with you so that you feel right? Or can you agree to disagree on many of the subjects you argue about?

Being in a conscious relationship with your partner or with the rest of the world may mean you will need to let go of the need to feel right or completely validated about what you choose to believe. Understanding that everyone has the right to choose for themselves what to believe and how to live their lives is a very important part of lightening up, you don’t have to carry around the whole load on your own.

Enlightenment is about lightening up, it is not crucial to our existence that we all believe the same things, if we did life could get very boring and very stuck as no new ideas would be born and that to me in my firm belief would be a much greater crime to humanity. Choose joy every time, it’s much easier to share a point of view when both of you are happy, loving and joyous.