My Blessings

Blessed art thou
I was reading THIS ARTICLE titled “Have I ever had “ANY unwanted/undesired physical or sexual contact”?” today and I found myself having a different experience than the author. I think the end especially was interesting…

I refuse to do the happy dance because I was fortunate enough not to be molested as a little girl and have not been violently raped. I refuse to be abjectly grateful for ‘getting off easy’ with the experiences I’ve mentioned here.

Because I deeply resent that they are normal.

Because I can hardly stand the thought of these constant erosions of personhood seeming normal to our daughters and sons.

But for this love and gentleness and compassion, I am infinitely grateful.

I have a different opinion (but her’s is totally valid). I say, why not do the happy dance? Why not celebrate? I too feel sad that some of these things are “normal” to some people and that others have experienced them. However, I appreciate that I have been very blessed, both by experiences I have had, and those I have not.

For example… I have never…

  • been raped
  • been molested
  • been beat up
  • been shot
  • been physically surrounded by war
  • been physically stalked
  • lost someone close to me
  • and much more..

In contrast, I can admit that I have…

  • hurt myself on purpose
  • been bullied
  • attempted suicide
  • had “unwanted physical contact”
  • been stolen from
  • grown up in a single parent household
But I have also…
  • bullied others
  • been mean
  • hurt others physically (though I am not very strong haha)
  • potentially given others “unwanted physical contact”
  • stolen from others
AND still I have…
  • apologized
  • found unconditional happiness
  • known love
  • loved myself (and still do!)
  • lived my dreams (too many to count last year alone)
  • helped others
  • inspired others
  • gotten to exactly where I want to be
  • made a commitment to love and kindness

I am so grateful for all of it! I am so blessed by everything. Because ALL of this, makes me who I am today.

Cafe Gratitude is closing?

This post comes as a response to the recent announcement of the sale/closing of all Northern California Cafe Gratitude locations.

I’m gonna be honest, I have not worked at Cafe Gratitude. I have not seen any actual evidence of how they deal with compensation or tips, and I haven’t done Landmark so I can’t comment on that… however, I have had my life changed by their incredible philosophy. I learned how to love better, how to listen, and how all of that was within me to begin with.

I had the pleasure of recently doing a workshop with Matthew and Terces recently where they mentioned there was a legal battle beginning and I think Terces especially was very upset about the whole thing. It was very hard for me to watch her struggle with that. I don’t know anything for sure, but I am making up they have made good in the world. Actually, that’s not true. I know one thing for sure. Cafe Gratitude inspires me every day to live better and love more.The last time I walked into a Cafe Gratitude one of my friends in the kitchen said “Hey, this girl came all the way from Canada to eat at our restaurant.” and he was right. And I am so grateful for that.

10 things I love about the world + myself

Love_Candy by broken__heart

Somehow I started getting these e-mails about how to live a fuller life from The Hendricks Institute and the last one challenged me to…

Think of an important person in your life, and generate a list of 5-10
things you appreciate about that person.

Do the same thing for a second person, and a third.

Generate a list of 5-10 things you appreciate about the world in general.

Generate a list of 5-10 things you appreciate about yourself.

 

I sent some e-mails to some people and then I made these lists:

10 Things I love about the World

  1. Trees!
  2. People!
  3. Music!
  4. Dancing!
  5. I have access to shelter, clear water, education and am provided for
  6. The abundance our planet provides for us
  7. Clouds!
  8. Sun!
  9. Fruits!
  10. Vegetables!

10 Things I love about Myself

  1. I am committed to bringing more unconditional love into the world
  2. I feel empowered knowing that I control my experience of life
  3. I face fear and do crazy things
  4. I have fun and act silly
  5. I have an adorable nose : P
  6. I look for the best in other people
  7. I am committed to a cruelty free lifestyle
  8. I am a leader
  9. I have a contagious smile
  10. I am a creative person

Today’s Epiphany

Dr. Stephen Covey, one of North America’s most respected, widely read and frequently quoted leadership experts, and author of The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People , defines leadership as:

Communicating to people their worth and potential so clearly that they come to see it in themselves.

I came across this quote as part of a leadership program I completed at SFU and I started making connections to the process of acknowledgement but I did not fully realize this connection until today.
Today it was made clear to me that…

if I just change my own behavior and use my aptitude for positivity to acknowledge others, then I can fully realize my potential for unconditional love.

By living with an appreciative mindset I notice and become attuned to the good in others and BY DOING THIS I can model how other people can do this as well. Then, they will also notice and become attuned to the good in others and (more importantly) themselves.

The thing I love most about the phase BE LOVE is that I continue to understand it on deeper and deeper levels.

Please watch the videos that SuperForester Matthew posted from the Leaders Causing Leaders Conference of Matthew and Terces Engelhart HERE.

I think i’ve seen this about 10 times and I STILL get stuff out of it. MAGICAL. Seriously. We create each other, so make us beautiful.

This insight also came out of a three day workshop I am completing and book I read called Clear Leadership. Good stuff.

So, what do you want to be acknowledged for?

Love,

Jenni

Grateful for today. Grateful for scrabble.

Awesome things about today:

  • Dreams that feel like reality
  • Manon Pouget
  • People caring about you
  • Mountains
  • Handstands
  • WARM SHOWERS
  • Talking
  • Accomplishing goals
  • Improv
  • Rain
  • Commercial Drive
  • Wisdom from others
  • Scrabble
  • RAIN.
  • Laughing until it hurts. Really. Really. Badly.
  • Crazy sleep deprived inspiration
  • Vegan Coconut Ice Creme
  • Hipster music
  • Being safe, being happy, being surrounded by awesome people : )

I AM GRATEFUL.

There is nowhere you can be that isn’t where you’re meant to be.

Everything happens for a reason.

“Yes, it’s all for the best”.

ACKNOWLEDGE YOURSELF.

ACKNOWLEDGE YOURSELF.

Give yourself permission to acknowledge yourself. What are you not appreciating about you? What are you afraid to say?

Yesterday I was at a workshop and as it ended we randomly acknowledged the other participants. As we were doing this I was reflecting on my experience at the workshop. I like to think back and look for areas I can improve after I complete an experience. It isn’t an inherently negative process by any means, I am looking for opportunities to be more awesome. However I think we all struggle with negative self talk. On this day, I was thinking about how sometimes I don’t communicate clearly. I was noticing how sometimes I figure out what I want to say only though saying it, and when I first start talking sometimes the meaning gets lost because I am not clear myself on the best way to share my ideas. It was so strange for me though because the woman that acknowledged me, specifically spoke about how well I articulated myself and the value she found in the questions and comments I shared.

It is so ironic when other people acknowledge us for things we have not acknowledged ourselves for.

This reminded me of the great SuperForest post that SF Mathew made about the Leaders Causing Leaders conference. In their speech (go view the post to watch it, HIGHLY RECOMMENDED) the Engelhart’s talk about how you can create other people. By recognizing and acknowledging things in others, even if there is not evidence that these qualities exist, we can grow people. I think it works the same way with negative things, even if these is no evidence of something, hearing it enough will make it true for you…

I’d never thought of applying this logic internally. What if, instead of trying to improve things, or change things about our selves, we simply acknowledged ourselves for being the things we are trying to cultivate internally. Perhaps we would naturally grow as a result of the positive acknowledgement.

For example, lately I have been working on my spacial awareness. I noticed that when I believed I was coordinated and aware of my environment, I did not have issues with spacial awareness (parking lots can be scary!).

I suppose this is how affirmations work. Interesting.

ACKNOWLEDGE YOURSELF.

Give yourself permission to acknowledge yourself. What are you not appreciating about you? What are you afraid to say?

 

An Awesome Philosophy

7. Be Grateful. At the end of the day, you can only be grateful for what you have. No matter how far away from the goal, you must be thankful for what you have been able to accomplish, and be grateful to those who have enabled you to affect change.

From The Philosophy of Five Bamboo (http://fivebamboo.com/index.php/company/philosophy)

I concur : )

I am grateful for MY MOM! And the amazing network of people I know! And soup! And text messaging! And reflectors! And DSLR cameras! And you!

Et toi?

Reasons it is awesome that it’s raining today

Sunday Morning, rain is falling…

  • The trees like it
  • You can sing in the rain
  • You can dance in the rain
  • Puddles are like little mirrors
  • It’s like a shower for the Earth

Northern Downpour sends it’s love.

Things that made this day special and lovely

  • FINALLY getting together with friends Sheamus and Nadia, two wonderful people.
  • the church van at Surrey Central
  • walking in the rain
  • wet hair (find it has this odd, pretty quality)
  • really good music and really good singing that makes me guitar playing sound not too bad : )
  • Mumford and Sons
  • King of Anything by Sara Barellies
  • DOUBLE DREAM HANDS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dm7yAWpX1Mc
  • The first five seconds of that shockingly titled Cee Lo Green song
  • Pizza without cheese
  • Irish Accents
  • awakward movies! wooo! (go see “Once” haha, really pretty songs!)
  • Remembering choreography from old plays
  • getting to be the girl while doing the octopus (that sounds wrong hahah … Swing Dancing! Geez!)
  • The way lights look when reflected on wet pavement
  • the smell of rain on concrete
  • perfect timing
  • the way music from the pub at surrey central blasts outside in the plaza (mmm Beatles covers!)
  • playing timshel by mumford and sons in the rain : )
  • making thoughtful gifts (and envelopes) for far away friends
  • OH AND Finding out about Russian Christmas! I feel so cultured!

I AM GRATEFUL!

I don’t know if I can say how lucky I am enough times. I just want to go hug the whole world right now.

May all be fed. May all be healthy. May all be loved. And may all love themselves.

XOXOXOX WORLD!

Jenni

Home

A while back, a lovely post on SuperForest introduced me to Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. Their song “Home” really stuck with me and makes all smiley inside. This is my favorite version:

I was thinking of this song one evening this weekend while saying goodbye to some friends before they went off to school far away this semester. When I first listened to the song it felt very “coupley”, two people, “home”, together. However, after further meditation I think I have learned something new about being “home”.

They say “home is where the heart is”…

I think home is wherever we find love. With friends, with strangers, with one person, with many, with ourselves, watching something sad, witnessing something beautiful… that is home. Home is wherever there is love. That feeling of unconditional acceptance..

I am so grateful to be home, always.

Today I saw a post on another inspiring blog with this adorable version of the song.

To wherever your travels may take you, and beyond.

Jenni