Being Uniquely Positioned to Choose the Brilliant Path

“The business world is uniquely positioned to help us choose the path of human connection, dignity, and abundance. It doesn’t sacrifice profitability, revenue generation, or innovation.” ~ Claudette Rowley

Early on in this co-hosts career, I worked for one of the best oral surgeons on the east side of Seattle. We enjoyed a healthy business culture with open communication and recognition for hard work and achievement.

A new partner came on board, and everything changed. A tremendous shift in the business culture created a rift in the communication and recognition we enjoyed. One of the changes the new doctor implemented almost immediately was a decrease in employee benefits.

It wasn’t long before the team became confused, since there had been little explanation of “why” the changes. Morale was dropping, and we requested a sit-down meeting so the doctors could answer questions and clarify their decision. We were delighted to learn time had been blocked out of the busy surgical schedule for the very meeting we requested.

Just as the meeting was to begin, the doctors slipped out the back door and went to lunch. Immediately the office manager came in to act as voice regarding the changes.

The manager attempted to mediate, but there was no resolution to our concerns. The team felt betrayed. Not only had we lost benefits without knowing why, our employers lacked courage to defend their decision.

Eventually, morale bottomed out. Myself and a few other “dream” team employees left.

If only these doctor-leaders had known about Claudette Rowley’s book, Cultural Brilliance!

As our most recent guest on Life Mastery Radio, Claudette made this co-host wish for do-overs at that surgical practice. She has developed a system to create brilliance in the culture of any organization by looking deep into the DNA of the business.

Claudette explained how a contrast between two cultures she worked in made her curious about how to change the toxic cultures of some businesses; and how to create a brilliant culture in every business.

Without Cultural Brilliance

A toxic organization has some, or all, of these characteristics:

  • Gossip
  • Back-stabbing
  • Blaming
  • Bullying
  • Asking for more data, then not acting on the results
With Cultural Brilliance

Conversely, a brilliant organization has these characteristics:

  • Potential is harnessed in people and systems
  • Adaptable to change
  • Low levels of stress
  • High levels of innovation
  • Reframe mistakes as opportunities

“Consciousness of any company can be increased, and must be done internally with self-awareness, assessment, and feedback. Mindset drives behavior” ~ Claudette Rowley

Our entire interview with Claudette was eye-opening. She taught us about balancing emotion with logic in any professional setting.

“Follow the logic, and drop your own biases. Pretend you’re new to the workplace or organization. What would you notice about the culture?” ~ Claudette Rowley

A brilliant interview about brilliant ideas to implement with a desired outcome of a brilliant culture.

You can find Claudette’s book here: Cultural Brilliance

You can find a podcast of her interview here: Life Mastery Radio

Wonderment, Watchdogs, and Walnut Sprinkles

“Be the observer of your life (a watchdog). Be in wonder of your life. See it differently; feel it differently; experience it differently.”

Ani Anderson, (MS, OT, LMT, CEMP, SBMC) has many degrees behind her name. Probably because she teaches by degrees how to find our soul’s agenda in her book titled Find Your Soul’s Agenda.

Conversing with Ani on Life Mastery Radio’s most recent show was sensational! Literally. Ani encouraged our audience to:

“Pay attention to the raw data of your nervous system. Rather than name emotions, describe the sensations in your body, and listen to the thoughts in your mind.”

A personal discovery in reading her book is “the ONE word”, which is different for each of us, and which grants us permission to feel the way we want/don’t want to feel. The Law of Polarity.

Read Ani’s story of Walnut Sprinkles

At one time, Ani began a search for unconditional love. Prayer was suggested, which Ani was not practiced in. Ani recalled praying for unconditional love, when she happened upon a lost dog running on the side of the road.

Not liking dogs, but feeling this might be an answer to prayer, Ani decided she’d test the answer.

“If I open the car door, and the dog jumps in, it will be a sign.”

The dog jumped in. An unsuccessful search for the dog’s owner, led to an adoption of the dog whose name became Walnut Sprinkles. Puppies were soon added, since Walnut Sprinkles was pregnant.

A cute, deliciously named, multiplied answer to prayer.

A Sensation-Based Mindset Coaching Workshop is open for registration now. Ani will host this event in Burlington, VT this May. “Science of Influence”

Take a listen to the recorded podcast of her interview on Life Mastery Radio

Wonderment, watchdogs, and Walnut Sprinkles are just the beginning of the journey to find your soul’s agenda.

Sharing Experiences of Anxiety, Allows you to Keep the Lessons

Eloquently spoken, Corinne Zupko was our Life Mastery Radio guest on March 19th. She is the author of From Anxiety to Love, wherein Corinne shares how A Course in Miracles helped her heal from anxiety.

Anxiety is nothing more than fear projected into the future: fear about what might occur at some future time. Love is lived only in present tense – A Course in Miracles

Experiencing anxiety from early childhood, Corinne’s mother encouraged her to study A Course in Miracles. Corinne explained how she literally put her fingers in her ears to avoid her mother’s explanation of “spiritual crap”.

Avoidance of “spiritual crap”

When Corinne’s anxiety escalated into debilitating panic attacks in college she was finally ready to “try anything.”

A Course in Miracles taught Corinne “miracles are a shift in perception”. Corinne simply needed to learn how to shift from an ego-controlled state of body and mind to a Self-controlled state, guided by her Inner Therapist.

Healing requires an exchange of fear for love.

During our delightful interview with Corinne Zupko, she illustrated through a personal story the choice we make to witness either fear or love – in other words, we’ll experience whichever one we’re looking for.

I was at a doctor’s office because of a symptom I’d had for a long time. My fear had led me to finally seek a diagnosis, and while in that state of fear the nurse (while drawing my blood) asked, “what are you here for?”

Upon explaining my concerns, the nurse replied, “oh, that’s not good. I sure hope you don’t pass out.”

Of course, I passed out! The nurse had validated my fear, which I was witnessing for.

I was sent to another doctor’s office for more tests. This time I had decided to witness for love instead.

When I walked into the office, the nurse I saw was the mother of a friend of mine. I didn’t even know her mother was a nurse. During my blood draw, I chatted with the nurse about my friend (her daughter).

The mother of my friend observed, “I don’t usually work on Monday’s, but was called in today. I arrived 30 minutes before you did.”

I was witnessing for love; the second nurse validated my love; and I’d had a completely different experience!

We’re grateful at Life Mastery Radio that Corinne shared her journey from anxiety to love. We will definitely keep the lessons.

You can read about her journey by purchasing, From Anxiety to Love – A radical new approach for letting go of fear and finding lasting peace

From the perspective of the ego, we are here to forget who we really are. From the perspective of our Inner Therapist, we are here to remember who we truly are.

Be sure to listen to Corinne Zupko’s complete interview on Life Mastery Radio podcast

CIA Declassified Documents Prove Psychic Powers are Real

Have you ever thought you might have psychic powers? Precognition; remote viewing; telepathy; life review and near-death experiences are all addressed in Mark Gober’s recent book: An End to Upside-Down Thinking.

On Life Mastery Radio this week, Mark Gober left us with clear and open consciousness about our psychic powers.

Explaining the *Whirlpool Effect, Mark began:

“Imagine reality is a stream of water, where water represents consciousness. Now imagine that within the stream, whirlpools form. Those whirlpools are self-localizations of water. While they may look different from other parts of the stream, the whirlpools are made of nothing more than water.

In the analogy, whirlpools represent individuals in a stream of consciousness. My brain is one whirlpool, yours is another, etc. Since water is the fundamental medium of the stream, it is possible that sometimes water from one whirlpool can end up in another whirlpool (think: psychic abilities). And when a whirlpool dissipates, the water simply flows into the broader stream (think: consciousness continues when the physical body dies).”

*Taken from preface section of An End to Upside-Down Thinking “Why Materialism is Baloney” Bernardo Kastrup

During our interview Mark mentioned he is not a scientist. When writing his book, he took a dispassionate approach to the research. Some of his sources include CIA declassified documents, peer-review research, and meta-analysis.

In fact, Mark finds it amazing that remote viewing (being able to see something in a different location than you’re in) has been stated in CIA declassified documents by the US Government, as “a real phenomenon”

Mark’s interview was fascinating. He has certainly provided evidence (which is massive in quantity) anyone would need to prove psychic power is real.

Do you have wizard-like abilities, or want to develop those abilities? Read An End to Upside-Down Thinking.

Listen to our interview with Mark Gober: Mark Gober Mark 12, 2019

Unleash the Artist Within

On our recent show, Eric Maisel taught us to “unleash the artist within”. More than a directive, it also happens to be the title of one of his more than 50 books.

Creativity is a broad subject, and one which Dr. Maisel has made his message for more than 30 years. It was then he noticed the lack of psychological help for performers, musicians, writers, artists, and the like. Artistic personalities have some particular issues with sadness, anxiety, and loneliness. Before Dr. Maisel began his work, there was little help (besides medication) for them.

We often use “narcissism” as a negative word describing individuals who seem self-centered and egotistical. However, Dr. Maisel suggests there is a good narcissist – the person who wants to make a difference in the world or life of others by using his/her particular “voice” – be it art or music, etc.

Creative personalities are often eccentric, leading to an area of study Dr. Maisel referred to as “anti-psychiatry”. He believes pharmaceutical companies are “bombarding the airwaves with a certain view” regarding behavior, and that “childhood has been diagnosed as a disorder”.

“Sadly, zero attention is paid to original personality. We all come into the world with our own sense of sadness, stubbornness, obsession, exuberance, etc.” and yet we are medicating kids because of who they are.

When relating the beginnings of his own childhood, Dr. Maisel described himself as “curious”, and was quick to comment “I’m still the same today”. He talked of family members, such as his parents who were a steady influence for him; but that, like most of us, he had a few relatives who were “batty.”

The conversation turned to the process which artists and creatives can take to “make meaning” in their purpose(s), rather than trying to “find meaning” in life. He cautioned that only a percentage of the work we do will be good, and we can me demoralized when our creations are not successful, or valued. Although this can be anxiety producing (especially when creativity is your livelihood) “YOU CAN’T SKIP THE STUFF THAT DOESN’T WORK”.

Dr. Maisel highly recommends a “morning creativity practice”. He gave reasons for this process, which he uses seven days a week. (Remember – he’s written more than 50 books!)

  1. Consistent practice provides a routine of productive thought.
  2. “Sleep thinking” happens in REM sleep, and your brain is providing you answers as you sleep. By spending your first awaking moments each morning on “output” rather than “input” you’ll have more clarity in your creativity.
  3. When you can “make meaning” first thing in the morning, then the rest of your day will change, knowing the real work has been done.

Brilliantly, Dr. Maisel used other phrases during his time with us:

  • Self-Talk – as long as it serves us
  • Affirm our abilities, and the belief that we matter
  • Don the mantle of “Meaning Maker”
  • Life has purpose(s) for us
  • Creating is lonely, but it’s noisy in there
  • Productive obsessions
  • Ceremonial bridge
  • Toxic criticism

You’ll benefit from hearing his interview with us, and you can listen at your convenience by clicking this link: Dr. Eric Maisel

Be sure to tune in to Life Mastery Radio with Todd Alan every Tuesday at 10:00 AM pst.

Todd’s Story by Coach Debby

Todd sat across from me late in the afternoon for a french tip and fries after most people had returned to their workplaces.  He was telling me his story about alcoholism.  We’d only known each other for a week, and this was our first date.  I listened intently.

I noticed that he was different than many people I had heard speak about their recovery process.  He was in complete acceptance that alcohol had no place in his present life.  None and done.  He didn’t miss it, relish it, long for it, fantasize about it, complain about it — none of that.  He had broken off his relationship with alcohol and he wanted me to know about it.

Of course, I wanted to write it all down!  I heard a book spewing out of him.

We continued to see each other often, and I encouraged him to share his story every chance he got:  “Tell bits and pieces to anyone you trust.  Watch their face.  Pay attention to their questions.  This will help you own your story.”

“What story?” he asked me.

“The book within you.”

“A book?  Really?” And then he followed up with, “I have always thought there might be a book in me, somewhere.”

Some of us are more excited to share our stories.  Some of us are timid or scared that people in the story will read it and be offended.  For certain, people can take offense even if you look at them wrong let alone feature them in your book.

But it is still important to share your story with those in your life who you deem as safe.  It’s an excellent place to start, and It helps you know your true story even better.  Later on, you can decide what stays in your public story and what you choose to edit out.  When you know the difference between the two, you’ve got the bones of a manuscript!

I was especially moved by Todd’s early memories of alcohol recovery, which we updated and placed in the very beginning of his book.  I remembered him sharing bits of it on our first date, and I must say, he had my complete attention.  Here’s the book version:

I was raised to be a man’s man, a strong farm hand, and basically an ordinary tough guy. My Dad influenced me powerfully. He grew up in a masculine world in middle America where he was a big football fan and raised to be a corn farmer. He coached me in football, baseball, basketball and soccer when I was a just a kid. If I got hurt while playing, I was told, “Shake it off!”… And, “Big boys don’t cry!”  Every injury was met with another chance to be tough as nails.  These messages were hammered into my brain and my body. Consequently, I became completely closed off from my feelings.

This was one of my first agreements in life:  Real men don’t feel.  I didn’t like it, but it was a concept straight from my dad, and it was all he knew.  The boy scouts enforced it even more, and later came the game of hunting wild animals – something I was not keen on – but these messages came from men I looked up to.  They were teaching me how to be a man’s man, as this was all they knew.

I was only 11 when my uncle introduced me to booze and I liked it!  I liked the way it made me feel.  I drank so much I got super intoxicated.  As the days pressed on, I could count on my uncle feeding this magic stuff to me and every time, I had the same reaction; I felt great!  Alcohol gave me the permission to feel superhuman!  This was the stuff, man!

Up until now, the only feelings I ever saw a man express was anger.  I noticed that when men got angry, they got their way.  It worked for me, too.  I could throw a tantrum and get what I wanted.  At age 12, my folks divorced and I spent a lot of time feeling really upset.  The only other option I knew was to numb out and try to feel nothing at all.  So now I had a new agreement:  I could feel angry or I could add a little alcohol and feel good.  Every chance I got, I chose the latter.

Not a bad start!  And it is only the very beginning of his story.  We sat down and crafted this one day to get his book rolling.

And then we wrote more, and talked more, and wrote more.

And at some point, the confusion of what to say became clear, and the feeling of fear turned to utter excitement. There are many phases, decisions, and re-working that needed to take place so that his story could be offered to a public audience with care.

Todd was overjoyed to see his words — his survival story — become a book.  I literally cried tears of joy.   It took time and attention and commitment. But I won’t say it was hard — it required dedication and focus, and there were many times when we laughed.

The process helped me build my business and brand: I help people write their books.  I’d love to help you.

Your true story is always about you, even though there were other important people.  That story you lived through has made you, changed you, shaped you, saved you, delivered you, and allowed you to be in this world, present and available.  Just think what that story could do for others.

 

Coach Debby is a spiritual mentor and has taught writing and literary editing since 1996. She helps new and seasoned authors create and complete their book.  www.coachdebby.com

 

The Elixir: The Final Concept in Fiction and Real Life

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by Coach Debby

I have finally created time to write!! Unbelievable. It only took 50 years.

And now for the next dilemma; which book shall I write first?  Will I begin with the memoir?  Perhaps a book about the writers journey?  Or best of all, the secrets your teacher never told you!

Since I can’t decide, I find myself moving back-and-forth between a few manuscripts.  Today I was reflecting on a common “how to” question that students often asked in creative writing class:  how do you finish a story without killing off the hero or doctoring the drama so that everyone lives happily ever after?  For this question, I must lead writers back to the heroes journey, back to the moment where the hero brings home the elixir.

If you have studied Joseph Campbell’s, The Hero’s Journey, you know that all heroes (main characters) go flying back into a dramatic ordeal if they cannot embrace their learnings. It is as certain as the law of gravity.  The ordeal awaits to anyone who cannot move forward by the act of selfless sharing.

Consider that in real life there are thieves who go to jail again and again, but at some point they learned their lesson, and they go on to live honest lives and share their wealth. Yet there is also the thief who can’t break the nasty habit, and for a screenwriter, this may lead to an epic mini-series as each ordeal (or robbery) is drawn out.  Westerns are infamous for this pattern.

We’ve seen so many movies go awry because the director simply cannot part with the knee-jerk impulse to offer a cliche and happy ending.  If you want your writing to be more subtle, it is essential that you find a way for the character to slowly embrace his new intelligence with just a few bumps, innocent scratches, and a lot of humor.

He can’t be perfect. He can’t be beautiful.  He can’t be rich.

He must be humble.  He must be accountable.  He must be universal.

In other words, the story ends with him being an ordinary man. Perhaps the middle and the climax demonstrated heroic acts but the ending shows his simple moral coding. I remember Christopher Vogler’s example of King Aurthur where he spoke of the knights sharing the grail, “as otherwise there would be no healing.”

Above all, he must be able to serve those who can benefit from his knowledge without making himself so unbelievably special.

The heroes journey and how it applies to exceptional writing must stay away from the colossal expansion of the human ego.  In fact, it is the writer’s job to show that the character has truly won the race by humbling himself, abandoning all notion of suicide or prestige, and becoming open to the greatest gift of all: selfless love.  He shows  he is grounded yet available to the human experience of every life he touches.

Do that, and you will sell millions.

Loving Your Spouse to Death by Coach Debby

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During my early years at the college, I shared an office with a man older than me who had two grown sons and a wife whom he loved and adored.  Our office was full of pictures of his family vacations, Christmas holidays, and wedding anniversaries.

One day during lunch, he asked if I would listen to him recite a poem that he had written to honor his wife and their upcoming anniversary.  “25 years!” He exclaimed with a broad, genuine smile.  I remember wondering at the time:  How do people do it?  What is the secret to a long and happy marriage?

And for whatever reason, I was moved to ask him, “So, what’s the secret?  How did you get to 25 years of marriage.”

He didn’t miss a beat, “it’s all her–she gets every bit of credit.”

But I knew there was more.  “C’mon, give it up. I’m listening.”

His mood shifted and he crunched his forehead the way he often did while reading bad handwriting. And after a moment, his smile returned.

He was very humble as he spoke, “Deb, I have worried that I would lose her ever since I found out she was carrying our first son. I’ve worried that something would happen to her or that she might get sick of me, and the result is that, every day, I live to know her. I just love her to death.”

I was gushing with tears, of course. To this day, it is one of the most beautiful things I’ve ever heard about love. I remember what he was wearing, the sound of his voice, and the pen in his hand.  Especially, I remember the phrase, “I live to know her,” as it seems to be the epitome of long-term partnership.  I really sensed his deep desire to continuously discover his wife and to share his true self with her.

I heard a reckoning choice, a decision to be vulnerable. It seems to be understood by both of them, and perhaps it has become part of their root system. They know that their partnership needs loving attention each day.

Anytime I have visited their home, I’ve noticed that they have several projects in the works that they are doing together, but they also talk about their individual interests.  They have built a magnificent garden together that has fed them as well as many of their neighbors over the years.  Between the two of them, they must own at least six bicycles and their home is filled with photos spanning a few decades of both coastal and cross-country excursions.

Still, she has time to make all things with yarn and he writes and publishes his poems simply for the fun of it.  Each possess their unique talents.

They both retired early and on the same day in 2014. Why? To be together.  It meant they have to live with a frugal consciousness and yet, every time I see them, I am convinced they are the happiest couple I know.  They’re coming up on 40 years together, loving each other to death.

 

Life is what you make of it – a message to millennials by Todd Alan (an excerpt from his book, Life Mastery Keys)

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I passionately believe life is what you make of it and it’s been that way for centuries.

There’s nothing new about the idea if you want to enjoy a great life it’s up to you to create it.

Now that you’re an adult – you’re in the driver’s seat of your life. If you wait for someone else to create a wonderful life for you – well, you’ll be waiting and yearning for a very long time, unfortunately.

Here’s “the secret” that was never revealed in the famous 2006 documentary of the same name.

Your thinking and mindset on the inside of you has a direct correlation to what you enjoy and accomplish or don’t accomplish on the outside.

This isn’t just referring to the size of your paycheck, although there’s nothing wrong with making a lot of money as long as you’re happy with how you do it and it enriches the lives of others, too. I’m referring to living an astonishing, epic life that takes your breath away in whatever way lights you up and makes your heart glow.

Your parents probably went to some awesome rock concerts in the seventies and eighties, smoked a few joints and thought they were wild and crazy before they settled down. Then somewhere along the way they got married (or not), had kids, landed a good job whether they liked it or not and set to the serious business of being an adult.

I encourage you and support you in connecting with the idea and fact there are many different ways to be an adult.

They don’t all include buying a house with three bedrooms, two baths, two kids and a dog. If you want that, great. I just want to give you permission to expand your thinking beyond the boundaries of what’s normal.

Be a grownup in a way that makes you excited – it really is possible if you want it.

What does “Being Present” Mean? by Todd Alan (an excerpt from his book, Life Mastery Keys)

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Not living in the present has been described as a person who stands looking to the left at the past with the right eye. At the same time they’re also looking right at the future with their left eye. Ultimately, they end up standing in the present moment, cross-eyed.

When you ponder on the past you live with regrets or concerns about what happened and you’re powerless to do anything about it. When you’re worried about the future you fret and worry over what hasn’t happened and you can’t do anything about that, either.

It’s not where you want to live, trust me.

So, choose to live in the present. Because your ego can’t survive when you live in the present moment. However, if you constantly living in the past or the future, the ego is always present, clouding your judgement with emotions and worry. Being present allows the ego to dissolve and go away. Living in the now is like doing an awake meditation. It comes from practice. You catch yourself and say, “Wow! I’m in the present moment right now.”

In his book “Peace in the Present Moment,” Eckhart Tolle, the guru of living in the now, says, “If you’re at peace you’re living in the present.”

Just before digging into this chapter I was driving. My mind was going in many different directions flashing back and forth to various times of my life from the past. It was so bizarre, as if I was reliving my past. Kiddingly I thought, maybe I’m getting close to death.

My thoughts were literally pinging with instances from my life reminding me of events that aren’t necessarily in alignment with how I live today. The experience was definitely rattling my cage and I could feel my emotions being impacted.

I thought maybe my mind is cleaning house, getting rid of extra junk that’s still hanging around. I hadn’t thought about most of those events in years. Some past experiences were vivid, banging around in my head over and over. They were brought to the surface and then I mentally did my best to toss them out.

Rather than going away, they lingered. I found myself wondering, why am I brooding over this stupid stuff from my past, years ago? In some of those flashes from my past they were of me as a boy, not even 12 years old.

It was strange to me that those events could still effect my emotions and bring me down as they popped up. The truth is I let them do it. I certainly wasn’t living in the present while I was mulling over these experiences, letting myself get caught up in negative feelings.

As I realized what I was doing, I stopped and said to myself “I’m okay right now.” Saying this reminded me to return to the present and to stop thinking about the past or worry about the future.

I did some research on the notion of being present and I discovered something drawn from the Bible called “The Jesus Attitudes.” It suggests we adopt a mindset or attitude of three emotions which have a lot to do with being present:

Nothing to hide.

Nothing to prove.

Nothing to lose.

By practicing these three attitudes you will grow accustomed to living in the present moment.

Why is being present important? It puts you in a mindset that’s open, joyful and keeps your eyes open and aware. Living in the present you’re more likely to have better memory and greater clarity. You comprehend more clearly. Being present is also a way to respect and validate others.

Many people spend little time listening. Instead they try to figure out what they’ll say in response as you talk to them, which removes them from the present moment. That’s the ego stepping in, trying to one up the person they’re supposed to be with in conversation.

Ego replies with, “This is what I think” and passes judgment. Contrast that to when you’re in the present moment. It’s difficult to be critical or disapproving because you’re actually listening. You’re less likely to judge because you’re not thinking about your past experiences or future worries. You’re listening to the other person in the now.