Category Archives: Daniel Collinsworth

Something Good

It’s raining. And not that small, light Colorado rain, or that Colorado thunderstorm that takes just 5-15 short minutes out of a day and tries to kill you, but real, get you wet, need an umbrella, gray sky, this might take all day, fall asleep to it and wake up to it kind of rain. We really needed it. This has been such a dry Spring. The only downside is all I want to do is stay home in my pjs, cuddling on the couch with my boys, and nap, watch a move, or read a book. Oh, let’s face it, when it’s sunny out the only difference is I want to be doing those same things in the backyard.

Fear of Writing Blog. Having suffered from about 25+ years of writer’s block, I have a soft spot for blogs like these. There’s something about being an artist, about having an open, tender heart, about being mindful and present, that makes you somehow more sensitive to fear and doubt–at least, that’s my theory, my experience. People who make art, feel it is their calling, love so big that the potential for loss and ruin can sometimes be overwhelming. I learned of this blog because one of my favorite bloggers, writers, artists, big hearts, Judy Clement Wall, wrote a post for them recently, “j’s Journey: Getting Personal.”

Prolific Living’s Green Juicing Guide. I haven’t downloaded this yet, but am going to because of the promise of “the only 10 recipes you will ever need for your green juicing journey.”

Marie Forleo’s Free Business Training Videos. Jonathan Fields blogged about this, and it peaked my interest enough that I followed the link. After watching the intro video, I signed up. The way she talks about the potential for women in online businesses was inspiring.

Animals Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before on Brain Pickings. This one is my very favorite.

from the book Menagerie by photographer Sharon Montrose

Risk Being You by Raam Dev. Wow…this is worth reading and thinking about.

27 ways to be an (even) better person & practically levitate with awesomery on Unicorns for Socialism. I might have already shared this, but was reminded of it today, and it’s certainly worth repeating. I really am madly in love with Alex Franzen and her particular flavor of awesomery.

Now What by Tara Sophia Mohr. “[W]e need goals, not because goals are themselves important but we can’t have an engaging quest without a meaningful goal. The goal provides direction, momentum, plot, in the quest.” Wise words, and this:

So pick your quests mindfully. Pick the ones that you think will give you joy, and moments of tears at the poignant beauty of it all. Pick the quests that you think will put you in deepest, most glorious contact with something larger than you. Pick the quests that make gratitude and passion come alive in you.

The pot of gold is not at the end of the rainbow. It’s here.

Amen, and thank you for the reminder, Tara.

You Don’t Have to be Everything on Metta Drum. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Daniel Collinsworth is a brilliant beast. In this post, he urges us to declare our freedom, provides a list of important points, including “You no longer have to feel embarrassed about your weirdness.” Amen. The light of weirdness in me acknowledges and honors the light of weirdness in you, Daniel, and you, kind and gentle reader. May we all be weird.

Cute Animal Break: Animals Like You’ve Never Seen Them Before on Brain Pickings, Part Two. This is my second favorite:

from the book Menagerie by photographer Sharon Montrose

Make It: Folded Notebook on Design Love Fest. Oh, nerd alert, I so want to make this book!

Quote from Ed & Deb Shapiro’s “Your Daily Chill Out”: “Like a young bird, you will have no idea how far you can fly until you spread your wings and just go for it.”

Quote from Tara Brach: ‎”During the moments of a pause, we become conscious of how the feeling that something is missing or wrong keeps us leaning into the future, on our way somewhere else. This gives us a fundamental choice in how we respond: We can continue our futile attempts at managing our experience, or we can meet our vulnerability with the wisdom of Radical Acceptance,” from her book Radical Acceptance.

Sloughing the “Spiritual” Identity and Becoming the Wholeness of Me on the Daily Breadcrumb. In this post, Sunni reminds us to give ourselves a break, that to be a fully realized spiritual being doesn’t mean becoming someone “just generally beaming sunshine out of her ass.” What a relief.

Procrastination.

Three Truths and One Wish

1. Truth: Being content is what will make us successful.

In this video, psychologist and teacher Shawn Achor argues that happiness inspires productivity. He says we are confused when it comes to success and happiness, because we think the formula is “if I work harder, I’ll be more successful, and when I’m more successful, I’ll be happy” and that’s not it at all. “90% of your long-term happiness is predicted not by your external world [your measurable success], but by the way your brain processes the world.” Being negative, neutral, or stressed does not bring happiness, (and thus, not as much success either). Happiness, as your perspective, is the center that generates everything else. In order to cultivate and strengthen this center, he suggests (and has found to be true through research) keeping a gratitude list, journaling about one positive experience a day, exercising, meditating, and practicing random acts of kindness–mindfulness, compassion, gratitude, connection to your body, and embodiment of the present moment.

Not only do we discover happiness resting in the present moment with this attitude, but we are more creative and productive. Shawn Achor suggests, at the end of this talk, that discovering contentment for ourselves, understanding that success is not what makes us happy, we can send out ripples of positivity and create a true revolution.

P.S. I think I may have made this video sound a bit stuffy and dry, but his delivery is really fun, so you should watch.

 

2. Truth: There is a you-shaped hole.

You are necessary, and only you can be you. I am on the Trust Tending with Kristin Noelle mailing list (Trust Note), and a few days ago, she sent one with the subject line “Trust Note: You-Shaped Hole.” Her message is so important, I’ve been passing it along every chance I get. She said:

Yes. You matter.

As humans move toward greater wholeness, your piece of that whole can’t be filled by anyone but you. Your perspective, your experiences, your voice: they bring balance to the rest of ours. They’re a mirror for some of us, showing us things about ourselves we need to see. And they’re windows for just as many more – glimpses past the boxes and walls we inevitably and inadvertently construct around our sense of what’s real and true and worth seeing.

There’s a you-shaped hole in our collective experience and I hope with all my heart you’re stepping into it with all the trust you’ve got.

3. Truth: “Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are,” (Chinese Proverb).

In my yoga class on Sunday, my teacher said “when we engage, we tend to tense up, and we need to learn to practice soft, gentle engagement.” This is so true. When we push, when we are aggressive, this is not right action. We must connect with gentleness, move with ease, relax into this very moment, just as we are and just as it is.

P.S. I just saw today that Susan Piver has an article on the Huffington Post, “Meditation, Relaxation and the Self-Help Demon” where she talks about meditation as a tool for relaxing into reality. It’s a really great read.

One wish:

Trust yourself. Be yourself. Be happy and relax, and in so doing, allow success and contentment, whatever that ends up being or looking like, no matter how quickly or slowly it happens, to organically arise.

image by Kristin Noelle

Two related posts so worth the read:

  • Stop Searching and Start Being” by Daniel Collinsworth on Metta Drum, in which he says “You are not incomplete, and there is nothing you must search for. You only have the work of nurturing and developing those aspects of You that you feel driven to bring forth. They are already present within you.” He uses the cultivation of a tree from a seed as a really powerful metaphor for how we sometimes forget what it takes to grow, to remind us that “what we are searching for already exists as a seed within us.”
  • Why I haven’t wanted to write about eating” by Anna Guest-Jelley on Curvy Yoga, in which she talks about learning to trust herself. She shares that before she learned “I was still very much overriding my intuition at every turn, thinking it was clearly too stupid to guide me, considering how I looked and felt” but that now “I think intuitive eating means showing up for our unique and individual work of doing whatever it is we need to do to get back in touch with our feelings and body. We can share tips and support each other, but the exact roadmap will be different for each of us.”

So again, kind and gentle reader, trust yourself, be yourself. And remember that there is a you-shaped hole, a missing piece of a much larger puzzle, necessary to the wholeness of all the rest of it, the rest of us.

Something Good

First on my list today has to be the Well-Fed Woman Retreatshop and Rachel Cole. 13 brave Fort Collins woman sat in a circle with Rachel yesterday, identifying and connecting with their hungers, trying to understand what was getting in the way of feeding them. I can’t stop thinking that we planted a seed, started something, and how powerful we can be, what great things we’ll do, how much love we’ll generate and spread. And when I think of that circle of women, so many of my favorites, I keep thinking of this quote: “What would happen if one woman told the truth about her life? The world would split open.” ~Muriel Rukeyser

Ladybug on the cover of my new notebook. I didn’t even realize it was there, and then, while I was sitting in the above circle of women, I looked down, and there she was. Considering who was sitting next to me at the time (Kandyce), it was pretty special.

Wednesday is Tibetan New Year: the Year of the Water Dragon. Another chance to begin again, make a fresh start, and the Dragon is a powerful symbol for the coming year: “The Warrior of Inscrutable: Dragon” and “The Mind of the Dragon and the Power of Non-Self.”

image by Will Clayton

Quote from Sakyong Mipham Rinphoche: “Aggression comes about from a feeling of inadequacy. Non-aggression comes about from a feeling of worthiness.”

Brittni Mehlhoff’s “Art to Inspire” posts on Scoutie Girl.

Neil Gaiman and his voice. I wish he would read me to sleep every night.

The Story You Are Telling Yourself” by Daniel Collinsworth on Metta Drum. “You, and you alone, generate the story that tells you who you are. So why not make it a beautiful one?”

Letter Love 101: Art Journals” Lettering Class!!!! I have been looking for some kind of calligraphy or lettering class for a long time, and this one is perfect, just what I wanted without even knowing how to describe what I wanted. And the fact that it’s self-paced and unlimited access means I don’t have to feel pressured or guilty about the timing.

Alaskan Husky Exercise Wheel. This dog looks like it is having so much fun.

29 Soundbites On Writing And Publishing” on the Creative Penn. I don’t agree with all of them, but it’s an interesting list.

Claire Brewster‘s Papercut Map Art. This is so cool.

Everblooming Amaryllis. The one in my office at work currently has eight blooms.

Three Truths and One Wish

A Secret: I think today’s Three Truths and One Wish might just be a Something Good post in disguise, and it’s all about the love, Baby.

poster gift from Patti Digh to her mailing list

1. Truth: All the love you need, you already have. No need to look outside yourself, no reason to wait for someone to save you, no need to attach to any person, program, or possession–none of that, none of them, will give you anything you don’t already have. You are not a hole to be filled or wound to be healed, you are not empty or broken. You are enough, just as you are, and your fundamental nature is basic goodness, wisdom and love.

When you begin to touch your heart or let your heart be touched, you begin to discover that it’s bottomless, that it doesn’t have any resolution, that this heart is huge, vast, and limitless. You begin to discover how much warmth and gentleness is there, as well as how much space. ~Pema Chödrön

Everything in the universe is within you. Ask all from yourself. ~Rumi

2. Truth: You are your own soul mate, the love of your life. There’s not some magic other half “out there” that will complete you, save you, make your life happy and safe, make you whole–(see truth #1). Yes, you might find a mate, a good and healthy match for you the enriches your life in so many ways, but it won’t fix everything, and it will bring struggle and suffering of its own. YOU are the only one who will always love you, be with you from birth to death, who knows just how to love you and give you exactly what you need.

You wander from room to room
Hunting for the diamond necklace
That is already around your neck!
~Rumi

3. Truth: No one will ever love you like you do. If you aren’t utterly head over heels in love with yourself, if you aren’t showing yourself that level of attention and care, make changing that your mission. Whatever you want, whatever you need or feel is missing, figure out how you can give that to yourself. If you are waiting for someone to give you the love you need and deserve, stop waiting and love yourself.

Learning how to be kind to ourselves, learning how to respect ourselves, is important. The reason it’s important is that, fundamentally, when we look into our own hearts and begin to discover what is confused and what is brilliant, what is bitter and what is sweet, it isn’t just ourselves that we’re discovering. We’re discovering the universe. ~Pema Chödrön

Wherever you are, and whatever you do, be in love. ~Rumi

One Wish: If you aren’t already completely committed to loving yourself, that you discover that wonder, that strength, that wisdom, that joy, that contentment in your life, quickly and without obstacle. I wish this for myself as well, that I not only intellectually accept these three truths, but that I embody them, manifest self-love in my life, and that in turn, I am able to give love to the world.

What is love?

A few loving things you might consider doing for yourself, with yourself today that have the potential to generate more love in the world:

:: Read Daniel Collinsworth’s post on Kind Over Matter, “Random Acts of Unconditional Love,” in which he proposes “making it a day of random acts of unconditional love — small gestures of kindness for all the people you interact with throughout your day.”

:: Watch this video that Daniel shared at the end of his post. I watched it, and it made my whole day. So, even if you don’t read his post, trust me that it will be worth your time and watch this video, (but really, I think you should read his post too).

:: Join the “Generosity Day” Cause, “We’re rebooting Valentine’s Day as Generosity Day: one day of sharing love with everyone, of being generous to everyone, to see how it feels and to practice saying ‘Yes.’ Let’s make the day about love, action and human connection – because we can do better than smarmy greeting cards, overpriced roses, and stressed-out couples trying to create romantic meals on the fly.”

:: Read The Last Thing We Want To Do Is Love” by Fiona Robyn at Writing Our Way Home:

image from Fiona's post

“In the midst of total uncertainty, we can love.” This is what Terrance Keenan has to say. He doesn’t say, we can feel that we are loved. He says, we can love.

Easier said than done. When there isn’t any ground under our feet, when we feel we’re being let down by people and situations and the whole world, the LAST thing we want to do is love.

And yet…What is the alternative? Closing down. Putting up walls. Looking after ourselves. Not seeing the pain of the other, not being softened by the pain of others, not dissolving into scary sweetness…

It happens to be Valentine’s Day today, which is mostly a contrived commercial holiday that is a pale, weak substitute for the full measure of love and generosity we are capable of, so on this day, instead of flowers or chocolate, live up to the full potential of your vulnerable, tender, brave, wide open heart. Gentleness is your superpower. You are a warrior of wisdom and kindness–act like it.

calligraphy by Chögyam Trungpa Rinpoche