Welcome Home

“We are all just walking each other home” ~ Ram Dass

Dear Anxiety,

So, here we are, we meet again. You have this habit of showing up whenever things are going well and your goal is to disrupt that and throw me under the bus while watching…

You’ve managed to pull the trigger many times and have succeeded by setting my nervous system on fire and clouding my judgment over the years

Well, I have news for you Anxiety, you’re not a prison life sentence. Instead, you’re a key through a doorway and I get to decide where my life leads next

We’ve known each other for a long time and yet it’s only recently that I want to befriend you.  You’ve been there all along trying to protect me.  I’ve then recoiled from you thinking you are trying to hurt me

This has only made our relationship more fearful and stronger. I fear and ignore you and distract myself which makes you cry louder and stronger, like a child not being heard

I hear you now and I see you so I’m going to welcome you in instead of running from you or stiffening against you. 

Come, sit, and know that things are safe.  When I turn to you and sit with you, I know you will begin to calm and over time, you won’t need to scream so loud

We can coexist and I can live my life knowing you won’t hurt me

As the late and great Maya Angelou once said, “I know why the caged bird sings. A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer. It sings because it has a song.”

I have the key to the cage that Anxiety tries to wrap around me. Despite this cage, I can still find peace and happiness and sing my song too. I also have wings that allow me to escape that cage anytime

I’m tired of your overwhelming waves that wash over me out of the blue. I feel like I’m underwater in those unmanageable anxious moments

You increase my breathing and heart rate, right to the point of fainting while you just sit there and watch the entire downward spiral unfold…

You slowly creep in and send me into panic mode for no real reason and I become my own worst enemy. It’s not fair to me or to the ones I love

Thankfully, my amazing support system handles me with undying care and unconditional love. They are tired of you too Anxiety. Your persistence is annoying

I tell myself to meditate, sit down and slow down. Walk outside in nature, listen to music, write, or paint. With growth, there are going to be growing pains, please be patient…

Breathe…

I don’t need to figure out how to keep going at this high level of anxiety, I need to figure out how to calm my nervous system down

I can be self-compassionate when sitting with this feeling and get curious by asking, “Why is it here right now? What is Anxiety trying to teach me?”
Anxiety is not accurate
Anxiety serves no purpose in life
Anxiety can challenge relationships to the point of destruction for no real reasons
Anxiety shows up when things are going well
Anxiety is a royal pain in the ass

Be aware of anxiety, but don’t make it your lifestyle. Become more present. Cultivate calm because anxiety is contagious but so is calm. Therefore, when I heal myself, I heal others in the process

I’m falling in love with the process of becoming the very best version of myself. I need more time to do less

It’s a continuous work in progress to speak kindly to yourself because your inner child is listening and so is the Universe. Be careful what you put out there because it will come back to you

Be open to what’s next and stop worrying about how it will all play out. I’ve spent countless years metabolizing pain and anxiety, it’s time to let it all go, and stop gaslighting myself…

I’ve realized the peace I’ve been seeking for so long is not out there in the world. It’s inside of me. I’ve been searching for something familiar that I already had inside. That’s why I can’t find it out there. It’s almost like you’ve been looking for your keys and they’ve been in your pocket the whole time

Walk yourself back to who you truly are; your loving and imperfect self. It’s time to build a safe haven within and with the one you love

After all, you’re only human

It’s time for us to say goodbye, Anxiety. I definitely don’t need or want you in my life. You’ve caused me enough trouble, and you’re not welcome to live here anymore

I’m saying hello to a peaceful, true, and deep love instead, I’m finally safe…

Welcome home, Jen ❤

**This blog was written in collaboration with a dear friend of mine as if Anxiety was a person and is dedicated to anyone and everyone who experiences various degrees of anxiety at different times in their life.  Sometimes it’s deceiving that what we see on the outside is not what’s going on on the inside. Please know you are not alone and we can get through this together.  All my love to all of you.  Just like Bruno Mars, you can Count On Me

Love Always,

Jen ❤

**Copies of my book, “Winning While Losing: The Upside of Heartbreak” are still available on the publishing website FriesenPress. All my gratitude to all of you ❤

~ Dare To Live Courageously…

Lessons And Truth Set Me Free

“He who blames others has a long way to go on his journey. He who blames himself is halfway there.  He who blames no one has arrived. ~ Chinese Proverb

In my book, “Winning While Losing: The Upside of Heartbreak” I talk about a coin having not only two sides, but three.  Heads, tails, and the edge.  The two sides represent two different points of view from two people opposing each other; heads and tails.  However, the edge represents the truth, facts, or reality behind a situation that is often avoided, overlooked, or hidden.  On the edge of truth or reality, are the reasons that run deeper than both points of view.  Therefore, the possibility of gaining a new perspective is there to consider, but only when you have an open mind and heart, is when you can own your behaviors and the role you played in the relationship.  I’m talking about accountability and responsibility.  We are no longer insecure toddlers saying, “not me!” Or at least we shouldn’t be.  After all, it’s the truth on that skinny little edge that will set you free, if you dare to go there.

Lessons Learned in 2021:

Do you know what’s interesting?  You can’t invite something or someone new in your heart until you create the space for it.  To do that means doing the work to heal from your past over a good amount of time, then letting it go for good

Stuffing the past inside never works; it causes toxic emotional constipation and that’s not fair to the next person involved because it always comes out later as an emotional explosion.  Who wants that?

Be wise enough to know how important self-love and self-respect are and they will guide you on what to do to heal

If someone tries to play mind games, create doubts, have sneaky conversations, or show inconsistencies, RUN! Kenny Rogers was right all along

Continue setting boundaries.  They protect your mind, heart, body, and soul.  If someone gets angry with your boundaries, then all the more reason to have them

If you ever notice a man using you for your money, get out ASAP.  That’s just pathetic, unattractive, and downright scary!  Never be a sugar mama

Always remember, when words don’t match actions and they twist it to blame you, that’s called manipulation

When people are not accountable, that’s called gaslighting

When someone labels others crazy or mental, that’s called projection which means they are describing themselves, not the other person

Manipulation + Gaslighting + Projection = Narcissistic Abuse

It’s not wise to play with fire, it only takes one tiny match to burn the whole thing down.  Unless you don’t care

The ones who give the impression of nothing, tells you everything

You have to learn when your part is over in someone’s story

This chapter is called MAKE ROOM

Relationships are not always meant to be forever, they are here for a reason, a season, and to teach us many lessons.  Learn the lessons

Know what you need and want and go for it

Trust the Universe, it knows more than you realize…

Take your power back and live an empowering life

Some of the best advice I ever heard was this, “If she’s told you what she has been through, don’t put her through that again. If you do put her through it, you are selfish and not listening.”

Take note that some people are open books, and some people are illiterate

The wound is not your fault, but the healing is your responsibility

Don’t curse my scars when all they ever tried to do was heal me

Evaluate your scars and heal from the inside out

Mistakes are forgivable, patterns are not

Conversations in relationships need to have a resolution or compromise.  Anger and aggression are toxic and ruin everything

Thriving in conflict is extremely unhealthy and toxic to anyone’s well-being

People let go when they are tired and they will no longer risk letting go of themselves

I am not required to set myself on fire to keep other people warm

I will not lose me to keep you

Effort and honesty are EVERYTHING…

There is nothing worse than self-betrayal.  Listen to your intuition, it’s always right

Don’t trust everything you see, even salt looks like sugar; be very discerning.  Ask questions

Every damn brick they try to throw at you, use it to stand on and use your voice

Never let them silence you or control you in any way shape or form

Be fearless and face the storm, lean in

Speak the truth, be courageous, set boundaries, give lots of self-care and self-love

I know my worth and I am honoring my spirit every single day

Own emotions, process them, and let them go.  The path to true happiness

Get up and out of your comfy zone

Forgive yourself for not knowing what you know now

Forgiveness is a gift you give to yourself

Loyalty and honesty are never too much to ask for in a relationship, it’s normal

Burning a bridge isn’t always a bad thing, you can never go back to what hurt you

Sometimes you have to give up on people, not because you don’t care but because they don’t. Show some self-respect.

Anger taught me how to be calm

Aggression taught me how to speak up

Cruelty taught me self-kindness

Narcissistic Personality Disorder is a serious red flag

When the past is still in the present, that’s another serious red flag

Unkind words about the past = a connection is still present and they won’t let go of the past, another serious red flag

Many red flags do not mean you are at a carnival, pay attention, they are dealbreakers

Look for green flags instead

Incessant whining, complaining, blaming is like living with a dysfunctional four-year-old that is stuck on repeat. No thanks.

Victim mentality is a lack of self-awareness which is annoying

When you are self-aware, you make the necessary changes in your life to move forward

Life is short

Nobody’s perfect

Setting healthy boundaries is self-protection and necessary in any relationship

Judging others reveals unhealed parts of yourself

It’s not my job to convince anyone to love me

You choose the behavior, you choose the consequences.  That’s it.

When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time

You can’t be disrespectful and expect respect in return

Ignoring my intuition is self-betrayal; never again.

My inner peace is non-negotiable

The price you pay to avoid something will always be higher than the price you pay to face it head-on

Living in the past = living in denial.  No chance for the present or future to come in.  If you don’t let the past die, it won’t let you live today which translates to cheated opportunities and missed relationships

Flat out lying or lying by omission is the same destructive pinch that breaks trust

Hearing what someone says and seeing how they behave are two different things.  Focus on the latter

Be accountable for your own shit, turn inward

Avoidance is for cowards

Entitlement and laziness are MAJOR turn-offs

It takes a strong person to ask for help.  Be strong

The pain never leaves us, we have to leave the pain.  Not everyone is capable of making this effort, even though it is necessary for any healthy relationship

The girl who takes care of everyone needs to be taken care of too. Don’t let anyone take advantage of you ever again

Besides, in a world where you can be anything, be kind

If it doesn’t feed your soul, then it’s time to go

Out with the old, in with the new, let it all go…

Onward and upward…

Amazing people are appearing and re-appearing in my life and my heart is so full of love and happiness ❤

Life is grand…

And just like the edge of the coin, the lessons and truth have set me free…

Thank you 2021!!!

The best is yet to come, let’s pop some champagne! ❤ Cheers ❤

** Hi everyone, how’s your October been?  I am happy to say things are going GREAT for me and I am getting ready to write another book!  Stay tuned and I appreciate the kindness and encouragement you’ve shown me all along.  Have a listen to Adele’s new song Easy On Me and have a fantastic week! 🙂

Love,

Jen xx

A Million Little Things

“Tears are words that need to be written” – Paulo Coelho

You’ve heard me say this before, “It’s not just one thing, it’s a million little things”

Like a vase, I was broken with shattered pieces everywhere 

Sharp glass edges not only cut me but others

Since then, I’ve tried  to pick up those pieces and create something beautiful

You found, cared, and loved me in every way

Ups and downs are part of the journey in life

However, taking risks with something you know is fragile, is not only insensitive, but it’s also dangerous

Remember, mountains do not form without earthquakes

I gaze at the stars suspended in the night sky

And think of the millions of great opportunities shining right before my eyes

I make a wish and hope you see them too

I remember it’s not the big things in life that count

It’s a million little things…

Much Love,

Jen
XO

Braving Uncertainty

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The world has changed drastically and fast.  We hit the brakes and went from 100mph to 0mph in a very short amount of time.  COVID-19 has officially hit the worldwide pause button, but despite this crisis, positive things are happening in the world every day and I want to write about what’s real, what matters, what’s on my mind and in my heart.

First of all, let’s recognize this elephant in the room as a grieving process so we can feel the feelings and move forward.  We all just suffered a loss of control and normalcy worldwide.  As we know, when a tragedy or loss happens, denial is first.  People think it isn’t real and carry on as usual.  Bargaining is next and that’s when people make little deals on the side to try and keep things as normal as possible.  Anger moves in and takes over like a storm while sadness and fear hide in the corner waiting to be seen.  As the news is announced to us all day every day, acceptance may or may not be reached.  This is real and isn’t going away unless we all do our part; the sooner the better.  Once we do accept this is happening, we can start creating a new normal, and a new normal is where creativity and ingenuity lives.

For many of us, living rooms have been turned into gyms, dining rooms into workspaces, and kitchens into restaurants.  Social distancing, travel restrictions, working from home, kids are home without school/daycare, grocery shopping and cleaning protocols, washing hands, and bingeing Netflix more than usual are just a few ways we’ve all had to adjust to our new lives.  Not only that, cabin fever has taken on a whole other meaning for so many of us!  Now is the time to get creative and learn a new skill or hobby.  Let’s face it, using the excuse that you don’t have time won’t work for anyone right now.  Virtual meetings, coffee dates, dinner dates, cooking classes, walks, yoga, meditation, games, happy hour, wine tours, dances, book clubs, and tea parties are just a few virtual events I’ve taken part in and I have to say, it’s been fun, given the circumstances we’re in.  Now more than ever, what we need to get through this, is connection but in a virtual setting for now.  Not only that, but we also need kindness, courage, love, patience, compassion, and understanding.

I am concerned about people living in domestic violence and unhappy marriages who are forced to self isolate together, children, single parents, single people, the sick and vulnerable, the invincibles, the unemployed, and those who long to be together but can’t right now.  It’s difficult being apart from the ones you love and on the other hand, it’s difficult being with the ones you don’t love.  Reach out to the people in your life as a support and to get support to help combat loneliness.  Excluding people is never a good idea and even more so now.

Be kind.

Uncertainty means being vulnerable and being vulnerable is scary to so many of us.  It can bring out the best and worst in all of us.  Now that uncertainty is being forced upon us, we have no choice but to lean into it and spread hope instead of fear.  It’s in times like these when we need to have faith and trust ourselves things will work out again soon.  Believing that whatever happens, we will find a way out of it. It’s not like our lives were 100% certain before, right?  We still survived and thrived.

In my experience when it comes to uncertainty, one way to turn that around is by practicing gratitude in a mindful space.  Take your soul for a ride and think about all the wonderful things you already have.  This is what creates happiness from within and is long-lasting.  Perhaps one of the silver linings is the fact we all had to slow down and when that happens, we have time to reflect on our needs and wants.  What and who is important to us and why.  As it turns out, we don’t need much; but we do need each other.  It’s time to relax and take one day at a time, find some light in the dark.  Try not to make the uncertain certain.  For me, connecting by video with coworkers, friends, family, and loved ones has been a lifesaver to make the best of a difficult situation.  Thank goodness we live in a high tech world now.

I truly believe when things calm down,  things will be different but in a good and positive way.  We all have time to think about the future and our goals right now.  Let’s see what happens next and hold onto hope.

All my gratitude to every single frontline worker out there in all the essential services, and a special shout out to my friends in hospitals.  My heart truly goes out to all of you and I can’t imagine how you must feel right now.  I see you and I hear you.  Additionally, thank you to everyone who is doing their part.  We’re all braving this uncertainty together and it will get better soon, we’ve got this.

Please enjoy the beautiful song Imagine by John Lennon and be safe and healthy everyone 🙂

Happy Easter and Passover from a distance.

Virtual Hugs ❤

Jen
XO

**Wondering which book to read next?  Copies of Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak are still available in all formats on iTunes, Google Play, Kobo, and online bookstores worldwide.  All my gratitude to YOU!

Tell Me Why…

Why

I see you running after the things that run from you
Tell me why you do that
Recalibrate, there is no need to chase the wrong person or thing

I hear you berating yourself as if it were a personal motivational speech
Tell me why you do that
Self-love and self-compassion are needed more than ever, please be kind to yourself

I see you running East expecting to see a sunset
Tell me why you do that
You’re running the wrong way, turn around; the sun sets in the West and you know that

I hear your lies and unapologetic excuses about things you’re not proud of
Tell me why you do that
Be courageous and take responsibility for your actions, the truth will set you free

I see you going back to the things that continually hurt you
Tell me why you do that
Wounds are meant to heal, not to stay open and continuously bleed

I hear you say you want a change and yet here you are in the same situation
Tell me why you do that
Make the decision to change and commit to that; don’t settle, know your worth

I see you doing the same thing over again, expecting a different outcome
Tell me why you do that
You know that one small shift can change everything…be brave

I hear you trying to convince yourself to stay in something you don’t want
Tell me why you do that
Be honest with yourself and with others, know what you want and say it

I see you holding on to the past for dear life and it only makes you miserable
Tell me why you do that
Let go of what hurts and release it to the Universe; the future is better and brighter

I hear you voicing your values yet they don’t match your behavior
Tell me why you do that
Are you sure they are your values or are they someone else’s beliefs

I see you trying to fit in because you want to belong
Tell me why you do that
Surround yourself with like-minded people, then you will belong

I hear you whispering to the crashing waves in the day and the suspended stars at night
Tell me why you do that
I hope they are listening to all your words and wishes

I see you putting your dreams on a shelf, tucked away for some other time
Tell me why you do that
You are meant to share your talent with the world, don’t worry what others may think

I hear you telling yourself not to say anything, to suppress your voice on matters
Tell me why you do that
Be courageous and use the voice you have; express your needs and wants

I see and hear you making choices out of fear and anxiety
Tell me why you do that
Make choices out of love, what fills your soul and makes you happy

I need to know the WHY behind what you say and do
Why is it important to you
Tell me why…

Dare to live courageously…

Much Love ❤

Jen
XO

*I’ve always loved this song Why by Annie Lennox and it happens to go with this blog.  Have a beautiful weekend everyone and be happy 🙂

**Please be sure to check out my friend Danielle Lewis and subscribe to her podcast titled Mom’s Still Standing which is available on iTunes and Spotify.  It’s a wonderful and inspiring podcast that connects all mom’s trying to navigate life and motherhood ❤

***Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak is still available at all online bookstores worldwide, iTunes, Google Play, Nook, Kindle, and at the FriesenPress bookstore.  Books are a great Christmas gift for the readers on your list 🙂 Thank you everyone xx

Pain Becomes The Cure

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Evening summer walks are my favorite because things are quieter, calm, and the sun is less intense.  I feel HAPPY.

As I walk down the street, I see a house and the address is DENIAL.  I suddenly feel a pain in my chest and rehearse those words in my head again out of nowhere.  “This can’t be happening, don’t worry about it.”  I think of what I lost and keep walking.

As I turn the corner onto the next street, I see another house and the address is BARGAINING.  I suddenly feel a lump in my throat and remember how desperate I was trying to hold on and make a deal.  “If you can just tell me how I can fix this, then everything will be ok.”  The loss feels heavy but I keep walking.

As I reach the cul-de-sac, I see another house and the address is ANGER.  I suddenly feel trapped with a pit in my stomach and all I want to do is scream at the heavens above me.  “How could you do this to me?”  Strangely enough, I feel a burst of energy and start running up the street, passing BARGAINING and DENIAL.  I ask myself, “What is going on here?”  I’m sure I look crazy to some.

As I run to the next street over, I see a lake at the end and I am drawn towards it.  There’s a house on the corner and the address is DEPRESSION.  I suddenly feel waves of sadness come over me and the tears start flowing and flowing.  “It’s not easy, I feel so alone…I lost everything.”  The loss feels huge and I am exhausted.  Then for some reason, I turn around and walk down the same street passing the other houses in no particular order and they each have a strange way of haunting me.  I don’t understand why or what is happening but I somehow keep walking.

Years and miles go by up and down these streets, passing house after house, experiencing feeling after feeling.  Over time I discovered a new street I was avoiding all along and started walking that way.  I see a house that catches my eye and the address is ACCEPTANCE.  I finally feel peace and happiness just standing there looking at it.  I think to myself how long it took to find it after years of walking, running, feeling, and forgiving.

Take a breath…

This blog is dedicated to anyone and everyone who has lost someone or something in their life.  One thing I know for sure is that grieving is different for everyone.  The stories of loss might be different, the order and length of grieving stages might be different, but the emotions are the same and that’s how we are all connected.  Don’t compare your inside to someone’s outside because you’ll always lose.  You will heal when you are ready, you are not on a schedule, but you have to keep going and ask for help.  Triggers can still happen but the only way out is through because one minute you’re happy and the next minute you are grieving one or more of the stages.

But in the end, the pain becomes the cure.  That I know for sure.

Take another breath…

You’re doing your best ❤

 

Much Love ❤

Jen
XO

*I would like to give a shout out to one of my good friends and soul sister, Danielle Lewis because on Monday, October 21st, she is releasing her new podcast called “Mom’s Still Standing”  You can subscribe to her podcast on iTunes, she has some great guest speakers on it too 😉

I love this song Rainbow by Kacey Musgraves.  Have a beautiful weekend everyone ❤

*Copies of “Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak” are available at all online bookstores worldwide.  All my gratitude to YOU ❤

~ Dare to live courageously…

 

 

Beautiful Destination

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I remember the day you went on a faraway vacation
As usual, you packed your bag last minute
Emotional baggage has always been your carry on, and it’s too heavy
You said you felt lost and needed to find yourself

After boarding the plane, you heard a song
The pain you were running from was now running after you
Affecting your heart, mind, body, and soul
You searched for a hypothetical bandaid to conceal a hypothetical bleeding wound

How inappropriate

After drying your eyes, you closed your eyes
And off to sleep, you went
I felt like a fly on the wall watching you from the outside in
Like a compassionate parent watching a suffering child

After arriving, the final destination was breathtakingly beautiful, just as you had hoped for and imagined
The warm sun made you smile
The beauty all around made you happy
The scents in the air woke your senses
I remember how grateful you were in that exact moment

Change is good

I begged you to please unpack your negative emotions from your heavy carry on
To take a break; you’re on vacation now
Put loneliness on a shelf and sadness in a drawer
Hang all your fears in a different closet and close the door
As they say; out of sight out of mind

Replace these emotions by packing peace, happiness, and love into your life instead
Be open to life’s possibilities and opportunities
Focus on the good and be grateful for everything you have
Time to practice self-compassion and self-care in such gorgeous surroundings

This vacation was exactly what you needed to push the reset button on your life
You deserve all the good things life has to offer, be patient
You realized the further you try to run away from it all
The closer it brought you home to yourself
Isn’t that interesting?

And what a beautiful destination for you to be in right now ❤
Much Love ❤

Jen
XO

****Hello everyone and thank you for reading my blog!  This picture was taken in the Himilayas, India 2016 at a retreat I visited when my divorce was finalized.  During that trip, I met friends, ate delicious food, listened to mesmerizing music, tried yoga, saw some breathtaking sights, and finally took some time for myself.  What an amazing healing experience that was for me.

It isn’t necessary to travel far each time, because even a change of scenery close by can make a world of difference in your mental and emotional health.  Travel taught me how to be more self-compassionate, which led me to self-care and eventually to self-love.  Writing has also been extremely helpful in my healing process and I feel so much better now.

How do you heal from something difficult?

****Copies of Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak are still available at all online bookstores worldwide.  All my gratitude to YOU

~ Dare to live courageously…

A Letter To Pain

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In the past, as some of you know, I wrote different letters to myself and recently, after reflecting on how far I’ve come, I think it’s time to write a letter to Pain.  Instead of blaming Pain for all the heartache it caused me over time, I’m going to look at Pain from a spiritual point of view and how it changed me into the woman I am today.

One thing I know for sure is that we always have a choice in our lives, for every decision that comes our way which makes us accountable for ourselves.  If things are decided for us, then we get to decide how to handle it.  What we decide becomes our new life path and leads us to exactly where we need to be in order to learn what we don’t know yet.  Even if it’s the second, third or hundredth time around.

Author Caroline Myss says there is no wrong path, we are all on the right path; but here’s the thing, we just might not be managing it very well.  We may have taken a detour along the way.  Therefore, in knowing we have a choice to get back on track and more aligned with who we really are; the path we are on always leads us home.  Back to ourselves and to our purpose.

 

Dear Pain,

Unfortunately, I know you well.  A little too well, actually.  I’ve seen you come and go throughout my life, sometimes disguised as pleasure, and I have to say, it is never easy or comfortable when you come to visit me.  Most of the time you appear without warning out of nowhere and end up making me feel scared, angry, disappointed, confused, upset, and hurt.  Your timing is incredible because it’s always inconvenient with my plans, forcing me to stop what I’m doing or take another detour.

However, these stops and detours have served a purpose while you were here.  All because of you, Pain, I found ways to handle you, heal you, and let you go.  There is no strength if there is no struggle and if there’s any silver lining to be found within you, Pain, this is it.  You’ve given my emotional muscles a real workout.

You see, Pain turned up the volume of the unworthy voices in my head and I believed them.  Pain knocked me down, but I fought to live.  Pain was my best teacher and worst nightmare all rolled into one.  I’ll never forget the lessons learned in the classroom outside the classroom.  Pain tried to make me fail but after a while, I passed the tests and received the blessing of insight.  Looking back, I see what needed to be learned and why.  So many rich meanings and a spiritual awakening occurred.

Pain, I can’t carry you around on my back anymore, you are too heavy and dark for me.  Not only do I need light, but I also need to feel light.  I finally realize Pain is a reverse role model of what not to do.

Here are some examples of what Pain brought me on the left, and on the right are some things Pain taught me:

Lies = Honesty

Mean = Kindness

Revenge = Walking Away

Selfish = Giving

Stealing = Generosity

Negative = Positive

Self-Righteous = Forgiving

Betrayal = Setting Boundaries

Quiet = Vocal

Closed Minded = Open-Minded

Ignoring Myself = Self-Care

Physical Symptoms = Exercise

Emotional Symptoms = Asking For Help

Holding On = Letting Go

Old Me = New Me

Thanks to you, Pain, I found new hobbies, interests, friends, work, perspective on life, parenting skills, awareness, and a new life.  Everything got better.  I even taught my kids how to handle you because unfortunately, they have seen you too.  Now I have more compassion, empathy, strength, understanding for others dealing with loss, suffering, and divorce.

Thanks again to you, I discovered the power of music, reading, writing, practicing mindfulness, living in the moment, accepting truths, and forgiveness is a gift I give to myself.

Writing is a big part of who I am, it leads me back to myself.  It is my life purpose, so much so that I wrote a book about you, Pain, and I still can’t believe it.  Don’t get too excited, just because I write about you doesn’t mean I like you.  I’m simply trying to understand and decode you for myself and others.  Happiness doesn’t come to me, it comes from me.  It is a choice and how I perceive life experiences.  Writing makes me happy.

You taught me the hard way to put the relationship with myself first, so I don’t put myself second with others.  I question what real love is, what do I want, need, from a meaningful relationship.  You showed me dealbreakers, pitfalls, narcissism, toxicity, and wove red flags in my face.  Now I ask more questions, and I’m careful with who I trust.  You’ve sent me difficult/selfish people, heartbreak, loss, tragic events, unfortunate circumstances to handle which taught me many things about myself and life.  Because of being cheated and deceived, I’ve become more vigilant and discerning.  Respect is a 2-way street, I  accept nothing less.  You certainly tested my patience and my ability to control my emotions.  Now I can see one of the reasons why you showed up was to protect me from other forms of pain.

At the moment,  I am practicing gratitude on a daily basis, my heart feels lighter, more peaceful.  I’m finished hiding behind you Pain, now I’m more obvious.  I found the courage to stand up and live my best life, imperfections and all.  What I’ve learned is this: if you focus on the hurt, you will continue to suffer.  If you focus on the lessons, you will continue to grow.  All because of you, Pain, I grew, learned, discovered, and even avoided you.  People came and went thanks to you.  I also apologize for being just like you at times, a royal pain in the A**!

The new me feels free, empowered, happy with myself,  and never gives up.  I can walk away from you, but with a grateful heart for all the life lessons.  I know I can’t live my life “Pain-free” but the next time you do arrive, I aim to be more prepared.

I never thought I would say this, but thank you Pain for showing up in my life, and for everything you’ve taught and brought me.   I’m exactly where I need to be in my life with my work, friends, family, love, and myself.  No experience goes unwasted, no mud, no lotus.  If it wasn’t for you, I wouldn’t be me, right here, right now.

Dare to live courageously…

Much Love ❤

Jen
XO

One of my favorite songs Never Give Up, by Sia is what I listen to while I go for my walks down by the river.  I love it, I hope you do too.

**Hello Everyone and Happy September!  Copies of Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak are still available at all online bookstores worldwide.  All my gratitude to YOU ❤

Breaking Up With Myself

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Living in the past only keeps me stuck.  Now I am living in the moment and setting goals for the future so bye-bye past, and all the things that kept me stuck.  Thanks for ALL the life lessons.  You certainly taught me a lot.

I’m tired of societal views and what everyone thinks; what I should do, say, act, and be.  I am who I am, take it or leave it.  This is what keeps people small and I am not small.

The peanut gallery never stops chatting in my head so I need to find a mute or delete button.  I will no longer let these gremlins control how I think or act because I know I’m a good person who deserves good in return.  I will no longer doubt myself in my strengths and capabilities.  If I don’t know something, I’ll learn it.  The days of self-limiting beliefs are over.

I can honestly say  I’ve taken the time and effort to do everything in my human power to heal the pain in my heart and at this point, I did it.  I’m open to handing the steering wheel over to my heart now and letting it do the driving for me.  I trust you completely, it’s time to be vulnerable again and let love in.

Enough is enough with low self-confidence!  I think you know by now you are a brave soul who never gives up so take that with you and use it to increase your self-confidence.  You’ve got this.

How do you expect to get anything done if you make excuses or procrastinate about making a decision?  Having the ability to choose is a privilege and should be used to improve your life, not take it for granted.  Laziness is ok on a Sunday, but not on a regular basis.

Stop playing games of any sort with anyone. The only way to live your life fully is to be genuine and authentic.  Fitting in is the opposite of belonging.  You don’t need to fit in anywhere because when you are who you are, you find like-minded people and you naturally belong there with them.  No need to change who you are.  If you want to play a game, learn how to play poker or something.

All my life I have held honesty as one of my truest values in how I am with others and how I expect others to be with me.  Being honest with myself is something I have been working on, even more, when it comes to what I want in my new life.  At the same time, it’s the best thing that could ever happen to me so I can create something real and beautiful.  It’s time to truly stand in my own truth and have zero tolerance for dishonesty.

I continue to live by the saying “Whenever you judge someone else, you reveal an unhealed part of yourself.”  How true is that?  I will only use judgments as my own compass to lead me back to myself.

Life can be scary but that’s what makes it so exciting!  If we live under a rock our whole lives and let fear stop us from actually trying something, we will always be wondering “what if.”  I definitely don’t want to be saying that in the end or along the way, so I’m taking chances, despite being scared of what could happen and that’s what being vulnerable and courageous is all about.  I will no longer let fear get in my way of living my life.  These walls are coming down!

I may not have the best of everything but I am happy and grateful for what I do have.  Now that I practice gratitude on a daily basis, my life has changed for the better and I can see improvements.  Whining and complaining will only keep people stuck and I’m too busy being on the move.  I will never think of myself as unworthy or not enough.  I’m done.

It’s time to stop accepting bad behavior and mediocrity as normal.  I learned how to set a boundary so it’s time to walk the other way.  The last thing I need in my life right now is any toxic relationship after all the work I did for myself.  Once again, thanks for the life lessons.  I don’t have time for jealousy either, it is poison in any relationship.

Which mask or shield do you wear?  I’m not talking Game of Thrones here, I mean what are you hiding behind?  Your stories, your excuses?  Drop the armor and start connecting with people.  Stop playing the victim or rescuer, it’s so disempowering.

It’s your time to be who you truly are and if people don’t like it, that’s their problem.  The right people will show up when you show up and you don’t need everyone to like you.  Trying your best is always better than doing nothing.

So this is it. I’m getting out of my own way.  It’s officially over.  I’m breaking up with myself and kicking the old me out and letting peace, love, and happiness in.  Hasta la vista baby!

Dare to live courageously…

Love ❤

Jen
XO

 

**Please take a moment to listen to this beautiful song called You Say By Lauren Daigle.  The lyrics go hand in hand with what is written here and the thoughts that go through our mind from time to time.  Remember to say good things and believe in yourself.  Life is too short and you are too precious.  It’s time to let go and break free.  Happy Sunday ❤

**Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak is available at online bookstores worldwide.  May 2019 is the second anniversary of my book release and I am so grateful. All my love and gratitude ❤

That Girl

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Sometimes I imagine…
I am living outside myself and looking back at who I am now

As I turn my head over my left shoulder,
I see a girl who is strong and brave
And then I see a girl who is sometimes alone and scared

I see a girl who is happy and smiling
And then I see a girl who is at times sad and tearful

I see a girl who is free and independent
And then I remember the girl who was stuck and felt trapped

I see a girl who knows herself more than ever because of practicing self-care, self-love, and forgiveness
I remember the girl who turned her back on herself and forgot who she was for so long

I see a girl who counts on herself to get things done with confidence
I sometimes see the girl who gets caught up in others broken promises and simultaneously finds a way to let go instead of feeling let down

I want to hug that girl and tell her in the most compassionate way that everything is going to be fine. Healing is never linear and triggers are everywhere. Some days are better than others and your friends and family love and support you.  Always remember this

I tell her, grieve so you can feel free to feel something else

Now I see a girl living her best life each day while dodging bullets and catching curveballs

I slowly look up at myself in the mirror and I see that girl and all the girls I know who experience the same things I do from time to time

We are a collective bunch of empowered women standing together with both our soft and sharp edges

I see a girl who wants the same thing we all want…love ❤

I remind her, the power of gratitude in your worst times can change your life into your best times

And she graciously smiles, knowing she’s THAT GIRL…

Love,

Jen
XO

 

**To all the women out there, I think we are THAT GIRL to some extent at one time or another.  Right now, my good friend Diane Loubert is making some pretty powerful positive changes in her life, and it’s such a privilege to be watching her turn the page and start a brand new chapter.  I’m really proud of her so I’m dedicating this blog to her.  Long live change my friend, you’ve got this!!

**Winning While Losing:  The Upside of Heartbreak is available at online bookstores worldwide.  Dare to live courageously…

**Just for the record, this blog also applies to men out there making positive changes as well.  Good for you guys… keep going 🙂