We Are All Connected

 

Cormorants on Point Grey Bell Boy, Vancouver, BC, Canada

Cormorants, black as ink,
their wings spread wide
drying in the brisk evening air.

Five of them, together,
watching out for each other.

Are they related?
Connected in some way?

Do they notice when one
goes missing?

Are they like us, connected
but pretending that they’re not?

Now, there are six.

The silhouette of their necks
like wrought iron,
black curves against the grey of
the water below.

 

On Plans, Winging It, and Flexibility

 

“Before you cross the street take my hand. Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans.” – John Lennon

It’s said John Lennon wrote these words about his experiences with his young son. At that point in his life, he was in his second marriage to Yoko Ono, fame had struck, and it would have been so very easy to get caught up in making plans.

It happens all the time.

Life gets busy, overwhelm and stress show up, and you bypass doing the right thing in favour of the fast or convenient thing.

You put off saying I love you, thinking you have all the time in the world.

Until you don’t.

Sometimes you’re given a moment of grace, and time slows down.

Sometimes, you embrace that moment and change all your plans.

For love,

family,

presence…

those parts of your life that make you whole.

You make room for flexibility.

You make requests.

You change your mind.

You choose what serves the moment, rather than the plans.

Just. Like. That.

Circumstances align, people show up, and your heart expands.

Life supports flexibility.

“No matter how many plans you make or how much in control you are, life is always winging it.” – Carroll Bryant

Life is always winging it.

Adapting, and evolving; that’s how we got here.

Which doesn’t mean never make plans.

Life isn’t an all or nothing game.

It means embrace what comes your way.

And trust you have everything you need.

 

How to Create a World of Connection

 

It’s easy to turn your yearnings into goals.

Ever notice how quickly this leads to planning and strategizing?

Sounds like fun?

Yeah, not so much.

Slowly but surely, the meaning behind your yearnings disappears, squeezed out by the minutiae of planning and you’re left with what exactly?

Empty results.

Example: You yearn to feel connected.

You brainstorm ways to feel more connected, and suddenly, your schedule is full of commitments: networking events, social engagements, scheduled calls to connect with people you love, etc.

Do you feel more connected?

Connect

In my experience, you’re more likely to feel exhausted, and resentful of the whirlwind you created.

Now imagine you create from a different starting place – a world where you already are connected. 

You don’t have to reconnect.

You only have to remember, and bring awareness back to the connection that is always there.

Let me say it again. . .

The connection is always there.

You can’t NOT be connected.

“We are all connected; To each other, biologically. To the earth, chemically. To the rest of the universe atomically.” – Neil deGrasse Tyson

The roots of a tree are there whether we see them or not; reaching deep or spreading wide – always there, always connected to the earth.

When you come from the place that we are always already connected, you open up a new view of life which then allows for a new way of being.

Instead of asking what you have to do to reconnect, ask yourself what needs to shift in you to feel your connection to the world and those around you right now.

“If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” – Mother Teresa

 

Over to You:

For the next 24 hours, notice your connection to life. Feel the already existing connection between you and every person who crosses your path.

Notice what shows up.

Notice what displaces your connection.

In becoming aware of what takes you out, you’ll also discover how to access your connection any time, anywhere.

 

 

Telling the Truth About Love and Freedom

 

“Freedom and love go together.” – Jiddu Krishnamurti

Yes, they do, and this belief has caused a shift recently. . .

a seismic shift away from traditional coaching towards a more freedom-oriented way of working that focuses on harmony and integration rather than goals, productivity, and the usual suspects of the coaching world. That doesn’t mean you won’t get those results, but that you’ll get them with more ease and alignment with your values than you’ve ever experienced before.

And since I’m telling the truth here, this shift feels more like 6.3 on the Richter scale in the magnitude it’s had on my life and business.

Because as I’ve been mastering this new way of working with you, I’ve been going through it myself and the word that comes to mind is transformative; like those imaginal cells that have been at work for so long have finally completed their role.

What does that mean?

It means I really don’t give a crap about:

  • fine-tuning my niche
  • developing SEO practices
  • following traditional coaching guidelines
  • and other sundry tips from the experts on how to succeed online!

It means I’m trusting my gut and my soul’s whispers.

It means you get more of the depth and breadth of fifteen years of my own personal development and coaching journey.

“In the Freedom Sessions, Sandi brings knowledge, humor and genuine compassion to the process.  Everything is done in relationship, in an atmosphere of non-judgement.” – Ellen Berg

It means my deepest yearning is to cherish life in such a way that it exposes its tender heart.

It means I’m in service to that desire by focusing on love and freedom in every interaction.

It means my primary interest – and yes, I do have an agenda – is to help you expand into love and freedom in any area of your life where you currently experience struggle and constraints.

Love & Freedom collage by Sandi Amorim

This my friends, might be bad for SEO, but it’s right in every other way.

Especially in my heart.

Especially in my heart.

The Many Flavours of Freedom

 

free·dom

– being able to think, choose, and act without constraint, or my simplified definition – the ability to do what you want when you want.

definition of freedom superimposed on ice cream cones

The focus of my work has shifted slowly, but surely towards freedom; no surprise really, as it’s one of my core values. I’ve found myself wanting to go deeper, into what freedom means to others.

I asked online and here’s what came back:

Freedom is. . .

  • the release of shoulds
  • being free to be yourself at every moment
  • giving yourself in service to others
  • feeling unconstrained
  • being able to choose how to spend my precious time
  • being able to still the turmoil in my mind

  • the ability to be myself in all ways, everywhere
  • knowing I am thinking my own thoughts, and not those of others
  • being able to speak my mind and do what I want, regardless of what anyone else thinks

  • doing only things I love and choose
  • having options, choices, and the opportunity to exercise one’s own will

Then there’s the more complicated, dictionary view:

Freedomnoun

1. the state of being free or at liberty rather than in confinement or under physical restraint.
2. exemption from external control, interference, regulation, etc.
3. the power to determine action without restraint.
4. political or national independence.
5. personal liberty, as opposed to bondage or slavery: a slave who bought his freedom.

So what exactly is it?

I asked some respected friends and colleagues this question:

What does freedom mean to you, and how do you nourish it in your life? 

Their words, and collective wisdom inspired me; so many flavours of freedom, each appealing in its own way and I realized the problem with freedom is that sometimes we take on someone else’s concept of freedom as our own.

Like letting someone who doesn’t know you pick a flavour of ice cream at random, you’re not likely to get what you want.

It’s why you might have the experience of constraint even when circumstances line up to produce the freedom you thought you were working towards.

So many options, grab a pink spoon and dip into the flavours below.

 

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A Credo for Living Your Best Life

definition of credo against burning background

Fight FOR something, not against.

Own who you are without apology.

Trust feelings over logic.

Take the first step even though it’s the hardest.

Change the world by looking inward.

Don’t just keep your word, honour it.

Ignite revolution from the inside out.

Be curious, experiment, question everything.

Do what you know to do.

Respect and live your values.

Believe. . .even when it’s most challenging.

Belong because you say so.

Embrace change, but don’t rush it.

Stand your ground for what’s important.

Crush your someday thinking.

Rock the boat, fiercely and often.

Speak your truth for there lies your essence.

Be, do and have what you’re here for.

Shine bright and shrink less.

Be brilliant, talented, fabulous.

Let silence nourish you.

Choose to open, especially when things feel tight.

Forgive yourself for losing your way.

Rattle the cage, speak up.

Choose love over fear every time.

 

The Year of Living 50

 

People keep asking me if I’m freaked out about turning 50 this year. I’m not really, although perhaps a wee bit surprised by some of the thoughts going through my mind.

I mean, turning 50 really is the mother of all wake-up calls!

And I’ve caught myself thinking about all the things I still want to be, do and have in my life.

All the things I want to create and share.

All the ways I want to open further, deeper, more fully.

All the hugs still to give, kisses to be savoured, and well. . .you get the point.

Those are the things I’m putting my attention on as I begin living my fiftieth year.

Not the 50 lessons I may or may not have learned.

Not 50 tips to look and feel good at 50 (although all this juicing and healthy living looks good on me!)

No tips, lessons, or strategies.

Instead, I’m choosing to open.

close up of rose unfurling, metaphor for turning 50

Because we do have a choice; to open or to close ourselves off.

One is energizing and risky. The other is tight, and oh so painfully safe.

I get to choose. And so do you.

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Hungry for Rebellion

 

“Being yourself, being who you are,
is a successful rebellion.” – Unknown

definition of rebellion

Brene Brown says,

“Vulnerability is the birthplace of everything we are hungry for.”

A rebel is the embodiment of this, taking a stand for what’s important, what they hunger for.

It’s contrary to the widely held view that a rebel fights against something.

Instead it’s the fight for something that fuels their fire.

With so much pressure to confirm, has your rebel become dormant?

Suppressed and shut down by the push to:

  • go with the flow
  • never rock the boat
  • be seen and not heard
  • keep your head down and stay safe

The primal fear of being kicked out of the tribe is powerful. We do so want to belong, but at what cost?

The cost is that you sell out on what you desire, what you most hunger for in life.

It’s a cost that eats away at your soul.

Do it long enough and you hardly notice. . .

Until one day someone speaks of rebellion in a new way and your ears perk up. Your heart flutters, the spark comes to life, rekindled as the old way is challenged.

That day has come.

I’m asking you to see yourself as a rebel, a *deva-lutionary willing to question the beliefs that have long kept you in the dark.

It’s time to wake up, to rebel, to become relentless in this pursuit.

You can do this.

 

* A deva-lutionary is committed to questioning the beliefs that have kept her in the dark. She changes the world by looking inward, igniting a revolution from the inside out. She rebels for that which is important to her, not for the sake of rebellion itself.

A deva-lutionary has the heart and courage to be herself without apology, a warrior willing to do what it takes to play in the light.

How to Use Your Values to Thrive in Life & Business

 

Values are underrated.

Underrated and underused, even in the world of personal development.

You might find people talking about them, but do they give you practical ways to use them in your day-to-day life?

The key is to work with your values often, not just as a once-through exercise, but as an ongoing practice to impact the quality of your life.

Not satisfied? ==> Check in with your values.

Work not fulfilling? ==> Check in with your values.

Relationship in a rut? ==> Check in with your values.

But it’s not enough to know what they are; like any knowledge or tool, you have to use your values to get the full benefit.

Like an internal compass, your values keep you aligned with what you say is important in your life, and can boost any goal or intention you have, making it much more effective and way more enjoyable.

“One must give value to their existence by behaving as if ones very existence were a work of art.” ― Friedrich Nietzsche

how to use your values to thrive in life and business

Values help you stand out from the crowd, and make your life and business hum with an inner confidence that is compelling.

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A Rampage of Appreciation

 

Every time you appreciate something,
every time you praise something,
every time you feel good about something,
you are telling the Universe,
“More of this, please.”
                                                     – Abraham-Hicks

I’ve just had a brilliant day.

Not just because the sun was shining here in Vancouver (a rare occurrence in January!)

Window silhouette at Dr. Sun Yet Sen Gardens, Vancouver, BC

It was simply one of those days, awake and present to my life.

And it reminded me of an amazing practice called rampage of appreciation, from Abraham-Hicks.

So good for what ails you, and more than a little woowoo.

Here’s how it works:

  • Make a list of everything you appreciate right now.
  • Keep going.
  • Continue.
  • Add to your list.
  • That’s it, you’re doing great.
  • How about a couple more?

That’s it. Crazy simple, yeah?

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