Love Revelation: Thinking…plus action…makes it so

Tonight’s magical NYC subway adventure included a conversation with a very close-talking, surprisingly profound and maybe a little psychic drunk man telling me that he was “very attracted to my light” and that I belong on Stephen Colbert or Broadway, :) , followed by a deep conversation with a man newly studying to be a lawyer about, NLP, Eckhart Tolle’s the Power of Now, Jed Mckenna, Byron Katie, Landmark Worldwide (It was a long train ride from the city at this hour).

And the evening ended with a text message from this new friend: “Melissa, amazing connecting with you. your journey is going to be as beautiful as you decide to make it. Thinking makes it so.”

This whole night began with my heading into the city to grab a drink with a lovely man who I met on the Subway last week who was reading an inspirational book that grabbed my attention.

All of my life, people have warned me to “keep my guard up” and worried about my daring willingness to leap into the unknown, befriend strangers, and go off the beaten path. Even in the midst of connecting with kind strangers like this man, I’m met with concern that I be careful in whom I put my trust.

The fact of the matter is that I wholeheartedly trust me and my inner guidance system. I’m just really good at following the YES in my heart and also listening for the NO, and nearly 33 years into this life I’m living, which has included travel to other countries and cities and meeting countless people, I have yet to have experienced anything short of magic.

I’m not lucky or extra blessed or extra special in my experience of miracles showing up daily in my life. I’ve just chosen to show up wherever I am from a place of wonder and a desire to connect, of sharing myself and discovering the light inside of others.

Love begets more love y’all. And as my lovely new friend said, “thinking makes it so.”

:)Melissa

Love Revelation: Being a stand for love in the world

It’s an incredibly vulnerable and weird experience to do a funding campaign.

Since launching my GoFundMe campaign to support my New York move a little over a month ago, I have been confronted by many uncomfortable feelings and thoughts.

“You look so needy.”
“People are gonna think that you don’t have your stuff together.”
“Asking for help on this level is just too much–people are going to be so annoyed and think you’re rude…and a little pathetic…for asking.”

Yes, I talk to myself like this in my head, and it hurts. And, there are days when these thoughts can almost stop me.

But here’s the thing: While YES, I asked for financial support in order to help ME transition my life to NYC, this campaign has been about SO MUCH more than me because WHO I AM is someone who wakes up everyday committed to making a loving difference in the world.

I have designed my life inside of the greater commitment to being an Ambassador of Radical Self-Love–of being someone by example, through my dedication to my work, through my creative expression, my family relationships, my friendships and through every day-to-day interaction to be a CAUSE for people to love who they are.

I live each day of my life committed to having others be LIT UP by their lives. I am committed to everyone knowing the freedom that comes with full self-expression, and to healing the shame that causes them to hide their true voice. I am committed to having people wake up in the morning with a smile on their face because they GET that they are truly loved & lovable in every moment.

So, for everyone who has contributed to this campaign and for all those who feel inspired to contribute, you’re not just donating money to me as I make my life in New York–you, right along with me, are choosing to be someone who is committed to creating a loving world.

THAT is the difference you make through donating to my crowd-funding campaign.

And so I’ve chosen to set all of my feelings of shame and thoughts of self-judgement aside because my life is NOT about looking good. I am a stand for love in the world, and so I’m choosing to risk what you’ll think of me, and choosing to invite you to be a powerful contribution along side me instead.

And so I want to ask, will you make the powerful choice to join me in creating a loving world?

Please visit http://www.gofundme.com/MelissaNYCJourney to donate and then share this campaign with the people you care about so that they get to experience themselves as the powerful contribution that they are, too.

Thanks for all that you are.

:)Melissa

Love Revelation: The power of “AND”

me

On August 27th, 2013, the word “AND” transformed my life.

Let me explain.

Two days before, in my Advanced Course with Landmark Worldwide I’d had a huge breakthrough that had me seeing all of the ways that I was living my life as a victim who needs to protect herself from anger, harshness, disappointment. I was being a coach inside of the thought “Please don’t be mad at me;” a daughter, lover, friend inside of the thought, “Please don’t be mad at me;” I was pursuing my dreams inside of the thought, “Please don’t be mad at me:” which ummm…wasn’t very effective, to say the least. Was I making things happen? Yes. And I had NO CLUE what I could make possible through freedom from that fear story.

So there I was on August 27th, the final night of my Advanced course, and we were doing one last exercise. It went like this:

Look for all of the statements where you say, I want X BUT Y. And we were going back and forth with a partner stating as many of these as we could think of.

“I want to have a passionate, committed relationship BUT I’m afraid it’s not possible for me.”

“I want to make money doing what I love BUT I don’t know how.”

“I want to move out of my mom’s house BUT I can’t afford it.”

Then we made one little shift that created my life as I know it today. We simply took that little word, that action-stopping, you-can’t-have-what-you-want word, “BUT” and replaced it with “AND.”

“I want to have a passionate, committed relationship AND I’m afraid it’s not possible for me.”

“I want to make money doing what I love AND I don’t know how.”

“I want to move out of my mom’s house AND I can’t afford it.”

And suddenly the world opened up. There were actions I could take to have what I want. There was the possibility to move forward in my life in ways that truly matter to me. When I got to that last one about wanting to move out of my mom’s house AND not being able to afford it, I was stopped in my tracks:

“I need to move out of my mom’s house.”

And then I saw actions: Get clear on my finances, pick a date to move out and get clear on prices of apartments that I want, create a financial plan to make it happen, etc.

And I hit the ground running. That next week I was looking at apartments in Madison. And than it occurred to me: I don’t want to live in Madison anymore. I want to move to Brooklyn, NY, and I’m going to do it by March of 2014. I registered into the Landmark Introduction Leaders Program that just started this past Friday as a way to REALLY throw my hat over that fence.

And well, my loves, I’m writing this post from Brooklyn, NY and it’s March of 2014. And believe me: there were freak outs and break downs. I nearly cancelled my registration for that program multiple times. I chose to move in the midst of a business re-brand, which felt insane. And I didn’t let that stop me. I found the courage to ask friends and family for financial support in order to follow through on my commitment to get here in March to begin that program, and between the online GoFundMe campaign (http://www.gofundme.com/MelissaNYCJourney), and loving checks in the mail, I’ve currently raised $2,961 toward my $5000 goal, with 11 days left. Vulnerable to ask–Hell yes. And I didn’t let the word “BUT” stop me from creating the invitation for others to contribute powerfully to my life and those who I’m meant to touch with my life.

And I’m falling in love with what is beginning to unfold in my life here in my new city. And oh yeah, I’m going to have that relationship that I want, and every day I get to do more and more of the work that I love while also making money…doing what I love.

Anything is possible when we remove the word “BUT” from our language.

“AND” just might be my new favorite word. 

Now it’s your turn: What could that simple word make possible in YOUR life? What actions can you take to turn YOUR wanting into reality?

All my love,

:)Melissa

Loving Revelation: Being positive in the midst of cynicism

So when I took the StrengthsFinder 2.0 assessment a few years back, one of my top 5 strengths was Positivity…which is, of course, a no-brainer for those who know me and/or even loosely follow my posts.

And I LOVE this strength–it is the essence of my enthusiasm, my authentic ability to see the good in all people and circumstances, my sense of humor and my ability to buoy the spirits of those around me…

What’s hard about it, though, is that I also wear my heart on my sleeve, and I can feel like a big, shiny target for (what I experience as) bubble-bursting cynics. And as much as it seems like “you can’t bring this girl down,” believe me, you can. And for what good reason?

My positivity can look like naivete to folks who don’t see life through the same lens, and I get that people might be trying to save me from disappointment or from some harsh future reality through “bringing me down to earth” or inserting what they think is reality into my experience, and yet, my reality has never colored the world as harsh and I like the life I’m creating. Life only ever feels harsh when I meet people who try to convince me that I’m going to soon discover that life is harsh. And as much as they might think that they’re sparing me from some nameless bad thing in my future…It just hurts me in the here and now…and then I have to do mental and emotional backtracking to get back to what’s true FOR ME.

One of the things it says in the StrengthsFinder assessment for people who have this strength is to choose not to hang around negative or cynical people because they drain me and bring me down…which is true. And I wish it were so simple to just “not hang around them,” and the reality of life, and especially of my life in meeting all new people, right now, is that I can’t avoid them all. I just wish it didn’t make me feel hurt and icky and less somehow when I encounter people trying to give me a “dose of reality.” In all of my capacity to rise above, to not take on other people’s stuff…I’ve not mastered this one. I’m so mutable and good at trying on other’s perspectives that I can lose my sense of what feels good for me in these kinds of interactions.

And I know those people will keep coming…especially as I’ve moved to a big city where people are trying to make dreams happen, and so many people seem to have a say on the right and wrong way to do that…and all I’m left with, right now is perhaps strengthening my ability to say, “Thanks for your perspective and my experience of life has been different…and I like my view.”

I may have just arrived in NYC 2 weeks ago, but I’ve been alive for 32 years and I haven’t lived in a vacuum. So far my life experience has said that no matter where I am, I get back 10-fold what I give…and what I want exists. And that’s the world I continue to choose–whether I’m in NYC, or Bangkok, or Monona, WI.

Sorry if this seems a little ranty–just feeling a little tender and drained tonight. I welcome your perspective, dear hearts.

(And, I also invite you to notice in your own life when you might burst someone’s bubble for the sake of being right…and assess: Is it really worth it?) xo

:)Melissa

Love Revelation: The lie that I tell…

So, I have this lie that I tell.

I tell it every time I walk into a group of people…the bigger the group, the bigger the lie. I tell it when I’m the “new girl” or I’m about to embark on something completely new and out of my comfort zone.

It goes something like this:

“I don’t belong here. I’m invisible. Everyone knows what they’re doing except me and no one cares that I feel lost. No one even cares if I am here or not…”

This lie seemed to get crystallized around age 10, the first week of band class when I picked up my flute to play a song I knew well…and unbeknownst to me, the band was playing it in a different key…but since I didn’t know that, all I thought was, “I’m wrong and I don’t even know why and no one cares.” If it weren’t for my dad getting me extra help when I came home crying and wanting to quit, I wouldn’t be playing flute today.

And the funny thing is, I’m not 10 anymore, but that memory, that feeling, can live itself over and over again every time I step into a new situation with a group of people, and every time, I want to quit, to walk away, to find the escape hatch.

And it’s a lie because the truth is, I belong the moment that I say I belong. I belong the moment that I step outside of my “what about me” fears and get present, really present and engage with the people around me. I belong when I get that every single person on this planet is a contribution, and I can choose to be a powerful, loving contribution.

I belong when I express myself, all of myself, when I share from my heart and create the space for others to share from their hearts.

I discover with a little more ease each time I start to tell this lie that if I want to belong, I need to create a space where others belong.

I’ve found that life is so much more powerful when I give away what I want the most.

So I ask you: What are you going to give away today?