04/16/14 5:16pm

Self-Care Saves the World

Self-Care Saves the World
by Starcat

I hope you’re getting into the idea of doing your own thing, pursuing your passions and making your daily life more joyful. It sounds like great fun, right? But that’s when the worries begin to pop up. Maybe you’re concerned about being selfish. How can you take the time to follow your bliss when your family needs you to cook and do dishes? What about the people living on the streets, the children being abused, and the planet being polluted? Shouldn’t you be putting your energies into serving others? How does your passion for – insert passion here – help anyone, anyway?

Rest assured, following your calling does help others. The point has been made often enough to become cliché, but no eye-rolling, I’m going to say it anyway. Just like on an airplane that’s losing cabin pressure, if you don’t put on your own oxygen mask first, you’ll pass out and will be no help to your fellow passengers. It’s the same with living your dreams.

You came here to this life with superpowers – your preferences, desires, and the creativity to make them happen. You brought them here with you for a reason.

When you deny this aspect of who you are, you’re diminishing your connection to the divine energies of your source. From that space, it becomes nearly impossible to bring forth the energies that will enrich the planet and your fellow beings. Being outraged about the state of the world doesn’t help anyone, it just brings more destructive energy to the situation. You can’t solve problems from the same mindset that causes them.

The converse is also true. When you open up to the energies that flow from the deepest source of your inner self, all kinds of amazing things are possible. It’s true; you may not know how your passion for embroidery or horseback-riding will serve humanity. But when you allow yourself to blossom into living your most cherished dreams, magical things will happen. From a place of love and connection, opportunities to make a difference – and have fun doing so – will unfold in front of you.

Ultimately, following your callings is the deepest form of self-care. Honor your divine creative nature. When that happens, the universe will support you in a multitude of ways.

Doing what you love is not selfish. There’s no need for guilt. By doing your thing and being your unique self, you’re helping save the world. Up, up and away!

04/14/14 5:05pm

Bestow to the World the Gift of You

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Bestow to the World the Gift of You
by BlackLion

How often do you take time for contemplation? When you find something you enjoy, do you revel in the emotion or do you feel somewhat guilty for having such a thought? Skip the whole “good” and “bad” labeling for now and leave judgment aside. Discernment is a better option.

In what ways do you honor your own inner guidance?

So what’s so important about your passions anyway? Do they pay the bills, feed the kids, or get you to work on time? Why not? I’m not suggesting you drop everything and forget all that you have now. Instead, take 5 minutes out of your day for a meditation under the stars or a silent walk through the sun-dappled forest. Schedule time for reflection and you’ll connect more and more deeply to your passions. Your life will begin to transform with every intention you make.

Spelunk deep and delve into where your true passions grow.

So why do this in the first place? When you are present and focused on your passions, the world will rejoice and support you. Determination, conviction, and resilience are all staples of a well-intended being. Sure, there may be resistance, especially if you buck your current trend and start taking care of yourself in a different way.

When you are following your intentions, you’ll see the world in a different light. You’ll begin to notice the gifts that have been all around you the whole time, encouraging you to become more. The universe will keep making a new now, so get on board with your inner Self and be present for fresh opportunities to strive forward and become who you came here to be.

Only you can take your next step, the question is, who is guiding it, you or some other?

So now that you’re going with your passionate flow, how do you share your gifts? Are you the best entrepreneur in your field? Do you thrive around children and community? Are you more hands on, creating sculptures, paintings, or inventions? Whatever may be your calling, do it with joy in your heart and a passion for discovery.

Your eternalness begets a new opportunity in the new now. Step up!

You are perfect just as you are and getting better and better. Why fuss about the past or sweat over the future? The present moment is all that you have and it keeps on changing with every new rendezvous, intense emotion, and enticing thought. How do you choose to take your next step?

For me, I share my passions by writing about them, offering them to the public via street and stage performance, and by being in community. When I am genuinely myself, I have found that I can share my gifts of joy, love, laughter, good humor, and connection. By taking the time to listen to myself and follow through on my own advice, I move forward with intention and purpose. You can do it too! Blessings!

 

04/9/14 9:46pm

Love What You Love

P7308687Love What You Love
by Starcat

We are all born with particular preferences and passions, and we develop new ones throughout our lifetimes. Some of these passions are valued by our culture, while others are seen as frivolous or even dangerous. You may have been discouraged from pursuing some of your dreams, or guided in a different direction. Now that you’re finding out who you are deep inside, your attention will be pulled back towards some of your early callings, and led forward in brand-new directions.

Your preferences and passions are clues along the path to your ideal life. You came here to this life for some purpose – or for several purposes! Uncovering them is a delightful part of the journey you are walking. When you’re following the path of self-love, you invite yourself to go wherever your heart leads you. It doesn’t matter what society thinks of your passion to turn your lawn into an edible food forest, or to open a used bookstore with a cafe. If your passions speak to you, listen, and let yourself be led toward them.

Honor your preferences, even when they don’t seem to make sense, or when they change from week to week. Let your intuition be your guide. Just because you are intrigued by learning one thing doesn’t mean you’ll be locked into it for the rest of your life. An interest in historic buildings could lead you in any number of directions, from an internship with an architect to writing historical fiction to painting pictures of aging villages, and beyond. Or it could just be a passing interest that is satisfied with a few road trips to museums.

Be excited about uncovering these clues to who you are becoming. If you don’t have time or inclination to pursue a particular interest, set it aside for future study. Recently, during a particularly busy time, I kept noticing articles about sacred geometry and symbols. I opened a file on my computer where I could stash the links to further information, and ideas that had occurred to me when I encountered the concept. That way I’m able to return to it at my leisure, and find out what messages this new fascination has for me.

As you uncover more layers of who you are, you’ll also find out who you’re not. Some of your previous interests might fade away, and it’s okay to let them go. With your new expansion, one challenge could be that you simply won’t have enough physical time for everything you want to do! Relax into it. It’s a happy problem. You have so much enthusiasm for life and its offerings that you wish you could have more hours in the day. But remember, you are an eternal being. Your spirit will guide you in the directions that bring you the most joy and fulfillment. All you have to do is stay open to the moment and be connected with your inner source.

- Excerpted from Cultivating Self-Love: Your Path to Wholeness by Nikki Starcat Shields. If you’re ready to read more, the full-length e-book is available in our Shop, on Amazon, and onSmashwords.

04/7/14 5:07pm

Live with Freedom and Passion

fd140407freepassionatelifeLive with Freedom and Passion
by BlackLion

Do you dream of living a life filled with passion, joy, and freedom? Thankfully, you get to decide how your life unfolds. Whether giving service to community, communing with your inner guidance, or reveling in your inspired actions, you choose your own blessed path. Of course, life has its challenges – that’s what makes us smarter, stronger, more compassionate, and more loving! What is your intention when you delve into the Great Mystery of Life?

No one can give you freedom, you have to accept it for yourself.

The question to ask yourself is: Am I following through with my passions or am I stymieing them with my habitual routines? Redirecting your momentum from the status quo is a gradual and fulfilling process. Take steps every day, even bursts as short as 5 minutes, to check in with yourself. Is the next action you are about to take fulfilling or detrimental to your overall well-being? Choose the path of better and better.

You may get some strange looks or inquisitive expressions when you’re devoted to your passions. Follow your bliss and cooperative energies will converge on you, filling you with joy and creativity. Release the worry and angst about what others may think. Only you can truly know what is best for you. Connect with your inner self and allow your brilliant wisdom to guide you.

04/2/14 3:30pm

Your Mission: Do YOUR Thing!

BridgetFall2013Your Mission: Do YOUR Thing!
by Starcat

What do you think about most often throughout your day? Work? Family? School? Housework? Relationships? If you’re like most people, your focus may often return to problems, worries, or pining for a better life. We’ve trained ourselves, as a society, to look most closely at what’s not working in our lives – just watch the news or glance at a magazine and you’ll see for yourself. The trouble with this approach is that it just brings more of the same. And who wants that?

All of that problem-solving and complaining leaves only dribs and drabs of time and energy to pursue your passions. This month, BlackLion and I will share many pathways that will help shed light on your own deep intentions. We’ll explore adding more of your true passions to your daily life.

You no longer need to cater to others’ expectations, blame your past for your current situation, or drive back into your habitual “ruts.” Instead, inject more fun and purpose into your everyday experience. How?

Start by figuring out what your thing is – or your things are. Most of us have multiple callings that we can integrate into a whole and happy existence. You might know your callings by heart, and maybe you’re even following some of them now. Great! Remember to check in with yourself from time to time. Passions change as we grow and evolve.

Begin your brainstorming session today! Make it fun. Sit down in your comfy chair with your favorite beverage. Get out the colorful markers and a sketch pad, or set up a special document on your laptop to capture your findings. Start a big list of things you absolutely love to do.

My own list includes writing and reading, as well as swimming, making pages in my art journal, drumming, helping people find and live their life’s purpose, dancing, learning about myself and my spirituality, watching and reading science fiction, laughing with friends and family, traveling to new places, doing yoga, and trying new vegetarian recipes. They don’t have to be things you’re good at. Practice will improve your skills. Start with things you love, that make you smile and maybe even jump up and down!

Here are some questions to ask yourself as you create your list:

What are my most cherished, long-held dreams and goals?

What was my favorite young childhood activity?

If money were no obstacle, how would I best enjoy my day?

What dreams have I set aside because I felt they were unrealistic?

This is the time for pure blue-sky brainstorming! If you really want to travel to outer space or become the queen of the world, write it down. There are many ways to satisfy your deep desires, and they will unfold as you pay attention to them. When you review your list, cross off any that you feel “should” be there only because you’re good at them or they serve others. This is your list, your place to focus on joy and expansion. “Should” is not an inspiring feeling. Let joy be your motivation.

Add to your list over the next several days, as you uncover more scrumptious goodies buried within you. Over the course of the month, check back in with us here at Feline Dreamers. As you surge forth on your joy-gathering mission, explore the many offerings we have to aid your quest. Integrate your favorite passions into your current lifestyle. You can do it!

Share one of your passions in the comments below!