Spirituality

Be Your Own Spiritual Activist

“Maybe it’s the ultimate act of self-love to be a spiritual activist FOR YOURSELF…”

This bubbled up the other day as I started out on a long overdue and much needed walk for fresh air. The Southern California rain had been encouraging a very introverted and introspective mood that was frankly quite low to begin with due to my hormones raging from switching up my birth control after 15 years. I had been really in my head about my next moves for work; What’s on the back burner, what’s ahead of me and brainstorming what I could do to move things forward. My thinking went from creative, exploratory, exciting to DOOM AND GLOOM. Isn’t it amazing how Thought can do that? One minute you’re in the middle of playing around in your thoughts as if you have every color of Play Doh and you’re curiously putting different sculptures together, breaking them apart, smooshing them into new shapes. Then all of a sudden the Play Doh weighs more, the beautiful bright colors are no longer and the dough isn’t pliable. You look down at a pile of rocks that are multiplying with each rock feeling really real, really heavy and really significant - aka DOOM AND GLOOM.

With my hormonal low mood, I already felt like I had a thick layer of green gas hanging around me 24/7 that I was fully aware I was looking at life through. I reminded myself on multiple occasions, even when I didn’t sense the green gas as much, to not take my gnarly thoughts seriously. My spiritual self had my human self’s back, so to speak. But who knows what happened on this particular day, the thought storm of Play Doh turned rocks was too heavy to handle. I reached into the ol’ goody bag of tools I have for these moments, also known as the only tool I have for these moments, and I asked myself OUT LOUD, “What do I need to do right now?” Wisdom always knocks with the answer and I was moved to go outside for a walk, and as always, it was exactly what I needed.

After getting outside, my perspective naturally came back and I could see where my thoughts went to hell without me noticing. You may already be a step ahead of me, but it was the moment I started to fall into the ol’ trap of needing to figure out things to do to move me forward faster in my work - whatever that even means. I say that because my own expectations and timelines are all made up, so who am I comparing myself to should I figure out something that would move me along faster? My own expectations? That again, are made up? I remembered all of this then AHA! What I know to be true, what is best for my well-being, is to TRUST the greater intelligence of life. TRUST that Universal Mind, the ever-flowing energy that is around me and within me, that my Wisdom is tapped into, will continue to nudge me forward via my gut instinct and when I heed it’s direction, everything unfolds EXACTLY the way it’s supposed to - beyond any of my wildest hopes or expectations. With my re-gained perspective came that delicious feeling of peace washing over me then there she was…

“Maybe it’s the ultimate act of self-love to be a spiritual activist FOR YOURSELF…”

It was so clear. To stay in the drivers seat of my thoughts, to remind myself that I can’t trust or believe the things going through my mind because my feelings coming from those thoughts were going to make me feel scared, anxious, fearful or just plain yucky - especially when I’m already in a low mood (from the hormones, but generally also from hunger, lack of sleep, hard day, etc etc) - is being an activist for my spiritual health to continue leading a soul-centered life. Like I said earlier, acting accordingly to what I know to be true about what’s going on in my mind when I feel like shit (aka nonsense that shouldn’t be paid attention to) is merely my spiritual self having my human self’s back. It’s like seeing the traffic on the freeway coming to a screeching halt from a distance so you make a quick decision to exit and take side streets to your destination.

So I say do it. Take the exit before the three car pile up. Be your own spiritual activist for a soul-centered life.

It’s the ultimate act in self-love. If you’ve ever been unsure how to have self-love, this is it, folks. Honoring what you know to be true, that Universal Mind HAS YOU, and it isn’t some airy-fairy, luck of the draw look at life. That it’s 100% my experience, as I’m sure you’ve experienced as well, that when you follow those inner nudges - your KNOWING inside - life flows and unfolds in a manner that can’t be described. Things always work out. So speak up for yourself! Talk to those very real looking thoughts and tell them you don’t want to believe them anymore and fall back into the lazy river of life that’s already flowing and pulling you forward!

Lastly, after having this insight I approached a staircase I needed to climb. I looked up at how many stairs there were and how steep they were, I took a deep breath in with my eyes closed, then with my first step on the first stair my inner voice, my Wisdom, said “Slow and steady.” I felt a zing of energy go from my toes through the crown of my head. I knew it meant much more than just climbing the stairs in front of me. I lifted my head in full gratitude with tears in my eyes and said, “Thank you.”

Here’s to you and your spiritual activism for your soul-centered life…

Here’s to us.

All my love,

Jessie

Here's To Your Roller Coaster

Have you ever noticed that as a culture when we refer to riding a roller coaster at a theme park, the perspective or feeling we get from it is FUN. Maybe we aren’t personally big fans of roller coasters, but we know the intention behind the experience is to be thrilled, get an adrenaline rush, feel accomplished and revved up to go for another spin when it’s over.

But when we’re asked by our friends and loved ones how life has been when we’re catching up, if we reply with, “life has been a roller coaster!” the intention behind it and the feeling we share is that it’s been kind of rough. Of course we’re referring to the highs and lows we’ve been experiencing, but we initially get a sense that, in general, we’ve been feeling the suck. Today, I share with you a short story that takes back the meaning of roller coaster when we refer to our adventurous lives.

Because that is what life is, pure adventure.

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If that sounds a bit too sugar coated for you, let me remind you: The deeper we are grounded in the perspective that we are ALWAYS OK, that we are standing in the middle of our well-being 100% of the time and the only thing that keeps us from feeling it is Thought. When we find ourselves in the pits, we may be hypnotized by it momentarily (or not so momentarily), but we can trust that eventually we will naturally shift into more of an observer of our own thinking as opposed to believing we’re messed up, life is falling apart, or everything is going to hell in a handbasket. So our experiences - good and bad - can then just be part of the whole adventure.

Is it really possible to be in the driver’s seat of our experience when we’re feeling shitty? YES! Read on…

The other night, I found myself really exhausted at the end of a long day. I had been in my thoughts about a big project that’s on the move, so I was more than done with myself. As I was driving home, sitting in traffic, the wave of exhaustion and being tired of staying in my thoughts made me cry - it was a good release. I got home, I was alone for the evening so I plopped in front of the TV and ate my dinner. Moments later I felt the sadness coming towards me again, but this time I had to pause the TV to give full attention to what felt like a force running full steam ahead right at me. I knew I couldn’t see it’s face for what it was because it was moving too fast then it hit me and I wept. Full on. I was looking at what was around me and thinking how a book on my coffee table that I’ve been loving didn’t look appealing anymore. I thought about my clients, my future success… I questioned everything. All within a matter of moments and I kept weeping.

Shortly after these few moments of grave sadness passed through me, it was as if I could see clearly again. I thought to myself, “My God! You are weeping as if someone died!” I asked myself out loud, “Am I going to be OK?” And of course, my Wisdom inside of me nodded with an ever so knowing, YES. And within a few breaths, perspective came back to me. I was calm, I remembered all that I knew, then I was moved to take a shower so I took it. I headed to bed after this whirlwind experience that felt incredibly spiritual - though it was painful, I couldn’t help but find it awe-inspiring. I was so grateful for the understanding I have of how our mind works. Even though my insecurity level was quite high, my consciousness stayed quite high also. In the old days when I would experience this type of force of insecure thinking, I would believe it meant something about me, about my life. I would get tossed into an anxiety attack and it would take a few days of analyzing where it came from to gain some relief. This time around, even though those same insecure thoughts flowed through and I had to hold ground… I did just that. I held my ground and rode the wave of sadness. I witnessed myself. I let the gnarly wave of Thought energy kick everything up in my mind and I reminded myself that it was exactly that. It wasn’t real, and it would be gone soon… however painful and uncomfortable, I sat in the experience and reminded myself what I knew.

When I spoke with my husband the next day about it all, he clarified an incredible perspective on the whole experience in a way that I loved. I knew what it was that I was experiencing (Thought), but I couldn’t stop reveling at how intense it was.

“It’s the adventure of living life” he said.

Beautiful. Simple. Ordinary.

That’s exactly it, my love. It’s the adventure of living life. The roller coaster. There’s no need to make sense of it. There’s no need to judge it. It’s just part of the ever evolving experience of being a spiritual being having a human experience on this planet. And it’s in those moments that we learn, we grow, we’re reminded of what we know and what we don’t know; they keep us on our toes and provide texture and color to our lives.

I will continue to be amazed… here’s to your roller coaster.

All my love and see you again very soon~

XO, Jessie


Trying To Solve A Problem From The Same Line Of Thinking That Created It

Wow.

I feel free again.

Again?! Where did I lose my freedom, you ask?

Well, I never lost it, but for the last month, I have been so incredibly hyper aware of my thinking. Instead of incredibly let’s go with, annoyingly, hyper aware of my thinking. I’ve been tossed in thought storm after thought storm about my work, where it’s going, what I’m doing to move it forward. I have been craving more. And what’s worse? I haven’t been able to define what that more is. Have you experienced that before? It’s usually the precursor experience to a big change which is exciting, but wow it can be a mess of chaos in my head. I have been in my own little Jessie jail because my awareness that I’m gripped and not enjoying the shift has been irritating me and keeping me stuck in a feeling that wasn’t bad but uncomfortable, like a backseat driver that you’re on a 7 hour journey with. I know that I’m caught up in my own tizzy, my own made-up whirlwind. I know it has nothing to do with anything because no matter how tossed up in my thinking I am, I am fully aware that Divine Mind - the greater intelligence of all things - Universe - has me. No matter how cross-eyed I get, it really doesn’t matter. There is a flow that is moving me forward and tossing me breadcrumbs to give me evidence of it - but even with the breadcrumbs that I’ve seen and this knowing about flow, I have been frozen by my thinking in my down time, trying to ‘figure things out’.

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So how did I get back to the feeling of freedom again? How did my thinking walls come crashing down?

I’m so glad you asked because my understanding isn’t actually the answer, it’s quite the opposite.

Knowing what goes on inside of my operating system had actually made me stubbornly determined to get out of this feeling of confusion - how to get to the next level with my work and business - by trying to play volleyball with my thoughts and WIN. Like I was trying to trick the system. Does that make sense? I’ve been strong-arming my thoughts to the ground to triumphantly make space for my Wisdom (ahem, I failed… it doesn’t work that way). See, the beauty of this understanding is, once you know what your thoughts are, you aren’t pulled into them emotionally in the same kind of way ever again. Yes I have felt gripped, annoyed, confused, irritated as of late… but I never felt pulled under water. I haven’t once felt yucky inside, no anxiety or depression - the moment I’ve sat in front of a client or friend or even just being out in the world, my annoying thinking would wash away because that’s it’s nature and I let it. But that’s why it didn’t dawn on me what I was doing to myself. None of my stubborn thought wrestling had resulted in traditional alerts in my body because my understanding of what Thought is had made me still feel content (to a point). Whenever I was previously stuck in my thoughts I would get a tight chest, yucky belly, I’d get super hot and sweaty, but this time I was just sitting around frozen with my thinking face on (the permanent crevasse between my eyebrows has grown deeper by the day).

So what is actually happening when I do all of that wrestling? Just more thinking!!! Here’s what I witnessed in myself: I have been so determined to get through this little phase inside-out, that when my Wisdom came through one day to meditate, I actually said to myself, “No, that’s outside-in, I don’t need to DO something to get through this, my understanding will get me through this!” Oh my god - more thinking that told my Wisdom (which was informing me what to do next, from the inside-out!) to eff off and I believed it (face-palm).

And guess what? The moment I finally said, “Fine! I’ll go sit on the balcony for a few minutes!” BAM! It instantly came through my Wisdom to join a workout class…

What?!

Yes. You heard me right. Join a workout class then everything will become clear about what to do next with my business. And guess what? I haven’t even stepped foot in a class yet but my vision is clearing up again. When I heard that from within, I did some research on what classes sounded exciting - that in itself filled me with joy. From there it came through to get back to meditating in the morning, so I did that first thing this morning. And guess what? I’m sure you guessed it.. more inner promptings! During meditation, it came through to journal again. So I picked up my journal and when I started writing, my vision for the coming months and year spilled out of me, exactly what I’ve been searching for. Then guess what? After having that vision fall out of me, my eyes came off the page and my mouth dropped. I realized that all the opportunities that are swirling around me right now, that have previously brought me a glimmer of insight that they were somehow connected but I couldn’t understand how (that was all part of my frozen thinking), are all absolutely in line with the vision that plopped out of me. Furthermore, I could see how Wisdom that came through me for clients in recent sessions, was also Wisdom that I needed to hear for myself… it’s as if all the pieces to the puzzle fell in place. But again, that’s the beauty of knowing that we’re being pulled forward even when we are distracted by our thinking - it’s just so much more fun to be able to witness it as it’s actually unfolding.

We are an incredible species, us humans, don’t you agree? It’s like our spiritual selves hang back in these scenarios, sipping a Mai Thai, enjoying the view, and thinking to themselves, “They’ll get it together soon.” Then we see one thing and our whole perspective shifts and we’re back in alignment, seeing the magic unfold. What an incredible feeling to know that even when we feel tight, stuck, or challenged, it’s all going to release soon and that blip of time where you felt like you were being dragged through a keyhole backwards was just a period of growth, yet again. None of it is bad or wrong, it just is.

It feels wonderful to be back with you, thank you for allowing me the space to go into a proverbial hole and contemplate my navel. I’ve been missing writing and it feels great to be broken wide open again, I’m so grateful.

I hope you have a wonderful week and if you haven’t already, have so much fun hitting the poles to VOTE if you’re in the States! I personally, cannot wait.

All my love and see you again very soon~

XO, Jessie




Bamboozled Into Spirituality

Hi, I’m Jessie, and I was tricked into being a spiritual person.

Does that sound harsh? I don’t mean it to. I was recently reflecting on my journey to where I am now, what I know to be true about how our mind works and the spiritual component to life that is undeniable, and I was in awe of how I’ve gotten here.

I was at a party Saturday night and in sharing about what I do with a new acquaintance, I shared that I am a spiritual teacher with a Behavioral Mastery practice. They were intrigued… I was intrigued!

“How did I get here?” I thought to myself later with a smile on my face. I grew up in a family who was very open to any and all beliefs that helped people get through life, but we were not religious by any stretch of the imagination. There was no negative talk about spirituality - in fact, anytime we’d get into deep conversations about religion, what my parents always pointed to was how religion had become a form of power and control for many cultures (including within the states), by mistelling the story of a wonderful man who gave a sense of peace and health to those around him, and that the spiritual component was a positive aspect that could help others feel connected to something greater than them so they didn’t feel alone… and who could argue with that?

For the longest time, even up through my twenties, any word that reminded me of religion or God would leave a bad taste in my mouth. I would immediately shut down in my mind - there was no convincing me of something positive that could come from it. BUT you want to hear something crazy?! Two things that completely contradict the first statement of this paragraph. One, my dad would play gospel music from time to time (specifically, Andrae Crouch) and I couldn’t help but dance and sing at the top of my lungs, the feeling it brought me was incredible. Two, I would get the weirdest pull to watch a Sunday morning sermon on tv every now and again (I would inevitably switch it after twenty minutes because the religious angle would take over any nice feeling that I had), but still! Interesting, to say the least! I was intrigued by something bigger without realizing it!

So how did I get here? How did I go from feeling icky saying anything about spirituality to calling myself a spiritual teacher?

I was bamboozled! But in the best of ways…

Throughout my entire life I have looked to my mind for answers. I have been overly analytical since I can remember. Any feeling I had, I analyzed it. Any feelings other people were dealing with? Analyze. Relationships going sour around me? Analyze. Going into adulthood, especially as a performer, any feelings of insecurity (aka MASSIVE insecurity) would baffle me because I loved every element of being a performer. I would analyze myself into the ground (which tended to lead me to the toilet - hello, anxiety!) as to WHY I felt insecure, WHY I had fear, WHY I couldn’t handle myself. And you know what?! I always took on the challenge. It was painful, I suffered so much on the inside, but I was fueled by the discovery, I was fueled by that feeling of release I would feel when I’d uncovered the nugget of old memories or self talk that I perceived as the thing that made me feel awful. And yet (or shall I say, inevitably), the suffering would continue to come back - maybe in a different costume, so I thought I was dealing with a new issue, but it was constant, never ending work.

So one day I changed my outsides by changing my career, thinking that would be the end to all suffering - and of course, it wasn’t. Things got so bad for me that my body started to protect itself from my constant internal struggle. I gained weight, my lymph nodes blew up to the size of golf balls and I was so incredibly unhappy. Any and all tools and management tactics were out the window. I had analyzed myself into a corner and my brain was just frozen with a habitual loop of unhappiness on repeat. Until one day I had an insight. The most beautiful insight that single-handedly changed my life. I was in the shower, I was riddled with so much anxiety that I had a hard time breathing and yet I was past any emotional release like crying. And BAM! It bubbled up. No one was in the shower with me, yet I was reacting as if I had emails in my face and co-workers yelling over me (which they never did in real life anyhow). And it dawned on me that what I was feeling was everything going on in my mind, not what was going on around me! For the first time in months I felt a shift inside me that brought more relief than any over-analyzing result I had ever come to before. If I could see it so clearly in this one moment, I could potentially start seeing my thinking for what it was in ALL the moments of my life!

How does this all connect back to spirituality, you ask?

After that fateful day, I was on a mission to unfold an understanding of the mind set forth by Sydney Banks and his work called the 3 Principles (when I shared my insight with my mom she excitedly proclaimed, “That sounds a lot like the 3 Principles!” so on I went). Syd would refer to the principles as spiritual principles, but they looked so logical to me and fed my intellect in such a way that I bypassed the whole spiritual part and took the literal understanding of how our minds work more to heart. One of the 3 Principles is the principle of Mind, also known as Universal Mind or Divine Mind. This was the most spiritual-esque looking one to me, but it made sense. The greater intelligence of all things that moves through us, around us and connects us; A little beyond my intellect at that time, but the examples he would use would make sense to me and the feeling it brought was immense. One example he used was when we get a cut on our arm, without any effort on our part, our body sends all healing elements to the cut to heal it. Of course there’s science behind what goes to the cut, but what is the actual force behind those elements to get it there? We don’t tell our body “Hey, body! I just got a cut, send red blood cells and new tissue to that gash on my arm!” of course not! That’s the energy of Mind.

As I deepened my understanding over the last few years, and as I’ve shared with you over the last 10 months, belief after belief revealed itself to me as thought, judgements about myself or the ‘way things should be’ revealed themselves as thought, urges and habits revealed themselves as thought, the way I interacted with others and my relationships with them revealed themselves as thought, fears, expectations, anxieties… ALL revealed themselves to me as THOUGHT! And guess where all of this has left me?

If thought has fallen away (most of the time) and it isn’t what dictates my interactions with the world, how I manage to maintain my happiness or how I move forward in my business or relationships anymore, what’s left?

The overwhelming knowing that was HAS me is what IS me. Universal Mind. And with my very own GPS system to navigate Mind - my Wisdom. The more I have seen this for myself, the more I drop out of my thinking into the beautiful feeling of peace and Wisdom within me, the more I see life unfold in front of me. An example of something that would make me incredibly scared and impatient in the past: I now can trust the gaps of space in my business that in the past would give me the illusion of things drying up, but now, knowing that Universal Mind is driven and fueled by love just as we are, I know that that space is a gift, it’s meant to be, for creating, organizing, rejuvenating - whatever it is that I need to be filled up to continue to give back and teach. There’s a knowing and a trust that I never thought was possible. And guess what?! It allows me to continue to LIVE, even in the moments that could press me to go outside of myself to try to hurry things along. It doesn’t work. It’s all inside-out. And it’s all spiritual. Though I can share an expansive array of evidence from my life that proves this spiritual energy exists, you can’t see it - but you can feel it. Even now, if you’re uneasy with trusting a greater Wisdom via your own Wisdom, if you feel peaceful reading this, it’s because it’s a truth that your spiritual self already knows exists, it’s just waiting for you to turn off the tv upstairs and hold hands with it. It’s OK to not ‘know’ things and still trust them to be true.

Pure magic over LA on a very ordinary day…

Pure magic over LA on a very ordinary day…

Take it from me, the previously proclaimed non-spiritual optimist. The moment you drop out of your personal thinking mind and start opening yourself up to seeing things differently - seeing a deeper meaning to life’s ups and downs - Universal Mind will show you the most immense, connected, love-filled experience of life you could ever imagine. Moments are full, interactions are magical, and gratitude and love knows no bounds - and all without any thinking effort whatsoever.

Here’s to you and all the magic that you are~

All my love and see you next week,

Jessie

What Are You Seeking?

No matter who you are, no matter what you do, where you are from, who you were raised by, what your circumstances were growing up; No matter your age, your relationship status, the color of your skin or the culture you're immersed in... WE ALL seek the same things.

Belonging, safety, love, peace, joy, purpose, happiness, success, health...

Can you take a wild guess as to where you find them or who you need in your life to achieve such graces?

You might've guessed it but I'll put it to you loud and clear...

You have them all, and then-some, within you, RIGHT NOW.

Prepping to write this, I sat for a few minutes with my eyes closed, my forehead relaxed and my tongue released from the roof of my mouth (I highly recommend doing this right now if you aren't already). I put on one of my favorite meditation tunes from my husband (Click here if you'd like it for yourself), and I imagined myself falling back... into myself. Does that make sense? I visualized myself literally falling backwards, or rather, floating backwards, into an abyss... into my Consciousness. The feeling that washed over me was pure peace and tranquility, then the tears came. Tears of immense gratitude for feeling all of those graces I mentioned above: Belonging, safety, love, peace, joy, purpose, happiness, success, health.

Now if I threw you for a little loop by saying consciousness, never fear,  I am here to share how I came to understanding it more clearly for myself. It has taken some chipping away at the overused version of the word that often times brings thoughts and feelings of hierarchy or someone achieving some level of understanding that you will never achieve. Divine Consciousness is purely our gift of awareness that resides within ALL of us, all the time. It is within this awareness that we can realize for ourselves that we have all of the answers to all of our life's qualms... answers to questions that each and every one of us has. As Sydney Banks says in his profound book that I refer to on a consistent basis for deepening my understanding of our experience of life, The Missing Link:

Mental health lies within the consciousness of all human beings, but it is shrouded and held prisoner by our own erroneous thoughts.

Side bar: Those thoughts are why our level of consciousness can go up and down throughout the day. When we're believing our stressful thinking {still happens to me, even if just for a moment - I'm human, too!}, our consciousness is in the ground because we're flailing around trying to find answers in those crappy thoughts as opposed to our wisdom, our gut instinct. When we are peaceful inside, in flow with our wisdom, we have a higher consciousness because we are aware that our knowing has us, and will continue to reveal answers as we need them. Ok, carry on with Syd...

This is why we must look past our contaminated thoughts to find the purity and wisdom that lies inside our own consciousness.

When the wise tell us to look within, they are directing us beyond intellectual analysis of personal thought, to a higher order of knowledge called wisdom.

Like the sun, your wisdom is always present beyond the clouds of your erroneous thoughts  Isla Mujeres, Mexico

Like the sun, your wisdom is always present beyond the clouds of your erroneous thoughts

Isla Mujeres, Mexico

When I fell back into myself in my brief meditation, those tears of gratitude were not only coming from the peace that washed over me from feeling the depth of truth that all which we seek lies within us; But from this place I felt expansive, a deep feeling of love that unleashed a flood of memories where I felt this same feeling because I was present and totally aware (conscious) of how pure the moment was. Nothing that was extraordinary, but absolutely ordinary: flashes of memories with my family sitting around the table with coffee or going on a bike ride, me at a tiny age in the back seat of my parent's car, collecting myself to head out on an exciting day trip adventure. My husband and I on a walk talking about our dreams, watching a sunset in Joshua Tree on vacation with my friends who are family, a moment where I sobbed in traffic because immense gratitude hit me so hard I couldn't contain myself, looking up at the stars during an outdoor summer concert...

Have you had these types of experiences? The kind where something hits you out of no where and you think to yourself how perfect a moment, an experience or a feeling is? And you're totally aware of it and grateful for it? You even say to yourself "I want to remember this forever."

In those moments, you were just completely aware of YOU - the brush and branches of any thinking that may have normally gotten in the way was gone, and you were experiencing YOURSELF in pure alignment form. It may have looked like it was the experience you were having that brought on all of those beautiful feelings, but you were truly just experiencing yourself, shining bright and effortless. The more you can realize for yourself that that IS you 100% of the time, even when you are distracted by your thinking, the more your thinking will stop distracting you. The feeling is so incredibly amazing that you'll naturally continue to make the effort to ignore your stressful thoughts. Like I've said many times before about this understanding: it feels like pure magic that no one told us we had.

Throughout your day, whenever you experience peace wash over you, even if it's just for a moment, pause to sit with it if you can or at the very least, just notice it. If you are reading this and thinking "There is no way I can have even a moment of what she is talking about - I work a stressful 9-5, I have kids, I have to make the meals, I barely even have time to take a crap in a peaceful state of mind." Well, to that I say, you are proving my point that we all innocently believe that the life that goes on outside of us is where we seek: Belonging, safety, love, peace, joy, purpose, happiness, success, health... But the truth is, when you are aware of what exists within you underneath the chaos of your mind, it makes no difference where you are, what you're doing or who you're interacting with - you can experience consistent, beautiful peace inside - because it's YOU; And nothing outside of yourself can take you away from YOU, only you can do that by continuing to believe your old script.

As a 15 year old client of mine said so clearly to me the other day when she had a huge insight into her anxiety, "OMG! It's like I'm choosing to get caught up in my own drama! My thoughts are my drama! They aren't real, they're just drama!"

Mmhmmm.....

All my love and see you next week,

Jessie

 

 

 

You Know So Much More Than You Think

"How many of you can tell the difference between the living and the dead?"

Dr. Judith Sedgeman, EdD posed this question to a room of soon-to-be doctors, and much to their dismay (and after much eye-rollage), she was adamant to get their opinion.

"Seriously, HOW many of you can tell the difference between the living and the dead?"

One student raises his hand, much to his chagrin... "No pulse, heart stops beating, lungs stop filling up with air..."

Dr. Sedgeman responds, "OK. How can you tell without touching them?"

Long pause in the room.

Another student takes a stab at the answer...

"There's no life"

Dr. Sedgeman: "That's what we're talking about. That energy that you know has left. The spiritual component of our existence."

*Let that sink in for a minute. Take your eyes away from your screen and breathe in that undeniable knowing.*

After hearing this simple yet incredibly powerful example to point to the spiritual nature of life and who we are, I got introspective. Stories of folks at the end of their lives, and experiences of my own, flooded my memory. Isn't it true that we're so often told from the ones we love before they are about to pass away, to live life to it's fullest? That their greatest regret is that they allowed fear to get in the way of endless amounts of opportunities, may it be in reference to their career, love, relationships, adventure, travel, finances and so on?

What comes up for me is that when we have a sense that we're at the end of our lives in our current skin suit, when we're in our final days, we naturally drop out of any and all insecure thinking. There is an element of pure surrender to the natural process we're experiencing and all that is left is the feeling of Oneness that exists between us all. We are 100% our spiritual selves. There's a feeling of not being able to see where 'I' or 'We' end and our surroundings, the energy behind life, begins. It becomes blatantly clear that any thinking that kept us from voicing our love for others or from going after our dreams or what kept us divided (ahem.. the current state of our country) was a complete waste of time, because it was just that... thinking that we believed. Though in the moment, the fearful and insecure thoughts looked really real and seemed to be warning signs that were logical, in the end we see that it was all self-made, it wasn't reality. That it was all BS. And who knows what 'could have been' should we have not paid attention to those thoughts.

One of many personal experiences that I've had that points to our spiritual nature is one that I'll never forget. The week I spent with my grandfather while he was passing was literally like watching a butterfly in transformation. When I first arrived to his home, he was still getting up from his bed with assistance, he could absolutely connect to who I was and speak a few words. As the days passed, his circulation slowed to his extremities and he slowly drifted away in his human self, but he stayed with us. Days went by and finally at 3 or 4 in the morning one morning, my mom called hospice. When the hospice nurse arrived, she took one look around the room and said, "Are you all here, all the time?!" She was referring to the room full of women that wouldn't leave his side - me, my mom, aunt, sisters, cousins, nieces... we all took turns caring for him, rubbing on his feet, sharing stories and laughter around him, eating cereal and making pot after pot of coffee to keep us going. It was my first experience where someone who represented science shown light on our spiritual nature. The nurse said, "You all are keeping him alive." My brain couldn't make sense of it, but I absolutely knew what she meant. His spiritual self, who he was beyond his skin suit, the energy that exists within and around us all, was keeping him connected and plugged in, it had nothing to do with his will power.

Thayer Douglass. My Grandpa.

Thayer Douglass. My Grandpa.

If you haven't already gotten the gist of the message I'm trying to portray to you, I'll make it very clear.

You can surrender to that knowing, to that Universal Mind, to that greater intelligence, RIGHT NOW.

How, you ask? Oh, I'm so glad you inquired.

You have a factory-installed, innate compass or rather, guide - that is like your own Mission Control center for your life. You don't have to go searching for it outside yourself, you don't need any tools to keep it tuned up and most importantly, you don't have to do anything to know it's there. All you have to do is follow it's inklings.

So what is it?

Your Wisdom. Your gut instinct.

It is 100% connected to the Universal Mind, the greater intelligence behind life. That is why every time you follow your gut, life unfolds without having to work at it. Even when your Wisdom guides you in a direction that looks risky, different, unknown, or you get insights into possibilities on your horizon that seem impossible - it takes courage to surrender to that knowing, but once you do, you begin to live a soul-centered experience of life that's immense. Hard conversations are had with more ease because you are coming from love and that love is felt by everyone involved. Leaps of faith feel supported and the risk isn't terrifying, it's thrilling. Breadcrumbs from the Universe are incredibly apparent and you begin to move in flow with the Oneness of it all.

Many folks have shared with me that what I'm saying makes sense, but are afraid they don't know the difference between their Wisdom and their thoughts. And to that, I answer... it's all in a feeling. Our Wisdom bubbles up one moment before our thoughts clobber the hell out of it with 'logic,' fear, judgement or insecurity. But guess what? No problem. You have a built-in alert system that tells you where the quality of your thinking is. And again, it's all in a feeling. If you are experiencing any feelings of angst, fear, anxiety, depression or physical symptoms of tight chest, sweaty pits and palms, upset belly, etc... all of these feelings and emotions are alerting you that you're believing your thinking that isn't true for you (and if you're thinking of an experience you've had in the past that you're determined is real like a break up or losing a job, it still isn't true for you, now. Why? The experience is in your past. It's important to appreciate it, but then leave it in the past and come back to the moment... it no longer supports who you are now which is why the thought of it makes you feel like shit). Conversely, if you are in any feeling related to joy, excitement, peace, contentment, happiness, love, etc... you are standing in your Wisdom. You are in flow and total alignment with Universal Mind.

Our feeling is the greatest gift. Like the bumps on the side of the freeway that warn you that you're moving out of your lane and you automatically correct your steering... the same is for your feeling in relation to your thinking. Heed it's warning and come back to what feels right. And if you're in a thought storm and feel all over the place and confused? Ask yourself OUT LOUD "What do I need to do now?" and your Wisdom, your gut instinct, will guide you loud and clear. And remember, you are always OK - even if you feel like your well-being has gone missing; You are actually standing in the middle of it, you're just distracted by your insecure thinking that you're believing. It will pass, I promise you. As a dear MFT friend so simply put it: It isn't my belief, it's my experience.

Back to the classroom with Judith Sedgeman:

"Where does that energy come from?" Dr. Sedgeman inquired of her students after them seeing what she was referring to about the spiritual component to life. She clarified that it wasn't a religious question, she wanted to know what they thought intellectually.

The class stayed quiet, they didn't know the answer.

She replied, "It's OK to not know things, and still take them as true."

Ahhhh... trust the feeling as fact, what a gift.

Here's to you, dear reader, and all of the courage that already resides within you to surrender to our Oneness, surrender to your knowing, surrender to your Wisdom and to live in the feeling of hindsight. I am so excited for you and all that is to come.

All my love and see you next week~

Jessie

 

Life Is A Gift That May Take Courage To Unwrap

I recently received news that a family member close to someone I love dearly has been given a very tough medical diagnosis. Literally a moment before receiving the news, I had let out a big exhale from all the thought stressors of paying bills, money, the patience it takes to build a really thriving business (we're doing it, the benefits far outweigh the insecure thoughts, but hey.. we're human, too). I know it reads slightly petty to talk about bill stress after having heard such immense news, but that's exactly where the lesson lies. I had a flash...

It was a reminder from the Universe. Universal Mind. The Intelligence behind all things.

In that very moment of exhale I was reminded, with purpose, that what is really important is this life, this time, the love and connection we have to ourselves and to each other, the love that we stand in every day - our core, this moment that we're in - right now. I was hit with massive gratitude that myself and my family have our health, in this moment. That we can call and connect with each other, in this moment.

I reflected on the duality of knowing that your release is not far away, yet what a gift it is to be able to say and do and BE all that you are, and have always wanted to be, for yourself and your loved ones for the rest of your days. What a metaphor for us all to not wait until we're given the expiration date on our current skin suit to be our true selves and TRUST.

I've had many conversations come up lately with clients and family about the courage it takes to truly follow your Wisdom that is always with you, within you. I understand it, wholly. I've been there. It can take literally one thought shift to look at things differently, but as long as you believe the illusions that your thoughts are creating, it can take as long as you need to turn your back to the thinking that isn't real for you - it takes courage. It's a journey of unlearning. We have been told our entire lives that we need this, we need that - for a peaceful life. Even the idea of positive thinking and gratitude - it's been pitched to us that if we don't have those things then our lives will not be the greatest they could be - merely adding more stressful thinking when we feel like we don't have it or can't find it. Here lies the unlearning:

You are already standing in peace and wellbeing that brings forth gratitude, love, joy, contentment. It is intrinsic within you - a constant. It may look like we are on a rollercoaster of our wellbeing going missing from time to time, or even for long periods of time, but it is only our thought-created world within us that distracts us from our wellbeing that doesn't ever go anywhere.

For me, it took a solid year and a half to do the biggest chunk of unlearning to date, and that doesn't include when I first found the 3 Principles, the base to my work, a year before that. While I was studying the understanding behind our true nature and the way our minds work (and maybe this is you right now, with reading my articles), I was constantly left with a good feeling after reading the different books and watching videos of Syd Banks discussing our spiritual nature, yet I didn't have the wherewithal to see it for myself. I would still get incredibly gripped by my thinking - I was in a major career transition and the thought storms were immense. I had so much insecure thinking that I believed to be true that I thought I was the only person on this planet that this understanding was not going to apply to. And yet, I kept going, I kept reading, I kept studying - I couldn't put it down because in the midst of reading and listening, the truth behind the information left me in such a good feeling I knew I had to trust it. That was my Wisdom that was naturally giving me the courage to trust. It gave me hope even when I felt like 'I' had gone missing.

After all of my studying, truth be told, the insights began to roll in the moment I stopped thinking about it (how's that for a mind twist). From listening to leaders in the field of the 3 Principles, it occurred to me that up to a certain point, I had been using my intellect to try and understand it all - how we function and how we can listen to our Wisdom and trust it. It sounded right to me, but I was still analyzing it with my prideful student brain. In all my innocence, I thought I 'had it' because I understood that my feelings were coming from my thoughts, I understood that I look at life through the lens of my thinking in any varied moment, and I understood that the answers to all of my life's twists and turns laid deep within my belly of Wisdom. I understood it, but I hadn't yet realized it for myself (does this sound like you?) I had a moment with Syd's dear friend Elsie Spittle who told me that even in the moments of life looking difficult, she lives in the feeling of excitement of what the next moment or day can bring. With the nature of Thought, she can trust that her current feeling will pass when she lets it. She can trust that when she follows her Wisdom on a moment to moment basis, her goals and dreams will come TO her, and how it all unfolds is always beyond her imagination (and telling me these things tickled her so much she was giggling just sharing it with me, after 40+ years of living this way). I could feel what she meant...

I could feel what she meant.

It was now in my hands to be active in my experience and drop the studying. When I was conscious (aware) that I was being gripped by my thinking (at the time, a lot of that thinking was being worried about things 'working out' in my new career and everything that comes along with that), I would recognize what was happening, which would naturally allow it to pass. It honestly felt like magic. And the moment the gripping, insecure thinking passed, my Wisdom would bubble up and give me guidance and assurance in what to do next. Many months later, I can tell you purely from experience, that the voice of my insecure thoughts is not only quieter, but more rare. The positive thinking and gratitude that we're told we need to experience a more beautiful life? Yes, they make life so much more bright and colorful and rich! But they bubble up naturally and effortlessly without me having to work at it. I spend more of my time in a state of curiosity, excitement, joy, and peace. And what happens when we're peaceful inside? Our Wisdom becomes the louder voice, and when we follow it, life unfolds... just like Elsie said it would.

Sometimes I'm in awe of this state of being. Will thinking and emotions grip me in the coming days, months, years? Abso-friggin-lutely... because I'm human. But having the understanding of what's going on inside of me gives me the tools to not be afraid of what I'm experiencing, which in turn brings me peace even in moments where I can't see clearly.

The take-away today is not to step away from this article thinking you have to work hard at your awareness. Quite the opposite. I share my personal experience with you so you can see that the more you just notice where you are in your thinking, the more you'll naturally be guided from within and see life's little miracles (life hack: your body always tells you where you are in your thinking... and sometimes you'll notice it there first. If you feel yucky in any way possible... you're believing your thinking that isn't real for you). Let me also remind you of this:

You have all the courage you need to follow your inner compass and experience your life to it's fullest potential. The only thing that stops you from trusting it is your thinking that it is impossible for a feeling within you to be the truth. When in fact, it is. Myself among many others have surrendered to it, and life couldn't be more beautiful. Don't wait another moment to be your whole self...

not one. more. moment.

All my love, see you next week~

Jessie

"You Are Not Alone"

"NO ESTÁN SOLOS!"

AGAIN!

"NO ESTÁN SOLOS!"

AGAIN!

"NO ESTÁN SOLOS!!!"

The feeling, in this moment, I am going to do my best to describe. What you've read above is the phrase my best friend and voice for healing, Natalia Cordova-Buckley, engaged in with the crowd of thousands at the Families Belong Together march this past Saturday. This was her rallying cry at the end of the most heart-to-heart, honest, and inspiring speech, translating to: "YOU ARE NOT ALONE!" for the families, single mothers and children being faced with more pain and suffering when they had dreamt of hope, change and belonging when arriving to the U.S. She spoke to the humanity in all of us, she spoke to the wisdom in all of us, she spoke to the hope in ALL of us; And in that moment, while I and thousands of others raised our voices to the ether in unity, with love coursing through us, I felt the Oneness.

Oneness?

Yes. I couldn't tell you where I began and where the world and people around me ended or vice versa. I've had experiences of this feeling before when I am in ultimate bliss and peace, but it was magnified times infinity. Of course my love and pride for what Natalia was so bravely speaking to, the fact that she was standing in her purpose, in wisdom, in flow, blew me away with gratitude. But additionally, to look around to see every walk of life, every ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, socioeconomic background, coming together for the same purpose - for humanity - created a whirlwind of electricity and light that swirled all around my insides and came pouring out of me and all around me. My awareness brought to life, yet again, that we are truly all coming from and functioning within the same energy, the only differences between us is our thinking. My heart, my chest and my belly all felt warm - tears streamed down my face. THIS is what we ALL are at our core - we are love and understanding in motion, our heart connection is inevitable, when we don't get in our own way.

When we don't get in our own way.

I share experiences every week to help identify and explain the energy of Thought as well as the content of your thinking and how you can move away from it. About your wisdom that comes from Universal Mind - the greater intelligence of ALL things that you can distinctly identify by that nagging feeling in your gut when wisdom is trying to tell you that YOU have the answer. About how your Consciousness goes up and down all day every day, depending on if you're aware and can observe where your internal experience is coming from. Need a reminder? Here's an example of higher Consciousness (awareness) "I'm feeling so anxious right now. What am I thinking about? Oh, next weeks meeting, and since I'm not there yet, I'm feeling anxious. Ok - let those thoughts go, I'm not there yet, wheww... " Result: back in a peaceful, neutral mind - back to the moment; Versus feeling anxious, reacting to that feeling by getting mesmerized by your thinking that created it and getting deeper and deeper into the whirlwind thought storm by having more thinking about the thinking that created the anxiety in the first place. This is the result of lower Consciousness because you're reactive to your internal experience as opposed to observing it (by the way, we're all human.... we ALL experience the roller coaster of Consciousness, don't stress).

Alllll of this to say that when I share these experiences, these observations, they're based in ordinary life occurrences that we can all relate to, but guess what? Having this understanding relates to politics as well. I have an intuitive notion that some of you just read the word 'politics' and the hair on the back of your neck stood straight up, no matter what side of the line you're on. Isn't that amazing? That is evidence, right there, of the power of thought. Just the word 'politics' can send you off into a hypnotic world of thinking and now you're having a different experience. Maybe it triggers fear that I'm going to launch into a political debate, maybe it triggers your fears of the state of our country, maybe it triggers your feeling the need to defend yourself because you're in support of the current administration - maybe you're feeling none of these things in this moment but you've experienced exactly what I'm talking about in other situations. But the reality is, just as we have the free will to change on a moment to moment basis depending on our thinking in that very moment, we have the free will to shuck and jive in the political climate. You may be thinking "That's impossible! My politics reflect my values and who I am!" Well, that's exactly it. So many folks get caught up in the thoughts of who they have identified themselves with/who they have labeled themselves as (or who their parents/families identified with, so they've adopted the same political affiliation), that they lose sight of what is happening in the moment in our country. They don't see what is unfolding, therefore they aren't given the opportunity to be curious about if what is unfolding is truly a reflection of what they value, or rather, what feels right to them. It truly does, like everything else in life, boil down to a feeling inside. If what you're trying to process about the state of our country doesn't feel right to you, then honor that feeling. Know that that is your personal alert system within you telling you that something isn't right, and it only takes one thought shift, to have a different experience.

If you are sensing by any stretch of the imagination that I'm trying to sway you a certain way politically, I'm not - and if you feel that way, you are looking at me through a lens of thinking that has nothing to do with me. Maybe I have stirred up something inside of you, and I would encourage you to get curious about it. What I AM saying though, is that I know with ALL of me that every single person on this planet is standing in the middle of mental health and stability, and that connection I felt so strongly at the march was the connection that exists between each and every one of us. We often miss the opportunity to feel it (both the connection to others AND our mental health and stability) because we're caught up in our mental chaos. That's it. We're at the movie theater but we're watching a different movie on our phone, missing all the action on the big screen. If anything that is unfolding in your community or the country is giving you a nagging feeling but you feel so identified by your political party that you're ignoring that feeling, know that your identity to your political party, like everything else, is just a thought. It is your right as a human being on this earth to honor your feeling first, and use your free will, to abandon that thought. It's much less lonely, it's much less divisive. And may I add some personal two cents? Where we are today has nothing to do with Democrat or Republican - it just doesn't. The core of every experience right now is our humanity being put through the ringer, period. I have chosen to let go of any previous experiences or judgements of everything having to do with a political label, because it has been proven to me, time and time again, that once a thought is released, humanity shines through - no matter what party you used to identify with, or plan to go back to, once this nonsense has passed.

To close, I would love to share a portion of Natalia's speech that speaks directly to the heart of every human being - our ESSENCE - nothing more.

"... I urge you all to continue participating. To take action as you are doing by being here today. Some day these children will read about this in the history books. They will read about how kind hearted strangers fought for their freedom and rights. They will know they were seen. They will know they were welcomed. They will know that they belong. They will in return do the same for others. THIS IS HOW WE HEAL HUMANITY!"

Pictures above of the Los Angeles Families Belong Together turnout, Natalia speaking, the biggest squeeze ever after she spoke, a snapshot with Natalia and Marianna Burelli, and the crew.

All my love, see you next week~

Jessie

 

Honoring Wisdom Over Your Thought Turds

A few years ago, my husband Mike and I had plans to hang out with our best and dear friends at their house. A casual mid-week evening catch-up that would serve as a boost to get through the rest of the week. I remember that I was in an absolute hole - a deep one. The kind that made everything look dark and impossible. I was in the midst of a major career change, but didn't have a vision of where I was headed yet, so I was often in a state of mental chaos. Mike kept saying to me, "Let's just cancel! They will completely understand!" but I knew in my gut that I wanted to see them - I didn't really know why because I was an absolute basket case and looked as such, but it didn't feel right to cancel. The whole way over I was complaining about my sadness and the circumstances in my life that I knew for sure was the reason for it. When we arrived at the house, I couldn't get out of the car - I was so incredibly upset, but I still wanted to see them. So being the wonderful human beings they are, they came out to the car and stood by my open window while I sobbed and told them everything that I thought was horrible about my life. I practically fell into a panic attack because my thoughts were being spun up a million miles an hour and I felt incredibly trapped because of it. After a good chunk of time of me going on and on and getting tons of love and arm squeezes from my besties, we headed back down the hill.

Why share this experience with you?

It was incredibly pivotal in my understanding of how my (our) experience of life is being created. Read on for more clarity...

As we drove away from our friends, I remember feeling a little embarrassed by my extremely upset state, which was odd because I had absolutely been vulnerable with them before and felt safe to do so. Looking back, as I mentioned earlier, I was beginning to get a glimpse into the notion that my thoughts were creating my experience. Though life looked really stressful at the time and everything I shared with them felt really real, it was the first time the flicker of insight that my feelings are always coming from my thoughts began to spearhead my consciousness (awareness). I remember recognizing that the suffering I was sharing with them was all in reaction to the swirling thoughts that were going through my mind in that moment, and not what was actually happening in front of me. It felt a little out of body, to be honest - I couldn't even judge myself for being crazy, because I could see for the first time why I couldn't stop going on and on: I was reacting to my thinking. My in the moment experience was my husband and two friends looking at me with incredible love and care and offering up their supportive advice, but what I was experiencing internally was thought after thought that brought me pain and suffering, so that is the experience I was living in - I was appreciative of their care, of course, but I completely missed out on the heart to heart connection that comes with being in the moment, which would have inevitably brought me peace.

It's incredible looking back on something like this and seeing in hindsight how wisdom is at work, even when we aren't aware of it. That the principle of Mind, the greater intelligence behind life that our wisdom and insights come from, always ALWAYS has us. If Mind is the ocean, we are a wave within it. Even through the chaos of my personal thinking, I was able to follow the feeling that my wisdom was making me privy to - a peaceful knowing inside that I needed to make that visit to my friends. I know now that I needed to unravel in front of a different audience to experience a bit of a shake up in my awareness. I had fallen apart like that with my husband and parents, of course, but this insight was never able to come through after speaking with them because I would stay in the spin in my head. It took having this different experience in front of my friends to make me see what was actually happening in that moment. You know when you get advice from someone over and over again, then you hear that same advice from a different person and you feel like you've heard it for the first time? It was a similar feeling to that!

If you're an avid reader of mine, you may be thinking, "But wait a minute - if our experience is coming from inside out, it shouldn't matter who you're talking to - how did that insight come through during such an intense thought storm with your friends and you claim it couldn't come through with your parents or Mike?"

Ugh, you guys are so smart - I'm SO GLAD YOU ASKED!

Having the different experience of my friends as opposed to Mike or my parents, naturally made me reflect on what had just happened with my melt down, therefore allowing a *moment* of internal peace during that inquiry! In that moment of peace, wisdom saw that the door to my intellect was open for a split second and it ran through just before I slammed it shut again to launch into more chaotic thinking. What an incredibly relieving realization, that our wisdom will take any opportunity to spearhead the storm in our mind, even when we aren't aware of what's going on.

This points to such a beautiful part of life that we all so innocently aren't aware of. We have a bottomless well of knowing, an internal tour guide if you will, that is ALWAYS directing us... nudging us along through life. But when we're gripped by our fearful thinking about ANYTHING, we believe our mind is trying to warn us about something that we should pay attention to. It isn't so. Those fearful thoughts are purely thought turds trying to clog up the well (sorry for the image, but you got it, I bet!) The more we're conscious (aware) of this process, the more we naturally check in with our wisdom and begin to ignore our thinking when it doesn't feel right. And when we do, we return to a peaceful state, naturally allowing our new, fresh ideas and guidance to bubble up from our wisdom, turd-free.

Sydney Banks, the wonderful human being who had the initial insight into this life-changing perspective, the 3 Principles, had this to say...

"Look in the mirror and you will find one of the wisest people on earth IF you can take your personal thoughts away."

You've got it all within you dear readers - every single answer you've been looking for. But I will continue to share every experience possible with you, so you can see your reflection in me.

All my love and see you next week~

Jessie

Your Guide To Self-Love

Is there a difference between loving yourself and liking yourself?

I got this question in a text this morning from a best friend of mine who was curious about my opinion, and I had so many insights bubble up.

What I know for sure is that love is a constant. It isn't a state of mind or something that comes and goes - LOVE in and of itself is always there. The only reason we don't feel it now and again is because we are distracted by our self-critical mind. Picture sitting next to a beautiful flowing stream. It's so quiet all around that you can hear the bubbling of the water as it twists and turns around the pebbles and rocks. There's a rainbow-like hue just above the stream from the sun hitting the light mist that's hovering just above the water. And yet, you have your back turned to to this beautiful stream and you're analyzing the dark clouds you see off in the distance, wondering if they're headed in your direction. That stream of love is still there, even when you're looking away and giving more attention to your fearful thought storms, you're just momentarily (or not so momentarily) turned away from it - your awareness is shifted, but it's there, quietly bubbling along.

Unfortunately, as so many of us have experienced time and time again, we allow those self-critical thought storms to get in the way of loving OURSELVES... often. Maybe we can get to a peaceful enough place to turn sideways to the stream to see and feel love for others, or we momentarily dangle our feet in the stream, feeling full of love for an experience. But when it comes down to holding up a mirror to ourselves and being able to say, "I love every bit of what I see - my heart, my humor, my light.. my imperfections, my cracks and creases, my patience and my impatience - I'm in love with every bit of it." We often times put ourselves dead last on the love list. We are so quick to beat ourselves up, to judge ourselves for things we aren't doing correctly, for not understanding things quick enough or for our impatience and not trusting the flow of life! We get in the boxing ring with our intellect and try to outdo ourselves, with ourselves. When in reality, when we fill ourselves up first, when we follow the little nudge from inside (our wisdom), when we give ourselves GRACE - we immediately shift to a place of peace and understanding. As I said above, we auto-correct to our natural state of LOVE.

Energetically speaking, when we're in this state of peace, understanding, grace = LOVE, we are open to see the breadcrumbs from the Universe, we have room to accept more love - whether that be in the form of another human being, friendships, that promotion we've wanted, the job shift we've been eager for, or life just simply feeling easy - even in the face of circumstances that give the illusion of hardship. When we are in alignment with ourselves, we are in alignment with ALL - with Mind (greater intelligence of all things, the energy of all things), the Universe. Our self-love truly governs and is the root to all facets of our life.

Are you wondering how to have self-love? Logically it makes sense to you, but when you really think about it it sounds a little out there and not completely possible? Here's the thing, when you get in the drivers seat of your thinking - when you start to connect that your feelings come from your thinking 100% of the time, you'll know that when you feel off in your body, that is a warning sign from your bod to your intellect that you're believing your thoughts that aren't true - you have the opportunity and freedom to choose to observe your thoughts in that moment, instead of being triggered by them. You create an immediate distance between you and the chaos trying to wreak havoc in your mind, and that in itself will make you more peaceful. You are human, so sometimes you'll get sucked into the storm before you even recognize the moment of choice. But again, allowing yourself grace, seeing your thinking for what it is, will bring you back to that peaceful place and the moldy thinking will pass - it always does the moment it's diffused.

Next step would be to do something that you love to do that may even make you feel challenged. At least once a week, do this. It can't be going to the gym (even if you love it), or something that is career related - think of something you would love to do for YOURSELF, something that may have piqued your interest before, but you always stop yourself with "logical" thoughts. I guarantee you it will bubble up immediately if you ask yourself "What would be a fun thing to do for myself once a week" - catch it, don't let your thoughts tell you it's nuts or that you don't have time or money. A pottery class? Horseback riding? Boxing? Setting goals for longer walks or runs? Crochet? Music lesson? Swimming? Roller skating? Dancing? Cooking? Baking? The feeling of accomplishment and joy that will beam from your insides will create a shift IMMEDIATELY. The peace, the joy, the calm, the light that is created, opens up the information highway inside of you that will allow you to walk the blueprint of your life that is already drawn - and boy is it exciting and wonderful.

Are you hanging in there with me? Here's the thing, as I say to my clients and in every workshop or talk I give, allow this information to flow through you, just drink it in. Just reading all of this is naturally opening up your understanding of it all. The insights are already at work. It's hard for us as human beings to not conceptualize, intellectualize and therapize ourselves into oblivion. But again, that's just more thoughts about our thoughts that create stress and anxiety. Just don't go there, ok?

Lastly, as my friend asked, is liking ourselves the same as loving ourselves? For a moment I thought, "well surely we can have a moment amongst loving ourselves where we don't like ourselves." But the reality is, at our core, when we have love for ourselves, in the moments where we might think it's ok to not like ourselves, we're purely just off course of our wisdom and believing our thinking. For example, this same friend and I were texting a few days ago and in response to something sweet we were talking about I wrote back #METOO. In the moment I wrote it, I got a little funny feeling in my belly - it didn't feel right - 'Me, too' would have sufficed, but I sent it anyway. That funny feeling in my belly was my wisdom saying to not do it (the #METOO movement is very important to me, so it was a bummer to diminutize it). I went against myself, therefore not coming from a place of love and full circle: not liking myself. Did I beat myself up for it? No. I just thought "that was a bummer" and left it. But it bubbled up every once in a while for the rest of the day, so I finally text my friend back in the evening and said, "I wish I would've just said 'Me, too!'" We had a laugh because in the big picture we both knew I wasn't being a turd about the movement, I was doing the best with my thinking in that moment which told me 'oh, it's kind of clever' when my gut felt off, but I appreciated her listening nonetheless.

So is there a difference between loving yourself and liking yourself? It feels to me, in this moment, that they are mutually exclusive. As my friend so insightfully said to my response to her "Love is the foundation to the building and like is what can be built on top" - exactly. And it's all flowing, moment to moment. The more we swim in the self-love stream, the deeper our resolve to care for ourselves first before we beat ourselves up.

Get in that stream dear friends, lap it up. It's always there, even if you aren't looking at it, but life's too short to just be aware of it's presence as opposed to enjoying every possible joy-full moment that you could be playing around in all of it's sparkling, rainbow-hued glory.

All my love and see you next week,

Jessie

 

 

My Excalibur Is My Strength As Much As It Is My Weakness

I totally stole the title of this article from my husband. But in all fairness, he was talking about me. And he's right.

What is my Excalibur? My entire life, no matter what I've been engaged in - school, my dance career, my career at the agency, and now my business - once I have a goal in my mind and I can see the big picture, I am full-out with my energy towards obtaining that big picture and I climb the ladder to get there hard and fast (at least that's the illusion that my mind creates). I constantly think about what I could be doing to strategically prove that I'm capable of more responsibility or being promoted or hired. But here's the thing, the deeper into this understanding I get with every day that passes by, I've observed myself creating an immense feeling of internal pressure because of all my thinking that gets created from this mindset. Because the reality is, it's just more thinking.

I have to be honest - I've recently been thrown off my own scent a bit. Meaning, I didn't realize I was creating this pressure! Several months ago, I had already recognized and appreciated that that pressure feeling was something I used as fuel in the past - when I felt totally spent I just excused it all by thinking "When the going gets tough, the tough get going" – if the situation becomes difficult, the strong will work harder to meet the challenge, and I was that person! Proudly! It's such a natural second gear for many of us - it's our cultural norm, really. But what's incredible is that with this understanding of the mind, I had been observing my thinking, not getting triggered by it, so I no longer felt that pressure (I thought!). Until the other day I was so focused on big picture goals, I was staring off into space with a concerned look on my face and my husband Mike snapped me out of it. My internal pressure feeling had changed - it no longer brought feelings of anxiety and I still felt a sense of peace within, but it was a weight nonetheless...

I don't know about you, but I'd rather walk through my days looking and feeling like this...

Little Jess... sometime in the 80's

Little Jess... sometime in the 80's

I was heading towards this bigger realization last week, as I had had an AHA moment where I was feeling this pressure (without recognizing it as that yet). I just felt worn out, wishing more things were unfolding faster and my brain wanted to question the greater Universal intelligence that we all live within. If my wisdom knew what I was headed for, opportunity wise, if I could see it AND I could feel it, why did I feel so challenged? Why was life feeling 'difficult' and my patience wearing thin? Then the AHA - if the Universe is always working in our best interest (which it is), and our feelings come from our thinking 100% of the time (which they are), this worn out and impatient feeling I was living in was completely self-created and was an opportunity (more like a big ol' slap across the face from the Universe) for me to go inside and see it. What a lesson.

It always boils back down to the very basics of this understanding, and I will be the first to willingly raise my hand to say that being human means being seduced by my surroundings from time to time. But the reality is, it's simple. Always simple. As Elsie Spittle says in her new book, The Path to Contentment:

"Innate wisdom is a spiritual fact - it's not just an idea or concept. At the same time that wisdom is of spiritual essence, wisdom is also extremely practical. (...) Over time, as I began to see more about the inner workings of my mind, I could see wisdom come to life for me and guide me in my day to day living. It was a natural outcome of simply enjoying my life and not trying to figure everything out with my intellect.  I discovered that the more I lived in the present, the more wisdom was released from inside me so that it became my companion and help-mate."

I just had an insight. I've experienced this so clearly in my relationship with my husband, Mike. To this day, I trust and surrender to it's flow without ever getting my thinking in the way. When we met, he had just left a gnarly relationship of a few years and really didn't feel ready to jump back into something. We had spent three blissful hours talking right after we met, there was no denying we had found something special, so in classic Jessie form, I made the first call the day after that long conversation trying to force my way in. He knew we had something too, so we made the decision to literally check in with each other every day. Folks have asked me, "Weren't you guys nervous you'd check in one day and one of you would say you're not into it anymore? That would be heartbreaking!" And the reality is, yeah, that was a total possibility, but neither of us ever got into our thoughts about it. In hindsight, we were just trusting the feeling and we knew what we had felt really good and right. We didn't even call each other boyfriend and girlfriend for months, but it didn't matter. We just enjoyed the hell out of each and every moment, and each day kept leading to the next. Nearly 15 years later, I can't believe I'm just seeing this. Proof right under my nose that the more you enjoy life and follow your wisdom, that gut feeling, life will continue to unfold for you, every step of the way.

Sweet relief. I've come back home. Back to myself. Back to enjoying life and following my inner promptings of what to do next, then taking those steps when they come to me. The blueprint is already drawn, there's no need to use my intellect, my over-thinking and over-analyzing, to make me feel as though I'm doing more, accomplishing more or that I could be doing more and accomplishing more. Because the plain fact of the matter is, the more your intellect gets in your way in that matter, it can create the illusion that you're falling short because your head is 10 steps ahead in the blueprint, while wisdom is happily guiding you along at the pace you're meant to be at. Additionally, each step taken provides more information for the next. Something that our intellect could never 'figure out' for us, that's why the surrender to the feeling inside is so important.

My Excalibur is no longer my weakness, it just has a new responsibility - keep dreaming big, but slow down, follow my wisdom and enjoy the view. God that makes me excited, you?

All my love, see you next week!

Jessie

 

 

Taking The Leap! An Interview With Aida Bernal Of Spellbound Entertainment

"What I do isn't just help people get jobs, I'm helping people's dreams come true. That's something that I honor and take very seriously."

This from the mouth of the woman who my best friend and client of Aida, Natalia Cordova-Buckley, calls Mama Shark. The woman knows the entertainment business like the back of her hand (her experience in the industry is mind blowing), she's incredibly passionate about her work and her clients, and has a heart bigger than the size of Texas.

I first met Aida a few years back through Natalia when she joined Natalia's efforts to spearhead the industry in Hollywood. Natalia's intention was to eclipse the overtly sexualized stereotypical roles that the industry so quickly throws Mexican women in, which in regards to the culture of Hollywood, can unfortunately be no small feat. I remember being in awe of the team they had created; They were on a mission, hand-in-hand, to find roles that represented a strong and empowered Latina. With pitch after pitch, Aida was getting Natalia in rooms that took her talent and intention seriously. Cut to Natalia most recently wrapping season 5 as the first Latina superhero on television (or any other medium, for that matter) on Marvel's Agents of Shield, I would say this team has broken through a glass ceiling.

This is Aida. This is her mission for each and every one of her clients.

Photography by Cammy Kinney

Photography by Cammy Kinney

So how did Aida get to the point of Taking The Leap into becoming manager extraordinaire? "Since I was young, working at the cash register at my parents store, I knew I would have my own thing. I didn't know what exactly, but I had the feeling." I can detect a deep sense of appreciation she has towards her parents for modeling what it looked like to be an entrepreneur, having their own store on the historic Olvera Street in Los Angeles. The love they shared between each other and for their business started the fire, and as she grew older, she knew she wanted to work in entertainment and work with artists.

When her first entertainment job as a stylist's assistant got her to music video sets, her fire grew bigger and the vision started to narrow. Every single job that followed, she says, led her to where she is today (be prepared for this killer resume): Queen Latifah's music management company Flavor Unit/West Coast (this wet her taste buds for management), MCA Records (where she heard the advice of a lifetime from an A&R executive, "Look at this like college - you're getting paid to learn. When you leave here you'll know what you want and what you don't want"), then finally, several years at the production company for one of the superstars of our generation, Jennifer Lopez.

As I experienced myself, taking the leap from a regular job to work for yourself is a spiritual experience. After collecting information and insights, the wisdom bubbles up out of no where that it's time to leap, and for Aida, though she considered herself a linear person who would have things more planned out (SAME HERE), the insight smacked her upside the head in the shower one day that it was time to go and she had to listen. It was time for her to step two feet into her own company...

Aida: I had friends and acquaintances tell me I was crazy, but when you know, you know! If I can share one thing with the world that I learned from that process: We need to be better supporters of each other. If someone is telling you their ideas for a big move in their life, whether it be writing a cook book or going out on their own in business, it is your job as the listener to empower them instead of fueling the embers of fear. You don't know where they are in their process - you don't know where on the ladder they are. If they're further down the line and are grounded, then it may not matter, but if they're a baby chick beginning to hatch and you come at them with your 'logical' fearful thoughts, you've just crushed their spirit.

AMEN, sister! Speaking to Aida about her work now, you can feel every bit is coming from her guts. Her passion is immense and so inspiring.

Aida: I feel very blessed to be able to run my own company, work from my gut, my intuition, and though I've always done that in every entertainment job I've had, being on my own, there's no politics or bureaucracy between me and the client or potential client.

Jessie: You're able to run your business from your wisdom, no holds barred! The core of your business, the ground that you stand on, because you choose people from that heart connection, from that gut instinct, it's inevitable for everything to blossom - from your clients careers to your career as a manager/producer. I feel like you can see the potential in your clients before they can see it for themselves.

A: Yes! It's all about listening to their story, listening to their history. When they demonstrate their drive and passion for whatever it is they want to do, that's what makes me engage. Those are the kind of people I look to work with, the ones that inspire me. Not just because they're great actors, but because they're good people going after their dreams. It's really not that complicated, it's really quite simple.

J: Do you find yourself getting emotionally invested in your clients since you're so involved in the day to day of their dreams?

A: I can't manage at a distance. I've been told by industry and non-industry people that you shouldn't become too attached to your clients because this business is brutal, this business is ruthless - I didn't get into this business to have that mentality. I came into this business for the love of what I do and the passion for seeing something through from beginning to end.

J: I can see the connection here to your music days.

A: Yes, very similar to A&R (Artists and Repertoire) in the music business. They sign the band then see them all the way through. The recording, the marketing, the release of the album, the music video - there's all this process that happens before that act becomes what they become. For me with talent management, because I've done some developing (which a lot of reps don't want to do), I will meet with someone and when there's that spark on a human to human basis, and the cherry on top is that they happen to be brilliant artists, to me, that's what matters. You sign the human being behind the actor. For me, it's not just about these really talented people, it's about having a real, personal connection.

A: (cont'd) When it comes to the relationship, I'm the one that has to process the 'no' before I speak to my client. It can be difficult especially when it has nothing to do with my client. I have to make sure I'm in a place where I can deliver that info so it can be received well. There are times where I've had to deliver three 'no's' in one day, and that's just a fragment of my day (due to meetings, submissions, pitches, etc), but then there's times I get to deliver three 'yes's' - I have to be ready for all of it. I deal with the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows. Learning how to manage the lows is the real key because being an artist is one of the most vulnerable things you can be. I'm known to be protective of my clients because when you're putting your artistry out there, everyone is going to judge (especially in the age of social media), there's no way of getting around that. So it's so important that those of us who work with talent whether it's agents, managers, publicists, even attorneys - to have that in the back of our brain. Knowing when you need more heart and less business.

Whew! What an incredible human, and what an advocate to have on your side as an artist on this roller coaster of an industry. What I love most about Aida's story is that she has literally followed her wisdom her entire career. Through each endeavor, without hesitation, she did the work, managed the ups and downs and moved on to the next step when her insides prompted her to. Now, I'm sure she would agree that she's human and every twist and turn felt overwhelming at times, but in hindsight, she was being guided from the inside-out. As she said, she is very blessed to be able to run her own company. From my perspective, because of her bravery and surrender to the process, even if she wasn't fully aware of the magic at the time, is why she is where she is. And guess what? Whether you're in the industry or just trying to figure out your next step in life, know that you can have a journey like Aida's the moment you choose to. The answer is inside, just allow it to bubble and it'll smack you upside the head in the shower one day too, I guarantee it.

Aida wanted to share some parting advice for incoming artists:

Do everything you can to be the best artist you can be, {hone your craft} as a musician, painter, actor, etc because that is all YOU. {And YOU are who the world needs!} As SNL's Michael Che says (not verbatim), "Don't put your goals into something or someone (in my actors cases an example would be a hiring 'body' like a Network or studio), because it can be taken away. Make your goals ABILITY based." Tune out the noise, and keep going.

And finally, the gem she left me with in all of her Mama Shark glory...

"I color outside the lines, and so do all the people I work with. We are the disruptors, we have something to give to the world. I already know how talented my clients are, the rest of the world just needs to catch up."

May we all have an Aida in our corner.

All my love to you and see you next week,

Jessie

Spellbound Entertainment is a management and production company. You can see Aida's clients in Agents of Shield, Mayans MC (Sons of Anarchy spin-off), Narcos, Sense8 and more. The first film produced by Spellboud Entertainment called STARFISH is in post production. It's written/directed & produced by UK client Al White and also produced by Aldo Jovan.

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Here's To You, Peaceful Warrior

I have been on an incredible journey this week, with an awakening that is blossoming like a sea anemone when the tide begins to shift. I have had a unique relationship with this subject that has allowed me to be fully open like the anemone when it's tentacles are exposed in all of it's beauty, as well as shut down and in question of it, like when the anemone gets disturbed and completely closes up. Where am I now with it? Completely open, exposing all of it's beauty and vulnerability, in effortless flow with the sea.

What is the subject in question? Spirituality - And please for the love of all anemone's everywhere, keep reading, I promise not to bore you or go down any religious path (quite the opposite is true) - and coming from a woman who was raised without any specific religious or spiritual beliefs, you will more than likely see a small reflection of yourself whether you were raised with a religion or not.

As far as my previous religious/spiritual experience, I've had quite the hodgepodge to pull from. I've gone to an array of Christian Sunday services of different sects, Native American spiritual circles, a day of prayer in a Hindu temple, I camped on the side of a mountain for a week to explore deep meditation. When I was young, I had a curiosity for watching different types of sermons on Sunday morning TV, as well as rocked out to an LP of the inimitable Andrae Crouch while vacuuming my parent's living room.

Growing up there were conversations of Jesus being a great man who gave people belonging by telling his story, similar to so many other great leaders whether in religion or activism. It seemed to me that the folks writing down their stories were the one's that screwed up the feeling of it all. Heart, connection, love, understanding, belonging, a feeling that could be identified in music, dancing, paintings, ART - that is what was most important.

So why all of this backstory? Well frankly, I'm realizing as I type that I've been on quite the search my whole life for something that fits for me. I've always sensed there was something greater, it never felt right to think that we're these skin suits that walk around then get dumped in the earth when we're done grinding away our whole lives. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks this time last week.

I was with a dear mentor of mine who replied to me after asking about some blocks I've been feeling with my work: "You aren't accepting the spiritual."

WHAT?!

The 3 Principles behind our experience of life that is the base of my work is spiritual! I talk out my nose to you and my clients all day long about listening to your wisdom, to trust the Universe - if that ain't spiritual, I don't know what is!!!

But guess what? He was right.

The moment he said it and I got past my thought storm that spiraled from "he doesn't realize how far I've come....." there came the bricks. I could see and trust all of what I was saying for YOU, my readers and clients... but when it came to my life, I was still trying to teach the cooks in the kitchen how to make my food. In my meditations I had been having incredible experiences, insights deepening my resolve to continue this path of sharing my work no matter how difficult it seems (aka the reality of building a business, which really only looks difficult when in a bummer state of mind). But as soon as my eyes would open from meditation, the thoughts started flying and I couldn't completely release my grip on the blueprint of my life. I needed to know each step like the board game of LIFE in front of me. For you? For the people I see day-in and day-out? I was tapped in - I could see it - but I was too scared to completely surrender for myself.

Of course I'm human and will surely have to catch myself in all of my humanness in the future, but I've released my grip on my own innocent, getting-in-my-own-way experience of life. A veil has been lifted.  I can see all of the breadcrumbs from the Universe - the synchronicity and manifestations are so obvious that I almost have to look around to see if anyone else is noticing them too. And to add insult to injury (with the most positive of meaning behind that), just before this crack in my world exposed itself, I was drawn to pick up a book I've had on my bookshelf since my sophomore year of high school. It's the only book I read word for word back then, and I think it will be by my side for the rest of my life. As so eloquently written by Dan Millman in Way of the Peaceful Warrior, this perfectly sums up what I've always been seeking:

(A conversation between the Peaceful Warrior named Socrates and Dan, a college student in search)

"... you fear death and crave survival. You want Forever, you desire Eternity. In your deluded belief that you are this 'mind' or 'spirit' or 'soul,' you find the escape clause in your contract with mortality. Perhaps as 'mind' you can wing free of the body when it dies, hmm?"
"It's a thought," Dan said with a grin.
"That's exactly what it is, Dan - a thought - no more real than the shadow of a shadow. Consciousness is not in the the body; the body is in Consciousness. And you are that Consciousness - not the phantom mind that troubles you so. You are the body, but you are everything else, too. (...) Only the mind resists change. When you relax mindless into the body, you are happy and content and free, sensing no separation. Immortality is already yours, but not in the way you imagine or hope for. You have been immortal since before you were born and will be long after the body dissolves. The body is Consciousness; never born; never dies; only changes. The mind - your ego, personal beliefs, history, and identity - is all that ends at death. (...)"

Then the clincher...

"Words mean little unless you realize the truth of it yourself. And when you do, you'll be free at last."

So here's to you, Peaceful Warrior, I hope no matter where you lie on the spiritual spectrum, whether the only relationship you have to me is through reading my blogs or if I'm lucky enough to connect with you in person, I want nothing else in this life but for you to reach the peace of mind and freedom that comes with recognizing that our personal human thoughts are the only thing that get in the way of us being guided so effortlessly in this thing called life. Like the sea anemone, completely open, showing it's beautiful colors and swaying back and forth with every swish of the sea around her. And the beauty of it all...

...it was with me the whole time; In me, around me, of me..

...As it is within you, around you, and of you.

Thank you for reading such a meaningful post that comes straight from my heart to yours.

All my love,

Jessie