The Truth about Psychics

What does the word “psychic” mean to you? Many will envision an exotic gypsy fortune teller seated in front of a crystal ball. Others may equate the word with “scam artist” or a practitioner of the dark arts.

As a professional psychic medium, I’d like to share my definition of a psychic. Psychics have the ability to deliberately raise their vibration to connect with the energy of other people. This part of the definition describes what a psychic does. But it’s the second part of the definition that I think is even more important. Psychics have the ability to deliberately raise their vibration to connect with the energy of other people WITH THE INTENTION of helping to guide, uplift and assist them on their life path.

I truly believe that we all come into our lives with this natural ability of vibrational awareness; we have an innate intuitive sense which relays information through energetic frequency. We can feel the energy of a place, person, or situation in a way that goes beyond the five senses. We can sense the intentions of others or the probable outcomes of situations without a lot of logical thinking. Babies and young children often demonstrate these abilities, along with a natural connection to spirit energy. It’s only when we start to become aware of the social stigma surrounding these abilities that we create an intentional block to them so that others don’t judge us as strange or scary.

A professional psychic is someone who has found a way to break free of those blocks and expand her natural abilities to the degree that she can tune in to the frequency of another’s life path and can get a sense of that person’s past, present, and future. However, it is important to note that the future is always changing, and that there will be many possible outcomes based on a person’s free will choices.

So, what exactly can a psychic reading do for you? A reader whose intention is as stated above will be able to help you get a different perspective on your current life path. He will help you to tune into the lessons of the past, the gifts within the challenges of the present, and the possible outcomes in the future. You should come away from a psychic reading feeling energized, motivated and validated, with a clearer sense of what the past has taught you, what needs your attention in the present, and what will help you realize your future desires.

The role of a psychic is not to tell you what to do or what is going to happen, it is to lend you the support and guidance of her intuitive connection with you and your energy. Your life is your own, directed by your own thoughts, beliefs and decisions. If you are feeling stuck or unsure of what’s in your best interest, a psychic can help you recognize your own power to move your energy forward and remind you of what your heart already knows. A fortune teller’s prediction is contrary to that intention; if you feel that a certain outcome is inevitable or completely out of your control, you will tend to feel like a victim of your life rather than the director of it.

Unfortunately, there are psychic practitioners out there whose intentions are not necessarily honorable, and this is where a lot of skepticism about the nature of psychics is borne. While they may have highly developed psychic skills, their intentions may be purely motivated by money, and they will use fear tactics to extort large fees from their clients. If you ever find yourself in the midst of a psychic reading that begins to feel very negative, where the psychic says you have had a curse placed on you or that you’re surrounded with “bad energy,” RUN! This is a sure sign that you’re about to be scammed. Usually, these practitioners will then tell you that they can remove the curse or clear your energy with some sort of ritual, candle or other means for a large fee which can be in the hundreds or thousands of dollars.

The best way to find a reputable psychic is by referral, but if that’s not forthcoming, look for practitioners who have established businesses and a decent website which includes testimonials and a clear description of what is offered. There are also some online directories listing vetted practitioners. Don’t look for the cheapest fee; while a novice reader may charge a low fee and still deliver a meaningful reading, often a very low fee can indicate that you’re in for a bait and switch scam. When comparing fees, remember that experienced and respected readers will charge fees that reflect the value of their service and the level of their expertise.

There are many talented, honorable and compassionate spiritual practitioners out there whose intention is focused on helping you to achieve your highest degree of happiness and success. A psychic can illuminate the truth and wisdom of your soul and connect you with the path that is in your highest good. When the choice of practitioner is made with your own intuitive awareness and careful consideration, you may find enormous benefit to your reading when you find the right psychic for you.

Ten Ways to be Present

If you are on any type of spiritual path, you will have heard it many times: be present, live in the now, focus on where you are. And it’s good advice. When we are fully focused on what’s in front of us, while still learning from the past and setting intentions for the future, we are truly engaged in the creation of our lives. But in this modern world full of constant distractions, where we’re expected to be multi-tasking dynamos taking on a variety of roles every day, exactly how do we put this into practice? Here are some tips you can start with today.

  1. Listen rather than hear. When we are distracted and unfocused, we tend to tune out what we feel isn’t important, and unfortunately, this can lead to misunderstandings and missed opportunities for connection and learning. The next time you’re in a conversation, fully engage in listening to the other person as though you were listening to your own thoughts. Listen with the intention to understand, and relax the need to respond. You may be surprised at what you hear.  

  2. Look to really see, rather than notice. Take a moment right now to stop reading this and look around you. Look closely with the intention to appreciate your surroundings. Where is there beauty around you that you may usually take for granted? What can you appreciate about where you are?

  3. Engage your empathy. When encountering people during your day, see if you can extend your energy to feel what they’re feeling. If someone is irritating you or acting less than honorably, you may not relate to what they’re doing, but can you relate to the fear or insecurity that may be leading to those actions? How does this empathetic perspective change your reaction to them?

  4. Feel your body’s responses. A “gut feeling” is often literal; you can feel an energetic reaction in your upper abdomen which can be a physical response to your intuition. Do you experience an excited feeling of butterflies, or a slightly queasy feeling, or maybe a heavy, tight feeling? How is your body reading the energy around you? Learning to recognize your physical reactions can help you get in touch with your inner wisdom.

  5. Feel the energy of gratitude. Taking time out of your day to practice gratitude is a great way to bring yourself into your present space. If you’re feeling stressed, scattered or negatively focused, take a few moments to name (and perhaps write down) 10 things you’re grateful for. Gratitude helps you make peace with where you are in the present moment, which allows you to more easily move forward.

  6. Leave space between what you think and what you say. Pause before you speak. Allow a few breaths between your initial reaction and your spoken words, or your email or text. Back up a bit from the situation and consider whether your emotions need to settle a bit before you respond or if it’s really in anyone’s best interest for you to assert your opinion in that moment. Connect with your heart and ensure that your words resonate with what you’re truly feeling in that moment, and not how you’re emotionally responding.

  7. Honor your need to withdraw and go within. Even the most extroverted people need time to rejuvenate, recharge and reflect. If you’re feeling overwhelmed and energetically drained, it’s more difficult to stay present. Be sure to honor those feelings with some quiet time. Nurturing and caring for your own energy is an important way to ensure you’re maintaining needed balance in your life.

  8. Pull your energy into your heart when you begin to judge. Judgment comes from the overprotective ego which thrives on illusion. The heart knows the truth, that we are all connected on a soul level; you can disagree with someone’s actions but still acknowledge your connection. Listening to the heart’s wisdom brings you fully present and allows you to transcend judgment.

  9. When challenged, ask what gift of learning is being offered. Remember that all challenges offer us the opportunity to grow and evolve. While it’s sometimes difficult to see these opportunities when we are in the midst of the challenge, it can help to acknowledge that moving through difficult energy instead of avoiding it will allow you to get a better perspective. Always look for the gift.

  10. Cultivate focus, attention and intention. These three practices can develop, enhance and bring a greater awareness of your intuition and connection to your higher self. Practice heightened focus on all your tasks, direct your full attention to whatever you’re doing in the moment, and set clear intentions for the road ahead.

Adding these practices to your daily life can help you gather your scattered energy and feel calmer, more grounded and less reactive. From that place of peaceful awareness, you’ll find yourself truly appreciating and fully experiencing all the riches your life has to offer!

Love Begets Love

“Trash begets trash.” A guy I was dating once said this while we were picnicking somewhere and noticed an area that was filled with litter. What he meant was that once a few people start dropping their trash on the ground, others follow suit, until you have a real mess. (This was sadly one of the wisest things he ever said.)

There are lots of reasons this occurs. There’s a sociological component here which was demonstrated in a college course I once took. The instructor called one person up to the front of the class and asked her to hop like a bunny. The girl blushed and awkwardly hopped in a half-hearted manner. Then the teacher kept calling others to the front of the room and by the time there were about 5 or 6 people up there, they were laughing and hopping like crazy, and once the whole class came up, it was a hopopalooza. Her point? We are HUGELY influenced by the people around us.

I know, you’ll say, “Not me. I’m an independent thinker.” But I want you to notice how you’re dressed, the programs you watch on TV, the model cell phone you have, and the way you wear your hair. I want you to think about singing karaoke in your local watering hole, or being pulled into a gossipy conversation among friends, or complaining about your boss at work. What influences your decisions here? And why?

The new agers (like me) often emphasize the ONENESS of us all, and while some will roll their eyes and think it’s just incense smoke and mirrors created to avoid the REAL problems of the world, it is clear that the ONENESS of our connected energy is extremely powerful in influencing our choices and behavior. I would expand upon the sociological component here and say it’s the ENERGY of others’ words, actions and even thoughts which can influence our own.

With this in mind, I’d like you to consider your part here. How accountable are you for the energy you’re putting out there? Are you aware of how powerful it is? If you’re spewing hatred and anger, whether it’s on Twitter, in a Facebook rant, face-to-face among friends, or even just in your thoughts, you’re creating an energetic vibration which resonates with those feelings. It doesn’t matter how justified you think your feelings are, they’re still creating a vibrational frequency of hatred and anger, much as a tuning fork vibrates to a C Sharp no matter how it’s struck. And on some level, that powerful frequency is being felt and passed along by those you come into contact with, creating a ripple effect of energy that extends far beyond your social circle.

So does this means you’re never allowed to have a negative emotional reaction to challenging circumstances? Do you have to stuff your anger, hold back your tears, or push aside your fears? Not at all, since working through our emotions is a vital way to grow, heal and evolve. What it means is that there are lots of healthy ways to deal with emotions which don’t involve spewing negatively around like a lawn sprinkler. It means sitting with your feelings and working through them first, before you consider exploding in a rage on social media. It means calling in the assistance of close friends, or perhaps a professional, who can help you see your way through difficult situations you may be dwelling on. It means understanding that your visceral reaction to a perceived situation may not be based on the whole truth, and that perhaps there are other perspectives to consider. It means using your powerful emotions to motivate positive action toward change. It means being careful, thoughtful and compassionate about the energy you emit, as it is a powerful force in the world around you.

Yep, I’ve had my moments of anger, disappointment, outrage, and despair. Yes, I’ve felt lost and alone, broken-hearted and frustrated, misunderstood and foolish. When these feelings arise, I look at them and decide how best to find the gift within them for my highest good, and when I do that, it NEVER feels like the best thing to do is blast them into the ethers as the one and only truth. Once I’ve been able to work through my emotions, adjust my perspective, and return to the truth of love, then I know that I have a story to share which can be based on my true intention, which is to inspire, uplift and empower.

Love begets love. So how’s YOUR frequency today?

The Three Skills that will Boost Your Psychic and Intuitive Abilities

Eleven years ago, I learned that my lifelong sensitivities were indications of higher gifts which I now use to do psychic and mediumship readings, and more recently to channel. As I began to develop and expand these abilities, I found that there were three key skills which were crucial to my success as a professional psychic and channel. I truly believe that one of the reasons I’ve been able to turn these abilities into a successful career is that I’ve learned to work with these three skills and expand upon them, and I believe that anyone can learn to build them through practice and mindfulness.

1.  Attention – I’ve always had a pretty good attention span. As a professional administrative assistant for most of my working life, I developed a keen attention to detail and the ability to stick with a task to its completion. As a psychic medium, attention is important as the information that comes in can be fast, fleeting and faint, and so if you are easily distracted or too worried about being “right,” you may miss some of this information or misinterpret it. If you’re working on building your own psychic and intuitive abilities, start by becoming aware of where your attention goes in the course of your day, and see if you can work on honing it by listening intently, picking up on the details of your surroundings, and resisting distractions.

2.  Intentions – Setting clear intentions for what you want to accomplish through any given task is an excellent way to create the foundation for success. Without clear intentions, you will risk losing motivation and your consciousness may drift from the task at hand. As a psychic, my intention is always to connect with the energy of my clients in order to receive the highest level of information to uplift and guide them. As a medium, my intention is to connect with the highest level of spirit energy in order to bring messages of love and support to their loved ones. And as a channel, my intention is to be the conduit for those in spirit who wish to guide and assist us here on earth. Begin to become more aware of the intentions behind the energy you put into various areas of your life, and make them deliberate and clear. You’ll find that you’ll then be naturally guided into the right actions to get you where you’d like to be.

3.  Focus – I find that all the work I do in this business: psychic readings, mediumship events, channeling, writing, speaking and running my spiritual center require a laser focus. When I am doing a reading, my focus is solely on the client and her energy. I am able to set aside my own ego, judgment and fears and completely direct my energy and vibrational awareness to the client. This is what allows me to connect with her energetically and interpret the signals I get in the best possible way. The same goes for spirit communication; my focus is completely directed on my inner vision and the subtle cues I get from spirit, and when I’m channeling, my focus helps me step aside and allow the spirit energy to flow through me. To work on your focus, you could practice concentrating on reading or writing in a noisy place, or completing a challenging task in a certain amount of time. Learning to really focus on your inner receptor in this fast-paced, multi-tasking world can take practice, but it can be extremely helpful when connecting with your inner guidance system.

Practicing a regular meditation routine can be very useful in building your attention, intentions and focus, as it teaches you to allow both your thoughts and any external interference drift away while you continue to draw your attention inward, set intentions for relaxation and calm, and focus on the present moment. In a world full of constant distractions, these three skills can not only help you connect with your higher vibrational awareness, they can bring a sense of ease to your life which can help you cope with the stresses and challenges on your path. And this ease is bound to bring success in ALL areas of your life. Where is YOUR focus today?

How Thoughts and Beliefs Can Affect Your Psychic Abilities

I’ve been a professional psychic medium for just over 10 years now, and if anyone would have suggested to me even 12 years ago that this is what I’d be doing for a living, I would have thought they were delusional. I’d always been attracted to the metaphysical realms, but never had the belief that I could harness them. But on the first day of the psychic development night school class I took at a local community college, I saw the clear image of the teacher’s spirit guide behind him as he spoke, and from then on, nothing was the same.

When I first started working with my higher vibrational awareness, the information coming in was random and chaotic. I would have strange visions in meditation and it was sometimes difficult to make sense of what was happening. But as my confidence grew, so did my peace of mind, and each time I crossed another threshold of belief in myself, I found I was better able to work with my abilities rather than feel overwhelmed by them. It was a process, and in hindsight, I can see that the process was guided by my beliefs in my abilities and the way I began to deliberately choose my thoughts about my work and its place in the world.

There were many times I thought about quitting and returning to a more “normal” life. The time I made a sweet grandmother cry when her late husband came through at a psychic party, I was sure that once I walked out that door, I would never do another reading. But just as I was leaving, her family approached me and told me how much the reading meant to her and how grateful she was. The drunk woman I refused to read and the hostile woman at a gallery whose spirit visitor was someone she despised were overshadowed by a message that was heeded from spirit to tighten the child seats in a day care van which was later involved in a serious accident and all the children were unharmed, and tearful gratitude from a psychic development student whose spirit visions had previously made her think she was mentally unstable.

Every time I strengthened my belief in my abilities, they heightened, and every time I focused more attention on the positive results of my work, the more grateful clients I attracted. And as my confidence grew, so did my ability to manage my energy and focus more clearly on the information I was getting. I found that whenever I set a clear and solid intention, there would be a shift within me toward peaceful resonance, and it has been within that peace that I’ve found my greatest gifts.

The power of our intentions was recently highlighted by a session with a coaching client of mine who had been experiencing many random and sometimes disturbing intrusions of spirit energy, sporadic psychic experiences and chaotic dreams. She knew she had psychic abilities, but she was troubled by them and wanted some guidance on how to control them. We discussed the power of thoughts and beliefs and when she watched The Secret, she felt a deep resonance with truth. Then she read Infinite Possibilities by the amazing Mike Dooley, and her life changed drastically. She found within herself the ability to direct her thoughts, attention and beliefs, which is creating enormous shifts, not only in her physical world, but in her psychic abilities. She is no longer plagued by disruptive and random experiences, but she is instead finding that she can invite the experiences when she is ready to work with them. She has discovered that by setting the intention to manifest a happy and peaceful life, she is able to direct her energy more deliberately instead of allowing it to be dragged and pulled in a million different directions. What a difference this has made in her life! And what an epiphany to both of us about the immense power of intention, beliefs and thoughts in not only our external experiences, but also in developing our higher vibrational awareness and abilities.

If you are experiencing flashes of psychic experiences or connections to spirit which are interrupting your life or disturbing you, take a look at your beliefs, thoughts and intentions and begin to direct them toward what you would rather experience with these gifts. Set the intention in that direction, make peace with where you are and watch the magic begin!

Levels of Vibrational Awareness and How to Develop Them

We humans have an amazing array of senses that we use to experience our world, but we tend to limit our awareness by relying on just a few of them. As children, we are taught that our five senses are the only way to discern the truth, and that anything that can’t be experienced this way is frivolous or false. The truth is that there are many more than five senses; we have a sense of body awareness, balance, pain, and others. In addition, there is vibrational awareness, or a sense of energetic reality.

We all experience vibrational awareness on varying levels. If you’ve ever walked into a room and sensed a mood or emotion leftover by the people just recently in it, you’ve experienced a connection with an unseen energetic force. Working with and developing this awareness can open you up to a greater understanding of yourself and others as powerful energetic beings.

The various levels of vibrational awareness include:

1.  Intuition and Empathy – Intuition is the act of knowing something without knowing how you know it. It is a connection with Universal truth which extends beyond that which we are taught or told. Empathy is a connection with the emotions of another, which can range from simply having an intuitive sense of what someone is feeling to actually feeling it oneself.

2.  Psychic Awareness – The traditional definition of the word “psychic” often centers on the ability to foretell the future. While it’s true that many psychics have precognitive abilities, my personal definition of a psychic is one who is able to raise her vibration to such a level that she can connect with the energy of others, thereby getting a sense of their life path with the intention to uplift and guide them. Psychic connection is simply the next vibrational step up from intuition.

3.  Mediumship – All mediums need to have some form of psychic awareness (whether they perform psychic readings or not), but not all psychics practice mediumship. A medium is someone who is able to raise his vibration to the level where he is able to connect with the energy of spirit. The vibrational frequency of spirit energy is such that we humans are not able to experience it with the five senses on a regular basis. Again, this is a step up from psychic awareness, as spirit energy vibrates at a higher frequency than that of physical beings.

4.  Channeling – A channel is someone who is able to connect with non-physical energy in such a way that these beings are able to communicate directly through the channel. This requires yet another level of vibrational connection, as the channel must also move her own consciousness aside to allow for this direct communication to occur.

There are many methods to expand your vibrational awareness. Beginning with the first level, become more aware of when you are picking up “feelings” of things which are not based on an intellectual “knowing.” See what happens when you begin to trust these feelings more and notice the difference between their supportive guidance and what can sometimes be the fear-based warnings of ego. The more you learn to trust this inner knowing, the easier it is to allow this higher state of vibrational awareness guide you.

Moving to the next level, you may want to experiment with different methods to connect with the energy of another person through psychic awareness. These may include psychometry (holding an object), oracle or tarot cards, pendulums, or other tools which can help to give you a point of focus for raising your vibrational frequency. Set the intention for what you would like to achieve and then try different methods until you find what resonates with you. Make sure you’re having fun with it!

While you’re working on your psychic abilities, you may find that you naturally begin to connect with spirit energy. You may receive inner visual images of spirit or get messages from non-physical beings. Simply observe this at first and notice what your state of consciousness is when these connections are made. Being relaxed, feeling protected and safe, and being in a positive frame of mind are all essential to having positive interactions with spirit. Again, be sure to set an intention for what you want to achieve through these interactions and practice honing your focus and attention, since these communications are often quick and subtle.

The realm of channeling is yet a higher vibrational state which you can first begin to practice through automatic writing. Sometimes handwriting is a good place to start, as it is a stronger physical connection, but you can also use a computer. Usually, the communication comes through as word-by-word dictation. Once a strong connection is made through writing, you may want to experiment with verbal channeling. Again, it is very important to feel safe, protected and free of fear when experimenting with this type of spirit connection.

Remember that everything is energy, and that there are many levels of energetic frequency existing all around us. Just as the broad spectrum of light contains just a small portion which is visible to the human eye, reality exists in many forms of higher vibration which can only be experienced through a raising of one’s frequency and awareness. What wisdom and knowledge can you access through these higher levels of awareness?

Three Ways to Expand your Intuitive and Psychic Abilities

Everyone has some degree of intuitive and psychic ability. We are born with it; it’s simply another one of our senses. Children access it naturally, until they learn that it’s not always socially accepted or believed, so they form blocks to it. If you feel you have a high degree of energetic sensitivity and you’d like to remove those obstacles and increase your intuitive awareness, here are some fun and easy exercises to try. My psychic development students are often astounded at what they can do when we practice these experiments in our classes.

1.  Psychometry – This is the practice of holding an object and tuning into it energetically with the intention of either picking up information on its owner or on the history of the object itself. Try holding a piece of jewelry, glasses or keys (but nothing electronic) that someone wears or carries a good deal of the time, relax with a few deep breaths, and set the intention to tune in energetically. See if you can feel the energy of the object, then allow yourself to receive any images, emotions or words which may be related to the person associated with it. Just say whatever you get and have the person you’re reading write it all down, then discuss whether you’ve picked up anything relevant. You may be amazed at what you’re able to get this way!

2.  Telepathy – First, find some books with fairly simple pictures in them. Children’s books and oracle cards work well with their clear, colorful images. Designate one person as the “sender” and the rest as “receivers.” The sender should sit in another room or behind the receivers and choose a picture to send by focusing intently on all the elements of the image including the colors, the lines, the emotions and the feelings of whatever is in the picture. Set the intention to send this information to the receivers and focus on the picture for no more than 3 to 4 minutes. The receivers should draw or write down whatever they get, then compare their results with the picture. It’s fun to see how well they’ve picked up elements from the sender’s image, and also how they tend to get hits from each other. Make sure you switch senders and receivers so that everyone has a chance to experience both.

3.  Reading Photographs – There are several ways you can experiment with this. One is to have a friend give you some photographs of people they know, but you don’t. Take a quick look at the photo, and then turn it over, placing your hand over it lightly. See if you pick up any words, emotions or feelings from the photo (similar to the psychometry exercise) and just say whatever you get as your partner writes it down. Then turn the photo over again and look at it closely. Again, say whatever comes to you but limit this to just a couple minutes, as your intellect will start to take over and want to figure things out in a logical way. You can also use this technique with pictures of missing persons, or photos from obituaries. Cover up any descriptive text and just record whatever you get from the photo. Then make it a point to follow up on the story or read the obituary to see how you did. Professional psychics are often able to pick up energetic information through photographs and can use them to help find missing persons and solve criminal cases.

Revving up your energetic awareness with exercises like these can not only put you in touch with your higher senses, it can help you to learn to trust your intuition so that you can allow it to guide you on your life’s path. Make sure that you are always able to verify the information you receive in whatever experiments you try, so that you can continue to build your confidence and thereby expand your natural abilities. Your intuition is a powerful tool for achieving a higher state of consciousness and awareness. Make sure you’re using it to its full potential!

The Ten Most Common Messages from Spirit

As a professional psychic medium, I’ve been giving people messages from their loved ones in spirit for about ten years now and I’ve found that there are a few messages that consistently come through in mediumship sessions.

1.  No matter how I passed, my transition was peaceful and beautiful. Spirit often shows me what their passage to the Other Side was like, and it is always an amazingly beautiful experience. There is a joyous reunion with their loved ones and pets in spirit, a sense of blessed relief and freedom, and beauty beyond belief.

2.  I carry no memory of pain. Even if they suffered physical pain in the time leading up to their passing, they do not retain a memory of it and only feel great peace in their spirit state of being.

3.  I am not gone. The spirit of your loved one is just as alive, aware and present as it was when housed in their physical body. In fact, their present state of being feels even more alive than when they were in the physical as they are no longer restricted by the material world.

4.  I see my life from a different perspective. While there is no sense of regret or remorse, spirit can see how the choices they made in their lifetime affected their own happiness and the lives of those around them. Often they want you to see their life as an example to learn from as you make choices in your own life.

5.  Your family history can teach you a lot about yourself. Spirit often encourages their loved ones to research their lineage and ancestry to find out about where they came from and understand more about the stories of their relatives. This can lead to a more compassionate understanding of their immediate family and themselves.

6.  You are an unlimited being. I often find spirit encouraging travel, adventure and taking risks. If someone is hesitating on a dream or desire, spirit will give them a little push and tell them not to wait, as the physical experience is a short one and those chances can lead to amazing experiences of wonder, growth and learning.

7.  I communicate with you. Those conversations you have with your loved ones in spirit aren’t just in your head, they are real. When you talk to spirit, they talk back, so pay attention to what comes to you when you ask them questions or look for guidance. They’ll also create little signs and synchronicities to let you know they’re around.

8.  Take care of your health. Spirit often points out physical ailments which are being ignored and might be holding the person back from fully enjoying their life. Self-care equates self-love, and this is a powerful way to create happiness in your life.

9.  I miss the experience of food. Spirit will often talk about some of the foods they loved while in the physical; it seems to be an experience which can’t accurately be duplicated on the Other Side. The smells, tastes and feelings evoked by delicious foods are experiences they’d like you not to take for granted!

10.  The physical experience is precious, sacred and beautiful, even in its struggles. Your loved ones in spirit recognize the amazing beauty of this physical life and want you to appreciate it as you experience it, and not wait until you transition to truly understand what a divine blessing it is. Every challenge adds to the soul’s evolution, and every day presents the opportunity to experience love and beauty.

Competition: The Myth of Winning and Losing

“One of the reasons many of us have trouble getting our work out into the world is that unconsciously we’re competing instead of creating, which short-circuits the flow of inspiration.”  ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach

What drives you forward, motivates you toward success, keeps your actions in line with your intentions? Is it the passion in your heart? The urging of your soul? Or is it a sense of wanting to be better than someone else?

From the time we are small, we are taught to compete. Not only are we taught to strive to do better than those around us, we learn that this is a healthy way to live, and that we will always have to outdo someone else in order to succeed.   We’re told that it’s a “dog eat dog world,” that we need to “win at all costs,” and that “life is a struggle.”  We compete athletically in the gymnasium, academically in the classroom and socially in the hallways.  We learn to be crushed by defeat and feel superior when we win. 

In high school we are led to believe that we need to achieve the highest standards of grades and accumulate extracurricular points because of the competitive nature of college admissions, and that we have to attend the “right” college because of the scarcity of jobs.  Then, once we find the “right” job, we are always striving to be one step ahead of our colleagues and other businesses so that we can prove our worth and get the promotions and raises we deserve.  And of course, we need those raises and promotions so that we can afford the best in gadgets, cars and homes to keep up with our neighbors and peers.

So how’s that “healthy competition” working out for you?

Buying into the belief that you have to be better than someone else not only creates unnecessary stress, it negates and overrides the driving force of our true passions and gifts.  We all come into the world with a divine light to shine, and that light is the truth of our soul.  When we get caught up in the social construct of constantly having to be wary and suspicious of the success of others, we create enemies where there may have been friends.  When we believe that our worth is tied up with how successful we are in comparison to our peers, we lose sight of what truly makes us happy.  When we measure abundance solely with accumulated possessions, we miss out on our daily joys.

As a spiritual practitioner in a small community, I surprised at how often I find myself faced with others whose lives reflect this fear-based sense of competition, since I believe that our small spiritual community could be just that; a community of people who promote and support each other with the understanding that we each have a unique light to shine for a common collective aim.  My idea of success is based on how I’m feeling about the work I’m doing, and not how well I’m doing in comparison to others.  There are more than enough clients for all the practitioners in the world; those who need to hear from me will find me, and those who will resonate with someone else will be drawn to them.  Knowing this allows me the freedom to progress in my business based on the direction of my heart and my intention to serve, while still earning a living which allows me to thrive.

Imagine how you would feel if you dropped the need to compete in every area of your life.  What doors would that new-found liberation open for you?  How much self-love could you gain by choosing to measure your personal success with the barometer of your feelings, rather than how you think you’re looking to others?  How would your work, your personal relationships, your body image, your self-confidence change if your focus was redirected to celebrating your personal triumphs, rather than suspiciously guarding them?  How would it feel to cheer on your colleagues, rather than feel envious of them?  How much better would you feel about yourself if you dropped the need to live up to the standards of others?

Competing with others causes us stress because it is counter to the truth of our soul, which recognizes that we are each a unique aspect of the divine.  If you are finding yourself dragged down by stress, take a look at your beliefs about competition and understand that you can choose a better truth; one that resonates with your inner knowing and leads you to a healthier state of experiencing peace with others, a higher understanding of the true meaning of self-worth and a more resonant definition of success.

Five Ways Your Higher Self Speaks to You

When we’re feeling lost, alone, and confused, we will often ask for guidance from the Universe, but we sometimes forget to pay attention to the answers that come to us. Our Higher Selves, Spirit, and the Universe communicate with us in quiet, subtle ways, which often require our diligent attention to fully appreciate. Here are a few ways we’re offered guidance in our daily lives. 

1. That Gut Feeling – It’s called a “gut feeling” for a good reason; you feel it right in your gut! This can happen when you meet someone, walk into a room, or when you have an important decision to make. You might feel a sort of sick feeling in your stomach, or a strange, uncomfortable sensation in the solar plexus area. This is a sure sign that something is “off,” and that you should probably keep your distance from whatever it is that’s triggering that feeling. Conversely, you could feel excited “butterflies” in your stomach, or a sense of joyful anticipation, or maybe a happy, tingling sensation. Let these positive feelings urge you forward on your path as they indicate you’re right where you need to be. Always pay close attention to these physical sensations, as they are the soul’s barometer.

2. Signs and Synchronicities – Your Higher Self and Spirit often try to get your attention with signs in the physical world, which can help you to connect with your soul’s wisdom. These signs can be visual, like ladybugs, birds, coins or feathers found in unusual or significant places. They can be sounds, like a special song playing at exactly the right moment, wind chimes or bells with no discernible cause, a snippet of overheard conversation that answers a question you’ve had, or even a voice that you hear speaking to you. They can be scents of food, flowers or cologne, which strongly invoke a memory. Whatever they are, if your intuition tells you it’s a sign, take it for granted that your intuition is right! 

3. Strong Urgings or Restlessness – When you’re feeling it’s time for a change, it’s a good idea to pay attention to that feeling, even if it doesn’t make logical sense. Your soul knows when it’s the right time to move forward and begin to manifest new experiences and challenges, and will signal you with feelings ranging from a sense of discontent with your current situation to a restless urging to explore new options. When these feelings arise, be sure to go within through meditation or quiet contemplation and allow yourself to explore these urgings to see where they’re leading you. It could be someplace wonderful.

4. Dreams and Visions – Your Higher Self and Spirit will often communicate with you through your dreams. If you find you’re in a phase of vivid dreaming that evokes an emotional response, start keeping a dream journal. Place a notebook and pen at your bedside and record all the dreams you can remember upon waking, before you start your morning routine. Then review these dreams every few days to see if you can discern any patterns or recurring emotions. Also pay attention to any visions that pop up during meditative times in your day. You may be used to calling these visions “daydreams,” which are simply your “imagination,” thereby dismissing their importance. But what exactly IS your imagination? How much valuable guidance do you dismiss by assuming these visions and dreams are simply a product of the brain, and not a window to the soul? 

5. Strong Emotions – We can always choose our responses to the powerful emotional responses we have to our world. We can choose to sink into the emotions and use them as an excuse to avoid change or we can take a step back from the situation and see them as a signal that we’re being offered an opportunity to learn something valuable about ourselves and our lives. If someone in your life regularly triggers unpleasant emotions, can you use this experience as a mirror of something you might want to work on within yourself? If you’re feeling sadness and grief, can you honor the need to temporarily withdraw, go within, and find your inner strength? Your emotions are a powerful indicator of the progress you’re making on your soul’s journey; be sure to use them to your best advantage, rather than viewing them as a catalyst to victimhood.

Remember that there is always guidance available to us, and that answers will always come to the questions we pose. Cultivating trust in our intuition, finding that quiet space within, and paying attention to the subtle signs from our Higher Selves can greatly enhance the amazing journey of our earthly lives. 

Are you listening?

This article also appeared on the TUT.com blog and has been shared 12,000 times.

Five Things to Unlearn to Clear the Way to Your Truth

One of the biggest challenges to raising our spiritual awareness is unlearning the questionable truths that we’ve adopted about ourselves and our lives. 

Here is a list of five things to UNLEARN in order to clear the path to your own truth:

1.  Trust your logical, thinking brain over your intuition. Since kindergarten, we are told that the best way to solve a problem is to work it out intellectually. Most of us never learn to listen to that intuitive voice, or to pay attention to our “gut feelings,” or to find meaning in our dreams, and it can take a lot of effort to overcome the feeling that we are being silly or stupid when we begin investigating these things. However, most of us can think of a time when we listened to that small, quiet voice over our logic and it helped to guide us, or when we refused to listen and wished we had. Remember that while there is a place for intellectual reasoning in our lives, our Higher Self resides in heart-centered thinking and intuitive knowing. Learn to trust your natural intuition.

2,  Loving yourself is selfish. As children, our awareness of Self changes from the infant’s sense of being at one with all others to a feeling of separation which begins to form our egos. It’s around this time that we learn that selfishness is bad, and that loving ourselves is selfish. We are encouraged to say “I love you” to family and friends, but not ourselves, and we grow up finding fault in our physical, emotional, and mental beings. Try this: look in the mirror and say, “I love you” out loud. Most people have a difficult time with this. But it’s a crucial step in honoring the Divine within and understanding how we are all connected.

3,  We should review past mistakes to instigate change. Spiritual teachers help us to understand how important it is to live in the moment, and that time spent on past regrets and future worries is simply distracting us from the happiness we could be enjoying in the present moment. While this is true, it can also be a very useful practice to review our past challenges with an eye to celebrating how far we’ve come. Normally, our thoughts about the past tend to focus on the negative. We rarely measure our success with our past accomplishments. But it’s important to evaluate your progress by looking at your life a year ago, 5 years ago, 10 years ago, and objectively examining the ways you have grown. Are you more compassionate? Do you see more beauty in life? Are you less stressed, less prone to anger, more loving? Give yourself credit for the road you’ve already traveled, and you’ll find the road ahead seems less daunting.

4,  Competition is necessary and healthy. We live in an extremely competitive society. We spend many hours in our school’s gymnasium learning to overcome our opponents. Teachers compare us to other students, parents compare us to other children, friends and family pit us against each other. Then we enter the world of employment and have to compete for a job, for recognition, and for what we perceive as success. This thought process is completely oppositional to a spiritual life, in which we view ourselves as whole and unique, while being part of a larger, greater good. If the Divine lives within us all, how can any of us be BETTER than others? It takes mindfulness to overcome this tendency to constantly compare ourselves to others, but the peace that results from dropping the need to compete is life-changing.

5,  What others think of us is important. As soon as we begin to see ourselves as a separate entity from our mothers and other people around us, we develop self-consciousness. That self-consciousness is what forms our ego, or our mental image of ourselves. We learn to try to conform to the image that others have of us and we spend a lot of time learning how to fit in to avoid ridicule. Not conforming to the social labels others use to make themselves more comfortable around us is considered a social gaffe, and sometimes we’ll do just about anything to be accepted and liked. We hear ourselves being described as shy, clumsy, reckless, stupid, etc., and internalize these adjectives, accepting them as part of our identity. It takes a lot of courage to learn to shed the images that others have placed upon us and recognize ourselves as unique, divine beings. In order to do this, we have to understand that we all have our own unique version of the world, and that what others think of us has nothing at all to do with who we really are. The freedom that results from that revelation makes all the introspection so worthwhile!

Unlearning that which limits us allows us to grow and flourish like never before!