Visualizing Yourself as a more senior person

You may recall this message I posted last summer. Serendipitously I happened to come across it recently. The message is an important one and seems to fit well following the last three New Years related blogs I wrote.  You may wish to read them again: Merry Christmas and Happy HolidayLooking Ahead, and Moving into 2019 with an Authentic Way of Being

Read on…….

Birthdays are only a number.  Although this sounds like a light and perhaps frivolous comment, it is actually deeper than you might think. We attach too many expectations to age numbers, sometimes in the form of shoulds, and sometimes in the form of diminishing abilities. Currently I am paying attention to releasing limiting beliefs around getting old.  Let me share a personal story.

Time passes quickly.  Sixteen years ago was 2002.  That seems fairly recent. It is in this millennium, post 9/11, and post retirement for me.  That thought is  relatively neutral until I move those 16 years into the future and realized how old I will be then.  Those numbers will have accumulated rather briskly. Yikes!

At first I was dragged down by this thought, coupled by continuing notices of the serious illnesses and/or deaths of friends, acquaintances, former classmates and relatives who are my age and even younger.  Dwelling on this thought was a downer.  I began thinking of myself losing ground, becoming weaker, less involved.  UGH! It was not a good feeling and I noticed that it was affecting my daily life in the present.  I noticed that I already was beginning to cut back on things I loved doing.

I find that Reiki self practice often guides me to higher ground. While some of the above helps me feel compassion toward those experiencing ill health, compassion is not meant to drag me down too.  Reflecting on this, I began to notice those things that gave me insights into what I needed to do.  Perhaps synchronistically I happened to see a Facebook ad from Mind Movies.  Perhaps you have seen those.  Very useful perspective and exercises.  I happened to pass through some of the previous workshops I have led on intentions, visualizations, and the effects of our thinking. I realized that I had a limiting belief about getting older that I did not need to hang on to.

As a Reiki practitioner and teacher I feel it is most important to do my own self reiki and self healing.  The more I can heal old stuff within my thought patterns and past life experiences, the better I can work with others and provide the right energy and capability to offer what they may need at that moment for their highest good. Through self care, I see old patterns that can be released. For my own personal and spiritual growth, I see a practitioner who uses Reiki and other methods to help me release them.  We work well together because I trust her ability.  I never expect a magic fix.  It always requires inner work on my part and her capabilities allow me to be more aware of the required work.  I hope I provide that for the people I see.  That is  my intention.

After I went to see my energy practitioner, I also listened to some of the audio and videos on Mind Movies and it became very clear to me what I needed to do.

Besides releasing the limiting beliefs, my inner work was to create a visualization of me as an older woman, still participating in the growth of others, still actively involved and healthy as I engage in life.  I am currently working on that image of my true self, not giving it an age number, but seeing me in the image as an older woman.  I look vibrant, caring, energetic, bright, and mentoring others, facilitating, engaging and enjoying life.  My family are also enjoying my vibrancy as an older woman and we are doing fun things together.  This is uplifting.  This image contributes significantly to the vibrancy I feel today. I am making different life choices. I welcome Birthdays. I am grateful for them.

I invite you to pay attention to how you see yourself today and in the future as you get older.  If you have learned Reiki, it can be very helpful in asking for guidance and releasing the limiting beliefs.  You may very well be able to do this without extra help but if you need me, just contact me.  We can set up an appointment.

By the way, I find this concept is also useful for people who have  been dealing with some serious “stuff” from their past and want to have a sense of “where from here”.  When a lot of time has been spent reviewing the past and connecting it to “why today”, it can sometimes lead you to a stuck place.  You may need a way to move forward from here.  This may be helpful for you.

I would love to hear your comments about this blog.  Have you had similar experiences you can share either privately or on the blog?

Till we meet again,  Marie

PS, if you are receiving this message on Face Book, linkedIn, Twitter or through a friend and would like to receive my infrequent blogs whenever I write one, please go to my web site at http://marieknapp.com and sign up. You will see the spot in the right sidebar or if you are on a small tablet or phone you may have to scroll way down to the bottom.  Input your email and you will receive an email to confirm.  You can always unsubscribe another time if you wish.

Warmly,  Marie

PS: Please send me your comments

Looking Ahead

My good friend Jan Lapp reminded me of a quote from “Women Who Run With Wolves” by Clarissa Pinkola Estes.   During this week before we begin the new year, I gather reflections that I can use as I decide how I wish to be through the coming year.  We each have our own unique roots from which we shine our light. This quote has meaning for me so I share it with you:

“Ours is not the task of fixing the entire world all at once, but of stretching out to mend the part of the world that is within our reach. Any small, calm thing that one soul can do to help another soul, to assist some portion of this poor suffering world, will help immensely. It is not given to us to know which acts or by whom, will cause the critical mass to tip toward an enduring good. What is needed for dramatic change is an accumulation of acts, adding, adding to, adding more, continuing. We know that it does not take everyone on Earth to bring justice and peace, but only a small, determined group who will not give up during the first, second, or hundredth gale. 

“One of the most calming and powerful actions you can do to intervene in a stormy world is to stand up and show your soul. Soul on deck shines like gold in dark times. The light of the soul throws sparks, can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to catch fire. To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these — to be fierce and to show mercy toward others; both are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do.

“There will always be times when you feel discouraged. I too have felt despair many times in my life, but I do not keep a chair for it. I will not entertain it. It is not allowed to eat from my plate. […]

“In that spirit, I hope you will write this on your wall: When a great ship is in harbor and moored, it is safe, there can be no doubt. But that is not what great ships are built for”.

–Clarissa Pinkola Estes

May you allow your ship to leave safe harbour and roll with the risks you take to shine your light that others may see their own inner light.

Happy New Year,

Marie

Reflections on quotes from Frans Stiene

Summer busyness accompanied by dismantled routines distracts me. It is not easy to consistently follow the meditations I had intended to do. Today I begin again.  I remember not to judge myself but the tendency is there and it takes time to let that go and just accept and love who I am.

Frans Stiene’s latest book “Reiki Insights” (available on amazon .com) gives me some thoughts to remember. The Chapter on page 75 is titled “How  to Stop Being Uncomfortable with Ourselves” .  How true that the Reiki practices are not easy and can “stir up stuff”.  Generally we do not like looking deep within ourselves.  The process tends to be an up and down process for me. When I am uncomfortable with “the stuff” I dig up, I f ind myself slowing down my practice and even ‘accidentally’ forgetting about it.

Frans says “It is like trying to train a wild horse; the wild horse represents our confused mind. It takes a lot of effort and patience to train a wild horse and sometimes we fall off the horse and hurt ourselves. We stir up emotions , things we do not want to look at: fear, worry, anger, you name it. But if we want to help others, then it is of utmost importance that we start to tame our own confused mind first.”

It is when I do not want to look at myself that I tend to blame others, or circumstances, or life for what I see as my failings.  We do that, don’t we?  We blame others and/or ourselves, labelling ourselves and others in the process.  How can we get out of that pattern?  First we have to recognize what we are doing.  Oooooh that is a tough one!  How do we get out of this habit when we really don’t want to admit our shortcomings.

Frans tells us “It means that we start to accept ourselves for who we are with all our pain, discomfort, joy, issues and attachments. We start to become friends with ourselves again…  I call this ‘being naked’ with yourself.  Being naked is about accepting yourself completely, without judging or labeling.  It is letting go of criticizing ourselves.  The precept ‘show compassion to yourself’ is pointing this out.” 

This brings to mind the concept of the shadow self. I found reading Debbie Ford’s book “Dark Side of the Light Chasers” meaningful in helping me understand this concept.  Yet “getting it” intellectually does not mean that we are able to make it real for us.  I know in my head that when I see something I react to in another, there is a good chance I need to look at that within myself.  But oh how difficult that can be.  I resist.  And sometimes out of the blue one day, I realize at a deeper level that it is true within me and I need to accept it.  When I finally do that, does it ever change how I view the other.  Little by little, step by step,  I learn more about me and become just a bit more comfortable with myself.

This brings me to a question for you.  In one or two words, can you share with me/us what is the most challenging thing for you to accept about yourself?  Just acknowledging that can be a big step in your process

For me it is the “nastiness”.  You only need to give one word.

I can sometimes speak in a nasty tone with those I love the most.  I do not think of myself as a nasty person. But I am learning to accept that there are circumstances when that nasty side shows its face.  I don’t like it and I deny it but today I realize it is there, showing its face occasionally, but staying hidden from my self awareness.  In accepting it, perhaps it will be less hidden from me.

To end this reflection I quote Frans again: “When we stop labelling and judging ourselves, we reach a state of mind of stillness.”

The Reiki Precepts: Just for Today

Do not be angry
Do not worry
Be grateful
Be true to your way and your being
Show compassion to yourself and other.

Till next time,
Marie

marieknapp.com

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Reiki Heightens My Bruce Trail Experience

Please turn your tablet or phone sideways for a better view.

img_0754Have you noticed that as soon as you start on a hiking trail, as soon as your feet begin to feel the soft earth beneath them and your eyes spot the colours around you and you smell the freshness of the air, that you feel really good  inside? Your vitality begins to pick up, as your heart beats a little faster, your lungs breathe more fully and all your cells feel the improved nourishment from your enhanced circulation?  Being in nature invites my Reiki connection to strengthen. My energy flows more vibrantly and Reiki energy  heals.

With Reiki activated, walking through the trees helps clear the heaviness I may feel in my emotional body.  Worry, anger, jealousy or other heaviness I may feel in my gut, or heart, or across the shoulders begins to move through me. As the sole of my foot touches the earth, the earth draws the feelings out and relieves me of these anxieties.  Energy from the highest power guides the flow.

My brain begins to clear as I breathe in the freshness of the seasons.  My mind gradually lets go of the troubling thoughts that were not solving anything and allows a clarity of “what is important anyways” to rise within. For me, hiking in the woods can be like a Reiki session.

I feel awe. Some places seem to have a richness in sensual experiences. I am grateful and connected to life.  I feel uplifted, inspired, and any emptiness begins to feel replenished. Reiki offers me this higher consciousness way of experiencing nature more fully.  This is why I love Reiki and why I love the Bruce Trail.

http://marieknapp.com

email:  livingreiki@rogers.com

Loving Today

img_0652It may only take a moment to shift your inner being from a place of tension and fear to one of calmness and love. In this state, you function much more effectively and with far less effort.  For best results do it first thing as you awaken.  Later in the day, simply take yourself to a private place away from the energy that has clouded your day.

Breathe deeply, bringing in the love energy that surrounds you even when you are not aware of its presence. Love energy is divine energy connected with the Source or Highest Power.  Let Reiki guide you.   Feel it circulate through your entire being.   Be with it. Experience the love that surrounds you and is within you. Share it with the world around you quietly and with intention.  You have made a difference.

The shift takes longer to read about than it does to actually allow to happen.  Yes it is about allowing.  There are many ways to guide this process for you.  Learning Reiki has been most helpful for me.  Have a loving day today.

Marie
http://marieknapp.com
livingreiki@rogers.com

Today’s Reiki Intentions

Today, I am protected from the influence of negative energies I may encounter.

I am surrounded by white light, filled with a love that is pure, unconditional, non-judgmental and compassionate.

The love energy that surrounds me moves easily within me and is shared freely with those I encounter, simply healing and spreading love without expectations of results or anything in return.

So it is and I am grateful.

Till next time,     Marie Knapp

Why Learn Reiki?

marieWhy learn Reiki if you are not interested in a Reiki practice?  Actually I find that several of my students never intended to actually set up a Reiki practice.  They may offer it to their families and friends but a Reiki Practice is entirely a different focus.

Besides being able to offer it to those you care about in your personal circles, there is also your own self care to consider.  Think about Reiki as an opportunity to find inner peace, to feel more balanced and grounded, to be better able to handle conflicts and puzzling challenges.

Since Reiki energy has no limits, the many uses of Reiki also have no limits.  Below are a few examples of ways you may find Reiki useful for yourself. In the classes for Reiki we teach the hand positions for a self treatment.  While this is useful, it is important to realize that this is only a small part of using Reiki for your own general well being of body, mind, emotions and spirit.

  1. Think of Reiki as a means to connect with the highest creative powers of the universe.  Perhaps you already do that through prayer.  Wonderful.  Reiki will simply enhance that practice.
  2. You may wish to refer to this greatest creative or higher power as God or Universal Energy or whatever is aligned with your personal spiritual philosophy.  It doesn’t matter.  What matters is that it is a source of pure love and strength that is available to you at all times.
  3. Knowing this, it means that when you want to “let go” of an issue, you have a place to send it to for action from a higher source.  I continue to see how this has been very helpful for people receiving Reiki.  Realizing that thinking through a problem does not bring a solution, we can easily feel stuck.  If we don’t think, what do we do?  By handing it off, we are better able to release it from our ineffective patterns of problem solving.  The answer is more apt to pop into our head or show itself in front of us. Try it.
  4. Similarly, we can remind ourselves to ask for guidance.  I have been in situations personally where I was at a loss as to what to say or do.  Asking for guidance is like letting it go because you quit trying to figure it out on your own.  The response is always what is best for all concerned.
  5. When you first awaken, you could begin the day with a simple acknowledgement of that connection, asking for guidance in whatever your day brings.  It helps you to accept life as it is. It helps you quit trying to control everything.
  6. Research is showing more and more positive effects from meditation.  Using Reiki on ourselves or on situations is a meditation.  Whatever kind of Reiki you have studied, use the symbols and process to be still.  Reiki can help you release the mind chatter.  It can be relaxing and help you find the wisdom that is who you are.  It can help you be you.

While this is a mere start of the possibilities of Reiki as a daily life practice or philosophy, I am very interested in reading some of your experiences.  What is your experience with any of the above?  What else do you find useful?  Let’s share our Reiki wisdom.

I have scheduled Holy Fire Usui Reiki 1 and 2 and Master classes (priced in Canadian dollars) in April and May. For more information please check my web site at http://marieknapp.com

Namaste,

Marie Knapp EdD

Holy Fire Usui and Karuna Reiki Master

Going Back 50 years

It has been a rainy day today.  Rainy days have some kind of quietness that moves me inward.  I love reflective moments that deepen my awareness of something even if I struggle with the words to express it all.

I passed an incredibly wonderful weekend with my classmates of 50 years ago.  Can you believe that it was fifty years ago that 89 young single women (key words there because in those days you could not be married and you could not be male in most nursing programs) walked the stage of Convocation Hall in Toronto as graduates of St Michael’s School of Nursing.  It seems impossible.  We come together as though time had not passed.  In fact it is an example of timelessness.  An example of how time is something we only make up to explain change but in reality it does not exist because we simply reconnected as though nothing had changed.

Some of us shared how the bond created back then when as young innocent young women we came together and experienced life and death in ways that we had not realized could happen before.  It was a growing up time and definitely a time of spiritual awakening that affected all of us forever.

We realized that we had become different.  Not just more grown up.  Not just more knowledgeable.  But unique in our commitment to caring and to personal growth.

Some married soon after graduation and some did not.  Some stayed close by and others moved great distances, exploring a world far greater than the city where we studied.  And this past weekend, about 54 of us gathered together again, loving each other, caring about what struggles we had all experienced and marveling at how we had come through them and continue on.  I feel so blessed.

I was a shy little girl way back in my early childhood.  The teachers always had to tell me to speak up and when we had to do our speeches I was terrible. Scared silly.  It took me a while to develop confidence.  The nursing program helped me open up.  I learned more about myself in the process.  Some people said that I was “university material” and should have gone there but for me, I needed that time at St Mikes in order to be stronger within.  I was much more able to handle University when I went there after working a year on Surgery at St Mikes.  Sometimes everything falls into place over time if you just let it.  It falls into place just as it should.

If that little shy girl from my elementary school days me the older adult that is me now, I wonder what she would have thought.  Would little Marie recognize the me that is here now?  Interesting questions.  Would the child and the older adult enjoy each others company?  I think they would.

Life is good.  I enjoy contemplating life.  I suppose that is why I so love offering retreats such as Self care — Soul Care.  It is all connected.  It is who I am.

I still have two spots left in the retreat.  Are you interested?  It will be an inspiring weekend.  You will get to spend some time with some very neat people.  Women who are probably a bit like you.  Give it some thought.  Give me a call and we can talk about it if you like.  You are unique.  Join us to share your uniqueness and strengthen who you are as you work to inspire others.  Nervous about coming alone?  Find a friend or relative to come with you.  Learn more about it here

Namaste,

Till next time

Marie

Fresh starts, new opportunities

With Labour Day weekend over, today feels like New Years day to me.  For so many years of my life the Tuesday after labour day was significant.  Perhaps I was starting something new like a new school year, or a new program at University, or teaching a new class.  Perhaps I was sending the kids off to a new class or a new school or away for university.  My hearts leaps with that remembered sense of fresh start, new learning, new books, clean exercise books, sharpened long pencils.  There is an energy connected with the first week of September.  An energy of exciting anticipation, accompanied by curious flips through new books and new people with whom to connect.  Eager to do well, I imagined enthusiastically completing assignments.  It thrills me to think about it.

I know I am best at starting up new things.  Planning and getting things moving forward are my strengths.  I am not so good at maintenance and finishing up details.  It is good to know our strengths and to have patience with our less developed parts. This summer I willed myself to complete the book I was writing about Mom’s life.  Sticking to completion of the final draft was painful for me.  My struggling attention to detail felt like a snails pace even with the excellent editing and layout help I received.  But I did it.

I have recently purchased a new sewing machine.  Oh it is a smart machine, adeptly computerized to make me look good … maybe.  In the depths of my creative being, I want to be able to sit down and make it do what I want it to do with little effort on my part but … no … that is not possible.  There is a rather steep learning curve requiring my patience to become familiar with its many features.  As smart as it is, it still requires a relatively smart operator to let its features shine.  I am learning through all the struggles.  In spite of my impatience with the process, I know for sure that it is only through more practice that I can actually  work with it more intuitively.  It will come.

How much like life these examples reveal. How much they tell me of what stuff I am made.  How much it helps me learn more about who I am simply by noticing and being aware of my response to these situations. Sometimes it is the simplest of stories that tell us most about who we really are.

What do you notice about yourself?  Are you able to have respect for even your shortcomings?

by the way there are still openings in the October retreat.  I have added a new link to give you a little more information about it.  And I have added October dates for two half-day workshops.  Go to my website at http://marieknapp.com and check out the drop down menu under events for the details.

Till next time,

warmly,

Marie

Meaningful Living

marie in canoeIt may be that we need time in a serene and relaxed setting to contemplate the meaning in our lives.  Or maybe not.  Actually my interest in meaning in life began early in my life and has simply grown and deepened with time.  That doesn’t mean that I have all the answers by any means.  Perhaps it has simply given me more questions to ask.

Just last week someone asked my to tell him about meaning in life.  I only had a few minutes and so summed it up quickly by suggesting he enjoy every moment and spend time with people he enjoys spending time with.  Perhaps over simplified and perhaps not.  Give it some thought.

That brief conversation did prompt me to pull my dusty thesis off the top shelf in my office.  I have started to read it again with intrigue, joy and gladness to see that I have not lost what I learned in that process.  My dissertation was a qualitative research approach where I designed a workshop and facilitative process that was aimed at helping well people enrich the meaning in their lives.  In other words they were not in the darkness of meaninglessness, but rather perhaps at a turning point and wanting to make some changes related to what was meaningful.  I guided them in their own process and them watched the changes they made, listening to their descriptions of it over six months.

It is a big book, this thesis  of mine.  I am not halfway through it yet.  Expect to read more of what I learned over the next few weeks.  The workshop I led was a two-day workshop much like the retreats I lead now.  I still use some of the exercises that I described in the thesis and will revisit them for the fall retreat, likely incorporating more into the process.  This excites me.Russet Hill House  Cottage

At the same time I am reading The Four Purposes of Life by Dan Millman.  I just know that these two pieces of writing are going to merge in my mind and help me create an even deeper retreat experience for fall and again next May.  Maybe you will consider joining me. It will be held in that beautiful space you see on the right.  If it interests you, read more about it here.

Till next time

Marie