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I’ll Take 2 Advil and a Fetal Position, Please

 When we have a headache, or even sore muscles, taking 2 Advil is an acceptable thing to do. Have you ever been hurt so badly, you want to take 2 Advil, curl up into a ball and suck your thumb? There are many sayings about human suffering…the world would be perfect, except for humans! While pain is an inevitable part of our existence, coping with pain is not something that we all do well.

When I coach people, the first thing that I suggest to my clients is for them address their perspective on pain. This is something that is really helped by journaling time. Each night before going to bed, write your feelings. Write what you are angry about, what you can find that is good, just write. Don’t correct grammar or spelling. Be completely transparent. After two weeks of journalling, take a look at your journal entries. How is your pain showing through? There may entries about the person that caused you the pain like, “John was so unreasonable again today. He wouldn’t come to an amicable settlement for the kids.” When you read the entries, are things always being done to you?

When I first left my former partner, I stayed in that mode for a while. “He did this”, or “He won’t agree to that”. Playing the victim was so easy. I got pity from the world as a victim. My favourite saying to people in recovery is this, “Being a victim can get you many things for free, but it won’t give you your freedom”.

I now ask you, can you make some choices to change the outcomes that you get? If you look at your pain in a different light, can you see that it can be a catalyst for change in your life? Your pain can be used to help other people through the same thing that you went through.

Remember, you cannot have a triumph without a trial. As you journal, try to look for positive ways to look at your pain. It can help take away some of the sting. Dr. Wayne Dyer says, “Change the way you look at things, and the things you look at change.” Advil doesn’t have to be your best friend!

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

There’s a Label for That…

She’s a bit strange. He’s a hustler. I’m having a bad hair day. She’s divorced.  He’s got a disability.

Tags, or labels, as a society, we live with them. There are some labels that I love to wear~adventurous (a new one for me), loyal and sympathetic are a few. Being a divorcee was a label that I didn’t want to wear. How often do we put a label on things that we do not understand? Or things that we have a previous experience with, be it negative or positive?

Labels can hold us back from having a meaningful or enjoyable experience. Have you ever been invited to a party, and figured that you were not going to have a good time based on the host, or even the location? Do you believe cannot achieve something based on your experience or training? Have you labeled yourself as being an underachiever, or even unlucky? (By the previous statement, I am not saying that you can be doctor or lawyer without finishing the necessary training.)

Many labels are not flattering. They may have been given to us as far back as childhood. Living up to them, or shaking them can cause us undue stress and negativity. These tags may not have been given to us by someone who even knew us well, or had our best interests at heart. They may have been jealous, or spiteful when they labeled us. And yet, we will go through our lives living in the box that these people have built for us.

We only get one go at this life. Second chances sometimes come our way, but we don’t have to wait for those. We an take the hand that we are dealt now, and look at life through our eyes, not someone else’s.

A lot of the things that I blog about are not easy. However, looking at life through your own eyes, ensures that you can take the credit for your actions. And, wouldn’t it be great to have that smug assurance that you were called an underachiever, but became a philanthropist and a millionaire?

Philanthropist. Millionaire. I’ll take that label!

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

Maybe Soppy, But It’s Still Touching…

One of my friends posted this video link.  It brings me to tears because I posted yesterday about giving.  I hope you enjoy it.  It’s a bit long for our microwave world…but then again, I don’t use a microwave~or a TV for that matter!  🙂

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

 

Tighter than Cling Wrap

Are you “tight” with your things? How about your past? I had things down pat when I was living in my marriage. I had my life down to a turbulent science. Yes, my former partner was not the kindest person, but I knew where the mortgage money was coming from…and if I worked, I probaby knew where the grocery money was coming from as well. Things were bad, sometimes VERY BAD, but I had a family. A real life family. Forget the fact that we had a facade when we went out. We still were a family!  I was tight with my crazy life!

 I know say, “What a crock!”  I literally wasted 23 years of my life because I was attached to a false idea. An idea of a perfect family…an idea that I didn’t want to be divorced. An idea that my God wasn’t gracious. An idea that I couldn’t live without my former partner. Twenty-three years of crying into a pillow!  I repeat, “What a crock!”

 And then I was out! On my own in Toronto, with three semi-grown kids and a grandkid. (If you believe that your kids don’t pick up on your actions, I have stories for you!) What else could I be attached to? Oh yes, stuff! Even though I could part with many things, they were familiar to me, and comforted me in my new life. But, they were also a reminder of my past life and its negativity. These things could be used to help pay the rent, help fund tuition, pay for groceries…the list could go on. We may know that an object is not serving any real purpose in our lives, but we still hang on to it.  Why is that?

 For me, hanging on to my things was something that I started noticing was a problem. Soon after I left, I no longer owned a car or a house. All I had was my STUFF. Those were my possessions. They were all that I had. I couldn’t let them go! But I started to see how ridiculous that was, in light of the fact that I had two dining tables and one dining room. I had the dining table from my previous house, plus an antique one that I had gotten for a song. How dumb is that?

 After you leave a marriage, it is natural to want to hang on to things. You have lost so much. If the marriage was abusive, you lost a lot before you even left! Letting go of your attachment to things is a hard concept to grasp, but it is achievable. Letting go frees you to have other things come into your life. When you are hanging on to things, you are fearful that something will not replace it. You are operating from a place of lack. Detachment and release, however, function from abundance. You are saying, I am not afraid of letting this go because something else, and probably something even better, will take its place. Nature abhors a vacuum. If there is an empty space, it’s gonna get filled!

 I repeat, I am not saying that letting go is easy. It takes guts, and tremendous willpower. But I am learning each and every day, when I give~or let go~I get. Sometimes it is time, sometimes it’s things. Sometimes it’s a complete surprise of a generous gift. For instance, I have been volunteering for years with kids at a local school, never thinking anything of it. Recently, someone has decided to gift me her time to show me business tips. She is a seasoned businesswoman, so this is a fantastic opportunity. I let go of my time a few hours a week for the kids, and I believe that this is my reward. Giving financially to charities also brings similar rewards.  Nature must fill a vacuum.

 Are you tighter than Cling Wrap with your past, your time, your money, or your things? Let go! You will start to become more peaceful when you realize that there’s more than enough to go around. Besides, you cannot embrace something new with a clenched fist!

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

What’s In a Name?

I have always been very big on what a person‘s name means.  Sometimes people behave in one manner, and people are puzzled by their behaviour.  I usually Google their name and get an answer really quickly.  Names are huge factors in our personality, I believe.

When I had my girls, I gave them each unique names.  My challenge was to find a meaning for these obscure names, or use the meaning of a name that was close to theirs.  I remember spending weeks pouring over name books (internet was not an option at the time) to get information on each one.  I then gave my findings to each of them printed on fine paper and framed.  I’m pleased to know that they have treasured these simple gifts, and it is the first thing to go up in any room that they call theirs.

As I was going through my separation, I knew that I would need to change my name.  I didn’t want to carry around a name from such a past as mine.  However, I loved my married name!  Everyone said it had a nice ring to it.  But, I was no longer that person.  I was also no longer the person that I was when I carried my maiden name, either.  What could I do~based on my penchant for choosing a name?  To add to the problem, when I applied to change my name, the Government informed me that I was not my married name, either.  I had assumed my married name.  Legally, I was still my maiden name.  No wonder I was so confused all the time! 😀

Searching through my genealogy, I looked for a name that would make me into the person that I saw myself becoming.  I decided to take the name of my maternal grandfather.  Now, I carry both sides of my family in my name.  But more importantly, the name reminds me when I am going through “stuff”, that I can get through it.

Tomorrow, I am going to do something that requires me to embrace my name with all the passion I can muster.  I will be on Toronto’s  favourite radio station, CHFI, and the Breakfast Television Show simultaneously.  While there, I shall be talking about Violence Against Women on behalf of the Canadian Women’s Foundation, and sharing my story.  I have been somewhat low-key about the whole thing.  I have not shared that I will be on television to many people…Until now.  Actually, my story has been on both CHFI’s and Breakfast Television’s websites for the past two weeks.  “Quietly”, I have been telling the world about what I’ve been through.  Telling my story is my calling, but as of tomorrow, it will no longer be quiet.

As I go forward as the new me, “the Princess who is a Courageous Giant”, I don’t believe that I won’t have problems.  Far from it!  However, I do know that I will need to stand tall and doubt myself less.  No one runs away from a Giant (except in the case of David and Goliath).  And if she maintains a good public presence, most Princesses are adored.  I can Courageously go forward in that knowledge.

What does your name mean?
I remain, Stephanie Titus-Andrews
Emerging Princess

May Your Cup Always Be Full!

For all the people you know named “Stephanie”…bet you didn’t know that this song existed!  (It may be kinda hokey, but it’s MINE! :D)

Now What?

Stephanie T, aka Emerging Princess, gives one of the first steps that she recommends that help keep you centred, after leaving a relationship.

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

Now What?

Brian Tracy

Yesterday, I went to a Brian Tracy all-day teaching. That in and of itself was not significant, but as I was coming home, I started pondering on some things.

Brian Tracy was helpful in my preparation and recovery from my abusive relationship. As I was getting ready to leave, I would listen to him and other inspirational speakers. I knew that I needed to have a change in my mind if I was to succeed at getting out of my relationship with my mind intact. I subscribed to Brian’s information e-mails, and had an inspirational e-mail delivered to my inbox each day. I read his book “Reinvention”, as I knew that I needed to find out who I was again. His “Focal Point” book kept me focused on my goal of leaving.

Blah, blah, blah…so what? I realized again, yesterday, that many people will not even enlighten their minds with a book, much less an all-day seminar. As I am getting my business going, I have made specific decisions. I have chosen not to go into debt. Last year, I sold my car, and am taking public transit. Normally, that doesn’t mean anything, but my seminar yesterday was in another city. I had many challenges getting there in the morning, and a freak storm to muddle through on the return trip. I still got there on time, and stood with other determined souls at the bus stop on the way home. A few weeks ago, I spoke of another seminar that I went to. On the Sunday morning, I had a good distance to walk to get to that seminar on time. The buses did not start running until later in the day. I could have rented a car, but I walk an hour each day anyways. I looked at it as getting my exercise for the day.

Many people are content just to get by from pay cheque to pay cheque. I am not such a person. I am looking to make a change in my world. I am looking to make a change in the lives of women who have been affected by divorce, especially if there is abuse attached to it. I am hoping too give direction to young girls, informing them about building their self-esteem so that abuse does not happen to them.

You see, right now, as Oprah said, I “prefer the pain of discipline over the pain of regret”. I’m “doing the best at this moment, to prepare me for the next moment”. Eventually, I’ll be driving a car again. I may choose to get some of the “things” that I would like to have. I hope to even start a foundation to help those less fortunate. But for now, I choose not to add a car payment to my list of bills.

Are you hungry enough? As you recover from your own problems, whether it be abuse or something else, will you stand at a bus stop in a storm to get better as a human being? Will you be willing to walk to a seminar that would help change your mental attitudes for a lifetime? Will you be willing to invest in YOU? Or are you content with a temporary “fix” that will fade like the sunset, because it feels good NOW? Hmmm…

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

The Outsiders

On Friday, I went downtown in my beautiful city. I love venturing to Toronto’s city centre. There is no shortage of beautiful sights, and interesting people! That day had an extra dose, for some reason. There was a myriad of university students smoking marijauna! Not a lover of the smell, I ventured into the Eaton Centre, and found my way to the Indigo bookstore. I love reading, so it was a natural place to settle for a while.

The discount tables often offer some fantastic deals. Besides, I had a gift card that I wanted to spend. Soon after I arrived at the table, a man came up to me and said, “Excuse me Ma’am, could you spare $2 for a cup of coffee?” I proceeded to grill the man as to why he needed MY two dollars.

This isn’t something that I normally do. Most times, I just give the change that I have laying around. If I’m on the ball that week, I would have gone to Tim Horton‘s and gotten a bunch of $5 gift cards. This way, I can be sure that the money won’t go to drugs; although to be quite certain, they won’t be getting proper food, either! But, I wasn’t ready to part with my $2 without some answers.

Why did I decide to engage that particular person is beyond me. He was fairly well-kept. His hair was not nappy, he was clean. However, after asking him why he was begging and not working to pay his way, I got a story that pulled at my heart-strings.

Daniel came to Canada with his mother years ago. From the conversation, his mother is not readily available to interact with her son. He eloquently explained that he is alone, trying to get his life together after being in a hospital for a while. He, however, did not want to be in the hospital. Daniel has schizophrenia.

I stood in the bookstore and thought, “I could feel alarmed, but I don’t”. You see, his problem was that society has ostracized him. He has not been able to find a job because who wants to hire someone with the word “schizophrenia on their resume?

As I listened to Daniel, I realized that I had a lot of negative stereotypes about what a person with schizophrenia looked like. He spoke well. He actually engaged me and made me want to know more. He was intelligent. The bookstore was one of his favourite hang-outs. One of his past times was reading Shakespeare. I don’t even read Shakespeare! Daniel and I talked for at least 20 minutes. I thought that I would like to keep in touch with him, so when he asked me for my number, I gave it to him as we separated.

As I left, I thought, “I just gave a perfect stranger my phone number”. Was I wrong to do so? Only time will tell. I do know that my conversation with him has made me ponder: We as a society are so quick to ostracized someone that doesn’t “fit in”. I know how Daniel feels. I have been shunned by the religious community because I am divorced. I have been pitied because I left an Abusive marriage. Looked-down on because I was larger (I call it fat). He was, and I have been one of “The Outsiders”.  I needed to shed MY hang-ups to let this man into my life, however that may look. I needed to be open to the fact that he may be able to teach me a thing or two about endurance, as he has been through more that I probably could have endured. I need to learn to trust. I have been badly burned by men, so it’s easy to dismiss them. I could dismiss him as being insignificant.

Last night, Daniel called. When I conversed with him again, he expressed to me how grateful he is to God for being alive. He is thankful that he has a place to call home and food to eat. “Life is good”, he said. WOW! I have embraced gratitude, but to be in his predicament, would I be thankful as well? I hope so.

I know that it was risky giving Daniel my phone number, but I think that we sometimes don’t take enough risks in life. I’ve already wasted 23 years in an abusive marriage, what have I got to lose? Oh yeah…”What if Daniel is lying?” I’ve met “normal” people who have disappointed me over and over again. I’ll take the chance on this person!

Have you ever taken a “chance” on someone? Please tell me. I’d love to hear your story.  🙂

May your cup always be full,

Emerging Princess

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Is Chocolate Really All That Bad?

As a chocoholic, I always looked for information to justify my love for the dark, delicious treat.  However, as I got older, I narrowed my picks of chocolate to only dark, 70% or darker.  That way, I didn’t have to eat as much to get the satisfaction.  A few months ago, however, I cut it out of my diet almost instantly.  Apparently, my beautiful heart does a wonderful dance, aka Pre-Ventrical Contractions, when I have too much caffeine.  So, the coffee had to go, too.  In actuality, I didn’t consume much of either~one cup of coffee every other day or so, and the same with the chocolate…1/2 ounce every couple of days.  One weekend, I imbibed on free coffee, chocolates and desserts, as I went from event to event.  An ensuing hospital stay has sworn me off having orgies of chocolate, like that one, and those from my youth.  I am now able to have just a tiny bit when I go out.  When I say, “No thank you”, people think that I have tremendous willpower.  If they only knew! 😉

The following video shows a healthy balance when it comes to eating chocolate.

May Your Cup Always Be Full,

Emerging Princess

www.createdtoexcel.ca

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Water For The Journey

Book Release PartyOctober 25th, 2013
The long-awaited release of Water For The Journey: 156 Days To Freedom. All day givaways and book release party!
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