Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Between a rock and a hard place

It seems to be part of life that at times we are stuck between a rock and a hard place. Knowing we really should do (at least) two things which ar incompatible with each other. Both things having a time constraint, needing to be done ‘now’, having only one body to do them… And there you are.

In and of itself, the fact that we find ourselves in a situation like that is not the end of the world in any stretch of the imagination. The important things is, though, that we don’t allow ourselves to get stuck in that situation. That we take the time to step back from it, re-examine it, and perhaps even come up with more things that need to be done which, for the moment at least, we had overlooked.
This may sound strange as a net step, but it does often help us to put things in perspective. To see that our lives, even though hectic, are not just these two things that need to be done now ~ our lives are so much more!
It is that realization that wil permit us to start prioritizing whatever is happening on our lives; whatever things need to be done ‘now’. Often it will show us that the very first thing to do is to take a deep breath, and to take some fifteen minutes or so of ‘me-time’. Whether we use that to go for a short walk, or just to make ourselves a cup of coffee doesn’t really matter. What matters is that it gives us the opportunity to step away from a stressful situation for a moment…

After that little bit of ‘me-time’ making a list of whatever needs our attention and putting things in order of importance may well guide us into a more productive direction.

And the things that on more than one occasion has totally amazed me is that those two things that made me feel caught between a rock and a hard place, weren’t numbers one and two on that list. Yes, they made it onto the list, but more like in 5th and 7th place or so… Almost invariable I have found that there is a different path with different priorities that turns out to be way more productive for me at that particular point in time.

It shows that, while it is fairly normal to encounter a situation where we feel caught between a rock and a hard place, there is always an innovative, unexpected path leading to greater productivity.

Friday, September 26, 2014


The sound of whistles is carried this direction by the wind. They signal that the engineers are moving the antique equipment in the railroad museum, about a mile from where I am at. It is tempting to walk over and have a look as the old steam engines are brought back to life, and monumental pieces of railroad history slowly start moving again, spitting out billowing clouds of smoke and steam.
The magic of the big wheels turning, the proud look on the face of the engineer, and the hard labor to feed the fire at the heart of the huge locomotive…

The whistles are most definitely sounds of an era long gone. A time when pretty much any journey, no matter how short to today’s standards, was an adventure. Not only because of the opportunity to explore new things, but because of the trip itself. To be brought to this other place at ‘breakneck speed’, pulled over the rails by this enormous, magical beast that is spitting out steam as it moves along. Hearing the cadence of the wheels, and the warning whistle whenever the engineer felt someone was to close to the tracks as he approached.

There are still places where the whistles sounds at the train’s approach of every railroad crossing. It is a safety feature, warning those that feel they can still make it across before the train actually gets there.
Yet somehow the magic has gone from railroad travel, as it has been relegated to being a quick and easy way to get from ‘A’ to ‘B’, especially in urban areas. It is a manner in which big, heavy loads can be transported across the country. Perhaps not that fast, but certainly reliable.
And arguably the biggest advantage of taking the train nowadays is the fact that you can sit down and get some work done. Trains even have WiFi, so you don’t have to miss a beat as you prepare for that meeting, or are doing your homework.
And looking outside is no longer something that sparks awe and wonder, but rather a check to see how much further you need to go.

A sign of the times…

We tend to speed ourselves from one event to another, whether that is by ‘train, plane, or automobile’, totally focused on the event; on what needs to be done. And maybe even on what we get out of it. The trip, the actual getting to where we have to go, has become an inconvenience rather than the adventure it used to be back then…

And somehow it feels like a shame to have lost that magical experience…

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Taking time

It seems that in our lives today pretty much everything is scheduled. Even the smallest things are being done ‘by appointment’, and the question is more and more often whether we can fit it in our calendars.

That, in and of itself, is not a bad thing. At least as long as we can fit ourselves into our calendars as well. Setting up a time for our personal needs and desires. And, when we have made it into our own calendars, do we have the sense to keep that appointment with ourselves? Even when something ‘important’ comes up like a friend who would like to come over and hang out? Or something work related?
Do we tell the other person: ‘Sorry, I got an appointment’; even when it is with ourselves?

Ultimately, the real question is if we are willing to take time for something.
Often, when that something is work related we are. Also, when other people are involved we tend to keep that appointment. Yet taking time for ourselves seems to be hard to do…

And even then some things are easier than others. Taking time to smell the roses is part of life. Taking a time out; creating a little ‘me-time’. Most of us are well aware that we just need those things on a more or less regular basis.
But what about taking time to just be. Taking time to truly see the environment you find yourself in at that very moment? Taking time to appreciate your personal experience in whatever situation you find yourself in?

It seems that on average we are willing to take time for things and people, as long as we can schedule it. Taking time to be aware of the experience of the moment ~ of this very instance ~ is a lot harder. Perhaps because we feel we are losing something when we take time for it…

Losing the much needed time in our possibly too filled up schedules. Losing an opportunity that awaits us right around the next corner. Losing a different, more interesting experience…

On second thought, when we take time to be in this moment, we tend to be more effective in what we are doing. When we take time to be aware of what is going on around us, chances are we are going to find ourselves less and less in unexpected, chaotic or scattered situations that need our immediate attention.
When we take time to be, we may well find that it is time well spend…

Friday, September 19, 2014


There have to be thousands upon thousands of colors.
It doesn’t matter where we are, we are continually surrounded by them. Even in the middle of the city there are colors. Granted, they may be tones of grey, and brown. Dark and dusty colors. But they are colors nonetheless.
When we find ourselves in nature there are ~ depending on climate etc. ~ greens and browns, earth tones, and life in all colors imaginable.
And then there are the ‘in your face’ colors that we create. Perhaps as an art form, or to make a point. Some colors are associated with certain trade marks ~ ‘Ferrari red’ comes to mind.

There are colors we like, and those we dislike. Colors that make us look good and healthy, and colors that we really shouldn’t wear, no matter how much we may like them as a color.
And there are colors that make us feel good…

Sometimes, when we keep looking long enough at a shape or form, perhaps a piece of art or something natural like a tree, we start seeing colors around its outline, like an aura. As if those colors are emitted from that object.
Those often are a different brand of colors; almost as if they are painted in light.

It may well indicate that we ourselves also emit colors. Colors that we, in our everyday lives, don’t see, Colors that are there and that perhaps even are giving information about us to those sensitive enough to pick up on them.

Some people dream in colors; not just in color images, but in bits and pieces of color. To them certain colors have certain meanings which they may use in order to interpret their dreams…

All in all, whether we are consciously thinking about it or not, colors are an important aspect of our lives. And as the frequency of the energy we live our lives in is increasing, we may well start experiencing colors differently.
Start liking different colors, or hues, or tones. For instance that bold red color we have always likes so much may be a color that is replaced by a more earthy red. And while perhaps our wardrobes were filled with certain colors, we may find that suddenly other colors start creeping in…

Whichever colors we like best, life is beautiful in all its colors, even the dark and dreary ones…
If for nothing else that it gives us information. For instance about how comfortable we feel at a certain place, or with a particular person…
On top of that we, ourselves are quite full of color as well!


Tuesday, September 16, 2014


According to the dictionary, an omen is a ‘portent of good or evil’. So at the least, an omen is bringing to your attention that something is about to happen in your life. But what is an omen? When is a cat just crossing the street, and when is a cat crossing the street telling you to be careful in traffic?
As a rule of thumb, whenever something happens, no matter how simple it is, whether it is an every day occurrence or something you have never seen before; if it grabs your attention, if it stops you in your tracks, or just gives you food for thought, chances are it is an omen.
In other words, if a cat crosses the street (gets safely to the other side), but you hardly ever saw it; it may not be an omen for you. Yet if a cat crosses the street and not only do you see it, but you take a moment to admire its great agility, it may well be an omen for you.

What an omen is telling us is intently personal. It is best deciphered through a process of free association, where you write down what just happened, and write above it your first association with each word or concept. The associations will then give you an indication as to what the omen may be about.

So what we end up with is that each and every thing that happens during our day that truly grabs our attention may be an omen. Up to us to take the time to decipher them or to just move on with what we are doing… Personally I have a tendency to just keep living my life…

But every once in a while I see something, or something happens that sticks in my mind.

Last week while on the road, I was passed by a car that had advertising on its sides and rear. It was an older model, green Mercedes. The windows were rolled down, and the passenger blew the smoke of a cigaret out of the open window. Then I read the advertisement: “Karma Diagnostics” with a ‘0900’ number one can call.

It most definitely stopped me in my tracks. As the green Mercedes zoomed off in a different direction than I was going, the scene, the car and the advertisement kept playing through my mind.
I would say that is an omen!

There are any number of things it can be telling me, from good (or bad) karma coming my way, to a sign that I finally am getting a handle on that life lesson I have been working with for so long, to let go of ‘old ghosts’ (the cigaret smoke blown out of the window).

One thing is certain, as an omen, it doesn’t get a whole lot more interesting and curious than this.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Feeling and feelings

Lately I have come across more and more people who do take the time to ponder ‘feeling’ and ‘feelings’. People who find it important to distinguish between the emotional feelings and the sense of touch, or the sensory perspective in general. People who feel that the next step on their personal paths is to deal with their emotional feelings, to transform those so they no longer get wrapped up in emotional circumstances and situations filled with drama. People who may seem a bit ‘stand-offish’ until you see that their detached manner of interaction often will permit them to see a larger picture on what is happening…

Invariably, when they find themselves getting emotional, they will ask themselves what has happened to instigate that emotion. They will strive to see, whether they are part of that situation, or just observing it, what it is in themselves that prompted the emotional reaction. And what they themselves can learn from that.
The next step is to transform the emotion, and to take a step back from the situation to see it from a more detached point of view.

It is a way to simplify life in a very specific manner.
Not through getting rid of material ‘stuff’, but rather through letting go of emotional ‘stuff’ and in doing so greatly reducing the ‘drama content’ of our lives.

That being said, it is not by any means an easy path to walk. It requires us to have the absolute willingness to see everything that happens in our lives that we feel a reaction to inside ourselves as something that is about us. Nothing is ‘just out there’; especially not if it touches us emotionally or if it touches our lives. We are part of it, and it is up to us to learn from it, to transform it, and to detach from it in order to see whatever happened as part of a larger whole…

It means that there is nothing happening in our lives that ‘someone is doing to us’. And while we may get wronged from a factual perspective, for instance when something would be stolen from us, even then there is an aspect within ourselves we can transform to ensure we won’t have to experience that type of situation again.
It means we are taking total responsibility for our feelings, total responsibility for our lives.

It also means that we interact more and more through our sensory awareness, together with our more mental, reasoning abilities.
And ultimately we gain tremendous insight into ourselves, the world around us, and perhaps even the universe…

Wednesday, September 10, 2014


In a sense we can divide people in two groups. Those who are more mentally oriented, and those who are more ‘feeling’ oriented. And while each group has their own pitfalls, one isn’t any better than the other. They just have a different way of experiencing the world around them.

Because of the different ways of relating to what is happening in their lives and in the world in general, it turns out that both groups can have a really hard time to get their point across to each other.

When a more mentally oriented person has reached a coherent, logical conclusion he or she wants to share; a more ‘feeling’ oriented person may not be able to translate that logical conclusion into a feeling they can comprehend.
And the other way around, when a ‘feeling’ oriented person has a strong and clear sense or feeling as to what is happening; a more mentally oriented person may keep asking ‘well, what does that mean?’, ‘what is the reason?’.

To confuse things even further, ‘feeling’ is a word used for both experiencing emotions, as well as for sensory perception. And yet ‘feeling the love’, while wonderful, doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with the sense of touch…

The feeling of emotions, whether they are ‘positive emotions’ like love, pleasure, joy, etc. or ‘negative emotions’ like anger, or frustration, are things we feel inside of us, independent from how we experience the world around us. And while these emotional feelings can have a huge impact on our lives as we can get totally caught up in them, their transformation is an ‘inner job’ we can only do ourselves.

Feeling as is connected to our sensory perception, the use of our (inner) senses, has everything to do with how we interact with the world around us. They are usually experienced from a much more detached perspective; more like a signal we may pay attention to. For instance when we have the feeling something is about to happen. That feeling may result in us paying just a little more attention in traffic, and as a result we ‘feel’ we are better off taking an earlier exit than we had planned. As a result we may have avoided an accident just a bit further up the highway…
(The mentally oriented way to do the same thing might be to decide to take that earlier exit after the traffic report talks about an accident just a bit further up the road. It is a conscious, logical, perfectly reasonable decision…)

Feeling, as in using our (inner) senses, is just another path to get where we want to go.

Friday, September 5, 2014


There are quite a few things we seem to do randomly, without giving them much thought. It even seems like more and more people operate that way, not necessarily because they are not organized, but rather because they are organized in a different manner.

In a world in which we still highly value logical reasoning, and thinking things through, following a more intuitive guidance does come across as random. And while there sometimes doesn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to the way in which someone is taking steps in order to accomplish their goal ~ as they seem to go about it randomly ~ that doesn’t mean that they won’t reach their goal. As a matter of fact, it more and more often so happens that they seem to reach their goals easier, more smoothly than those that follow the path of reason who have thought the whole process through…

As it turns out, using logic or intuition to get where you want to go, are both valid options; in all reality neither one is better than the other. It all depends on what is the easier route for you to go; what fits your way of sorting things out best.

But whether you are a logical thinker or a more intuitive person, at times we all have random thoughts that drift into our awareness. It can be the sudden thought that we are almost out of pet food, so we’d better pick some up, or a line of thought that is almost a daydream, half wishful, half reality…
Either way, those random thoughts have something to tell us.

This is especially true when over an afternoon or so, we keep becoming aware of a series of apparently random thoughts. And rather than pushing them away with the thought that we ought to be focussing better on the task at hand, we could benefit from writing each random thought down on a note pad.
This serves two purposes. First, having written it down, there is no need to keep thinking about it, and so chances are we won’t be distracted by that particular thought any further. Second, when we are having a number of random thoughts in a fairly short period of time, they are likely to interface with each other. Randomly…
Yet reading them back from our notepads makes it easier to see the common denominator, and it is this commonality which may point us to something that is happening in our lives that we should pay a little more attention to.

As it turns out, neither random processes, nor random thoughts come to us at random at all…

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Sun and rain

The weather is funny today. One moment the sun is out and the temperature rises to a comfortable, if not warm summer level, only for the sun to disappear, the temperature to drop quickly; and before you know it big drops are falling from the sky.

Nature loves it!! It definitely thrives this summer!

And, if for nothing else, this type of weather does create the most wonderful picture opportunities with some moments towering white cloud formations against a back drop of blue skies, and the next dark grey, almost bluish clouds that really sets off the trees still highlighted by the sun.

Observed as elements, this kind of weather allows for fire and water to exchange places any number of times in a day. Looking at it that way, it would give us the opportunity to ponder our emotions.
How do we experience our emotions? Do we feel them and sit with them endlessly? Relish in them even? Or do we fully enjoy the good times, while noticing the ‘bad’ emotions as signals to change direction in our lives?

Emotions, or the water element, definitely has a place in our lives. As long as we don’t get stuck with them. On the other hand, actions, or the fire element can help us change direction, or take steps in the direction we set out in already. A good thing as long as we don’t forget to take time every once in a while to smell the roses.

So, perceiving this changeable weather as elemental qualities, may point us in a direction of re-examining how much time and energy we spend with our emotions, and how much time and energy is action oriented. Do we have a productive balance between the two?

Yet the most beautiful aspect of these days when sun and rain change places so often are the rainbows that keep popping up!
The colors reflected in the rain just outside the window. The colorful bands of energy that span both sides of the landscape; sometimes twice, one above the other…

They are truly bridges.
Bridging two sides, whether physical or in energy; or even etheric. And as the bridge they are they span the whole spectrum, from deep indigo to bright red, and everything in between.

I can’t help but wondering when I see a rainbow, where is this bridge leading to?
Is it pointing me into a new direction? Is it guiding me toward unknown places, new energy frequencies?
Or is it just trying to get my attention to hand me that ~ when finally I see it, obvious ~ solution I was searching for?