“I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy!”

I love this affirmation, and it has become my go-to whenever I am feeling down on myself.  I make a point to treat everyone as I would want to be treated, and have been awakened to how much less so I do to myself.  I affirm the good, and let go of the past, holding it up like a helium party balloon and let the wind carry it away.  I am struggling forward with rebuilding myself, brainwashing myself to get rid of all the programming, habits and limitations.  Washing my brain for a clean home for my new thoughts.  Thank you, Master Key Experience!

The visualization this week touched me deeply.  As I meditated on bringing a favorite flower that I admire from the unseen past memory to the seen, examining it in my mind, I recalled an experience I had when I was around 5 years old.  My mother had taken my sister, wo is a year older, and I to Branch Brook Park in Newark, NJ to see the cherry blossoms. We walked around, had a bit of a picnic lunch, climbed the trees and did plenty of running around.

When it was time to go we took an asphalt sidewalk under the train tracks.  It was there that I was struck by something so powerful, so amazing, that I remember it to this day.  I had stopped in my tracks and y mother and sister had walked ahead, and were beginning to call for me to catch up.  I yelled to them and said “No, you have to come see this!”  There was a wrinkle in the blacktop of the sidewalk, and at the crest of that wrinkle, there was a crack, and through that crack a flower was coming up.  It struck me that this flower had pushed its way up, through the black top, pushing until the asphalt buckled, kept pushing until it cracked, and then forced its way through this crack to bloom.

I was awed by this flower and the power it evinced, despite its soft and fragile being.  It was expressing the same laws that we are studying and practicing right now in this Master Mind Alliance!  The law of growth, of definiteness of purpose, of persistence and attraction.  I practiced in my mind sitting with this flower as people walked by, rush hour traffic swirled around, and commuter trains rattling overhead.  I leaned in and smelled the flower, felt the outside world recede, traveled back in time to sit there with the little boy that was me as well.

As I meditated on this, I realized that “I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy!”

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I find that I am seeing so many things in a different light.  The repeating “Do It Now”, “I can be what I Will to be”, the laws of giving and receiving, the other daily readings and repetitions are really starting to sink in.  I have had times where I felt like I was getting overloaded and the thought of listening to one more recording, reading something AGAIN, and had resistance, followed by trudging ahead knowing I make this commitment to myself.

And then increasingly, I start to feel giddy, light, like energy is welling up inside of me responding to the call of my actions, my words.  The exercise of the mental diet would bring me down if I did not approach it with a sense of humor.  Being instructed to go seven days without a negative thought, starting over each time we became aware of negative thinking, I became very aware of how many automatically negative inner dialogues arise in response to my experiences.

I have had to start over several times a day, even now I have not made it through a single day.  But I am appreciating this awareness and the opportunity to rewrite the blueprint using the law of substitution.  Every time I recognize a negative or complaining thought, I visualize my dream board, I fill myself with the feeling of my favorite place, remember a smile from my child and take a deep breath.

I can be what I will to be

The Master Key Experience.  It is quite an experience, an adventure and journey in myself, my past and my future.  One of our exercises is to write out clearly and concisely our DMP, or Definite Purpose in Life.  Now in its 6th iteration, it is like the process of distillation.  A few weeks back we talked about Personal Pivotal Needs, PPNs, and as we wrote each of the 7 with our non-dominant hand, we were asked to select the two that most called to us at first impulse without any thought or judgement.  The 7 PPNs are, in no particular order, Spiritual Growth, Helping Others, Legacy, True Health, Recognition for Creative Expression, Autonomy and Liberty.

The two that initially jumped out at me were True Health and Recognition for Creative Expression.  These seemed obvious, as there are many areas in which I could improve my health.  For example: quitting smoking, eating more fruits and vegetables and less meat, getting more exercise, and sleeping in a more regular pattern.  Definitely significant needs for improvements in these areas!  Likewise for Recognition for Creative Expression; I am a musician, a composer, teacher and so my first thoughts were surrounding my ego as a performer and public figure.  However, as my guide kept pointing out, these did not seem to really be showing up clearly in my rewrites of my DMP.

And so at my guides suggestion, I wrote each of the 7 PPNs on a blank piece of paper and began to explore each one more fully by heading the page with these questions to interrogate myself on.  What does this mean?  Why is it important to me? What does it feel like living this life?  I found this to be enlightening, and that I was really connecting more deeply and having more to say on the subjects of Spiritual Growth and Helping Others.  This was followed very strongly by Legacy, the desire to leave behind a lasting positive impact, especially in regards to my children, but professionally as well.

For me, Spiritual Growth has always been closely intertwined with Helping Others, and so in my mind I folded these two into each other and the first of my PPNs.  I chose Legacy as my second PPN to focus on, realizing that bringing each of these forward would automatically have a positive and significant impact on all the other areas simultaneously.  I tweaked my DMP and it seemed easy and natural to weave these themes into my story.  I am looking forward to some direct guidance and coaching to get my DMP to a temporarily satisfactory state that meets the criteria set forth of being clear, specific and emotional with the themes of my PPNs woven in.

I don’t feel like I am starting over, but have reconsidered the focus or realigned the filter through which I am seeing my dream into reality.  I am looking forward to the new challenges this coming week has to bring!

Here I am at week 6 of the MKE MMA experience.  I am very excited to be a part of this experience.  In French the work for experiment is experience, and I am viewing this as both.  I love a challenge, and especially a challenge that leads to personal growth and movement in the direction of my dreams.

I am surprised at the difficulty I have had in clearly writing out my DMP or Definite Major Purpose.  This is something I have held in my mind as an abstract idea for quite some time, and thought that writing it out in detail would be easy.  It proved not to be so!

I appreciate all the help of my coach and mentor in this process, she seems to always know the right questions to ask to send me scrambling back to the drawing board.  Until we are forced to create a clear picture in someone else’s mind, we (or at least I) assume that it is clear and all the details that my mind fills in around the blanks will be obvious to others.  Especially if I keep repeating it louder and louder!

I am getting closer, and the most interesting thing is discovering all the areas in which I actually do not even have a clear picture what I want.  Not that I don’t know really, but that the distance between vague and abstract ideals and the crystal clear articulation is greater than I had imagined.  As this process continues to unfold, I look forward to discovering for myself more about who I am and what I really want!

This has been an eye opening week, full of confrontations with my resistance.  While I knew my mind was somewhat rebellious, I was not prepared for the full on resistance movement I encountered this week.  I started this Master Mind Experience with excitement and anticipation.  The first few weeks steamrolled along, and I was feeling good about it, like this was going to be if not easy, at least easily manageable.

However, after a week’s setback of not meeting my self-imposed goals, a deep seated sense of failure and inadequacy welled up, it’s ugly head roaring like a wild beast intent on devouring me alive.  How many times in my life had I felt like I had conquered thees demons?  How many times had I believed I had buried this part of my inner soundtrack?

Yes, I want to re-program my subconscious, yes I want to change the direction of my life, yes I want more than more of the same.  And so I humble myself before the conglomeration of habits and beliefs that are the outgrowth of my past conditioning, and admit that I am struggling, but also that I am not about to give up the struggle.  And so I sit down at my computer and write.  I all the more fervently do my daily readings, full of emotion, jumping up and down to break through the static and make sure my subconscious hears me.

I agree to trust the process, to continue this experiment, giving it every chance to succeed.  To be continued!

Well this has been a bit of a rough week.  After the first couple of weeks of writing our “chore cards”, now changed to our “service cards”, I was feeling pretty good!  My first week’s chore was done by Wednesday, and I ended up going above and beyond what I had set or myself in the time-frame allotted.  This was sorting through and organizing a daunting stack of paperwork relating to work, mail, bills, etc which were long overdue and had been taunting me for way too long.  This took me about 6 hours over the course of a couple days.

My second week I set myself the task of cleaning out the car.  I got that one done by Wednesday as well, and even washed the interior, again exceeding the basic requirement of the “chore” I had set for myself.  This one was pretty easy, only taking about two and a half hours to complete.

So the following week, when we changed our mindset to service rather than chore, and were encouraged to make this one about doing something for others, I decided that I would oblige myself to complete a couple of musical instruments that I was making for my parents as a wedding anniversary present.  Yes, my amazing parents have now been happily married for 58 years!  I had been bragging on them, but had not completed my gifts in time to send them to arrive on time for their anniversary.  Then I talked myself into not calling them, believing that they would not believe me that I was working on this project for them, that they would assume I had forgotten instead of that I was punishing myself for not having met my self-imposed deadline for finishing and sending them their gifts.

Of course,  thought that making this my “service (chore!)” this week would really push it through.  Well, it turns out that there was over 15 hours of work to get these instruments finished, and due to glues and finishes drying, a defective tuner that I had to searching for a part for, the time for gourds and rawhide skins to soak and then dry, it was pushing me right up to Saturday and they were not yet ready to ship.  It did not help that the goal I had set for myself was not simply to complete them before Sunday, but to have them shipped out by Saturday!

As this became more urgent and less likely, I missed posting a blog for the week, (hence the “late” in the title) fell behind on other goals, and generally felt like a failure.  It had seemed like it would be easy to get this done in a week’s time, but I was not able to accomplish that.  By Saturday afternoon, I had completed both instruments and had them boxed up and ready to go.  But my daughter was auditioning for regional orchestra, and the director instructed us to be there, forty minutes from home, by 7:30am.  For whatever reason we are not allowed to know in advance when each student will be called, and she did not get to audition until after 4pm!  AH!!! Panic!! I am not going to be able to ship today!

Now, upon reflection, as I am about to head to the Post Office and ship not only my parents gifts, but also a card from my daughter and I, a package to my son that was overdue, as well as another gift that had been waiting to go to the post office for nearly a month, I am forgiving myself.  I actually accomplished more than I had set out to do.  Did I forsake the task?  No.  Was I too ambitious with my goal?  Probably.  Would I have done all this without that self-imposed deadline?  Not likely.  Did I fail?  No, I grew.  I realized that without scaling back the demand for excellence on myself, I can allow myself to accept arriving at the pace that my best permits me too, even if it is not what I had initially demanded of myself.  And I can be okay with that.

I find myself this week telling myself to trust the process.  I know this from studying music, that gains may seem incremental or even at times that I have hit a wall, yet continued application of study and practice eventually reveal the progress that is taking place, and at times after feeling as though I have plateaued I experience a sudden jump in understanding and ability.

I am humbled by the resistance that I encounter as I find myself face to face with myself and all the self-doubts creep in.  I observe all the things I do to divert myself from making significant changes in my life, how I procrastinate, distract myself, criticize and judge myself.  In certain moments I am daunted by the self constructed obstacles I have begun to see more clearly, and in other moments I am simply thankful for the clarity with which these this is all coming into focus.

So I find myself alternating between great excitement and enthusiasm on the one hand, and overwhelming despair on the other.  And so I encourage myself to just continue, just keep going on, practicing all the new skills and perspectives being offered through this mastermind process; telling myself that if I do not stop, if I engage with enthusiasm in all the readings, exercises, the practices of mind and body control and mastery, that yes, the results are available even for me.

I do not know where all this is going, or maybe I do have an idea where but no idea how.  In any case, of one thing I am certain.  Where I am now is not where I want to be in my life, I envision more for myself, for my children, for my community.  I have been getting by, but that is no longer enough.  I want it all.  I want to live my dreams, to realize my fullest potential, to transform myself into the best version of myself.  This has always been my desire, but now I have a plan, a coach, a team, and a renewed sense of urgency.

I will not quit, I will not give up, I will not accept half measures from myself, and I promise to see this process through to wherever it may take me.