Joy is what we are, not what we must get. Joy is the realization that all we want or need in life has been etched into our souls. Joy helps us see not what we are "going through," but what we are "growing to"-a greater sense of understanding, accomplishment, and enlightenment. Joy reveals to us the calm at the end of the storm, the peace that surpasses the momentary happiness of pleasure. If we keep our minds centered on joy, joy becomes a state of mind.
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Everything that's happening in our world is a function of what is going on inside of people. We are violent in our minds. We are violent with one another. We walk past one another in the street and don't even look nor make eye contact - don't speak. We can be outraged about the missiles and the planes. I'm more outraged that somebody will walk past me in the street and not look me in the face and say good morning.
We live in a society where we're not taught how to deal with our weaknesses and frailties as human beings. We're not taught how to speak to our difficulties and challenges. We're taught the Pythagorean theorem and chemistry and biology and history. We're not taught anger management. We're not taught dissolution of fear and how to process shame and guilt. I've never in my life ever used the Pythagorean theorem!
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Self-worth is an understanding on the intellectual level, trusting at the heart level, and accepting at the soul level that you are worthy just because you believe that you are. Your worthiness is proven by your existence. Your breathing. The beating of your heart. Your mere presence is all that is needed to establish your worth.
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What a blessing that God allows a life to come through your body, and then allows you to place that body in a body bag and take it out. I had to say that there's a magnificent something that God has for me to do, to give me that level of completion. That level of experience. It's unspeakable.
Stop hiding! Stop holding yourself back and playing yourself down! Stop worrying about how you look and what people are saying. Stop listening to what people are saying and trying to find out if they are whispering about you. Stop waiting for someone to tell you that you are okay or to make you feel special. Life is special! It is a special gift. This is your life! Now take your gift and live it out in the open! Decide today that you are going to live out loud!
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The only relationship we can have in this life is the relationship we have with ourselves. We cannot love anybody more than we love ourselves. We cannot treat anyone any better than we treat ourselves. When you forget you, give up on you, or devalue yourself, anyone coming into your life has a universal responsibility to follow your lead.
When you know something or someone in your life is unhealthy or unproductive, that you have grown beyond where they are and where they want to keep you, you must let go. If you tell yourself you do not see it when you do, or if you tell yourself it will get better, you are not being honest with yourself. Stop trying to fix things or change things. Simply let go.
Your greatest adversary is also your greatest teacher. Like it or not, it is the job of certain people to bring out the worst in you. What they trigger is already in you. They are here to reveal the sore, tender wounded places in your heart and mind, and they are providing you with a wonderful and divine opportunity for healing.
Until today, you may not have realized that your life provides the content of your obituary. Just for today, examine your life. Think about all of the things you want to leave behind. Remember, the good thing about doing this today is that you still have time to rewrite your life's content if necessary.
When we find ourselves in the same situation repeatedly as a result of our conditioned responses, we must stop and do a new thing. The situation may look different. The route we take there may be altogether different. The lesson we must learn does not change. Get honest! Pay attention! Change what you do to create a change for yourself!
What do you do when it seems as if people want to stay in their pain. They have a story to tell and they tell you every chance they get. Well, believe it or not, they may like where they are. Our job is to leave them there. You can point the way out of pain, but you cannot force them to get out. You can support the move beyond their limitations, but you cannot make the move for them.
As you move through the day, be aware of how you treat yourself. Be aware of what you do to and for yourself, because you set the standard for others. As you grow in your awareness of how you treat yourself, you will probably become aware of the example you have set for others. You may realize that the time has come to set a new example.
If you want to run the show, God will let you. If you want to pull all the strings, that's up to you. If you want to insist that what you are doing is the way it should be done, even when you are not getting anywhere, go right ahead. God will let you run yourself ragged, if you choose to do so. Unfortunately, you may not always be aware that you are in God's way. . . . God has no need to prove to you what God can do.
A stable and nurturing childhood is essential for the healthy psycho-emotional and spiritual development of a human being. While we may understand what is supposed to happen to us physically, we must begin to better understand what happens to children mentally, emotionally and spiritually as a result of the families into which they are born.
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There are times when we do not recognize that it is time for us to move forward. When life is ready for us to move and we resist, life will move us by any means necessary. What may feel like a disaster is actually a graduation. Remain open to being guided, supported and protected by the universe.
Each of us face a moment in our lives called 'the breakdown moment.' This is the time when you must stand toe to toe, eyeball to eyeball, with the very thing you have tried desperately to avoid. In that moment, when there is nothing standing between you and the thing you fear the most, you will be forced to step into your greatness, because that is what life is demanding of you.
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One of the greatest challenges in creating a joyful, peaceful and abundant life is taking responsibility for what you do and how you do it. As long as you can blame someone else, be angry with someone else, point the finger at someone else, you are not taking responsibility for your life.
You must earn what you have. Life does not give you anything. You must give in order to get. You must stand up to the very thing that challenges you, look it in the face, get clear about your intention, order your thoughts and your life, and proceed without fear or hesitation. Life is not unfair. Along the way, you will always find bits of information and support to guide you to purpose.
The process of life is ever unfolding, guiding you, pushing you, preparing you for the next part of the process. Difficult challenges, bad days, upset feelings, moments of confusion are part of life's process. Perhaps these things are there to keep us alert, to make us stronger, or to test our resolve to keep moving forward.
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I think as men begin to see things that address them, they will feel that they can relate. They can't relate to 'Basketball Wives,' 'Housewives of Atlanta.' I am not judging or criticizing those shows at all; what I am saying is the perspective is not necessarily the male perspective. 'Iyanla: Fix My Life' is inclusive of everyone.
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Well the beauty of 'Iyanla: Fix My Life' is that men are in every show. To our surprise, some of the deepest healing demonstrations have been with the men - the sons, the fathers, the husbands - because they agree to participate with the wife or the daughter or whatever it is we are looking at, and it is there.
Finally and most important of all, authenticity means that you must do what you do the way you do it and allow everyone else the same courtesy. There was a time I wanted to be like every famous writer that ever lived. I tried to copy styles, reframe information, use similar artwork. I almost drove myself crazy! Now I just do what I do. I have mentors. There are people whose work I admire, but I write the way I write. I eat the way I eat. I dress the way I dress. I can't believe that God made us each so unique only to have us do everything the same way.
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In silence, we have an opportunity to reflect, listen, and gain new insights about ourselves. In silence, we can think, feel, and most important of all, breathe. When you seek guidance, understanding, clarity, or peace of mind, the first step is to master the art of silence and to rethink the value of solitude.
When you need to be loved, you take love wherever you can find it. When you are desperate to be loved, feel love, know love, you seek out what you think love should look like. When you find love, or what you think love is, you will lie, kill, and steal to keep it. But learning about real love comes from within. It cannot be given. It cannot be taken away. It grows from your ability to re-create within yourself, the essence of loving experiences you have had in your life.
You know when I was 20 and 30, they were insecurities. Now they're just a new normal. I'm 60 years old, so my expectations of who I am and how I look and how I show up in the world had to shift. Not because I couldn't help it, or not because I did anything wrong, but because I had to get into the natural flow of my being as a woman.
I knew all of the childhood prayers I uttered on my knees at the side of my bed. Many years of Sunday-school attendance had etched certain Psalms and rote prayers into the fibers of my brain. However, somewhere deep inside of me, I had the secret belief that I did not know how to pray, and that frightened me.
At every single moment, we are given the opportunity to choose our future. What we do today will determine what we face next week, next month, or next year. It is at the moment of a particular occurrence that we are called upon to make a choice: Will I do it the way I've always done it, or will I do it a different way.
Step into this moment, because it is the only one you have right now. It is not wasted or thrown away. The divine opportunity could be stolen unless you tell yourself it is here right now; available to you this moment, to make of it anything you choose. Why not choose this moment, right now, to be available to yourself by declaring, I AM GOOD! . . . . The richness of the present is here. The fullness of now is present. If you are not here now, it means you could be missing the love, joy, peace and brand-new ideas that are here right now.
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Staying focused on a project or plan is one of the most difficult challenges we face. There is always the house to clean, calls to make, laundry to fold, deadlines to meet. Actually, there is only one thing that keeps us from our goals - lack of focus. And very often, lack of focus is caused by fear.
Forgiveness is a process of giving up the old for something new. Old experiences and memories that we hold on to in anger, resentment, shame, or guilt cloud our spirit mind. The truth is, everything that has happened had to happen. It was a growth experience. There was something you needed to know or learn. If you stay angry, hurt, afraid, ashamed, or guilty, you miss the lesson. You will be stuck in a cloud of pain.
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You can accept or reject the way you are treated by other people, but until you heal the wounds of your past, you will continue to bleed. You can bandage the bleeding with food, with alcohol, with drugs, with work, with cigarettes, with sex, but eventually, it will all ooze through and stain your life. You must find the strength to open the wounds, stick your hands inside, pull out the core of the pain that is holding you in your past, the memories, and make peace with them.
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No matter what is going on in your life today, remember, it is only preparation. People come and go; situations rise and fall; it's all preparation for better things. You must stretch, reach, grow into your goodness. Without the preparation we receive through adversity, disappointment, confusion, or pain, we could not appreciate the goodness when it arrives.
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As people, we have forgotten to be people. We know how to be doctors, lawyers, nurses, teachers, we know what to do, we know what to buy, but how do I just sit with you in your pain? How do I sit with you in your vulnerability and not betray you, not abuse you? We do not know how to do that, even in our homes.
If you are a card-carrying human being, chances are that you share the same fear as all other humans: the fear of losing love, respect and connection to others. And if you are human, in order to avoid or prevent the pain, trauma and perceived devastation of the loss, you will do anything to avoid your greatest fear from being visited on you.