What is the meaning of success? And is there one true definition? Is there a universal test? Perhaps that ties it to ambition? Perhaps to money… or career? Or how the others view your choices? Is there a word that rings so clear That it drowns out the other noises… I would say no, avoid the stress There is no word that plays the master One’s definition of success Is but another one’s disaster Success is but a state of mind A state of calm and introspection And those who live it always find That it exists in every action… Read more.
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Sometimes my fears get so intense. It’s like my heart is in a vice grip and it’s squeezing all of the optimism and positivity out of me. Fortunately this has happened enough times over my lifetime to know that those fears are not me. They are not my truth. They are seeds that were planted at one point or another and I choose not to give them my power any longer. This is why I celebrate my fears and the anxiety that tends to come with them. Because when it’s on the surface, in my face and surging through my… Read more.
Most of us would change something about our bodies if we could. We (too) often speak harshly about ourselves: Gross. Fat. Ugly. Flabby. Eh, this part is ok. But this part, disgusting. Too big. Too small. Too short. Too tall. Body image is a reflection of our thoughts and belief systems. It is also an indicator of the amount of self love we possess. Stories we have been told. And lies we believe. The weight loss industry rakes in billions each year. People try one diet after another. They ride the wave the media makes. Everyone wants a quick fix to look “good,” whatever… Read more.
After another loud, red-faced argument with my husband, I retreated to my corner to mentally reassert my rightness and curse under my breath. Our angry words hung in the air like trapped dust. We’d had too many of these arguments lately, and I hated how I felt. Like a shrew, the kind of woman who makes a scene in public and you watch, shaking your head and thinking, How could she do that? I hated too the inevitable aftermath: hours, days, of silence, polite avoiding of each other in the hallway, sleeping separately, and the only words spoken questions about food… Read more.
Father Miles O’Brien Riley reflects on some of the people who have passed through his life and inspired him with their insight, inspiration, and love in this series of posts. Occasionally folks will refer to our Riley Family as the Kennedys of the West Coast. Inaccurate of course since patriarch Joseph Kennedy MADE his money SELLING alcohol and our father, Daddy Bill, SPENT his money BUYING alcohol. Most of us Rileys were Republicans but we had close friends who were Democrats like Paul Butler from our home town, South Bend, Indiana who served as National Chairman in 1960 the year… Read more.
When the behaviors of a Type A are out of control, we can take responsibility for situations and outcomes, for the feelings and experience or others, and for absolutely everything around us. We think everything is our responsibility, and thus, within our control to affect. We fear if we don’t take care of everything needing to get done, there will be horrible consequences. The stress coming from being overtaken by our Type-A tendencies, eventually takes a toll on our mood, mental clarity, relationships, work satisfaction, and our health. The goal of this book is to help reduce these negative side effects of… Read more.
Yesterday, during a seminar on intuition, Mel Doerr (our wonderful intuitive) guided us on a meditation. I relaxed my body, imagined a protective healing light all around me, and rose up into the ether. My third eye started to pulsate, I was getting deeper into a trance-like state and then I felt my right arm tingle. It was as if my hairs were being gently brushed. I have had shivers down my spine during meditation before but never anything like this. This was very very real. It was so real that for a moment I opened my eyes to see if… Read more.
On this World Suicide Prevention Day, and every day, may we send our love out to all who are hurting… We Love You Child, I don’t know Why you experience such pain And even though I’m grown up I have no way to explain- Yet I can tell you from experience That life unfolds in stages And sometimes on our journeys We just need a few more pages- So please know you’re supported Even though you feel alone- And talk to someone that you trust Or call them on the phone- And know no matter how you feel You… Read more.
I was sitting around the other day and began daydreaming about horses. I have loved horses with a passion for as long as I was aware of their existence. For decades they consumed my existence. I wanted a horse of my own with every ounce of my being. And always knew one day I would have one. Such magic, beauty. Words cannot describe their magnificence. The smell of a barn, the dust from the paths, the wet mark on the horse’s back from under the saddle, the sound of a canter or trot – ah, nostalgia. Suddenly, it occurred to me that I… Read more.
Father Miles O’Brien Riley reflects on some of the people who have passed through his life and inspired him with their insight, inspiration, and love in this series of posts. This is a love story. Margret-Ann Olsson was 19 entering her junior year at Northwestern; I was 21 and had graduated from St. Patrick’s College and two years of graduate philosophy. She was singing with a small band—piano, bass, drums—exactly like the band I played bass with. Her band was playing at a bar in Elko, Nevada; I was driving home from a 10 week course at the University of Notre Dame… Read more.
The life and death of two prominent and beloved figures were brought into our national consciousness recently: Lou Gehrig and Robin Williams. They brought joy to the lives of others through their respective careers in the limelight—one a professional athlete and the other an entertainer. They died in different ways. Gehrig died slowly and methodically from an illness that now bears his name. Williams took his own life after a long struggle with depression, addiction, and perhaps a different chronic illness looming in his future. Williams’ death brought surprise and sadness. We still ride the ripples as the media presents… Read more.
We are always fascinated by the future. We gravitate to those who say they can predict it. We ask them to look into their crystal ball and tell us what’s in store. We read Nostradamus and try to interpret his visions and transpose them onto the events of the past to see if he’s accurate. We huddle around to hear stories of dreams that turn out to be true. Thinking of this I am reminded of a verse from Jesus Christ Superstar: …Why should you want to know? Don’t you mind about the future Don’t you try to think ahead… Read more.
As a new school year begins, may all children be free from bullying, and know that they are love and loved~ Rhyme for the Sensitive Child ‘Don’t take things so personal’ You hear them say But child I know You don’t see it that way- For I know that you feel Deep like the sea And when you are hurt You long to be free from this world- Yet I’m here to tell you From the wisdom of years From trying to fit in And hiding my tears- That you are so Amazing… That the gifts that you bring… Read more.
The concept of a Type A personality has not been around for long. It was actually identified in the 1950s by two cardiologists, Drs. Meyer Friedman and Ray Rosenman, who were studying coronary heart disease. They found a link between personality types and heart disease. According to their research, they identified three types of behaviors: Type A, which they labeled as competitive, ambitious, impatient, aggressive, and fast-talking; Type B, which is more relaxed and non-competitive; and Type C, which is hardworking, but becomes apathetic when faced with stress. Those considered Type A were more prone to having high blood pressure,… Read more.
Happy Labor Day! When you think about that statement, it seems like somewhat of an oxymoron, wishing someone a happy day celebrating the fact that they have to work. Labor Day was originally created to celebrate the labor movement, dedicated to the social and economic achievements of the workers. It honors the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity and well-being of the country. Yet, if you ask most people, they would prefer to never have to work another day in their life. According to a 2013 Gallop Poll, The State of the American Workplace, 70% of Americans described themselves as… Read more.
Father Miles O’Brien Riley reflects on some of the people who have passed through his life and inspired him with their insight, inspiration, and love in this series of posts. A guest on my half hour TV program, I Believe, in the 1970’s, The Dalai Lama recommends starting every day by remembering that everyone on Planet Earth wants and needs the same two things: to be loved and to be happy. He promised that we would look at everyone with new eyes–family members, fellow commuters, co-workers, shop folks, phone callers, everyone—they are all just like us. Then spend another several minutes… Read more.
All of the local kids I knew picked berries during the summer to make spending money and some to pay for school clothes and supplies in the year ahead. I started picking berries for money at the age of 6. Over the years, I worked the season: first strawberries, then raspberries, a short crop of boysenberries (by far the easiest), marionberries or blackcaps, then blackberries. My aunt Joyce took me with her to the berry fields to “help out” at her summer job and after a full day of picking strawberries, (many of which made their way into my mouth)… Read more.
When fate says “Hi”, what do you do? Is “run and hide” the choice for you? Or are you willing to accept The change in order to adapt? These are the choices that we make The chances are but yours to take For Universe will show the way It’s up to you to seize the day We often wish upon the stars Protected ‘cause they seem so far We want the wishes to come true But they won’t work unless we do The Universe’s not there to please But it is also not a tease It will provide the tools… Read more.
I doubt myself, I trust myself. The vision is clear, then I’m in the fog. I feel powerful and then the next moment I feel like nothing. These are the cycles I go through again and again as I work towards the vision I want for my life and this world. Because I’m usually happy people get the impression that I don’t struggle or have difficulties. This couldn’t be anywhere farther from the truth. I live my life between the space of who I just was and who I am choosing to become. This practice of constantly stretching myself makes for a… Read more.
Over the past month, I was subjected to an evaluation. It got me thinking about the mistakes I made in the past, the mistakes I am making currently and the mistakes I will make in the future because I am human. I always say, “When we know better, we do better.” My wise wing-man told me today, “Man, I can mess up a lotta stuff too– just human nature: make mistakes, learn, try again, fall down, get up, move on, life’s learning cycle.” It took me 40 years to learn this and I’m still learning. I have made a career… Read more.
We all know the story of the man who was trapped in a flood, who refused a ride out of town before the storm, then also refused a canoe, a motorboat and finally a helicopter, saying, “I’ll wait, God will save me”. The story tells us that when the man drowned and met God, he asked, “Why didn’t you save me?”, to which God answered, “I sent you a car, a canoe, a motorboat and even a helicopter. What more were you waiting for?” The reason I share this story with you today is to ask, what are you waiting… Read more.