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Story Within

Here we are again, at the time of year when we are invited to change our lives by making New Year’s resolutions.  So we set goals, but after the first few weeks they begin to fade.  Why does that happen?  Because healing does not come from trying to make yourself or your life into what you think it should be.  In fact, whatever you want to get rid of you actually empower (and if you look closely, you will see most of your goals are about getting rid of something you don’t like so you can get to what you perceive as the good stuff).  You may say you are going to go on a diet or exercise more or spend less, but after a short period the compulsion that fuels the behavior gets stronger!

A big part of healing is about meeting what is, discovering that what’s in the way IS the way!  There is another powerful aspect of healing which is all about intention.  Webster’s Dictionary defines intention as “a determination to act in a certain way.”  That sounds suspiciously like a goal to me and goals so often require so much effort and so little return!  In my world, intentions are all about feeling the energy that is present, rather than thinking about what we want to happen in the future.  An intention is not about something you have to do.  It is about allowing yourself to feel what is calling to you.

Let’s imagine that you have a longing to sail around the world.  You have set all sorts of goals and it is just not happening.  With intention, you instead imagine sailing around the world and then allow yourself to feel what kind of feeling states this brings up inside of you – maybe it is freedom, spaciousness or adventure.  Then your intention is to generate those feelings inside of you.  You may or may not sail around the world, but you are claiming the feeling states that you thought sailing would bring you!   When you allow your energy field to open through your intentions, the creativity of life partners with your energy.

Now let’s imagine that you want to set a goal for having a mate in your life.  Rather than writing down all of the steps you need to take in order for that to happen and then trying to make it happen (way too much effort), instead set an intention of experiencing the feeling of being loved, appreciated and accepted.  And allow your intention to remind you to let love, appreciation and acceptance in right now!

There is an even more powerful way to work with intentions.  It is to hold the space for Truth to live itself through you.  The greatest truth is that our main brain is our heart and that in our essence we are Love.  When we recognize this, we hold the intention to have an open heart, or to move through life in kindness, or to trust whatever life is bringing us, or to welcome whatever life is offering, or to feel gratitude for the myriad gifts we are given every day and maybe even forgive ourselves and others.

I invite you to think about changing your resolutions and goals for the New Year into intentions, and here are few ideas to consider:

  • If you want more money in your life, hold the intention for gratitude.
  • If you want less weight in your body, hold the space of falling in love with your body as it is (this is one of the most powerful ways for the body to let go of its extra weight!)
  • If you want to experience the belief that you really matter to the people in your life, hold the intention for kindness.
  • If you want to know less struggle in your life, hold the space for welcoming whatever comes into your life, both on the inside and the outside.

Who you are is a field of creativity and you don’t need to make anything happen.   You can hold the space and allow life to bring you exactly what you need for your healing and fulfillment! It may be different than what you thought you wanted, but trust that life knows what it is doing!

Image – “The Story Within” by artists Roxanne Evans Stout and Seth Apter

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Mary O’Malley is an author and counselor in Kirkland, Washington. In the early 1970’s, a powerful awakening set Mary on the path to changing her whole relationship with the challenges of life, freeing herself from a lifelong struggle with darkness. Since that time, Mary has taught extensively throughout the United States, Canada and Denmark.

She is an inspirational speaker who leads retreats that transform people’s lives, provides individual counseling, and offers ongoing groups where people can come together to experience the miracle of Awakening. Her strengths lie in her ability to be fully present in the moment, integrating information, technique and insight with simplicity and compassion. Mary is committed to helping people heal their inner wars, so they can become a part of the healing of our planet. She does so by drawing on her own life experience to facilitate healing and awakening in a compassionate and powerful way.

Mary’s books, which are endorsed by Eckhart Tolle and Neale Donald Walsch, include: What’s In the Way IS the Way: Moving Beyond Your Struggle into the Joy of Being Fully AliveThe Gift of Our Compulsions: A Revolutionary Approach to Self-Acceptance and HealingBelonging to Life: The Journey of Awakening; and The Magical Forest of Aliveness: A Tale of Awakening.

For more information, please visit