Thursday, March 12, 2009

Break, and Challenge Fears with Actions!

I think it was Tuli Kupferberg who said it best... "When patterns are broken, new worlds emerge."

Its official, I broke.

Wednesdays are Thomas’ swimming lessons. Its my one day lately that I get to break from study sessions, office politics, pressures of life in general, to be where my heart is – with my beloved son. The time away from him lately is exasperating me, and although I know that this is short term, it still hurts none the less. Yesterday, I reached my max on the demands at bay and to make matters worse, I was stuck at the office and running late for my date with my son ….

Fast-forward: At 11pm last night I was propped up against my kitchen cabinets looking at Christmas lights that Thomas refuses to let me take down (yes, I am going to blame that on him …). I had uncovered the liquor that I hid from myself and was nestled in comfortably with my shot glass, Tequila bottle, and Pomegranate Martinis to chase. There in that moment, I cried. I let it all out. The frustrations, the stress, the overwhelming sense of anxiety and pressure were being released in wave after wave of falling tears. And then, in true Chrissy fashion, the tears stopped and my giggle of laughter took over.

Fast-forward yet again: This morning, I am told I am radiating a glow …. I am all smiles and sunshine again. And I owe it all to the stress playing out in my universe. The universe is going to send pressures like an army invading a foreign land. I scream, LET THEM COME! For this invasion will overwhelm, and cause this nasty thing called doubt. I began to doubt myself and my ability to overcome, to face and achieve, to challenge and win. Conversely, when I was laughing last night I keyed in on one main principle of the moment: Two negatives make a positive … use that energy to create a new emerging world, one that brings back your fight, your fire, your sense of being …. One that faces your fears and takes action … one that welcomes challenge for you know you can and will achieve.

I asked myself, “Are you going to let these things get the better of you? Defeat you? Hinder your success? Eliminate your confidence?”

My reply, “Not on its last breath of attempt. Bring on the force, for I am one to be reckon with” … and so are you.

I broke my pattern last night of frustration and remembered my inner strength is key to achievement. Today is a new day, and I am prepared to challenge myself further. I needed to release in order to take on more; it’s a science. A whole new world has emerged … and I am eager to get back out there and attain!

Thoughts become things … choose the good ones.

This is a site that sends me a daily note from the universe personally addressed to me. I just read todays and it says:
Sometimes when you're ready for a change, Chrissy, and you kind of know it but won't admit it, when it comes, not only are you surprised, but it hurts.

Yeah, I know that doesn't help much, unless you remember the "ready" part. Because there is simply no change that might ever transpire in time and space that happens before you're fully able to use it for your own growth and glory.

So hey, Chrissy, may as well just act like you had personally requested it, and soar. Because, truthfully, you did, and, honestly, you can.
Love watching you create, The Universe

Watch me soar!!! I challenge my fears with actions … In two weeks I will be licensed, and most of my current stress will be at rest. I get to sit back and say, I overcame. I believed, and achieved. The rest of life’s stress? Will inevitably be a part of our lives … but if you can use it as a tool rather than a hindrance, it can bring a new world time and again … worlds that reminds us that we can achieve victory in endeavors, overcome fears, and giggle at the pressures of life … besides, they help shape us to achieve more, to push ourselves further, to reach peaks we would otherwise never see .... and I for one would not have it any other way.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Spring Cleaning… Spring Forward… Spring Training…

Spring: it’s all around us. We are itching to put “spring” into our lives. I walked out of the house this morning and breathed in deep the intoxicating smell of the warm air. Spring is the birth of renewal, the bloom of a fresh flower, the growth of new leaves. The intensification of new beginnings and transformations. ….. The cold, confined days of winter are soon to pass, and what lies ahead is fresh air, and sunny days spent outdoors.

Because the intensification of renewal is strong (or maybe it’s the intoxication, cannot really say for sure…) I have decided this will be my last column for Plan B until the month of April. For the next four weeks I will be taking a break from my writing, and focusing solely on an element I seldom do …. Myself. For Lent, I have given up my distraction and indulgence of social networking, i.e. facebook, as a way to provide myself with more time to focus on reading, researching, and meditation. For work, I have decided to pursue my Municipal Bond license. As many of you are aware, I have taken and failed the exam numerous times and the opportunity has presented itself once again for me to accept the challenge of retaking the assessment. I am nervous, and scared, and I will only admit that to you. For when I look in the mirror I tell myself: you have this, you can do this, make this examination say your name ….. Some call this trash talking, I call them affirmations... try them. You’ll like them. For myself, I have decided to clear my agenda of anything that does not involve my nose in a book or my son by my side. It is a sacrifice, but in order to excel some times we need to look at the bigger picture and find a way to succeed. I am not na├»ve to think the weeks ahead will not be trying; in fact, I think it is safe to assume they could possible be some of my most demanding weeks to date. That is why now more than ever I must refill my inner core, and give myself time to focus, rest, and replenish.

From time to time I might pop in and say hello and drop a line or two here on Plan B. You may notice a column written at midnight, when I am flooded with doubt, and energized by my diet of caffeine and caramel fiber bars. When the hour is late and I need an outlet from the pressures at bay, remember this… you’re the subscriber, so indulge me as I employ you to vent. For venting is also a form of healing, and rejuvenating yourself. You release the negative and work towards the positive. I have an incredible friend, Karen Tosie, who also serves as a mentor to me. Last night in an email, I vented to her without even releasing how much I had written and the words that were coming out. I wrote and wrote about my fears, about my insecurities, about this overwhelming flood of life that seems to be gripping me. This morning I received a response from Karen that has touched me to the core and has given me fuel in the form of hope, love, and inspiration. A phrase she wrote that I hope grips you as well is this, “Continue on the path – it won’t be without pain, but it will be with extreme joy.” I share this with you for I want you to be aware that you of an invaluable resource you have in your life, to share in your pain, and your extreme joy --- your loved ones.

With Karen’s permission I am able to share a part of her words to me. My belief is that they will embrace you, as they did me. Her powerful writing shines in my life, as does her words of wisdom, and each time we speak I leave with a little more understanding of my self, a clarity, and a sense of peace. My hope is by sharing a part of what she has written to me, I can pass on her powerful message of letting go; looking at what we have around us and remembering to trust in God, and in ourselves as we pursue change, and embrace our futures. Although I do not have an answer as to when these words will play a key role in my life, or yours, I do have an intuition that tells me soon I will be letting go …

“There's a story about holding on to the rope--I wish I could remember it correctly, but here goes the parts I remember. A man was hanging from a rope, in the dark, in the fog, trying to get to safety. He got to the end of the rope and he just hung on. A voice kept saying, Let go, let go. But he didn't trust the voice, and he held on for dear life. And froze to death. And when they found him, he was just feet off the ground. Had he let go, he would have survived.

I'm not sure why I told you that story, other than to let you know, it truly is okay to let go--let go of the feelings that keep us trapped. Trust God--which I already know you do. That doesn't mean be stupid--He did give us logic and reason. And girl, you have a brain, and you know how to use it. You are beautiful, articulate, fun-loving and giving. You are also damaged, which is just the way God can use us the most. Check your bible stories--I don't remember anyone perfect in there being used greatly by God.
So, stand firm, don't give up. Be still, listen for God's voice and His leading; don't be so filled with busy work that you can't hear Him. Let Go, for His strength to see you through, and stay away from negative thoughts. Find a mantra that makes sense for you, and use it! Fill your heart with hope and love, and when it's empty, refill it! Look at that little boy, Thomas, and know that you are being used by God. He sent you this child, for safekeeping and nurturing. And to provide a little flesh on flesh, godly love, to fill your days, nights, and thoughts.”
While I have made this decision to “spring clean, forward, and train” for my March, I also had a notion ….. I am submitting a challenge to each of you:

Spend the month of March trying to focus on you. Take time to write down your joys, your fears, your failures, your accomplishments. Explore where you have been … and where you are heading. Ask yourself questions, provide yourself with answers. Seek options and seize opportunities. Be conscience of your resources, what is able to refuel your inner spirit. Give back to yourself, and appreciate those who give to your life invaluable measure of love and encouragement. March is the month to reinvent yourself (see my column on, Welcome to the New Year). Just as we gain an extra hour of daylight, we are gaining an opportunity to look inside ourselves and see what we wish to change and what we can do to make that a possibility in our lives. Whether we are adapting a new lifestyle, or changing our appearance, or shedding layers of our past, we need to look inside and grant permission to ourselves to face our fears and conquer change.

I am posting a few articles (see the tab articles to your left) that I hope you find interesting, and helpful, as you boldly accept my challenge, and I look forward to hearing what you learned about yourself … there is no doubt you will discover more than you give yourself credit for, and it is my hope that knowledge fuels you to challenge yourself again and again, each time gaining more wisdom, confidence, and putting forth your own Plan B.

Here is wishing you well …. Go get ‘um tiger! Carpe Diem.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Post Season Football Chat???

I am so down with this! To those who may not know, let me enlighten you ... Football is the greatest sport known to mankind. Seriously, I speak the truth, flags down! Next week, March 11th, Mark Bowden will be speaking at Maryville University to discuss his new book entitled The Best Game Ever. The Birth of Modern NFL. In his book, Bowden explores the significance of the National Football League in modern society. I know ... I know ... I am obsessed, but I had to share the news even if you think I am a crazed football fanatic! Plus there is cocktails before hand which always implies a great time!

Mark Bowden - March 11, 7:30 p.m., Maryville University Auditorium
A reception will take place in the Pfaff Lobby outside the Maryville University Auditorium, beginning at 6:45 p.m.

Michaela, Chris, and Oprah - Oh MY!!!

Its official .... refer back to an earlier posting entitled "Oprah and the Rodriguez's" ... tomorrow the segment airs!!!! I cannot sit still ... where is my popcorn!!!!

Seesaw of Emotion

When I started Plan B in the early fall of last year I was fueled by listening to an inner voice that wanted to challenge the affects we have in the lives of ourselves, and those around us. I was at a place when I was searching for a meaning of more, and listening to those around me who were also wanting more. Yet, each of us felt they we were at a standstill in our presence on this terrain.

What evolved from meetings in a hotel lobby bar is what you read today: Plan B, Life’s Discussion. I looked around me in the eyes of friends, and then I looked in the mirror myself, and I began to understand that what I was seeing was fear. Fear that we may have missed our opportunity of a golden sunrise. Fear that we would forever be stuck in this mundane existence of living out our legacy by settling; whether in our relationships, our careers, our choices, or merely put our continuations. I listened to you tell the stories of wanting to move to the next chapter in your lives, yet not certain on how to get there, and defiantly at a loss for resources. In order to make a difference, Plan B was going to have to provide assets of the mental and spiritual nature that could assist in unlocking creativity, provide a springboard to new heights, and give you a challenge in many facets of your lives. Since its birth, I have heard stories of how Plan B has in fact made such a difference; it has implemented a change in your lives … causing you to think, to step outside yourselves, and to approach life from a different logic. A logic that encompasses risk, bravery, and a notion of attempt.

Lately I had a reminder of how when we are growing and changing we often go from one extreme to the next before we can find balance. My life the past couple of weeks has been a whirlwind of emotions, from being high in the clouds with bliss to feeling lost and confused over proceedings that seem to be unraveling. The bliss part was easy. In fact I think it would be safe to accuse the majority of you to also deal well when bliss is embracing us. However, if my theory is correct then the following hypothesis is true: When faced with bliss, we prepare ourselves for disaster for we are more equipped to handle the bad than the good.

Let’s Play Scientist: observation and calculation

FEELINGS: I saw myself caught up with emotions. My heart was skipping a beat, I was glowing, and I felt like I was floating on air …. A part of me was embracing the moment, relishing in the notion that skipping around like a giddy school girl was appropriate behavior ….

DOUBT: I heard myself utter the phrase countless times … when is the other shoe going to drop. Not only did I utter, I wrote it, I mumble it, hell, I autographed my future best selling book entitled, “Well, when is it?”

DEFEAT: And within an instant of signing my Herby Hancock other events started to transpire that let to the next phrase, I knew it …. I let my negative side come to surface and play a role in my life. I sat feeling defeated …

RESULTS: Ah, that’s the beautiful part … I get to determine that. I can be plagued with doubt and defeat, and surrender to the negativity that faces me. Or, I can make a choice to use the tools I speak of in Plan B to change my thinking.

CONCLUSION: We have had events in life that have led us to become distrustful and to seek out the negative in a situation. We put up barriers and roadblocks, for we know what to do when the negative happens, and we have learned how to mange, prevent, and treat those happenings in our lives. We have grown to expect more negative than positive; not only do we expect it, but … and prepare yourself for what I am about to suggest …. We seek it. We seek out negative because it fits in our comfort zones. When we are happy, and positive, we tend to feel uneasy and uncomfortable because we are having doubts … we are feeling uneasy because we doubt ourselves and our ability to deserve pleasure in our lives. We are feeling uncomfortable because the pleasure is so good we fear it will go away, and therefore we in a sense send it away.

Each day is a choice; each day can be a struggle or an opportunity. Some days you will struggle, you will be in the extreme of emotion searching for an outlet. You are going to have days that are going to block your positive thinking. These days are going to try to defeat you and take away your bliss, your glow, your skip in your step. There is no preventing them … they will come. But my dear readers, if you take anything away from Plan B, know this … you already have the tools and resources inside of you to overcome life’s challenges. You must believe in your power; you have control of your course … you can follow the detour signs and get lost somewhere in “How-Did-I-Get-Here-Ville” or … you can read the manual on how to work your inner GPS system and navigate your way back to the main road. Either way, you get to make this choice in your life. And as you decide you will find that there will be a seesaw between your emotions until you find your balance, until you find your way. Use that time to grow and discover, and I think you will find you have had this power all along … Plan B only helped to push away the doubt and unleash the power within.