Melissa Heisler, Stress Reduction Expert

The Power of Surrender

My life has changed immensely over the last few weeks.  Goals I had given up upon have been coming to fruition seemingly out of thin air.  It is a truly amazing time.  What is so hard to grasp about it all is that I have not done anything different.  The wonderful new opportunities I have received did not come about due to planning, strategy, or hard work.  They came about because I surrendered.

ALS_2401_8x10The theme of surrender has been coming to me from many different angles this year.  It is a hard concept to understand and even more difficult to explain.  Surrender is not giving up.  Surrender is not releasing desire.  Surrender is not powerlessness.  Surrender is tapping into a greater power by releasing one’s focus on outcome.  Surrender is focusing one’s energy in their mission and passion instead of on tasks and to do’s.  Surrender is focusing on one’s heartfelt desires but not being caught up in what it will look like to manifest them.  Surrender is living in the bliss of one’s true purpose without regard to what the end result will be.  But I gotta tell you, the end results are pretty cool too.

It all started when I was approached to write blog posts for the Linked Local Network (LLN).  I am always open to appropriate resources to gain a greater audience for my messages.  LLN’s desire to build communities and share positive information was in alignment with me so it was a perfect fit.  But as I began to become involved, I saw that the mission of LLN was even more intrenched with my own.  Although it is a for-profit company they desire to support non-profits through resources and finances, a giving back element.  I learned about opportunities to become more involved with LLN by becoming a Hub Administrator, meaning that I would lead one of the city-centered websites.  As we talked about the opportunity, I went to a state of surrender, surrender of what I “should” say in a business meeting, and instead spoke from my authentic self.  I was called to bring forth my true mission to empower individuals.  What came about was the new Women’s Hub on Linked Local Network.  A website where I could choose the types of news and voices to be represented.  I didn’t have to ask, bribe or negotiate it.  It was handed to me, for it was aligned to my purpose and I had surrendered to my purpose.

There was not only surrender in how I thought things had to be done but also surrender in that I had to follow my heart and not my pocketbook.  Accepting management of the Women’s Hub meant providing lots of volunteer hours and taking my focus away from promoting my coaching business.  Or did it?  This year I have been trying to promote my business and grow it more.  I was doing everything the sales books told me to do, networking, social media, presentations.  Surrendering my time from these sales functions to focus on a website would on the surface be the wrong business choice.  In my heart however, it was right.  I knew I could reach and affect more people through this opportunity.  The hurdle to get over was money and compensation.  In the short term, there is none and there are no guarantees that there will be any revenue.  I surrendered to being the Women’s Hub Administrator because the alignment with my purpose and desire was higher than any immediate materialistic need.

And I was rewarded with yet another vehicle to get my message out.  A message meant to connect, educate and change people for the better.  I was rewarded with a radio show with which to project my message.  If you have been reading my journey, I tried all of the conventional ways to get my word out.  They usually required me to exchange my authentic self in return for a platform.  Now I have a weekly platform where I can share my authentic self and the information and power of those I respect.

Surrender is truly powerful.

Join me May 21st at 6pm on The Empowerment Show as I interview the documentary filmmakers behind The Empowerment Project:  Extraordinary Women Doing Extraordinary Things.

Giraffe / Jirafe

Spectacularly Perfect Events

There are two ways to live: you can live as if nothing is a miracle; you can live as if everything is a miracle. – Albert Einstein

I love the coincidences of the universe.  These coincidences may seem random and unconnected but eventually if one puts the pieces together great insight and support can be found in these coincidences.   The coincidences I am talking about are the times when we say, “Isn’t that weird?” or “What are the chances?” or “Wasn’t it lucky this happened?”  Over the years I learned that these are not coincidences but Spectacularly Perfect Events (SPE) as I call them, sent to guide us down the right path.  My recent SPE involved a giraffe.

Giraffe / JirafeAs some of you might know, I had a life changing experience in Peru working with a shaman (native healer).  I learned that shamanic practices can be a great way for me to access my unconscious when I am stuck, and a great way to find release.  Over the last few months there has been a lot of transition for me and I was at a point where I needed some additional guidance and insight.  I was referred to Kathleen Rude, a local shamanic practitioner.  In working together, she said there were three animals guiding me right now.  One was the giraffe.

There are many symbolic messages from the giraffe.  At first, I thought the giraffe’s message for me was my ability to have higher perceptions, a higher vision if you will.  But there are two other symbolic messages from the giraffe.  One is tied to communication.  The power of the giraffe’s neck symbolizes strength in one’s own voice and words, while the length of the giraffe’s tongue symbolizes the ability to speak eloquently.  The other message is how the giraffe’s long neck symbolizes taking a risk by sticking one’s neck out.  Telling the giraffe story is, in itself, utilizing the symbolism of the giraffe as it is trying to write clearly about my experience and also a big risk for me to share it.  I thought the giraffe’s message was encouragement for my writing and the book I have been trying to complete, but it took me somewhere else.

Last month’s I Hate Sales! blog was inspired by a chat with Robert Terson.  In that meeting, he inspired me to pick up the phone and actively connect with previous clients in order to generate more referrals. This is a challenge for me.  I don’t want to feel I am harassing anyone.  I love to receive referrals but I assumed they would all come on their own.  Together we found ways to ethically and comfortably reconnect with my clients and contacts.  As I walked to my car after the meeting, sitting comfortably on the dashboard of the car next to mine was a stuffed giraffe.  I took this SPE to mean, yes now is the time to stick my neck out.  Now is the time to proactively reconnect.  Robert’s suggestions and advice were something I should pursue.

But I think my version of sticking my neck out and the universe’s was different. I did start incorporating some reconnection and outreach work, but I did ninety-nine percent of it while hiding behind a computer.  I was still stuck in the “I don’t want to bug anybody” syndrome.  In the meantime, I looked into resurrecting my book and finding ways to create online programs.  But these did not move smoothly.  I didn’t have any energy to give them.  I didn’t have clarity about how these projects would actually improve my practice.  I felt they were things I had to do and I felt stuck.  I was using logic and fear instead of using my intuition and it was holding me back. 

Luckily I reconnected with author and sales guru, Stacia Skinner.  After catching up, she generously talked to me about the need for sales calls.  The passive receptivity of the internet has blocked us from one-on-one connection, that connection which is the foundation of coaching work.  Picking up where Robert left off, she walked me through ethical and focused sales scripts I can use to make true connections with prospective clients.  What I noticed is that although the idea of cold calls were historically terrifying to me, I felt more energy rush into the idea of making the calls than I had in the past four weeks of trying to write my book.  The energy was here.  The resistance was to projects I was using to block my direct connection with my tribe.  I felt in the flow when I thought of actually authentically and directly reaching out to these individuals.  To confirm I was headed in the right direction, the giraffe appeared at the end of my conversation with Stacia.  I told her about the side business my husband and I created whose mascot just happens to be a giraffe. We decided on the mascot animal months before he appeared in my shamanic experience, showing he was already at work before I knew it.  The journey of my giraffe-centered SPE was directing me to the next step for my business, giving me the strength to risk sticking my neck out, and helping me get back into the energetic flow. 

Where are you feeling stuck?  What do you feel you need to do but just can’t seem to put the energy behind it?  What Spectacularly Perfect Events are pointing you in a different direction?

Italian Perspective

I was very fortunate to spend two weeks in Italy this April.  Upfront I realized it was not going to be a normal vacation.  My mother is still recovering from her December and subsequent surgeries so every morning my sister and I were to take turns changing her bandages.  After that responsibility, I expected time and space to be able to recharge and replenish.  This was the first vacation in the four years of my business in which I would not have email, phone, or computer access.  It was to be a time to truly relax.  But as all of my blogs seem to go, I was wrong.

Venice with my buddy, Eleanor

You see there was another factor to this trip.  We were taking it with my mother’s church group.  The trip was created for “mature” travelers so the majority of our group was over sixty years old.  What I quickly learned was how much assistance some of the members needed.  We were walking up and down stairs, over uneven cobblestone, and just walking and walking and walking.  At seventy, eighty, and even ninety years old, this amount of physical activity was quite challenging for many of our group.  Immediately I began to help the other navigate the ancient streets of Rome.

Within the first two days it hit me, resentment.  Here I was on a trip meant to recuperate me from the three years spent nursing my father and I was spending the majority of the time once again nursing others:  taking care of my mother, helping people with stairs, lagging behind with those who couldn’t keep pace with the tour guide, and wrangling those who were getting lost.  The more I thought about it the more the resentment, anger, self-pity, and sadness arose.  It wasn’t a pleasant feeling.  All of my judgments about how things should be and what I deserved were more hurtful than the actual act of helping the others.  So I flipped the switch.

TuscanIn the same way I help so many people reframe their thoughts and experience through MasterHeart™, I chose a new more positive perspective.  I Accepted the situation I was in.  I could not change who was on the trip, I would not change my desire to help others, and I had no other place I could possibly be for the next ten days.  This first step of seeing, accepting, and embracing the reality of my situation brought a wave of calm and a sigh of release.  Second, I filled my heart with Compassion.  None of these people purposefully set out to disrupt my trip.  They were all wonderful people going through a difficult time and they were very grateful for my assistance.  No one was forcing me to help; I was choosing to help.  Embracing Acceptance and Compassion, a sense of peace washed over me.  It was the replenishment I was seeking on this trip.  The rest of the time I enjoyed the sites of Italy at a slow pace, relaxing and resting more frequently than I would have on my own, and enjoying the appreciation and gratitude received from the others on the trip.

What is happening in your life right now which is robbing your energy?  Is it truly the situation or is it your judgment of the situation?  How can you use Acceptance and Compassion to improve your experience?

It's My Life Inc.

Effortless

Museum of Science and Industry Month at the MuseumMy purpose in life is to share my experiences, my thoughts, my hardships, and my growth to help others see options and ways to their own perfect lives.  By baring my soul and exposing my faults and struggles, others can see that they are not alone and that they too can overcome and transform.  So when I heard that the Museum of Science and Industry was looking for a roommate.  I was intrigued.  The concept is that one person will stay at the museum 24/7 to experience every exhibit and share their experience first hand as well as through blogging, Tweeting, and video.  My heart skipped a beat.  This is my purpose; I am meant to be that example.

So I stopped what I was working on and downloaded the application and rules.  I began to brainstorm the best references to use and which picture to provide.  But then it came to the video.  I don’t have a video camera that records DVD nor did I know who would be available to help with the video – and the deadline was not that far away.  So I decided that after my Monday morning networking meeting and before my afternoon client I would bite the bullet and go to an electronics store and buy a camera.  A funny thing happened though.  At the end of the morning meeting, the founder of the Dynamic Professional Women’s Network said, “My son is starting his own video company and needs samples of his work.  If anyone would like a free one minute video, see me.” What??!!!  Could this just be a perfectly timed coincidence or was it meant to happen?

Effort
Photo by Sam Levan

Have you ever had a situation where the exact thing you needed seemingly popped out of no where?  It is an electrifying experience, and kind of dumbfounding.  At least for me I always think I have to do everything myself.  I have to make things happen.  If I don’t take action, nothing will happen.  But here was a situation that I did absolutely nothing but went about my normal day.  And this amazing obstacle before me was solved, cost-free, in minutes.  I did not seek it.  I did not have to call everyone I knew to find a solution.  I did not have to buy equipment myself.  I did not have to do anything except be open and present.  For me it is an amazing lesson that I seem to need to hear again and again.  I do not have to do everything myself or by myself.  Things can get done without my direct effort.  So much stress in life is caused by the belief that we control and need to control everything in our life.  When one can open up and trust, amazing coincidences can occur.

Within a few days I met with Gerald and he agreed to work on my video.  But then there was the question as to where to shoot it.  I had some ideas, but they just didn’t seem right.  Then the idea popped into my mind, the perfect place to shoot.  (I can not divulge where this perfect place is lest I give the idea to my competition.)  But there was a problem with the location.  Was there a conflict of interest?  Would they allow me to do it?  How many others had already asked to use it?  So I called the location and they had to ask upper management if I could shoot there.  I was floored.  Had no one else thought of this idea?  Again, I had a feeling that things were falling into place.  Here was the perfect location and a location no one else had thought of using.  It was a long shot but it fell into place easily.  When things are right, the way is easy.

What are you currently struggling to make happen?  What if you let go the idea that you have to make it happen and trust that it will be completed?  What happens to your stress level?  And what other options now present themselves?

On August 12th after all applications have been submitted, I will release my video on You Tube.  Watch my Twitter account, www.twitter.com/itsmylifeinc for details.