Open Up & Expand

We all have cargo. We all come carrying stories on our shoulders. We all come burdened with raw emotions we have not been able to leave behind.

We are all heavy in our own way.

We keep so much inside the universe that we are, afraid of being misunderstood, criticized or judged. We are afraid of losing… of hurting… of being hurt.

Who can we tell all our secrets to? Who can we trust? Who will listen without judgement?

We have been taught to bottle up our feelings. We have been educated to believe that sharing our deepest emotions is a sign of weakness.

What are you hiding? What are you not telling? What are you ashamed of? What are you afraid of? What is YOUR truth?

Own it… and share it with someone you love today. Let’s change how we communicate.

Let’s never have an empty conversation again. Let’s never bring up the weather. Let “small talk” cease to exist. Let’s get real. Let’s go deep. Within ourselves and our relations with others. I believe we are all here to relate. So let’s do that.

Let go of your fear, your anger, your shame and make room for the love, for the beauty.

Unburden yourself. Lift the weight. Shake the heavy off.

Be Yourself.

 

Be unapologetically you.

What do You Want?

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When we want to achieve something, when we have something that needs to be done, what we’re doing is focusing our energy to accomplish said task.

So my question is:

What do you REALLY want out of this Life?

What are you focusing your energy on?

Does it make your heart sing?

Does it make your soul fly?

Does it make you want to cry out of sheer joy?

Are you living or surviving?

What can you do about it?

If there were no limitations, no “ifs” or “buts” or “maybes…”

No fear.

If failure wasn’t an option… what would you seek out of life?

You want to know what I want?

Are you ready to hear this?

Are you ready to give me what I need?

Because I want You.

I want to see you succeed.

I want to hear your dreams.

I want to help make them come true.

I want to love and be loved.

Without conditions, without boundaries,

Without words, without fears.

I want to abolish currency.

I want to pay for my muffin with love.

I want our hearts to be treated as celebrities,

Rolling out the red carpet whenever you catch a glimpse of it.

I want to have the liberty to not do things just for the money.

I want to live free of fear. In all its forms and masks.

Self-doubt, procrastination, caution, get lost.

I want the mountains closer to me.

I want rivers.

I want trees.

I want kisses that end wars.

I want to share my point of view with whomever is willing to listen.

I want to give you my eyes, so you can finally see how beautiful you really are to me.

I want a family. I want babies.

I want my soulmate to give me another chance.

Just one more.

I want to live forever.

I want to be remembered for who I am.

I want to be an example of vulnerability.

I want to get it all out on paper.

I can’t die with things still inside of me.

I want clarity.

I want yoga.

I want 4 a.m. meditations back.

I want to find my purpose.

I want closeness,

With every human being.

I want to play my part

In this vast Universe.

I want to make the most

Of this body

My soul has chosen to inhabit.

And of this soul,

That my body has awoken to.

I want simplicity.

Optimism.

Lightness.

Beauty.

I want a revolution.

I want to break the mold.

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Have you met Vidal?

I am going to be real with you. I sometimes go into a deep existential crisis when I think about the future of humanity. When I think about the world that I must grow old in, the world in which the children I will one day give birth to have to grow up in. What kind of world will that be?

My optimism allows me to hope for the best. When I see the youth of today, I think of myself and remember that most things are just a phase and we need to go through certain life experiences in order to grow and expand our consciousness. However, this new generation has an obsession with technology. Striving to create virtual connections yet failing somewhere along the line to nourish and value true connections, emotions, people.

A lot of what is needed currently in the world are more of us being present in the moment. Absolutely present. Mind, body and soul connected to the action.

 However, I know for a fact that not all adolescents are the same. No human being is like any other. We are each unique in our experiences, our thoughts and our beliefs.

I put a lot of faith in the youth. I believe we are underestimating their power. I believe a ten year old has infinite potential within him yet he doesn’t have the space to express it.

That’s why I’m always moved when I read stories about very young children making a difference, whether at home, in school, for their community or their country.

It shows a powerful soul knowing its purpose and overcoming any adversity.

You might have met this young man already but if you haven’t, I want to make sure you do.

Meet 13-year-old Vidal Chastanet from Brownsville, Brooklyn. He had a chance encounter with Brandon Stanton, creator of the popular website Humans of New York.

Brandon took Vidal’s photo, and asked the teen who the most influential person in his life was; Vidal replied it was his Principal, Nadia Lopez, at Mott Hall Bridges Academy. The interaction went viral in this touching photograph.

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Curious Brandon just had to meet this amazing principal.

It turns out that Ms. Lopez was in the middle of raising money to send her students on a trip to Harvard, a college she wanted them to have in the forefront of their minds. Soon thereafter, Brandon found himself joining the cause, helping to raise over $700,000 for the trip in just four days.

“Nadia’s unbelievable,” Brandon tells Ellen’s Good News.

“She’s like a movie character, she just cares so much and she’s tough. It’s what you need in this area. She’s tough and she’s unbelievably committed and ambitious, but ambitious on part of the kids. She could have been CEO of a Fortune 500 company, but decided to be principal in one of toughest neighborhoods in Brooklyn.”

Because they’ve raised so much money – their original goal was only $100,000 – the entire school will be visiting Harvard, and subsequently, the sixth-grade class will be able to go for the next ten years. Additionally, they will be able to establish a summer program to run for the next 10 years, as well as a scholarship fund named in Vidal’s honor.

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“When people tell you they’re from Brownsville they get cringes. There’s a sense of hopelessness. I want these kids to know that there are no limits or boundaries to where they can go… I also want those institutions to see the impact they can have on those children’s lives.” says Nadia. She is making a huge impact on her students. She started the school in 2010 as a way to change the narrative of the neighborhood, and to empower students to believe they are more than their surroundings. Vidal says he began school with a “short temper” and often got in trouble, but Nadia changed his attitude.

“If you’re from Brownsville, they don’t expect you to be much in life,” he says. “They don’t expect you to have a quality education, they don’t expect you to know what you’re doing. They expect you to fail. They don’t want you to become anything that you want to be… I realized that if I want to be anything in life, as Ms. Lopez said, I have to learn how to be better. It doesn’t matter about the past and present, you must focus on the future. Your future is what you set it to be in your mind.”

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The most recent post shows Ms. Lopez at an assembly on Monday where Ms. Lopez explained the fundraiser to the entire student body. Most of the students had already heard bits and pieces about what’s been going on, but Ms. Lopez projected the blog onto a screen and walked through the entire story. She began with Vidal’s original post and ended with the final tally raised thus far. ($707,000 at the time. over a million now!)

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“I have something to admit to all of you. Before all of this happened, I was about to give up. I was broken. I felt like typing my resignation. I told my mother: ‘Mom, I don’t think I can do it anymore. Because I don’t think my scholars care. And I don’t think they believe in themselves enough to care. I’m afraid they don’t think they’re good enough.’ And she told me to pray on it. But I told her, ‘I might be too angry to pray.’ And I know this is hard to believe, because you guys have never seen me break. But I was broken. It’s just like when you see your mom break down. You only see your mom cry when she’s been fighting so hard for you and she doesn’t think you care. That’s how I felt. But then a couple nights later I was with my daughter at a Broadway show, and we were waiting for the show to start, and I started to get all these text messages from my teachers and former students. And then I saw Vidal’s face pop up on my screen. And my first thought was that something bad had happened. Because that’s normally the case around here when someone’s photo shows up unexpectedly. And the moment I realized that Vidal had said something nice about me, the usher came over and made me turn off my phone. When intermission came, my daughter said: ‘Mom, we’ve got to find out what’s happening.’ So we went and sat in the car. And I read what Vidal said, and I began to read the comments. And tears started coming down my face. Because even though I always tell you that you matter, up until that moment, I didn’t feel like I mattered.”

This is love. Care. Inspiration. Kindness. Solidarity. Hope.

This is Humanity.

That’s why it touches us all.

PS – There are still 7 days left to donate! If you’re interested in reading more about the cause or adding your little grain of salt, click here.

PS 2 – Aren’t you glad you met Vidal? 🙂

How to Change the World!

We are all praying, crying or begging for change. We all wish for “A Better World” There is so much pain in the world. I cannot pretend to be deaf, blind or dumb to it. Everyday I witness more and more people protesting injustice, hurting, bleeding, numb, lost, confused, resigned, resentful and caged. From police violence to racism, from virus diseases to lost aircrafts to suicides. But I also can’t help but see the good too. From Michael Franti’s song to Kindness blogs, upworthy news, inspiring stories, inspiring ideas, inspiring people, amazing people doing amazing things. I’ve said this before. If you really look, depending on the vision you have, you will see: There is Inspiration Everywhere The issue again is: Consciousness. It is a deep yearning of the soul to live in harmony and enjoy a peaceful world overcoming fears that separate us. Spirituality teaches us that we are actors in the stage of Life and that the masks that we use to relate to and interact with others are not our true identity. The true self is behind those masks, the spark of light that animates the body we inhabit. What the world needs is a SHIFT. A shift in mindset, in attitude, in vision.

So how do we create a change? By BEING the Change.

We all know HOW to be Good. Kind. Loving. Honest. Happy. Beautiful. Friendly. Peaceful. Supportive. Cooperative. Generous. Caring… but how many of us put it into practice?

May 2015 be your time to make a leap of courage, from material consciousness to spiritual awareness. That eternal leap from your masks to that spark of light: the great journey to our original nature. From spiritual consciousness, a friendly and respectful coexistence emerges naturally and change becomes a reality. We celebrate the conscious choice that drives us to the eternal beauty of the simple things, enjoying the grace of each moment. Congratulations to you, you gorgeous soul for this wondrous journey you’re on and thank you for joining me along the way. I wish nothing but the best for you in 2015. Make it your best one yet. 2015

Happy New Year!!!!!

PS – OMG! I just got my annual report in the mail, and you guys just BLOW MY MIND! Literally, I never expected this blog to be anything more than a corner of the Universe for me to rest my thoughts. The fact that it’s connecting with you beautiful souls means the world to me. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you for being YOU. For searching, for seeking, for looking, for improving, for learning, for sharing… Infinite Thanks my WP Family. 

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You don’t have to try…

Why should you care, what they think of you
When you’re all alone, by yourself
Do you like you? Do you like you?

I have to admit. I cried when I heard this song. It took me back to a time, a time where all I ever did was try.

I tried to fit in, I tried to be accepted, I tried to please others. Make them proud. I tried to be what they wanted me to be.

It was painful. 

I felt so far from the person that everyone wanted me to be and I felt less because of it.

I felt so small, so worthless, a disgrace in many ways.

I was different. I always was. This fact always made me feel out of place.

I was lost. Where did I belong?

Today. Oh, today is a glorious day. Today is a day I’m proud of that struggle. Because if gave me strength. That strength then transformed into the courage I needed to follow my heart.

Today I’m a soul that’s fallen into my body. Today there’s nothing you could tell me that would make me like myself any less.

“At that moment I was sure. That I belonged in my skin. That my organs were mine and my eyes were mine and my ears, which could only hear the silence of this night and my faint breathing, were mine, and I loved them and what they could do.”

— Dave Eggers

Sure, the people that had problems with me then still have them with me now.

I’m too boyish, too overweight, too this, too that.  

But that’s ok. Because I am ok with it. I accept myself. I love myself and I know that I am more than the sum of my parts. I am heart, I am soul, I am creativity, I am magic. And you can’t fit that on any scale or put it into any outfit.

This society we live in, this crazy popular society likes to categorize things, give everything it’s appropriate label, stereotype things to make it easier. So a lot of people end up with labels such as “freak, weirdo, pervert, ugly, fat, wh*re, b*tch…” and the list goes on.

Would you ever speak to someone you love like that? How could you ever refer to another soul in that manner?

The problem is Vision. We have a limited vision. We see things on the surface and we assess their value based on that. We make too many assumptions and we aren’t looking at the whole picture.

Connect with yourself. Connect with your TRUE SELF. The being that you truly are. A being of light, of beauty, of truth, happiness, of power and virtue.

Really look at yourself with the vision of your soul.

I practice looking at myself in the mirror on mornings and I recite an affirmation:

“You are a being of light. You are wondrous. You are gorgeous. You are powerful. You have a purpose. Share that today with someone” 

I then carry that soul vision around with me, It’s like wearing a pair of shades and I see the entire Universe in a different light. Everything is… just a little more bright.

And people. One of my favorite things to do these days in this new city that I’m in is to sit in a park and watch people pass me by. The range and variety of them, their laughter, their chatter, their expressions, their energy are so contrasting. So unique. Each soul is unique. I feel like a witness to a miracle for each person that passes me by. I appreciate each and every one of them.

Do you think you could do that? Put on the glasses of your soul and look at yourself and love yourself. really love yourself. deep down. in spaces no one else knows about but you. in your darkness. in your downfalls. on your bad hair days. with your fears, your doubts, your mistakes. Know that there is nothing NOT worth loving.

You are lovable. You are 100% lovable. You don’t need to hide an inch or change a thing.

Look into the mirror, at yourself
Don’t you like you?
Cause I like you

Be that awesome person that you are and share that vision with someone else.

Make someone else feel just as awesome as you 🙂

Namaste.

A Love Letter to my Heart…

I have a question for you: Have you ever heard your heart? Have you ever heard the intricacies of it…how loudly it beats, how it accelerates, if it ever trembles and if it ever cries? It was my birthday this weekend, and as a birthday gift I had participated in a Silence Retreat just outside of the city of Santiago, in a place called Portillo in Chile. It’s usually a destination for ski enthusiasts during the winter, but right now the place was empty, deserted, awaiting the brave souls that were willing to venture out in silence in search of themselves. Even though I had many discoveries that I will share with you in the future during my week of silence, the one that really hit me, really spoke to me, opened me up, transformed me to the point of no return was… my heart.

A glimpse of Portillo...
A glimpse of Portillo…

I really heard it. Everything it is, everything it holds, everything it keeps, everything it gives. It was all there, so exposed to me now. I went to sleep to the sound of my beating heart and I woke up to it, when i felt an emotion, it was like feeling it in slow motion, I felt how the seed of the emotion grew from the center of my heart and expanded into every atom in my body, I even felt how it transcended my body and like a painter with a steady hand, painted the aura around me. I felt that. And then, after a few meditations and really embracing the silence, I heard it’s voice. The voice of Love was now a channel that was completely open to me. And we had so much catching up to do. I discovered just how much love I have inside me, in all its forms, for me and for everything and everyone else. And there is such a beauty, such wisdom, such delicacy when I think back on that moment. Because even though my chats with Love lasted a short span of time, it felt like forever. It still feels like forever.

Dialogue with Love...
Dialogue with Love…

Now Love isn’t quite hard to find you see, and it’s something we do quite often, I would say on a daily basis. If you are here and reading this then you’re probably like me and you probably Love as much as you Breathe. But we need to Listen. That is the key. In a world where we are losing our listening, that is harder and harder to do. But I implore you… wherever, whenever you can, seek the silence. For it is a space that you can fill with the echo of yourself. Where you can really hear yourself, and listen to yourself. Listen to your mind, listen to your thoughts, listen to your heart, listen to Love. If you have a question, you might get an answer or two. If you have a request, you might just find the courage. We must seek a relationship with ourselves, with our hearts, with our love in the same way that we seek relationships with others. In fact, we should be a priority. The more Love you have in you, the more you’re able to share. So, if this touches you in any way, let it be in this way: You are amazing. You are wonderful. You are wondrous. You are unexplored territory. There is so much within you waiting to be discovered. Dig. Dive. Look. Listen. Seek. And be amazed by the magnificence of your own Being. Namaste.

Holding on to Letting Go…

I’ve written a million posts about letting go, I know it’s good for the soul. I promote the harshest removal of everything and anything in life that doesn’t make you happy. It’s a process I’ve been working on personally as well. For me its been a process of destruction and transformation. I’ve had to destroy the things I didn’t want, destroy the person I didn’t want to be in order to end up with the person I am. It’s hard. It’s really hard, I’m not going to lie, I’m not going to sit in this lazy couch and tell you it’s easy. There came a point where I was actively working on letting go of things and I thought I had come a long way, so long that i began to settle for where i was and who I was. I began to start a process of acceptance. It was all roses and cozy until very recently.

I was confronted with my neglect. I had neglected to continue my process of removing the garbage from within. They were still things there and even though I had piled a bunch of goodness on top, there was still crap at the bottom. Sigh.

It’s like climbing a mountain and finding a shortcut that in the end isn’t really a shortcut because it’s full of difficulties, then you get on the other side and you realize you’re not where you’re supposed to be so you have to go back to where you came from and STILL climb the mountain on top of that.. Double Sigh.

But that’s life, no? It’s all about the struggle I’ve learned. It’s what makes us or breaks us. We’ve all heard the Butterfly story I’m sure. We each have our cocoon or mountain or hurricane or storm to go through.

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In class today (Life has granted me the amazing opportunity to attend a awesome Spiritual University… but that deserves its own post so we’re going to put a temporary pin on it), we did an exercise of writing what we want to let go of on paper and in the end we would literally set it on fire!

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I can’t explain the feeling of watching it burn. You might think rituals are ridiculous but this one was healing. As I saw that paper filled with all the things that still haunt me, I felt my inner fire burning. I was letting go again. I was purifying, cleansing myself. I felt lighter. I am now committed to letting go, it’s a constant process because we are always accumulating things. I advise you to do the exercise if you can, if you can’t then just write them down, take the power out of them. Let Go!

To conclude, I’ve written a poem that pretty much sums up the whole experience for me. I’m glad to share it with you in the hopes it might inspire you:

Today I was given a lifetime opportunity.

I was asked to let go

Of all the things I don’t want,

I don’t need.

To write them on paper at least.

To throw them in the crucible

To burn them…

From within.

It’s hard to come to terms

With the things you hold on to

That no longer serve you.

Where to start?

My fears,

My doubts,

My insecurities.

My constant need for acceptance and approval,

Associating my worth to my body,

Feeling like I don’t fit the standard definition of “pretty”,

My mistakes, my flaws, my faults

My guilt,

My expectations.

“Let them go” a little voice whispered to me.

Let them go and live from your soul.

Allow yourself to be.

That beautiful, wonderful being that you are

That perfection in you

Because that’s what you are.

You are perfect.

You’re the reason

the definition of the word perfect even exists,

because there is nothing perfect in this world

yet we know what it is.

Listen to your heart.

Let it go…

Everything you think you are,

Everything you think you know,

And just breathe.

Just be.

Because in that being,

Dwells a divine masterpiece.

Have an awesome day 🙂

Show your Awesome!

Dear Readers,

I’d like to share the start of something amazing and beautiful.

As you all know, I endorse Awesomeness.

I’m awesome.

You’re awesome.

We’re all awesome!

I know that and I’ve made it my mission in life for you to be aware of it too.

In an effort to share the awesomeness around, to spread it through the land of the living, to make it a palpable, living and breathing thing I’ve decided to do something very simple: This.

Today I’m feeling Awesome.

Check out the website, spread the word, if you would be so kind as to support the expansion of global awesomeness I’d be truly grateful.

Whatever you do, have an Awesome day!

All my love,

Dolly.

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It’s Time.

It’s time to begin, isn’t it?
I get a little bit bigger, but then I’ll admit
I’m just the same as I was
Now don’t you understand
That I’m never changing who I am

 

As human beings, we are genetically engineered to mess up. We were perfectly designed to be flawed. If we aren’t making mistakes and learning from them in some way we’re doing something wrong!

We shouldn’t be aiming to be “perfect”. What the hell is perfect?

We should be aiming for better.

Be better than who you were yesterday.

Until you become the best version of yourself that you know you can be.

You’re awesome just the way you are, with all your flaws, your imperfections, your fumbles, your falls, your lies, your secrets, your shortcomings. You, my fellow human being, you are beautiful.