Latest Posts

Golden Orange Hues

Golden hues filter in through the window
As night falls slowly and the air becomes crisp.
In the distance, the bridge’s towers gently pierce the tinted sky
And the waves roll in, crashing softly,
Coming and going, coming and going.

A woman sings sweetly
Playing gorgeous melodies with her guitar.
The travelers listen intently, enraptured.
The magic is palpable, created with each song
And destroyed once again with each forthcoming silence.

The guitar allows itself to be strummed generously,
As the darkness outside engulfs everything in its path.
The warm lights inside the cafe are cozy and welcoming,
Offering a safe space to connect, to write, to dream,
To breathe in the beauty of this moment
And of this life.

Mahalo, soul of mine,
For your generous gifts of song, of word, of breathtaking views,
And of pure light.

Photo by: Belén Alemán

Silence

“El silencio no es tiempo perdido”. – El Rito, Soda Stereo

One of my favorite song lyrics, meaning “silence is not time wasted.”

My blog has been dormant for 553 days. During this period, I have, at times, quietly observed and experienced my deepest urges and desires to write. At others, I have complained loudly and endlessly about my silence –which masquerades as “writer’s block”– to anyone within earshot. I’m sure I’ve driven a few of you crazy.

In these 553 days, I’ve consistently received, and also given myself, one main piece of advice: JUST DO IT. (Thank you, Nike.) It’s true: all it takes is to sit my butt down and grab either my computer, or a notebook and a pen, and simply create letters grouped in specific patterns that form words, and eventually sentences, until it becomes what we call writing.

Before I go on, allow me to clarify that I have written sporadically, albeit not publicly. I still have my journal, but even that has gone unloved for 6 months now.

Whenever I’m stuck in an area of life that matters to me, the personal development company I participate with always has me look at what’s missing in that area which, if it were there, would make a real difference, maybe even inspire me. This is in direct opposition to what I learned growing up, which was to look for what’s wrong or what needs to be fixed. Over the years, I’ve become a master at “fixing” things; however, there aren’t very many things that are actually broken, and my writing certainly isn’t one of them.

I love to write. Everyone knows this about me. I even have a tattoo about writing! (Not like that proves anything other than I can tolerate a needle piercing my skin with ink, but still, I think it’s cool). So then, if I love to write and there’s nothing wrong with my writing, what’s the problem? What’s been keeping me quiet?

I’ve been in this inquiry for as long as I’ve been silent. Longer than that, actually, because this isn’t the first time I’ve stopped doing that which I’m most passionate about. And the only answer I’ve come up with is this: I feel fear and I let it stop me. What if what I write sucks? What if my inspiration runs dry? I live a full and busy life; what if I can’t make time for it? Or worse, what if I become so unpracticed with writing that I lose all desire for it?

That last question feels like a dagger through my heart. And while it may seem silly or overly dramatic to some, this is truly what’s been having me feel so afraid all this time.

So, back to what’s missing. After much personal discovery work, I realized I gave up on my commitment to make a difference with others through my writing. That’s what moves me the most, other than my love of creating words on paper. I want to make a difference, and I do make a difference, but at some point in the last 553 days, I got distracted. I lost touch with the part of my Soul that very softly, yet quite insistently, says to me, “Your writing makes a difference. You make a difference. Your writing is worthy. You are worthy. Your writing is enough. You are enough.”

What’s been missing is my self-worth.

And no one can give me my self-worth. It is mine to create in each moment. It is only for me to know, with absolute and unwavering certainty, that I am always enough simply because I say that I am.

That is the power of my Word.

So here I am, back at it again. Stay tuned – there’s much more to come.
And, as always, thank you for reading.

Photo by: Anthony Chiechi / Colonia del Sacramento, Uruguay

Follow my blog with Bloglovin

I Am That We Are

I am that We are powerful and free.
I am that We are compassion, love, and understanding.
I am that We are forgiveness.
I am that We are passionate and driven.
I am that We are a force to be reckoned with.
I am that We are courage, strength, and resilience.
I am that We are open to learn from each other.
I am that We are lending our ears to truly listen.
I am that We are awakening.
I am that We are being called to be a higher version of ourselves.
I am that We are a light for future generations.
I am that We are our planet’s caregivers.
I am that We are all one and in tune with the universe.
I am that We are infinite possibilities.

I am the possibility of the 2016 election being a blessing in disguise.

I am the possibility of taking action, of fanning the flames of the fire that has been ignited in my soul. I know I am not alone in feeling this.

I am the possibility of transformation for our world.

I understand why some voted for this man. I empathize with the suffering they’ve endured and feel compassion for them. I, too, believe radical change is needed, but I do not, cannot, and will not ever support radical change that is rooted in fear, hatred, separation, sexism, racism, misogyny, discrimination, and intolerance.

I apologize for the times when I have been those things in the past. No more.

I am taking a stand for humanity. I am taking a stand for myself and for us all. I am calling us to rise. I am calling us to be the lightworkers and healers that we know ourselves to be.

I will do no harm, but I will take no shit.

All of this is an agreement with my soul.
All of this is my commitment to you.

I am making this public so that you can hold me accountable if ever I stray from my Word. I simply ask that you hold me accountable with compassion and love, and that you extend your hand and lend me your strength so that I may once again rise with you — not against you.

I will do the same for you.

“Know this: The most fierce, courageous, loving, passionate, radiant spirits have just been ignited. The future is bright!”

– Life as Ceremony

Photo by: Found on Google

I Wish You Had Been It

I had hoped you would be everything I wanted, but you weren’t.

That’s OK.

I overlaid my expectations on you to see if they would match up perfectly with who you are. Some things did, but most didn’t. That was on me.

Still, I stayed. Still, I told myself I should be flexible; I should adapt; I should learn a new way of loving.

And I did.
You inadvertently taught me that.

Thank you.

You pushed me to my limit and then asked me to keep going, and I did. I broke some of my own barriers, and while I certainly didn’t do it smoothly all the time, nor did I always get it right, I certainly gave it my all. I certainly tried.

Eventually, I grew tired. Sometimes I need a break from being outside of my comfort zone for too long. I need to pause, and process, and take things in, and understand, and heal, and grow, and move on. Often, I can continue on my journey with the same person, but that’s not how it was this time for me with you.

Pushing myself led me to experience new inner growth, but I also discovered that some types of pushing had the opposite effect: It led me into lies. I lied to myself, thinking that if I could only adapt a bit more, just one more tiny bit, I’d finally get it right.

But, who can truly define what it means to love the “right” way?

Love is not something we will ever get “right.” Love is something that we do, and there are many ways of doing it. My “right” way may not be good for you, and vice versa.

I learned that if it doesn’t feel good, something has to change; otherwise, I run the risk of deluding myself into being miserable the rest of my life. I run the risk of missing the exit and convincing myself that this is how it has to be, that I have to put myself aside to love someone more than myself.

There is a selfish love of self that is harmful to others–that’s not what I’m referring to. I’m referring to the radical self-love that is absolutely necessary to cultivate within us and for us before we are able to give others the love they need and deserve; the type of pure love that radiates from our core and is full of light.

When we lose sight of this radical self-love, like I did, we welcome in our own self-destruction. That’s why I needed us to part ways: I needed to regain my Self, and I couldn’t do it with you. I was blocked. I did all I could; I gave all I could give. My spirit, mind, and body had had enough.

I haven’t stopped loving you; I’ve simply shifted the way in which I do. And from this distance I am able to love you more fully than when I was right beside you. Trust me, it’s better from where I now stand.

Now, my energy has shifted to focus on me again and on my next spirit-growth-spurt. Not the harmful, selfish kind of energy, but the radically loving energy that will help heal and restore my Self… And my memory of Us.

I wish it had worked. I wish you had been it.
But it didn’t. And you weren’t.

And that’s OK.

Photo by: Belén Alemán / Maui, Hawai’i

From My Higher Self, To Me, With Love

You are exactly where you’re meant to be, right here, right now.
Not in the past, not in the future…
Right here, right now, in this moment.
It is only this moment.

Yes, you are a spiritual being in a physical body, you are capable of perceiving non-physically, but in this current reality, in this particular moment of the Eternal Moment, your soul is co-existing and co-creating with your physical form, with your body. You must accept this; it would be delusional not to! The evidence is under your nose… Indeed, your nose is a part of the evidence.

Therefore, be here, right now.

Learn the lessons you came here to learn.
Yes, you actually did choose to be born into a Catholic family.
You chose all of your circumstances, and you are continuously creating your reality.

You created this moment of writing knowing that otherwise your mind would burst; you wisely gave yourself this outlet.

Trust that you are exactly where you’re meant to be and that you’re living exactly what your soul needs in order to experience and remember what it came into being to remember.

Don’t try to jump ahead.

The lesson doesn’t lie over there, in some future moment that you have not yet experienced; the lesson lies here.

Let go.

Let go of the desire to control and to obtain all of the answers to everything by yesterday. That is not the point. The point is to be alive while you live in this body and to use your body as a vessel to evolve your soul.

I know you wish you lived in a future time when a lot of things will be figured out and we will have acquired much more knowledge, but you will, and you have. You feel the barrier in your mind and you get frustrated and antsy and desperate to surpass it because you know that you already have done all of this at some point of the Eternal Moment, but you are not living at that point of the Eternal Moment, you’re living in THIS ONE because YOU CHOSE IT. Trust that you chose it for a reason, and that you chose it well, with purpose!

TRUST YOURSELF!
TRUST THE WISDOM OF YOUR SOUL!
It belongs to God.
It knows what it’s doing.
It is a part of God.
Ultimately, it IS God.

Stop looking elsewhere for truth; you need only look within.
You already have all the answers; you need only remember them.
Trust that you are on the right path.
Please, please trust this.

Please.

You are beautiful.
You are exquisite.
You are God’s glory.
You are Love.

Live it, breathe it, feel it, BE IT.
You already are it.

Even if no one else believes you, even if no one else believes it, trust and follow your own path. You can trust yourself to know the way. You can. You need only believe.

Seek within and you shall find, you shall rediscover, you shall re-member, you shall once again become one with God.

Trust your soul.

Photo by: Gautam Sodera / At the summit of Haleakala, Maui, Hawai’i

Lean On Me

I took myself to yoga today for the first time in several months. I chose to go on my own and purposely told no one about it. Could I endure it? Not physically, but mentally?

I practiced yoga for many years in Argentina, but since being back in the US, I’ve had a hard time finding a class and an instructor I like. While this didn’t stop me from searching for the missing puzzle piece, it did make me lazy over time. Eventually, I arrived at the excuse of “I simply don’t want to do yoga as my main workout each week because I’m bored of it.” For the most part, I eliminated it from of my routine, with the exception of a special occasion for charity, a few poses I’ve always done before and after exercising and, of course, my headstands, because I love them.

After much reflection, I finally understood the real reason behind my disenchantment with yoga: it wasn’t the practice itself, rather the quieting of my mind that seemed extremely daunting. I didn’t want to deal with what would come out, as I also didn’t want to deal with the flexibility I’ve lost over the years due to lack of practice. I didn’t want to acknowledge the reality that I was no longer as connected to my body and as centered as I once was.

Excuses, excuses, excuses. So I forced myself to go today. I put a reminder on my calendar three weeks ago and told myself I wasn’t allowed to cancel this date. The class is the one held every Tuesday at Grace Cathedral, and while it’s for beginners, they have beautiful live music and the church’s interior gives off a genuine feeling of calm and tranquility.

It wasn’t as bad as I had led myself to believe. (I’m my own worst enemy, after all). I made my mind focus on what my body was doing, and every so often –when I remembered—on my breath, as well. At one point, I looked up and saw a very old woman participating in the class and I teared up as I thought, “I miss my grandparents. And I wish they had as much life in them as she does.”

I was patient with myself during the process. I was kind. I reminded myself that it had been a while and I was a bit out of form, but that was OK. I forgave myself for having been so harsh in the past. I pushed my body to keep going. And when I lost my balance, my mind whispered, “Try again.”

When we laid down for the last meditation, memories flooded my mind. I was suddenly watching myself in my bedroom in Argentina as I cried after having received a call from my mother letting me know one of my dearest family members had passed in a car accident a few hours before, during the night I was out partying with my friends after having aced my last final of my first year of college.

As I looked at my 19-year-old self, that little girl that struggled to comprehend what she had just heard while tears instinctively poured out of her eyes, I said to her in my mind’s most compassionate voice, “It’s OK baby. I promise you’ll be OK,” and realized the end of 2016 will mark the 10th anniversary of that death.

It is a death I carry with me, even if I don’t think about it all the time anymore. And it is memories similar to this one and that of my grandparents and their perils, among many others, from which I was running away.

Running is exhausting. I’m ready to deal with what I’ve repressed, and learn to let it go, and forgive myself whenever necessary, and move on. Yoga is one of many ways to do this, because you are able to observe your body changing and your mind becoming more in tune with the All of You while you deal with whatever issues come up.

Except you don’t deal with them alone. You have your beautiful self to hang on to and lean on.

Photo by: A friend of mine / Buenos Aires, Argentina

A (Re)Commitment To My Self

Without actually moving an inch, I can taste the bittersweet magic of writing, of watching as the first few mischievous words fearlessly leap onto the page, not knowing where they are going, or with what purpose, but choosing to follow anyway. I can feel how it feels to get lost in the process by simply closing my eyes. I can savor that moment when I lose track of time and forget where I am, who I am, how I am, why I am; that instant when I’m simply, freely, and easily surrendering and yielding to a force and an energy so deep within myself that it is as if it were All That Is. While the words create as they please by ordering themselves however they desire, I am able to immerse mind, body, and soul into the climax-like feeling of nearing the end, and the ecstasy of knowing that, when it is finished, the masterpiece will finally reveal itself and I will inevitably fall back into the constraints of my physical world and regain consciousness of the limitations I aspire to surpass.

“And in that moment, I swear we were infinite.” – Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The act of wanting to write is, at times, more beautiful, powerful, and inspiring than the act of writing itself, because when I write, I must face my fears, which are laden with all of the criticisms I have ever received from others, as well as all of the nonsense I make up to try to convince myself that I am unworthy of immortalizing my thoughts and musings on a canvas of paper. It is in the wanting that I am free of all of the (wo)man-made bullshit; it is in the wanting that I am safe.

Yet safety has never led any exquisite mind to greatness, and my mind—make no mistake—is exquisite. I do not write that with arrogance, but with absolute humility and awe. No creation of mine will ever be as magnificent as is the being we call a human, with its mind, body, and soul. I can only hope to offer up the unique essence that arises from the perfect combination of those three aspects within the being I recognize as me.

And since I am here, right now, in this particular state of being called me, I plan on spending every eternal moment of now that I am given attempting to be the grandest version of the greatest vision I ever had about myself, until I cease to exist. Once I leave my body, I give permission to others to do as they please with whatever is left of my writing.

In the meantime, however, I am in charge of what, how, and when I write. I am in charge of whom I write about and to whom I direct my words. I will hold the reins. I will make the necessary decisions. I will choose what feedback to accept and which to discard, although I promise to hear and consider all of it. I will forgive myself for taking a hiatus, for resting, for pausing whenever my soul feels the need. I will not judge myself; rather, I will be understanding and loving. I will be kind to myself first, that I may then be kind to others to an even greater degree. I will give freely, because I always have enough; I have never gone without.

This is my commitment to my Self, this beautiful, magnificent, exquisite, imaginative, restless, crazy Self that cannot envision its own existence without the possibility of writing, no matter what others, as well as my own fears, may think about said writing.

Thank you for reading. May these words serve you, and if they don’t, please toss them and move on. I hope you find that which does serve you, and if you cannot find it, may you have the courage to create it yourself.

Cheers to 2016!

Photo by: Belén Alemán / San Telmo, Buenos Aires, Argentina / Quote by Calle 13, Vuelta al mundo: “I only have a smile, and I expect one back.”

The Art Of Self-Sabotage And How To Stop It

A quick guide to self-sabotage:

  1. Let in every, and any, negative thought about yourself.
  2. Pay no mind to whether said thoughts are real or simply perceptions.
  3. Believe these thoughts.
  4. Watch your reality turn sour.

Easy, huh?

We do it all the time. We allow, and sometimes even encourage, our minds to drown in debilitating thoughts. This happens mainly due to a lack of awareness and a sense of impotence, of believing we are not in control of our lives and our realities. Yet nothing could be farther from the truth.

Our individual realities, our personal worlds, are created daily by us with every thought, word, and action. It is a continuous and often impercetible process; we are so used to thinking that we seldom stop to consider what we think about. Gradually, we end up influencing every aspect of our lives, but our lack of awareness leads us to not understand how things came to be or why certain situations delivered certain outcomes. This is when we start blaming external factors–things, people, or the entire universe with all of its life forms known and unknown to man—for our miseries.

It’s true that many situations are out of our individual and personal control, but you’d be surprised at how many fall under our direct influence.

How often do we stop to consider our share in the responsibility for the outcomes in our lives? Why do we hesitate to look inward? Our power lies within, and that power can be positive or negative, depending on where we decide to place our energy.

Have you ever created a lie so intricate you ran the risk of almost believing it yourself after repeating it so much? That is exactly how we shape our realites. We start by having a first thought, barely recognizable amidst the noise of our minds. Slowly we allow it to grow, and grow, and grow without questioning it, until we accept it and manifest it through our words, through how we share our stories, perceptions, and opinions with others. Finally, we manifest it through our deeds, which translate into habits and behaviors. Once it’s reached this last point, it has already become real. Unless we make a concerted effort to stop the negativity and reverse the damage, it will continue to manifest in our lives until we reach that drowning sensation.

What if we could become so aware of our first thoughts that we became innately good at changing them almost immediately? While not impossible, it requires a lot of patience, a lot of paying attention, a lot of being present and persevering. It requires training ourselves to listen to and hear our minds, to observe how our thoughts make us feel, to identify where our intent lies so that we can then see how it all inspires us unto the next thought. What’s going on in those beautiful brains of ours? What are our minds saying? What are our hearts whispering that we’re likely ignoring? Are we making decisions based on love or fear?

The more we practice awareness –conscientious listening—, the easier it becomes. We begin to identify which mindsets and attitudes require our attention, and from there we gain the ability to turn them around. We can then transform a simple thought, such as “I suck at this,” into a powerful statement, such as “I am improving little by little,” that over time and with patience will change our reality – as long as we believe it.

Try it, but be patient; it is a work in progress. Some thoughts, words, deeds, and beliefs take years to reverse. However, if you’re miserable in certain aspects of your life, or feel lost and are unsure why, what have you got to lose by focusing some well-deserved attention on your own inner workings?

Photo by: Belén Alemán / Valparaíso, Chile

All You Have To Do

All you have to do is be present, right here, right now, in this moment.

Allow yourself to be here, right now. Allow yourself to love all of it: California, San Francisco, the park, the bridge, the weather, the weirdness, the people, the thought of staying put, your current circumstances… All of it.

You don’t have to go anywhere. You don’t have to run. There’s no need for you to pick up and go. Drown the feeling of suffocation; it’s not real. The walls aren’t closing in on you; there’s enough room in this city for your life and everyone else’s.

Memories are created with people in specific places. Sometimes revisiting these places hurts, yes, but you can move past the associations. You can create new memories. Go back to each location and make it your own. Call back your power to you; call it back from those who have proven themselves unworthy to receive it and nurture it.

All you have to do is be here, right now, in this moment. Nowhere else.

You don’t have to be anyone but yourself, with your imperfections and your mistakes; with your hurts, your wants, your needs; with your own brand of crazy and passion; with your hope of moving forward, of improving, of learning each necessary lesson; with all of the love you carry within, yet have failed to give to those closest to you; with your tears and your smiles; with all of the ways you have misspoken and have been misunderstood; with all of the pain you have caused.

All you have to do is be you in this exact moment, in this exact place.
Nothing less, nothing more. Nowhere else, no one else.
That is all.
Just be.
Breathe, and just be.

Changing your environment won’t change you.
Be here right now, and be okay with all of it.
Be okay with all of it.

Pay attention.

Remember: you are loved, and you are forgiven. Therefore, love and forgive others. Make peace with yourself, and walk on to your next adventure as you are. If you are receptive, the journey will teach you what you need to know at each step of the way.

Photo by: Belén Alemán / Fort Mason Park, San Francisco, California

A Realignment Of Heart And Mind

My heart was ready to explode. The top of my head was balancing on the red rocks, with my arms forming a triangle of tense support around it. My heart didn’t like this. It also didn’t like that I kept going despite its frantic efforts to get me to stop. I was attempting to straighten my back, tighten my core, and walk my legs forward before raising them into a headstand. With every movement, my heart pounded more intensely against my chest, and it did everything in its power to drown out the voice of reason coming from my mind. How could the mind not see that tumbling off a cliff was a perfectly good reason to feel afraid?

My mind, on the other hand, knew better, although it was also afraid. The difference was that my mind remembered I had counted the steps before venturing upside down and that I had found a safe spot that was several feet away from the edge. It did its best to console my heart. The two of them had a quick chat, during which my mind told my heart that if it calmed down a bit, they could work together to help me breathe through every step, and that if they trusted each other, there would be no harm done.

I closed my eyes, took several deep breaths, and slowly managed to raise my legs into the desired headstand. The wind started blowing pretty steadily, and it took all of the concentration and focus I could muster to not topple over and, instead, keep my legs straight and find my balance. Once I did, the adrenaline hit, and it was an incredible rush. There I was, staring upside down at the amazing expanse of the Grand Canyon, my view of the Earth completely flipped. I felt like I was infinite, one with the sky. It sounds corny to say it now, but in that moment, you really do feel all of the feelings.

There was an important lesson for me to learn that day, one that goes beyond the typical “you can do anything when you put your mind to it,” because truth be told, you won’t be able to achieve happiness or go anywhere worth going with just your mind, as powerful as it may be.

How often do we forget and tend to underplay the importance of our hearts? We are taught that hearts are emotional and, therefore, untrustworthy, but that is a sad and very disrespectful lie. We are creatures with a unique duality, that of feeling and of reason. Both are important in their own right, and each may need to take the lead at certain stages of our lives more than the other, but whenever able, we should consult with mind and heart and strive for alignment.

Overcoming fears is one of the most difficult tasks we undertake in every phase of life. If we consciously choose and make the effort to understand the emotional aspect of our fears and then confront them with reason, we will be much better equipped to disarm them. And if you’re like me and you strive to constantly step outside of your comfort zone in order to grow, mature, learn, and change, achieving an alignment of mind and heart will greatly benefit our journeys.

Don’t you feel off when you have your mind and your heart pointing in different directions? Listen carefully to both of them, help them make peace with each other, and in turn you will find your balance.

Photo by: Ginevra Figg / Grand Canyon South Rim, Arizona, USA