Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Liberate yourself from your mental prisons.

A mental prison can destroy an individual!
Everybody has experienced this, being locked in an invisible jail, so invisible that most of the time, you don't even notice it! Frequently, it is people close to you that see that you look trapped.
They see you changing, losing your joviality, and becoming obsessed.








The reasons why we let ourselves feel imprisoned are various, but it is mostly due to some insecurity on our part.
This insecurity in our personality is usually the source of our own doubts and fears.
This insecurity can also be made worse by the environment we are in. For example our family, friends, or even collegues can all influence our feelings or sense of insecurity. Even nurturing negative thoughts could have an impact on us.

A good way to detect early feelings of insecurity is to be attentive to other peoples reaction around you. When people around you alert you that you are changing, becoming obsessed and close minded, when you see yourself that you can't deploy your wings anymore, that your vision is really restricted, you have to start looking for these weaknesses founded in insecurity.
Some of the questions you need to ask include:

-Which part of my personality is easily affected or sensitive to feelings of insecurity?
-Why is this the case?
-What is the source?

Accepting there is a problem is halfway towards solving the problem.
Initiate a sincere dialogue with yourself, and in the process, clean the diamond in you.
Remember mental prisons can destroy us, but what doesn't destroy us can only make us stronger!



Thursday, May 8, 2008

Interview with Kendra Santos

My guest today is Kendra Santos. She is the owner of Kensankofa.
Kendra specializes in jewelry for woman, and by the way, I love her work.




The interview:

Me:Can you tell me in a few words your life, experience, how and when you started Kensankofa.

Kendra:I started KenSanKofa in Aug of 2006. I bought the rights to a multilevel marketing company. At the time it was a good idea because it would be something that I could do overseas. As time passed I realized that it was not my calling and lost interest. I am thankful for the opportunity because it enable me to tap into my entrepreneurial spirit. So last month I started the jewelry division of KSK. In this past month I have had more success with my jewelry than I did in the past year with the marketing company. I am now willing to create and sell items that I made verse something that someone else made. To me this is far more gratifying.



Me:What does Kensankofa mean?

Kendra:KenSanKofa is a play on my name KENDRA SANTOS and Sankofa. "Sankofa can mean either the word in the Akan language of Ghana that translates in English to "go back and take" (Sanko- go back, fa- take) or the Asante Adinkra symbol.
The Asante of Ghana use an Adinkra symbol to represent this same idea and one version of it is similar to the eastern symbol of a heart, and another version is that of a bird with its head turned backwards taking an egg off its back. It symbolizes one taking from the past what is good and bringing it into the present in order to make positive progress through the benevolent use of knowledge." Wikipedia

I feel that this is very important because my family if from Cape Verde, Africa and I believe that my culture is very important to me and I use my families' teachings in everything I do.


Me:What are your goals?

Kendra:My goals at this point are fairly undetermined simply because the jewelry business was born and blossomed so quickly that I haven't given it much thought. But I have been working on another business plan that incorporate other forms of art and artist in various capacities. I will open an art gallery/showroom with the next couple of years that will provide artist a free or minimal cost rent for studio space.


Me:Do you believe in your lucky star?


Kendra:I don't believe in luck. I am a very spiritual person and I believe that we create our own realities. It is up to us and our Creator to decide what our lives will bring.



Me:Do you have periods of doubts?


Kendra:I never doubt anything that is in my heart. If you doubt something then you don't truly believe in it. Famous people are not famous because they doubted themselves. They knew with out a doubt that they have talent and they want to share that talent with the world and in turn they have become successful. Have you ever met someone that is extremely talented by works in a office somewhere just making enough money to barely make ends meet? They didn't have faith in their talent. It doesn't mean that they were any less talented than people we see on TV.
I wasn't raised to be ordinary and I don't believe that I am ordinary. I have been given a gift from my Creator and I have just been blessed enough to acknowledges it.




Me:What method do you use to find back your energy?


Kendra:It is hard at times to find creative and spiritual energy if you are not listening. If you are aware of your surroundings at all times you can regain that spirit. I try to read books to learn how to become more in tune with my body and the world around me. My favorite books are Conversations With God. These books have completely changed my life. I also have read The Secret. Some people call it a "secret" while other call it faith. "A rose by any other name is still a rose."





Me:Is it effective?

Kendra:It's incredibly effective! Since I started reading my whole life has changed. My business became incredible successful. My financial situation completely changed. I am getting married next year. And one of the most important things I have done is...I learn to be true to myself. I am an artist and I have denied that part of me for too long. I almost became that talented person in the office that no one knew about.

Me:What is your motto in life?


Kendra:I don't really have a motto but I often wish my friends "peace, love and manifestations."

However, in my car I have a note from my friend that I say often that goes something like this, "The Universe supports every thought I choose to think. I choose balance, peace and harmony and I express it in my life."
Thank you Kendra for sharing!



Monday, April 28, 2008

What a wonderful world!



Music is so powerful!

I just wanted to share these sacred musical pieces with you.

I feel an immense interior joy and peace when I listen to these songs.

I also feel a deep sadness when I think off all the atrocities commited because of our beliefs.

Isn't that paradoxal?

Can you say that the truth is here or there?

It seems like it is everywhere for whoever wishes to see it.









Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Think positive




Today, I want to tell you about our thoughts, and how they can affect our lives.
The person who described this best is Ahmadou Hampate Ba. He is an African writer who wrote many successful books.
In his book “The inspiring life of Tierno Bokar", he explains why thoughts are important, how our own thought can act in our life.
I totally adhere to this idea.

Here are his views below:
Imagine that in each person there are 2 walls: a white wall and a red one.
The red wall has several holes, and in each hole, a red bird.

The white wall also has several holes, and in each hole a white bird.

Red birds symbolize bad thoughts and white birds symbolize good thoughts.

Each good thought you have release a white bird. A place is now empty in the white wall, ready to receive someone else white bird (good thought).
But it works the same way for red birds ( bad thoughts). Each bad thought you have release a red bird, and empty a place in the red wall, ready to receive the bad thought of someone else.

So according to Ahmadou Ampathe Ba, The more you have good thoughts for others, the more you are willing to receive good thoughts from others that will have impact in your life.
Ibid for the bad thoughts.

So in a few words, you receive what you give. Balance of the universe.
You may not receive it by the person you gave it to, but you will receive it as soon as a place on your wall is empty.
So try the more you can to think positive.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Special dedicace


Today, I want to dedicate this poem to Yoan, Amadou, Sory, and Quentin. I am sure, one day, they will become men of honor and duty. And I hope those words will help them find the energy and the light in periods of trouble and remind them not to choose the easy way, but the path of men of honor.
Love


If

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you;
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or, being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or, being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise;

If you can dream - and not make dreams your master;
If you can think - and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with triumph and disaster
And treat those two imposters just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with wornout tools;
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on";

If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings - nor lose the common touch;
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And - which is more - you'll be a Man my son!


{Si

Si tu peux voir détruit l'ouvrage de ta vie
Et sans dire un seul mot te mettre à rebâtir,
Ou perdre en un seul coup le gain de cent parties
Sans un geste et sans un soupir ;
Si tu peux être amant sans être fou d'amour,
Si tu peux être fort sans cesser d'être tendre,
Et, te sentant haï, sans haïr à ton tour,
Pourtant lutter et te défendre ;

Si tu peux supporter d'entendre tes paroles

Travesties par des gueux pour exciter des sots,
Et d'entendre mentir sur toi leurs bouches folles
Sans mentir toi-même d'un mot ;
Si tu peux rester digne en étant populaire,
Si tu peux rester peuple en conseillant les rois,
Et si tu peux aimer tous tes amis en frères,
Sans qu'aucun d'eux soit tout pour toi ;

Si tu sais méditer, observer et connaître,

Sans jamais devenir sceptique ou destructeur ;
Rêver, mais sans laisser ton rêve être ton maître,
Penser sans n'être que penseur ;
Si tu sais être dur, sans jamais être en rage,
Si tu sais être brave et jamais imprudent,
Si tu sais être bon, si tu sais être sage,
Sans être moral et pédant ;

Si tu peux rencontrer Triomphe après Défaite

Et recevoir ces deux menteurs d'un même front,
Si tu peux conserver ton courage et ta tête
Quand tous les autres les perdront
,Alors les Rois les Dieux la Chance et la Victoire
Seront à tout jamais tes esclaves soumis,
Et, ce qui vaut bien mieux que les Rois et la Gloire,
Tu seras un homme mon fils !}

Rudyard Kipling



Flora Sicot/Wraggle Taggle Gypsie ( KIRBY MEMORY )

Friday, March 28, 2008

Manage your conflicts



Some kind of conflicts can be very poisonous.


I have seen many people been really affected when this happened in their private life, as well as in their work place.
When it is not managed in time, it can become very disproportionated in relation to the initial disagreement.


Conflicts are sometimes necessary because they are one of the ways you can affirm your personality. So don’t systematically avoid them.
But there are many other ways to affirm your personality as well, so don’t let it become a habit. And keep in mind that conflict which lasts, can become a mental prison. It takes all your energy and thought, and prevents your light from shining through.







If you live that kind of situation, stop thinking the way people usually do in those cases: “Who is right and who is wrong, who first started, etc...” That is very infantile, and it appeals only to one kind of solution: Parental (hierarchic) control of the situation.
Take a pen, and write on a paper when this started, and why it started.
If it started a long time ago, you maybe have forgotten why it started. ( Some people stay so long in conflict that they sometimes forgot the reason of the initial disagreement). If that is your case, it is really time to change.
Why did this started. Question yourself, is the motive so important that you have to lose all your energy on it, that you take the risk to compromise your credibility ( or objectivity)?


“What can I do? He or she is always looking for confrontation?” That is the most frequent answer I had.


Maybe you are right, but you have to know that if you can’t change someone else, you can change your own behavior, and in this way, force the person to change their behavior towards you.


First of all, refuse to communicate emotionally.


Try to understand without emotion what this person is really trying to tell you. Is it understandable for you?


Secondly, start communicating with him or her in a positive manner.


Reestablish a positive communication. “I understand your concern, and…” or “It is important for me to understand your concern,…..”


Thirdly, stay positive.


In your dialog, stay positive. Retell this person's idea in a positive manner, and tell your own idea with positive words.







Positive communication is a nice way to refuse the mental prison in which some kind of conflicts can maintain you. By changing your method of communication, you will bring positive energy, and force people around you to change.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

The magic of meditation



During my coaching sessions, I used to ask my clients to meditate. And most of the time, their answer was: “Meditation? But I don’t know how to meditate…I have never learned…”
Maybe we should start initiating our kids to the art of meditation….
For me, meditation is the thing I use in period of big trouble (stress, conflicts, fears, etc…)
You can use many methods.




Here is mine:

Just find for a few moments a quiet place. You can put music on (peaceful music) if you want. The important thing is that you have to ensure that no aggressive sound will disturb you.
Lay down on your back. You have to be comfortable.
Then close your eyes and start your meditation.
I often had this reflection from my clients:” I have tried once, but I couldn’t empty my mind. That’s too hard.”
My response was: “You are doing it wrong; you must not start a meditation by trying to stop your thoughts! That’s impossible!!!”
If you try that way, surely you will never succeed! You have to let your mind (soul) go where it wants. Don’t try to control your thoughts! Don’t try…..and you’ll see, it will go far far away from the initial point. Thus, you will evacuate all your parasites thoughts till you reach “the highest level”.


Here is my tip:

If you are a beginner, choose the word “peace” to start your meditation. That means that you should close your eyes and mentally repeat this word and think of all images associated.
By “highest level “, I mean that very nice state (for the body and the soul) where you finally find yourself. I won’t try to describe it because it is very different from an individual to another.One thing is certain, that state “washes” you from all your negative energy, and charges you with positive energy.
Have a good meditation!


Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Interview with Flora Sicot



My guest today is Flora Sicot. She is an excellent pianist, jazz and gospel singer. She studied classical piano at the conservatoire, and then turned to Jazz and gospel.
Now, she is a pianist-singer and works mostly with 
The new Orleans Gospel Quartet
Here are two links where you can hear her wonderful voice!

http://www.myspace.com/neworleansgospelquartet

Besides, she is the very busy mum of two cute kids.






What impress me with Flora is that she goes through life with a big smile on her face.


The interview:


Me: For how long have you been playing with “Kirby memory”?
Flora: We needed one year to create the repertoire. That was a lot of work (search for the musical scores, musical arrangement, etc….), and we started playing about 2 years ago.


Me: What are your goals in music?Flora: I’d liked to create several projects….One in jazz (piano, songs, string bass, drums), with new runs and arrangement of old standards; another one with soul, afro, gospel ambiance and brass section.For now, I want to work on my piano and my voice. I am still beginning.Me: Do you believe in your lucky star?Flora: Yes, I think we all have one,…but I believe in God, he is my lucky star.Me: Do you have times of doubts?Flora: Every…..day!! Most seriously, there are period of doubt. But they help me awakening, and stay in the good direction… They are good if they don’t last too long.Me: How do you deal with those periods of doubts?Flora: I try to stabilize myself, to stay objective, and not being submerged…..I accept them………doubt is our own fears that we have to fight. We have to work on them in order to evolve.Me: What method do you use to find back your energy?Flora: In general, Bach flowers for emotions, Solitude to find myself……When I am really physically and morally tired, I treat myself with a shiatsu session.Me: Is it effective?Flora: Yes…I have the chance to have a profession that gives me a lot of energy, good energies… I can be tired, have a low morale, as soon as I am on repetition, I find back my energy and force. Music is magic for that. Jazz for the feelings of life and a certain nostalgia, and gospel for faith and hope.Me: What is your motto in life?Flora: I love this sentence from Hawes: “ Sow an action, you will glean a habit, Sow a habit, you will glean a personality, sow a personality, you will glean a destiny”….I am working on it.


Thank you flora for sharing.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Tips to "let go"





In a post comment, I’ve been asked to give tips on how to “let go”..

That makes me think that maybe I should develop the last part of the “letting go principle” post.

Once you have decided to apply the letting go principle in your life, the best way to succeed, is to defocus your attention from your target point. To achieve that objective, you have to find an alternative point to focus on.The best alternative points are the ones which don’t present the same risk as the first one. They have to be things, thoughts and activities in which you had found peaceful joy in the past.






Here are my tips:






1-Physical activities: Sports, yoga, and dance: all physical activities helps you to evacuate your mental tension through your body and generates endomorphines which is good for you during that period.I prefer running because it helps you clean your mental state



2-Mental activities: Chess, Sudoku etc… They require your attention.




3-Manual activities: Knitting, scrapbooking, crafting, painting, fiddling….They clean your mind in a creative and constructive way.




4-Change your environment: Put order in your room, change the position of your furnitures, Change the colors in your home, and make it takes the look of the new you.



5- Treat yourself: treat yourself like the very precious diamond you are.



6- Travel if you can: By taking a physical distance from your target, the mind will follow.



7- Break the routine: Change at least 2 routines in your everyday habits.



8-Make a list: make a numbered list of all the things you want to accomplish in your life. Put objectively your target point on that list. The order of the list should be from the more important to the less important. See the result.(Health issues are an exception, and if you do have health issues, you should be accompained by a professional.) It shouldn’t be the first of the list. This helps you to put relativity in your vision. Keep the list with care, and read it once a year.
















And remember a fixation is a mental prison, that while growing, prevents your light from being reflected. “Letting go” doesn’t mean that you won’t have what you want. On the contrary, it means that you give yourself the possibility to have it by letting your light shine with all its power.




Friday, March 7, 2008

The "letting go" principle





Who never had the experience of trying to have something so hard, that you put all your energy and thought on it,….but at the end, don’t have it.


Then you start asking yourself: Why didn’t I get it? Am I unfortunate?


And you go on denigrating yourself: “I am not good”And qualify yourself with negative adjectives. ( This is the reason why the diamond has to be cleaned sometimes Cf “ the diamond in you”).









We all heard about the “letting go” principle. Philosophies, Psychologies, religions, and all the spirituals taught around the world tell us about it.


“Letting go”, so easy to say, so hard to apply, but so successful!


If you decide ( I insist on decide, as it is the sinequanone condition to all personal development path) to apply the “letting go” principle in your life, you have to be aware of the consequences of focusing on something.


Let’s take this example:


You want to visit a friend who just bought a house in a town at 1 hour from you. You never went there, so before you take the road, you print the directions.


During the trip, you focus so much on following the directions you have printed that you don’t even notice that the road is full off signs and indications on where you have to go.


You continue on following your instructions, when you find out that a few miles further, there is a traffic jam.


You finally arrive at your friend’s house 2 hour after the party ended.You have missed all the opportunities offered to you to get there on time.



Once you are conscious of the lost of lateral vision generated by focusing too much your attention on something, you can correct it by finding out things, thoughts, activities in which you find joy in, to help you defocus your attention from your target point.










Frequently, when we focus, we lose the ability to listen. So reintroduce the communication with your interior voice, and you will see the path to your goal.

Monday, March 3, 2008

The diamond in you






We should stop seeing ourselves with negative eyes, and start considering ourselves as diamonds. Every single Human soul is a diamond.

As a diamond, we have multiple facets, as a diamond, we are precious and strong, and as a diamond, we can reflect light.








The problem, is that we don't take care of that soul.
Let us consider that we decide to manage everyday a few moments for a discussion with our soul, and try to eliminate all the conflicts we can have. I am not talking about conflicts with other people, I am talking about conflicts with ourselves. Those kinds of conflicts can have important impact on our future.



Why? Because if we are not in harmony with ourselves, we will not give ourselves the possibility to do what we can do.

There are many ways to communicate with our soul. It can be meditation or contemplation, sport, art, anything we find joy in.










So Take care of your diamond, and clean it from all the dirt which has gathered on it, and the entire world will see you shine, and will shine through you!

Friday, February 29, 2008

About dreamland





Do you remember when you stopped believing in fairies , prince charming, Santa Clause.......
I can't remember myself, but I just know that one day you just wake up with no faith in anything.....just in your daytime reality.
And the more you grow, the more you learn that no other reality exist other than the one you live in.
If you have the chance to live in a great reality, good for you! If not, good luck in your life as you've lost your faith in your fairy good mother a long time ago.

Why is it so important to bring back that faith?



The first and most important step on that path is the desire to go back to dreamland. Find out all the reasons in yourself, in your life to do it.










How do you bring it back?


When you have grown that desire, you have to listen to your interior voice, it will show you the path.










How do you find the way back to dreamland, the dimension of all things possible.

Once you've heard your interior voice, you have to start communicating with it, and you'll see, everything will become different, easyer, because it is your power.







Showing you that way is my goal, as an individual an artist and a coach.


Now you are ready to explore the dimension off all things possible.

Have a good trip!
















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