Little Shifts

When you read “Little Shifts” in the subject line, I hope you didn’t confuse that with what my mother used to call us when we were being mischievous. Don’t worry. She said it with love. Mostly. As adults, we joke about it all the time. 

No, the little shifts I’m talking about are the seemingly insignificant changes I’ve made lately. Although small, I trust they are shifting the flow of energy in some way that will yield unexpected benefits. 

For example, after 10 months of living in this apartment, all of a sudden, I started reaching for the wrong kitchen drawer for silverware. Why now, after all this time? I don’t know. You would think my brain would be on autopilot for a task like this. 

Rather than fight the inclination, I decided to relocate the silverware tray to that drawer and place the large kitchen utensils in what was the silverware drawer. Occasionally, I find myself opening the wrong drawer for a kitchen knife, but this setup feels better for some reason. If I have learned anything from my friend Dorena, the Space Doula, it’s that making small changes in your home can create space for miraculous changes in your life. For now, I’m leaving the drawers that way. Let’s see what happens! 

In this same week, my navigation app started guiding me to use the back entrance of my apartment complex to the street I travel frequently. At first, I was reluctant to try the new way. The route I had been traveling for 10 months was perfectly adequate and seemed to be the most direct. But after the drawer swap, I decided to give the new route a try. 

Lo and behold, it actually saves time because it avoids a very long traffic light. I have been enjoying a smoother and quicker trip to Sarasota Bay every morning for my walk. Again, it is a seemingly insignificant shift, but it feels better!

So here’s to little shifts everywhere! Maybe there is a little shift that wants to happen in your daily routine. If you’re like me, you might be resistant or simply unaware that something else might flow better. But with a dash of mindfulness, willingness, and openness, perhaps you can get the energy moving in a new and exciting direction. 

That’s exactly what we do in Family Constellations. I would be honored to help you shift the energy in your family dynamics so you can release intergenerational patterns that no longer serve. After 11 years of doing this work, I am still in awe of the healing that happens in one 2-hour session. Please look around my website for more information and to book a session

And if the energy in your home needs shifting, please consider giving yourself the gift of a session with my friend Dorena, the Space Doula. She works with the energy in spaces much like I work with the energy in families. Her extensive knowledge of feng shui, years of space-clearing training with Denise Linn, and laser-beam intuition combine to help reveal energetic blocks that keep you from your heart’s desires. She has helped set me up for success in all areas of my life in every space where I have lived since I met her! Visit her website and take her free quiz to get an idea of her brilliant work at SpaceDoula.com.

Until next time, may you discover and implement little shifts that lead to big, beautiful changes.

There is no order of difficulty in miracles.

A Course in Miracles ~ T-1.I.1:1

Let It Be Okay

Let it be okay. These words have been echoing in my mind for the past few days. Some of you may have noticed there was no email from me in your inbox last Friday. After a very full and rewarding five days of Family Constellations Workshops and Sessions in Virginia, I found myself needing a little more time to rest and rejuvenate last week. When Thursday rolled around, I had not started writing a rough draft, nor did I have a clear idea of what to write about. Although many miracles and a great deal of healing happened for me and for those I had the honor to work with, I felt I needed more time to integrate that experience.

Rather than force it and push past my tiredness, I decided to be gentle with myself and let it be okay to take a week off. As far as I know, the earth did not stop rotating last week. I’d be willing to bet most people who read my weekly stories did not notice the absence. And if you did, I imagine you were okay with one less email in your inbox while I practiced self-care.

Over the weekend, I had another chance to “let it be okay.” I intended to invest several hours answering emails and creating new marketing materials for upcoming Family Constellations Workshops. Instead, I found myself acquiescing to my need for more sleep and my desire to be at the beach for the sunset on both Saturday and Sunday. I answered the time-sensitive emails, but I felt no spark to design new marketing materials. 

Although not much work happened, my soul was soothed and recharged by the relaxing sound of the waves rolling into the shore on those evenings. While the sun dipped below the horizon, Mother Nature painted the sky with spectacular purple and orange hues. I’m always amazed by how different her artwork can be from night to night. And with my soul recharged, I found the inspiration to create those marketing materials the following day. 

Obviously, I’m not advocating avoiding work forever or abandoning our responsibilities. What I am advocating is stepping back to reassess the things we tell ourselves we have to do now. Is it true that they need to be done right away? Perhaps it is only a habit or the ego pressuring us to keep going and not take time to rest. It’s no secret that our culture places high value on doing and very little value on being. I am so grateful to have learned that both are necessary for a happy, healthy life.

Are you stuck in doing mode with little or no time for being? Perhaps today is the day you let it be okay to stop pushing and allow yourself some well-deserved time to rest and recharge. If I can assist you in breaking this cycle with a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a private Family Constellations Session, please don’t hesitate to contact me. You can learn more about these opportunities or book a session on my website. I look forward to being with you!  

By the way, I hope you can tell how much I enjoy sharing the lessons life is teaching me in these weekly stories. It makes my heart smile when I hear that something I wrote was precisely what someone needed to hear that week. Often, I forget anyone else reads these stories until I am out in the world and someone says something nice about them. It happens a lot when I travel to places where people have been on my email list for years. It’s hard to believe I have been writing these stories consistently since 2015! (They are all on the Blog Page of my website if you are curious to read some oldies.)

Whether you have been reading my stories for 9 years or 9 days, I thank you for inviting me along on your spiritual journey. Until next time, may you give yourself time to rest and recharge, and most importantly…let it be okay!

Yet there will always be this place of rest to which you can return. And you will be more aware of this quiet center of the storm than all its raging activity. This quiet center, in which you do nothing, will remain with you, giving you rest in the midst of every busy doing on which you are sent.

A Course in Miracles ~ T-18.VII.8:1-3

A Well-Timed Lesson

It always makes me laugh when an opportunity to “practice what I teach” appears right before or sometimes as I’m teaching it! Just before logging into Zoom for our weekly online A Course in Miracles study group, I reached for my iPad while holding a water bottle. My water bottle knocked the iPad off its holder and into the burning candle in front of it. Although it was only a tiny tea light candle, it sent hot wax everywhere. What a mess!

I was relieved to see there was no damage to my iPad, but I noticed a significant amount of wax on the corner of the screen not to mention on my kitchen table and floor. I tried to wipe it off with a damp cloth, but that only spread the wax over a larger area. By then I was really frustrated. With just 5 minutes before the start of our meeting, I had no choice but to surrender the cleanup until after our group. 

When I opened my book to see where we left off the previous week, I laughed out loud. That night we would be reading a section called “The Obstacles to Peace.” How funny that just moments before I experienced one! It was a well-timed reminder that only my thoughts prevent me from experiencing peace. I could continue to berate myself for not being more careful, or I could let it go and be present for the joy and miracles in our loving group. 

With each smiling face that entered the Zoom room, I felt more and more peaceful. The annoyance of what had just happened began to fade away, and I joked about it during our miracle sharing. It truly was a miracle that I was able to shift from frustration to joy so quickly. 

Later, we had an excellent discussion about the obstacles to peace from many different perspectives. One sentence from that section summed it up beautifully. “You are its home; its tranquil dwelling place from which it gently reaches out, but never leaving you.” In other words, peace begins with you and then radiates outward, all the while staying with you. Many of you probably recognize this as the message of the Peace Song sung at many spiritual gatherings. 

By the time we finished our meeting, I had forgiven myself for spilling the wax. The task of cleaning it up still felt daunting, so I decided to make a batch of banana oatmeal chocolate chip cookies with the overripe bananas on my kitchen counter first. While mashing the bananas in a bowl, an idea spontaneously dropped into my head. Rather than any kind of spray cleaner, try a plastic gift card to scrape the wax off the surfaces.

It worked like a charm…even on the iPad screen! Any residual wax on the screen came off with the cleaning spray and scratch-resistant cloth my eye doctor gave me to clean my glasses. In less than 30 minutes, there was no sign of the messy wax spill. It was a great reminder to get my thinking out of the problem so inspiration on how to proceed can drop in. 

Yes, spilled wax is a relatively minor setback compared to some of life’s bigger challenges, but in my experience, this approach still works. It’s best to stop judging myself or others for what happened and stop wishing that it didn’t happen. From a place of acceptance, I can return to peace, even if it means focusing on something else for a while. Then, from that peaceful place, I am open and available to receive inspired solutions. I encourage you to give it a try and see if it works.

If you would like some assistance with this endeavor, I would be honored to help you with a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a private Family Constellations Session. My Spiritual Coaching sessions are based on the strong principles found in A Course in Miracles, my 10+ years facilitating Family Constellations and other metaphysical practices. Please look around my website for more information and to book a session. You can also join us any Tuesday for our weekly online A Course in Miracles study group. I look forward to creating miracles with you! 

I could see peace instead of this.

Lesson 34 ~ A Course in Miracles 

Peace in the Darkness

Our family cat, Cleo, comforted me during some tough times.

Last weekend, I had another opportunity to witness what’s possible when I keep choosing peace despite the presence of obstacles. The screen on my laptop went dark while I was talking on the phone Saturday night. When I tapped the space bar to bring it out of idle mode, nothing happened. I clicked the touchpad a few times. Still no response. 

The screen had been sluggish the last few weeks. Sometimes it took up to 30 seconds, but it eventually came back on. This was an unusually long lag time. I waited and then tapped a few more keys. Still nothing. “Uh oh,” I thought. This might be it.

My laptop had been giving me signs that the end was near for quite a while. In addition to the sluggish screen, it was taking longer and longer to open an app or a document. The speakers blew out 2 years ago, making the sound so scratchy and tinny that I had to use my AirPods for Zoom calls.

A few months later, my computer stopped connecting to my AirPods or any Bluetooth device for that matter. If I wanted to Zoom, listen to music, or watch videos, I had to use earbuds that connected with a cord. It was not ideal, but it worked.

Perhaps the most telling sign that it was time to retire the laptop was the rattling noise it made when it had been running for a while. Sometimes when the rattling got very loud, I gave the base a loving thump to get the noise to stop. I felt like Fonzie from the TV show “Happy Days!”

Yes, I knew I would be investing in a new computer soon. I just wasn’t expecting it to be last weekend! In the past, I might have had a “freakout” moment thinking about lost data and the hefty price tag of a new computer. I was concerned, but I never had the freakout moment. Almost two decades of studying and practicing A Course in Miracles helped make that possible. Since I remained peaceful, I was able to follow guidance on what to do and where to go. 

My screen was still dark, so I could not go back to what I was working on. The guidance I received was to let the computer charge overnight and try again in the morning. Now that I had some unexpected free time, I grabbed my phone to research which Apple computer would best suit my needs if I had to buy a new one. The new 15“ MacBook Air looked like the best choice given everything I read online. Even though they are expensive, I knew I wanted to stick with an Apple product. 

The last time I bought a computer, I opened an Apple credit card with 0% interest for the first 12 months. That allowed me to pay for it gradually over the next year. It looked like I might be able to do this again since I closed that account two years ago. This possibility made buying a new laptop feel more doable. There was nothing else I could do that night, so I turned off my phone, spoke a prayer for guidance, and went to bed. 

I will admit I did not have the most restful sleep that night. I woke up before 4 AM and could not fall back to sleep. My mind kept working out scenarios of what might happen the next day. After reading a few chapters in my book, I was able to return to the land of dreams. 

And what sweet dreams they were! For the first time in I don’t know how long, I dreamt of our family cat, Cleo. In the dream, she curled up on the pillow next to me and began purring. Cleo often kept me company during times of chaos in my childhood. The sound of her purring and her presence was very comforting. It felt like she was telling me everything would be okay. Call it a miracle, a gift of Grace, a visit from Cleo, or a function of my unconscious mind. Whatever it was, I woke up with a peaceful smile on my face. 

After reading my ACIM lesson for the day, I reluctantly got out of bed and prepared a bowl of oatmeal and fresh strawberries. I intentionally avoided my laptop to enjoy that peaceful feeling as long as possible. Alas, I couldn’t avoid it forever. I opened my computer and hit the power key with cheerful expectancy, hoping to hear that famous MacBook chime. Still nothing.

Oh well. Knowing I’d want to be as centered as possible before a visit to the Apple Store, I decided to roll out my yoga mat and do my practice. Focusing my mind was like trying to walk a Doberman in a forest of squirrels. My thoughts ran in multiple directions trying to envision what might happen with my laptop situation. I had to keep bringing my attention back to my breath. It was quite comical to observe, yet I was still remarkably calm.

When I finished my practice, something told me to give the keyboard one more tap before packing up the laptop. To my surprise, the screen lit up right away! I was stunned and grateful! Now, I could complete a time-sensitive task, and then back up my hard drive.

I found the external hard drive in my desk, but the cord that connected it to my laptop was not with it. I consider myself to be a very organized and detail-oriented person, so the cord not being in the same drawer was highly unusual. I found several other cords, but none of them had the correct connectors. It was frustrating, but I had to laugh. The one cord I needed was MIA. There was no reason to panic. I simply needed to go to Best Buy to purchase that cord. 

Since one of my favorite Mexican restaurants is near Best Buy, I decided to go there for lunch before buying the cord. While waiting for my burrito, I did a little more laptop research on my phone and narrowed it down to my top choice. That’s when I remembered Best Buy sells Apple products. I could check out that laptop while I was there. If I liked it, once I had the right cord, I could complete the backup and then go to the Apple Store the following day to make the purchase. This seemed like a great plan! 

What a scavenger hunt to find the cord I needed among a wall of boxes containing all sorts of cords and connectors! Perseverance paid off. With my prize in hand, I walked over to the Apple computer section. There it was. The 15” MacBook Air that I had been eying online. 

I stood in front of it and began tapping the keyboard. I liked how it felt. The screen and the touchpad were much larger and easier to navigate than my current laptop. I tested the built-in camera because I use Zoom a lot. The video was sharp and clear. When I looked at the specs on the tag next to the computer, I couldn’t believe my eyes. It was on sale for $300 off! 

Not having the right cord turned out to be a blessing in disguise. I would never have known about this sale had I not gone to Best Buy. When I went to the front to purchase the cord, I asked the cashier how long the sale was running and he said it ended that day! Well wasn’t that interesting timing?

The cashier put me in a cue to speak with a sales associate, so I had another 15 minutes to play with the laptop. I really liked it! Everything about this felt right until the sales associate arrived. He was a nice enough young man, but he talked very quickly. I told him what I use my computer for most often, and asked him which one would be best for my business. He quickly steered me away from the MacBook Air over to a MacBook Pro. 

I don’t doubt that the Pro is a better machine, but he was rambling on about screen definition and processing power, all of which are not high priorities for me. I just need a computer to host Zoom calls, answer emails, and write these stories. He went on about how the MacBook Air was less sturdy and might overheat because it didn’t have a fan. 

He also told me that I would need an external camera because the built-in camera was not great on the MacBook Air. Gee. It looked fine to me when I was playing around with it earlier. The more he talked, the less peaceful I felt. This young man claimed he didn’t work on commission, and that he was only trying to help me buy the best computer.

That may have been true, but I was still feeling pressured into something that did not feel right. The MacBook Pro has a significantly higher price, and it was not on sale, so there was no advantage to purchasing it right then and there. Thankfully, I have learned to trust my intuition when something feels off. I thanked him for his time and left the store.

I will admit, once I was in my car driving home, I asked Siri if Best Buy employees work on commission. Siri confirmed he was telling the truth, but I still did not resonate with his energy. Even though the sale ended that day and the store closed in an hour, I was not going to rush into a big decision like this from a place of scarcity or fear. 

As I tell my coaching clients all the time, there is no urgency in Spirit. No part of the river rushes past another to get to the ocean. Each droplet of water gets there at the perfect time. 

After that yucky experience, I called a dear friend to share what had happened. She asked if I wanted to talk with her husband because he buys computers for his job quite often. Speaking with him was so helpful. He had not heard of any issues with the MacBook Air overheating. In his opinion, the Air was a better choice for my business needs. 

I did a little more research online and saw only excellent reviews for this machine. The only thing left to do was to take the question into prayer and ask what would be the highest choice. Of all the options, including “wait,” the only answer that felt peaceful was purchasing the MacBook Air on Best Buy’s website before midnight so I could take advantage of the sale. 

Once I had that clarity, everything went smoothly. From the comfort of my own home with no fast-talking salesperson, I purchased the computer for $300 off and was approved for the Best Buy credit card. Like the last one, I will be paying off this computer a little at a time for the next 12 months with no interest. 

Picking up the computer at a different Best Buy location the next morning was so easy. All I had to do was show the cashier my photo ID and the email saying my new laptop was ready for pickup. He stepped away for a moment and returned with a box with my name on it. The whole process took less than 10 minutes.

My heart is filled with gratitude for all of the events that led to me typing this story on a brand-new MacBook Air. Although I love it, the miracle isn’t that I have a new laptop. The real miracle was my ability to remain (mostly) peaceful while navigating the obstacles that popped up. By remaining calm, I was able to receive clear guidance on what to do next. I trusted that everything would be okay, just as Cleo promised when she appeared in my dream.

If you are having a difficult time navigating a stressful situation, it would be my great joy to assist you with a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a private Family Constellations Session. Both can help you return to peace where miracles are waiting to happen. Look around my website for more information and to book a session. I look forward to working with you. 

A tranquil mind is not a little gift.

A Course in Miracles ~ M-20.4:8

Just Walk Away!

This week, I learned once again that sometimes the best course of action is to just walk away! I wasn’t having great luck finding an affordable hotel room with the app I normally use, so my sister recommended a rewards program she likes. She said it’s free to create an account, so I decided to give it a try.

After the last software update, something weird must have happened with my Apple password. I had to create a new password and circumvent a very old email address before the new app would download. The challenge seemed to be worth it. When it finally downloaded, I created an account and discovered a better rate on the same room, so I began the process of booking it. 

When I got to the payment screen, a credit card offer popped up. It promised a $150 statement credit after my first purchase and no annual fee. Last fall, a similar credit card deal popped up while I was purchasing an airline ticket. I applied, and it was approved in seconds. The whole process happened seamlessly and saved me quite a bit of money. Since that deal worked out so well, I decided to take advantage of this one.

Unfortunately, the process was not so smooth this time. My credit application was approved, but the new card was not added automatically to my account. The payment screen was asking for the 16-digit number and the rest of the pertinent information. Of course, I did not have this information because the account was brand new. I visited the bank’s website, but I could only see the last 4 digits of the number. No matter what link I clicked, it would not display any more information.

Meanwhile, the clock was ticking. My sister was waiting for me to finish so we could go for our morning walk before her husband arrived for lunch. What I thought would be a quick and easy task was turning out to be a lengthy, digital obstacle course. I could feel myself getting more and more frustrated with each tap on my keyboard that led to a dead end.

Thankfully, I had the good sense to abandon this pursuit. The next logical step would be to call the bank, but I knew I was not in the right frame of mind for that. I had neither the patience nor the time to jump through all those hoops before speaking to a human. I took a deep breath, then closed both my laptop and the app on my phone. Booking the hotel room could wait.

I knew peace would return once I got outside and started moving my body. There is truth in the saying, “Move a muscle. Change a thought.” It definitely works for me. I always feel better after a morning walk or my yoga practice. 

And it was a gorgeous day for a walk! The sun was peaking through the clouds while its rays danced and sparkled on the surface of Sarasota Bay. Getting to share the experience with my sister made it even more enjoyable. It didn’t take long for the frustration of the previous hour to leave my mind completely. 

When we returned to my apartment, I was in a peaceful state of mind and ready to revisit the situation. Rather than call the bank, I decided to open the hotel app to see if anything had changed. Lo and behold it had! My newly opened credit card had been added to my account, and I booked the room in less than a minute!

It truly was a miracle, but not because something on the outside changed. Miracles happen when something on the inside changes. Thank you, Spirit, for the wisdom to step away from the problem and not try to force a solution. Had I continued along the path of frustration and anger, there was little to no room for a miracle.

Would you like some assistance in returning to a peaceful state of mind where peaceful solutions are possible? Now is the perfect time to give yourself the gift of Spiritual Coaching or a private Family Constellations Session. Both will help you step back and see things from another perspective so you can move forward with ease and grace. Please look around my website for more information or to book a session. I look forward to welcoming peaceful solutions with you!

And the next time a situation has you feeling frustrated or stuck, perhaps you’ll remember that the best course of action might be to just walk away!

It must begin with your own thoughts, and then extend outward. It is from your peace of mind that a peaceful perception of the world arises.

A Course in Miracles ~ W-34.1:3-4

A Foggy Mystical Metaphor

It was a foggy, mystical morning as I set out for my daily walk along Sarasota Bay last week. Typically, the view is expansive and joyful when I traverse the bridge over the turquoise water sparkling in the sunlight. On this day, the bay was shrouded in gray clouds, and I could see only a short distance in any direction. It was eerie that the city skyline was not visible until I was more than halfway across the bridge. This limited, somber view made me introspective and pensive.

Heading back across the bridge for the second part of my walk, I watched joggers pass me and then disappear into the fog. Of course, I knew they were still jogging along the path, but from my vantage point, I could no longer see them or where the bridge ended. Given my introspective and pensive mood, it is not surprising that my mind concocted a metaphor connecting the joggers and the fog to the approaching year and life in general. 

I’m sending this story out on the first day of the last month of 2023. We don’t know what the next 31 days will bring, let alone what will happen in 2024. In truth, we don’t know what will happen in the next moment. And yet, we continue moving forward.

This year was full of surprises for me. Had I known what was coming, I might have done things differently. But since I didn’t know, I simply made the best choices I could as situations and events presented themselves. With each new piece of information, I took another step. Even though we may not be able to see what’s ahead, like the joggers in the fog, as we continue along the path, the way forward will become clear. 

Life continues to teach me that even when I can’t see a way out of a situation, if I keep putting one foot in front of the other, a way forward will be revealed. My job is not to “figure it out” but to do my best to return to a peaceful state of mind. In my experience, great solutions don’t come when I am immersed in fear or continue to think about the problem. Inspired ideas and guidance have a much better chance of reaching me when I am calm and centered. 

I know. Easier said than done sometimes! But it gets easier with practice. And you can be sure there will be plenty of opportunities to practice during this journey called life. 

I’ve also learned to reach out for assistance when I feel stuck or overwhelmed. The ego doesn’t like to ask, but my heart is grateful for all the love and support I’ve received. If you are struggling, there is no shame in asking for help.

It would be my great honor and joy to guide you through a foggy patch with a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a private Family Constellations Session. Both can be done virtually anywhere thanks to the Internet. Please look around my website for more information or to book a session. I look forward to helping you return to peace where guidance and inspiration thrive.  

If you knew Who walks beside you on the way that you have chosen, fear would be impossible.

A Course in Miracles ~ T-18.III.3:2

Shelf That for Now

The story I’m about to share is a little embarrassing, but I hope it will be helpful to anyone feeling blocked by an obstacle that appears to be beyond their control. This experience was a powerful reminder of how easy it is to delay happiness when we get stuck into thinking something needs to be a certain way.

You may recall that I moved into a new apartment several weeks ago. Except for a few minor items, everything was in good working order when I moved in. One of the items that needed attention was a shelf in my bedroom closet. Someone installed it incredibly close to the ceiling so only very small items could be placed on top.

That shelf is also one of the only places to hang clothes. Anyone of shorter stature would not be able to use it. At 5’10”, I can reach it if I stretch, but it’s not very practical. Since this is the only closet in my entire apartment, having one of the 3 shelves inconveniently placed is not ideal.

The following day, I visited the leasing office to let them know about the things that needed attention. Unfortunately, the leasing agent working that day was not the friendliest in the bunch. She said she would write work orders for these items, however moving the shelf was probably not going to happen because the shelf was like that when I moved in. 

As you can imagine, I was not thrilled with her answer. This was not an extravagant request. I wasn’t asking them to remodel the kitchen. I just needed a shelf lowered a few inches! 

When Joe, the maintenance worker, arrived the next day to address the other issues, I asked if he’d mind taking a look at the shelf. He agreed that it was installed much too high and said he would come back to move it later in the week. Joe was able to fix the other issues relatively quickly and seemed very friendly and knowledgeable. I had no reason to doubt he’d return.

With the expectation the shelf would be moved within a few days, I left everything that would eventually go in the closet in piles around my bedroom. Among the assortment of boxes, bags, and linens were two large 4×4 storage cubes. I wedged them between my dresser and my bed. It seemed silly to fill the closet with all this stuff only to pull it out again when Joe returned.

Two weeks passed. No return visit. I saw Joe working on the pool filter one day and politely inquired about my shelf. He told me the other maintenance guy called in sick for the entire  week so he was swamped with work orders. He promised to get to my shelf as soon as he could. 

Given these circumstances, I knew my shelf was not a high priority, so I patiently waited. And waited. And waited. Two more weeks passed and I was still sleeping in what felt like a storage unit. 

The following week I would be traveling out of town. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Joe moved the shelf while I was away? I decided to nudge that idea along by calling the leasing office from the airport while waiting to board my plane. I prayed that the less-than-helpful leasing agent would be off that day. I was so grateful when the exceptionally friendly property manager answered the phone. As soon as I told her my name, she said, “Oh right! You want that shelf moved.” 

I was shocked she knew of my request, let alone able to recall it just by hearing my name. She apologized profusely that it hadn’t been done yet. One of her maintenance crew members was still out sick. I was impressed when she owned that this was no excuse for letting it go so long. I told her I understood my shelf wasn’t an emergency, but it would be great if it could be moved while I was away. She wrote out a new work order and assured me it would be taken care of as soon as possible. Finally, a light at the end of the tunnel!

Sadly, the light at the end of the tunnel was extinguished quickly when I returned home. The shelf had not been touched. It had been a long travel day and I was tired and irritated. Why was it so hard to get a shelf moved?  

You may be wondering why I didn’t move it myself. Not only do I not have the tools required for such a project, I do not have much experience in this area. Yes, I could have bought tools, but this didn’t feel like a practical solution. What might easily have been an all-day project for me would probably take Joe about 30 minutes to complete. Plus, this shelf would support a lot of weight. If I installed it incorrectly, the whole thing could come crashing down on me. So I waited.

Two more weeks passed. It had now been a month and a half since I moved in and my bedroom still felt like a storage unit. I’m certain it was affecting my sleep. That Saturday morning I woke up, looked at all the clutter around me, and something snapped. I couldn’t stand it one moment longer!

I got out of bed and moved the two large storage cube units into the closet. Then I started filling them with the assortment of bags and boxes piled up around my room. I was pleasantly surprised when all of the larger items fit nicely into those cubes. I was even more surprised to find plenty of smaller items that fit on top of the high shelf. 

Granted, I had to stand on a chair to place them up there, but I was quickly able to fill that awkward space. Then it occurred to me to move the clothes I don’t wear often to that high shelf and leave the rest on the lower shelf. This solved the problem of constantly reaching for clothes. Now the shirts I wear all the time are easily accessible. 

Before I knew it, everything was in the closet with room to spare! Why hadn’t I done this weeks ago? I could have been sleeping better and avoided a great deal of frustration and irritation. Like Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, I had the power to return all along. For her, to return home. For me, to return to peace. 

There would be no journey of discovery (and no movie!) if Dorothy knew about the power of the ruby slippers from the start. Likewise, I wouldn’t have received this humbling lesson if I moved everything into my closet right away. Although it was extremely unpleasant, it was a powerful reminder that my happiness really doesn’t depend on things being a certain way.

Speaking of home and happiness, once everything found a home in my closet, I spent the rest of the weekend finding homes for my artwork, photos, and sacred objects. My apartment finally feels like home!

But wait. The story doesn’t end there. Four days later, I heard a knock at my door. It was a maintenance worker from another property sent to help catch up on the work orders at this property. He came to move my shelf. What could I do but laugh? I thanked him for coming and told him his services were no longer needed. I wasn’t about to haul everything out of that darn closet now that I finally got it in there! Nothing needed to change. I was already at peace. 

Are you waiting for something to change before you can be happy? Whether this something is large or small, I invite you to consider the possibility that this something may not be necessary for you to return to peace. I would be honored to assist you on this journey with a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a Private Family Constellations Session. Both can help you release the obstacles to the awareness of love’s presence right now. Sessions can be done from anywhere in the world thanks to technology. Please visit my website for more information and to book a session. I look forward to walking with you a while! 

Be not content with future happiness.

A Course in Miracles ~ T-26.VIII.9:1

It’s the Little Things

We’ve all heard and perhaps used the saying “it’s the little things” when referring to the ability to appreciate seemingly small details, good fortunes, or joyful experiences in life. Sure, it might seem like a cliché, but sayings don’t become clichés unless they contain some grain of lasting truth. With all the daily challenges we face, I think it’s more important than ever to appreciate the little things. They can tip the scales to a more joyful life. 

Just this week, one of those little things surprised me and left me feeling extremely grateful. My preferred store for items like toothpaste and laundry detergent is Target. Every time I check out, a prompt appears on the credit card screen asking for my phone number as part of the Target Circle Club. At some point, a cashier must have convinced me to join, although now I have no idea what the benefits are of being in this club. 

I seem to recall receiving an email near my birthday offering to save a percentage off of my next purchase. I never quite figured out how to redeem that offer. Still, every time that screen pops up, I dutifully enter my phone number. Surely, there must be some advantage. Over the past few visits, I’ve questioned why I continue to give Target information about my shopping habits. 

During this most recent visit, I almost ignored that little screen, but something nudged me to type in my phone number once again. To my surprise, once I hit “enter” another message popped up on that screen inquiring if I’d like to apply the $17.15 credit I had earned toward today’s purchase. Of course! Why wouldn’t I?

I’m not sure why this message popped up for the first time that day, but I was grateful for the significant and unexpected savings on my purchases. It was a nice confirmation that we don’t always know the reasons why we do things. However, when we follow those nudges, life may give us sweet little surprises. 

In the big scheme of things, this event was quite inconsequential. But it reminded me of an episode of one of my favorite TV shows from the early 2000s, Joan of Arcadia. The show only lasted 2 seasons, but I loved the premise. God would appear in different forms (ie. cute boy on the bus, school cafeteria server, sanitation worker) to a teenage girl who was struggling to fit in at her new school.

At first, Joan thought she was going crazy, but with time and experience, she began to trust her new relationship with the Divine. Each week, God gave Joan an assignment that she initially resisted but eventually would do. It was God, after all. By the end of the episode, Joan would learn a life lesson or understand the bigger picture of why she was asked to do things like join the chess team or get a job at a bookstore.

The show never hit you over the head with a lesson, nor did it feel preachy or biased toward any particular faith tradition. It simply presented situations and choices through the eyes of an awkward teenager, and then let viewers draw their own conclusions. The particular episode that came to mind did this masterfully.

In this episode, God asked Joan to spend her weekend volunteering for an organization similar to Habitat for Humanity. But Joan had big plans with her boyfriend that weekend and was not interested in changing them to pound nails with a bunch of strangers. To say she was angry at God for this request would be an understatement, but reluctantly, she complied.

By the end of the episode, the viewer is privy to a whole chain of events that Joan changing her plans set off. Multiple connections were made that greatly benefited people close to her, but Joan never saw any of the results. She remained mad and frustrated in her room as the credits rolled.

I thought the writers did a brilliant job of presenting a profound truth without feeling the need to give our protagonist an explanation for why her plans were not the highest and best for all. In life, we don’t always see how the choices we make impact our lives and the lives of others. But rest assured, if we follow our guidance and make choices from the heart, ripples of love will start in us and then expand in all directions, positively affecting people and situations we may never know. 

So go ahead and do those little things you feel guided to do, even when they don’t appear to make sense. You never know when life will pull back the curtain and reveal a joyful surprise. 

If I can assist you in following guidance and listening to your heart more consistently, please consider giving yourself the gift of a Spiritual Coaching Session or private Family Constellations Session. Both can help pull back the curtain and reveal a life more joyful than you thought possible. And thanks to Zoom, Skype, and FaceTime, we can connect no matter where you are in the world. Book a session with my automated scheduler or send me an email with questions. I look forward to creating miracles with you!

Until next time, I encourage you to trust your guidance and keep noticing the little things that bring you joy. They will add up quickly!

A miracle is never lost. It may touch many people you have not even met, and produce undreamed of changes in situations of which you are not even aware.

Miracle Principle #45 from A Course in Miracles ~ T-1.I.45:1-2

The Relentless Sandpiper

My Sunday morning beach walks truly feed my soul. I love the expansiveness I feel while strolling along the sparkling turquoise water that extends past the horizon as sea breezes swirl around me. It’s also very grounding to feel my feet sink into the soft, wet sand as the waves roll in and out. 

Lately, I’ve been listening to the Miracle Voices podcast while I walk. During this hour-long podcast, other A Course in Miracles students share their journey with the Course and their stories of forgiveness. It’s a perfect combo because it enhances my expansive experience by expanding my mind. The last two episodes (#64 and #65) have been particularly inspiring. 

But the lessons I learn from the podcast aren’t the only ones I receive on the beach. Last summer, while walking along Ormond Beach, I watched a small group of sandpipers dodging waves while digging for small crustaceans in the sand. I noticed one sandpiper got very irate any time another bird got within 3 feet of him. He puffed himself up and charged at the intruders aggressively to scare them away. He was relentless!

Although his strategy was effective at scaring them away, it occurred to me that he was investing a lot of time chasing away other sandpipers when he could be using that time to find food. It’s a big beach with enough crustaceans to feed all of the sandpipers. Why was he so concerned about other birds getting close to him? None of the other sandpipers seemed to have an issue with sharing their part of the beach.

As I continued to watch the show, it occurred to me how many times I have acted similarly to that sandpiper. Instead of focusing on what I need to do, I’ve let myself be distracted by what others are doing. Anytime I judge someone for making a choice that I would not make, I’m just like that sandpiper. When I hold onto resentments toward someone for what they did or did not do, I’m like that sandpiper. Even when I compare myself to others, I’m like that sandpiper. If I stop thinking about the person or situation that I find upsetting, I will return to peace. It may sound overly simple, but it works. Try it for yourself.

Yes, sometimes there is an action step being asked of me before I can move forward. But most of the time, it’s all in my mind. What a magnificent teacher (and unpleasant reflection) that feisty little sandpiper turned out to be. Since then, whenever I catch myself being more concerned with what someone else is doing rather than focusing on what I need to do, I picture that puffed-up little guy charging at his “enemies” but barely enjoying breakfast. Hopefully, this image will make me laugh and help me bring the focus back to where it belongs.

Do you often find yourself being like that relentless sandpiper? It would be my great honor to help you put the focus back on you and return to peace with a series of Spiritual Coaching sessions or a private Family Constellations Session. For more information about both, please visit JohnHaroldMoore.com. You can also schedule a session or purchase a gift certificate for a loved one by visiting my website or by sending me an email

Until next time, I encourage you to focus on what’s yours to do and let the other sandpipers do their own thing. 

He who would not forgive must judge, for he must justify his failure to forgive.

A Course in Miracles ~ W.pII.1.4:4

Oasis in a Warehouse

Last week, there was an empty spot on the shelf at Target where the “Beyond Sausage” should be. In the past when this happened, I have asked a friendly Target employee to check to see if there were any more packages of my favorite plant-based sausage in the stock room. On this particular night, I was a bit tired, and there was no employee in sight. Although it is less expensive to buy this product at Target, I decided it was not worth the energy to search for an employee, so I went home. The next day, while doing my regular grocery shopping, I was pleasantly surprised to discover a plethora of “Beyond Sausage” in the frozen case at Publix, and it was “buy one, get one free.” Score!

Later that day, I planned to visit the IKEA store in Tampa to purchase a second white cubicle shelving unit to match the one I had already purchased in December. Two of these units would fill my workspace nicely and give me more room to store things. When I checked the inventory on the website, it said the item was “low stock” but not “out of stock.” When I arrived about an hour later, I went directly to the area in the customer warehouse where I picked up the first one. I found stacks of boxes containing grey and black versions of the shelving unit, but no white ones. I scoured the piles of boxes for about 15-20 minutes determined to find a white one hiding amongst the others. Sadly, there were none to be found. 

I finally surrendered and continued browsing the warehouse to see if anything else caught my eye. I found two end tables that might work with my decor, so I put them on a cart and made my way to the checkout area. As I approached the self-checkout area, I couldn’t believe my eyes. A display of white cubicle shelving units appeared in the distance like an oasis in the desert to a thirsty traveler. No, it wasn’t a mirage. The same elusive item I had been searching for minutes ago was there on display. To my delight, this one had two boxes left on the pallet next to it. I scooped one up and put it on my cart as if I had just unearthed buried treasure. With current supply chain issues, I was extremely grateful to find another one without having to wait months for another shipment.

These two incidents occurring on the same day felt like Life making sure I didn’t miss two powerful lessons. Like the sausage, it was “buy one lesson, get one free!” The first lesson I have learned many times, but apparently, I needed to learn it again. When I stop putting so much effort into finding something I desire and simply live my life, that’s when it usually shows up. I’m not suggesting sitting on your couch and waiting for things to come to you. (Although Amazon and DoorDash make that easier these days.) We still have to do our part. Since I wanted an item that only IKEA sells, obviously I had to drive 60 miles north to the closest IKEA store. But my obsessive search of the original stacks of boxes did not yield the result I wanted. However, as soon as I surrendered, the shelving unit magically appeared right in front of me!

The second lesson goes hand in hand with the first. Release the need to make it difficult. If there is an easy way to accomplish a goal and a hard way, many of us choose the hard way without ever considering there might be an alternative. And we suffer greatly because of it. I’m not saying life will never be challenging, but so many of our challenges are self-inflicted. We set unrealistic goals or make choices based on what we think we “should” do instead of what makes the most sense. (See last week’s story about The Should Shed.) If we take a moment to examine the path ahead of us or consult someone who is skilled in this area, we may discover another way that is more efficient and feels much more peaceful. When I stopped thinking I “should” find a Target employee and honored the fact that I really just wanted to go home, the rewards were better than I could have anticipated.  

This week, I encourage you to examine some of your tasks that feel heavy and ask if there might be an easier way to accomplish the same goals. I also invite you to ease up on your search for that elusive desire and allow some space for it to be revealed in a miraculous way. If you could use some assistance, please consider giving yourself the gift of a series of Spiritual Coaching Sessions or a private Family Constellations Session. Both can help you stop spinning your wheels and get your life moving again on a peaceful path. For more information or to book a session, please visit my website or send me an email.

Until next time, may you release the need to make it difficult, go with the flow of Life, and enjoy how much easier it can be.

Nothing you undertake with certain purpose and high resolve and happy confidence, holding your brother’s hand and keeping step to Heaven’s song, is difficult to do.

A Course in Miracles ~ T-26.V.2:5

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