Luxury: is it only for the rich?

Hello gorgeous one! Today, we will focus on luxury … your idea of luxury, no one else’s. To do this we need to break through and see what reaction you have to the word luxury … excitement or I can’t afford that. First, drop the can’t. Around here that is a four letter word that is not used because it blocks your energy which keeps you from living a life you adore.

Everyone can have luxury in your life no matter the condition of your bank balance or credit cards. The first thing to remember is that luxury isn’t solely about money, but is defined as something adding to pleasure or comfort but not absolutely necessary. This is the time to think of life’s little pleasures. Creating a life that allows luxury opens yourself to the Universal Abundance, increases Self Love and opens you to knowing yourself through self-care.

Now is the time to take out your journal and pen. Let’s take three deep breathes: in through the nose, out through the nose, again breathe and feel your diaphragm move slow and deep, lastly one deep breathe in the nose and out through the nose … breathe and feel relaxed. Now, return to your normal breathe.

I want you to create two lists. The first list are those things you enjoy that cannot cost a dime. The second list can involve investing in yourself financially. The purpose of this exercise is to see luxury and self-care in a new light. For each list I wish you to come up with 8 items.

Write: I feel amazing when ….
This is the time to list anything that makes you feel fantastic, beautiful, cared for, loved, sexy, decedent, luxurious …. just flat out amazing!

I’ll share my journal with you …

I feel amazing when:
1. I start my day with a hot cup of death wish coffee
2. I listen to music that makes my soul sing
3. I read for at least 30 minutes a day
4. I post affirmations around my house
5. I meditate in the morning and evening
6. I take three breathes and check in with how I truly feel before making a calendar commitment
7. My house is clean and organized, not cluttered
8. I take time to care for my hair and make-up

This next list is not to worry about money but just what brings you pleasure and makes you feel luxurious …

1. Professional pedicure and manicure
2. Fine chocolates
3. Eating out at new restaurants
4. Going to a yoga retreat (a yet-realized dream)
5. Travel
6. Going to the gym
7. I spend time in small bookstores, they always have amazing gems on the shelves and with the staff
8. Surround myself with beautiful crystals, candles, essential oils and incense

Shift your energy with luxurious self care. Each of us has a different idea of luxury and that is alright. Whatever brings you joy is luxury. As I was writing this part, my children started interrupting me non-stop. Instead of getting irritated that they were knocking my train of thought off track, I managed to take a deep breathe and think about the type of interruptions they were.

Instead of the usual hunger or this child won’t share a toy with that child, it was come look at this cool butterfly or I found a spiderweb. I am grateful that I noticed instead of letting fear in the form of anger or irritation take over. I listened to the Universe and closed my laptop. From there I spent the afternoon in luxury. We spent time with them showing me the world through their eyes, then when they wandered off I noticed it was a beautiful day outside.

So, I grabbed my tablet and read outside, alternating between watching and chatting with my children. After a while I decided to attempt a challenge in a video game. Then I helped my daughter with a request to make her room more open and loving. So, we moved her furniture around and I left her with directions and ideas on how she can continue to clear the space and make it more hers from there versus cluttered.

Feeling rejuvenated and inspired, I came back to my laptop with a lovely cup of lavender honey tea in a mug from a place that brings me warm memories and love to my heart. I am grateful that I listened to the Universe instead of letting the fact my expectations of my morning were interrupted irritate me. I breathed and listened. Then I received a day of luxury and bonding with my children. The Universe provided us with a beautiful gift because I took the time to listen and observe without judgement or expectation. I am grateful for today. I am grateful for the lessons. I am grateful.

There are so many ways to make yourself feel luxurious from big splurges to small everyday moment that are meaningful if we are mindful to create the space to enjoy them. Sometimes, I set my alarm a bit early to just enjoy the coffee in silence or better yet outside in the cool, dewy morning air. What can you do to fit 5 minutes of luxury into your day today? I would love for you to comment and share.

Feed your soul and you will have the loving support and guide of inner wisdom and the Universe with you at all times.

In love,
Irisa

Fear is my co-pilot; where is the eject button?

Every single one of us has Fear. The extent to which fear has twined its way into our mind, thoughts, actions and beliefs deepens the blocks within each of us and keeps us from living our best authentic life.

Fear is the backseat driver in most of our lives. Most of us do not even realize that Fear is controlling our life. Fear limits us. Fear keeps us from living a life that we adore.

Where do fears come from? There are many places that fears grow. Some are from our personal experiences and others are from another individuals experience and influence on our life.

Fear keeps us from:
… setting healthy boundaries,
… being honest with other people,
… following our dreams,
… speaking the truth as we both see and feel it,
… loving relationships,
… health,
… living a life that we adore.

None of us can reach our potential while we have fear whispering in our ear. I have allowed fear to limit my life by listening to fear disguised as practical advice. This was a behavior that I was taught by my parents and well-meaning friends when I was a teenager. Unfortunately, those lessons took hold and formed deep blocks to my happiness, creativity and abundance.

I have always been a writer and photographer. For as long as I can recall they have been my passion. During high school I realized I could take an artistic track to prepare me for post-secondary education or career. I came home so excited with the plan to take a variety of art courses and which technical colleges to apply to after.

There isn’t a time I ever recall being so excited about the potential of life. Knowing that this was my path and plan for my time here. Then I went home and told my parents what I wanted. Practical advice crushed my spirit that day. Being told I was too smart for a path that would never allow me financial stability or respect and was a fool to follow such dreams. Art is a hobby, not a career. Authors don’t make money or become famous until they die. Many discussions on how this was foolish and I would be unsuccessful and starve followed and created blocks within myself.

Rooting blocks and fears:
… Artists cannot support themselves
… True success comes from going to college
… Money is what makes you successful
… Making $50,000 a year and buying a house will make me happy
… A secure job is happiness

Conversation after conversation arose in high school around my passions. Each one was squished with practical advice. Until fear took firm hold and I was a senior in high school. That year was sad. I had no excitement for my future other than to be done with that town and live elsewhere. I was going to a college of my parents choice and taking a major that made them happy. This made me feel worthy of being loved by my family because I was following their dreams; not mine.

Prior to the college semester beginning I was in the mountains with friends and family. An older friend who was in forestry and taught me much about nature was chatting with me. He asked me what I was going to do in college. English? Art? Yes, he knew my parents feelings on it but supported me. I told him I was going to major in accounting at an all girls Catholic college. There is nothing wrong with either choice, except they could not be farther from my personal truth. Never, have I seen anyone spit a beer so far in my life. Why? he asked. That isn’t your dream.

The only answer I have found is that in four years of high school so many fears had rooted in me. Fears of being unloved if I was my authentic self. Disappointing people by not listening to their advice. That I would starve and die alone if I followed my art. As such, college was a massive disaster that lead to a lot of debt, personal crisis and heartache but no degree.

Now that fear was the main voice in my ear a constant internal battle began. The battle of who I was and who I was supposed to be. Supposed to be ran the show for a long time. Many years were spent in a corporate financial career that was successful by society standards. This colored my first marriage, living arrangements, friendships and made me miserable. I was financially well-off, people considered me to be in a loving relationship and I had a nice home. Fear and misery were my constant companions. Depression was my best friend because I felt awful for not wanting that life. Stating I was unhappy only led to me being told I was ungrateful.

I share this because no one can tell you what type of life you should be grateful for. Being poor, writing and creating art made me happier than thousands in the bank, a nice house and one sided happy relationship.

No one should tell you what your definition of success is. We all have different goals and capabilities. The interests, passions and desire to share that with the world is different for everyone. Whatever you bring to the world is a gift, if it is done with love.

Fear leads us to judge and put our perceptions, wants, needs and disappointments on others. This creates block after block within individuals and communities. As long as we continue to share fear, we will not know ourselves. We will not build loving, supportive families that create supportive, safe, nurturing communities. Fear will continue to control and destroy the best of what we are … our ability and desire to love.

Love puts us in alignment with the Universe. When we operate from a place of love our world shifts. Abundance, knowledge, wisdom, respect and much more begin to fill the spaces where fear, anger, judgement and other limiting emotions lived within us.

It is Okay to not be okay. Things are never perfect. We are people living real lives and having real experiences. That means this work is cyclical for us. Whether you are just beginning your journey of self discovery or have been walking this path for decades we all have times were we have to remember that It is Okay to NOT be Okay.

Struggles in life are normal. Emotional and mental blocks are normal. It isn’t like you do the work and after so many levels you hit this miracle place where there are no blocks or struggles. I can’t say do this work for a set amount of time and you will earn your trophy. What I can say is that by doing the work you have tools to handle what life throws at you. By doing the work you recognize when you are not being true to yourself. You recognize when fear is whispering in your ear or speaking instead of love.

Today’s Mantra: It’s Okay to Not be Okay and I am still lovable.
You do not have to be perfect to be lovable. You do not have to be perfect, just be the best you that you can be at this moment.

In Universal Love,
Irisa MacKenzie

Adult Adventures in Ear Tubes

I could not help but laugh when the ENT suggested I get ear tubes for my recurring ear problems. A 45 year old woman getting what is commonly thought of as a kids procedure; yes, that about explains my life. However, since the tinnitus and deafness are competing for what is going to make me go insane, I gladly agreed to the procedure.

My 7 year old had hers done a few months prior so I thought I understood the procedure. Oh No. I was sorely mistaken. My daughter got the better end of this deal. When she had hers done they gave her nice relaxing drugs and put her to sleep. Adults do not get the same treatment.

Ear tubes in adults are a quick, in office procedure with local anesthetic. I am sure that works fine for most individuals. However, I am one of those people that are incredibly difficult to numb. When I tell you I need a very high dose to get numb I am not kidding. Max that stuff out or I will feel everything!

Sadly, I felt all of this. It was not the worse experience of my life but it certainly was not pleasant. Now, I had ruptured my ear drum earlier this summer. If I had not done that, this procedure would have freaked me out a lot more.

The procedure itself is very simple. A tiny slit in your inner ear and insert the tubes; which are teeny tiny. The popping, pressure and pain from it was not fun. It also hurt a lot more for the rest of the night than I had anticipated. Unexpected side effects were my sinus’ draining and my jaw hurting (probably from stress clenching).

Three days later I am glad I got the procedure but disappointed that I still have random to low level tinnitus. I had been hoping that it would be completely gone. We had performed hearing tests earlier in the year and I knew to expect a drop in my hearing; however, I am still adjusting to that. Although, I am grateful to not be completely deaf as I have spent a good part of this year due to my ear problems, especially in my right ear.

My hearing has always been better than my eyesight and something I have always highly relied upon. It is an adjustment to not have that sense be as strong as it was in my youth. As we age, we change and hopefully have the grace to adapt and accept the changes with grace.

The one good thing to come from this experience is that I better understand my partner’s difficulties. He is deaf in one ear and having experienced this for any length of time has been eye opening. I never understood how dramatic even a slight hearing loss was when in a room of conversation. It can be very confusing as the sounds sometimes all rush together and your mind tries to make sense of it all. Now, that is if you hear anything at all. At my worst people would be talking across the table and I didn’t know except for the fact I saw their mouths moving.

Adventures in living,

Irisa

Recovering Human

Fear, anxiety, depression. They are very real issues that prevent so many of us from living. These issues prevent us from being our authentic selves. Questions that go round and round in our minds.

How do you love when you were raised that love is a lie?

How do you parent when the parents you had were cruel?

How do you form healthy relationships when all you have known are toxic ones?

How do you love when you don’t understand what love is?

How do you have friendships when you feel you are worthless and nothing to give?

How do you create when the fear is choking you?

To these questions (and more) I say:

I find and embrace the warrior within. The warrior within is the part of me that hasn’t been broken. It is the part of me that wants to eradicate the fear, anxiety and depression. As long as one cell within my body wants to fight, then I have a warrior within that can shine through.

I will use the warrior within to create.

I will use the warrior within to break through my fear.

I will use the warrior within to turn the internal screaming into art and beauty.

I will use my pain, fear and insecurity to create; to be productive; to succeeed. I will dream of love and trust and live my life as though the dreams are real. I will make that type of love real. I will accept that I am loved. I will not let the people in my past destroy the love I have now. Because if I do, I will never feel his arms around me. I will miss the small smiles, tiny hands, big hearts as they show me who they are.

I do not need or want anxiety in my life. I will fight each day to silence your voice. The cruelty you share and play in my mind. The fears you plant in my Soul. The lies you whisper in my ear. I no longer give you harbor in my body, mind or spirit. I will not respond to your call.

I will only listen and answer to love and creativity. I cannot do this any other way because I will drown in your siren’s call if I do not find the warrior strength within. Those that believe in me deserve the best of me.

Now, when the anxiety and fear are in control, I am not the best of me. I am raw. I am honest. I am strong. I am weak. I am broken. I am whole. At this moment I am a contradiction of healing and healed. I am a recovering human.

Recovering from the faults of humanity. Recovering from lies and deceit. Recovering from the weakness of others and the weakness within. Recovering from choices and consequences. I am human who will use her ability to love and create to fill her cracks with gold. To create a new standard of beauty and wholeness. To be real and authentic without apology. I am a recovering human.

I embrace my role as a recovering human and begin the journey of uncovering, discovering and sharing my authentic self.

Irisa MacKenzie