As we journey through life we unearth truths about ourselves and the world around us.

This week’s post is about self-discovery and ultimately self-acceptance and self-love.

How often do we stop to simply seek inside ourselves?  To take an inventory of all that we are and all that we are not. You cannot hope to become the person you wish to be if you do not know the person you are.

I’ve been following Joanne Cipressi’s Renewing Yourself This Spring Series.  Her Part 5: Taking Inventory of Yourself really challenged me to hold up a magnifying glass and look myself over, kind of like conducting  the first half of a personal SWOT analysis.

We were asked to take an assessment of our strengths and weaknesses.  Once you have those you can choose to move on and identify your opportunities and threats.  So I thought, Why not?  And I decided to step up to the plate.  I drew a line down the middle of the paper and started writing.

I am willing to stand here naked ( figuratively of course!) in hopes that it will encourage you to do the same.  This was actually a very overwhelming exercise and I am sure I could have added more, but here is what I came up with.

STRENGTHS:

  • I am kind.
  • I care.
  • I listen well.
  • I am smart.
  • My words move people.
  • I look at the big picture & evaluate options
  • I put others at ease and make sure they are comfortable
  • I am open-minded.
  • I know I will always persevere.
  • I go out of my way to help others.
  • I am bright & vivacious.
  • I believe in magic.
  • I love big.

WEAKNESSES:

  • I could be more patient
  • I am harder on myself than on others.
  • I can get defensive.
  • I am not always focused.
  • I am a giant procrastinator when there’s something I don’t want to do.
  • I compromise my desires for others.
  • I let people push me and cross my boundaries
  • I can be self-deprecating.
  • I am quick to cut off relationships when I judge them toxic
  • I’m a dreamer.
  • I don’t always honour my passion.
  • I am slightly defiant.
  • I do not connect deeply with people. **

Let me tell you that I DO NOT  like what I see written here.  But if I don’t own each of these, how can I ever get past them?

This Vince Lomabrdi quote really struck a chord with me:

 “You can’t improve on something you don’t understand.”

Even if some of these weaknesses were momentary and fleeting, I included them because they are still a part of my psyche.  I am proud to say that the many of these are much improved compared to a time when  they ran rampant within me.  Awareness is key.

On a cerebral level, I KNOW the right answers.  The reason I still have some of these items on the weakness side is that I make choices that do not confront the base fear from which they all stem.  Some matters are for the soul.

I admit that I am occasionally guilty of letting the fear of “all that I am not” interfere with cherishing the gift of “all that I am.” I expect too many of us are guilty of this at times.

Even when I make this acknowledgement, I hear how utterly absurd it sounds!  But the purpose of this exercise is honesty and growth and the simple fact is that I am a work in progress, and sometimes I falter.

You must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.

Participating in tweetchats has been really eye-opening for me. Feeling safe and allowing myself to be unconstrained while truly searching for answers is surprisingly scary and empowering.

To listen to your souls whispers, to discover truths you’ve hidden from yourself – is cathartic.

This week’s #Inspirechat was especially an eye opener for me.  By the time we hit Question 4, I was stopped in my tracks. But I forced myself to confront the question  and to search within myself for an answer.

What are you avoiding that you know you should be doing? Why are you avoiding?

Here was my answer. It completely surprised me, but I made sure to go back and add it to the weakness list, because I do see it as a weakness.

I tend to avoid deep connection. **  I used to feel stifled by it. (Actually, I still do) But you have all been teaching me how to open up and to simply be me.

Joanne responded with, “Glad you are learning to experience deep connection! It truly changes our lives.”  I believe she is right. Thankfully she did not call attention to the “why” which I had not answered.

I was left whirling at this revelation.  And looking back, I realise this roadblock has incessantly held me back in personal relationships.  I spent so many years in survival mode that I closed myself up tight to protect myself from feeling vulnerable.  A bud that was never allowed to blossom.

I have lived with violence that I allowed to wither my being.  I have suffered facial damage that others seem not to see, but sometimes it is all I do see.   I can’t even smile in a picture for fear when I see it my heart will plummet.  I am ashamed to admit that even though I KNOW that beauty comes from inside, that I still cannot pass a mirror without my spirit falling. As I write these words my soul is screaming.  I am dishonouring myself.

If any of this sounds familiar, listen to me right now!  YOU HAVE TO STOP IT!

How can a smile, a moment of joy, be anything other than BEAUTIFUL?!

So now when I see my reflection, I take a deep breath, look myself in the eyes, and I say, “You are beautiful.”

I am working on my self-image and really looking at all the areas it has affected my life.

I posted this tweet a few days ago:

 Never lower your standards because you’re lonely.  #YouMatter

I must admit that I have been guilty of abandoning the very standard which I now decry.  In fairness, I have to admit that the most egregious part of the choices I made was that I was so willing to sacrifice myself to “become” what I thought someone else wanted me to be.

I accept responsibility for this. I did it and I can’t blame anyone else for loving  the “me” I presented – always a shadow version without any hopes or dreams of my own.  I just wanted to be loved, and I thought that was enough.  I was wrong.

My best friend Rumi says that  I am just like Maggie Carpenter in The Runaway Bride. There are those who are convinced that the movie was written around my actual life adventures, but I was long gone before I ever got to the altar!

Like Maggie, I had yet to discover myself, my own likes, my own needs, my own passions, my own dreams (and how I best like my eggs!)  Thankfully, I have  most of those answers now and I am prepared to own my inventory.

I now see the underlying root of it all.  I now realise that the biggest thing that has always been missing in my life was the belief that I was worthy of loving and belonging.

Without that basic tenet to guide me, patterns emerged and were repeated.  Brutal honesty (no judgement please) :  I have had 5 fiancés, 7 proposals, and have never been married.  For years, I also never had truly close personal friendships.

I now realise that for connection to happen, you have to really be seen.  How could I have expected to create deep and meaningful connections while hiding myself away?  How could I expect others to honour these things about me when I did not?

But today, with the support of many wonderful people, I AM learning.

That’s right! I don’t need to discover myself.  I get to create myself! I get to decide what I want out of life and whether or not to make choices that will lead me to my desires.  I KNOW it’s going to take practice and I am SO grateful to have found amazing new friends, who believe in me, love me just the way I am, and accept me without judgement.

It has been supposed that I am commitment phobic, but I’m not sure it’s really true, despite the elephant that sits itself down upon my chest at the slightest sign of feeling overwhelmed and suffocated.

Maybe one day I will feel so caught up in the magic of simply being me and cherishing all that I am, that I will let my guard down.  I am working on it, one day at a time. I am practicing loving me.

Another timely tweet came this week, from Alex Ajnas, @alex__au, who is one of the most kind and caring people I have ever had the privilege of encountering. Here is what he tweeted:

 “You know you’ve found love when you look in their eyes and find yourself.”

 This resounds with me.  When you can completely be yourself, treasured for who you are, and the person you’re with can do the same, maybe that’s when you know it’s right.

But before you can do that, maybe you need to decide who you are and what you want. And maybe you should make sure you introduce the “real” you to the world and to yourself.

Maybe it’s even ok to choose a life with someone before you know.  But maybe it should be with someone who accepts you, helps you explore, and who does not try to turn you into what they believe you should be.  Someone who will walk with you and care about your happiness as much as their own.

I don’t have all the answers.  My answers lie within me, as yours do within you.  I do intrinsically believe we need to pay heed to our soul’s call, that beautiful voice whose whispers reverberate through our very being.

I think that being authentic and unreservedly “YOU” is the only way to make deep connection of any kind.  To do that, you have to believe in you. You have to believe you can fly. You have to know that you deserve to soar.

What makes you vulnerable makes you beautiful. Have the courage to be perfectly imperfect.

My advice to you is to KNOW YOURSELF,  BE YOURSELF,  TRUST YOURSELF,  and  LOVE YOURSELF.  YOU MATTER.

As for me, I do not know what my future holds, but I do know that whatever path I choose to take, I will never again leave myself behind.

I DO have the courage to be vulnerable.

I AM beautiful.

I AM good enough.

I AM worthy of love.

AND I DO BELIEVE I CAN FLY!

I Believe I Can Fly -  Lyrics

I used to think that I could not go on
And life was nothing but an awful song
But now I know the meanin’ of true love
I’m leanin’ on the everlasting arms

If I can see it then I can do it
If I just believe it, there’s nothing to it

I believe I can fly
I believe I can touch the sky
I think about it every night and day
Spread my wings and fly away
I believe I can soar
I see me running through that open door
I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly
I believe I can fly

See I was on the verge of breakin’ down
Sometimes silence can seem so loud
There are miracles in life I must achieve
But first I know it starts inside of me oh

If I can see it then I can be it
If I just believe it, there’s nothing to it

I believe I can fly
I believe I can touch the sky
I think about it every night and day
Spread my wings and fly away
I believe I can soar
I see me runnin’ through that open door
I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly
I believe I can fly

Hey ‘cuz I believe in me
If I can see it then I can do it
If I just believe it, there’s nothing to it

I believe I can fly
I believe I can touch the sky
I think about it every night and day
Spread my wings and fly away
I believe I can soar
I see me runnin’ through that open door
I believe I can fly, I believe I can fly
I believe I can fly

Hey if I just spread my wings
I can fly
I can fly
I can fly, hey
If I just spread my wings
I can fly
Fly eye, eye

© ZOMBA SONGS INC; R KELLY PUBLISHING INC

Do you know who you are? Are you who you want to be?

What are you avoiding that you know you should be doing? Why are you avoiding?

 

66 Responses to I Believe I Can Fly

  1. Linda Clay says:

    How ironic while you are working through your self image, that life has been forcing me to exam myself again but this time much deeper then ever before, facing the muck that has come out of my life experiences and has created many negative I am’s! Then this last Sunday at church, the sermon was on the Great I AM..weaving through the story how we are exactly like the “I am” we say we are! I am angry, I am impatient, I am made in God’s image, I am beautiful, I am kind..Perhaps one of the hardest things that a person can do, is dispel the “the ugly” I am’s from our mind and welcome the “beauty”..Shelley, you are beautiful!

    • Thank you, Linda. I am amazed by the struggle. I am amazed by the voices that try to tell us that we are less than perfect. Every single one of us is a miracle and we should all simply rejoice in that knowledge and the beauty of who we are, YOU are beautiful, my friend, and any time you struggle, you just come to me and I will remind you just how spectacular you are! xox

  2. Nina says:

    First I want to express how I honor your courage in your willingness to face self examination
    and then sharing this with others.  I stand up and applaud YOU!!!

     

    Absolutely beautifully articulated. 
    Your statement “being authentic and unreservedly “YOU” is the only way to make deep connection of any kind.  To do that, you have to believe in you.”  Is right on target!!!  You
    MUST accept whom you are in order to give and receive love.  Unfortunately as you have experienced, along with millions of others, that life has NOT been easy and judgments have been thrown at you.  

    I fell deeply in love with a man with similar traits.  I can see him more clearly than he can see himself.  Unfortunately, he does not believe he is deserving of love and fearful of the deep relationship.  The fear of having one’s heart slashed again.  I
    cannot change him, but I can be there to support and love him unconditionally. 

    My suggestion to you would be to focus on the positives and strengths you posses. 
    And with that, may you find inner peace.  Thank You for the experience.  You touched me with your words and even more important, your courage!!!

     

    ~Nina

    • Thank you, Nina. I really appreciate your kindness. My heart goes out to you both. I remember what it felt like to walk through life feeling like I deserved nothing. It was a sorry state of affairs. But we each need to understand it is a choice… it is something we can change, but we need to have the courage to do the work,

      I believe the first step is gratitude, Gratitude for every blessing as much as every sorrow. I wouldn’t change any of the pain, Overcoming it has made me strong and as made me me. Today, despite my momentary lapses of craziness… I CAN say… that i thin I’m pretty spectacular! And so are you, sweet Nina.

      Thank you for your courage and your kindness, and for taking the time to stop by. : )

  3. Betsy Cross says:

    Hey Shell,
    I know who I am and that there’s so much good to be had for my life, that I have the power to choose who and what I’ll be. The little nagging voices, cruel words that people have said that are so close to the truth, sit in front of me as stumbling blocks. It is so hard to ignore the negative and move forward, even when I know who I am. Must be the challenge of life. Right? But, I’m happiest and most at peace when I respond to the positive instead of the negative. I have to figuratively walk away from things that make me want to focus too long and hard on my imperfections. I find joy expecting miracles and watching opportunities come my way that lead me to grow in a positive, constructive way. So much to say…so little time! Have a great week. I enjoyed this post. Made me think.

    • Lovely, Betsy. You are such a blessing. Maybe we all have these voices; voices that we need to ignore. I believe when we understand why they’re there, they will speak less often. The more  we live in gratitude and cherish the gift of life we’ve been given and accept that we are all miracles, maybe then those voices will dissipate on the wind. Maybe it’s a test that we are supposed to pass as we embrace love.

      You are wonderful Betsy! Just the way you are! xox

  4. Leia Cator says:

    How honest and authentic of you to share that which you hold so close to your heart. It is a wonderful inspiration for us all. I love the sound of the word “auTHENtic.” THEN, what, Shelley? Cathartic & nicely done. Thank you, dear beautiful heart for such courage.

    • Thank you, Leia. I love the way you spell auTHENtic! A great way to look at it! I feel such release at owning it all. I feel peaceful and like I can truly cherish all that I am!

      I hope it will inspire others to take a good hard look at themselves and what’s holding them back. It’s the only way to move forward.

      You are beautiful. Thank you for sharing. : )

  5. This is so beautiful, Shelley, and brave.  And just what I needed to hear today.  I so believe that self compassion needs to come before anything else – and I’m looking forward to watching you fly, fly, fly!

    XOXOXOX

  6. Thank you for sharing the woman behind the avatar – the person behind the spirit we’ve come to know through the tweetchats. I am truly inspired to share a multidimensional view of myself after reading your post. You are truly courageous. The possibilities are endless from this point. 

  7. Sal says:

    Very courageous Shelly! It takes more than strength to reach deep into the soul and grasp the very root of inner fear. I simply cried when I read this touching post.  It took years for me to go inward and find my inner self and wounds of my past I had tried to flee from. I have come a long and struggling way and still have yet to complete my journey. I am no longer pretending to be blind but had open my heart and soul to the healing powers that were always there for me. I was expecting a miracle to free me but found that miracle that I had been expecting was there all along deep inside of me.  I am so moved by the courage you have undertaken unto yourself my loving friend and I hold your hand in mine and walk with you. Fly Shelly… spread your wings and fly real high.

    • Dear beautiful Sal… perhaps we all have these demons inside of us. But the truth lies hidden there too… we just have to look for it and listen to the whispers of the soul as it helps guide the way. YOU are beautiful just the way you are… and YOU get to decide the rest. Happy to be sharing the journey with you. I am always here should you need a friend. Spread YOUR wings, Sal… I feel joy at watching you soar. Much love xox

  8. Dede says:

    A very introspective and courageous post! There is a lot of you in most of us! You had the ability to put it so beautifully and share it with others so that they may benefit from your words!

    • Thank you, Dede. I’m actually really prou dof myself for doing it. It has granted me a sense of peace and acceptance… and love. I do hope it inspires others to do the same. Thank you for sharing. You are a beautiful, kind, wondrous soul!

  9. MELISASource says:

    This is a very beautiful post! How brave of you to be so transparent and open! I agree that it truly does take a lot to “face yourself” and be honest with yourself to discover your real strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes it can be so easy to get caught up in what we wish to be that we lose sight of who we are at the moment.  

    Very touching post Shelly! Stay strong and keep being the Beautiful YOU that you are!! :)

    • Thank you, Makeba. That’s exactly it. I was too busy perfecting the perfect persona that I was neglecting me. I wouldn’t say I was ever inauthentic… but I was definitely boundaried and somewhat closed. If i was successful before, look out! Because when you believe in yourself you can soar so much higher!

      You are beautiful, Makeba! I really appreciate the wonderful woman you are!

  10. Shelley! As always yours posts are so inspirational!!! I love following your journey :) 

    • Thank you, Tyalor. That means a lot coming from you. I used to always think I had to be that person you know. The business coach, the mentor, the success story. I now know my success story is about cherishing and honouring me. I am so proud that you seem to have learned that lesson already. You have such a spectacular future ahead of you. I am so glad to be a part of your journey. YOU inspire me. Hope to see you again soon! xox

  11. Al says:

    Wow, Shelley.  You are so incredible.  This needs to be read by everyone, especially those struggling or young people trying to find their own way.  I thought of one of my fav sayings from recovery; “If I’m not the problem, there is no solution”   We need to look at ourselves and acknowledge our faults and issues.  If we do not acknowledge the problem then there is none (in our minds) Then and only then, can we do something about it and become the person we are meant to be.

    Thanks again for this and all your wonderful support and encouragement.

    You are AWESOME !

    Al

    • I agree. I have to own my choices, my actions and my inventory. If I want to live differently, I need to believe in me.

      That’s where it starts for all of us. Inside.

      YOU are AWESOME too!

  12. Ande Lyons says:

    Goddess Shelley!

    What a lovely post. I’m a huge believer in knowing they WHOLE self… and that includes the opportunities for growth.

    Here’s what I know to be true for me: rather than resist my ‘flaws,’ I’ve learned to embrace them and love them. I use this visual: imagine you’re baking a delicious cake… just because the baking soda tastes terrible doesn’t mean you leave it out of the mix… it’s key to a successful outcome.

    The same is true with our fears, doubts, procrastinations, negative self talk, etc. Blend them into your delicious self… welcome them to the whole you… they are such an important part of the journey. By loving, embracing and blending the flaws, they become a less prominent fixture than if we had resisted them.

    Thank you for sharing the love so authentically and courageously!

    Namaste,

    Ande Lyons

    PS: Thank you for sharing the lyrics to I Believe I Can Fly … so beautiful!

    • Thank you, Ande… that’s a great analogy… and I am embracing all of me for who I am at every given moment.  I am so blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful people who lead with such great love, how can I not learn from that example. Namaste, my dear friend. Thank you for sharing the journey.

      P.S. I tried to share the video too, not sure what happened. Will fix that!

  13. Shelley, Learning who we are not is a great necessity in learning who we can become. Your path of honest sharing puts you in a position of greater vulnerability but also greater growth.

     God bless you in your path of discovery, as you honestly assess your tools and potential; as foundations for a healthy flight plan.  I believe you can fly to0, ……… with the right preparation and this post is a great step in that direction. 

    Your friend, Slam

    • Hi Slam, thank you for all your encouragement and support. Thank you for believing in me. I believe in me too. And I am so grateful to have so many wonderful people, like you, who love and support me. Thank upi for sharing your gifts, your faith, your strength. You inspire me to have faith and to believe in love. xox

  14. PHOENIXSTAR9 says:

    wow ok, I really enjoyed this post, it was so honest.  Sometimes we want to deny a part of ourselves, but acceptance is growth.  I loved this!

    • Thank you! I am glad it resonated. I tried denying a lot about me… things I hated about myself… but that just leads to pain. We must cherish who we are, embrace the whole, and love ourselves anyway. Thanks for taking the time and for sharing. I really appreciate you xox

  15. LollyDaskal says:

    Being so vulnerable. Being so honest. Is a sign of a stunning soul.
    Lolly 

    • Thank you, Lolly. We are all miracles with such beauty inside of us… how can we not embrace it. Love is such a powerful healer. I hope my sharing this will help someone else find the courage to do the same. I feel so truly blessed. Thank you for your kindness.

  16. Dear Shelley,
    Thank YOU for sharing the amazing person you truly are in your excellent and inspiring post. Whatever “brokenness” you describe is the same brokenness we ALL share. It may be slightly different for each of us, yet profoundly similar in all the ways that unite us as humans on our career-life journey looking for bright stars to illuminate our path as we grow and seek self-awareness to become our True Self. YOU are one of those bright stars who guide us through your powerful and honest sharing about yourself.

    Yes, you are so right, we do NOT have all the answers, nor should we. We are each learning, because we are HERE to learn. Loving others and having deep connections with others can happen when we are able to love ourselves, and in order to truly love ourselves, we must first experience unconditional love. Yet loving ourselves is so challenging when that self-doubt you discuss prevents us from accepting and loving ourselves, including our own brokenness. It would be ideal if all parents were wise enough and able to offer their young children unconditional love. Yet Higher Power/Spirit/God, whatever one feels and believes does ground them as their Source, ALWAYS has and will love us unconditionally because we are each part of that Source, LOVE.

    So Shelley, YOU are so loved by God and also by many of us who have come to know you and are blessed by your presence in our lives, especially through Twitter. What makes you vulnerable also makes you strong. You are strong and you are loved Shelley…. and you ARE flying. I Love You, EdC

    • Thank you for your giant heart Edward. You, along with the rest of our #spiritchat, #inspirechat and #ubusensations friends have opened your arms and hearts and accepted me so amazingly. You each have a special place in my heart.

      I do believe we are all connected. And that connectedness is healing. Opening myself up to being a part of it, has made me strong. I love you, too my friend.  I am so grateful to share my journey with you. xox

  17. Alice Chan says:

    Shelley,

    Way to stand “naked” and be vulnerable and authentic. Most, if not all, of us learned subconsciously since we were young children to hide and protect our authentic selves. Then we spend years knocking down the walls we have built around ourselves out of self-preservation. What you’ve written here is courageous and encourages others to do the same themselves. Bravo!

    All the best,
    Alice

    • Thank you, Alice. It was hard at first. I didn’t want to face the truth. And I cannot tell you how much better I feel… a huge release. It’s like I’ve taken myself back. I feel utterly exhilerated!

      Thank you for being there and supporting me. I really appreciate you!

  18. Shelley, 

    You are such a beautiful, strong and brave soul. It takes so much courage to take an assessment of ourselves, yet it is one of the most important journeys that we benefit from. Observing ourselves as who we really are is the greatest step to truly embracing, and loving ourselves, as well as becoming that person we desire to be. I admire that you shared your inventory here with us all. What an inspiration for others to do the same!! Also thank you for sharing the Renewing Yourself this Spring Series. I am so glad and moved that you have benefited so much from it. :) 

    I am looking forward to seeing your blossom even more as you continue your journey. Hugs!!! ~ Joanne

    • Thank you, Joanne. And thankyou for your constant support and encouragement. When you reach to help it is always with an open hand and an open heart. I so admire your strength and your passion to truly make a difference and to help others empower themselves. Namaste.

  19. Akusomcpeith says:

    Thanks for you critical and honest introspection for it has enlightened me about some of my own weaknesses and the need in myself so to be more self-reflective. 
    As for your concern, no, you do not dishonour yourself but rather you honour yourself by beings honest to yourself -I’ve not often read such honesty in a piece. 

    As for your own painful experiences, perhaps I cannot begin to understand these – unlike you, Iv’e not lived with violence in my own life, so to my own person (save to my mind). Yet in a way I may be able to identify for i have lived with the violent to those connected to me, so perpetrated against them for that they are so connect – that, at times, I find myself feeling their pain as if it were my own biting at my soul. (Yet this is another matter – a matter which it struggle, even against Procrastination, to solve.) Find each day I find myself struggling to resolve these pains in me, and only after recently after placing them at the Alter of the Christ and leaving them there that I am beginning to feel an evolving peace within my soul. 

    These experience have led me in a way to lose faith with so many people, that detachment from then have become for me a way of survival; for to mingle with them, those causing pain to these that I care about, even seeing them got me sick. in this regard, I can well understand you detachment from others; and yet we need be careful how we threat this path less we become cold towards all and, as such, victims of our own pain and painful experiences.Among your weaknesses listed, as for you being I dreamer, be not hard in this regard on yourself for it. Indeed, I see it not as a weakness in you but as a strength that empowers your mind to quest after that which is not yet, yet is possible: for to dream is to hold faith with Life and the light and love in the living; and to set sail into the future on the wings of Potential – not to dream, and inspire toward the dream, but to sell yourself short to yourself.Now with regard to your greater weaknesses, be most careful with that weasel called “Procrastination” for it can become a curse upon the spirit. I tell you this for, in a way, I know this weasel well: for it has become, upon reflection, my curse and one of my most substantial weakness - one I struggle each day to rid myself off.Nor condemn yourself for you defiance for a little defiance in you is good for you: for it says to you and to the world: I strive to be myself!Now, with regard to that other matter, a mystic once said to me in words similar to these: Son if you don’t experience marriage in this life think of the many lifetimes to come in which you shall. This life perhaps exist to prepare you for these that when they come you may be perfect in affection.In passing I tell you this, mindful of yourself: think not that you can fly but, rather, know that you do fly! And think not only that you are lovable and worthy of love but that you are loved and that you are loving. 

    Again, thank you: you have awaken such reflections in me!

    • What a beautiful and heartfelt message. You have reached me with your wisdom. Despite that you have petrified me about the potential impending doom of marriage in my next lives! – just kidding… I am sure when your truly find a soul mate that there is nothing more right in the world.

      Defiance, well placed, can also be a blessing and a strength. I ALWAYS stand up to stop injustice and to make this world a better place.

      I don’t really mind being a dreamer… it’s only when you only allow yourself to dream and you do not follow your passion with action that it becomes a weakness.

      I am working on these things. Understanding the reason they’re there… and working my way through til the work is done, we can say our farewells, and they can vanish on  the wind.

      I am thankful for you and your giant heart. Be well, my friend. You are also loved.

  20. joshmedici says:

    I have no words to truly portray what just happened to me Shelley. And believe me, I’ not a man that looks for words on most situations.

    You have managed to make me cry, not in pain, but in joy, to be able to open yourself and share such deep emotions, I experienced that sense of overwhelming surprise, like in the movies when the whole story unravels in a couple of minutes, the story that build through 90 minutes. 

    And I need to tell you this: I feel many many things in the exact same way, that is what made it so extraordinary to read. And the soul, the mind and the feelings I read is beautiful in ways the eyes cannot see. Being free of those expectations of ourselves by the world means looking into us rather than unto others.
    What makes you, you. Is that ability to see what others are still struggling to see, to act on it, to accept the person you are now and not the person you might be, to love the face in the mirror because it holds the human inside together.Serendipity is lately my favorite word, but now, I’m starting to see a pattern, I truly believe in a supreme being, only I believe the laws that govern the universe are was beyond our comprehension, but I saw a History Channel documentary about the universe, and how things similar in nature tend to gravitate towards each other. Proven by astronauts who let sugar float in the space station, and every time they did that, no matter that they were in zero-gravity, that things tend to float randomly in space, the grains of sugar gravitated together and formed a circular mass.That for me was the very definition of things vibrating at the same frequency, like-minded people, spiritual beings drawn together by their likeness.So, serendipity maybe means knowing people who can help us reach out, or being a person that can help others reach out, for me, today, you have been one of those human beings that appear seemingly out of nowhere and give you such powerful insights into yourself that you know in your mind and heart you will never ever be the same person you were before meeting them.

    I wish for you the challenges, the achievements, the love, the laughter, the tears, all those human emotions that make us, well, us. Because it is not what comes at us from outside, it is, and always have been what comes to us from within.

    Bless you…!

    • How absolutely beautiful… and I am so glad this post moved you. It has moved me too. It has changed me. I am changing msyelf from the inside out.  I LOVE the word serendipity (I like the movie too)

      Meeting people like you and the rest of our chat gang has been exactly that for me. And i will enver be the same. I am joyful at such blessing.

      Bless YOU, Josh… I believe in you… and I wish you a lifetime of joy and peace.

  21. Cathy Wilke says:

    Shelley– I am so awed by your bravery and your willingness to keep going deeper within yourself to get to the heart of the matter.  You are so not alone in this and your writing is healing not just for you but for everyone who relates to what you’ve been struggling with.  And believe me my dear…there are many.  Thanks for going to the edge and putting it out there to the world. xoxo 

    • Thank you, Cathy. Being willing to explore and to go deeper within yourself and to the heart of the matter is the only way to free yourself. It is healing. I do know I am not alone and I do hope others hear it, give pause, lsiten for their own whispers, and find a way to heal themselves. You have to go to the edge, be preapred to call. That is when, with faith, you find your wings and soar. xoxox

  22. Mudda42 says:

    Wow – I commend you for your candor.  To identify our own negative traits and make an admission that you need to work on modifying them requires bravery and a high sense of morality.  I commend you for being capable of identifying your positive qualities. Individuals generally have difficult in pointing out what there positive traits are. You have bared your soul with great honesty and insight-fulness. Your public declaration will be a model for many to do the same. Thanks for your brave admission – well done.

    • Thank you, I truly hope it will inspire others to do the same. It is the way out. You have to love yourself for who you are to become the person you want to be. I appreciate you.

  23. I relate to you in so many ways, sweet Shelley. Thank you for sharing your naked heart; it is a beauty to behold. I am also on this healing journey toward experiencing LOVE on a deeper level. Please know that you are supported with unconditional love and encouragement. God is building a beautiful and wondrous community of pure hearted souls seeking to improve ourselves and to influence many to the same path. LOVE and blessings be yours :) I am so thankful to get to know you, Shelley :) 

    • I know I am not alone in my need to heal. The first step is realising you want to.There are so many of us who falter or miss seeing how beautiful they truly are, who do not believe they are worthy. But we are all worthy. It is wondrous to truly know how blessed my life is. Let’s walk together on this journey. You are loved. I am very thankful that our paths have crossed and I get to know your beautiful soul.

  24. Todd Gray says:

    This is wonderfully moving Shelley, I related to so much of the insight which you so openly and selflessly shared… as human beings, we are really more alike than most of us realize, aren’t we? I truly believe the secret to growing beyond ourselves and healing humanity is being willing to put ourselves out there and share the insight learned by overcoming the obstacles we’ve faced in life… and from overcoming those challenges, we gain the strength to lead others ~ pay it forward!

    • Thank you Todd… I agree… when you put yourself out there, you grow stronger. And hellping others along the way is so empowering. Thank you for taking the time to visit and to share. I really appreciate you. : )

  25. exraytech says:

    Hello Miss Shelley,

    You opened yourself up to the world, made yourself vulnerable to who knows what. It can be terrifying knowing what you thought others would be thinking. Our brain can create such vivid and horrible responses to our potential words, that it stops us from ever opening our mouth. Thank you for having the courage, and making steps in a direction of your choosing. I feel at times that I am in a queue that is going someplace, where I have no idea, but don’t want to get out of line for fear of losing my spot. Yes I’m a lemming, but just some of the time. You are a lovely lady, yes you are. You are beautiful, yes you are. You right now are the person that people around the world are getting to know. This incredible lady that helps others with each of her heart filled messages. I’m not going to say heart felt, cause you pour your heart into each message. I wish I had words that would adequately relate my thoughts. I’m sorry, it’s been a very long week, and these days seem to run together. Why am I talking about myself? Miss Shelley thank you for sending me that DM this week to visit here, you have thrown a stone in the pond and the ripples they are spreading, where and how we don’t know, but those ripples will change the world. Happy weekend lovely lady.

    • My dear friend, I want you to talk about yourself. I want you to open up. I feel your pain and your uncertainty. I feel you hold yourself back, not knowing which way to turn to honour yourself. You touched my heart a long time ago with your kindness and I care about you. I care that you are ok. I know how it feels to walk around in a world doing all the things that one thinks one should do while you feel nothing. I hope you spread your wings, my sweet friend, your answers are inside. Listen and search until you find them Always here for you. xox

  26. Linda says:

    Shelley! Your bravery, openness and willingness to be vulnerable provides an important gift for each of us.  We are all on this journey of self-love and self-acceptance and at times we falsely believe that we are the only one experiencing these deep feelings. This post and all your writing allows others to see that they are not alone and that there is hope.  Your truth has touched me deeply as it has many others. 

    Fly, baby, fly!

    • I am so truly blessed to share my journey with such wonderful peopl, people  like you. Encouragment  makes such a difference . We each have the ability to reach out to shine the light on another’s journey. When we are brave enough to “be” it can help others see that they can do it too.

      Thank you, Linda… I am soaring!

  27. Kath Roberts says:

    Nice one Shelley…vulnerability is damn right scary when we first start the process of unfolding but in doing so we begin to appreciate we have something far more beautiful to offer and I can see, hear, feel your soul calling in the more authentic you.You are absolutely perfect just as you are and by sharing you give others permission to do the same. Thanks for being courageous, you’re an inspiring example.

    • Thanks Kath. It is scary when we begin the journey of truth… but each step we take is so empowering, that the fear that anchors us, will  soon disappear and we will soar to heights we never thought possible. There is nothing like living your authentic self. : )

  28. Lovely post. Thanks for sharing :)

  29. Wow Shelley!
    Very powerful!

    You weren’t
    kidding when you said you were standing naked – remarkable how open and honest
    you are being with yourself – something we can all take a strong lesson from!

    All it takes is
    one selfless act to support transformational change – you have ignited the
    spark for others (including me) to take a stand in our lives and to move from being
    a passive passenger in life to taking an active participating role in creating
    the lives we want.

    I applaud you -
    For being you! For sharing you! For letting us go on this wonderful journey
    with you! AND For giving us “permission” to go on our own journeys!

    Mark

    • Hi Mark,
      I think we really have to be open and honest with ourselves… it’s the only chance we have at living the best life we can.  I do hope this post has inspired a few others to take a deep breath and to delve deeply into the depths of their being to see what they can unearth. Good luck on your own journey, Mark. We’re all out here caring about you should you ever need a friend. xox
      Love Shelley

  30. Inkscrblr says:

    Lovely post. Thanks for sharing. I see that you are also open to the idea of change and vulnerability. That is a great lesson for all of us. Thx.

    Paula
    @inkscrblr

  31. Wow Shelley, what a beautiful post! What courage you have , not just to go within, but to also share your journey so openly. I have been working on many of these areas in my own life and your post is truly inspiring! Thank you so much for sharing!

    • Hi Shannon, I think it’s wonderful when we can share our experiences, lessons, courage.. with others to help them on their journey. It is a blessed gift that helps us realise we are not alone. I hope that my “bearing” myself will help others look deep inside and be able to do the same. Embrace themselves, love themselves, and cherish all they find. Even weaknesses need to be understood. : )

      Thanks for sharing. I appreciate you.

  32. Simon Harvey says:

    Very deep and beautiful Shelley, a post that cuts to the very core of who we are, why we do the things we do, and how we can grow when we are as honest and open about who we are, as you have been here.

    You always bring so much to all the tweetchats that I have been fortunate enough to be in, and you constantly get me thinking deeper.

    Do I know who I am ? Yes today I do, and tomorrows today I hope I shall to. Am I who I want to be, well yes I am very happy to be me, and would not want to be anyone else. That I think would not be much fun. 

    Do I do everything that I should, no, but I strive to learn and push a little more everyday to learn how to attack those things that I know I have been avoiding. Why am I avoiding them; that’s a good question. Probably because I can, not that that is a good answer, but it is the truth at the moment.

    I do like to have the windows open and doors ajar a bit I must admit, closure is nice to a point but I am always looking for one more piece of that huge jigsaw puzzel of life. Sometimes though I know that I just have to close the window because there is a storm coming, and it just has to be done. But it can be hard for me until I know that that is that and I have to move forward. 

    I do believe that we are all capable of extraordinary things in life, if we have faith in who we are, believe that we can do what it is we dream of doing, we will succeed. I believe that if something is hard to do, them it is worth doing, and it will offer you some of the greatest learning and growth opportunities in life. 

    For all the not so fun and hard to deal with things that have happened in my life, the growth that came afterwards far outweighed any hardship. Although those times seemed like they may never end, they did , and the serenity that came afterwards was reward enough. Life is here now, death on the way, but while life is here, I intend to love living it to the full, good and bad. 

    When you can find your core, learn, understand and love yourself, then you will fly.

    • Dear Simon, I have learned so much from you. You share your wisdom so willingly and your giant heart is beautiful.

      I think when our eyes and hearts are open and we begin to explore and look for truths, that we will find them… one more piece of the jigsaw puzzle that makes up the beauty of who we are.

      I, too, believe we are all capable of extraordinary things, we just have to believe in ourelves and dare to soar.

      I am so glad that you are a part of my tweethat family. My life is truly blessed that I get to share the journey with so many wonderful souls.

      Much love to you, my friend. xox

  33. Deeone Higgs says:

    What a beautiful message, Shelley! :)

    I agree totally with what you’ve shared here. In order for us to truly get to know who we really are, we must include the weaknesses. It’s the only way to know what to improve upon next. 

    I loved the part where you shared, “You must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest to fool.” SO VERY TRUE! OMG, SO VERY TRUE!

    Lately, it’s as though the “shells of lies” that have been blinding me, from as far back as I can remember, have fallen off of my eyes. I recognize that I was looking blindly at the world around me, and not taking any of the blame for it. Many of the truths I’ve discovered has allowed me to reintroduce myself to me. :)Do I know who I am now? Most definitely… without a shadow of a doubt!Am I who I want to be? Not quite, but I am grateful that I am finally able to see myself becoming who I want to be. I believe, that the more we believe that we can fly, the more opportunities we’ll get to spread our wings. When we start seeing the potential we have – and it only takes a glimpse – we realize that all we ever needed was a running start and a push from that inner power within us. I’m with you, my friend. I believe that we both are flying! Keep Soaring, Shelley! ;) 

  34. I love this one, Shelley. Very inspiring and the video at the end was, too. Anything involving Joanne Cipressi is bound to be inspirational and beautiful. She’s such a lovely person–just like you.  

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