Letter to an Old Soul

Dear Old Soul,

Years ago, I remember listening to a channeling by Lee Carroll, who bIMG_2227.JPGrings forth the being called “Kryon.” I don’t remember the subject of the channeling, but I do remember Kryon saying that old souls tend to have low self-esteem. He explained that because we have been embodied hundreds or thousands of times, we have seen everything. Through our experiences, we have gained wisdom, which we have innocently tried to share with others. However, much of the time, the planet has not been ready for our wisdom. This has led to some unpleasant experiences such as being made fun of, criticized, condemned, jailed, and even killed in past lifetimes.

We have been the minority for a very long time.

As a result, we’ve adopted an element of hesitation, shyness, or a reluctance to really share what we know. And as old souls, we know. We know things deep in our bellies and in our very bones. We know that power, darkness, energy stealing, domination, and violence never get us where we really want to go. We’ve tried it all before, and we have learned that all of the ways we tried to get power from others never brought us the satisfaction we truly longed for. We know that all we are really looking for is home.

As old souls, we know that the way home is through loving ourselves and others, treating all beings with respect, and taking care of the planet. We know that the way to get where we want to go comes from love and freedom, not power and control. We know that utopia comes from taking care of and nurturing each other, especially the downtrodden and the weak. We know that God (or the Universe of Spirit) is not an angry man with a beard in the sky, but rather, love. Pure, radiant, soft love. We know this deep in our cells.

And yet, we’re reluctant to share what we know. Perhaps we see that the world still needs to learn and grow, and isn’t ready for our wisdom, or is only ready for a small dose of it. Perhaps we are too afraid of having our heads cut off or being burned at the stake to share our truth. Whatever the reason, it is ok.

Dear Old Soul, know that I see you, and I love you. I honor the struggles, hardships, horrors, and difficulties you’ve faced in this lifetime and all previous ones. I see your sensitivity, your wisdom, and your gorgeous heart. I see your beautiful sparkling essence. I see your Spirit and the loving that wants to burst out of every pore. I love you, and I love your ability to love, in spite of everything you have experienced.

Dear Old Soul, you are precious and special. Your wisdom is valuable, even if it goes unappreciated. I appreciate you and all you bring to this world. I know it is hard, at times, to be here. You see the shootings, and the racism, the homophobia, the violence and the poisoning of our water and food. You feel the pain and suffering deep in your belly or in your heart. And yet, Old Soul, I remind you to look deeper. Look deeper into your wisdom. You’ve seen this before. Remember that we are here to wake up. And we are witnessing a planet that is waking up quickly and in a giant burst.

Dear Old Soul, I love all that you are. Take care of yourself, nurture yourself, love yourself. And when you feel ready – when you feel safe enough, or maybe just courageous enough – please feel free to share your wisdom with us. Not everyone will understand it, and that’s ok too. But there are those who will. There are those of us who are ready for you. I see you. I honor you.



Why Forgiving Others Doesn’t Really Matter

I’m going to say something very controversial in self-help circles. This isn’t a popular viewpoint, but it is something I have discovered through my years of practice. I’m going to tell you that all those people who have done you wrong, hurt you, betrayed you, stomped on your heart, and called you names – don’t forgive them.

Let go of the fight inside.Forgive copyWhat?

“But isn’t being spiritual about forgiving everyone and loving them? Isn’t that what being a good person is?”


Here’s the thing, forgiveness is incredibly important. I would argue that it is the most important aspect of healing there is. My entire healing practice is based on forgiveness and I have witnessed people’s lives changes instantly with just a small dose of well-placed forgiveness. But here is my secret: it isn’t forgiving others that matters, but forgiving yourself.

The mind is a funny thing. When we go through difficult experiences, even if we logically know those experiences aren’t our fault, some part of us forms a belief that what happened is our fault. Our mind likes to take everything personally. We want so desperately to understand why something happened, and the mind’s logical conclusion is that we must have done something wrong or that we are bad in some way.

I’m not sure why the mind is wired this way, but it is. And it isn’t a problem, if we know how to bypass the mind and get back into our loving.

We do this through self-forgiveness.

The next time you are in a difficult situation, I want you to try something. Just for a second, forget about the other person or people involved. I want you to place a hand on your heart, close your eyes, and say to yourself:

I am so sorry you had to go through what you did.

I love you.

Please forgive me.

I forgive myself.

And take a deep breath. Forgive yourself for just having had to go through what you did.

You will likely feel a release in your body and the return of joy.

The really exciting thing is, that once we forgive ourselves, oftentimes forgiveness towards the person who wronged us starts to happen spontaneously. We don’t have to force it, or make ourselves forgive someone when we are still struggling with real hurt.

All we have to do is reach into that part of ourselves that was hurt, and offer ourselves the love and forgiveness we think we should be offering to another.

Love and forgive yourself first and foremost.

Once you have forgiven yourself, it might feel natural to then do a similar forgiveness process with the person who harmed you. Feel free to if it feels natural. But please don’t force yourself.

Love yourself so much that you offer yourself forgiveness and acceptance above all. Stay gentle and soft with yourself, letting yourself know you will never betray yourself by offering forgiveness to someone else when you aren’t ready. Just keep loving yourself and forgiving yourself for where you are at. The rest will take care of itself.







Self-forgiveness: The Key to True Healing that You’ve Probably been Missing

There is a lot of talk in the healing world about forgiveness. We all know that to truly let go of a situation or person that has disturbed us, we need to forgive. This world is a tough place and all of us are at one time or another, the subjects of mean words, traumatic accidents, gossip, criticism, and sometimes even physical, emotional, or sexual violence. Life as a human being can be hard!

Often times when difficult things occur, a piece of ourselves gets stuck in the negative event. While this society can be pretty harsh, we aren’t taught how to really release and integrate a difficult experience. This leaves many of us walking around with minor or major PTSD – anxiety, depression, flashbacks, general unease, etc.

One thing we are taught is that we need to forgive others when we’ve been the victim of some kind of perpetration, whether minor or major. And it is true, forgiveness can radically help a healing process. But I have found that for mysForgive yourself and forget about(1) copyelf, even once I’ve forgiven someone who has hurt me in some way, I still feel hurt. I still spend time and energy thinking about the event and I still feel anxious that the event could happen again. When I forgive another, I feel better, but I usually don’t feel great.

It wasn’t until I stumbled onto the power of self-forgiveness that I realized it was even possible to feel great again. I was doing my M.A. and had started working with an incredible spiritual teacher in Santa Fe, New Mexico. He led me through a series of self-forgiveness exercises that completely transformed my life. In five or ten minutes, I was able to once and for all, heal some situations that were still hanging out in my body and mind. He led me through a process to recover the parts of myself that had gotten stuck in those negative events. And at once, I felt my entire body soften. I felt joy and inklings of happiness again. I started to feel like me, the real me. Self-forgiveness turned out to be a magical process that changed my life forever.

Through working with my spiritual mentor, I realized that we’ve had it wrong this whole time. Forgiveness of another is not the way to fully heal, forgiveness of yourself is. In working with hundreds of clients, I have witnessed firsthand the power of self-forgiveness. I would even be so bold as to argue that forgiving others doesn’t matter, but forgiving yourself does. I would also say that once your forgive yourself, forgiveness of another happens spontaneously and without any effort.

My hope is that one day we will all be taught the power of self-forgiveness and how to actually do it. If you are wanting to try self-forgiveness out for yourself, you can try this exercise (for simplicity sake I am using a female pronoun but this exercise works equally well for men and women).

  • Find a quiet place where you will not be disturbed. Close your eyes.
  • Call to mind a difficult event that still doesn’t feel resolved.
  • Look at the you who is in the event, experiencing it. We are going to gently work with that version of you.
  • Call that version of you over to you. Hold her, nurture her, put a blanket around her. Do whatever feels natural. Give her some love.
  • Look at that version of you and repeat this statement “I’m so sorry you had to go through that. I am so sorry. I love you. Please forgive me. I forgive myself.”
  • Take a deep breath and notice what happens in your body.
  • Give that version of you whatever love and attention she needs.

My Love Story

IMG_2068_2It is the day before Valentine’s Day and I’m feeling particularly thankful for the adorable man who is asleep in our bedroom as I write this. I love Valentine’s Day. I love the pink and red paper cut out hearts hanging from ceilings, displays full of delicious chocolates and cookies, sappy sentimental cards, and the dozens of crimson roses wrapped in tissue paper. I especially love the chocolate.

I didn’t always feel this way about Valentine’s Day. In fact, this is only the second year ever that I’ve had someone to celebrate with. Before this relationship, I used to despise the Day of Love and would celebrate by wearing black, eating ice cream, and watching bad movies with my other single girlfriends. I remember how dreadful Valentine’s Day was in middle school and high school when I watched all the popular girls receive carnations from the popular boys in the National Honor Society’s “Send your Valentine a Flower” yearly fundraiser. I remember how angry I was and how much I couldn’t wait for the day of sickly fake pink flowers and cards to be over.

So how did I go from a grim girl dressed in black cursing about love, to someone tempted to plaster her walls in fuchsia hearts?

I fell in love.

But not with anyone else.

I fell in love with myself.

Let me explain. For years and years, I dreamed about the magical man I would one day meet who would make all my problems vanish. He would swoop me up in his strong arms, take me back to his castle, cook delicious food for me, gather flowers from his garden, and tend to my every desire.  I spent most of my waking life fantasizing about the soulmate I would one day meet who would be able to read my mind and meet my every need. He was perfect – tall, dark, handsome, wealthy, strong, smart, successful, masculine and completely emotionally intelligent. It was terribly fun to be in such a deep state of longing about the man I had yet to meet. But it also left me miserable and feeling like I needed that soulmate to be happy. I truly believed that I would not be happy until meeting this magical dark-haired prince.

Eventually, something happened. Years of being single spanned into decades of being single. I started to doubt that I would ever meet this perfect prince of a man that I just knew I was destined to be with. I was single for so long and had so many disastrous dating experiences that I started to give up on the idea of a soulmate completely. I’m not sure when the exact moment was, but I started to become aware of how much energy I had given to this idea of the “soulmate.”

For the first time, I objectively examined my life as it actually was, sans soulmate. I was single, but I had my own tiny apartment that was all mine where I could do whatever I wanted (like set up a painting studio on my kitchen floor at 3 a.m.), friends who really got me, a beach that I could drive to in under a half hour, and work that I loved. I looked around and it dawned on me, that I had created a life that was all mine and that strangely enough, I really enjoyed that life.

It was in this moment that I realized I had started to fall in love with myself and my own life. I loved my incredible support system and the wonderful freedom I had. I loved that on a whim, I could take off and drive to Santa Cruz and spend $8 on a fancy smoothie from Café Gratitude and drink it on the beach with my own good company. Instead of focusing at everything I thought I was missing (the man), I organically started loving everything I had. And everything changed!

Valentine’s Day no longer was about seeking love from another to feel worthy, validated, accepted and loved. I had unintentionally created a life where I already felt worthy, validated, accepted and loved  – by me. And so the Pepto-Bismol colored heart and sugary candy no longer represented the love I didn’t have, but the love that was all around me. My love for Valentine’s Day was born.

The Day of Love has become a celebration of all the many forms of love I have in my life. I love myself, Spirit, my family, friends, and each and every one of my clients. I experience such an abundance of love in my heart these days that sometimes I spontaneously well up with tears while sitting on the couch staring at the redwood trees in our backyard.

And yes, I also love the tall handsome man I did eventually meet. He is by no means the perfect fantasy I dreamed about when I was 13 years old. There is no castle and he has no cooking skills. But he offers me his heart, and I take it.