I was walking around Whole Foods, not feeling my best. Frankly, I was having a mediocre day. I was still energetically recovering from a toxic exchange several days ago. I had been feeling so much better, so good, and that’s when I stepped in it. In my feel good high, I had mistaken myself for invincible (I am GODDESS! I can handle anything!) and stepped over a firm boundary with someone. Boundaries are exactly like our protective skin. Once we violate a boundary, we open ourselves up to all kinds of sludge.

My energy practices for the morning seemed to all point to pulling back into my energy field.

Earlier that morning, my guitar teacher synchronously drove the point home when she talked about how musical artists need to listen to other artists to get good. I mentioned that when we do that we may risk being influenced by them (which is why some of my author friends do not read others’ books).  We can pick up on others’ voice, ideas, only to discover them appearing in our own work.

“Maybe it comes down to pulling your energy back, and living your own life,” she replied. Touche.

While I had an excellent morning playing with songwriting, now in Whole Foods I wasn’t. I wanted to feel excellent! A pretty, bubbly woman near the meat counter exuded the energy I wanted to have. As I shuffled down the aisle, my songwriting success began to wane. I started feeling bad.

It took me a second comparison to yet another person to connect the dots…

Aha. I wanted my experience of myself to be different than what it was.  Have you ever noticed that happening for you? When you feel funky or off-center, the temptation is to compare yourself to others.

There was nothing wrong with how I was feeling. It was just okay, kind of funky, less than stellar. Until I judged myself, my experience, as lacking. That’s when things started feeling real bad.

The minute I decided I was in lack was the minute my energy took a nosedive.

The minute I judged my experience should be different than what it was, I felt really awful.

Hear this: It wasn’t the true fact that I felt funky/weird/off my game that made me feel bad. It was the untruth of self-judgment/non-acceptance that invited “feeling bad”. 

We are used to thinking that if we had this or that external thing we would be happier, feel better, be more awesome or amazing. It is not lack of anything that causes us suffering. It is the thought of lack, the idea that we lack anything, which is untrue. The minute we believe that something in our life is not adequate– love, happiness, confidence, money, our self, whatever- we begin to suffer.

Yet we will have moments where we want something else, something more- something other than this.

The human journey guarantees we will not always feel great. To me, the question becomes how do we embrace our humanity during these moments, in the most loving way? How can we accept what is — without making any part of our self, or our life, wrong in the process?

This is a delicate art. It often involves undoing the habit of self-shame most of us have inherited from our human family, the misperception we are inadequate. This is insidious. It extends far beyond familial conditioning and into culture. So many people walk around believing their self or their life to be inherently wrong in a fundamental way. How do we know this? Because, like a firehose, just look how shame spews criticism and judgment from different corners, telling you what you should or shouldn’t be doing, what is right and what is wrong. Failure, success. Bad, good. Judge, judge. Which we internalize. What to do?

It begins with meeting our human experience with honesty and compassionate understanding.

I just wanted to feel better than I did…and I could understand that.

I had a rough couple of days… I could give myself that.

I had the desire to feel awesome in the Whole Foods…I could adjust that expectation for today.

I also know that I am not my feelings… I AM. I AM. I AM.

Oooh…

I could feel my energy pulling back into my core, myself. I asked for Mother Earth to ground me. I could feel my stems, my legs, connected to the Earth. I felt the energy rise from deep within, travel up my spine, my heart, my crown. I envisioned myself as a strong, elegant, tall bird of paradise.

I could feel the Rockstar Goddess stir within. She wanted my embrace and acknowledgment. She wanted me to remember: You are amazing. You are awesome. Just look at how you got through that toxic exchange on Sunday. It may be Wednesday and you’re still feeling the effects of it, yet overall you are feeling so much better than you were. You’re doing fantastic work.

This is how we bridge the gap. We offer our raw humanity our honest understanding. Then we remember that we are not our feelings or experience. We are so. much. more.

Libra Full Moon Intuitive Practice: The Self Acceptance Panacea

Libra is the art of inhabiting the middle way. Feeling amazing? Don’t get too extreme that you forget you have a backbone and boundaries to honor, Libra advises. Feeling good can be like spun sugar; we let it make us high and take us out of our body. Feeling bad? Are you judging your experience?, Libra asks. When we learn to live without labels or judgment, we discover that all is good. We are actually okay.

Thus, balance, centering, a peaceful sense of harmony is achieved. The ultimate Libra victory.

This practice is best done on a two or three, not a five, star day, so yay for mediocre days! Notice your lower baseline energy for this day, and offer yourself some compassion and tenderness. Maybe you feel like crawling into a hole. Or maybe it’s not that rough…but you just don’t feel like yourself.

The practice is this: wanting nothing in your life to be different than what it actually is.

This is not a mantra or meditation, but connecting with deep self-acceptance that you can energetically feel in your belly. Sit with the feeling “I do not need or want anything in my life to be different than what it is. I AM enough.” Feel this drop into your energy body. Give it a minute or two. You will (hopefully) feel a subtle shift — maybe more tenderness towards yourself, or perhaps you exhale a little more deeply.

Hello, Goddess! You have just remembered your innate Divinity.

Self-acceptance is a panacea – a cure all. Panacea was also the name of a Greek Goddess, the Goddess of universal remedy, and her name means “all-healing”. Panacea was a goddess of healing.

Take some time to play with this.

For today, remember: the minute you decide you do not want to be having the experience you are having, you are in murky water…and already feeling bad. This includes making comparisons to others. When you notice this, return to your practice of wanting nothing to be different than what it actually is.