RESILIENCY

Written by Natasha Burke

March 25, 2020

As we all are going through this challenging time with the Corona Virus, having to stay home, social distancing and not much human contact may cause people to feel fear or anxiety. More than ever, this is a time to practice resilience. I know that I had a couple of days of feeling off. What has helped me go get through the uncertainty is meditation. When I meditate I am present. I slow my thought process down. My breath slows down, and when I am done I feel good. I have taken walks in nature, which always makes me feel good. Having conversations with my family and friends also helps me get through this time. I also receive positive affirmations. I pick an angel or goddess card and have it near my monitor and when I write, I look at my card several times per day. It makes me feel good. I love my angel cards. When I pull one, I ponder if it’s something I need in my life now or already have in my life. These are a few things that are helping me as we continue to live my day in a positive manner.

Having resilience through challenging times is so important. It’s how we keep going or bounce back after going through difficult times in life. What is resilience? Resilience is when one goes through a difficult time and come back stronger then before. 

Do we learn resilience or do we naturally have it? Some people are inherently more resilient than others, however, we can all tap into what resilience looks like to us. A positive outlook is one of the keys to being resilient. Of course when you are in the middle of pain and suffering, it’s hard to tap into resilience. This is where using tools can help someone. 

Resilience relies on different skills that we have which include rational thinking skills, physical and mental health, and your relationships with those around you. When I ponder if I am resilient or not; I find that  I am.

2017 was the most challenging time in my life. My stepson killed himself, my daughter was in the Las Vegas shooting and then we had to evacuate because of the wildfires in Sonoma County. 

I was numb through all three situations. One trauma after another threw me over the edge. I lived life in the fog and detached for a long time. I had panic attacks, which I had never had until this last year. It was a slow two and a half year process to bounce back. 

What did I do to bounce back? I saw a therapist. I tapped into my resources I have built over the years. I held onto my faith, which is strong. I relied on my family and friends to talk when I needed to. I changed my mindset from fear and anxiety into hope, love, being present and not stay stuck in the past. I took baby steps. All of this was no simple task. It was a slow process. There were times I didn’t want to do the work but I had to in order to bounce back, because the truth is, it was one of the most challenging times in my life. When I look back, I am so grateful I did bounce back. I am so grateful I did what I had to do to get out of the dark murky waters and returned to the light. 

We all have difficult times in our life at some point. Sometimes we have trauma. What are ways we can build our resilience? We can stay positive. We can open our hearts. We can take care of ourselves. We can have humor. We can have compassion for ourselves and one another.

The big question is how do we build resiliency, adapting quickly in times of stress. The stresses of family, relationship problems, health problems, loss, problems in the workplace or even financial problems are a few stressors. 

How do we bounce back? Developing resilience can help you cope and bounce back after changes, challenges, setbacks, disappointments and failures.  There is always a silver lining in the worst times. At some point during your process, there will come a time when you can see the positivity in your situation. 

Resilience is the ability to roll with the punches. When you’re stressed, or trauma happens, you will experience all the emotions of anger, grief, and pain but the key to resilience is to be you are able to function both physically and psychologically. When we don’t have control over our situation, it’s really important to be in acceptance. 

It’s important to have a balanced emotional approach to dealing with challenges when we go through them. Staying present is key.

It’s important to pay attention to where our mind is. If we can be mindful when we are in negativity, pause for a moment, take deep breaths, and ask yourself what are five things you are grateful for. Being in gratitude is so important. Being in negative self-talk isn’t going to help nor change the situation. Ask yourself how can I turn my negativity into positivity. GRATITUDE IS HUGE! Look at all the things that are good in your life. We all have them. 

We all experience pain in life. One way we can become resilient is to look at the situation, try to find a solution to help you find a way to be resilient. It’s so helpful if you have someone you can talk to. Someone who will listen to you with an open heart. Someone who can give you some positive insight. There can be times if you don’t reach out that your mindset is stuck in negativity just like a hamster running in a continuous loop. It doesn’t stop. 

It’s so hard to stop that loop without the help of others. It’s important to open our hearts up and reach out. You don’t have to feel alone. Just talking about it gives the problem less power. It feels good to talk about things to a trusted person. It feels good to know that you are being heard. It feels good to be acknowledged. Strong social connection!

Another way you can become resilient through difficult times is be of service to others. Studies show that serotonin the neurotransmitter associated with feelings of happiness and well-being is used more efficiently by people who engage in an act of kindness. It’s getting yourself out of yourself. Acts of kindness have a cumulative effect. Volunteering can be a real good solution to get you out of your negativity and be more positive. Human connection is so important. 

I read that for every heart-wrenching negative experience that you go through, you should try to experience at least a few heartfelt experiences that will lift you up. I am a believer in affirmations. I read affirmations on a daily basis. It really does help to read something positive, which can shift your mindset from negativity into positivity. 

Most important is taking care of yourself. Having good regular healthy habits is the foundation for both mental and emotional resilience. Get enough rest. Eat healthy foods. Stay hydrated. This can help with being resilient. Take regular mental breaks.

Meditation can help with this as it slows down our thought process. It creates calm and peace. Create something. This is a great tool, which helps me be present, and takes my mind off the challenging time. When I create, it makes me feel good. When I create it keeps me focused on what I am actually creating. When I create, I am fully present.

Spend time outdoors in nature or just walk and breathe in fresh air. Research suggests that 20 minutes being outside leads to more expansive and open thinking. It’s a pro-resilient mindset. It can help with anxiety and depression, improves your immunity and lowers levels of inflammatory chemicals in your body. Yoga is a great way to remain calm, and in the present moment. Taking deep breaths. It can calm you. If you can, do at least five deep breathes in one sitting. Breathe in and count to 10, pause for a couple of seconds and slowly breathe out for the count of 11. Feel what is going on with your body as you do this exercise. 

Do your best to remain hopeful. You can’t change the past but you can always look toward the future. It’s important to remember that when we experience a challenging time in our life, when we experience trauma, experience pain and suffering, it’s important to stay positive. I know this is no easy task. However staying in the negativity is not a good way to live your life. 

Humor is important too. I know it’s not what you are thinking when you are in the middle of challenging times. It’s a break from the negativity. Laughter is important. If you can, watch a movie that is funny. Laughing reduces tension. Resilience doesn’t make things go away but it can give you the ability to see past them. If you aren’t as resilient, you can develop skills on how to be more resilient.

Here are some ways to improve your resilience:

Find a sense of purpose in life.

Build positive beliefs in your abilities.

Develop a strong social network.

Embrace change.

Be optimistic.

Nurture yourself. 

Practice acts of kindness. 

Be present.

Develop your problem solving skills and take action. 

Take control of the things you can and try to accept those things you can’t.

Have self-compassion. Be compassionate with others.

This can all be done by taking one step at a time. 

I hope you found this topic insightful and I encourage you to do what you can during this challenging time to keep positive. Know that this too will pass. Know that we are all going through this together. Reach out to others via facebook, facetime, skype; any measure of vitural connection. Call a friend or family member. I am sending you all hugs. Love and light.

YOUR AUTHENTIC SELF

Author, Natasha Burke I am Enough, Becoming empowered and celebrating your True self

Being your authentic self is the culmination of a lifetime of lessons in living, learning, growing and changing. It’s all the things that make you unique, and need to be expressed. It is not what you believe you are supposed to be and do.

Being your authentic self is the core of who you are. It’s the real, true, genuine substance of who you are. It’s all of the things that make you unique and authentic.

Being authentic means to be true to one’s own personality and spirit despite pressures from external forces and influences.  It’s hard not to be influenced by external forces, such as what we see on television, social media or experience from our family, friends or peers. It’s not defined as your job, your function or role in the world. When you are not living your authentic self, you can find yourself incomplete, as if there is a hole in your soul.

Let’s step back to when we were born. On the day we were born, we were pure, perfect, innocent, beautiful, precious, amazing, alert, joyful, loving, peaceful, happy, wondrous, trusting, and a divine presence. The list goes on. This was our authentic self! This was our true essence.

As we got older, we inherited belief systems from others. We became aware of what others thought about us, told us what we should be or shouldn’t be. We forgot the true essence of who we really are. We forgot our true authentic self. Living your life through the lens of others, you live your life as your “false” self. You live a life through the lens of how the world sees you. 

When you don’t live your life wholeheartedly, when you ignore your true gifts and talents, you are living your life as a false self. Living through the lens of your false self drains your life force. I believe it’s much easer to live life as your authentic self. 

Authenticity is the daily practice of letting go of who we think we are supposed to be and embracing who we are! –Brene Brown

At the end of the day, you are the only one who can look in the mirror and decide if you like the person looking back at you. The more you practice being your true authentic self, the easier it gets. 

I invite you to ponder these questions: 

Are you living a life that is more in tune with your “authentic” self (who you were created to be) or your “false” self (who the world has told you to be)? 

Do you find it easier to fill the roles your family and friends expect of you? 

Do you long to become who you really want to be? Your authentic self. 

Do you want to be like everybody else or do you want to be your authentic self? 

Do I see myself through the lens of others? Am I afraid to show the world my authentic self? If yes, why? Do I have a mask that I want to remove? I invite you to remove your mask. It may be uncomfortable because you have had this mask on perhaps your whole life. Unveil your mask and discover your true essence. 

When someone asks you “Who are you?” What is your answer? Is it, “I am a student.” “I am an artist.” “I am an athlete.” The list goes on and on. Does this sound familiar?

Often the answer isn’t who you are but what you do, what your social place is or how you see yourself function in life. Our roles in life don’t make us who we are. We change our roles in different social situations and act out the character because we think we should. When you realize that you act this way, you are not being you at your deepest level. 

Perhaps you can’t answer who you are because you don’t know. It’s okay. I invite you to be curious and explore who you really are. Give yourself this amazing gift. You are worth it. 

As you take this journey, be compassionate with yourself. Allow your process to unfold. Don’t compare yourself to others or concern yourself with what people will think. What matters is living your life wholeheartedly! Being the authentic you!

The process can be uncomfortable but discovering 

your authentic self will be much more satisfying than being a false self to satisfy others.

The world needs you to show up as your true authentic self. Slowly shed the mask of who you think you are and dive into your real self. It’s time to be real. It’s vital to your happiness.

GRATITUDE

Written by Natasha Burke

Gratitude is the quality of being thankful, a readiness to show appreciation for and to return to kindness.

Every morning when I wake up, I start my day by stating what I am grateful for. This just sets the tone for my day, being grateful. I am grateful for the abundance in my life. This is a wonderful ritual to start a brand new day.

Being more grateful in life means that you are also allowing yourself to be happier, more content, and more satisfied with everything that is going on around you. If you have negative thoughts, replace them with positive thoughts. It’s all about being mindful.  Gratitude changes the heart’s rhythm quicker than other positive reaction or feeling . We raise the vibration of this energy. 

With all the stress, disappointments, and challenges life brings us, you might ask yourself how can I be more grateful with my life?

Live in the moment. Remember what you are grateful for. Just being alive is a huge start.  Read an inspirational quote for the day. Most important is to always appreciate what you have now. 

The happiest people are those who are content with what they currently have, not what they lack. 

Reasons why gratitude is important:

Gratitude is an antidote to negative emotions.

Gratitude helps you savor your positive experiences. 

Be mindful and engage in the present moment.

Gratitude helps you cope with stress and life difficulties.

Gratitude boosts your confidence and self-esteem.

Gratitude fosters empathy.

Gratitude improves your physical health.

Gratitude fosters resilience.

Gratitude strengthens relationships.

Gratitude enhances mindfulness.

Every action begins with a thought. I love this quote by Gandhi:

Your beliefs become your thoughts

Your thoughts become your words

Your words become your actions

You habits become your values

Your values become your destiny

Make yourself gratitude cards, decorate them beautifully and look at them as a reminder of what you are grateful for. 

TRIGGERS

Triggers
Witten by Natasha Burke
November 9, 2018

Do you have triggers? What are your triggers? What do you do when you are triggered? Do you have coping skills to use when you are triggered?

You might ask, what is a trigger? A trigger is something that sets off a memory tape or flashbacks bringing the person back to the event of her/his original trauma.

Triggers are real. Different things trigger different people. A person may avoid situations and stimuli that she/he thinks may trigger a flashback.

Triggers are old painful feelings. Once you recognize your trigger, I invite you to look at that trigger. See where it originated so that when you do get triggered, you will be able to assess what is going on in your body and will be able to use your coping tools quicker.

I think about how many people in the world have trauma, PTSD and triggers. I am writing about this topic as I was triggered yesterday.

I was triggered from the shooting in Thousand Oaks. My grandson’s best friend’s sister died in that shooting. My heart goes out to their family. My heart goes out to our family. Once again a senseless act of violence that affects so many people. Family members of loved ones, here one day, gone the next.

This hits so close to home for me as it brought me back to the trauma of last year, my daughter being in the Las Vegas shooting. The shooting at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburg and now the shooting in Sherman Oaks triggered my daughter. She told me she feels like she is reliving the trauma of last year. Triggers are real.

Another trigger was the Camp fire in Butte County. I live in Santa Rosa and the smoke is so bad here. It reminds me of when the fires happened in my own city last year. I have family that live in Paradise; they are evacuated and not sure if they will have a home to return to. So many fires this year have affected so many people.

A year and a half ago I began the journey to go deep with PTSD and triggers. I really didn’t know what PTSD was until one day I looked at this flyer and it described symptoms. I thought to myself, wow, all these years I felt like something was wrong with me. I always felt there was a hole. I didn’t know what it was but it got worse and I knew that it was time to address my issues. This was the start of my deep work with EMDR and Somatic Therapy. I am learning where the triggers originated from. I pay attention to what triggers feel like in my body. This is very new for me. As a survivor of childhood and adult abuse, I wasn’t fully in my body. I was numb most of my life.

In the past when I was triggered, I have spiraled deep down a dark hole, which paralyzed me for days. At first I didn’t know what was going on, but at some point I realized that it was a trigger. What were my symptoms? Anger, I have been angry for many years. I didn’t know where that stemmed from, I just felt angry. I have anxiety, lots of it. I feel it in my chest (like I can’t breathe or I feel tightness), and stomach area (feeling nauseated). I have felt out of control, my head spinning. The external triggers are shootings; fire and certain movies can trigger me. It could be something someone said to me. It’s so interesting to me how something can trigger an old trauma.

I am grateful that I can finally pay attention to what triggers me. It’s now easier figuring out what is going on with me that caused me to be triggered. The big cue is paying attention to what is going on in my body. I don’t spiral for days and feel out of control. I look at what is triggering me, and I use some of my tools that I have learned to cope. This is a process but I am getting better at handling triggers. What I do to cope is to breathe, deep belly breathes, 3-5 at a time. I check in with my body and notice what I am feeling. I move, this really helps me get grounded.

I wonder if my triggers will every go away, or whether I will just handle them in a healthier way.

Here is a list of internal and external triggers.

Internal Triggers
Anger
Anxiety
Sadness
Memories
Feeling lonely
Feeling abandoned
Frustration
Feeling out of control
Feeling vulnerable
Racing heartbeat
Pain
Muscle tension

External Triggers
An argument
Seeing a news article that reminds you of your traumatic event
Watching a movie or television show that reminds you of your traumatic event
Seeing a car accident
Certain smells
The end of a relationship
An anniversary
Holidays
A specific place
Seeing someone who reminds you of a person connected to your traumatic event

It can be challenging to identify what your triggers are, but by knowing what they are, you can understand them and use tools that will help you cope better when you are triggered.

With practice, emotional triggers can subside, but they may never go away. Because we often cannot avoid triggers, it is important to learn ways of coping with triggers. Effective, healthy coping strategies for lessening the impact of triggers include:

Mindfulness
Relaxation
Self-Soothing
Grounding
Expressive writing
Social support
Deep breathing

Being more aware of your triggers can be beneficial. When you have awareness, your emotional reactions may begin to feel more understandable, valid, predictable, and less out of control. This can positively impact your mood and overall well-being. If you do have triggers, I hope you can recognize them as they are debilitating. It’s rough going through the process of healing, but you are worth it!

 

National Hispanic Heritage Month

Written by Bianca Peralta

Women have always been associated as flowers due to their apparent feminine and delicate nature. However, flowers are essential to our ecosystem and much like women, we couldn’t survive without either. Also flowers range from different shapes, sizes, and colors just like the wonderful Hispanic Women we honor during Hispanic Heritage month. I want to take the time to reclaim the feminine association of a flower by demonstrating how each unique flower represents a different Hispanic female icon. Though individually these flowers are stunning and serve a various array of different functions out in nature, when you put all the flowers together, the bouquet makes up a uniquely stunning masterpiece.

As a twenty one year old, Mexican-American women it’s hard to stay positive about a month dedicated to celebrating the amazing feats of my culture because Hispanic Heritage month tends to highlight the men like Cesar Chavez, Juan Calamera, Diego Rivera, featuring one woman which is normally Frida Kahlo. So what about all the amazing feats of other Hispanic women that is overshadowed by males?

To highlight the amazing, Hispanic women, I have compared a diverse range of icons ranging from painters to supreme court justices to the unique and beautiful flower that best embodies them. As a Sorority woman in Alpha Omicron Pi, we follow the motto of “individually unique, all together complete.” So let’s celebrate the complexity of the individual woman and while also understanding how her unique contributions contribute to the Hispanic culture like diverse flowers making up a stunning bouquet. Dolores Huerta, the flowers of Kurunj.

The flowers of a Kurinji plant take forever to fully bloom, yet when they do, provide a beautiful spectacle that is worth the wait. The fearless leader we know today as Dolores Huerta was once a social outcast because she was a single mother, an immigrant, a farmhand, and female. Little did she know, that she would take on the world despite being a female of color, older, or unmarried. She empowered a generation of women like my Abuela, the immigrant farmhand who sold tortillas in the migrant camps, to chant “Si Se Puede” alongside the men. Her leadership bloomed because she empowered the women around her to change the gender dynamic of a civil rights movement. So ladies, next time you think you are too old or too unworthy to make a change, think again. Like Dolores and the Kurinji Plant’s flowers, your time to bloom will come, it just might take a while.

Sonia Sotomayor, Purple Iris Hollywood may have the fictional Elle Woods to inspire women to pursue law, but Hispanics have Sonia Sotomayor to look up to. Think of it, the first Hispanic to be on SCOTUS isn’t a male! As an eleven year old who dreamed of being a lawyer when this historical feat happened, I couldn’t help but think of hope. The judicial system doesn’t favor women, let alone brown women like me. Even today, despite the new surge in toxic masculinity and xenophobia, I remain determined to go to law school because I know women like me can do it! The Iris has many meanings and many places use it as the official flower, but I was told growing up that the Iris means hope. Sotomayor stands out amongst her fellow justices on the supreme court like a bright purple iris amongst a field of white daisies. However, that bold purple iris is essentially paving a way for the other purple irises to mix in and grow alongside the white daisies.

I remember watching West Side Story and being completely enamored with Rita Moreno as she successfully managed to dance, sing, and act equally amazing. It was years later I would find out that most of the cast wasn’t even Puerto Rican, except for Moreno. I mean if we thought Hollywood was predominantly white now, imagine it years ago. However, her magnificent on screen presence was due to her talent, not her race. Like the birds of paradise flower, Moreno was bold and magnificent. Don’t believe me? Well I challenge you to go look up her prestigious awards Diane Guerrero, Gladiolus.

The Gladiolus flower symbolizes strength, a characteristic Diane Guerrero has proven to possess as she continues to speak out against modern day immigration reform. Her family was deported back to Columbia while she remained in the United States as a young child. Nevertheless, she pursued acting and used her fame as a platform to speak out for those who have no voice. Her strength has motivated my generation of young women to use our voice for those who can’t. She isn’t in our history books yet, allowing girls to find their voice and be a part of a movement.

There are so many iconic Hispanic women that have done some pretty remarkable things. Lastly I want to dedicate the Marigold flower to all the amazing Hispanic women, like my Abuela who marched alongside Dolores Huerta, who have now been laid to rest. In my culture, these flowers honor the dead.

There are amazing women everywhere and here at Women Empowering Women, we make sure to include all women from all walks of life in our empowerment narrative. I hope you take the flower analogy with you, and take the time to celebrate how unique we all are. But when we come together we are beautiful, unstoppable forces of nature.

WHY DO WE COMPARE OURSELVES TO OTHER WOMEN?

Natasha Burke, Women Empower Each Other
June 21, 2018

“COMPARISON IS THE THIEF OF JOY”, Theodore Roosevelt

I am going to be authentic and share with you where my struggles with comparison have been. I invite you to ponder the questions of when did comparison start for you? In what areas do you compare yourself with other women, and how does it make you feel? My thought is by being mindful when comparison shows up in your life, you can name it, claim it, and most important, release it. It comes down to being ENOUGH! I AM ENOUGH! YOU ARE ENOUGH!

For me body image has been huge for most of my life. I have felt jealous. I have felt fat. I wanted my body to look like someone else’s body. If only….. It started with being a young girl. I have a sister; her body type is very thin. My body type is stocky. I wanted to be thinner.

It’s been exhausting feeling inadequate, NOT ENOUGH. It’s exhausting to go on diets; and I realize I don’t do well with diets. I don’t know about you but I have probably been on most diet fads throughout my years. It never worked for me. The psychological component of feeling like I couldn’t eat something was more powerful then the actual act of dieting. It’s such a yo-yo effect. Up and down, up and down.

Recently, something clicked about how I compare my body with other women’s bodies.In April, I started thinking about how I need to loose 20 pounds before I go on a trip to Hawaii in July. The thought of me being in a bathing suit prompted me to loose weight. I joined Weight Watchers. Oh my gosh, once again the dieting regime. I had a realization that realistically I wouldn’t loose that much weight in two months. The second realization was all the negative talk I do with myself isn’t working anymore. I don’t like how thinking this way makes me feel.

I pondered why do I do this to myself? Why can’t I accept my body for what it looks like? I explored this deeper. What I discovered is that comparing will never make me feel good about me. I discovered that my body is perfect the way it is, 20 pounds more than what I would like, but it’s perfect. It’s my unique body. It houses my soul. All parts of my body are a miracle. Each part of my body needs the other part to LIVE. The bigger question was, what if I stopped comparing my body to other women’s bodies? What would that look like? I realized that I have never owned my body, I mean truly own it. This work is a process, but instead of seeing myself as a fat woman, I see myself as an amazon woman! Strong, curvy, voluptuous. No one has the body that I have! Owning my body is empowering! Wow, what a huge discovery!

What I do now, is every time I see a woman through the lens of her heart and spirit. I say to myself, “she is beautiful”. With this mindset, I compare less. I appreciate other women and their bodies more. I can smile and say, thank goodness we all have different shapes, sizes, color, flaws, and each body is unique! What would the world look like if we all looked the same? Boring!

Another comparison is, “she is more together than me.” She has a degree, her business is successful, she has a bigger house, nicer car etc. Does this sound familiar??

I was a stay-at-home mom, working from home while I was raising my three children. I earned several certificates in my chosen areas of work. However, once my last child left, I had to figure out what to do next. I didn’t value the path I chose. I started comparing once again and had the feeling that I was not enough. Today it’s less but every now and then I go into that “I am not enough” mode. When I go there, I pull myself out of it and remind myself, what I do is not what gives me value, I am enough!

Many years ago I was living next to a woman who was very materialistic. I always wanted more and more and never felt satisfied.Then came the day when I realized that this wasn’t making me feel good about myself. I could not keep up, and all the material stuff, well it didn’t make me feel whole. It was like an addiction, I wanted more.

 

Today I appreciate all women for who they are and what they do. We are all doing amazing things in the world. WE don’t have to be like others. We need to be okay with WHO WE ARE AND WHAT WE DO!

Comparison destroys confidence and self-belief. It steals joy and much more. It takes up a lot of negative energy. It takes away from what we have achieved and continue to achieve.

Comparison does not give happiness or pleasure. What positive emotions can come from comparing? If you feel other women are ahead, you feel down. If you feel they are behind you, you’ll feel pity and sorry for them. Comparison is a losing game. Comparison is based on FEELING AND NOT TRUTH.

What is a better feeling than comparing? Knowing who you are and appreciate all that you do! We all need different things in life. If you know who you are and what you want, that will keep the focus on YOU!

Create your own path and follow it. We all are on a different path, one that we must take the journey down our own road. I have created the road that I want to follow in my life. This road is mine. I have milestones and challenges but it’s my path. I would like to say that I have travelled the road less traveled! Is it easy? Absolutely not.

Life is a process of CREATION not a destination. Life is not about getting to the end but it’s about learning and experiences, and most of all GROWTH! You don’t need to compare to create.

Compare only with you! You can strive to be better a little bit each day. Commit to growing a little each day and celebrate the small steps forwards into what you want. What a great reminder for me.

If a woman inspires you, let her know. We need to celebrate each other and our accomplishments! Sisterhood is important! Together we rise!

I AM ENOUGH

Written by Natasha Burke
April 9, 2018

How many times have you felt you are not enough? Where does this come from? How does it make you feel?

I am here to remind you that YOU ARE ENOUGH JUST THE WAY YOU ARE. WE ARE ENOUGH JUST THE WAY WE ARE. 

SELF-LOVE- The instinct by which one’s actions are directed to the promotion of one’s own welfare or well-being.

SELF-LOVE: What Does It Mean To Love One’s Self?

“When you are compassionate with yourself, you trust in your soul, which you let guide your life. Your soul knows the geography of your destiny better than you do.”—– John O’Donohue.

SELF-LOVE- I am enough!! I Matter!

When you feel you are not enough, you are not loving yourself. When you compare yourself to someone else, you are not loving yourself. When you are in your head and your inner critic is saying you are not beautiful, worthy of love, fat, something is wrong with you, etc. you are not loving yourself. Does this sound familiar?

FEAR OF NOT BEING GOOD ENOUGH

ATELOPHOBIA (A-TEL-O-PHO-BIA)– The fear of imperfection. The fear of never being good enough.

When you were born, you felt unconditionally loved by your parents. You felt safe because you were being taken care of. That unconditional love doesn’t last forever and perhaps at an early age there were events where you didn’t feel that love.

Maybe it was when you were yelled at. It is at that very moment that you identify with the thought “I am not good enough. The fear of not being good enough was then born.

The fear of not being enough affects your sense of self-power, self-esteem and self-image. Everything you attempt to do is controlled by your self imagine and how much you believe in yourself.

The fear of not being good enough destroys your confidence.

Go deep, explore where this belief system stems from. When you discover the root of this belief, you can then heal what makes you not feel enough. Be compassionate while you do this work. This will take practice. You are worth it!

 

THINGS THAT CAN HELP YOU TO REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE ENOUGH! THIS WILL TAKE PRACTICE! YOU ARE WORTH IT!

We all compare ourselves to other people, but if you could look at another person through the eyes of compassion, understanding, and see a person for who they truly are, that will take away from judgment and jealousy. Look at a person as imperfect as you are and going through their own challenges. Look at a person with love. This takes practice. You are worth it!

Don’t believe everything you think! Thoughts are thoughts, and it’s not healthy and is very exhausting to give power to those negative thoughts. If you catch yourself, try to replace the negative thought with a positive one. This takes practice. You are worth it!

Quote by Jon Kabat-Zinn, “Until you stop breathing, there’s more right with you than wrong with you.” We can always find flaws. However, there are so many more things that you can like about yourself. This takes practice. You are worth it!

You can’t feel acceptance, love and compassion from others if you are in in a state of anger, anxiety, depression or shame. We all have those moments in life. Practice saying during those times, “ love is the greatest gift that I can receive during this challenging time. This takes practice. You are worth it!

Fully accept NOW. This will help you feel satisfied with the later.
Embrace and make peace with where you are right now. Your journey toward something new will feel more peaceful, rewarding and satisfying. If you are always looking for the next…. you will not ever feel satisfied or content. This takes practice. You are worth it!

Focus on your progress rather than perfection. Focus on how far you have gone rather than how far you have left to go. When you strive for perfection and success, and when you feel that you fall short, you feel less than and worthless. Realize that you are striving for success no matter how many times you fail. Don’t beat yourself up but give yourself a pat on the back for trying, making progress, and coming as far as you have. This takes practice. You are worth it!

If you tell yourself you are worthless and unlovable it won’t make you feel worthy and loveable. Love yourself! No matter where you are in life or even if you want to make changes, LOVE YOURSELF! YOU ARE ENOUGH!

Everyday, as often as you can say, I AM ENOUGH! This takes practice. You are worth it!

 

 

BELIEF SYSTEM

Written by Natasha Burke, February 23, 2018


What are your core beliefs? Are you beliefs formed based on other people’s beliefs? Does your belief system enrich your life or cause you pain and suffering?

Belief systems come from external influences such as religion, political system, society, family, parents, relatives, friends, peers, mentors, employers, media and others. Your belief system is fundamentally how you approach your life.

 

Think back as far as you can at something someone said that you continue to hold as part of your belief. Is this belief something you truly believe about yourself? Is this belief something that gets in the way of living your life to it’s fullest?

I invite you to go within and discover where some of your beliefs stem from and if they don’t resonate with the you, then it’s time to replace with a new belief in order to live the life you really want.

Check in with yourself and see how this belief makes you feel. How does this belief work in all aspects of your life?

Secrets and Silence

Secrets and Silence

How many of you have held a secret that causes you pain and suffering? How many of you have been silent? Why do you continue to be silent? I invite you to ponder these questions if you have secrets and have been silent. Giving the secrets a voice is FREEDOM!

I am one of those women who have been silent most of my life. I have carried this burden. As a result of it, for years I questioned what is wrong with me? I always had this lingering hole in my being. I never knew what it was.

It was my 60th birthday that prompted me to get back into therapy and dig deep and figure out what was truly going on. I didn’t want to numb, drink, eat my feelings, or anything that I thought would make me feel better. None of it ever made me feel better. It was always a temporary fix.

As I began my journey unveiling my secrets, I realized there is nothing wrong with me. There were things that happened in my life that I could never share with someone because there was FEAR, SHAME, JUDGEMENT, and ANGER, around my secrets. I felt less than, not whole, not good enough, certainly not in my power. I lived life small.

Was it hard to tell someone my secret? Absolutely. I remember thinking about the emotions that went with having to share my secrets. I felt fear, shame, guilt, blame, afraid that others would judge me. I felt sick to my stomach when I thought about sharing my secret.

I thought about who I trust enough to share my secrets with. Once I opened up to one person, a person whom I trust, then I was able to share with others, people whom I trust. It’s very important that you share with someone who will listen to you, who will support you to feel safe enough to share.

This was a huge burden lifted up. One by one, I released my secrets, put a voice to them, and released them. Knowing that as I do this work, I am more empowered. I am stronger, and I no longer live little. I live life BIG! There is so much empowerment doing this work.

Women, it’s important that we use our voice! We speak our truth! We honor and love ourselves enough to open up and release the secrets that we hold. Together we will rise!

 

 

Written by Natasha Burke, January 18, 2018

What Makes A Woman Powerful? by Jane Powell

A powerful woman doesn’t have to prove she is powerful.

Women who feel the need to prove their power usually deep down don’t feel they are powerful. They try to prove something to themselves and others. The more you continue down this path, the more doubts you will have.

 

Women know their power. We are tough yet tender daily. We remain strong with our loved ones through rough times. If they stumble or need support, we are there with soft sensitive words, and open our hearts to them and comfort them with our arms.

Be proud of your ability to be strong and gentle. Let your power make it known, through your quiet, calm confidence and the respect it surrounds you.

If you find yourself trying to prove your power to others, please stop. True power doesn’t need to shout to prove itself. It can whisper and still be heard.

Be proud of your ability to be both strong and gentle. Embrace these different sides of your personality and exercise them in equal measure. Show your strength and determination.

YOU ARE A POWERFUL WOMAN! I AM A POWERFUL WOMAN!