Now that I have made the final decision to break away from my home church until further notice, the process of that breaking away continues. I say continue because the process started a year ago with thoughts and some actions. The pandemic really saved me from having to go but, this year it’s been a mostly not there to a “need be basis”. This morning I felt guilt for not going but, why did I feel such guilt? I know it’s because that is what the church has used to pull in people and to keep people. By enlarge. It’s not wrong for me to want to be fed good, wholesome, prepared spiritual food and not to settle for anything less. It is good to know that I am in a position to feed myself and others. I am growing my own garden. I have been all along. It’s also good to know there are others that are qualified spiritual chefs and cooks I can get a plate or meal from.
This “ministry”, if you can call it that, I am creating is different than the traditional brick and mortar, fire and brimstone. Although, I have a Christian background and foundation, I am built from spirituality, research, wisdom, and life experiences. I am not ridged in my thinking but, I am not flimsy either. There have been many pioneers before me that have branched out into the “light” and some were cut off from the very religion that launched them.
No one can do what you do, how you do it. No one has your personality or experiences. No one has your energy. No one has your thought process or habits. I know that I am dragging my feet. I know that I am scared out of my wits and I should embrace that with a bear hug. I joined TikTok as @nikkisconfettilife to get use to hearing my voice and creating short snaps of video with positive content. I must say I like it. I am yet to follow instructions on my YouTube channel because I don’t like the quality of video from my camera and I really am not comfortable watching myself. The two excuses that do not hold water.
One thing I was obedient about was taking a class this week on Creative Teaching through the association of my old denomination. It was a really good class with information and ideas I can apply to what I am embarking on. It also reminded me that I DO have a gift and a passion for teaching. Teaching Sunday School and teaching the congregation was my favorite thing to do. The entire process of studying and gathering, verifying information was something I enjoyed. It was the helping people to understand, be encouraged, or enlightened that meant the most. Basically, you understood what I was trying to convey or you got something helpful from it. That is my only aim with the YouTube channel. To help someone.
Here are some photos from Orange Bach 2021 with Family.
We stayed in a 4 bedroom, five bathroom beach condo. It was lovely!
Views from the condo. We saw schools of STINGRAYS everyday and even saw some jump out of the water. We saw dolphins each day and early in the mornings they really showed out jumping out of the water. Magical. Breathtaking. Beautiful.
Above: A Night in White and Blue: Dinner at Cobalt was exceptional.
Above: This was the Tiki Boat Tour and it was like a mini party on the water.
I definitely caught some breathtaking sunrises and sunsets.
Certainly, we will return next year as this vacation is our wind down vacation. We had meals at the condo, movie night, and plenty of down time. My favorite times were in the morning catching the sunrise, meeting the other early risers in the kitchen and onto the balcony to soak in tranquility.
Baby, you’ve got it. You’ve got what it takes to become the best version of yourself and to achieve your goals and dreams. Stop looking at other people’s journey and bank accounts. Focus on the gifts inside of you and stop trying to emulate someone else! Become bold and do the work to find your authentic self and gather the courage to live out your dreams. You are capable! Now cape up!
Before the fly decided to take a swim…it didn’t make it.
The other night I had anxiety which led to me being up later than usual. After I took something for anxiety, I listened to a guided meditation and then I drifted off to sleep. I recall right before I drifted off to sleep, I began to silently TALK BACK to anxiety. To the thoughts in my mind. “It’s alright, Nicole. Everything will work out for your good. Anxiety is such a liar. You are so blessed. You actually manifested this home and it was a grueling process but, you made it. You can even dream of another home. You will find love and love will find you. Does it really matter when it shows up? It will show up. Anxiety knows nothing but negativity. Money is not a problem. Books will become best sellers. You can do it. If they can write books back to back you can, too. The right people will read your books. You are loved. God loves you and cares about your wants, desires, needs.”
And somewhere afterwards I feel asleep. The next few days I thought about how anxiety talks a lot of trash. You know like athletes do when they are in a game. You do not want to hear some of the things they say. Growing up with a few athletic siblings, the things you hear courtside is not for the “saints”. Some of the things football players say on the field…
Well, that is how anxiety is. It’s talks TRASH. It gets you riled up and sometimes it gets you to become overwhelmed or afraid. Some of us go into shut down mode and some of us become agitated. But, once it was brought to my attention that anxiety talks trash, I thought about how the other player usually talks trash back. I didn’t want to talk trash so I decided to call it “Talking TRUTH and FACTS” back. I call it talking HOPE.
The next time anxiety begins to talk trash, talk truth, facts, and hope.
It’s a fact I am 40 something and I haven’t found love. It’s also a fact that I can still find love.
I don’t know how it’s going to work out but, God always works it out. Let me tell you about some times it worked out for me…
And so on and so forth. This is just one method I am learning to use when anxiety wants to talk to me. I hope it helps someone else.
Every month I will be sharing my lessons, reminders, and observations of the previous month. So it’s October and here is what I have gained or gleamed from September.
You can accept people as they are BUT, you DO NOT have to accept them into your physical space or your heart space.
You don’t have to always choose the hard way to learn or to love.
There is a time for everything. There is a time not to trust your logic or heart (emotions) but, to trust your intuition. This is the time to trust your intuition. Solar plexus. Quiet the heart and logic through prayer and meditation. Through exercise. Your intuition, the Holy Spirit, your holy spirit, will speak. This is ONE way to GAIN CLARITY. (I was desperate for clarity!)
Another way to CLARITY is to catch a hawks point of view. My daughter and I saw a Cooper’s Hawk at eyelevel which is rare. Rise above your feelings and thoughts and observe what you see. Above the confusion, above the chaos, is a view that allows you to sort things out QUIETLY and to gain…CLARITY. Be calm like the hawk. Be reserved. Be in control of YOU, your actions and reactions.
From a friend of mine, “There is a difference between an Alpha male and a Neanderthal.” If your definition of an alpha male is one that is one that is the leader of the pack, dominant, controlling, bossy, rude, pushy…I am not the one for you. I am in the market for a team player. Side by side. Go play golf.
I learned that I can manufacture confidence on the spot.
Let love come to me in it’s own time and in it’s own way. Anything I ever had too soon or too much of only made me ill.
Reminder: When you FEEL like you need to pray but, don’t know what to say, ask Spirit to pray for you and just be quiet. Be still. Just feel. Spirit will pray and you will receive what it is you cannot put into words.
Let’s start at the beginning. I booked this tour/adventure for my family and thought nothing about it until the date drew closer. I begin to become afraid of getting on the water in a tiki boat because I can not swim. I have been on three cruises. I still have some fear and I rationalized that as normal. Ok. No problem. I am still getting on the boat I tell myself.
I get on the boat and immediately, fear rises and changes into anxiety. I am now gripping the bar and I am having second, third, fourth, thousands of thoughts. I feel like I can’t breathe. I tell my fiend. I am scared! He says, “It’s ok. Just breathe. Nothing is going to happen.” I am thinking, “How many people have thought or said that and something happened.” I laid my head on the bar. The Captain wanted to know who all could swim and I was the only one that couldn’t. I looked at my friend and he said, “I am not going to let anything happen to you. I gotcha. Try to relax and enjoy.” The Captain saw my fear and begin to tell me his credentials and then he started to explain the physics of how this type of boat works. With the combination of trust in my friend and the captain, trust in God, the logic of how this boat floats, and comforting words (Oh yeah and downing a glass of pineapple sangria!) I started to relax.
I begin to talk to myself silently, “All is well. IF something happens you will not die. All of these people can swim and they will help you. The coastguard is literally in the water. It’s not your time. This is not how you will go and you know this. God is not going to let anything happen to you. Breathe. Look at the beautiful water all around you. Look at the clear blue skies. Feel the breeze. Soak up the sun and moment of this experience. And have a shot of vodka. :-D! ” Hey, my wine was all gone. After this photo was snapped, I thought about if I should post it. I look so confident but, I didn’t start out that way. I also thought about HOW I LOOKED IN THIS PHOTO. I am not a slim chic. I am who I am and I do love myself and my body. (I worked hard to get there) But most of us, even men, have some body insecurities. I saw the double chin. I saw the big boobs. I saw the mid section. I saw the lack of “junk in the trunk”. All of the things that cross between “WHITE AMERICAN BEAUTY” and “MY CULTURE’S DEFINITION” of beauty. This only lasted a split second because I was like, “The hell away with people. I love me!” Pic posted!
For some confidence is a given and for others we have to work at it. Confidence is built through experience. There are times you get to whip out your confidence on the spot and then there are times it has to be manufactured on the spot. The tools I was searching for in that moment seem to escape me. My fear of drowning swallowed up my confidence. TRUST is what I was searching for. LOGIC is what I was searching for. A PLAN for SAFETY is what I was searching for. When those things were presented to me I had to accept those tools. Then I had to use those tools to dig my way out of anxiety and an impeding anxiety attack. I did just that. It was difficult and it had to be done quickly.
I enjoyed the tour. I partied. I learned a few things about the area. I made memories with family. I did something new. I conquered a fear and silenced anxiety that day. Victory.
Friday I decided to have a really good cheeseburger and fries combo with a diet coke for a late lunch. This was suppose to be it until dinner with the exception of a 15g snack. After the meal I was still thirsty. I was still a little hungry. That’s not a problem because I could have chosen something else to eat but, it needed to be healthy. I didn’t do that. I CHOSE some corn chips and a bottle of ginger green tea. That bottle of ginger green tea has a serving for 3 and guess what? I drank it all!!!
I am diabetic. In about an hour I began to feel really bad. I checked my blood sugar and WHOA! I’d never seen it that high before! I didn’t panic. I knew what to do. But boy, was I miserable for the next few hours. I admit I also had too many corn chips…and dip. WHY DID I DO THIS?
You may say it was a lack of self control. I think that’s a part of the puzzle. However, I took a closer look and I examined how I was feeling. I was feeling anxious. I was thinking about the vacation I had coming up and if things would be go well. I was thinking about the guy I am dating and if I’d made the wrong choice inviting him along.
I also wanted those chips and I wanted all of the tea. It was a deliberate choice and decision. I kind of felt like I deserved to have it. I mean after all, my thoughts at that time were on “Why can’t I have what I want in this life? I want what I want now. It’s taking so long to get there.” And so and so forth. FOOD can sometimes be a way to achieve the satisfaction you are lacking at times in life. I wanted to feel satisfaction that I was making the right decisions and that all was going to work out. I went the quick but, temporary route. I took a short cut with consequences.
Take a look at what happens when you have what you want TOO SOON or TOO MUCH? It can make you ill. It can be a disaster. It can not last. In life, we want what we want, and we often want it now. We may feel we have waited long enough and we deserve it. This type of thinking can lead us to make rash decisions and choices. It will lead to frustration and ultimately come to an end. If only I would have had the proper portion at that time. If only I would have gotten control of my emotions or thoughts and then I would have had control of my ACTIONS (DECISIONS). I would have been in a better frame of mind.
I don’t know what it is you want. I don’t know if you are tired of waiting on it to manifest. I don’t know if you don’t have the drive to make it happen and the proper patience as it happens. I don’t know if you are worried or have anxious thoughts. I do know that having what you want when it’s not time for it is not a good thing. I also know that too much of something, that you do want, could become a problem. And we circle back around to TIMING, BALANCE, PRAYER and PATIENCE. But might I add for those of us that struggle with anxiety, PAUSE and ask, WHAT AM I FEELING? WHY? and answer HONESTLY. Then do what you need to do to calm those thoughts and feelings in the least destructive way. Seek out therapeutic methods like exercise, something creative, something relaxing that won’t have a negative impact on you later.
Good Saturday (Rainy and Beautifully Gray here in Memphis, TN) Morning to you! I hope this post finds you well. I thought today would be a great day to share some thrifts, clearance and consignment finds. Enjoy!
I picked up the shoes and purse at a local consignment shop. This was my attire for last Sunday. The top is a Vince Camuto find on clearance and the skirt is from Target. The earrings I found at a yard sale.
The maxi sundresses and hats above and below are from (drum roll please) WAL-MART! The sundresses were $7 each and I have 4 of them. The hats were $5. The swing dresses and shorts were all $5! I bought a few dresses for family and THEY HAVE POCKETS!!!
I stop by this small town Wal-Mart often when I pick my daughter up from school. It’s my secret spot that often have hidden gems.
My spirit will not let up on “clarity”. It is calling me into clarity as of late August and into September. I have learned to NOT ignore this. So, I dive in wholeheartedly with most pulls of my spirit by the Spirit. Although, sometimes, I must admit I unwillingly give in.
Get quiet. Meditate.
Pay attention to the SIGNS. If you are a person like me that loves “signs and wonders” and is interested in symbolism (these things are Biblical as well FYI), then PAY ATTENTION to what stands out to you. I saw a Cooper’s Hawk perched on my neighbor’s mailbox in direct sight. We’ll talk about that Sunday but, look up what things mean that capture your attention.
In this journey of clarity, clouds will roll away and clouds will roll back in like the weather pattern. When Spirit dropped this in my Spirit, I was like “Oh, no. How long will this journey last?” Let’s get this over with is my thoughts. But, Spirit explained by bringing into my remembrance that this is LIFE and this CLARITY leg of the journey is to prepare me to SEE and understand better myself and others. So, when clouds, the cloudy mental moments come, I will understand where the confusion, anxiety, or depression is coming from. I will be able to navigate the mental fog BETTER. So this is TRAINING is necessary for my growth and my journey. Still, “ugh. okay.”
The process of clarity are keys to clarity. What’s the process? Well, you will find your process through therapy, hearing directly from Spirit, or GOOGLE. Yes, really. Google Gaining clarity and what resonates with you, go for it. For me thus far, it’s to get quiet. Guided meditation on clarity. PRAYER and after prayer, LISTEN for a response and be AWARE of any SIGNS sent my way. Also, do something I love or something that brings me joy and peace while I wait for the “clouds to roll away.”
And PATIENCE is required in the clarity process. I used to tell people, “I only have patience with the elderly and children.” I am much better NOW and getting better with being patient with others and myself. So, you will have to be patient as the cloudiness rolls to clarity.
Clarity gives insight to YOU, the situation, the people involved and helps you to construct a plan or a response. It’s your next move. Even if that move is to do nothing or let it go.
This is all I have learned in this “Clarity Course” so far. I am currently putting some of these things into practice.
What have you learned about clarity? How do you access clarity when your mind is cloudy or there is confusion in your life?
“In all your ways (decisions, steps, actions) acknowledge Him (see if what you are about to do is alignment with God, Higher Power, the Universe, Your True SPIRIT) and He shall direct (guide you) YOUR path.” – Proverbs 3:6, The Bible